Saturday, August 26, 2006

Blog Influence by links

I'm trying to figure out what drives people to a blog. Specifically this one. The virgin blogger - guess who? - is faced with an overload of options. The learning curve is steep. And we look for "influencers". Links on the right point to those who have influenced me one way or another. And that is only a start...I'd like to thank the academy, my mother and father....ooops - thats for another post :)

David Armano at Logic+Emotion gives a graphic of his perception. It makes logical sense. The challenging part for me is to make it less linear. More organic - more spherical. I think we can all agree the real point of blogging is to create conversation. That is the grand opportunity we are given with this tool of communication. And it is a special thrill to get a comment on any given entry.

Here's my question. Is blog readership linear to start? Then at some point - the point of conversation - it becomes like ripples in a stream?


David Armano said...


Thanks for your great comment. I don't think blogging is linear at all. I created a visual showing how it's a newtork of "community clusters" interacting with eachother.

It's a messy, noisy organic environment not unlike the market places of the old days.

But my post on influence is another issue. It's merely stating that in this network of chatter, influencers are able to rise to the top (Seth Godin etc.)

In this post, I am not interested in the how as much as I am pointing out that "levels of influence" exist.

It's interesting, because I think people don't like the idea of rank. But rank exists in both human and even animal society (dogs, chimps etc) whether we like it or not.

That said, there are wonderful blogs out there that nobody has ever heard of, just like all of the bands that haven't broke through. Yet.

Thanks again for the comment.

Gavin Heaton said...

Blogs are like conversations snippets ... but almost like conversations that are overheard. Sometimes the audiences of some blogs are very vocal, with loyal readers and "conversationalists" engaged with every post ... and it can be intimidating stepping into the conversation.
While at other times the debate can be all-in, quite funny and very liberating. Perhaps we just like to try and impose some structure over the chaos.
Overall, though, while there is an initial linear direction (ie where your friends and colleagues are your readers/commenters) ... once you start, you have very little control over the connections you make ... they will come from technorati, from google, from blogger or typepad ... and one by one, the audience will grow.
Great conversation! Thanks

BobG said...

Thanks, David and Gavin. What I read is true - post a comment, and receive a comment. I truly appreciate the thoughts you share.

David - I like how you name the network "chatter". And clearly stated on rank. I feel you're right. We humans struggle with the idea. We are all created equal - right? But its plain to see - rank is everywhere. This dislike of rank reminds me of the sometime disdain for competition. There are thousands of thoughtful and interesting blogs yet undiscovered. I think you are onto something with your "levels of influence".

Gavin - overheard conversations - WOW! I recently shared an example of a blog with a friend of mine. His comment "I don't care for them - its like I come into the middle of a conversation". He is a terrfic conversationalist yet uncomfortable at entering a "secret" world.
I love the idea of attempting to impose structure over this chaotic "chatter" -
Thanks again to both of you -

Mack Collier said...

Again Bob, you are doing exactly what you need to do to grow your blog, you are getting involved. Here, and on other blogs. That's all it takes. Then what happens is that you get conversations started on your blog, and when you comment on other blogs, you get the attention of smart people like David, who link to you, and that gives you more exposure.

Keep on keepin' on!

BobG said...

Thanks Mack - starting to get the hang of it. All I need now is the magic to have more than 24 hours in a day :).

Your comment helps me reach a small milestone. It makes the 3rd unique blog that touched my posting. In addition, I now have 3 links to one reader.