Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Apostrophica: the Problem with Blog Consultants

apostrophica Posted by Hello

We who are supposedly "consulting" with clients on how to build, write, maintain, and promote a business blog, need to work harder on perfecting our own blogs.

I see a deadly apostrophica creeping into our ranks all over the Business Sector of the Bloatosphere.

We “blog consultants” need to get our own acts together first.

We, and I include myself, need to write better, think smarter, and offer much better value to clients.

We could do more harm than good to clients.

We aren’t writing valuable posts, too many “I went to such and such conference” or “Billy Blogalot is a great blogger, let me introduce him, so he can kiss my behind later on his blog” or “guess who has a great tv commercial right now? Nike and Tiger Woods".

Give me a break.

We all need to improve, and I ain’t no role model. I need to improve more than my esteemed colleagues here, some of which Toby, Paul, and Jeremy are wonderful allies and friends.

I just don’t think our own blogs are good enough yet.

Don’t hate me for saying this, it’s my grating goading opinion onion.


[My vasperishly wicked and annoyingly contrarian comment posted on a business blog, whose author was asking "do you provide blogging consultation to clients and businesses?"]

Let's stop gazing lovingly into each other's eyes and start challenging each other to pursue excellance and seth godinian remarkable blogdoms.

We don't write good enough posts.

We don't post enough comments on our fellow bloggers' blogs.

We don't sound the alarm at dubious or demented blogging practices, like sleazy sponsored links and cultish, indiscriminate reciprocal blogrolling.

We don't offer enough practical advice.

We skip over vital issues.

We incestously link to our friends, while ignoring the obscure, but radically brilliant new and struggling business blogs out there.

We may not know who to turn to when we ourselves have questions about tip jars, anonymous blogs, crypto-blogging, code blogging, ghost blogging, team blogging, sleazy sponsored links, audio blogging, podcast search engines, good blog directories, Technorati profiles, deep linking and plagiarizing, stolen posts appearing in material for sale by scumbloggers, etc.

We hype business blogging too much...then clients complain that even though their search engine page rank is high, the blog is not putting cash in their pockets.

We are guilty of "apostrophizing".

Apostrophica: acts of marginalizing the more important blog guidelines in favor of fluff and hyperbole (exaggeration), practices involving the partial explanation of a topic of serious import.

apo = from

strephein = to turn

apostrophe =

(1.) "a turning away to address one person"

(2.) "indicate possessive case"

(3.) "to show omission of a letter or letters from a word."

We are apostrophisers.

We turn away from the real blogging guidelines and proven methods, to address a client in a simpering (silly, affected, smirking) manner to make blogging look exciting, trendy, and profitable.

We act as if we possessed the clues, secrets, and special ingredients of Super Blogging...but we can't even explain RSS, post writing, post title composition, dynamic looping, template selection, color schemes, recommended typefaces and the rationale for them, comment spam prevention, feed scraping, RSS ad spamming, dangers of personal blogging, or multiloguing (as defined by Jennifer Rice, of What's Your Brand Mantra blog, a real blog pro).

I try to cover some of these issues, but only the readers, the audience, can determine if I do it reasonably well.

We omit the really necessary facts about how:

* blogging is hard work, not always "fun" and "self-fulfilling" or "revolutionary"
* blogging must provide lots and lots of practical advice, tips, relevant info
* blogging must express your most obnoxious opinions
* blogging must be sincere, transparent, honest
* readers aren't thrilled with announcements for conferences they can't attend
* readers aren't thrilled with flimsy proclamations of articles they must link to, instead of you giving a nice summary and commentary, plus the link to the article
* you have to post more than twice a month
* you have to have something worthwhile to post about
* you have to interact with other bloggers
* you have to speak in your own authentic voice
* you have to constantly hate your blog and seek ways to improve it
* you have to visit lots of other blogs and post comments at them
* you have to reply in a timely manner to comments on your blog
* you have to accept flaming and trolling as facts of life.

I ain't no role model, as I said above.

But I am saying: "Let's provoke one another to strive for really Astonishing Super Blogs."

Please accept this post in the friendly spirit that I sincerely intend.

I'm really not so bad once you get to know me.

But know this: if I get in your face and debate you aggressively about something, there's a good chance we'll both end up a lot smarter, and tougher in our debating skills. Not flaming, just honest Socratic debate.

I seek to champion the New Improved Business Blogosphere that is coming, if we make it happen.

If you have suggestions, complaints, opposing points of view, please email me.


[signed] Steven Streight aka Vaspers the Grate

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