Making Money Through Blogging – The Role of a Blog in Competitive Analysis
A blog, also called web log, blog, or weblog, is simply a website publishing content through the use of a browser-based interface. Unlike websites like traditional news organizations, which are more formal and structured than personal blogs, a blog is more informal and is frequently updated. A blog can be as extensive or as short as an individual wants it to be, with specific categories for different subjects or interest areas. Most blogs can be subscribed to RSS feeds, which automatically update the content without the need for continuous user input. Because blogs are generally self-hosted, anyone can publish a blog on the Internet, regardless of technical knowledge, writing ability, or lack thereof.
Blogs are an offshoot of social media websites. Social media websites such as Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, and LinkedIn are online communities where people gather together to discuss all topics relevant to their friendship, professional, or personal lives. As previously stated, blogs are simply written versions of social media forums, but the two forms interact differently. In essence, blogs are personal blogs that focus on a single topic or theme, but also provide the means for other members to comment or interact. Through the use of RSS feeds and syndication, blogs allow readers to easily keep up with the latest events by receiving the post as an email, instant message, or news tip, directly from the blog owner. As blogs are becoming more popular among companies as a means of communication, companies have begun publishing company blogs on their own websites.
There are many reasons a company might want to publish a blog on their company website. One reason is that blog posts allow company owners to “show off” their favorite products, discuss new products, and disseminate company information to their readers. Other reasons a company might want to publish a blog on their website include: conducting surveys, providing tips, or announcing new hires. Another reason a company might want to post a blog on their website is to provide readers with a platform to communicate with the company.
With blogs, one way companies can make money is through advertisements. When a company blog discusses certain products or services they are offering, they may generate ads on their blog posts or through hyperlinks on their website. Because blogs are dynamic in nature, the revenue generated through these ads can vary on a daily or weekly basis. Companies who wish to generate alternate sources of revenue through blogs should make sure that they have carefully considered their options.
Some blogs, called “weblogs,” exist solely for the purposes of commenting on other people’s blogs. Other blogs, or weblogs, exist as hybrid platforms for blogging, where they are used to display advertising as well as for communicating with the public. Hybrid blogs are increasingly common on the Internet. Hybrid blogs work by using the same platform as another website, in the form of an affiliate network. Bloggers who post on other people’s blogs and vice versa, share advertising revenue with the host site.
The content on a blog will have a strong impact on whether a blog will generate revenue or not. Therefore, it is critical for a company to carefully consider which types of content will generate the most revenue through advertising. If a blog is purely intended for commentary, there will not likely be many people that will be exposed to the blog post styles that the company is using. This means that a blog post style will not be as effective for a company that hopes to target a specific audience or a specific geography.