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How to write blogs and influence people

June 12, 2009 - Deb Gau
Back when I was thinking of all the possible downsides of having a blog, there was one situation that honestly didn’t occur to me - receiving spam.

I’m not talking about the kind of spam that I’ve seen appear in the blog comments sections of other websites, where random people will leave advertisements for their (usually Not Safe For Work) products. What I’ve found in my e-mail inbox a couple of times now is a completely different, but weirdly blog-centric variety of spam.

“Hi, Deb,” the e-mail will start out. “Why don’t you write a blog about our product/website/so on?” Then the rest of the message will be a press release by a public relations firm I’ve never heard of, on a subject with no connection whatsoever to southwest Minnesota. Frankly, I’m baffled. Not so much about the press release part - newsrooms get sent a lot of press releases, and most of the time, they’re just as random as that. No, what confuses me is the thought that somebody out there must believe I have enough influence on blog readers to make a good spokesperson. The more I think about it, it's actually kind of funny.

I think it also misses the whole point of Internet “viral” marketing. The big deal with the Internet is that it allows people with similar interests to pass information to each other. Trying to talk a random blogger into plugging your product probably won’t work as well as going directly to the sites that your desired customers frequent.

But then, what do I know, with my one undergrad marketing course and casual Internet usage? Maybe I just haven’t realized the extent of my blogging superpowers yet.


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