… and therefore we blogged.
We are kick starting this week with a round up of thoughts from us here at IB.
Nihal recommends listening to Van Morrison’s Into The Mystic while you read what’s up with IndiPeeps, cheers!
Renie shares what’s new at IB!
Here is a sneak peak into something we are working on…
(Why) is it monumentally stupid to ask bloggers to send their drafts for review before they are published?
Working with IB over these years has given me opportunities to work with some really great minds and of course, some on the other end of the scale too. As a result, there have been some really great questions that have forced me to do my research, get my facts right and re-think the fundamentals before I can face those questions again… and at the same time, some that have simply sent me to the nearest wall (to bang my head on until I got woozy).
Here is one of those questions that we get occasionally. At times, it’s not even a question. It’s just a plain requirement!
“Can you ask the bloggers to send us their posts for us to check? If we are OK with it they can publish. If not, they can make the changes we ask for and then publish it.”
Now, as a blogger what is your response? Do you really want to share your opinions or your thoughts “privately” with the company/brand so they can tell you if it’s good to go?
As a short answer, I’d say it’s quite stupid AND counterproductive to ask bloggers/consumers to send you drafts when you are asking for their honest opinions! If you are not asking for honest content, then there is a very different problem that needs to be fixed first.
Let’s look at the long answer.
First, a blogger is simply like any other consumer, except with a louder voice! When working with bloggers it’s important to remember that. Oftentimes, people easily neglect that and just look at them as ‘Heralds’. And mind you, the heralds are consumers as well and their opinions as consumers are what’s going to shape the future of your product. So it’s important that they are really happy with what they see.
Secondly, users are smart. No buying decision is made from reading just one review. For that to happen, one would have to be really confident about the author and the source. This in itself establishes the fact that they have earned that credibility!
Now is it possible to build such credibility by sending drafts to brands to match their requirement? Facts and incorrect information can always be changed or updated to make sure your readers always get the latest information from you. As bloggers, if we fail to give our community of readers the updates and correct information, we will never build that credibility we just spoke about.
There are no shortcuts to creating a community around you and there are no shortcuts to becoming a content driven brand either. If you are afraid that people will say derogatory things about your brand/product, then that’s the first thing we need to battle before we engage consumers and ask about their experiences.
Let’s also explore the reasons as to why a brand would want to proof read a blog post before it is published?
Its either because they do not understand the medium or they are worried about the quality of the post. Most of the time it’s the later because no one wants to admit they don’t understand the medium now, do they?
Quality, however, is always subjective and has little bearing on what goes viral.
“Rebecca Black’s Friday” is something that comes to mind for an example of a video that went viral. And here is another video that also went viral – The Google Ad connecting 2 friends who got separated due to our India-Pakistan partition. One of this is a great video and the other… not so much at least in terms of “quality of content”. This pop song explores the deepest of truths…
“Today i-is Friday, Friday (Partyin’) We-we- we so excited… Tomorrow is Saturday And Sunday comes after … wards”
We already learnt all this way back in kindergarten now, didn’t we? Coming back to these videos, both of these videos went viral irrespective of their quality. Now some would argue that the Friday song is also of great quality – which is what makes it subjective. Irrespective of its quality, any publicity gained is publicity earned.
Let me know your thoughts on this in the comments. If you’ve answered a yes to the question above, then please remember to send in your comment as a draft so I can validate it and then let you know if you can publish it as is 😉
Have a great week ahead!
Every Indian gamer ever has faced flak for pursuing their passion, and ridiculed for “still playing video games”. How can we ever have a team that is capable of seriously competing at the International level, when sponsorship and funding are non-existent for these so-called ‘Children’s Hobbies’ ?
With tournaments like ‘The International’ having 7 digit prize pools, the world is slowly coming to accept gaming as a mainstream career option. But in the land of Doctors and Engineers, where gaming and blogging are considered pass-times more than anything else, we are not so lucky. Yet we press on, sticking to what we believe in, and not buckling under the pressure that we face.
Don’t give up; Keep doing what you do! You are the pioneers paving a way for yourselves and future gamers. Even if the country hasn’t caught up yet, it will eventually, and all of this hard work and dedication would not have been wasted.
Isn’t it when someone talks about hip hop, what comes to your mind is rap music. But is that what it is? Something that has gained worldwide popularity in such a small time span, can really be just that? It definitely should have something that everyone is able to connect with. Hip hop is more than just a form a music. It is carrying a message that everyone is keen on spreading and letting others know what they stand for. It can be a story telling via music, graffiti on walls, dance sequences or a DJ scratching those turntables. Hip hop is not just about wearing the sneakers or the loose clothes or the big chains. In a Christian wedding the couple wears white clothes which is totally opposite to the Hindu culture as they wear white attire to mourn someone’s passing away. It is just the representation of a culture and their beliefs.
Don’t you get amazed seeing someone beat-boxing, or b-boying or when you figure out all the syllables you just heard in a rap song are rhyming with each other or just by seeing the sheer colorful art on the wall trying to deliver a message.
As Vince Staples has tried putting it in one line, Hip hop is the most imitated, most influential, most creative, most underappreciated, under respected form there is.
Spotted spoken silence in colours
When I look back, I would’ve never imagined myself working in India or for that matter working anywhere else other than a ship. But then as they say life has its own plans. In the last couple of years I have come to truce with life that we’ve have all been destined for something. Yes Destiny!
People say that we make our own destiny, but I’d like to disagree to that as a lot of things in life are outside our control. We really cannot do anything about these factors. All we can do is, do our bit and brace ourselves for life to happen! Looking back from what I’ve wanted to be doing in life, to where I stand today can be considered as two different extremes. Am I happy about it? Well, the journey so far has been crazy with surprises every now and then! There were a lot of things in life which did not end up the way I wanted them to, like relationships etc. But then when I look back, probably it all makes sense now. Looking back at life, I can connect the dots now.
When we are going through a bad phase in life, it’s extremely important to keep on fighting and not give up. It’s that excruciatingly painful fight back which will eventually take you that extra step in life.
We’ve all been destined for something and we’ll never figure out what it is if we give up! So never give up and keep fighting!
I’ll end this post by a quote which I read somewhere on the internet.
“There are things that we don’t want to happen but have to accept, things that we don’t want to know but have to learn and people we can’t live without but have to let go.”
The first ever blogger meet for me was in 2008 which I incidentally also hosted for IndiBlogger. I was still in college back then (2nd year of MBA at SIBM) this was probably one of the more constructive projects I had taken up in those two years. Over the last 9 years we at IndiBlogger have more thousands of bloggers and we never seem to get enough of it. Every meet, I usually hold guard at the entry ensuring the legitimate ones make through with a hug (I promise I did not transmit anything to you!) or the shady ones with the bye-bye. So if you were one of those who were ever sent back, I do hope you created a blog after that. I know a few did, and they still send a link once in a while and it’s a pleasure reading all the thoughts pouring through.
If one can remember the scene from the movie, The Time Machine; this journey has been one like that for us. We have seen the times when bloggers were just starting up; and every post was something about their personal lives which otherwise no one was interested in. Now when everyone just wants to talk to “Influencers” we seem to have forgotten about bloggers and blogging. I digress, and let’s keep it for another time.
The blogger meet in Pune was scheduled for 15th March 2008 in the Symbiosis Distance Learning Center. Not sure if they are still around, but we got the venue for 15K; an amount that precisely gets us only one thing in this time and age – nada.
It started with an email approval from Renie.
Promoting the event in a city which had never seen a blogger meet meant wasn’t easy. We had to promote the shit out of it. Imagine if we were to promote an IndiBlogger meet with posters now! Can’t? Let me help you.
We also put up ads on google, and it had 10 clicks. All by me, and I think Renie was still looking for a refund for those clicks back in 2008. We promoted it on orkut; and thanks to my chimpanzee typing skills I suckered 4 classmates to attend the event for one reason alone – pizza.
This email below pretty much sums up how we looked at sponsors for blogger meets then.
Today there are a lot of communities for biking, photography, trekking etc. and what makes them stick together are events where they can meet, share ideas and talk about the common thread that brought them together. We hear a lot of bloggers complain about the lack of blogger meets in their cities. My simple request to them is to go out and host their own meet. We will help in every way possible, and you never know you could also land up being part of the team someday! One does not have to be a great organizer to pull off a meet in your respective cities; you just need to feel the need to meet other bloggers. If you think you should, just give us a shout here. We might even decide to go back to the old times and print some posters like the old times!
So whether you are from a metro or a non-metro, go out and meet more bloggers. What does it cost to host one of these meets? Nothing really. Pick a coffee shop, a restaurant and bloggers can pay for what they consume. These places may even throw a free meal, or give a discount if you ask for it. If you want to host a bigger one, check with colleges. Their auditoriums are usually given for outside events and they would be happy with a few thousand usually. They might even have WiFi for free.
And to make your city the next happening blogging hotspot write about the meet. You don’t have to write about the sponsor, but write about the bloggers you met, the discussions you had; the ideas you deliberated. Believe me, next time there will be other bloggers who would want to host a meet. And people are watching you on facebook, twitter, Instagram, read news and blogs and most importantly search all the time. In the long run, social media may vanish, but your blog posts will remain for life. It’s immortal.
Blog about every meet you attend. Because “influencing” will come and go, but blogging is forever. Blogs are the real influence. Blog now, live forever!
PS: Always remember to renew your domain names. My original domain name is now offering escort services in Delhi, which I am sure Mr. Karthik DR is making good use off. So I would recommend you stay away from the domain name mentioned in the video!
Renie wonders if anyone in the community has,
“Have you ever been called an “Influencer“? Do you mind being called one, or would you rather throttle the person who calls you that?
Share your thoughts with us! We want to hear you say it…