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Vancouver Social Media Scene: Joomla Day! 2008

The Value of Blog Posts and Bloggers for Hire

May 12th, 2008 @ 10:20pm (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

I know I am a student to the DaveOF*ck Stats, Make Art” school of thought but I’m under the impression that some people would like your art, and they would like to make a lot of money off of it leaving you with no compensation except the lovely feeling of having created said art.

Bloggers who produce strong, insightful, creative and intelligently content have great value. Luckily for those who would like to make a career with their social media writing skills, some companies out there are realizing a blogger’s potential (Sales and Marketing Executives International).


Photo credit: Roland Tanglao on Flickr

Hurdles that remain include the mindset that having a “blog” means your company’s website will be unprofessional, people can have spelling mistakes and completely forget about the caps lock key, and your company’s outward appearance must now include copy that appears as though it should be a caption on LOLCats. Also, a blog is not Facebook.

Company content should not be dumbed-down because that seems to be what the cool kids are doing. It can still be fun, interesting and professional while promoting your products and services, and your blogger should not be paid peanuts.

With a quick browse through Craigslist this evening I spotted countless job postings for companies seeking “bloggers” although many of them seemed tragically flawed.

Seeking Financial Blogger: “This position requires full time physical presence in downtown Vancouver office with web development team. You will be trained on a proprietary system to facilitate automatic syndication and RSS feed distribution, etc.” I don’t know but to me that sounds like quite the beefy operation for simply producing some blog content. “Syndication” and “RSS” aren’t half as scary or complicated as they sound and if you have it setup right from the get-go you won’t have to touch your feed at all, at any point in time, ever again.

Freeland Writers: “If we happen to publish your work then we’ll pay $125/per story. Each story should at least be 1500 words…” is it just me or does that seem really low by any standards?

Add Your Blog to Our Network: “This is a paying opportunity for bloggers with established blogs… Compensation: $7.5 x Google PR# per post.” So that means if I write on Miss604.com and push them some content I could make $37.50 per post (based on my Google Page Rank of 5). I guess I just value my time and my content a little more than that.

No Clue: “I can pay by the post or hourly on a weekly, bi-weekly or monthly basis, whichever works for you. In terms of compensation, let me know what range you are looking at. I have no idea what the going rate is for something like this!” At least they’re honest but that is followed by: “Most posts can be created and posted within an hour. There are 15 different sites that will require a weekly update.” I wonder what all 15 pages have for Google Page Rank? Hmm…

It’s obvious that the companies advertising on Craigslist have no idea what to charge for this type of thing by any standard. It seems like blogging is far below freelance writing on the career totem pole and yet having a prudent blogger on your corporate team could benefit your company exponentially – think marketing, sales, market research, customer service, client relations etc. The possibilities are endless (see Elastic Path’s white paper: Blogging for Retailers)

I understand that blogging in business is still a rather new concept for some and there are currently no real guidelines for going rates in the marketplace, but when it comes to bloggers who are good at what they do, would like to continue writing and perhaps make a career out of their online publishing skills, where should they look? …And is anyone willing to give them what they’re worth?

Current contests on Miss604.com

7 comments

  1. Rastin Mehr says:

    I think Writers, Programmers, Designers, Mad Scientists, and Crafts people need to treat business problems just like another life problem that need to be solved in a creative manner.

    We are so in love with our crafts that sometimes forget the business aspects of what we do, and unfortunately that could really expose us to exploitations of those who don’t accurate our talents, but know their ways with money. Money on it self is green stuff, but it does represent power. Power of one person over another.

    I partly blame that on the school system that separated business curriculum from the other studies. I was a comp-sci student who took electives in marketing. I was amazed to see that for all the hours the Science and Art students spent behind their textbooks and computer screens biting their nails and perfecting their craft, the Business students were creating power points, studying business models, and making multiple presentations a day in front of an audience.

    The business mind learned how to acquire money, and therefore held power over the Arts and Science mind.

    We’ve created a population of Scientists, Writers, Designers who know very little on how to promote themselves, handle a negotiation, or protect themselves from those who want to exploit them.

    The good news is that business skills can be learned and taught.

    Ironically it is often easier for the Arts and Science person to acquire business skills than for the business person to learn a craft or technology. A business model is yet another life problem, it is an algorithm, and when there is a problem, there are always creative solutions.

    And there will always be people who want to exploit other people, we just have to learn not to give in to their psychotic ways and stay way from them as much as possible.

  2. Luc says:

    I think that every advertisment/PR agency will eventually have a Chief Blogging Officer, whose job would be to spread the word about the customers’ products on the net and collect feedback. The problem is that the company’s bloggers will no longer afford to be objective, but even bloggers have to eat.

  3. [...] Miss604 always manages to come up with great content, but this is perhaps one of Rebecca’s best entries IMHO. Blogging for hire? How much is your content worth? She poses the question in a very well-thought-out manner and [...]

  4. Jordan says:

    The one bit of consolation we can take comfort in (we hope) is that those clueless companies will only ever get the quality that they pay for.

    Hint to companies: If you’re thinking of hiring a “professional blogger,” hire someone who knows A LOT MORE about the medium than you do, and listen to all of their ideas. Simply pushing your marketing message out there the same way as always (just with updated media tools) isn’t going to change much. Focusing on content that is of value (REAL value) to your customers will be infinitely more successful. Simply put, your strategy should be less about how many incoming links you can generate, and more about how many meaningful conversations you can start.

  5. Gus says:

    I came across the following website today – http://www.socialmediajobs.com/ as you can see the US definately has more “social media” jobs out there, they even have “managers”. I only hope that we in Canada catch up and realize the importance of these types of positions.

  6. [...] as a professional gig. At a recent interview she had with 24 Hrs (the newspaper) I reminded Rebecca of a post she wrote and that I really liked on the value of blog posts, where she touched on this very issue. As of right now, I have been offered some freelance gigs, [...]

  7. Muskie says:

    Hmm… I think it will become more accepted as part of a job at organizations, it has become part of mine. I also think PageRank 5 even is getting harder to come by for a blog. My blog’s PageRank seems to have gone down as I posted more crap. I’d even guess hand coded stuff, ie old stuff, might be getting a boost PageRank wise in Google.

    I think PR has been devalued some and proximity and exactness of the phrase may be more important. I’m too busy to give this a lot of thought organizing our Urban Garden.

    I stay away from the money making schemes, link exchanges from gambling sites are the ones I get offered, because I write about playing games sometimes…

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