Scobleizer Weblog

Daily Permalink Thursday, October 30, 2003

OK, this is taking a Windows-oriented blog too far. (Although I want to do something like this).

Diego Dovall reacts to my "hate" piece with a very interesting series of points himself. He takes me to task and forces me to think about things I've never thought about before. Good stuff to think about. Here's a quote: "My point is that Language (yes, capital L) has been steadily distorted to the point in which the only way to get attention is to scream at the top of your lungs and be "controversial.""

I disagree that that's the only way to get attention. It certainly is one thing in the bag of "attention getting" tricks, though.

Now that I'm slowly digging out from the workload over the past few days, I wanted to point out Julia Lerman's hand-written notes from the keynote. Interesting use of the Tablet. I like that people are trying them out and seeing what they are good for.

I just visited Text America's PDC Photoblog and saw Don Box's face smiling out at me. I wonder how to make photo blogs more useful. Thanks to those of you who posted photos.

Welcome MSNBC readers! It's a joy having you here, and if you have any questions about what I do or what I'm about, please ask in my comments. This is a conversation going on here, not a monolog. Plus, feel free to start a weblog yourselves. If you need help, ask and we'll try to help you.

Why do I call what I do conversational marketing? Because, what webloggers do is introduce an idea (some call those "memes") into the blogosphere (the people who write and/or read weblogs) and they talk about those ideas. That's called having a conversation.

Why do I call this marketing? Because I'm talking to technology markets and want technologists to take action. This is the purest form of marketing. I'm looking to engage with people who make, refine, produce, talk about, buy, sell, distribute, technology and I want to make sure that their needs are met. That's all marketing is. Identifying market need and then showing how your product meets that need.

There is no form of marketing more powerful than participating in the weblog conversation.


We'll talk more about that over the next few months, but the basics are:

Scale. If I tell two people. And those people tell two people. And those people tell two people. Eventually you have a runaway train. The old term used to be "viral marketing" but I don't think that what I do is just simply viral marketing, so we need a new term.

Syndication. (Translation: productivity). I can watch 600 blogs today in 30 minutes. You try doing that with a web browser. It's impossible. But, with an RSS News Aggregator, not only is it possible, it becomes explosively productive.

Relationships. Lots of people came up to me this week and said "I love your writing." Why is that? Because I've shared my life in a transparent, passionate, and reliable way (translation: when I told people that the PDC would be an event that they shouldn't miss, they agreed that I told them the truth).

There's more too, but I gotta go attend to things here at the PDC.

Welcome to the new conversation.

A weblogger in the hall here asked me yesterday: "Scoble, what's next for you and for Microsoft after the PDC?"

You missed the point. The PDC never ends. The conversation has just begun.

Someone just asked me here in the hall "are you scared about weblogging at Microsoft?" No way. If anything I'm now emboldened. Why? Because person-after-person came up to me at the party last night and said "it's cause of you that I came."

Conversational marketing is powerful. It can be used for good. It can be used for evil. And lots of things in between. But, there's no question in my mind today that those of us who engage in conversational marketing have a new-found power base that will only continue to get stronger.

That doesn't mean that while we figure out the "best practices" of corporate weblogging there won't be chaos and/or pain as we all try to figure it out. Conversations are messy. I've seen conversations turn into marriages. I've also seen them turn into divorces. (I've even participated in a few of those conversations).

Yes, participating in a conversation is risky. You might say something that gets you in trouble. You might also say something that helps thousands of people out.

The risk is worth the reward. Webloggers are playing with dynamite, particularly when they weblogs are identified with multi-billion-dollar corporations.

In life, the most interesting things have happened when I've taken risks. When skiing, is the most fun to be had on the flat beginner slope? No! The ski runs I remember most are when I took on the hardest runs.

So, am I worried about weblogging at Microsoft? No. Am I careful? Yes!

Dave Winer asked me to give a good overview of what Longhorn really is. I told him I wanted to wait two weeks to do that. Why? Because I wanted to let the community distill what they heard at the PDC first.

I hear the new .NET Rocks show that features me as a guest is now up. Content-light, but hopefully it's fun to listen to.

One thing about blogging at the PDC. Everyone has been reading PDC Bloggers. Someone told me that just in the morning yesterday they had more than 40,000 page views. I've been lucky to play a part of a very small "insiders" team here that is implementing PDC. We've been watching the PDC Bloggers site every day for feedback about what's going on out there. Drew and Kevin (the two guys who produce that site) are freaking awesome!

Some other news about blogging.

1) Several teams talked about blogging on stage (blogging was even mentioned during the keynotes). I am looking forward to getting a demo of the Tablet PC's team's new SDK and "ink blogging" feature.

2) A lot of new people started blogging this week. If you need help, please let us know. I'd be happy to share my "best practices" that I've learned over the past 3.5 years of blogging.

3) Microsoft Research has some killer stuff. I hope it ships as product soon!

What a week. Sorry I didn't post for the past few days, but I've been slammed trying to help the team here give PDC attendees a great experience.

Over the next few weeks I'll try to give my observations. The PDC really starts today. We have tons of newsgroups. Tons of weblogs. Why? Because now we can really dig in and discuss what was disclosed in the past four days.

I highly recommend that anyone who attended the PDC get involved in both the newsgroups as well as by posting a weblog.

First in my mind was that this was a coming out party for weblogs.

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Robert Scoble works at Microsoft. Everything here, though, is his personal opinion and is not read or approved before it is posted. No warranties or other guarantees will be offered as to the quality of the opinions or anything else offered here.

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© Copyright 2004 Robert Scoble Last updated: 1/3/2004; 3:16:39 AM.