Thursday, July 12, 2007

Beauty of the Blog [Re-mix]

A make-up artist works his magic on Wendy Cheng, who blogs as Xiaxue (Falling Snow). Wendy's pop-star looks, eye-candy site design and outspoken attitude landed her a stint as spokesmodel for LocalBrand T-Shirts (Singapore). Wendy's blog is a curious mix of teen innocence, Singaporean savvy and truckstop banter! Oh, and she's SEXY too!

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It's no big secret that SEX SELLS. A large chunk of internet business (successful internet business) deals in pornography. In researching the internet prior to launching the Capital Region People blog, I found certain blogs attracted more attention than others. The Newsblog or Political Blog is tops in the USA, closely followed by the Personal-Diary form, popularized by Stephanie Klein. Personal/Sexual and Game blogs rule the roost across much of Asia, most notably China where Mu Zimei, Furong JieJie and others have made their mark on Net history, and Singapore too, with Xiaxue and SarongPartyGirl.

The validation that SEX SELLS came for me the morning of August 2nd, 2005. I'm usually up early. I was checking traffic stats for CRP around 5am and noticed something wasn't quite right. An enormous "spike". What was it? Over 3-thousand hits? WHY? Was this a mistake? With a comfortable number of incoming links and an average of 400 unique hits a day, how could I not want more? CRP may not be the most popular blog around but I nurtured it into something bigger than I'd ever expected it to be. But not THIS big?!??!

Depending on the counter/tracking service, CRP got between 18,000 to 23,000 hits on that date. It wasn't blog-readers (blogders). It was websurfers Googling Sandra "Beth Geisel," the CBA teacher who had sex with young teen students. Because I had the foresight (a total accident) to post "The Doctor and The Teacher" on July 30th and "Media Circus" on July 31st, I was blessed with more visitors to CRP than I could ever have imagined!

I figured out what happened: sometime between the 31stof July and the 2nd of August, the search-engine "spiders" had visited the CRP blog and sucked up the terms "Sandra Geisel" and "Beth Geisel." Bingo! I couldn't have begged, borrowed or stole more hits! Top ranking on Google, Yahoo and FoxNews search engines! Incredible!

Capital Region People began as a little personal digital storehouse. A place to park information and reminders. A place to keep a list of my guests on the Sunday radio program. I needed a space that I could access from anywhere. I had tried a blog on Xanga, with poor results. Along came Blogger, and VOILA!

Here are a few things to keep in mind if you're thinking of starting a blog:

- Make it Pretty (if you're a girl) and people will keep coming back. Look at Xiaxue. Wendy's built a site that is attractive and easy to load.

- Write. Write ANYTHING! Again, I'll use Asia's #1 blogger, Wendy, as an example. Her Xiaxue blog is a mixed bag of photos and topics. She often posts material that triggers a number of readers to comment. Her secret: a well-written and slickly graphically presented blog about nothing imparticular and everything Wendy, and her blogders love it! Keep the tone of your postings intelligent and intelligent responses will follow. Keep the tone of your postings controversial and controversial responses will follow.

-Believe. In yourself! Confidence and faith are milemarkers on the pathway to success. A little talent never hurt, either!

-Don't be afraid to BORROW! - It's okay to lift a line or a sentence from someone else. If it's especially crafted or meaningful or contains original information, you'll need to attribute and/or link back to the source.

-Don't reproduce entire articles. Search for the article or reference online and link to it so you readers can follow through if they want to or need to. If you MUST re-publish an article in its entirety, name the author and the source and mention that the piece is NOT available online.

Blogders: Kwitcherbitchen! If you didn't like or were offended by something you saw on a blog, SoRrY! Can't please everyone! One time somebody e-mailed me that they thought I should stick to "Capital Region" topics. For the most part, I do. But I also get out into the "Blogsphere," and when I do, I keep the Capital Region in mind and in context. Look, if you read any newspaper, maybe you're not into sports or stocks or horoscopes. But you don't write the newspaper protesting the fact that they're in there. You simply SKIP over the stuff that doesn't interest you. Try that with blogs, too!

Originally published August 2005

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