Apologies up front if this particular genre of blog posts isn’t to your liking but the end of the year is nigh and there are some bloggers / blogs out there that have really helped shape my thinking in 2010 and I wanted to share them with you.
Here are the ones I’ve relied on consistently – you are probably familiar with most, if not all of them, but hopefully my reasons for regularly referring to these blogs adds some value to you and your regular reading rituals.
SimplyZesty.com – the ‘all-in-one’ social media and online PR blog
If I could only take one blog with me to a desert Island it would be this one.
Niall, Lauren and the team at Simpy Zesty produce quality content on a daily basis, ranging from ‘how-to’ posts to sector-specific analysis.
Niall is specifically good at compiling guides to tools that make life easier in the social media / online PR space and unearths new stuff, constantly.
If you want some insights into what a change in a platform might mean to brands / consumers, Lauren often analyses this kind of thing too.
If you are looking for a best practice corporate blog, this is it.
Key ‘tags’: Social media, tools, news, case studies, trends.
KyleLacy.com – Practical social media advice / thinking
Kyle Lacy is not only a Justin Timberlake look-a-like but is also the man behind one of the most practical and useful social media blogs you’ll come across.
A post like 20 LinkedIn case studies and examples for professionals is a great example – the reasons why these profiles are successful are featured and the resulting impact.
I also thought this post 25 ways to engage contacts in social media provided some useful tips too.
Overall, just a good place to go to get access to some great thinking.
Key ‘tags’: Platforms, case studies, tips.
ReputationOnline.co.uk – real insights, real lessons, real analysis
This blog is split in two parts:
1. Contributions from the Rep Online editorial team
2. Contributions from leading comms pros / advisors reporting back from the front line
This helps provide nice balance of opinions and insight, often linked to the latest news and developments from the digital world.
‘Balance’ is also the key to Rep Online’s tone. You won’t find any pointless naming and shaming here, but rather constructive analysis around campaigns being activated and what can be learnt from them.
A lot of useful analysis / thinking can be also found in the comments sections of the posts thanks to the engaged community that has been cultivated by the team.
Key ‘tags’: News, analysis, insight, case studies.
ArikHanson.com – access everyday experience, everyday
I chat to Arik quite regularly on Twitter so I don’t want to embarrass him (too much!!) but I just like the way he thinks.
There have been several posts this year from Arik that have posed questions a lot of people are afraid to ask in the public domain.
A few weeks back I compiled a series of posts from his blog that provide practical advice / tips about blogger outreach which are well worth a look too.
Key ‘tags’: Blogger outreach, thought-provoking, practical, broad.
MackCollier.com – the blogger’s blogger
The term practical has already been used a few times in this post, but let’s use it again!
Mack’s #blogchats are one place to get access to his experience and knowledge and his blog is the same but adds some additional context and detail.
It’s the little things which Mack highlights that are the most handy i.e. where you put your ‘subscribe by email’ box on your blog can significantly impact on your subscription numbers. And this isn’t just a theory, Mack tested this by putting this in several places on his blog and then shared his experience with us.
Key ‘tags’: Analytics, blogging, content, strategy.
Blog.TheJordanRules.com – digital strategy and the user experience
I tried to come up with a different tagline to the one Jordan Julien uses on his blog, The Jordan Rules, but that is exactly what it is all about – digital strategy and things you can do to make the user experience as good as possible.
He is also great to follow on Twitter, sharing links that you wouldn’t normally discover – if you trawl through my Twitter favourites you’ll see Jordan pop up a fair bit.
Key ‘tags’: Digital, strategy, web architecture, content.
www.businessgrow.com/blog – get your thinking cap on
I’ve lost count of how many times someone has said to me: “The problem with marketing blogs is that they are all the same, no-one is saying anything different.”
While I have an issue with being different for the sake of being different, the blog from Mark W. Schaefer is a good example of different in the way you’d like it to be.
A great example is a post from last week where Mark looked at why a post from Chris Brogan, containing 41 words (!) would get retweeted 274 times.
Again, Mark is someone who offers practical advice too, including this other good ‘un from last week giving you ten reasons why you should blog even if no-one is reading your stuff.
Key ‘tags’: Blogging, business, marketing, advice.
blog.LouisGray.com – where you’ll learn about new stuff…first
I don’t know how Louis does it, but his blog will tell you about the next big thing before it even thinks about being the next big thing.
Everything in the digital / online space moves so fast, and new solutions and tools get released all the time, but this blog separates the good from the bad and can help you stay on top of what should be on y our radar.
He blogs nearly everyday too – awesome!
Key ‘tags’: Apps, tools, platforms, trends.
MakeUseOf.com – daily cool web apps and tools
Head specifically to the Cool Web Apps tag of MakeUseOf.com and scroll through the daily listing of the latest apps, tools and cool websites they’ve unearthed.
The inner-geek in you will love this.
Key ‘tags’: “Cool stuff!”
A final note…
I think one of the things we’ll see next year is people consolidating the sources they turn to for news / insights as opposed to the exploration philosophy that has characterised 2009/10.
Time continues to become a more finite resource and the really good blogs will get stronger, while the ones that lack that special ingredient will find it harder attract readers.
If you were restricted to only subscribing to 10 blogs next year, this lot would serve you very well indeed.
COMMScorner.com is the blog from Adam Vincenzini which focuses on social media and PR. Connect with Adam on Twitter or subscribe to his blog. If you’d like to view this blog on a mobile device, visit COMMScorner.mofuse.mobi.