So far as I can tell, I’ve found 4 different flavors of blogs out there.  However, the shades of gray could be infinite.  I came across this discovery when planning a blog campaign. All the returns by spending precious dollars on a Blog campaign and not something else, seemed to make all the sense in the world.  Most importantly, my campaign was already tied to a brand that had invested years in the Internet, so their Digital Equity was sky high.  Then again strength online inside Social Networks needs timing along with ad support.  If not careful, they can conflict or cancel each other out. But, I digress…

PAID BLOGS – There area couple ways someone can get paid. Many are careful to use paid blogs and bloggers that get paid have options too.  These paid bloggers can accept instructions to include certain facts, sentences or entire paragraphs. And, there status as paid or unpaid could be disclosed or undisclosed.  I think it’s important to avoid disingenuous messaging and always admit to paid blogs that are opinion driven.  They may read as advertising, but you wont’ have to hide the truth. “Sony getsripped for a bogus PSP blog“ .

BLOG AUCTION – Now when you want to drive traffic and blog posts by sheer volume is your goal, then Auctioning your information will boost your numbers.  You can pay someone to just post the facts, no opinions about your news.  It’s like low cost PR only without the Associated Press.  Your benefit will be more in organic search as more mentions drive your brand to the top.  But SEO is another top…

OPT-IN BLOGS – Also called opinion based blogs.  These are large groups of blogs that receive news update from Ad Agencies.  The Agencies spend lots of time cultivating these relationships, so they can guarantee some performance metric.  Most clients will demand some kind of goal.  Many of these Agencies are performance based. Like Cost Per Click, they need to perform before you pay.  However, the hardest part might be deciding your success metrics.

BLOG NETWORKS – These networks pattern themselves from online publishers of websites.  They will run your story across a multitude of Blog publishers and charge rates like a Banner campaign.  The cost per click or cost per thousand or cost be acquisition will apply. These can be extremely extensive networks and even be divided into categories that server your brand and target market.  Useful for Behavioral, Seasonal or just Unusual.

All of them have their purposes and it’s important to choose the right fit.  The design of a campaign with close alignment to client goals will garner success.  The challenge is always picking the right time, the right brand and the blogs.

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