Thursday, August 2, 2007

Two Interviews, in Which I Feel Awkward

I have to try to be careful when blogging about blogging. It's quite possible, probable even, that the people I interviewed with or work for will read this, sooner or later.

Anyway, I had two interviews for corporate blogging positions today and I felt a little overwhelmed.

I know what I'm doing when it comes to blogging and subsidiary tasks, but this is only the second and third time that I've sat down with people who want to hire me for this type of position. Corporate blogging is quite similar to, and uses many of the same skills as, regular blogging, but in somewhat different ways.

Although I know a lot of the professional tricks of the trade for fast rampups, I've only followed tips and included my blog on blog carnivals and problogger lists and so on. I haven't spent money on a professional campaign for Adwords, blog reviews and talk and so on, even though I know people to whom to turn for that.

I have to answer to the question: why are they paying me? What exactly will I do for them? I can't give numbers and measurements as to what type of effect my work will produce in such and such time.

As a result, in the first interview I felt like I was bumbling along like an amateur. I had suggestions and solid ideas as to how I was going to proceed, but no real answers to exactly what effect it would have. In fact, I've never even really done solid measurements as to how my traffic works and what effect my various techniques have.

I've built relationships with people, which took time. Over the course of three years, I've made myself known in the gaming world as hot on game news, knowledgeable about game topics, a funny and incisive write, and so on. I get clicks from comments I've left on other site's forums and posts. I get traffic from word of mouth. Heck, I get traffic from people reading the inside cover of my game.

How the heck do I measure the effectiveness of all of these things? Are there tools? Blog stats are nice and all, and analytics can measure direct clicks from certain sources, but can't tell you who thought about what you wrote and decided to visit your blog three days later.

Anyway, for this interview I had to admit that I didn't really know the answer to these types of questions. I'm now supposed to come back with a solid idea as to how many hours I'll be working on what types of activities and some guidelines as to what types of effects I expect over what time.

The second interview went somewhat better for me, as the position incorporated not only blogging, but my experience with technical writing, programming, and a number of other of my skills. Many of the tasks I will be required for this position will be instantly measurable (such as, writing white papers and how to articles on the site, the traffic for which is irrelevant).

In the meantime, waiting in my mailbox are two superblog sites that have asked for sample posts to see if they want me to write for them on a per post basis along with dozens (? hundreds?) of other writers.


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