Doc Searls has some terrific Online Spin-related feedback for me in a post on his blog. First off, let me make the usual caveats. I'm just a contributing writer for Mediapost, so I have a bit less control over how the message is presented than I might like. That said, The Online Spin and the Spin Board are both things that me and the Mediaposters came up with several years back, so I do bear a bit of responsibility here.
Doc suggests a couple things:
First, get the Powers That Be at MediaPost to take down the annoying registration wall.
Preaching to the choir, Doc. And that registration wall has caused a good number of problems for folks who read my columns as they get passed around via e-mail and want to respond on the Spin Board. They can't do that without registering. And that probably stifles discussion, to say nothing of how it affects search results and the ability of interested folks to find us. I'll lob a suggestion at some of the Mediaposters and see what they say about it.
Second, syndicate the newsletters on the Web and not just via email. I see no RSS feature for OnlineSPIN.
This isn't the first time Mediapost has been accused of failing to practice what it preaches. It's a bit frustrating sometimes to give advice to marketing professionals in columns and it appears as if I'm not even following my own advice. We've had people post to the Spin Board, saying things like 'isn't it ironic that you wrote a column telling me not to do this, but then you turn around and do it yourself...'
I haven't suggested a feed (much less a series of feeds) to Mediapost, but then again, I'm just a contributing writer. But Mediapost needs to turn around and realize that most of their competitors are offering their columns, content categories and other information via RSS. I get information from iMediaConnection, MarketingVox, AdRants and many other marketing/advertising-related publishers this way.
So again, I'll lob the suggestion up to Ken Fadner and the rest of the Mediaposters and hopefully, they'll implement that feature.
Third (this is old advice, but it bears repeating), drop the old-media jargon: "consumers", "consuming" and "content", for example.
Yep. I'm trying to wean myself off the consumer-speak. The difficulty is that The Online Spin reaches tens of thousands of people in the online marketing and advertising industries and that's the language they speak. But I hear ya loud and clear.
Thanks for the constructive criticism, Doc. You're a guy I respect and admire, so thanks for the shout out.