Posted by: acohen109 | January 20, 2009

No one knows how far to go on the first blog.

It’s just different for everyone, I suppose.

Ah, WordPress.  Like an old friend from high school that you hadn’t really thought about it in a while.  The kind who made you laugh a few times, but honestly we never hung out all that much when you really think about it.  Yeah, I know WordPress.  Vaguely.  Spicing up the background and adding some fun gadgets are next, but for now I’m diving right into my first post; aka Diary for grown ups.  

Starting up a blog the night before the inauguration of President Obama seems oddly appropriate to me.  However, given my position as a new media guy, and the extent to which the Obama campaign brought all the fun stuff into the mainstream, it’s no surprise.  I’m not planning on seriously overt politicking in this blog, but given that Obama and his team are thoroughly dedicated to the cause, I’m sure there will be plenty of opportunities to ramble on about him.

Swearing by the theory that every blog post should contain some info that actually is useful to whoever might be reading it, I present  Have you heard of TinyURL?  Free, infinitely available service that shortens obnoxiously long user names for easy posting in new media outlets like Twitter.  Well, cligs is a very similar service, except it provides analytics, page views, and anything you could want.  Exceptional when it comes to tracking who is clicking on your links…say, if you were sending out coupons via Twitter in a grass roots campaign.  Instead of linking directly to a coupon page, send it through a Clig.  You’ll find out where and when people are looking at your page, and these are the little details the Client always likes to know about.

Funny clig story; using it to track users of a certain product my company represents (I haven’t decided how specific I’m going to be re: describing work experiences on this blog, my apologies) I found that I was receiving a decent number of hits from the farthest reaches of Europe and even Asia.  As far as I could tell, the product was strictly available in the U.S.  So what were foreign nations doing checking out a coupon page?  My curiosity wouldn’t let it go.  Using social media trackers such as Radian6 (pay service) and (totally free, i highly recommend it) I searched for mentions of my product and countries such as Italy in conjunction.  I found my answer:  Americans, traveling the globe, were still getting online and posting their thoughts on blogs and twitter, and they were giving me my foreign hits.  Astounding that even as the American population hits the road, we are still stuck to the internet.

I mean, I was in Europe not too long ago and even I managed to stay off the internet most of the time.  Kind of.  The Lakers were making a finals run, give me a break!  Yes, I got home the day after game 6 of the finals, a bloodbath.  Sigh.

Well, I was going to continue on with a decent anecdote or two regarding the Facebook and our dark and sordid past together, but I think it can wait.  in the meantime, I can’t recommend Cligs enough, just remember it’s got a funky address (  Boardreader is excellent because you can point its search at any message board.  Twitter too.  Very handy when you’re researching specific topics that you know are going to have their own dedicated communities built in.  

I haven’t decided how many people are going to know this blog exists, I haven’t even sitemapped the thing yet.  But for sure I know the APOC group will have access, and you guys should know I think you’re a great group of people and we’re going to be able to have some fun while we make our way through this program.  I don’t get much sappier than that, so sayonara for now.

And because a blog is worthless without a funny picture:
Possibly the greatest picture ever to grace the internet.



  1. Dang! I completely forgot about We use url-shortening services for all our viral/seed marketing needs, but we completely forgot the important part of marketing–gathering statistics!

  2. i agree with Kaywan…. Nice tip, Alex!

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