Everyone is probably familiar with Technorati. If not a quick primer: Technorati is a blog-specific search engine who has carved out a niche by selling people on the concept of “tracking the conversation.” For instance, if you search Technorati for “Skype” you would find all blogs talking about Skype and be able to track the timeline of who was saying what.
Until recently I didn’t see the need for it.Â More to the point, I didn’t get why you would want to track just blogs.Â See as I’ve stated before, I believe blogs are just one component of the conversation and one that really is not anymore mysterious in their creation than a magazine.Â There’s a writer, there’s a format, there’s a distribution method.Â It’s the same equation.Â
Then it dawned on me (I never claimed to be the brightest or the fastest guy in the world).Â One of my mantras to anyone who will listen is that the difference between a blog – or podcast – and an established media outlet is who is creating the content.Â And that’s when I realized that was where the value of search enginesÂ like Technorati and Icerocket is, in drawing attention to the author.Â Â Identifying a blogger who’s talking about you and followingÂ their blog isÂ just like tracking a byline in a newspaper.Â You need to know which way their prevailing winds are blowing so you can better tailor your message in such a way that they will pay attention to it.Â
It’s also important to use for brand management.Â There’s nothing that will stick in someone’s mind quite like negative press (just ask Dell).Â By knowing what’s being said on your company, product or industry you know how you are – or aren’t – differentiating yourself in the marketplace and what kind of impact your company is having.Â It’s been said that bloggers are the new focus group.Â If it’s important to you to know what’s going on in the blogosphere – and that’s a decision you have to make for yourself – then these type of services can be a valuable resource.