Before moving off the blog tag topic I thought it would be interesting to trace the line of bloggers that led to me along with the dates they posted to see how fast things can spread online and how viral the blogosphere can be.
- David Gale – 12/12
- Avinash Kaushik – 12/14
- Aaron Shear – 12/14
- Scott Boyd (Marketing Guy) – 12/14
- Dean Bloomsfield – 12/14
- GrayWolf – 12/15
- Lisa Barone – 12/15
- kim krause Berg – 12/15
- Dazzlin Donna Fontenot – 12/15
- Reuben Yau – 12/16
- Randall McCarley – 12/16
- Yuri Filimonov – 12/18
- Steven Bradley – 12/18
All told it took six days and twelve steps to get from David Gale to me. It’s even quicker if you consider that first step from David to Avinash took two days. Even more the only people on this list I’ve ever held a conversation with are Yuri and Kim. I think that’s pretty impressive considering an idea that started with someone I don’t know traveled to me in just a few days.
What’s also interesting is I first learned of the tagging game through Kim’s blog the day before it hit me without realizing that it would come to me through her blog post. In fact as I was reading Kim’s post I wondered if log tag would spread to me and a few hours later it had.
Spreading Linkbait Through Blogs
Imagine for a moment that instead of blog tag it was a linkbait idea that was spreading. In just a few days of launching an idea it could reasonably spread a dozen levels deep. That’s not to mention how much it might spread laterally at the same time. Have a look at all the names in between David and myself on the blog tag tree.
Blog tag is spreading as people see their name called out on a blog and then post and tag to spread the game further. There are many empty lines so you can see not all want to play, but if you have an idea worth spreading it would be less likely to die out along branches. Keep in mind too that with a viral marketing campaign you would be a little more active in trying to get the idea to spread off the start. You probably wouldn’t just be tagging five people. The campaign would start with many more branches.
Consider too how many links the blog tag tree will end up generating as many in the game will inevitably link to it as will many only following the game.
An admittedly quick count tells me 77 people have been recorded as participating from this tag line in those same six days and again this isn’t something people are actively promoting. Start with more branches and give it a few more days and think of how far an idea can spread.
Blogging as a form of marketing is still misunderstood by many I think. I’ve seen questions in forums implying that it’s the underlying software that makes a blog such an effective seo tool, but it really is the social interaction of the blogoshphere that builds links, and brands. Bloggers tend to read other blogs and when they see something they like it becomes fodder for their own writing, usually accompanied by a link.
While being tagged was fun and made me feel a part of a larger community I think the game is a good way to show how far and fast an idea can spread. It’ll be interesting to follow how long it continues and how many levels deep it ultimately gets. Most of the branches are shorter than the line that grabbed me and I assume many have already stopped growing, but as the tree already shows it doesn’t take much for many new branches to grow.