Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Blogs, Time, and Money

It seems like you need time and money to be able to say you have a successful blog. The problem is, I've got neither. OK, I know you can put ads up on your blog, but you still need a decent amount of visitors to make that pay. Also, my kind of blogs don't lend themselves much to advertising.

It's not that I'm in the blogs game to make money, though it would be fun. Don't you dream sometimes of becoming famous through your blog, or even better, through your web site you're selling off to Google or to another megawebmogul for millions of dollars?

The Enzo Ciancia slash S2S venture began when I read a newspaper article about a French guy in Japan who made money by, listen guys, visiting clothing stores and taking pictures of young Japanese ladies in the street. Yes, it was all about fashion and spotting fashion trends. I dreamt of doing the same thing in Taiwan, only, Taiwan isn't one of the world's hottest fashion capitals, and local newspapers are already doing the same thing. But that was the gist of my first blog, Taiwan Fashionista, now renamed as S2S.

From clothes the Enzo Ciancia brand went to no clothes. In Mediterranean climes, it feels much more comfortable not to be wearing any clothes, especially for swimming and sunbathing. So a blog started to make the idea of naturism more popular in Taiwan, http://asianaturist.blogspot.com. This one might earn the warning notice NSFW - not suitable for work, but then maybe any blog would have to warn you about this, because if you're working, you're not supposed to be looking at any blogs.

I also admire the people who can crawl into the skin of a famous person and pretend they are him or her writing a blog. But hey, even Fake Steve is now giving it up. He was pretending to be Steve Jobs at http://fakesteve.blogspot.com. You have to sound realistic, all the while keeping it funny and colorful. I don't think a fake Alan Greenspan blog would work, but a fake Richard Branson might. Belgian politicians seem to be favorite targets, former Prime Minister Jean-Luc Dehaene had his fake blog in Dutch at http://jeanlucdehaene.blogspot.com, but it died a quick death. Another example is the Enzo Ciancia-related http://jeanmariededecker.blogspot.com.

A more unwieldy and expensive way of making a name in the blogosphere or money on the web is of course opening up a real full-blown web site, not just a blog, but a site with a dotcom name that you choose, and with your own pictures, designs, forums, and the whole shebang. But that needs even more time and more money to develop, and as I mentioned, I'm short of both. The Enzo Ciancia brand controls two domain names that haven't been developed yet.

One is a fan site for Taiwanese actress Judy Hu or Hu Ting-ting at www.tingtinghu.com. Hu is a young actress who's spending most of her time in Britain, and therefore has managed to obtain small parts in movies like "Around the World in 80 Days" with Jackie Chan and "Breaking and Entering" with Jude Law. She is also known in Taiwan as the daughter of a prominent politician. But should such a site be launched in English or in Chinese? Or maybe bilingual, but then you get all kinds of issues, only half the site accessible to half the people, etcetera.

Another potential jewel in the Enzo Ciancia crown is www.hsiehshuwei.com, a fan site for one of Taiwan's class of rising female tennis stars. The problem is, I need to watch more sports and follow tennis from a closer distance, which means, yes, I need more time. Maybe it would work better as a blog, in Chinese for a Taiwanese audience, who are all over these stars anyway.

So, while I munch and mumble over whether I should be impersonating Richard Branson or reading and writing about Taiwanese tennis stars, you are probably already writing your successful blog, attracting thousands of readers because unlike me, you write more than twice a month on only one blog, about popular Hollywood teenage stars or already near-the-summit football giants. Anyway, whatever happens to the Enzo Ciancia brand, I wish you good luck.


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