Steve Rubel Interview: SOTB 2009
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Steve Rubel, SVP and Director of Insights for Edelman Digital, is well known as the blogger behind Micro Persuasion and, more recently, SteveRubel.com. Steve talks about why he made the switch to a Posterous-powered blog, the meaning (or lack thereof) of lifestreaming, digital curation, and PR 2.0, and PR and online marketing trends that form part of his "flow."
You made a bold move this year in converting your online publishing activity from the well known and respected Micro Persuasion blog to The Steve Rubel Lifestream (on the Posterous platform). Why did you make the move, and how is it working out thus far?
I made the move for three reasons.
First, I felt that after five years my blogging was getting long in the tooth. As an individual who isn't running a news blog, it's harder than ever to maintain one's influence with a blog these days. The world is moving toward an age of streams - and right now Twitter and Facebook are the primary attention networks. We're living through the Attention Crash, so I had to do something different to stand out.
That said, I longed for a format that sits between a blog and a tweet, yet lets me syndicate and converse around my content on all of the relevant social networks where I do spend time. I felt that launching a lifestream - a place where I start anything longer than an @ or a simple link tweet was the right approach.
Finally, I fell in love with the flexibility of the Posterous platform. Specifically, I was enchanted by how well it works from a mobile device, syndicates out to other social networks and handles formats beyond text. It has rekindled my creative side as I dabble with new formats like mindmaps and more.
How do you balance the needs and sensitivities of Edelman’s clients with your ability to freely express your opinions about online products and trends?
This is always a balance. My loyalty first and foremost is to our firm, its employees and our clients. As a rule, we don't write about clients without their permission first - and in the process we always disclose our relationship. The trickier part is writing about the companies who compete with our clients.
Where I have netted out (after trial and error) is to stick to big topics that are future-oriented in nature and don't single out any one company's successes or failures. I leave a lot on the table. Still, thanks to a fantastic executive team here, I have been able to find a niche that allows for expression and helps both me and the firm maintain its thought leadership.