Saturday, October 11, 2008

Michael Brodkorb - Blogger of the Year

Sepember 4, 2008: Thanks to some rather generous grants and sponsorships, we’re now able to open the 2008 Conservative Leadership Conference to the public absolutely…FREE. Please join us at this exciting and critically important get-together of conservative-libertarian activists, leaders and candidates in Las Vegas on September 18-21, 2008. And by all means, bring a friend. Or two friends. Or three…"

Although politically some of the ideas presented were not representative of my thinking I like ideas.. and even more... I like FREE!

Of interest to me was blogger Michael Brodkorb of “Minnesota Democrats Exposed”. He had been chosen to receive the annual Blogger of the Year Award. Brodkorb is being widely credited with almost single-handedly torpedoing the U.S. Senate campaign of “comedian” Al Franken this year. Rush Limbaugh, Fox News, and every major news outlet in his state have mentioned his blog.

His blog - the form - is hardly innovative. it is just a blog built on the free Wordpress platform. What makes him stand out is compelling content. He uses extensive promotional activities to get his content noticed.

In the late 1990s, Brodkorb worked for Minnesota senate Republicans where he learned how to do opposition research. He did it well enough to become director of research for the Minnesota Republican Party and served in similar roles for several Republican campaigns. Minnesota Democrats Exposed, however, is his personal blog, unconnected with his professional activities. Brodkorb says, “If you read Minnesota Democrats Exposed and can’t figure out that I am a partisan Republican, you are a moron. Turn your computer off and get your head examined.”

I met with him unexpectedly in a quiet room and we spoke for about 20 minutes. I asked him how he developed his blog and how he supported it. He was most gracious and gave me a lot of information on how to use the internet to connect with others and put action behind ones words. He even make money (Google ad words) off his blog - not much, just enough to support his personal mission. His blog is very local and has little meaning outside his home state - but it does, through his diligent work, really have an impact. I think his blog is a lesson on how to use the internet to get noticed and make a difference - regardless of your political leanings.

Having great ideas is one thing. Getting noticed in another. If you have compelling content and you work to get the work out - that is what I call authentic. Having great ideas, but sitting in bed with a paper bag over your head is not!

PS: the sumptuous ($150) dinner Saturday night at the Venetian (also free, thanks
Sheldon Adelson, the media-shy owner of the Venetian) was wonderful. The speakers were loaded with provocative ideas, as was the dinner conversation.

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