Michael Arrington questioning Robert Scoble about his “addiction” to Twitter and Friendfeed wouldn’t normally be headline news here at Marketing Pilgrim, but I think it opens up a good debate.
First, the backstory. Arrington’s open letter post to Scoble reads, in part:
What is the cost of this addiction? Well, I’ll put his family life aside, that’s his business. But his blog has clearly suffered. He now posts only a few times a week, sometimes sporadically writing multiple posts in a day but often skipping 3-4 days in between. A year ago, Robert wrote multiple posts, every day. I used to read his blog daily, now I visit once a week.
Scoble takes it in his stride, providing some good self-analysis of what he’s gained and lost by focusing his efforts away from his blog.
So, here’s my take.
When you use a third-party platform to build your brand, you always run the risk that the rug will be pulled out from under you. Don’t believe me, just ask those that had put the effort into building their network on Pownce.
Marketing Pilgrim is owned by me, operated by me, hosted by me. The investments made into building our audience–currently close to 13,000 daily readers–will, in theory, always be realized. Compare this to my use of Twitter. I love using Twitter, I love the social interaction, the conversations, and the ability to better connect with folks, but I make very little “investment” in Twitter. I know some folks that have built their entire reputation around their Twitter/LinkedIn/Facebook community and I hope it’s always there for them.
However, aside from the obvious ramifications if any of these networks ever go the way of Pownce, we now have the “Scoble-dilemma”–sorry Robert. What is the Scoble-dilemma? When you’ve invested 2,000 hours into building your network elsewhere, you not only lose the momentum on your own blog, but how do you get that momentum back and how do you migrate your network to the next hot service?
What’s your take? Is it wise to invest so much time in building your social network, if it means sacrificing your blog’s momentum?