The Friendly Ghost PowerPR Index for August 2007

With explanations below:

fgpowerindex2.gif technorati_reactions.gif yahoo2.gif google.gif blogpulse.gif total.gif
1 Micro Persuasion 10 10 10 10 7 10 10 10 77
2 Center for Media and Democracy 10 10 10 10 7 10 10 10 77
3 Online Marketing Blog 10 10 10 10 6 10 10 10 76
4 a shel of my former self 10 10 10 10 6 10 10 10 76
5 NevilleHobson.com 10 10 10 10 4 10 10 10 74
6 Strumpette 10 10 10 9 5 10 9 10 73
7 Todd Andrlik – the Power to Connect 10 10 10 7 4 10 10 10 71
8 PR Squared 9 9 9 9 6 10 9 9 70
9 On Message Wagner Comms 10 10 9 9 6 8 10 8 70
10 Communication Overtones 9 10 10 9 6 7 10 9 70
11 Pop! PR Jots 9 9 9 10 5 8 10 9 69
12 PR Meets the WWW 9 9 9 10 5 9 10 8 69
13 PR 2.0 Silicon Valley 10 10 9 9 4 8 9 10 69
14 Canuckflack 10 10 10 6 6 8 8 9 67
15 PR Blogger 9 9 8 9 6 9 8 8 66
16 The Bad Pitch Blog 9 9 8 8 5 9 9 8 65
17 Media Orchard 8 8 10 10 5 6 9 7 63
18 Strategic Public Relations 9 9 8 9 5 7 7 9 63
19 A PR Guy’s Musings 8 8 9 8 5 8 9 8 63
20 Marketing Begins at Home 8 8 8 9 6 7 9 8 63
21 Pro PR 8 8 9 8 5 7 8 9 62
22 Paul Gillin – Social Media 8 9 8 8 6 8 8 7 62
23 Web Ink Now 9 9 9 9 1 7 8 9 61
24 Common Sense PR 9 9 8 5 5 9 7 9 61
25 Cooler Insights 9 9 7 8 4 8 8 8 61
26 Corporate PR 7 7 8 10 5 7 9 7 60
27 Spinwatch 8 8 8 10 3 10 6 7 60
28 Tech PR Gems 8 8 7 6 5 7 8 9 58
29 Blogging Me, Blogging You 8 8 8 8 5 4 9 7 57
30 Media Guerrilla 8 8 9 6 5 7 7 7 57
31 The Buzz Bin 8 8 7 7 0 9 8 9 56
32 New PR, ranked by readers 6 6 7 8 6 8 7 8 56
33 PR Works 7 7 7 7 5 7 8 7 55
34 PR. Differently 8 8 8 7 4 6 6 8 55
35 ….the world’s leading…. 7 7 7 7 5 6 7 8 54
36 PR Studies 7 7 7 8 5 7 7 6 54
37 PR Communications 7 7 6 8 5 8 5 7 53
38 Piaras Kelly PR – Irish Public Relations 6 6 9 7 5 6 8 6 53
39 Beyond PR 6 6 6 9 5 9 7 5 53
40 Drew B’s take on tech PR 6 7 7 8 6 6 7 6 53
41 The New PR 7 7 7 6 5 5 8 6 51
42 Murphy’s Law 7 7 6 5 5 6 7 7 50
43 PR News Online 5 5 5 6 6 10 6 5 48
44 bitemarks 6 6 6 6 5 9 6 4 48
45 Young PR 1 1 8 7 5 9 9 8 48
46 Heather Yaxley – Greenbanana PR 7 7 6 6 4 4 6 6 46
47 ToughSledding 6 6 5 7 5 3 7 6 45
48 Client Service Insights (CSI) 6 6 7 3 5 6 6 5 44
49 KDPaine’s PR Measurement Blog 6 6 6 5 5 5 5 6 44
50 The New View from Object Towers 7 7 6 4 4 5 4 6 43
51 The PR 2.0 Universe 6 6 4 6 3 6 5 6 42
52 The Friendly Ghost 6 6 5 5 5 3 6 5 41
53 PR Disasters 5 5 5 5 3 8 5 4 40
54 Technobabble 2.0 7 7 5 4 0 4 5 7 39
55 Onalytica – analysing online buzz 4 4 6 4 5 5 5 6 39
56 Alan Weinkrantz PR Web Log 5 5 5 5 4 5 5 5 39
57 The New Marketing 5 5 6 4 5 5 3 5 38
58 The PR Place 5 5 6 5 4 4 5 4 38
59 Glass House 5 5 5 8 5 2 6 2 38
60 Wired PR Works by Barbara Rozgonyi 6 6 3 4 5 2 6 6 38
61 Naked PR 5 5 4 5 3 8 3 4 37
62 Wadds’ tech pr blog 5 5 4 4 4 5 5 4 36
63 Active Voice 4 4 6 7 4 4 6 1 36
64 wordymouth.com 4 4 3 3 4 9 4 4 35
65 PR Voice 5 5 5 3 4 4 4 4 34
66 PR 2.0 4 4 5 4 5 2 6 3 33
67 Teaching PR 4 4 5 3 4 4 5 4 33
68 media mindshare 4 4 3 6 4 4 3 5 33
69 Valley PR Blog 5 5 4 3 4 5 3 4 33
70 PR Girlz 3 3 4 6 4 4 5 2 31
71 PR Conversations 4 5 3 5 0 6 4 4 31
72 Don’t eat the shrimp – Josh Morgan 3 3 3 4 4 6 4 3 30
73 Tech PR War Stories 3 4 3 3 5 2 4 6 30
74 The Rosemont Loving 4 4 2 6 5 3 3 3 30
75 The Thicket 3 3 4 4 4 6 4 1 29
76 Tech for PR 4 4 3 2 5 3 2 4 27
77 Indian and Global PR 3 3 2 3 5 3 4 3 26
78 nerd-in-residence 3 3 3 2 4 5 3 3 26
79 DummySpit 3 3 3 2 4 3 3 5 26
80 Engage in PR 3 3 4 3 0 5 3 5 26
81 Clogger 2 2 4 3 4 3 5 2 25
82 Media Artifacts 5 4 3 2 0 4 3 3 24
83 point being: 3 2 3 4 4 3 2 2 23
84 The last man in Europe… 3 3 2 3 4 2 3 3 23
85 IndiaPRBlog! 3 3 1 2 0 9 3 2 23
86 Corporati 2 1 1 7 3 3 2 2 21
87 Fusion PR Forum 2 2 2 2 4 2 2 5 21
88 GREENblog 2 2 4 3 0 3 5 2 21
89 A communica-holic’s view of PR 1 1 1 5 3 2 1 2 16
90 First Person PR 2 2 2 1 4 1 2 2 16
91 All Things PR 2 2 2 1 3 3 2 1 16
92 PRactical P.R. 2 1 1 2 3 1 2 2 14
93 Public Relations Rogue 2 2 2 2 0 2 1 3 14
94 my(PR)palette 1 1 2 1 2 2 1 4 14
95 copypunk 2 3 2 2 0 1 2 2 14
96 Small Business PR and Marketing 2 1 2 1 4 1 1 1 13
97 PR India Post 1 1 1 2 2 2 2 2 13
98 PR (in a jar) 2 1 1 1 3 1 1 2 12
99 On the face… 1 1 2 1 3 1 1 1 11
100 72 Point Blog 1 1 1 1 4 1 1 1 11
101 The Jive Man 1 1 1 1 4 1 1 1 11
102 note to editors… 2 2 1 1 0 1 2 1 10
103 The Spud Gun 1 1 1 1 0 1 2 2 9
104 The Byline 1 1 1 1 0 2 1 1 8

technorati_reactions.gif yahoo2.gif google.gif blogpulse.gif total.gif

This one took quite some time. I’ve been trying to automate it using the Easy Bee software and whereas it’s great for small amounts of data capture it gets very slow indeed as you go into the hundreds of queries, which is of course what we have with the PowerPR index. I realise there are much more sophisticated ways to grab this data using APIs but I just don’t have the knowledge to do this. I got about 75 percent the way through the automation but then decided I just wanted to get this version out so that I can complete the work and add some enhancements to the next issue.

Other points to note:

  • The biggest change to the index this time around is the scoring system. In previous indexes I had used simple ‘percentage bands’, so the top 5% by value scored 10, the next 10% scored 9, and so on. However, I had a bad feeling about this because it seemed quite arbitrary, not least because different percentage bands needed to be used across different populations. As I discussed in the previous index, I tried to look into normal distribution treatments but I just don’t think we have normal distributions here (as I discovered when the blogs proved to describe a long tail).

    So, I took professional advice, from a government statistician no less. It seems this kind of thing really is more an art than a science (as Humphrey proved to Jim Hacker in Yes Minister), so all approaches are valid. In the end I settled on one suggestion which was to take the total number of blogs, and give the top ten percent of that population a score of 10, the next 10 percent a score of 9, and so on. 

    We have 104 blogs here, meaning our ‘ten percent’ bands are roughly groups of ten. So in this index, roughly ten of the blogs will get each score, from 10 to 1, with slight variations dependent on decimal places which you can’t see in the integers of this index (which is also why some scores appear identical like the top two in the index, but they are in fact separated by decimal points differences in the spreadsheet).

    I like this method because it works for any population and lends itself nicely to Excel calculations (you can do it easily using the COUNTA and RANK functions). The disadvantage is that it doesn’t show how clearly the big blogs such as Micropersuasion are ahead of the rest. I did consider log scores for this but then my brain started to hurt.

  • Google Page Rank is different. I just list the actual page rank because that’s supposed to be out of 10 too – although it never actually seems to reach 10. Strange one, that. I tried to normalise using the same method but got odd results, such as a page rank of 6 getting a score of 8 while a page rank of 5 got a score of 4, that kind of thing. It’s also strange that of all these metrics, page rank is the only one that doesn’t cover all these blogs (a score of zero indicates data unavailable). I was very tempted to remove page rank altogether, simply because it is used in the Power150 and I’d very much like to move away from that so I can provide something more complementary. Perhaps I will do that next time.
  • Three of these blogs have moved and I have a strong feeling copypunk used to be someone else too. I wasn’t sure how to treat them, whether to add their new values to their old ones or just continue with the new values. In the end I decided to go with the new ones, so the three blogs I detailed as moving yesterday might have slightly odd positioning for a while. If this annoys people I’ll see what I can do about it.
  • We now have hyperlinks so each index entry is clickable.
  • I would have liked to include indicators showing movement up/down/no change, but I simply don’t have time to do this right now, plus the number of blogs is considerably bigger so it seems to make more sense to compare like with like. I’ll save that for future issues. Likewise other ‘nice to have’ features which I recently discussed for the Power150.
  • One very quick calculation I can make: the total PR blogosphere according to the figures accumulated here. In the last index, if I added together quite literally every metric (except Technorati Rank which works ‘the other way around’ in that the smaller the figure the better, so I just removed it from the total), the sum total was 1,914,778. Divided by 83 blogs, this gives a figure of 23,070: that is, each blog accounted for, on average, 23,070 ‘FG points’. This time, the total is 2,045,886 across 104 blogs, so each blog accounts for 19,672 points – quite a bit lower. This represents a reduction of 15% from June to August. The PR blogosphere would appear to be shrinking, or perhaps that’s just because I have more blogs with lower scores. The next issue should be clearer on this point.
  • Finally can I point out that I’ve tried my best to be accurate with this, which was another reason for using automation. If anyone can see any glaring errors in it then please let me know, and I’ll try and fix them. I know for example that YoungPR has problems with Technorati which have recently been ironed out but, it seems, too recently for me to get any figures for it yet. If/when these figures emerge, expect a change there at least.
  • I just realised, it’s no longer Todd And’s Power150, it’s Ad Age’s. Oh, what the heck. Here’s a link.

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33 thoughts on “The Friendly Ghost PowerPR Index for August 2007

  1. Friendly Ghost. I realize that this index may be more realistic than Ad Age’s index, only because of the Bloglines issue (blogged it up on Sat.). Anyway, I may be paying more attention to this now. Thanks for the hard work.

  2. The Bloglines issue is precisely the reason I don’t use Bloglines! I don’t claim this as a competitor to the Power150, which is more comprehensive and automated. What it does offer, however, is an alternative – I use different metrics, and in fact I was tempted to *remove* the Pagerank simply because the Power150 uses it. Also, my index is much more exclusively PR sites, rather than the mix of PR and marketing as seen in the Power150. Thanks for the positive comments.

  3. John Wagner’s blog is ranked 9th yet he hasn’t blogged since the middle of May?

    Sorry, my comment seems short, a bit rude and abrupt. Not intended. Very tired, very busy so can’t be bothered to write a detailed comment.

    Thanks for the inclusion though.

  4. Yup, looks that way: I just double-checked and the figures are all correct. Let’s look at it from an influence vs popularity viewpoint. Does it necessarily follow that someone needs to post regularly or even frequently to have influence? I certainly know that my good friend Seamus McCauley has noticed his blog stats increase *while he’s on holiday*. Where’s the sense in that? Perhaps given time Wagner’s rating will go down. Meanwhile he’s got enough links – note, just links, that’s all most of these metrics measure – to keep him up there.

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  7. I’m just glad to find another couple of blogs to check out every time I visit a list. Blogrolls are so sporadic these days, I have to look elsewhere for pointers to good blogs.

    Thanks!

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  10. This is where you have to start looking at the people who read the blogs as opposed to just the blogs themselves, which increases this study by several orders of magnitude. The ideal ‘dashboard’ would be something where you could compile lists of blogs, readily bringing together metrics from many sources and having alongside them more qualititative data based on tracking sentiments about them. And, of course, for it all to be free!

  11. I’m just happy you got my URL correct, I can’t get anyone at AdAge to fix it on their end. Agree with Eric, the best part of these is that I can quickly check out some new blogs in my area of interest.

    /kff

  12. I think this raises another issue…

    Those who started blogging back in the “Thou Shalt Have A Blogroll” days still have some type of built-in structure for maintaining links. Influence isn’t about who is on a blogroll, but rather who is writing material that gets linked to, memed away, or blogged about.

    If there is any saving grace to “Technorati Authority,” it’s that it only counts links from the last six months. Admirable attempt, but foiled by static blogrolls.

  13. OK, Simon’s blog seems to me to be about PR – and primarily PR – so that’s in. Ike, sorry, but I really can’t see the ‘PR’ element of your blog? I know I’m probably going to regret this but I need to keep the blogroll ‘pureplay PR’, as that is what distinguishes it from the Power150. FYI, future developments for the PowerPR index will probably involve actually reducing my blogroll considerably, to just the blogs I really do read regularly nowadays, downloading the OPML file from the Power150, and taking what I consider the PR blogs from that. So there are likely to be changes afoot.

  14. Cool. Actually, Ike’s inclusion (or not) raises a very interesting question around what exactly is a ‘PR’ blog. Is it an individual working in PR, or a group? Then again, is it a stand-alone blog, or a corporate blog ie an offshoot of another website? And how do we treat new media, given that in many respects, it is PR incarnate? And how will this be different in a year’s time? More to the point, why didn’t I post about this instead of hiding it away in a comment?

  15. Perhaps any blog that slaps “PR” or “public relations” in its moniker should qualify. “All hail self publishing!” (Tongue in cheek, natch.)

    I don’t put a ton of credibility in a blog authored by someone who isn’t actually working in public relations *right now.* (Being in the PR role 15 years ago doesn’t cut it. Nor does being a former journalist. You either are or you aren’t, in terms of currency of the skill set and credibility in the marketplace/with various publics.)

    A lot of marketing people (particularly Americans), subscribe to the PR-as-an-offshoot-of-marketing school. (Well, they would, wouldn’t they?) I don’t buy that one, either.

    Your list is probably more targeted/thoughtful than most, FG, but I still reckon you have several listed that are really more in the marcomm and technology areas, rather than actual public relations. (BTW, I really like your targeted and aggregated feeds on the side and have found some great posts and new resources via “PRs proclaim.” Some don’t really fit the PR criteria, but the majority do, so thanks.)

    Cheers,
    Judy

    P.S. There’s been some great debates about the viability of (and need for) the licensing of public relations practitioners (to protect the public, etc.), plus discussions on where the function best fits re: reporting structure. (For example, on the My Two Cents marketing blog.) Perhaps some of those debates would help you to solidify the PR function for qualification, and whether your above blogs should continue to get listed.

  16. FG:
    Thanks for being so diligent and innovative in your blog tracking – your ranking system is one of the most well-rounded and accurate out there. Your rankings spark some intriguing comments and you certainly have your finger on the pulse of the PR blogsphere.
    Keep up the good work!
    Barbara

  17. Pingback: PRPower Index | Top PR Blogs | Wired PR Works at 60 | Thanks Friendly Ghost | Wired PR Works by Barbara Rozgonyi

  18. Pingback: Monty PR blogger and the Holy Grail of rankings « media mindshare: on media, technology & public relations

  19. I have to say that this is a very cool list, not because I’m on it, but because your formula is a lot more focused, and realistic, than some of the other lists circulating in the blogosophere.

    There are some fantastic conversations in the comments section too. Aside from the content of the blogs on the list, and whether or not they really should here, I do like the fact that you stepped up to offer an alternative set of metrics. In fact something like this could be the standard that is utilized across different segments – well, as long as Technorati stays relevant anyway 🙂

    Since we’re on the topic of what should and shouldn’t be included in the list, how do you feel about publishers of “top” lists that immediately jump to the top due to the mass amount of sudden link love that comes their way? Do those links take away from the relevance and value of others that are inbound because of commentary?

    Please note, that there’s no sarcasm here, just a genuine question. I read Friendly Ghost and I’m a fan of your writing outside of any “power” lists. I’m sure as you’ll experience, much in the same way Todd A’s numbers spiked, your standing will leapfrog most on the list in no time.

    Just curious to hear your thoughts, and the thoughts of others as well!

    p.s. My Google PR moved up to 6 these days. I had to start from scratch when I moved it from blogger to my own domain last year. In fact, everything reset, including Technorati, which was a painful experience.

  20. Oh, and I just realised, I never did respond to Brian’s comment:

    Since we’re on the topic of what should and shouldn’t be included in the list, how do you feel about publishers of “top” lists that immediately jump to the top due to the mass amount of sudden link love that comes their way? Do those links take away from the relevance and value of others that are inbound because of commentary?

    My experience has been that yes, my hits shot up after publishing the first index. I honestly did not expect that, and previously I had only about 3 subscribers for several months. So, in terms of links, it works.

    But then, if people came here and didn’t like what they saw, they would just go away again. It works very much like the classic PR strategy of inventing a survey and owning that subject matter.

    So yes, there is a sudden amount of link love, but it needs to be followed up by a certain amount of substance.

    I would also say that the creators of the lists deserve recognition for taking the time and effort to create them. The PowerPR list is a right old pain in the arse to produce, which is why I’m still slowly compiling the lot into the Easy Bee software to make it a bit less so.

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