The Social Web

Archive for May, 2009|Monthly archive page

Blog Publishing

In Uncategorized on May 15, 2009 at 2:25 am

clip_image001This morning, I was excited to hear that Kindle Publishing is now open to all blogs. I tested out the beta at http://kindlepublishing.amazon.com/ and found it very simple to use. All I had to do was create an account, and enter the details of my blog including the feed, thumbnails and a description. Amazon will make the blog available in the Kindle Store within 48-72 hours. According to the site, you will get paid 30% of the monthly blog subscription price for every subscriber to your blog and it also says in an FAQ “Amazon will define the price based on what we deem is a fair value for customers”. It also appears that you can’t make your blog free if you chose to, and I certainly hope that changes. In addition to making your blog available to Kindle users via the Kindle Store there are other options that I have been experimenting with to make blog updates available through other media.  One of my blogs is now available as a kindle download via the Kindle Store.

The ShiSh Lists

clip_image003Magcloud is another option that I am experimenting with and can be viewed as the future of magazine publishing. Magcloud is the option for the rest of us that don’t use Kindles. Paper still holds its magic for many of us that refuse to be drawn to reading off a screen. You can create an account at http://magcloud.com/ and register your blog to be available for conversion to a printed magazine. I tested this out by exporting my wordpress blog out as XML and then converting the articles to a PDF file using http://www.blogbooker.com/ . It’s a fairly simple process of uploading the PDF to Magcloud and making it available for subscribers.

 

clip_image005I also use http://www.TwitterFeed.com to automatically twitter my blog posts out to the twittersphere. This is an excellent way to notify people of blog entries and also to automatically twitter RSS Feeds from multiple blogs to your twitter account. I also use this for my group twitter account where several of my team mate’s blogs are automatically twittered through a single twitter account. Between these methods and RSS Feed Syndication using services such as http://www.blogburst.com , there are several ways in which you can make your blog available across different social media.

Taking your Retail Business to Social Communities

In Uncategorized on May 12, 2009 at 4:28 pm

With the growth of Social Networks and Communities, we see a lot of conversations, recommendations of products and services happening outside of the retailer’s site. This presents an excellent opportunity for retailers to syndicate their product catalogs right to the place where the conversations and recommendations happen: blogs, social rating sites, social networking sites and other affiliate sites. I love what companies like Best Buy, Tesco, Amazon and EBay have done by making their APIs available for developers to integrate into their sites.

Best Buy Remix is the open API for Best Buy’s product catalog, featuring full product information including pricing, availability, specifications, descriptions and images for nearly a million current and historical products. It can be accessed via http://remix.bestbuy.com/ . I wasn’t aware that Best Buy had an affiliate program as well: you will notice the signup link there as well.

Through the Amazon Associates Web Service API developers can retrieve product information and access e-commerce functionality. This allows developers, web site publishers and others to leverage the data that Amazon uses to power its own business, and potentially make money as an Amazon affiliate. https://affiliate-program.amazon.com/gp/advertising/api/detail/main.html

Tesco has its own API web to access the Grocery catalog at https://www.lansleytech.com/tescoapiweb/ . Check out Nick Lansleys blog for more information: http://techfortesco.blogspot.com/

The eBay API at http://developer.ebay.com/common/api/ enables developers to submit items for listing on eBay, get current listings and eBay categories and more.

Some of the APIs available out there:

We are not only seeing more and more retailers make their APIs available so that they can be wherever their customers are but we are also seeing Social Networking sites open up so that you can take your networks to shopping sites for a true social shopping experience. Facebook Connect is a great example of this. CitySearch is a great example of a site using Facebook Connect.