I’m sitting in a session here at New Media Nouveaux which is geared toward PR types and marketers. A statement is made by one panelist that using blogs effectively is about knowing what people are talking about and suggests Technorati as the source of market research.
While Technorati is A source, a better idea would be using Google Alerts or Google Blog Search. These really have become key for me in the past year as I’ve moved away from favoring Technorati. Many niches also have sites devoted to “following the conversation”. For technology bloggers, there is Techmeme and it’s sister site for politics, Memeorandum. Tailrank attempts to track the “long tail” of conversation on many topics including entertainment.
There’s many ways to track conversation. My advice to marketers is to not be an outsider. When you join the conversation, the conversation will develop in front of your eyes. You’ll spend far less time doing “market research” and far more time cultivating relationships with your consumers and partners.