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30 April 2010

Carnival Midway from The Jerk Welcome to the Friday, April 30, 2010 edition of On the Moneyed Midways! Each week, we scan the best of the week's money and business-related blog carnivals to find the best posts contributed to each.

That job is getting harder and harder.

Here's why. Blog carnivals, as a social media phenomenon, are dying. Over the years, we've seen a number of the carnivals we've frequently featured fall by the wayside. That distinguished list includes blog carnivals such as the Carnival of the Capitalists, but since the beginning of the year, now also appears to include the long-running Carnival of Real Estate and the Carnival of Debt Reduction, the latter's edition this week featuring just one, count them, one post.

Part of why that is, is technology-driven. Today's Internet search engines are capable of assembling closely related posts together for people to review much more easily that a real-life host can. Especially if all they want to do is read through a bunch of somewhat related posts on a given subject.

But the bigger reason why that is has to do with those who read blog carnivals. There just aren't many people who make a specific habit of doing that any more.

Here's a case in point. We recently hosted the Cavalcade of Risk which was, by blog carnival standards, a blowout success. Going by our site traffic, we found a distinct increase directly attributable to unique interest in the carnival that lasted more than a week.

And that's the problem. Almost all of the site traffic we saw for the Cavalcade of Risk originated from a handful of larger media sites, who were reacting to the original and timely content we had created specifically to feature as part of the Cavalcade of Risk.

We compared that traffic to the previous times we've hosted the Cavalcade of Risk, where we provided content that would stand apart from typical blog carnivals, but not as dramatically. Looking over our site traffic for each of our previous hosting efforts, we found that the blog carnival posts for the more "standard"-style carnival was almost indistinguishable from the typical variation we see in our site traffic levels during any given week.

Our conclusion is that offering original, timely, topical and compelling content makes a huge difference for generating traffic for a blog carnival.

We read lots of blog carnivals every week. We'll confirm that when counted on one's fingers, the number of blog carnival hosts who themselves provide original, timely, topical and compelling content as part of their hosting of a blog carnival in any given year will result in lots of fingers being left over. Even when you do the counting with the fingers of just one hand.

That's why we suspect that blog carnivals as a social media phenomenon are dying.

And yet, they're not quite dead yet. The best posts we found in the best of the past week's money and business-related blog carnivals await you below....

On the Moneyed Midways for April 30, 2010
Carnival Post Blog Comments
Carnival of HR Can Common Sense Be Learned? Great Leadership We're ready to send Dan McCarthy to Washington D.C. Not to run things, mind you, but like Jamie Oliver's PR trip to Huntington, West Virginia, to teach those who most need it how to develop it! The Best Post of the Week, Anywhere!
Carnival of Personal Finance Why Being Passionate About Your Career Can Drive You Nuts Funny About Money Simple Life in France takes on the maxim "Just do what you love, and you'll never work a day in your life," showing that it doesn't really work that way in the real world!
Festival of Frugality Couponing for People Who Hate Couponing: A Zero-Stress Guide to Clipping Big Bargains Cheap Healthy Good Kris focuses on how to use coupons to achieve the "Cheap" part of Cheap Healthy Good's outlook on food!
Money Hacks Carnival Ban Antibiotics and Save Money Eliminate the Muda The LeanLifeCoach takes counterintuitive sense to a whole new level in taking on what the proper role of antibiotics should be. Absolutely essential reading!
Carnival of Debt Reduction An Example of Why Making the Minimum Payment on a Credit Card Is a Horrible Idea Free Money Finance With only one post making the relevance cut for this week's Carnival of Debt Reduction, we debated whether or not we should feature the carnival at all. Then we thought more about it and realized that carnival host MBH was doing us a real favor by highlighting the one contributed post that actually had something at all to do with debt reduction (we can only imagine how many off-topic posts had to be cut!)

OMM's Running Index for 2010

Presented in reverse chronological order....

Older Editions


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