Rebecca Kelley

If You Build It, They May Not Come Just Yet: The Upside to Creating Fake User Accounts

June 28, 2012
Thumbnail image for If You Build It, They May Not Come Just Yet: The Upside to Creating Fake User Accounts

Last week reddit cofounder Steve Huffmann confessed that when he and Alexis Ohanian first launched the now hugely popular social news site, they created hundreds of fake user accounts to make the site seem more popular than it actually was. They used the “dummy accounts” to submit the type of content they found interesting or […]

12 comments Read the full article →

Would You Compromise Your Brand’s Integrity for a Little Traffic Bump?

June 20, 2012
Thumbnail image for Would You Compromise Your Brand’s Integrity for a Little Traffic Bump?

Last week I wrote about how FunnyJunk was threatening to take legal action against Matt Inman, aka The Oatmeal, unless he forked over $20,000 for making “false statements” about their website and for having the audacity to outrank them for searches for their own brand.  Rather than cave to this blatantly absurd threat, Matt instead […]

8 comments Read the full article →

What Did You Think Was Going to Happen, FunnyJunk? A Lesson in What NOT to Do with Reputation Management

June 13, 2012
Thumbnail image for What Did You Think Was Going to Happen, FunnyJunk? A Lesson in What NOT to Do with Reputation Management

My friend Matt Inman, who I’m sure many of you know as The Oatmeal, has caused quite the media stir this week, and he has FunnyJunk to blame (or thank, depending on how you look at it). On the slim chance you aren’t aware of what’s happening, I’ll get you up to speed. Matt creates […]

8 comments Read the full article →

Stop Embarrassing Yourself With a Brand Persona That Doesn’t Make Sense

May 30, 2012
Thumbnail image for Stop Embarrassing Yourself With a Brand Persona That Doesn’t Make Sense

Occasionally I see this commercial on TV for a credit union. It tries to be hip and edgy in a Poochie the Dog sort of way in a sad, desperate attempt to stand out and seem relevant, yet ironically I couldn’t tell you the name of the company if you held a gun to my […]

14 comments Read the full article →

Vetting Your Writers: Why It’s Hard to Find the Creative Needle in the Haystack of Crap

May 23, 2012
Thumbnail image for Vetting Your Writers: Why It’s Hard to Find the Creative Needle in the Haystack of Crap

Last fall Demand Media announced they were cutting back on the number of freelancers they were paying to churn out thousands of articles for their websites. Until then they had been well known for their “content farm,” but the company decided to shift their focus to “more targeted categories and other forms of content such […]

13 comments Read the full article →

My Short-Lived Obsession with Foursquare and My Growing Concern for Privacy

April 18, 2012
Thumbnail image for My Short-Lived Obsession with Foursquare and My Growing Concern for Privacy

I signed up for Foursquare, the app that lets you check into various locations and unlock badges and deals, shortly after it launched (yes, I’m pulling the “hipster” card on you) at the suggestion of a friend. It was a novel concept at the time, and I found the gaming aspects to be a great […]

5 comments Read the full article →

It’s the Training, Not the Destination: The Endurance Sport of Online Marketing

April 9, 2012
Thumbnail image for It’s the Training, Not the Destination: The Endurance Sport of Online Marketing

I’m currently training for an Ironman. It’s not my first time tackling the distance–I completed my first Ironman in 2010, and have been involved in endurance sports since 2006. Whenever a non-triathlete or someone who isn’t familiar with the sport hears that I’m planning to race in an Ironman this August, the response is generally […]

10 comments Read the full article →

If It Ain’t Broke, Keep Milkin’ It: Getting the Most Out of Your One-Trick Pony

April 2, 2012
Thumbnail image for If It Ain’t Broke, Keep Milkin’ It: Getting the Most Out of Your One-Trick Pony

Rovio, the Finnish company behind the insanely popular Angry Birds series of games, announced that they’re working on a cartoon series based on the game that will debut this fall. This was after the studio’s head of animation Nick Dorra said they were envisioning a feature film that won’t be ready for a couple years. […]

21 comments Read the full article →

Marketing Fail 101: How Woody Harrelson Taught Us About the Importance of Knowing Your Audience

March 27, 2012

The social news site reddit is a marvelous beast. Comprised of countless user-created categories, it’s a haven for all sorts of information and interactions. There are subreddits about world news, fitness, video games, humor, TV shows such as The Walking Dead and Game of Thrones, politics, and everything in between. One popular section is called […]

7 comments Read the full article →

If You’re Universally Loathed, A Blog Commenting System Probably Isn’t a Good Idea

March 19, 2012

Generally, I’m a fan of enabling comments on your personal or professional blog. Most of the time it’s a win-win–you can facilitate a discussion among your readers, address any feedback that gets brought up, and get free unique content for your site (blog comments can often bring in some long-tail search traffic). It’s an easy […]

13 comments Read the full article →

The Rise of Knee-Jerk Outrage: Why You’re a Moron for Grabbing Your Internet Pitchfork

March 12, 2012

Back in October, a waitress who was bartending at the Cha Cha Lounge here in Seattle discovered something that I’m sure has happened to every server in the restaurant industry at some point or another: she got stiffed by a customer. Not only did the cheapskate patron opt out of leaving her a tip, he […]

4 comments Read the full article →

Bigger Ain’t Always Better: Why Renovation Can Be Risky

February 14, 2011

Seeing as how it’s Valentine’s Day, I thought I’d focus this post on something I truly love: food. More specifically, there’s a burger place in Seattle called Lunchbox Laboratory. You could order up a huge sloppy, delicious concoction of your choosing — beef, “dork” (duck + pork), lamb, “churken” (turkey + chicken), game — adorned with bacon, truffle sauce, gorgonzola cream, you name it, complete with a fries or tots with your choice of salt accompaniments and one of many different milkshake flavors to wash it all down.

82 comments Read the full article →

6 Things I Learned From Sifting Through 724 Blogger Emails

February 8, 2011

Back in December, This or That was looking for people to contribute content to our website, so we published some job postings and watched the emails pile up. And by “we,” of course, I’m referring to me. I became an Army of One, a lean, mean, writer hiring machine. It took me about six weeks to tame my inbox, but I managed to go through 724 application emails (and counting, though the job applications have slowed to a trickle by now). No, that’s not a typo. I read 724 emails and over 700 writing samples (not everyone who contacted me provided a writing sample because they apparently couldn’t follow simple instructions). Not only did I pick up some handy tips about what makes a candidate stand out among the competition (as I summarized in my recent post, 10 Tips for Freelance Writers Applying for Blogging Jobs), I learned a lot about the process from the employer’s perspective that I’d thought I’d share with you all in case you’re ever in a position to hire freelancers.

76 comments Read the full article →

Don’t Obsess About Design For Design’s Sake

January 17, 2011

A short while back, a visual interface designer who’s done some work for Apple tweeted the following:

158 comments Read the full article →

10 Tips for Freelance Writers Applying for Blogging Jobs

December 28, 2010

For those of you who don’t know, I work for a company that has created a comparison website called This or That. We’re a soon-to-be four person operation and have gone through a few different design iterations since we launched in June. Our most recent design change mixes user-generated comparisons with blog posts and news […]

101 comments Read the full article →