Dragan Varagic
is describing the Balkan blogosphere at (g)local 2.0: "In Serbia there are maybe 20,000 bloggers… maybe 50 who are very good bloggers."

The most popular of these blogs websites in the Balkans can have as many as 150,000 visitors per day. [Added Correction: Dragan informs me that he was quoting figures for websites, not blogs. Blogs, he tells me, can get as many as 1500 visitors per day.]  There are busy blogs and influential blogs, according to Varagic, and they aren’t necessarily the same.

Dragan’s presentation walks us through all the different blog tracking
and ranking tools – technorati, alexa, bloglines, google blog searches
for links, linkhounds, Brendan Cooper’s PR Index,
etc – most of which he says are indicative of traffic and influence but
none of which are able to give the entire picture on their own. Who is visiting is also important.

Based on Technorati rank alone (approx 92,000) the most influential blog in the Balkans is Borja.org. Dragan’s own blog is 6th. But in Dragan’s opinion, and he’s a leading regional expert in blog tracking, the "most influential" blog in Serbia is probably mooshema, which ranks 3rd out of Balkan blogs on technorati. What I find most interesting about Dragan’s research is that although some Balkan blogs are getting large numbers of visitors, they aren’t getting very many inbound links – so even the top blogs would rank way behind cybersoc.com.

Paul Bradshaw, who contributed to (g)local 2.0 yesterday via Seesmic, has been doing his own research on the leading UK Journo Blogs. Cybersoc appears in the top five on each of the different rankings he’s Paul’s looked at – technorati, page rank, alexa, google results and "blog authority", a combination of Alexa and PageRank.

Varagic ends his presentation by saying that metrics related to number of links aren’t so relevant, but their combination can give us some answers. The lack of standardised measurement techniques is a problem but by combining the use of different buzz tracking tools and techniques, you can start to understand where particular blogs sit amongst their peers. He says that the key to becoming more visible online is "to know who influence the influencers" to become more visible.

Stats p0rn is useful if PR or Search Engine Optomisation are you’re business – as they are for Varagic – and it’s kind of fun for us Journo Bloggers to see how we’re doing within our peer group, but I’m still quite skeptical of validity or usefulness of this type of information for most bloggers. Personally, I’d prefer to have a small number of highly engaged regular readers who take what they see here and do things with it than thousands of visitors and thousands of random links.

[You can track blog posts, flickr uploads and tweets from (g)local 2.0 using this buzz tracking pipe. ]

Cybersoc by Robin Hamman
With over 13 years of professional experience in the digital and social media industry, and a client portfolio that includes some of the World's most recognisable brands and organisations, I've built a reputation internationally as a leading practitioner in the industry.

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About Robin Hamman

I've been helping some of the World's most widely recognised brands and organisations devise and implement strategic digital and social media programmes since 1999.

I'm currently the EMEA Digital Network Lead at Fleishman Hillard. I've previously held a variety of roles including Managing Director of Dachis Group Europe, Director of Digital at Edelman, Head of Social Media at Headshift, Acting Editor of the BBC Blogs and Executive Producer at ITV.

In addition to my day job, I help my wife run an online retail business selling wool blankets - if you're feeling chilly, check out JustSheep.co.uk

I hold a BA in Education, MA in Sociology, MPhil in Communication Studies and a PgDip in Law. I've also been a Non-Residential Fellow at Stanford University Law School and a Visiting Fellow of Journalism at City University, London.

Why cybersoc.com? In 1995, I tried to register, for the purposes of researching "ordinary users", the username Cybersociologist on AOL. They truncated my name and I stuck with it....

Published Under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License