You think you can market on the web, do you?

Two posts caught my eye today: Stacy Higganbottham at GigaOm talking about page views versus engagement, and John Blyler on the value of Wikipedia and Digg.

Stacy points out that page views, the thing most media companies use to try to sell advertising, are really pretty worthless. The real question is: are those eyeballs engaged in the content. If the audience isn't spending time digesting the content who cares how many people.

John, on the other hand, throws some real doubt into the value of internet research on sites like Wikipedia and Digg because a very small, anonymous group of people are actually determining what rises to the top...not the masses themselves.

I've been wondering this myself the past couple of months as readership of this blog has been growing. For the first few months I was able to recognize the regulars on the site who downloaded the posts to their blog readers, and then the people that were search for certain terms that coincided with my subject matter. What was really interesting is being able to see what people spent time reading, listening to and watching on the site. I've learned that any pod cast longer than 5 minutes is generally too long. and that a post that can't be read under 4 minutes is not helpful. That's the attention span of the audience.

I've also started posting edits to Wikipedia and have found that information readily found in encyclopedias in public libraries will, more often then not, be excluded because it can't get approval from the "powers that be."

Still not sure what to do with Digg yet.