The who:
Today I had a chance to interview Pam Spaulding (@Pam_Spaulding) of Pam’s House Blend. Pam has been featured on CNN, Washingtonpost.com, live blogged from the Democratic National Committee (DNC), Tavis Smiley and more. Her blog Pam’s House Blend which was started in 2004 has become more of a social network with over 120,000 visitors a month, plus includes guest writers, multi-media content and has one of the most passionate readership on the web today. But what does Pam blog about? Pam’s House Blend which started off being her personal blog now covers politics, Lesbian, Gay, BIsexual & Transgender (LGBT) rights and played a major roll this year contributing to the blogosphere as being the site to read about the differences in presidential candidates pertaining equal rights for LGBT.

The history:
Earlier this year when I had started doing online video interviews for the local TV station a lot of people in N.C. were saying Wayne you have to interview Pam. We’ll the year went by and I eventually met Pam for the first time at one of President Elect Barack Obama town hall events in Raleigh, N.C. before he was elected, we shook hands, exchanged business cards and the months flew by.  After that we crossed paths again at a new media/tech conference called Converged South in Greensboro, NC where I did get a chance to cohost an interview for 30THREADS.com of Pam. Then this week President Elect Barack Obama announced that he selected evangelical pastor and author of “The Purpose Driven Life, Rick Warren to deliver the invocation at his inauguration and the LGBT community was very upset and sounded off their frustration on twitter.  Which lead me to Pam’s site and I contacted her team to see if she was up for an interview to talk about the situation.

The interview:
The interview took place at Brian Russel’s Carrboro Creative Coworking office and asked Pam a series of questions about her blog, her role at the DNC, citizen journalism, LGBT reaction to Rick Warren, challenges of being a female blogger, main stream media rejecting and embracing blogging and what’s next for her in 2009. We also talked about the social responsibility that she and I both have as African-American bloggers to education our communities and culture. I won’t go into details Pam’s responses because I want you to watch it on http://waynesutton.tv .

The outcome:
So you may be asking yourself what does this have to do with extending your brand and relationships? For one, Pam has a huge following and a different community that I have. Plus she’s well respected by main stream media, journalist, reporters and the local community in N.C. and by interviewing her it ads to my credibility. She operates in different circles that I seldom reach and by interviewing Pam people who never heard of Wayne Sutton now know that I exist and are more likely to do a little research to see who I am and what I do. Also not being in a mode of trying to control content both my site WayneSutton.TV and Pam’s site Pam’s House Blend hosted the live interview at the same time using Ustream.TV. After the live show both of our sites share the saved show to where her readers and mine can watch the show if they missed the live stream.

The effect:
Immediately after the live show I started getting emails from my google alert from a few sites that I’ve never heard of before and a few other local bloggers in N.C.
A Blog Around The Clock – Pam Spaulding on Waynesutton.tv
Gay Blog Headlines – Live on WayneSutton.tv
2015Place.com – Combined Gay News Headlines

Lessons Learned:
Although Pam and I are entirely two different individuals but at the same time we have a lot in common.

  • Pam’s a lesbian and I’m straight
  • Pam blogs about politics and religion and I try to stay away from that conversation (except today)
  • Both of us are African-American
  • Both are bloggers
  • Both reside in N.C. (Pam’s lives in Durham and I live in Raleigh)
  • Both are passionate about what we do.
  • Both want to education our race and community about online technologies
  • Both have big plans for 2009.

But despite our differences, Pam and I respect one another and have a new found relationship. The feedback from the show has been great so far except me talking to fast…. I’m still in beta mode by the way.

The new beginning:
Pam it was an honor to interview you today, and thank you for your contributions to bridging the gab between the bloggers and main stream media. I’ll see you around N.C. or at a future conference in 2009.
The challenge for you:
Think outside of your social network and try to think new ways of reaching audiences that you’re not connected too now.

Are you willing to interview or have a discussion with people who don’t entirely agree with in a public online forum?

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