(Most recently updated: May 6, 2014)
I’m Rex Hammock. (More introductions below.)
RexBlog has been my personal weblog since its creation in the year 2000, or Y2K, as we called it back then. These days (2K14) I’m writing about business things on RexBlog…so it’s less personal. Observations. Opinions. Experiences. Help. Things like that.
The fun stuff:
- I write about non-business things on my Tumblr account: rex.tumblr.com.
- I post photos on my Flickr account.
- I tweet random things at @R
Currently, a significant portion of my time is spenet working with the users, developers and others interested in the future of SmallBusiness.com. I’ve realized that there are things I want to share about that process–and about marketing to those who own and run small businesses–that I want to share on this blog. For that reason, I’ve decided to shift some of the personal things I blog about (Nashville, bicycling) to rex.tumblr.com and to my personal Facebook.com account.
This blog was created in the year 2000, but because of the Y2K bug that shut down the electrical grid and caused the internet to go offline for 14 months (you remember that, right?), I did not start blogging regularly (too constantly?) until January 1, 2002. The next thing I know, it’s a dozen years and nearly 9,000 posts later. There would be even more posts, but my Twitter account, @R gets most of the one-liners that used to happen here.
Here are some obligatory FAQs, although “frequently” is not really that often:
How does one contact Rex Hammock?
Who is Rex Hammock?
I’m founder/ceo of the customer media and marketing services company, Hammock Inc. Before starting it in 1991 in Nashville, I had stints as the founder/partner of a public relations subsidiary of one of the largest regional advertising agencies in the south, a congressional speech writer and press secretary. I’ve served three two-year terms on the board of the century-old association of business-to-business media companies, American Business Media. In 1999, I was a co-founder of the national trade association today called the Custom Content Council. My wife and I have two incredible children in their 20s. We have a dog named Kate.
You can learn more about Hammock, the company, on the “About” page of Hammock.com.
In brief, for past two decades, the company has been providing the types of print, digital and video marketing services that some people today call “content marketing” (we don’t typically use the term, but we don’t correct anyone who describes us as a “pioneering content marketing” firm). We work with some of the largest companies in the healthcare services field, as well as large associations. Our services include all of the types of activities you’d find in a traditional media company that produces recurring print or digital magazines, newsletters and digital media. The only difference is our business model: We are an out-source provider of such services to organizations who use media and various types of content to serve (“help” is a word we like) their customers or members in a better way. Our services are designed to help our clients fulfill a strategic objective–they use media, they aren’t in the media business.
When not working, I have several interests and passions that range from being a big fan of Nashville and its sports teams. I’m also “bicycle lover” (some might say I’m a nut) who tries to commute to-and-from work (about 15 miles, round-trip) 3-4 days a week, all four seasons, rain or shine. I don’t ride fast nor do I wear lycra/spandex (at least, that is visible), but I’ve been known to ride for long distances, as in a 415+ mile ride from the Alabama-Tennessee border near Florence, Alabama to Fairhope, Alabama, on Mobile Bay in November, 2013. I’m always thinking of the next such trip I’d like to take. I serve on the Nashville-Davidson County Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee.
How did you get the Twitter username @R?
I asked for it. Actually, the credit goes to a young member of the fictitious club called People Named Rex, Rex Pelcher. I got to know Rex through Twitter where he is (@rex). As I had tried to register that name when Twitter first launched and was unable to get a three-letter name, I asked Rex how he was successful in getting the name. He said, “I asked for it” and then suggested that I ask for “R” as it was still unregistered. And the rest is history. All this happened back when there were maybe five people working at Twitter and Oprah was about three years away from hearing about it.
Where can I find more about Hammock Inc.?
You can learn about Hammock Inc. at the convenient to remember web address Hammock.com. However, I can tell you this much without making you click over there and be disappointed: we don’t sell hammocks. However, if you’re looking for a hammock, I’m a big fan of the camping hammocks and related gear from Eagles Nest Outfitters (ENO). They are great for bike touring (although I tend to spend bicycle touring nights in motels, when possible).
Where can I find more about SmallBusiness.com?
At the easy-to-remember web address SmallBusiness.com/about.
Why do you (keep a, have a, do a) blog?
I see this blog simply as my base for my part of a bigger conversation that is taking place. To me, having a blog is like having access to a phone or to email. Except, with a blog, you have a platform to say your piece to anyone who wants to hear. If this isn’t a long enough answer, here is link to an answer to this question that will put you to sleep.
What is your business model for this blog?
Oh, you noticed! This blog doesn’t carry advertising.
And, because it’s a personal blog, I’ve never tried to directly “monetize” it. However, since there is a company that I’m associated with that is related to some of the topics I write about, the blog often gets categorized as a CEO blog or a “small business” blog. In that way, one could argue the entire blog is an advertisement. As I said in the answer right before this one, this blog is like a telephone or email or any means I have to communicate with people who may turn into employees or partners or customers or referrers. So, yes, it’s business-related…but it doesn’t have a business model. But it supports my other business models.
I do, however, have one direct means of generating revenue from this blog, but it rarely generates much…
The last time I checked, I directly earned about $30 a year from the Amazon.com affiliate account I set up on and link to if I mention a product that may be sold there.
How do you find the time to do your blog?
I used to get this question a lot. That’s when I used to post things throughout the day. Typically, they were were short items or links and comments. Those are now tweets. Back when I blog here a lot, I wrote most of the posts at night. Also, my kids were at the point of going away to school when I blogged the most. All that “family time” became a lot more quiet when they left.
How much time do you search for stories to link to?
Again, I could not do this in the limited time it takes were it not for the amazing Goggle hacks and RSS tools that work in the background to keep me from having to search for news by going from site-to-site.
Is there an archive of this blog?
Look over on the left hand column. You can use the calendar to access specific days. Also, there is a search box in the right-hand column.
What’s the deal with you being the first White House blogger?
Rather than answer that here, I’ll just link to several posts on that topic .
Why don’t you run your posts thru a spell-check?
In the early days of this blog, my blogging tool had no spell-checker. I’m trying harder now that I use a tool that does. It still doesn’t always work. If the editors at Hammock weren’t busy working for and being paid by clients to edit their content, I’d probably run what I write here past them. (Those who actually read this blog are quick to IM me if they see something grossly screwed up.)
Because lard is the substance you are left with when you boil down hog fat, a fitting metaphor to what one has after spending time reading this stuff. Also, when used as a verb, lard means to enrich or lace heavily with extra material or to embellish. Actually, my wife found that neat Rex Lard can at a flea market in Maine and I thought it would look good somewhere on this blog. That was in 1999.
What are the copyright restrictions on using content from Rexblog?
Rexblog is covered by the Creative Commons Deed called, “Attributioin-NonCommerical-NoDerivs 2.5 .” If you’d like to do something more than what is covered by that deed, feel free to contact me.
No one actually asked the question, but here are some places you’ll find me online.: