(Most recently updated: January 2020)
I’m Rex Hammock.
RexBlog has been my personal weblog since its creation in the year 2000. Fortunately, I started blogging before there were any rules about how someone should blog. So I’ve stuck with that approach.:
- You can find information about the customer media and marketing content company Hammock Inc. at Hammock.com
- I post photos on my Flickr account.
- I collect extremely random things on my Tumblr account: rex.tumblr.com. (currently on sabbatical)
- I tweet random things at @R (Scroll down and you’ll find the answer to the question, “How did you get that Twitter username?”)
- Currently, I write less on this blog because I write so much for SmallBusiness.com. You can see what I’ve written there lately: Rex on SmallBusiness.com
- Every-other Thursday afternoon, I write an essay called Idea Email. You can subscribe to it on this page, an archive of five years of the essays.
- Once in a while, I update my LinkedIn Account.
- I have other social media accounts that aren’t public.
Some nice things people have said about me:
- Chief Executive Magazine: Top Ten CEO Blogs
- CEO.com: Top 25 CEO Bloggers
- Feedspot.com | Top 25 CEO Bloggers (2017)
- Nashville Technology Council: Social Media/Blogger of the Year (2009)
- Econsultancy.com: “When it comes to discussing what the future holds, Rex Hammock is one of the guys you want to speak to.”
When did you start RexBlog.com
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 15 years and nearly 10,000 posts later. There would be even more posts, but my Twitter account, @R gets most of the one-liners that used to happen here.
Obligatory FAQs, although “frequently” is not really that often:
Why is this blog called Rex Hammock’s RexBlog.com instead of just RexBlog?
I don’t remember. Perhaps I thought that would keep it from being confused with the countless other RexBlogs that I thought may appear one day.
How does one contact Rex Hammock?
Who is Rex Hammock?
I’m founder/ceo of the customer media and marketing services company, Hammock Inc. I also am sometimes called the Founder and Head Helper of SmallBusiness.com. Before starting Hammock Inc. (or, back then, Hammock Publishing) 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 and as a congressional speechwriter 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 (now called something else). In 1999, I was a co-founder of the national trade association that today is called the Content Council. My wife and I have two grown children who are amazing. We also have two dogs. Or, to be more accurate, they have us.
For 27 years, the company has been a specialized marketing services company focused exclusively on direct-to-customer media and content; the types of print, digital and video marketing services that some people today call “content marketing.” We don’t typically use the term “content marketing,” 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 and companies that serve the marketplace of small business decision makers. 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 outsource 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.
What’s the deal with bicycles?
I’ve posted lots of items about bicycling during the past few years but the items might be out of context if you don’t know why. Here’s why.
While I have several personal, family, “fan and fun” interests that make Nashville the perfect place for me to live, over the past few years, I’ve rediscovered my childhood love for the bicycle. I’ve ridden bikes as an adult, but I grew tired of the type of riding that involves wearing lycra, obsessing over speed or using words like “performance.” I rediscovered the bicycle as a simple joy that is focused on transportation and fun.
When the weather cooperates, I try to commute to-and-from work (about 10 miles, round-trip) at least three days a week. On the weekends, I love to take long rides to parts of Nashville that are communities or neighborhoods I’d never get to see, otherwise. (Some find it odd that I ride in-town on weekends, as the rural back-roads of Middle Tennessee are extremely beautiful and include some routes (most notably, the Natchez Trace Parkway) that people travel from around the world to ride).
I try to ride year-round, but Nashville isn’t quite ready for me to share the road with cars during a downpour or the early darkness that comes with living on the easternmost edge of Central Standard Time.
I don’t ride fast nor do I wear lycra (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.
In October 2019, I rode from Nashville to Tupelo, Miss., on the Natchez Trace Parkway. The route I took was about 250 miles (from north to south).
I’m always thinking of the next such trip I’d like to take — but these days my focus is on flat rides, not the hills of the Trace.
But riding a bike anywhere makes me happy. So making Nashville safe and fun for riding (and walking) and for commuting to work and school is both a “community thing” and personal thing for me. So I’m happy that I had the chance to spend a few years on the Nashville-Davidson County Mayor’s 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 years before future presidents knew it existed.
Where can I find more about Hammock Inc.?
You can learn about Hammock Inc. at the convenient to remember web address Hammock.com. (I think I’ve mentioned that three times already.)
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. While I would gladly accept it, the ENO folks have never sent me free stuff to say nice things about them. (Of course, I’ll disclose it…proudly.)
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 a 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 blog?
I used to get this question a lot. That’s when I used to post things throughout the day. Typically, they were short items or links and comments. Those are now tweets. Back when I blogged 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 quieter 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.: