BlogHer co-founder and CEO Lisa Stone sounded triumphant today in San Diego, where her women-focused blog and advertising network was hosting its seventh annual BlogHer conference. More than 3,500 bloggers were in attendance, and the company announced some new partnerships like the "Live Well Lived" initiative with P&G.
In the years since BlogHer was founded in 2005, Stone said the company has crossed "the credibility gap", so advertisers take it seriously. There's still plenty of opportunity for future growth, though. Stone said one of her big efforts in the coming year will be the LATISM-BlogHer Publishing Network, a new, joint effort with the Latinos in Social Media group to create a bilingual network of Latino blogs. She's also interested in expanding BlogHer's support for video and "mobile, mobile, mobile" —on the latter front, Stone hinted that there will be announcements coming soon, but she declined to offer any details.
Asked how BlogHer's model changes as more and more online conversation moves onto social networks, Stone said she welcomes the shift. BlogHer's properties reach 26 million women every month, but its bloggers connect with another 8 million people through social networks, she said. She also suggested that private social networks such as Google Circles could offer new opportunities, because women want to have conversations with trusted bloggers about sensitive issues, and they don't want to have those conversations in public.
"Facebook doesn't have Circles," Stone said.
Meanwhile, another female-focused advertising company, Glam Media, has been talking about a possible IPO later this year. Stone didn't reveal much about her future financial plans, but she did say BlogHer has made tens of millions of dollars in annual revenue for the past two years, and that it's not profitable yet.
"Our vision is of a company that makes money for woman, rather than off women, Stone said. "We want to build a powerhouse, profitable company for the post-Oprah, post-Martha world."