YQMA – Season 2 Premiere

Available on iTunes Videos Your Questions, My Answers17 Comments on YQMA – Season 2 Premiere

YQMA – Season 2 Premiere

We decided to kickoff Season 2 of Your Questions, My Answers on the fly after being guests on Stogie411. Its me, Brian and Walt shooting the shit and talking about random topics. We talk about IPCPR, Crowned Heads, other blogs, cigar events and Walt gets all fiery when we talk about Oliva/Nub/Studio Tabac all he was missing was a podium and a machette and he’d look like Dictator. Enjoy.


17 thoughts on “YQMA – Season 2 Premiere

  1. Good show, good topics, great humor. Always a pleasure to see Stogie Review gang (* minus Hippie) in one video 🙂

    When it comes to partial RSS feeds and / or blocked photographs, I’m going to stand up and wave my hand. I obviously disagree with your comments since I currently do deploy partial feeds. There are few reasons for it:

    # 1 – presentation. I want folks to come to my site and enjoy the main content of that specific write-up, blog layout-out, previous write-ups, link to other blogs (* beneficial to all across the board).

    # 2 – photographs. There are few blogs that have a nitch and I would like to consider mine as a cigar photography blog, hence the domain name. I want to maximize the experience and one can’t do that by looking through mobile RSS feed. I don’t think there is a way to restrict mobile to partial RSS feed vs. non-mobile for full feed. Let me know.

    # 3 – advertizing. Your current advertizing ‘successful’ percentage is completely out the window b/c you are providing full content via feeds and give no incentive to access the site. I’m actually shocked that this is not written into your ‘advertizing contract.’ If I was one of those companies I would have expected at a minimum: a) ads via feeds OR b) partial feeds to force audience to the site.

    # 4 – your videos LoL. Everyone and their mother owns an iOS device. Some of your videos (Walt’s ?) appear via iOS device and some don’t (Mike / Jerry). I’m excluding Brian here since his content and photographs appear via iOS. If I access your “FULL” feed via my iPhone and there is no video, how is that different from my partial RSS feed ? 🙂 LoL

    1. Jay,
      Different strokes for different folks. I currently have a couple of dozen blogs in my “Cigars” folder in Google Reader. I don’t have time to visit them one by one via direct link. So, to save time and keep everything in one place, I skim through my RSS Feed. If you restrict photos and only show a partial feed, there is no way that I’m going to spend the time to click through (which I do pretty often to read comment copy/paste link for Tweeting/Facebook/Google+). If I’m not going to bother clicking through, why should I even bother having the feed in Google Reader?

      I’m a firm believer that if you produce good content, you’ll get click-throughs even if you provide a full feed.

      I just checked a couple big-time blogs that I follow via Google Reader. The ads that are in their sidebar (on their site) are not in their RSS Feed. Seems as though we aren’t the only ones that don’t offer our website ads in our RSS Feed.

      The video displaying is out of our control. It is pushed through our Full RSS Feed, some readers (Google Reader) just do not embed video from Blip.tv. My videos typically display on the mobile site because I use a lower quality setting so that the master file is compatible with the iPhone and iTouch.

      Regardless of what your opinion is on RSS Feeds, thanks for watching the long video and leaving a comment. I guess we will just have to agree to disagree…. LOL

    2. Jay – Awesome feedback. I think when you are talking about RSS you have to look at it at the point of the reader and not as the content owner. Why make it harder (even if it is just a click) ? I’m a believer (like Walt) that full RSS leads to more pageviews and more traffic.

      Full text feeds makes the reading process easier. Which means someone will read the full piece AND actually understands what’s being said. This will then make it more likely for them to share it whether its on Twitter, Facebook or on another blog. That generates more traffic, interest and page views from new readers. Who we hope subscribe to our content and become regulars. Rinse and repeat.

      The whole idea is that by making it easier for anyone to read and fully grasp our content, the more likely they are to spread it and that tends to lead to much greater adoption than by limiting or dictating what we give to our readers and begging them to come to our site if they want to read more than a sentence or two.

      As for advertises…its not part of the package. Everyone’s RSS reader is different and we wouldn’t be able to control how that reader renders. As for videos. Like Walt said, thats out of our control and still confuses me why sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t.

      At any rate, we try to have our content easily accessible the way the reader wants to enjoy it.

  2. Entertaining, I hope YQMA makes a comeback like the old days. With Skype improvements, gone are the days where Walt and or Jerry had to spend literally 12 or more hours splicing video feeds together.

    As for RSS… I’m old school, I go to a few websites daily, and others less frequently. No RSS feeds for me anymore. I like being on the website itself. To each their own though. RSS feeds obviously have a purpose for many people.

    Cigar blogs are a dime a dozen now. But every now and then a new gem pops up and grabs your attention. Stogie411 is a perfect example.

  3. Great segment guys. First it was Jerry vs Alec Bradley, then Walt vs Oliva….is Brian holding back on something??

  4. Walt / Jerry,
    Great responses and healthy conversation. Much appreciated.

    I still don’t fully understand your response to # 4 which is the most relevant one. I can appreciate that video formating and display is out of your hand(s) but that doesn’t change the fact that your feed doesn’t provide anything but a bare notification ‘hey, I posted a video, go to my site and view it.’ How is that different from partial RSS feed ??? From a NEW viewer perspective, your ‘lack of embedded video’ notification is not any different than my partial RSS feed.

    I’m always open to suggestions. Obviously you guys have been around the block more than I and have greater experience with promoting your content so who knows, maybe I will give this magical ‘full feed’ a try and see the impact. Won’t hurt 🙂 Thanks for your suggestions !

    1. Jay its all about intentions. If we could ensure that our videos get embedded each and every time we would. But like I said, sometimes its blip.tv thats the problem and other times its the RSS Reader. Two things we really can’t control. Besides, the majority of our posts have written portion that a reader can read and for the most part, figure out what we think of a cigar.

      I’d give the full feed a chance or at least have it display at least one image from the post to give readers encouragement…I think you will see an increase. The full vs partial feed is a long debate amongst bloggers like cello on/off debate amongst cigar smokers. In the end, you do what you think is best for your circumstances.

  5. Walt,
    I know the exact Reading shop you are talking about, where the guy follows you in. I do think it has to do with the shop being in the Mall, but holy cow it’s annoying.

    Also, is Honduran Connecticut Shade a new “fad”?

    Great video guys, nice to see all three of you on a vid!

  6. The three amigos always make it an interesting ride. As always I appreciate the candid, uncompromising comments and opinions. No one does it quite like you guys. Keep the YQMA’s coming!

  7. Great show! I agree about the 6×60 trend, and I think Brian was right that NUB has a lot to do with the current fad–not a fan personally, but I understand why some guys like ’em big:
    1) Big frickin’ cigars are just cool and fun for some people
    2) A lot of cigar for the $, especially if you only smoke a cigar a week or whatever (your cigar is an event in itself), you want to smoke a “real” cigar that’s gonna last 2-hours or more, not some little thing
    3) Fatties smoke very cool on the palate, and for new smokers in particular that can be more comfortable
    4) Fatties tend to loose some body, especially in spicy/peppery blends, and a lot of guys consider that to make for a “smoother” smoke, though I’d disagree with that term. I’ve heard that from lots of guys, though

    As to other industry trends out of IPCPR this year, I see several things picking up steam:

    1) Extra-full bodied/extra-full strength cigars. This year we saw the Fausto, MK Ultra, 601 La Bomba, Ratzilla, etc. This isn’t a new craze, but I think it’s picking up a lot more steam now as the industry in general is finding that a lot of the 5-10/week and up smokers are looking for something stronger than what was previously considered “strong.” I think the Edge started this, followed by the LFD Ligero and Double Ligero lines, Oliva V and 601 Green, then a lot of CI stuff (Ruination, Diesel, Puro Authentico, etc), some Tatuaje LEs (T110, Pork Tenderloin, T-Rex) then even the almost-worshiped Padrons came out with the 45th, which I’d consider to boarder on extra-full body. The Cromagnon line is just fantastic in every way if you like ’em really strong.

    2) Mexican wrappers. For many years Mexican tobacco has been laughed at, and let’s be honest, for some good reasons (Te Amo, really?). But there have been rumors for years that the Padrons used Mexican-grown wrappers. I know back in the day guys only smoked “puros,” so I guess it mattered to them, but now I think most people say “who the frak cares, how does it taste?” But regardless of whether there is truth in that, a year or two ago you started seeing Don Pepin use Mexican wrappers. You had the Murcielago, LAdC Mi Amor, Tat Face, and a couple others. And now the Illusione Maduros use a Mexican wrapper, the La Reloba Mexican, A. Turrent Triple Play (which I’ve not had) and I think there were a couple more I read about at IPCPR. I smoked an Oliva V Maduro a couple days ago, and when I mentioned it a buddy said they use a Mexican maduro as well, not sure about that (but I loved the stick!). I personally don’t care where it’s grown, if it tastes good I’m all in … and I like a lot of these new Mexican wrappers!

    3) More Vitolas! It used to be that a new blend would come out, and be available in a robusto, toro, torpedo, and churchill, and maybe a corona. These days, you are seeing lines getting bigger in terms of the number of sizes offered, and not just for the VSGs and Opuses of the world. A few vitolas in particular are becoming more common:
    6×60 — We already covered this one
    Lancero — This one makes me very happy, as I love thin-ring cigars, and especially lanceros. While Cuba is discontinuing more and more of it’s thin-ring masterpieces, non-Cuban manufacturers are making more of them! I love it. The Pepin’s, Fuentes, Dion, and Lito rule this demographic, though lately there are a lot more options outside of these big boys too (Casa Fernandez, La Aurora, J. Fuego, etc).
    NUB-ish sizes — Love it or hate it, tons of manufacturers have decided to give in to the NUB craze. The Cigars International exclusives were the first to tap this new demand, but many others are now following suit, such as AVO, LA Aurora,
    Petite Robusto — I think the NUB’s success get’s some credit here … and why not have a shorter cigar that’s NOT 58-rg? I love this size because I often don’t have that much time to smoke a cigar. Also, these vitolas (especially from the Pepin’s) tend to be real flavor bombs. Short fatties can be good, but I usually like them more in the 50-52 range. A current favorite is the Cromagnon Knuckle-Dragger, but the EPC Short Run 2010 was stellar, as is the La Riqueza PR, Jaime Garcia RE RP, MF LP 1922, Camacho Triple Maduro, etc are all good cigars. I know there is an AVO Herritage in this size as well, though I haven’t tried it.
    Shorts — Petite coronas are coming back into style, but so are cigars that are even smaller (tres petite?). Sometimes you only have a lunch break to burn a stick, and sometimes it’s so cold out that you have to either skip the stogie or risk losing an earlobe to frostbite. In the last year or two you’ve seen a lot more happening on the small cigar front. Obviously there are the 4 short-format Tatuajes (5 if you count the Angeles), which are all spectacular. There is also the 7-20-4 dog walker, Epernay le petite, Illusione 68, several Viajes, Room 101 Namakubi, JdN Antano Dark Corojo, and more coming all the time! Great trend.

    Oh, and as far as Ecuadorian Connecticut Shade wrappers go, I think the first great example of this was the CAO Black. When CAO brought it back a few years ago, it was an exclusive to the CI/Ccom gang. But that is a fantastic smoke, and the creaminess you get from the wrapper on the CAO Black is different from your standard Connecticut (lacks the slight bitterness and tannins that often accompany Conn. wrappers). Then came the AVO XO, Tobacco Baez (Pepin), RP Signature (another CI stick, and a good one), and the JdN Cabinetta, and now the EPC New Wave and others. They’re getting a lot of buzz. Ecuador grows some amazing wrapper leaf, much of which is so unique, and I think the Connecticut Shade wrappers grown there are fantastic and deserve even more attention.

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