Kingmaker: Selling Influence on Digg
"You scratch my back, and I'll scratch yours" is a common method of mutual site promotion, in which bloggers, site managers, and writers team up with each other across the ether to promote their respective work on social media sites such as Digg.
However, some users carry more swing than others, and have figured out that they can charge for their promotions, if the interview below is to be believed. I'm taking the actual numbers with a grain of salt, but still.
A little known fact is that most top users from Digg offer social media promotion services. It is easy money. Once you reach a certain number of following and you start being recognized by the community its not that hard to get a certain number of diggs.
This allows most users ( including me ) the benefit of charging for such promotion, given that a front page on Digg can easily bring traffic anywhere from 20,000 to 100,000 plus to one single article.
I have worked for many popular blogs and I know most top users do. As of now I am involved with three blogs/companies that I regularly help with social media promotion, especially on Digg. To put it in short : my status and reach within the community allows me to help businesses leverage their opportunities by reaching a different crowd and a large crowd for that matter.
There are couple different ways I offer my services. If someone wants me to submit an article without any promotions involved, I charge anywhere between $300 - $500 depending on the quality of article. My submissions grow pretty fast so most people do not opt for promotion. For a submission and promotion I charge $700 irrespective of whether the article is good or not. As you know a front page can never be guaranteed.