Try searching on Google Reader’s feed discovery search engine to get a feel for what shows up on searches important to your industry.
Here’s an example for the term “Minneapolis”:
In this example, a local news station, KARE 11, has the top search result for this term. Minneapolis largest local daily, the StarTribune, happens to be much further down the list of blogs Google Reader recommends to people searching for the term “Minneapolis.”
So, what factors are at play here?
A few that appear to matter:
1. Title Tag: Use important terms to describe your blog.
2. Blog Description: This seems much less important than titles, but seems to have an effect.
3. Subscriber Volume: This isn’t seem to have a strong signal, but it makes sense that they’d give higher weight to blogs others have subscribed to.
4. PageRank: I’m looking for an explanation for why Thomas Friedman’s blog from the NY Times ranks as high as it does. The description uses the term Minneapolis, but it seems like it may be the PageRank of the NYTimes.com website that helps Friedman’s blog rank so high for a term that’s only loosely relevant to the search.
What else do you think is at play?