Thursday, July 13, 2006

BlogKits Claims It Has A New Deal for Bloggers

In an announcement yesterday via PRWeb, Forge Corporation revealed it had acquired BlogKits from business blog expert Jim Kukral, who has also become VP of Branding and Marketing for Forge. BlogKits is a network built to help match blogges with advertisers.

From the wording of the press release it is clear that the current dominance of Google Adsense as a money generator for bloggers is not underestimated.

"Google Adsense has been a revolutionary tool for bloggers, and should always stay part of a successful blog monetization strategy. BlogKit's approach is not to recommend to replace Adsense, but to add to it without penalty. We believe there’s a lot more money to be made on a well-matched cost-per-action (CPA) offer for bloggers as opposed to a few pennies per click from Adsense."



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Blogspot Sites Fingered in Research on Spam Blogs

Anyone doing business with a blogspot site, such as this, needs to be concerned, as I am, about the report just released by Microsoft and as reported by Brian Krebs in his blog at The Washington Post, in Microsoft Stabs at Blogspam, Pokes Google.

Microsoft today released new research on the epidemic of spam blogs -- or "splogs" -- as well as the "comment spam" that dodgy marketers splatter all over blogs in a bid to improve theirsites' search-engine rankings. Redmond's research team found thatsplogs hosted on Google's Blogspot.com appear to be widely spammed and fairly effective at jacking up the search results for the spammers' Web sites.

There is no way I want to be associated with the sort of low-life ways of making money through blogging, as listed in the article.

But mud sticks.

It is probably time to move this blog to either being hosted with Blogger.com software on my own server, or to - say - a Wordpress site, which would also be hosted on my server. That way I could also use the domain name I have reserved for the purpose.

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Blogger Success Now Claimed On Technorati

Yesterday I posted on my frustration in trying to claim this site on Technorati. I could not understand how Technorati could bring the blog up in a search but then inform me that it was 'unclaimable.'

From a bit of online searching I found a suggestion to get the code for a Technorati Favorite image and drop that into the site template. I did that. Whether or not that changed things I don't know, but today I went into Technorati and claimed the blog without any drama.



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Great Tips For Blogs That Mean Business

Lee Odden has an excellent post at his Online Marketing Blog - 25 Tips for Marketing Your Blog.

More than enough work here to keep any serious blogger busy for weeks - and longer.

The post answers the question implicit in the statement:

With so many blogs being created every day, it’s a mystery to many bloggers how to make their blog stand out.



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Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Escaping the Day Job

Sobering or inspiring - or a bit of each - are the words of Internet marketing expert Marlon Sanders, in his article at GuruKnowledge.com, How to Escape Your Day Job And Pay Your Bills.

Especially good words for anyone who thinks they can learn about marketing online from courses or books alone:

Honestly, in the DOING, you'll learn a lot more than
you'll ever learn in the reading. You ask. The market
answers. You learn along the way.

But if you're a spectator and you never get in the game, I
can guarantee you one rock solid thing: You'll never win
the game if you aren't in it.



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Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Technorati Blog Claiming Process Mystifying

Technorati has a process for 'claiming' your blog.

Claiming your blog in Technorati allows you to customize the way it's presented, add your photo and description, and even add cool Technorati tools to your site.

Great!

But what happens when you go through the process of claiming your blog - as I have tried to do several times with Blogger Success - and Technorati:

  • tells you your blog is 'unclaimable'
  • invites you to contact support if you have a problem with that
  • acknowledges your enquiry via prompt return email
  • then goes silent.
???

Technorati finds the blog quickly enough when I search for it using its Blogfinder tab.

But then when for the umpteenth time I go to claim the blog I get the dreaded 'unclaimable' message.

Is it a Blogger thing?

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Some Sobering Words for Anyone Wanting to Make Money From Blogging

Chris Garrett at Performancing.com has some very practical advice in his post 'Can Anyone Make Money From Blogging?'

His answer to his own question? Yes, but...

While anyone has the potential to make money out of blogging a great many people never will. Just like any business, most bloggers don't last out their first year.

And not much consolation here for the fastbuck dreamers, who see the Google adwords about making tens of thousands of dollars from blogging and can't wait to find out more about this magic money tree.

Critical to success is having staying power, not being defeated by minor setbacks, being willing to put yourself out there and put in the hard work.

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It's About Doing Business, Not Just Getting Traffic

Pro bloggers sometimes obsess about their traffic numbers - how many visitors, how many of those are returning, how many new. Then there are page downloads, etc.

Measuring the traffic is an important part of blogging for money, but it's only part of the picture.

Problem is, when people first get into blogging for or as a business they pick up that they need lots of traffic and as an apparently sel-evident corollary that they need to post every day and preferably several times a day.

In an excellent - and provocative - article, Why blog post frequency does not matter anymore, HP heavy Eric Kintz provides ten reasons why the pressure to post frequently is not only inappropriate but will in the long run hinder the growth of business blogging.

And if you make yourself a coffee and put some time aside to read the extensive comments on the post, you will hopefully find the conversation as interesting as I did.

Via CT Biz Blogs



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John Edwards Among the Geeks

One event I would really like to have attended this year was the recent Gnomedex 6.0 in Seattle (yes, it's actually over even though the banner says 'Register Now'). I'm no geek, but this is not the kind of event where you can get together with serious bloggers and podcasters - and interested others - from across the country and discuss real issues.

I would have liked to have heard John Edwards the lead speaker, not so much about party politics but about where he sees us heading with the Internet and blogging especially.

Todd Bishop on SeattlePI has some interesting info and observations in John Edwards courts tech crowd in Seattle :

One recurring theme mixed the two areas (technical issues and politics). Several in the audience stressed the importance of authenticity in politics, and the potential for blogs and other technology to give Americans a more accurate view of campaigns and the legislative process by getting closer to what's really going on.

Via LexBlog



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Technorati Charts Rocketboom Mentions

Do you yearn for Amanda Congdon's days on Rocketboom? Do you think as some apparently do that having Joanne Colan, a Brit, now as host is worse than a mistake? See the comments on her freshly-launched blog.

Lots of opinions.

Some people are having fun with the news that the re-launch of Rocketboom was delayed.

Technorati has offered a chart to keep track of the Rocketboom mention stats, for what that's worth.


Posts that contain Rocketboom per day for the last 30 days.
Technorati Chart
Get your own chart!

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More To the Story Than a Headbutt

The spectacle of France's soccer hero leaving the field of play in disgrace in the closer of the World Cup - as covered in Bloggers Cover the World Cup Final, and elsewhere - was certainly bizarre.

How could France as a nation reconcile its virtual deification of this man with his 'brain explosion'? Well, they are working on it.

But there is a lot more to that story, and many others that flash across our TV or Web-tuned computer or pda screens, as Dan Farber points out in a thoughtful piece on the ZDNet blog system - Beyond blogging, the power of the videoclip

Beyond blogging, video from anyone and anywhere phenomenon is extending to all corners of society and commerce. If you have a product or service some users don't like, or head butt someone in a World Cup match, expect to see powerful, visual clips, parodies and slams, some bordering on slander, that hugely amplify the positives or negatives, depending on the take, and spread like wildfire across the Net.


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Monday, July 10, 2006

Comments on Rocketboom and Money

Lots of buzz in the blogosphere in recent days over the split between Rocketboom partners Andrew Baron and Amanda Congdon.

Donna Bogatin, on the Digital Micro-Markets blog at ZDNet blogs, ponders about whether the undeniable popularity of Rocketboom has been translating into enough cash to make everyone concerned happy - or happy enough.

See Rocketboom: 'lots of chuckles', what about lots of money

In true Web 2.0 fashion, Rocketboom “distributes attention to all kinds of creative people doing coooool stuff,” but it doesn’t necessarily distribute money to the creators of the “cool” content.

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Does Blogging for Profile Help Make Money?

Thought-provoking post at BlogHerald by Aaron, The Value in Profile.

Aaron declares at the outset that he blogs for profile and then provides brief answers on three key questions about blogging for profile:

  • What is the value in profile?
  • How is profile built?
  • Why would someone choose profile over money, if forced to choose?

At his own Technosailor blog, Aaron posts about technology, blogging and new media.

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Google Adsense Explained

Google Adsense


Discovered today the Google Adsense blog and watched a video post explaining a few specific questions as follows:

1. Why aren't all of my ad units showing? I've pasted 3 ad units into my site, but only 1 appears.

2. The postal service in my town is unreliable. What other options do I have for receiving payments?

3. How do referrals work and why should I use them?

The referrals stuff sounds interesting. Will check it out.



Saturday, July 08, 2006

How to Make Money - BloggerCon Report

Haven't gone through it in detail yet, but there is a very interesting post by John Palfrey of Harvard Law School's Berkman Center, on the "How to Make Money" session at June's BloggerCon IV.

The article includes "an outline of suggestions people have made — before, during and after — for the “How to Make Money” session". Some interesting hyperlinks in the list, which is divided into two main ways of making money via blogs - Making Money "By" Blogging and what the article calls Making Money "Off Of" Blogging.

Create Your Own Polls for Free

People like polls. Having polls on your blog is a way of helping people enjoy the experience of visiting, and maybe encouraging them to return.

At Vizu, you can design your own poll and get the code to install it in your blog. Accounts are free.

I just designed this for the World Cup final.

Who will win the football World Cup?
Italy
France
Web Polls by Vizu

A Good List of Blog and Feed Directories

Clearly, one of the most useful things to do in setting the scene to make money from blogging is to get your blog known. One of the ways to do that is to submit your blog to various directories.

There are some people who do that quite indiscriminately - any directory will do. But do you want your blog being listed just anywhere? If 'family friendly' is part of your ethos for your blog, you presumably don't want your blog listed on a directory of 'adult' or X-rated sites.

One of the people who has a very responsible approach to the business side of blogging is Easton Ellsworth of Business Blogwire and he has produced a handy list of sites where you can submit your blog url or newsfeed. See his post The 23 Most Critical URLs Where You Should Submit Your Blog or Feed. And as he provides the url link, you can just click straight through and add your blog.

How Do You Feel About Making Money From Your Blog?

Steve.Pavlina.com in the article How To Make Money From Your Blog has some good advice for people who are not yet decided about whether they want to make money from blogging, especially if they feel that it is somehow wrong to do so:

If you have mixed feelings about monetizing your blog, then sort out those feelings first. If you think monetizing your site is wonderful, fine. If you think it’s evil, fine. But make up your mind before you seriously consider starting down this path. If you want to succeed, you must be congruent.

The article lists a number of ways to make money from a blog, but I felt the real value of the article is in the clarity with which it explains to people the need to figure out seriously how the effort to monetize their blog fits - or doesn't - with their values.

Chinese Government

The Hindustani Times comments on a report that the Director of the Information Office of China's Cabinet is quoted as declaring "As more and more illegal and unhealthy information spreads through the blog and search engine, we will take effective measures to put the BBS, blog and search engine under control."

The article claims that China has 37 million blogs, "which will soon touch 60 million".

Technorati says it is currently tracking 47.3 million blog sites - which presumably means Technorati is not tracking some or all of the Chinese ones.

Fast Track to Basic HTML

Anyone who wants to make money from blogging needs to accept that it will help to understand some basic Hypertext Markup Language - or HTML - coding. And even some PHP coding will help.

An excellent, practical resource, free of charge, is at the W3 Schools Online Web Tutorial site - plain language, step by step.

Friday, July 07, 2006

How to Hide the Blogger Navbar

The standard Blogger navbar didn't really bother me, until I clicked on the 'Next Blog' tab and found myself at a site that had nothing to do with blogging. For anyone who wants to make money from blogging, i.e. the intended readership for this blog, why would you want to provide a link to take people to some unspecified site?

Found a piece of code at Blogger Templates that solved the problem. As it hides the whole navbar it also hides the Blogger search tool. Installing the Google search tool will presumably solve that.

I suspect that at least one of the standard issue Blogger templates hides the Blogger navbar, but that's research for another day.

Flocking Time

Kathleen Gilroy at The Otter Group has installed Flock as her default browser and loves it.

Flock is now my standard browser for search. When I type a search term into te search window I get my local favorites, my recent search history, and a likely set of search results in Yahoo search. I also have access to Google, Amazon, and wikipedia in the drop down results.

I've installed Flock - must try it out.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

A Blogger Success Story

No doubt every blogger has his or her own version of success and that will in many cases not be about money primarily, or at all.

As mentioned in the previous post, this blog is about helping identify and point to ways for people to make money with blogging, ethically, responsibly, honestly.

It's good to find examples of people who have gained a financial benefit from blogging and are also proud of what they are doing and the service they are providing, like that of Tris Hussey, who 'didn't think he could write'.

How to Define Success in Blogging

The focus of this blog is basically monetary: how to make money with your blog.

The fuller statement of purpose is: how to make money with your blog and keep your self-respect.

Let's face it, the people who want to show you a way to make loads of money by mechanically creating a storm of fake blogs or automating a storm of comment spam are not showing you a way to make money by providing a much needed or appreciated end service. For me, that is not a way to keep your self-respect.

Why do something online that you wouldn't want to have to explain to your mother or your best friends, especially when there are plenty of ways to make an honest buck or many, ethically, responsibly?

But there's a catch. It may take time - and some hard work.

I like this quote I picked up today from Paul Allen's post Overnight Internet Success:

My brother Curt, founder of Folio Corp, former CEO of MyFamily.com, and current CEO of Agilix, a venture-backed company, is fond of saying how his company was going to be an overnight success…after 10 years of hard work.

I believe that the single most important key to success in an online venture is doing the little things day after day for years and years until you magically reach the tipping point and everyone seems to have heard of you. In other words, persistence is required for most successful ventures.


via ProBlogger

More blogs about blogger success.
Performancing