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Archive for the ‘Opinion’ Category

Using “Shared Experiences” to Create More Valuable Content for Company Blogs

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 “Life is never made unbearable by circumstances, but only by lack of meaning and purpose.” – Viktor E. Frankl

Many people today are constantly searching for purpose in life. Discontentment transcends age, gender, economic status and race. Fortunately, we are interdependent as a species. We thrive on affirmation and never hesitate to give advice. Such interactions don’t always lead to knowledge of the “ultimate goal”; but they do yield meaningful, shared experiences.

Answering a friend’s question.

Making a suggestion to a colleague.

Following the advice of a family member.

These are all great examples of shared experiences. Since technology has made communication much more convenient, idea and opinion sharing effectively found its way online. Capitalising on the human tendency for semantics, search engines are rapidly moving away from keyword-prompted results towards meaning-based answers to user queries. Read More

Categories: Blogging Sense, Blogging Tips, General, Opinion
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Why Is Monetization a Dirty Word for Bloggers?

Blog monetization

Traditional publishing has long maintained a “church and state” separation between the editorial and advertising departments. Meanwhile, from the reader’s point of view, the two have always intermingled. The daily news appears alongside ads for fashion brands, department stores, and household services. We can almost certainly credit the the abundance of local car dealership advertisers for the auto section in local newspapers. The line has always been blurry. Read More

Categories: Blogging Tips, Opinion
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What’s Next for RSS

RSS IconWith the announcement that Google is shuttering Google Reader, its popular RSS reading service, there have been a lot of questions about what is next for RSS, the ubiquitous technology that enables easy syndication of online content.

The questions are certainly valid. Google Reader was by far the most popular RSS reader on the planet. It had been dominating the market for years and, for many users, Google Reader was practically synonymous with the term RSS as it was their only direct use of the technology.

But with the key player gone, what’s next for RSS? Will social media, such as Twitter and Facebook, become replacements? Will people switch to alternative feed readers? Or will something else altogether different happen?

I’ve been thinking about this a great deal lately and, though a lot of people are understandably pessimistic about RSS’ role as a user-facing technology, I’m starting to become more optimistic. Though the removal of Google Reader is definitely painful in the short term, in the long haul it could lead to some great new tools, things that would not have been possible with a stagnant Google product dominating the market.

So what’s next for RSS? Here are my (brief) thoughts on the matter. Read More

Categories: Opinion

How To Improve Your Company Through Failure

Nobody likes to fail. Unfortunately, it’s a part of business, and while “I succeed because I fail” is somewhat of a cliche, it still rings very true, and there are real lessons to be learned from not coming up on top. Besides the somewhat obvious “soft lessons” we gain from failing time and again, there are also more direct ways we can leverage failure to come up significantly better than we were before.

While not all of these answers may be directly applicable to your business, hopefully they will offer enough motivation that when you suffer your next, inevitable dip in business, you’ll see opportunity through that collapse. Read More

Categories: Blogging Sense, Marketing, Opinion
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Use of Social Media by Law Firms

I was on my first assignment and task as a writer for a law firm. Because of the trend in social media lately, I decided to check how the law firms utilize and use it for their online promotional campaigns.

Recently, the demand for social media marketing has greatly increased for several reasons. One of these is the relatively low cost of maintaining marketing campaigns in social media sites. Plus there are a lot of channels to choose from.

Law firms now extensively use social media in their link building and SEO campaigns. No wonder why because social media is getting more attention. Read More

Categories: Opinion
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Why T-Day Probably Doesn’t Matter

Blog Tumblr Google TrendsBack in 2009, on the Blog Herald I wrote a post entitled “Should Your Blog Be on Tumblr?” taking a look at whether using Tumblr was right for your site or not.

While there was no simple answer at that time, it seems a lot of people chose Tumblr in the past 2-3 years. Lately, the Web has been talking about how, if the current trends continue, it’s likely that searches for the word “Tumblr” could outpace searches for the word “blog” by mid-October this year, a day I’ve taken to calling T-Day.

Simply put, Tumblr has had a meteoric rise since late 2010 and it doesn’t seem like it’s going to slow down. It has long since passed “WordPress” as a search term and, given the recent attention to Tumblr, T-Day could be even sooner than the comic predicted.

But would it have any significance? Does it matter if it comes before or after it’s predicted? The answer is simple: Probably not.

Because as interesting as Google search trends are, they aren’t the only source of data and they are easily skewed. However, it is still impressive what Tumblr has managed and, as such, it’s probably worth a second look as a blogging platform. Read More

Categories: Opinion

How to Give Feedback to Guest Bloggers the Right Way

As someone who has been a guest blogger on approximately 80 different blogs, I feel as though I’ve seen it all when it comes to feedback. I have been asked to create an outline, articles have been sent back to me full of red and purple markings, articles have been completely ignored, and some of my articles have received nothing but a “no thank you” (no name, not greeting, just those three little words). As a writer, I have personal preferences as to how I think feedback should be handled. However, I also work on the flip side—I run a blog that accepts guests posts and I am constantly in a position to give feedback. Oddly enough, the way I give feedback to guest bloggers as an editor and the way I want to get feedback as a writer are completely different.

As a writer, I like it when an editor just tells me in one sentence why my article doesn’t work for their blog so I can send it somewhere else. I am not interested in seeing the hundreds of little comments an editor makes. If they have an idea about something that could make the article better then that’s great, but in general I am interested in getting my articles posted in a timely fashion. I am not offended (usually) if an editor doesn’t like my article, I will just try better next time.

Read More

Categories: Blogging: How To, Opinion
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Blogging Pitfalls: Unlimited Hosting

It’s a promise we’ve all heard before. Web hosting companies all over are offering “unlimited” hosting for mere dollars per month.

On the surface, it seems like a great deal. For a low monthly price you get to stop worrying about bandwidth and server space caps and focus on running your site. You can host as many domains, get as much traffic and store as many files as you want.

However, unlimited hosting is much more myth than reality. It just means that the host doesn’t place “hard” caps on storage and transfer and instead has replaced it with soft ones that could come back to bite you at almost any time.

Fortunately, it is a relatively avoidable pitfall if one is willing to be realistic about the limitations of such hosting and take precautions to avoid abusing it.

Read More

Categories: Backups, General, Opinion
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Blogging All-in-One for Dummies Now Available

Many people like to have a book by their side as they learn something.  If you’re one of those people, then you might be interested to hear that my new book, Blogging All-in-One for Dummies, is now available through Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and all other online and offline book sellers.

Blogging All-in-One for Dummies offers over 700 pages explaining anything and everything about blogging for a beginner audience, so you can start your own blog right away!  It’s a perfect supplement to the content you read here on BloggingPro.  The book includes 8 minibooks about starting a blog, choosing a blogging application, publishing blog content, growing your blog’s audience, making money from your blog, and more.  There is even a minibook about Twitter.

While Blogging All-in-One for Dummies is certainly the most comprehensive book about blogging available, following are a few other books that I recommend: Read More

Categories: Blogging Resources, Blogging: How To, Opinion
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WordCamps Need to be GPL too now?

WordPress logoJane Wells from Automattic published an update on the WordCamp How To blogtoday which is a warm welcome to anyone wanting to host a WordCamp. I have been lucky enough to help organize a WordCamp here in the Netherlands last year and hope to repeat that this year -yes, you’re all invited :) – and anything and everything is welcome to help make that a smoother experience for all attending.

Guidelines

The newly drafted guidelines are in fact pretty much straight forward on most topic such but there there are some questions it raises.

  1. It’s about everything WordPress. The guidelines state that it for 80% should be about WordPress.
  2. Open to all, easy to access, shared with community.WordCamps are meant to be low-key local gatherings that are affordable — cheap, even — to allow people from all walks of life to attend, meet, share, and learn.
  3. Locally organized and focused. Showcasing local talent and helping local practitioners connect is one of the best things about WordCamp. The best WordCamps tend to have both local and visiting speakers.
  4. Read More

Categories: Opinion, WordPress News
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