BloggingPro http://www.bloggingpro.com News, plugins and themes for blogging applications Mon, 20 Oct 2014 13:00:55 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.0 Can You Earn From Running a Tech/Gadget Review Blog? http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/10/20/can-earn-running-techgadget-review-blog/ http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/10/20/can-earn-running-techgadget-review-blog/#comments Mon, 20 Oct 2014 13:00:55 +0000 http://www.bloggingpro.com/?p=31093 Most bloggers who enter a specific niche want to earn some money from their activity. While it has been said so many times that you shouldn’t prioritize making money out of your blog, at the end of the day, it does matter.

One of the niches that is quite popular is tech, a sub-niche of which is gadget review blogs.

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There is no doubt that a gadget review blog can be popular, especially with how consumers have become fixated on gadgets -from mobile phones to tablets to computers to other electronic devices. So, yes, the simple answer is you can earn from running a gadget review blog. It is a matter of how much you expect to earn.

If you’re thinking about starting a gadget review blog, there are two questions to ask yourself.

1. Do you buy the gadgets out of your own pocket?

This is a critical consideration because you will have to shell out a considerable amount of money in order to purchase gadgets. If you have that kind of money, then you’ll have the advantage of being able to say that you are truly unbiased in your review.

Another just as important thing to factor in is how and where you buy devices for your gadget review blog. Again, you have two options:

  • A brick-and-mortar store
  • Online shops

Both types of stores offer all sorts of discounts, so you just have to do your research and be patient so that you don’t have to pay more than you have to.

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A piece of good news when it comes to making purchases is that, in the near future, you won’t have to worry about credit card debt as well as security/ID theft. A new payment technology called  IFAN Financial Inc. (OTCBB: IFAN) is about to launch a secure and convenient way of paying for your purchases. It makes use of a device called iPIN, which is plugged into your mobile phone or your computer; so whether you are shopping at a physical store or an online shop, you can use this device.

How does it work and why should you be interested in iPIN?

iPIN works just like your ordinary debit card works. Once you plug the device into your phone or computer, you swipe your debit card, and the payment goes through immediately – as long as your account has enough funds. The advantage of this is that you will not fall into the trap of maxing out your credit card only to find that you are neck deep in debt.

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The premise of the technology of IFAN Financial Inc. (OTCBB: IFAN) is to make it faster and more secure for consumers because the merchant does not get any of your information at all.

Right now, the IFAN Financial Inc. (OTCBB: IFAN) tech is yet to launch, but they are going to partner with shops offline and online, and you will be able to buy your gadgets for review using this tech.

To learn more about how iPIN will make your life easier, watch this video.

2. Do you rely on review products given by companies?

This will certainly save you a lot of money because many manufacturers or marketers/agencies give away their products to gadget review blogs without expecting them to be returned. They allot a budget for these items to be given away.

That being said, there is the question of how objective can you be in this case?

Let’s face it, even though the source of the gadget says, “Please give us your unbiased opinion”, do you really think you can be 100% objective?

Maybe. Maybe not.

However, if you want to be respected by your readers, one thing is compulsory: you should disclose if you were given the gadget for free.

Also read: How To Score Products To Review For Your Blog

How can you make money?

It’s up to you which route to take, and you can even make it a mix.

As for making money, there is the traditional way of getting a lot of traffic and earning from AdSense. Relying on this for earnings will not work, however, if you do not make splash first and gain enough traffic.

One way to drive traffic to your site is promoting and marketing your content.This will also take time, but if you do it right, and you have enough patience, you’ll get there.

Another way to gain a larger audience is to hold giveaways. This might hurt you financially at first if you buy your own devices for review. If you are given gadgets by companies, then you won’t lose anything. In fact, it will score you points, as you do not keep the devices for yourself.

Advertisements/endorsements. This is also a touchy subject, because some companies may want an exclusive deal with you. For example, if X telecom gives you X money per month, they may give the condition that you can’t review or advertise anything related to Y telecom. This money-making method can give you lots of earnings, though.

Wrap up

Depending on how you handle your gadget review blog, you can make some money. It all depends on how strict you are when it comes to “free” review products and advertising.

Have a little patience, provide excellent reviews, and you just might make big bucks out of your gadget review blog.

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BloggingPro Job Board Highlights, October 20, 2014 http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/10/20/bloggingpro-job-board-highlights-october-20-2014/ http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/10/20/bloggingpro-job-board-highlights-october-20-2014/#comments Mon, 20 Oct 2014 12:00:05 +0000 http://www.bloggingpro.com/?p=31091 Job board highlightsGood morning! Here are the job board highlights. We’re hoping you get lucky, and find new jobs this week. Have a good week ahead!

Seeking European-based freelance writer and copyeditor with knowledge of wireless telecoms market

FierceMarkets, a growing online media company based in Washington, D.C., is seeking a part-time writer and copyeditor for its telecom newsletters and websites. This person will write news articles and copyedit an executive newsletter on the European wireless telecoms market.

Freelance Sports Content Writer

SportShocker.com, a division of Hallamos Media Inc., is looking for freelance writers to help develop our unique sports-related online content. We are currently seeking creative and funny individuals to help research and editorialize SportShocker.com stories.

Weekly Blogger for gravesprinting.tumblr.com

Weekly Blogger needed for writing printing industry related stories on gravesprinting.tumblr.com with links back to main site and products at: gravesprinting.com

Consultant/freelance curriculum developer

Hack the Hood is looking for an experienced and creative curriculum developer/instructional materials writer/editor to help our team expand and polish our professional development and technology training curriculum geared towards low-income youth of color. This is a part-time, contract role working with a very hands-on team with a track record of success in teaching young people tech and workplace skills.

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Amazon by the Numbers http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/10/17/amazon-numbers-infographic/ http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/10/17/amazon-numbers-infographic/#comments Fri, 17 Oct 2014 15:00:15 +0000 http://www.bloggingpro.com/?p=31072 Amazon by the Numbers

The chances are that you are connected to Amazon in one way or another. Perhaps your blog is part of the Amazon Affiliate Program. Perhaps you use Amazon Web Services. I’m pretty sure you’ve bought from Amazon at least once.

But have you ever thought about the immensity of the business Jeff Bezos has created? We have heard all sorts of stories – I’m sure some are true while others are not – about the founder of Amazon. He’s been called a genius. He’s also been labeled as the bad guy.

Looking at Amazon, though, we get to see just how massive the company’s operations are; and there are also nice tidbits that you may not have known. Here’s an infographic from TechieSense, which will shed some insight into the household name called Amazon; before that, here’s a quick rundown of some of the best details:

  • Jeff Bezos only makes $81,840 per year, even though he is CEO.
  • Amazon started by selling only books to selling everything from clothing to electronics. That’s a total of 17 umbrella categories, with 143 subcategories!
  • Amazon has 132,600 employees
  • Amazon is the number one spender when it comes to Google ads – a total of $158 million (2013)
  • When Amazon went down for less than an hour (49 minutes) last year, the company lost about $4.8 million in sales.
  • Amazon’s sales during Cyber Monday of 2014 amounted to 37 million items, which translates to 428 purchases per second.
  • Every employee has to spend two days every two years as a customer service representative. This includes the CEO himself.

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The Age of Link “Earning”: Why Link Building Doesn’t Matter Anymore http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/10/17/link-earning-link-building/ http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/10/17/link-earning-link-building/#comments Fri, 17 Oct 2014 12:30:16 +0000 http://www.bloggingpro.com/?p=31053 chain-297842_640

Are you aggressively implementing a link building strategy in which you employ blog commenting, forum posting, online directories, and guest posting as tactics?

If so, then I suggest you throw your strategy out the window. It’s not going to work. I’m serious.

The problem with link building

To understand what makes link building problematic, you need to look into the history of the Google algorithm updates.

Prior to 2011, link building felt like a data entry job. All marketers have to do is copy and paste a block of text with an anchor text pointing back to their website and have it published online. Not much thought or insight is used in this activity.

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One of the most effective link building methods at the time is getting your content published on content farms. It is fairly easy to rank an article with a backlink to your site for your desired keyword once published on sites like EZineArticles. If your content does begin appearing in the SERPs, then your website gains a valuable backlink that will also help raise its ranking for its keyword.

Content farms drew the ire of Google and search engine users when shallow content that did not offer valuable information about the subject matter began ranking at the top of search results. Google prides itself on providing users with relevant websites for the keyword they searched for. Therefore, Google came out with the Panda update to eliminate the shallow articles coming from content farms. This cleared search results from uninformative content and websites that relied solely on content farms for links.

Fast-forward to 2014.
Google drops another bomb at another misused link building practice: guest posting. While this tactic is a legitimate way of getting a backlink from a website because there is permission from the site owner to get your content published on their site, guest posting began to be infiltrated by people who wrote articles for the purpose of getting a backlink regardless of content quality.

Google released an algorithm update early this year that specifically penalizes MyBlogGuest, a site responsible for connecting publishers of spammy articles and webmasters willing to publish such content.

What’s the common denominator between these two instances?

Both banned tactics are high-profile examples of unnatural link building.

Google has always come down hard on websites that stray away from their guidelines to control search rankings. Since rankings of websites on search results are primarily based on the number of links pointing to a website, Google prefers that websites go the organic route with regard to gaining backlinks. This means that, instead of webmasters going out of their way to create links pointing to their sites, they should encourage people to link to their sites instead.

It’s time to earn your backlinks, not build them!

Examples of link earning techniques:

  • Create link-bait content – Give people a reason why they should link back to your site through the creation of high-quality, actionable, and informative content. Essential read: SEO Guide to Creating Viral Linkbait and Infographics
  • Build relationships – The approach to link building should not necessarily be all about getting that almighty link. Instead, focus on getting to know the people behind the sites you’re trying to get links from and make a profound connection with them. Essential read: Relationship-Based Link Building
  • Launch contests – Get people interested in your business by holding contests and giving away freebies and amazing prices. Use Rafflecopter to easily run contests.

More on link building:

Sunday Morning SEO: The Psychology of Link Building

Sunday Morning SEO: Link Building With the Cold Call Guest Post Method

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5 WordPress Plugins to Boost Social Media Activity http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/10/15/wordpress-plugins-boost-social-media-activity/ http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/10/15/wordpress-plugins-boost-social-media-activity/#comments Wed, 15 Oct 2014 12:00:15 +0000 http://www.bloggingpro.com/?p=31025 5 WordPress Plugins To Boost Social Media Activity

Image from Pixabay

WordPress is one of the most widely-used content management systems (CMS) for a good reason: it can be easily tweaked and customized to your liking. However, the flexibility of WordPress to accommodate different website types, from blogs to e-commerce, hinges on the WordPress plugins used to help achieve the site owner’s goals.

For webmasters who wish to increase site visitors, one way of doing this is to use WordPress plugins that allow easy sharing of site pages on social media.

Below are five of the best WordPress plugins that you should use to get more shares, as well as possibly boost your fans and followers.

SumoMe Sharing Options

SumoMe originally worked to increase your e-mail subscribers with its List Building apps. However, it has grown to include more apps to really help site owners gain more visitors to their pages.

The Image Sharer app lets visitors share pictures on the page using Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

The Share app is a floating bar on the left side of the screen to make it easier for visitors to share the post on social media. The default available are Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, and Pinterest. To access other social media sites where you can share the post, click on the crown icon.

The Highlighter app lets visitors easily share quotes from the post. All they have to do is highlight the text and a pop-up menu will appear on the screen so they can share it using Facebook or Twitter.

Click To Tweet by Todaymade

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Create tweetable content on your post so people can easily click and share it on Twitter. Make sure to observe the 140-character limit when writing messages to tweet using this plugin.

Evergreen Post Tweeter

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Another plugin that boosts site traffic using Twitter, this lets you automatically post your website content on social media. This is ideal for webmasters who manage sites with lots of content that they want to share on social media. You can set up the types of posts and under which category, allowing you full customization of the automatic tweets that will be published on your Twitter account.

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If you have e-books and white papers available for download on your site, then you ought to use this plugin. Once installed, instead of people downloading the resources off your site for free, they will have to share the page on your site using their social media first before the resources become available for download.

WP Sharely

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This is similar to wpLike2Get, but instead of downloadable content, it works on the actual content on the page . If you want to entice readers to read your post, you can stop at the first few paragraphs and “gate” the rest of the content using this WordPress plugin. This will encourage them to share the post in order to read the entire article. Keep in mind that this is a paid plugin.

Did we miss out on any other WordPress plugins that help site owners increase their social media activity? Let us know by commenting below!

More about WordPress plugins:

10 Free WordPress Plugins Every Blog Needs and 5 Bonus Plugins

WordPress Launches Plugin Compatibility Beta

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Dashboard Tools Can Revolutionize the Way Marketers Consume & Use Data http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/10/14/dashboard-tools-can-revolutionize-way-marketers-consume-use-data/ http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/10/14/dashboard-tools-can-revolutionize-way-marketers-consume-use-data/#comments Wed, 15 Oct 2014 00:27:22 +0000 http://www.bloggingpro.com/?p=31029 We’ve all been hearing the “big data” buzzword thrown around lately and while some may view it as just another fad everybody’s going crazy about, the reality is that, as marketers, we all have our personal experiences with analyzing and making sense of all the information coming our way. Every data point has potential clues into how we can run our online businesses better or coin the perfect headline for our blog posts, for example. There’s some magic in the numbers and that may be a reason for our obsession with metrics such as page visits, bounce rates and even page likes. These data points say something about our work online and we have to get to the bottom of it.

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The numbers relating to big data do speak for themselves though and by the end of 2016 we’ll enter what Cisco calls the Zettabyte Era, where annual global internet traffic will reach 1.6 zettabytes (1.6 billion terrabytes) by the end of 2018. There’s a lot we’ll have to digest and as more information becomes available through the continued advancement and availability of computing power, an understanding of it will be a crucial element for success in the business world.

Right now as you try to make sense of all the industry statistics, website visitor data, social network conversations and marketing information coming your way, you’ll need a personalized method for interpreting and using this information. Here are some guidelines for streamlining the data collection process and what to focus on.

Data Analysis Should Align with your Objectives

Not all data is necessarily useful data and you’ll need to identify early on the metrics that make sense for you, your website and online business towards achieving higher conversion rates and ROI. As you pull data related to user interaction with your content, visitors statistics from Google Analytics or engagement metrics from Buffer, time shouldn’t be spent collating the total number of likes your content receives if it has nothing to do with a sensible outcome which impacts your bottom line objectives.

Here are some examples of what you should be focusing on:

Using keyword & topical research in relation to onsite actions – As you conduct keyword research to take advantage of long tail opportunities, monitor and assess how each keyword focus affects how users interact with your site. Try to understand how users in each niche respond to your content marketing campaigns to identify the real money keywords with earning potential. It’s possible to attract tons of traffic from low competition keywords that produce zero tangible results because the subject matter just does not translate to earnings. Know which keywords bring valuable business for you rather than hunting keywords solely for traffic.

Monitoring & making sense of clicks – Using heatmaps to learn users’ click behavior is worth spending your time on. Anything that helps you to understand user behavior will empower you with information towards satisfying them. Use Sumome’s Heatmap plugin, it’s free, it works and is simple to use.

Social engagement that matters – Sure acquiring 1,000 likes on your blog posts look good and it’s a healthy ego booster. However, what tangible value does it create for your website and business? Does it just look good or is it increasing the value of your advertising products? Or, how much is a share on LinkedIn worth and should you be more focused on getting shares on Twitter? Study your niche to identify which engagement metrics value more since every network responds differently based on topics and audience preferences.

Actions that lead to sales & other objectives – Once there’s some action taking place on your site, spend time identifying each one that contributes to your goals and objectives and assess and compare values. Never make assumptions on the value of what your readers are doing on your site. You may be surprised to discover that you’ve been wasting time and money investing in something that literally adds no value. Strive to be in the know and what each action such as email subscriptions, comments and shares mean for your business.

Everything you invest in your business or blog should have some justification behind it and clearly aligns with your ultimate objectives. Acting otherwise is merely operating blindly.

Taking Advantage of Tools

Thankfully, there are myriad tools available that will help us make sense of all the data that bombards us on a daily basis. As you begin to collect and assess data, it’s never recommended to utilize a manual approach since there are just so many data points and relationships we need to interpret. Tools reduce the margins for error and can better guarantee accurate and meaningful assessments and conclusions.

Google Analytics

It’s safe to say that a majority of website owners use Google Analytics since it’s free and quite powerful. However, the majority of us are not using this powerhouse tool to its full potential. GA has lots of useful features for making sense of visitor behavior such as goal setting, campaign creation and tracking, visitor flow visualization and even creating custom dashboards for personalizing even further the data collection and interpretation workflow.1334098468_bb17d24cf076f88e6231ec935d23691d

GA allows you to dig deeper to use event tracking to measure calls to action, see who spends more than a minute on your site, see how the visitors who subscribe to your lists behave and even gain insight about users who purchase books and other merchandise from your site. It’s a powerful tool that is typically underutilized. Here’s an excellent article on Moz that goes in-depth on how useful GA is for making sense of all the site data you need.

Cyfe All-in-one Dashboard

Another powerful data visualization and analytics tool is the Cyfe all-in-one dashboard. This tool helps marketers create custom dashboards with access to a large number of widgets that provide one centralized spot for everything ranging from finances, social media, advertising to web analytics.

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Marketing dashboard

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Social media dashboard

Most marketers will have a few dozen marketing tools and accounts that we login to on a daily basis. This can be a time consuming task and making all data points connect to form a big cohesive picture is often elusive and daunting. Cyfe allows you to connect all the common accounts you regularly use, specify which data you’d like to automatically pull from them and display them in neat custom dashboards that present the information exactly the way you want it. This completely eliminates the need to login to multiple accounts and presents a complete view in one screen of everything you need to know and analyze.

Setup real time visual dashboards that cover data such as Facebook insights, Google Analytics, Trends, Twitter searches, Google Webmasters, AdWords, Alexa rankings, Paypal earnings and more. Cyfe is basically one place to manage multiple SEO campaigns and every other aspect of running your business.

To conclude, as more data becomes available to us, there’s no need to become overwhelmed, it’s simply a matter of choosing the right tools that give us control over what we need to pay attention to. Now is the time to start getting serious with the information available regarding your business. The more you know, the greater your power to take action and achieve success.

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BloggingPro Job Board Highlights, October 13, 2014 http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/10/13/bloggingpro-job-board-highlights-october-13-2014/ http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/10/13/bloggingpro-job-board-highlights-october-13-2014/#comments Mon, 13 Oct 2014 12:00:21 +0000 http://www.bloggingpro.com/?p=31021 Job board highlightsThey say that if you start your day/week on the right note, everything will fall into place. I hope that’s the case for you this week.

Here are the job board highlights to help you find new gigs.

Seeking freelance journalist for viral video blog

PopVideo is a blog that is concerned with the technical, creative and business aspects of online video. They require a writer who can conduct and publish Q&A interviews with relevant newsmakers. Usually, you’ll be interviewing the people behind the latest viral videos and film crowdsourcing campaigns.

Real Estate Blogger

A top producing real estate team is in needed of bloggers who are keen to write for the real estate industry and/or local events and news in the Phoenix Metro area.

Freelance Beauty and Fashion Contributor

Job Description: xoJane.com, the premier site where women go to be their unabashed selves, is looking for freelance beauty and fashion contributors. For fashion posts they’re looking for fun, engaging stories and slideshows that highlight aspirational aesthetics for bold, freethinking women. Along these lines, they’re also looking for shopping posts that are both relatable and service-y. Straightforward how-to’s are also welcome in this section.

Article Writer

The Travel Dealer is adding experienced writers who love talking about Las Vegas. You must have writing samples and be able to work with editorial direction. They will evaluate you for featured status (credit) on their website. Submissions may be about your area of interest (must be Vegas-related), one of their blog categories, or related to their monthly themes, as directed by the Editor.

Tech Bloggers

Chase needs 5-10 Tech bloggers to write sponsored posts about their clients’ startup. The posts will have a focus on driving traffic to their website as well as increasing awareness of their project.

To be able to apply for this role, you must have a Tech or App related blog that you can prove receives at least 20,000 Monthly unique visits.

In return, you will receive $30 – $60 per post.

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WordPress Websites Targeted by Russian Cybercrime Network http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/10/09/wordpress-websites-targeted-russian-cybercrime-network/ http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/10/09/wordpress-websites-targeted-russian-cybercrime-network/#comments Thu, 09 Oct 2014 12:00:00 +0000 http://www.bloggingpro.com/?p=31010 WordPress websites are battling with a new threat involving a Russian cybercrime network, which is stealing login credentials for U.S. and European banks. Using a botnet, the cybercriminals have already obtained information from 800,000 online-banking transactions. More than 50 percent of these are reported to be from five of the largest banks in the U.S.

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The illicit activities of the cybercrime network were discovered by Proofpoint, Inc., a Sunnyvale, California-based security company. It has released information on how cybercriminals get around security measures.

Not all WordPress websites are targets of this new cybercrime activity, although those that have been exploited are basically taken over by a browser exploit kit. As explained by Tom’s Guide: “The Blackhole exploit kit is a collection of malicious code that exists on fraudulent websites, or can be illegally injected onto legitimate, but hacked, websites. These pieces of code are designed to detect and exploit vulnerabilities in Web browsers and create security risks for PCs.

In this particular case, users who visit compromised WordPress sites would become infected with malware which steals information.

Here’s the dark side of the Internet coming out: the criminals were able to take control of WordPress sites by purchasing information about default WordPress administrator login credentials in online cybercrime markets.

The not-so-bad news here is that most of the computers that have been affected (about 52 percent) are still running on Windows XP. Maybe Microsoft was right in pushing people to discard the old operating system after all!

In any case, if you’re running an up-to-date operating system, you’re probably safe – at least for now.

Just to be sure, if you’re running a WordPress site, change the admin log in details NOW, and make it a habit to change them periodically as well (which is good practice in any case).

More on blog security:

Most Popular WordPress Security Plugins

6 Quick And Simple WordPress Security Tips

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Is Micro Blogging Better? http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/10/08/micro-blogging-better/ http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/10/08/micro-blogging-better/#comments Wed, 08 Oct 2014 13:00:42 +0000 http://www.bloggingpro.com/?p=30981 Editor’s note: This post was written by Larry Alton, an independent business consultant specializing in social media trends, business, and entrepreneurship. Follow him on Twitter and LinkedIn.

As a business owner, you know that blogging is arguably the best platform to actually engage with your audience. It’s how they put a face to a business, how you can foster relationships, and a great source for dishing up quality content that can help bolster your search engine optimization (SEO) rankings. You have blogging down, or at least you know how important it is, but suddenly the world is buzzing with “micro blogging” and you might feel like everything you knew about blogs has gone down the tubes.

 Micro blogging

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Micro blogging refers to the fast, frequent sharing of bite sized information via a certain platform. Most often, it’s used to send or receive updates from posts that are based in text (in other words, memes and short Vine-esque videos don’t qualify as micro blogging quite yet as they’re image-based and not text-based). However, that’s changed in recent months and now some experts consider just about anything fodder for micro blogs whether it’s audio, text, video or images. Once the content is uploaded to a site like Twitter, it’s sent to members so the “group” is automatically notified of the microblog.

You might consider Twitter the biggest microblog of all, but there are plenty of others with the same nugget-sized approach.

The rules of micro blogs

Don’t forget about the “blog” in micro blogging: For the most part, micro blogs are about yourself or about your business. It’s not usually a means of spreading third party news (otherwise that would be “micro news”) and it’s simply a shortened version of long-form blogging—although spreading third party news happens in micro blogging and isn’t going to get you in trouble with the “blog police”. Traditionally, long-form blogs were a few hundred words, but micro blogs are a few hundred characters. You probably don’t have your own site for micro blogging, but instead rely on a web service to post.

There are a few reasons people choose micro blogs instead of – or in addition to – long-form blogs. You might want to stay in touch with friends, get involved with a group for entertainment, engage in genuine discussions without having to write the equivalent of a novel, or get expert opinions. Business professionals use micro blogs to sell or market products, to become a live support tool, foster user feedback, or bolster brand awareness.

Where do you micro blog?

micro bloggingObviously Twitter is one of the most well known platforms, but it’s also worth checking out Soup, Chyrp, Jaiku, Tumblr, Streem or doing your own research to pinpoint the right service. If you’re on the fence, consider micro blogging for updates that are instantly accessible to your community. Unlike messengers that were previously used, micro blogging allows for more people to interact at once. There’s no need to spend hours creating a long-form blog post with micro blogging, which by nature is more informal and initiates more of a conversation than an article-length post which serves as a catalyst.

On the other hand, micro blogging has fewer characters allowed, with some platforms being stricter about this than others. With Twitter, you only have 140 characters and there’s not much more flexibility with other sites. Plus, micro blogging has a penchant for letting discussions get hijacked (after all, it certainly appeals to those with short attention spans). So is micro blogging for you, and is it better than blogging? That all depends on you, your business, your audience and what you hope to achieve.

Any business can benefit from micro blogging if done well and consistently. If you can create shareable content that’s informative and/or entertaining, you’ll catch the attention of more readers in a wider demographic with commitment. Just keep in mind that any form of blogging, micro or otherwise, takes awhile (sometimes months) to see seriously improved analytics.

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BloggingPro Job Board Highlights, October 6, 2014 http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/10/06/bloggingpro-job-board-highlights-october-6-2014/ http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/10/06/bloggingpro-job-board-highlights-october-6-2014/#comments Mon, 06 Oct 2014 12:00:46 +0000 http://www.bloggingpro.com/?p=30999 Job board highlightsIt’s the start of the week once again, and as usual, we’re bringing you the job board highlights.

We hope you find some good gigs today.

Social Media/Online Publishing/WordPress Blogger

A blog network is looking for a blogger:
-with experience writing about the web, WordPress, social media, and blogging/writing
-who keeps tabs on the latest Internet/social media/blogging/WordPress trends and news
-who is committed and reliable.

Freelance Content Writers

Be part of a game-changing team. LocalVox is a local, social & mobile marketing platform. LocalVox has been named the third hottest startup in NYC by Business Insider and the best high tech tool for new business entrepreneurs by Good Day New York. And they’re seeking talent for long-term freelance assignments!

Copywriter (clever short form, freelance)

A comfort focused retail and consumer goods company is in need of a talented Copywriter to assist their team on a freelance, offsite basis. Your expertise is needed to create clever product names and perhaps even the product descriptions.

Psychology Health Writer

Part time writer needed for busy doctor and writer/producer of a boutique production company focusing on psychological topical news stories (sex, dating, drugs, relationships, human behavior, celebrity behavior, medical studies, etc.)

Domains/DNS and web app/cloud copywriter

Rude Otter is looking for contributors to a small but growing blog focused broadly on web applications and development. Posts are a mixture of informational pieces as well as step-by-step tutorials. They’re looking for 2-3 posts of 500-700 words each month.

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Take Advantage of the Cloud to Optimize Online Publishing http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/10/03/take-advantage-cloud-online-publishing/ http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/10/03/take-advantage-cloud-online-publishing/#comments Fri, 03 Oct 2014 13:00:30 +0000 http://www.bloggingpro.com/?p=30992 Cloud computing is all the rave today, with sitcoms even referring to it (see Big Bang Theory Cloud back up). While it is a buzzword, sometimes, you hear things from some people that makes you convinced that not everyone understands what the Cloud really is.

take advantage cloud
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Here’s a quick explanation from PCMag:

“…to be considered “cloud computing,” you need to access your data or your programs over the Internet, or at the very least, have that data synchronized with other information over the Net.”

That’s clear as day, isn’t it?

But how can you take advantage of cloud computing as a blogger or online publisher? Aside from making sure your cherished photos (which may or may not be relevant to what you’re doing), is there anything else of import about the Cloud for a blogger?

Here’s an infographic that gives an overview of what you can do, and I’ve added some tricks on how you can take advantage of the Cloud as an online publisher.

  • Streaming. Video and sound are elements that can add value to your content. Streaming services gives you access to media which you many otherwise not have stored locally. This is also convenient when you’re on the road and still working.
  • Document sharing. You may have a document stored on your computer, but what if you’re out, you need the document, and you only have your iPad with you? Enter the cloud – assuming you’ve uploaded that file to a service such as Dropbox. If you use a Mac, though, you will soon be able to do this seamlessly with the upcoming OS, Yosemite.
  • Backups. Backing up your blog on a regular basis is good practice. There are many tutorials on how to do this, although some web hosts offer this in their packages, and you can easily back up your blog with a click or two.

Here, take a look at the infographic, which will give you more ideas about what you can do with the Cloud.

cloud online publishing

How else do you take advantage of the cloud for your online publishing needs? What apps do you use that run in the cloud?

Let’s hear from you in the comments.

Also read: 5 Solutions For Backing Up Your Blog

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6 Must Have Mobile Tools for Bloggers http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/10/02/6-must-mobile-tools-bloggers/ http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/10/02/6-must-mobile-tools-bloggers/#comments Thu, 02 Oct 2014 13:05:57 +0000 http://www.bloggingpro.com/?p=30984 mobile tools for bloggers

In August 2011, 72.2 million Americans connected to social networking sites or blogs on their mobile device, which is 37 percent higher than in the past year, states a study by comScore. For bloggers, a smartphone is not just a way to update on-the-go. It’s also a great way to connect with readers. If most of your audience is using a mobile phone to read your blog, then it’s a good idea for you to use the same device to upload content.

Although this might seem more difficult, mobile blogging tools are helping make this easier every day. Here are some of those tools so you don’t have to go at it alone.

Blogger

For those who have their blog own Blogger site, Blogger Mobile is a great way to continue updating anytime, anywhere. All you have to do is go to the Settings page on your blog, then to Mobile and email and add your mobile device. The service is different than other mobile blog platforms because it does most of the work for you. If your blog is all about restaurant reviews, for instance, you can take a photo of your food and share it with your viewers by sending it via text message to go@blogger.com. Blogger will then automatically update your blog.

Dropbox

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This free file sharing service is a blogger’s best friend. Technology isn’t perfect, and a blogger’s biggest fear is having his or her information accidentally deleted. Keep this from happening by having a backup plan. You can store every single post and photo you’ve shared on your blog by downloading it to Dropbox for safe keeping. Furthermore, a related app called Dropvox can record audio and send it directly to your Dropbox account. This is a great feature for those moments when you’re not able to text but want to record an event as it’s happening.

Feedly

Feedly is a news aggregator application that finds the most popular articles and stories for you. You can stop wasting time looking for top stories and interesting tidbits on a million different websites and opt to have the information sent directly to you. Now, you can curate content anywhere whether you have an iPhone or an LG G3 smartphone because Feedly is available for both iOS and Android. Additionally, Fabulous Blogging recommends using Feedly to generate new ideas, share great content and build your authority with your followers.

WordPress

A survey conducted by ProBlogger found that WordPress is the most used platform for blogging. This comes as no surprise since the open source blogging tool offers a wide variety of ways to post. Plus, WordPress mobile apps are available for iOS, Android and BlackBerry. These apps have simpler layouts than the WordPress desktop version, allowing you to quickly publish text, photos and videos directly from your mobile device. WordPress Mobile also lets bloggers see their site stats and check notifications. Nevertheless, Social Media Examiner suggests waiting to do HTML changes and advanced coding until you get to a computer.

MindMeister

coffee

Every blogger needs a great mind mapping tool, or otherwise known as a way to brainstorm online. MindMeister is available for iPhone, iPad and Android and helps make your ideas a reality. With MindMeister, you can jot down post ideas, outline blog promotion campaigns and even come up with a sketch for a new blog design. And, if your smartphone has a limited Internet connection, you can still use MindMeister to get work done.

Pixlr Express

This list wouldn’t be complete without a mobile photo editing tool. Pixlr Express lets you quickly and easily edit photos you’ve taken with your smartphone. You’ll go from snap to upload in just a few minutes with this streamlined editing process. Aside from basic editing options like crop, resize and rotate, Pixlr Express also lets you create collages, Auto Fix photos and add interesting effects to your images.

Also read:

5 Ways Pro Bloggers Leverage Mobile Devices

10 Twitter Tools That Save Your Time and Sanity

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Why Personal Blogging Is Still an Option Today http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/10/01/personal-entertainment-blog/ http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/10/01/personal-entertainment-blog/#comments Wed, 01 Oct 2014 13:00:57 +0000 http://www.bloggingpro.com/?p=30968 In this digital age, it has never been easier to share one’s favorite entertainment with the rest of the world. Personal blogs can be used to discuss a blogger’s favorite music, movies, books, and performing arts. Posts can be archived according to specific topics such as the date of release of specific films or songs. Similarly, such blog posts can be classified by actor, singer or performer. Bloggers can have plenty of fun in creating their own personal archives featuring short statements or entire articles about anything related to entertainment. This could very well be one of the reasons why personal blogs rock.

personal entertainment blog

When blogging about personal interests such as entertainment, it is important to keep in mind the type of readers that will be exposed to the posts. Often, friends and relatives will be the most loyal followers of such personal blogs. However, it is also a good idea to share some personal interests with fellow workers and other individuals from the workplace.

For example, some teachers are more than happy to share their thoughts about music and movies with students. Teachers might seem “cooler” if they have similar tastes in entertainment as the youth. Similarly, parents of students might also be interested in finding out about the personality of teachers.

Personal entertainment blogs can also act as “icebreakers” for professionals who start a new job. It’s a great way to bond with co-workers by using blogs to talk about specific interests in entertainment or sports. A young professional like Lindsey Stone and other ladies are examples of individuals who blog about their favorite kind of entertainment.

Blogging platforms and social networks actually allow individuals to encourage others to enjoy specific movies, video games, songs, books and more. For example, it’s quite easy to post a link that leads to a movie trailer or review on an external site. Similarly, links could be posted to official websites of video game publishers.

personal entertainment blog

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While ordinary individuals blog about their favorite entertainment, companies are also taking advantage of online platforms. For example, recent movie releases or classic films can be downloaded online and then watched on any platform. Users can select to download file formats for an HDTV, desktop computer, laptop or tablet. Before making an online purchase, customers get the chance to preview the movie by watching an extended trailer version.

Before downloading songs or entire albums online, customers have the chance to listen to samples. There might be different versions of a single song such as those for radio play and original album releases. Up to 30 seconds of actual soundtrack can be heard for free before making a purchase of the full-length song. Similarly, video game demo versions could be downloaded for free before making an upgrade to the full-length editions.

Blogging about favorite books is enhanced thanks to external links to websites that might have full versions of specific titles. In fact, most classic literature is available for download for free because copyright laws didn’t exist centuries ago. Marketplaces for digital multimedia are loaded with electronic versions of books that can be downloaded without any charges. Of course, there are also plenty of new releases of books that can be purchased. Before buying electronic books, customers can preview several pages of actual content. Full-length descriptions of books are also available in traditional synopsis format. Sharing these snippets on blogs can attract readers and help bloggers discover new favorites.

#76 - Mannequin Artist

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Finally, blogging is therapeutic. Where else in your life can you talk endlessly about any subject of your choosing? Likely, nowhere (If you do have somewhere you do this in real life, perhaps you should evaluate how others feel about this).

An entertainment blog can be tailor-made to suit your needs as a writer. Want just a few readers? Only tell your friends. Want your thoughts to be read by the masses? It’ll take a little more work, but there are abundant resources available online to help you learn to expand your readership.

Blogging is a great activity that accommodates all types of writers. Many people, though, have trouble writing that first post. My advice? Just write it, publish it, and then publish more. Expecting big after doing small things could become one of the biggest mistakes bloggers must avoid. Not many people will see the first post. By the time they catch up with you, you’ll have posted 20 times or more. You’ll be better at it from the practice, and your blog will start to have its own identity. The only way to get there is to start, so I encourage you, start your entertainment blog today.

This post was written by Shah, a professional writer and blogger interested in writing about various aspect of SEO, marketing, tech, and design. You can join Shah at Google+ or Twitter.

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BloggingPro Job Board Highlights, September 29, 2014 http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/09/29/bloggingpro-job-board-highlights-september-29-2014/ http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/09/29/bloggingpro-job-board-highlights-september-29-2014/#comments Mon, 29 Sep 2014 12:00:20 +0000 http://www.bloggingpro.com/?p=30966 Job board highlightsHow’s your Monday morning starting off? Wishing you all a good day ahead, and an even better week.

Here are the job board highlights from last week. Good luck!

Apple Blogger

We’re looking for a blogger who is an Apple fanboy — or girl — but can still appreciate the merits of Android (or other brands). If you don’t know who Jony Ive is, or you think Infinite Loop stands for an obscure mathematical sign, you can close this window. However, if you can hold discuss the merits and the downsides of every Apple product released in the past year, then we might have something to talk about.

Marketing Blogger

Billow is looking for a blogger. They create social media apps for companies. They’re launching a blog that will provide insight to marketing and social media tools and strategies. They are currently looking for writers that are knowledgable in the fields of marketing and social media.

Part-time Blogger

Shakeforshape is has a blog related to fitness, weight loss, nutrition, workouts, beauty and general health and lifestyle. They require a part time content creator to make blog posts.

Part-time Content Writer

FatPipe Networks is looking for a content writer. This person will write content for their websites and blogs. This is a part-time position in which this person may work from home. This employee will be paid per key word.

Content Creator

IMGE LLC is looking for creative, passionate, and entertaining writers and content creators who want to make informative and entertaining things that people want to share. This job can be based out of their Washington, DC area office, your bedroom, or your favorite coffee shop, and can be either part-time or full-time.

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3 Simple Habits to Nurture Your Guest Writing Network http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/09/25/nurture-guest-writing-network/ http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/09/25/nurture-guest-writing-network/#comments Thu, 25 Sep 2014 12:15:25 +0000 http://www.bloggingpro.com/?p=30935 Guest blogging, guest posting, or guest writing – whatever you want to call it – is still very much alive, in spite of Matt Cutts saying “stop guest blogging for SEO“.

guest writing network
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We definitely agree that guest blogging has its pitfalls, but as Matt Cutts also said, guest blogging per se is not “bad”. It gets all sleazy when it’s done simply for SEO, and when the content and link quality is low.

That being said, we’re all for guest blogging. We accept guest posts, and we also guest post on other blogs. But we totally agree with the concept of NOT doing guest blogging purely for SEO, and we want to ensure that the guest posts we accept are high quality and not (link) spammy.

For sure, you see the merits of this way of thinking. The thing is, even if you agree with the idea, your execution is what counts. What is important is that you actually do guest posting right, and not simply wing it.

One way to do this is to establish a guest writing network – build your contacts, and nurture them. Build relationships and make sure you take care of them. Otherwise, you’ll just end up ruining your reputation, and probably destroy your guest writing network.

Tips to help you nurture and grow your guest writing network.

Make sure you meet all the guidelines when you send your entry.

Whether it is the first time you are guest posting for a site, or you are a regular contributor, the “rule” is the same: meet all the guidelines as required by the host site. This is especially important when you’re doing it for the first time, as you want to make the best impression with the goal of perhaps being able to guest post again in the future. Some editors/bloggers may be lax when it comes to this point and give you another chance, but others will just drop you like a hot potato.

“Guest” is the keyword here.

guest writing network
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I like comparing guest posting to visiting a friend, wherein you are a guest. You stay in their house and behave like a visitor, not as if you owned the house.

With guest posting, remember that you do not own the blog. The blog/site accepting your article does not owe you anything. Behave as if you were visiting a friend; be courteous, be polite, take into consideration the fact that you are, for the lack of a better term, asking the host for a favor.

Also read: Successful Guest Blogging: How Not to Sleepwalk Right into Penalties

Don’t be annoying.

All that being said, don’t be annoying. There are so many ways a guest blogger can be annoying. Ignoring the first two points above is annoying to the host. Not making edits when the host asks you to make edits is annoying.

Another thing that is annoying is drowning the host with emails about whether they received your email or not, or when your article will get posted. This is not to say that following up is a negative thing. Do give the host time to respond, however. Often, blogs that accept guest posts indicate a “waiting period” – the time they need to respond. This can be anywhere from 24 hours to a week. First, check if the blog explicitly gives a waiting period. If so, then don’t email till that waiting period has expired.

guest writing network

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If there is no waiting period indicated, wait a couple of days before following up. If it’s the weekend, don’t bug the host either. While most bloggers check their email in the weekend and maybe even work, not everyone appreciates being bugged over the weekend.

Conclusion

Finding a trustworthy site with high quality content to work with on a regular basis is not always an easy thing. When you do find a site that regularly accepts your posts, make sure it stays in your guest writing network by following the tips above.

Back to you: how do you make sure you are nurturing your guest writing network?

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Blog About Your Adventures: 5 Tips for Aspiring Travel Bloggers http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/09/22/blog-adventures-5-tips-aspiring-travel-bloggers/ http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/09/22/blog-adventures-5-tips-aspiring-travel-bloggers/#comments Mon, 22 Sep 2014 12:30:38 +0000 http://www.bloggingpro.com/?p=30928 aspiring travel bloggers

The excitement of dreaming about an exotic trip or returning home from a global excursion is even more fun when shared. You may be ecstatic to share your travel inspiration and adventures in a blog, but building the space is the first step. The following five tips can help any vagabond start a travel blogging journey.

Find a Host

Regardless of whether you want to create a travel blog to update your friends and family while abroad or if you want to try to earn money from your blog, the first step is to find a host.

Adventurous Kate, a full-time solo traveler who quit her job at age 26 to see the world, suggests that everyone—no matter their experience level or intentions—go with Bluehost. They offer a low price of $6.95 for 12 months, and the company’s friendly and knowledgeable customer service team is always reachable if and when there’s an issue. As a bonus, the company offers a free domain name for your new travel blog. Compared to a free WordPress blog for example, a blog with a domain name and hosting provider is more searchable and has better opportunity for monetization.

Once you secure hosting, check out Adventurous Kate’s tips for setting up your blog, including WordPress and Plugin installations, as well as securing social media handles, starting an email list and joining Travel Blog Success, a traveling online course and community.

Also read: 5 Grim Realities of Shared Hosting

Find Your Brand

Do It While Your Young, a website dedicated to inspiring travel for ambitious women, suggests that you come up with a specific angle to brand your blog and give it a unique voice. If you adore a certain part of the world—for example, Hawaii, the Southwest or Europe—focus your travel blog on that region to narrow down its theme. If traveling by an RV is your passion, center the blog on traveling tips and ideas for visiting destinations in your four-wheeled home. A Restless Transplant documents indie life on the road as vagabond Foster Huntington and his gang move from state to state in his camper van.

aspiring travel bloggers

Blogger Nomadic Matt has also created a name for himself by offering proven tactics and advice for budget travel. Nomadic Matt took his first trip overseas to Costa Rica as a two-week vacation from his first job. His next life-changing trip was a Thailand trip where he met five backpackers who inspired him to liberate himself from his job and travel for less. He’s positioned his blog to be an excellent travel resource offering advice like teaching English to fund world travels and how to find cheap flights.

Find Your Catch Phrase

In order to emphasize your brand, create a logo or saying to help establish the theme or essence of your blog. Even if you start your blog for friends and family, like-minded people will probably find it and follow you. By adding an easily-recognizable logo or catch phrase, you will help your site stand out in people’s minds, increasing the likelihood that they will return again.

The tagline of travel blog Prêt À Voyager, “travel is not about where you go, but how you see the world” shapes the idea that traveling isn’t always about arriving at new destinations and visiting faraway locations. Traveling is about trying new things, embarking on new experiences and connecting with other creatives across the globe, even if you never leave a city. Although Prêt À Voyager’s Anne Stark Ditmeyer is indeed a seasoned worldly traveler, she uses her blog as a creative outlet for how she continues to discover and re-discover her beloved home Paris.

Find Your Camera Angle

A lot of travel blogs feature long, flowery descriptions of various sights around the world. But you might not have the time or inclination to fill your own blog with a lot of writing. Travel blog visitors love visuals—lots of short videos and photos, suggests Budget Travel.

aspiring travel  bloggers

Travel website Fathom Away, an online destination for “inspiring stories, practical advice, and useful tools and products,” features Tiny Atlas Quarterly as one of the best travel blogs and websites. Tiny Atlas Quarterly is a talented roster of photographers who capture the beauty of a locale and pass on travel narratives through dynamic images and beautiful portraits. Classe Touriste also uses imagery to inspire and celebrate travel with its one day one photoblog saturated with pictures and on-the-go life snippets from blogger Debbie Pappyn’s around-the-world adventures.

Also read: Blogging Safely When You Travel All Over the World

Find the Cloud

Is your blog consumed with photos and videos? Secure your content and find a good cloud storage company to safely store all of your vacation shots and any other blog-related work you have collected along the way. If you’re unsure about where to look, a website like Top10CloudStorage is a great place to start. The cloud storage, online backup and Web hosting resource offers helpful reviews and information about cloud storage companies. LiveDrive is an excellent feature for backing up content and seamlessly transferring files across devices and to social media platforms.

Solo Traveler features guest blogger and tech guru Doug from ihelpinnovate.com who recommends that travelers use the cloud as a virtual storage center for important files and precious photos while traveling. Documents, files and photos are securely stored in the cloud and accessed by smartphones, laptops or tablets via the Internet. No matter where you are in the world, the cloud backs up data in case of a disaster. Then, once you return home, you can easily access your files and pictures and upload these snap shots to share on your blog.

This post was written by Alison Stanton, who has been a freelance writer for the past 14 years. Based in the Phoenix, Arizona area, Alison enjoys writing about a wide variety of topics, but especially loves meeting interesting people and telling their stories.

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BloggingPro Job Board Highlights, September 22, 2014 http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/09/22/bloggingpro-job-board-highlights-september-22-2014/ http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/09/22/bloggingpro-job-board-highlights-september-22-2014/#comments Mon, 22 Sep 2014 12:00:50 +0000 http://www.bloggingpro.com/?p=30947 Job board highlightsGood Monday morning to everyone. Did the weekend give you time to relax and take a break from work? We sure hope so!

Here are some of the job board highlights from last week’s jobs. Good luck!

Freelance Copywriters/Ghostwriters

WebpageFX is seeking talented outside freelance writing professionals to write quality content and meet deadlines. Excellent opportunity for versatile creative writers. If your writing and working styles meet their needs, they can provide a consistent stream of interesting assignments.

Freelance Copy Editor

Are you a lover of language who pays close attention to facts and flow, and the nuts and bolts—syntax, dotted ‘i’s and crossed ‘t’s, semicolons, and em dashes? Are you equally a lover of art? Artsy is looking for a detail-focused but speedy and skilled copy editor to edit 1-2 days per week (off-site). Candidates should have experience copy editing for an art publication, as well as a background in writing and line editing.

Freelance Production Copywriter

Scope of work: Initial copy for approx. 140 workshops provided via Google Docs. Copy needs to be edited for grammar, AP Style, consistent voice. Copy must fit within a specific word count. Present tense, upbeat and motivating style.
Deadline: Copy provided September 22, 2014. 1 round of revisions, Final Copy due October 5th, 2014.

Technical Writer – Construction

Looking for a content writer from any city and any country able to write or rewrite 170 – 300 word webpage content for a horizontal directional drilling site.

Experienced Finance or Economy Blogger Needed

Ruby Media are currently looking for a blogger with experience in finance/business or economy niche to work with them on a pay per article basis. If you are reliable, proactive, love to create, and have a positive no-excuse attitude they’d love to work with you!

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5 Ways to Get Good Search Engine Ranking for a New Website http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/09/19/5-ways-get-good-search-engine-ranking-new-website/ http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/09/19/5-ways-get-good-search-engine-ranking-new-website/#comments Fri, 19 Sep 2014 13:00:57 +0000 http://www.bloggingpro.com/?p=30915 Editor’s note: This post was written by Shah, a professional writer and blogger interested in writing about various aspect of SEO, marketing, tech, and design. You can join Shah at Google+ or Twitter.

Once a website has been created, webmasters have to figure out how to get their rankings increased in search engines. Top rankings ensure more visibility and enhanced earnings. Brent Franson offers five surefire tips that will lead to search engine domination.

good search engine ranking

Create Unique Content to Stop Penalties

Back in the day, people could get away with submitting the same exact article content to multiple directories. Google has put a stop to this and will flag websites that have the same article in multiple places linking back to them. To ensure that sites are never flagged, it is advisable to submit a unique article to each directory. Even if the articles are on the same topic, they all must be 100 percent unique. It’s true that it will take time to produce unique content for every site but it would have a positive long impact over website ranking. So invest your time to produce quality content and see the results.

Also read: How to Reshare Old Content Without Annoying Your Followers

Do Not Keyword Stuff, Write for Humans

Google wants content that is not only readable by computers. The company also wants humans to be able to read it comfortably and become engaged. When keywords are not stuffed but worked into the content to read naturally, Google and other search engine reward these webmasters by moving their ranking higher. A three to five percent keyword density is recommended. If an article is 300 words long, then someone using a three percent keyword density will want each keyword to appear nine times in the content. Keeping this simple calculation in mind will help you avoid keyword stuffing issues.

Choose Only Top Content Submission Directories
good search engine ranking
In order to have the most success, article content must only be submitted to the top SEO directories. Some of these directories are niche-specific while others will allow submissions on any subject. Ezinearticles.com, Squidoo.com, Goarticles.com and articlesbase.com are examples of high-ranking directories open to receiving content on all subjects. Because the traffic to these directories is magnificent, views on article content and websites are a guarantee.

Produce Content Often

In order to maintain a spot in the search engines, it is vital to produce content often. It is recommended that 20 unique articles be produced on a weekly basis. These articles can all be submitted to different directories or to a handful of favorite ones. Creating content regularly will keep readers coming back for more because they will look forward to something new to read, and they will also be inclined to check the website to see if there is anything new being offered.

Stay up to Date with SEO Trends

What worked last year may not work this year. SEO trends are ever changing. To keep up to date with current SEO trends, it is critical to subscribe to the RSS feed of a professional SEO blog. There are also email lists that are dedicated to providing nuggets of precious knowledge to business owners, and they can be subscribed to just by visiting the websites of SEO professionals.

In addition to following these five tips, webmasters also need to make certain their websites are search engine friendly. Clean code must be used to build the website so the search engine spiders could crawl it easily. Additionally, keywords need to be used evenly throughout the content on the web pages, such as in page titles, additional headings and in the content body. If these tips are followed and the website is designed to make optimization effortless, there will be no trouble dominating the search engines. After some time, a first page ranking can be achieved and profits will soar tremendously.

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5 Crazy Ways Social Media Is Changing Your Brain Right Now http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/09/18/5-crazy-ways-social-media-changing-brain-right-now/ http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/09/18/5-crazy-ways-social-media-changing-brain-right-now/#comments Thu, 18 Sep 2014 17:00:31 +0000 http://www.bloggingpro.com/?p=30921 Social media has become the de facto venue for people to express themselves online. While it used to be that personal blogging was where friends and friends of friends would go to find out what was going on in other people’s lives, now it’s platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+ (no it’s not a ghost town), and Tumblr where you will find people from all walks of lives.

social media is changing your brain

More than a personal communication or expression tool, social media is being used by brands – corporate or personal – to expand their reach and interact with their target audience. Big brands like Coca-Cola, Oreo, Nike, and KFC are known to be on the ball when it comes to their social media accounts. Celebrities are not exempt, too. Just think of Rihanna, Justin Bieber (yeah, sorry if I’ve offended anyone just by mentioning him), William Shatner, and so many more. Then there are the athletes, influencers in the tech scene, influencers in the marketing scene, and so on.

Everyone, it seems, is on social media – from your brother in middle school to your grandmother.

But did you know that social media has an impact your brain? In fact, social media is changing your brain. Right now. Even as you read this post.

The guys as AsapSCIENCE have created an explainer video showing how social media is changing your brain as you continue to use whichever platforms you prefer. It tackles concepts such as emotions, attention, and decision making – all of which have some relation to how our brains function.

Take a look at the video and find out how social media is changing your brain, and then decide whether or not you have to change some of your habits.

More reads on social media:

Are You an Annoying Person on Social Media?

Are You Managing Your Social Media Presence Properly?

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10 Twitter Tools That Save Your Time and Sanity http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/09/18/10-twitter-tools-save-time-sanity/ http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/09/18/10-twitter-tools-save-time-sanity/#comments Thu, 18 Sep 2014 13:00:06 +0000 http://www.bloggingpro.com/?p=30901 Editor’s Note: This post was written by Tim Soulo, who calls himself a blogging experimenter and conversion junkie. In case you’d like to read more of his awesome articles, consider visiting his personal blog at BloggerJet.

When you have a business online and you are relying on social media to get information to your audience, it seems like there’s not enough hours in the day. But never fear, because there are tons of amazing tools that can help with that!

twitter tools

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With the right tools, you can accomplish lots of stuff in no time: monitoring your niche, automating tweets, posting at best times of the day, authenticating via social networks, displaying selected tweets on your blog, etc.

Actually, the amount of Twitter-related tools that you can use today might seem overwhelming (especially if you’re a Twitter Marketing dummy), so to save some of your precious time we’d like to suggest you a list of only 10 Twitter tools that truly deserve your attention.

1. Minimalist Twitter Widget

twitter tools

If you’re searching for a widget that displays tweets on your sidebar without a lot of flash, this is the one that you want. It definitely falls under the less is more idea and it’s hard to tell that it’s actually for Twitter.

2. Nextend Twitter Connect

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This is a great plugin for those who have a lot of followers. This plugin can be put on your website to allow people to login your site using their account with Twitter.

3. TweetDis

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Do you love writing content and you want to make it easier for people to tweet your content? Well, with TweetDis it’s simple. This WordPress plugin lets you turn any writing passage into one that can be tweeted. Your reader only has to click on it once so that it can be easily tweeted. The result is a professional looking tweet that engages readers and encourages them to visit!

4. Random Tweet

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Just because your tweets are old, it doesn’t mean they don’t need some love, too. This widget allows you to preselect a certain amount of tweets in your sidebar and then it will rotate them. This will ensure that your visitors are able to see both your new and old tweets.

5. Rotating Tweets

twitter tools

Want people to have the latest news from your Twitter account? Or maybe you want to encourage everyone to go and look at your account? This is a very basic widget but it lets you display your latest retweets, tweets, and it also includes a button so that visitors can follow you too.

6. JetPack

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Everyone wants things to be easier for them, and that’s one thing that JetPack does – it makes life easier. If you have Twitter followers who are commenting on your blog often, it lets them access your blog’s comments section using their Twitter, Google+, and Facebook profiles. This makes commenting on your blog much easier for everyone.

7. Evergreen Post Tweeter

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If you are always creating a lot of content for your blog and you want to reduce your tweeting load, this is a plugin that will help. It will automatically tweet the posts that you make when they’re published and it will also automatically tweet your older posts.

8. Twitter Hover Tweet

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Use lots of images in your WordPress site? Then you are going to love this plugin! It allows your images to be easily tweetable. Just imagine the possibilities if you are a photographer!

9. Twitter Alligator Plugin

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Are you following anyone who is always sending out tweets that you think your audience will enjoy? With this plugin, their tweets are going to be displayed on your WordPress blog. Your audience will appreciate it and so will the person whose Tweets are displayed.

10. Twitter Tools

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If you feel as if you can’t get enough time on Twitter, this plugin will be a lifesaver. It lets you tweet your posts automatically, tweet right when you’re on your blog, and archive your tweets into an area so that your audience can view.

These Twitter tools absolutely deserve your attention, and we advise you to try them on your own website. However, it has been said numerous times that nothing beats real communication on Twitter.

Don’t forget that your Twitter followers are humans and they are looking for communication with other humans, not just automated responses. So make sure your Twitter Marketing is a mix of both: tools and natural communication.

Good luck!

Also read: How to Easily Build a Real Twitter Following

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We’re Giving Away 3 WordPress Themes From 7Theme! Want One? http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/09/15/giving-away-3-wordpress-themes-7theme-want-one/ http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/09/15/giving-away-3-wordpress-themes-7theme-want-one/#comments Mon, 15 Sep 2014 14:00:27 +0000 http://www.bloggingpro.com/?p=30894 WordPress themes are easy to find, but to find the perfect one for what you have in mind for your blog or web site is sometimes like finding a needle in a haystack. We’d like to think that by working with 7Theme, a WordPress theme shop – a space where you can get stunning designs and professional support.

7theme

Founded in 2012 in Italy and Germany the site was formally launched in May 28th 2013. It is now a professional Premium Theme company, which has been designing more than 300 websites with WordPress. All of their themes are released under the GPL license giving you freedom to use them as you want, just like WordPress. Through their generosity, we are giving away THREE of their WordPress themes to lucky BloggingPro readers.

Paris

The 7Theme Giveaway

Let’s make this easy for everyone:

  • Anyone can join the giveaway, no matter where you are.
  • The winners can choose any theme from the web site, so better browse 7Theme to get an idea of what you want.
  • Follow the instructions in the Rafflecopter widget below to send in your entries.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Remember: The giveaway starts today, Monday (September 15) and ends on Friday, (September 19). You can tweet every day to get more entries, and also check out the other options for additional entries.

Happy tweeting, sharing, and commenting!

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Why Social Media Monitoring is Vital for Companies in Asia–Pacific http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/09/15/social-media-monitoring-vital-companies-asia-pacific/ http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/09/15/social-media-monitoring-vital-companies-asia-pacific/#comments Mon, 15 Sep 2014 13:00:35 +0000 http://www.bloggingpro.com/?p=30886 Editor’s note: This post was written by Elizabeth Victor, Brand Advisor for iSentia Media Monitoring. She enjoys sharing tips on social media monitoring and analysis, especially in Asia Pacific. You can find her on G+ and Twitter.

Social media monitoring is important for every business in order to keep tabs on what people are saying about your company; however, it is especially important for Asia-Pacific companies who are very conscious about their brand image. Many Asia-Pacific countries are gun shy when it comes to launching social media campaigns for fear of negativity from customers in addition to abiding by strict guidelines and laws imposed by different countries.

social media monitoring

Companies like this who are concerned about what people are saying about their brand online should absolutely be using the tools available to monitor online activity. This allows them to venture into social media marketing, where there might not be as much competition present and still keep close tabs on their brand reputation and image.

As experts in social media monitoring, reporting, and creating connections with key influencers, we understand how important company image is for companies in Asia-Pacific companies including Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Philippines, Thailand, Indonesia, and China. For as important as social media monitoring can be to companies, it can be incredibly easy, automated, and even free.

Benefits of Social Media Monitoring

Even if you have not established your own social channels, consumers, customers, and employees will be talking about your company and your brand online and in social media. Monitoring these channels allows you to not only know what people are saying, but also react to it.

Setting up your own channels, website, and blog allows you to control the conversation and lay the groundwork online for the types of information that you want current and potential customers to read about you. Social media monitoring tells you when, why and how to get in on the conversation. Beyond just listening to what people are saying about your company, you should actively engage with the people that are talking about you. Finding tools that are easy to use and geared towards your specific market are also vital to ensuring a well-executed media monitoring effort.

Social Monitoring Tools

The next step is known how to listen and discern all of the social chatter online. There are quite a few different tools available that will monitor online activity on certain keywords and even people. Once you set them up, automated information can be sent to your email or your mobile device to ensure immediate alerts and allow for a quick response. Some tools even go beyond just social media and can also alert you activity on your competitor’s websites or blogs. Here are a few free tools to consider using:

  • IFTTT stands for If This Then That. On this website, you can make “recipe” combinations that will alert you to different things. There are far reaching capabilities of this tool in addition to social media monitoring. It allows you to set up an RSS feed that scans industry websites you want to keep a close eye on via the feed URL function and have the alerts emailed to you.
  • Me on the Web is a free service offered by Google that allows you to search for your own name, but also any other person or keyword and instantly get Google’s results. Google Alerts is the way to automate this feature. You can set up alerts for any keyword or key phrase to be emailed to you. You can also set the frequency as often as you want.
  • IceRocket is free and allows you to instantly search social sites for mentions of keywords, phrases, or names you are interested in monitoring. It will search blogs, Twitter, and Facebook. There is a wide range of filtering options of the results so you can narrow down the information you are looking for to very specific parameters.
  • Topsy is a very powerful Twitter search tool. This free tool goes beyond Twitter’s search feature and helps you find key influencers in your industry. Identifying influencers not only allows you to see what they are saying but also opens to door to connecting with them to see if they are willing to talk about or review your product or service.
  • Social Mention is another tool that helps identify sentiment in social media mentions about your company online on websites as well as social sites. Searches on SocialMention.com are done in real-time and they include sentiment, top keywords, top users, top hashtags, and last mention.
  • BuzzNumbers is a social media monitoring service available in Australia and New Zealand that provides an easy way to conduct real-time research and uncover data and insights into what your customers and end users are saying online.
  • Social Express is a media monitoring and reporting program that is available in Asian countries including Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Philippines, Thailand, and Indonesia. All countries where businesses must keep a close eye on social conversations. The tool provides you with insights and analytical reporting that includes statistics, trends, charts, and more and keeps your team in the know about any trending discussions or reputation management crisis that might be affecting your bottom line.
  • SinoPortal is a media monitoring product that is exclusive in China. Businesses in China know that media and social media are quite different. Playing by a different set of rules, this product provides you with fast access to information and returns information for you based on the criteria you filter in the search.

Conclusion and Takeaways for Your Business

social media monitoring

Monitoring social media is important all over the world, however it is vital in certain cultures where company image is important and social media is still growing. Different tools are available for different countries. Finding a social monitoring tool that is most compatible with the culture and laws governing your country will make the process easier for your company.

Once you have a media monitoring campaign set up, there are some universal guidelines to go live by.

  • Ignoring social media comments (whether they are bad or good) is never a good idea. Interacting and further engaging consumers are the best ways to keep the conversation going, fix any problems as they arise, and create a positive social image for your brand.
  • Even if the comments from customers are negative, a quick response and apology shows not just the person posting the complaint but anyone else reading that your company cares and takes the time to address and fix any issues.
  • When you are dealing with a particular customer problem on social media, the best thing is to address the issue and take the complaint offline to a more private phone call or email situation instead of listing details right on the social network.
  • Reacting quickly and professionally should always govern your interactions. Do not let emotions or anger guide your reaction. Follow customer service best practices on social media just as if you are speaking with a customer or client in person.
  • Never ignore a social media problem assuming that it will just “go away”.
  • Do not assume that social media does not correlate to sales. A recent study showed that 69 percent of consumers are more likely to patronize a business if they can find them on social media. Therefore, your social media presence not only allows you to monitor and control the conversations about your company, but can increase sales and creates a forum of trust where you can connect with your target audience.

Once you familiarize yourself with the tools that are available to monitor online and media mentions about your business, you will see that you can fully take advantage of growing social media campaign in a market where there is very likely to be less competition. Develop your plan of action and detail a social media and media monitoring strategy. Let your competitors fall into the fears of social media while you succeed and surpass them in reputation and sales as a result.

 

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BloggingPro Job Board Highlights, September 15, 2014 http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/09/15/bloggingpro-job-board-highlights-september-15-2014/ http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/09/15/bloggingpro-job-board-highlights-september-15-2014/#comments Mon, 15 Sep 2014 12:00:34 +0000 http://www.bloggingpro.com/?p=30891 Job board highlightsIs your Monday off to a good start? I certainly hope so!

And here are the job board highlights, which should help you have an even better start to the week. Good luck!

Job Board Highlights

Overnight Writer

Everyday on PSFK.com, the look for and share the most innovative, creative and remarkable trends, people, projects and ideas. They’re looking for people who want to help inspire others by assisting with writing articles that capture this tone and style of content. Professional writing experience is required.

Culinary and Hospitality Educational Writers

A company is currently looking for freelance Subject Matter Experts and Educational Writers to write and develop curriculum materials, such as assessment questions and ancillary materials (PowerPoint presentations, lecture notes, etc.), to accompany textbooks for high-profile educational publishing clients. Content may be developed for online or in-class delivery.

IT Professional needed for ongoing writing job

An IT services and cloud firm located in Brisbane, Australia is looking for an IT professional turned writer to assist with ongoing articles, blogs and writing. The ideal writer will have experience in the IT services space and be very familiar with terms like IaaS, BYOD, SaaS, Private Cloud, Office 365, SharePoint and Cloud backups.

Tech Bloggers

Looking for few accomplished content writers to write on tech blog (excluding gadgets). Requirements of the job:
1. Experience in writing for tech blog
2. Unique
3. Good English
4. Post submission on time

Blog Writers Needed for International Film Production & Photography Services Company

Do you have a way with words? Can you make a blog article come to life? A global media services company is looking for engaging, creative and talented blog writers for their newly launched blog. They are interested in dynamic individuals who are internationally minded with knowledge of film production and/or photography.

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WP Couch Mode Plugin: For Readers Who Want to Focus on Content http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/09/12/wp-couch-mode-plugin-readers-want-focus-content/ http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/09/12/wp-couch-mode-plugin-readers-want-focus-content/#comments Fri, 12 Sep 2014 12:30:01 +0000 http://www.bloggingpro.com/?p=30879 We may be bloggers, content providers, writers, or whatever you want to call yourself, but at the end of the day, we are also consumers. If you think about it, when we’re not writing, we’re reading. Or playing games, in some cases. ;)

WP Couch Mode

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Some that reading time may be because we want to be at the top of our game when it comes to the niche we write about. Some of the time may be reading for the simple pleasure of reading.

Whatever the reason, it cannot be denied that reading is an inherent part of the Internet experience. And that’s where the highlighting of content comes into the picture.

For many people, they just want to see the content of the article or blog post. They want to see the text, the words, and perhaps the accompanying images.

Distraction-free reading.

That’s why posts like this on Medium appeal to readers. The content is the focus of the post, and while photos break up the text, there is flow that still highlights what is to be read without distraction.

Understandably, however, some sites need to have ads and other elements that may distract the reader from the content.

What can you do to balance these needs out?

Enter the WP Couch Mode Plugin.

This plugin gives the reader the option to forego all the ads and other distracting elements that may be found in your site. What it does, basically, is to add a link – which is customizable – to content. When this link is clicked, a lightbox pops up, showing only the content.

Developer Ritesh Vatwani has incorporated several options, as seen in the screenshot below.

WP Couch Mode

When the reader chooses “Read Mode”, this is what he will see.

WP Couch Mode

Obviously, that distraction-free mode is more appealing to readers. Unless you’re one to actively seek ads for some reason.

For a more in-depth analysis of how WP Couch Mode performs click here.

If you want to download the plugin or check out the developer details, click here.

Here are more WordPress tips for you:

Export Google Docs to WP Posts with “Send to WordPress” Chrome Extension

6 WordPress Plugins That Make Migration & Mass Content Creation Simple

15 Functional e-Commerce WordPress Blogging Themes to Start Raking in the Sales

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4 Actionable Strategies For Boosting Sales & Engagement on your Blog http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/09/10/powerful-tactics-boosting-sales-engagement-website/ http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2014/09/10/powerful-tactics-boosting-sales-engagement-website/#comments Wed, 10 Sep 2014 19:20:13 +0000 http://www.bloggingpro.com/?p=30870 Finding the perfect formula for driving sales, subscriptions and readers to your website who actually engage is a task that grows more difficult as the web continues to develop and grow. It’s quite easy to hit a plateau whether you’re trying to create fresh and appealing content for your personal or corporate blog; or creating a new angle that will attract buyers to your new product or startup. Successful online business is hard work and in reality it’s not for everyone. The defining quality that is proven to set winners apart from losers simply boils down to persistence.

shutterstock_163307801

The ability to launch winning traffic generation and business booming strategies does not necessarily require that you master every skill possible but more relies on you knowing your target audience’s needs and being honest with what you can and are willing to provide. A blog that covers social media marketing for instances, does not necessarily need to publish on every possible topic under it’s umbrella but should narrow the focus to where the impact is greatest based on the marketer’s skillset and targets for ROI. Especially in cases where a small business or blog is managed by one individual, the stakes are higher regarding using marketing time wisely for maximum effect.

So, what are some oftentimes ignored and underutilized techniques that can create success online for marketers and how do you enrich your content marketing efforts for greater ROI?

Narrowing Your Focus

Let’s face it, there’s a strong possibility that what you’re publishing on your blog has already been said and dissected somewhere on the web by a few other bloggers. It’s extremely difficult to be unique when content is being produced across the world at its current rapid pace. How do you create a unique voice for your brand and standout in the noisy crowd? The best strategy you can employ here is drilling down on your niche topics and narrowing and deepening your focus to go a step further with the general topics being discussed frequently on the web.

There are 3 benefits here:

1) You become an expert in a rarely discussed field – Many websites typically discuss the obvious facts and do not dive deep into the “how’s”, “why’s” and “if’s” of the industry. For example, Google launches a new product with “x” cool features. Everybody talks about that; you should then dive into commentary on the potential impact on users, use the service and offer detailed reviews and simply look for opportunities to provide and focus on various angles that aren’t evidently addressed. That’s how you create unique share-worthy and link-worthy content.

2) Benefit from valuable long tail keywords and niches – SEO is alive, will always be alive and you still can win. There is great value in long tail keywords. For example, you simply cannot compete with general, broad keywords like “social media marketing” or “increase sales.” However, you may discover greater opportunities and value for something more narrow like “how to increase sales without a zero budget” or “creating a social media marketing plan for small businesses.” The keyword competition will be less. Use a tool like Keywordtool.io to discover ideas for narrowing your keyword focus.

3) You save time and energy – Focus means that you strip your days of unnecessary work on things that do not add value to your bottom line and objectives.

Engage Your Target Audience Off Your Website

Promoting your website and getting feedback from readers and users is not all about you and your site. Advertising your latest blog post on pitchingTwitter each chance you get will not attract meaningful traffic and engagement unless you’ve already built a reputation through relationships on social networks. Simply put, people won’t be interested in your stuff if they have no idea who you are or what you stand for. Sure, you’ll get a few clicks from readers here and there but the results are negligible.

If you’re trying to get influencers to engage and share your content you’ll need to engage them as fellow human beings without strictly pitching to them. A recent study by Buzzstream reveals that 64% of writers and editors of popular websites think it’s important to establish a personal relationship before pitching a story to them.

Treat your target audience as a community and start interacting and building relationships on social media as well as taking advantage of meeting people offline. Share interests and add value to their daily lives by contributing things that they’ll find useful. Pitching is not your priority here. If an influencer knows that you always add value and always engaged with them on a human level, your profile, work and content will have more value in their eyes. Use tools like Commun.it, Hootsuite and Oktopost to effectively manage your social network relationships.

Build the relationships and you’ll find that you’ll achieve higher clickthrough rates on social media and engagement from the readers you acquire.

Evoke Curiosity

For whatever reasons visitors are coming to your site you should try to have something that directly addresses that. For example, if your website is directed at teaching readers how to play a musical instrument, you could collect emails from subscribers who would be highly engaged with what you have to offer; like a pop-up that says “Do you want to learn how to play the piano like Beethoven?” or something else the average aspiring student can relate to.

Therefore, how you present your content is very important and your wording should address a need the reader may have leading them to explore further. Writing a strong headline is an art worth perfecting.

Optimize Your Site’s Usability

Usability is something you should never take for granted. The more enjoyable and user-friendly the experience is for your readers the greater the chance of them spending more time to consume and use your content. They’ll keep coming back for more.

Make your readers’ experiences better with simple strategies like:

  • Making key information easier to find
  • Keeping relevant info above the fold
  • Optimizing site load speed
  • Eliminating dead-end pages that link to nowhere else on your site

websiteusability

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Here’s a list of free usability testing tools to help assess your site and determine what improvements you can make.

To conclude, increasing engagement relies heavily on your ability to communicate solutions effectively to your target audience with the help of a few tools. While also narrowing your vision to help produce unique products and content users will love and share.

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