Posts Tagged ‘Blogs’

Blogging Networks

March 15, 2008

In spirit of the Music Festival currently happening at SXSW, and me not being there.  I have decided to write a post about music blogs and blogging networks.  Obviously there are blogs for every available niche.  I even know of a knitting blog network. But music, fashion, and web 2.0 are the types of blogs that there are the most of.

Bloggers are a lot smarter than most people realize.  A smart blogger who keeps their blog fresh and active, join a network, receive ads, get outreached and make huge profits.  But how does a blogger know when it is time to sign over their blogs and retire from taking the long subway journey to their cubicle every day?

My best friend writes a music blog called MyPopRoks, and she is a very active blogger.  There are daily themes, short posts, media posts, etc.  She has a ton of readers, gets outreached to, and really enjoys writing.  Is it time to join a network? By joining a network, some blogs tend to lose their flavor.  They write advertorials, and throw ugly ads all over the place…

The top 3 music bloggers of 2007:

1. Stereogum : Here is a blog that sets the standards for every music blogger.  They have different authors, record label contacts, MP3’s, and their own advertising model.  The syndication options are perfect and they just released a new design for SXSW which obviously they are all rock-stars at.

2. I Guess I am Floating– Here is a Blogger blog done perfectly.  It has a unique layout with multiple authors, a mini-social platform, web.blog ads, and MP3’s. However there is no SXSW coverage, how rare!

3. My Old Kentucky Blog– This is an mp3 blog also on Blogger. It looks great, has interviews, mp3’s, multiple authors, serves web.blog ads, MOKB even has it’s own show on SIRIUS Satellite Radio. Nicely done.

I think the best advice for my friend at this point would be to contact blogads and ask if she could be a publisher.  It is invite only at this point, but they offer the best network. They claim to be Flexible. You set prices, customize design and write copy to solicit advertising. You alone decide what appears on your site. Sounds good right?

Anybody else have any other ideas for bloggers who don’t affiliate with networks, but want to become full time bloggers without selling out?

Blogs you must Feed!

December 25, 2007

I had a weird experience today…

My mother (who doesn’t even have her own email address) and who I am teaching about SEO and blogging, sent me a link to the Top Rank Blog with a list of Must ReadBIGLIST SEO Blogs compiled by Lee Odden. Odden is one of my favorite bloggers and speakers.

Lee Odden

Going through the list, adding to my Bloglines, and reading reading reading! I have a lot of new blogs to discover. I found a few good ones like:

  • Internet News – A general internet marketing and search news blog by Gwen Harris.
  • Nic ‘n Cher – Nicola Young from Scotland and Cheryl Clark from Canada are thoroughly enthusiastic about SEO and PPC and the writing shows.
  • NewspaperGrl – Janet Meiners writes about internet and affiliate marketing.
  • SEOidiot – Paul Madden is a cartoonist, designer, salesman, blackhat, & SEO.

….It is a really BIG list and I have tons more feeding to do.

And of course there are the classics, including 10e20Chris Winfield and team blog about search marketing, social media and design.- Which was the first ever SEO blog I read, and is the perfect example Winfield gave as to why having the name 10e20, got them to the top of search and lists.

So my mother asked, “Why isn’t your blog listed honey?” And while this blog is totally a baby in the blogosphere, my other blog is listed!!

SEO Chicks – Julie Joyce, Lisa Ditlefsen and Anita Chaperon are women, or as they prefer to be called, “chicks” who know SEO and PPC. They decided after a few beers during a London conference that it was time to get some female attitude into the SEO & SEM blogosphere and here they are with lots of great photos from the recent SMX conference.

I just need to ask Odden to add my name!

1 Mixxed Up Month!

December 19, 2007

It’s been about a month that I have been using Mixx, and I do love it overall.

Things I love about Mixx:

  • It is user friendly
  • It is not saturated with competitive members (yet!)
  • It allows me to complain about members who vote down my content out of spite. (yes this happened)
  • Mixx does not mind if you Mixx your blog.
  • There are easy tagging options
  • It’s sooo easy to vote & see votes (And even easier to vote on all of your friends stories!)
  • There are many “front” page option, not just popular.
  • Some Top Diggers have been using Mixx, making it more popular.

Things I HATE about Mixx:

  •  The constant e-mail updates I was getting in my mailbox & my Blackberry until I opted out.
  • How people put things in every single category, when they shouldn’t.
  • Red & Sky Blue color scheme (my opinion)
  • That you can’t put a link in your Public Profile
  • Mean and Nasty diggers who are trying to abuse Mixx

To sum things up, I love Mixx way more than I hate it. I see it being improved a little, but besides that.. It’s like a fun new toy.

I’m a SEO Chick!

December 14, 2007

Earlier this year, I decided to add the SEO Chick’s blog to my feed.  As many people within the industry know, many blogs can get boring and tedious to read.  So I found the SEO-Chick blog really light and entertaining. Definitely a nice break after some of the others, and still enlightening and educational.

I even poked fun at SEO Chick, Julie Joyce’s post about Chimp’s doing SEO. Really it was just a call to her attention to be able to interview her. As stalkerish as it seems, I really enjoyed reading her posts.

I eventually started talking it up with some of the chicks via Facebook, after joining their group,  and decided it would be a great opportunity to meet them at Pubcon, Las Vegas.

I got a chance to meet a few of them and they were such smart ladies!  Therefore, I am so happy to be a part of the SEO-Chick blog and cannot wait to get started posting with such a great team of Chick Internet Marketers.

SEO-Chicks

Here are some SEO- Chicks minus Rebecca Kelley.

Thanks Chicks 🙂

Search and Blogging Reporters Forum

December 7, 2007

This live forum was pretty cool and extremely entertaining.

Speakers: Andy Beal, Rand Fishkin, Michael McDonald, Lee Odden

Some great things I learned from this forum:

  1. Advertising money is going away from print and towards online ads.
  2.  More than 7,000 journalists have lost their jobs in the past year due to blogging popularity.
  3. The NYTimes print sales are going way down, but their online ad sales are very expensive.
  4. It is best to pick a niche to blog about.  When you are passionate about a topic, it makes you more of an expert in your field and easier to monetize.
  5. SEO blogging needs to be done timely and carefully because it is so saturated and dangerous.
  6. Look for opportunities to write similar posts to your most successful posts.
  7. Contests are a great way to pull rank,
  8. Multimedia is great for branding but does not improve readership.  Many people choose not to watch videos because they are at work (sound) or they are mobile browsing.
  9. People in the SEM/SMM/SEO industry do not click on ads, blogging more in a niche opens up these ads to a different vertical.

There is more on the Search Engine Round Table.

There is also a really in depth coverage of the forum done by GrayWolf. 

There is also a great recap of the whole day , as well as this one by Lisa Barone @ Bruce Clay.

Las Vegas: A Place for Marketers

December 6, 2007

Having been in theLas Vegas Hilton marketing industry for a few years now, I am noticing significant trends at networking events and the differences in people within the industry.

Marketers of the “old school” persuasion usually go to events to:

  • buy/sell
  • examine competition
  • get out of the office
  • meet clients
  • get free shwag

Marketers of the “new school” persuasion go to networking events for those reasons as well. However, this is the lifestyle. If you are an online marketer, you cannot miss important networking events. Networking= business.

Branding yourself as an online marketer, in Las Vegas at one of the largest conventions of the year is tricky. I see many people here who are really working hard at branding themselves as online marketers and I see many “Superstars” whose faces are well known by everyone, and have celebrity status amongst the convention.

The simplest strategy for online marketers:

  1. Come to networking events as a brand. example: Shoemoney has a name, but it doesn’t matter because he has created a successful brand, and everybody in Vegas knows Shoemoney.
  2. Get Known in your community. Many people here are great at networking, quick hello, introduction, 30- second pitch, wink, smile, business card, and move on. (This produces links)
  3. Start Conversations. The best thing about Pubcon, and other networking events is building relationships. Creating real life relationships with people in the industry are insanely beneficial. These are the people who will vote for your stories, send you traffic, give advice, and buy you drinks- and it is a mutual relationship!

The WynnTwo days at Pubcon, has really given a crash course on the industry. There are many “to-dos” at the convention, and a lot to learn as the industry keeps changing. One thing that sticks to mind is a quote from Rae Hoffman at her session: “If your an online marketer and you not marketing yourself, how will your clients believe you can market them?”

Stephanie Since many people say I don’t look like my picture….. If you see me and recognize me… say hello!

Alternative Discovery and SEO

December 6, 2007
  Alternative Discovery and SEO – Feeds, PDF’s, and Blog SEO

Rick Klau

Moderator: Joe Laratro
Speakers:
Rick Klau, Strategic Partner Development , Google
Stephan Spencer, Founder & President , Netconcepts
George Aspland, Founder & President, eVision, LLC

Rick Klau, Strategic Partner Development for Google, was an excellent speaker who discussed the “no index” rule that both Google and Yahoo are respecting for RSS feeds.  Klau, who used to be with Feedburner, discussed how Feedburner offers free pro features now that they have been acquired by Google.  Klau also recommends feeding any site content for SEO purposes.  A site feed acts as a poor man’s site map, interesting!

For serious bloggers, Klau recommends checking out Techmeme.com, which is a site that analyzes similar content and shows relationships.

Looking for more ways of distributing content? Klau recommends using Facebook professionally and importing your blog feed to distribute your RSS to all of your friends.

Stephan Spencer of Netconcepts gave the best blogging advice I have ever heard.  He gave quick tips, that are helpful and to the point.  You can read all of his blogging tips on his blog.

4 Ways to Improve The SEO Chicks Blog

November 21, 2007

Today, I was tagged by Julie Joyce from the SEO-Chicks to give my 4 Ways to Improve the SEO Chicks Blog. She even referred to me as her “new best friend”. Of course I feel really cool right now. Trying to shove my enlarged ego aside, I began to run through my 4,700 SEO blog feeds to think about what my advice would be.

We all read so many SEO blogs all day. If you are one for time management, you might place aside an hour or two early in your day just to read what people in the industry are talking about. Chances are they are all talking about the same thing; the state of SEO, Marketing on Social Networks, Google Page Ranks, the levels of “true” popularity on Digg, Reddit, Sphinn, content blogging, and so on. After a while, it gets really boring to read the same thing over and over again. This is one thing I love, love, love about SEO-Chicks, they don’t find the need to post overdone subjects, instead they make fun of it. SEO Chicks

This list was a bit hard to put together, being I am such a fan of the SEO-Chicks, but here is goes:

  1. Add more “Just For Fun” posts. As I stated early, sometimes I get really bored reading blogs. I loved the “Master-Baiter” t-shirt post by Lisa, and I know for a fact tons of other people really appreciated that joke as well. I would love it if more people in the industry could show their sense of humor and personality instead of blogging like robots.
  2. Post content about project success and failure. I read this advice on Dosh-Dosh once and it made so much sense. We all learn from our mistakes, but it’s best to pass the knowledge gained around. With a collective group of successful women in the industry, I am sure there have been many positive and negative experiences in the industry that “newbies”, like myself would benefit from reading.
  3. Gadget Reviews! I am addicted to reading posts on the newest gadgets coming out. I would love to know what the “chicks” are using as far as phones, Video & Music Players (Julie, that must be important to you!), PDA’s, etc.
  4. Finally, I will throw in (again) to add a Guest Writer section. I was told it was in the works, but I definitely want to see that happen because there are soo many talented women in the industry. I would love to read what they all have to say! It would be super hot to throw all of the guests pictures up there and just have a “Women of SEO” Gallery.

Thanks Julie, I can’t wait to meet you and the Chicks at PubCon in Vegas. I have a feeling we will talk about music a lot! I can’t wait to see the new and improved SEO-Chicks.

PS- Can I buy a shirt at the Convention?

“Social Media is about breaking down barriers to engage in conversations”

November 14, 2007

Social Media is about breaking down barriers to engage in conversations.”

“Relationships are the new metric for ROI.”

-These are just two quotes from an amazing blog post I read today. “Conversational Marketing Vs. Market Conversations”

It really gets me thinking… With all the hype on Social Networks and people being put together by grouping, and links, does everyone become a salesman/ or marketer?

In my experience, ever since customized AOL Member Profiles, people have been selling themselves. Now with the Myspace & Facebook evolution, everyone has a crooked picture (the angles) and they are promoting a blog that they are trying to sell ads on so they wont have to work at Starbucks….. (I guess that was harsh) But what about us, the online marketers who really have business to promote…. a lot of times we fall in the cracks.

It almost seems that all online marketers, must must must be  prominent figures amongst many in online communities.

A lot of marketers I have spoken to even do most of their work on online communities. Get to the top of your community, target your fans, and promote your product. This is the formula I see every day.

In “Conversational Marketing Vs. Market Conversations”, Brian Solis discusses the right way to be a marketer in a place where everyone is a salesman. We must all listen to the market, before we participate. This taught me a lot because many times I feel so eager to just jump into the industry, instead of sitting back and observing the entire spectrum.

The best way to do even the most important aspects of Search Marketing (PPC, Keyword Advertising, PPL, etc) is to analyze your market for a period of time until you feel completely ready to promote to the target. And these methods are considered “traditional”, yet still completely necessary.

So while it is tempting to jump head first into the industry, it is also important to understand how everything works and to prepare for the future, because this might be “The Year of Facebook”, but who knows what next year will bring.

… The ironic thing about this is the fact that I found this posted on Sphinn. It was posted by “Lyndon”, (a top “Sphinner”)and while I don’t know who he is… I know he posts some great articles on Sphinn!

Interview with Seo Chick: Julie Joyce

October 30, 2007

After attacking her post about Monkeys Chimps doing SEO, I decided to ask Julie Joyce for an interview. With a name that sounds like the name of a 5:00 News Weather Reporter, Julie co-owns Stroud (a SEO/SEM company) and Link Fish Media with her husband. She is extremely talented in the field of SEO and is a big music fan.

julie.jpg

So at around 12:30 AM the other night I put together all the questions I had for somebody I definitely look up to and respect.

#1 How did the 2 Seo-Chicks meet?
There are actually 4 of us who consistently write for the blog… Lisa and I just have the biggest mouths. I had briefly met Lisa at a LondonSEO party back in February of this year. I immediately liked her since she seemed completely insane and was Norwegian. How can you NOT like a Viking? It truly feels like I have known her forever now. She is one of my favorite people in the whole world and I completely adore her. Sounds sappy, but I seriously do. I’ve known Anita Chaperon for much longer, as we met around 18 months ago and worked together for awhile. Anita is the woman I wish I could be…very logical, never acts like an idiot in public, always has perfect hair, never says the wrong thing, etc. Those two got to talking at a later LondonSEO and decided to do something in the industry, and Anita mentioned my name as being a good third person so there you go. I actually just met Judith Lewis for the first time in person when I was in London a few weeks ago. It’s amazing how well we all fit together. They’re all women that I am friends with, and all women that I would have hand-picked if I had started the blog myself.

 

Lisa deserves a ton of credit for putting everything together and constantly being the face of the blog.

#2 How did you get involved in the SEO world?

It was actually kind of an accidental thing… A vacancy opened up on the SEO team where I was working, and they asked me to do it since I was the only person in the office with anything other than a straight technical background, having an English degree. I’d actually spent time on almost every team there at that point so it was one of those things where it’s not truly being asked whether you want to do it or not, it’s like an order that’s given in a nice way. It turned out to be something that was very intuitive for me as well though, and then I became the head of the team and learned more in a year than I thought was possible.

It was a very lovely turning point in my career because I was really sick of programming at that point and couldn’t imagine doing that for the next few years.

#3 Was it very hard to start your own company?

Is it very difficult to work with your husband in this industry?

It was insanely easy actually, but we were very lucky. My husband Jay landed a major client without really trying, so the financial backbone was there. It soon became a matter of whether I should stay at my old job and keep that security, or take a chance and join him. I don’t think that starting a company is usually as easy as it was for us. We’ve just started another one as well, called Link Fish Media, which handles large-scale link development work. Starting that one and working out the details was a bit harder than starting Str0ud, simply because we ended up hiring a few people to work for us.

Many people have asked how it felt to take such a chance, but Jay is the one who made the leap and I took longer to join him, so it honestly was not all that scary or difficult. I can recall a few moments of panic in the beginning but now I’ve gotten used to it. I actually worked with Jay at my previous agency as well, in the same tiny office! So we’re very used to each other and it generally works out.

There are certainly moments when we want to kill each other, but we try to never get too involved in the same exact things at the same time. I do tend to be slightly less nice to him than I would be to someone else because I’m so comfortable with him, which is why he drinks so much and does a lot of groaning in the corner with his arms wrapped around his knees.

However, that’s a nice outlet for me since I don’t feel the need to tiptoe around him and be nice when I really want to strangle him.

#4 What are your most favorite conferences to attend?

Do you find it easier or more difficult as a female attending these conferences?

I thought that the first SMX in Seattle was the best one so far. I’ve been to several different ones but that one had the best food (and good vegetarian food) and it was in one of the best cities on earth so I’ll pick it as the top choice. I think that it’s quite easy to be a female at a conference. I wouldn’t recommend eating a cream-filled eclair when you’re the only woman in a circle of men though. It’s certainly not a predatory industry, not that I have seen.

You don’t tend to have guys lurking around dark corners waiting to jump out at any halfway-decent female who wanders past, like in social work. I haven’t met anyone at a conference who’s been a jerk or rude or anything, so I don’t think my being female really has any effect on anyone else honestly, other than the guy who kept saying Lisa and I were like hot smart cheerleaders.

#5 Do you think Classic SEO is dying?

It does feel that way at times.

Of course my version of Classic SEO was cloaking the bejaysus out of most sites. I hated to let that go…there’s a big focus on new media now with everyone into social media marketing and optimizing videos and podcasts and voting on sites, etc. SEO has become more fun though, I will say that. It’s become more challenging, but it’s also easier to find help when you need it now, with the proliferation of really quality blogs out there with knowledgeable people actively writing about what they do. Forums were bigger back when I started, and there was a sense of not really wanting to let anyone know who you were so that you wouldn’t leave the door open for someone to figure out what YOU were doing and either do it better or report you.

I think that has definitely changed, and for the better.

#6 What do you think is next in this ever-changing industry?

I’ve actually thought about this for quite some time. I wish that I had some idea of what could be next, but I honestly don’t. I thought social media would have gone a bit sour by now so my opinion on things like this is mostly invalid.

The beauty of this industry is its constant change, and I think that being able to accurately predict the next change would take some of the fun out of it.

Of course, I’m saying that because I lack vision.

#7 Do you think that tools like Facebook are better than the constant challenge of using Digg, Reddit, etc?

I do, yes. I love Facebook.

I make fun of it, certainly, but I absolutely love it. I love boring other friends with the minute details of my life, but I don’t find theirs boring. I’m really not a huge fan of sites where people vote for things. I think they are great for many reasons, but I am not that interested in what everyone else thinks is great when it comes right down to it. My likes and dislikes are quite different from most people that I know, so unless the majority of the people who use those sites start liking old punk rock and Philip Roth,

I’ll stick to poking Lisa on Facebook.

#8 Where do you see yourself in this industry in 5 years?

Hopefully being driven around town by some hot young SEO geek who has good taste in music and likes to buy boots for me as a token of his appreciation for being employed. One who makes perfect iced lattes and cleans the house in under an hour.

Is this a serious question? OK…I honestly have no idea.

I’ve not even been in SEO for 5 years yet, and 5 years ago I never would have predicted being the owner of two SEO companies and traveling around the world all the time.

I’d hope that both companies would still be going strong in 5 years and that I would still be in the thick of things.

#9 Whats your advice for me as a newbie “Chick” in this industry?

First of all, I think it’s great that you’re willing to call yourself a newbie.

This industry would go nowhere without new people coming in, asking questions, and shaking things up. As a female new to the industry, I would advise you to never dumb yourself down, but also never go overboard trying to prove anything.

Just be who you are, and everyone will respond to it.

People will argue back and forth over whether being female even matters in this industry, but whether or not it does, don’t ASSUME that it does. Wait and see. Maybe you’ll be treated differently or badly because of it, but give everyone the benefit of the doubt.

#10 Are you ever planning on inviting new chicks to write for the blog?

We really would love to! We have a new guest post series that’s about to debut, and we have several invitations out there already.

We’ve received some seriously fantastic comments from other SEOs about the the blog being something enjoyable to read, so we want to maintain that no matter what. We’re definitely not set on never asking anyone else to join, but we’re trying to let things happen organically.

I think that the guest post series will be really nice, since we’re very interested in other women writers. We like the offbeat, as you may have noticed. We never want our blog to become a stodgy one, where you almost fall asleep reading it.

If the right blogger came along, I think we’d let her in provided she agreed with absolutely everything we said and promised to talk about how lovely we all are whenever possible.

So much thanks to Julie and the rest of the SEO-Chicks for keeping the HOT in SEO and attitude in Blogging.