AdSense Video Ads Launched

AdWords have officially started allowing their US, Canadian and Japanese advertisers create video ads.

This should mean that we start seeing the first of them in the coming days as they are approved by the AdWords team.

Let us know if and where you spot them in action and what you think of them.

AdSense adds International Referral Buttons

Adsense InternationalThe AdSense blog has announce that they have now added international referral buttons to their referrals area.

This allows non English blogs to start using referrals in their own languages (I can count 23 or so languages currently supported).

There are definitely not as many button options available for non English speaking publishers as there are for ‘English US’ ones though – but it’s a step in the right direction (which is easy for me to say as an English speaker of course).

I’d be interested to hear the thoughts of non English speaking bloggers on this – what would you like to see from AdSense and other ad programs? Send a message to AdSense – you never know, they might just be listening!

More information from the AdSense blog at Redesigned AdWords referral buttons now available internationally

Highly Effective Bloggers Project – More Submissions

200605231206The Habits of Highly Effective Bloggers Group Writing Project is coming to an end. Today’s the cut off date so if want to contribute something you’ve only got til the end of the day (I’ll accept entries as long as they were sent on a Friday 26 May – wherever you are).

Today we have 19 more reader submissions (bringing us to a total of 48) and once again there has been a lot of thought put into them. What is exciting me most is the number of blogs that I’ve never seen before that are contributing posts – I’m discovering some quality bloggers through this project and hope others are also. Here’s todays submissions (all of which are being added to the central submissions page also):

Once again – if you’re written something but are not yet on the list you need to email me with your post’s URL – I’ve noticed that some people have not done this bit but can’t find everyone’s posts without a little help.

How to Find Traffic for a New Blog

Yaro’s put together a good post on How To Launch A Brand New Blog that will be of use to PreBloggers wanting to think through their first day or two of blogging. Here’s part of his great advice:

“One of the problems new bloggers of today face is the hype generated by established successful blogs. You read stories about bloggers earning thousands of dollars per day, with hundreds of thousands of visitors, huge exposure and big profits. Bloggers enter the blogosphere chasing big goals. Once their blog is set up and they have made their first few posts they stop and wonder why nothing is happening. The impatient bloggers head out looking for quick fixes – methods that promise huge amounts of traffic in a few days or weeks.

The reality is you have to pay your dues for success online just as much as you do in the real world. Nearly all big time bloggers have a history of hard and consistent work, only as a snapshot in time *after* something great has been built does it look easy.”

Solid Advice from Yaro there.

In my experience the only real way to fast track a launch is to leverage traffic from somewhere else.

Option 1 – This is a little easier if you already have a web presence and the ability to directly influence current readers (especially if your known in the area your new blog is about).

Option 2 – If you don’t already have such an influence your options are more limited and things might be a little slower to grow. One such option is to pay for traffic via some form of Advertising. You might try AdWords, BlogAds or direct ad buys from other relevant bloggers. If you’re smart with your ads you can actually do quite well from this – but of course it costs you – cold hard cash.

Option 3 – If you don’t have direct influence or you are not willing to pay for traffic another option is to leverage the traffic of others via the links they give you. This takes time as you build relationships with other bloggers and as a result of producing quality content gain traction for your blog from them linking to you. While a slower start, it’s this last option that probably has the bigger lasting impact as you not only bring new readers in but also have a little link love that continues to do it’s magic into the future in terms of helping your search engine presence.

Ultimately all three options are unlikely to bring you overnight success and will take sustained work. Each will not work if you don’t have quality content that meets a need of potential readers.

Engadget Runs ‘Post-Like’ BMW Ads

I just saw an ad that I haven’t seen before over at Engadget. It’s placed between the end of individual posts and the ‘recent posts’ section.

The ad is labeled twice as ‘Advertisement’ but is also very well blended with the rest of the site with it’s heading in the same color and format as other heading on the blog and the link to the advertiser the same as other links at the bottom of posts. The font of the copy is slightly different as is the background color.

The ad is also largely text with a picture (similar to normal Engadget formats for posts). I’m not quite sure what to call this type of ads except to call them ‘post like’.

See the ad below.

I don’t have any problem with the ad in terms of blending – they’ve labeled it twice – but it’s definitely interesting development for Engadget and a newish type of ad for blogs.

By the way – the ad links to a BMW video ad and an interesting campaign in and of itself.

[Read more…]

CSS tips

If you are a blogger who wants to learn how to use CSS (cascading Style Sheets) to modify the look and feel of your blog and you are after some tips you might want to check out the latest post over at Business Logs where Mike gives his 5 CSS tips.

  1. Organize Your CSS
  2. Avoid Default Styles
  3. Use Your Utility Tags
  4. Use The Right Tool For The Job
  5. Name According To Where It Is, Not What It Looks Like

I won’t pretend I understand half of what he’s talking about (design is not my forte) but he is someone who knows how to design and so might be worth listening to on the topic.

Looks like Scrivs has some useful things to say on CSS also here.

AdBrite beta testing Mobile, In Video and Banner ads

AdBrite announced that they are accepting beta users for three new formats of ads. It was announced last week but escaped my attention for some reason.

  • Mobile Ads – an Ad system for mobile content sites (WAP)
  • Banner Ads – fairly standard banner ad options by the looks of things
  • In Video Ads – the ability to show embedded ads in videos

I’m sre there will be a few videocasters interested in the last option.

Thanks to Michael for the email tip off

Habits of Highly Effective Bloggers – More Reader Submissions

200605231206The reader submissions for the Habits of Highly Effective Bloggers Group Writing Project have continued to come in over night – 13 more to add to yesterdays 16. Once again I’ve posted them all to the central page with yesterday’s submissions.

I’m really excited by the quality of some of what’s been submitted so far. Collectively I think people have come up with a wonderful picture of what it is to be an effective blogger.

The other thing I’m excited about with this project is the way that many ProBlogger readers are surfing through the list of links and are discovering new blogs and leaving great comments. I’ve had a number of emails from participants thanking me for helping them find new readers and emails from readers thanking me for highlighting blogs they’d not seen before. Hopefully a side benefit of this project will be that this will continue.

Here are today’s submissions:

Despite the similarities in names there’s a fair bit of variety in there. I hope you enjoy surfing around and giving the authors your encouragement.

Read the full list of submissions so far here.

Podcast interviews ProBlogger at Practical Blogging

Robyn Tippins has just posted a short podcast interview with me talking about blogging, now I got into it, how I transitioned into doing it for a living, how PR and marketing people should pitch bloggers, things I’d do differently and a few tips on blogging and monetization etc. Listen to it at Robyn’s blog Practical Blogging.