AdSense ‘Change to ads about’ Ads Reappearing

I’ve just started seeing the following ads on today in my AdSense ads.


They look pretty normal except for the last line or two ‘Change to ads about:’ with alternate ad categories under them.

When you click one of the links under that it reloads the page and you get new ads as follows (I clicked ‘Blog AD’:

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4% of ProBlogger Readers are Six Figure Bloggers

Early results after 24 hours on this week’s poll show that 12% of ProBlogger readers are earning over $1000 per month from blogging and 4% are earning over $10,000 (making them six figure bloggers if they average that over a year).

At the other end of the spectrum 25% don’t earn anything.

I wish now I’d put two categories of the ‘earn nothing’ category, one for ‘I tried but earned nothing’ and another for ‘I haven’t tried’. I’d be interested if you are one of the 100 voters in this category to hear which you are in comments of the post announcing the poll.

Of those who have earned something it is the ‘under $10 category’ that is most common followed by the $100 to $499 a month category (15%).

Interestingly this survey I added a $15,000 or more category (last time the top one was a $10,000 or more one) and it has actually been voted in more than other lower levels (3% of total vote so far).

if you haven’t voted yet I’d love to include you in my informal little study.

What to Do When You’ve Said Everything there is to Say

Do you ever feel that you’ve written about everything that needs to be said on the topic of your blog?

If you do – you’re not alone.

Many bloggers hit a dry patch 6 to 12 months into their blog when they feel they’ve already covered almost every aspect of their niche and that they’re content is getting ‘thin’.

Unfortunately a large number of bloggers hitting this dry patch give up on their blog when they feel they’ve ‘covered everything’ and as a result could be missing out on the benefits of their previous months or years of hard work.

My theory is that most bloggers see their archives as a list of items on a ‘to do list’ that they’ve ticked off. Once they’ve ticked them off they’re over and done with – never to be returned to.

I think this is flawed thinking

Rather than thinking this way I see a blog’s archives as a treasure trove of ideas for future posts

Bouncing off previous posts that I’ve written is one of the techniques that I regularly use on my blogs to build momentum and go deeper into the topic that my blogs cover.

The problem with seeing your archives as a list of static topics that you’ve ticked off is twofold:

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Poll of the Week – How Much Money do you Make from Blogging?

I was interviewed during the week by an Australian journalist who was fascinated by the idea that people were making money from blogs.

As with most interviews that I do the old ‘how much can bloggers earn?’ question came out fairly early in the piece (it’s an oldie but a goodie).

I quoted a couple of the polls that I did of ProBlogger readers last year with regards to their AdSense and Chitika earnings and then realized that it’s been a while since we did a poll on reader earnings. In fact it’s been an even longer time since we did a ‘total earnings’ poll.

So it’s time for another one.

This week’s sidebar Poll asks the question:

How Much Money did you Make from Blogging in April?

I’m talking ALL forms of income from your blog – from direct income earners like Advertising, Selling products and Affiliate programs through to indirect earners like consulting or speaking work that you might have picked up BECAUSE of your blog (more on the distinction between direct and indirect earnings here).

I’m also talking on a personal level – what YOU earnt from all blogs you work on.

Don’t answer straight away – tally it up, give it some thought and then let us know.

If you didn’t earn any money from your blog in April either because you tried and didn’t have any luck or because you don’t try to then there is an option for you also.

If you’d like to comment on your vote or on the poll in general feel free to do so on this post.

Positioning BlogAds for Maximum Impact

Blogads-1I’ve noticed quite a few bloggers using ads on their blogs recently so thought I’d share a simple tip that should help attract advertisers.

I share this out of my experience both as a BlogAds publisher (I use their ads on a number of my blogs) but also as a BlogAds advertiser (I use them to promote my own blogs and projects).

The tip is this (and it’s not rocket science). If you’re going to use BlogAds put your Ad strip above the fold.

As a BlogAds advertiser I consider a number of factors when choosing which blog to place my ads. They include:

  • Is the blog on a relevant topic to the blog I want to drive traffic to?
  • Is the ad reasonably priced?
  • What level of traffic does this blog get?

These are all important questions to ask but even if they all are positive I’m unlikely to buy an ad unless I am confident that the readers of that blog will see the ads.

I know this sounds like a basic tip but the reality is that as I look at many blogs with BlogAds I see bloggers that have learnt how to optimally place their AdSense or Chitika ads who ignore the basic placement tips on BlogAds. The same principles apply. The more prominent your BlogAds strip is the more attractive it becomes to advertisers. Generally the higher on your sidebar you can position it the better.

If you can’t fit your BlogAds Ad strip high on your blog (sometimes there just isn’t enough room) there are two courses of action that I’d recommend:

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Six Figure AdSense Publisher Shares How He Did It

Earlier in the week I was visiting a discussion forum (I don’t remember which one) and came across a product that I wish I’d stumbled across in my first months of blogging (and not now 3 years later). It’s called AdSense Videos (aff) and it’s produced and presented by a British AdSense publisher by the name of Michael Cheney.

Michael earns over $19,000 USD per month using AdSense (that’s more than $600 a day) and has obviously spent a lot of time researching how to get the most out of the ad network.

In this product he’s produced a series of 9 videos that take you from the basics through to more advanced tips.

As I wrote earlier today in my email newsletter – I like Michael’s videos not only because he knows what he’s talking about but because he presents in a non hyped up way. He also has a great balance between showing the potential that someone using AdSense can earn with it but also making it clear that it’s not ‘easy’ money (ie it takes hard work). He’s obviously put some hard work into it himself (as he has these videos) and over time he’s managed to build his earnings up from just a little a day (the way we all start) into well over six figures per year.

While I’ve managed to build my own AdSense earnings up to levels that I never would have imagined I can’t begin to imagine how much quicker I’d have gotten there if someone had put these videos in front of me three years ago.

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Alternablog: Podcast

This post has been submitted by regular contributor – Aaron Brazell

Recently, we began examining alternate forms of blogging. Mostly this is to stimulate thought on other methods of bringing content to the table. Last week it was mobile blogging, or moblogging. Another alternablog is the podcast. While podcast describes an entry more than a blog, it is another way to deliver content and it is far more popular than other alternablogs, in my opinion.

While I have personally experimented with the podcast (it sucked!), I’ve found it lacking for my situation. But for many others, podcasting is an extremely powerful medium to enhance a bloggers influence and reach.

Everyday I walk through the halls of the building I work in and I’ve noticed that, increasingly, people are listening to iPods while they work. Not just MP3 players. Real iPods. In fact, as I sit here in my cubicle and type away, my iPod is plugged up to my theatre system (yes, I have a theatre system in my cubicle!).
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Schedule Writing Times

200605161802One of the ways that I find helpful to get back into the momentum of writing a blog is to set aside specific times for writing.

I find it is very easy to get distracted by the many different elements of maintaining a blog, to the point where I find it hard to do the core element – writing posts. As a result setting aside time for writing has become increasingly important for me.

I do this by setting aside time each day (usually the same time each day) for writing but also setting aside longer times on a weekly basis (ie at present I’m experimenting with making Mondays ‘writing day’). I’ve also at times taken even longer periods of time to go away for the sole purpose of writing (ie for a weekend).

I find that setting this time aside away from email, away from IM and even away from being online altogether really lifts the quality and style of my writing.

Of course in the midst of the rest of my week I do write posts – but they tend to be more ‘newsy’ and ‘link posty’ in nature.

I guess ultimately this ‘tip’ is common sense. The things you are intentional about putting time aside for are the things which you have a good chance of doing. The same tip could be written in terms of ‘scheduling time for design’, ‘scheduling time for blog promotion’, ‘scheduling time for Ad optimization’ and many other basic blogging tasks – but ultimately it is a blog’s content that is at it’s core and I’d recommend putting aside time for it’s creation as one of the first things a blogger should do each day.

Building on Reader Comments to Maintain Blogging Momentum

Blogging is conversational in it’s very nature and one way to build momentum on a blog is to take the conversation a step further and let your readership set the agenda for your posting.

I quite often am inspired by the comments, questions and experiences that are contributed by ProBlogger readers. I read each comment that is left and attempt to respond wherever possible within comment threads.

However responding in comment threads is not the only place to have conversations. The problem with comments is that when a post drops off the front page of a blog that the comment thread generally dies off off and momentum is lost. Tools like ‘recent comments’ and ‘comment subscription’ plugins can extend threads a little but not a whole lot longer.

I find that when I take a comment from a reader and highlight it on the main blog as a post that it can create a post that generates even richer and longer conversation. It also has the side benefit of acknowledging your readers and giving them a sense of greater ownership on your blog.

This creates ‘momentum’ in two ways:

  1. Firstly it directly gives you a topic for a new post. I quite often hear bloggers saying that they’ve run out of things to write about – dig in your own blog’s comments and you’ll find plenty of ideas for new posts.
  2. Secondly momentum is created in terms of the conversation on your blog. Instead of conversations dying quickly as the post gets old – the conversation gets a new spark and can go to another level when you draw your readers attention back to it.

There are a number of ways you can build on your reader’s comments in new posts:

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