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A – Z of Professional Blogging Tools

200606271704Following is my A to Z of Professional blogging including blogging tools, blogging platforms, blogging services and ways of making money from blogging (in fact whether you blog for money or not much of what follows should help you improve your blogging).

I hope you enjoy it and feel free to share your own tools and services in comments (I’m sure I’ll have missed some). update – I’ve been adding your suggestions and we’re now up to over 130 blog tools and platforms.

Update: as there are so many blogging tools listed on this page I’ve made another shorter page with just my most recommended blogging resources and tools which might help if you want something with a personal recommendation.

If this is your first time to ProBlogger you might like to subscribe to my free weekly newsletter (see the top of the left hand sidebar) or RSS News Feed.

A

AdSense – contextual ad program by Google
Adbrite – sell text ads
Amazon Associates – popular affiliate program
aStore – add an Amazon Store to your Blog
AdGenta – text ads by Qumana (see ‘Q’)
AdRotator – WP ad rotating plugin
Akismet – Comment Spam Fighting Tool
Adhearus – pay per click advertising
AdWords – the advertisers side of AdSense – many bloggers use it to promote their blogs
AzoogleAds – advertising system
Audio Blogger – adds audio to your blog

B

Build A Niche Store- add an eBay store to your site
Bidvertiser – bid based advertising
Blog Ads – blog advertising network
Blog Jet - blog editing tool
Blog Desk - blog editing tool
Bloglines – Web based RSS feed reader
BlogPulse – blog search tool
BlogPolls – tool for putting polls on your blog
Blog Poll – another blog poll tool
Backpackit – useful organizational tool
Blogger.com – blog platform
Bloggers for Hire – bloggers looking for work and potential employers looking for bloggers
BlogSitter.net – service for find guest bloggers while you take a holiday
BlogBurst – syndicates bloggers content for mainstream medium
BlogFlux – blog services portal
Blogger Jobs – a blog following the advertising of blog jobs

C

Chitika eMiniMalls – advertising program
CrispAds – blog advertising network
Creative Commons – copyright licenses
Copyscape – tool for checking for content theft/plagiarism
Clicksor – advertising program
Clickbank – library of many affiliate products
Commission Junction – collection of many affiliate programs
Casale Media – advertising solution

[Read more...]

Blogger, Rafat Ali, Raises VC Dollars

Yet another blogger, Rafat Ali from Paid Content, has raised Venture capital for his blogging business according to his announcement post today.

Rafat explains the investment saying that the investment comes from Alan Patricof and that the amount will not be disclosed.

What will Rafat do with the invested money?

“We’ll be hiring a journalist in NYC, starting our UK vertical, launching a redesign of all our sites, hiring more staff for operations and sales, bringing on interns, planning more industry mixers and developing conferences, starting our research arm, and more.”

Found via the WSJ (subscription required) which reports that the investment is lower than $ 1 million.

Blog Network Owner Shares ‘Mistakes I’ve Made’

Mac Slocum at The Independent Publisher is reflecting upon the first year of development of his Fodder Network and has written a post on the five biggest mistakes that he’s made along the road so far.

  • Mistake No. 1: Underestimating the Time Commitment – I suspect this is something many bloggers with dreams of developing multiple successful blogs make. Establishing one blog is a massive task but multiply that by several and you’ve got a full time job very quickly.
  • Mistake No. 2: Forgetting About the Exponential Nature of Tweaks – Mac talks in this point about the amount of work that just a simple tweak can mean if you’re making the same tweak in multiple blogs. On the flip side of course is the good things that can happen as a result of a simple tweak too. For example I remember the day I discovered that moving my AdSense ads closer into content would increase their earnings – of course I quickly did this on all of my blogs and the impact was significant.
  • Mistake No. 3: Building Single Sites instead of Deep Sites – I don’t think there is a right or wrong with this – either strategy can be successful but I also think that especially when you’re a smaller enterprise that it makes sense to build fewer deep blogs than lots of stand alone ones.
  • Mistake No. 4: Managing Expectation Levels - This is a hard lesson to learn. When recruiting bloggers it’s important to give them a realistic idea of what they’ll get out of it. Unfortunately when you’re in start up mode what bloggers get out is not massive unless you have some cash behind your venture. I think most blog networks run into this problem at one time or another as it takes months (if not a year or two) for a blog to really hit its stride and many bloggers just won’t hang around that long.
  • Mistake No. 5: Naivete About Advertising - I’ve come up against this myself in the last couple of years. Once you build a blog up it’s difficult to know how to find advertisers for it and how much to charge. Managing advertising is difficult and as a result I have contracted someone to do a lot of that work for me which has taken a load off my mind.

Mac’s list is pretty typical of many of the issues that bloggers and blog network owners come up against. None of the mistakes he’s made are insurmountable but all are worth considering before getting into the game.

ecto for Windows 2.1 beta Released

Ecto (the blog editor) has released ecto for Windows 2.1 beta. I’d be interested to hear what people think of this new Windows based version.

10 Things Every Reader Wants from a Writer

Liz at Successful Blog has a good list of 10 Things Every Reader Wants from a Writer.

Thankful Blogging Catches On

It looks like the idea of Giving Thanks for traffic is going a little viral – ok it’s not a full blown virus but it’s nice to see others doing it too. Thanks to Spinopsys, Trevor, Christian and the Retrospector for passing on the thanks.

Anyone else feeling thankful – share the love, post a list and let me know about it in comments below.

Update: here’s a couple more at Cata Vino and Brilliant Days.

Update II: here’s some more who have joined in the thankful frenzy – Techno Sailor, Melissa Wiley, Frankaar, Proper Course, Designers who blog, Empirical Empire, lil duck duck, Stories of Pregnancy & Birth over 44y and Through Ball.

UPdate – thanks to everyone who participated – I’m closing this little project off now. Thanks

MeCommerce – A Bookshop on your Blog’s Sidebar

Good Storm is working on a service for bloggers called MeCommerce which effectively puts a little book, DVD and CD store right on your sidebar.

At a first look it doesn’t seem much different to running Amazon ads in your side bar until you click one of the products highlighted when the process of ordering the products happens right there on your blog. Let me show you how it works.

The first picture below is what you see when you go to a blog before clicking a link:

Me-Commerce

The next screen cap is of what happens without leaving your blog when you click a link:

Me-Commerce-2

[Read more...]

Blogger Gets Yahoo Internship

Congratulations to PaulStamatiou.com for landing a ‘Blogger Internship’ at Yahoo – another blogger finding indirect opportunities opening up as a result of their blogging activities. I’m predicting that the second half of 2006 that we’ll see a lot more of this type of thing.

found via blogHelper

25 To Do Lists Services

If you’re as disorganized as I can be at my worst you might find Solution Watch’s post titled 25 To Do Lists to Stay Productive a helpful one. Yes it’s a list of 25 ‘to do list’ services to help you get organized.

I’ve been meaning to find a good to do list for a while now…. but I keep forgetting to do it….