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Job Boards – 11 hours In

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Thank you to everyone who has sent in feedback, questions and ideas for the ProBlogger Job Boards as well as the many bloggers who have linked up to it.

I’ve always wanted to be a match maker – and now I sort of feel like I am with lots of reports of bloggers and blog employees doing ‘mating dances’ over at the boards.

The boards have only been up and running for 11 or so hours but the response has been very positive. A few highlights already:

  • We’ve had our first paying ads go up (obviously there were a few freebies to start with)
  • We’re hearing that quite a few bloggers have subscribed to the RSS feed and thousands hitting the front page already
  • There have been a few opportunities for interviews with podcasters, bloggers and mainstream media about the boards
  • Initial reports from advertisers are that they’re getting some very quality applicants already. One looks like they’ve already filled a position and are actively negotiating with a blogger.
  • We’ve had some good bookmarks over at Delicious (thanks people)
  • Some great ideas have been sent in from readers as to what they’d like to see added

FAQ – Pricing

[Read more...]

Blogger Jobs – ProBlogger Job Boards

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Are you looking for a Blogger for your blog?

Are you a blogger for hire, looking for a blogging job?

Today I’m proud to announce the ProBlogger Job Board – a place where bloggers for hire and those looking for them will meet.

Two questions are popping up in my inbox over and over each week.

  1. I’m looking for a blogger/coblogger for my blog but I’m just not sure where to find one – do you know of anyone?”
  2. “I’ve been hearing about people getting blog jobs – where do I find one? Do you know of anyone looking for a blogger?

Every time I’m asked one of these questions I look at my ‘dreams for ProBlogger list’ and think to myself – I really should do some sort of ProBlogger job classifieds service.

A couple of weeks ago I decided to do something about it and talked to a couple of people about the possibility of designing me a Jobs area for ProBlogger. Unfortunately neither of the people I emailed had the time to do and after a few days I wondered if it would ever happen.

At around that time I had an email from Eric Allam from 52 Reviews who had been thinking along very similar lines and was looking for a partner. We got talking and over the past couple of weeks have pulled together our first version of the ProBlogger Job board.

The concept is simple and will be familiar to many users of other job boards out there.

Advertisers

Blogger-Job-Categories
Looking for a Blogger? - Look no further.

ProBlogger.net is read on a daily basis by around 5000 readers per day via the main site plus another 8000+ via it’s RSS feed. Most of our readers are bloggers and almost all of them are actively searching for information on how to earn a living from blogs.

ProBlogger readers range from the beginner blogger looking to start their first blog (undiscovered raw talent) through to the more experienced blogger with years of experience. No matter what you’re looking for, you’re sure to find someone that fits the bill among our readers.

Add Your Job to our Listings here and selecting which category of job you’re looking to position (we’re open to suggestions for other categories) what the job entails and how bloggers should contact you.

Your ad will appear in the top right hand corner of ProBlogger’s main page (we’ll feature the last five ads there) as well as on the main page of the job board and category pages. It’ll also be featured on RSS feeds which we expect to be popular with bloggers looking for jobs.

The cost of listing a job is currently $50 as an opening special but this will go up to around the $100 mark in two weeks time.

This service would suit companies looking for bloggers, blog networks, individual bloggers looking for CoBloggers or even bloggers looking for medium to short term guest bloggers while they take a vacation.

Bloggers

Latest-Blog-Jobs-1Looking for Blogging Work? Let us help you find some.

The best way to use the job board is to regularly visit our front page (currently dominated slightly by b5 jobs, but there’ll be more from others soon) where all new jobs will be listed. Also be notified of new jobs as they are added to the list by subscribing to our main RSS feed.

Alternatively you might like to follow along on one of our category pages or the RSS feeds that are attached to them if you’re looking for something specific.

In talking to potential advertisers this week (there are more preparing their ads) they are looking for a range of bloggers so whether you’re new to blogging or an old hand, looking for part time or full time work – it’ll be worth subscribing to the feed.

Give Us your Feedback
Eric and I would love to hear what you think about ProBlogger Job Boards. We’ve spent a lot of time thinking it through and testing but as with any new project that goes live there will be improvements that we can make, ways that we can make it even more useful for it’s users and bugs to iron out (we still have a few little integration things to work on).

We do have quite a few ideas for expanding the service and new features but wanted to keep the initial launch reasonably simple.

So go to it – subscribe to the feed if you’re a blogger and take advantage of our two week opening discount if you’re an advertiser and list your blog job today.

Conviction – Persuasive Blogging Part III

Convicted“Strong convictions precede great actions.” – Louisa May Alcott

We’ve been talking this week about how to be a persuasive blogger and so far I’ve spoken about getting attention to your posts and going deeper to create interest in your post. Today I want to go a step deeper again and look at ‘conviction’.

You see you can write posts that grab the attention of readers and that even are wonderfully interesting – yet still have no lasting impact upon those who read them.

If you truly want to persuade them to some new course of action then you need to convince them that the action you’re asking them to take is a worthwhile thing for them to do.

Without it – your readers will simply walk away from your post without really being moved to do anything by it (that could be a valid goal that you have – but this series is about being persuasive so I’m assuming we want to go further than that).

Of course convicting or convincing readers is not something that happens just naturally – it takes thought, clever writing and having something worthy of convincing them of.

Elements of Convincing Blogging

Whilst the ‘attention grabbing’ and ‘developing interest’ stages generally happen at the beginning of your post (often in the title and first paragraph) the ‘convincing’ work generally takes a little longer and will make up the main part of your post.

It’s where you present your case in full and to your reader

1. Outline the facts

This is where the main thrust of your post will be. Outline your main points (don’t overwhelm people with too many). Talk them through the pros and cons of the choice you’re putting before them and show the end results of taking the action you’re suggesting (painting pictures of ‘end results’ can be a powerful thing as we’ll see in tomorrow’s post in this series).

2. Present the full Picture

I find that people are often more response when I’m open and honest both about the positives and negatives of taking the course of action that I’m presenting people. For instance if I’m recommending people buy a book I’ll always try to point out both it’s strengths and weaknesses. I find that people respect this transparency and are much more likely to follow the recommendation than if all I do is give a glowing review.

3. Share the Action you’re asking readers to take

If you want readers to DO something then you need to outline it for them. It’s pretty logical really but I’m quite amazed how many people don’t seem to get this point and expect their readers to read their post and then go and do something about it without giving them some concrete suggestions of what that might be. Even a simple task at the end of a post can empower your readers to put into action what you’re writing about.

If you’re asking readers to do something that is complicated (and even if it isn’t) outline it step by step – breaking it down into bite sized achievable actions.

A Quote for the Road

“Conviction is worthless unless it is converted into conduct.” – Thomas Carlyle

Thomas is right and tomorrow we’ll take another step forward and talk about another important stage that your readers need to go through in order to be fully persuaded to take action – Desire.

Speedlinking – 23 August 2006

AdSense Launches Premium Video Test

A few weeks ago Google announced a partnership with Viacom (NYT Coverage) to allow their AdSense publishers to put video clips (MTV video) on their websites with embedded advertising in them.

In the last 24 hours they’ve begun to roll out the program and a select group of publishers have been selected as beta testers of the 4 week pilot program (you can see a screen cap of one of the ads below).

Adsense-Viacom-Video-Ad

You can see the ads in action at American Idol Blog for instance where an ‘Meet the Cast of Season 3′ Clip for Laguna Beach is running.

The videos are content from a variety of stations including Comedy Central, MTV and Nikelodeon. They generally go for a few minutes. The ad sizes available to participating publishers are 336×280 and 300×250 pixels. Ads must be placed above the fold.

Publishers earn money from the clips on a CPM basis. I’m hearing from a couple of publishers that the way that ad rates are determined is a little more complicated than just a payment per basic impression though. It seems that each video has the potential for multiple payments depending upon how long the viewer watches for and how many ads they see (ie there are numerous ads interspersed through each clip.

So if a reader of one of the sites in the test plays the video (they don’t start playing by themselves) and watches for just a minute or two it might only count as one impression as they only see the first ad, but if they watch the full clip but if they watch the full clip they will see multiple ads and the publisher will earn more.

Following is a full FAQ that was sent to publishers on the beta test.

[Read more...]

Amazon aStore in iFrames

Two of the main critiques of Amazon’s new aStore (the new beta test from Amazon that allows you to make your own Amazon store) that I’m hearing from publishers are:

  • It’s hosted on Amazon’s domain which doesn’t look that integrated with your site
  • There’s no link back to your site from the store

One of the more creative ways I’ve seen the aStore used in the last two days (and I’ve seen a few of them) is by John Jantsch from Duct Tape Marketing who has added a store to his site using iframes. This enables him to put the store on his own domain (see his aStore here) and also to put his own header and footer around the store with whatever links he wants back to his own site.

I haven’t seen anything on Amazon’s site saying that this is against their terms of service but it could be worth checking if you’re going to give it a go.

found via a comment in a previous post by 5 Star Affiliate Programs

Creating Interest in Your Posts – Persuasive Blogging Part II

Books-2

Have you ever picked up a novel in a bookstore that just jumped out at you from the display and screamed ‘read me’. Perhaps it was the title that got your attention, perhaps it was the design of the front cover, or perhaps it was a recommendation that some newspaper reviewer had written saying how amazing a book it was.

Whatever the reason – you buy the book and take it home with anticipation of a great read – dreaming of taking the phone off the hook and curling up in bed with the book when you get home and spending the rest of the day there.

You open the front cover and eagerly begin to read…. expecting to be swept away to some wonderful fictional place…. only to discover that despite it’s wonderful title, great cover design and excellent recommendations from ‘experts’ that the author barely knows how to string two words together and that the book fails to interest you at all. It’s not long before you put the book down – never to pick it up again.

Read the Introduction to this mini-series on persuasive blogging.

Getting Attention for your posts is a relatively easy part of being a persuasive blogger but in order to truly persuade your readers you need to go deeper and pique the interest of your reader.

Being an ‘Attention Grabbing Blogger’ is great if you’re interested in simply building up lots of hits to your blog – but visits by people who come and leave again in the blink of an eye is not what most of us are on about.

Without interest in what you’re writing your readers are unlikely to read beyond the attention grabbing title and first paragraph of your post and you have no chance of getting them to take any sort of action what so ever.

Generating interest is the task of convincing your reader that they should ‘read on’ because what you’re writing about is on a topic in which they have some sort of need that you might be able to help them with.

The interest that they have might take different forms or emerge for different reasons:

  • it could be a personal/hobby type interest
  • it could be an interest out of a work related need
  • it could be an interest out of some research that they’re doing
  • it could even be an interest coming out of a need for fun/entertainment that they have – etc

Whatever the motivation for or type of interest – you’re unlikely to convince someone to read beyond a few paragraphs unless your reader feels some need to read on.

How to Pique Your Readers Interest:

[Read more...]

Attention Grabbing Blogging – Persuasive Blogging Part I

EyeballGetting eyeballs on your post is the first crucial step in it being persuasive.

Read the Introduction to this mini-series on persuasive blogging.

In order to persuade your reader to take a certain action you need to find a way to get their attention – otherwise they’ll never read your content and find out what you’re attempting to convince them of.

One of the sad facts of blogging is that there are many great writers producing quality posts that just don’t get on the radar. I personally think that this sucks and have been trying to unearth some of it lately – but in doing so have found myself wondering if some bloggers could help their case a little by making a few tweaks to their posts that help to get noticed more.

The reality is that with 50 million blogs in existence and hundreds of thousands of posts being written every day that you need to be intentional about getting your post noticed.

When it comes to writing a blog post there are a number of things you can do to get attention of potential readers: [Read more...]

Car Salesmen, Preachers and the Art of Persuasion

Have you ever wanted to be more persuasive in your writing? If so, this is the first post in a series that is designed to help you achieve just that.

Warning – Tangent Ahead

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Lessons from a New Car Salesman

A few months back, in the lead up to our little Xavier’s arrival, we decided we needed to upgrade our two door hatchback for a larger ‘family wagon’. Outside of buying our home the year before this was the largest purchase I’d ever made and so I entered it pretty cautiously and wanting to find the best deal. As a result I did a lot of research and visited a lot of car show rooms.

Over a few weeks I met and interacted with quite a few car sales guys and was fascinated by the different approaches that they used in attempting to convince me which car to buy and that I should buy it off them. Their attempts to persuade me to go with them were wide and varied – some did great jobs while others were in the vicinity of appalling.

Of course as I shopped around I couldn’t help but draw what I was observing back to blogging and think about how there were some similarities (and differences of course). While most bloggers are not in the business of selling cars to their readers – most of us are are in attempting to be persuasive in one way or another.

Persuasive Blogging

This goal of persuasion varies a lot in intent from blogger to blogger depending upon their topic – for example:

  • political bloggers might attempt to argue cases on that front
  • corporate bloggers might attempt to persuade people to give their company a go
  • entrepreneurial bloggers might attempt to convince people to buy affiliate products or hire them as consultants
  • personal bloggers might attempt to convince readers to see their favorite movie or read a certain book
  • religious bloggers might write hoping to convince people to a certain way of living or belief – etc

Sometimes we are very intentional about arguing a case – but sometimes it happens almost subconsciously.

Preacher

Lessons from a Preacher

I don’t talk a whole lot about my days as a Baptist Minister – but before I was a blogger I’d been working in churches as a youth minister for almost a decade. My weekly rhythm had all kinds of things in it but one of the favorite aspects of what I did was preaching.

I loved working up a sermon in the lead up to giving it. Researching, looking at what others had to say on the topic, piecing together thoughts, looking for illustrations and examples (tangents) and then practicing giving it and making the last minute tweaks and additions in the day before Sunday arrived.

In many ways it was similar to blogging.

No one ever taught me to ‘preach’ as such. I was largely self taught from observing others and having a go myself. The only ‘training’ I really had was a number of sessions with a group who did some teaching on public speaking.

The Five Challenges of Communication

Part of what they taught was what they called the ‘communication wheel’ – a tool that identifies five stages that those people communicated to go through and the corresponding challenges that communicators need to tackle along the way.

I’ve written about this process before (two years ago) but have wanted to retackle it as my previous posts didn’t quite click for me (or my readers by the lack of interaction there was around them).

Over the next five days I’ll tackle the five stages/challenges. While some readers might not feel each of the five challenges are completely relevant for their particular type of blog I hope that in walking through the process we’ll all learn a thing or two about the art of communication and the task of persuading our readers.

I invite your comment and participation over the next five posts.

Read the rest of this Series at: