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ProBlogger Weekend Round Up

Traffic levels at ProBlogger is much lower most weekends and a number of readers feedback that they often feel a little out of the loop when they come back to the office on a Monday to find I’ve been posting ‘as normal’. This RSS feed can seem a little overwhelming – so I thought I’d try a summary post that recaps what you might have missed if, unlike me, you had a ProBlogger free weekend. I hope you had a good weekend – here are the posts from the last couple of days (first to last):

I know for some of you these were not written on your weekend – but counting for the global audience of ProBlogger I hope this helps you work out what you missed and which you might like to catch up on and enter the conversation on.

A New Model for Paid Blogging

Will Pate has an interesting post which includes A New Model for Paid Blogging where he suggests that companies who are paying bloggers to blog for them use an incentive system to work out how much to pay bloggers for their posts.

‘Assign points for increases in hits to the part of the site you want to drive traffic to, signups for your services or purchases of your products and increases in inbound links.’

I’m probably not the person to ask about this as I’ve never blogged for anyone else or paid anyone to blog – but my initial reaction is that its a nice idea but perhaps a little complicated to administer. I’m sure there are systems around that will track incoming traffic, purchases and sign ups (most affiliate programs seem to have such a system) but I wonder how many companies would be willing to get their stats systems up to speed? I guess if there were someone willing to come up with some package that automates this that it might work.

found via Kris Krug

AutoBlogger

I often get asked how I can update my blogs so often – its time to go public. I use AutoBlogger.

Learn more about it from this trailer.

Google Paying Bloggers $50 to Blog for an Hour

Google are willing to pay Blogger’s using their Blogger blog system $50 to drop by Google HQ in California to let them watch you blog later in May or early in June.

Get the details at Blogger User Testing

WordPress Blogs excluded from Adsense in RSS Feed Beta

Those of you who use WordPress to run your blog (like me) and who are waiting to be accepted into the Adsense for RSS feeds program might have a bit of a wait. The word is that at this stage they are only accepting Blogger and MoveableType/TypePad blogs according to Matt from WordPress.

Inaugural Inter-School Blogging Championships

This is not really ProBlogging news but I couldn’t pass it up. Singaporean students are being encouraged to blog in the inaugural inter-school blogging championships. I wish they had this type of competition back when I was at school!

‘Nine junior colleges and 43 secondary schools will slug it out online in the Inter-school Blogging Championship organised by SingTel and the Ministry of Education (MOE).

Five student leaders from each school will help sustain and moderate the blogs from next month till August, during which their schoolmates are free to post messages on the blogs via the Internet or mobile phones. They can win more than $15,000 in cash and 3G mobile phones.

Entries must support the theme Voices of Singapore Teenagers. And it seems these voices are undeterred by fears of getting into trouble….’

Read more at Inaugural blogging contest to break new ground – found via Weblogg-ed.

Building Blogging Relationships – Attitude

In my recent post on Blogging in Formation – Lessons from a Goose I promised to write some posts on how to build blogging relationships. This will be the first of numerous posts on the topic.

Before I get straight into strategies about how to make contact with and build mutually beneficial connections with other bloggers let me suggest that a starting point is not about choosing who you want to connect with – but rather that its probably worth doing a little self analysis first. Ask yourself some of these questions:

- Do you have the time and energy to connect with other bloggers?
- Are you willing to be ignored, rejected and even abused by other bloggers?
- Are you willing to be annoyed by other bloggers that you don’t want to connect with?
- What are your motives for building relationships with others?

These questions sound a pretty negative place to start a series on relationships – but I think its important not only to talk about the warm fuzzy stuff of blogging but the cold hard reality that sometimes it can be a cruel environment and a lot of hard work. Blogging has a ‘light side’ but it also has a ‘dark side’ (use the force Luke) and its worth considering both.

Let me tackle each question in turn [Read more...]

Selecting a Niche Market for your Blog

Computer Toaster has a helpful article on selecting a Niche Market for Ecommerce (update: the link is now dead so I’ve deleted it) which whilst not written for bloggers has some useful tips on how you might go through such a process of choosing a niche for your next blog. It’s one of those ‘free articles’ – but one of the more useful ones I’ve seen recently if you’re looking for good basic information on this topic.

Update: the link in this post is now out of date – but on the same topic you may be interested to read my post – How to choose a niche topic for your blog.

Should New Blogs Have Ads?

Jacob asks Should New Blogs Have Ads? He has decided not to put ads on his new blogs for two main reasons:

  1. Not much money – it takes time to build readership and in the mean time it doesn’t really earn much
  2. Bring in the Audience – ads can put off a potential audience. When you’re working on establishing yourself you want to give your visitors as few reasons as possible not to come back

Both are legitimate arguments that are well worth taking into consideration when you start a new blog.

I however take another approach to Jacob:

[Read more...]

Search Engine Optimization Secrets

Adrian at Be A Design Group has a good post on Search Engine Optimization Secrets which is a good, non hyped, well thought through and easy to read post full of good common sense Search Engine Optimization goodness. He gives five tips (and writes a bit on each):

  1. Don’t Fake Your Content.
  2. Avoid Flash
  3. Start a Blog
  4. Search Engine Optimization Isn’t Magic
  5. Link Management