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Hustle, Passion and Resiliency

Another good post over at Jason’s Blog particularly this bit:

‘The older I get the more I realize that business is about three very basic things:

1. Hustle
2. Passion
3. Resiliency

You have those things it really doesn’t matter what the idea is… you can change your ideas all day long, in fact evolving is what you’re supposed to do in business. However, you can’t substitute hustle, passion, or resiliency.’

When Blog Competition is Good

A number of people have asked me in the past 24 hours whether I feel threatened when a new blog starts up with the same topic as one of mine.

It is an interesting question and one that I usually answer in a number of ways.

Firstly I admit that I do feel a bit threatened. I think its a fairly natural feel some anxiety, threat or worry when someone else steps on what you perceive as your patch. I feel these emotions when I first see new blogs set up that have complete or partial overlap with a topic I’m writing about. It worries me from time to time that there is only one top ranking in the Search Engines for a keyword that I might be targeting – in a sense my ‘competition’ and I are in a contest for such positioning. The more sites on the same topic the harder it is to get to the top of the pile.

Many people respond to such competition in a negative way. In response to the threat they tend to either:

  • ignore the competition (and hope they’ll go away)
  • attack their competition (discredit and try to undermine them)
  • worry themselves silly by monitoring their every move and attempting to copy everything they do in order to keep them covered

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$1,000 a day on Adsense

Jason Calacanis is talking Adsense earnigns again. I’m a bit surprised that a publisher like Jason is revealing his Adsense CTR and CPM figures so explicitly post. Not because I’m offended by it or anything (I actually find its pretty interesting) but because its against Google’s rules. (‘m not going to refer to his actual figures here in case he decides to remove them later.)

A few people have asked me to comment on his CTR levels which I always hesitate to do mainly because comparing CTR from page to page or even blog to blog is so difficult to do.

Whilst I can look at the CTR he’s mentioned and see its at the lower end of what the range of my blogs do there are so many factors that can contribute to it ranging from positioning on the page, to design of ads, to the amount of other outbound links you have on your page (both within your blog or to other sites), to the topic of the blog that it is almost useless to compare one blog’s performance to another one.

What I’m more interested in with my CTR is comparing one blog’s figures over time – this (in my opinion) is the main usefulness of the statistic and I track my CTR in this way on all my blogs.

Jason talks about how they’ve optimized their Adsense ads the past few days which has seen a good rise in their earnings – up from $600 per day (just a week or so ago) to $1000 per day. Its amazing what a tweak or two can do for people. Yesterday I helped one person with their ads and they increased their CTR from less than 1% to over 5% with one small adjustment – quite amazing what a change of colors or position can do! I’m not going to go into what the strategy for doing this is because its all in my Adsense category already and I’d just be going over the same old stuff.

Update – Of course within minutes of posting this Jason has removed his CTR and CPM figures as I went over to leave a comment suggesting he did.

What still concerns me however is that in his comments others have followed his example and are revealing their own figures which could get them in trouble with Adsense.

Australian Blogger Get Media Attention – Is this as Good as it Gets?

Darren-Rowse-SpamA few days ago when I was lamenting the fact that Australian Bloggers don’t get enough local press coverage I was hoping that it might cause some reporters to do a feature or two – but I wasn’t expecting the article that the Herald Sun published today which highlighted a post on my personal blog that was written over a year ago titled I’m Pro SPAM! (click to enlarge the article – no online version that I can find). I laughed so hard when I saw this – I guess any publicity is better than nothing.

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Blogging Fears – Disappearing from Search Engines

A couple of days ago I started a Blogging Fears mini-series and talked about Getting Hacked. Here’s another – Disappearing from the Search Engines

As many of you know I’ve been there – it sucks and has the ability to almost completely cripple a blog that relies upon SE traffic. If you’re relying heavily on search engine traffic for most of your posts – be warned – it could happen to you.

Advice: Diversify your blogging interests. Develop a variety of blogs on different topics and domains. Look at non blogging income streams or related blogging income such as consulting, books, speaking etc. Work on generating traffic from other non Search Engine sources like other sites and newsletters to loyal readers. Even consider keeping or getting a part time ‘real’ job until you know you can survive on your blogging income even if the Search Engines abandon you.

A day in the life of a ProBlogger

This has always been one of the most popular posts on ProBlogger so today I thought I’d update it with some new things that I do on an ‘average day’ as a ProBlogger (originally written November 2004 which will explain the old comments).

A number of people have asked me recently what a typical day of blogging looks like for me – I thought I’d share the basics. Of course what an actual day looks like differs from day to day depending on other commitments (I have other interests/work outside of blogging), the day of the week (weekends I try to get a life) and my mood (I’m an impulsive type).

7.00am – My wife’s (‘V’) alarm goes off. I attempt to ignore it. She hits ‘snooze’.

7.15am – The alarm goes off again – I shove V out of the bed in the direction of the shower and promptly fall back asleep.

7.45am – V returns to the bedroom and the hair dryer starts – sleep becomes impossible – and so my day begins.

8.30am – Having showered, eaten and seen V off to work I sit down at my powerbook with a fresh cup of coffee and begin my morning blogging routine (note that despite public perception to the contrary – this ProBlogger is usually fully dressed (not in pyjamas or boxer shorts) by the time most people are hitting their normal place of work (9am). Of course there are exceptions to every rule).
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Viral Advertising

MarketingSherpa has a great article on Viral Advertising which could be of interest to bloggers both in thinking about promoting their own blogs but also in providing adspace ON their blogs.

‘Viral advertising is the red hot tactic of 2005 … but the lack of practical how-to information on the tactic is astounding.

Viral ads are online promotional campaigns that (hopefully) spread “like a virus.” One minute nobody’s heard of it, next minute, it’s everywhere. The term’s been around for almost a decade now, and it’s been the online ad tactic de jour at least three times…’

The RSS Ads are Coming!

Dave Morgan over at Clickz has a great piece on RSS Advertising which he says is Coming Fast. He cites the experience of one of the testers (A VC) of the Overture experiment at Feedburner of contextual ads in RSS feeds which is quite positive for those of you wondering if it is a viable option. Dave’s comments were:

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How To Get RSS Subscribers for your Blog

T.L. Pakii has a great piece on How To Get Blog RSS Subscribers which is useful for anyone wanting to expand their RSS readership (an ever increasingly important way of finding readers for many bloggers).

One of his main points is that you should work on Educating your Demographic which makes a lot of sense as RSS remains a relatively new and often unknown technology:

‘Your demographic may be a bit behind on the technology curve so you may want to write about the value of RSS with your market. Write a free report for them to download and even offer a video tutorial that shows them how to use RSS after they read about the why of RSS. Making sure that your customers and prospects knows what RSS is and how to use it productively is a next step in increasing subscribers. An important point to realize is that that there is still a learning curve on blogs and more so on RSS. It’s getting easier for more and more people to engage and use these tools but you will do much better to take a lead role in educating those within your reach on the merits using RSS.’

Read more at How To Get Blog RSS Subscribers

TypePad and Blogger Compared

CNET has a comparative review of the TypePad and Blogger blog platforms. I think they made the right decision with their ratings.

‘We looked at the two top blogging services. Best known, and free, is Google Blogger. But you get what you pay for: Blogger is a basic blogging service that won’t overpower beginners with too many options or choices. For a small monthly fee, however, Six Apart TypePad provides the services we’d like to see offered within Blogger, such as mixed-media templates, built-in photo uploading, and guest accounts. Ironically, Blogger makes it much easier to host your blogs on your own domain; TypePad allows it but also requires a little extra work between you and your ISP.’