Six Profitable Blogs

Jim Buie takes a brief look at Six Profitable Blogs including:

Did Volvo Miss an Opportunity with MSNSpaces?

Henry Copeland over at BlogAds writes a good post on Volvo buying Ad space on MSNSpaces pointing out that they would be getting better return on their exposure by sponsoring some big named bloggers than the random approach of putting their name on thousands of random blogs – some of which have questionable and inconsequential content. Henry writes:

‘To expand on Steve’s point, Volvo is, at best, paying to appear above MSNSpaces bloggers who are writing about random stuff, blogospheric noise. Spaces bloggers are newbies on the fringes of the blogosphere. MSN may well have promised Volvo 100 million page impressions a month, but these are impression seen by nobody — or more exactly “nobodies” — people who are viewed as influential only by their moms and ex-girlfriends.’

I’m with Henry on this one – whilst I’ve read a few quality MSN Spaces blogs – I wouldn’t want to associate my business with many of them. What do you think?

What to do when you Get Slashdotted

Getting a deluge of visitors to your blog from a larger site is what many blogger’s dreams are made of but what should you do if you want to maximise the benefit of this occurrence as and when it happens?

Every month or two I tend to get a link from the megablog Slashdot to one of my blogs (something that is called being ‘Slashdotted’ by many ). I’ve posted previously about how it can be quite a rush although the financial pay off is sometimes not quite what you might think. After being Slashdotted last time I started thinking about what a blogger could do to capitalise on the the rush of traffic.

There are a number of things that you might want to consider next time this happens to you (whether the traffic comes from a big blog like Slashdot or any other blog that is a little higher up the food chain than you). Before I outline what you might want to do – let me say that some of these will depend upon what the goals of your blog are. [Read more…]

Adsense Optimization – the Holistic Approach

Increasing Adsense Earnings is a task I get asked to help people with every day.

One of the interesting trends that I’ve noticed in chatting to people wanting advice is that they often come with a fairly single minded approach. The initial request is often one of the following questions:

– ‘Can you help me increase my Click Through Rate?’
– ‘I need to raise my page impressions to help me increase my earnings – can you help?’
– ‘CPM (earnings per 1000 impressions) are too low – can you help me increase them?’
– ‘I want to get higher paying ads on my blog – how do I do that?’

These are all good questions to be thinking about – however I find that post people seem to be obsessed about one of them and quite oblivious to the others. As a result they are only working on one of numerous factors that can increase your Adsense earnings and are possibly ignoring others that could have significant impact on your overall earnings.

The way I like to break it down is into an equation which I’ve previously talked about in Part III of my Adsense Tips for Bloggers Series – the equation is quite simple:

[Read more…]

Adsense Developing Fully Customizable Ads Blocks?

Google Adsense are testing new ad formats that allow publishers to have greater control over how many ads are show and what the overall size of the ad block is.

The other day when a few of us were analyzing the Adsense performance of Dogster and Catster it struck me that something was a little odd about the Adsense advertisements on those sites. (update: the Catster ads have been removed – but the Dogster ones remain at this point)

It didn’t hit me straight away what was different but after going back a few times in the days since I’ve realized what it is – they are in a format that is unlike any other ads I’ve seen on an Adsense publisher’s site before.

I’ve posted a screen capture (from Dogster) to the left and you’ll notice if you look closely and compare it with the ad formats that many of us are familiar with that this ad format is different on a couple of levels.

Firstly there are five ads on it and secondly the size of the overall ad is different.
[Read more…]

3 Blog Jobs Available

Paul Chaney is advertising 3 Blogger Jobs at Radiant Marketing Group. The jobs are for blogs on the topics of Investment Strategies, Small Business Finance/Factoring and Whitepaper/Webinar Review.

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Ad Agency launches Blog Kit

Media Daily News posts that Ad Agency Carat are launching some interesting resources for companies wanting to explore blogging as part of their marketing.

‘John Cate, vice president and national media director for Carat Interactive, said clients such as TiVo and Pfizer will each be given a three-part blogging “starter kit,” introducing them to the increasingly influential world of blogs.

The kits will instruct each client on how to effectively monitor blogs within their purview, advertise on appropriate blogs, and actually blog themselves. “This practice won’t be right for all of our clients,” said Cate. “We’ll have to access the landscape, and determine who can sustain a dialogue and who can’t.”‘

I’ll be interested to see how companies respond to Carat with this kit – particularly if and how many take up the advertising approach (especially with my recent advertising experience in mind).

Network Blogging and Cross Promotion

Scrivs post a nice comparative analysis of two entrepreneurial blogging network models – Weblogs, Inc vs. Gawker.

I have learnt a lot from watching both approaches and think that both are valid and seemingly very successful approaches to blogging for dollars.

One of the subtle differences in approach that I’ve been pondering over the past week or so is the way in which Gawker seems to have a more natural cross promotional thing going on between their blogs. I know WIN also does a bit of this but I wonder if the cluster of 11 Gawker blogs might be a little more naturally suited to one another in terms of the demographics of their readers.

Gawker seems to be going for something of an edgy and alternative readership on quite a few of their blogs (they released a cluster of boy blogs a while back).They are perhaps a little more rough around the edges than what WIN are doing on most of their blogs. As a result of this I wonder if the Gawker Blogs might be a little more suited to cross promotion between blogs because they have a similar feel or approach. Gawker actively promote posts on their different blogs in the main content (example) of their sites but also with banner, skyscraper and button ads (sometimes quite a few of them if they don’t have other ads running).

Having said this I don’t think WIN can’t or don’t cross promote their blogs – in fact as they add new blogs to their stable the opportunities for cross promotion will grow as natural clusters of blogs within the larger community continue to form. For example they have a growing number of technology blogs that will have plenty of opportunity to plug each other in natural ways – similarly there are opportunities between their consumer blogs, business blogs, life science blogs etc. WIN don’t seem to cross promote their blogs as much within content (or at least not as much on the blogs I read of theirs) or as much with banner ads. Their main cross promotion seems to come from text links in sidebars and at the bottom of pages which has the added bonus of building Google Juice and Page Rank in Search engines.

Sydney Bound

I’m heading to Sydney today for a couple of days to meet with some blogging partners (the co-owners of Breaking News Blog). It is time for some reviewing and planning for the collective which has been live for five months now.

So blogging will be a little scarcer than normal until Thursday night. I’ve set a couple of advanced posts to go live in the next 48 hours but if you’re expecting email or replies to comments it might not be til I return unless I get a little spare time online in Sydney. So talk nicely amongst your selves and last one out lock the door please.

Have a good day or two.