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Google Testing Animated Ads

Yesterday I missed another change to Adsense – it seems they will be testing animated image ads – here is what they say on their site:

‘We’ll be accepting animated GIFs from a small test group of advertisers, and you’ll be able to display these ads on your pages! The new ads will still adhere to the 50KB size limit…’

Blogger Idol

Blogger IdolEarlier in the year I ran a blogging experiment by the name of Blogger Idol on one of my other blogs. It was a fun way of connect bloggers together to all write on a common theme each week. Over 150 bloggers signed up for weekly emails with a suggested theme. It took a bit of energy and time for me to run it but it was well worth it as I met some great new bloggers from around the globe.

The benefits of participating in the Blogger Idol experiment were numerous.

- A free and easy way to promote your blog

- Builds page ranking as your blog is listed on the Blogger Idol weekly pages as well as other bloggers pages if they vote for you

- Discover other quality bloggers

- Stimulation for post topics (sometimes we all get bloggers block and need a starting point).

Participating bloggers ranged from personal blogs, to business blogs, to photologs and even a couple of political blogs.

We took a break from the project a few months back but have decided to get it going again as of today. This time it will all run on its own domain/blog so as not to dominate this one. If you’re interested in joining the project head over to Blogger Idol and join in on week 1′s topic of ‘All I want for Christmas….‘ Entries can be anything from stories, photos, essays, rants, poems, quotes – whatever. Creativity is encouraged.

You can also submit a topic for future weeks and sign up for the weekly emails announcing new themes.

The Cancer Blog – Weblogs Inc

Weblogs Inc have launched yet another blog this time focusing upon health care. It is the Cancer Blog. it is an interesting move by the team at Weblogs Inc to move in this direction.

Leading the charge as the editor of the blog is a medical resident, Leonardo Faoro – so there is someone at the helm who should have at least some good knowledge on the topic which is reassuring – the legal issues of blogging on medical topics are ones to keep in mind when setting out in this direction and I would suspect that they will have to walk a fine line between reporting news and giving advice or endorsing treatments.

I think this is a good move by Weblogs Inc (and it will provide a valuable service) although I do not think that it is being done all because they want to educate people on the topic – it is worth keeping in mind that different forms of cancer are some of the highest paying keywords on Adsense (whose ads this site is heavily using) and that this is a commercial venture also.

No more beer, drugs, tobacco or weaponry for you!

If you’re using Adsense to bring an income stream to your blog about alcohol, tobacco, weapons or prescription drugs then it might be time to find a new advertising method because in part of the latest update on Google they have moved to ban such topics.

They have also re emphasized that you must not give any incentives for your readers to click on your ads – in any way whether they be financial or point-based programs.

New URL Channel Feature on Adsense

Adsense forums are buzzing this morning over a new feature added to the Adsense program in the last few hours that allows publishers to track their statistics without adding code to pages. You simply add the URL of the site, directory, category and they will provide statistics for that part of your blog.

For instance if I want to track the earnings from the Adsense category of this blog I would simply set ‘http://www.livingroom.org.au/problogger/archives/adsense/’ as the category. Previously to track categories on blogs would mean a lot of tricky coding that I’m not sure I have the time, energy or skill for.

The only unfortunate part of the new features is that they have only made an extra 10 channels available to publishers which means the benefits will be limited. Still – its a useful tool.

The Ten Commandments of Keyword Selection

SEO Chat has an interesting article on Keyword Selection which may be helpful for some bloggers wanting to generate quality income around targeted keywords:

‘Is your website getting a lot of traffic, but not a lot of sales? Maybe you need to take a look at the keywords you’re using. Praveen Viswanath walks you through keyword selection process, and sums it up with ten keyword selection commandments to help keep you on track.

A term or a phrase used by a searcher to find information on a particular topic is called a “keyword.” “Keyword selection” is the process of scrutinizing different prospective keywords to select the right ones for your campaign. It is the stepping stone to your success in the Web world. Find the right keyword, and you strike gold. Make a mistake, and you’ve just punched yourself in the face.’



Read more at The Ten Commandments of Keyword Selection

BlogTalk Downunder – Another Aussie Blogging Conference

It looks like there will be yet another Aussie Blogging conference in Australia next year – this time in Sydney between 20 – 21 May.

As with the Melbourne conference that we mentioned a few days ago, there are not many details yet but the fact that there are two groups talking about such an event is promising for bloggers downunder. My only wonder is if they should combine their efforts and put on a bigger and better conference together.

I hope to get to both events.

Learn more at Learning Technologies: BlogTalk Downunder

The Business Of Blogging

Business Week Online has an interesting article on The Business Of Blogging. It is pretty basic with the usual quotes from the usual probloggers – but its another example of how blogging for dollars is becoming more main stream.

‘Now advertisers are realizing there is a market emerging in the blogosphere. Already, the growth in regular online advertising, estimated to be about 35% this year, will far outpace the spending increases for any other sector of the media world. Add to all this the fact that about 11% of Internet users today are inveterate blog readers, and the blogging scene starts to get mighty compelling for marketers.

Don’t expect a repeat of the dot-com rush that inflated the Web bubble of the late 1990s. “This is a long game, with lots of ebbs and flows,” says Henry Copeland, founder of media-buying firm BlogAds. Blogging isn’t about to lead to vast wealth anytime soon, says Copeland, but he does expect “more money to [flow to] more authors as smart advertisers bypass publishers and pay authors directly for their audiences.” BlogAds is placing ads on 50 to 100 blogs a day for up to 20 advertisers, including Sharp Electronics Corp. and Walt Disney Co. Just six months ago, the firm served 20 blogs for about 10 advertisers….’

Read more at The Business Of Blogging

Weblogs Inc Introduces Luxist

Luxist

Weblogs Inc have just announce their latest blog Luxist – a blog that promotes itself as obsessively covering luxury products. They write about everthing from clothes, to gadgets, to jewelry through to cars.

Their income stream will be much the same as other Weblogs Inc blogs and includes Adsense and private advertising.

How to Grow Your Blogging Income

Dan Harper asked in the comments of my post on No Money in Blogging? for more comment on the ‘growth factor’ of blogging. He asks:

‘How long would a new blogger see slow growth for?
What do you think that factors are here, any advice on speeding the growth up?’

Good questions – I guess in many ways they are the Million Dollar Questions so to speak and ones that many would like ‘the answer’ to.

Unfortunately there is no one answer to speeding up the growth and earnings on your blog. There are however a number of things to consider that I’ve previously written about but which tend to get lost in the archives on this site. As a result I thought I’d outline some of the more popular and helpful posts that I’ve written below:
[Read more...]