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Options Other Than Ads To Monetize Your Online Presence

13 Nov
I’m at the International Food Bloggers Conference where I spoke yesterday on creating compelling content about wine for food bloggers. (It went well! Lots of people have come up to me to say how inspiring it was!)
This morning I had a choice of these two sessions
  • Session Option 1: Eating on a Budget with Kimberly Morales (Food)
    It’s a common goal to save and spend money more wisely. And as a food blogger, it’s natural to want to try all the latest products and prepare a slew of different and expensive dinners. Hear from savvy, budget-conscious bloggers about how they mastered clipping coupons and embraced canning, preserving, and buying in bulk. You’ll learn how to feed your family and yourself while spending less, and how to keep food blogging from breaking your bank account.
  • Session Option 2: Monetizing Your Blog with Barnaby Dorfman, Melissa Lanz, and Andie Mitchell (Writing & Technology)
    Here you’ll learn the ins and outs of monetization- everything from partnering with ad networks and affiliate programs to publishing your work in print and online media.

I’m sitting in on the second session where I posted the following nuggets on twitter (this is reverse chronological order–ie, the tweet at the end is the first one on the topic, the tweet at the top is the last one). You can check out what others had to say by checking out the hashtag on twitter #ifbc:

  • @melissalanz last word of advice: get reader emails to add to your list.
  • Control yr message, offer online & live events, consider charity partnerships to build yr brand, be good for business. Think globally! #ifbc
  • consult, coach, teach, speak are all ways you can grow your brand, get more valuable, turn into $$ says @melissalanz #ifbc
  • be honest about your affiliate partners & talk about their products that you use & love in an authentic way says @melisslanz #ifbc
  • what do you know? what can you teach? you can teach & sell classes online building from your online content #ifbc
  • you can make a simple app w/o spending thousands of $$ & get it up & running in your blog #ifbc (really? how? cool!)
  • Kindle feed your blog on amazon –love that as a passive way to monetize your blog & let your readers support what you give online #ifbc
Melissa Lanz has promised to share her slides with us –with the joke that this will be the one and only time she ever offers something of this much value for free!
Speaking of free and of value, yesterday I attended  Rand Fishkin’s session that focused on SEO for Food Bloggers and you can check out his slideshow “SEO for Food Bloggers” for yourself.

WordCampSF 2011 Arrives!

13 Aug

WordPress sponsors WordCamps around the world but the granddaddy of them all takes place once a year in San Francisco.

And that event is this weekend August 12-14, 2011!

It’s a lot of fun as you might guess from my WordPress tattoo which earned me a WordPress moleskin journal in 2008!

This year on Friday WordCampSF offered a new users workshop. If you missed this full day of learning how to blog, and you’d like me to tutor you, let me know! I can teach you!

Saturday is for developers and Sunday is for content creators.

It’s all sold out but you can still attend by joining the livestream and following along the conversation and main points on Twitter. Check out the hashtags #wordcampsf and #wcsf. You might also check out @kashaziz suggestion that there’s a crowdsourced collection of slides from #wcsf here – lanyrd.com/2011/wordcamps…. People can sign in with Twitter to add more.

I attended and “live” blogged sessions at WordCampSF in 2008 and 2009 (plus WordCampLA 2009); it’s just worked out for me to go tomorrow for Sunday’s session, so subscribe to this site (and Art Predator!) and you’ll get what to me are the most important highlights.

Here are some of my blog posts from previous WordCamp Sessions as originally posted over at Art Predator. As I review them, I realize how much I’ve learned from going to WordCamp and I’m excited about learning more tomorrow!

WordCampLA 2009

September 12, 2009Live Blogging From WordCamp LA 2009

September 13, 2009Ben Huh: guess some lol cats thought my blog post was a cheezburgr & ate it

September 12, 2009Andrew Warner: Using video instead of relying on text to convey your message

September 12, 2009Jim Turner: Never Fear, Genuine is Here! Or how to pay your mortgage by blogging

September 12, 2009Ben Huh: your best bet is just to google my name

September 12, 2009Failure is Job One: Micah Baldwin says “Go to the SEO panel”

September 12, 2009I’m Shayne: WordPress MU & WP ecommerce

September 12, 2009Live Blogging From WordCamp LA 2009

WordCampSF 2009

WordCampSF 2008

Tuesday Tips: More On “It’s” & “Its” — what about “Its’”?

28 Jun

For last week’s Tuesday Tips, I discussed how to use it’s and its. In an email today from a PR firm, I came across this sentence:

“VOGA Italia hails from Italy, the country best known for producing some of the world’s best wine as well as its’ keen sense of style.”

which reminded me I didn’t even mention the third its’: this one is ALWAYS wrong. Just like hers and his, its is a possessive that doesn’t require an apostrophe. Its’ is not a word.

It is tempting to also question the sentence further (can a country make wine or have style?) but I’m not. At least not today!

Remember if you have copy that needs work, or if you need some coaching for your writing, let me know! I’m happy to help you.

Tuesday Tips: On "It's" & "Its" Here are two wonderful and important concepts from a blog post I was reading and which inspired me to write this morning: Social Networking at it’s very foundation is building relationships with people… Social networking at it’s finest: making friends and helping each other at the same time. Do you know the difference between “it’s” and “its”? Chances are that you don’t. There’s even a Facebook page about it’s and its (that’s where I found the gr … Read More

via The Write Alley

Tuesday Tips from Kathy Sierra on How To Kick *, Create Passion, Do It All Better

14 Jun

Last week, Kathy Sierra wrote a guest post for Hugh McLeod’s “gaping void” blog about some current trends in social media which included this graphic. (FYI, Hugh McLeod is famous for some outrageous marketing ideas for wine and tweed as well as drawing insightful cartoons which he also uses in his best-selling book Ignore Everybody.)

In her guest post, Kathy Sierra asks, “why are people still so convinced that social media and all related buzzwords are The Answer?” when, if the product is truly crap, “your social media strategy won’t save you.”

“You want to use social media not because you *must*,” continues Kathy Sierra, “but because you can add even more value for your users by doing so.”

In conclusion, Kathy Sierra says, “There is a world of difference between helping someone *appear* more awesome and helping them actually BE more awesome.”

Reading this article reminded me of how insightful she is and it made me look up a blog post I wrote following hearing her speak in August 2008 at my first WordPress conference. Continue on to read her 20 ways to kick ass and create passion without resorting to the “gamification” she decries in her article on Hugh McLeod’s blog last week.

Kathy Sierra's WordCamp Waterfall of Words: How To Kick Ass, Create Passion, Do Everything Better (even sex!) What do you do to help people kick ass? In a waterfall of words, Kathy Sierra swam us through 20 ways in the final presentation at WordCamp 2008. While she was speaking primarily to and for software programmers and developers, and not just WordPress uses, I could see where much of what she had to say applied to me as a poet, and as a blogger, and in other ways as well. (Heck, a lot of it even applies to having great sex!) This is what I got out o … Read More

via art predator

Tuesday Tips: Be a Social Linchpin this week!

17 May

It’s not every day that some of the best, most creative minds doing business today gather where ever they are to discuss ways to be “linchpins” and to bring passion and ingenuity to work and to the world.

But that’s going to happen tomorrow, Wednesday May 18 because Linchpin author Seth Godin has called for a worldwide meetup of Linchpins and linchpins everywhere have responded. Find out where here. Locally, there are a number of Linchpin gatherings. I’ll be at the one organized by David Pu’u and Donna Von Hoesslin at My Florist Cafe in downtown Ventura; it starts at 7pm.

If someone else isn’t organizing a meetup in your corner of the world, do what linchpins do and make one happen!

(What’s a linchpin again? Read about linchpins here. And here. Here too. And here. Heck, just search this site and you’ll see.)

On Thursday, May 19, Jodi Womack (pictured above with Seth Godin and I) has organized another one of her wonderful No More Nylons Women’s Business Socials. (more…)

Tuesday Tips: Do More Networking!

12 Apr

There’s a new networking opportunity –and this one is for artists and the at community! What a great idea! Plus read on for two other fun networking opportunities in Ventura on Thursday and next Wednesday!

Today, Tuesday April 12, is the first in a monthly series of arts and community events in downtown Oxnard led by the formidably creative force Tracy Hudak.

ART PUB happens the 2nd “2zday” of every month  at The Kitchen on A Street in Oxnard from 5 – 7pm with an open call at 6pm for news and announcements plus $3 craft beer, wine and appetizers.

This kid friendly event invites all poets & painters, dj’s & dancers, musicians & mystics, designers & divas ~ creators and community builders of all stripes to join a MONTHLY ONGOING ARTS COMMUNITY HAPPY HOUR in Downtown Oxnard for making connections and sharing news and opportunities.

The Kitchen is family friendly and offers a full menu as well as hand-selected beers and wine. After some Art Pubs, Tracy plans to offer Sneak Peeks of various spaces and special sites in Downtown.

Also this week, Thursday April 14, Roylin Downs and Kama Sutra Closet hosts a networking event upstairs in the El Jardin courtyard in downtown Ventura–an Adult Mixer for those who like to check out the latest in toys, potions, and other sensuous couple’s items: http://www.kamasutracloset.com/index.html

I’ll be at Kama Sutra Closet Thursday from 5-7pm –my art is hanging on the walls, plus I’ll have broadsides and my new books for sale. I’ll be changing out the at soon so please come see this show while it’s up.

Next Weds, April 20, the Ventura’s Women’s Business Social meets from 6-8pm at Jonathan’s on Main across from the Mission in downtown Ventura.

See you around!

How To Be A Part of A Creative Community

2 Feb

Eric Wallner sent me an email about a new project the City of Ventura is embarking on where seven community members bring in slides to show about one idea or another; the presentations are followed by conversation. The first community building event is being held tonight in downtown Ventura; it starts with food and networking and features several architects as well as ArtBarn founder Lynne Okun; I will be involved in a future event. Learn more about 20×20 below.

Contribute to A Creative Community What kind of a creative community do YOU want to live in? On Wednesday, head to downtown Ventura to see the vision of seven individuals and to participate in conversations to make these visions become reality! Ventura’s 20×20 event this Wednesday, February 2nd, 2011 offers food and good times.  Take this as an opportunity to mix with the community and push forward fresh dialogue on what’s happening in Ventura! Time:    6-9pm Where:  230 E. Main S … Read More

via art predator

Tuesday Tips: 25 Best Practices for Email Marketing

25 Jan

Kelly Flint, self-professed email geek says “Stay in front of your customers by landing in their inbox.  Less is more; get it out the door!”

In this blog post, I go over some of what I learned from Kelly about email marketing: why and how it works, tips, strategy, techniques, list building, permission marketing, and content tips.

So why should you use email marketing? 91% internet users use email; 225 million people in the US, including seniors which is the biggest growing segment of the internet population. Direct mail costs 20x more than email.

Email ROI: average $43. 52 returned for every $1 (WOW!)  Learning how to do it well by increasing your use of the following best practices, your open rate will increase that ROI. Average open rate is 12%, but if you have great content, the open rate can increase greatly–and your return on investment.

Here are 25 Best Practices for Email Marketing: (more…)

How to get a Facebook biz page in 3 easy steps & what’s next

23 Dec

Is your business on Facebook? Or have you avoided the Facebook revolution even though you know you should be using Facebook for your business?

Here’s how to get a Facebook account for your business and not really be on Facebook yourself, and what to do with your Facebook page once you have it. (more…)

More Social Media Tips & Tools

15 Dec

I’m attending Constant Contact’s free social media workshop…so you don’t have to…and will be sharing the highlights here for you! See the previous post for the first part of this two part blog post.

While social media tools are free or low-cost, they can have a huge price: your time.

The presenter argues that all a small business needs to do is 15 minutes a day three days a week to maintain a social media presence that’s consistent and active.

I would disagree: if you have plenty of time, if your business is young, or if you’re underemployed, invest time in social media, especially if you are blogging–which she isn’t addressing in this workshop.

Recycle and reuse content. Post the link to your email or blog post to social media sites. You can even break down information from a larger article into smaller Facebook or Twitter sized updates.

Make sure you cross promote your various social media platforms.

Social networks offer YOU a chance to share your message but also a chance for OTHERS to talk about you, so you’d better monitor the web for what people are saying.

If someone says something, respond! If it’s positive, thank them! Engage them! If what they said is NOT positive, you need to respond immediately and take it offline quickly.

Bad feedback? Contact the person immediately and take it offline. Don’t be defensive: fix the problem.

In addition to monitoring, it’s important to measure your impact. Start with a baseline. Figure out what you want to measure and get that information, possibly into a spreadsheet like Excel. Then experiment with the different platforms and see what the results are.

Some tools:

NutshellMail.com is a monitoring tool.

Google Alerts sends you an email notice about whatever topic you want to know about: your name, your business, your blog, your community.

HootSuite and TweetDeck help you to monitor what’s happening on various social media platforms.

bit.ly shortens links and provides tracking information.

Constantcontact.com offers more free tools and free trial for 60 days.

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