Wednesday, November 22, 2006

The Power of BlogsCarol Stack What do you think of when you hear the word "blogging"? Many people think of a teenage girl's personal diary online. They wonder why any professional would ever have a blog.
Blogs have evolved, however, into a terrific tool to promote anything. Businesses are setting up blogs, as well as individuals, who want to promote their products. Blogs are the perfect tool for anyone who wants a presence on the World Wide Web.
Using free blogging software, such as Wordpress, you can have a site up in minutes. Spend a little extra time creating a header graphic and you can have a professional-looking site up in less than an hour.
Although many people still think "teenager's diary" when they hear the word blog, that is beginning to change. Professionals have found that using a blog to communicate with their audience is a great way to build excitement about an upcoming product launch, keep their buyers informed about updates, or just simply communicate with the world. What an inspiring thought that is - to communicate with the world!
It's true, though, that a blog puts each of us in a spotlight for the whole world to find us. Within a few hours of setting up a blog you can have traffic coming to visit. With a good ping list you simply make a post and dozens of sites are told (pinged) that you have added content to your blog. It really is that simple.
Another way to get traffic is to make relevant comments on other blogs with your blog's URL listed with your name. You can also go to answers.yahoo.com and answer questions in your field, again leaving your blog's URL with your name. If your answer is good, people will be inclined to visit your site to see what else you are saying about the topic.
If you regularly post, get links coming to the site, and provide good, solid content, you should succeed in getting a decent amount of traffic within a short time. There are blogs that are getting about 100 visitors a day after 3 months online and there are blogs getting a million visitors a day after a year. It depends a lot on the number of people interested in the topic.
Monetizing a blog is not hard. If you are selling a product then you will be focused on promoting your product. Don't provide the visitor very many choices except to buy your product. In other words, don't have Adsense or affiliate products on prominent pages. Place them on pages that visitors end up on if they are not interested in your product.
If you don't have a product then you can use an assortment of money-makers such as Adsense, Chitika, and affiliate products. If you go this route, don't depend on just one revenue source. Have several affiliate products, Clickbank products, and pay per click advertising.
There is no reason why anyone with a computer and an internet connection could not make money with a blog. It is very simple. The blog does most of the work. All you really have to do is set it up and then post interesting content. Don't put it off another day.
Carol Stack enjoys writing. She lives with her husband, children, and various dogs and cats in the United States. She has several blogs, including http://www.selfpublishinghelper.com where she posts about online publishing using blogs, article syndication, video, and more.
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