Saturday, September 23, 2006

B-Blogs: A Business Prerequisite
Scott Lindsay

“How does business change when everyone is a potential publisher? A vast new stretch of the information world opens up.” – Stephen Baker and Heather Green
As a Business Blogger (b-blogger) you do not need to reinvent the wheel and you don’t even need to be an especially gifted writer. Simple software solutions are available to allow you to blog with confidence even if you feel technologically challenged.
Link and Click
One of the principal benefits of blogging is you can simply provide an opening sentence or paragraph on a subject that may be of interest to your clients. Once this is accomplished you can simply provide a direct link to the story you wish to cite. You can also include an associated photo. The client then has the ability to see first hand the information you found so valuable in relation to your business; it’s services, goods and future.
The information you can provide may be tied to the movement of stock in relations to a product you carry. New advancements in scientific research that has a bearing on a product you carry or new uses for an existing product.
Comprehensive Coverage
Many b-blogs have a list of outside links that may be interest to visitors. The purpose of a blog is not to withhold information or to provide that information on a time-released basis. For most b-bloggers there is a realization that the information they have to share is available elsewhere on the worldwide web, so being as timely as possible simply makes sense.
“There are some 9 million blogs out there, with 40,000 new ones popping up each day.” – Stephen Baker and Heather Green
Point of Comparison
Companies that have made blogging a priority have seen as many as five million visits to their blog. When you have web traffic at that level you can see how a search engine will recognize your blog site as authoritative and reputable and provide your blog with a higher rank.
“Given the changes barreling down upon us, blogs are not a business elective. They're a prerequisite.” – Stephen Baker and Heather Green
Commitment
Operating a b-blog takes discipline and an understanding that this IS a marketing tool. It is possible that a b-blog might take some time to attract visitors and it may be tempting to simply give up on the prospect and drop this marketing element from your overall business plan.
The good news is you will save a few minutes a day by not developing your b-blog. The bad news is someone else will see the potential and work at building their reputation as an expert in the field – and they may likely be recognized as such.
Scott Lindsay is a web developer and entrepreneur. He is the founder of HighPowerSites and many other web projects. HighPowerSites is the easiest do-it-yourself website builder on the web. No programming or design skill required.
http://www.highpowersites.com
blog good techniques

Friday, September 22, 2006

Blogs and Forums: A Two-Pronged Approach
Scott Lindsay

When discussing online marketing there is the inevitable comparison between a Business Blog (b-blog) and an online forum. The feeling is that the two serve essentially the same purpose and it is a simple matter of defining which approach may be best for your company.
The comparison between these two approaches is something like comparing apples and oranges. They are both fruit, but that’s about the sum total of their similarities.
B-Blogs
A b-blog is designed to allow you a controlling interest in a conversation between you and your customers and guests. Your guests can provide feedback, but they can’t post.
B-blogs allow you great flexibility in timely release of company information in an informal and nonthreatening way.
Forums
A forum is offered as a means of allowing member interaction and conversation. Generally speaking a forum will be member-directed and in most cases a moderator or administrator will simply act as referee when needed. They may also answer a few questions along the way.
B-blog Benefits
As the owner of a b-blog you have the capability of keeping an informal line of communication with your customers and prospects. You can keep your clients updated on a variety of aspects related to your business. There is very little work that needs to be done with a b-blog to keep it maintained.
Forum Benefits
When you develop a forum for your business you are welcoming individuals with an interest in your products or services to network with other likeminded consumers. In a best-case scenario a forum will allow customers to discuss your product or service, provide tips to other users and develop friendships with other customers based on mutual interests.
Since this approach is consumer-centric it may seem a less than ideal means of online marketing. The truth is, a forum is less about active marketing and more about learning customer trends and preferences. If you pay close enough attention to what your customers are saying to each other you will learn more effective ways to connect with them.
It is a bit surprising, but a forum board somehow allows openness in communication that you won’t likely find in face-to-face conversations.
Combining Benefits
By combining these two truly unique online marketing principles you maximize your effectiveness in reaching your customers while allowing them the opportunity to provide honest feedback. Sure, they may not realize that’s what they’re doing, but an astute netrepreneur will take the information clients voluntarily share with each other and maximize customer satisfaction whenever possible.
Scott Lindsay is a web developer and entrepreneur. He is the founder of HighPowerSites and many other web projects. HighPowerSites is the easiest do-it-yourself website builder on the web. No programming or design skill required.
http://www.highpowersites.com
blog good techniques

Thursday, September 21, 2006

How a Blog Can Benefit Your Website
Daryl H. Bryant

Ok, so the latest craze on the Internet is ‘blogging’. I’m sure you’ve heard of it. If you have not heard of blogging, then maybe you’ve heard of a blog. If you’re still unsure what I’m talking about then maybe you should get out more.
Ok, I’m seriously just kidding. A Web log or ‘blog’ is a personal website consisting of regularly updated entries displayed in reverse chronological order. Blogs read like a diary or journal, but with the most recent entry at the top. Web logs or blogs are a type of Web content typically created by independent writers (although some reporters for media companies create blogs on newspaper or magazine sites). Some blogs are personal journals; others resemble newsletters or columns. Sometimes, they contain links to other sources of content and other times they are the main source of content like on this site.
So why are blogs so cool? Why is everyone blogging these days? Well in my opinion, it all comes to two main factors. First, blogs are very easy to setup, maintain and add content entries with minimal web experience necessary. There are many descent blogging software tools that allow you to effortlessly setup and maintain a blog all on your own. My favorite is Wordpress. Wordpress offers you an easy and powerful way to start blogging right away… plus it’s free! The second reason in my opinion, why people blog, is because it provides them with a great means to add more content for their website. As we all know, content rules the Internet. With more content, you are guaranteed to receive more exposure, hence why I believe so many people are blogging these days.
Ok, so now you might be thinking to yourself, “Maybe I can start a blog and easily add more content to my website.” If you’re thinking this, this is good. So if you’re considering a blog for your website, let me ask you a few questions first before you dive in head first.
Do you have a topic that you feel comfortable to write about on a regular basis?Are you knowledgeable enough on this specific topic to be writing articles on the Internet?Do you have the time in your busy schedule to create an article or more every week?These are the three basic questions to help you determine if a blog is for you. If you’ve answered ‘No’ to any of these questions, then a blog is definitely not suitable for you. You must be comfortable and knowledgeable about your topic as well as have the time in your schedule to operate a blog of your own. However, if you’ve answered ‘Yes’ to all three questions, then I would highly recommend creating a blog for your website. Why? Because it will provide you with the following benefits:
More content = more exposure - Adding more content to your site will ultimately lead to more visits, hence more exposure.Credibility on your chosen topic – Writing articles on your topic could cause you to build a reader base that will continue to come back to your site to read more about your topic.Increased business – As you receive more exposure and begin to build your credibility, you will be sure to increase your business and gain qualified business leads. It’s a great marketing resource.Knowledge – By writing about your topic every week, you will be sure to stay abreast on the latest trends and news relating to your topic.Fun – Blogging offers you something different, a way to break up your day. If you have a blog, then enjoy it and have fun with it.Well I hope I’ve provided you with some basic information on what a blog is and how it can benefit your website. If you think that a blog is for you and fits into the idea of your website then go for it… create your own blog, start blogging and enjoy it!
I wish you much success!
At Hudson Horizons, we provide website Content Management conversion for the small to mid-sized business to easily allow our clients the ability to manage the data of their website on a day-to-day basis.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

BlogBiz
Michelle Bery

How do you know if your blogging is a hobby or a business? Consider the following:
Are you behaving in a business minded manner when you blog?
Does your blog, even if silly or comical, have a purpose to draw readers or traffic with the intent of creating an income?
Are you putting in enough time and energy into blogging to make it profitable, or are you half heartedly approaching blogging as a side hobby?
As you increase your income, are you investing, reinvesting or utilizing the income for livelihood, or are you considering it 'mad money'.
There is a difference in how you perceive your income and how you will behave. If you feel it’s just extra money to have fun with, you may not be taking a serious business perspective of blogging that you need to take for profit long term.
As you increase your business, you need to be flexible and grow with the business. This means that what worked in phase one may need to be upgraded or changed in phase two, and phase three and so on and so on.
In the past, have you followed through with goals and activities? If the resounding answer is no – then beware, being self-employed, even a blogger business, may not be right for you. However, if you have a support system, a partner or a plan B, where if you start to fall downward you have a way upward, then blogging as a business is certainly a possibility.
Some real positives of having a blog as a business is that it is easy to start up, and easy to maintain, especially if you use a service to help you glean the most from your business as you can.
Another great thing, if you are not a people person, that is fine! If you are, good – communicate more with your fans! Having positive working relationships is very important and yet, with blogging, you can make money and not really have to develop super close relationships. Many people find close relationships, especially working relationships, to be very stressful. Again, if you have a service to help you, this is two-fold easier.
Blogs are great because as far as a business goes, there are minimal decisions in this line of career. Most business owners make decisions constantly, have a lot of overhead and are under pressure. However, with blogging you have minimal overhead if any, and your big decisions are often simply when to renew your service contract with your supplier/manager. Usually the partner/manager/supplier in blogging makes all the nuance decisions that can drive you crazy.
If planning and organizing are not your strong suits, never fear… you can certainly hire someone to do this for you; again there are organizations that take all of that nitty-gritty stuff away from you for a small fee. But you can also learn how to organize yourself but realize this can mean you may be working at your blog a few hours at a time when you’d normally be spending time with family or friends. Again, blogging will make you money if you go toward this goal as a business, not a hobby.
Make sure you survey family, friends on peers in what they may enjoy seeing or having in a blog. Maybe they will voice that they’d like to have a place to write in themselves about their experiences, or just read inspirational experiences or informative comments. Perhaps, they want an informative site where they can both interact with others and, purchase equipment or books. Figure out what you like, then start seeing how you can tie your interests in with other’s desires.
As you initially start your business you can add ideas or subtract things that don’t seem to be working, but in whole marketing research will give you a nice, firm foundation; if nothing else, it gives you a target starting point which is easier for you to focus on.
This actually takes you to the next subject of thought, which is a strategy to market. Once you know what your survey tells you, you can easily, as outlined above, develop a strategy. Again, it’s knowing how to take an interest of yours and make it marketable.
In your blog, don’t just write! Sell! Sell a product or service. Although some people can make money just from writing, through banners and such, you will have more success actually offering a bit more. However, if you have a service working with you, they can certainly help to promote you as well as place banners and other marketing tools in to help you get your business off the ground.
Think of unique promotion strategies. Though if you have a service, again, you will not have to worry as much – it still is a good idea to create promotions yourself that are highly unique to your specialty. Make sure your prices are competitive or at the least, considered well within your target market. The moment the Blog is up to the moment the client or consumer has what they want from you; and the entire process should be quite enjoyable!
Michelle is a bona fide professional blogger. If you're aiming for six figure online profits then you NEED her fresh, upbeat advice!

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Blogging: A Writer’s Journal
Scott Lindsay

A novel way for a writer to keep prospects and fans in the loop on their progress as a writer is through the use of a web log or ‘Blog’.
“This notion of self-publishing, which is what Blogger and blogging are really about, is the next big wave of human communication. The last big wave was Web activity. Before that one it was e-mail.” – Eric Schmidt
This online tool has allowed many writers to share thoughts, humor, politics, and more with any and all who would visit. Since the Internet is a device of connectivity it also allows for immediate feedback in ways standard publishing cannot offer.
Essentially the web has created a means for someone who has not been discovered to find an audience who is interested in what they have to say.
For some, a blog is intended to be private in that they do not promote the blog for mass consumption, however with the growth of blogging it has become more difficult to ensure your blog will remain essentially a private journal.
As Eric Schmidt pointed out, blogging has become a form of self-publishing. In this case the author becomes the editor and publisher and has total artistic control. The use of Google Adsense can also provide residual income to help pay for any costs associated with your blog.
A blog can be very useful to a writer. It provides an outlet for regular writing, but it also allows people who enjoy your work to take in your regular posts and feel a greater connection to you. Some random blog-thought has been transformed by their owners into long form articles and stories.
“At its best, blogging is all about change. The format suits writers who want to move fast.” – Naomi Darvell
Many blogging sites allow the use of photographs and audio. For instance, if you had a book signing you could use photos from the event in the body of your blog. If you have a recording of a portion of your book that you are authorized to rebroadcast it also can be placed in your blog. Links can be provided to encourage visitors to check out similar blogs by other writing friends – and best of all a blog can assist visitors in finding where they may find other work you’ve produced along with information on how to purchase any available books you may have.
People who enjoy reading blogs will find a circle of blogs that entertain, inspire, and make them think or laugh. Having a blog that is tied into a personal website can go a long way in connecting with those who may already have an appreciation for your work.
Scott Lindsay is a web developer and entrepreneur. He is the founder of FaithWriters (
www.faithwriters.com) and many other web projects. FaithWriters has grown to become one of the largest online destinations for Christian writers. Members include writers from all around the world.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Blogging Is The Ultimate Marketing Tool For The 21st Century
Allen Taylor

Blogging has become quite the popular sport. People blog the news, sports, politics, their personal lives, and even business. But should you?

As a marketing tool, there’s no question that blogging is a powerful tool. But is it right for everyone? Probably not. However, it is a great way to add valuable content to most web sites.

The popular search engines – Google, Yahoo, MSN, Ask – expect webmasters to update their web sites frequently. In fact, one of the best ways to climb in search engine rankings is to keep those sites updated with fresh content. Blogs provide that content so naturally and effectively.

Blogs don’t have to be huge tomes to be successful. In fact, some of the best and most successful blogs are short and sweet. A well-written short blog is actually better than a long, boring Moby Dick-like piece that no one wants to read. Fifty words with two or three dashes of a useful keyword phrase will score big points with the search engines, and if it is useful information for your target audience then you’ll also gain ground with those human visitors you want to turn into customers. Do that three to seven times a week for a year and you’ll have a web site that search engines can’t say “No” to.

It won’t even take a full year. You can build a successful and useful web site in three to six months with valuable blogging that inspires, entertains and enlightens your readers into being valuable, paying customers.

If you do see blogging as a part of your marketing future, don’t develop a narrow view of the skill. It takes more than just throwing out a few phrases and keywords to make a successful blog. You must ensure you are communicating with your audience so ask them what information they want to see and provide them with benefits. And blogging doesn’t just have to mean writing your journals online either. There are two other forms of blogging that are gaining more popularity every day. Which you use depends on your company’s goals, personality, and vision.

Audio blogging and video blogging can be powerful forms of communication. Again, they aren’t for everyone but don’t rule them out. Are you a singer or someone who makes a living with their voice? If so, you might consider a blog that incorporates audio. Maybe not every day, but in some kind of creative and useful way that promotes your voice skills so that potential customers can evaluate your voice and audio technique.

This principle also applies to video blogging. Perhaps you are a struggling actor or video engineer. If one of your core competencies involves corporate video production then video blogging could help sell your services. It’s worth considering, don’t you think?

Blogging is here and so is the 21st century. This powerful marketing strategy can be of benefit to almost any business. I’d encourage you to check it out.
Allen Taylor is an award-winning journalist, freelance writer and copywriter. He specializes in low-cost marketing for small businesses. He writes the York-Adams Blog and manages blogs for clients.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Blogging Directory
Darren Dunner

Have you looked at your website traffic lately? How much visitors actually visit your site everyday. One of the best ways to attract the visitor to your site is by writing informative blogs. A blogging directory with a high page rank can do wonders to lift the traffic of your site. Thousands of people are already successfully blogging to create better relationship with their prospects, increase client loyalty and enhance their visibility and brand recognition.
If someone takes the time to get word our there about themselves and their services or products then they are serious about business. If you are one of these people then you need to get max exposure for your blogs and just writing a blog is not enough anymore. The competition is fierce so find blog directories as some of them offer a free listing. A Blogging directory is a perfect solution to people who are in search of new information online.
Most of us know what a blog directory is. Most of us have some knowledge that everyone who has an online presence needs an online blog. Most of us do not realize that blogging in the wrong way is a waste of your time!
Before getting into more information on Blog Directories it is important to know that your blog needs to be set up properly. Here are a few things to know:
Submitting your blog in an effective blogging directory can· Boost your website traffic· Increase the size of your email list· Build trust with prospects and clients· Can you earn you huge money online
Today you can search and find blogs everywhere on the net, it seems when you search the major directories that blogs show up in top positions. Is your blog appearing in these places? If not, then maybe you don`t know something that these other bloggers do know.
Before getting into more information on Blog Directories it is important to know that your blog needs to be set up properly. Here are a few things to know:
Install your blog directly on your site Make sure you are using full search engine friendly urls with these blogs Do not copy other blogs and post them on your blog as this is duplicate content and will hurt you Add at least 1 post a week if not more.
Don’t waste time on this anymore, get your blog, get listed on directories and increase your page rank. So what are you waiting for make up your own blog and start blogging.
Copyright 2006 Darren DunnerDarren Dunner writes for
www.surrealblog.com offering you the latest information on on all types of blogs.