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Write for the Beginners in Your Niche

September 26, 2007

When I was new at this whole blogging thing, I didn’t know very much. Actually, I didn’t know ANYTHING. I actually thought that Feedburner was something bad, and that it could cause damage to your blog’s feed, whatever that was (please don’t laugh at me TOO much). But blogging is a learning process and I’m continuously discovering new things. Often I forget there are people back at the start of the blogging road, wondering which directions to take and how to go about it.

Remember The Newbies

As a blogger, you’re most likely an expert or at least decently good at what you’re doing or talking about. But you need to remember not to get carried away. There are some people probably reading your blog that are at square one and don’t even have a clue what’s going on. This is what I forget a lot of the time.

When I first began blogging, I was in search of all kinds of information that would help me just to learn the basics. But instead of finding those kinds of articles, I was seeing topics discussing things I had no clue about. RSS? FTP? Excuse me?! The smarter you become as blogger, the less likely you are to address the simple things. You might think that something is so obvious it doesn’t need to be mentioned, but for many people, IT DOES.

There are people who read your blog that are BEGINNERS in your niche. Don’t forget about them! Take some time to sit down and think about the things that confused you most when you just started in your field, and then write about them. Even if you think something is so simple it doesn’t even need to be said, you’re wrong. There’s always someone out there who is trying to learn.

From now on, I promise I will write more articles focusing on the begginers in blogging. All the experts and people who have been blogging for months might not get much use out of the posts, but people who are new will need them. Sometimes the basics are everything. Write for the beginners in your niche. We all start somewhere! If you have any questions about blogging or topics you’d like me to address, feel free to leave a comment or an email for me using the contact form. Thanks, and happy blogging! :D

Want More Bang For Your Buck? Advertise Here!

September 25, 2007

If you have a website, blog, service, or product you’d like to promote, I know you don’t want to spend hundreds of dollars doing so and then not even get noticed. Well, advertising on Super Blogging is quite the opposite! Your chosen method of advertising is guaranteed to be inexpensive and reach a loyal readerbase consisting of visitors that equal targeted traffic for you.

The new advertise page has just been launched and is offering text link ads for sale. Each one costs $10 and shows up on the Recommended Sites area in the sidebar for a full month. As time progresses, more methods of advertising will be offered such as a review of your site, banner advertisement, and RSS feed advertising. Each method is a surefire way to receive backlinks, exposure, and valuable traffic.

After launching the advertise page there are ten slots for text link ads, so you’d better hurry. That price of only $10 is an unbeatable steal! And besides your month of sidebar advertising, I always give out permanent links to my sponsors in posts, and then a thank you post to everyone who has advertised. Who can surpass that offer? Nobody!

If a valuable and inexpensive text link ad just isn’t your thing for some bizarre reason, please do hang around as more methods of advertising will continuously be released. I can’t wait to help drive traffic to YOUR site! :D

Click here to advertise now.

Do You Think PageRank Could Be Kaput?

September 25, 2007

It’s now become widespead speculation of many bloggers that PageRank is no more. Other bloggers think that Google could possibly be just updating their algorithm and that is why this update is so belated. Who knows? But now that PageRank is five months overdue, the longest period inbetween updates ever, people are getting worried. CashQuests has a great post titled Google Abandons PageRank that you should check out. Some valid points the author makes includes:

  •  It has almost been five months since the last update, and usually PageRank updates come every two to three months.
  • Updates on the internet usually get faster with time, not slower, especially from big companies like Google.
  • Google is completely against paid links and getting rid of PageRank would help to stop the problem, since one of the biggest factors in determining link pricing is PageRank.

These are only some of the great points that CashQuests makes. So considering that Google did do out with PageRank… What would the rest of us do? Now’s the time to be thinking about it. Not only companies like TextLinkAds and PayPerPost will suffer, but so will all bloggers monetizing their sites. As mentioned above, a site’s PageRank is one of the biggest factors in determining text link advertisement sales.

It’s time to start thinking about how else you could monetize your blog, especially if you rely on PageRank to get more money with your advertising. There are so many other reliable ways to prove your blog is a great one for sponsors to advertise on. Your RSS subscriber count is a fantastic way. In my opinion, it could be a lot better than PageRank. PageRank counts your number of incoming links, but RSS subscribers are for real. That count displays how many loyal visitors you have that read your content every single day. Advertisers would surely be interested in those numbers.

Besides your RSS subscribers, consider how many unique visitors and pageviews you get daily. Take screenshots of the graphs of your statistics and place them on your advertising page. Any future sponsors would love to know the traffic you’re receiving! If you have a good, low Alexa number then display that too – but if you don’t, that’s okay. Alexa is not the most reliable source of information as their data isn’t tracked equally for everyone.

If PageRank is kaput, another way to lure advertisers in is to have testimonials from past sponsors who have really enjoy and benefited from advertising on your site. This way new advertisers will know that their money will be worth it.

Hopefully from reading above you’ve figured out ways to earn more money on your blog based on factors besides PageRank. No one knows for sure yet except those dastardly people behind Google itself, but it’s always best to be prepared for the worst in case PageRank won’t exist any longer.

PageRank being done with is a very logical assumption, even if it’s one most of us would hate. Without PageRank, the majority of bloggers and webmasters would go into a chaotic state. So what do you think? Is PageRank over, or is Google just changing their algorithm and system to base it on other factors besides links? Please share your opinions, and let us know what you would do if Google said PageRank was dead.

Progress Report From a New Blogger

September 24, 2007

As I approach the two month anniversary of my blog, The Junk Drawer, I thought I’d take stock and do a self-assessment. With any new venture, it’s worth taking a step back to review what’s working and what’s not, make corrections and produce a better product.

What I do right:

1. I write for the thrill of it. Writing has always been a passion for me, but because I’m not confident enough to try writing for a living, I decided to write for a blog. It offers me a much-needed creative outlet and gives me a venue to build confidence and see whether my dream of being a full-time writer has any legs.

2. I make connections with other bloggers. It seems to me the best way to build a readership is to read other blogs that interest me and communicate with their authors. Whether it’s through email or comments I leave, I make connections with those I can learn the most from. My blog gains new visitors as a result, and I benefit from the expertise of seasoned bloggers. Never ignore your own readers. Especially when you’re new, respond to every comment someone leaves you. This builds loyalty, a critical need for the new blogger.

3. I research how to design and build a better blog. There’s no substitute for good research. When you’re new, read blogs on blogging. You’ll begin to see a pattern of rules to follow. Also, pay close attention to the blogs you find visually stimulating and those that are well-written, such as this one. Blogs with lots of subscribers got that way for a reason. Take note of what they’re doing and apply similar techniques to your own blog.

4. I jot down blog ideas as soon as they pop into my head. Whether you use a notepad or online tool to journal your ideas, make sure you record your ideas when they come to you. Some ideas are so fleeting and you don’t want to forget anything. Some of my best posts began as just a tiny nugget and grew into highly-read stories. Don’t let that great idea get away!

What I’m doing wrong (and need to fix!):

1. I didn’t have the foresight to get my own domain name and host. I’m blogging with Blogger, and it’s not a bad way to do it. It’s just that now I want to individualize my blog and separate from the pack. I may have chosen a different name, as well, had I known how much it will cost me to get The Junk Drawer domain (or some similar name).

2. I’m obsessed about my stats, and it’s taking away from writing new posts. I use Clicky and Google Analytics to monitor my readership, but it’s too easy to check constantly. “Living in the now” is hindering my focus on the future.

3. I don’t have a clear-cut niche. I’m still on the fence about what to do as a result. I have three main interests: technology tips for the average user, language/linguistics topics, and humor writing. I expect my blog will morph into strictly humor writing, for two reasons: 1) It’s what gives me the most enjoyment to write, and 2) My humor pieces are getting the most comments and feedback. Simply put — people like my humor stuff better. Don’t ignore what you do best and what posts get the most response. It’ll tell you everything about what to write.

4. I haven’t figured out all the mechanics of blogging yet. I expect when I move to my own domain name and switch to WordPress, I’ll have even more to learn. My blog is designed very simply, but I want more flexibility for my blog’s look and feel.

5. I’m still new to “selling my blog.” Not knowing the best places to publicize my blog is where I’m failing the most. I’ve had zero success with submitting to Digg and StumbleUpon, but have some success with social networking sites and improving my SEO techniques. It’s probably something a little more research will cure.

Let’s hear from some other new bloggers. If you’ve been blogging for less than six months, drop a line and let us know what lessons you’ve learned. What would you do differently if you could start your blog all over again?

Miscellaneous Happenings for September 22, 2007

September 22, 2007

Happy Saturday; I hope everyone is having a great weekend so far! First I would like to say that I’m sorry there isn’t a lot of new content lately and that when there is, it isn’t the best quality. My computer is still in the shop and the guy hasn’t even began to fix it yet, so I’m holding out and doing my best here with just a few minutes a day, if even. Now would be the perfect time for some guest writers to step in! You get free exposure and backlinks with your content published on another site, so you can reach new potential readers. Why not write for this blog? It’s a win-win situation!

Next I’d like to speak about the month of free advertising contest. Today is supposed to be the deadline for that, but apparently I’m in no position to sit for hours and count up credits, trackbacks, and come up with a winner. So for now, you’re still allowed to enter (even for perhaps another week or longer, depending). I’m sorry if this causes inconvience for anyone, but hey, if you haven’t entered yet now’s your chance!

Now that the bad news is out of the way, let’s channel our focus to good news and accomplishments. The subscriber count for this blog has been continously growing, and lately it’s been getting a lot easier to gain subscribers. Do you know the 150 mark has been broken? As of the time of writing, there are 154 subscribers. It might not be a lot compared to all the major blogs in this niche out there, but I’m definitely getting somewhere. I have goals set for myself and I’m determined to reach them. Click here to subscribe so you can get all the latest updates delivered to you in your reader or email inbox.

Also, Super Blogging has almost broken the Alexa 100k. For the past couple weeks it’s been hovering right over that mark, but at the moment our Alexa traffic levels indicate us as around 102,000. It won’t be long now before we drop a digit (hopefully)! Keep on visiting. ;)

And since there haven’t been many good quality articles posted here lately, thanks to my lack of computer, I’d like to point you in the direction of past posts that hopefully you will find helpful and informative. Check ’em out:

If you crave more reading and can’t wait for my soon to come weekly roundup or don’t feel like browsing through archives, then pore over this awesome post by Steven Snell titled The Value of a Network. He’s constantly giving great advice – take it and view all of his other articles too. I swear, sometimes I just want to link to each and every one of them, that’s how good they are!

Again I’d like to wish everyone a great weekend, and ask that you please bear with me until my computer is repaired and I can actually get on this blog and do the work that needs to be done. Thanks, and happy blogging! :)

EDIT: Whenever I can I will do the best to respond to all comments and emails. At the moment, however, that isn’t something I’m able to do. I’m sorry but please don’t worry; I WILL get back to you. If it’s urgent leave a comment. I still read them, even if I can’t reply to them all just yet.

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