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    Blog success stories: linkers as big money makers
       August 8th, 2006

    So, you run or are about to start your own blog and devour the information (that is abundant online) how to make your blog successful. One of the ideas that you will come across in every article on blog success is that:

    You need to generate original content of super quality.

    Partly, I agree with this statement, but it is not always the case.

    If you think that you can succeed in blogging with high quality unique content only I will prove you that you are wrong. Below are just a few samples of the blogs that are super popular on the Internet, but they do not generate much unique content, they just link to different kind of information that they find themselves or get from their readers.

    I do not say that it is a simple way to succeed, but it proves that you can find an angle or niche, think of the ways how to present your information and succeed with the blog that just links to other website information.

    Here are a few successful linkers’ blogs:

    Blog success stories: linkers as big money makers

    BoingBoing The most successful blog of this kind I am aware of. They have about 50,000 feed subscribers (including me). Home page rank 9 (!). A Directory of Wonderful Things – this is the way they position themselves that gives a pretty wide area for post links – they cover any topics that fit their idea of Wonderful Things.

    Blog success stories: linkers as big money makers

    Lifehacker Home page rank 7. About 1,000 feed readers. Unique Selling Proposition (USP) – Lifehacker recommends the software downloads and web sites that actually save time. Don’t live to geek; geek to live. Yes, a great motto.

    Blog success stories: linkers as big money makers

    The Hype Machine This one is about music. They have a lower number of feed subscribers – just above 200, home PR 6. But it is very popular with those who search and listen to music online. The idea of the blog: Discover, listen and buy music discussed on the best mp3 blogs.

    I have no idea how much online property of this kind generates monthly in cash, but I am sure that it is sufficient for doing things you enjoy in life. Any of the above websites is a brand name.

    Summary: I repeat that the purpose of my post is not to state that the above blogs make easy money – the people behind the websites are smart guys (and ladies?), no doubt. I just would like to show that it is possible to succeed in blogging with some other things besides unique content: with an IDEA or with design or with content presentation, etc.

    And there is a chance to succeed in any industry. It should not be a blog on some web related topic – it can be cars, humor, video, travel, business, career – any topic is a good fit.

    [tags]blogs, boingboing, lifehacker, hype machine, links, myspace, seo, internet marketing, affiliate marketing, content generation, news aggregator, ebay, google, make money online, work from home, home based job, wikipedia, del.icio.us, technorati, bloglines, duplicate content, links, earn your living online[/tags]

    MySpace money
       August 4th, 2006

    MySpace moneyMySpace is a popular topic to discuss among webmasters these days. Its unbelievable traffic leaves nobody indifferent. And it seems much easier to get a portion of that traffic from MySpace than from search engines. With every passing week MySpace makes it harder and harder to earn some money for webmasters by banning accounts for spamming, making the process of friend addition harder to automate, etc.

    But it does not stop online entrepreneurs – more and more persons join the game looking for the weak points in MySpace. Many run numerous accounts, try to invent new ways of automated friend generation and are more careful with sending out the bulletins. Well, MySpace traffic is not high quality targeted traffic that most webmasters search for. Bit it is better than nothing taking into the account that it is relatively easy to get it – I again compare to the difficulty to get search engine traffic.

    The simplest and most common way to use MySpace for your online marketing efforts is to send the traffic to your website. Hopefully, someone will click your ads or join your community.

    Another way practiced by some webmasters (who never stop experimenting) is to use their friend lists generated for numerous accounts to promote some affiliate offers. You can send out bulletins and add the links of affiliate programs in the text. The chances that your offer to buy something will work out are next to nothing. It is not the right type of affiliate links. Most webmasters use so-called incentivized affiliate programs – when the users have some incentive to click or join your offer (for instance, enter your e-mail and win a free iPod, complete the application and get a free MP3 player and the similar offers).

    Where to get that kind of affiliate programs? Just check the most popular affiliate networks. Webmaster often mention in this connection:

    AzoogleAds.com
    HydraMedia.com
    CPAEmpire.com

    I am not sure if it is allowed by TOS of these networks, but at the moment it works for many people.

    Summary: I think MySpace will not last for webmasters – it is spammed too much. And those users who join MySpace for networking and communicating purposes are more and more disappointed with all that flood of bulletins they get from their ‘friends’. The rules will become stricter. So, this way of making money on the Internet is not a long-term approach.

    On the other hand, it is ‘fast money’ – automatically generate friends for a few accounts, send out bulletins with affiliate links and collect some cash.

    Another party that might be dissatisfied with this practice – customers of the affiliate networks. They are not likely to achieve their marketing targets with this sort of promotion. And as it is known Yahoo! Publisher Network is probably the first to take steps against this kind of activity – they do not allow to use their ads next to images and it is also rumored they ban those accounts that get greater portion of their traffic via MySpace.

    [tags]incentivized, websites, cpaempire, azoogleads, myspace, web content, web 2.0, unique content, duplicate content, links buying, links selling, myspace, seo, internet marketing, affiliate marketing, blogs, content generation, ebay, google, make money online, work from home, home based job, wikipedia, del.icio.us, technorati, bloglines, duplicate content, links, earn your living online[/tags]

    Web content generation ‘magical formula’
       August 2nd, 2006

    Websites need content. It does not depend on the type of the web site: an online store, service, image hosting, any type.

    Every webmaster is faced with the problem how to generate content: much of it. And preferably of high quality. I have analyzed our options and here are my conclusions.

    There are four types of content:

    1. Duplicate content (RSS feeds displayed on your website, article syndication, public domains, Creative Commons, etc).

    This content is of low value for the website promotion in search engines and its visitors in general. But it can be a nice addition to other types of content. Also it is good when it is a new project and we develop other types of content in the meantime.

    How to generate much: find the resources that fit for your website and are not copyrighted, copy and paste.

    2. ‘Half-duplicate’ or ‘half-unique’ – whatever you like.

    Re-written news, blog posts, press releases. Events and news important for your industry. If you re-write them (instead of using the 1st content generation method) you increase your chances to be picked up by search engines. It is a good idea to add some personal attitude.

    How to generate much: hire freelance college students, provide them with info sources and control their work quality (general quality and with www.copyscape.com for duplicate issues).

    3. User generated content (forums, blog comments, image and video downloads, etc.)

    One of Web 2.0 key features. Very valuable content but it is not an easy task to start the process.

    How to generate much: find the answer to this question how to motivate my website visitors? I agree with Chris: motivate them with MONEY (can be cash, prizes, points), RECOGNITION (select and feature top community members, reward them), ADVANCEMENT (develop and feature a good ranking system).

    4. Unique content, something that other websites do not have (I also think that link baiting fits into this category – it is unique content, but edited in a special way that makes it easy and tempting to link to and refer to).

    How to generate much: if it were easy – everyone could do that. But here are some ideas that will definitely help you with this task:

    - You need perfect knowledge of the industry. Better: partner with one more expert in this field.
    - Explore types of content bookmarked in your industry on del.icio.us and digg.com (I agree with Nick)
    - Research industry forums and blogs (Aaron provides a great list of resources)
    - Find FAQ (frequently asked questions there) in your niche forums and discussion boards.
    - Analyze the results of your ongoing research (see above); produce posts/ articles of various types (interviews, reviews, surveys, case studies, charts, etc); develop online services and tools that are likely to be in demand in your industry, make images, animations and graphics.

    Summary: Well, these are the only four types of web content (as I see them) that are available out there. All you need – use this ‘magical formula’ mixing all types of content, generate much, publish it and become rich.

    Any ideas and comments are welcome.

    [tags]web content, web 2.0, unique content, duplicate content, links buying, links selling, myspace, seo, internet marketing, affiliate marketing, blogs, content generation, ebay, google, make money online, work from home, home based job, wikipedia, del.icio.us, technorati, bloglines, duplicate content, links, earn your living online[/tags]

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