Category Archives: Blog Network Tips

8 Bloggers to Network With

I want to give a huge thanks to Steven Snell of Vandelay Design for including me in a recent post on Pure Blogging entitled “8 Bloggers That Won’t Bite”.

Networking is one of the things I tell everyone to focus on in this ever changing landscape of web publishing, and it is nice to know that people have noticed that I enjoy networking with others. When you work from home by yourself, any contact helps stop me from going crazy.

People listed on Pure Blogging include, Courtney Tuttle, Tay, Jon Phillips, David Culpepper, Adnan, Pearl, and Karen Zara.

A great list of people, some who I have talked to before, and others who I plan on networking with soon.

Originally posted on January 25, 2008 @ 6:46 pm

My Splashpress Media Job Responsibilities

So you might have noticed that there was no post on Friday on this blog, and I have tried to make it a goal of mine to bring new content every weekday on this blog, but with my new duties at Splashpress Media, I have been working hard at getting integrated into their team, and that hasn’t left much time to do things around here. Don’t fear though, I still have lots of ideas, and will make sure to find the time to continue to share my experiences and knowledge.

Today, I wanted to talk about what my new duties will be at Splashpress Media to continue the transparency I am working on creating about my new job. The first thing some of you might have noticed is that I am the new Head of Marketing. This means I have a marketing budget which I have to organize and use effectively to promote the Splashpress brand, as well as the brands of each of the properties held by Splashpress.

This is a relatively new job for me, as I have only started learning promotion and marketing, but with all the resources online, I hope to learn quickly and do well at this new task.

Continue reading

Originally posted on November 3, 2007 @ 3:24 pm

46 Things To Do Before Launching a Blog Network

There are so many things that a potential blog network owner should do before actually showing the world their sites, and I think that most people who decide to start a network, are really unaware of the challenges that they will have to surpass.

Thanks to the prodding of Ahmed Bilal, I have come up with this list of forty-six things you should do before launching a blog network.

Money

1.) Building a network costs money, even if you build the sites from scratch. Get together enough capital to keep the whole thing running for six months. It will take at least that long to get really noticed by the world, and especially by search engines.

2.) Create a list of expenses, and add a fifteen percent buffer zone. Things like hosting costs, business supplies, and business cards all add up quickly.

3.) Are you hiring writers? Designers? Developers? Budget properly for each of these expenses. It can be very hard, especially early on to find people willing to work for you at the rates you can afford, but if you cast a wide net, and work hard at selecting the right people for the job at a price you can afford, you will be more successful.

4.) Spending money on advertising to get the word out there? Make sure you budget for each type of advertising separately. Banner advertising, paid posts or reviews, text links, press releases and even some social media attention can cost a fair bit of money. Don’t over extend yourself early on. Continue reading

Originally posted on October 11, 2007 @ 9:14 am

Top Make Money Online Blogs

Top 100 Make Money Online Blogs

Mark at 45n5 has created a great little list of the top one hundred blogs relating to making money online. The list currently only has seventy-three blogs but Mark is adding more as people submit their sites.

eXtra for Every Publisher is currently sitting at sixty-one, not the greatest, as I’d like to be better than half way up the list, but give me a little time, and I will get there.

Currently, the list only uses Google PageRank, Technorati, and the very hated, Alexa. I am hoping Mark will add more things to the tool so that sites rank where they should be, rather than higher due to weird Alexa stats.

The great thing about the idea is that the more traffic it gets, the more traffic is filtered down to the people on the list, and the more people promote it, the more links Mark gets. So it ends up being a win-win for all involved.

A very cool list, and one I am glad to be part of. Check it out at 45n5.com/top100.

Ack! I have slipped down to 103 thanks to all the new competition that has been added. I knew I had a long climb to do well in this niche, but I don’t think I deserve to be ranked so low on the list.

If you’d like to help Xfep do better, please favourite this site on Technorati, link back to me or one of my posts from your site, or browse my site using the Alexa toolbar (I wouldn’t make anyone do that).

Originally posted on September 9, 2007 @ 10:10 pm

My Failed Blog Network

Early on in my blogging career, I was planning on starting my own blog network. I thought that I knew better, and could do much the same as what Darren Rowse had done by making some niche sites, and writing on them. I was so naive that I thought I could turn a profit on the sites in less than half a year.

I named the network Digital Life News. I set up a bunch of blogs under different sub-domains all with the same main design. I was planning on targeting the Canadian market, a group that hadn’t seen much attention in the blogging world, and I thought I had what it takes. I was quickly proven wrong. I had ideas, a great domain and passion, so what was missing?

Patience

It seems like such an easy thing, but I didn’t think about the long term, and I didn’t have the patience and really the persistence to make something like this work.

Had I really sat down, and thought about each step of the process in greater detail, I would have seen that it could take me a year, maybe more before the network was making more than the cost of hosting the sites, and even then it might take a long time before the network was recognized in the community as worthy of attention. I would have also seen that I should have focused on a few niches, rather than casting a wide net.

Help

I was planning on doing it alone, and as I mentioned before in Starting a Blog Network, no one is an expert at every skill that starting and managing a blog network requires.

I couldn’t write on all the niches I had planned, at least not at the quality level that would help grow the network. I wasn’t very good at monetization nor at managing others. I actually hired a friend of mine that was tech savvy at one point, but I couldn’t pay him enough, nor was he really interested in writing about the news and information that he found, and thus, he stopped after only a month or two.

I should have found great people that were interested in blogging to help me, which leads me to my next two points.

Networking

I didn’t really know anyone in the blogging community. I knew Darren, and a few others, but I wasn’t constantly talking with them, nor was I someone they came to talk to. I didn’t have anyone that could help me get the word out about what I was doing, and without being able to properly network, I could tell early on, that I was quickly losing momentum.

I have learned this skill more and more over the last two years, but I am still no expert. I shift between being someone that likes to stay quiet by myself, to wanting to be the center of attention. This has been something I have always struggled with.

I knew people that were amazing at networking, and I should have found ways to network with them. They could have passed around my name, and what I was doing, making my network much more of a success.

Money

One thing that some networks need is seed money. It was something my blog network needed badly as more than anything else, I needed money to hire writers to create content. I also needed money to create buzz through contests, or advertising on other sites. All of the things I needed to bring my network to the masses required money, and that was something I didn’t have.

Had I more friends interested in writing, or maybe more of a celebrity clout, I could have forgone the money required on writers for the starting phase, and if I had better networking skills, I could have maybe secured some advertising or items to run a contest from other sites or businesses, but alas that wasn’t the case.

Closed Up Shop

So after a few months of running it, and doing the best I could, I closed Digital Life News, as a blog network. I currently use the name as my business name. I learned a lot through the process, and found out that I belonged more as someone one or two steps from the top of the blog network hierarchy, rather than top dog.

I still believe that anyone can start a blog network, and I think that most can be successful at it, but if you don’t have the proper skills, talents, or friends, then you better have the money to find people that do.

Hopefully, a few of tidbits from my experience will help you avoid your blog network failing.

Originally posted on July 22, 2007 @ 10:42 pm