Wait! Write before you Launch

published on July 9, 2007

We’ve all been there. You come up with a new idea for a site, you register the domain, install WordPress or some other blogging platform, and write a post or two introducing your new blog to the world. Of course, the world has no idea your brand new great idea blog even exists so decide to start promoting it. You link to it from the forums you visit, you include it on all your profile pages (MySpace, Facebook, Digg, etc. etc.) and you call in all the favors other bloggers owe you. And… it starts to work. You get a few links, a few visitors and maybe even a few comments. The only problem is, you’ve been so busy promoting your new baby that you haven’t written any new content for days. The visitors you’ve gained have probably come and gone and forgotten that your blog even exists. It’s not that they didn’t like what you had to say, they did. You simply haven’t followed up that initial good impression with anything to support it.

In contrast, imagine if you had your idea, registered your domain, installed WordPress and then spent the next two weeks writing. You write your welcome, you explain your site, you go in depth with a couple of articles, you address a common question or two and before you know it, you’ve got 10-15 posts written. THEN you launch your blog. You post the welcome and maybe even tell the good folks what your site’s going to be about and do the same type of promotion as in the first scenario. You link to your new blog from every profile you can think of, you call in a few favors in the form of links, and start generating some buzz. Maybe you take a few people up on their offers for links in exchange for reviews or perhaps you order up a couple of SponsoredReviews. Whatever, the point is, you start to build some buzz about your site and the traffic starts to trickle in. Maybe you’ve even set up your RSS feed and you even get a few subscribers. This time, instead of forgetting your blog exists while you’re off pimping your new site rather than writing, they’re able to read a new post every day from your blog. Rather than thinking you’ve already given up on this new project, they’ll think you’re hard at work writing new posts every single day. See the difference?

Now you’re still going to have to write on a very regular basis of course. However, having a backlog of posts will provide a cushion should you get writers block, have to work over time at your day job, or if you decide to spend time promoting your content rather than creating it. So, next time you’re in a rush to launch your new site, consider taking a step back and think about whether your plan of action is going to result in excited but ultimately let down visitors, or impressed and loyal readers.

How Do I Make Money Blogging?

published on July 6, 2007

One of the biggest questions I see people asking across the web is how to make money from their blog. They can write well enough, they have generated some decent traffic, but now what? How do they take the next step and turn their hobby blog into a site that will make them money? Today, I’m going to address that common question and hopefully point you towards a few options you hadn’t heard of before.

The most prominent money making method for blogs is of course advertising. However, that’s a pretty broad description so I’m going to break it down even further into three of the larger categories.

Contextual Ads:
These are probably the most well known ads on the internet. Google’s vastly popular AdSense is where many bloggers begin and end their site monetization. The ads are easy to register for, easy to set up, and are usually quite targeted to your site’s content. However, you only get paid when someone clicks an ad and unless you have a large amount of traffic, the income earned from the ads might not be what you expect or had hoped for. Other examples of contextual ads are Yahoo Publisher Network, Kontera, and to some extent BidVertiser.

Paid Links:
While these ads are often very similar to contextual ads in appearance, there are a couple of major differences. The first is the method of payment. Unlike contextual ads, the price you’re paid is not determined by the number of click throughs that ad generates. You are paid a set price per agreed upon time period (usually monthly but occasionally weekly or even annually). This price of this link is usually determined by a few different factors often focusing primarily on the PageRank of the pages on which the links will appear. Text link ads can be sold on a case by case basis through arrangements with other webmasters or you can use third party services such as Text Link Ads, Text Link Brokers, and LinkAdage.

Paid Posts:
This is one of the methods I plan on relying upon pretty heavily for this site. Paid posts are just what the name implies. A blogger or website author is paid to post about a specific topic, program, or website. Most of the time these posts come in the form of reviews, but they can also be promotional posts trying to create a buzz about the event, product, or website in question. While these types of paid posts can also be done on a case by case basis, most advertisers and publishers opt for using one of the third party services that are available. PayPerPost, ReviewMe, and SponsoredReveiws are all sites that bring advertisers and publishers together in exchange for a cut of the proceeds. ReviewMe takes 50% of the price of the review, SponsoredReviews takes 35% and PayPerPost does not disclose the cut they take. While I am a big fan of SponsoredReviews simply for the extra 15% I get to keep, each of these services provide quality profit generating opportunities. Best of all, none of the programs have any type of exclusivity conditions so you’re free to join all three and pick and choose the paid posts you’d like to write.

So there you have it, three categories for a total of 9 different programs to help you make money blogging. While there are TONS more if I went into each and every one of them I’d be here forever. Although, that might not be a bad idea for some more posts. Analyze or review each of the different advertising programs etc. That would keep me writing for quite a while. The best advice I can give you though, try and test several different methods. Once you find one that works for you, milk it for all it’s worth.

Keyword Research

published on July 5, 2007

Before I get too far into this little experiment, I’ll need to do some keyword research. Of course this comes from my search engine optimization (SEO) background but you don’t have to be an SEO to figure this stuff out. Obviously it will be a while before this site ranks for any search phrases that are even remotely competitive, but by doing due diligence now, I can make sure that when it does begin to rank, it will be for quality terms that will deliver a lot of quality traffic. Hence, keyword research. Now, as I mentioned in the welcome post, the idea behind this site is to get this blog to a place that it generates a full time income. Naturally terms like “make money” or “make money online” or “make money blogging” would be ideal, however, using Wordtracker I can quickly see that I’d be targeting phrases with a LOT of heavy competition.

This is a screen shot of the competition search feature of Wordtracker. The KEI score (keyword effectiveness index) takes into account the number of daily searches a term gets and the number of pages and sites competing for that phrase. As you can (hopefully) see from the image, the higher the score the better. Unfortunately the highest score for any of the 300+ words I searched was 16.379. Of course, when you have power players like John Chow targeting the same phrases, these results certainly aren’t unexpected. As just an interesting side note, Wordtracker puts John’s target phrase of “make money online” at 0.442. I guess that’s why he can call himself a dot com mogul.

Anyway, when you consider the fact that the scores range from 0 to 400+, that score of 16 suggests these terms probably aren’t terms I should expect to compete for yet. However, as I mentioned earlier, I won’t be expecting to see much search engine traffic for a while anyway. So, by laying a groundwork of posts and incoming links to this site, I’ll hopefully be able to compete for those terms once the blog is released from Google’s infamous sandbox. Also, I’ll be targeting other less popular phrases that have slightly less competition. Phrases like “make money blogging”, “earn money blogging”, and “earn money online” are all phrases I’ll likely target. However, as I said earlier, search traffic isn’t what’s going to get this blog up and running. Early on, I’ll be primarily focusing on generating traffic using the different blog networking sites, participating on other blogs, social media sites, and leveraging the blogosphere itself but that’s probably a post for another day.

If you’d like to take Wordtracker for a Free Spin, I’d love for you to do so via this affiliate link. Thanks! 

Welcome To The Blogging Experiment – The Road To Independence

published on July 4, 2007

Declaration of IndependenceAs the title says, welcome to the Blogging Experiment. Everyone knows what a blog is but you may be asking what the experiment is.

The concept is simple; over the course of the next year I’ll take this blog from $0 income to generating a full time income. I’ve decided on today for the launch because, what better way to (hopefully) celebrate Independence Day next year than realizing my dream of being independent from my day job?

Of course everyone has their own definition of “full time income” however, for the purpose of this blog I’m going to use $60,000 annually or an average of $5,000 a month.

As I said, I’ll be starting completely from scratch. I do own and run several other websites but I won’t be using them in this experiment. I’m not the first blogger to set out a quest like this but I do hope to be the first to document each and every step along the way.

Whether I fail or succeed, my goal is to make this site something that anyone can duplicate if they are willing to put in the work. Speaking of which I’d better get to it, but have a fun and safe 4th of July!

Struts: Validate form with Struts Validation

published on February 2, 2007

When using Struts, you can easily validate datas before excute. So many way to validate the form with Struts, you can use JavaScripts, XML validator…many, many way to validate them…This article is not a new way for this, but it’s simple to use if you’re not sure about use javascript or other way.

Before use validating, you must sure that you can create the Struts form. If not, read following article, it’s a tutorial how to Create Basic Struts Form.


Struts: The basic Web Struts Application

published on January 31, 2007

Before read this article, be sure you know What is the Strusts Framework?

So, this article will explaint how to build an simple Web Struts Application?. It has many programs support easily-build-int Struts such as: MyEclipse, NetBean … But, the basic guide for building Struts is very helpful for new to Struts and Java programming. This example will help you understand Struts in detail. I’ll create new user interface to accept Name and Email address from user-input. In this case, form input was create with a basic JSP template called input.jsp and the success page will be success.jsp. Action class is just forwarding it to the sucess.jsp.