Reflections on Grind Show 7-28-12 and Why it Was Awesome

Reasons the Grind was awesome last night:

  • It was an encouraging crowd (as opposed to the silent kind).
  • I felt really relaxed which allowed me to hit some of the single string stuff better.
  • My family came and that rocked.
  • My dad took some great photos which I can use to promote future gigs.
  • I got some tips from people who thanked me for the music
  • and … I remember most the lyrics!!! (Bonus) Rocket Man felt really great as if the room changed colors.
  • I play the Grind again 8-11-2012 7:30-9 I hope some of you can make it out.

Blog Posts About Something vs Nothing

I have known for years that the most visited posts I write are those that are “pillar posts” or in other words posts about something specific. For example, I wrote a post about the brain and anger several years ago and it remains one of my most highly visited posts. At the same time, I wrote a detailed post on acronyms for personal development and it gets scant attention. Even though that post is about something, it apparently is not about a very highly searched for something. Then there are my short pithy posts that are about nothing. The “Seinfeld” posts if you will. These are my online diary, my journal. In these I just seek to complete some sort of thought in hopes of growing as a writer and person. The challenge in these is simply to be regular at writing them. I have had posts like this gather huge interest as well, but not as much.

I suppose if you are a celebrity the journal entry is the best to write because people care about the minutiae of your day. I think these posts are valuable because they keep my readers updated on what’s up with me. Most my readers who produce Adsense and other advertising dollars will come in for the pillar posts but I don’t want a blog experience that consists of simply writing pillar content. The online diarist in me seeks to reach out and hopes that over time he will produce “Seinfeld” content that entertains.

Blog Stats 2-12

What is C.A.N.? Simply put: I self-rank my blogs based on three criteria: backlinks, visitors, and dollars earned. C.A.N. breaks down specifically as: C: circulation (# of backlinks) A: analytics (# of visitors) N: net (# of dollar earnings) The higher the C and A, the higher the Net payout. Some months I make more than others depending on the effort and time I put in.

C: (via Alexa)
rileycentral.net 148
rileycentral.net 145
dynamitelessonplan.com 82
blogwithdamien.com 36

A: (via Google Analytics)
rileycentral.net 3,661 Visits
rileycentral.net 224 Visits
dynamitelessonplan.com 672 Visits
blogwithdamien.com 562 Visits

N: via Paypal/adsense check in the given month from all blogs.
Total: $165

Puppeteer Blogger vs. Puppet

This post is for bloggers who want to be different and break away from the trappings of “what everyone else does.” Every time a blogger logs on to his/her computer, he/she looks for stimulus. This can be through Facebook or Twitter or most recently, Google Plus. This can also come from emails or notifications from a service one subscribes to. All too often these external stimuli only serve to sap energy and distract from the artistry and professionalism that is blogging. What do you do when no one has replied? How about when your peers have tons more followers than you. Do you get discouraged? If the external stimuli is your motivation then definitely you do. You become downright depressed. Because external stimuli is a bad indicator of success and a poor navigator to the future, a blogger should make effort to BE external stimuli. By this I mean: Start conversations, create content of value to readers, comment on quality blogs, and add to the web in your own special way. Blogging might be compared to puppetry. If you rely on externals to motivate and guide you, you are a puppet. On the other hand, if you aim to create content that will affect people, you are running the show and you are the puppeteer.

As you create your task list, pay attention to how much you are channeling external stimuli as opposed to creating your own, meant to affect people. Anyone can set up a blog these days. Many can make it look good. But that is only a shell. The rubber meets the road when you can sit down comfortably and write something of value for someone else. If you can do that, you should do it. Then, translate that “creative” energy into your social networks. I can guarantee you if you are thinking about adding value, your work will be better than 90% of what’s out there. The social networks and “free” services want you to give them traffic. If you visit Facebook and other social media more than twice a day, you are padding their pockets. Not only that but you’ll probably log out somewhat discouraged. The chances are not in your favor you’ll become a hit there.

In short, try to avoid being a puppet blogger who hopes for a high email and comment count. Instead, you’ll have a better chance getting these things and more if you pull the strings and act more as a puppeteer blogger.

I Didn’t Realize Google Gave Free Images to Bloggers!

Just ran across this on Twitter. This looks like a cool feature for getting fair use photos for free through Google. Google rocks, I must bow down. This is an excerpt and then a link to the original article below that.

I like to use images in most of my blog posts. Whether it’s for my own blog or a client’s, the use of the right image can enhance the post and compliment it perfectly.

Whilst in some instances it does require for a stock image to be purchased, more often than not there are suitable royalty free images available to use online – it’s just finding them that’s often the problem.

Fortunately, Google Images makes the process so simple that you can be presented with a screen of suitable images in a matter of seconds and all you have to do is go to the ‘Images’ section of Google’s search engine, click on the ‘Advanced Image Search’ link and then choose ‘labeled for reuse’ from the ‘Usage Rights’ dropdown box.

via 5 Reasons Why Google Rocks My Freelance Writing World | Get Paid to Write Online.

How to Monitor the Analytics of Your Blog

Nowadays, a lot of people have blogs. At the same time, not as many know how to check and monitor their stats in a productive way. This is a quick way to check the daily visits, or analytics, to your blog and how you’re doing compared to your monthly average. Just like custom address labels are there when you need them, so a few tools can help you check your analytics quickly on demand.

What you need (materials):
A Google Analytics account for each if you have multiple blogs.
Optional: Mozilla Firefox (for ease of shortcuts)

Steps:
1) Make a new folder on your shortcut bar entitled Analytics (or whatever you choose).

2) Go to your blogs “Overview” page in Google Analytics.

3) Drag that url into your new Analytics folder on the toolbar.

4) Repeat steps 2 and 3 with any other blogs you wish to monitor.

5) Click on the folder. When all GA shortcuts drop down. click “Open all in tabs.”

6) Start on the left tab. Look at your graph. Note yesterday’s number of visits by scrolling over the point. (ie; 151 etc.)

7) Now find the monthly number of visits on the bottom left of the graph (ie; 4,846 visits etc.) Click on that.

8) In the same area you will now see a visits / day number. That is your daily average for the past 30 days. (ie; 156.32 etc.)

So, if you had 151 visits yesterday, you were about 6 visits lower than your monthly average.

9) Go back to step moving one tab to the right and repeat the rest of the steps until you’ve monitored all your blog analytics.

10) Note the changes or lack thereof. Make tasks for the week that will help you raise your analytics or keep them high.

This is an excellent way to monitor the “A” in my acronym CAN. CAN is a method I created of improving blog stats through setting strategic goals.

my Can Blog Stats July 2010

C – circulation, inlinks: 108 Links in, Alexa Rank: 346,523

A – analytics, traffic: 4,526 Visits, 146 Visits / Day Average and 291 Feed subscribers (per Feedburner)

N – net: $80 in-text-links / $4.63 Adsense / $0 Amazon Associates

I had the Summer to think about my blog quite a bit with an un-distracted mind. I decided to make changes to the way I was presenting ads. I am hopeful this will pay off down the road. I am trying out the Amazon Associates banners at the foot of my index and single pages. These changes along with better keyword research and good seo picked titles will hopefully increase my net. The inlinks and traffic are up up up. I see that as a good step in the right direction. If you have any questions let me know. I hope you find these CAN blog stats posts on making money online interesting and helpful. If not, kindly let them pass by. Thanks!

C and A are way up. Net is lagging a bit. I’ve made template ad changes I think will help. Until next time, make the most of your blogging time. And remember this, the best fat burners are activities that earn you money.