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March 10, 2009

The Dream Team of Blogging and Social Media Experts at Your Table

Exploring Social Media article series badgeIn “How to Find Your Tribe in One Word” by , she wrote about how it is too easy to feel separated from society by the actions often not of our choosing.

Lots of folks have lots of reason for feeling we’re on the outside.

It’s almost overwhelming. The world can seem to be one huge tribe and we can seem to be the only one who’s not a part. Of course, that’s flawed thinking. Ever met a group of people who could agree on anything huge for very long? The whole world is too big to hold a meeting about who belongs.

It’s not how the world sees you. It’s how you see yourself that counts.

When I was young, my mother taught me to choose my friends wisely. As an innocent, I thought this meant I should pick better, smarter people, i.e, the popular kids. While it is important to be known by the “known” people, what she explained was a bigger principle. You are judged by those you keep company with.

Among all the social media tools I’ve been exploring in this series, this is one of the most important ones: understanding the influence others have on you to help define your social influence. read more

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August 27, 2008

DailyBlogTips interviews Timothy Sykes, $50k/month blogger

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Earlier this month, Daily Blog Tips interviewed Timothy Sykes, who is making more than $50,000 monthly with his blog:

You claim to have earned $45,000 from your blog last month, and that your traffic is 3 times smaller than John Chow’s one. How is that possible?

My business model is different, he’s all ad and affiliate-based, while my focus is on creating educational products through my own publishing company, BullShip Prress, LLC, namely my PennyStocking Instructional DVD that makes penny stock trading understandable and TIMalerts, a real-time trading alerts subscription service, both of which I promote endlessly through my blog.

Mind you, I tried Chow’s business model—admittedly only half-heartedly because I have problems promoting all the frauds in finance–but it didn’t work for me…so I adapted.

It’s an interesting interview to read primarily because of the discussion around the question above. Timothy’s income is less about advertising and affiliate income and more about using his blog as a method to promote his product lines – and then pocketing the much higher profits when those products are sold.

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July 15, 2008

Blogging Jobs: How Much Are Bloggers Paid to Blog?

Blogging Jobs by Lorelle VanFossenAs we continue with this series on blogging jobs, it’s time to look at the income a blogger can make by blogging for pay.

The skills and qualities a company or blog owner is looking for from a blogger are extensive, far beyond just writing abilities. As with any freelance job, determining how to put a value on the time it really takes, and the costs associated with the time and production, is really hard when the real cost is in time, not materials. Bloggers should be paid for the time as well as their expertise and abilities. Are they? This is a problem that has been around for a very long time. How much is your time worth?

For many decades, professional editorial writers found a compromise on the time/value issue with payment by the word with a restriction on word count. I often was told, “We’ll pay you a dollar a word up to 1,000 words maximum.”

This meant the magazine, newspaper, newsletter, or other print publication had space for one thousand words that needed to be filled. Going over meant changing their magazine or newspaper design structure. Giving them less meant I’d be paid less, but somewhere in the middle was a compromise for both of us, usually in the form of me setting a minimum fee I was to be paid, no matter the word count, such as “I want $500 minimum for 700 words and a dollar a word thereafter.” If the article came it at 400 words, I would still be paid my minimum. If it crossed the 700 word mark, at which point I should have been paid $700 for a dollar a word, that’s when they have to start paying me the dollar a word rate. It wasn’t the best, but the companies felt like they were getting a deal and for the most part, I covered the minimum I needed to pay my rent and eat.

Here is a chart for the various traditional writer’s pay scale based upon a dollar amount per word. The more experience and expertise, the higher the fee per word.
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Blogging Jobs: How Much is Blogging Worth?

Blogging Jobs by Lorelle VanFossenIn “Blogger Jobs: What Are They Looking For?” we talked about what jobs are out there and what blog owners and companies are looking for when they hire a blogger. Blogger Jobs: How to Apply For a Blogger Job? covered how to apply for a job as a blogger, with some good tips on what to do – and not to do. Today, I want to look at a very serious issue: How much are they paying bloggers to blog?

The issue of the blogging pay scale is very important, not just because I’m one of the workers in this new industry who expects to be able to pay the rent or meet a mortgage, but also because I represent the hundreds of thousands, possibly millions, of people who want to make money blogging.

In a NY Times article on the blogging sweatshops by Matt Richtel (Print Version) the description of people of one of the hottest jobs in the world has writers churning out mass volumes of content working around-the-clock to make enough money to survive. It’s called blogging.
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July 11, 2008

Blogger Jobs: How to Apply For a Blogger Job?

Blogging Jobs by Lorelle VanFossenIs applying for a job as a blogger the same as applying for any job? Yes…and no.

Blogging is about writing, however, as we found out in Blogger Jobs: What Are They Looking For?, working as a blogger is so much more.

Let’s look at where to find blogging jobs and how to apply for one.

Where to Look for Jobs for Bloggers

The following are some of the most useful and easy to access sites for blogger jobs, with most of these specifically for bloggers only.
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July 10, 2008

Blogger Jobs: What Are They Looking For?

In What is Your Ideal Dream Blog Job?, I listed some of the blogging jobs I found on the different blogger job sites, including:
Blogging Jobs by Lorelle VanFossen

  • Advertising Expert Blogger
  • Alternative Health Blogger
  • Car and Phone Tech Blogger
  • Cell Phone Blogger
  • Children Issues Blogger
  • Cosmetics Blogger
  • Musicians Blogger
  • Online Games Blogger
  • Science Blogger
  • Women’s Issues Blogger
  • Work from Home Blogger

Many people want to turn their blogging hobby into a job, and many professional writers are finding their writing jobs drying up in the shrinking and changing economy. Finding work as a blogger is a way to make your passion for writing pay off.

Digging through the blogger job news, I realized that while the job description for these jobs is much the same as for a professional writer, there are some distinctions that put blogging in a special job category. The number one different? The art of conversation. Blogs aren’t just about writing. They are about networking and socializing.
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June 30, 2008

And the puppets move on…

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Loren Feldman, of 1938 Media, has put an end to the Shel Israel puppet game.

In his post from Saturday evening entitled Open Letter to Shel Israel: It’s Over, Feldman announces the end of the dispute to Shel read more

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June 25, 2008

Steven Hodson joins Mashable

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One of my more recent adds to my newsreader is Steven Hodson of WinExtra. Over the last few weeks he’s been guesting posting at Mashable, giving him exposure to a broader audience on a very popular blog.

Now he’s announcing that he is joining Mashable as a regular blogger:

I am really looking forward to writing for Mashable and joining an excellent team of bloggers but that doesn’t mean that I will be slowing down my pace of posting here. That said my first official post as a Mashable staffer is now available for your reading pleasure so head over there and read my thoughts on GPS mobile phones and the newest wave of location based social nonsense.

Steven is someone that I could always count on for a different view on what’s happening in the world of technology – he should make a good addition to the Mashable team…

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June 24, 2008

The Secret to Writing a Successful and Outstanding Blog Ebook

Liz Strauss released her new ebook, , this weekend to rave reviews.

Based upon the lessons she learned on her own blogs, and , as a long time writer for the Blog Herald, and the work she continues in the popular annual , Liz reveals the keys she used to turn her blog into one of the most successful and social blogs on the web.

Divided into two sections, the 68-page ebook asks two important questionss: “Can You Hear the Internet?” and “Can the Internet Hear You?” If you aren’t listening to your customers and readers, you are missing the blogging boat. Accordingly, if you aren’t writing to be heard, who is listening to you?
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June 23, 2008

Shel Israel, SAP, and the end of Global Neighborhoods TV (For now?)

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Back in April, I wrote about how Shel Israel was being outsmarted by NYC Videographer Loren Feldman:

First, when deciding to embark on something new – like launching a new video show on FastCompany perhaps – it’s critical that you understand the workflow and equipment that you’re going to be using. Watching Shel try to interview someone while operating his equipment – and then the entertainment involved in watching him use the boom shotgun mike as a handheld mike nearly caused me to spit up my morning coffee.

Shel’s videos weren’t entertaining – they were boring (and badly so) and his video work was sorely lacking. This led Loren Feldman of 1938media to launch a parody video show of Shel Israel using a puppet – and the story flows from there.

Yesterday, Shel announced that SAP was dropping its sponsorship of his Global Survey and that Global Neighborhoods TV was leaving Fast Company:

SAP has been a great sponsor. They have given me a free hand in selecting topics. They have encouraged me along the way. They have paid me to do what I would have probably done on my own anyway. But after one year, they have elected not to continue and I wish them well.

Effective July 1, the SAP Global Survey will become the Global Survey. I will continue. Hopefully a new entity will step up to sponsor this ongoing exploration. Meanwhile, I will continue to seek out new stories about how social media is changing just about everything. In fact, I will be expanding topics to also cover issues of Green and Corporate Social Responsibility. If you have either a story or an interest in sponsoring, please contact me.

When GNTV launched, I was not quite ready for prime time. If I was an actor, I would say I was prepared for a summer stock script reading. When the curtain went up, I found myself instead at center stage of an opening night on Broadway with some determined hecklers in the audience who managed for a while to distract me.

Most people seem to agree that I got better. After 14 episodes, I think GNTV has proved its value and professionals hungry for insights into how they can use social media in their businesses have found GNTV to have more than a little value.

A few weeks back, however, FastCompany granted my request to take back GNTV, to remove it from their site and to eventually relaunched it o a smaller scale on this site.

Shel claims that he’ll relaunch GNTV – but that he’ll need sponsorship to do so. Interesting – because I don’t see sponsorship being needed in order to do an online video show. ZeFrank did quite well on his own.

Hopefully this brings to an end the long drama of Shel Israel and the videoblog/show. But given one of Shel’s comments, I doubt we’ve seen the last of him in front of a camera:

I’m also available for freelance video and text journalistic projects. Recently, Scoble & I collaborated on an eBook called, “The Conversational Corporation” for Dow Jones. It was an assignment I loved and welcome similar assignments. Several organizations have recently contracted video personalities to do interviews for enterprise projects and I would be happy to be considered for them in the future.

Please… no. Shel, you’re a great writer, but the video thing is simply not for you. Stick to what is working…

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