Sign up right now for email updates and get two free ebooks:

How to get 80% of the results with 20% of the content

The Most Interesting Man In The World - i dont always write but when i do i write because i have s

When should you write? How often? How long should your blog posts be? Should you have a schedule? I get asked these questions and similar every week, between emails, Q&A calls/webinars, and clients. Content is becoming super important. We used to talk about if content was king or not. Now, I see a shift. The […]

How to Solve the “Creativity Problem” and Stand Out in a Crowd

I think everyone has the capacity to be creative, but if you listen to some pundits it seems creativity is something only bestowed on an elite few. The fact is, the word “creativity” itself can cause a lot of creative resistance, and make people feel that the bar has been set too high for them. […]

Spiritual River Blog Critique

Patrick Meninga, aka skinnyninja to forum members, won this blog critique in the Blogger of the Month competition. If you would like to win a blog critique or Authority Blogger membership there is still time to win the June prize, you just need to participate in the forum by being friendly, asking excellent questions that […]

Join Darren Rowse and Chris Garrett on a Live Call

How would you like to ask Darren Rowse of Problogger fame a question? Next Tuesday Darren is joining me on the telephone where I will be asking him YOUR biggest questions about blogging, traffic, subscribers and how he makes so much money – and you can join us online. Windows users will be able to […]

Interview With Naomi Dunford and Sonia Simone

Today I had the pleasure of interviewing two very cool internet marketing gurus, Naomi Dunford and Sonia Simone of Marketing for Nice People. We talked about lots of interesting stuff in this fun interview, but there are definitely some strong lessons for all of us contained in this interview. Play the interview Download the MP3 […]

Win Tickets to Social Media Success Summit 2009!

Social Media Success 2009All around the world people are very excited about Social Media Success Summit 2009 — the first major online event dedicated to helping you successfully market your business with sites like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. More than 500 people have already registered.

Now you have the exclusive chance to win two valuable seats to the event for no cost!

I am not bragging when I say that the line-up is an all-star cast (well… maybe a little).

Presenters include bestselling authors and social media marketing experts such as Gary Vaynerchuk (Wine Library TV), Darren Rowse (Problogger), Mari Smith (Facebook guru), Jason Alba (wrote the book on LinkedIn), Ann Handley (MarketingProfs), Brian Clark (Copyblogger), Denise Wakeman (BlogSquad). Oh, and me.

Sessions include:

  • How to Create a Mega-Following and Mega-Sales With Social Media Marketing
  • Building a Loyal Facebook Following for Increased Profits
  • How to Grow and Engage an Audience on Twitter
  • Using the Power and Reach of LinkedIn to Grow Your Business
  • How to Productively Engage in Social Media Marketing
  • Five Reasons You Need to Be on Twitter (and Tools to Help You Manage)
  • Social Media Start Up: 3 Key Tools to Build Your Social Media Marketing Plan
  • How to Attract Tens of Thousands of People in Mere Days
  • Using Social Bookmarking for Improved Traffic, Links and Visibility

Go here to see the full details of all 11 sessions …

This event does not require any travel (no hotel, rental car or wasted time). You simply attend sessions online and meet the experts and network with peers from the comfort of your home or office. Pretty cool, eh? :)

Contest Prizes

There are two prizes:

  1. Twitter Prize: Valued at $497
    One ticket to Social Media Success Summit 2009
  2. Grand prize: Valued at $1,693.90!
    Two tickets to Social Media Success Summit 2009 (one for you and one for a friend)

PLUS

  • A social media marketing consultation with Michael Stelzner (Michael will spend an hour with you, helping you get your plan in order)
  • A blog critique by me (I will identify actionable steps you can take to improve your blog)
  • A copy of the Problogger book by Darren Rowse and me
  • A copy of the book Writing White Papers by Michael Stelzner

Just think how your business or online efforts could be boosted by this package. Just the consult with Michael is priceless; he after all put this whole summit together.

How to Enter

Step 1: Enter for Twitter Prize

Simply post a Tweet on Twitter using the button included here, or simply copy and paste the below Tweet message. This automatically qualifies you an entry into the prize draw to win a free seat at the summit. You may tweet up to 5 times between now and 21st May 2009. The tweet must contain “#smsuccess” to qualify. We will select the winner randomly on the 22st May 2009.

The Tweet:

Win a FREE ticket to Social Media Success Summit 2009: http://cli.gs/Grq8RX #smsuccess

How to Win the Grand Prize

To win the grand prize, write a blog post (no longer than 1,000 words) explaining why you want to win a seat at the Social Media Success Summit 2009. Have your post published by midnight 21st May 2009 (GMT). So we are notified about your post you will need to leave a trackback on this blog post or comment with a link.

Remember the grand prize includes two summit tickets, social media consultation, a blog critique and two awesome books, so it is well worth getting your friends on board. The more friends who enter the more chances you have of getting a seat yourself :).

Good Luck!

The winners will be selected by Mike and I and announced right here on this blog on the 22st May 2009.

Good luck, and tell your friends!

Partnering Profits – Free Teleclass and Ebook Downloads

Partnering Profits is both a true statement and the name of Brian Clark and Jon Morrow’s new training where you can get free cool stuff!

If you have read my free ebook, Authority Alliances, you know I believe that partnering has been a huge factor in me being able to make an income online. For those of you who haven’t read it, you might want to subscribe now and grab your copy. Existing subscribers just go to the download page.

Already I have had feedback that my small free ebook has helped people put together joint ventures and team projects. Just think what you could do with a detailed partnering blueprint?

Once you have read it, go grab the free Partnering Profits ebook and live teleclass. Believe me, the stuff Brian and Jon have put together goes way further than my introduction to the topic and it will blow your mind with the possibilities for your own business.

Partnering Really Does Produce Profits

Right from the start of my online career I have been collaborating.

Rather than try to do everything yourself you can gain the benefit of key resources from those best able to provide them. It’s the most efficient route to success.

You will likely already be aware of some of my past collaborations, such as co-authoring books like the ProBlogger Book, and startups such as Performancing. Right now as well as working on several websites with business partners, I am partnering on a banner ad network, a web application aimed at small businesses and a competitor analysis tool. Several more projects are in discussion. On top of that I have partners who refer me consulting work or send me Authority Blogger customers.

Each collaboration or joint venture leads to more opportunities. So as well as my income far exceeding what I would have been able to create alone, in addition it is through these projects that I have met cool people like Brian Clark in the first place.

Partner Up and Profit Now!

Why struggle to do everything on your own? People are out there ready, willing and able to help if you can approach the right people and cut the right deal. You can learn the full strategies and how to approach it with their course eventually, but even if you just take the free stuff I am sure you will have enough ideas to take you to the next stage of your business.

Sign up and get your Partnering Profits freebies now!

As If, Yeah Right

When we write we are talking to our reader. While your reader is going through your content they will be responding. They might think “Interesting, I didn’t know that”, or they might think “So? What’s in it for me?” and they might think “So what?“. One response I don’t think many marketing copywriters are prepared […]

What Are You Saying Between the Lines?

IMG_3564.JPG

All of us have an inner dialog. When you blog, that inner message can be revealed between the lines of your articles, social media messages and forum posts.

If you are sitting there doubting what I just said, think about it for a second. That inner voice might be quiet, but it will be there. When someone compliments you, what do you think? Do you say to yourself “You are so right!” or do you think “This is embarrassing, change the subject”. When faces with an opportunity do you think “Go for it!” or do you think “This will probably go wrong. Again.”.

The things we tell ourselves are like our mental programming, the subconscious software that manages our behavior. This inner view of the world is revealed in our writing.

The things we tell ourselves are like our mental programming, the subconscious software that manages our behavior. This inner view of the world is revealed in our writing.

My inner dialog has often been “If I managed it then it can’t have been that difficult”, which translates to an outer dialog in the form of “Anyone can do this, here is how”. While my inner thoughts are not particularly healthy, in a way it has worked for me as I break things down into systems and processes then teach other people what I have learned.

When you meet someone and start talking to them, through the stories they tell you can often get an idea of what their inner story is. They leak their imagined plot-line of their life.

Here are some examples:

  • “Despite what everyone else thought, I was proved right in the end.”
  • “Life is hard, and we are powerless, don’t ever believe otherwise.”
  • “Self-promotion is evil, people should recognize my true value without being told.”
  • “People are basically good if you would only give them a chance.”
  • “Anyone with money must have cheated or worse to get it.”
  • “You are either with me or against me.”
  • “My life is a constant test.”
  • “I am in this situation because of all of them.”
  • “Everyone else is a fraud, mine is the only authentic way.”
  • “I was put here to do great things.”
  • “People always let me down leaving me to carry the burden alone.”
  • “If it wasn’t for bad luck I wouldn’t have any luck at all.”

Listen and read, try to work out what the message behind the message is. I am sure while you think on it you can come up with more examples.

So what is the point of all this?

Measured

I am not a psychologist, I don’t even play one on television, but I am interested in people. Just looking out for these things can give you a better insight into the stories we tell ourselves and the games people play, but for anyone who works online where everything we do is pretty much on permanent record, there are a couple of important ramifications:

what we say between the lines can have a profound effect on our relationships and our success (or lack of)

First of all, be aware that we all leak our inner dialog out into the world and what we say between the lines can have a profound effect on our relationships and our success (or lack of).

For example, if you are constantly complaining about people for example, don’t be surprised if friends stop helping or partnering with you. Another example would be the person who has to tell everyone he or she has a secret (between the lines “I’m in the loop, people confide in me and I am important”), but suddenly nobody shares secrets with them any longer. It might be you think you are only sharing in private, but these impressions build up over time, get shared in other channels, and are surprisingly stubborn to break.

The second part of this message is to be aware when listening to others. Listen to the intentional message along with the unintentional. Forums, conversations, twitter messages, all form a larger thread over time.

Is someone constantly sharing conspiracy links? (sense of powerlessness?) , do they start projects then quit blaming others? (no shared responsibility?). On the other hand, do they boost others? Do they share in a positive way?

These signs collected over time can give you a sense of who is a good person to team with and who might be better left to their own projects. As I have no-doubt said many times before, collaborations are a big part of any progress online and you need to make sure you are not going to be hampered before you even start.

Finally, it is possible to have a conscious between the lines message. Decide the overall theme of your blog and make each individual article reinforce that theme. As I said before, the underlying theme of everything I do is “anyone can do this”, what do you want people to take away as your lasting message?

Bottom line is awareness:

  1. Read through what you write and make your intended message clear, and be conscious of unintended messages
  2. While reading and listening, watch out to see if you can pick up any underlying themes, what are they really saying?

Do you recognize this or think I have lost my marbles? Got any examples? Think you might be leaking? How can we plug these leaks? Please share your thoughts in the comments …

Writing Lessons from Obama and Hilary

Obama and Hilary have been a dominant force in the news since they started campaigning. This is saying something, as I am not even American. Their long battle has taught me a couple of related lessons that I wanted to share with you.

Attacks and Negativity Damage All

While attacks are one way to get attention, and also serve to position yourself relative to your competitor,  in the end the damage is not localized and you end up soiling your own reputation.

Think about it, what do we say about someone who campaigns this way?

“They stooped to a new low”

“She is fighting dirty”

“Smearing the other candidate”

“Sowing the seeds of discord and dissent”

Is this the kind of thing candidates want to be associated with?

What has this to do with writing?

  • How many blogs do you see that go on the attack, as a content strategy or as a means of self promotion?
  • When you see someone ragging on someone or something popular to make a point, how do you feel?
  • Do you see community leaders saying “you are with us or against us”? (eg. why shouldn’t an Apple fan respect Bill Gates? Why is it not OK for an open source advocate to recommend a piece of proprietary software if it’s the best for the job?)
  • The whole “we don’t like these people, we are better than them, because”, does that work with you or make you think the worst of the writer?

Sometimes we do have to criticize to make a serious point, but that does not mean we should label the person. Always, if you must criticize, try to criticize behavior.

Positivity and Solutions are Persuasive

When I see two people argue like Obama and Hilary, I look for the person who is offering ideas and solutions, and I do the same in my reading and learning.

It’s impossible to make a good decision long term based on fear-mongering and negative attacks. Hate and bashing only serves to remove choices, not help make the right one. Positivity and inventive solutions provide you something to get behind, something motivating and enabling.

Ideas Bind, Attacks Divide

When you write you can say what you don’t like or you can offer ideas for a better way. I try to do the latter, though of course being only human it doesn’t always come through like that. My idea of something better today is to try to spin a criticism into an offer of positive advice and see how different the reaction and results can be.

Summary

The main point is, what do you want to achieve with your piece of writing? If you want to make someone or a whole group feel bad, then go on the attack. If on the other hand you want to help, provide answers, then you are far better giving real advice and ideas. Offer something constructive, it is best all round.

What do you think? Have I mis-read the situation, have I just alienated half my readers? Am I being unfair? Do you agree with me about my point of being positive and offering solutions? Please share your thoughts in the comments