Is Your Blog Your Business or Do You Blog to Promote Your Business?

by Sherryl Perry on November 3, 2010

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Are you a blogger? If you are, are you using your blog to build awareness and drive traffic to a website for an existing business or is your blog your business? Or do you simply blog as a hobby? What fascinates me lately is the number of people who start blogging in hopes of making a living solely through blogging. How do they intend on doing this? Is their blog designed to promote a product or service? Is the product or service their own or someone else’s? Is the plan to make money through Google AdSense, affiliate programs or multi-level marketing? So my question is … “Is your blog your business or do you blog to promote your business?

Treat Your Blog as a Business

What prompted me to ask this question is an article by Tia Peterson on BizChickBlogs. Some of you may be familiar with Tia. She often comments on my articles and I can be found over on her blog adding my 2 cents. One of the reasons that Tia and I have formed a bond is that we both have similar business backgrounds and we both tend to blog with a specific purpose in mind. We both try to add value and blog about things that entrepreneurs and small business owners can find value in. Tia’s post (that got me thinking about blogging and business plans) addresses some of the challenges of blogging.

Have a Business Strategy

As I read Tia’s post, I realized that what she really was addressing related to having a business strategy. She talks about measuring improvements and charting your course. Tia and I are not alone. I know several readers who leave comments here are who very business minded and often talk about marketing tactics and business strategies. I’m pretty sure that all of these people (yes… you… I think I know who you are) have a written business plan. You have processes in place. You track your strategies and measure your results. When you identify tactics that are not producing the results that you expect, you adjust your plan accordingly.

Measure, Analyze and Regroup

To me, one of the greatest risks of working alone (like many bloggers do) is that we don’t have the checks and balances that we would have if we were working as part of a team. It’s easy to get excited over an idea that you hear about and tempting to implement a new strategy or tactic. I’m guilty of doing that too. You’ll hear about a new opportunity or a new idea that people are raving about and start considering incorporating it into your strategy.

What we need to keep in mind is the overall business plan. Just because it’s working for someone else doesn’t mean it’s a good fit for you or me. If we spend all of our time jumping on the latest bandwagon and trying the same strategies that someone else is raving about, we’re taking a huge risk. Sometimes, we need to step back and look at the plan. Even in this virtual world we’re operating in, we need to remember that the same basic business principles that would help us succeed in the brick and mortar world will help us be successful online too.

What do you think? Why do you blog? Do you have a business plan for your blog?

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{ 105 comments… read them below or add one }

Barney Delaney - Landscape Photography
Twitter:
May 16, 2012 at 4:28 pm

Hi Sherryl, a friend of mine recommended i check out your blog, I’m glad i did! I’m pretty new to the world of blogging and have been trying to keep my content engaging but at the same time keeping it on-topic. And, hoping i dont run out of steam!
Thanks again for the pointers and taking the time to share.
Barney Delaney – Landscape Photography recently posted..Landscape Photography, Canada Landmarks, Consolation LakeMy Profile

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Sherryl Perry May 16, 2012 at 4:56 pm

Welcome Barney. I’m glad you came by! I love photography and have experience promoting an online virtual tour business that targeted the tourism industry. (I’ll check out your site as soon as I get a chance.) Feel free to use the comment section to ask questions (of course you could always use the contact form if you’d like). I often get great idas from posts in the comment section. There are a lot great conversations that go on here too.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..2 Steps to Stalking the Popular Kids and Getting More TrafficMy Profile

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Corporate Photographer London
Twitter:
March 30, 2012 at 6:57 pm

We initially blogged for some personal ideas but planning on having a useful section that will be more industry related in the future.

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Sherryl Perry March 30, 2012 at 8:54 pm

Good luck with your blog. Writing industry related articles can be a good idea. Just make sure that you’re writing content that your potential clients will find valuable. I’ve noticed some professionals who write content that other professionals in their niche find valuable. If your intent is to attract new business, then that’s who you should be writing for.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Are Your Website Visitors Sticking Around Or Bailing Out?My Profile

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Barney Delaney - Landscape Photography
Twitter:
May 17, 2012 at 9:05 am

Thanks Sherryl, very kind of you, thank you! I’ll be sure to check them out, cheers!
Barney Delaney – Landscape Photography recently posted..Landscape Photography, Canada Landmarks, Consolation LakeMy Profile

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Nate March 18, 2012 at 2:51 pm

I think it is really important to have a strategy as you mentioned in the post, but sometimes it just goes your way with a project you really didn’t put so much effort to. So it is really important to not overdo your blog. You will notice quite soon if it is interesting for people to read! Thanks for a great post btw! =)

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Sherryl Perry March 18, 2012 at 6:04 pm

Nate, What do you mean by overdoing your blog? Do you mean over promoting it?

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Jeff
Twitter:
January 24, 2012 at 5:21 pm

This is an all too common occurrence, “blogging about blogging” , for the sake of blogging, and maybe some affiliate/adsense income will trickle in along the way.

In some ways, it’s better to do ‘something’, than nothing, but eventually we all need to define the purpose of our blog, and understand how it helps others.

It could be as simple as documenting your journey, to say “get out of debt”, but that is probably helping someone….hence the blog’s purpose. You provide practical tips for helping people take action and get out of debt.

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Sherryl Perry January 24, 2012 at 5:57 pm

Jeff,
I agree that we need to define a purpose. Our blogs can educate, entertain or somehow add value. I find that blogs that just prattle on without bringing value to their readers tend to go nowhere and eventually end up abandoned.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..What Impact does Social Media Have on Businesses?My Profile

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Abel Pardo Fernandez
Twitter:
January 22, 2012 at 5:53 pm

I agree with you, Sherryl. No strategies = not to know where are you going. A business plan is necessary for making a company, for developing it step by step, and so on a blogging plan is also a must for a blogger, even if this person hasn’t a company.

Plan, test and control are our keywords.

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Sherryl Perry January 22, 2012 at 7:15 pm

Hi Abel,
“Plan, test and control” are music to my ears. Add documenting and tracking to that and I think a blogger would be in good shape to at least get started.

I followed the link to your blog. Whatever you’re using to translate does a good job. Thanks for dropping by and leaving a comment. It’s always good to hear from others.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..What Impact does Social Media Have on Businesses?My Profile

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Corporate Photographer
Twitter:
December 18, 2011 at 5:24 pm

Hi Sheril, just wanted to say that it is a nice blog post. I am having a blog on my site but at the moment I am keeping it just personal. However, more and more I keep noticing that Google really in many cases prefers blogs to static sites, which rarely change and do not populate content as fast as blogs in most cases. So, I am thinking that perhaps following your guidelines could be better for the readership and overall relevancy to the nature of my business. So thank you for the blog – it made me think that I could try doing more with mine. Have a great day!:-)

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Sherryl Perry December 18, 2011 at 5:52 pm

You’re absolutely right about search engines liking new content. That’s why it’s so important to include bloggubg as part of your online marketing strategy. I took a quick peek at your website and I found it a little difficult to find your portfolios. I also had a question as to who your target clients are. I’m thinking that you could use your blog to link to specific pages on your site. Maybe the different tabs on your site (actors head shots, corporate, portrait, family, fashion and product) could be categories and you could write posts using the appropriate keywords to target that niche in those articles.

You may find the article that I linked to below interesting as you think about the opportunities of driving traffic through your blog. Good luck!
Sherryl Perry recently posted..4 SEO Tips to Optimize your WordPress BlogMy Profile

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richie
Twitter:
December 2, 2011 at 4:48 pm

Hi Sherryl,
My site is three weeks old and is used to promote my business i have written a few blogs and am focusing on the seo, i have signed up to adsense and this will be my next step.
I must say that i am enjoying this new learning curve and the wealth of information that is available from sites like yours.

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Sherryl Perry December 4, 2011 at 9:48 pm

Hi Richie,
Good luck with your blog. Blogging is a great way to build awareness of your business. I just took a peek at your blog. You’re off to a good start. One of my earlier posts might give you some additional insight. If you get a chance, check out http://keepupwiththeweb.com/4-basic-steps-to-better-blogging-better-branding-and-more-business/. Any questions, feel free to ask. There are always great tips in the comment section here. We have a very active group of readers!

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Julie Dawn Harris December 1, 2011 at 3:55 am

Thanks for the great ideas Sherryl!

Blogging can help blog owners in so many ways. As practiced, I blogged to earn more referral traffic for my site as well as to know the world what are the services offered by our company and yes, it’s like making money out of my blog and indeed it’s an effective strategy.

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Sherryl Perry December 2, 2011 at 12:19 pm

You’re welcome Julie. Blogging is a commitment but it’s a great way to build awareness and the search engines love new content. So, it’s a win-win.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Utilizing Social Media to Build Brand Awareness and AuthorityMy Profile

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CherylB November 12, 2011 at 1:08 am

At first blogging is just a hobby for me.. But these days as blogging is becoming more competitive, I am considering this as my business as well.

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Sherryl Perry November 12, 2011 at 10:27 am

Hi Cheryl,
That’s wonderful that your blog is growing and that you’re developing plans to treat it as a business. Do you have Google Analytics installed? This could be very important to you in the future if you need to show growth in readership. I always recommend installing GA as soon as possible to start collecting data.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Can Someone Tell What Your Website/Blog Is About In 3 Seconds?My Profile

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Grant October 16, 2011 at 1:43 pm

Do you do any other kinds of SEO i.e. comments on blogs with backlinks? I ask this as with my posts I was doing well of three keyword terms, but getting nowhere in google with 2 keyword terms and had to use back linking to gain the higher positions

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Sherryl Perry October 16, 2011 at 4:56 pm

I comment on a lot of blogs that use CommentLuv with KeywordLuv installed but I really have not increased the amount of commenting that I’ve been doing lately. I’ve been pretty consistent with that. What sort of backlinking did you do to gain higher positions?
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Can Klout Really Measure our Influence on Social Media?My Profile

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Sherryl Perry October 16, 2011 at 12:08 pm

Hi Gabriel. It’s good to hear that your strategy for you blog is working for you.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Should CommentLuv Premium be Part of Your Social Media Strategy?My Profile

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Grant October 16, 2011 at 10:16 am

I use my blog to promote my business- nothing new in that I know- but I also have become very interested in SEO through reading other blogs and joining the blogging community and your point about not chasing after all the techniques that people are raving about is a good point as this can often distract you from your own SEO plans.

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Sherryl Perry October 16, 2011 at 1:17 pm

Hi Grant,
Concentrating on SEO is a strategy that I’ve embraced for this blog and I’m starting to reap the results. I’ve always optimized my posts for the search engines but recently I’ve been paying a lot more attention to the specific keywords that I’m tying to rank well on – especially keyword phrases including the words “business” and “strategy”. It’s actually the topics in Klout that motivated me to be more conscious of this. When MLM marketing showed up as a topic that I ranked in, it made me realize that it had to have come from tweeting the posts of a fellow blogger. (I personally have little experience with MLM marketing.) I started paying more attention to using my keywords in my post titles and in hashtags when I tweet. The percentage of traffic that I’m now receiving from organic searches has risen significantly.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Could Your Business Survive if Something Happened to You?My Profile

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George
Twitter:
October 15, 2011 at 8:13 pm

Many reputed companies are maintaining blog to add a personal touch to their business which works favorably in generating more business. It also act as a gateway to social networks with social sharing enabled.

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Sherryl Perry October 16, 2011 at 12:14 pm

You raise a good point George. Companies are embracing both blogging and social media as tools to engage their customers. Nowadays, that human connection is vital to business success. Thanks for weighing in on this.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Could Your Business Survive if Something Happened to You?My Profile

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Kate Mirkowski October 12, 2011 at 12:09 am

My blog is my business and I promote my business through blog. Promoting your business through blogging is perfect strategy. Many famous bloggers been using it, like you. Thanks Sherryl for sharing this great one.

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Sherryl Perry October 16, 2011 at 12:11 pm

Hi Kate,
I followed the link to your blog post. You have a lot of information about dancing but I am a little confused about your business. Do you own a dance studio?
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Can Anyone Really Follow 131,000 People on Twitter?My Profile

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Milhan September 27, 2011 at 4:58 am

Good job Sherryl,.Seems like you have done lot of research on this topic and I really liked the way of your writing and how you have thrown the light on unhidden facts. The main focus is to make your blog post rich in content. You can only attract people, to your posts if they feel that it is valuable for them. Should also point out that not all of the techniques are going to work for every business.

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Sherryl Perry September 28, 2011 at 6:15 pm

I’ve launched a business or two. :) It all comes down to having a plan and knowing your niche. I’ve worked with clients before who have started out wanting to market their products or services to anyone who would buy them. That is a big mistake and a quick way to waste a lot of time and money.

You are completely right that not all techniques work for all businesses. Thanks for the reminder!
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Can One Website Meet the Needs of Multiple Niche Target Markets?My Profile

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Grant September 16, 2011 at 2:25 pm

I use my event photographer blog to promote my work as a showcase to clients. I can’t see it making any money with sponsorship or advertisers but that was never the idea. Its as you say – use your blog for the business you are in.

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Sherryl Perry September 16, 2011 at 4:25 pm

Hi Grant,
Thanks for dropping by. Do you use your blog to reach potential clients as well? The reason I’m asking is that I checked out your blog and your photography speaks for itself. I did notice that you don’t have a lot of text on your blog and I have to believe that must hurt you in the search engines. You can certainly use the meta tag description fields for each of your images to include keyword rich text but additionally, I believe adding some content to your posts would help drive more traffic to your site.

Good luck with your business!
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Can Anyone Really Follow 131,000 People on Twitter?My Profile

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Jane September 14, 2011 at 3:49 pm

Bloggers do blog for different purposes. Whatever it may be, make sure that you have entailed it with a business plan. As bloggers, we are entrepreneurs in our own little ways. We promote whatever we have in our blog, may it be in the form of personal thoughts, affiliate’s or any make money business, products or services. Business plans really plays an important role in managing our blog.

Thanks for sharing.

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Sherryl Perry September 16, 2011 at 3:48 pm

Hi Jane,
It’s great to hear from other bloggers who recognize the importance of having a business plan for their blog. Going through the exercise of creating a document and answering the questions such as who is target customer or client, how you intend to market etc. can be invaluable. There are so many free resources and templates available to create a business plan, that not knowing “how” is not a valid excuse.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Can Anyone Really Follow 131,000 People on Twitter?My Profile

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John Knights June 27, 2011 at 2:32 pm

The title speaks for it self.
I envy those who already have their business set up. As for pure bloggers, I believe some of them thinks that they wish they also have their own business to promote into their blog.
But I know some people who are contented as bloggers and make good amount of money just blogging.

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Sherryl Perry September 16, 2011 at 12:58 pm

John, Sorry it took me so long to read your comment! I agree some people blog just as an online journal but eventually most people do look to monetize their blogs. At that point, it becomes a business
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Can Anyone Really Follow 131,000 People on Twitter?My Profile

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Jay January 14, 2011 at 3:55 am

Aside from blogging to earn a living, I blog to improve my passion which is writing. Anyway, before I started my blogging business, I devised a plan on how to improve my business and reach all my goals. Yeah, business plan are really important in every business in order not to get lost from the right track. Your strategies should also be evaluated and updated in order to get pace with your competitors. Great post. I really had a good read.

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Sherryl Perry January 14, 2011 at 9:02 pm

Thanks so much for sharing your experience with blogging. Blogs are a wonderful resource for writers. You are so right about needing to evaluate and update your strategies. It’s always been important but today with new technologies becoming available at such a rapid pace, it’s more important than ever. Good luck with your blog!
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Who Should You Like- Follow and Connect WithMy Profile

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TJ McDowell December 22, 2010 at 11:52 am

Sherryl,
My blog definitely isn’t intended to be a business on its own. I really enjoy writing, and it’s a great way to build SEO value into our main website, to get a little extra money (eventually), and also to build credibility amongst photographers. Maybe that’s too many things that I’m trying to accomplish with the blog, but I feel like I can accomplish all 3.

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Sherryl Perry December 22, 2010 at 3:07 pm

Hi TJ,
Definitely sounds like you have a blogging strategy. I hope you don’t mind if I offer a couple of (unsolicited) tips. I checked out the blog that you linked to here and I think you did a great job. (I would suggest using keyword-rich headers to break up the sections because search engines love them.) I did notice that I couldn’t find a way to get to your main site from this blog though. (I’m probably missing it.)

Since I love photography, I went to your main site and noticed that the links you have there are to blogs hosted on blogspot.com rather than incorporated in sub-directories of your main website. Are there plans to incorporate them into your main site? (You’re losing an opportunity to increase your ranking with the search engines by driving traffic to blogspot.com rather than your website. This is pretty huge.) Overall, you have a very nice site and I definitely appreciate your joining the conversation here. :)

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TJ McDowell December 22, 2010 at 3:36 pm

Sherryl,
Thanks for stopping by my blog =) And thanks for the advice.

With the keyword rich headers, are you talking about within each post or on the main blog page? As far as the blog being listed on the main site, it actually isn’t. The reason it’s not is because it’s more for photographers, and our main site is more for customers. From your perspective, do you feel like keeping the 2 separated is a mistake?

The photography education blog is done by me, and the blogspot blogs are Larissa’s. I’m a big fan of Wordpress, but I don’t think Larissa shares my appreciation for Wordpress. I agree that there would be many benefits to including the other blogs on the same site, but for right now she’s pretty happy with how things are.

Thanks again for taking the time to offer some great suggestions! Talk to you again soon.

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Sherryl Perry December 22, 2010 at 3:59 pm

The keyword rich headers would be within your posts. If you look at this post, you see the 3 bold headers. The 1st header is “Treat Your Blog as a Business”. If you’re using WordPress, you may see a drop-down button labeled either “format” or it may say “paragraph”. (I’m not sure if the default editor has this but it probably does.) You should be able to select your text and then select “Heading 2″. That will insert the HTML tags for you. (You could switch to the HTML tab and enter the header tags yourself.

As for your larissaphotography.com/blog, the way you’ve created it is exactly what I would have done. I just didn’t understand why you didn’t have a link to your main site. Even if you don’t think photographers would be interested, at least the search engines would find an internal link to your main domain.

As for the blogspot blogs, I just hate to see people missing an opportunity to drive traffic to their domain. Blogspot.com does not need your traffic. Maybe someday you could convince Larissa to import her existing blogs into her main website.

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Rob Berman December 22, 2010 at 11:01 pm

Sherryl:

I found where you are talking about H2 tags. Are you suggesting that all the headings should be H2 or just some of them? Feel free to look at one of my posts for reference.

Thanks,

Rob
Rob Berman recently posted..Turning a Liability into an AssetMy Profile

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Sherryl Perry December 23, 2010 at 12:37 pm

Rob,
You don’t want to overload your post with heading tags. It needs to appear natural but it is a great way to give a little SEO juice using keyword rich phrases. I try to use no more than three or four H2 tags in my posts (which usually run between 600 to 800 words). You can also use H3 and H4 tags.

I looked at the post that you linked to and I may have used an H2 tag like “Pepsi and Coke Meet the Obesity Challenge”. Then I would probably use H2 tags around “How the Two Leading Soda Companies Prepared”. Then I would try to come up with a keyword rich heading for “the takeaway”.

In addition to the search engines paying more attention to the header tag, they also help to define your post. They stand out a little more than the rest of the text and help draw your readers eye.

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Rob Berman December 23, 2010 at 2:52 pm

Sherryl:

Thanks for the insight. I going to try it.

Rob

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Sherryl Perry December 13, 2010 at 12:01 pm

Great! I congratulate you on being so ambitious. :)

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Grant December 13, 2010 at 9:42 am

Hi Sherryl

I noticed your comment about using an avatar, and agree that Gravatar.com is a great way to do it and gets it added automatically to your comments. It is also good for your all around SEO as well- Cheers Grant

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Sherryl Perry December 13, 2010 at 12:04 pm

Gravatars are great Grant. They really help bloggers weed out spam. (Spammers rarely use gravatars.)

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Grant September 22, 2011 at 2:02 pm

You can also tell how important they are – as if a twitter follower changes their profile photo it really seems odd and a little strange for a while.

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Sherryl Perry September 23, 2011 at 10:08 am

When I’m on sites like BlogEngage and Blokube, I find myself scanning the Gravatars for familiar faces. So, I hope no one changes their profile pics too much. It’s part of your brand.

BTW – I really like how you’ve included a camera in your Gravatar.
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Will CommentLuv Premium Make Your Blogging Life Easier?My Profile

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Grant September 23, 2011 at 11:20 am

Thanks Sherryl
I kept the camera in shot for the obvious reason, which is what I try and do when I get commissions to photograph clients who need a social media portrait. Its good to get an element of their business or personality in the avatar.

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Ron December 13, 2010 at 7:16 am

Blogging is my business and a part of my hobby. I use to do blogs to express my thoughts and it is my way to share my experiences. Thanks for sharing!

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Sherryl Perry December 13, 2010 at 12:06 pm

I’m hoping someday to blog as a hobby too. It would be nice to be able to quickly write a post that I didn’t have to spend so much time on! I could just ramble about my thoughts and experiences for fun Of course, no one would probably read it. :)

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Sherryl Perry December 10, 2010 at 10:52 pm

Thank you so much for the positive feedback Tia!

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Grant December 2, 2010 at 1:19 pm

Thanks Sherryl
I use keywordLuv as well to reward comments made and my worry was that I would attract lots of spam but the opposite has happened! Grant

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Sherryl Perry December 2, 2010 at 8:29 pm

That’s good to hear about KeywordLuv Grant. I know other people who like it too. I’ll look into it when I have some free time.

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Grant December 2, 2010 at 10:28 am

I must admit that when I started my blog I only saw it as a way to promote my business. Keeping in touch with the blogging community via keywordLuv has let me see the potential of blogging as a business. Grant

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Sherryl Perry December 2, 2010 at 1:10 pm

Grant, I find the blogging community to be so generous. I’m amazed at the opportunities that are opening up to me through blogging. It’s great to have you here!

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Sherryl Perry November 30, 2010 at 9:02 pm

Thanks for your input. Sounds like you think your blogs out strategically. BTW – I followed the CommentLuv and was going to leave a comment but the “Comments are closed”.

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Sherryl Perry December 2, 2010 at 12:05 pm

I had never heard of Gloson. Thanks for the tip! I’m following him on Twitter now. I appreciate your comments. We’re building a nice community here, I think. :)

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Stacy November 23, 2010 at 3:07 pm

Yes, I read this Tia’s article too. Also I read Kathy’s article (fellow blogger who also comments a lot on Tia’s blogs) and she wrote on the topic in a different light. She said that you also have to define whether your blog works for you or you work for your blog. For many people who are just enthusiastic about blogging but don’t have a clear plan on how to monetize them, the whole blogging thing turns into them working for their blogs without any considerable feedback. We should always weigh costs and benefits.

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Sherryl Perry November 23, 2010 at 5:03 pm

Stacy, I read Kathy’s blog too and I know exactly which post you’re talking about. Wasn’t she talking about writing a blog as a job and not as a business?

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Stacy November 29, 2010 at 1:23 pm

Sherryl, from what I remember, the recommendation was along the lines of making your blog work for you (business) rather than working for it (that’s description of the job according to Kiyosaki). She writers the following: “If you are serious about building your blog into something great, then you had better think about how you intend to transition it from a job to a real business.”

Perhaps I got it wrong, we can check on her post to find out :)

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Sherryl Perry November 29, 2010 at 4:54 pm

I thinke we both interpret her post the same way. I believe she said that when you aren’t serious and don’t transition your blog to a business, that’s when it becomes a job.

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Jasmine November 23, 2010 at 2:27 pm

What a great post! I blog to promote my business. I write a new post once a week, including articles and sometimes a really great review as a guest post. But the kind of blogs I like to read are personal blogs. The ones that really create a homey environment. One where I can grab a cup of coffee and read through the morning! Everyone has a different strategy I suppose!

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Sherryl Perry November 23, 2010 at 5:00 pm

Jasmine, Blogging is a great way to promote a business. Search engines in particular love blogs because the content is updated so often. I have to ask…. I went to your site to see your blog and didn’t find it. Is your blog on a separate domain?

I know just the kind of blog you’re talking about! I enjoy those too.

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Dustin November 12, 2010 at 10:50 pm

This post is getting at a good point. It really depends on the blogger’s purpose. If a blogger just wants to blog for fun, that is fine. But on the other hand many of us are blogging for a specific purpose like financial gain or the ability to help others or both!

I personally use my blog to help new bloggers come up with ideas and keep moving down the path. My blog content is free and user oriented but I offer Hosting Services, WordPress Installations, and PHPBB Forum Installations as the business side. Every blogger looking to earn a living needs to find that balance in my opinion.

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Sherryl Perry November 14, 2010 at 11:42 am

Sounds like you definitely have a strategy for your blog. Offering meaningful content while at the same time, monetizing your blog by offering valuable services is definitely a plan to me. I agree with you that every blogger does need to find t he balance. Thanks for commenting!
Sherryl Perry recently posted..Differentiate your Website From Your Competitors with Live HelpMy Profile

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Sherryl Perry November 9, 2010 at 9:50 am

Sounds like you’re taking advantage of blogging by both driving traffic to a business with a blog and having a blog as a business itself. I need to do more of the latter. Thanks for commenting!

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Laptopuri ieftine November 9, 2010 at 9:35 am

I’m more a tech guy, but if I have to write content I surely do it for SEO and money. Anyway I’ve just started a new blog and I had my ROI in less than a month. (domain name + hosting)

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Sherryl Perry November 9, 2010 at 11:49 am

Good luck with your new blog! Great point that (other than your time) the cost of your domain name + hosting is usually your only investment in a new blog. So, hopefully, you can earn that back relatively quickly.

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John November 8, 2010 at 9:37 pm

I do a little bit of both and with that in mind I know how important it is to have a strategy or plan for your business. I totally agree with you that you’re taking a huge risk of you jump on the bandwagon of every shiny new system that’s suppose to make you five figures in 30 days. You should focus on your marketing plan and master that before you move on to the next strategy, because what works for one individual may not work for you so stick to what you do best and your blog will be everything you want it to be.

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Sherryl Perry November 9, 2010 at 10:16 am

John,
Thanks for letting me know that you value having a strategy and business plan.

I wanted to let you know that for some reason, the little CommentLuv icon is showing but your post wasn’t attached. (I have no idea why but I didn’t want you to think I stripped it out.)

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Ryan November 6, 2010 at 1:21 pm

Hey Sherryl! Im really new to promoting my website and I’m giving it my best shot! I know that it is key to build relationships and drive traffic to your website! I’m really hoping I can be successful.. But thank you very much for your article :)

Cheers! -Ryan

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Sherryl Perry November 9, 2010 at 10:02 am

Thanks for letting me know that you liked my article Ryan. Sounds like you’re on the right track to being successful.

On another note…. have you thought about grabbing an avatar? Your comment sat in my spam folder for a few days. When I glance quickly and see a photo, it’s so much easier to identify a comment as not being from a spammer. You can create an avatar at Gravatar.com. It’s easy and free.

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Fran Aslam November 5, 2010 at 5:53 pm

Hi Sherryl :

My blog is to introduce myself to the networking community with an image, I will make money with my blog only. I make some money writing for other people, and that is how I started this blog. Planning business strategy and measure and analyze and regroup all are great ides to place yourself where you want to be. Your blog post is a great reminder to me that I better work fast and move from branding to converting. I appreciate creating a reminder for all of us not to waste time but learn whatever is good for us to move from one point to the next.
Oh by the way I read Tia Peterson too

Fran A

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Sherryl Perry November 8, 2010 at 10:44 am

Hi Fran, Sounds like you have a plan for your blog. You site is temporarily down now but I’ll try to remember to check it out later. Hope to see you on Tia’s blog too!

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Dennis Salvatier
Twitter:
November 5, 2010 at 3:07 pm

Great strategies, Sherryl. This is very helpful information. I definitely see the benefit of treating the blog as a business. But I’m lucky in the fact that I’ve been able to use my blog as a “hobby” and not a selling point. Perhaps it’s because of the nature of what I do that I feel people would feel me selling them and they would be turned off and turn away. I prefer to share what I do and how I do it in a fun way. It had lead to some great gigs and the best part about it was I wasn’t even trying, but I am going to take this info to heart and see if I can make it help me. Because, like you, I am all about selling the value and not the product. Thanks!
Dennis Salvatier recently posted..When to Trust Your Gut and Go With Your InstinctsMy Profile

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Sherryl Perry November 5, 2010 at 3:33 pm

Dennis, Your blog is a wonderful showcase of your talent. Your illustrations are great and you’re certainly building awareness. Have you ever thought about incorporating your blog into your graphic design website? I don’t think it would be a turnoff at all. Your work speaks for itself on your blog. I would think if someone was excited about your illustrations in your posts that having your blog as part of your site would make it easy for potential clients to find you. Readers may not notice the link on your blog to your “Official Website”. It would also drive traffic to http://salvatierstudios.com/ rather than blogspot.com It would still be the same “fun” blog it is now. Nothing would change except your address.

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Dennis Salvatier
Twitter:
November 5, 2010 at 11:27 pm

You are absolutely right and that’s one of my goals for next week. It’s been on my mind for a very long time and it’s time to do it. Thanks for the reminder and the continued support. You’re a doll, Sherryl!
Dennis Salvatier recently posted..When to Trust Your Gut and Go With Your InstinctsMy Profile

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Catarina Alexon
Twitter:
November 5, 2010 at 1:31 pm

Good article Sherryl. Blogging is part of my personal brand i.e international businesswoman and writer. Have lived in and/or worked with almost all countries in the world. Hence the picture since it swiftly shows how international I am.

Don’t have a business plan for it. However, since I’m considering taking on assignments as a consultant I recently started writing more about communications, PR, CSR and so forth. Apart from that I just promote it to make sure I get a lot of readers to “sell” my brand to.

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Sherryl Perry November 5, 2010 at 1:41 pm

Even if you don’t have a formally written business plan for your blog Catarina, you certainly have an active blog with valuable information. And your purpose is clear – to build your personal brand. You’re definitely blogging with a purpose and you have a well defined niche. I enjoy reading your blog very much.

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Calgary November 4, 2010 at 11:42 pm

Nice strategies. I think nowadays, blogs are getting more sophisticated and competitive. The potential of making money from blogging has really increased. Blogging is a real business. Anyone with knowledge in blogging and with determination to succeed can make a good income through blogging. Quality content is the key to success. Layout may have impact on your visitors but content is still the most important part of any blog.

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Sherryl Perry November 5, 2010 at 1:04 pm

Agreed. It’s amazing how powerful WordPress has become. There is definitely huge potential as well as competition. Content is critical. I also think differentiation is a critical part of success too.

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Julie Weishaar
Twitter:
November 4, 2010 at 5:57 pm

Thanks for the validation Sherryl – then with your answer I can now say that my blog IS part of my business plan :)
Julie Weishaar recently posted..The Printing Industry TransformedMy Profile

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Susan Oakes
Twitter:
November 4, 2010 at 5:07 pm

Great post Sherryl. I do have an overall plan with the blog being part. I am slowly turning the blog to more as a website with a blog being part instead of the focus. Probably would not surprise you that I have set up metrics to track and make adjustments along the way.
Susan Oakes recently posted..5 Signs Your Customers May Be Cheating On YouMy Profile

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Sherryl Perry November 5, 2010 at 1:01 pm

Susan, I knew you had a plan and metrics! :) I’ve been noticing some changes to your website. I’m gradually implementing subtle changes to my blog too. Are your marketing courses a new addition to your coaching?

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Susan Oakes
Twitter:
November 5, 2010 at 3:52 pm

Hi Sherryl,

Yes I they are and want include more short courses for marketing and also make changes to the coaching. Just need to find the time to get more up and make them available in different ways.
Susan Oakes recently posted..5 Signs Your Customers May Be Cheating On YouMy Profile

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keyuri joshi
Twitter:
November 4, 2010 at 3:55 pm

Sherryl, As usual, you have educated and inspired. Until recently (when a very kind SP put an idea in my head) I didn’t formalize my blog as part of my business strategy. I knew I was using it as such, but didn’t connect the idea in my head with what the blog was doing. I’ve made some changes and I know I still have plenty to do. Moving forward I’ll always think of my blog as a marketing piece and work on optimizing it.

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Sherryl Perry November 5, 2010 at 12:55 pm

Thanks for the kind words Keyuri. I’ve noticed the changes you’ve made to your blog and it is definitely a more cohesive fit into your business website now. The changes are subtle but should be effective. I really enjoy reading your blog and often find myself sharing some of your posts on my Facebook page.

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Rob Berman November 4, 2010 at 2:20 pm

I blog to build a brand. People want to do business with you when they see you offer value. There should always be a plan for you tactics and strategies. Some of those should be about readership (reach), how often you are found through organic search (content), how often you are quoted, referred to, re-tweeted etc (influence). None of those three are typical business plan topics. The plan for the web should be multi-channel and ever evolving as Social Media grows.

Rob
Rob Berman recently posted..Differentiated Commodity Products Drive ProfitsMy Profile

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Sherryl Perry November 5, 2010 at 12:53 pm

Good points Rob especially about it being multi-channel and ever evolving.

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Krystal November 4, 2010 at 2:41 am

Very interesting. I am an affiliate with all of the site that you are affilliated with and my blog doesn’t have any of the banners – looking good like yours. This is inspiring. I especially like the ‘follow me’ banner.

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Sherryl Perry November 9, 2010 at 9:54 am

The “follow me” banner is a simple plug-in called “Follow Me”. It works well for me. Of course, depending on what plug-ins you have, there’s always the chance of a conflict.

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Ardorm November 4, 2010 at 12:11 am

Since I am still a student, you can tell that I have only a kind of “business plan”. I blog about technology, movies, making money online and society. I think that you may guess which one of the topics was chosen by me in order to get more traffic ;-)

So, basically, I have a certain strategy which I have been establishing for two years. I know that 2 years is pretty much time, still my plan works :-)

Though I think about blogging techniques, I am doing this for getting more traffic and not making money of it… at least, not yet :D

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Sherryl Perry November 4, 2010 at 12:42 pm

Congratulations on having a business plan and a strategy. Sounds like we’ll be hearing more from you. Thanks for dropping by and joining the conversation!

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Wes Towers
Twitter:
November 3, 2010 at 9:26 pm

This is another thought-provoking post from you, Sherryl. I salute you. :) I blog mainly because I want to offer information to my target audience, hoping that I could reel in some business in the process. It is just lately that I’ve started enhancing the business plan of my blog by commenting on others’ posts. As you may have noticed, I am fairly young in this thing, and still trying to establish, what I hope would be, great relationships.

Thanks for the post.

– Wes -

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Sherryl Perry November 4, 2010 at 12:35 pm

Wes, sounds like your plan is very similar to Julie’s. It’s working for both of you because I have found your blogs and I’m commenting and retweeting for both of you. You’re establishing your presence, building awareness and driving traffic to your website from your blog. I think you’re establishing great relationships. I know I’m glad I met you online. :)

Thanks for the comment!

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Wes Towers
Twitter:
November 5, 2010 at 11:01 pm

Thanks for the encouragement and support, Sherryl.

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Julie Weishaar
Twitter:
November 3, 2010 at 6:46 pm

Hi Sherryl,

More great insight from you :) A “business plan” for my blog – hmmmm – well I am not writing my blog to earn money from my blog. I know there are people who do but that is not my goal. I am writing it to provide value to those who read it, to establish myself as someone who knows what she is talking about, to connect with others and build relationships, and to meet new people like you. I know I have accomplished most of the above – I would have to ask others to evaluate whether or not I have established myself as someone who knows what she is talking about :)
Julie Weishaar recently posted..The Printing Industry TransformedMy Profile

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Sherryl Perry November 4, 2010 at 12:13 pm

Julie,
Your blog does all those things and you absolutely have established yourself as someone to look to when outsourcing marketing. You’re building awareness and driving traffic to promote your services. So, isn’t your blog a part of your overall business plan?

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Josh Ray November 9, 2010 at 7:25 am

I agree that it sounds like it’s part of your business plan. I’m in a similar situation in that I created my blog to promote myself in my niche as a freelance writer. If by some miracle I get to the point where 100’s of 1,000’s of people are visiting on a daily basis than I think my blog would turn into my business but my goal is to find clients through my blog.

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Sherryl Perry November 9, 2010 at 10:51 am

Josh, Sounds like you’re on the right track! I just read your post and after following a link found your list of “55 Active Web Directories to Submit your RSS Feed!” – Thanks. That’s very helpful!

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Josh Ray November 9, 2010 at 5:49 pm

Thanks for replying and checking out my site. I hope the directories help, although I don’t place a ton of confidence in them myself. They’re necessary but probably not the best source of links. It’s nice to see bloggers actually taking time to reply to their comments.

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Astro Gremlin December 4, 2011 at 1:29 pm

Like you, Josh, I’m seeing what kind of readership I can attract, and what they like, before developing a business model. I’m running a few ads and affiliate links in the process. Have to admit I’m just a hobbyist at this point, but having this brand of “fun” sure takes a lot of work! Good luck with your freelancing — have done it full time, still do it part time, and it has challenges and rewards like no other business.
Astro Gremlin recently posted..How to Be a Superhero Part 2My Profile

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