Aweber Tutorial: How To Create A Blog Broadcast Newsletter

Does the thought of creating a newsletter completely overwhelm you? Then I highly recommend creating an automatic blog broadcast newsletter in Aweber. And I’m going to show you how to do it in under ten minutes in this Aweber blog broadcast tutorial – video edition.

VIEW THE VIDEO ABOVE OR ON YOUTUBE

WHAT IS A BLOG BROADCAST NEWSLETTER?

A blog broadcast newsletter is an email newsletter that you create by pulling from the published articles on your blog’s RSS feed. If you have a WordPress or Blogger blog, then you absolutely have an RSS feed. Every time you publish a new article to your blog, it will be added to your Aweber blog broadcast, so the great thing about this strategy is that you can set it once and forget it.

HOW TO USE A BLOG BROADCAST

When I first started my consulting business, I was spending most of my time creating content and searching for clients, I didn’t have the time necessary to publish a regular newsletter. BUT one thing I knew was that it was very important to continue engaging my list. Sporadic engagement will only result in sporadic results, and people will forget why they signed up in the first place or even who you are. That’s why it’s a great idea to use a blog broadcast newsletter as your main weekly, bi-weekly newsletter, or as an article wrap-up type of a newsletter.

VIDEO NOTES

This video was created to supplement my original written tutorial:
The Beginner’s Guide For Creating An Online Newsletter

Newsletter/Autoresponder Service Used: Aweber

How To Build A Trustworthy Blog In 7 Steps

7 Steps For Building A Trustworthy Blog That Gets Readers To Know, Like & Trust You And Pleases The Search Engine Gods

The key to making more money online in your business is to build trust with prospective clients and customers. When people feel as if they know you, as if you are a trusted friend, they are more likely to invest in you. Here are seven ways to improve your blog’s “trust factor” with potential customers and clients.

building a trustworthy blog

1. Teach Your Readers Something

The most important thing when building your blog is to write or feature content that teaches your readers something or solves a problem…and get it right! When you solve a problem for a reader, even if they don’t subscribe to your list right away or share the post on Facebook or Twitter right away, trust me when I say that they will never forget you…and they will come back to your blog.

2. Add Your Address & Phone Number

The latest research shows that search engines like Google like when sites include easy to find contact information for your business. It shows that you are a “real” business who isn’t trying to make it difficult for readers to find you. A great and search engine friendly place to do this is in the footer area of your blog so that the address and phone number appear on every page of your site.

3 . Include Your Email Address

In today’s post Panda and Penguin world, Google is looking more and more for “trust factors” when deciding where to rank websites and a visible, clickable email address is one of them. Marketers (including myself) would teach clients to not include a clickable email address on a blog because of all the spammers who will send you junk — but lately it seems that the benefits of being more transparent and accessible to readers outweighs the cons of email spam. Just be sure to implement a good spam blocker on your email client.

4. Privacy Policy

Readers may not be looking for this on your site but the search engines sure are. Everyone online who collects names or any other information for an email list, contest, or promotion should have a privacy policy clearly accessible on their site.

5. Whois Data

Have you noticed that when you purchase a domain name that the company will give you an option of registering your domain privately for an additional few bucks? This means that if someone goes looking for information on your site using your domain name, that they cannot see that you are the owner of the url or any contact details for you. Can you see how this could reek of dishonesty? You should never hide your contact information from the public. If you are building a real, legitimate business there is no need to hide that you are indeed the owner of your domain and a mailing address for your business. Check your whois information here.

6. Social Media Integration

It is going to be very difficult to increase a blog’s traffic, visibility, and trustability in today’s web environment without integrating some type of social media engagement. Give people the opportunity to engage with you about your content. To share your content with others. To comment on it and add to the value of your posts. Give your blog articles the chance to go viral. That can only really happen these days via social media. At the minium, you need to add social media sharing buttons to your blog. The easiest way to do this is to use a WordPress plugin or toolbar such as the one I use over at Wibiya.

Ninja tip: Don’t worry about engaging everyone on all of the social media platforms out there. If you try to work all of them, you may find that you aren’t making an impact on any of them. Pick one you like and really get visible there.

7. Add A Ratings System

If you own small business that sells a variety of products and services, then adding a ratings system is a great way to dramatically increase your site’s trust factor. This is the type of system that businesses such as Amazon, Zappos, etc. were built on. Not much traditional marketing is necessary when you implement this strategy correctly, because the customers do all the selling for you. Another way to integrate this is to have a presence on a review site such as Yelp.com and then refer to your ratings with a website badge and/or link there when you get a few good ones. In other words, talk about it when you get a good review!

This article serves as a next step in building a highly optimized WordPress blog from scratch in 15 minutes or less.

How To Build A SEO Friendly Blog In 15 Minutes (Or Less)

Are You Ready To Learn How To Build A SEO Friendly Blog In 15 Minutes (Or Less) And Write Your First Blog Post? Then I’m Here To Guide You One Step At A Time…

As an entrepreneur one of the most critical pieces of your success online will be building a website that has long-term success in the search engines. Consider what happens when someone searches for a solution to a specific problem online. They type in a few keywords in a search box and waits to see what results are returned. When they see what looks to be like content that will solve their problem (usually in the first 5 results they see), they click the link and go read the content. That is what is called highly qualified organic traffic. Many small business owners believe that getting good rankings involves some sort of complicated series of SEO steps, but trust me when I tell you that in today’s post Panda/Penguin world, it isn’t that difficult. You just need to know what to do and when you do you can get it done rather quickly.

In this post today (this is a long article but worth the read:), I have outlined the steps that you can take to create a really SEO friendly blog as well as write your first post and you can do it all in under fifteen minutes.

STEP 1 – Selecting A Good Great Domain Name

It use to be that SEO experts and marketers taught clients that it’s better if you pick a domain name that has your top keyword phrase in it. We did so because for years that’s what Google showed us and told us they liked. Domain names with keywords in them because it showed relevancy. Yet with recent updates affecting exact domain names as well as Google’s Panda and Penguin updates, now everything we know has been turned upside down.

So the advice now is to not go with a domain name with an EXACT match to your keyword phrase; but to purchase one with your keyword inside. So for example, if you sell blue shoes on your site, do not buy a domain name such as Blueshoes.com — what you could buy though instead is LisasBlueShoes.com or PhiladelphiaBlueShoes.com which is not an exact keyword match but still contains the relevant keyword of blue shoes.

You can also go with a brand name  (such as LisaAngelettie.com) and forget about selecting a keyword rich domain name, yet focus your SEO optimization in other ways, which we will go over in step four of this tutorial.

TIP: You will buy a domain name once and renew it annually with any company you buy it from. Most companies charge between $10 to 15 dollars per name and the same for renewals. It is best to buy a .com name as it is the most widely recognized and used. In a pinch, you could go with a .net or a .org. Do not waste your money on a .info name or a .biz. I have yet to see these do well in the search engines.

RESOURCE: Whichever type of name you decide on, using this link you can purchase one for only $5.99 with my preferred domain hosting company GoDaddy.

godaddy domain names

STEP 2 – Fast & Reliable Website Hosting

Many moons ago, I once founded and ran an article directory for coaches. It was really becoming a great niche resource in my industry until I started running into major problems with my website hosting company. They were constantly shutting me down because of the amount of resources I was using because my traffic was good, submissions were high, and the platform that the directory was built on used a lot of resources. At the time this host didn’t have any other options for me. Shared web hosting which is fine for most sites, was all they provided and I needed something a little more robust.

I went searching for a new webhost and found Hostgator. Someone recommended them as a host who had experience handling resource heavy sites like my own under a completely affordable shared hosting plan. No need for my own server and the cost of that and they were right. I’ve been with them ever since.

One of the major factors that the search engines have been warning webmasters about for months is that page load time and site speed matters when it comes to ranking our content favorably. If it’s between sites that have near identical content but one site is faster than the other, the faster one will be ranked higher. While there are many factors that affect site speed, one of the major ones is using a webhost that is reliable, secure, and speedy.

SIDE NOTE: You can also buy your domain name with Hostgator which will cost a little more at $15.00, but I like to keep my domain name registrations separate from my web hosting just in case one of them goes down. If that happens (and I have stories about that!), I can always switch the name to a new host or move a new name to my hosted site. If you purchase your domain name with a separate company such as GoDaddy, then you will need to create your new account using your existing domain name.

existing domain name

TIP: You will need a web hosting company to host your blog. Think of it as “office space” for your blog. Free WordPress hosting will not work for a for-profit company because of their terms of service which they fully execute. You will pay for your web hosting on a monthly or annual basis and packages are rock bottom cheap now (not like when I first started out:). Make sure to write down or record your username and password after you open your account and keep it in a safe place. I use 1password for my password management.

RESOURCE: You can get started with Hostgator webhosting for as little as $3 bucks a month (at the time of this writing) and you can save $9.94 on your entire package only when you use my affiliate link and special coupon code: CONTENTRICH

hostgator webhosting


STEP 3 – Installing WordPress

Once you’ve purchased your web hosting plan, it’s super simple to install your own self hosted WordPress blog. First, you’re going to log into your new web hosting’s account CPANEL area. So for instance, you’d go to the url: http://YourWebsite.com/cpanel, which will lead you to a login box. Add the USERNAME and PASSWORD you used when you created your web hosting account. (I told you to write it down earlier:)

Now you are logged into your cpanel administration area. You can and you should spend a little time playing around in your cpanel area at a later date and get familiar with it. For now, I’m going to have you scroll down and find the links for QuickInstall or Fantastico De Luxe under software/services.  This is the program that you are going to use to install your blog. If you see QuickInstall, go with that one.

wordpress install

Once you’ve clicked on QuickInstall, then you will look to the list of software programs on the left and click on WORDPRESS. You’ll see information to the right describing the version and installation size of WordPress and a button to click to continue installing the software.

wordpress installation

Once you click continue, you’ll see another box appear on the right hand side where you will input some required information for your new blog. The first thing you’ll see is a drop down menu with your domain name in it. It’s here where you decide if you want your blog to be hosted at the root meaning http://yoursite.com or on a separate directory such as http://yoursite.com/blog. If you want it hosted on a separate directory, then you’ll have to write the name of it in the box next to the drop down menu. For example: blog. You need to be sort of sure how you want to do this because to change it you would have to uninstall WordPress then start all over again.

Examples of both scenarios would look like this:

Hosted at the root: http://LisaAngelettieBlog.com [You see blog posts on the first page of my site because it’s hosted at the root]

Hosted on a separate directory: http://clickbank.com/blog

wordpress quick install

Add an administration email for your blog, your blog’s title, your first and last name (you can change any of these details later) and click INSTALL NOW. Let the magic happen:) You’ll see a progression bar and after installation you’ll see notification of its completion. Congrats!

STEP 4 – Optimizing WordPress

Now it’s time to login to your new WordPress blog. Now you’ll go to your WordPress admin area by going to the url: http://YourSite.com/wp-admin. Once there you will need to input your username and password. Before we start writing your first post, we need to tweak some things to make your blog super SEO friendly.

There are two shortcuts to optimizing your WordPress blog. You can either use a plugin such as the wildly popular WordPress SEO Plugin, or you can use a premium template to do the job such as Thesis, or a combination of both. (I use a combination.) Whichever solution you choose, these are the basics you’ll start with when setting up your site:

Site Visibility – Make sure that you’ve published your blog to the public. You’ll find the option in the privacy area under SETTINGS in your WordPress dashboard. Believe it or not a lot of people forget or don’t know to do this after setting up their blog.

wordpress privacy settings

With the WordPress SEO plugin and Thesis Template you can set up these other three items:

Titles & Meta – Set your title & meta information for your blog the way you want people to see it in a search.
Permalinks – Change your permalink settings to a more SEO friendly one such as /%postname%/.
Sitemaps – Set up a XML sitemap so that search engines can easily crawl every post and page on your site.

RESOURCES: I highly recommend to invest in the Thesis WordPress Template and to download the FREE WordPress SEO plugin by Yoast.

STEP 5 – Writing Your First Post

Whew! You’ve set up and optimized your blog. Now it’s time to write your first post. WordPress is really simple to use. Go to the POSTS link and click on ADD NEW. Give your post a reader friendly title that includes a relevant keyword. WordPress will automatically use that title as the url for the post, but you can edit the url in case it’s too long. (I do this all the time).

When writing for the first time, sometimes it’s a good idea to write an introductory post which explains who you are and the types of content you’ll be writing about in the future on your blog. Some people just dive in with a really meaty, info-packed post. The choice is yours. Tweak your SEO settings for your post and then publish your post immediately or schedule it to post at a later date.

Thank you for taking the time to read this tutorial. I will be posting a series of supporting mini posts for this tutorial to take your blog publishing and optimization efforts to the next level, so be sure to subscribe to get notification of them or follow me on Facebook, Twitter, or Google+.

Please leave any questions or feedback you have on this tutorial in the comment section and be sure to share this post with someone you think would benefit from it.

 

Ninja Tips for Serious Bloggers

penguin ninja tips imageBlogs are born in all shapes and sizes.  But there is one thing that all Blogs have in common: someone, somewhere, had a dream.  Every single Blog that exists, exists only because someone had a passion, or a wish, or a dream.

And that dream was strong enough to motivate that person get up off the sofa, and Take ACTION, in order to make their dream come true.  All the other would-be Bloggers are still sitting at home watching TV – with no Blog to call their own.

Which sort of person are YOU???  Are you serious about setting up a blog?

If you really are going to take active steps to set up a Blog, the first and most important question you must ask yourself is:

Why Do I Want to Set Up a Blog?

Only you can answer this question.  And everything you do in your future blogging life will depend on your answers to this question.  There are no Right or Wrong answers.  Before anything else, you need to know WHY you want to set up a blog, and WHAT you want to achieve with your blog.

The ‘HOW’ of setting up a blog comes later, after you know what sort of blog you want to set up.

Some Reasons Why You Might Want to Blog

The reasons WHY you want to set up a blog, and what you hope to achieve with it, dictates everything you need to do when you get down to the job of setting it up.

For example: Blogs that are designed to bring you untold wealth and an early retirement are a completely different kettle-of-fish, to the Family Recipe Blog.

[Disclaimer: Untold wealth can mean anything from $1 to $1,000,000 – that’s why it’s called ‘untold’.  Neat, eh?]

1. The Photo Album/Travel Blog

You might want to share your photos with family and friends, but you hate Facebook.  I understand that perfectly – it’s a perfectly valid reason.  I sympathize.

2. The ‘I Know How to Set Up a Blog’ Blog

This is a greatly under-rated sort of blog, and it’s one of my favorite types.

  • Sometimes we just need to impress people – Right?…Right!
  •  Feeling undervalued?  Do the kids think you are still living in the Dark Ages?  Ha! No way! Set up a blog (before they do ?) and you will Rock!  Or maybe, sway… just a little.

optimized blogging superhero

  • This sort of blog has the big advantage of not requiring much on-going work.  Setting it up and then bragging about it, is it’s sole purpose.Then, after your friends and family have been suitably impressed with your talents and brilliance, you can move on with the rest of your life, with head held high, and an Eat-My-Dust, Super-Hero Self-Confidence that will leave them gasping in your wake.  Brilliant!  Yes!

3. The ‘Dear Diary’ Blog

This type of blog will be a blog where you write and publish, thoughts and events that you are willing to share with the world.

  • There is nothing wrong with starting a ‘Dear Diary’ Blog.  Sometimes we just have to ‘tell someone’ what we are feeling, don’t we.
  • Warning: Don’t share with the world, thoughts that are best kept private. Using this Ninja Tip can save you from some tricky personal complications…such as divorce.
  • If you want to keep your thoughts personal, and for your eyes only, don’t start a Dear Diary Blog.  Keep your innermost thoughts on a File on your Computer, or only confide in the dog.
  • Extra Ninja Tip: do not call this private File: FMEO (For My Eyes Only). Why? Because some clever-clogs kid will come along and wonder what’s hidden in your FMEO file…. I’ll let you imagine the rest of that story.

4. The Personal Fortune & Early Retirement Blog

You might want to find a way to help to pay the Bills every month.

  • Great idea, but you will want to set up a completely different style of blog to the Photo Album or Personal Travelogue types of blogs.

NB. How you set up a blog so you can pay the Bills every month is not something to think about at the moment.  That will come later, after you have made a committed decision to actually get this baby on the road – and what sort of baby it’s going to be.

Free Bonus Ninja Tip:

If you are having trouble deciding what sort of a blog you want, don’t ask your friends what you should blog about. Why?

  • It’s your blog.  You know best what you want, and why you want it.
  • If you can’t work out why you want to blog for yourself, your friends aren’t going to know what YOU want, if you don’t know that for yourself.
  • If you are blogging because someone else gave you an idea that they say is the current best money-spinner – forget it. Why?

Do they really know that the topic is a potential cash cow? I doubt it. The more important reason is that if you had to ask someone else what you should blog about, you will not be sufficiently interested in that topic to be able to write a new and riveting post on that subject every 2 or 3 days – for several months. Because that is what will be required if you want to set up a serious blog that brings you visitors who are not just your family and friends. If you want to set up a blog to make money, you MUST choose a topic you have a passion for, or else you will quickly get bored with it after a month.  And then it will fail.

More Ninja Tips: What To Do If You Are Unsure What To Blog About

Ask yourself: 

  • What am I good at?
  • What do I know a lot about?
  • Do I have any hobbies?
  • Is there something I have a passion about?
  • Is my passion, or hobby or knowledge likely to be of interest to others?
  • If you hope to make money with your blog, also ask yourself:

1. Is the Topic I’m interested in, something someone else would pay money to know more about?

2. Are there enough people out there who would be willing to pay money for what I can offer them?

Note: This article cannot cover the mysteries of ‘Niche Topic Research’, or ‘How to Find Markets Where You Can Make a Killing’, or Affiliate Marketing.  How you do that can be found on the Internet…or at my own blog, My Second Million.

Really, Really Important Ninja Tip for Young Players:

Do NOT tell all your friends you are going to set up a Blog before you actually do it.  Why?  If you tell people what you intend to do before you do it, you have put yourself in a No-Win situation.  Really? Yes, really! Think about it:

Possible Outcome 1:You succeed in setting up a blog.

  • Great, but is anyone impressed?  No. Is anyone surprised? No. Why? You have only done what you said you would do. Nothing more.  They are not impressed with your brilliance because you flagged this event earlier, before you had anything to impress them with.
  • You raised their expectations, and now you have fulfilled them.  So what?  It’s no big deal – from their point of view.

Possible Outcome 2: You don’t get around to setting up your blog. 

  • If you have not told anyone of your plans, you have lost nothing.  It’s a personal decision with no public consequences.
  • But…if you have already raised people’s expectations by telling them you are going to set up a blog, and then you don’t: you have failed to deliver…you are now less in their eyes than if you had said nothing beforehand.

Flagging your intended achievements before actually achieving them is a No-No in everything you do in life, not just in blogging.  Yes, it applies to everything you do in life.

Special Ninja Life-Tip:

Always, always, always….first decide what you are going to do, then do it, then tell people what you have done.  That way, you will always give yourself the best chance to reap the true rewards for your achievements.

But if you do it in the reverse order, you will either fail to get the proper praise you deserve, or you will fail to live up to their raised expectations – expectations that you have loaded onto yourself – and you can end up damaging your image in the eyes of others.

Keep safe, friends….and keep Blogging.

Carol Manser specializes in easy to follow ‘How To’ articles on Blogging from Day1 to online Mega-Stardom – Think Big! is her motto. Visit her at http://www.mysecondmillion.com

How My Blog Traffic Increased by 33%

One of the major ways that you can and you should be attracting more clients and customers is by leveraging the power of the web. Ultimately what that means, is that you should be taking advantage of the free traffic that the search engines will send you when you give them what they want–content.

How I Increased My Blog Traffic By 33%

On February 13th I got the highest amount of traffic ever on my site and most of it was due to several articles I had written over two years ago on February and Valentine’s Day related article ideas. I saw similar results last year, but this year the increase was even higher probably because Google has ranked those articles pretty high for me with related keywords.

lisa-angelettie-blog-stats

For instance, if someone is searching specifically for Valentine’s Day Article Ideas, they will find that two of my articles on this site come up in positions #1 and #2 in Google out of over 49 million results!

valentine's day article ideas

 

Keep in mind that I wrote these articles two years ago — nothing this year around this topic because I was busy promoting Articology. So my point here is that the real key to consistent traffic that will only get better as long as it still is relevant is to just do it! Create it, publish it, rinse and repeat. And realize that you will reap rewards from your efforts immediately when you push your content out in social media AND for years to come as the search engines rank your content higher and higher in a search like the above example.

You can replicate these types of results as well when you follow a few simple rules:

Do Proper Keyword Research
I didn’t accidentally come across the term valentine’s day article ideas. I did my research and knew that there was a select group of people searching this topic using these keywords. So I made sure that I wrote optimized articles around them. I talk about this a lot in my article marketing training program Articology.

Keep Stacking Content
It’s important that you continually publish content to your blog. Not only to keep things fresh for your clients, but for the search engines, who will rank your older content based on how relevant you continue to be with your new content. Simply put, if I hadn’t continued to build my site and stack it with relevant content, I doubt that those articles would hold the #1 and #2 positions. They would get ranked, but probably not that highly.

Keep Sharing Your Content
One thing that I did do differently this year, was to casually remind people through my ezine and social media that if they needed article ideas for February or Valentine’s day that I had a few articles around that topic. I really think that this helped my traffic rise for not only the 13th but the entire month of February. Remember that while you are always sharing new content, it’s important that you remind folks of all your great older content found deep inside your site.

Keep Your Eyes On The Prize
Remember that content marketing is a long-term marketing strategy. It serves as the foundation for your business and you should ALWAYS be doing something content related in your business. This is not a quick fix strategy. Once you adjust your mindset around that fact, you will do the work necessary to see REAL results like mine as you grow your business.

Are You Going To Hit It & Quit It?

I want you to stop thinking about the pursuit of search engine traffic as a one hit wonder, a one night stand, or a quick fix. Sure there are a lot of marketers out there trying to sell you WordPress plugins, software, and “systems” that will assure you a HUGE avalanche of traffic (can you hear me being sarcastic?), but the truth of the matter is that I am not here for a quickie. I’m in it for the long haul. I can stay committed. I am faithful. I want a long term partner and therefore long term results. That is why I consistently feed the search engines what they want:

Content that is original
There is little tolerance for duplicate content by the search engines and rehashed content by readers. The search engines are getting smarter and smarter each day to all the duplicate content tricks, PLR mess, etc. and the readers are getting a little sick and tired of reading something they know that they’ve read somewhere else. Be original.

Content that is high quality and useful
I’m going to be totally transparent here. There are definitely days where I have written articles that I just wanted to get done and rushed it. Or there were articles I’ve written where I didn’t really have a lot to say and perhaps should of saved them to include in a more meaty article — but I didn’t. Ultimately I will pay the price for those so-so articles because people won’t read them or they certainly won’t convert. Not when there is a higher level of content out there on my topic. Now I’m not putting a word count on that content – I’m putting a quality meter on it. If it’s highly informative or entertaining, then publish it. If it’s not really something that you would read yourself, forget it, and go back to the drawing board.

Content that is shared with others
This is a relatively new concept for many business owners but it makes perfect sense. The quality level of any piece of content can generally be judged by how many people share it with others. Think about an article you shared with someone recently. Or a video you “liked” or “tweeted”. If you’re not totally sold on social media yet, think of “old school” sharing. Comments. Or reviews (like Amazon). Anything that gives your content the thumbs up or the seal of approval is of great importance to the search engines and helps them determine where they will rank your content. For example, if you’ve enjoyed this article, I’d really appreciate it if you would comment, Tweet it, share it on Facebook, or give it a G+.

Your Turn!
What strategies have you used to increase your blog traffic this year?  What are your trying? What’s working for you? What isn’t?