This Blog Stuff

Why you have to become a better writer

I had the pleasure of interviewing Penelope Trunk last night for the forthcoming book Beyond Blogging.

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She’s interesting, helpful and full of insight, and she made a major contribution to the book, and you should go and join the email list for the book when you’ve read this.

But there was one thing she said that left me lying awake last night and that kept running through my brain:

“Look at all the top blogs out there, the so called A-Listers. One thing they all have in common is the quality of the writing. Even the technical ones have extraordinary, fantastic writers.”  read more »

New Staff Writer on Mike's Life

Thanks to so many of you for emailing me about the staff writer position I advertised here recently. I hope some of you will write some guest posts for our community, but in the meantime allow me to introduce you to Firas Steitiyeh.

Firas 

Firas fulfils everything I was looking for in the role – he’s technical, really understands Wordpress and SEO and basically fills some gaps in my abilities to help other bloggers. The clincher for me is his helpful attitude and I’d like to tell you a story to illustrate it.  read more »

Bring a great post back to life!

Do you remember the dark nights in the early days of writing your blog? You wrote some really good stuff back then, didn’t you? I know I did. But the trouble is the good ones are buried way back in the archives and the thousands who come here every day don’t get to see them.

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Image: FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Let’s do something about it!  read more »

Staff Writer Job for a Blogger

Update: Thanks for an amazing response! No more applications please. Check back to find out who the new staff writer is.

I’m pretty good at writing about writing, I’m very good at writing about making money as a blogger, and I find helping bloggers prioritize all their tasks easy. But I do have an Achilles heel – I’m not that good on technical stuff, and as I don’t use Wordpress (like 90% of my readers do) I often struggle to stay up to date with life in WP land. Finally, I want to up the posting rate on this blog.

Mont Blanc   read more »

I Really should go to the Ad:Tech Conference

I love living on my little desert island called Lanzarote in The Atlantic Ocean. And I especially love the fact that I can run my blogging business from here! But there’s one big drawback. You see, 80% of my audience is in The United States and all the “action” related to my niche, which is to help other bloggers earn a long term sustainable income from blogging, is also in the US.

Adtech

Living here means any trip to attend a conference, and to hang out with Schoemaker, Chow or Brogan becomes a very expensive affair, involving ferries, and two or sometimes three flights. It means I have to budget well ahead for any kind of trip. Next year I’ve planned one, but it’s a budget buster!  read more »

Denial, Excuses, The Truth and a Lesson

After months of consistent and really quite dramatic growth in every key measure, this blog slowed down in September. Everything still went in the right direction, but when I did my monthly update I was disappointed that the rate of growth hadn’t continued at the level I’d been enjoying. I spent a few days mulling the reasons:

 

The Denial

Deny

I soon realized that it had in fact been a combination of things. It was the end of the well known summer traffic slump, combined with what Darren Rowse described so well in this post about the way blog traffic can reach a plateau.

I slept better for a night, then I started to think about it again:

   read more »

Beyond Blogging - The Authors

As you know, I’m currently co-authoring a book called Beyond Blogging with my friend Nathan Hangen. We’re deep into the writing and information collation stage, and we decided to have a chat and an update using Skype. Fortunately, we recorded the call, because it ended up being a great one! Yes we talked about the book, but we also explored some of the amazing bloggers we’re working with to create it, and we discussed how they have achieved their success. We came to the conclusion each is very different in their approach.

Cover

Amazingly, we nattered on for an hour! So get a coffee and here’s the link:  read more »

Using Surveys on a Blog

I sent a survey out to Mike’s Life readers and subscribers last week. Surveys are a great way to understand what your readers want, and to make sure you are delivering on those needs. This was my first survey, but I plan to do more in the future.

Work Group

Image: FreeDigitalPhotos.net 

I used Questionpro‘s free account to create the survey – with the free account you’re limited to ten questions, but they have premium accounts where you can ask as many as you want and also get a full suite of analytics.  read more »

An Apology

I wrote a post yesterday about the Ultimate Footer Advert. It was about a special offer from the designer of UFA. No problems with the post or the product, the former was fine and the latter is excellent! But then I did something silly. You see, I wanted to let my email subscribers know about the offer and I wanted to do it fast as it was a time limited one. But it was getting late, it had been a long day, so instead of investing some time in writing an email. I simply copied and pasted the designer’s suggested email and sent it out.

photo_6730_20090607  read more »

Switching to Disqus Comments

You may have noticed that I have switched to Disqus comments on here. I’ve been looking at them for some time, and finally decided to switch for three reasons:

Logo_Disqus

1/ Several of the blogs I read and enjoy have switched recently.

2/ The Drupal commenting system on my blog isn’t user friendly for commentators – Drupal doesn’t remember you when you come back to comment again so you have to fill in all the fields each time. My thanks to Doug Dillard for drawing my attention to that.

3/ The system to allow people to subscribe to a comment thread was broken!  read more »

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"Mike's Life is where you can stay current with the life, thoughts, successes and failures of Mike Cliffe-Jones. Never knowingly ordinary, Mike shares as much as possible about his work as a marketer and in business, as well as his enviable lifestyle on and in the oceans around The Canary Islands."

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