Tips for Mommy Blogging from McSweeneys

I loved this cute and clever post over at the fabulous McSweeneys.

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Entitled “Tips for Mommy Blogging”, it includes such winning advice as:

  • Start new paragraphs frequently.
  • Have a nervous breakdown
  • Intentionally set your kitchen on fire making gluten-free oatmeal cookies from only sustainable ingredients
  • At the annual women’s blogger conference wear odd costumes, drunk-tweet the Top 50 Mommy Bloggers, and cry publicly in bathrooms.

Read the full (amazing) post here.

Which Blogger Do You Want to Be?

In a session at January’s Blissdom conference, the blog monetization session included some real-life snapshots of blog earnings from real bloggers. Check out these two bloggers to get a sense of what they are charging.

Which of these two bloggers would you rather be?

Blogger A:

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  • Ad rates: $50 for 125X125; $60 for 250X250 per month
  • Sponsored Post: $100
  • Twitter Party: $1,000
  • Consulting: $50-$150 depending on the duration
  • Events: Paid $250 as a stipend for a 2-day trip to NYC

Blogger B:

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  • Ad rates: $50- $100/month
  • Sponsored Post: $100
  • Guest Post on a Brand’s site: $500
  • Consulting: $50/hr for a bigger job
  • Focus Group: $50-$150/hr
  • Product Reviews: $50
  • Brand Event: Paid up to $1,000
  • Spokesperson role: $700 plus related expenses

Why Brands Should Hire (Mom) Bloggers

On the heels of a great blog conference, I’m prepping a few posts in reference to the monetization sessions I was able to enjoy at Blissdom in Nashville.

In my efforts to scour the web for others’ reactions to the conference, I enjoyed reading this post over at Better in Bulk about why brands should hire bloggers in the first place.

Her take? Moms have influence, and when moms get on blogs they can talk up a brand or a product like a pro. Actually, they can talk way better than a pro, because they are talking like a mom.

Which is, of course, the whole point.

The article continues and has other gems about how moms typically choose the products and companies that they want to care about long-term, building win-win partnerships on both sides that bring both brand and blogger to new heights.

However, I got side-tracked in my reading when I noticed something startling. In a fascinating twist, I saw that the post was actually sponsored through a sponsored post gig the writer has.

Confusing?

Or proof that mom bloggers really can connect words with brands?

You decide.

Should You Work For Free?

If you’re a blogger, you’ve likely been approached to work for free. If not free, than perhaps you’ve been offered yogurt, ice cream, laundry detergent or gift cards for your work and brand influence. During a workshop on advanced monetization at the Blissdom conference this year (2011), a presenter recommended that this chart can help you decide if a “free” opportunity is right for you.

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Check out the chart, and have a laugh:)

Should You Tell Your Boss You’re Blogging on the Side?

If you’ve ever worried about your boss finding out about your blogging hobby, here’s an article that won’t make you too happy!

Woman Torn Between Unpaid Historical Fiction Blogging and Job at Chase.

I’m sure I’m not the only one that has pondered this issue before. Although most companies allow you to pursue your outside hobbies, even when they are monetized, this article sure puts that in perspective in a (very negative) way;)

Why Professional Bloggers Should Use WordPress

My Blog Goals for 2011: And Did You Set Yours?

The Savvy Blogging ladies have encouraged bloggers to think about (and link up) their blogging goals for 2011, and I’ve forced myself (yes, there was force required) to spend 30 minutes taking up the challenge.

I’d encourage you to do the same — and I’d go so far as to tell you how to best do it:

  • Put your computer away
  • Go to quiet table
  • Spread our paper and colored pens

For me, and for many — I’d argue — the best way to brainstorm is when you are far, far away from your computer and are engaging the creative muscles in your brain to think big and to think wide.

Importantly, I’m only talking about brainstorming for one blog here. If you have multiple blogs, these should be different brainstorms. A Blog Job is not my only blog, and it’s hardly my biggest or most prolific (see my goals on trying to change that — LOL!), but it still deserves thirty minutes of my brainstorming time once a year.

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So, after much fanfare, the five goals I’ve set for myself and A Blog Job in 2011:

  1. Sack up and make one valuable post of original content every week. (I’m bolding that one for my own benefit!)
  2. Link to one interesting article, video, or podcast on the topic of blog monetization once a week. [A bigger goal that I'm not quite ready to sign up for would be to create a round-up list of interesting articles and information about blog monetization around the web and post it each week here on A Blog Job.]
  3. Slowly start to monetize. When I say this, you may ask, “But don’t you already have adsense on this blog?” The answer is yes, but since adsense is purely passive monetization I don’t want to count it as a “goal.” The main way adsense revenue can be a goal is in increasing traffic…and, well, see below for that goal!
  4. Actually start thinking about my traffic, and getting some more! This blog has been around for awhile (and the domain name has been around for even longer!) and until now I’ve just dabbled at it when I feel like. Changing that is all about focusing on getting readers, keeping readers, and making readers not want to bang their head against a wall because my writing is so bad.
  5. Do 6 guest posts in 2011 on blog monetization. No, this isn’t an incredibly lofty goal. You may be wondering why I couldn’t write 6 guest post a month, say. Well, the reason goes back to the (important) fact that this isn’t my only blog. This is actually #3 (in that order) on a list of other blogging priorities — so I want to make sure I can reasonably meet the goals I set.

Okay — that’s it for me.

Did you set your blogging goals for 2011?

What’s Really Important, and Why It’s OK When Your Blog Crashes

One of the best life lessons any professional blogger can learn is that any blogger – not matter the size of their blog and the size of their team behind it – can suffer the most simple of nightmares: the crash.

Today, I happened to notice dear old ProBlogger had gone the way of the website outage (well, technically it was still loading, just barely, though).

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It got me thinking what we can learn from some outages, and the answer was clear — no less so because today happened to be Christmas.

No matter how important blogging is to you, it is not the only thing.

Today, on Christmas, celebrate with the ones you love;)

As one mommy blogger once said, when your kids grow up you don’t want them looking back on their childhood and only remembering the back of mommy’s head at her laptop…

Happy Holidays!

Twitter Moms – Is Micro Blogging for Gift-Cards Worth It?

This is a great article by Anna over at ABDPBT about Twitter Moms – a site where mommy bloggers (okay, mommy micro-bloggers) can earn gift cards promoting products for big brands.

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As Anna says, it looks like not all is well in the land of Twitter Moms — or is it? Me, I just have enough problems trying to figure out how Twitter Moms works. As a newbie to the site, it’s definitely hard to navigate and I’m in need of a bit red button saying “Start Here!

If any of you have participated as a micro-blogger for Twitter Moms I’d love to hear if you’ve had positive experiences or not.

Okay, enough said. Check out the article, then try to figure out Twitter Moms for yourself.

The #1 Reason I Will Never Return to Your Blog and You Won’t Make Any Money

Sure, everybody’s different.

Everybody reads your blog differently and relies on a different form of communication to be notified when you have a new post: Twitter, Facebook, RSS, etc.

Me?

I use all those things. But with my favorite blogs – and with any new blog I want to keep extra good tabs on for awhile – I always subscribe via email. It may not be the norm these days, but it is what works for me, and it is what many people out there do.

So what is the #1 thing you can do to get me so annoyed with your blog that I’ll never come back?

Not offer me a way to subscribe via email.

Let me rephrase that: if you want me to read your blog, and you want me to come back, make sure you’re offering email delivery of posts (as well as all other options, of course). Every reader is different, and every reader feels passionately about the form of communication they are most reliant upon.

Not sure of what an email sign-up should look like? Without too many bells and whistles, here’s my simple email sign up for A Blog Job:

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So, what’s the (terribly obvious) action step of this post?

Make sure you have a way for readers to subscribe — via email — and via everything else;)