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July 2010

Take Out your Blogging Trash


Earlier today, BlogWorld asked on Facebook:

Do you blog on the weekends? If so, does it significantly raise your traffic?

So far, most of the answers have indicated that no, many of you do not blog on weekends, either because you think that those posts won’t get as much traffic or because you need a break from work. Obviously, I do blog on weekends – this post is evidence – but I understand why some people don’t. If I could make a suggestion though? Use the weekends, or another day when you’re not doing writing-related blog work, to take out your blogging trash.

In a traditional job, your office trash can fills up with papers and junk during the work week, and if you (or your janitor) didn’t empty it, your office would soon be overrun with garbage. Unfortunately, that sometimes happens with our blogs. Readers don’t necessarily see it, but your dashboard can become pretty cluttered in a hurry.

So, if you don’t blog on weekends, take a moment to do the following work on your blog:

  • Approve pending comments, empty your spam comments, and make sure that none of the comments that got through are actually spam.
  • Delete any posts that are in draft form, but which you have no intention of actually completing.
  • Clean up your categories. Simplicity is good, but your blog’s navigation also needs to be functional. Use the parent function to create a better hierarchy than the one you have right now.
  • Update plugins has necessary and get rid of any that do not work or that you are no longer using.
  • Delete any pages you aren’t using and don’t need anymore.
  • Read over you About page and update it if necessary. Add a more recent picture if the one posted is over a year old.
  • Connect your blog to any new profiles you may have since you first started your blog.

You can extend this “taking out the trash” exercise to your social networking profiles as well. If you’re anything like me, your Facebook page, Twitter profile, and other accounts start to get dusty every few months, not from lack of use, but from lack of updating the information listed. Clean house this weekend.

If your blog is spic-and-span, so other behind-the-scenes work you could get done this weekend include:

  • Brainstorming post ideas for the coming week.
  • Return emails.
  • Retweet others’ links on Twitter.
  • Rearrange your sidebar to get rid of widgets that aren’t working for your blog.
  • Catch up on your feed reading.
  • Write some guest posts and approach other bloggers.
  • Email your mailing list with some links to your favorite recent blog posts on your own blog and other blogs.
  • Do some research on things to do in Vegas while attending BlogWorld!
  • Comment on others’ blogs.
  • Post a poll on your blog.
  • Design some business cards if you don’ t have them.
  • Delete emails you don’t need and organize the ones you do.

And don’t forget to have some fun this weekend. I really agree with the comment that we all need to take a break sometimes. So, take out the trash, but relax a little too!

What are you doing to clean up your blog this weekend?

Allison Boyer is a writer for BWE’s blog and the owner/manager of After Graduation. She has done some cleaning up on her own blog and is now heading out to enjoy the sun.

Image credit: sxc.hu

Paying for BlogWorld, part 2


Brain dump =/= dumpster. These tips are not garbage!

Earlier today, I posted some ways yous can bring in a little extra cash to go toward paying for your BlogWorld ticket. I know some people are still frustrated, though. So, I’m going to do a brain dump right here, right now.

Growing up, my family didn’t have a lot of money. We weren’t living in a cardboard box or anything, but we certainly couldn’t afford the latest fashions or eating out very often. I credit my ability today to save money to the wonderful skills my mother taught me. Sharon Boyer knows how to clip a coupon.

Beyond buying items on sale and clipping coupons, though, what are some things you can do to save up money for BlogWorld? Brain dump commencing in three…two…one…

  • Have a yard sale. I recently participated in my community’s yard sale and raised $50 or so getting rid of old junk. I didn’t even have any big-ticket items to sell. You can also sell items on Craig’s List or eBay to raise some cash.
  • Get a library card. Even used books can start to add up if you buy a few every month. The library is free!
  • Give up your gym membership and instead look for natural ways to work out at home. I run at my local park, for example. You can also check out your community center – many have an exercise room that you can use for free.
  • Switch your hosting. Often, if you shop around, you can find the same or better hosting for slightly less money. Even if you’re just saving a few dollars, remember that you’re working toward a goal. It all starts to add up. Sometimes if you call your host, they’ll give you a discount if you ask just to keep you as a customer.
  • Change your cell phone plan. Do you really need unlimited texting? Can you live with half the number of minutes for the next few months? If you use your cell phone for business, the answer might be “no,” but if your phone is primarily for pleasure, you might be able to save some money on the monthly bill.
  • Ask for no ice. This is my favorite “save money” tip, and I use it every time I pick up an iced coffee or soda at a fast food place. Ask for no or light ice and you’ll get double the amount, half of which you can save for later instead of buying a second drink.
  • Downgrade your television service. Like with a cell phone plan, people are often paying a lot for cable or satellite because they want it, not because they need it. Can you survive a few months without the movie channels? If so, you can save enough to pay for a night or two at one of the BlogWorld discounted hotels.
  • Turn off the AC and get outside. Yes, it’s summertime. Yes, it’s hot. Put on some shorts and sit outside unless you absolutely can’t stand it. The AC will eat up your electricity, skyrocketing your bill. If it really is too hot to function, consider going to the library or another WiFi area to work (but skip cafes where you spend money on lunch!).
  • Skip the pre-packaged snacks and make your own munchies. At the beginning of the week, cut up veggies and put sandwich baggies of them in the refrigerator. You can also make trail mix, bake cookies, or otherwise create your own snacks. It’s much cheaper than packaged treats.
  • Take shorter showers. You’ll save on both your heat and water bills.
  • Start a dinner club with your friends. Instead of eating out, go to someone’s house once a week for dinner, with that person cooking for everyone. You still get the benefit of not having to cook for the night, but you don’t have to pay high restaurant prices. Cooking dinner for your friends every few weeks is much less expensive than eating out every week.
  • Check out your local hair salon instead of a chain at the mall. You’ll often spend just a fraction of the cost by choosing a small business owner.
  • Shop for seasonal ingredients. Fruits and veggies that are out-of-season cost more since they have to be shipped in from afar. Added bonus: seasonal ingredients are fresher, tastier, and better for the environment!
  • Trade baby-sitting. For those of you with kids, instead of hiring a baby-sitter so you can have date night, work out a deal with some other families in your community. If everyone hosts neighborhood movie night once a month, couples can enjoy some alone time for free.
  • Combine errands to make one trip. You’ll use less gas if you go to the grocery store, post office, library, etc at once instead of splitting up the trips. You can also take your bike to places close by to avoid using gas completely.
  • Check out community center activities for the kids. Many neighborhoods have free or very inexpensive programs during the summer or after school, which is much less expensive than paying for a sitter or day care.
  • Look for local drive-in movie locations. This is a personal favorite of mine! You get two movies often for a price lower than what it costs to see one at the movie theatre. Plus, you can make your own snacks instead of buying high-priced treats.
  • Check out the Salvation Army or Goodwill before you buy anything. Second-hand stuff can be just as good as new stuff, as long as you give it a good scrubbin’ when you get home!
  • Pump your own gas. You’ll save money on tips if you go to a self-service center. Of course, this isn’t possible in all states, but if you can, take a moment to get out of your car.
  • If you live in the suburbs, take the bus into the city instead of driving. In general, take the bus whenever you’ll have to pay for parking.
  • Give up smoking. Yes, this is a tough one for some of you…but you’ll spend hundreds or even thousands of dollars every year on cigarettes if you don’t! At least cut down in over the next few months to save up some money for BlogWorld.

The key to all of this is that every time you save a dollar, put it in an account as though you’ve spent it. Otherwise, you’ll spend it somewhere else if you’re anything like me!

Ok, I’ve spent 1000+ words telling ya’ll how I save money. Your turn – leave a comment with a few of your best money-saving tips.

Allison Boyer is a writer for BWE’s blog and the owner/manager of After Graduation. She is still waiting for someone to buy her a tiara.

Image credit: sxc.hu

Paying for BlogWorld, part 1


I follow the hashtag #BWE10 on Twitter to keep my finger on the pulse of what people are saying about BlogWorld. Sadly, it seems like a number of people are making the decision not to come because they don’t have the money for it.

I understand that completely. I’m not someone with deep pockets, and a trip across the country isn’t cheap. It’s not a matter of whether or not a ticket to BlogWorld is worth the money. Although the upfront price may look expensive at first, you’re getting a ton of value for the cost of a ticket. I think you all realize that. The problem is, no matter how good of a deal something is, if you don’t have the money, you don’t have the money.

If you’d like to go to BlogWorld, even if you think you don’t have the cash, I’d like to help you brainstorm some ideas to pay for the trip. I recommend booking your BlogWorld hotel room right now. Go on, I’ll wait. Your card isn’t charged until October, and you can cancel for free before then if you honestly don’t have the money in the end. You don’t want to get stuck without a discounted room if you decide you can go at the last minute. Booking a hotel room, even though you can cancel if you change your mind, makes things see more official, so it’s a motivator to actually make money to go.

OK, let’s get into the meat of this post. How can you go about paying for this trip? Here are some fab tips – and not a single one involves taking off your clothing, joining a pyramid scheme, or

  • Sign up on shareasale.com‘s* site to be a part of the BlogWorld affiliate program and start encouraging your friends and readers to attend BlogWorld. You’ll make $30+ for every person who attends through your affiliate link, and it’s something you can easily promote not only on your website, but also on your social networks.
  • Contact companies directly to ask for sponsorship. I’ve seen some people tweeting about wanting a sponsor, but not having much luck. You have to man up and contact companies directly. Look for companies that aren’t attending BlogWorld and come up with a comprehensive sponsorship package. Maybe you’ll wear their t-shirt for one day in exchange for paying one night of the hotel room or maybe you’ll hand out their business cards with your own in exchange for buying the actual ticket. Give companies options to fit any budget. Don’t forget to approach local business that have an online presence.
  • Sell some ad space on your blog specific for BlogWorld sponsorship. Again, this involves cold-calling companies directly, which can be uncomfortable, but is much more successful than simply posting a notice on your blog. Note that you expect more traffic than normal as you’re blogging about BlogWorld and again, have multiple price points for different budgets.
  • Offer some blogging services to companies to help cover costs. For example, you could approach local businesses in your area and offer to set up free WordPress sites with their theme of choice for them for a set amount of money. Or, you could help a company optimize their site for search engine traffic. Or, you could help a company edit their stylesheet to customize a theme. Draw on your own skills. Note that you’re raising money to get to BlogWorld. People are more likely to jump on board if they’re part of a cause of some sort.
  • Put a tip jar on your blog. I’ve never had a ton of success with these, but if you mention specifically that you’re trying to raise money to attend BlogWorld, some of your readers might donate. Make sure to add some affiliate links as well and note that they can also tip simply by buying a product they were going to purchase anyway, since you’ll get a cut of the money. Amazon is a great affiliate program for this, since they have so many items people buy anyway.
  • Create an information product, like an ebook or video series, to sell on your blog. You can go all-out and do a huge project, but if you simply don’t have the time, create something small and sell it for $10 – $20. If just 100 people buy your $20 product, that’s $2000 to put toward your trip, which is almost enough to pay for it completely, depending on your travel costs.
  • Find bloggers in your area and arrange a carpool. This isn’t really relevant if you are flying, not driving, but for bloggers who live within driving distance of Las Vegas, spliting the cost of gas/parking for a van or SUV between six or so people can really cut your costs.

I know, I know – a lot of you are looking at this list and thinking, “this doesn’t help, I’m doing these things already and still don’t have the money to go!” Don’t worry! I’m compiling a list of other ways you can cut costs in your daily life to save up money for this trip. This list was blogging-specific, but never fear. I am the Queen of Pinching Pennies, and I have some cool tricks to share with you.

Keep in mind that all of the tips in this post (and my next post) can be used not just for BlogWorld, but for any trip you want to take, even a vacation.

*Disclosure: That’s an affiliate link.

Allison Boyer is a writer for BWE’s blog and the owner/manager of After Graduation. As the Queen of Pinching Pennies, she thinks she needs a crown and a cape. Or at least a tiara.

Blogging from an Event: More on Planning, Prioritizing, and Preparing


Earlier today, Nikki wrote a really great post about planning, prioritizing, and preparing when you head off to BlogWorld or any other type of event.

Insert my geek jealousy that she went to Comic Con here.

Anyway, I wanted to build on her ideas a little in regards to actually blogging live from a conference. As I told ya’ll yesterday, this will be my first year at BlogWorld, and I’m a little nervous about attending. This is not my first conference, though, and from a remote blogging standpoint, I think I’m an old pro. This aspect of attending a conference takes it’s own planning, prioritizing, and preparing.


The number one thing you should find out is whether or not there will be WiFi at the conference center. This information may not be readily available on the conference website, but it is often listed on the press page. If you qualify as a member of the press, you should absolutely sign up to go under a press pass. Even if you don’t mind paying for an attendee badge, members of the press often have a press-only room for working, as well as access to interview spaces and sound-proof rooms for podcasting. Conferences also often have staff on hand to help members of the press set up interviews and other opportunities.

One of the interview spaces at Game X, a conference I attended in Philly.

Do not wait until you get there to tell them that you’re press. At most conferences, there is a strict deadline to register for a press badge.

Another aspect of planning – set up interviews before you go with the people you really want to see. That way they’re not only prepared for your interview, but there’s no chance of them being too busy for you and turning you down. Try to be courtesy of their time and flexible when scheduling, especially for celebrities at the event who are meeting with tons of other people too.


This part is tricky. Yes, you want to attend the conference and see all the cool stuff there is to see, but as a blogger, you also have the duty to report on what is most interesting to your readers, not just what you enjoy. For example, at BlogWorld, you may want to see Speaker A talk about monetizing your blog at the same time Speaker B is running a high-profile panel directly covering your blog’s niche. Which should you attend? I can’t make that decision for you, but I will say that if you never consider your readers while at an event, you probably shouldn’t worry about blogging from it at all.

You also need to prioritize your time during the day to give yourself time to work if you intend to blog from the event. Yes, you may really want to go to the bar after a long day at the conference, but it is more important to upload pictures to your blog or sit down to edit a video you shot. I’m not trying to kill all your fun – promise! Just be aware that if you want to blog from an event, you need to schedule time for work.


This is a biggy. When you’re blogging from an event, here are some of the main things you can do to prepare:

  • Bring a good bag for carrying your laptop and other equipment. It will be a long day if you have to lug something around and your shoulder hurts.
  • Make sure you have charger batteries for all your equipment and bring your chargers with you to ensure you don’t run low.
  • Bring a back-up camera if you can. I can’t tell you how many cameras get set down somewhere and forgotten or stolen at events. Having an extra back at your room is a lifesaver.
  • Mark all of your equipment with your name and number. Like I said, cameras and other equipment get set down when you’re talking to someone and it’s easy to just walk away. People who find your equipment need a way to contact you.
  • Find out where the local WiFi hotspots are located in case the connecting at the conference center or your hotel isn’t as good as you thought. You can at least get a few posts done at Starbucks during the evening.
  • Find out where the local RadioShack (or comparable store) is located in case you need to pick up anything while in town.
  • If you have a smartphone, download apps for Twitter, Facebook, and other social media sites so you can connect to people on the go without giving out your cell number to everyone you meet.

Conferences in any niche take a lot out of you, so don’t forget to also plan, prioritize, and prepare for the day you get home. Plan no work so you can sleep. Prioritize sleep before other things on your schedule. Prepare for being super tired but not being able to sleep because you’re thinking about all the stuff you just say.

Allison Boyer is a writer for BWE’s blog and the owner/manager of After Graduation. Comic Con is her Mecca.

Image (c) Allison Boyer/Binge Gamer

Plan, Prioritize, and Prepare For Anything: My Conference Tips!


I just finished attending Comic Con this past weekend (my third year in a row) and am headed off to an SCBWI Writer’s Conference today (my second year in a row, fourth time attending a writer’s conference). Although BlogWorld & New Media Expo fits somewhere in between these as far as scope and amount of attendees, I figure my tips (from these conferences and the others I’ve attended in the past) should be of help to some of you.

I’m a planner by nature, so when it comes to conferences I scour the conference tracks and the exhibit schedule. I research the speakers and exhibitors, and put together a plan of where I’m going to go and when. But it’s not only the event itself that needs planning … it’s travel arrangements, parking, bringing snacks to munch on, packing a jacket for the freezing cold conference rooms (and they are always freezing!) and of course what to wear to the parties.

Sometimes you can’t fit it all in. There’s no way. It might be two panels at the same time or a book signing on the expo floor at the same time as a speaker in another room. You have to prioritize. Pick one, two, or maybe three things that you want to make sure to hit during a particular day, and plan around it. With Comic Con it’s pretty insane – you may choose a panel as your top priority, and then realize you’ll need to go park it in Hall H all day, just to make sure you see it! With a large event, you definitely need to plan for lines and crowds.

Prepare For Anything:
I can’t stress enough how much you need to be prepared – and this will be completely based on what your goals are for the conference. If you’re taking pictures, bring an extra camera battery! If you’re live blogging, bring along your charger and make sure you have Internet access. If you are networking, make sure you’ve got a ton of business cards (I have a major fail on this one for my upcoming conference). If you want a book signed, make sure to pack it with you!

Nikki Katz is the Managing Editor for the BlogWorld Blog and is exhausted from only one day at Comic Con! Feel free to follow her Twitter @nikki_blogworld and @katzni

Image Source: SXC

Get to Know Other BlogWorld Attendees


This is me. Yes, I took a picture of myself in the bathroom mirror to show ya'll. Find me at BlogWorld! Don't be afraid to just yell my name if you see me walk past.

Thousands of people will be attending BlogWorld this year. As a new attendee, I have to be honest; that makes me a little nervous. I don’t actually know anyone else who is going, and I’m terrified that it will be junior high all over again. I don’t want to end up eating lunch alone or being the last kid picked in gym class. Sometimes, I end up being more introverted than I’d like, and while I wouldn’t really say that I’m shy, it does make me a little anxious to go into a situation where so many people know one another and I don’t know anyone.

Lisa Morosky, who is a panelist this year and someone I regularly stalk on Twitter, did something I consider pretty ingenious yesterday. She wrote a post specifically for BlogWorld attendees to leave their link, which allows everyone to get to know some of the people who will be there – at least through their blogs. Dave Risley, Nathan Hangen, Mike CJ, and Lisa will be doing a panel called “Treating Your Blog Like a Business” this year, but even if you can’t attend that specific session, it makes sense to leave your link on this list.

Beyond that, don’t just leave your link – check out the other links to see who else is attending this year. If you land on a blog that isn’t in your niche or even mildly interesting to you, you might still want to connect with that person. Check out their about page – you might find that you have something in common. Hey, you’re a travel blogger who homeschools her kids? I’m an entertainment blogger, but I also home my kids. We should try to meet up!

You might have other things in common as well that aren’t so apparent at first glance. For example, maybe you have a similar writing style. Or, maybe you live in the same area. Wouldn’t it be cool to find out that a blogger in your niche lives in your neighborhood and will also be attending? Heck, you might even be able to make arrangements to share a cab to the airport.

Maybe you just like the person’s blog. True story: I follow this one mommy blog, even though I have no kids of my own. Her stories just make me laugh! There’s no reason you can’t connect with a blogger outside of your niche if you like his or her writing.

At the very least, everyone at BlogWorld 2010 has one thing in common – the drive to be a better blogger. Otherwise, you wouldn’t be attending in the first place! Use that as a starting off point, and connect to these people. My goal is to comment on every blog on this list before BlogWorld, and although that’s a small goal right now (at the time of posting, there were only 12 blogs listed so far), I’m hoping that this list grows to include hundreds of bloggers.

I know I won’t get to meet every attendee at BlogWorld, but I hope that in the coming months, I can make some deeper connections and find new blogs that I really enjoy. There are already a few people on my list of “have to find at BlogWorld,” but I’d really like that list to grow to the point where my every moment is packed with meeting awesome people from around the world.

So, go add your link to Lisa’s list – and don’t be afraid to say hi to me, either here or at my own blog (listed as #2) on Lisa’s post, After Graduation). Hope to see you at BlogWorld!

Allison Boyer is a writer for BWE’s blog and the owner/manager of After Graduation. She apologizes in advance – her hair will probably not be the same color at BWE as it is in that picture. Hell, it might not even be the same color every day of the conference.

BlogWorld Flickr Photo of the Week: Chris Brogan and Charnell Lucich


We’re starting a new feature – BlogWorld Flickr Photo of the Week! If you have a photo and story you’d like to share, please email me with a link to the photo and your story. Don’t forget to join our BlogWorld Flickr Group too!

Chris Brogan, Charnell Lucich

This week’s photo is from Kevin Blalock:

Social media was a little unfamiliar to me and I never really got a good grasp of it until I attended the BlogWorld Expo in 2008 for the first time. I had heard about social media here and there, and had seen the buzz online. I even registered an account on Twitter, yet I still couldn’t figure it out.

This first trip to BlogWorld was a great experience for me as I wandered around the floor. I watched people connecting, learning about each others business, and hearing tips and tricks about social media in general and how it can be used in a positive way.

The key piece of knowledge for me was learning about blogging. Blogging was another buzz term that I figured only artists and poets used to document their daily life or something. To my excitement, asking many silly questions resulted in many very helpful answers from the other attendees and exhibitors. I quickly learned what exactly all this social media and blogging stuff was all about!

The experience this first year made me want to learn more and get involved myself. Now, I will be the first to say I am not the best at keeping my blog up to date on a regular basis, but I am working on it. I have a new project/business that gives me a reason to blog now, other than just the things I have been up to in my personal life.

Because of what I have learned by attending BlogWorld Expo, not only do I know how to leverage the tools of social media such as blogging; I can now share what I have learned and hopefully teach others as the wonderful people of BlogWorld have done for me.

Part of the BlogWorld experience is getting to meet many great people. One such person is the man who took the time to allow me to take a photo of himself and Charnell Lucich, Chris Brogan. Since leaving BlogWorld 2008, I started following him on Twitter and keeping up with his social media presence.

To my delight, Chris was once again at BlogWorld 2009 and was signing his then new book release titled “Trust Agents”. One minute, I was with Charnell Lucich who keeps up with Chris religiously, and is one of his biggest fans. The next minute she was in front of his table talking with him. So, I ran over to say hi as well since it is very rare that you do not see him surrounded by fans!

This brings me to the greatest part about BlogWorld. We all know who Chris Brogan is; and to be honest with you, I was expecting a better than thou attitude. Let me tell you, Chris is one of the most down to earth people I have ever met. He sat there looking us in the eyes talking to us, focused on the conversation and really made me feel that he was truly interested in our conversation.

I am really looking forward to attending BlogWorld 2010 in October. I look forward to seeing the friends I have made over the past two years as well as making new ones. To me, this is what BlogWorld is all about.

Kevin Blalock
Blalock Photography
Email: kevin@blalockphotography.com
Twitter: @kevinblalock

Attend the "How to Sell Your Blog” Panel, Even if You don't Want to Sell


Earlier today, Deb announced the that there would be a “How to Sell Your Blog” panel at BlogWorld. It’s a topic that doesn’t really blow my skirt for one main reason: I don’t actually want to sell my blog. I like writing posts for my blog. I like having control over the blog’s direction. I like using my blog as a home base. If someone offered me a million dollars for my blog right now…well, I’d probably say yes, because damn that’s a lot of money. BUT if someone offered my the fair value for my blog right now, which is considerably less than a million dollars, I wouldn’t be interested.

The more I think about it, though, the more I am actually hope that this panel fits into my BlogWorld 2010 schedule. Even though I don’t want to sell my blog at the moment, I’m excited for the panel for a number of reasons – and you should be, too:

  • You’re going to want to sell someday.

No one lives forever, so even if you blog at a single site for the rest of your life, eventually, you’ll have to hand over control to someone else. I’m guessing that a good 99.9999999 percent of people won’t want their children to inherit their blog on their deathbed. No, you’ll want to sell it long before then. All of the tips covered in this panel will prepare you for when that day comes, be it next month or ten years from now.

  • The panel will cover some great content tips.

Deb already announced that one of the topics covered in this panel is “how to have a blog people want to buy.” Even if you aren’t selling, having a blog that garners interest is definitely a good thing. If people want to buy your blog, it probably means you’re driving traffic, ranked high on Google, etc., so the content tips you can learn from this panel are in valuable, even if you don’t want to sell right now.

  • You’ll get to meet some movers and shakers.

People on this panel have sold their blogs…for a lot of money. Some of them may not be as well known as popular social media and Internet marketing bloggers presenting at BlogWorld, but they are innovative people with strong business senses. They’re the cream of the crop. They’ve done what we all want to do – created super successful blogs. So successful that other people bought them! I’m willing to bet you’re going to see a lot of movers and shakers, so to speak, in the audience too. You’ll benefit from the questions they ask, and maybe even get to meet some of them after the presentation. They should call this panel “How to be the Most Successful Blogger You can Possibly Be.” It’s going to attract people from every niche and at every experience level.

I’m pretty sure that I won’t get to attend half of the panels, speakers, etc. that I want to see while at BlogWorld. When Deb announced this panel, I thought, “Oh good. That’s something I don’t have to worry about adding to my schedule.” Except now that I think about it…I do. I want to be there, just like I want to be at every other session announced so far, even in niches unrelated to my own.

Guess it’s time to start working on that cloning machine.

Allison Boyer is a writer for BWE’s blog and the owner/manager of After Graduation. She’s quickly realizing that she’s not smart enough to build a cloning machine in three months. She should have started working on this earlier this year.

Image credit: sxc.hu

Knowledge & Passion vs. Experience & Expertise in MedBlogging


The most common advice handed out when it comes to blogging is, “Blog about something you know and are passionate about.”  That’s great advice, as your passion will continue to provide you with a wide range of topics to write about, while your knowledge in the field will give your posts the authority that readers expect, and that combination will result in attracting a steady stream of new readers.

But no matter how smart you are, how much you know, or how much time you spend researching, there are times when you want to write about a subject that is unfamiliar to you, or involves remote locations that you can’t visit in order to gain firsthand experience.

When I started the Global Patriot blog I knew this would be the case more often than not, as the topics which interested me covered everything from human rights, hunger, poverty and violence, to helping the environment and health care.  I knew a fair amount about each of these topics from news reports and documentaries, and there’s a wealth of information online, but in some cases that wasn’t enough.

While many medical disciplines reside in the laboratory, the true end goal is about treating people, and this is never more true than when medical teams are called upon to save lives inside conflict zones.  In these situations, nothing can substitute for the experience of someone who was actually there.

Such was the case when I decided to write a series of blog posts about Doctors Without Borders (DWB) the second of which highlighted their ongoing mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

Part One – Humanitarian Efforts
Part Two – Democratic Republic of Congo
Part Three – Refugee Camps

I didn’t work for Doctors Without Borders, wasn’t a trained doctor or nurse, and had never visited DRC.  What I did have, however, was a passion to write about the topic, and a reputation at Global Patriot for blogging about issues affecting people around the world who were in need of medical aid.  So when I reached out to the Director of Communications at DWB, he was very supportive of this project and opened doors to internal resources who could provide me with the human experience I was looking for.

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"How to Sell Your Blog for Lots of Money" Panel Announced


On my first day on the job for BlogWorld, Rick Calvert sent me a copy of a blank schedule and told me to create my dream conference. He suggested I write in the sessions I would most like to see as an attendee. At the time, there were several topics that I wanted to see covered at BlogWorld, but two of them in particular kept coming into my head. The first was a “From Blog to Book” panel (which we’ll discuss here once speakers are all confirmed). The second was a panel on selling a blog (for lots of money).

When I described my idea for a session on selling a blog (f0r lots of money) to the BlogWorld team, no one laughed. In fact, I received the opposite reaction. Everyone thought it was a great idea. So I put it on the grid and put a note on my list of things to do to find panelists for this session. The next day, I had a call with Eric Olsen to discuss possible speaking opportunities for him at BlogWorld.  “What if I talked about how to sell a blog for lots of money,” said Eric.

Apparently great minds things alike. Eric sold Blog Critics to Technorati for a reported $1 million in 2008.

I reached out to a couple of other bloggers who sold for big bucks, but no one responded. Then Rick came back to me with another brilliant idea. “You know who we should get to be part of that panel?” He asked. “One of the Ars Technica guys. They sold their blog to Conde Nast for $25 mil.” And so we welcomed Ken Fisher to the panel.

Our best ideas are always a BlogWorld team effort.

What will this panel cover?

After selling my own blog network (for lots of money) last month, I received a flood of emails asking me a variety of question. The majority included:

  • Why sell your blog?
  • How to have a blog people want to buy
  • How to find a buyer
  • How to set a price
  • What to present to a potential buyer
  • What happens after you sell

Though they weren’t related to the panel, receiving these emails gave us an idea of what folks most wanted to know about selling a blog. Expect to see these questions and more covered in the “How to Sell Your Blog ” panel. We haven’t yet named a moderator, but we’re sure you’re going to walk away armed to take action if you’re considering a sale of your blog.

Stay tuned to this blog for more terrific reasons to attend BlogWorld ’10!

Deb Ng is the Conference Director for BlogWorld and blogs about blogging and social media at Kommein. Feel free to follow her on Twitter @debng.

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