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BlogWorld 2008

Blogger’s Night Out Details!

Author:

First of all a huge thank you to Joe Morin and Brett Tabke from Pubcon for making this happen. Second a Huge Thank You to the folks from MGM/Mirage, Blue Man Group and Cirque du Soleil for their generosity in donating all of the tickets and for being such a cutting edge company that realizes the influence of the Blogosphere and new media.

This program was a huge success at last year’s Pubcon and I was immediately jealous when I saw what they had done. Completely by coincidence Joe and I met about a month ago at New Media Expo and he said we might be able to pull this off for BlogWorld. About three weeks of hard work and organization from Joe and Brett and off we go.

So here is the deal, the tickets are free to all BlogWorld attendees on a first come first serve basis. Every show is certain to sell out so sign up ASAP. I would highly recommend going to the Thursday night showing if you can as there will be fewer bloggers in town then vs. Friday.

All the MGM/Mirage folks are asking is that you write an honest review of the show you see. It is not required but if they are cool enough to give you a $100 + ticket I hope you are decent enough to follow up and write the review on your blog. They don’t want puff pieces. They want your honest opinion if you loved it let them know, if you hated it, then explain why.

When you post your review, please link back to this post.

Here is the Blogger’s Night Out Schedule with all of the available shows and times:

Thursday September 18th

Mamma Mia

7:30 p.m.

Carrot Top

8:00 p.m.   (tickets must be picked up by 6pm or they will be released back to general sales pool)

Friday September 19th

Roller Coaster at NYNY

Between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Blog World attendees can ride the coaster for free with their conference badge – up to the first 200 attendees each day. Be sure you bring your badge if you want to ride the roller coaster!

Siegfried & Roy’s Secret Garden and Dolphin Habitat

Between 12:00 p.m.  and 4:00 p.m. BlogWorld attendees may obtain free admission with their badge. Be sure you bring your badge if you want to get in!

Blue Man Group

7:00 p.m.

Zumanity

7:30 p.m.

Now how do you get your tickets?

Go to this website and sign up, you will get an email verifying you have registered. Click the link and log in. You will then get an email from Brett asking which show you want tickets for. Just reply with your request.

The pubon folks will be at Blogworld Thursday afternoon and all day Friday. You will need to pick up your tickets directly from them.

Counting the roller coaster there are over 1,000 tickets available. This is a huge program that MGM/Mirage has put together for us. So if you feel inspired to just thank them in general please be sure and link back to this post with anything like that as well.

Blogworld Speaker Interview: Deborah Micek

Author:

Q: In two sentences, highlight your background and professional experience to date. One bonus sentence: how’d you get started blogging?

A: My background began with a quick rise to the top of my field as a social worker with a degree in Psychology. Ok well, it was actually to the #2 spot in my field, but I realized I’d have to wait another 30+ years to get the president’s position as she was fairly young with no plans to go anywhere. That’s when I started exploring other ways to challenge myself. After spending a decade as a behavior analyst, overseeing managers and motivating the unmotivated, I decided it was time for a change. A BIG Change!

As a result, I changed everything about my life. I started a coaching & consulting business in the NY/NJ area, I quit my “secure” job, and I sold my house and all my belongings (except my shoes) and moved 5,000 away from my home state to live and work in the state of Hawaii.

Once I realized how time consuming in-person networking was, and how costly advertising was for a small business owner, I began the quest to find another way to get the word out about my boutique coaching firm. That’s when I discovered the power of blogging.

Deborah Micek, aka CoachDeb

Deborah Micek, aka "CoachDeb"

I started blogging after participating in a coaching club with Stephen Pierce where he talked about blogging as a way to get traffic for all the articles we wrote for Hawaii’s daily newspaper The Star Bulletin and magazines back in 2002. Having my own Coach was just the kind of accountability I needed.

After that, my blogging efforts took a life of its own. My business partner and I started seeing additional benefits for our blogging platforms, and took it to the next level, writing the first book on new media marketing tools and strategies. But instead of calling the book “blogging secrets” we wanted the book to be full of timeless strategies, and instead titled it, “Secrets of Online Persuasion” taking the topic beyond blogs and Podcasts, which were all trend setting topics at the time, and the book was released way before its time in regards to the blogging bandwagon that followed.

The book covers what’s most important when you’re using any communication platform – which is your influence and ability to persuade with your words via your blog. And to me, that’s more important than just the mechanics of blogging.

Q: How often do you blog?  What platform do you use?  Why?

I blog often. I guess I could say daily, now that I use Twitter as my micro-blogging platform, but as far as article blogging, it’s several times weekly on a variety of the blogs we run.

I started using WordPress, but found there were so many plug-ins to install, and with the updates they issue to fix bugs, etc. it became incredibly time-consuming.

The platform we use is BLOGi360.com.

Why do I use this platform? Simple = Because we created it.

Ok, well that’s the short answer, but on the serious note, we developed it to take care of an unmet need for busy business owners who didn’t have the time to do all the things necessary for their blog to work for them. We hired a team of programmers to create software that works automatically for the busy business owner (starting with me).

The system took a ton of tech time off my shoulders so I was able to focus on writing & uploading content, videos, etc instead of worrying about the techie stuff. All the installation and plug-ins along with proprietary software that goes far beyond WordPress are all done for me on any blog I create with this software. Now with the BLOGi360 system working for me, I can get busy doing the things I love – like tweeting on Twitter and connecting with other influencers.

We originally created the system to use for ourselves (selfishly) and then shared it with our private coaching clients. Recently we decided it was time to share the technology with the world of small business owners. Thus began another journey.

Q: Point us to a recent postings on your blog that you think are superb, and tell us a bit about your writing process. How long did it take for you to come up with the topic?  How long to write?

http://tribalseduction.com/blog/womenrule is a recent post that was uber fun to create & share with my subscribers. The topic generated 30 comments almost immediately and continues to get a lot of hits to this day.

People often tweet me mentioning how they laughed when watching the video on this post, and then share whether they agree or disagree with what the gentleman in the video shared.  The blog post posed a question (instead of a statement) “Do women rule on Twitter? (What Men Think)” and shared a few paragraphs about the making of the video that was shared in the post. The video itself was created while at a friend’s place, and editing less than 5 minutes because we kept it “reality style”.

This topic on my personal blog was a continuation of a column written for Entrepreneur magazine where I posed a controversial topic that people couldn’t help but comment and tweet about. 72 comments came in from my Twitter following who were not afraid to get engaged in a controversial dialogue.

My writing process is to not fear controversy. I even posed the thought for my readers, “Does this make me sexist?” and allowed readers to decide for themselves. In a politically correct world, people are tired of only saying what they’re “supposed to say” so anytime you go against the norm and try something different, it’ll have a certain shock value where people will enjoy participating in. And that’s what the blogosphere is all about – isn’t it? To get people engaged, entertained and sharing their two cents about matters important to them.

Q: How often do you leave comments on other people’s blogs?  How do you find their entries in the first place?

I comment anytime I come across a topic that interests me. I often find the blog posts from the people I follow on Twitter. I love knowing the moment a blog post goes up and have some bloggers who regularly DM me about 10 minutes before their post goes live to give me a chance to read and comment first, and then tweet my following so they can do the same.

Q: Tell us a bit about your talk at Blogworld Expo. Topic, key points you’ll cover, etc?

I’ll cover the issues of how to use controversy and creating shock value in my Tribal Seduction presentation at Blog World Expo on the Entrepreneur track.

Once you understand how people are tribal by nature, you’ll be able to gather a tribe yourself of raving fans.
Most people are afraid of “rocking the boat” yet that’s the precise way of generating a flood of traffic, fans and clients.

New Media has introduced a more authentic, transparent world, and when people try to disguise their views or true identity, it backfires, or worse, gets them no results as though they don’t exist.
We’ll talk about how to brand their voice and develop their story in order to be known in the marketplace of ideas.

I’ll also reveal an amazingly effective process that’s a 180° turn from all you’ve been told about marketing in the 20th Century. Most people do it backwards. That’s why I’ll discuss how business owners can solve the problems that most entrepreneurs encounter when developing their marketing strategy.

Q: How do you recommend new folks best experience a major conference and expo like Blogworld Expo?

I’d recommend new attendees going to Blog World Expo for the first time begin their experience by tracking the hashtag #BWE08 on their mobile phones and the internet using Search.Twitter.com in order to follow the conversations happening in all of the different rooms.

This is another great way to find and connect with people who are at the conference that you might not otherwise have the chance to meet in person due to the overwhelming number of people attending this conference.

Q: Easy ones: Mac or PC?  Ipod or Zune?  Iphone or Blackberry?

I go both ways. I use a PC for all my business needs with corporate clients so all documents transfer easily. And I use a Mac for my iPhone connection and think of it as my portable Mac computer, since I use it mostly for internet connection, checking email, etc. all the things people buy a Macbook AIR for.

Then I carry around my Blackberry in order to use the phone reliably and not hang up on people when my cheek hits the touch pad on the iPhone. I also have it as my backup for when my iPhone battery dies. I can never go a full day without recharging. So – I find going both ways works best.

As for iPod, I use the Creative Zen to download from my Napster account and listen to tunes and Podcasts on my long flight from Honolulu to Vegas.

Thanks for sharing all of this, Deb!  If you don’t, you should consider following @CoachDeb on Twitter too, though be warned, she’s as prolific a Twitterer as I am. But then again, perhaps you can just follow both of us (I’m @DaveTaylor) and add Rick Calvert, host of Blogworld (@blogworld) and fill your dance card quickly. 🙂


Interview by Blogworld Expo co-host Dave Taylor, of Ask Dave Taylor.com and Intuitive.com.  He’ll see ya in Vegas in just a few days!

Blogworld Speaker Interview: Lee Odden

Author:

Q: In two sentences, highlight your background and professional experience to date. One bonus sentence: how’d you get started blogging?

I’m CEO of TopRank Online Marketing, an Internet Marketing Consulting agency specializing in web strategy, digital marketing and PR, SEO, social media and email marketing. Before TopRank, I was a VP at a web development and marketing agency for about 5 years.

I started blogging in December 2003 as a way to collect and annotate news of interest for our team at TopRank. I changed it from a news blog to one that focuses on original content such as interviews, tips, conferences, polls and reviews about 3 years ago.

Q: How often do you blog?  What platform do you use?  Why?

Lee Odden, CEO, TopRank Online Marketing

Lee Odden, CEO, TopRank Online Marketing

Currently I blog just about every day, but not on the same blog. For the most part, I post to TopRankBlog.com which is run on WordPress. Why WordPress? Because it makes blogging easier and more effective. I also contribute to AllBusiness.com, MediaRelationsBlog.com and am working on something special for MarketingBlog.com, but that’s not live yet.

Q: Point us to one or two recent postings on your blog that you think were superb, and tell us a bit about your writing process. How long did it take for you to come up with the topic?  How long to write?

Recently I did a 3 part series on the topic of Digital PR and SEO that I personally thought were fairly well done.  Here’s the roundup of the series.

Overall, the best posts seem to come from tips or observations that happen in the course of working in an Internet Marketing agency or interviews. Tips posts like this one on repurposing content are often a compilation of reviews or bulleted lists of suggestions. However, we get the most comments and links from posts that are observations about the internet marketing industry and all the misinformation and change that comes with it. Those just flow out after a conversation with a prospect, a thread on Twitter or from a networking event and take anywhere from 10 – 45 minute to write.

Q: How often do you leave comments on other people’s blogs?  How do you find their entries in the first place?

I try to leave comments whenever people mention us or if I notice something of interest and can offer some value to the thread.  I find these kinds of entries from Google Alerts and especially from the alerts we get from Radian6, the social media monitoring tool we use. I have nearly 1,000 internet marketing blogs that we’ve reviewed for our BIGLIST in my RSS reader but obviously can’t get to more than a handful each week.

Q: Tell us a bit about your talk at Blogworld Expo. Topic, key points you’ll cover, etc?

I’m moderating a session on Search Marketing and New Media with an excellent group of speakers including: Stephan Spencer of Netconcepts, Brian Clark of Copyblogger.com and Michael Gray of Atlas Web Service. Each is an accomplished blogger as well as an industry leader in their respective areas of search and social marketing.

We’re foregoing formal presentations in favor of an overall discussion about trends and tactics with the last portion of the time dedicated to audience questions about blogging, SEO and any other relevant topic that comes up.

I think the audience will be in for a real treat because the depth in expertise about blogging as well as SEO, paid search, social media from this group would be hard to match.

Q: How do you recommend new folk best experience a major conference and expo like Blogworld Expo?

We recently ran a series on how to get the most out of attending conferences,  (See: Getting the Most Out of Internet Marketing Conferences) but I’ll summarize:

The important thing is to understand the conference offerings and read through the program to see what is being offered. Be sure to set goals and make the time to pre-plan conference involvement. Leverage content creation, networking, recruiting, competitive intelligence as well as prospecting opportunities.

Introduce yourself often, to speakers, sponsors and other attendees. Participate in after event social opportunities but don’t overdo it or you won’t get value out of the next day’s sessions. Be sure to follow up with new contacts and connect with people socially online through Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn or your social network of choice.

Q: Easy ones: Mac or PC?  Ipod or Zune?  Iphone or Blackberry?

PC, Ipod and Blackberry.


Interview by Dave Taylor, who blogs about tech support, business blogging, and personal finances, among many, many other topics. He’s also an avid film afficionado and runs @FilmBuzz, a movie new service exclusively available on Twitter.

Sparkplugging Heads to BlogWorld

Author:

This is a guest post by BlogWorld Speaker and rock star blogger Wendy Piersal:

Most people who know me, know that I am a conference junkie – I go to as many conferences as my schedule and budget will allow. Those of you headed to BlogWorld don’t need convincing of the benefits of being at conferences: the networking, the learning opportunities, the networking, the PR bump, and… the networking.

Most of the authors who write for my blog network don’t go to conferences – and this year, I decided I wanted to change that. I’ve given my team hours and hours of blogging and business training – but in the end, they are mostly just learning from one person – me. Bringing them to a conference would allow them to learn so much more from a completely diverse group of experts.

Choosing which conference to bring them to was pretty much a no-brainer. While other conferences like BlogHer and SOBCon are phenomenal events – whenever anyone asks me for a recommendation on which conference to attend, I tell them that BlogWorld is a must attend event. My team is very diverse in both topic coverage and skill sets. Some I’d call intermediate bloggers, some I’d call advanced bloggers. Some are new media experts, some are mommy blogging experts. BlogWorld is simply the ONE conference I could bring them to in which every single one of my authors would walk away from it with tremendous value.

The project isn’t just great training for my team – to have 12 people at the show live blogging and with Flip Video cameras is a huge opportunity for us. We’ll probably blog more in our three days in Vegas than we have in the last month. Plus having a brand-name sponsor like Epson opens a lot of doors for us, both now and in the future. We are a live case study on how a blogger can leverage everything you have into bigger successes.

We’ve even set up a brand new blog on our network and a new YouTube channel just for our BlogWorld coverage. We personally can’t wait until we get there. If you see any of us, please stop and introduce yourself – we’d love to talk to you!

Blogworld Speaker Interview: Joel Mark Witt

Author:

Q: In two sentences, highlight your background and professional experience to date. One bonus sentence: how’d you get started blogging?

I actually came into blogging from the podcasting angle. I worked as the Communications and Advertising Manager at the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore. The Zoo had been experiencing some financial and attendance challenges. I decided to start the video Podcast MarylandZoo.TV to begin extending the Zoo from simply a destination to an actual experience online and off. As a result I began blogging on my own — at Joel-Mark-Witt.com — to talk about the changes happening in the new media and podcasting industries. Online video has definitely driven my blogging efforts.

Q: How often do you blog? What platform do you use? Why?

I try to post at least once a week. Writing original content is a very difficult job. I would rather post less and push for quality than just post for posting sake. I know there are some who would disagree with this. But I will post when I feel I have something to say. Not find something to say because I have to post.

I use the WordPress platform right now because of the diverse themes available. I also like the community that has sprung up around this platform.

Q: How often do you leave comments on other people’s blogs? How do you find their entries in the first place?

I use Google Reader to monitor over 50 different blogs. I will also check out recommended posts from my friends using Reader. These have led to some neat discoveries of new and fresh content.

I will comment about once a week on a post that I find particularly engaging – more sometimes if I feel the need. I try not to make “me too” comments – but rather add value to the current post or further the discussion.

Q: Tell us a bit about your talk at Blogworld Expo. Topic, key points you’ll cover, etc?

I am teaming up with Michael Hoffman from See3 Communications for our session talk entitled “New Media From Inside The Organization.” Michael has many years experience helping non-profits develop online media for their organizations.

In this session we are going to lay out a roadmap for executives and managers to follow. How to use new media to create feedback among customers, re-purpose content for other uses, and ways to start using new media from the inside.

Q: How do you recommend new folk best experience a major conference and expo like Blogworld Expo?

Limit the number of sessions you attend. Spend as much time meeting people and talking in the hallways. The sessions are recorded – the hallways and networking times are not.

Q: Easy ones: Mac or PC? Ipod or Zune? Iphone or Blackberry?

Mac AND PC.

I actually use a lttle $50 Creative brand mp3 player. Never owned an iPod. Blasphemy – I know.

iPhone.

Great stuff, Mark. Thanks!  Looking forward to your talk at Blogworld Expo at the end of this week!  Man, that’s soon!  🙂   [Interview by Dave Taylor]

Blogworld Speaker Interview: Chris Baggott

Author:

Another in our series of Blogworld Expo speaker interviews, this is Chris Baggott, CEO and Co-founder of Compendium Blogware.  Ready?  Here we go!

Q: In two sentences, highlight your background and professional experience to date. One bonus sentence: how’d you get started blogging?

I began my career doing database marketing in the catalog industry.  My frustration was that in spite of a terrific insight into customer behavior, I was stuck sending a batch of similar books to everyone regardless of the specifics related to individual data.  This led me to Co-found ExactTarget the worlds leading Data-driven Email Service Provider.   As the company evolved I realized that although Email is perfect for building dialog and relationships with people you already know, it does nothing for acquisition.   The number one online activity other than email is search…this led me to found Compendium Blogware.

Q: How often do you blog?  What platform do you use?  Why?

Chris Baggott

Chris Baggott

I blog nearly daily.  Every employee in our organization is empowered to blog.  Probably 8 drive most of the program but our goal is to make sure as a company we generate at least three posts a day.  We use Compendium obviously because it’s the only tool that is SaaS, designed to empower employees and built for SEO through the unique “Compending” algorithm.

Q: Point us to one or two recent postings on your blog that you think were superb, and tell us a bit about your writing process. How long did it take for you to come up with the topic?  How long to write?

Blogging Best Practices

I write about our clients and general blogging best practices.  Specifically my goal is to get business and other organizations to realize that blogging can have a legitimate ROI.  It’s ok to be both Social and drive your business forward.  Seth Godin gave me the best advice ever when he told me to be Pithy.  Most bloggers in business feel like they have to write articles or whitepapers every time they sit down.

I just write 200 or so words about what I’m thinking regarding my business and my industry…and especially my customers.

Q: How often do you leave comments on other people’s blogs?  How do you find their entries in the first place?

I use Google Alerts for a lot of our keywords so my inbox is full every day.  I try leave two comments a day, but not so good at keeping that promise.

Q: Tell us a bit about your talk at Blogworld Expo.  Topic, key points you’ll cover, etc?

I’m doing two sessions.   The first is on Friday called Corporate Blogging; Myths & Reality with panelists Paula Berg of Southwest Airlines and Mario Sundar of LinkedIn.  We are going to discuss the recent Forrester report on business blogging and some of the disappointments and the gap caused by focusing on the wrong metrics of success.

Then on Sunday at 12:15 I’m giving a solo talk/discussion titled: How to Track, Measure & Adjust Corporate Blogs for Maximum ROI.  A lot of business blog inititatives never really get traction because perhaps the organizations are measuring the wrong things and don’t fully appreciate the power of business blogging to drive actual ROI.

In this session will discuss some new metrics and tactics to accomplish both the humanization that comes from blogging as well as drive ROI.

Q: How do you recommend new folk best experience a major conference and expo like Blogworld Expo?

People have to think about their specific goals.   Are you just wanting to share your personal journal?  Do you want to make money through a publishing model through Advertising or are you a business with specific demand generation and engagement goals.

It is easy to get off track with so many different models and objectives for blogging to forget what your specific end game is.

Q: Easy ones: Mac or PC?  Ipod or Zune?  Iphone or Blackberry?

Mac all the way.  Ipod of course.   Iphone but switching as soon as possible to the Blackberry Bold.

Thanks, Chris. Looking forward to both of your spots at the podium!


Interview by Blogworld co-host Dave Taylor, who blogs about tech support, business blogging and attachment parenting, when he’s not spending a ridiculous amount of time on Twitter (where he’s @DaveTaylor).

Blogworld Expo Speaker Interview: Dave Taylor

Author:

Remember that classic book Jekyll and Hyde? yeah, well, I’m interviewing myself here. You can roll with this, though, right? Sure I can. Great, I knew you’d be good with this. See ya in Vegas in just a week. Yeah, see ya in the mirror, Dave. Bwahahahahahah!

Q: In two sentences, highlight your background and professional experience to date. One bonus sentence: how’d you get started blogging?

Great question, Dave!  I’ve been involved with the Internet since I first logged in to the network back in 1980, while I was a student at UCSD. Back then it was the ARPAnet and only academic institutions and research groups were plugged in. Over the years more and more commercial use trickled in until the floodgates were opened to what we have now.

Along the way, I become very focused on how people communicate with each other via electronic systems, and spent years developing email systems and building email backends, notably the first X400 gateway for Hewlett-Packard and the Elm Mail System that ultimately was the most popular command-line based email app for a few years in the Unix community.

I got into blogging through writing tech books (notably Creating Cool Web Pages, Teach Yourself Unix, and the like). What I found was that readers would constantly email questions to me seeking clarification or help and that I would answer the same question again and again. My first attempt at creating a “knowledge base” was a forum, but, for various reasons, that didn’t work out, so I converted it into a weblog once I’d heard about those. My first blog posts were in May 2003.  It’s worked out pretty well since then. 🙂

Q: How often do you blog? What platform do you use? Why?

I am a blogging junkie, I think. On my Ask Dave Taylor tech support blog, I typically write 2-3 days a week, but during those periods write two or three postings and schedule them out so that there’s a new article every day. I’ve done that for years.

In addition, on my business blog at Intuitive.com I write probably once or twice a week, on average, though I’m in the midst of a long series of iPhone application developer interviews which has given me an atypically frequent schedule.

My third blog, the Attachment Parenting Blog, the posts are completely sporadic. Sometimes I’ll write two posts in a day and other times it’ll languish for a week or two with no activity at all. I’m too busy being a single dad to three [wonderful] children to blog about parenting! 🙂

All of my weblogs are built atop Movable Type, which I’ve used from the beginning. I know and respect WordPress (which is what we use for the Blogworld Expo Blog, by the way) and like Matt, but I started with MT and have stuck with it through the years. And, I might add, been rewarded with a stable platform that’s never failed on me and never (knock on digital wood) been hacked or compromised.

Q: Point us to one or two recent postings on your blog that you think were superb, and tell us a bit about your writing process. How long did it take for you to come up with the topic? How long to write?

Like most prolific bloggers, I am a very fast writer. I’ve written twenty books and been published over a thosuand times in magazines and newspapers, I have a weekly column in the local newspaper and a monthly column in Linux Journal. I can write.  As a result, I rarely spend more than about 15-20 minutes writing and editing a blog post, which is obviously a boon to productivity.  One aspect of this that people don’t tend to talk about, by the way, is the value of learning how to write so that you don’t need to edit yourself. It’s a learnable skill, but takes lots of practice.

In terms of good postings, hmmm… here’s one: Hey DirectTV!  Lying to customers isn’t a good way to drive business! What I like about this posting is that the title’s engaging, the story is interesting, and that there’s a good close. Of course, it’s also interseting that it’s been up a few weeks and the marketing team at DirecTV hasn’t responded, which demonstrates that I’m right: they’re not listening to their customer community.

Another one, off my tech support blog: How do I stop applications launching when I start up my Windows XP PC? Again, a pretty typical reader question, but after writing thousands of Q&A entries, I feel that my style of answering, with screen shots and a simple narrative, makes it very easy for people to follow along and so the site really does help a ton of folk gain control over their electronic chaos of their lives. And that makes me feel like there’s a direct benefit to my blogging efforts above and beyond me just having the proverbial bully pulpit.

Q: How often do you leave comments on other people’s blogs? How do you find their entries in the first place?

I try to leave at least a comment or two on other blogs each day, but admit that I am slacking on that as my workload (esp. regarding Blogworld Expo) has increased. I both read about 200 RSS feeds with Google Reader (which rocks!) and use a couple of very refined tracking patterns with Filtrbox, a more powerful alternative to Google Alerts, etc.

Q: Tell us a bit about your talk at Blogworld Expo. Topic, key points you’ll cover, etc?

Uh oh, I’m supposed to be talking at Blogworld Expo?  Awww jeez, I better start pulling some notes together!  Just kidding, Rick, just kidding. 🙂

I am honored and delighted to have been given a keynote slot and will be opening up the entire conference with a talk on the past, present and future of blogging entitled “How We Got Here: The State of Blogging and Where It’s Heading”, followed on Saturday with a talk on Ten Things You Need to Know About Search Engines and Findability, in which I’ll take my best crack at explaining why search engine optimization (aka SEO) is your friend as a blogger.

Q: How do you recommend new folk best experience a major conference and expo like Blogworld Expo?

I’ve been going to conferences since, well, for a long time.  A really long time. And I have learned that a little bit of planning and scheduling coupled with some flexibility can make your experience quite a bit better. Specifically, I suggest that you print out the conference schedule now and circle just the half-dozen talks that look the best. Leave holes in your schedule, but ask yourself not only “is this a good topic?” but also “is this speaker an expert on this subject too?”

The holes that you’ve left spend hanging out at the lounge, talking in the hallway with other attendees or socializing with those speakers whose sessions you’ve just enjoyed. Be open to tagging along to a presentation with a new friend too – you never know what’ll happen.

Once the main conference is over, don’t just hide in your room and watch TV (or go to the casino and gamble). Find out what parties are going on, find out where people are staying and check out the bars at those venues, and follow some of the speakers on Twitter too (start by following me: @DaveTaylor)

Q: Easy ones: Mac or PC? Ipod or Zune? Iphone or Blackberry?

Dude, you know what I have, why are you asking?  Oh, yeah, we’re blogging this interview. So hard to keep track. Must. Stay. Focused.

Mac and PC. Well, at last count, five Macs, two PCs.  iPod. Again, six iPods?  Seven?  It’s insane. Oh, you know that already. Bwahahahahahaha! And iPhone, of course. Heck, I have tons of free iPhone help on my (our?) blog, I have to own an iPhone.


Dave was interviewed by the handsome, vivacious, charming and extraordinarily modest Dave Taylor.  Yeah, we’re confused too.

Kings of Keynotes!

Author:

So we just talked about some of the rockstar speakers that we are going to have at blog world expo but wait till you hear our list of keynote speakers!  We really have some great folks.

My, where to begin, here is a brief description of this years keynote speakers at blog world expo

  • Chris Alden, chief executive officer and chairman of Six Apart.
  • Anil Dash is chief evangelist at Six Apart
  • Timothy Ferriss is author of the #1 New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and BusinessWeek bestseller, The 4-Hour Workweek
  • Richard Jalichandra, president and chief executive officer of Technorati
  • Guy Kawasaki is a managing director of Garage Technology Ventures, an early-stage venture capital firm and a columnist for Entrepreneur Magazine.
  • Steve Rubel is a digital marketer with over 15 years experience. He currently serves as Senior Vice President and Director of Insights for Edelman Digital, a division of Edelman – the world’s largest independent PR firm.
  • Mike Shinoda is a Japanese American musician, record producer and visual artist best known for his vocal and musical endeavors with his band Linkin Park and solo project Fort Minor.
  • Gary Vaynerchuk, a self-trained wine expert, is revolutionizing the wine industry.

As you can see we have quite an impressive lineup and one thing that we really tried to do this year is diversify by getting experts and thought leaders from various fields.  Where else are you going to find keynotes by a wine guru, a musician, a venture capitalist, and a senior level executive?

We are very proud and honored to have these folks keynote in Las Vegas and we hope that you can join us for what is going to be a truly remarkable event next week.

You can still get tickets to the event if you haven’t already.  You are sure to leave this expo with a slew of new valuable connections and game changing techniques and strategies that will help make you a better blogger.

See you next week!

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Rockstars of the Blogosphere

Author:

When you think of a rockstar who comes to mind?  For me it’s folks like Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, the Beatles, etc.  Now when you think of a blogosphere rockstar who do you think of?  Chances are whatever person you just though of is going to be at blog world expo this year!

We have 200 speakers at blog world expo and guess what?  They are all rockstars of the blogosphere.  I’m talking about folks like:

  • Laura Fitton (Pistachio on Twitter)
  • Chris Brogan
  • Brian Solis
  • Shawn Collins
  • Robert Scoble
  • Lee Odden

Just to name a few.  We are also going to feature leading military and political bloggers such as:

  • Matt Burden (Black Five)
  • Greyhawk (Mudville Gazette)
  • Jane Hamsher (Firedog Lake)
  • Erin Kotecki Vest (Queen of Spain)

Bloggers from virtually every industry are going to be at this event to lend their ideas and experiences to other bloggers from around the world.  If you are a seasoned blogger or someone who is just looking to get started with a blog, you are going to find invaluable insight and networking opportunities.

One of the things we are most excited about this year at blogworld expo is the “blockbuster” panel which is going to feature some of the true “rockstars” of blog monetizations.  The session, Making Money Online with a Blog, will be moderated by leading expert, Jim Kukral. Panel participants include big-time money making bloggers John Chow, Brian Clark, Zac Johnson, Darren Rowse, and Shoemoney.  This panel is going to be one you are not going to want to miss.

Be sure to check out our list of other “rockstars of the blogosphere!”

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Blogworld Expo Speaker Interview: Shama Hyder

Author:

Q: In two sentences, highlight your background and professional experience to date. One bonus sentence: how’d you get started blogging?

I run a small online marketing firm based out of Dallas called After The Launch. We specialize in helping professional service firms market themselves online. I started blogging a year ago because I wanted a platform to share my expertise. What better way to do that than blog?

Shama Hyder, Principal, After the Launch

Shama Hyder, Principal, After the Launch

Q: How often do you blog?  What platform do you use?  Why?

About 3 times a week. I’d like to blog more, just need to find the time! We use WordPress. LOVE It! Wouldn’t use anything else. It’s constantly evolving, and you have so much flexibility to customize it how you want. Plus, it’s great for the search engines. Some of our posts get picked up within hours! We build ALL our client sites on Word Press.

Q: Point us to one or two recent postings on your blog that you think were superb, and tell us a bit about your writing process. How long did it take for you to come up with the topic?  How long to write?

Hmm. Good question! Okay, here is some shameless self promotion.

Top 7 Resources You Had No Idea Existed: I like finding cool hidden web secrets and sharing them with my readers. There are some amazing things out there!

Our most popular post has been: Top 10 Ways to Use Facebook to Promote Your Business For Free . I chose the topic (Facebook) because it’s something I am VERY comfortable with. I have been using it for over 3 years. Both posts took me about 30 minutes to write. Writing comes fairly easily to me.

Q: How often do you leave comments on other people’s blogs?  How do you find their entries in the first place?

I have blogs I frequent, and will comment anytime I feel really moved by a post-which is often when it comes to my favorite blogs. I find entries and new blogs through 1) Twitter and 2) Google Alerts. I follow the coolest people on Twitter-and they are always sharing great links! Then I have Google alerts set out for terms I think are key. Example: Social Media Marketing. So, I’ll follow such terms and the blogs they inevitably lead to.

Q: Tell us a bit about your talk at Blogworld Expo. Topic, key points you’ll cover, etc?

It’s going to be awesome. : ) Well- I am planning for it to go that way anyways. My talk will be on Facebook. How to strategically use Facebook to leverage your business, brand, and blog. I am going to be covering a few key case studies and hopefully leave the audience with an action plan for how they can make the most of Facebook for themselves.

Q: How do you recommend new folk best experience a major conference and expo like Blogworld Expo?

Sneak into the speaker’s lounge! Okay, kidding-but they have good food there. : ) I’d say spend time in sessions and the lounge. Don’t be shy-go up and say hi to people. Last year was the first time I went and I had JUST started the blog. I remember coming up to you Dave and being “star-struck!”-but I did manage to say hi. : )

Having something that’s a conversation starter also doesn’t hurt. Whether it’s a funny shirt or a cool piece of technology (NOT the Iphone). My laptop has a sticker with our company name (After The Launch) on it, and it ALWAYS gets people talking. I love that!

Q: Easy ones: Mac or PC?  Ipod or Zune?  Iphone or Blackberry?

Hehe. I am going to get into so much trouble for this I know. PC (gulp). Ipod or Zune- neither. I listen to stuff on my laptop which I take EVERYWHERE. Iphone or Blackberry? Yea… an old T-Mobile Samsung. My new(ish) Tmobile dash was chewed up by Snoopy the Puppy (err…office mascot). So, I am not big into gadgets. I am much more on the business applications and marketing side of technology.

Thanks so much for your contribution here, Shama!  I’m sure that your talk will be great and look forward to it in just a week!


This interview was done by Dave Taylor, who has been blogging and involved with the Internet since Heck was a Pup. You can find his early cave paintings on tech support and business blogging and you can, of course, follow his adventures on Twitter at @DaveTaylor.

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