Canned Article on Get Google Ads Free!

Get Google Ads Free? Well this is another fine mess you’ve gotten me into Stanley!

So much for the clever marketing ploy and the push for traffic to start selling this affiliate product I just spent all that time reviewing and promoting and writing about in my last posts here:
Affiliate Promotion: Get Google Ads Free – My Review.

Ezine Articles are a great site and I’m not putting them down in any way, but they stopped my review article dead in its tracks because they don’t like the fact that it reviews a book that claims to get Google ads free!

Never mind that the article is actually a review, they won’t approve it because they think it suggests that you can get Google ads free, which of course is nonsense and the review even says as much! I’ve told them what it is all about, but they don’t seem to want to budge, so it looks like that side of the promotion has stalled.

Oh well, every silver lining has a cloud!

Now to turn it around. I’ll have to box a little clever here to get some blog posts up onto page one of the search engine results for the keyword get Google ads free. To do that will need some keyword heavy posts in a couple of PR3 blogs to get up there and hopefully attract the traffic that way. So apologies in advance for the frequency of bolded phrases like get Google ads free. It’s just that is the only way to get this post up past all the other sites vying for the first page.

So what have I to report on so far with my Get Google Ads Free affiliate campaign? Well, GoArticles have been kinder to me and the article: The Amazing Truth About Get Google Ads Free, has been published up there. If you want to have a look at it, just click the link and you’ll open a new page or tab and you can even vote for it (if you like it, that is!)

So the bottom line, have I made any sales of Get Google Ads Free?

Nope. So far the traffic simply hasn’t turned up probably due to the ezine articles submission not getting approved yet, which was the hinge for all of this happening. They are probably the only top ezine that are strict about duplicate content, so while the GoArticles version was spun to be different, my plan was to then submit that version unchanged around some more less discerning article databases, but was waiting on approval.

What the heck, I’ll do that anyway now as I can’t waste time arguing with the editors at ezine articles – I’ll just have to pull the article off there and put it up somewhere else.

As for the other promotional methods, well I learned a clever trick for getting a blog post indexed in about six minutes AND up onto the top page of a low competition results page at Google, so that’s what this post is actually doing right now! Thanks to Vic at Blogger Unleashed for the tip.

See you on Page 1…

Terry Didcott
The Honest Way

Online Business or Online Job?

This is a bit of a poser for those of you who make money online doing whatever you do to achieve an online income.

Do you consider what you do as a business or a job?

Most of you will answer that with a resounding:

“Its a business, of course! I work for myself, don’t I?”

But would you be right? I was thinking about this last night after responding to one of Monika’s blog posts at The Writers Manifesto and I’m not so sure it is as cut and dried as a lot of people suppose.

There are glaring differences between the two that are obvious when you take time to really look at what you are doing online. The first thing you should consider is this. Do you work only for yourself, do you work for someone else, or do you do a combination of the two?

Let’s look at the differences between the main two categories here. Are you the boss or is someone else the boss? Let’s take each side and lay them bare as to exactly what they are.

Think of a business in terms of how you are paid, or how you make money.

Do you make money from the income you generate from selling products, be they your own or commissions from affiliate products, or from revenue generated from advertising space on your websites or blogs? Do you make money from the sale of websites or blogs that you have created? Do you make money from the sale of articles you have written yourself? Essentially do you make money from the sale of something that is generated by you or your websites or blogs?

If the answer is “Yes,” then you are in business.

Now think of a job in terms of how you are paid.

Do you make money by being paid by someone else to produce something within a time frame and for a set amount of money that has been pre-defined during your negotiations? Do you write articles or ad copy or blog posts or write the content for whole websites or even create and design websites for someone else who will pay you for your work? Do you fill in surveys, read emails, write paid reviews or essentially doing anything or performing any task online that someone else pays you for?

If the answer is “Yes,” to any of that, then you are doing a job.

What is the difference?

Well, if you make money by generating that income from the sale of goods or products that’s a business. If you are being paid by another person for any other reason for a service you provide online, then its a job pure and simple.

When you run a business, you work your own hours to suit the nature of what you are selling. You do your own promotion and marketing and you then reap the rewards of your work depending on how much you put in and how well you do it. You make money from your customers, of whom there are many. When you write a book and put it up for sale, you’ve created your product and now you will promote it and many people will buy that product. You don’t have to re-write it for each new customer – that would be silly. You can offer additional bonuses with your book, for instance you can offer free updates of the books for each customer for a certain length of time. But when you do this, you’re not working for those customers, you’re working for yourself because those updates are made to the one copy of which you will mail out to many customers. After a certain amount of time has elapsed, your book will have been updated enough times for you to market it as a new product, so all your updates will essentially have been for your benefit.

However, when you do a job, you work the hours that you have to in order to fulfil the criteria of your boss and get paid what that boss has agreed with you initially. If that work entails writing articles or ad copy, you will write each entity once and hand it over to your boss who will take ownership of it. You won’t be able to re-sell it to anyone else because it will no longer be yours, unless you have managed to negotiate something to the contrary with your boss. However, this is unlikely to happen, because your boss is paying you to produce content for them. They won’t be too happy to find their content turning up on someone else’s site.

Like it or not, when you are in this situation you are still working for someone else – a boss – because they are the ones who pay you. By working a job online, your income still has a ceiling which is defined by the amount of hours you are able to put in and the amount of dollars per hour you are able to negotiate for your pay.

You will never get rich working for someone else.

Ever hear that statement? Well better believe it because it’s true.

You’ll only get rich working for yourself. How rich you’ll get depends on many factors, but can basically be worn down to a few essentials. Like how dedicated you are to your business, how motivated you are to succeed, how well you have educated yourself for running a successful business.. oh yes, and how good a product you can produce – although that’s only part of it – more importantly is how good an advertising and promotion campaign you are able to create in order to sell that product.

Lastly we have the hybrids. The ones who are running their own business selling products, affiliate products and advertising space etc as well as working for someone else by creating content specifically for them or even writing paid reviews.

I fall into this category at present, which is why I mentioned it.

I sell my own ebooks and other niche products that I have created myself. I also sell articles that I write via Constant Content. You might pipe up and say, “Hey, that’s a job isn’t it?” – well no it’s not because I don’t write to any set time frame or set wage. I sell each article for an individual price that I define at the outset and I’ll put up as many articles to sell as I have time to write. The buyers are actually customers who buy the rights to each individual item, in a similar fashion to an artist selling one of their paintings – there can be only one! Constant Content are not my boss, because although they pay me, they are only a broker who pass on the payment from the customer and take out their commission. They are acting as an affiliate in that respect, by promoting my product for me.

So what about paid reviews? Didn’t I just say they were a job?

Yes, I did although that is more of a grey area. While the review sites act as broker to sell my review to the customer and take their commission before paying me like with Constant Content, they also have more stringent rules that I must follow. Of these, the most poignant ones are that once I accept a review, I have a limited time frame in which to complete it, which makes it more like a job. Granted, it’s up to me to decide how many reviews I want to take but there is no negotiating the price – I accept the review and the price that goes with it. Those two points make it more of a job than a true sale, but not entirely, which is why I called it a grey area.

Well, I expect there are those of you who will find some objections to my reasoning here, but there really is no denying the facts.

If you’re working away for several hours a day producing content, writing ads, designing websites, reading emails or whatever for someone who pays you for your work and for those hours you are putting in to produce that work, then you are doing a job and you have a boss – pure and simple.

If you’re selling something to customers, then you have a business and you are your own boss. Even more pure and simple!

So which are you?

Terry Didcott
The Honest Way

Better Than Nothing At All…

Making money is a great motivator when you’re having a touch of writer’s block and the ideas seem to be drying up.

This blog was always intended as a vehicle to make money and that’s exactly what it is doing for its author right now! So when I get those times when my brain is tired and the creative process is gumming up a touch, I just remind myself why I’m doing this in the first place and then force my lazy grey matter into a flurry of activity.

Well, I can always sleep later – after I’ve made that money!

Writing original content is still my number one method of generating income, so it is in my interests to keep the creative juices flowing and write about something*, even if that something is actually about nothing.

Because something about nothing is better than nothing at all!

Well, you have to be a writer to figure that one out!

Terry Didcott
The Honest Way

Writing Honest Paid Reviews and “The Gonster”

The Honest Way loves to tell it straight, as it is, the honest truth and all that! So this may come as no surprise to my regular readers…

There is an alarming debate going on over the merits and possible problems associated with writing paid reviews for sites like PayPerPost, ReviewMe etc. I learned this from a recent post in my friend Grizzly Brear’s blog, Make Money For Beginners.

It stems from the recent page rank shake-up by “The Gonster” (I think you know who I mean!) where some very high profile blogs were slapped down in the rankings for selling links to make money…

Gasp! Make Money? How dare they!

Well, that seems to be the feeling at The Gonster, anyway. Of course this is still only conjecture, as no one outside of The Gonstser actually knows the whole truth. Maybe the likes of John Chow (who suffered a massive cut in his PR) were doing something else that rankled the Big G.

But as far as anyone can intelligently surmise, the PR cut in the big name blogs was highly probably because the search engines don’t like crappy sites buying links to boost their own page rankings. When you think about it logically it is an unfair way of getting a high rank and coming out as popular in a keyword search when your site is actually a pile of ads and misleading links. The search engines are trying hard to keep such sites from their high pages because when people search for something, they should get the most relevant sites first. Fair enough.

So it makes a lot of sense. Except like all corporate monsters, The Gonster is shooting the messengers, and not the perpetrators by penalizing people for trying to make money from facilitating this practice, which is after all simply exploiting an opportunity that has presented itself.

Isn’t that what business is all about? Making money from supply and demand?

Of course it is. And there will always be the ones who oppose it. Which is fine as long as the opposers don’t have too much power or too loud a voice.

But when a big voice booms “Don’t do that or you’ll be sorry…” we have a problem. The Gonster is that problem and they appear to be after hitting anyone who does not comply with their precepts.

“Resistance is futile…”

Well, that’s my take on the paid links bit, so how does that affect paid reviews?

Paid review sites have their own set of rules, one of them being that when they give you a link to include in your review (and they always do) they state that the link must not be altered in any way or the post will not be accepted.

Now, if your review was to advertise a company and to raise their profile by being exposed to your blog’s readership, which is how they do it in magazines and newspapers, then as long as the link sent some of those readers to the advertiser’s site, then the paid review has done its job.

But what if the predominant purpose of that paid review was not simply exposure, but to gain link juice from the link in the post, especially if it came from a high PR blog?

If that’s the case, which when you think about it makes all the more sense, then isn’t that the same as paying for links? Oh, dear – sounds like the same problem! The Gonster may well penalize naughty, misbehaving bloggers who are trying to scrape a living from the few dollars they make from writing these reviews.

Oh, oh.

As the message clearly sent out by The Gonster was to stop selling links or have your PR cut down, then anyone writing paid reviews must surely fall under the cosh as well.

So what can we do about it?

Well, at the moment, it appears that it’s not possible to distinguish a paid link in a review from a naturally given link love link. To muddy the waters further, some blogs write reviews of other websites and blogs for free either because they thought the site was worthy of it or they wanted to get the attention of the site so they’ll maybe link back by way of thanking them for the review. That’s something you can’t realistically penalize blogger for, because it’s all part of promoting yourself for no direct monetary gain.

If paid review companies want to stay in business – and let’s not bury our heads in the sand here, they will lose a lot of business if The Gonster has its way – they need to be more flexible in the way links are allowed to be displayed on blogs. One simple way is to allow the rel=”_nofollow” attribute to be added to the anchor tag. This effectively cuts off the link juice to the advertiser, but still allows the link to generate traffic to the advertiser’s site.

Another way is to get clever with the “full disclosure” directive. This is a measure enforced upon paid review sites whereby the reviewer must disclose that the review is sponsored and who by. The disclosure is usually in the form of text or a link, which can be read or followed by certain techniques – high tech ones like robots and text recognition and low tech ones like a person actually reading the text! Guess which one will be most effective across the billion or so blogs out there. Here’s a hint: There aren’t enough people to physically read them all.

So instead of a text or link disclosure, how about a graphic disclosure? PayPerPost actually do that on some reviews, but it falls down because they use a tinyurl.com link to the graphic on their own server, which is too traceable. Now if they got clever and gave that graphic disclosure bubble as a download to be linked direct from the reviewer’s blog’s server, not so trackable!

Well if it was MY business on the line, I’d be thinking along those lines…

To conclude. For now, it is probably still relatively safe to carry on writing paid reviews and I shall certainly continue for as long as I feel justified in doing so, as it brings me in some very welcome income that reimburses me for all the hard work I put in writing for my several blogs, sites, lenses and everything else I do online that takes up my 12 hour plus day sitting in front of this thing.

If I get slapped down for doing it, then what have I lost?

I still have my ever increasing traffic on all of my blogs which I attract by my own promotion – very little of it comes from The Gonster anyway – it’s all my own efforts and I like to think my interesting and informative writing skills that people keep coming back to see.

So I’ll take the money while it’s there, because it wasn’t there before and if it goes away in a while, then I will have made considerably more for doing it than I would have for not doing it. (If that made sense, then you have a brain as chaotic as mine!!!)

Here’s to your success!

Terry Didcott
The Honest Way