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How I Built a 4 Figure Monthly Blog in 3 Months – Part 2

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In my last post in this series, I examined the importance of planning your blog as well as how to choose a niche; I used my own examples to make it practical.

Today’s post will be talking about how I chose my domain name, set up my blog, and how I create “key pages” on my blog.

For a refresher, this is part 2 in a series of 4 posts that shares how I built a 4 figure monthly blog in 3 months, and how you can do the same.

Here’s what this series covers:

The Hard Reality About Choosing Your Domain Name

Exact Match DomainsWith over 2 years of experience blogging before I started the blog I’m discussing in this series, I’ve discovered how critical it can be to choose the right domain name for one’s blog.

Your domain name won’t necessarily make or break your blog but choosing the right domain name can significantly influence your chances for success.

While I can credit the quick success of my blog to a lot of things, I believe the domain name had significant impact; this was evident when I got my first client, who discovered me through the Google search engine, when I had around 3 posts on the blog and I had not even started marketing.

He saw that my domain name reflects someone who has the solution to his problems and he hired me to help him handle, first, his guest blogging campaign, and then his overall content marketing.

I’ve also guided a few people towards choosing a domain name that accurately depicts what they can offer so I can tell you how critical it is to choose the right domain name.

So unless you are Zac, whose name is synonymous to affiliate marketing online due to years of success and established authority, you would lose more than you would gain if you decide to register your name as your domain name unless you have a killer strategy.

My Simple Process for Choosing Domain Names

When choosing a domain name, I have a process. The first step in my process is to determine the main keyword for the niche I will be starting my blog in; in my case, it was “guest blogging.”

If you don’t have a niche yet, make sure to go back to part 1 of this series for some ideas to help you determine your own niche.

Now that I know that my main keyword is “guest blogging,” it is obvious that guestblogging.com and other relevant domain names have been taken years back. So, how do I choose a domain name that accurately depicts what my blog will talk about?

Here are some tips I use:

1. Use power words: Words that give more meaning to your blog, further defining its topic.

These are words you can add to the beginning or end of your domain name to ensure your domain name clearly shows the topic you’re talking about, that it has the keywords you plan to rank for in Google eventually, and that it isn’t difficult to pronounce.

In my case, this word was “tactics.” So, I added “tactics” to the end of “guestblogging” and I came up with guestbloggingtactics.com

This gave me the advantage of letting people know what my blog will be about while also making it easy for me to rank well for relevant keywords; with my blog ranking in the top 10 results several times for the term “guest blogging,” especially when I’m updating it regularly, and with several people linking back to me as an expert on the subject of guest blogging, choosing that domain name was a wise choice.

So make sure you think of a word that doesn’t significantly change the message of your blog, a word that enhance your message if possible, and look for a way to add it before or after your domain name.

2. Use Prefixes/Suffixes: Another approach is to add prefixes or suffixes to your original keyword; they won’t change your message significantly, and they can be very easy to remember.

If you just can’t come up with an idea for your domain name, you might want to check out Panabee.com. It will automatically generate these ideas for you, mostly using the above tips.

How I Set Up My Blog

Now that I’ve decided on my domain name, the next step was to register my blog and install it. Here was how I approached it:

1. Registering my domain name: I’ve had great experience with Namecheap in the past, so, for this, I used Namecheap to register my domain name.

2. Choosing a Blog Host: I’ve had great experience with Hostgator, so I used Hostgator to register my blog.

Thankfully, Zac has an option to help you install your blog for free on Hostgator if you decide to go with them. Check out Zac’s offer!

3. Powering My Blog: The next step was to bring life to my blog; I needed to make sure it is optimal and easy to use. I’ve had great experience with the WordPress CMS, so this was a no-brainer for me. I installed WordPress to run my blog; this was easy with QuickInstall in my Hostgator Cpanel.

4. Choosing My Theme: While I would have loved to recommend a certain theme, I’ve changed the theme I installed on my blog a few times. However, I purchased all the themes I have used on Theme Forest

5. Installing Basic Plugins: In other to ensure my blog was functioning properly, I had to install some basic WordPress plugins.

Some of the plugins I installed are:

  • Akismet; to combat spam.
  • Gravity Forms; my favorite plugin for creating good looking forms.
  • Smart Archives; to create my archives page.
  • Growmap Anti Spambot Plugin (GASP); to combat spam, and it is more effective than Akismet.
  • Google Analyticator; to link my blog with Google Analytics for stats tracking.
  • Clicky for WordPress; to link my blog with Clicky Analytics for stats tracking

With the above, my blog was properly set up and ready to launch. Now, I just had to create some key pages and start updating my blog.

Creating Key Pages on My Blog

Before launching my blog, I had determined that some pages are critical to the success of my blog. Some of these pages are:

1. My About Page: People needed to know who is behind the blog as well as what his main motivations are. My about page was created to answer this question.

Since I started my blog under a pseudonym, and as a part of a public challenge, the about page was short and told people my reasons for starting the blog. You might want to follow a proven formula when creating yours and, for that, I recommend this article by Michael Hyatt.

2. My Contact Page: The more readers get in touch with me, the more of their problems I know and the more effective my blog can help them solve these problems. My contact page is a very essential part of my blog.

3. My Services Page: Now, I wanted to make money. In fact, the title of this page promises to show you how I built a 4 figure monthly blog in 3 months, so this page is essential because it is critical to achieving this success.

The main way I planned to make money from my blog was by offering my services, and my services page showed people how they can hire me.

I occasionally linked my services page in my blog posts, in my navigation bar, as well as in guest posts on other blogs.

For detailed instruction on my process for creating services/hire me pages, read this article on my blog.

4. My Archives Page: When I started getting requests for this, I later created a page that featured all the posts that have been published on my blog.

Conclusion

This is where today’s post will stop. The next post in this series will talk about my process for writing key posts that drive income; these posts are a key part to getting clients that help me make money, so you won’t want to miss out on the next post in this series.

Bamidele Onibalusi is a blogger, freelance writer, and the founder of Writers in Charge, a popular blog for writers. If you want a proven formula for getting writing clients by blogging.

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Meet the Entrepreneurs and Experts of Affiliate Summit West 17

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Thousands of internet marketers, entrepreneurs, content creators and brands will ascend upon Las Vegas this weekend for Affiliate Summit West 2017. Not only has Affiliate Summit become one of the largest affiliate and internet marketing conferences in the world today, it’s also one I’ve been closely associated with ever since the beginning. From it’s first conference in a small room in New York City with just a couple hundred people to now having more than 5,000+ attendees and conferences twice per year, it’s always been great to attend as both an attendee and speaker.

At the same time, it would be a huge mistake to discount Affiliate Summit as just another networking of marketing conference. The relationships, businesses and life experiences that are a result of the event is second to none — which I why I always recommend everyone to attend, no matter their current level of expertise.

By the way… if you are attending, don’t miss the awesome “How to Become a Millionaire Blogger” panel with myself, John Chow, John Rampton, and Syed Balkhi. It’s almost always standing room only, and rated as one of the highest attended and most valued sessions of Affiliate Summit.

Affiliate_Summit_West_2017_Agenda2_-_Affiliate_Summit

Over the years I’ve literally met thousands of people through the conference and built many powerful relationships and business opportunities as well. With each new year, new speakers, entrepreneurs, and bloggers will take the next step in becoming financially independent, starting a side business or simply changing the world in some way or another.

To help you not only get inspired for this year’s Affiliate Summit West conference but also get inspired with just a glimpse of the talent at this event, I wanted to highlight some of my previous podcast guests, who will also be speaking at #ASW17. Enjoy, and I hope to see you there!

Inspiring Stories and Marketing Tips from Affiliate Summit Speakers

Below you will find a list of speakers currently on the agenda for ASW 17. However, through my podcast I’ve interviewed more than 80 different industry experts… many of which who will be also attending the event in one way or another. Be sure to check out the full list of interviews here.

Shawn Collins and the Affiliate Summit Empire

Shawn Collins of Affiliate Summit

Shawn Collins the co-founder of Affiliate Summit, which has become the largest affiliate marketing conference in the world today.

I’ve been good friends with Shawn for a while now and we’ve both been able to experience the affiliate marketing industry completely transition and develop over the past 15+ years. We were both in attendance at the Affiliate Force cruise, which was one of the first attempts at an affiliate marketing conference, but knew it could be done better. At that point Shawn and Missy decided they could do it better and the rest is history!

John Chow, the Master of Blog Monetization

John Chow

John Chow is one of the most well-known and successful bloggers in the world. If you’ve ever Google’d “how to make money online” or “how to make money blogging”, you’ve probably come across his name and site several times.

The amazing thing about John Chow was that he was never supposed to make money with his blog in the first place. What was originally just going to be a blog on his personal life and what he ate for lunch, soon became a “money making case study”. As John learned new and exciting ways to monetize his blog content and audience, the money just kept rolling in.

Jump forward several years later and his blog is now generating over six-figures per month, and most of it recurring and automated through his amazing sales funnel system — all of which John talks about in this episode.

Rachel Honoway, From Intern to CEO

Rachel Honoway

Rachel Honoway is the CEO of For Me To Coupon. However it’s not her current position that we are focusing on, instead it’s the great journey that’s led her to where she is today.

The start of Rachel’s journey in the world of online marketing is nearly 20 years in the making. Rachel’s first job was at an internet marketing company called Kowabunga, where she first came in as an intern. As the company continued to grow in size, so did Rachel’s daily tasks and her job title. The company was soon acquired and Rachel was then managing more of the company than ever before. Once leaving Kowabunga, Rachel had a wide range of opportunities over the years before ending up at For Me To Coupon, where she is the CEO today — which is all discussed in this latest episode.

Syed Balkhi, the Wizard of WordPress

Syed Speaking at Fincon13

Syed Balkhi is not only a master at WordPress, but he is also an awesome entrepreneur.

Since an early age Syed has always had a passion for business and building success. This could be seen from the early years of his life when he was just a kid in Pakistan and selling greeting cards. Then later in life while in high school, Syed started developing sites of his own while quickly discovering what the internet had to offer.

Today Syed runs some of the most powerful and heavily trafficked sites in the world… and yes, they are all powered with WordPress!

Stephan Spencer and the Science of SEO

Stephan Spencer

Stephan Spencer is an SEO expert. He’s also the author of Google Power Search and co-author of The Art of SEO… so it’s safe to say he knows his stuff when it comes to SEO and ranking sites in the search results.

How sites rank in the search results can go all the way back to before 2000, which is when Stephan and his NetConcepts company started getting heavy into SEO services. The thing about SEO is that it’s always changing, so to be one of the best SEO experts in the industry, Stephan is continually at the forefront of the industry and connecting with some of the most successful experts, businesses, and brands in the world.

Geno Prussakov Shares his Affiliate Management Tips

Geno Prussakov

Geno Prussakov is an affiliate marketing expert, author, and international speaker.

In the world of the internet, being an expert is key. Geno has mastered the art of affiliate marketing and affiliate program management and through this expertise has been able to grow his personal brand and business at the same time. As the author of many best-selling books on affiliate marketing, and also haven spoke at 50+ different conferences on such topics, Geno is the voice many people turn to when looking for answers to their affiliate marketing questions.

Having trained thousands of marketing professionals through his various books and online blog, Geno also went on to create Affiliate Management Days, which is a conference solely focused on the art of successful affiliate program management.

Oliver Roup Wants to Make Every Link Intelligent and Valuable

Oliver Roup

Oliver Roup is the founder and CEO of VigLink, a company that helps content creators make money through the use of affiliate marketing, while not having to deal with all the complexities of individual tracking, manually creating links and joining multiple programs.

Before getting active in the online marketing space, Oliver had accumulated quite an exciting resume of previous work with Space X, Microsoft, Paul Allen and many others. However, what might be Oliver’s most exciting experience to date was taking his business at Viglink from an idea to the flourishing business it is today.

For Oliver, this isn’t something that would happen overnight. Instead, it was a long journey of meeting with investors and VCs, trying to convince them that his idea was worth their time and investment. After many failed attempts, Oliver finally found an investor that was interested and things started to move fast!

Years later and over $20 million dollars in funding to date, the company continues to grow and scale in size while also helping sites of all sizes make money with their content while also connecting them with some of the largest brands and advertisers in the world.

Russell Brunson and How to Create Killer Sales Funnels

Russell_Brunson_of_ClickFunnels

Russell Brunson is an entrepreneur and the founder of DotComSecrets and ClickFunnels.

While finishing up his last year in College, Russell wanted to figure out a way to make enough money so he could continue with his passion for wrestling and to take care of himself and his girlfriend. After dabbling in the online marketing space and going through various failed projects, Russell discovered that one of the most successful ways to make money online was through the use of ebooks, guides and selling information. While messing around with some friends, Russell wanted to create a potato gun and went to the internet to find out how to create one. Once he found that there was nothing out there, he quickly threw one together and made a little course of his own on how to do the same.

Jump forward several years and today you will find Russell Brunson with all of his attention focused on ClickFunnels, a WYSIWYG editor and seamless way to create high converting landing pages and sales funnels. Not only has ClickFunnels become a huge success, it’s also taught Russell how to grow and scale a company, while also learning how to remove distractions and only focusing on what matters most.

John Rampton and Living the Dream in Silicon Valley

John Rampton

John Rampton is an online entrepreneur who has become a master at pay per click marketing, but even more importantly — making connections and networking with the right people.

I first met John Rampton several years back when he came up to me and asked for an interview while at Affiliate Summit. Since then we just seemed to click and started working on various projects together. In addition to being the Managing Editor of Search Engine Journal, John’s writing can also be found on Forbes, HuffingtonPost, Entrepreneur and many other top media outlets and news sources.

One of the major reasons for John’s success in the world of online marketing can be attributed to his outgoing attitude, willingness to help others and talking with just about everyone he meets. Each of these are all required skills for making it in the world of business and forming new partnerships. With all of this in mind, it only made sense for him to leave his home state of Utah and make the big move to Silicon Valley, CA — the central economic focal point for everything internet!

Thomas Smale and How to Buy and Sell Websites

Thomas_Smale

Thomas Smale is the co-founder of FE International, a company that was founded in 2010 that focuses on website brokering for mid-market online businesses.

Back in 2009-2010 Thomas wanted to get involved in the world of online marketing, but with little technical experience, his options were limited. It was then that he fell upon the concept of buying and selling websites for himself. With only a few hundred dollars at a time, Thomas began buying and flipping websites and getting quite good at it in the process. As his reputation and experience in this space started to grow, so did requests from other individuals asking for his support in selling their own websites — thus, a new business venture begins!

Today Thomas is the co-founder of FE International, which has offices in two different countries and 11 team members — all with the focus on website brokering and mastering the art of buying and selling websites.

See you at Affiliate Summit West!

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10 Strategies to Take Your Facebook Marketing to the Next Level

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How should brands that rely on Facebook marketing shift strategy in light of Facebook’s latest newsfeed update (which makes brand pages more dependent on users sharing posts with friends)?

Facebook, with over 1.7 billion users, is a powerful marketing platform for any business. It allows you to reach consumers on a platform that they are already using every day.

But when users told Facebook that they wanted to see more stories from friends and less promotional content, Facebook implemented a news feed update that gave them just that. So what does that mean for your marketing efforts?

Facebook Marketing

Businesses now need to work harder to ensure that their content is shareable rather than promotional. We asked ten entrepreneurs from YEC to share their best tips to ensure that your content still makes it on the news feed.

1. Be the Supplier for News Breakers

Step back and think about the sharing behavior of your own friends. They always want to be the first to share content that others have not already seen. Be fast and be first to break new stories relevant to your audience. Your Facebook page fans are more likely to share exclusive and engaging content to their own personal audiences if they feel it’s fresh and new.

– Anthony SaladinoKitchen Cabinet Kings

2. Stop Selling and Start Engaging

Unless you want to pay Facebook to promote your content, you need to push more content that your audience is likely to share. The more shares and likes you drive, the more reach you get with your content. With Facebook’s recent change, the key is to stop using Facebook to sell and instead use it to educate, entertain and engage your audience.

– Kristopher JonesLSEO.com

3. Pay Facebook

Facebook is a public company. Any updates to its newsfeed algorithm are meant to help the company maximize its return to shareholders. My advice? Play the game. Pay Facebook its advertising dollars to ensure your content gets discovered. The cost to create content (designers, copywriters, etc.) is usually more than advertising. Budget a little extra for Facebook ads to produce your best content ROI.

– Brett FarmiloeMarkitors

4. Embed Interactivity

Reduce the number of links that you post on your page and focus on embedding content – articles and videos – into Facebook instead. Since Facebook users prefer to stay on Facebook, giving them content without sending them away will help to guarantee they actually share your content, which will then place you in front of other audiences. Share stories that are informative, not promotional.

– Marcela De VivoBrilliance

5. Focus on Proven Tactics That Yield More Shares

Tactics like video content and helpful advice are some of the most commonly shared type of posts, so businesses should redirect their content strategy toward these tactics if they haven’t done so already.

– Peter DaisymeDue Invoicing

6. Diversify Your Marketing Strategies

It is not a good idea to be solely dependent on just one marketing platform. In this fast-paced world, change is inevitable when it comes to marketing via various social media platforms. Diversify your marketing strategies across numerous platforms because safety comes in numbers. If changes on one platform don’t suit your business, move your marketing money to another.

– Engelo Rumora, List’n Sell Realty

7. Make Ad Campaigns Pop

 With social media platforms now “competing for screen time,” companies need to make their advertising campaigns funny or memorable. We always remember those funny Super Bowl commercials, share them and talk about them. Making an emotional connection through storytelling will make potential customers remember your brand and create more buzz.

– Nemoy RauUS Biometrix

8. Network and Be Personal

You need to connect with friends and family on a personal level. Then you can market your services, just like you would in real life. You would not consistently blast your friends and family with announcements of your services, so don’t do it on Facebook either. However, a well-placed announcement for something interesting or important can be effective.

– Peter BoydPaperStreet Web Design

9. Make Content Sharable, Then Pay

If you have the right approach, this shouldn’t be a problem. You’re already creating shareable content targeted to the right audience. But even if your content is popular, you’ll have to pay to promote posts to a wider audience. Find out which posts generate the most engagement and pay to promote them. For brands, Facebook isn’t the free ride to huge audiences that it used to be.

– Justin BlanchardServerMania Inc.

10. Provide Value

Facebook is a game changer for any business that can master it. By providing value to the users that share your posts, it will give them an incentive to do so more often. For example, if you have an e-commerce business, offer a coupon code to anyone who shares your post. If you’re providing a service, give the users access to an exclusive blog post for sharing.

– Chad KellerWUDN

 

The answers above are provided by members of Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC), an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, YEC recently launched BusinessCollective, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses.

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Affiliate Summit – Stories and Moments You Don’t Want to Miss

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Hi, I’m Zac Johnson

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