27.3.07

Email Subscription: What's The Problem?

Spam is the last thing on my mind even though I do get spam emails regularly. I can deal with this problem. I won't lose sleep over it. I just get on with the job.

I've been thinking but not like some of the thinking done by some bloggers.

I think more than 80% of blogs do have an email subscription somewhere on the top right or left corner. Or somewhere thereabout.

I'm not sure how many bloggers ever thought about this. Why not find a blog with good content and information (not necessarily one that belongs to a celebrated blog), submit your email address and get informed of the lastest posting via email. It doesn't cost a cent. At least, you're doing a favour for that blog.

You'll be surprised that many of these
"blue collar blogs" have fantastic content. They write well, too.

I've done that with some blogs that I appreciate very much because of their content. I've realized that once you subscribed to these blogs, it's so easy to be informed of new postings by just checking your emails. Even you can see the pictures or graphics if you activate your HTML.

If you like a particular new post, you can archive it (e.g. in your Google email archive) but if that post is not so interesting, just delete it. What's the problem? You can even unsubscribe anytime if you want to have no more of it.


This way, I get the "news" fast without having to surf all over the place to visit blogs that I want to read. And find that some of them don't load fast enough. Only when I want to take a closer look do I make a trip to that particular blog.


I know, I know. Somebody is gonna say "use RSS feed". That's my alternative, but selected email subscriptions are still my preference 'cos I find RSS feed can be slow to load up (correct me if I'm wrong).

Believe you me, reading up your email subscriptions is a time-saver and quite convenient.

P. S. It's tagging time again today for nine visitors to this blog. Spread the goodwill. Here they are:


Jemmille
http://www.jemmille.com
Where else would you possibly want to be?

Daleng
http://dalesworkathome.blogspot.com
A blog on work at home online business and other interesting things online

Blogpond
http://blogpond.wordpress.com
Blogging with an Australian Flair

Pablo Pabla
http://deliciousasianfood.com
Recipes for home-cooked food and reviews of great Malaysian food

Krynsky
http://krynsky.com
Eclectic mix of technology, poetry, guides, and my ramblings

Villager
http://electronicvillage.blogspot.com
The Electronic Village is a 'virtual village' created in the African tradition with an eclectic collection of insights, input and information...

Amycham
http://amycham.typepad.com
Thoughts on interactive marketing, small business, and miscellaneous web findings

Robyn
http://brainbasedbiz.blogspot.com
Refreshing Business through Arts and Mind

Christine
http://les5sensselonchristian.typepad.com
Fenetre ouverte sur le monde du Voyage travers cultures et rencontres, visions de photographes et chroniques de reporters, recits de voyaes par les emotions et les 5 sens ainsi que l actualite du tourisme.

26.3.07

Russian Artist Makes American Debut



Art knows no boundaries. If art is confining, then all is lost.

The tools of an artist can be many things. The results can be diverse.

That brings us to Russian Artist Victor Lysakov who is celebrated for his vibrant palette and unique composition. He's now in the states to introduce his works to the American public.

Lysakov is renowned in art circles in Russia and Europe. He became a founding partner of the first truly independent artists' union, "Arbatr" in 1987. In 2001, he created history when a graduate student dedicated her entire master's thesis to a living artist.

Curiosity, mystery and even fear. That might be your first reaction when you view the modern expressionistic work of Lysakov who was named one of "The Best European Artists" in 1991.

Lysakov's modern art is not entirely subjective. His paintings challenge the viewer to conquer her fear. If one should look closely upon his paintings, one would discover a captivating story accompanies each image, providing a riveting insight on the artist's muse. His contemporary motifs include creatures and nature.

According to Lysakov, he finds that the "most natural and the most fitting way to carry on a conversation with the world" is through the "visual language."

The Russian artist started his artistic journey with watercolor. He was never trained classically, but studied Rembrandt's and Bryullov's techniques on his own. Now he paints almost exclusively with oil or acrylic on canvas.



24.3.07

The Hots On Link Baiting - By Eric Ward



Here's a WebProNews video interview with SEO link building specialist Eric Ward that just came in and the main topic discussed is linkbait.

According to Ward, linkbait is a viable strategy to get links and that "good linkbait is pure," not coming off as "slimy"or "cheesy."

He also discussed the finer points of link building today, what constitutes good link bait and more in this interview.

As we are all aware, a great number of bloggers - from the hotshots to the wannabes - have been working their butts off lately to win Link Love.

"Link Love" is just another way (more refined) of defining the word "Linkbait" which to some so-called "white hat purists" is a dirty word and, therefore, should not be uttered in front of little kids.

But thankfully, there are rational and wiser heads around who don't look at it as a "black hat" operation. And the word itself should not be frowned upon as something that's linked to chicanery.

Ward, who has been there much earlier than the vast majority of us tyros had even heard of hyperlink, is one of those guys who can knock some sense into us with his experience and authority on link building and link baiting.

Whatever your link strategy, Ward reminds us that "in the long run, the end user votes with the mouse."

Well, dig into this video interview with Ward via webcam. Can't keep you waiting.

17.3.07

It Makes Sense To Give Link Love

Regular visitors to this blog and my other blog at The NextPost would not have failed to read up my post entitled "When A Little Link Can Go A Long Way."

Now I'd just thought that visitors to CommonSense With Markk should be given the same treatment. A fair deal, if you like.

I'm gonna repeat what I had mentioned over at The NextPost that there's no obligation involved here. Everything is up to you, good folks.

As I write this, there are nine avatars showing on MyBlogLog's Recent Readers list. To show my appreciation for their visits, I'm gonna provide a link back to their blogs.

You know something? It doesn't take much to do this. Eventually, I'll do away with the blogroll on the sidebar or cut it down to size. If I like to link to some blogs, I just give them some mention in a post.

Like I'd said before, you don't have to review this blog to get a backlink. But if you want to do that, there's no stopping you. Just think of this as some kind of linkety fun that hit me in a flash! But please take note that this is not an everyday affair.

Okay, here goes...the Lucky 9:

Goodness Graciousness
Sharing and spreading goodness and graciousness throughout the world by Jennifer Jones

Podnosh Blog: High Fibre Podcasting
I'm not really into podcasting but Nick Booth digs it

House of Virtue
A Christian Information & Resource Sharing Blog

Life Learning Today - New & Improved
Life Learnings about Love, Success, Health, Finances, Wealth, Technology, Happiness, and More! That's what it says.

GorillaSushi We Eat Blogs
"GorillaSushi is a band of eclectic bloggers writing on every imaginable subject. As many blogs gain attention for their narrow focus, we pride ourselves in our broad subject matter. Satire, movie reviews, trailers, humor, politics, technology and culture." Wow!

Little Lolita
"I'm weird (in a good way). Sometimes quiet. Other times im hyper as hell. Im friendly. Im funny... ," says Perri

Chateau Lalinde
She calls herself Red Shoes and she has this View From A Chateau Window. Good vantage point!

NewSFiX
The largest collective news site on the internet.

Buzzeum
Oui, it's very Frenchie here. ..Les Musees font leur Buzz.




Say "Hello" And Pay As You Go!


It's a good thing that cell phone companies are giving users the option of choosing the right payment plan.

When I started using a cell phone several years back, I used to get monthly bills that really did not justify the amount of minutes that I spent on the phone.

I'm not your regular "yakety yak" type who would be chatting with various friends and others till the cows come home virtually every day, and night.

So it was a blessing when these companies started to promote
prepaid cell phones which is an ingenious plan that suits me fine. It makes sense to me. And this "pay as you go" plans have gone down very well with a horde of cell phone users.

Now I have control over how much I spend each month without worrying about being slammed with overhead charges. By going this route, I now pay only for the minutes when I use the phone.

For those who are not in favour of signing an annual or two-year contract, the prepaid plans are just the ticket for them. And it's a bonus for those who don't have enough good credit to qualify for a wireless contract.

If you're more or less like me who just don't need all the minutes offered by a standard cell phone plan, the prepaid plan is the way to go, mate.

By the way, when it comes time for airtime refills, you can pay as low as $10. Some prepaid plans also come with rollover.

Just to recap, look at what you don't have to commit yourself to if you're using a prepaid plan:

  • No contract
  • No credit check
  • No expensive surprises

How sweet can it be! Go figure.

13.3.07

SponsoredReviews Open The Doors







The buzz is on. SponsoredReviews finally launched - officially on Monday, March 12.

With the backing of 360 Enterprises, Inc., which has a large base of advertisers, the team at SponsoredReviews are banking on a flood of ads to come their way.

At first glance, SponsoredReviews appear ready to give the competition a run for their money. They first announced their intention in mid-January and had called on bloggers to register early.

I'm sure many who had done that had been notified by email to sign up immediately.


Here are their carrots for advertisers:

  • They'll be the first paid-blogging system to allow advertisers and bloggers to be both passive and proactive.

  • Advertisers can post opportunities to attract bids from bloggers

  • They can search through bloggers' profiles and purchase reviews directly.

  • They are charging lower fees - at a flat 35% (with no per-transaction fee) - than their two largest competitors. According to SponsoredReviews, this is the lowest on the market.

    And for bloggers:

  • You'll get paid on a bi-weekly basis. You don't have to wait 30 days. That's pronto!

  • Manual pricing for bloggers. That means you set your own price and their system will make recommendations based on their automated ratings system.

  • Their bidding system allows publishers and advertisers to negotiate pricing.

  • Oh yes, bloggers are required to provide full disclosure.

  • To insure that only quality blogs are allowed into their system, SponsoredReviews have set minimum standards for blogs.

8.3.07

Looking For Free Fonts And Dingbats?



Blog design, as in traditional publication design, comes in many different shapes, sizes and styles. And in most cases, typography plays a very important role in the design in relation to the other page elements.

Understanding the art of typography is knowing your type or font. Know what typeface or font to use so as to reflect the mood, spirit and needs of your design. This is what type experts refer to typography as having a "tone of voice."

If you're on the lookout for some suitable fonts, you won't be short of choices at this new site that has an amazing collection of
Free Fonts and free dingbats, too.

UrbanFonts.com is just the place for font fanatics. They have more than 8,000 free fonts and dingbats for PC and Macintosh.

You name it: Helvetica, Futura, Old English or other novelty fonts, this site has got the lot.

If you can't tell the difference between Arial (a san serif font) and Times Roman (a serif font) then, obviously, you don't know your type.

Do you know that typography is a discipline going back to the 15th century when Johannes Gutenberg invented moveable type? And that desktop publishing revolutionized the use of type by graphic and web designers?

Apart from giving you free downloads, UrbanFonts.com is where you can also learn a lot about typography. They put you through a "crash course" on type design and typography.




1.3.07

More Affiliate Programs For Bloggers

The blog advertising industry, albeit a new one, seems to pick up pace lately. Now it looks like this new marketing niche is opening up for more enterprising bloggers to grab income opportunities with their blogs.

PayPerPost introduced their "Get Paid To Review My Post" badge, an affiliate referral program, early last month which enables posties to invite new prospects to review their blog post and get paid.

I guess it was hugely popular with the PPP fraternity judging by the appearance of this badge on many blogs, incuding this one. If you see one on a blog, well, you know what the blogger is up to, don't you?

Not to be left behind, ReviewMe are also planning to start their own affiliate referral program this month to lure more people to sign up.

Now it's Blogsvertise's turn to start sounding out their members to go and get their new affiliate banners. They want you to place these banners on your blog so you can refer advertisers to them.

Blogsvertise will pay a generous 20% of the amount an advertiser spends with them to you based on all their purchase amounts.

For example, you'll earn $100 if an advertiser makes a $500 purchase across a number of blogs. You'll earn income each time advertisers place an order.

According to Blogsvertise, you'll earn income even if the advertiser places ad offers with other Blogsvertise bloggers. How this works out wasn't explained fully. Got to check this out further.

Other enhancements to their service include higher payouts that are above the standard $5-$10 range. But this will depend on your pagerank and traffic statistics for your blog.

Here's a boon for the education sector, if you're able to publish a blog on your university site Blogsvertise can offer you payouts in the $25+ range. To qualify, your blog must reside on an educational domain ending in .edu.

Of related interests:
Some silly "insider" secrets
Coming - new kid on the block
More affiliate programs for bloggers
Sponsored Reviews open the doors
Writing paid reviews: How is it going?



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