The Pros and Cons of Creating a Forum for Your Blog

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photo credit: woodleywonderworks

If you run a high traffic blog, you might be tempted to create a forum to help facilitate the growth of your community.

Stop right there.

Before you even think about creating a forum, it’s important to realize just how big of a commitment you’re making.

Yes, owning your own forum has massive benefits. However, if you manage it poorly, it could spell the end of your business.

Here’s an in depth analysis of the pros and cons of creating a forum for your blog.

Make sure you carefully consider both sides before taking the plunge. [Read more...]

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Easy Content Weekly – March 24, 2012


From rants to helpful hints and downloadable checklists, we’ve got a lot of stuff for you this week.

You’ll learn how to find time for blogging, get traditional media coverage, understand the difference between good and bad Facebook ads and a whole lot more.

Oh, and make sure to listen in on the Late Night Internet Marketing Podcast for an interview with Alice. Details are below in “Lesli’s Picks”.

Here’s what’s new this week… [Read more...]

How Do I Get Traditional Media Coverage for My Website?

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In the past, when someone said the word “media”, we knew exactly what it meant. It meant programs and publications that were responsible for delivering the news to us and prior to the Internet, it’s all we had.

These days, when we say the word “media”, it can mean a variety of different things. People often use the phrase “new media” to describe what the media has evolved into with blogs and other digital media.

In fact, your own website IS the “new media” and you can use it to reach your audience directly and completely bypass traditional media if you prefer. Certainly, this rise of digital media has caused  traditional media’s power to wane, but the important thing to remember is that traditional media is still a great source for establishing credibility for your business. These are long standing institutions that people still turn to as reputable sources of information.

And hey, when it comes to new media, the traditional media aren’t doing to shabbily either as you can see:

The good news is, you don’t have to write endless press releases, go on publicity tours or make hundreds of phone calls to get decent credibility-boosting coverage from newspapers, radio programs, TV shows and more.

Here are 6 ways to facilitate traditional media coverage:

  • Press / News Releases: Despite what others might say about press releases going the way of the dodo bird, the press release (or often modernly called “news release”). Traditional media still uses press releases, but always do your homework for each publication to see how they like to receive their new stories and adjust accordingly. The bonus to creating press or news releases is that you can also publish them online and reach your target audience of customers directly too.

(Note: You can download press release instructions, topic ideas and a template here.)

  • Go local: If you want media coverage, it’s easiest to go local. Local media publications like local stories, so be proud of your roots and get known in your community. Larger and broader-reaching publications look for bigger stories and people with more media experience. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t reach for the stars, but work it locally and then go wider.

(Note: You can download a press release distribution checklist here.)

  • Showcase your expertise: Today’s reporters are web-savvy, so make sure you stand out as an expert in your field. Use your website, print books and other self-published media as an opportunity to get that expertise out there.

(By the way, if you’re looking for a way to find out what your expertise or special knowledge is, our free Monetize Your Knowledge course can help you do that.)

  • Be searchable: One of the easiest ways to be approached by the media for a quote or interview is to be found for important keyword phrases for your niche. This means doing basic SEO on all that expert content you’re publishing.

(Lesson 12 of our free Better Content Marketing course at Contentrix covers SEO for you…and everything leading up to that lesson will certainly come in handy too.)

  • Easy to contact: Don’t hide behind private domain registrations and web forms. Make sure you have a phone number and mailing address so the media can see you as a legitimate source and  can contact you for an interview, an opinion or quote at anytime.
  • Get to Know Reporters: Just like with anything else in business, you need to get to know people and expand your connections. Ask for introductions and referrals readily. You can also use services like HARO (Help a Reporter Out) to help you reach traditional and new media contacts.

It’s probably quite clear by now, working to reach the traditional media is something you can incorporate into what you’re already doing. It all translates into creating valuable content and getting it out there.

Give Your Readers What They Want - WITHOUT All The Hard Work - Pre-made fully-illustrated step-by-step tutorials make it easy to sell your products, build your list and grow your business. Click here to learn more.

Content That Actually Sells Stuff


As you know, content can serve a lot of different purposes. It can showcase your expertise, generate traffic, serve as a relationship-builder and so much more. As a reader of this blog, we’re pretty sure we don’t have to tell you this. ;-)

But one thing we really hope from our content is that it helps us directly increase our sales. While all strategically created content can help us grow our businesses, there are certain types of content that lend themselves best to actually selling products and that’s what we want to talk about today.

1. Product Reviews or Profiles

A website visitor who is already in the consumer mindset is much more likely to become a customer than someone who simply searching for information on a particular topic. That is the main reason product focused content is always a safe bet when it comes to monetization.

Consumers flock to the Internet looking for information about their next purchase. They want to know the features of a certain product, they need opinions on whether the product works as advertised and more. When they find your review of a specific  product, you bring yourself that much closer to clinching a sale.

2. Product Comparisons

Going even further with the product-based content idea, consumers already readily compare their purchase options. Whether they want to compare different cell phones or laundry detergent, one of the first stops for this type of information is the Internet.

Helping your visitors make a decision between specific products is also a great way to drive consumers to your website and detailed product comparisons can help them do just that.

3. How to Guides

Teaching someone how to do something can be a great way to generate some sales, especially when your visitor needs to make some purchases to complete the project.

For example, if you’re showing someone how to do a home repair project and you happen to sell a kit that makes it really easy, a how to guide showing them how to fix the problem can help pre-sell that product for you.

4. What to Guides

If you sell information products and want people to pay you for the “how to” information, you don’t need to give away the whole farm. The best way to sell your “how to” product is to give them “what to” information instead.

What this basically means is that you show your reader what they need to do to solve a particular problem, but not necessarily the details of how to do it. After all, it’s your information product that will give them that detailed how-to help.

For example, if you sell a guide on dog grooming, you might create some content that shows them the important things to remember when clipping a dogs nails (avoiding the quick, how frequently to clip, etc.), but you don’t show them exactly how to properly clip  the nails. And of course, with this type of content, you can also recommend the tools to get the job done as well.

5. Content with Ads

If you aren’t selling a product, but are displaying advertising instead, putting a focus on certain content topics can also help.

For example, if you’re displaying Google Adsense ads, you know that certain ads pay more than others. Product-related content like product reviews and comparisons can help you display higher paying ads. You can also do some research and choose topics that have a higher pay-per-click rate.

Content IS a business builder, but you’ve got to plan it right. By mixing up your content strategy, you can establish your expertise, build relationships AND sell plenty of products too.

Tired of the Hassles of Outsourcing Your Content?

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Just enter your first and last name below and get instant access to your free guide and more content tips by email.

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No, It’s Not Okay


A little while back, I said we don’t rant much at Contentrix, but here I am feeling frustrated, disappointed and I need to do a little venting.

But please don’t take this to simply be a rant because my real goal is to actually help anyone who has struggled with creating their own content.

Here’s the back story… [Read more...]

Free Outsourcing Content Guide

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Click here to get yours.

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