Today is this blog’s one-year mark. My “welcome” post was posted April 18th, 2007.

The blog has come a long way since that first post. My original thought with the blog, to chronicle my experiences in Internet Marketing, so that others can learn from them, is still my guiding mission. The level of sophistication in the tips and techniques has risen quite a bit, though, as I advance through the learning curve.

Most blogs don’t last six months of daily posting, because of the huge pressure to create posts. I’ve survived only because my posts are drawn, generally, from my experiences in Internet Marketing. That’s key…I’m actually doing what I talk about, and so always have ideas for new posts (generally from problems I’ve solved lately, or screwups I’ve made).

What does the next year hold for the blog and for me? Here is some of what I see in store:

Mentoring

I see so many people approaching Internet Marketing the wrong way, promoting the latest system or product launch using the same tired techniques that other people who don’t know what they’re doing tell them to use. I’ve tried creating targeted email courses to help people learn more effective techniques, but people sign up for the courses and then you never hear whether they learned anything or not.

This year my focus will be on personal mentoring. I certainly don’t know it all yet, but I’m far enough advanced on the learning curve to save newbies a lot of time and money, perhaps keeping them on the curve instead of having them quit in disgust, several thousand dollars poorer.

My mentoring will be available to Advisory Panel members only. It’s a free forum, so there’s no risk to joining to take advantage of the mentoring.

While I regularly help out Advisory Panel members with keyword research help, and we have regular contests for participation, the level of help my mentoring students get will be a cut above that. I’ll create a private forum area for each mentoring student where we can discuss what they’re doing and how to improve it, and measure progress.

Mentoring will be free, but there will be a limited number of slots (I only have so much time!) To qualify for mentoring, you must:

1. Be an Advisory Panel member
2. Be willing to take advice that might contradict what you’re hearing on “guru” lists
3. Be motivated to do the work!
4. Be prepared to be in it for the long-term

Read more about this offer and how to apply in the Announcements section, the thread titled Mentoring Available.

More Guest Posting Opportunities

This week’s guest posting binge was the first time that someone else’s writing was featured on the blog. For the next year, I want to provide other bloggers in the niche with a regular opportunity to get their writing posted here. They benefit because of the extra exposure, traffic, and backlinks, and I benefit because that’s one day I don’t need to write a post.

Guest posting will be limited to a maximum of once a week. Posts must be high quality (generally higher quality than my “one off posts”), and should link to non-spammy sites. Educational types of posts are the rule, although if you want to review something, go ahead and submit the idea. If I have no interest in reviewing the product, and think it would be useful to my readers, I may give you the go ahead.

To apply for the next available guest posting slot, use the contact form on the blog.

Monetization

Yes, this blog will become monetized this year, in some way.

Right now, the only monetization on the blog is from affiliate links to products I have reviewed. I stick an affiliate link even into negative reviews, figuring that if you buy it even after I’ve told you it isn’t worth it, I might as well benefit.

The affiliate links on the blog actually earn very little. By the time I review any particular product, the chances are good that every “guru” has not only sent a ringing endorsement out to their list (said endorsement usually written for them by the product owner), but they’ve also offered tons of free bonuses for you to buy through their link. Affiliate marketing works better in other niches, where you don’t have the same culture of gurus and bonuses.

For the amount of time I invest into the blog, I’ve decided it needs to pay for itself. I’m not sure yet what method of monetizing I’ll use, but I still want to make sure that nobody mistakes an advertisement for something I endorse, as happened on John Chow dot com (somebody used Adsense site placement to place a graphic ad that said, “John Chow Recommends This”).

I will likely test various monetization options over the spring and summer, giving each two or three weeks to see what works best. I plan on using the Who Sees Ads plugin to make most ads not show to regular readers, but you’ll still see them until the plugin decides that you’re a regular (however it makes that decision).

Mostly Same Old, Same Old

I might cut back on the number of posts each week if I think that I can produce higher quality posts that way, but right now I don’t have any plans to do that.

Otherwise, you can expect the quality of content on the blog to remain the same, and for the sophistication of it all to increase as I continue to learn.

Thanks for being a reader!

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