Overnight Blogging

Troy Moore from marketingwithtroy.com

Today’s talk is  about overnight blogging.

The idea is that you spend an evening filling up your blog for an entire year, or if you want to be really thorough, maybe spend a weekend on and off just writing a few quick blog posts, and then schedule them far enough in the future that if you have more stuff to say later, you can fill it in between the scheduled posts but, even if you don’t, you’ll still have a blog that posts content on a regular basis for an entire year.

Blogging isn’t that difficult. It doesn’t have to be another site you maintain, it doesn’t have to be an extra task you do every single day and it doesn’t have to be an extra chore. If you just use my overnight blogging system, you can make your blog posting into a very simple system that you can just use to crank out a few blog posts, and then sit back and let it do the promoting for you.

The Point of Your Blog

Before we do that let’s go over what the point of a blog is. A blog is where you set up a site and you can post your articles or your content and it’s organized by date. It’s a journal. But what most people forget about is that if you’re a marketer of any kind in any niche, it should be a lead-in to your regular products; or even if you don’t have products, it should be a lead-in to your affiliate programs. But so many people will post content on a blog and it won’t go anywhere. So you need to keep that in mind anytime you’re blogging: That you’re not blogging for charity, you’re not blogging just to be a nice guy, you’re blogging because it’s supposed to lead somewhere.

So what you want to do for your blog is to lead in to your regular products and get some regular readers who flock to your blog every time you have something new to say. And then you use your blog for email opt-ins, so you have your blog and you allow people to subscribe to an RSS feed to get notified about new posts – and that’s great, but nothing’s going to beat email. You’re going to want to get people on an email mailing list as well, so that when you make new blog posts you can send them a message and they can come and read it; and when you launch new products, they’ll get those messages as well.

Your goal is to fill up your blog for 12 months. One of my blogs right now, which is about a year old, and I’ve got 56 posts and almost 1,500 comments, and it looks like a pretty busy blog – even though when you think about it, 56 posts?  What is that?  Like, five posts a month.  But because I market it to my list and because I have a call to action at the bottom and because I gather opt-ins on that blog, I’ve got an average of 26.5 comments per post. I don’t have any less than 10 comments per post, but I think a few are in the 15 to 20 range. I have one blog post that’s very close to 100 comments.  But on average, if I make a blog post, I can expect about 27 comments on that post.  And I do that because every time I make a new blog post, I type out a special message to my mailing list, not just an automatic notification, but a real reason and a teaser type hook of why they should read it and why they should post.

I do article marketing. The extra articles I write that don’t really fit on my blog I will submit to article directories and for many of them, in the resource box, instead of plugging some actual product, I will plug the specific blog post it relates to, because people were on that article site reading free information, so the perfect transition is to go to my blog to read free information and then maybe when they’re on the blog, then they can opt in to a list. And then once they’re on a list for a while and I’ve built up their trust, then I can hit them with some low-ticket stuff; then once they bought a few low-ticket products, I can start hitting them with the high-ticket products.

So I’ve got the list sending traffic to the blog, I’ve got articles going to the blog, I market on forums and I have my forum signature pointing to my blog.  And when I have a popular blog post I might sometimes change my forum signature to point directly to a specific blog post.

What do you want on your blog?

You want to put the best stuff you have to write on your blog. If you don’t write a lot, then fine you can put every single thing you write on your blog. But for me, I never really want to post more than one blog post a week. Sometimes I do it more frequently, but I don’t want to consistently post more than one blog post a week. If you remember I have had 56 posts on my blog in the past year so that’s about one post a week. That seems to be good enough that my list pays attention, then I have something to say – because I’m not mailing too often – and I also can keep their attention – because if you don’t post often enough, they’re just not going to come, no matter what.

So if you can write one article a week, post it on your blog. If you can write two articles a week, post one of those articles on the blog and submit one of the articles to the article directories to get traffic back to the blog, to get people to opt-in and to buy from you.

What do you want to post on your blog? You want to post the tame stuff – the “neutered” content – onto the article directories because you want it to be accepted by as many places as possible. But if you have an article that might be a little more on the promotional side or might be a little more on the controversial side, and you’re afraid it might not get approved by as many article directories, then you should post it on your blog, especially because this is the kind of stuff people will actually respond to.

If you write an article that’s so good that people are going to respond to it and you submit it to article directories, it ends up in other article sites, ends up on other people’s blogs and other people’s newsletters. So what? How does that benefit you if people respond to someone else posting your article?

So you want to write articles on your blog that people will respond to, that get people going, because they’re adding more content to your site, they’re making your site look more popular and then that’ll lead into more visitors and more commenters. It’s a windfall.

Blog posts can be even shorter than articles. Nobody said there is a set length on blog posts. There’s always a set length on articles but blog posts can be as long or as short as you want. I try to keep it under three pages but sometimes I’ll have blog posts that are not even half a page. And that’s totally fine.

You can ask questions on your blog. So even if you have stuff you’re not totally sure of, asking questions on the blog is great because they bring in more people responding. And with articles that aren’t exactly article-length – if you write an article and it’s just too short and you’re only making one quick point and you don’t have time to make it better, just post it on the blog.

The plan is to crank out as many blog posts as you can in a one hour period, because we don’t want to have to write a blog post, then go back to the regular marketing, then go back to the blog posts, go back to marketing, go back to the blog posts. No way. That is a guaranteed way to make sure that the blogging takes up too much of your time. So, you want to get yourself in the mood to write a bunch of blog posts, write them out, schedule them, and then not have to think about it for a very long time.

So a one hour period, alright. Make a commitment to me that for 60 minutes you will just crank out a handful of blog posts. Don’t get up, don’t answer the phone, don’t have any browser windows open, don’t check email, don’t let anybody disturb you. Just say, “For one hour, I need this time to myself to crank out a bunch of blog posts.” You can write them to be a hundred words, they can a third of a page, they can be a full page, they can be a page and a half – it doesn’t matter. A hundred word post or a five hundred word post? They both work.

All I want you to do is to knock out the first six months. So sit down for one hour and knock out the first six months of blog posts. Since we’re doing the bare minimum, let’s just say we’re going to post one blog entry per month, ok. That’s the parameters I’m going to set here. So, for one hour, you’re going to write six posts. I’m sure that if someone sat you down and grilled you for 10 minutes on one subject, you could say a heck of a lot about that subject, 10 minutes is a long time. I know you’ve had to give presentations – maybe for school, or for work, or for some kind of club or activity. 10 minutes is a long time to talk. You can get a lot of stuff down in 10 minutes. So you just do this 10 minute thing six times.

You want to knock out six posts and then we will schedule them one month apart and that gives us the first six months of content.

Once that’s completely done and maybe a day from now, or a couple weeks from now, or a month from now, if you want to write something else, you can fill in stuff in between those one-month gaps, but only four posts per month max, because there is such a thing as posting to your blog too often. I have followed many blogs where the guy posted every day. And I could keep that up for maybe a month or two, but then at some point it just became too tough.

So give people the break.  At least give them a weekend or at least post different types of content. So maybe one day you’ll do a video, maybe one day you’ll do text, but just don’t overload them.  Don’t post a bunch of entries per day. Space it out because it’ll last longer.

Blogging Formula

Here is my blogging formula because I know that if you sit down for an hour and you try to write out your six blog posts, it’ll be really tough because you don’t have a system. And if you allow creativity to drive your writing, well that’s great, but you’re going to get stuck.

So this is my system for how to figure out what to blog about next: “Rat Gum.” And I’ve got a picture here of a rat blowing up a bubble of bubblegum. So I did this so that you could really easily remember this, because I know that you’re going to think about the little rat, and he goes and finds a little piece of gum and he puts it in his mouth, and he chews it like a piece of cheese, and then he blows up a big bubble. All right?  “Rat Gum.” Just remember “Rat Gum.”

I’ve got these six different types of blog posts:

  1. You can write a rant about something that really disturbed you. So, it could be a “good” rant (about how great something is) or a “bad” rant (about how bad something is).
  2. You could do an affiliate review (this is a pitch to some other product).
  3. You could do a tutorial (so, how to do this).
  4. You could do a guest survey (this is where you ask your readers what they think about something.)
  5. And then a similar type of post is user feedback, where you actually take a comment somebody left in a previous entry (and it doesn’t even have to be in your blog). But if you see something somebody mentioned and it got you thinking about something else you could take their response and make a whole other blog post about it.
  6. You could do a monthly summary (you just tell people what you did that month, how it was different from the previous month, what you’re going to do next month, what was the most important takeaway from this month, what did you notice this month. You just talk about what you’ve done in the past three days.)

So, “Rat Gum”:

 

Rant

Affiliate review

Tutorial

Guest survey

User feedback and

Monthly summary

 

 

I’ve got some real life examples coming up of my “Rat Gum” formula in action.

But the point is that if you sat down for one hour and you had to write your six blog posts and you only had 10 minutes to do each, do you think you can rant for something for 10 minutes?  Do you think you could spend 10 minutes writing up a quick affiliate review?  Do you think you can spend 10 minutes teaching someone a really simple tutorial in a niche where you’re an expert? Do you think you can spend 10 minutes asking a simple question explaining your problem and asking people to help?  Heck yeah, you could!  Do you think you could spend 10 minutes taking someone’s question from a blog post or taking someone’s idea and turning it into your own idea?  Heck yeah!  Do you think you could spend 10 minutes explaining what you did in the past month if you just focus on one or two things? You definitely could.

Rant Posts

Here are some examples. I have posted several rant posts on my blog. These are probably the easiest to get carried away with, but that’s okay because we’re only giving you 10 minutes to talk, so you’ll be really quick to get to the point and then get to your conclusion.

One of my rant posts was about frustration – I was seeing all over the news, I was getting all these emails and message board posts from people about “Are we in a recession?” “Because we’re in a recession, should I just quit and not do internet marketing?”

And I was just frustrated because I was like, “Okay, maybe there’s a slowdown, but that means you’ll have less competitors. That means you’ll have less tire-kickers and less desperate, less low-ticket buyers. So you should focus on the true and the loyal and the high-ticket customers. It doesn’t mean you should quit.”

And then I shared a story about a guy in the Great Depression who was cut off from the news, and he sold hotdogs, and he was an old man.  His son came from college and told him “We’re in a recession, you’d better cut down your advertising and you’d better cut down your hotdog orders,” and he did and his sales dropped overnight. So, he was like, “Oh, I guess we’re in a recession.” I just shared that story because I was so frustrated about people saying one thing that I didn’t agree with -that’s the perfect kind of rant post.

And I also did a rant post about a software product that was like a tell-a-friend thing, where you could refer hundreds of people in one click to a site. But the problem was it required people to give up their email address and their password and allowed this script to log in and grab all their contacts.

So at first the idea sounded great and to all of the affiliates promoting this product it sounded great, but for me, I was like, “Well, they could be saving your password anywhere and this totally goes against all the terms of service for every single one of these email providers.” People didn’t agree with me. I said, “Well, I’ve got a blog, I’ve got readers” so I made my points and I got a lot of responses of people agreeing with me who were actually thinking about the problem and people disagreeing with me – and many of them were affiliates of the product – but that’s fine because it got some discussion going.

Another rant was one in which I asked the question “Are you a professional newbie?” And I was coming across all these people when I was doing support for my products, when I was doing coaching and webinars, and stuff like that.  All these people were just newbies at every single thing. They would try to learn one thing, they’d learn a tiny bit about it, and then they’d switch gears and do something else, then they’d switch gears and do something else. I was getting sick of seeing this mentality over and over, and I knew it was something people could relate to because maybe they were professional newbies themselves and needed a kick in the pants to do better; or maybe they dealt with professional newbies over and over like I had and they could relate. So I just had this rant and tell them about these types of people I’ve dealt with (professional newbies).

And then another rant post was where I said, “You’re fired.” So, I said, “If you were working at a job and you did all the exact same stuff you did right now with your internet marketing – that was your only job – and if you had a boss who made sure you kept doing the stuff that made money, would you be fired?”  And many people said, yes, they would be fired because they spent all day answering emails, or on forums, or just doing stuff that’s not making money. There’s nothing wrong with systematizing your business and getting some passive income and not working as much. But there definitely is something wrong if you’re not making as much money as you should. So I made that point.

And if you are still stuck about what to rant about you could share your big idea. I know everyone has their big idea, alright they have their crazy idea for what they think – if someone is marketing a product incorrectly or if they have plans for the upcoming year or whatever, you could share your big idea.

So one blog post I shared about for my big idea was called “Your List Is Your Baby.” I was seeing all these people promote affiliate product after affiliate product and I was thinking, “Well, you take all this effort to build up a really nice responsive list and then you keep hitting them with these affiliate offers and once you make one sale as an affiliate, then that guy who you referred to now has that contact information. And if that guy can market better than you then you’re actually going to hurt your business by sending traffic to other people.” So I was saying, “Promoting stuff as an affiliate is great if they have something complementary or if you don’t yet have a product. But don’t keep hitting people with affiliate offers if you’ve got your own product to sell them because you can keep them all inhouse.”

So those were the kinds of rant posts I made. I made a post about the recession (my frustration about that); my frustration with an inferior product; frustration with dealing with certain kinds of people and a certain kind of mentality, and a certain kind of marketing strategy. I guess what I should say is that rant posts are good if you’re frustrated about something or you feel good about something. These are the really emotional posts.

Affiliate Review Posts 

The next type of posts are the affiliate review posts. You’ve probably seen these on blogs. People will take pieces of someone else’s sales letter or solo ad they were given and they will just post it on their blog and stick their affiliate link on there. That’s fine if that’s all you have time to do, there’s nothing wrong with reposting an ad on your blog. If you have a little bit more time you could give a review. So you could say “Here’s what this product does. I actually bought it. Here’s what happens when I used it. Here are my results,” because your results are going to sell a lot better than the usual marketing spiel everyone is used to.

For a while every time I launched a product I would just put a blog post with that product name. So if I launch a product called “Hypnotic Peach P,” I would just say, “Hypnotic Peach P,”  and then I would talk about maybe what was different about this product compared to other products, or I would start with just the main benefit and then hook them with that and list the rest. But this is more like a sales-ey type of post. But because you’re a blogger your reviews are going to sell really well, especially with high-ticket products where the big names get lots of partners on board and everyone in the world is sending the exact same email, people are going to be looking for the review sites.

This reminds me of when John Reese released “Traffic Secrets 1.0.” This was years and years ago, back before every single person did a product launch formula type of launch, but he got a heck of a lot of people promoting for him. The sites that I would end up looking for were the review sites, the sites where the guy said, “All right, I got this. It came in the box today. I opened it up. Here are the CDs, in here. Here’s what each of the CD’s is about. I popped in the first CD and I fast-forwarded it to this part, because this was more what I was interested in. And this is what I got out of it in the first 30 minutes. Here’s what I got out of it in the extra two minutes. Here are the extra workbooks. Here’s an excerpt.” Just the fact that you’d paid for something and just the fact you’re spending so much time going over something says a lot, compared to the people who just copy and paste the same exact, boring ad.

Tutorial Posts

Tutorial posts for me are the easiest to make but I don’t know how it is for you (maybe it’s because I have so much practice doing tutorials). All you need to do is pick something that you’re already doing everyday, or maybe even once a month, and teach how to do it.

I noticed that I was recording a lot of PowerPoint Camtasias like this, where I would make PowerPoint slides and record Camtasia videos for them. It’s pretty simple but there are little tiny tricks that I’ve picked up along the way that made me able to record these kinds of videos twice as fast or three times as fast, whereas before I would take multiple takes, I would spend extra time on the design, on the editing and on the production. But now I’m like, “All right, you do this, this, this and this.” I think I actually posted about how to convert an audio product into a video product, which I tried to do unsuccessfully I think three years before, and I ended up wasting three weeks trying to record just one product from audio to video. But now it takes as long as the actual audio product is. So if I’m converting a 60-minute audio product into video, it takes me exactly 60 minutes to do that, whereas before it took weeks and weeks.

So I was thinking, “All right, if someone was like me and just trying to do this for the first time, it would take them weeks and weeks, so is it worthwhile to post about something that would otherwise take weeks, that you could compress down to an hour?”  Well, heck yes it is!

Another tutorial posted was the daily video challenge. I actually have two versions of this: I have a free version and a paid version. I give away the free version on my blog because I said, “I used to have trouble recording videos. I wasn’t that good at it because I didn’t have practice. So you need to record a video everyday.” And I set out a bunch of rules but basically the idea was that you had to record a video every day, even if it’s five or ten minutes, and there were rules like “You can’t give it away for free, you have to turn it into a paid thing and you can give it to a business partner to show them what you’ve done that day.” But the point was just to record a video every day and so many people can’t even do that, and I was like, “All right, well, here is how you record a video every day.” I had tutorials like “How to Break into Any Niche.”  So I was like, “All right, here’s where you set up the blog, you set up the list, you get some videos out – tutorial.”

You can have quick and very short tutorials about stuff people don’t normally think of. I had a short tutorial about how Clickbank let’s you sell physical products. Clickbank is a credit card payment processor but they do digital stuff only. You can only sell downloadable eBooks and videos and memberships and stuff on Clickbank. But I found a little thing in the terms of service that no one had ever mentioned, where you are allowed to ship physical products as a supplemental bonus, because Clickbank is pretty liberal about the refund policy. So if somebody asks for a refund they’ll give it to them and they don’t want to have to deal with if you shipped something to them and then they say “Well, no, you can’t get the refund until you’ve mailed the thing back.”

Clickbank says you can sell somebody a downloadable version for $50 and then send them the shipped version for free, and if they refund, they get the physical thing for free. So that’s how you get around that rule. You could say, “You buy this from me, you instantly get the download and I’ll ship it to you for free”. And if you’re willing to take that loss on not getting the physical product back, you can.

You can also use it as a “loyalty” thing. You can say, “You buy this from me and I’ll ship you the first half. So you can download the whole thing or I’ll ship you the first CD right now, and after 60 days (after the refund period has expired) I’ll ship you the second CD.”

So I said “That’s how you can sell physical stuff on Clickbank (you do it as a supplementary bonus).”

And I had a tutorial about how to reduce refunds – which is kind of on the same line as that – you keep giving people content that goes past the refund period. So you give away an eBook and then maybe you crank out a couple extra articles or extra reports and you put them on autoresponder so that they get the bonus after 14 days, and after 30 days, and after 60 days, and after 90 days, and after 3 months, so that they stick around the whole entire time and don’t refund, because they want to get all this extra value.

So those were my tutorial posts. It’s just how to do something, how to get something accomplished, to do a specialized task, how to get money or save money, how to get more time or save time, or stop from losing time. Anything you can break down into a step-by-step, even if it’s only four or five steps, that’s a perfect tutorial blog post.

Guest Survey Posts

These are a lot of fun to do. These are where you explain a problem – you explain your situation – and you ask your readers to answer you. The only thing about this is it relies on you having a decent amount of trust to get even a couple of comments. But if you do what I said, if you have your articles, your forums and your lists going to these posts, if you make it a point to really sell these question posts (these guest survey posts), you really try to get lots of people looking at that, everyone has an opinion. So if you can get lots of people looking at that you can get lots of responses.

As of today my most popular post ever was a post saying “Should I quit my day job?” And I told a story about how I make five times as much from my Internet marketing as from my day job, but I still like the security of my day job. And this was a very polarizing issue. Guest survey posts are really good if they’re polarizing – if you have half the people on one side and half the people on the other – because they will respond to each other and it’ll start a really good conversation. So I asked “Should I quit my day job? Here are the reasons to quit; here are the reasons not to quit. What do you think?” That’s all I had to say. It doesn’t have to be fancy.

Another guest survey was “Is your photo on every sales letter?” I looked at my sales letters and I noticed that I didn’t have a picture of myself. And these days, when everyone’s picture is on YouTube or Facebook or other social media sites – you probably have a picture of yourself online. So why not add it to your sales letters to boost conversions so that people know you’re a real person? Even if you’re ugly? All right, well just resize it down to a small postage-stamp size. And so I just asked, “Is your photo on every sales letter and if not, could you add it for me?”

So it doesn’t necessarily have to be where people argue about stuff. It could just be something like, “Here’s my tip. I’m just wondering how many of you actually use this tip.”

Recently, I posted about dual monitors. I got a new computer and I had my old monitor left over and I hooked it up. So I used one monitor for when I do video and then I can do something on the other monitor, or I use one monitor for research and the other monitor for article writing. So I just listed one or two things I used the monitors for. You don’t have to do exhaustive lists, I just said, “Here’s a couple of examples of why I use dual monitors. Were you aware of this? And do you use dual monitors?” And I had people saying, “No, I had no idea,” or, “I knew I could do it but I just didn’t know how,” I had people saying, “Oh, well, I have three monitors.”  I had a guy saying, “Well, I have four monitors.”

So just asking about something – an issue that everyone has to deal with – gets a lot of response.

What got a heck of a lot of response was when I was about to start a membership site and I asked, “What membership software do you use?” Sometimes you’ll be surprised by the answers to your blog posts – because I had no idea that this many membership scripts existed. I thought there were maybe five or ten but I got some people listing 30 of them. It wasn’t one person listing all these different membership scripts. I was like, “Which membership scripts do you use?” I didn’t want a list, I didn’t want them to make a link directory; I was going for quality not quantity. I said, “What membership script do you use?  Here’s what I’m thinking of using. What do you think?”

And I got a lot of people saying, “Well, I use this because of this feature,” “Because this one goes in really easily and it’s easy to use,” or, “I use this other script because it has support for lots of payment processors,” or, “I use this script because it allows me to sell it off later,” or, “I use this one because it has the built-in upsells.” I got so many responses. And, yeah, a lot of people were self-promoting but it got people talking.

And this was asking about something topical to an upcoming launch. It really helped because I was asking, “What membership software should I use?” and then a couple weeks later I started promoting my actual membership site. So people felt like they actually contributed which helped in my decision. They helped me to make the right choice in my business decision.

User Feedback Posts 

This is where you take someone’s comment in some post and you write an entire new post about it. So you might have had the guest survey where you ask a question and people give different answers, and maybe based on one answer you’ll pull that out and you’ll talk about it really quickly (about user feedback). So this usually came about from people asking me to write stuff, so I didn’t necessarily hunt down for these questions, I just had people bullying me into explaining things.

One of things I answered was ‘How to make $5,000 a month writing articles’. People ask me “How do you write so much stuff?” And I just said, “Well I think about it as if I’m writing an article. I don’t think about writing a whole entire chapter; I just think about writing an article.” I put up a scenario where you write a handful – maybe five or ten – quick articles; but instead of “articles,” you call them eBook chapters. You pack it into an eBook and you sell it for $10. You get a few buyers but you limit the number of buyers and you cap it off.

Then if you filled up all the slots you say, “All right, I’ve got enough demand to write one more chapter,” or one more article” because a big hang up with people is they think, “Oh, book chapter,” and they read “Harry Potter,” or “War And Peace,” or something – they read some long book with twenty, thirty-page chapters. You can write chapters where there are one or two pages.

So you write one or two more pages and then you give the new book to all your $10 buyers, then you market it again, and you market it as the second version of your book and you price it at $11. And if all those slots sell out then you write more articles. And then the way that I think it added up being is if you worked at it for a decent amount of time, over a month, it would make you $5,000.

And so that was the hook. Many article writers will write all month and only make $500. So I was like, “Well, here’s how to make $5,000 writing articles. Don’t necessarily give them away as articles and write about stuff that people actually want and use the number of sales to test the demand”.

Someone else kept asking “How do I get so many comments on my blog?” And I said “All right here’s my system to get comments on my blog. It might not be the best system but it’s something that works.” My system for getting lots of blog posts is I have a call to action in my list marketing and on my blog and I say, “I need 10 comments to this post so that I can continue commenting.”

So it’s kind of along the same lines as the “$5,000 writing articles”, I only wanted to talk about things people want to hear. So if I make a blog post and it gets no comments at all, or it only gets five comments, then I guess I should stop blogging, because blogging no longer works. So that was another user feedback post.

And then, finally, people kept asking about how I get my blog optimized for the search engines because I made a lot of little changes that were not built into WordPress and that were not in any plugin – that I had to make by hand. I made five or ten different changes. People kept asking me about it “How do I get such good rankings?” and all that good stuff, so I just explained it all.

So if somebody asks you how you do something write a blog post about it. It doesn’t necessarily have to be something about your blog. Somebody might ask you stuff about something about your business. So if you do site flipping, if you do pay-per-click, if you do articles, if you do videos, if you do coaching, if you do freelancing, if somebody asked you one simple question about it, maybe you should write about it.

Or if you don’t have a blog yet and you don’t have all these blog posts, you can do either the six-months-later approach or the one-more-thing approach.

The Six-Months-Later Approach

The six-months-later approach is where you look back at something you read about or you wrote about six months ago. And you say, “This is what I thought six months ago but this is what I think now that’s different”. So, you might say “I thought Adsense worked well for me six months ago when I was happy making $100 a month, but now that I’ve graduated into CPA networks I no longer do Adsense.” There’s nothing wrong with that. There is something wrong with you getting stuck in the commitment and consistency.

Commitment and consistency says that if you say you’re going to do something, most people will try to do it; they’ll do their best to do that and to not contradict themselves. So if you say that you’re going to spend all your time doing Adsense stuff and you end up doing less and less Adsense over time – because it’s not profitable – your inner voice, that doesn’t want you to conflict, is going to make you keep doing that Adsense, even if it makes you no money. It’s really easy to say “I’m going to market Adsense” and then you get stuck on marketing Adsense. And if you want to move to something else, your brain does not want to do that because you’re already committed to doing the Adsense.

This is a real danger with people who spend way too much time blogging or way too much time marketing on forums, is they’ll get stuck on just one state of mind. They’ll be happy at first building up a list using free methods and they’ll teach all kinds of free methods and keep the paid information to themselves because they keep saying you should do these free methods. They’ll keep doing them themselves, even if they should be working on something different.

So if you use the six-months-later approach where you say, “All right, this is what I was doing six months ago. This is what I’ve changed now and this is why I’ve changed,” then you can avoid that.  You can say, “I used to do Adsense but I don’t do Adsense now, and now I’m doing this.”

So it’s okay to contradict yourself. It’s okay for your present self to say something different than your past self, as long as you don’t pretend you’ve been saying it all along, as long as you admit not that you were wrong, but you were correct then and you are correct now, and here is why your thinking has changed.

The One-More-Thing Approach

You can also do the one-more-thing approach. I wrote a blog post about Camtasia PowerPoint and then I had one extra idea. Instead of making the blog post super-long, I scheduled it as another blog post in the future. So you can be the own source of your feedback. If you have a blog post and you’re going to make three different posts on it, maybe you could remove that last point and schedule it for later. So first you make the first two points, so the people can easily digest that information, and then later on you make point number three; and you can even link back to the original point to help people get up to speed.

But the thing you need to do always with blogging is avoid doing a Part One, Part Two, Part Three type of stuff. You don’t want people to start on Part Three and then say, “Oh, we have to read Part One and Part Two.” I saw one guy and he was doing a Part 40 blog post.  40 parts!  So in order for Part 40 to make sense, you have to read Parts 1 through 39.  Who’s going to do that?

So it’s okay to say, “All right, here’s this idea that stands on its own and it builds on this other idea but you don’t have to understand the first idea to get the new idea”.

My example of this was I explained how to record videos quickly using Camtasia and PowerPoint. Then afterwards I said, “All right, I used dual screens for this because one screen can show me the actual video and the other screen can show me the slides that are coming up – showing my slide notes.”

So you could read it either as “You just made a Camtasia PowerPoint and have the dual screens to show your slide notes or you could read the “Have the dual screens to improve productivity, and all that stuff.” So they both stand on their own, but at the end of writing that first blog post it gave me the idea for a new blog post.

Monthly Summary Posts 

Here are the m’s: the monthly summary posts. You can say “What did you do this month that was different than the previous month?” This can also avoid the commitment-and-consistency syndrome because you’re saying, “This is where I was at the beginning of the month, this is where I am at the end of the month; this is where I was last month, here’s where I am now.”

In one of my blog posts I was talking about marketing more on Twitter and the hook for that was “Barack Obama follows me on Twitter.” Obviously Barack Obama didn’t personally follow me on Twitter, but the point was that he was campaigning for President and he was using Twitter to update people about where he was in the country giving some talk.

So I was talking about how so many people used Twitter for the wrong reasons and they used Twitter to say, “Oh, I’m hanging out with my family,” “I’m waiting in line at McDonald’s.” And I’m saying if you are using Twitter as a business tool, be like Barack Obama and say what you’re doing business-wise today.

So, are you presenting at some seminar?  Are you launching a product?  Did you just put out a new blog post, a new video?  Use it to promote yourself, but in a way that delivers value to people, instead of just giving them nonsense; instead of telling them that you’re taking a walk, or that you’re using the bathroom or you’re cooking dinner. Who cares about that stuff?  Everybody does that. What people you care about is what you have for them (“What’s in it for me?”).

Another monthly summary post was about my homeowner status. I bought a house and I said that I launched all these products, I made a bunch of money and I really got hurt on taxes so this year I bought a house. I took a picture of my house with a car in the driveway right after I got the keys and moved in.

I like to talk about my launches. So I say, “Here’s my launch. Here’s what I did differently. So, this time I did a dime sale so that the price increased with every sale and it seemed to get more buyers,” or, “This time I priced my product a little higher because I wanted to focus on the high-ticket buyers this time,” or, “This time I capped the number of slots because I didn’t want a lot of people in there.” I just broke down how I did the launch and how other people could duplicate that launch.

Your Next Steps

So here are your instructions. Choose one of the six “Rat Gum” types at random. I prefer to just start with the rants and then do it in order (R-a-t-G-u-m) because you can arrange things any way you want. But if one of these six types just jumps out at you – like, you really want to do a monthly summary, because that’s what’s on your mind right now – then choose that type. Write a blog post on it and post it immediately.

So the first one is going to be posted immediately, okay, but the other one, you spend ten minutes on; you schedule it one month from now. And for every one of these blog posts you schedule an autoresponder to promote it.

So you write the first blot post, post it immediately, write a quick autoresponder to your list saying, “I just posted this. Here’s what it’s about.” Boom! URL. “Go comment.”

Blog post number two, you post it to your blog but you schedule it exactly one month from now, and then you schedule another message in your autoresponder that will go out on the same day that says “Here’s my blog post about this. Here’s why you should read it. Here’s why you should reply.” Boom! URL. “Go there now.”

And I would also add this into one of the follow-up series in your list. A “follow-up series” is after somebody gets on your list – gets on your newsletter – after either they give up their email address for free or they buy from you to get updates. You can stick this in after, say, seven days, or after twenty days, you can say, “All right, you just bought this and here’s this blog post that’s related to this. So go read it and comment on it now.” So that’s another way that you can get a constant flow of traffic to your blog posts.

Remember: Six posts equals six months. You don’t want to be the guy who writes a lot of stuff and posts every single day for 20 days, and then totally lets the blog go, and then you never hear from him for several months later. You want to have just consistent, constant content, even if it’s over a long period of time. Even if you can only post one month at a time, post six months worth.

So I want your original post that you just spent an hour writing – that you just spent 10 minutes for each post writing – space them out for six months. So every blog post is for one month: one post is for January; one February; March; April; May. Just do it like that. Just have six posts for the next six months and then try to add just one more post for each of those six months.

So maybe this weekend you spend an hour making your six months worth of blog posts. Then maybe next weekend you’ll make just one more post for each month and you spent a total of two hours, over two different weekends, and now you’ve got two posts a month for six months. To me that’s better than slaving away thinking, “Oh, I’ve got a whole year of content. Okay, I’ve made my first blog post,”  “Now I’ve got 11 months of content to go,”  “Now I’ve got 10 months of content to go,”

It’s easier to just say, “All right, six quick posts make six months. I made six more posts, and then I’ve got two posts a month for six months.” Then you can fill in stuff as time goes on.

You can easily and cheaply outsource this because you only need to get a couple of articles written. Or you could get a few articles written and break them up, then make them Part One and Part Two of the article and post each part a couple of days apart and there’s some extra blog posts. Or you can look at the articles and take the last idea in every article, pull it out and make that a separate blog post. Now you’ve got twice as much content.

So you could pay for say, six articles, and if somebody charges you $10 an article, that’s $60. And you could break those up and make those two articles a month for six months. That’s a good deal, right? Its $60, 2 articles a month for six months.

What else can you do? I like to schedule Twitter posts about my blog posts. And if you use a service called TweetLater.com, you can actually schedule these. So I will make my blog post, I’ll schedule the autoresponders and I’ll schedule the Twitter – which because I have it hooked up to different feeds, it copies onto Facebook as well.

If you have a brand new blog post, when my blog was new, then the day I had that new post I would leave a bunch of blog comments on other blogs leading back directly to the post.

And it would update my forum signature with the latest blog post, because when you first post to your blog there’s just something about that first 24 hours – that first 48 hours – when it’s brand new that it’s going to be the most popular. That’s when it’s going to peak (when you first made that post). A week from now, a month from now, that post is just never going to get back to that level of popularity, most likely.

You could take your blog’s RSS feed and submit it to the RSS directories. You can add a Digg button and Digg it yourself. Digg is a service where people can vote on a URL and possibly comment. But the main idea is that you vote. They say, “This URL’s got a few people. Keep voting this URL.” And so if five people say a URL is good, then it’ll show further up than people who said one URL is good. If a hundred people say a URL is good, that’s going to show up higher in the ranking than if five people said the URL is good.

That’s another way to promote your blog, is you have a Digg button directly on the blog post. And there are plugins that’ll let you put a Digg button right there and they click that one button and it’ll promote just that URL.

You can also get more blog traffic by using the Robert Plank rule, where you refuse to post until 10 comments have filled up. 10 comments might seem like a lot to you, but if you think that if you reply it to each and every blog comment somebody leaves you, that means you really only need five posts from people. So, commenter number one leaves something and you leave the second comment. Then somebody leaves comment three, leave comment four. So over time five people left comments and you left five replies. That’s pretty easy, right?

The worst case, if you make these posts and you really want comments and no matter what, you just can’t get people to comment, then reply with a fake name. I’ve never done that, but if you were desperate, type out a fake name as a comment and ask something else to get the conversation going.

Or actively get your friends to reply to the blog post. Go to your friends and say, “Look, no one’s replying. I really need your feedback,” and maybe you can promise to reply on their blog as well.

You can outsource blog comments. These days, you can outsource forum posting and blog commenting. They’re not going to be the best comments, the best comments you get are going to be the ones that your visitors voluntarily leave. If you’ve got nothing, maybe you can pay a dollar or two for people to type in a name and do some research and ask a question. Or you can say to someone you’re outsourcing to, “Read this blog post and tell me what it makes you think of,” “Tell me what questions it brings up and then ask them, and I’ll pay you a couple of dollars for that blog comment.”

Finally, if you can only get one comment every day or every week, who cares if it takes a whole month to get all 10 comments? Think about this: 30 days to get five comments and you reply to each comment. That means you get one comment every six days. So if you can get one comment a week – which is possible if you do your list marketing, and your article marketing, and your forum marketing – one comment a week is very doable, and 10 comments per post is very, very doable, even on a low traffic blog.

If you want to differentiate your blog, then record a PowerPoint Camtasia with the post content. So for every couple of sentences, every point you make in the blog, make a PowerPoint slide about it – which is really easy (PowerPoint is really point and click – you just make a slide and there’s a place to click to fill in a title, a place to click to fill in the bullet points, and then you just make as many slides as you want.)

So for every point you make on the blog, make a PowerPoint slide about it then use screen-capture software, like Jing or Camtasia or iShowU (I think even Keynote might have a video option, I’m not sure). You just find some way to capture your screen in video and there are tons of programs to do it. I prefer Camtasia, even though its $199, but it has a trial version. If you record yourself reading the PowerPoints – and you can just read it word for word (who cares?) – record the post content, post it to YouTube, and then add the YouTube code to your blog. And if you export the MP3 that makes a podcast.

I submit my videos to Traffic Geyser which makes a copy to YouTube and all the video sites; makes it into an MP3 and adds it to the podcast sites; and does social networking to those URLs as well and posts to blogs, and all kinds of good stuff.

So blogging and writing text for your blog is not the end, you can make videos and do social networking and use all these different tricks to get traffic back to your blog, and to eventually get people on a list and to get people to buy.

Don’t forget (don’t ever forget) that you want to have a paid call to action to your product at the end of every post. If you have a post just to have a post then what’s the point. Yes you can get comments, you can get opt-ins, but I prefer to find some way to lead in my story, lead in my rant, my affiliate review, my user feedback, my guest survey, or whatever, into at least one link to my product. Sometimes I’ll put two links, but try to just promote one thing at the end of every post.

Don’t forget to add an opt-in box to your sidebar. You can edit your WordPress theme or add a widget to paste into your autoresponder code. Again, what’s the point of a blog and posting stuff if lots of people will visit but won’t come back? You need to have your opt-in box so people can give their name and email address so that when you add new blog content then you can send them back there.

Make sure to have a Subscribe to RSS link, because some people won’t ever want to opt-in – they’ll just want to subscribe to RSS – and that’s fine because they’ll still get notified when you make new posts and they’ll still have a chance of clicking on one of your product links. So make sure that’s visible because many WordPress themes, many blog themes, will hide that.

Optimize for SEO. The easiest way is try to find a plugin for your blog. WordPress has an All-in-One SEO plugin. This will make your blog look better on search engines and may prevent spiders from getting it incorrectly and notify the search engines that you just posted.

I also use a Sitemap plugin so that I can be sure that the search engines have indexed every single one of my blog posts so that there’s a greater chance that if somebody types in a search phrase in Google, if it’s something I talked about, there’s a better chance that it’ll show up as a result.

So don’t forget “Rat Gum.” Picture that rat finding that little piece of gum, chewing it, blowing a bubble, and you’ll always have an idea for what to write about for a blog post. So “Rat Gum” (R-A-T-G-U-M). You could do a rant, you can do an affiliate review, a tutorial, a guest survey (where you ask a question), user feedback (where you create a post based on someone’s response) and a monthly summary.

So that is how you come up with a year’s worth of blog content overnight or in a weekend.  You can just take an hour to come up with six months of content. If you want to do that again, you have a whole year. If you want to stop at six months, that’s fine. You just need a minimum of one blog post per month.

And if all you do is schedule six blog posts for six months you’ve got a pretty darn good start on your blog and you’re doing a lot better than people who write one or two blog posts and then forget, or people who write a bunch of blog posts every single day and then let it go. It’s better to do the slow burn, to keep getting content incrementally over time, because that means you can keep in contact with your list, that means there’s more chance people will see your opt-in box, more chance people will see your product links, and that means you have a better chance to get a sale.