Saturday, May 26, 2012

Envy, Editors, and Efforts

I'm Envious of:


At
Yahoo! Voices on Friday, the editors announced a brand new "Contributor Spotlight" award and the first winner (not I). The award recognition is certainly nice to receive I'm sure, but the $500 bonus has gotta be the bestest part of it! Though envious I am, it's inspirational too -- like... it's something that I could actually aspire to win someday. The first winner doesn't have a journalism or English degree, hasn't previously worked at or been published in newspapers or magazines. Just a regular person with an expertise in real estate, but without a professional writing background - YaY, an achievable award to GOal for!


Editors can be great, or not:

  • YaY: I finished the 2nd of 2 test assignments for the Yahoo! Politics Featured Contributor (FC) program and was accepted! On my Yahoo! Contributor profile, there's now a snazzy "YFC Politics" badge - woohoo!! It means I'll get at least one guaranteed assignment each month that pays more upfront ($15) than regular assignments ($5-$10).
  • Boo: Not long after I got the FC, I got a Finance article submission rejected as "topic not searchable enough". It was about getting a better discount for an online  subscription after cancelling a free trial. Well, at least it wasn't rejected for being badly written or something like that, I suppose. I may try resubmitting it to Yahoo! Voices instead of Yahoo! Finance, or I might use it as a blog post.


Efforts
Effortless:

  • My Very 1st paid Sponsored Tweet was tweeted!
    Made a whole 49 cents, but hey -- it's a start!! And a really easy, breezy tweet it was:
        What I really, really, really like about this whole sponsored tweet thing:

  1. Clicks on the link don't matter, ya get paid a flat rate just for the tweet!
  2. The tweet content is provided, just tweek it a bit to suit your voice.
  3. I don't actually tweet the tweet, it's auto-tweeted via their app.
  4. I'm not pestering people with ad tweets all day, it's just tweeted once.
  5. The flat rate price is "suggested", but you can set it at whatever rate ya want. Suggested rate seems to be sorta based on how many followers ya have -- mine just went up to 52 cents. 
  • a Forbes editor actually replied to my tweet!

Thanks much for visiting & have a great Memorial Day long weekend! 
(F is gonna be for "Format" -- there's gotta be an easier way to get this blog post formatted better)


Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Dogs, my Dad, and a Ditzy chick

So last week, I had some nice surprises with my articles on Yahoo! Voices, Yahoo! Finance, and Yahoo! News!

Dogs
My article about how I manage to keep my dog from the shelter despite being broke got featured on the Yahoo! Voices front page for a day and a half. That's a frickin big deal in Yahoo! Contributor land!! It increased my page views too, from less than 50 to an additional 3.8K page views - YAY!

Dad
Ok, so this next one is a stretch - but I'm in the Insecure Writers Support Group (IWSG) for a reason! I got a very nice compliment on twitter from another Yahoo! Contributor for my Yahoo! Finance article about my Dad's seemingly odd refinance of their house for another 30 years.

btw: if you've stopped by from the Bloggers Comment Club and/or the IWSG and follow me on twitter, if I haven't followed back and/or added you to my lists - please give me a shout out on twitter. Thankfully, my twitter followers are growing, but I can't remember who's who - so sorting followers by lists helps. I try to make sure that I retweet everybody, so lists helps me that way too. Thanks!   

Ditzy chick
Then, I got a special assignment to write a political article for Yahoo! News that was a test assignment to potentially become a "Featured Contributor" and it was accepted - YAY again!! I call it the Ditzy chick of the week in politics article - LoL! 

It did reasonably well for page views, 3.8K worth. That's not as many page views as the other one I blogged about, but it's pretty respectable. I've had a few that were much much lower. I've read that some Yahoo! News articles can get into 6 figure page views, but that seems to be when they're featured on the Yahoo! front page slides. I can wish!

So last week was a pretty darn good week with my writing for Yahoo! I didn't get as many articles published as I wanted - I'm going for 5 a week, but I did get 5 submitted so I'll just have to catch up this week by submitting more articles earlier in the week.  

And this is my 4th blog post this month, so I've already exceeded last month's one whole post - LoL! So hopefully I can stick to my goal for transitioning between blogging and article writing. So far, so good. 

On to E for the next post... hmmm, that's gonna be a tuffy...


Friday, May 11, 2012

Comments for Cash (or Coins)? Yep!

A few years ago, I used to post comments a lot on websites like HuffPo, local newspaper articles, and such. I had no idea that people could get paid to post until I noticed other posters bashing the forums "paid trolls". I even asked a few times how a person could get that job. Got no answers. 

I thought they must be joking... like, get paid for posting comments, really??? Ever since then, I've sometimes noticed comments that seem a little too... oh I dunno, either a little too polished or too enthusiastic or too something... 

So I became more convinced that there really was some paid commenting going on out there in cyberland. But when I searched for how-to, all I found at the time was things like "oh, sponsors will notice you in the forums and they'll contact you" type of advice. 

Then lo and behold, I recently came across a blog post about that very thing. Sure enough, there's places to go that will hire you to post comments in forums and wherever commenting goes I suppose.

Doesn't seem like they pay a whole lot, but it's something that seems easy enough to do for quick and easy extra cash. 

I haven't tried it yet, mainly because I'm focusing on articles and blogging for now. But I'll do a few paid surveys when I need a break now and then. I tend to get tired of surveys after awhile, so I might signup for the paid posting thing next time.  

Anna of the RealWaystoEarnMoneyOnline blog recently posted about her own experience with Postloop and has a list of Paid Forum Posting sites in her directory too. 

Have you ever tried commenting for cash, a.k.a. paid posting in forums? If so, any tips are most welcome! 

Ok, so YAY, I've got A B C down on the alphabet post trail, next up -- D is for... maybe Dollars or Doubts or...



Friday, May 4, 2012

Be a Better Blogger to make more Bucks

Along with my article writing successes mentioned in the previous post, had some fails too that included:

Blogging, or lack thereof 
and since I've seen so many April A-Z Blogging Challenge posts (that I didn't signup for because I just wasn't ready to pressure myself that much just yet), I'm going with the Alphabet Soup style for an unofficial blogging topic/prompt for this month. We'll see if I can stick with it. 

I'd signed up last month with a "paid to blog" site called Social Spark. I'd received an invite from another Yahoo! Contributor, so what the heck. I'm not exactly a proficient blogger just yet, but thought I'd have a looksee. Turns out ya have to have a minimum of 20 blog posts within a 3-month period to be eligible.

So time for me to get busy with the blogging. I've just got to get a routine, or semi-flexible schedule going between blogging and article writing.  

Paid Tweets
I got one whole offer in April from Sponsored Tweets, but it was declined as "not needed". Bummer!! 

Sponsored Tweets is free to register, but also has a monthly pay for self-promo subscription thing that I'm certainly not going to sign up for. But, just this week I got approved for another offer that should be tweeting June 8th at 10:00 AMish. 

It's apparently for just one tweet on that day, but there was a note that it could be up to 3 tweets. Not sure how the auto-tweet an ad thing'll work - so it'll be interesting to see what happens.

So, I'm off to improve my blogging post frequency, get more sponsored tweets, and improve the article writing during May. Ok, so C is for...

Thursday, May 3, 2012

A is for April Article Successes - IWSG

So, I'm a day late and a dollar short with my Insecure Writers Support Group (IWSG) blog post that's a 1st Wednesday of the month thing. Blog posts took a back seat last month while I cranked up my Yahoo! Contributor article submissions. Have had a few unexpected successes, so I feel much better now!

Not that I've mastered article writing yet or anything, but I think I'm starting to get the hang of it. There's several things that I struggle with when writing articles:
  • I'm a slow writer: 2 - 4 hours to complete an article, sometimes longer
  • Boring Beat Topic: for Yahoo! Finance beat, upfront pay is better, but not fun to write  
  • AP vs. Chicago Manual style: Switching between article types, News vs. Voices vs. Finance gets confusing
Article Page View Successes:
Accomplishments:
So April was a pretty great month! There were some fails too, I'll blog about those tomorrow...