Last Updated: Saturday, December 10, 2016

The Number One Reason Why Some Blogs Have Several Comments While Yours Have Zero



I feel excited every time I see notifications on comments that are awaiting for moderation. Why I wouldn't be? Despite having a not so famous blog, someone took their precious time off to read my posts and leave a comment!

However, several bloggers are bothered by the fact that no one comments on their blog. Even if they have hundreds to thousands of page views per day, no reader bothers to interact on the comment section.

It is really disheartening when no one comments on your blog. It feels as if your blog doesn't exist.

You did everything to encourage people to comment on your blog through writing interesting and valuable posts, having a call-to-action, installing an easy-to-use commenting system, and creating a great web design.

You have a near-perfect blog, but still, no one cares.

The reason?

It's because you don't have the initiative to interact with other people.

Do you know this quote from St. Francis of Assisi?

"For it is in giving, that we receive."

If you want to have several comments on your blog, then you have to give first.

Start commenting on other people's blogs, so that other bloggers will comment on your blog too (if they are willing to reciprocate) even without you asking them.

And I think this method works.

For example, visit any of Donna Merrill's blog posts on Donna Merrill Tribe, and you would see that almost all of her posts are studded with comments.

And for every person who commented on her blog, Donna takes the time to visit the blogs of each of her commenters and leave a comment on their posts as well.

So, if you try doing like what Donna does, you'll have greater chances of receiving blog comments too!

Are you now ready to become a friendlier blogger? Let me know if this method works for you!

Last Updated: Sunday, December 4, 2016

Songs to Help You Concentrate When at Work


When you are working, do you turn the music on?

It's all over the web that music helps increase productivity, especially when you choose the right songs to play.

When I still worked at an office, my colleagues were in charge of the music. Among the artists, bands, or types of songs in our playlist include: the 90s boy bands, pop rock bands, and Youtube cover artists.

I have no complaints against the songs played, since I also like them. They were effective in removing the tension in the air, and makes everyone work happier.

However, I think that these types of songs aren't really great for increasing work productivity. You end up singing along, then you start talking about the song and other things with your officemates, when you should be working. Your concentration is significantly reduced.


You're probably aware by now that the most recommended songs for increased concentration and productivity are classical music, ambient music, noise music, and even video game soundtracks. But what songs exactly?

I went over 8tracks and searched for concentration playlists. 8tracks has tons of them, but I picked the playlist arranged by WildernessQueen - a playlist that consists of 50 tracks of classical and mellow music. The playlist is superb as a whole, but I filtered its best songs. So, here they are:

Wings by Niklas Aman


Hope by James Spiteri


At Zanarkand (Final Fantasy X) by Nobuo Uematsu


One Note by Alberto Giurioli


Sheep, Cloud and Wind by Keiichi Uko


Do by Nils Frahm


As Old Roads by Goldmund


Dark Night of the Soul by Philip Wesley


Farewell by Akira Kosemura


Farewell by Akira Kosemura is my favorite so far in the playlist. I just discovered 8tracks while I'm writing this piece and it's really a great music streaming site. You could play songs even without creating an account. 

Last Updated: Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Google+ Community Posts Not Showing Up? Here's the Solution



When sharing blog posts, Google+ communities are my favorite places to go. Why? Because I get more likes, shares and views on Google+!

However, recently, around the month of August this year (2016) until now, I noticed that I'm getting less and less likes, shares and views.

So I've got the notion that maybe, people are not seeing my posts. Then I investigated what's happening.

I shared a post on a Google+ community, then logged in to my other G+ account using another laptop.

With my other G+ account, I went inside the community and voila! I couldn't see the post I made.

God! Am I marked as a spammer? This thought occurred to me, but I immediately dismissed it.

I'm confident that my shared posts are not spam because of 4 things:

1. My posts are all unique. Meaning, I don't share posts with similar wordings.
2. My posts have human-friendly captions. I don't just drop links.
3. My posts are in line with the community's rules.
4. My posts have proper time-spacing. Like an hour or two.

So thinking that I'm following the rules yet my posts are treated like criminals (spams) by Google+, I decided to ask some help on the official Google+ Help community, so that my problem would be solved faster.

However, I was not really in luck finding an answer on the community, so I just scoured the web to look for answers.

After a few hours of visiting several groups and forums, here's the solution that I found for disappearing Google+ community posts.

Solution to disappearing Google+ community posts

1. Go to the Google+ community where you shared a post.

2. Click the triple dot icon on the top-right corner.



3. Select "Preferences."



4. Beside "Sort by top posts or most recent" change "Top posts" to "Most recent."



And there you go! Your shared post that you thought been banned, blocked or flagged as spam by the Google+ community moderators will show up again.

While others may insist that you've been banned, blocked or labeled you as a spammer, don't believe them until you change this sort post setting. Your recent posts won't naturally appear if the posts are sorted by top posts.


Google+ community, then and now

Back then, all Google+ communities show posts by the "most recent" ones. However today, all Google+ communities sort posts as "top posts" by default.

So whenever you refresh the community or visit it later to check out your shared post, your post won't show up.

I'm not sure but I think this is a new update or feature of Google+ communities? Wherein the default setting is now "Top posts?"

I've been sharing in Google+ communities for years and this is the only time that I have encountered disappearing posts because of that setting or feature.

In fact, there are several people who encountered the same problem as mine.

Google+ community not a great platform to share posts anymore?

Since Google+ communities now sort posts as "top posts" by default, people will not see your "recent" posts. Hence, you won't get any likes, shares and views. And I think that most Google+ users are not aware of changing this setting, so it's no use sharing your posts on communities anymore.

What are your thoughts about this?

Last Updated: Thursday, November 17, 2016

How to Be a More Likable Boss?

how to be a more likable boss




Do you want to be a more likable boss? Then you've come at the right place.


I believe these tips will help you become a more likable boss because these tips come from an employee's perspective.

So, let's start?

Learn to smile.


Being a likable boss all starts with how you face your employees. Do you smile as a greeting every time you walk inside your office? Or do you just flash your grumpy face while walking passed your employees at full speed?

When you wear a smile, it helps break down that barrier between you and your employees, and it usually helps debunk that notion that you are a tyrant and unapproachable boss.

Remember all of your employees' names.


Anyone wouldn't like it if you don't remember their name. Well, you may be forgiven for not remembering everybody's names if you have a very large company.

But you've got no excuse for not remembering your employees' names especially if your office is just a one big room.

Don't always interrupt your employees.


Avoid frequent chats or avoid asking the same questions again when they have been already answered. Don't hold surprise meetings every time just because you want to feel busy.

Remember that your employees have something to do and deliver by the end of the day, and you, disturbing them unnecessarily is really not likable.

Allow a relaxed atmosphere.


Don't be too strict to your employees. They cannot enjoy their work and be more productive if you are emanating that menacing boss aura.

Allow them to play their favorite music while working. Let them chat and have a laugh with their colleagues. Don't look too much into it as long as they are able to deliver.

Learn to listen.


Your business is not always about you. Though you are the boss, learn how to listen to your employees' ideas, suggestions and concerns.

A boss who does not know how to listen is usually hated by their employees. What kind of company and management do you have if you are not letting them speak up their own voice?

Accept that you are sometimes wrong.


I once had a boss who lectured us, the content writing department, for having written the headlines "wrong" because they were too short and didn't contain much keywords for SEO.

We explained to our boss that our written headlines comply with the best practices of the web. We even showed him facts and posts written by well-known SEO experts, but he still said no and insisted us using his too long and keyword-stuffed headlines.

We really felt bad during that time. Though facts were already presented (and nicely presented), our boss didn't even lower his pride.

Provide your employees the necessary tools.


If you want your employees to get something done fast and of top quality, provide them the necessary tools. While there are free resources and tools on the web, those only have limited features. And tools with limited features affect the productivity of your workers.

For example, graphic designers always need stock photos. Don't just make them rely on free image sources such as Pixabay or Flickr. Though there are several free images there, your graphic designers may not still find the pictures they need. And I could attest to that.

Don't be a cheapskate boss! Upgrade to a premium account on Shutterstock or any paid image sources. Your money won't be wasted as your graphic designers always need them anyway.


Eat together with your employees.


If you have the time, eat together with your employees. I'm not saying that you always have to treat them to lunch. It's not a requirement to be always treating your employees.

But by eating together with them, you'll get to know more about them personally. Talk to them that's not about work. Ask them about their likes or dislikes. These little conversations might even come in handy on Kris Kringles!

Raise the salaries of your employees.


Remember your contract with your employee that you'll be giving them a raise every year? Don't you forget that, especially if your employee is deserving of a raise.

Don't make your employee come to you and ask about it just because you forget. It feels awkward on the employee's part, you know? Always be sensitive on this matter and do the initiative to review your employee's performance in order for him to receive his raise.


Wrapping up

Most bosses were once employees once. If you want to be a more likable boss, then reminisce those times when you were just still an employee and ask these questions:

  • What do you hate about your boss?
  • What do you like about your boss?

Then sort your answers. Do what you need to do as what you would expect to your previous boss.

Last Updated: Thursday, November 10, 2016

5 Tips to Help You Become Happier at Work



Have you take a look at your old photos? Compare them with your recent ones.

What did you notice aside from you gaining weight?

You look happier... younger... and less wrinkle lines.

But today, no matter how you pose a smile in front of the camera, you cannot hide the fact that you are stressed and a bit sadder.

What's the cause of it? Is it your job?

Sure, you've got your dream job, and it pays you just the exact amount of money that you ever wished for.

But every time you go to the office, you feel unmotivated... uninspired... depressed.

You are always looking forward to end the day even if your work hasn't started yet. And this is what's contributing to your wrinkle lines.

When you are depressed or feel horrible at work, you are looking older than your real age because stress ages your genes.

So for you to revive that positive energy towards work, here are some tips to help you become happier.

1. Decorate your desk the way you want it.


You'd be much happier at work if your working space looks like the way you want it to be. It gives you a feeling of uniqueness and it screams that you "own" this particular space.

You could bring your favorite mousepad instead of using the company's. You could neatly stack on your desk your favorite books, pin sticker notes, put picture frames, pen holders... anything that would make you happy and comfortable.


2. Don't pay too much attention to your stressors.


Sometimes, you don't feel getting up for work because there is someone in your office who makes you feel stressed all the time which is usually your manager or boss.

Don't be too self-conscious whenever they are around. Don't think like "Oh damn, I'll be seeing my manager and boss again." Don't make it a big deal.

Just continue working like they are your ordinary colleagues.

3. Always make yourself clear.


Usually, you feel stressed seeing your manager and boss because there's something that you haven't finished doing in your deliverable yet which makes them pester you all the time.

They always check upon the status of your work as if you are not doing your job. This is really stressful, right?

So to make them give you a little space for you to focus on your work, be clear on your deliverables' deadlines.

Tell them when they would expect to see the finished product and create a specific schedule on when you would do your regular reporting regarding the status of your work. And do it nicely.

4. Have a work buddy.


Make friends in your office. Or if you are uncomfortable being too friendly with everyone, at least, have a work buddy - your best friend in the office.

This would make you feel less alone. You have someone to talk to, eat lunch together, or even hang out after office hours.

So even if the whole office is against you (for whatever reason), you have that one close buddy whom you could ask for support.


5. Don't forget the reasons why you are working hard.


Why do you work? Is it only for you to survive and pay your bills? Or do you have a goal and inspiration?

If you feel like giving up on your work or you are less happy, just think of your goal and inspiration. Imagine yourself reaching that goal and you'll be a lot happier.


While you cannot fully avoid the things that make you less happy at work, it all comes down to on how you deal with them.

How about you? What are your ways on how to become happier at your work place?

Last Updated: Wednesday, November 2, 2016

How to Find Your Website's Broken Links Using Google Webmasters Tools


According to Google Support, your website's broken links or 404s don't harm your site's indexing or ranking.


But if you would ask your SEO friends, they would highly recommend that you fix them as it will affect the ranking of your website. But Google says otherwise. So whom should you believe? It's gonna be Google, the gods of the search engine, right?

However, I don't think that our SEO friends are wrong. While Google may say that broken links don't affect your site's ranking, it can in the long run.

According to A Bright Clear Web, broken links are bad for your website because of the following reasons:

  • A source of frustration for the user
  • Gives the impression that you don't do regular housekeeping
  • Harms your credibility as an authority
  • Affects your sales page's conversion
  • Hurt your SEO and page rankings

If you always lead your readers to broken links, your website will have a higher bounce rate or exit rate making it appear that your website isn't of value at all. So what would search engines do? Lower your rankings.

So to prevent this from happening, you should start looking for your website's broken links. But how?

As web owners, I'm sure that you have already heard of Google Webmasters Tools. You might not be aware of it but Google Webmasters Tools also has a broken link checker.


Steps on finding your website's broken links with Google Webmasters Tools


1. Login to your Google Webmasters Tools account. Login here: https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/ If you don't have a GWT account, create one.  

Notes: If you have just created a GWT account, you need to wait for a few days for Google to "crawl" your website to gather data. Wait at least a week.

2. Go to the Search Console Dashboard of your website by clicking your website's property URL.


3. On the left side, look for "Crawl" and click "Crawl Errors."


4. Under "Crawl Errors," Google Webmasters Tools will show you the entire list of broken links if there's any.


5. To locate the source of the broken link, click the reported broken link, then click the "Linked from" tab.



By clicking the "Linked from" tab, you can discover which pages contain the broken link. To fix the broken links, you can change them, replace them with a new source link, or delete them entirely. Once you have fixed everything, click the "Mark as fixed" button.


What is your favorite way of finding broken links on your website? What tool do you use? Do you use Google Webmasters Tools too? Let me know your thoughts and comment below.

Last Updated: Monday, October 31, 2016

Should You Allow Pets in the Workplace?


Here in our country, it's rare to see companies that allow pets in the workplace. If there is ever one, you'll only see them in pet-related businesses like animal cafes.

As an animal lover myself, I also want pets as my officemates. My favorite pets are cats, but I'm all okay with other animals too.

My past jobs don't allow pets in the workplace simply because one is a hospital, and the remaining others where I had worked are digital marketing companies.

Though in one of my previous workplaces, I was able to experience "working" with cats. My bosses always brought their pet cats with them. Despite they were the only ones authorized to do so, I was delighted to see cats in the office. In a country where pets at work are rare, that was truly an amazing experience.

Nevertheless, since I am already working from home, I am able to work with cats as much as I like. Meet one of my supervisors, King Maru.

Hooman, I said no Facebook while working!

So as a business owner, should you allow your employees to bring their pets in the workplace? Would it do any good for the entire company?


Why allow pets in the workplace


If your company is not pet-friendly yet, here are some of the reasons on why your company should welcome pets at work:


1. Pets help reduce stress.


Based on a report, pets such as dogs "help buffer work stress and make the job more satisfying" even for non-dog owners. So if your employees' work is demanding and stressful in nature, perhaps allowing Fido at work (or any kind of pet) might give them a motivational boost and lessen their worries.

Every time my writing job stresses me out, just seeing the cuddly face of my pet cats makes my mind feel more at ease. They are also great companions. I can talk with them about my problems at work, and they would just simply stare at me and continue licking their paws. How cute! Lol.


2. Pets encourage conversation among employees.


Sometimes, an office has that awkward atmosphere. Everyone is quiet and not talking.

Just like in my previous job, I worked on a night shift and most of us night shifters didn't talk that much (like me). But when our bosses came in with pet cats, it broke the ice.

Everyone was suddenly talking about cats and other pets. The atmosphere became lively. I even discovered a co-worker who also likes cats.


3. Pets help your employees become more productive.


Have you asked your employees what are their motivation for work? If I could honestly answer this question, my answer would be this:

Image Source

It's funny, but to most animal lovers, this is true.

Aside from being a successful freelance writer, I have big dreams for my pets. I want them to have their own cat yard, be able to give them lots of cat towers, boxes, catnips, toys, and many more.

To most of my friends who are animal lovers, they seem to have better work ethics. They always go to work, no absences and tardiness, and they always do their best!


4. Pets attract good hires in the future.


If you are looking for new hires, then your company being pet-friendly might just be one of your selling points.

One of the reasons why I don't like office jobs is that I'm worried leaving my pets alone in the house. Sure, you can hire a pet-sitter or leave your pets in pet hotels but that would mean more expenses.

But if your company is pet-friendly, more would be interested to apply because they can now save pet-sitting costs.


But there are times that pets in the workplace would be bad.


While the benefits of allowing pets in the workplace sound promising, there are also instances that it would be bad.


1. Not all of your employees may be good at dealing with animals.


Some people just can't really handle animals. They are scared of them.

When my previous bosses brought cats in the office, the cats were pretty behave. They didn't fight or send out irritating meows. However, being cats, they were insanely curious and playful creatures. They would walk behind our computer screens, or even sit on your lap.

And then it happened.

One of my officemates is actually scared of cats. She tried to keep herself composed and ignored the cat who was innocently playing with her long hair.

But alas! I received a message on Skype and she was asking me a favor if I could remove the cat which was stationed behind her back.

So what would happen if your employees are scared of animals?


2. Your employees would have lower productivity.


If any of your employees are scared of animals, they will lose focus in their work; thus, have lower productivity.

I think my officemate was bothered by the cat for almost an hour before she called me to help. So she's been working uncomfortably for almost an hour.

Aside from your employees being scared, they could also have lower productivity if the pets are causing work distractions such as barking, meowing, or if they do this:

King Maru, I know how awesome you are, but would you please step aside?


3. Pets may damage company properties.


Some pets are very well-trained, but even the most behaved pets can damage company properties.

If you bring your pet to a "new" environment like your office, there would definitely be a change in their behavior. Your pet might get scared with the new people around and it would be harder for you to make them listen to you.

Dogs might chew off things to make them feel less nervous. Cats might pee everywhere to mark their new territory. Worse, your pet might be involved in unexpected "fights" knocking things all over the place.



Allowing your employees to bring their pets at work needs a well-thought decision. And if you allow them, make sure that your office would be pet-proofed.

Do you have any experience bringing pets in the workplace? Let me know your thoughts and comment below.

Last Updated: Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Is PopAds.net Legit? Does It Pay?


When I became a freelance writer, I learned to discover many things. That aside from writing for clients, you could earn passively through blogging by incorporating pay-per-click ads on your website. (I've got a couple of blogs - hobby blogs).

I know that Google AdSense is the biggest player in the advertising network, and since it is the biggest, it has also the most scrupulous process before you get accepted as a publisher. Knowing this, I tried to look for an alternative and I found PopAds.net.

I've read a lot of reviews that PopAds.net has a high payout. I've also read that others have a bad experience with it. Nevertheless, I tried using PopAds on one of my hobby blogs.

So is PopAds.net legit or not? Does it pay? Or is it a scam?


Yes, it is a paying network. I received payment after 2 days of withdrawing the amount.

So if you can't get your AdSense application approved, you can try PopAds.

Last Updated: Friday, September 9, 2016

7 Blogs Every Freelance Writer Should Read


Though I love writing, I was never a big reader - be it books or blogs. Just looking at those text on paper or on screen makes me dizzy.

But when I stepped into the world of freelance writing, I became addicted to reading other people's blogs and it inspired me to do better in my freelance writing career.

So if you are also looking for blogs to read and give you that push to advance your freelance writing career, here are 10 blogs that you should definitely include in your follow list.

1. Make A Living Writing

This is one of the first blogs that I discovered when I was still a newbie writer. Carol Tice's blog always comes first on Google search results whenever I look for tips about freelance writing. Reading this blog will not only help you learn more about freelance writing, but you will also realize your true worth as a freelance writer.

2. ProBlogger

Blogging is the sister of freelance writing. When you decide to become a freelance writer, sooner or later, you'll be finding yourself creating your own blog. And Darren Rowse's ProBlogger will help you learn the skills of blogging.

3. Elna Cain

Elna Cain is my top favorite freelance writer (and blog). Despite being a fresh face in the freelance writing industry, Elna has climbed to success even after within 6 months from starting her freelance career. She was able to earn full-time income while working part-time! Aside from the wonderful tips written on her blog, her web design is really classy, refreshing and nice.

4. Be a Freelance Blogger

While Be a Freelance Blogger is also focused on teaching readers how to blog, what I like about Sophie Lizard's blog is that it is a rich resource of pitching tips. So if you want to ditch your generic client pitch or guest post pitch, BAFB can help you create better ones.

5. Social Media Examiner

When you have a business online, the social media is your friend. If you want to promote your freelance writing business right using social media networks, Social Media Examiner covers a wide range of topics for every kind of platform.

6. Jeffbulla's Blog

When you take the hat of a freelance writer, you'll be wearing many hats. A blogger, a social media marketer, or an internet marketer. It's not just writing. So if you want to efficiently perform your different duties, Jeff Bulla's internet marketing blog has it all.

7. Backlinko

Backlinko is owned by Brian Dean. It is a blog that discusses topics on SEO for increasing web traffic. While some freelance writers believe that SEO is a spammy evil thing, you'll definitely change your views about SEO when you read Brian's blog.


There are so many blogs that I follow, but these 7 blogs had made a difference on my freelance writing career.

What are your favorite blogs?

Last Updated: Wednesday, August 31, 2016

How to Check If Your Website Is Mobile Friendly or Not


Do you hate websites that are so annoying and difficult to view when using your smartphone?

You have to zoom in... zoom out... just to read the too small text. Or just to press that very tiny purchase button.

Well, that is how your web visitors exactly feel when they view yours! Oops...

So before you start hating other websites because they are not mobile friendly, learn to fix your website's issue first. And you can begin by doing a mobile friendly test.

Not techie? No worries! Anyone can do a mobile friendly test using Google's Mobile-Friendly Test tool.

Just visit this page Mobile-Friendly Test.

google mobile friendly test

Enter your website's homepage URL on the field, click the "ANALYZE" button, and the tool will show you results whether your website is mobile friendly or not.

Here's an example of a non-mobile friendly result:

not mobile friendly


If this is the result shown by the tool, then you should better make your website responsive. To fix this issue, you can either replace your current website's theme with a responsive web design template, or call out your web developer.

So how's my little blog doing?


It seems that I passed the mobile-friendly test!

How about yours?

Last Updated: Friday, August 26, 2016

Know If an Email Address Exists with This Validating Tool



Most websites have a contact page. We often visit the contact page of a website if we want to discuss something with the web owner, or any specific person in mind.

However, sometimes, the email address of the web owner is not written, and only the website's general contact form is on sight.

So what's the problem if there is only the contact form?

  1. Messages coming from the contact form are usually handled by the website's support staff.
  2. Chances are, your message won't reach the right person.
  3. Your message might be ignored especially if you won't purchase their product or avail their services.
Hence, you'll be most likely wasting your time emailing the wrong person using the contact form.

It would be better if you could send your email to the personal email of the web owner, right? But how can you do that if their email is not visible?

You can actually find them out using this email validating tool.

There are a lot of email validating tools out there. But I'm comfortable using Email Checker.

email checker


To use this tool, all you need to know is the name of the web owner, and check their email using the "name@example.com" format.

For example, you want to personally email Neil Patel of Quick Sprout. But on his contact page, there's only a contact form.



And you're unsure if Neil would actually be the one receiving your message or his email support staff (if there's any).

So you want to find out his direct email on Quick Sprout.

Since you already know the name of the web owner (which is Neil), check if the email "neil@quicksprout.com" is a valid and existing contact.

If it is valid and existing, Email Checker will show you a result like this:


That means to say, there is a high possibility that Neil Patel's direct email on Quick Sprout is "neil@quicksprout.com."

If you don't know, most web owners set up their email handlers on their website using their first name.

Though what Email Checker shows you valid results, it doesn't always mean that the person you want to email actively uses that email address. They might be using a couple of email addresses.

Nevertheless, this is your great chance to email the right person without wasting much of your effort.

Last Updated: Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Google Will Now Penalize Websites with Pop-ups (Including Newsletter Sign-up Pop-ups)

Aside from Facebook changing its Newsfeed algorithm, bloggers and web owners will kind of hate Google too as it will be changing its algorithm on the upcoming year 2017.

Google will now penalize or lower the rankings of websites with intrusive pop-up ads whether they come in the form of:

  • newsletter pop-ups
  • coupon pop-ups
  • Like Our Facebook Page pop-ups
  • membership or registration sign-ups
  • promotional pop-ups
  • and many more!

According to the Official Google Webmaster Central Blog, here are the examples of intrusive pop-up ads:


Now, how does Google's so-called intrusive pop-up ads look in mobile:

1. An example of an intrusive popup


2. An example of an intrusive standalone interstitial



3. Another example of intrusive standalone interstitial


For more information about this new Google algorithm 2017, please check out this page.

Last Updated: Sunday, August 7, 2016

The 4 Most Common Reasons Why People Blog


From just a hobby to promoting one's business, blogging has become an indispensable tool to share one's thoughts and expertise.

In Tumblr alone, there are already more than 305.9 million blog accounts. On the other hand, there are more than 3.9 million posts that are being published every day.

These statistics are definitely amazing, making you wonder why there are millions of people who blog.

And to many, the most common reasons why they started blogging are the following:

1. They blog because it is one of their favorite hobbies.

Though there are more readers than bloggers or writers, writing belongs in one of the top 50 most popular hobbies in the world which means that there are still people who find pleasure in blogging or writing during their leisure time. This kind of people are already satisfied when they are able to unleash their creative side or express their thoughts through writing.


2. They blog because they want to make money online.

If you are looking for ways to make money online, then you can try blogging. Though making money online through blogging isn't easy, there are multiple ways on how to monetize your blog. Based on a Blogging Basics 101 article of Jessica Knapp, you can monetize your blog through the following methods: CPC or CPM ads, sell private ads, include affiliate links, sell digital products, use it as a content marketing tool for business and sell memberships.

3. They blog because they want to improve their writing skills.

Who says that the only persons who have the right to write are those already good at writing? If your writing sucks but you have the passion for it, write. In fact, there are several well-known bloggers today admit that they were once terrible writers, including Jeff Bullas. Watch his video interview on this page and see him reminisce his writing adventures when he was still a beginner.

4. They blog for fame.

Those who blog for fame are generally business owners who aim to build their online presence. With a blog, they can showcase their expertise to be able to establish themselves as thought leaders in the industry. When they are famous enough, more people will come to know about their brand which can potentially convert them as buying consumers.


These are only some of the most common reasons why people blog. How about you? What are your reasons for blogging?

Last Updated: Saturday, July 23, 2016

Don't Like Attending Conferences and Seminars to Build Your Network? Do These Instead.





I know one of your secrets.


You have chosen the freelance life because you actually hate facing people. Talking to people face-to-face makes you feel uncomfortable.

So you quit your 9-5 job simply because of that, and you don't want other people to know about it. Or else, they will tell you that it is a very stupid reason.

Well, I would say that your reason for quitting is okay; it doesn't have to be so noble a reason.

If you don't want to work in an office setting because you hate being in a crowd and socializing, I understand you.

Everyone of us have different personalities. Some are introverts and some are extroverts. And I don't blame you for that.

But if you are also a work at home individual like me, you'll soon realize that even if you're stuck to the four corners of your room, you still need to build your network, for you to get more clients and more work.

Of course, one of the best ways to build your network is to go outside your home and participate in conferences and seminars to meet like-minded individuals.

But socializing ain't your thing. So is there still hope for you to build your network without forcing yourself to attend conferences and seminars?

Actually there is... there are.

1. Connect with people on social media (and the better way to do it).


Since your goal is to find more clients for your freelance business through networking, then it's better to connect with  people whom you are targeting.

For example, you're a freelance writer in the health niche, and you would like to have connections with someone on the health field.

For a more worthwhile and profitable networking experience, you can directly connect with people who can possibly give you the job such as CEOs, owners, founders, directors, EICs and content managers (for freelance writers), consultants, coaches, or mentors of a particular business.

Find where your target clients hang out such as Facebook groups, LinkedIn groups, or even Google+ communities.

I find it easier to find the right connection on Facebook groups by doing this simple tactic:

a. Search relevant Facebook groups. 


So let's go back to the example of finding clients on the health niche. I would search them using the keyword "health entrepreneurs" and filter the results under the "Groups" tab.


b. Take a peek at the group's members, then join.


Before joining the group, I would take a look at it's group members. I do this by clicking the group name and then the group member list at the right.


I'm doing this so that I could take a look at their profession (if they are publicly displayed) and usually, they are, since anyone running a business won't keep it secret and make it publicly available.



Once I confirmed that the group consists of my target clients, I will join the group.

You can also do this on LinkedIn groups but not on Google+ communities. And you'll undoubtedly find more professionals on LinkedIn there since it's the networking site for professionals. But I find it more comfortable doing my client research on Facebook.

c. Be active on the group, interact and help.


If you're already accepted on the group, try to interact with the group members through answering questions, commenting on their posts or even starting a new post for conversation.

That way, you can build a name for yourself in that group and everyone will know you.

d. Establish relationship, then personally connect.


Once you have already established a relationship among its group members, you can now send friend requests to those people whom you frequently have conversations with.

Then it's already up to you on how to foster your professional relationship with your network.

2. Comment on blogs with lots of people commenting.


Of course, the blog you should comment on should be relevant to your niche, or better yet, the blogs of industry leaders. But aside from that, prioritize commenting on blogs with lots of people commenting.

You don't want to just build connection with the blog owner, but to their readers (blog commenters) as well.

Say for example, it would be a very great move to regularly comment on Neil Patel's QuickSprout blog if your freelance business is on a digital marketing or content marketing niche.


QuickSprout's blog posts always have a lot of comments in it and if you leave a comment on Neil's blog, your name will get more exposure on the blog readers, not only on the blog owner.

You can also try replying to other people's comments to build relationships, but do it moderately. You don't want to be acting like you're the owner of the blog or something. Or you'll wait for the blog owner to answer the question of his reader first, then politely butt into the conversation and add something of value.

My friend even landed a writing gig after her comment was read by her now-client who's also a regular reader of the blog.

So if you are stuck on what blogs should you comment on, better comment on blogs with lots of comments in it. Killing two birds with one stone.

3.  Get on Twitter and Instagram.


I used to devalue these two social media networks since there's so little that you can do compared to Facebook and LinkedIn.

But when I tried using them, it's actually fun. Through these networks, I am able to expand my LinkedIn connections because I was able to meet them through Twitter.

As for Instagram, this may be embarrassing but it's my first time using it yesterday yet it's so easy to build connections with.

So as you may attract the right connections on Twitter and Instagram, always use hashtags so that people can easily find you.

When you're on Twitter, do retweets, and when you're on Instagram, leave a comment on images of top Instagram personalities, media, etc. such as Forbes, Times, Hubspot, Huffington Post, and many more. Cos like in commenting on blogs, when you comment on other people's Insta posts, you get exposure for your name.


These methods of building a professional network may only be a few. But they are actually one of the best ways to connect with people without meeting them face to face.

How about you? What methods can you suggest to build the professional network of an introvert freelancer?

Last Updated: Thursday, June 30, 2016

5 Tips on How to Write Faster


Like you, I've been in the dilemma of finishing writing tasks fast when I was a newbie freelance web content writer.

Back then, I was only able to finish writing a 500-word article within four to five hours. I think I was writing about balustrades back then - a topic I'm not so familiar with.

Though some of our freelance writing clients prompt us to write about things which we are not an expert of, that doesn't mean that we couldn't craft an article within a lesser period of time.

With my more than four years of web content writing experience, I have learned how to write faster. From a four or five hour period of writing, I have reduced that to an hour or two. So, what did I do?

Do less research. 


What? Less research? Isn't researching the most important part of writing? Yes, we need to research a lot so that we can write more about a topic that we don't know, and provide more accuracy and credibility to our writing. But what I meant by this is that you shouldn't consume too much of your time researching.

Most of the time, we tend to over-research. We even research on things that are not really relevant to our writing, or we even look for reference materials that we won’t be actually using at all.

Before, I had almost 30-ish tabs opened on my browser, and I read and analyze all of them. But over time, I learned to only research for the most relevant results.

Proofread after writing. 


Yep, you read that right. It's not proofreading "while" writing.

Though some freelance writers prefer to proofread while they write, I prefer to proofread after I have written all my thoughts. I just type and type. No matter how bad my grammar tends to be. Because if I don’t continuously type, my flow of thoughts uhh... won't flow anymore.

This actually works best for me. English is not my first language, and sometimes, I do have a hard time translating my thoughts in English. After all the typing, I run through the article again and fix my grammar.

Time yourself. 


It's not that I always set an alarm clock. The sound of an alarm is very annoying.

I just set a particular time on when should I finish writing a piece of content. For content that does not need extensive research, I challenge myself to finish it within an hour, or less than that.

I just take note of the time on my laptop screen. Every time I glance at the clock, I know how much time is still left.

If you don't time yourself, the result is that you always slack off. Back then, I didn't time myself whenever I write, and I was only being unproductive.

Write in a not-so quiet environment. 


It’s true that we, freelance writers, need a quiet workspace inside our home so that we can write without distraction.

However, I tend to get more distracted if the place is too quiet. That's just too boring, and it can even make me doze off. So what I do is play a music that I like, but one that is not too loud.

If you are looking for a type of music that helps you boost your productivity, you can play soft music, nature sounds, or even video game sounds.

Take short breaks. 


Some freelance writers don't take a break thinking that it will only consume much of their time.

However, you should replenish yourself once in a while. Drink a hot coffee; stand up and do some stretching; talk to anyone, even your pets; close your eyes for a while, and many more. You'll find that you are writing faster than expected.


Well, these are my techniques in order to write faster. What's yours? I'd love to know.

Last Updated: Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Tired of Sharing Posts on Your Social Media Accounts One by One? Here's How to Make It Easier and Faster.


You know too damn well that social media marketing shouldn't be ignored because social media helps drive business to your business. So you hop onto Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, or to any other network where you think your brand will get the most exposure.

With too many social media platforms around, having all of your accounts active has become quite a hassle. Just the mere logging in on all of your accounts makes you feel stressed out. What's more, you have to publish and share posts daily, or else people will think that your business has gone dead. Isn't it too tiring?

But worry no more!

Even if you have a bazillion social media accounts and company pages for your business, you can manage them using a web-based tool called Buffer.

What is Buffer?


As mentioned earlier, Buffer is a web-based tool. It works like your social media assistant that lets you schedule and publish posts on all of your linked social media accounts. It has been once called as the Siri of Social Media.

How to start using Buffer


1. Go to Buffer.com and sign-up to create an account. Click the "Get Started for Free" button (if you only want a free account).


2. Link your social media accounts. A free Buffer account lets you connect your Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn social networks.


3. Once you have linked your social media accounts, you can start scheduling your posts.



How to schedule posts in Buffer


1. To schedule posts, click the "Content" tab menu, and the "Queue" tab.


2. You will then be shown an empty text box with social media icons on top representing your linked accounts.


3. You can select where you want to share your post by clicking the social media icons above.




4. Type your desired content in the text box.


Notes:

  1. Hashtags are only working on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest, so you may not include sharing your posts with hashtags on LinkedIn.
  2. Your pasted URL will be automatically shortened to a Buff.ly link. But if you want, you may erase the Buff.ly link after Buffer has generated a preview of your URL.
  3. Once you have pasted a URL, Buffer will pull in a preview of your URL, together with an image, your blog's meta title, permalink and meta description.
  4. There's a tiny character counter beside the "Add to Queue" button indicating how many characters are left for each social media platform. Hence, a longer post is not feasible if you will be sharing it on Twitter that only allows a max of 140 characters.
5.  Click the dropdown arrow of the "Add to Queue" button to select how you want to schedule your post.


  • Share Next - will be published only after Buffer finished publishing all of your post's queue
  • Share Now - instant share
  • Schedule Post - publish your post whenever you want

And that's it! Easy, right? No more opening of several browser tabs just to login and update all of your social media accounts.