Apart from the chat rooms, instant messengers and electronic mails created for communication and dialogue beyond turf are the emerging innovations that help man build opportunities for interaction. The need for a personalized and human face aspect of building online communities is slowly changing the technological landscape of the Internet.

Blogs / “weblogs” or blogging are the newest gift of Internet technology to people all over the world. These are updated posts, crop up entries or personalized life snippets, of mundane or bizarre in nature. For most, a “blog” is a personal, unedited, and authentic journal meant to be shared in an online community. Blog site is a place where bloggers can publish anything; his thoughts, feelings, photos, special events, experiences, comments on issues and so on. It is more of an online diary with videos, links, documents, newsletters and opinions on just about any topics you are interested.

Blogs are made to welcome the insights and opinions of all and therefore, should not be written to sound intimidating and too formal. This kind of blog is a sure way to put off the readers. In the basics of blogging, conversational tone would be more appropriate to reach the desired audience.

Blogging is all about individuals reaching out to other individuals. Having a blog has its own set of advantages:

?Freedom of Expression. If you want people to hear you out and give their own opinion, this is the best way to create a line of communication;

?Networking is at its best. Having a blog is a good platform for exchanging genuine ideas from consumers to you as marketer of a certain product. Sound opinion and point of view is better than just showing the price quote;

?Excellent advertising platform. Blogging is a new way to advertise products, a refreshing change from the traditional advertising outlets and it is cost-effective.

? Gauging public opinion on products and services. The key is nice and catchy titles with new ideas presented in your content. This is an assurance of quick and repeated responses from your readers. Blogs is an excellent spot for the exchange of ideas between the seller and the consumer. Good for measuring public opinion regarding services and products, even political and business matters alike.

?Useful tool for internal communication. This will help your company to build a knowledge-based community of employees. Also good for harnessing employee relations and identifying human resource issues in advance.

?Other benefits like search engine optimization (SEO) will help your blogs to be seen often by as many people as you wish. This is very good exposure for your products and services.

Many blog hosting services are available on the Internet. But the basic question is which one of the services will be the best to start off your business blog program? Business people are usually clueless to recent technological innovations which would help them maximize their marketing potentials. For these beginners, it is best to study first the services offered by blog hosts. An ineffective business blogging program may damage marketing opportunities instead of enriching them.

A company may decide to do the following depending on its capacity and needs: 1) Host their own blog service, 2) Pay someone else to host the service, or 3) Setup a “blog aggregator page” and ask the employees to select their blog hosting services individually. There are paid and free services available for individuals.

For business blogs, they are required to have the latest blogging features; if not, this will prevent them from maximizing their marketing, public relations and SEO potentials.

Keep in mind that blogs should have the following basic essentials:

COMMENTS. Welcoming comments provide opportunity for dialogue. In business blogs, they are a good customer feedback mechanism. This helps develop better customer relations based from loyalty and trust. Blogging is an innovative way to converse with your customers.

TRACKBACK. This helps in maximizing company and product exposure. Through this service, consumers can get back to you for more posts and updates without the difficulty of locating you. If your blog is popular in a specific online community chances are links going back to your blog site are everywhere online, other blog sites or even websites.

CATEGORIES AND TAGS. These both help in classifying blog searches for ease of navigation and on site search. Categories act as libraries because it classifies posts by subject matter such as business, distance learning, e-commerce, online auctions, etc. Tags, help in the classification, especially in the blog search engine Technorati. Possible customers and new clients locate blogs about certain topics of interest by just clicking the tags.

RSS FEED. Really Simple Syndication is the feed from your blog that is sent out over the internet, and collected through the various newsreaders and aggregators.

If your company is to establish a business blogging program, considerable options should be made available by the hosting companies shortlisted for the services. Free blog hosting services are popular but they are much appropriate for individual online journals. Paid blog hosting services offer unlimited packages best for your company’s needs. You may want to suggest checking out some blogs that use the host first, read and examine their layout and design. Another important thing to consider is a reliable technical support the host has.

After, choosing the blog host, a team should be ready to plan the design and structure of the blog: The team should:

?create a style that meets the needs of the audience;

?establish an open, credible tone;

?schedule weekly updating of blog – ideally, a few times a week;

?include weblinks of other website and blogs;

?blog post should be in the “first person;”

?focus on the business blog objective; and,

?maintain an honest, engaging conversational quality.

Remember, whatever the look, style and content found on your blog is a reflection of you and your company.

(990 words)

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Jan
25

Blogging 101

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If writing is an art, then, blogging is one way of using words to come up with an art. This is because people who are into blogging are the ones who are artistic on their own sense, carefully choosing words that would best describe their feelings, sentiments, wishes, desires, and everything.

Basically, blogs were first introduced as weblogs that refer to a “server’s log file.” It was created when web logging hit the virtual market. Since its inception in the mid-1990s, web logging gradually saturated the virtual community making the Internet a viable source of greater information.

However, with web logging, you still need a web site and domain names, but with blogging, you do not need anything just an account with blog providers. In most cases, these kinds of blogs are free of charge.

With the onset of blogging in the industry, personal journaling had been a common ground for people who wish to be known all over the world. However, not literally famous as this is not a case on being popular or well-known personality.

Generally, blogs are created for personal use. Like a journal, people can write their daily adventures, sentiments, and whatever ideas they want to express online.

Nevertheless, with the advent of the online businesses, blogs had gradually taken the limelight in providing businesses a chance to boost their productivity online. This is where the business blogs have taken the limelight.

Business blogs are, basically, created to advertise the services or products of a certain web site or online business in order to increase online sales.

Moreover, business blogs are also one way of promoting the company so that the other readers will know that a certain company exists online. With blogs, entrepreneurs are able to establish a name in the virtual market through articles that can be very useful in the reader’s life.

From there, you can make money out of blogs by simply syndicating it to your business’ web site. This can be done through the RSS technology.

So, if you are thinking to create a blog, whether for business or for pleasure, you need to know some tips that could help you get through and make your blog one of the interesting blogs online.

Here’s how:

1. Consider your audience

Even if your blog is generally personal, still, it would be better to consider the minds of your readers. You have to think of something that would interest them.

After all, most of the reasons of people who write blogs are not at all confined to their own personal motives. Most of them would love to be “heard” (or read) and would love to be known, in some way or another, even for just a minute. Hence, it is very important to come with a write up that everybody can understand, not necessarily that these people can relate to it but they can understand it.

2. Pictures speaks a thousand words

To make your blogging worth the browsing effort of your readers, it would be extremely nice if you will put some pictures in it. It does not necessarily mean you have to place a picture of yourself. Any photographs will do as long as it does not pose danger or insult to anyone who will be reading your blog.

3. Make constructive and beneficial blogs

Even if you are free to write anything you wan to say to the world, still, it would be better to create some write-ups that would be beneficial to your readers.

After all, its information technology that you have there so better be inclined to provide information rather than sheer quirky entertainment.

4. Avoid making multifaceted and complicated blogs

In order to have an interesting blogs, try not to use some highly technical and highfalutin words. After all, it is not a science discourse or a debate that you are making, so better stick to simple facts and short blogs.

Bear in mind that most people who use the Internet usually do more scanning than scrutinizing each site word for word. Therefore, it would be better to come with blogs that will not bore your readers just because you have these lengthy articles.

5. Make it interactive

As much as possible and if your capacity will allow it, make your blog interactive. Yu can do this by placing some video or audio clips in your blog.

You can even place an area for comments or for some feedbacks. In this way, you can get some impressions or reactions of other people. Who knows, you might even gain some friends just by making them feel at home in your blog site.

Indeed, blogs are not created just for the mere fun of it. It also has its own purpose in the world of the Internet.

Therefore, for people who wish to harness their craft, as far as writing is concerned, blogs are the best way to do it.

As they say, blogging is the contemporary term of creative and commercial writing.

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Jan
23

Internet Marketing Secret

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What’s the Internet Marketing Secret?

With more and more people trying out their hand at internet marketing, and many of these people failing at it, the question of what’s the internet marketing secret comes up over and over again. Why is it that some people are successful and some people can go on for years and never make it work? Yes, many people fail at internet marketing. But the reality is that many more people are also succeeding in it.

The people who do make it work then end up marketing their internet marketing secret. But will it work for you? Not necessarily, even if it’s guaranteed (as most marketers claim their products and services to be). There are many variables that go into how successful you will be in your internet marketing endeavor.

First of all, do you have the drive and belief in yourself? Many successful internet marketers declare that this is really all it takes. Tenacity, dedication, and belief in yourself. When you think about it, they could be right. If this guy is making millions of dollars, why shouldn’t you be able to do it too? It’s very likely that the only thing that got him to that point was to never give up.

Some will object to this and say that they probably had more money to invest in the first place. But this has been proven over and over again not to be the case. Often people get heavily into debt before they start making their first real progress. Or they start small with free methods and very gradually and slowly work their way into becoming more and more profitable. While using free methods can take longer, it does work. You just have to give it more time to start kicking in. If you’re consistent and persistent enough, you will benefit even from these free methods of online marketing.

Another “secret” is being able to leverage off of the experience and knowledge of those who are successful. What better way to break into internet marketing than to be under the tutelage of someone who is a proven success? There are several ways you can do this. You can sign up for some of the free material that they offer, such as videos, e-books, webinars, courses, etc. You can pay a little more for some of their “unpersonalized” methods. Or you can get one-on-one or close to it from these people themselves. This is a great way to see what is really working in today’s internet marketing world. It changes so quickly that if you are new, you could be doing things that worked years ago, but are now outdated.

Finally, do your best to avoid overwhelm. Any internet marketing secret will work for you if you stick with it long enough. Jumping around from one course, e-book, or program to the next will just leave you spinning your wheels in confusion.

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Jan
21

Internet Marketing Report

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How to Use an Internet Marketing Report

What is an internet marketing report? It could be several things–a newsletter that comes out every so often, a monthly online or offline magazine article, or an under 30-page document. You’ve probably seen a number or these, and most likely used the information you gained from them to your advantage. But creating your own report is a great way to gain customers and to establish presence, visibility and expert status.

The word “report” usually signifies some sort of authority or objective information to most readers. This is one way that it differs from an e-book, which can be subjective with not as much point-by-point information. A report is also shorter, which is often seen as an advantage in the eyes of the reader, as well as in your eyes since you will be putting in the effort to create it. E-books are usually considered to be over 40 pages long. Finally, reports tend to be offered for free, while e-books often come with a price.

So, how do you come up with an internet marketing report? There are several avenues that can lead you to your first report. The important thing to consider is that this report should be free and it should eventually introduce readers to your next product which they will pay for. So, you’re report could be the first chapter in your e-book. Or it could be a summary of just one point that will be covered in your ebook. Or it could be an entirely different sort of take on one aspect of internet marketing. For example, your report could focus on the mental attitude you need to be a successful online marketer. While your next product would focus on the actual tasks that you need to perform in order to be successful.

You can also give away your report in exchange for your reader’s contact details. So, you ask them to fill in their name and email and after they have submitted this information, they can have the report. In this case, you have them on your list and can keep in touch with them in order to promote your next product or some other affiliate products.

Similar to this, you can give your report away as a bonus. If your readers buy something else that you offer, they then get the report for free.

The structure of your report should consist of a cover page, a “Welcome” or “Thank You” page, a Table of Contents, the various topics or chapters, and then a conclusion and another thank you. Make sure that you also include all of your contact information and pictures to break it up a little bit. You will want to save your report as a PDF file.

These are just a few of the many different ways in which an internet marketing report can be used.

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Jan
19

Internet Marketing Books

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Internet marketing is a hot topic right now, whether for local business owners, home business owners, or large corporations, and there are Internet marketing books abound that can help you improve this part of your business.

Rated high on the list of Internet marketing books, the EBoot Camp was written by Corey Perlman who claims to take away the “gambling” aspect of raising your website up in the search engines and provide you with a sure-fire strategy instead. The book covers both organic search engine training (how to use free methods to get your site ranked higher) and paid methods. Reviews of this book are very positive, with an emphasis on how well the author puts the information in a way that can be easily understood, even by complete internet marketing beginners. It’s also impressive that Corey’s blog is on the free Blogger platform (http://www.coreyperlman.com).

Internet Marketing Methods Revealed: The Complete Guide to Becoming an Internet Marketing Expert was written by Miguel Todaro, and is a very thorough look at the internet marketing process. It goes into depth and may be a little hard to read, especially if you are new to the subject, but most reviewers claim that it is worth the time and effort. Miguel Todaro discusses online brand development, e-sales strategies, Internet public relations, management consulting, and website development, among other things.

The New Rules of Marketing and PR: How to Use Social Media, Blogs, News Releases, Online Video, and Viral Marketing to Reach Buyers Directly was written by David Meerman Scott and has mixed reviews. As the title implies, this book focuses on social media marketing which is a present-day powerful trend. The focus of the book is based on the fact that social media marketing must be done correctly, and if you can do the social internet marketing the right way, you’re headed for success in your business.

Inbound Marketing: Get Found Using Google, Social Media, and Blogs (The New Rules of Social Media) is by Brian Halligan, Dharmesh. It’s received almost all positive reviews from those who are newer to the world of internet marketing. However, if you are somewhat advanced in your experience and/or training, this might be just a good review.

Guerilla Marketing on the Internet: The Definitive Guide from the Father of Guerilla Marketing was co-authored by Jay Conrad Levinson, Mitch Meyerson, and Mary Eule Scarborough and has received generally good reviews, with some complaints of grammatical and spelling errors. This book includes important information like how to avoid the 12 biggest internet marketing mistakes, and how to get a high-impact website inexpensively.

How to Use the Internet to Advertise, Promote and Market Your Business or Website with Little or No Money was written by Bruce C. Brown. Getting results without over-spending is a state that everyone would like to be in so this is one of the Internet marketing books that helps with that while touching on important points such as branding, SEO, unlocking the secrets of eBay, and several other topics.

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You Need an Internet Marketing and Advertising Company

When looking for an internet marketing and advertising company, you will find that you have many to choose from. What’s the difference between internet marketing and advertising? Marketing is basically the whole approach you take to sell your product or service, while advertising is just one part of the marketing pie. The other pieces of the pie include, but are not limited to, market research (researching your target market and competition), media planning, public relations, product or service pricing, distribution, customer support, and involvement in the community. Market research is a key activity that needs to be performed by yourself or another company that specializes in this. It is crucial that you do this and also very time consuming so it might be one of the tasks that you do outsource to someone else. Media planning is another good one to hand over to someone else. An expert in this field can put you head and shoulders above the competition. Distribution, customer service and community involvement are often the kinds of duties that management likes to be involved in personally in order to be in touch with their customers and their needs. But you can also pass this on to another company.

While one firm may be an internet marketing and advertising company all in one, it is often the case that the two concepts are split. An internet marketing company may perform tasks such as developing a website, doing all the SEO, establishing your brand, providing content, copywriting, public relations, and ad creation. An internet advertising company will focus on only the ad part of the business. This could also include creating the ad, in addition to creating advertising campaigns.

Before handing your business over to someone else, think about what you really need and how much you want to spend. While you can do a great deal of the online marketing for free on various sites, this kind of stuff can take up a lot of time. And, as they say, time is money. If hiring extra staff to take on this task isn’t what you had in mind, then yes, an internet marketing company can be a good fit for you. One thing is for sure, you do need to be on the internet if you are going to do business. This is true for small local businesses as much as it is true for global corporations. Even local searches are now being performed online. People just throw their phone books out these days, and they don’t go to online yellow pages either. They just use their simple search engine, like Google, Yahoo, or MSN, and type in what they want to find. If you want to make sales, you need to come up in their searches. And you can do all of this through an internet marketing and advertising company.

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Jan
15

Internet Home Based Businesses

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Succeeding with Your Internet Home Based Businesses

If you’re running internet home based businesses or are considering getting into one, there are some steps you need to follow in order to make your endeavor successful. First of all, it’s easy to get caught up in all the hype of the many products that are offered to help you in your business. They all claim to be the best or have the best formula or system that makes everything easy. Of course, you first need a product or service to sell. And that is actually often the easiest part of starting a business.

But the reality is that there are really only three steps you need to master in order to grow your business. You need to get your business in front of the people who will be interested in buying your products or services. You need to build a list of all of the people who take a look at your business, even if they don’t buy. And you need to build a relationship with the people on this list so that they become buyers or repeat buyers. In short, you need traffic, a list, and communication.

Let’s start with traffic. If you’re on a budget, you can use the many free or low-cost traffic generating tools out there such as Facebook. Twitter, Blogger, WordPress, USFreeAds, Craigslist, and YouTube, just to name a few. These are extremely effective places to tell people what you are offering. You can also do some paid pay-per-click advertising on some of the major search engines like Google, Yahoo, Bing, and Facebook.

When it comes to building lists for your internet home based businesses, there is one tool that is essential. That is an autoresponder. This tool allows you to place a form on your website, blog, or whatever web page you are using to create interest in your product. Generally, you offer something free like a newsletter, a sample product, or partial service, in order to get the people to fill in their contact information. This information is then added directly to your list of clients/potential clients. So, you can now email them with updates, information, new products, or whatever you want to communicate with them in order to help you build your relationship with them.

In this day and internet age, the personal touch is becoming more valued, simply because it is less frequent. Everything is automated including customer service, sales, and emails. So, if you can add a little bit of personalization to your automated efforts, it will go a long way in establishing trust with your list and clients. How can you do this? Send out cards every once in a while for birthdays or holidays. Communicate on Facebook. Make some phone calls. There are several ways to show your customers that they are important to you. Asking for feedback helps as well.

If you can master these three simple rules, your internet home based businesses will be successful.

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Jan
13

Internet And Marketing

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How the Internet and Marketing Go Hand-in-Hand

It’s hard to think of a better combination than the Internet and marketing. Where else can you reach the hundreds, thousands, or even millions who make up your target market. Whether you are a small, local business, or a large corporation, internet marketing is indispensible. It’s been proven that most folks don’t even glance at a yellow pages book anymore to find a local business. Nor do they go on the online yellow pages. Now, the average consumer just types their need into their search engine, whether it be Google, Yahoo, Bing, or any of the other hundreds out there. If you want to come up in their searches, you need to learn how to take advantage of the Internet and marketing, or hire someone to do it for you.

If you’re a local business, you don’t even need a website to come up in Google, Yahoo, or Bing searches. All you need to do is fill in your information on their Local Business pages. You can include your company name, contact details, directions, photos, and a website if you have one. You can also choose to offer coupons for your customers, which brings you up in popularity and rankings. These pages also offer users the chance to review what it is that you offer. Ask your happy customers to review you, and you are also boosted in ranking. And the best part of all? This listing is completely free! Think of how much you save on yellow pages or newspaper ads that are no longer even getting results. If you run a local business, take the few minutes it will take you to get listed on the search engine local results and you can start seeing traffic immediately. Other free options include setting up accounts on Twitter, FaceBook, and YouTube, or any of the other social media sites. Blogging is another way to create interest and establish credibility in your field.

If you haven’t yet merged the Internet and marketing for your larger company or corporation, luckily you can get in on the game very quickly whether you hire staff to handle this for you or you outsource the job to someone else. One of the major sources of income for larger companies who take advantage of internet marketing is pay-per-click (PPC) advertising. While this type of advertising is not free, you only pay when someone actually clicks on your ad. This is one of the huge advantages of pay-per-click versus offline advertising. You only pay when you get results. Large companies are also taking advantage of FaceBook, Twitter, YouTube, and blogging. If they are using these free methods even though they have millions of dollars to spend on marketing, you better believe that this is working for them.

The Internet and marketing really are two extremely compatible terms–make sure that you are teaming them up in your business.

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Jan
11

Increased Web Traffic With Ezines

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Who wants increased web traffic? Everybody! Whether you’re an experienced online marketer or a newcomer to the scene, you’re looking for more traffic to your site. Traffic is the fuel that will keep your business running, so it’s of top priority. While the amount of web traffic you get is important, the quality of traffic is even more traffic. It really does you know good if you’ve got thousands of people visiting, and no one buying or taking the action that you desire.

Ezines are a great way to get increased web traffic, as well as more quality traffic. An ezine is an electronic magazine which is delivered to its subscribers by email either on a daily, weekly, bi-monthly, or monthly basis. Some ezines are free to join and others charge a subscription fee. Either way, they represent a very easy way for you to reach your target market.

And you do that by paying for advertising space in an ezine that is sent out to members of your target market. Not all ezine publishers offer the same advertising possibilities, conditions, and prices so you’ll need to do a little research before choosing one that’s right for you. Obviously, you want to pick one as laser-targeted to your market as possible. You can do this simply by typing in a search on google for ezines or newsletters in your particular market, or by using a free or paid ezine directory. You want to look at the amount of subscribers the ezine has, the frequency that it is mailed to subscribers, and the advertising options and costs.

In general, the most effective ads you can do are called “solo” ads. This means that your ad gets sent out to the subscriber list alone, without and other ads or content, and with your topic in the subject line. Solo ads are also the most expensive type of ezine advertising but you can get them for as low as $10. Be wary, however, of a solo ad that costs very little and is sent out to a lot of subscribers. You will more likely get a better response from a $10 solo ad sent to 500 to 600 subscribers than from one of the same price that is sent to 5,000 or more subscribers. If it seems to good to be true, it is.

Before you place your solo ad, subscribe to the ezine to test out its quality and reliability first. You will also see examples of other solo ads this way.

Ezine advertising is a good way to get increased web traffic and targeted visitors. Start with just one, track the results, and stick with it if they are good. Once you start profiting, re-invest at least half of the profit into higher subscriber base ezines and continue in this direction. Remember to track and tweak your ads in order to really optimize your response rate.

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Jan
09

Increase Blog Traffic

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It doesn’t really matter if your blog is a personal blog that you do just for fun, or if you’re a serious online marketer who uses their blog to make money, everyone wants to know how to increase blog traffic. That seems to be the universal question.

The good news is that just by using a blog format for your website you’ve already done a lot to get more targeted traffic to your blog. The search engines love fresh content and since blogs are updated far more frequently than a static site would be, the search engines view that as a content driven site and will rank it higher.

There are many other things you can do, for free, to increase the amount of traffic you get to your blog. And remember, it’s not just about any traffic, it’s about getting quality traffic, traffic that consists of people who are actually interested in the topic of your blog.

Here are a few of the simplest and most effective free things you can do to keep the flow of quality traffic to your blog going strong:

1. Post often. The more often you post, the more often your blog will get crawled by the search engines and you will be rewarded with a higher page rank and more free traffic. One word of warning though, as with vitamins, don’t fall into thinking that if one is good 15 must be better. If you post too many times in a day, the search engines will think that your not building your site in a ‘natural’ way and they will penalize you for it.

A very effective rule of thumb is to post one post every single day for 21 days, I don’t know why, but that 21 seems to be the magic number. After the first 21 days you can slow down to several posts a week if you want, or you can continue with one a day, it’s up to you.

2. Write articles that will direct people to visit your blog. You can use the free Google keyword tool to target the types of keyword phrases people are using to find your blog, than write quality articles around that keyword, then you can submit your article for free to article directories such as EzineArticles.com.

3. Learn a little about Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and start using those techniques on your blog. This will make your site stand out to the search engines. Don’t worry about knowing everything there is to know about SEO, just a few basic concepts can make a huge difference.

4. Visit other blogs and leave a comment with a link back to your blog. This will not only show people that you are an expert in your field, but they will also be interested in checking out your blog and more about what you have to say, assuming of course that you leave insightful, interesting comments.

These methods are the easiest methods that will help you increase blog traffic, that you will find. Don’t waste a ton of money on expensive pay per click campaigns when you can have even better results just by investing a little time.

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