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<p>Andy: Welcome to our first call, for six figure blogging</p> <p>Six Figure Blogging </p> <p> 2005 Andy Wibbels and Darren Rowse. All Rights Reserved. http://www.sixfigureblogging.com/ v 1.0 </p> <p>34</p> <p>Six Figure Blogging Call 2 Transcript Introduction </p> <p>Andy: Welcome to our second call for Six Figure Blogging. Darren there is this </p> <p>news of a new blogging network that just launched today. How about that? </p> <p>Topic: Launch of B5 Media Blog Network </p> <p>Darren: That is right. There have been three of us: Jeremy Wright, Duncan </p> <p>Riley, and myself have been working on a new network for the last it must be a </p> <p>month or two now that weve been talking about it. We went live yesterday </p> <p>Australian time or today your time, I think. </p> <p>Weve launched with fourteen blogs on a variety of niche topics which is quite </p> <p>handy for today. It is going really well. It has caused quite a bit of a stir around </p> <p>the blogosphere. We are getting a bit of talk about our approach. So yes, it has </p> <p>been going well. </p> <p>Andy: Yes, I was putting you guys through Technorati to see who has been </p> <p>talking about the project. </p> <p>Participant: What is the site? What is the URL? </p> <p>Andy: The URL is b5media.com. There is good press out and then there are </p> <p>people saying you guys arent paying the bloggers enough and you should give </p> <p>them everything after hosting and design. Then I was thinking, What is in it for </p> <p>Darren, Jeremy, and Duncan? </p> <p>Darren: That is right. We are trying to be quite fluid with the approach that </p> <p>weve taken. Really, well change our approach as things grow. We wanted to start </p> <p>with something quite simple that everyone could understand and everyone is on </p> <p>the same page in terms of how to pay people. As we grow and as we learn, well be </p> <p>Six Figure Blogging </p> <p> 2005 Andy Wibbels and Darren Rowse. All Rights Reserved. http://www.sixfigureblogging.com/ v 1.0 </p> <p>35</p> <p>adapting that system. There are always going to be people who knock it, but there </p> <p>has been an overwhelming positive response as well which have been great. </p> <p>Andy: What is particularly different about this blog network versus other ones? </p> <p>Darren: I guess what we are trying to do is do something that is very niche-</p> <p>based and starts with the passion of a blogger rather than a commercial idea. A </p> <p>lot of them seem to be more about the money rather than about the people. We </p> <p>really are wanting to create a network where the bloggers become heroes, where </p> <p>they have every chance of becoming A-listed in their own right. </p> <p>There are some similarities between us and the some of the other networks, but </p> <p>we are just trying to do it with our own flavor. </p> <p>Andy: You and Duncan both have done blog networks before so this is a way for </p> <p>you to say, If I knew what I knew then, I would have done this. </p> <p>Darren: Exactly. I was saying this morning to someone; this enables us to do </p> <p>something much bigger than we could have ever hoped to do by ourselves. The </p> <p>three of us have a great mix of skills and experiences. I am really looking forward </p> <p>to seeing what comes out of it. </p> <p>I am really tired at the moment. Weve been working around the clock for the last </p> <p>week on it but it is coming together nicely. </p> <p>Andy: Awesome. Again folks, that is at b5media.com. Are there any questions </p> <p>about that particular network and any questions from last weeks content? </p> <p>Don: I have a question. What is the advantage of announcing your new blog </p> <p>network to the world? It seems to me like all that does is draw slack for how little </p> <p>or whether you should be doing it or whatever. I just wondered about that. </p> <p>Darren: The approach we are going is we want to be as transparent as possible. </p> <p>We could have quietly launched it and just gathered links amongst ourselves and </p> <p>built ourselves in the search engines. We wanted an exercise one of actually </p> <p>Six Figure Blogging </p> <p> 2005 Andy Wibbels and Darren Rowse. All Rights Reserved. http://www.sixfigureblogging.com/ v 1.0 </p> <p>36</p> <p>producing a network but all three of us are really interested in building blogging </p> <p>up. So being transparent about the way we do it, what we are paying, and what we </p> <p>are learning will be a big part of B5. </p> <p>I guess even the negative slack is positive in some ways. It actually makes us </p> <p>better and also it is building our ranking in search engines as well. I know that </p> <p>every negative feedback we get brings a link with it. </p> <p>Andy: That is true. </p> <p>Darren: I guess there are a variety of good things about it. </p> <p>Andy: And how much are you paying the bloggers? </p> <p>Darren: We are paying the first one hundred dollar amount and then on top of </p> <p>that they are taking forty percent of all advertising. </p> <p>Andy: Is that per blog or is that divided across the whole network? </p> <p>Darren: Per blog. So if you are writing for three blogs for us, it will be the first </p> <p>three hundred dollars from those plus forty percent of those for all of those blogs. </p> <p>Andy: There was another question out there? </p> <p>Paula: Yes, this is Paula. </p> <p>Andy: Yes, go ahead Paula. </p> <p>Evaluating Existing Blog Networks </p> <p>Paula: I was checking out the stuff on the fieldwork and looking at the different </p> <p>blog networks. I was struggling with answering the question of how you can tell if </p> <p>it is a blog network versus just another blog. Obviously in your new one it just </p> <p>says that right out there and the ones that I was going to are the ones that we </p> <p>discussed last week so I know they were a blog network. But I was having some </p> <p>problems discerning how they are tied together whether they are just feeds from </p> <p>Six Figure Blogging </p> <p> 2005 Andy Wibbels and Darren Rowse. All Rights Reserved. http://www.sixfigureblogging.com/ v 1.0 </p> <p>37</p> <p>other blogs creating this one page or how that exactly works. You kind of have to </p> <p>understand that I am kind of geeky so I want to know how it works. I am not just </p> <p>happy just looking at it. I was like, How is that working? </p> <p>Andy: Do you mean how does one blog reference another one and have it post on </p> <p>that page? </p> <p>Paula: I am guessing that in the blog networks, they are doing that automatically </p> <p>versus like when you regularly read a blog and if somebody says, Oh just go to </p> <p>that blog; it has something great on that, and they link back to the permanent </p> <p>link or whatever. But in the blog network, this kind of happens almost seamlessly. </p> <p>It is like running My Yahoo! for you or something. </p> <p>Andy: Yes, Im guessing most of those networks are all in the same servers, so </p> <p>they can all trade code back and forth pretty easily. You can have elements such </p> <p>as common header or a common footer or have an element that is on every blog </p> <p>in the network and it is all just from one file. </p> <p>Paula: OK, but when I look at the B5 Media one, just because I went there and </p> <p>just because we are talking about it, where do all the other blogs show up? Are </p> <p>they integrated within this page? </p> <p>Darren: No. What youll find is that each of the blogs in our network has their </p> <p>own URL. They are stand-alone blogs. We are not integrating them into one </p> <p>space. Weve toyed with the idea of doing that but at the moment we are just </p> <p>running them as normal stand-alone blogs and they are being tied together by </p> <p>linking to one another or theyll be tied together with some buttons on the page </p> <p>that promote each other. They are stand alone blogs. I think most of the networks </p> <p>are doing that. They are all still written by individuals not machines. But there </p> <p>are some cross linking and cross promotions which is probably the advantages of </p> <p>doing it in a network style because youre building up your brand and youre </p> <p>building up your search engine presence. </p> <p>Six Figure Blogging </p> <p> 2005 Andy Wibbels and Darren Rowse. All Rights Reserved. http://www.sixfigureblogging.com/ v 1.0 </p> <p>38</p> <p>Paula: Yes, I can see in yours where you have a section on the right like what has </p> <p>other sites in the B5 Network and that links to other blog. It is not as evident as </p> <p>some of the other ones that I went to. </p> <p>Darren: Some of them do it more explicitly more than others. </p> <p>Paula: Either that or I was so overwhelmed by that and everything else I couldnt </p> <p>find. OK, thanks. </p> <p>Andy: Sure. Darren today we are talking about niches right? </p> <p>Niche Introduction and Darrens Story </p> <p>Darren: That is right. Really niches are the key to B5 Media, they are the key to </p> <p>the way I have been making income from blogging for the last two or three years </p> <p>now. </p> <p>Ill start with telling a little bit more about my story. When I first started </p> <p>blogging, I started a very general blog; it was a personal blog. I didnt actually put </p> <p>the link in the notes. Ill add that later. It is livingroom.org.au/blog. </p> <p>If you go back through the archives of that blog, youll find that I really posted on </p> <p>so many different topics. If you look at the categories that Ive got there, there are </p> <p>really different focuses there and a lot of topics. Originally, I was blogging about </p> <p>church and starting a new church so there was a spiritual Christian element </p> <p>there. I was also blogging about the Iraq War because that was all happening at </p> <p>the time. I was blogging about gadgets and technology. I was blogging about </p> <p>blogging and making money from blogs. Really it was an extension of my life. </p> <p>One of the things Ive noticed over that first year of blogging at that Living Room </p> <p>blog was that a lot of my readers didnt share that same spread of interests to me. </p> <p>I have a fairly collective bunch of tastes and ideas and passions. Increasingly I </p> <p>began to see readers either leaving my blog as loyal readers or expressing their </p> <p>frustration for me becoming obsessed about something. </p> <p>Six Figure Blogging </p> <p> 2005 Andy Wibbels and Darren Rowse. All Rights Reserved. http://www.sixfigureblogging.com/ v 1.0 </p> <p>39</p> <p>So when I began to write more about making money from blogs, a lot of my </p> <p>emerging church readers, that wasnt something that they wanted to really know </p> <p>about and so I began to sense this disillusionment within my blog. I also felt quite </p> <p>guilty myself about writing all these different topics knowing that I was causing </p> <p>angst for different people. </p> <p>So the idea began to be born in my mind, as I saw what others were doing, of </p> <p>having different blogs for different topics. It is not really rocket science but it took </p> <p>me a little while to work that out. That began the process of me thinking about </p> <p>blogs that focused tightly on a particular topic, on a particular niche topic. That is </p> <p>really where problogging has been going over the last year or two and we find </p> <p>more and more networks and individuals starting blogs that are focusing on </p> <p>those tight niches. </p> <p>Andy: What you are saying is that part of what we are going to get today is the </p> <p>idea of aligning content, audience and advertising? </p> <p>Darren: That is right. That is largely the advantage of niche blogging is that you </p> <p>are focusing on one thing which means you can target readers but you can also </p> <p>target advertisers which is a very beneficial thing. </p> <p>Maryam: Darren, I have a question. Can I ask? </p> <p>Darren: Sure </p> <p>Maryam: This is Maryam. </p> <p>Andy: Hi Maryam. </p> <p>Maryam: Hi, I am wondering and maybe this has been covered and Im a little </p> <p>behind on the reading but how do you track when readers leave? How do you </p> <p>track how long theyve been with you and if you dont actually have a subscription </p> <p>blog? Because I go to the Living Room and its not subscription Im noticing. </p> <p>Six Figure Blogging </p> <p> 2005 Andy Wibbels and Darren Rowse. All Rights Reserved. http://www.sixfigureblogging.com/ v 1.0 </p> <p>40</p> <p>Darren: That is right. There is just any sort of evidence of this person is not </p> <p>commenting anymore, this person isnt linking to me anymore and just in </p> <p>conversation and feedback and emails. That is where that evidence was coming </p> <p>from but it is very difficult to track when they dont subscribe. </p> <p>Maryam: Great template by the way. It is a beautiful design. </p> <p>Darren: Thanks. So did you want to give us your definition of a niche, Andy? </p> <p>Definition of a Niche </p> <p>Andy: Yes, going off of Darrens story about getting into what exactly is a niche </p> <p>and yes, it took me years before I pronounced it neesh and not nitch so I guess I </p> <p>am elevating myself culturally and being more continental. </p> <p>When I talk about niche, what I try to get across is a group of people with a </p> <p>common set of problems or a common set of passions. There is a term called </p> <p>otaku which is used with fans of Japanese animation. It is a name for someone </p> <p>that is just really obsessed with Japanese animation or if you think about really </p> <p>geeky people that are obsessed with a certain type of hardware or a certain </p> <p>operating system and they just really focus on that all the time that they have this </p> <p>passion for this topic or this thing. </p> <p>I went to those shoe blogs that Darren talked about last week at shoeblogs.com </p> <p>and yes, the design is really crappy but the thinking behind it is pretty wild </p> <p>because there are people who are absolutely nuts about shoes. Even if they are </p> <p>not buying shoes everyday, they want to read about it. </p> <p>It is the idea of common passions and common problems that these people are all </p> <p>united in their interest or what they are trying to solve. Along with that if we were </p> <p>going to be talking about niche in a non blog perspective, I would also say what is </p> <p>important is that they hang out together whether it is an online discussion forum </p> <p>and whether it is a trade association if you are talking a business type niche. The </p> <p>idea is that you are maximizing your marketing by going after a certain niche so </p> <p>Six Figure Blogging </p> <p> 2005 Andy Wibbels and Darren Rowse. All Rights Reserved. http://www.sixfigureblogging.com/ v 1.0 </p> <p>41</p> <p>you want all these people to be accessible more easily than just throwing it </p> <p>against the wall and seeing if it sticks. </p> <p>Why Use a Niche? </p> <p>Darren: That is right and I guess for me, there is a number of reasons why we </p> <p>would want to use a niche and Ive outlined them in a post on the ecampus if you </p> <p>want to follow along the post, Why use a niche? </p> <p>Really, there are seven things that Ive identified there. First one to come out of </p> <p>my story is the loyal readers. Niche blogs develop a loyal readership who just </p> <p>keeps coming back to you. </p> <p>1. Loyal Readers </p> <p>Darren: I was thinking about Engadget this morning at engadget.com. They </p> <p>have an incredibly high loyal reader factor. People bookmark their blog. Theyll </p> <p>log in every morning; theyll log in during the day; and theyll log in the last thing </p> <p>at night. That is because they know what theyll get when they go to Engadget. </p> <p>They k...</p>