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					The Definitive Guide To Blogging
    Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 1
This ebook is completely free and I am not
reserving any copyrights on the content herein.

I encourage you to share this ebook with
all your friends, email contacts, Facebook
buddies and Twitter fans.

This ebook is totally free and I don't expect any
sort of compensation from you whatsoever, but
if you want to show your gratitude then please
use my affiliate links in the ebook to buy any
hosting/ plugins or products that I recommend.

It won't change your purchase price at all and
it will give me a percentage of it (instead of all
the profit going to the product owners).

If you have any questions you can email me at
diggy@upgradereality.com

I don't guarantee results or profits of any sort.

This is just a guide to help you set up a blog from scratch
and get you started as a blogger without struggling for
months with all the technical and setup problems new
bloggers usually experience.




     The Definitive Guide To Blogging
             Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 2
         Table of Contents
Introduction                                                 P.5

Chapter 1:Create Your Own Blog                               P.9
-Hosting
-Domain Name
-Wp Installation

Chapter 2: Layout & Design                                  P.24
-Theme
-Orientation
-Essential pages
-Sidebar

Chapter 3: SEO                                              P.35
-Theory
-On Page SEO
-Basic SEO techniques

Chapter 4: Essential Plugins                                P.43
-All the WP plugins you need




   The Definitive Guide To Blogging
         Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com    Page 3
Chapter 5: Tools & Tutorials                                P.45
-Feedburner
-Aweber
-Getclicky
-Popup Domination
-OIO publisher
-Photoshop
-Twitter
-Facebook Fan Page

Chapter 6 : Marketing & Traffic                             P.65
-Guest posting
-Social media
-Youtube videos
-Interviews

Chapter 7: Monetization                                     P.71
-Adsense
-Clickbank
-125 Ads
-Text link ads
-Your own products


Conclusion                                                  P.76




   The Definitive Guide To Blogging
         Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com    Page 4
                Introduction:
Welcome!

When I started my blog Upgradereality.com
back in mid-2008 , I had zero knowledge about
websites or blogs. I knew my way around a
computer and the internet, but coding,
designing and writing were totally new to me.

In the two years that followed I learnt an
enormous amount about all aspects of blogging
and internet marketing. I built my blog up to
over 2500 subscribed readers, a high ranking
in google for the term 'Self Improvement' and I
have hopefully made a difference to the lives of
many people through my dozens of articles.

All this knowledge that I have accumulated
over the two years is what I compiled into this
ebook that you are reading right now.

In a way I wish someone else had written an
ebook like this 2 years ago when I was starting
out, because it would have made my blogging
career so much easier. I have spent hours and


    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
           Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 5
weeks figuring things out by trial and error that
could have been solved in mere minutes had I
known what the correct procedure was.

I believe everything happens for a reason and I
am glad that I am able to help you out and
give you a head-start over many other
bloggers out there.




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 6
REASONS TO START A BLOG:

I think that one of the main reasons to be a
blogger is the ability that you have to reach out
to thousands if not millions of people across
the world for years to come. You can literally
change the lives of hundreds of people for the
better with the articles that you write on your
blog.

Every article that you write is one that stays in
cyberspace for a very long time. An article that
you write today can still be viewed by hundreds
of people 10 years from now. Every article you
write builds up your blog and your library of
knowledge.

There is a decision you need to make:
Do you want to blog to help people or you want
to blog to make a living from the internet while
working from the comfort of your home?

There are other reasons to become a blogger
besides the two that I mentioned above.

I think it is possible to both blog because you

    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 7
want to help people AND make good money
from your blog because of the value that you
provide to your readers.

The advice that I am going to give you is
something that you should keep in mind for
your entire blogging career right from the
start: Focus on creating great content and
fantastic value first.

Do not focus on gaining thousands of readers
or making thousands of dollars a month from
your blog. If you follow all the steps in this
guide, ie, good design, good seo, link building
etc in combination with fantastic content over a
prolonged period of time, the readers and
dollars will come to you naturally. Trust me.




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 8
        Chapter 1:
How To Create Your Own Blog
Choosing and Buying a Domain

Capital Required:
(not necessary if you already have these)

$ 4.95 per month for the hosting of your blog.
$10.00 for a domain for one year.


Note
It is possible to have a free blog without any
setup costs on a site like www.blogspot.com
but I would highly recommend against it.

In my opinion, having your own website is the
best thing to do, because you are in control of
everything about it,.

You choose the domain name, the content, the
the layout and advertisements. Free blogs
control all that for you, and at any time can
change their rules or delete your account which


     The Definitive Guide To Blogging
            Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 9
can be detrimental to your hard work.
STEP 1: Deciding what your blog is going
to be about:

 • Is it a personal diary about your life and
   experiences?
 • Is it to promote products, with the sole
   purpose of reviewing products to make
   sales?
 • Is it to promote a cause or be informative?
 • What niche are you going to write about?


HINT:Choose something you are passionate
about and can see yourself writing about for
years without getting bored. Many bloggers
give up after a few months.

You need to take these things into
consideration because when you are going to
buy a domain, you need to know what you are
creating the blog about.

For instance if you want to start a blog about
cheese, you will not name your blog
‘www.galaxybattlewars.com’, but you will do
some keyword research (which I will show you

   The Definitive Guide To Blogging
         Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 10
just now) and try to include your main
keywords in your domain, eg:
‘www.exoticcheeses.com’.


Not only is this good for people typing in your
domain name (So they immediately know what
your site is about), but it is also good for
search engines like Google to rank your site for
the relevant words and phrases.




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 11
STEP 2: KEYWORD RESEARCH

This is a step that you only need to do if you
aim is to sell a product or promote a certain
niche. It is not essential if you are making a
website just for fun or for friends or family.


The idea behind this is that if you choose a
word or phrase that gets a high amount of
exact searches per month, and you build your
blog up for ranking for that keyphrase, that
you will get a lot of natural free traffic through
search engines which will in turn bring you
more sales.


I am not going to do a detailed guide on this
since there are many guides on the internet
already. A quick search on Google for 'Keyword
Research Tutorial' will help you out!

If you really want more information, feel free
to email me and I will be happy to help you
out.



    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 12
STEP 3: BUYING THE DOMAIN

Go to Namecheap.com – click here- to buy
your domain.


You will have to search if your domain is
available, and then register it to your name.
A domain usually costs around $10.00 per year
and I prefer to buy them from Namecheap
because the provide a free whois guard. (This
means the domain is protected so people
cannot see it belongs to you or which address
you registered with)

When you buy a domain, you are buying the
right to use that address for a period of time
(standard is one year), and it belongs to you or
your company that purchased it. Nobody else
can use the same domain until it expires or
until you sell it.

**Just to explain, you need to purchase a domain to have
a presence on the internet. Think of a domain as virtual
property or space on the internet. You need hosting to be
able to upload your webpages onto your domain so people
can access and view your website. Hosting is like the
bridge connection your domain and the public.**

    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
            Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 13
Type the domain name in the box and click go
to see if it’s available. If it is, then follow the
onscreen instructions for payment.


You need to register a free account with
Namecheap and can pay via your credit card or
via Paypal, it is quick and perfectly safe.




If it is not available, the you will get this:




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
           Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 14
I personally prefer a .com domain, just
because it sounds nicer and most people are
familiar with it.

.Com domains are more difficult to find,
because many are already taken. Once you get
into buying domains just for marketing or
promotion purposes, then .net domains are a
good alternative if the .com is already taken,
but for a blog, try to get a .com domain.


   The Definitive Guide To Blogging
         Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 15
Setting up your Hosting:

I use Hostgator for my webhosting because
they are cheap and reliable.




They have excellent support and I have not had a single server problem since I have been with them
for over 2 years.

These are the hosting plans that Hostgator
offers:




If you are planning on only having one domain

        The Definitive Guide To Blogging
                    Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com                    Page 16
– your blog or website - and are still unsure if
you will enjoy it or if you will make money,
then I suggest you take the 'Hatchling' package
for just $4.95 a month.


I have had some people tell me they are low on
funds, but honestly, I think everyone can afford
$4.95 a month for hosting. Just cut out two
cups of Starbucks coffee or a drink at the pub
and you will have saved that amount.

CLICK HERE TO GET YOUR HOSTGATOR
WEBSITE HOSTING




Changing the Nameservers

    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 17
As soon as you have setup your hosting
account with Hostgator, you will have received
a welcome email from them, with the domain
you registered, the IP adress (eg 196.2.6.45)
and the two nameservers ( eg
NAMESERVER1.hostgator.com and
NAMESERVER2.hostgator.com)


This step is ESSENTIAL for your website to be
publicly accessed on your domain.


 • Log in to your Namecheap account
 • Click on 'view' next to 'number of domains
   in your account' on your home screen
 • Click on your domain you have registered
   earlier
 • Click on 'domain name server setup' on the
   left sidebar under 'General'
 • Fill in your nameserver addresses from your
   Hostgator welcome email in #1 and #2
 • Click 'Save changes
 • Voila! Name server setup is complete.
Installing Wordpress

    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
         Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 18
Wordpress is a free and very popular blogging
platform, which is easily customizable with
themes and plugins.

Wordpress makes life a heck of a lot easier,
doing a lot of all the geeky tech stuff (coding
and programming) for you automatically. You
can even create a normal webpage with
Wordpress, by choosing a suitable theme. The
platform remains the same.

So far you've:
 • Bought your domain from Namecheap
 •   Set up your hosting account with Hostgator
 • Changed your nameservers in your
   Namecheap account for your domain,

Now it's time to install Wordpress on your
server so you can get started with blogging.


You are ready to log in to your Cpanel (control
panel from which you will do your wordpress
install, upload any files and check traffic stats)



     The Definitive Guide To Blogging
           Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 19
You log into your Cpanel by typing
www.yourdomainname.com/cpanel
into your internet browser.

You need to login with your Hostgator user and
password.

In the Cpanel

Scroll down the page to the subheading
‘Software/services’




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
         Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 20
Click on ‘Fantastico de Luxe’.
Select the Wordpress install from the list on the
left.




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 21
Select ‘new installation’




Select the domain you want to install
Wordpress on.

Select a username and password for
Wordpress.

Click ‘Install’

Click ‘Finish Installation’

WORDPRESS IS NOW INSTALLED ON
YOUR DOMAIN :)

    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
           Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 22
Your Wordpress login (from where you will
create and manage your posts, pages and
themes) will be in your internet browser:


http://www.yourdomainname.com/wp-admin


This is where you need to go to work on your
blog.




   The Definitive Guide To Blogging
         Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 23
              Chapter 2:
           Layout & Design
The most common mistake new bloggers make
is skimping on buying a professional theme and
the initial effort it takes to set it up.

A beautiful and easy to navigate blog will make
a world of difference. I can tell you that if you
have a cheap or ugly design, new visitors are
going to click away from your site as fast as
possible. That means you are losing
subscribers and money.

Even if you write the best content in the world,
if your layout and design scares people off,
they're not going to get to read it.

A professional theme can cost as little as $27,
so let me show you where you can get hold of
one.

I'm also going to give you some tips and
pointers about the layout and setup of your
blog theme.



    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 24
 Choosing a Wordpress Theme

Like I mentioned earlier, the beauty about
Wordpress is that you can change the look of
your website in minutes by selecting a different
theme (a theme is a predesigned layout).

I personally struggled to find a theme I
thought was beautiful, and for many months I
went through theme after theme until I finally
decided to buy a theme for $27.


I recommend a fantastic site for cheap
and professional-looking Wordpress
themes called Themeforest.

For a highly customizable premium theme I
suggest the THESIS THEME, a theme that
some of the most popular blogs on the web
use. It's a bit pricy for $87 once off, so if
money is tight, then rather get a cheaper one.
You can always get Thesis later if your blog is
successful.

Click this link to get the THESIS THEME



       The Definitive Guide To Blogging
                  Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 25
Once you purchased a theme, you will need to
download the files to your computer.

Open the folder where you downloaded the WP
theme to, right-click on it and extract it.




I’m not going to use Cpanel to upload your file,
because with cpanel you have to upload each
file manually which takes ages.

Download a ftp program called Filezilla
here



    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 26
Click on Filezilla for windows, download and
then install filezilla.

Open Filezilla

Select ‘File’, click on ‘Site Manager’.

Now we are going to add your main domain
that you registered with Hostgator.

Click on ‘New Site’




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
           Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 27
Under ‘Host’, you will put in the IP address that
you received in your welcome email from
Hostgator (eg 194.6.45.64)

Under port you will type ‘21′

Select the dropdown arrow on ‘Logon type’and
change it to ‘Normal’

Enter your user name and password that you
use to login to your Cpanel from hostgator.




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 28
Click ‘Connect’




Filezilla will connect to your site and it will look
like this:
In the right colum click on ‘Public HTML’


Click ‘WP-Content’


Click ‘themes’


On the left column you want to get to the
folder that has your extracted wordpress

    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
           Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 29
theme.




Copy the whole folder containing your
extracted WP theme to your domain by
dragging it from the left column and dropping it
on the right column.


If you did it correctly there should now be the

    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 30
folder containing your extracted WP theme on
the right hand side like this:




You can now close Filezilla, you have
uploaded your new theme.
CONGRATULATIONS:)




   The Definitive Guide To Blogging
         Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 31
In your internet browser, go to

www.yourdomainname.com/wp-admin

Login with your WP user and password you
created in Cpanel when you did the Wordpress
install.

Your WP dashboard should look like this:




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 32
Click on the dropdown arrow next to
‘Appearance’ on the left.

Click on ‘Themes’

Your theme that you just uploaded should be
displayed, click on it.




   The Definitive Guide To Blogging
         Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 33
A preview of your theme will pop up, and in the
top of that corner you need to click ‘Activate
theme’


CONGRATULATIONS! You have just setup
wordpress on your domain, with the
theme you liked, and you are ready to
start blogging and putting your content
out to the world.




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
         Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 34
          Chapter 3:
  Search Engine Optimization
Search engine optimization (SEO) is a process
to make a website readable for search engines
to rank you as highly and as relevantly as
possible for your niche / keywords.

WHY IS SEO IMPORTANT?

 • Highly targeted free traffic from search
   engines:
   If you have people coming to your websites
   via search engines, it means that they were
   looking for something very similar or
   exactly to what you have to offer. This
   means you have a great chance of gaining
   subscribers, selling your products or
   making a difference to your visitors life.

   There is also the possibility of literally
   getting hundreds of thousands of people
   landing on your site if you rank high for a
   popular search phrase or event.




   The Definitive Guide To Blogging
         Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 35
 • Establishing Authority:
   If you are ranking in the top results for your
   niche it means that you are doing
   something right. People will see you as an
   authority in your niche and this will boost
   your whole presence and status as a
   blogger (and boost your blog)

Of course there is a huge amount of
competition and for the majority of bloggers, it
is a complete waste of time to do more than
the bare essentials of SEO because they don't
know what they are doing or they are not
going to be blogging for very long anyways.

Search engines like Google and Yahoo use very
complex algorithms (formulas with many
different factors) to determine where and how
high a website ranks. The job of a search
engine is primarily to ensure that the best and
most relevant content comes up when a user
types in a search phrase.

If you as the user go to Google and type in
'best brownie recipes' then the first results that
Google wants to give you are the websites with
really thorough brownie-making recipes.

    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 36
Nobody knows exactly how the algorithm of
search engines work but there are certain steps
and factors that are known to have an
influence. While I am far from an SEO expert,
I'm going to explain what I know and what I
have learnt about it and what steps you can
and should apply to your blog to make sure
that search engines rank your blog as
quickly,relevantly and as highly as possible.




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
         Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 37
On-page SEO

On-page SEO is all the basic SEO work that you
need to do on your blog.

It is set and forget, so once you've done it you
don't need to think about it again.

Once you've done your keyword research,
meaning you have chosen a phrase or word
that you want your website to rank for, you are
going to use this keyword and related words
and phrases in various positions in your site.

E.G. Upgradereality.com ranks for the phrase
'Self Improvement', and I want it to show up in
the Google results when people search for that.

Install a plugin called all-in-1-SEO.

You can do this in your Wordpress dashboard,
under 'plugins' and then 'add new'. Just search
for the plugin name and you will find it and be
able to install it by following the on-screen
instructions.




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 38
Home Title – This is the text that appears in
the blue bar at the top of your browser. Use
your keyword here.

Mine says “Self Improvement – Upgrade
Reality”

Home Description – This is the phrase that
appears in search engines under your website
name. Include your keyword but keep the
description short. The simpler the better.

Home Keywords – These is where you fill in
your main keyword and any keywords of
phrases related to your main keyword.

All the other options you can leave as default.




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 39
Footer:
In your footer you can include your keyword
and make it a link to your site homepage.

This is a benefit because when you have
hundreds of pages, the footer appears on each
one and that will be hundreds of links from
your own site pointing to your home page.

Mine footer contains 'Self Improvement' linking
to my home page.

Install a plugin called BETTER FEED

In your WP dashboard go to 'plugins', 'add
new' and search for 'better feed'. Follow the
on-screen instructions to install it.

What this does is it allows you to create a
footer that will appear in your RSS and Emails
that go out to your subscribed readers (your
normal blog footer does not appear).

This helps for SEO in the sense that when
auto-blogs copy your article, they will also copy
your RSS footer and that will give you a link
back to your original post. (Don't worry, you

    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 40
don't need to understand it, just do it)

Change permalinks to %postname%

In your WP dashboard go to 'settings',
'permalinks' and then change it to custom
structure '%postname%'.

This means that when you write a post with the
title 'Best Food for Dogs' that the url will
automatically be set as:
http://www.yourdomain.com/best-food-for-dogs
Which helps for SEO purposes.

“Alt” and “Titles” for images.
It is possible to give images an 'Alt' text which
appears if the images doesn't load properly.
You can also give the image a 'title' which
appears when you hover your mouse over it.

I think it also helps if you give your image your
keyword name e.g. self-improvement.jpg.

You can do this when you insert the image with
the following HTML code:
<img src=”http://www.imagesource.com”
alt=”alt text here” title=”title text here”>

    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
           Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 41
SEO tips for writing your articles

When it comes to writing your blog articles,
you can do a few small things to help your SEO
and increase the possibility of ranking high.

Rankings depend mostly on incoming links
from other sites, but also of course on the
relevance of your content.

You want to let the search engine (robot) know
what you are writing about.

The best way to do this is spread your main
keyword and mention it a couple of times
throughout your post. If you can mention it in
the title that is fantastic.

Also try to use related keywords and phrases
throughout your article. E.g. self improvement,
self help,self growth etc.

Remember that if you are writing for an
audience, they don't care about SEO. Don;t use
your keywords too much, and if you feel your
title sounds better without the keyword in it,
then rather do it that way.

    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 42
                Chapter 4:
             Essential Plugins

Here is a list of essential plugins I recommend
you install and activate on your Wordpress
blog.

You can install them by selecting the 'plugins'
section in your dashboard (WP-admin) of your
blog.

Click on 'add new' and type in the name of the
plugin, and then follow the on-screen
instructions to install the plugins.

SEO:
Google XML sitemaps
All in 1 SEO plugin
Better Feed plugin

Comments:
Threaded comments plugin
(if your theme is not already doing this)

Subscribe to comments plugin
(if your theme is not already doing this)


     The Definitive Guide To Blogging
            Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 43
Commentluv plugin
(Gives commentors a link to their own blog which could
increase the amount of comments you get)

Comment relish plugin
(Automatically sends a message to first time commentors)



Miscellaneous:
WP-table reloaded plugin
(useful for inserting tables into your posts)

Contact:
Wp-contact form 7 plugin
(Allows you to create a contact form easily)

Social Bookmarking:
Share and Follow Plugin
(Allows you to add social bookmarking icons to the bottom
or top of your posts and pages. I suggest selecting Twitter,
Facebook and Stumbleupon)

Analytics:
Ultimate GA plugin
(plugin needed for Google Analytics tracking)

Clicky for Wordpress plugin
(plugin needed for Clicky analytics tracking)


     The Definitive Guide To Blogging
             Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 44
           Chapter 5:
       TOOLS & TUTORIALS
In this chapter I'm going to tell you about a
few free and paid tools and services that can
make your blogging life a LOT easier and more
profitable.

I've also included various tutorials how to do
certain things.

I've created step-by-step mini-tutorials with
screenshots about the process. You can choose
if you want to apply the principle and you can
choose to use my method exactly or you can
change it to suit your preferences.




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 45
Setting Up Feedburner

With a blog it is really important to have an
option where visitors and readers can subscribe
to your latest posts. It is essential that this
subscribe option is very visible and pleasing to
the eye. The more appealing it looks, the
higher the chance the reader will subscribe (of
course good content also makes a difference).

First you need to set up an account with
Feedburner:
http://www.feedburner.google.com

Once your account is created you will need to
set up your feed for your website:




After you type in your blog URL and click 'next',
you can select RSS feed on the next screen.

    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 46
Click 'next' again on the following page and
now your feed is set up.




Skip directly to feed management.
In your dashboard or home screen, click on
your feed that you have just created. Then
click on the 'Publicize' tab.




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 47
Now you want to enable subscriptions via
email. This is good because not all of your
visitors will use RSS feeds or even know what
an RSS feed is, so they will rather choose to
get updates to their email inbox.




There are other small little things that you can
tweak in your 'Publicize' dashboard but nothing
big that I'm going to get into. Things like
'Delivery Options' where you can choose the
time your email is delivered on the day you
publish a post. Feel free to play around a little
once you have some spare time.




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 48
AWEBER EMAIL SUBSCRIBER SERVICE



Aweber is an VERY IMPORTANT AND
ESSENTIAL email subscriber management
service.

That sounds complicated. In simple language,
Aweber is a service that allows you to collect
email addresses and build a list.

Not only that, but you can pre-program an
unlimited series of automatic newsletters and
emails to be sent on various days of the week.

Aweber is great for automatically sending that
free ebook or course that you offered as an
incentive for your reader to sign up.
You can link your blog updates to Aweber, so
that when you post a new article it will
automatically be sent to your Aweber email list.

I only started using Aweber after a year of
blogging, and I highly regret that.

Firstly because of all the reasons and benefits

    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 49
mentioned above.
Secondly, readers check their email much more
frequently than they check their RSS readers,
which means that your articles get read by
more readers than if you just have Feedburner.

Thirdly, if you only use Feedburner, you are
completely dependent on them. If their service
goes down, or they decide that they want to
start charging $100 a month, then you are
screwed.

When you have your email list on Aweber, it's
much safer and you are much more flexible.

If you know that you are not going to take blogging
seriously, then I guess Aweber is not worth it at $19 a
month.

BUT, if you plan on blogging for a long time,
and plan on building a subscriber list of
thousands of readers and making an income
from your blog, then I'd highly recommend
getting Aweber right now.

           Click Here to get Aweber
         (Only $1 for the first month)


     The Definitive Guide To Blogging
            Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 50
     Click Here to get Aweber
   (Only $1 for the first month)




The Definitive Guide To Blogging
    Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 51
Getclicky Analytics

When you have a blog you need to track what
happens on it from day 1.

You need to have a record of how many daily
visitors you get, where they come from
(Google, Facebook, other blogs etc.), how long
they spend on your site, which pages or posts
get the most visits etc.

The reason that you need to know this is that
you can make improvements based upon this
data. For instance, if there is a single post that
is getting 80% of your traffic, then you could
put affiliate links in that post to make you more
money, or put a big subscribe box there to get
more readers on your email list.

If you ever decide to sell your blog, it is
essential that you have the traffic data to show
your new buyer what kind of traffic stats you
have.

The two leading analtyics and stats tracking
sites are Google Analytics and Getclicky.

    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 52
Personally I use both (they are free), but I
really prefer Getclicky because of its user-
friendly interface and dashboard.

Also, when you upgrade your Getclicky account
(a few dollars a month), you get access to
some crazy features like 'Spy' which allows you
to see how many visitors are live on your site
every single second of the day, and from which
country and source they came.

     Click Here to sign up to Getclicky
           (Basic option is FREE)




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 53
POPUP DOMINATION (PD)

If you're just starting out this is not essential,
but as soon as you start getting 50 or more
unique visitors a day to your blog then
Popupdomination could be very beneficial.

PD is a plugin for Wordpress that works with
your Aweber account. It allows you to create
very aesthetically pleasing popups that appear
only for first-time visitors. This is mine:




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 54
Because of it's beautiful design, PD has the
ability to increase your opt-in rate (how many
people opt in to your email list) by up to
1000%!

For me my optin rate increased from 0.3% to
3% when I started using Popup Domination.
This means that for every 1000 visitors instead
of getting 3 subscribers, I get 30! That is HUGE
and well worth the once-off $47 price!

Click Here to buy Popup Domination Now




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 55
OIO PUBLISHER (Ad Manager)

OIO Publisher is an incredibly useful Wordpress
plugin that handles all those 125x125 ads you
see on most blogs.

It costs $50 and I'd only recommend it if you
have a fair amount of daily traffic.

The beauty of it is that it automates the entire
process of managing ads. You setup your price
for the ad and the amount of days for which it
runs, and anyone can go ahead and make a
paypal payment and upload their ad for the set
amount of days.

OIO Publisher tracks clicks and everything and
sends a monthly/weekly report to your
advertisers.

See it this way, if your blog gets decent traffic,
you only need to sell one ad for one month (at
$50 which is the average price) and then you
have made the cost of this plugin back already.




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 56
Another cool feature is that OIO Publsiher
rotates your ads, so they are not constantly in
the same position, which increases the amount
of clicks you get.

Again, it's not essential and not recommended
if you are just starting out. Wait until you have
at least a few hundred subscribed readers
before getting this.

      Click here to get OIO Publisher




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 57
Create Rounded Images with Photoshop
Elements

As a blogger you'll be using images in almost
every post. It's useful to be able to do some
basic editing, cropping and resizing of images
and Photoshop is the best program to do this.

If you have Photoshop on your computer, then
it's great! However it is rather expensive and I
personally started out with Photoshop Elements
(PSE) which is a basic version of Photoshop. It
is enough to create some good design work if
you are just starting out with your blog.

There are many different effects you can add to
an image to make your blog look more
professional. Beveled edges or dropshadows
are among those effects, but today I'm just
going to show you how to create rounded
corners on an image.




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 58
1.   Open the image (that you are going to
  add rounded corners to in PSE.




2.     Select the rounded rectangle tool and




     The Definitive Guide To Blogging
         Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 59
 draw your rounded rectangle over your
 image.

3.    On the right of the screen you need to
  bring the opacity of your rounded rectangle




 to 0% and then right click on your image
 and click 'make selection'.




  The Definitive Guide To Blogging
        Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 60
4.      From the taskbar select 'edit' and then




 'copy merged'.


5.    From the taskbar select 'file' and then
  'new' and it will come up with the
  dimensions automatically. Select 'OK'.




     The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 61
6.    From the taskbar select 'edit' and then
  'paste' (or just Ctrl+V). Voila, your rounded
  image is complete. To save select 'file' and
  then 'save' your image as a type you
  desire. (I use .png or .jpg)




  The Definitive Guide To Blogging
        Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 62
The Definitive Guide To Blogging
    Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 63
TWITTER, FACEBOOK, GMAIL

Tip: Setup all your accounts under one name.

For ease of use, create all your accounts under
one name. It'll make it easier to remember and
for your fans and readers to follow you too.

E.g.
upgradereality.com
upgradereality@gmail.com
twitter.com/upgradereality
facebook.com/upgradereality

Twitter and Facebook are very good platforms
to build and increase the quality of your
relationships with your readers.

While readers may visit your blog once or twice
a week, they are on Facebook and Twitter
almost every day.

If you haven't done this yet, set up a Facebook
Fan Page or Twitter Account NOW!

(Here's a great guide to setting up a FB fan page)




     The Definitive Guide To Blogging
            Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 64
           Chapter 6:
      Branding & Marketing
Once you have all the technical aspects of your
blog set up, and you have your pretty layout
and design, it's time to start building your
brand and getting an audience.

Before starting with marketing and promotion
of your blog, I recommend having at least 5
pillar articles (very in-depth useful articles)
that will give new visitors an idea what you are
about.

The better these pillar articles and the more
relevant they are to your blog theme (E.g. Self
Improvement), the more likely you are to turn
a visitor into a subscriber.

So here are the best few methods you can use
to build your awareness and subscriber list:




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 65
Guest Posting

Guest posting is by far the single best tactic to
increase your audience.

It means that you write an article and ask
another blogger to put it up on their blog.

It's a win-win situation, because the blogger
wins by getting a fresh perspective and a great
article without spending money or effort on
writing it.

You win because you get your writing exposed
to hundreds or even thousands of readers, and
you get a link to your blog with a little bio
about yourself. This way a percentage of the
other blogger's readers will click through to
your blog and some of them will become
regular readers of your site!




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 66
Another added benefit of guest posting is that
you get a high-quality link back to your site.
This helps enormously for rankings on Google.

For example, when I do guest posts I used the
anchor text 'Self Improvement' as a link to my
home page. This helps me with my ranking for
Self Improvement in Google (currently in the
top 20 results in the world!).

(Clickhere for a fantastic guide on guest-
posting)




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 67
Commenting

Another good way of building your brand's
awareness is to connect with other bloggers in
your niche.

Make a list of 30-50 blogs in your niche, and
make it a habit to regularly comment on their
articles. (You can have a thumbnail picture and
link to your blog when you leave a comment)

Not only will other readers and bloggers start
seeing your face and name, the main thing is
that if you leave helpful and interesting
comments regularly, the blog owner will get
curious and want to get in touch with you.

Commenting takes a bit of time, but when you
are just starting out, it can really help you
grow a lot!

If you can, get in touch with all those blog
owners personally. Send them an email or chat
to them on Twitter. Networking is always great!




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 68
Great content

With literally millions of blogs out there, and
hundreds of new ones being created every
single day, you need to stand out from the
rest.

My suggestions is to choose quality over
quantity.

Don't repeat the same things people are
saying, rather focus on in-depth, long and
useful articles. Even if you only post once a
week, this is a better strategy than posting
boring and rehashed content twice daily.




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 69
FREE EBOOK/COURSE

Something you should consider doing is writing
an ebook or making a course that you can give
away for free.

The more valuable and useful the ebook is, the
more likely it is that even other bloggers and
readers will share it around the web and get
your name and brand out there.

It may take you a few weeks to create
something decent, but trust me, if you are in
this blogging game for a long time, then it's
well worth it to create a great free ebook or
course right from the start.

You can (and should) also offer this freebie as
an incentive for visitors to subscribe to your
blog and email list.




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 70
                 Chapter 7:
                Monetization
Monetizing your blog is a tricky subject.

Personally I think that you shouldn't overdo it
in the beginning, and maybe consider not
having any ads or products for sale at all.

Nowadays almost every website is plastered
with ads, banners and popups telling you to
buy things. It's quite a turnoff no?

Recently having watched The Social Network
(the story behind Facebook), it backs this point
up completely.

In the early stages of Facebook, it was growing
nicely and had a couple thousand members.
There were no ads, and Mark's partner (CFO)
wanted to start putting ads on it.

Mark said, 'No Ways' because it was a cool site,
and people liked it. By putting ads on it the
growth may have stopped completely and

    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 71
Facebook may never have become what it is
today!

The same thing applies to your blog.

However, there is nothing wrong with making
money from your work.

If you do recommend products, make sure they
are useful and will help your readers. Try to
promote only things you have experience with.

Also, if you have Aweber, you can set up a
weekly or monthly newsletter where you
recommend affiliate products, without ever
having to post spammy review posts on you
blog.

I'd suggest holding out on ads and banners
until you have 1000 subscribed readers at
least. And maybe even then, consider
launching your own ebook instead of using
someone else's product. After all, your readers
subscribed because they liked YOUR content:)

Just for information, here are a couple of ways
how to monetize your blog:

    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 72
Adsense

Adsense is Google's paid ad network.
Advertisers pay money to have their ads
displayed on relevant sites. By hosting those
ads, you get paid from a few cents to a few
dollars for every person that clicks on your ad.

The downside is that every person who clicks
on your ad is taken away from your site, so it
might not be the most profitable way (A few
cents versus having a loyal reader worth
potentially hundreds of dollars)

Clickbank Products

Clickbank is a digital marketplace with
thousands of products that you can promote.

You can browse it at your leisure and when you
find a relevant product to promote to your
readers, you get a comissions for every sale
you make (usually 75% of the sale).




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 73
125 Ads

If you are getting a decent amount of traffic
you can consider putting 125x125 ads in your
side bar. These ads can either be links to
affiliate products, or you can sell them to
advertisers. (I recommend OIO Publisher if you
are going to sell ads).

I do this and make a couple hundred dollars a
year. It can definitely help cover some of your
expenses.

Text Links

There are websites and programs that pay you
for allowing other people to place text link ads
on your content. This means that in older
articles people will turn certain words into links
to websites.

This could bring in up to hundreds of dollars a
month if you have a popular site. But on the
other hand it looks kind of spammy to me.




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
             Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 74
Your Own Products

Creating your own products (ebooks, videos,
courses etc.) is probably the most profitable
way of making money from your blog.

You can outsource a lot of the content creation
of your product, but you can also do it yourself
if you don't mind doing the work.

With some experience, you can create an
entire ebook in 1-2 weeks, sell it for $17 and
depending on your niche and audience, sell
hundreds or even thousands of copies.

Not only that, but your ebooks and products
will continue to bring in money for months and
years to come!

I created my Upgrade Reality ebook and it
continues to bring in over $100 a month on
total autopilot. This is months after I launched
it.




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 75
                  Conclusion:

This ebook contains a LOT of information,
maybe too much for you to process all at once.

Whether you are a complete beginner or
whether you've been blogging for a while now,
following all the steps and advice in this ebook
will get you to a very good level of blogging
and competence as a blogger.

I'd recommend reading this ebook another few
times over the coming weeks, and refer to
small sections at a time if you want to make
changes or improvements to your blogging.

I hope you enjoyed reading The Definitive
Guide to Blogging and that it will help you
become a good and profitable blogger!

This ebook is totally free and I don't expect any
sort of compensation from you whatsoever, but
if you want to show your gratitude then please
use my affiliate links in the ebook to buy any
hosting/ plugins or products that I recommend.



    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
          Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 76
It won't change your purchase price at all and
it will give me a percentage of it (instead of all
the profit going to the product owners).

Please share this ebook with your friends
on email, via Facebook or Twitter!

Wishing you all the best
Cheers!




Dirk de Bruin (Aka Diggy)
http://www.upgradereality.com




    The Definitive Guide To Blogging
           Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 77
The Definitive Guide To Blogging
    Written by Dirk de Bruin from Upgradereality.com   Page 78

				
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Description: This guide is about how to build a better blog