Monday, May 28, 2007

Ticket to Watch

If you find yourself traveling to New York City any times and a and you'd like to find a good site to help you find tickets to a baseball game or a football game or to a Broadway or off-Broadway show you might consider Hallmark tickets as a source for your new york ticket broker.

They provide a wide range of tickets for many different sporting and entertainment events even concert tickets. You can look for events on their calendar and then try and determine what type of event might work for you or you can look by events and then going to the calendar to attempt to match up say a sporting event to your travel schedule.

Bloggerwave cleared by PayPal

PayPal this weekend confirmed that Bloggerwave is not engaging in fraud and that their account is open for business.

Earlier this month several bloggers experienced payment reversals relating to paid articles written for Bloggerwave.  PayPal initially indicated that these reversals were related to unauthorized access to bank or credit card accounts through Bloggerwave's paypal account.

PayPal is now stating that Bloggerwave's account was temporarily flagged.  Transactions including payments to bloggers that occurred during the flagged period were reversed when PayPal was unable to get information confirming the legitimacy of the payments from Bloggerwave.  These transactions occurred around the 8th of May.

Bloggerwave got to work and corrected the situation with PayPal this week and in doing so seems to have increased their trust levels with bloggers.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

What do you do with all that historical data?

So you have been collecting data for months and months possibly years.  What do you do with all that historical data?

the answer to that question is that you use that historical data to build up a forecasting model.  Forecasting models and business plans are extremely useful tools to help guide you in your planning as well as in preparing you to make decisions on how to operate and improve your business.

One of our sponsors, provides an excellent forecasting software solution.  The general idea is very simple, you accumulate data, you find some relatively easy way to plug it in to a modeling program, you identify the metrics and you start to make some assumptions are also plugged into the model.

Next you run the model and you take a look at the results and attempt to determine if the likely outcome seems possible probable remote and possible and then you begin to fine tune the model when your plan.  You're basically trying to predict the future and determine if the outcomes are what you want to achieve or what you want to avoid.

Either way you need to then go back and refine the data if it's accurate or inaccurate or possibly contains some one-time offense that aren't likely to recur in the future.  They need you to check your assumptions and ensure that they are also accurate and likely to happen in the future.


From there you run the model and see what happens and you prepare for the future, that way as the future actually unfolds you'll be able to anticipate what's going to happen and make your decisions and reactions accordingly with the foresight of understanding all the potential possibilities.  When I was in the military this was referred to as battle planning.  We come up with a battle plan and we come up with multiple different scenarios that might occur throughout the battle and we do tend to come up with are most likely responses to those outcomes, essentially how would we react given options A, B or C.

Now in the heat of battle it is not unusual for the plan to go completely awry.  The good thing about tight forecasting models is that they not only enable you to help plan and predict the future, they also help you learn how to make good decisions when the future begins to unfold.  From your modeling experience you'll have a better appreciation for what can happen or what can trigger an outcome that you desire or do not desire.  You also start to gain an appreciation of essentially what it takes to stack the deck or the results in your favor.  This enables you to maneuver situations to your best advantage in knowing what will help you in the long run and what will hurt and should be avoided.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Microsoft pays $6B for online ad company

In the advertising world Microsoft is fighting for its life.  Google has far outpaced Microsoft and the advertising area and in the search area.  Yahoo had a vast head start on Microsoft originally as well.  

So Microsoft turned to its war chest and spent $6 million this week just had the ability to display banner ads.  That may seem counterintuitive as the age of banner ads has long since passed, however Microsoft has big hopes for banner ads with its portable devices and especially with the Xbox. 

aQuantive was definitely in the right spot at the right time and received a hefty premium for their company. That price tag is probably $3-$5 billion over what the company is actually worth. But Microsoft needs to purchase momentum and if that means shelling out extra money, providing the executives with their own private jets or providing engraved pens capable of writing in 24k gold ink, then that is what they're going to do.

aQuantive's technology will allow Microsoft to deliver ads to third-party Web sites, something that should mesh with Microsoft's existing plans for delivering ads onto other platforms such as video games on its XBox, which connects to the Internet. Microsoft currently delivers ads mostly to its own Web sites, such as MSN.

aQuantive also has a significant interactive advertising agency called Avenue A / Razorfish, which buys, sells and creates online advertising - much like a traditional advertising agency, but online.

Source: Microsoft pays $6B for online ad company

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Using the Alexa Redirect in your comments on Nofollow sites

Many blogs do not allow search engine bots to follow links left in their comments.  Google and many other search engine types got together as an industry several years ago and convinced each other that taking away the link value of links in comments would decrease spam and make it easier for the search engines to rank things better.

Personally, I think their effort helped a little and hurt in other ways.

Regardless you can still benefit from leaving a link in a comment if you do not put spam in comments.

When you write a good comment you might have a link that is relative to your comment or just want to provide your own site link in the comment itself.

If you precede the url with the Alexa redirect code, Alexa will track the number of people that visit your site through this link and this will help you improve your scores through Alexa.

Note.  A lower score at Alexa is better than a higher score (like golf).

Here is the code that you need to put before your url

So for example if your sites url is

you would put

Then anyone that clicks on that code would trigger Alexa to take count of their click and help reduce (that's good) your Alexa score.

If you are trying to earn money from your blog, this can be very important for many services that pay bloggers to blog.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Microsoft BuyOut of Yahoo! would be good for Internet Publishers

Microsoft is still working to buyout Yahoo! and join forces to do business against Google in the online advertising industry.  Such a merger would definitely be good for both publishers, advertisers and innovation in general.

Google has continued to refine their search algorithms but they have not kept up the pace of innovation with their advertising products.  A stronger adversary in the form of MicrosAhoo! would definitely push Google to work harder and push the enveloper further.  It would also give advertisers and publishers additional options to cover different markets.  This growth of supply would be beneficial for the industry from a simple economics perspective.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Keyword Strategies High Level Review

There are many factors that go into creating a good keyword campaign. Each website is different and each page on each website is different. When we create every single page on the website we had to be cognizant of the title that appears in the tab of the website along with the words appear in the title at the heady level and at all the subtitle levels. we then need to consider how often the keywords that we are interested in focusing on, how often they appear within the text of the article. This is referred to as keyword density.

There used to be a time when people could stack keywords into webpages, setting up a long list of meta keywords there were only used to attract people by accident. Today people need to ensure that their website or webpage is consistent in theme and point throughout the entire page. the keywords used in the title and the subtitles need to be in alignment with the meta description and the meta keywords used in the HTML. All of these things need to be consistent with the keywords used in the actual text that a visitor to that page will read and if done right this will achieve a keyword density of a few percent. For example if we wanted to focus on a website with the keywords under cabinet lighting We would need to ensure that those keywords were utilized in all the sections of the search engine analyzes to determine what a webpage is about. In addition search engines will also look towards other sites that point to this site page of a website and utilize the same keyword structures.

Text Link Ads Temporarily Stops Supporting New Blogger

Text Link Ads stopped supporting New Blogger Blogs this week.  Google's New Blogger system has not been working with Text Link Ads for several weeks, and it appears that Text Link Ads has chosen to pull the plug on this segment of bloggers at least in the short term.

Note there is No longer a Blogger Option!

Text Link Ads drops New Blogger from Line up his

I have been following a problem for several weeks now as I attempted to install text Link ads on one of my blogger sites.  TextLinkAd's provides a URL from a feed which they used to prescribe should be added to the new blogger set up in a way that blogger would pull the feed and posted in a sidebar.  This will display the TextLinkAd as advertisers signed up for that particular site.

The only problem is that new blogger stopped working with the TextLinkAd feed which is not a standard feed link.  In comparison blogger does work just fine with feed links from places such as feedburner, but fails out when it comes to text Link ads.

TextLinkAd tech support was less than helpful explaining the situation and Google support never provides much if any support.  So for anybody hoping to work in the realm of Google's blogger system and text Link ads found themselves in the chasm of an information void that is not normally seen on the Internet.

The couple days ago I logged into TextLinkAd try to find out what status wasn't my blogger blog as TextLinkAd's authority sold advertising to an advertiser for my site.  When I logged in an attempted to get the code to check things out I realized that TextLinkAd's no longer offered a blogger blog option as you can see in the image above.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Direct Advertising for Online Visitors?

You have probably seen advertisements in older mediums used to bring people online.  You might find something on a billboard, on TV, or even in the mail.  This can be a very useful way to get some one on one attention with people.  That one on one attention can be your opportunity to bring new people into your site that might not otherwise cross your path.

Martin Worldwide provides Mailing Lists with a mega database of over 290 million people living in the US.  They recently provided a release about their database ResponsCom.  This is a collection of buying behaviors and information for millions of people.  Just like running an Adwords campaign in direct advertising you want to insure that your money is used wisely and effectively, this means a shot gun approach is not going to be desirable.  That typically only helps for generic brand building.  You want to find the people in the demographics that are most likely to convert and show up at your site.

A focus on Home Loans

This summer I am also going to be focussing my efforts on a move. That means its time to tighten up my credit and focus on my home loan and finances in general.  I will be doing this (of course) at a new site called Home Loan Focus at (

I'm just preparing to get started there but will soon be providing not only useful information but many different financial tools that I have customized over the years.


I have beenworking on several marketing projects that are all building on each other and ultimating culminating in a larger entertainment project.  That project is going to be located at a site that will temporarily be parked with a blog at Viral Grape Vine.

Instead of just parking a site with some silly ads that aren't terribly productive, I will build up the site with a blog.  The content will get far more recognition from search engines, but more importantly it will be something useful to build on and something that can be ported elsewhere in the site later.  This will enable me to earn some real money from the site as a I prepare to develop it later.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

PageRank Updates

A lot of people in the blogging world where buzzing about the latest page rank update. a lot of people are very happy about the boost in pay drink they received and a few people are grumbling about being knocked down a peg or two.

For myself I was very happy to see my page rank go up on a number of sites especially some of my new sites. I saw a number of increases by two or three points and I saw a few increases by a single point. I did have one site drop from a page rank of four down to a page rank of three. Fortunately it's not a site that I rely on for writing income and so it had little impact on me financially. Oddly enough a blog on that same domain in a different directory went from a page rank of zero up to a page rank of four.

So all in all I was pretty happy myself with the update I need to do a little bit more work building up links especially deep links to individual articles which everyone is advocating is the latest trend for ghouls watching. It's not good enough to have a link to your individual homepage it's more important now to have links to the articles within your site. That makes a lot of sense and actually that's one of the founding premises for the new site that we set up under the banner. you can read more about our strategy is here in a deep link under our Wedge blogging Battle Plan.