The Entrecarder
2008-02-15

Entrecard, Project Wonderful, Spottt, Adtoll, & More  

I've been busy reorganizing blogs and structuring my internet marketing adventures. Entrecard is still my main activity and I've now expanded to a full 20 active Entrecard accounts. 11 of them fall under the Biz Beacon umbrella and are designed with the Entrecard community as the main audience. I'm using The Entrecarder as my main blog for recording what I've been up to with Entrecard and won't duplicate too much here on this blog.

I've mentioned before that one of my goals is to drive traffic to Ready Health Products' website and to that end I've restructured how I'm working with Project Wonderful. I had a skyscraper of 6 125x125 boxes on the Entrecarder site and it ended up being a lot of work to manage it. I had followed the advice of others and set the minimum cost at "free" and only had a few days when the bids got up over $.03, with maybe 27 cents being the best day. At the same time I was bidding on a number of sites and got some decent traffic through to the Ready Health Products site. Pretty cost effective for a small budget, seeing as how I spent about $2 (net) over the course of a week. Still, I wasn't really ready to run an indepth campaign and so I took the skyscraper away and emptied out my funds and let my PW account sit idle for a few days.

Honestly, I was getting bogged down with all the card dropping and maintenance of the Entrecard sites and wasn't overly enthused with this whole approach. I was a bit flattered when "coincidentally" someone started using my idea for guessing locations that were presented using Google Earth. In fact, I started rejecting ads and stopped dropping cards, sold off my Entrecredit stash, and was ready to take a break from everything Entrecard-related. (As has been common for me, I get my best ideas in the early morning and have had to learn to not make decisions when I'm tired at night.) It was just a day or two later that I realized that I had an asset--multiple established Entrecard accounts--and I just needed to reframe how I was approaching things.

That's how the Biz Beacon Advertising Co-op came to be. I had another 7-10 ideas for blogs that were in various stages of development (most of them brand new) and I quickly set about the process of registering them, finding or creating a graphic for the Entrecard, and getting them all tied together in a group of 20 blogs. The idea was to provide a service that might be needed on Entrecard...the ability to do a scheduled ad blast across 20 blogs. Full details can be found on the Coop site. No one has taken me up on the offer yet, but that's ok...I can put my own ads on the Co-op sites at no expense.

It's funny how random things can happen as if they were orchestrated. Just as Entrecard was experiencing some VERY slow response times, we caught wind of Spottt, the new link trading concept from AdBrite. I'm sure that I'm not the only one who took advantage of the break from Entrecard to check out this new service. I signed up for a couple of accounts for my different blogs and was amazed at the number of impressions that I got in the first few days. What does that mean for my traffic? Nothing. I'm not tracking traffic and haven't made it a focus yet. Naturally, the guys at Entrecard see Spottt as a competitor, but I don't see it that way. Why not have both on your site(s)? That's what I decided to do, in addition to an ad that someone can purchase by the week via the Co-op and the Project Wonderful ad, which defaults to an ad for Ready Health Products when no one has ponied up for the minimum bid amount.

AdToll also made a splash recently by unveiling their Peel Away ads, which caused me to try one out on the What Do YOU See? site. I find it interesting that some of the purists in the blogger community would prefer that a blog have no ads on it whatsoever. I don't like a page full of obnoxious ads anymore than the next guy, but even PBS has learned that a little income from ads can go a long way towards paying the bills. I intend to keep trying ad programs in order to see what works best for me. But before I go too far down that road I know that I have to continue to create content, refine the look of my blogs, and get listed with directories, etc. And in the back of my mind is that nagging little voice whispering "SEO...SEO is the way to go." I'll get there one day. The huge broad market is full of opportunity and my ultimate goal is to press beyond the blogger community and present sites that will add value to the masses of search engine driven consumers.

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