Tuesday, January 22, 2008

More Free Advertising

It's a snowy Tuesday in NW Ohio. Temperatures in the teens with wind chills below that. I'd love to say it's toasty warm here but my desk is right next to the cold air return so it can get a bit chilly here.

I'd like to continue a bit on Free Advertising. I was checking out other blogs today [as I usually do] and Randy Ingermanson [Advanced Fiction Writing] has a bit about websites today. He knows his stuff so you should go check out what he has to say about domain hosting as well as getting your own website.

http://www.advancedfictionwriting.com/blog/2008/01/21/questions-on-web-domains/

Chip MacGregor also had some great advice about becoming an professional writer that you should check out. The name of the blog is "State of Confusion" and it's from January 20, 2008. His blog address is www.ChipMacGregor.com

Now, ways to get free advertising.

I've shared that traditional advertising isn't always the most effective form BUT it can be useful. One way I've been able to get free advertising with a local publication [as well as online publications] is to write an article in exchange for a free ad. Sometimes this is a good idea. You get a by-line as well as an advertisement in their paper. Your article shows that you're a professional [at least, that is the perception by many] and then when they see the advertisement for your website or product it can drive traffic, even if they're only curious.

My step-mom did this. She works as an interior designer [or is it decorator, I always forget the difference]. She started writing articles for a local magazine that talked about real estate. She was a little TOO effective because she found people stopping in to the store she worked at just to meet her and say they loved her article. That would be GREAT except that would take "her up" [which meant her turn to talk to a walk-in customer]. When business got really slow she may have only got 1 or 2 ups a day. When those were taken by fans it didn't have the desired effect.

But imagine if your advertising sent one or two curious people a week to your blog or website, do you have a system in place to capture them? Will you be able to make them regular customers? [By customers I don't always mean they buy something. I consider all of you customers of my blog.] Are you providing a service that is helpful enough that a person will come back regularly. If yes, how can you make it better? If not, how can you make it better?

There are also other forms of free advertising that we haven't discussed. There is public speaking as well as radio interviews. Now, before you go running off calling radio stations you need to learn HOW to approach them. I have a connection in the radio industry that I can contact. How much interest is there for this? Let me know.

Oh, and if you're a casual reader and haven't yet signed up through feedblitz to get my blog do that today. I will soon be launching my mentorship program and I'll email a discount link the day before the new site opens to every person on my subscriber list. I'd encourage your to tell your writing friends about this blog in preparation for the big announcement. They can sign up to get the blog delivered to them directly by simply clicking this link: http://www.feedblitz.com/f/?Sub=267268

Now, HIGH 15

Thank you for your patience on picking this back up. On Friday I told you I was about to enter a bumpy road. It was June 2004 when I didn't win the writing contest and I was crushed. I was even more devastated than I had been when my teacher gave me a 'D' on my story. I had worked so long and hard for this and I had nothing to show for it.

I continued to write articles for the local paper, and enjoyed that, but beyond that I had given up on writing. No more characters chattering in my head. I focused on submitting queries to various magazines and collecting more pages for my "fan mail binder" [which held all my rejection letters]. In August of that year we began the process to adopt a deaf 4 year old girl from Siberia, Russia.

From that point on my time was filled with paperwork, documents, notaries, and paperwork. My writing had to be completely put aside. I continued to write the monthly article but everything else, including reading, stopped. On April 4, 2005 we boarded a plane to the region for court and to pick up our daughter. On April 11, 2005 we were named her guardian and April 15, 2005 our daughter became a US Citizen when our plane touched down at JFK Airport. [The adopted child of 2 US citizens becomes a citizen upon touching soil in the US. This is fairly recent.]

Oh it was an adventure. Our daughter had no language other than squeals and chattering sounds that were like a chipmunk or squirrel. It was a rough road. Two weeks in to it I wondered why I had turned my life upside down. I was exhausted and she was aggressive. My calm house had become one of screaming [when she hit her sisters-her other form of communication] or stomping [the only way to call her to us from across the room was to stomp on the floor so she could feel the vibrations]. In May, on the advise of someone in the writing industry, I put my writing completely aside. It was painful and I cried for weeks but I knew I couldn't do it all.

In June my husband's knee started to act up like it did every spring [yes, up here it is still Spring in early June]. He got it X-rayed and the doctor said it looked like the childhood injury had turned in to arthritis or possibly a tore meniscus. There was not much to do except deal with it. He could have a CT scan to see which it was but since it was only a little painful he left it alone.

By October the pain in his knee was unbearable. He had a hard time at work [he's a Paramedic] and we prepared for imminent surgery. It would mean weeks off from work and with the adoption loan adding to our expenses we wanted to hold off as long as possible. On November 9, 2005 he went in for the CT.

At 9:25 am November 10 they called with results. I saw my husband sit down.
"They found an 11 cm tumor in my bone marrow."

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