Monday, August 4, 2008

To B(log) Or Not To B(log), That Is The Question - Part 2


.......Continued from Article 10 of July 28, 2008

The following Monday, I opened my blog during my lunch break and was pleasantly surprised to see an advertisement by Disneyland in the ad unit. "Wow, there's an advertisement by Disneyland in my blog" I announced to my colleagues. They crowded excitedly around my computer to see my blog and the advertisement. I was tempted to click my maiden advertisement to see what it really looked like. However I had to refrain from doing so as it was against AdSense program policies. I later found out that Disneyland was promoting a dance show at their theme park in Hong Kong. And if you would like to know; I earned 5 US cents from AdSense that day.

Over the following weekends, Fai and I sat down to face-lift my web site. We improved on the layout & design and linked up my site to other well known and relevant web sites. To jazz up the pages, a dance video bar and a video tutorial were added. A Google search bar and a translator were installed for the benefit of visitors who may not be so fluent in English. Mind you, the translation of the page contents is done by a computer and is not 100% accurate but it can be relied upon to give a rough translation.

Having read the AdSense Help Forum and the AdSense Team's optimization report on how to improve monetization, I decided to change the format of the ad units. Instead of having one single ad unit I decided to use the leaderboard and wide skyscraper formats. Link units were also incorporated into the web pages. I also signed up as a publisher with a local company, Nuffnang. The advertisements by Nuffnang are mainly graphic or video based ads and are colourful and eye catching. Finally to track the number of visitors, a site meter was installed.

Fai also taught me how to do inline links to link up with the relevant contents of other web pages. Linking is considered de riguere in blogs. I also learned how to add images and videos to my pages. The tasks may seem daunting at first but it becomes a piece of cake once you get the hang of it. My web site is now not only a blog, but also a vlog or video blog as I show a lot of interesting and relevant dance videos in the pages. I publish posts 3 times a week currently.

So far I have received positive comments and feedback on the articles that I have published. Some visitors said they found my articles interesting and informative. A couple of dance enthusiasts commended me for writing good reviews on the So You Think You Can Dance Malaysia 2 competition. I felt humbled when one viewer approached me to write articles for her dance magazine. My enthusiasm for and the joy of blogging seems to be infectious. Some of my friends have requested me to help them set up blogs. I tell them all about Blogger and that it's as easy as abc and as simple as 123. In fact I feel like singing to them the song ABC by the Jackson 5. It goes something like this:-

Abc, as easy as 123

Or simple as do re mi

abc, 123, do re mi

Bloggy (Baby), you and me!

Best Wishes & Happy Blogging,

Dance Aficionado
Dancesport Malaysia

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