I admit it I’m a sucker for Z-list blogs! There’s just something about the Z-list that the A-list just doesn’t (and never can) have. Reading about someone making their first dollar online just seems so much more useful and relevant to me than reading about how to get a six-figure book deal. Despite their great reputation and credibility, a lot of the A-list bloggers seem to be writing about here’s what I do now rather than here’s what I did to get here. Hence, the Z-list can provide you with lots of great information on how to make money online from the very beginning.
The newest Z-lister in the blogosphere is Anthony from Blogging Dosh whose site is exactly one week old. That’s right - one week! Anthony is a 19 year old Australian entrepreneur who writes that he’s been blogging for over 5 years! That means he’s been doing it for over a quarter of his life which is pretty cool! Recently, he decided to sell his blogging network Tap Media and get to work on some new projects online.
Containing just 16 posts (6 of which were written on the first day!), this site is about blogging and making money and is as new as they get. Reviewing a site this new isn’t easy, but there’s probably no better time to get some advice and tips on how your site is going.
It’s always all about the content
With just 16 posts, does Blogging Dosh have the content to keep you coming back?
It only took about 10 minutes to read the entire site…
The first five posts on the site are what I’d call ‘introduction posts’ and are pretty standard welcome to my blog postings. While I did it myself, I have to say that writing posts about joining MyBlogLog and your plans to add widgets aren’t really the type of posts that hold a reader’s interest. They’re just not useful or informative to anyone except the author.
However, there is a gem in there entitled Starting A Wordpress Blog Checklist that is quite on the money. Although quite applicable to all bloggers (not just wordpress users!), the article takes you through what you should do in the first few days of your site and while it’s not revolutionary, it is a very good checklist that should probably be required reading for anyone asking, I have a new blog and want to make money, what should I do first?.
After these introductory posts, Blogging Dosh gets straight into the business of blogging and dosh by providing some tips and advice for making money online. The first post that Anthony admits contains useful information regards building screensavers and bundling them with a possibly adware-containing toolbar and receiving a commission every time the software is downloaded. Perhaps a nice way to make money, but reading this really turned me off downloading anything from his blog.
And then he offers a toolbar download¦.
The toolbar is the DoshBar 1.0 and is a reasonable concept. The toolbar contains quick links to popular money making sites (FriendFinder, myLot etc) and lets you receive updates from your favorite blogs. It also contains weather updates (make money from rain?) and a dictionary (make money from spelling?) installed. Looking at the names of the money making programs in the links, I get the feeling that these links are affiliate links designed to sign-up toolbar downloaders. That’s a smart idea and if it’s successful it has the potential to be a real money earner.
However, while Anthony claims that the toolbar doesn’t contain any adware, after reading his post on possibly bundling adware into screensavers, I wasn’t game to download it and try it out.
Blogging Dosh’s latest post is a little more useful and contains a list of advice on How To Write Traffic Pulling Posts. Not to be too critical, but Tip #6 was to use pictures and the post didn’t contain pictures. Similarly, Tip #3 was to write something unique yet I’ve seen posts on this topic at least 20 times on Problogger alone. Take from that what you will.
Where is the ka-boom?
For a new site with few posts, it’s essential to grab the reader’s interest from as soon as they land on your page.
The first thing that I noticed when I visited Blogging Dosh was the use of the Misty theme for the site. As I’ve written before, there’s nothing inherently wrong with this theme (I use it myself!), but it has to be one of the most used themes in the blogosphere. Anthony has done his homework and knew to create a custom header immediately which gives the site a bit more of it’s own personality. Always a great thing to do first!
However, the site is still using the standard Misty color scheme and I’d recommend Anthony get to work adding some bling and color to the rest of theme to give it a bit more of the wow factor. A few more graphics and bold colors on the site would be great as it is now, the site is rather grey and pastel looking.
Anthony is using an interesting plugin under his profile picture that states how many posts and comments have been written on the site. This plugin isn’t such a bad idea for some sites. It’s a well known fact that Success breeds success and that blogs that display large RSS subscriber numbers usually find their subscribers increasing more. Similarly, a site with 4000 posts and 30000 comments would command a lot of credibility.
On Blogging Dosh, the plugin reads 16 posts and 4 comments which is advertising to me straight away that the site is new and contains a small readership. That doesn’t worry me, but there are many bloggers who would ignore the site completely based on these numbers and that is definitely not what you want for a new blog. Just as you shouldn’t show how many RSS subscribers you’ve got until it reaches at least 50, you probably shouldn’t list how many posts you have until you’ve got more than a few month’s worth.
The design of the site just lacks that extra something to make it stand out from the millions of other blogs out there.
Everybody loves a competition and right now Blogging Dosh is giving away 3 free domains with 3 months free hosting and wordpress setup to bloggers looking to get off blogspot and use their own custom domain. To enter, you just have to link to the competition page with the words Make the Switch. The competition closes today and there aren’t any entries yet, so get in there!
Money to be made?
Anthony is only 19 and claims to have already made quite a bit of money online. That’s a good start and I hope his blog can be just as successful for him. At this stage, it’s a little too early to tell how successful it will be but I’ll be monitoring his progress and keeping up the search for those tips that A-listers just don’t have.
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