Are You Getting Dangerous Feedback from Your Readers and Prospects?

image of Siegfried and Roy

Feedback is the cornerstone of community-oriented, kumbaya-style blogging. Like a beautifully polished mirror, we take our best ideas from the wants, needs, and desires of our readers.

So as we all know, the smartest thing content creators can do is to solicit feedback. If our readers unsubscribe, cancel, or stomp off in a huff, we want to know why so we can make our content better.

Right?

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Five Smart Things You Can Still Do in 2009

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Copyblogger is about to go on our annual holiday hiatus. We’ll be taking a break from posting while we catch up, get rested, and get excited about what we’ve got in store for you in 2010.

You may be taking a little time off yourself. Or you may still be going into the office, but the last week of the year is often a time when routine tasks slow down or stop altogether.

So what’s the smartest, most productive use you could make of the next seven days?

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How to Make a Living as a
Social Media Rock Star Writer

Freelance X Factor

Earlier this year, Brian and I created a course called Freelance X Factor.

It was designed for the “typical” Copyblogger reader. (Smart, interested in writing, pretty savvy about social media . . . but possibly “not there yet” when it comes to packaging all of that up and turning it into income.)

The course is designed to give you a “business model in a box,” to take what you’re great at and start using it to make a better living. Our focus was to take social media writers and turn them into effective businesspeople.

While we were at it, we included a lot of content to help you become a social media rock star, if you weren’t there already.

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Should We Be Worried About
Fast Food Content?

image of guy looking at a hamburger

Earlier this week on TechCrunch, Michael Arrington wrote an alarmed post about “fast food content that will surely, over time, destroy the mom and pop operations that hand craft their content today.”

Mom and pop operations and hand-crafted content sounds an awful lot like you and me, doesn’t it?

So is this actually something we need to worry about? Is what Arrington calls “the rise of cheap, disposable content on a mass scale, force fed to us by the portals and search engines” going to destroy the businesses we’re building on a foundation of high-quality content?

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The First Rule of Copyblogger

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Are you guilty of spamducation?

Spamducation is a white paper, special report, video, podcast or manifesto that claims to solve a pressing reader problem, but is in fact a thinly disguised ad. Jon Stribling describes them as “compelling headlines and disappointing content written by amateurs or second-rate copywriters.”

The content is too often a lame version of work done by a real expert. (You know, someone who cared enough about the topic to actually learn a lot about it.)

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Does Speech Recognition Software
Really Work?

image of a hands-free headset

One of my favorite posts from around the web last week came from our own Associate Editor Jon Morrow. He recorded a 20-minute video post for Problogger about how he works with speech recognition software to do all of his blogging.

I do an awful lot of writing every week, and I’ve been thinking about trying speech recognition out in order to speed up the process. But like most people, I was afraid it was going to be more trouble than it was worth to get it working.

Jon’s video made me realize how simple (and inexpensive) it will be for me to make it happen.

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