How to Consistently Attract High-Quality
Traffic to Your Site

image of Arc de Triomphe in Paris

What’s the first thing any business with a website needs?

Traffic, right? Without it, you’re dead in the water.

Your site design might be amazing. Your content might be useful and entertaining. Your salesmanship might be brilliant. But if no one’s visiting your pages, you’ve thrown a great party that no one showed up for.

And we can’t have that, now can we?

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5 Crippling Beliefs That Keep Writers Penniless and Mired in Mediocrity

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Is it just me, or is the whole starving artist thing highly overrated?

Yes, there’s a certain romanticism to being a penniless vagabond, sacrificing material goods in the selfless pursuit of art.

Yes, it’s fun to fantasize about everyone suddenly realizing you’re a genius after you’re dead and auctioning your once-soiled toilet for nearly $20,000.

Yes, it’s hip to take a stand against evil capitalists and proselytize about constructing digital economies based on currencies of cool.

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Copyblogger Weekly Wrap: Week of April 11, 2011

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I always find myself having to explain what it means to have “internet relationships.”

Last month, I went to South by Southwest. Next month, I’m going to Blogworld (I’m actually presenting at Blogworld, but sadly don’t have enough people “interested” on my event page yet — hint, hint). I go to these events, and I meet people I’ve only known through email. Or from Twitter. It’s fun.

But when my everyday-life friends hear this, they say, “You go to meet people you know from the internet?” and then give me wedgies and steal my lunch money.

I don’t have a solution to this. I just thought I’d share.

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The Market for Something to Believe in is Infinite: An Interview with Hugh MacLeod

We are here to find meaning. We are here to help other people do the same. Everything else is secondary.

We humans want to believe in our own species. And we want people, companies, and products in our lives that make it easier for us to believe in one another.

~Hugh MacLeod, from “The Hughtrain Manifesto.”

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Here’s How Brevity Can Crush Your Copy

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We tell you the importance of tight editing all the time.

We tell you lean writing is powerful and effective.

We tell you it just plain works better.

Except when it doesn’t.

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Do You Have What it Takes to be an
Effective Leader?

image of Jillian Michaels

Last night I tuned in for one of my favorite guilty pleasures — watching The Biggest Loser on NBC.

The episode featured celebrity trainer Jillian Michaels being hurled off of the Auckland Sky Tower, the highest structure in the Southern Hemisphere.

(OK, she had a sort of bungee cord apparatus that kept her from falling to her doom. But you know there were still some cheers).

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Three Worldclass WordPress Themes for Savvy Online Publishers

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It would be a gross understatement to say that my colleagues over at Copyblogger Media’s StudioPress division have been working like crazy on your behalf (likely because we’re now offering WordPress hosting for StudioPress customers only).

They’ve been developing and shipping so much digital goodness lately, it’s making me feel fatigued just watching.

I mean, I’m just a guy typing in his bathrobe, continually pouring coffee, and talking into a microphone once a week. I’m lucky to get a coherent sentence out in an hour.

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The Good Advice That Killed My
Conversion Rate

image of man with ideas

How would you like to sell more of your products or services … without increasing your traffic?

If that’s your goal, then you need to improve your conversion rate. Which is a very wise goal — I know I’m always looking for the tweaks or additions that can optimize the performance of my sales pages.

The slightest changes to a headline, one item in a bulleted list, or the overall picture you paint can pay off in massive ways.

Sometimes even seemingly tiny changes — the headline color or the words you use on your buy button — can double your sales.

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Copyblogger Weekly Wrap: Week of April 4, 2011

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A week ago yesterday, this post ran here on Copyblogger, all about how I’m actually a woman. Not coincidentally, a week ago yesterday was also April 1st, widely known as April Fool’s Day. So, the whole thing was the drunken brainchild of me and James Chartrand, who actually did make that revelation for real. (In fact, that’s James in the photo that goes with my post).

I tried to make that post as ridiculous and over-the-top as possible, but I still got several comments, messages and emails saying, essentially, “You go, girl!”

So I guess I should make it clear that I’m not actually a woman. I have watched every episode of Sex and the City, though. Don’t look at me like that. There’s sex in it.

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How to Constantly Create Compelling Content

All right, all right … we know that content is the grease that keeps the gears, pipes, levers and shocks of this relentless internet machine rolling down the highway.

The deal is, you make/write immortal stuff related to your business or ideas, and people will eventually find you, trust you and pay you.

The question is: Where the hell do I get the ideas for all this content I’m supposed to be writing?

The answer lies at a little-known crossroads that great songwriters, journalists, novelists, philosophers, scientists and poets have been driving to for millennia.

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