The Simple Tricks Experts Use to
Always Get Paid For Their Time

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When I think about it, I still get that feeling in the pit of my stomach.

I was chatting with a woman with an interior design business about the changes she needed to make in her website. The conversation was going well — she loved all my ideas and was ready to rebuild her site.

I started getting excited, thinking I had found my next project. I was already putting together her proposal in my head. Then she uttered those dreaded words …

“I’d love to take you to lunch and pick your brain sometime.”

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4 Simple Ways to Get More
High-Paying Clients with Your Blog

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How many new high-paying clients do you get for every hour you spend blogging?

What’s that? You have no idea?

We need to talk.

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Copyblogger Weekly Wrap:
Week of September 27, 2010

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Those who stalk me (and you know who you are) know that I’ve been talking a lot lately about “Storyselling,” which is a way to sell stuff using stories. But nothing is infallible, so I wanted to publicly announce some flaws I’ve found with it:

  • Don’t use Storyselling with the police. Tell them about Uncle Phil’s hairpiece and they’ll still put you in jail for running over a Photomat booth with a city bus. (Don’t ask how I know this.)
  • Don’t tell your story after being pushed off a building by the person you were trying to convince not to push you. Tell it before. After is too late. It’s amazing how many people get this one wrong.
  • Don’t watch The Story of O with your grandmother, unless you enjoy uncontrolled squirming.

Now, with that out of the way, let me tell you the story of what happened this week on Copyblogger:

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Scribe 3.0:
SEO Made Simple

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Some people think search engine optimization is a dark and mysterious art. But for online writers and content producers, it’s really as simple as 1, 2, 3:

  • First, you need the right keywords, so you understand the language your readers, customers, or clients are using when they search.
  • Second, you need compelling content that people love and search engines know is relevant to those searchers.
  • Third, you need incoming links so search engines treat your site as a trusted and relevant source.

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8 Bad Habits that Crush Your Creativity and Stifle Your Success

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“The brain is a wonderful organ. It starts the moment you get up and doesn’t stop until you get into the office.” ~ Robert Frost

It’s a myth that only highly intelligent people are creative.

In fact, research shows that once you get beyond an I.Q. of about 120, which is just a little above average, intelligence and creativity are not at all related.

That means that even if you’re no smarter than most people, you still have the potential to wield amazing creative powers.

So why are so few people highly creative?

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Want People To Read Your Sales Page?
Make It Scannable

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There are two types of sales page readers: those who faithfully read every word, and those who skim until they get to the end.

Since you want to sell to both of these groups, you have to know exactly how to capture and hold the attention of each — and doing so in the same sales page is no small feat.

The good news is, you can use the same writing strategy to get each group to engage with what you’re reading … and ultimately to buy what you’re selling.

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50 Can’t-Fail Techniques for Finding Great Blog Topics

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It’s one thing to know you need to create lots of great content. It’s another to actually know what you’re going to write about this week.

Are you out of ideas for blog posts? Small wonder, if the only place you’re looking is inside your own head. We all need inspiration … and you’re not going to find it banging your head against the desk and hoping an idea falls out.

You need fresh inspiration if you’re going to come up with new ideas.

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Copyblogger Weekly Wrap:
Week of September 19, 2010

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This week, I finalized my plans to join the Blogworld hullaballoo in Las Vegas, which is where I’ll be winning my fortune at the blackjack tables, or possibly losing my house, or possibly not even playing blackjack at all. Blackjack is the game where you hit the ball on the rope until you wrap it around the pole, right?

Now, I try to be understanding, but you wouldn’t believe how hard it is to get Copyblogger to buy you round-trip first class airfare and a $3000 per night Sky Loft suite at the MGM Grand. The negotiations were intense. “But I write the wrapup,” I argued. “Who are you and why are you hiding in my closet?” Brian retorted.

And so it goes.

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Follow Your MAP to
Greater Writing Productivity

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When you hear the word “outline,” do you give a little shudder?

You’re not alone. For so many of us, the outline evokes painful memories of five-paragraph essays, clumsy thesis statements, and prayers for snow days.

Outlines tend to make writers, especially younger ones, feel confined and boxed in, forced to quell their creativity for the sake of structure.

It’s time to let those middle school nightmares go. An outline can be so much more than where Roman numerals go to die.

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The Responsible Blogger’s Guide to
Dealing with Big Brother

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“What should I be doing better with my blog?”

That’s one helluva question, isn’t it? As someone who blogs to support a thriving business, I think about that question every day.

There are a lot of answers, many of which involve sexy topics like traffic, subscribers, and getting one zillion followers on Twitter.

But when’s the last time you sat down and answered the question above with:

“I should be paying more attention to blogging ethics.”

Not so sexy.

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