8 Ways for Journalists to be in Business

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Recently on the site Poynter Online, Steve Myers wrote a post dealing with ways that a Journalist can be more like a businessperson. He said that being a entrepreneurial journalist is more than a check and a good idea.

1.) Unfortunately, cash does make a difference. Assuming invoices are paid on time, your income statement will show how much cash a business will have.

2.)Watch for the quickness in paychecks. Focus is mainly on the contracts but actually it should be more on the paycheck. You must make sure you are paid as fast as possible.

3.) Complementing Revenue streams. There needs to be a well balance of multiple ways that revenue is created and a variety of options.

4.) Knowledgeable in pro and cons of Revenues. Advertisement is crucial but risky. You will not receive payment till after you provide your service.

5.) Be open. Don't limit yourself to what your core is. Branch out and do a variety in the field.

6.) Increase advertising with certain networks. Google is great for your ads. They are able to pinpoint your to those who would care about it.

7.) Never stress over the site. Meet your goals and target audience. If the hyper local site is outside the area, you are not reaching your target audience.

8.) Page views are unequal. The further you get with the site the more opportunities that are given. Let ones that register and subscribe receive more access than those of visiting the site.

While this is mostly on business, i still think that it is good for a journalist to keep in mind.


Onaf's 13 Steps of Blogging

Blogging is the news reporting of the future and Ant Onaf has 13 tips that will help young journalists get their start online.

1.) Start Free
Onaf suggests that young journalists should start with a free blogging site. Going this route allows them to focus on the content of their stories and not have to worry about scripting, hosting or programming. This way, if your blog does not become successful, you are not out of any money either.

2.) Niche
Young bloggers need to decide on a product, topic or service to write about. Bloggers are trying to appeal to specific audiences and will come to your blog expecting to read about the specific topic you cover. The topic does not have to be extremely popular if it has an audience then it works.

3.) Update Daily
Consistency is important to keep brining readers back to your blog. They do not want to be stuck reading old things and the more frequently and consistently you post the more audience you get to follow what you are writing.

4.) Traffic
Young writers are going to need traffic to attract attention to their blogs. The distinct ways to spread word of you blog is through advertising, search engine marketing, viral marketing, RSS feeds and word of mouth. Even if they run over it by accident they may be interested by what they see.

5.) Track You Blog
Do not panic if none of your readers are commenting on your page. The majority of blog readers do not comment on articles you write and there are several ways to find out your traffic numbers differently. Onaf suggests a free page counter like StatCounter.com.

6.)Listen to Your Audience
You should check and see if readers are finding your blog through search engine searches. If this is the case then find out what word they use to find the blog and write your blog around that word or topic.

7.) Multiple Blogs
Once you really get into the grove of things you should use multiple accounts to blog. Having blogs on many different sites is a great way to increase reader turnout and a great way to create more traffic to the blogs you are writing.

8.) Short and Concise
Onaf feels that except for a weekly blog summing up your findings for the week your blogs need to be as short as possible. Readers have short attention spans and if they are reading novels every time they come to your page they will lose interest.

9.)Digital Aft
Include pictures and other forms of art on your blog entries. Graphics perk up your blog and can bring color and life to the stories you are pursuing and reporting.

10.) Keep It Personal
Include personal experiences that have to do with your blog topic. It is fine to write in the first person and use a more personal voice in a blog.

11.) Interact With Your Visitors
You now have a great following of loyal readers that go out of their way to see what you have to say. You owe it to them to put out the best product you can. Knowing that they will visit frequently Onaf suggests using daily tips and other devices to keep them intersted.

12.) Make Money
Once you have established your self in the big time you need to start trying to profit from the stories you are putting out. This means buying a page for yourself and checking its domain availability. Use advertising as a source of income and well as a way to create more traffic.

13.) You're a Professional
The last twelve sets have all led up to this point. Now you have a following, you have a specific niche, you are making money and life is good.


10 Rules for Brands to Folllow on Twitter

Mashable journalist, Jolie O'Dell, recently conducted research on how people think brands should utilize Twitter. O'Dell compiled a list of 10 items in which consumers expect companies to follow.

1. "Don't Be a Showoff" -- Tell users about special deals and make sure the features and benefits are known. To determine whether a tweet is acceptable, ask yourself if you would care to read about it if you didn't work there.
2. "Don't Use Poor Grammar or Spelling" -- It seems obvious, but far too many people misspell words. If this happens and you catch the mistake, I would suggest going back and fixing it. You may also want to delete the incorrect tweet. Don't use abbreviations for words, or at least keep them to a minimum. Avoid using shorthand terms, such as "LOL" and "Thnx," and emoticons, such as the smiley face.

3. "Don't Get Too Personal" -- Don't use your company's Twitter account to tell people about your favorite things or what's going on in your personal life. If you are representing a business or brand, remember to keep it professional.

4. "Don't Auto-Tweet" -- The purpose of Twitter for companies is to be "personally engaging" not entirely promotional. While it may be OK to set up a tweet or two to roll out while you are away, avoid setting up an entire feed. Also, don't automatically direct message new followers as it is considered spam by consumers.

5. "Don't Leave Air in the Conversation" -- If you are having a conversation with someone via @replies, don't wait too long to respond. People expect responses in a timely manner.

6. "Don't Overtweet" -- If you're not using Twitter to engage with consumers, but you're constantly tweeting, people will feel as if you are "shouting" at them.

7. "Do Shout Out to Users Who Mention You" -- If a person tweets something that is favorable toward a product or your company in general, tell them thanks. If it is a negative tweet, be cautious about replying, but never ignore them.

8. "Do Monitor Keywords and Competitors" -- Knowing what people are saying about a competitor helps keep you informed and can also allow you to gain a potential costumer.

9. "Do Make an Informative Profile" -- Use your company or brand logo as your avatar and make the purpose of the account known in the "bio" section.

10. "Do Fish Where the Fish Are" -- Determine if your brand or company needs to be on Twitter. If your general target market is an older demographic, use forms of media that they engage with. However, it may be beneficial to know what is going on on Twitter. If you are trying to tap into a younger market, you may want to consider setting up an account.


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