• work life

    There’s No Such Thing as Passive Income

    Well, technically there is… but NOT how it’s defined by online salespeople.  What is passive income? From BusinessDictonary.com: “Earnings from rent, limited partnership, or other sources of income (in which the earner does not take an active part), not including salary, wage, interest, or capital gain. Also called unearned income, passive income can be written off against passive losses.” There is a section of the U.S. tax code dedicated to passive income as it’s defined above. It’s this. In other words: Passive income IS NOT ebooks, info products, webinars, courses, downloads, workbooks, etc. that sell “in your sleep.” That isn’t passive income. See the official definition above, whereby the earner does…

  • work life

    Blogging Is Dead… and Other Myths

    How often do you hear it lamented, “Blogging is dead”? Just yesterday someone said that to me on a call, ironically, about her business blog. I’ve said this before, and I know I’ll say it a million times more, but just because you don’t like or understand something doesn’t mean you can bury it. And it isn’t just blogging that’s regularly declared dead. Let’s take a look at three of the most pervasive: blogging, Facebook, and reading.   Fiction: Blogs are dead. Fact: Blogs are thriving. In fact, by declaring blogging’s death, you’re likely hurting your business because this form of publication provides many benefits that you can’t accomplish in…

  • work life

    How to deal with criticism online

    Fact: Everyone online has an opinion about everything. Some of those folks are able to express their opinions in clear, constructive, kind ways. They’re able to have robust discussions with friends on social or in the comments section, and they understand that many issues have many sides so it’s easy to stay respectful of others since we’re all so different from one another. Then there’s everyone else. Seriously, though, trolls make up a small group. They’re just so LOUD. And they’re usually pretty good at isolating a personal issue and attacking, which can feel crushing… and raise our hackles.   Instead of fighting back, here are a handful of productive…

  • work life

    3 Things to Check on Your Blog ASAP

    While you focus on creating fresh, new, engaging content for your readers, chances are a few spots on your blog are gathering dust. It happens: You want to keep your blog fresh, of course, but that makes it easy to “set it and forget it” with your blog’s static pages.   Ask yourself a handful of Qs about your blog’s static spots: When was the list time you revisited your about page? Is your privacy policy up to date? Has anything changed with your email, social profiles, or affiliate programs? Is your headshot current? (Current = last 5 years NOT that awesome snap of you looking tan that one summer…

  • work life

    Does blogging have an environmental impact?

    Can you work online and minimize your impact on the planet? Whether your job is entirely digital or not, chances are you spend a chunk of your day consuming digital media. It’s inescapable. If you do create in a digital space or if you simply consume, the reality is that your tech habits do have a significant environmental impact. What is the environmental impact of social media? Can we use our online businesses to diminish our carbon footprint? Let’s look at three of the big problems and then consider ways to reduce that environmental impact: Tech Waste According to Rubicon Global, “Electronic Waste (e-waste) is one of the fastest growing segments of our nation’s…

  • work life

    Authenticity and SEO: Can you have both?

    Of course! OK, see ya next week! Just kidding… sort of… I recently had a conversation with someone who was griping about having to write “SEO copy” and coming off sounding awkward and forced. Hmm. That can happen. That does happen. I read awkward copy all over the web, copy where you can skim it and say to yourself, “OK, this guy’s trying to rank for XYZ.” But it doesn’t have to be like this! There’s a better way! Here’s the big secret. Ready? Write for people, real people, not for bots.  See, all the SEO tips and tricks in the world are designed for the bots that skim websites to…

  • freelance life

    How to Land a Guest Blogging Pitch

    In my former role as Director of Content for a digital media company, I received countless pitches for guest blogging. I would estimate–conservatively–that for every 15 pitches, one was worth pursuing. And of those, roughly half fall apart because the writer never replies to my response, the writer submits shitty copy that’s unsalvageable, or because the writer misses the deadline. All the rest of the pitches–14 out of 15 or so–never made it far enough to have the chance to fall apart. I’m going to assume that if you’re reading this, you know that if you pitch a website, part of being a successful freelancer includes finishing the assignment, doing…

  • freelance life

    5 Steps to More Authentic Writing

    How often have you, as a blogger, been told to write authentically? How frequently have you read the advice to be authentic and your audience will find you? Sure, you should absolutely write authentically. Yes, if you are authentic, the right people will find you. But… How do you do that? How do you write authentically? How do you balance all the social media dos and don’ts with being your true self? Here are my 5 steps to authenticity that apply to anyone creating content: Write like you speak. Nothing makes your work sound weirder faster than trying to write in a way that you think sounds “smart” or, really, anything…