Welcome, Savvy Blogging Summit Attendees

I would like to extend a warm welcome to all of the wonderful Savvy Blogging Summit attendees. My heart beats a little fast as I am preparing to head to the beautiful Colorado Springs, Colorado to not only share about brand-blogger relations, but also serving as the Keynote Speaker for the event.  What an honor to share about my true passion of building your community authentically, transparently, and in the most balanced way that a mother can!

You are only meeting half of the MomAdvice team in our house. I tend to get all the glory, while my husband graciously does all of the hard coding, programming, and back-breaking work of our site.  Without his mad skills and his willingness to give me the chance to travel and share, we just wouldn’t have the site that we have today. We have been a team for a long time.  Eleven years of wedded bliss and high school sweethearts before we could even drive.  That is a lot of team work, friends!

My name is Amy and I am the Founder of MomAdvice.com. I am a busy mom of two and live in the beautiful Midwest with my web designing husband and our two children. I love to cook, knit, drink coffee, take pictures, and am a total bookworm. I am dedicated to anything that will help make my life simpler, keep me on my budget, and that promotes family time!

We started this site seven years ago as a platform to share about all of those topics that I had been searching for when I became homemaker. How do I cook? How do I clean this house? How do I keep my children entertained without breaking the bank? How do I manage a daily routine? Most of all though…how do I do all of this on a limited income?

I love staying connected with my readers so you can find me on Facebook,TwitterGoodReads, and Ravelry…just to name a few! Chances are, if you search for someone named momadvice, you will likely find me there!

Are you on Facebook? Please be sure to Fan our MomAdvice.com Page. We would love to continue to share and interact with you! If you are on Twitter, you can find me there too sharing about our daily life and what is happening on our site. There are so many ways to connect regularly with the site and I would love to interact with you daily!

My site is powered by McD’s Diet Coke, coffee, and cute shoes.  I am going to put my heart on my sleeve today at this conference in a way that I have never been brave enough to do. I hope you brought a few tissues because it is about to get real at the Keynote.  On the flip side, it is also going to be very real in my Brand-Blogger relationships discussion. I am going to tell you how to score those jobs, a good range on what to expect for the jobs you are doing, and how to put your best foot forward when doing business. I hope there will be lots of discussion and I promise to be as open of a book as I can be about how to grow your blog into a money tree for your family.

Pretty much, everything I have learned over these seven years is in this post right here- I Did It My Way: Long-Term Blogging Success Tips. Read it. It is exactly what I would tell you if we could have coffee and if you asked my advice on how to get your business off of the ground.

For those of you not there, here are a few tips for growing that blog in a big way

Immediately Engage Your Readers- If you are featured in any noteworthy publication, site, radio show or television show, or speaking at an event create a Welcome page to those readers. Include some of your favorite posts from the archives, a bio about who you are and why you started your blog, and information on how to subscribe to your site. Imagine that someone is reading your site for the first time and gather everything they will need to navigate and find that great information.

This week I am speaking at Savvy Blogging Summit so I have created this page so you can see a little piece of what I work so hard on every single day.  Are you at the event too? Get a page up so when people are flipping through their business cards they will be able to discover what you represent and how to interact with your site immediately!

Live Authentically– My blog is like another extension of myself and because I write about my family and how we manage the day-to-day tasks of life,  I have to share about these situations authentically with my readers. I try to share the triumphs of my life and also the things that have totally bombed in our family authentically! This means sharing pictures of what is created in the kitchen, created during my craft time, the disorganized mess and then the freshly organized space, and glimpses of me as a mother and my family.

More importantly though, I am LIVING. I try to not sit at my computer all day because then I am not living an authentic life that I can share with you. I can’t share about crafts I create with my kids unless I actually did those crafts with them. You need to live your beautiful life to create an authentic blog life. The more living you are doing, the more inspiring your blog will be. THAT is what creates readers, not just sitting mind-numbingly at a computer for hours and hours on end.

Living authentically also means only taking opportunities that fit with your site and who you are. Our site promotes family, getting your family around the dinner table,  organizing solutions, and inexpensive living. Those are the opportunities that I should be seeking and sharing about. This means I turn down roughly five to ten opportunities a week. Sometimes it REALLY stinks to say no, but I know that I have to live AUTHENTICALLY to keep my readers engaged. If it doesn’t offer value to my community and if it takes me away from my #1 goal to be the best mom I can be, then I have to say no.  Don’t sacrifice your reputation for free stuff and that will give you the staying power to outlast other blogs. Believe me!

Today Transparency is Key to Your Community– The fastest way to lose your community is to not be transparent about what is happening behind the scenes. Get that Disclaimer up, make sure that product reviews fit with your site or that you are doing your best to offer those items back to your readers, and add an extra Disclaimer at the bottom of your reviews to make everyone feel right at home. For example, this is what I put at the bottom of EVERY review post.

This product was received as a review sample. The thoughts and opinions expressed will always be honest and heartfelt and no reflection on receiving a sample copy.  We promise to always do our best to also give away each of these products to our readers because it is always better to give than to receive!  Want to know more about how things are handled here at MomAdvice? Be sure to read our Disclaimer which clearly states how things work and know that we will always offer only the best reviews to our readers.

Reward Your Referrers- Without great referrals; you won’t be able to gain new readers. At the beginning of each month, thank the people that made your site great that month and what was most popular for the month on your site. I am able to see my top referrers through my web host so that is where I gather my information for compiling our top ten list at the start of the month. Here is an example of what my monthly recaps look like.

Highlight Others- Create a post weekly or monthly that will showcase others that read your site and to keep them engaged on your site.  I try to highlight weekly a round-up of great blogs that offer information that our readers will find helpful . I also try ideas that are highlighted in this round-up to further add the spotlight on these great blogs. In fact, Amy’s Notebook and our Notebook Experiments are some of the most visited and favorite posts of our reader’s week! I try to mix in people that have made our site a success (often those that are highlighted as referrers each month) because no one deserves to be highlighted more than someone who has created our community!

Here are some other great reads that I encourage you to look at for creating a community, generating revenue, and a balanced blogger life:

7 Tips for Leading a Balanced Blogger Life

The Player Scores and Silence

Five Commandments for Blogging

Gaining a Readership the Frugal Way

Simplifying Your T0-Do List

How Do I Become a Product Review Blogger

How Do I Track My Traffic

How Do I Work From Home

What in the World is Twitter?

10 Useful Tools for Twitter Users

Selling Yourself

Achieving Balance When Working From Home

If you are attending the conference this week, PLEASE say hello to me! I am looking forward to learning, networking, and loving you! I am an open book of information because it has been hard to find people who were an open book to me. I will tell you anything you want to know about blogging and if I don’t know it, I can help you network with the people who can offer you the information you need. I have had GREAT mentors in my life who have shaped who I am and family &  friends that keep me grounded and living an authentic life on MomAdvice.

If you are shy, as so many of us are, know that I am a sweaty mess at conferences too.

I want everyone to like me.

I don’t want to eat alone.

I don’t like to sit by myself.

Won’t you sit with me? Won’t you be my neighbor?

I want this experience to end with tears just like my church camp days where my poor father would stand there for hours waiting for me to say goodbye a million times to the same people over and over again.

Just one more hug.

Just one more picture.

Just one more hour, please.

I can’t wait for us to all be lifelong friends.

Just to prove how intimidating I am, here I am dressed as a pirate for my kid’s VBS program. Yes.  This is your Keynote Speaker.  I hope you will say hi to me now. I can’t wait to meet you all!

Don’t forget, you can subscribe to my feeds and never miss another thing on our site again! We have a landing page where it makes it easy to subscribe to our blogs and you can even subscribe to my article feed. Everything is right at your fingertips and we want the site to be a daily destination for you and your family

Published July 12, 2011 by:

Amy Allen Clark is the founder of MomAdvice.com. You can read all about her here.

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