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April 20, 2008

The Top 3 Pro-Blogging Trickster

The Top 3 Pro-Blogging Trickster

In a post last week, I suggested some of the most respected pro bloggers may be “cheap tricksters” and compared them to street magicians. Talented ‘performers’ whose real skill is in making you believe they have some kind of secret.

This week, I want to give some specific examples and name names!

But before I do, I want to make something clear. I’m in no way trying to denigrate these particular bloggers. All of them provide useful information and are worth subscribing to. I’m simply pointing out that the top money making bloggers don’t always tell the whole truth.

The 3 people I’m going to talk about happen to be the top 3 bloggers in the “blogging about blogging” niche in Technorati. I’m quite sure others use similar tactics, and there’s nothing intrinsically wrong with the tricks they use themselves. They are simply things to be aware of when following their advice.

  • John Chow
    The title tag on John’s blog says “I Make Money By Telling People How Much Money I Make Online”, but that’s not strictly accurate. John is very good at luring in new readers with the promise of money making tips, but if you actually break down the content of his blog, genuine tips are few and far between. The majority of the content on John’s blog is photos of his lunch and paid reviews - i.e. ads.

    But every month, John posts his earnings for the previous month and that hooks people in. The “I Make Money…” title becomes a self fulfilling prophecy, as with each new subscriber hooked by idea of earning $30,000/month, John is able to charge his adverterisers a little bit more.

    As to whether John really even makes the figures he posts in his earnings reports, well that’s debatable too…

  • Jeremy Schoemaker
    Jeremy has his fingers in many different pies and his blog is just a small part of his total income. Although there’s a fair amount of ‘fluff’ on his blog, generally speaking there’s a great deal more useful information than on John Chow’s blog.

    Many people are hooked into subscribing to shoemoney.com by a particular photo that appears on every page of the blog. It’s a photo of a cheque for a single month’s Google AdSense revenue for $132,000. Not surprising people want to know more.

    But you have to dig a little deeper before you find out that that particular cheque was for revenue from another project, not the blog. Now this isn’t a ‘trick’ as such, but it’s a well thought out ploy to get your attention and draw you in. And it works!

    Then there was an incident a few months ago in which shoemoney.com “magically” received several thousand new subscribers over night after a “competition” with John Chow - a feat that would be almost impossible without bending the rules.

    What I like about Jeremy as that I think he’s probably the most likely of the pro bloggers to admit that he will occasionally use “evil” techniques. But he probably won’t tell you exactly what those techniques are…

  • Darren Rowse
    Darren Rowse (aka ‘ProBlogger’) is probably the most respected blogger in his field. He consistently posts great tips, ideas and links that will really help you to improve your blog.

    But the interesting thing about Darren that many people don’t realise is that the majority of his income comes from other blogs, not problogger.net.

    The majority of Darren’s income comes from his photography blogs, and it terms of style and content, these are the polar opposite of problogger.net. They often feature recycled content which has been “borrowed” from other people and rewritten, and the pages are jam packed full of ads.

    Each page on Darren’s photography blog is effectively a landing page for an affiliate ad with some SEO thrown in, so people Googling for a particular camera will hopefully end up on Darren’s blog before clicking through to buy a camera.

    Now there’s nothing wrong with doing this, but it’s not something you see Darren recommend in his posts on ProBlogger. And for those readers who are really trying to make a living from blogging, it’s probably not in Darren’s interest to promote the fact that most of his revenue comes from such a spammy looking site.


It may sound as though I’m having a go at these bloggers, but that’s absolutely not the case. They are successful in their field and are probably all wonderful people (although some people seem to disagree). But as a blog reader, you should realise that it’s unlikely they will ever reveal all their money making sercrets. The simple fact is, if they did that, they would lose their appeal - and a large chunk of their income - over night.

The moral of this post is not that you should stop reading these blogs. It’s that you should read more of them. Read enough to form a balanced opinion of what’s really going on. Don’t take anything at face value and make up your own mind as to whether the information you’re being fed is the truth.

I will freely admit that I use some of these “tricks” myself, and if you really want to make money from blogging, you’ll probably need to do the same. To know more about tips & tricks on how to make money from blogging just Click Here to Sign Up.

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