Monday, December 31, 2007

Get Paid to Post on Forums While Increasing your Blog's Traffic

A few weeks ago, I made an attempt at posting a few links to my blog and articles on forums, but I did not have much success, as most forums do not accept links, as they want their websites to be as free of spam as possible.

Today, I had a dream come true: I joined MoraChat, which is a "Get Paid to Post" forum and I already made 11c (which is more than I have ever made with Adsense in a single day); I spent the afternoon on the forum (between the kids, a trip to the shop next door and watching Shrek3) but if I had had more quiet time I could have made this amount in about 1 hour.

You really need to visit the MoraChat website in order to find out all the possibilities and this is a forum you can easily get addicted to.

One great thing about MoraChat, on top of the getting paid to post thing, is that you can have as many links in your signature as you like (which will appear in all your posts if you wish), and after 7 days as a member, you are allowed to post links in your posts as well (which is very handy if you write articles).

So, rather than get booted out of Yahoo Answers (I did), sign up for free with MoraChat; you get paid via PayPal when your pay-out reaches $9 so go on, you know you want to!

Before I forget, have a very Happy New Year! (But try not to overdo it on the Champagne)


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Sunday, December 30, 2007

Increase Your Blog's Traffic With Blogrush

Did you notice the change? No, not a new haircut, only my new Blogrush widget.

I had noticed it on a few other blogs and thought it was just another wigdet from another blog directory, but it is actually a bit more; I won't go through all the technicality here (after all, I am just a girl!), all I will say is that it can help your blog get noticed by displaying some of your own blog posts on other blogs that support the Blogrush widget.

If you want to find out more, you can either click on my Blogrush widget or visit the Blogrush website, they have a video tutorial which explains everything much better than I do.

I hope you will excuse me for this, but I just can't help myself, so here it goes: Blogrush, because I'm worth it!


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Friday, December 28, 2007

Get Rich Quick, Marry a Millionnaire

If you are a single woman, tired of all the Internet Get Rich Quick scams, if you are getting tired of trying to make money on the Internet and getting nowhere, I may have the solution for you: marry a millionnaire!

O.K. I know millionnaires are hard to come by, but, believe it or not, this website can help you find a rich, eligible man. If you are a golddigger, I recommend you to follow this link:


I don't suppose all the members are as good-looking as this one?

Hmmm, I wonder if you have to sign a pre-nuptial agreement...

No, this is not a joke, I found this on http://momworksathome.blogspot.com/2007/12/marry-millionaire.html, which is an excellent blog. Well, as a single woman (Am I trying to get some male readership here?), I just had to have this hunk on my blog!




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Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Holiday Of Social Bookmarking

This week, I am giving myself a semi-holiday; semi, because I will use the time between Christmas and New Year's day to do something that has been on my agenda now for a while, but that I did not get time to do yet: social bookmarking of some of my blog posts; holiday, because I will take it easy, giving myself time to find new blogs to bookmark (and comment on at the same time).

It would be easy to just jump on some of my posts and Stumble or Digg them but since I don't want to get banned from any social bookmarking websites, I need to find at least 5 blogs to bookmark for each of my own blog posts. Of course, I will not bookmark each of my posts (I will leave this one out for example), I need to go back and select only the posts that do give useful information, and since I can't stand things being half-done, I will probably waste a lot of my time searching for really good blogs.

That's it for today, and Happy St Stephen's Day for those of you who celebrate it!


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Monday, December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas!

I just wanted to wish everybody a Merry Christmas and I just couldn't resist using those cute little French penguins.

Now, time for me to hit some Internet cooking sites and try and learn how to cook a turkey!


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Sunday, December 23, 2007

Last Friday, I received an email from IZEA Marketplace, which I had never heard of before, telling me that I had an "Opportunity" to write a post about Johnny Depp for "twelve bucks". There was a link to check my "Dashboard" and it actually brought me to the PayPerPost website.

Unfortunately for me (and for Johnny Depp...?), as soon as I arrived on the site, I was informed (once again) that no opportunities were open to me, since my blog (only 2 months old) was not yet approved.

PayPerPost now also offers the PPP Direct opportunity: for bloggers whose blogs are waiting approval or have been rejected for some other reason, there is a code that can be embedded in the blog's template; I did this on Friday and I am now waiting for PPP to check it out so I can put the PPP Direct Widget on my blog, which should allow advertisers to hire me to post independently from PayPerPost for a fee that I can set up myself (since my blog does not get that much traffic yet, I think it would be safe enough to start with the minimum $5 per post).

I don't know why I received an email saying that I could get $12 for a post when my blog is not approved yet; maybe just an administration error? Anyway I checked the list of opportunities available to approved bloggers and some of them looked very interesting with a few reasonable posts for $35.

So now I am waiting for January 20th, this blog's 3 months anniversary, and hopefully some opportunities will be available to me and I can then let you know if PayPerPost is all that it cracked up to be.

Before anybody asks, this is not a sponsored post, but I can earn money if you join through this widget:





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Thursday, December 20, 2007

Here Is Another Way To Make Money With Clickbank

In my last post, I talked about making money writing reviews about Clickbank products on Associated Content; I received a comment saying that Associated Content does not really like people submitting articles containing affiliate links and this is true, so in case anybody is trying the same, please don't overdo it: it could get you in trouble with Associated Content; but don't worry, there is another way:

You can set up a new blog or even use your current one, and write reviews on several Clickbank products. Of course, you need to write interesting posts also in this blog and choose products that are related to your blog's topic or else, any visitors will quickly get bored and leave; nobody would ever watch TV if it was only showing advertisements (not sane people anyway!).

There is also a website you can join if you are interested in making money writing reviews for Clickbank products: it is called ReviewsArena but I don't think it is a very good idea, unless you are the website owner, I explained the reason why in this article.

I will not do this myself because I find it difficult enough to keep this blog going and write articles and promote them, I also have a life (well, kind of!) and I don't want to suffer from burn-out.




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Monday, December 17, 2007

This Is How I Will Make Money In 2008

At least I hope! Well, it is the time of the year where we are all full of good intentions, so here is one of them: make some actual real money online in 2008!

1- I will promote this blog more actively and earn a minimum $1000 from
Adsense
. I will start using Social Bookmarking to promote my best blog posts and in order for this to work, I will need to Bookmark also other people's posts, because I don't want to be seen as a spammer. I am getting 250 free business cards and 100 free postcards printed at the time, courtesy of Vista Print with my blog details on them. I will put up some ads in shops advertising my blog (I think I have a good phrase in mind, which I don't want to reveal here, you might steal it from me!)

2- I also want to earn $1000 from Associated Content but that means, at $1.50 per 1000 pageviews, that I need to get 666 667 pageviews, which is 12820 pageviews per week; as I write on average 1 to 2 articles per week max which so far got at the most 200 pageviews (I started in October so these are not really realistic figures), I need to come up with the article of the century, or else write over 1000 articles and reviews, and I don't think I can come up with 20 articles a day! This is where no. 3 comes into action.

3- If I can't make $1000 from Associated Content, maybe Clickbank can help. I can write reviews on Associated Content. Better even, I can write some reviews about Clickbank products on Associated Content and promote them like mad! With my Clickbank hoplink here and there, if I do this once a week for a different product everytime, I should be getting some kind of commission from Clickbank!

2008 might not be the year when I will get rich, but I will make damn sure that I make enough money online to finance next Christmas, and if I don't make money from Adsense, Associated Content or Clickbank, there are still my PiggyPoints!


P.S. Before you go get drunk over the Christmas holidays, read 10 Healthy Hangover Cures! (I know, shameless promotion, but this is my blog, and I can do whatever I like with it!)


Updated on 25/01/08
I have just been informed by Associated Content that they have removed the 2 articles containing my clickbank affiliate links so I advise you against using the above advice. However, this still allowed me to earn €58.48!




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Friday, December 14, 2007

Ironic Survey Rewards

I am now a proud member of 6 survey websites. Of those 6 sites, one of them, Irish Media Survey, is a survey panel that does not offer payment for filling in their surveys but they send me an email every day inviting me to share my opinions on TV and Radio programmes. In exchange for doing this, they enter me in a monthly draw to win vouchers.

Each month, one participant wins €1000 and about 100 other participants win €5. Well, I am usually unlucky when it comes to draws, but last Thursday I did win €5 in the November draw. So far, I have earned 190 points with Global Test Market (I must earn a minimum of 1000 points to qualify for a prize) and €3 with Irish Opinions (I don't qualify for a reward yet). I think it is a bit ironic that my first survey reward is coming from them, given the fact that Irish Media Survey is the only non-paying survey website I have signed up with.

I will keep answering the surveys everyday for Irish Media Survey ; even though I thought I had lost the link for the last few days, I only realised today that their last emails were sent to my Bulk folder so I corrected this and now I am hoping to get a €1000 prize someday. It is cheaper than the Lotto!


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Thursday, December 13, 2007

How To Survive Christmas Traffic

If you haven't already done your Christmas shopping, you will know what I am talking about; miles of cars and trucks sitting in traffic in the hope of getting a parking space outside a shopping center to buy your last Christmas items.

Option 1 - Put your car in first gear all the way to the shops and like millions of other consumers being slowly driven to slavery, suffer in silence; you will damage your car's gearbox, spend more petrol, spend all your money when you finally get to the shopping centre, slowly drive home again and when you get home complain about the whole shopping experience to your partner (especially when you realise you have forgotten something and will have to go back the next day); be careful, this could end up in a divorce (who wants to spend the whole evening listening to your complaints?).

Option 2 - Get everything online. It is easier to compare prices and everything will come to your door. Not the best option if you are a late shopper, in order to get everything in before Christmas, you should probably have ordered in November or at the latest, in the first week of December. For your food, use either delivery services or go to your local grocery store.

Option 3 - Stay home. You can act as a Christmas grinch, not buy any presents for anyone, no Christmas cards, no special lovely Christmas food and pretend that you are trying to set up a new fashion! Be ready to lose friendships and be hated by your family and neighbours (especially children).

Option 4 - Break a leg on Christmas Eve or if you are pregnant, try to plan it so you will give birth on Christmas Eve, lucky you, you don't even need to break anything else than water! You will spend Christmas day in a hospital bed, won't have to cook or buy presents, you will be visited by all your loved ones who will hopefully bring you some gifts and get well cards. You can always decide to have an after-Christmas party when you get home: traffic will be lighter and everything will be on sale!

Of course you can also walk or take public transport, I was just trying to be funny. I experienced Christmas traffic this morning for the last time (for 2007 anyway) so now I can make fun of people like you who still have Christmas shopping to do!


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Tuesday, December 11, 2007

DIY Blog Monetizing

Lately I have come up with ideas at the most unexpected times; take this morning for example, while I was mopping my bathroom floor (well my mind was not really on the job at hand!), I started thinking about my post on Clickbank; before writing the post I had been looking at the different monetizing programmes such as Adsense, Bidvertiser, etc.

I was toying with the idea of adding Bidvertiser on my blog but after reading a few comparison reviews between Adsense and Bidvertiser, I decided it would not make a lot of difference if I changed anything, especially as my blog does not attract huge volumes of traffic yet (athough I am hoping this will change in the next few months).

Here is the idea that came to me: what if I made my own ads containing my Clickbank hoplink and found a strategic place to display them? If someone ends up buying a product, I will get a much bigger commission than I would with Adsense or any other monetizing programme.

Of course the mere displaying of the ads will not get me a commission but I can choose my own ads, I can change them whenever I like and if I also keep Adsense, I think it can only be a win-win situation!

So here it is, I changed my blog's template to include a few Clickbank ads at the bottom of my posts, I also added a link to my own website because Clickbank doesn't need to own the monopole of my DIY Ads placing!

The only worry I have is that Google might see this as an attempt to display Adsense competing ads on my blog but even if it does, what is the risk? If I get banned from Adsense, I can either choose to display more of my own DIY ads instead or sign up with Bidvertiser, or a combination of both!


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Monday, December 10, 2007

Can You Make Money With Clickbank?

I am not a huge fan of Clickbank products, and to tell you the truth, the Clickbank products websites really unnerve me: what is more annoying than clicking on a link, hoping to discover The secret that will allow me to make tons of money, and after reading a long sales pitch, find out I still know nothing of the product?

I am not going to lie to you: I did sign up to Clickbank hoping to make a few sales from my website but I never bought any Clickbank products. The thought of giving my money away to purchase an e-book that might or (more likely) might not help me to make money does not really appeal to me.

However, there is a system that could very well work for Clickbank affiliates; one day while I was looking for ways to make money, I downloaded my free "License to Print Money", which is an extract of the Millionnaire League. When I read it, I thought it looked like a great way to make money, and even though I have not tried it, I think it might just work.

I know this is a pretty poor sales pitch, but I heard that unusual can sell, and after all, I am a Clickbank affiliate and I am here to make money, so if you want to try the Millionnaire League, I suggest you download your free Licence To Print Money first by visiting the Millionnaire League's website. Once you get your free extract, if you decide to put it in practice, I would really appreciate your comments: tell me if it works, tell me if it's crap, tell me if it made you want to buy the system, tell me if you bought this or any other money-making Clickbank product, just talk to me, depending on the feedback I receive, I will use it for a post on this blog and if you are lucky, I might just decide to put a link to your blog or website in the post.

To download your free Licence To Print Money, Click Here!


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Saturday, December 8, 2007

How To Make Your Blog Successful

If you want to make your blog more successful, you should visit Caroline Middlebrook's blog.

Last August, she took the plunge and left her job as a software developper to try and earn a living from the Internet.

Why should you go to her blog? If, like me, you are suffering from information overload, you will find relief in her blog, because she has all the information you need to make your blog successful; all the information contained in just one blog, what more to ask for?

I see each of her blog posts as a full tutorial on one single aspect of successful blogging, very detailed and explained clearly; she doesn't hold back on any information and you will have everything to gain by subscribing to her feed, as many bloggers did (so did I).

If you want to see what I am talking about, here is the link again for Caroline Middlebrook's blog. Happy reading!


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Friday, December 7, 2007

Promoting Your Blog Through Articles

If you have written some posts on your blog that you think are good enough to be published as articles and relevant to your blog, it is a good idea to submit them to as many free article directories as possible.

Most will not allow you to put links in the body of your articles but they always an author's resource box where you can put a link to your blog and whatever other links are relevant to the article.

I would not recommend using the social bookmarking websites for your own blog posts as you will be considered as a spammer if you do this too often but you can always bookmark your published articles, as these will contain a link to your blog. Be careful though, if you have submitted one article to 12 article directories, please choose only one of these to bookmark!

You can click here for a reminder of my free article directories list.


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Thursday, December 6, 2007

My Email Inbox Is Going To Explode

41! That is the number of emails I received in my email inbox today, and I have not included the emails that went straight to my junk folder (100, 200? I don't check them anymore). It is my new record and it means that it is time to unsubscribe to a few newsletters.

Between the guy who is trying to give me some free websites and the widows trying to flunk me their millions, I know I am part responsible for this flood of emails; only yesterday, I signed up for a tips newsletter for cat owners and another one for dog owners; here is the interesting part: I don't own any pets.

Am I a newsletter addict? No, I just did this so that I could get an extra 100 PiggyPoints in my PiggyBank. I also got another 100 PiggyPoints by requesting a free a dog goodies pack, which I will give to a neighbour. I signed up for a membership on an alcoholic drinks website which I will not name, earning me another 50 PiggyPoints, and using 5 coupons today in my grocery shopping should get me an extra 320 PiggyPoints. I felt a bit sorry for the girl working at the cash register but I am on my way for more Boots vouchers, or will it be Sasha or A/Wear the next time?


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Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Making Money Completing Surveys

You will not get rich quick by filling out surveys but here is one way to ensure that you get selected for completing a few surveys:

I joined Global Test Market almost a year ago, and for a whole 10 months, I was invited to do a survey for them just once.

A few weeks ago, I joined Ireland Survey Panel, through which I applied to 5 different programmes. For 2 weeks, I received no invitations other than to update my profile on those different survey websites and to fill out the media survey, which does not pay you but enters you in a draw to win prizes.

In the last 2 weeks I have been invited to fill out on average one survey every other day, and the funny thing is that most surveys are coming from Global Test Market.

If you want to make a bit of money from completing online surveys, you need to join as many survey websites as you can, fill out your surveys as soon as you receive your invitations, and try to complete all the surveys you get.

One more thing: before you start filling out a survey, make sure that you have at least 30 minutes of free time, I overcooked dinner more than once thinking I had time to finish a survey (no wonder I am still single)!


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Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Choosing An Article Submission Website

I was starting to write a quick review of Helium and Associated Content on this blog but I realized after 600 words that maybe I should submit it as an article.

If you want to write articles to promote a blog or website, my advice is to submit them to as many free article directories as possible. Here is the list I used for my website:

Article Alley
Go Articles
Article Buzz
Article Cube
Article World
Blog Telecast
Isnare
Ezine Articles
Amazines
Article City
Free Articles Zone
Article Marketer

If you just want to write random articles and get paid, you can read my review of Helium and Associated Content here:
Choosing An Article Submission Website


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Monday, December 3, 2007

Weathly Fatigue Syndrome, Or How Money Can Make You Sick

Did you know that having too much money can make you sick? Unfortunately I am feeling very well (and broke too!).

Last week I heard about anhedonia, which is the inability to experience pleasure, so after overcoming my reaction (gobsmacked!) I just did some research and wrote an article about it.

If you would like to read it, here is the link: Spare a Thought for the Rich. If you would like to make me sick, you can use my PayPal "Donate" button!


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Sunday, December 2, 2007

Save Money With Pigsback

For about a year now, I have been a member of Pigsback.com. I have not been very active on the website but last week I received my first reward, a €10 Boots voucher.

For those of you who have never heard of it, Pigsback.com is a free website that allows you to print coupons for grocery products that you can use in any supermarket; the coupons do not only entitle you to a discount on the chosen product, making use of them also allows you to get PiggyPoints. Once you have enough PiggyPoints in your PiggyBank, you can choose a reward or make a donation to a charity.

Other ways to earn PiggyPoints are to sign up on some of the partners' websites or "shop and earn": I always buy my mobile phone credit online through the Pigsback.com website.

They also have competitions where you can win great prizes; I never won anything but I am always up for a free entry when I could win as much as €500! It is a good idea to sign up for as many of their newsletters as possible, this way you can always be informed of the newest offers and competitions.

Nobody with an email address should be without a Pigsback account: it is free, you can print as many coupons as you like, and although this is not a lame attempt from me to get referrals (I could only do this by submitting names and email addresses), you can get 500 PiggyPoints per friend referred (this is a value of €5.00 in rewards).

P.S. While I was writing this post, I discovered the Pigsback "Play and earn" option and I bet 50 PiggyPoints on Chelsea to win over Arsenal in December (that's English soccer for you Americans). There is a jackpot of 8500 PiggyPoints so far and no money at stake!


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Saturday, December 1, 2007

Is Del.icio.us Broken?

I haven't been able to access the famous social bookmarking del.icio.us website lately.

I don't know if it's just me or what, I don't have any trouble with any other websites. I tried everything in Google: I tried to access it from my toolbar button, I typed the address in Google with the dots, without the dots, with the "www" and without, even with and without the ".com", any time I try, I get the famous and much hated "Internet Explorer cannot display the webpage".

This has been going on for a month and yet, the del.icio.us website still appears at the top of the Google search page!

I would appreciate your comments if you know what is going on, maybe you don't have this problem, maybe you do, please share your thoughts!


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Friday, November 30, 2007

Now I Am Getting Emails From The FBI! - Nigerian Scam Follow-up

Those Nigerian crooks are trying really hard to scam people! Today I received an email from someone impersonating the FBI telling me that it was safe for me to go ahead with my on-going contract with the Central Bank of Nigeria!

First, I never contacted the FBI, I came across their website when I was looking for information on the Nigerian Scam but I never sent them any email! I did forward the first email I received from the so-called "Central Bank of Nigeria" to Scamomatic, but after getting confirmation from their website that this was indeed a fraudulent email, I doubt very much that the FBI would personnally send me an email advising me to go ahead with the project!

OK, so I watch a lot of movies, read a lot of books, when I got an email mentionning "FBI", I got curious (how glamourous is that?) and I actually read the whole email! (I usually just see "NIGERIA", "Dear Friend", "Lotto", "Congratulations".... and I send the email to "spam") but this is all they will get from me, 2 minutes of my time reading an email. No mister, you will not get a cent from me!


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Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Getting Organized In Order To Succeed

For the last few weeks, I have been trying to find ways to increase the traffic to this blog. I keep telling myself that I must find a daily routine from the time I switch on my computer until when the kids come into my room, hollow eyes, looking very hungry!

I decided that I must do the following each day:
- Find a great new blog and write a comment on it,
- Add it to my "Favourite Websites",
- Find a new Freebies website, add it to my "freebies" and if possible, add a comment on their blog,
- Submit my blog to one new blog directory,
- Try and write one blog post.

If I don't get side-tracked (that is my main problem, I waste a lot of time everyday just reading blogs and just following links), I might have time to write one article a day on Associated Content.

I started a diary and when I get an idea for an article, I just write it down (yes, with a pen, on real paper, like they used to do before computers started to rule the world!), I also write down everything I achieved during the day, it helps a lot and it gives me a starting point every day.

Today, I achieved about half of my goals, now I must go and feed my children!


P.S. Sorry if I offended some people with the reference to my kids, I would never favour my blog over them, that was just a JOKE! It was going around in my head since yesteday, I just had to write it!


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Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Listed in Google!

Waow! I can't believe it, my blog is listed in Google!

I was feeling a bit depressed today when I checked my "how much is your website worth" gadget, as the value had dropped from $197 to $180 but I thought this was due to the fact that I hadn't written on it or added any links for 4 days.

Then I started writing posts every day and adding links to Freebie websites and this morning my blog's value had dropped to $175! This was a big disappointment for me so I decided to do something drastic (well not really, it's just something I should have done a long time ago): I added my blog in some Irish blog directories, since I am in Ireland.

I know these last submissions haven't got time to kick in yet but just by curiosity, I typed "Internet Junkie" in my Google toolbar and on the second page, at number 13 to be precise (13 is definitely a lucky number), there it was, as listed by BlogCatalog.

So submitting to blog directories does pay off, well I haven't seen any money yet but imagine the thrilling sensation of being listed in Google! (OK, now I sound like a total nutcase to anybody who has never tried to advertise a website, nevermind, I am happy!)


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Monday, November 26, 2007

Freebies Websites

Since we are so close to Christmas I thought it would be a good idea to provide my readers (wherever they are hiding) with links to sites where they (and I!) can get free stuff.

Unfortunately for me most of the freebies are only available to U.S. residents but if I search well I am sure I can find some that I can get in Ireland.

Watch this space because I will try to update it as often as possible (yes, I also have some shopping to do!). Make sure you keep an eye on my "Freebies" heading in the navigation bar.

Any comments are welcome, especially if you can share some sites that I don't know about. If you have received some freebies, I would appreciate your feedback on the products you have got.


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Sunday, November 25, 2007

Get Free Personalized Stationery With Vista Print

Freebies, Freebies, Freebies! Are you up for it?

When you sign up with Vista Print, you can design your own stationery, whether you have a business or just for fun, it's always nice to have personalized stationery and you can also use them as Christmas gifts!

Yesterday I ordered €74.43 worth of stuff for free. Of course I had to pay for postage but that is still a huge saving compared to what I would have to pay otherwise.

Here is what I ordered (remember this was all for free!):
- 1 white T-shirt, personalized with caricatures of my family members (I think my sister will love it!),
- 250 business cards with my website's URL but you can design them for your own needs,
- 140 return address labels (with my own designed caricatures),
- 25 business cards magnets (well, my kids love all sorts of magnets),
- 10 sheets of A4 letterheads,
- 2 different sets of 10 personalized note cards with enveloppes,
- 1 sticky note pad,
- 1 rubber stamp with black ink,
- 1 note pad (handy for the babysitter).

That is all I was able to put in my shopping basket, but I could also have got free Christmas cards (I never send any, do you?), a free photo calendar (with my own photos) and Vista Print regularly sends me emails when they have special offers. I think I will use them again, I had great fun designing all the items anyway!

If you want to avail of the Freebies too, join Vista Print, I am sure you will love it too!

P.S. Just so that there is no misunderstanding, I get €1 anytime I refer someone to Vista Print.


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Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Don't Get Caught In The Credit Card Trap

It is almost Christmas and some (or should I say most?) of us are relying on our credit card to help us get through it.

Of course you already know all the tricks to avoid paying too much interest on your credit card but you may need a reminder:

1- Only put small amounts on your credit card so that you can pay the balance in full next month and not pay any interest (easier said than done).

2- If you can, switch credit card companies, transfer your outstanding balance on your new card and you will pay no interest for a specified period (typically 6 or 9 months).

3- Use your savings account to repay your outstanding balance (interest on credit card balances range from 9% to 19% whereas a savings account will only give you between 3% and 5% interest: do the maths!)

I had never paid too much attention before today at how the interest is being charged on credit card balances:

If you balance is paid in full each month, no worries, no interest is charged (I am only talking about purchases, cash withdrawals are different).

If you only pay part of your balance, interest on the full purchase amount is charged until the balance is fully paid, on top of the interest on the reduced outstanding amount. What does this mean in plain English?
If you spend €1000 in December 2007 and you decide to repay €200 each month for 5 months, you will pay interest on €1000 until May 2008!

"La morale de cette histoire": have a good Christmas but don't overspend, remember there is going to be another Christmas next year!

Who is going to have the best Christmas? Banks! Now, here is how they can afford to give away free calendars (I think I'll take a few ones for the kids!)


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Sunday, November 18, 2007

Little Buttons

Phew! I spent most of yesterday trying to add those little buttons that you can now see at the bottom of each of my posts.

It started by a visit to the StumbleUpon website: after I signed up in another effort to promote my website, my blog and my articles, I tried to follow the website's instructions on how to integrate the famous button to my blog so I went and edited my template's HTML but I just could not find the tag they were talking about!

So I searched the web and after a lot of trial I error I finally found a post called How to Share your Blog in Blogger Site.

I am sharing this link here because this seem to be a problem a lot of bloggers come accross. I am not a computer geek but I managed to follow the instructions as you can see (look down!).

So now, feel free to share my blog!


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Friday, November 16, 2007

How Much Is Your Website Worth?

I don't seem to be doing too much these days, I like to tell myself that I am learning, but in fact I am really reading a few interesting blogs.

Working on the outbound/inbound links thingy, this morning I came accross an interesting blog, actually it is something similar to what I would like this blog to be like, also from a girl (sorry guys!).

This is where I found the link for the Website Value Checker (it also works for blogs), I just had to get it! On the same website, I also found the Cynical Magic 8 Ball: I had a lot a fun with it, not quite the answers I wanted to see, especially when I asked "Will I be rich soon?" but probably what I should have expected!


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Thursday, November 15, 2007

Promotion

So much time spent trying to promote everything, from this blog to my articles and my website!

I could easily write one good article per day but what good would that do if nobody reads them? So, for the moment I will spend some time promoting my stuff. Once I have used up all the channels I can think of and worked out my own advertising routine (which could take a while), I can write again.

Yesterday I spent some time on Facebook, posted all my articles on my page, joined a few groups, wrote a few messages, because I have to participate as much as I can to make myself known on the different networks. The aim is to get people to check my Facebook profile, where they will see my posted items (=articles) and hopefully click on some of the links. Also, I can join in some interesting conversations or just have a ball posting in the most ridiculous dicussion boards!

When I know exactly what I am doing, I will write some more detailed posts on how to advertise on different channels, so keep watching this space!


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Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Promoting Day Turned Into Dossing Day

I tried to get my Potty Training articles' links posted to as many parenting forums as I could yesterday. As a result, I discovered that most forums don't accept links (at least not from new members), this is considered as spamming, and I spent laborious hours (well at least 2) reading posting guidelines. My links were savagely removed from 1 website but at least I managed to post on the parenting forum I have been using for a year. Conclusion: this is not the best way of promoting my articles.

I ended up reading very interesting information about using inbound and outbound links to improve the ranking of websites, which I need to study in more detail. I also came accross "how to turn $6 to $600". This is like the chain letters I used to get as a kid to write postcards to different people but this one works using PayPal and sending $1 to 6 email addresses. Even though it has been featured on Oprah, I smelled a rat. I need to find out for myself what does Paypal think about this.

I also wrote a review of a dvd I saw recently, at this stage I have 4 of these saved on Word, I am trying to think of the best place to publish them. Maybe I will go for Associated Content when I find out how to increase my article page views.

So, O.K, I didn't make any money yet, but I am learning every day, so it's not all bad!


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Monday, November 12, 2007

Busy Day

Last week, I wrote 3 articles on potty training on Associated Content.

Now the hard part is getting people to read them, so today, I will be haunting parenting forums so I can post my links. I will make $1.50 for every 1000 page views, so having 3 articles each specialized in one aspect of potty training, the people who read one are bound to check out the other 2, since it doesn't cost them anything and they will be on the site already. This means that I (only!) need to attract 223 people to earn $1!

Those of you who have young children might be interested in reading these:

How to Successfully Potty Train Your Child

Prepare Yourself and Your Child for the Potty Training Challenge

How to Successfully Potty Train Your Child

Now if you'll excuse me, I have a busy day ahead of me!


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Saturday, November 10, 2007

Before Joining a Review Website, Read This

I spent the last few days visiting some "get paid to review" websites.

Some of them I liked, some of them I doubted and others I dismissed straight away.

I invested a lot of my precious time in this (not scientific) study, so I decided to write a detailed article on Associated Content about making money writing reviews. You are welcome to read it by clicking on the title below:

A Review of Get Paid to Review Websites.


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Thursday, November 8, 2007

Spedia

A few weeks ago, I spent a bit of time checking out some "Get paid to surf" websites. I already wrote a post about Agloco, so now I will talk about Spedia.

Sign up is free as well so I joined them. I entered all my details on their website, clicked the link on my confirmation email (you know how it goes) and then I started downloading the toolbar. When I had 99% of the toolbar downloaded, my antivirus programme beeped (yes, it does that) and indicated me that there was a virus threat of some kind so I stopped and tried again 5 or 6 times during the day but still with the same result. I sent an email to the Spedia support department but my email came back with a message from Postmaster (whatever that is) informing me that my message could not be delivered so I gave up.

I tried again a week later and the same thing happened but this time (after running my antivirus programme), I went back on the site and started to explore. The website claims that you can make money not only by surfing, but also by joining their advertisers programmes, reading emails, referring people and playing games.

Most of the programmes to join are only open to U.S. residents. There was one online casino but in order to get Spedia points I would have had to make a deposit and I did not want to do that so I passed and tried the free games.

I started playing Solitaire against other online players and instantly got addicted: I just had to win. I had a bit of fun for about one hour (yeah, I know, I could have used the time better, but this was on a Sunday) but when I went to check how many Spedia points I had got, I was informed that the points system was down and that I should try later. I tried to check this again a few more times during the week but it was still unavailable. Somehow I don't think I will be earning any money with Spedia.

It looks like "get paid to surf" programmes are not all they claim to be. I don't expect any money from them so I will keep up with the writing instead.


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Sunday, November 4, 2007

Headless Chicken

I need structure. At the moment I am going around like a headless chicken, looking for ways to increase traffic to my blog. I seem to be spending more time signing up on new websites than anything else.

Well, I did write one article yesterday on Helium. I will need to write about this website again but tonight I am just too tired.

I am also working on a potty-training article which is taking a lot out of me. It looks more like a novel so far so I might just split it in two. I need this article to be perfect as I want to make lots of happy Mammies and Daddies but I have a lot of editing to do.

On the positive side, I had some comments on this blog so someone must be reading and this is to say Thank you.


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Friday, November 2, 2007

Beware of Fake PayPal Emails

I don't like to be taken advantage of and this almost happened when I opened an email seemingly coming from PayPal. I found it a bit strange at first to get an email from PayPal on my new email address (which I never use with them) but this message looked like a genuine PayPal email, it had the logo and was even signed from someone with a PayPal email ID.


The email in question informed me that they had noticed some suspicious activity on my PayPal account. I was worried that someone may have been using my PayPal account without my authorisation so I clicked on the link provided in the email in order to verify my identity, as I was being advised to. The email also said that if I did not act in the next 72 hours, my PayPal account would be cancelled.


I clicked on the link (which started with https://www.paypal.com/*) and was taken to what looked exactly like the real PayPal website, where I had to enter my user name and password (which is usual when you log in to the PayPal site) but when I went to verify my identity, which was really a form requesting all my details, I did not see the security symbol (which should look like a lock) anywhere on the page.


This detail prompted me to open a new page and type the PayPal website address in my browser. Once on the website I noticed that not only the security symbol was present but also the browser area where you can see the page's URL address is always green in the real PayPal website. After finding the PayPal security center, I forwarded the suspicious email to spoof@paypal.com and they confirmed that this was a phishing email. Fortunately, I had also remembered to change my PayPal password right after I noticed that there was something not right on the fake website.


If you think you have been targeted by a phishing email please report it. There are a lot of websites where you can do this so I won't list them all but you can search Google or Yahoo for "report phishing". If you just want to learn more about phishing email, you can take PayPal's Fight Phishing Challenge at https://www.paypal.com/fightphishing.



*Please do not access PayPal through any email or website link (including this one), if you want to visit PayPal's website, type in http://www.paypal.com/ in your browser.


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Suspicious Emails Alert

During the last week, I received 5 suspicious emails:
- the Nigerian scam (or 419 scam), which I have already mentionned,
- the UK Lottery Online Organization informing me that my email address has won $4.6M,
- an email from Matroc Technical Ceramics Company Ltd offering me a job as a representative/payment agent to help them recover money owed to them,
- a "Notification for Cash Aid" email from a so-called Italian Foundation (why would a charity organization offer me $1,000,000.00? Don't they have anything better to do with the money like giving it to some italian orphanage or something?),
- an email from Powerball Online Promotion Programmes telling me that my email address has won £1.5.
All those messages asked me to send an email to some agent whose email address (in some case telephone number) was written on the email.

While I had my doubts about the legitimacy of the offers, I might have been slightly less suspicious if I had only received one email, but 5! My email address must be on some list that is being sold on the net with the title "Prospective Suckers".

I wanted to make sure that I was not passing on any interesting opportunities so I searched the Internet and found the Scamomatic website, which has a great feature: I clicked on the following question: "is that email a scam?" and was asked to copy and paste the suspicious emails in the corresponding fields. I was not surprised to see that these were indeed fraudulent emails. I am very lucky I found this website: not only do they tell you whether an email is genuine or fake, but they also give you a list of things to watch out for when you get an offer by email.

If you receive an email offering them money, please don't get sucked in, visit Scamomatic. There is a phrase that could be their motto: "If it seems too good to be true, it probably isn't!" and I agree with this.


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Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Writing for Associated Content

A few days ago, I submitted an article to Associated Content. I was pleasantly surprised yesterday when I was informed by email that my article Is Data-Entry Work a Scam? had been published.

AC is a website where you can write articles and get paid. What I love about this website is that it gives you great options: you can submit text, video, audio, slideshows, you can write about anything you like and they will pay you $1.50 per thousand page views, which is great if you can bring traffic to your articles. You can also write articles on a subject that has been called for, which is more advantageous, moneywise.

Associated Content helps you bringing visitors to your articles by giving you the necessary tools: you can bookmark your articles and share them on network websites such as Facebook, Digg or My Space, you can also interact with other AC members.

So if you like to write, give it a go, it is worth the effort!


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Sunday, October 28, 2007

Nigerian Scam

I had a surprise when I went through my emails this morning: apparently, the Central Bank of Nigeria has been instructed to credit my account with some contract funds.

First, I never entered in any contract with anybody from Nigeria. I am just a girl trying to make a bit of extra cash on the Internet.

Another thing, the email mentions a contract number (which doesn't ring a bell), a Bank Swift code, an account number, an email address, a phone number, which is a lot of probably bogus detail, but it does not include the amount of the payment in question, which is what I'd really like to know!

Well, I am not going to phone them, I am not wasting my money ringing this international phone number, and I will not write to the email contact (I would probably end up receiving more scam emails or even worse, this could result in someone being able to get information from my computer without my knowledge).

I ran an internet search on internet fraud after getting this email and found that the Nigerian scam has been active since the 1980's! My information said that very often, Nigerian officials are not only aware of it, they run the bloody scheme!

I printed the email and I am going to hand it into my nearest police station, which I suppose is the right thing to do, even though I don't think this will result in much. I suppose I am part responsible in getting that email, as I am always signing up for free stuff online (most of the time free newsletters about internet marketing that I don't even have the time to read!).

The bottom line is that I am happy I did not get sucked in and become another victim of this scam and I want to warn as many people as possible, so it's a good thing you are reading this!


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Friday, October 26, 2007

Agloco

While surfing the net a few months ago, I found a story from someone saying he was making a killing just by having a viewbar on his computer screen; he was talking about companies that pay people just for using the Internet. I could not remember the website's name so the other day, while investigating some more ways to get paid on the Internet, I ran a search for "get paid to surf" and I found a lot of blogs and articles about such programmes.

I signed up with Agloco and then realised I would not get paid (if ever), for another while. I downloaded their viewbar even though the website says it is not yet available (weird?). I think there is a new version coming up which is not yet available for download but Agloco is encouraging members to refer as many people as possible for when the company will get hot. This might be wishful thinking but I read their blog and thought this sounded like an honest company.

You have to understand that when you sign up, you own a part of Agloco. There are 4 ways to make money when you sign up:
1- you earn money when you use the Agloco viewbar,
2- you get some of the total revenue generated by the total use of Agloco's viewbars by all their members,
3- when a member makes a purchase with a company advertising with them, all members get a portion of the commission earned by Agloco,
4- when you refer new members, you also make money.

The downside of it all is that Agloco is not making money yet so they can't pay their members at the moment but since sign up is free, what have I got to lose?


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Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Is Data-Entry Work a Scam?

Today while I was reading my emails, I was taken to another of those sites that offer data-entry work. If you don't already know about them, these are websites that guarantee you big money for little work, inputting a few lines of data onto some forms. They always sound very convincing, the only thing is that you need to pay them in order to join their scheme.

This is one of the job opportunities I would never go for, it just does not seem right to have to pay anyone for working. When you get work, you should get paid, not the opposite! I think this is one of the biggest scams on the internet. Maybe I am wrong, maybe you can make $200 or more a day just filling forms. If I had money to throw out the window, I would be very tempted to get in on one of those schemes and find out what exactly are they all about.

Did you notice that they always have a high price for joining (usually $97) but always have that price reduced to almost half just when you are about to join? If you haven't, try again in 6 months and you will see that the time-limited special price offer is strangely still valid. I don't know about you but I think this makes it even more look like a scam.

What if, instead of asking for a payment on signing up, the companies just deducted that amount from your first paycheck? They may argue that the joining fee allows them to recover the cost of training new aplicants: if training new people really is that costly to them, this would seem fairer (even though a legitimate company should provide training free of charge), but then again, if you could join for free, I guess they would not make any money, since they appear to make a lot of dough from their new applicants.

Another thing data-entry companies may claim as one of the reasons for the joining fee is that acceptance is limited, so they use the money thing to control the flow of entries: I don't know, if they so much want to limit the number of entrants, why don't they spend a little less in advertising? I guess this way they could even afford to pay for the training themselves!

If you own or work for a data-entry company and you read this blog, please leave a comment, I would be very interested to find out what you have to say.


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Monday, October 22, 2007

Dear God, I Almost Forgot!

With all this talk about making money online, I nearly forgot that my car insurance was due for renewal! I have been with the same insurers for a good few years now, so I thought it might be a good idea this year to get a few Insurance Quotes Online, just to keep my insurance dealer on his toes (yes, I do like to get people to actually work for their commission and no, you would not like to have me as your boss).

I found a great choice of Automobile Insurance Policies on the internet. I managed to find a great site offering all kinds of auto insurance ranging from Sports cars to policies for Teen drivers. As it turns out, I even found Poor Driver Auto Insurance Rates (Not that I need this, even though I am a woman)!

So I won't bore you with all the details but I printed out the cheapest quote I could find for my own needs, stashed it in an enveloppe and if my old insurance company can't match that I am changing my car insurance tomorrow!


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Saturday, October 20, 2007

Why Write a Blog?

I stumbled on the concept of blogs while browsing on the internet, looking for more ideas to make me earn money online.

Apparently, it is possible to make decent money online by writing on your own blog. So if you keep an online diary and enjoy writing for fun, like me, why not get paid for it? This is why I decided to give it a go and joined Blogvertise.

The process seems simple enough: you don't just write anything. Blogvertise works with advertisers who want some publicity about their product, website or service. When they get a request from an advertiser, Blogvertise passes it on to its registered bloggers who then have to write a post on their blog about the specific item.

In order to be accepted in the program, your blog must attract enough traffic so that your paid posts (which are in fact ads) are being seen by more than a handful of people. That is the reason why your blog must be at least 3 months old, which is not yet the case for my blog, and you must also write regularly on it so until this blog gets old enough to be accepted I will just have to write for fun!


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How my Internet Career Started

I am a single mum and even though I have college education, I can't go outside my home to work everyday like most people do as I can't afford childcare. I am lucky enough to be receiving money from the Social Welfare but I don't want to live this way forever!


Last June, I went on Ebay and bought some ebooks loaded with money-making advice, some of them were good, others were utterly rubbish. One of them showed me how to make money from bookmakers. I had never been a gambler before this but it turned out the advice was good and I managed to make €6000 in one month! My only problem was being too greedy, instead of stopping after one winner per day, I tried to get two and sometimes three a day, which worked fine until I lost everything in one afternoon, so I decided to give up the horses.


A few weeks later, I came upon a website claiming it could make me $300 in 7 minutes and $100 per hour thereafter. You might have seen the ad on Google, this is in fact an affiliate advertising a casino's sign up bonus. I signed up, made a $200 deposit, got the bonus, followed the instructions for winning at European Roulette, got up to $676 and back down to $238, up to $520 again, at which point I decided to take $220 back and I played the other $300 and lost it. This gave me a total win of $20: not bad, I did not lose any money, but not great either for 2 weeks of playing 1 to 2 hours a day!


I then decided not to risk any more money and I joined 4 casino affiliate programs and created my own website: http://www.freewebs.com/freecasinobonus. I thought this was going to be easy money but oh, boy, was I wrong! Although I enjoyed it I spent an entire week building, designing, changing pages, adding and removing things, and I still occasionally do it when a new idea comes to me. But the hardest thing about a website is its promotion, during the last 2 weeks, I have spent hours everyday looking for ways to get visitors on my website. I didn't want to pay for advertising until I started making money so I had to find other ways. I signed up for every available free newsletter giving me advice on promoting my website and my email inbox is now full of rubbish, it takes me almost an hour each day to sort the good from the bad (and the ugly!).


I am not looking for lazy ways to make money, no get rich quick scams. I am willing to work hard and I am not ready to give up just yet. Call me crazy if you like but I am sure there are ways to make money on the net!


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