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On Elon Vs. Zuck, and Elon’s Use of Controversy to Maximize Media Attention

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On Elon Vs. Zuck, and Elon’s Use of Controversy to Maximize Media Attention

*Sigh*

Okay, let’s talk about the Elon vs. Zuck fight.

As you’ll undoubtedly recall, back in June, X owner Elon Musk tweeted that he’d be “up for a cage match” with Meta chief Mark Zuckerberg, in response to the news that Meta was planning to launch a new X rival app, ahead of the release of Threads. To the surprise of many, Zuckerberg, who’s been getting more into MMA of late, responded that Musk just needed to “Send Me Location”, implying that he was indeed up for an actual fight.

What’s ensued is a ridiculous back-and-forth between the two, as Elon has used the potential bout as a means to grab more attention, and likely get more users to X as a result.

A week after this initial exchange, Musk claimed that there was “some chance” that the bout could be held in the Colosseum in Rome, and implied that he’d spoken to Italian officials about hosting the fight at the historic venue. Italy’s Ministry of Culture denied this.

A week after that, Musk re-shared an image of himself in training with MMA fighters.

Zuckerberg responded with his own training image, also with UFC stars:

So both multi-billionaires were actually training, which seemed to suggest that the fight might actually happen. Then things went quiet for a few weeks on the Elon v Musk front, as sense seemed to (briefly) prevail.

Things kicked up again last week, with Musk posting that he’s been “lifting weights throughout the day, preparing for the fight”. Elon then claimed that the fight would be live-streamed on X, with all proceeds going to charity, and further implied that solid arrangements were now in place.

But Zuckerberg quickly denied this, and has denied all of Musk’s various implications.

Elon has since clarified that he’ll likely need shoulder surgery before the fight, which will require months of recovery, which pretty clearly implies that all of Musk’s various public statements on the potential fight have been a publicity stunt designed to drive more interest in his budding social media empire. Whether Musk plans to actually go ahead with the bout at all or not, he has known all along that he’s probably physically unable to take part, so really, it’s another part of the Elon circus, that he uses to eat up media attention, and then deflect that to his various business interests.

Which, no matter how you feel about the man, he’s clearly very good at. All along, in his tenure at Twitter/X, Musk has been able to keep getting attention, which has likely helped to prop up the platform’s numbers, and keep people coming back to the app.

There’s a reason why Tesla doesn’t pay for advertising, because Elon himself is such a lightning rod for the media that he can get his businesses mass media coverage without having to pay for it, which also aligns with his cost-minimization management approach.

Essentially, as noted by Platformer’s Casey Newton, Elon uses business media’s established processes against them to gain mass coverage, by stretching the truth, straight-up lying, or just coming up with outlandish comments that trigger a frenzy online.

As per Newton:

It’s in the nature of business journalism to assume that CEOs of public companies are not lying all the time. And it’s in Musk’s nature to make frequent, bold pronouncements about his companies, politics, the nature of consciousness, and so on, all of which are irresistible to editors.

Newton suggests that editors should employ a more skeptical approach, and question more of Musk’s outlandish claims, in order to stop him from using the mainstream outlets, which he claims to despise, to keep getting himself more attention.

Which is entirely correct. There’s seemingly no prospect that an Elon v Musk fight is actually going to happen, yet even people within his extended orbit are now getting asked about it in their own media interviews and coverage. Just this week, X CEO Linda Yaccarino and his ex-wife Grimes were both asked for their thoughts on the bout, giving more column space to Musk’s latest bid for attention, which is clearly working, given that I too am now writing about it.

But I’ve resisted covering it for this reason. It’s not real, it’s not a real thing, and Elon is just using this as the latest button to push to trigger the media hype cycle, and next week it’ll be some other crazy thing, then another the week after that.

In this sense, Elon does seem to have taken inspiration from the Trump book of media relations.

Various studies have shown that the only valuable indicator of electoral success in social media metrics is mention volume, i.e. if your name is getting discussed the most in social apps, you’re going to end up winning the election.

Sentiment, likes, followers, all of these have failed to provide any real indication of election outcomes, but pure mention volume has been a consistent indicator of success, as simple a metric as it might be.

In this context, it pays to be an attention seeker, it pays to be the one who says the things that get the most people talking, because that expanded discussion is generally all you need to occupy the public consciousness, which then influences how they vote.

Elon seems to be taking the same approach, in order to keep his social media platform afloat, by reflecting attention back to his posts, which then sparks more in-app engagement.

From selling verification ticks, to letting previously banned users back in the app, to backing up COVID conspiracy theories, to promoting the use of LSD. Whenever engagement seems to be waning, Elon just comes out with another controversial comment or stance, and the media cycle kicks in to help him out once again.  

The question then is whether he can keep saying and doing enough things to keep getting attention, which thus far he’s proven that he definitely can.   

Will that be enough to keep X relevant? Will that be the thing that keeps millions of users coming back to the app, even if a rival gains ground?

It’s hard to trust X’s reported usage numbers, given Elon’s aforementioned affinity for misinformation. But he claims that usage is rising, which would largely, at this stage, be a reflection of his attention-grabbing capacity.   



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12 Proven Methods to Make Money Blogging in 2024

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Make money blogging

 

Make money bloggingThis is a contributed article.

The world of blogging continues to thrive in 2024, offering a compelling avenue for creative minds to share their knowledge, build an audience, and even turn their passion into profit. Whether you’re a seasoned blogger or just starting, there are numerous effective strategies to monetize your blog and achieve financial success. Here, we delve into 12 proven methods to make money blogging in 2024:

1. Embrace Niche Expertise:

Standing out in the vast blogosphere requires focus. Carving a niche allows you to cater to a specific audience with targeted content. This not only builds a loyal following but also positions you as an authority in your chosen field. Whether it’s gardening techniques, travel hacking tips, or the intricacies of cryptocurrency, delve deep into a subject you’re passionate and knowledgeable about. Targeted audiences are more receptive to monetization efforts, making them ideal for success.

2. Content is King (and Queen):

High-quality content remains the cornerstone of any successful blog. In 2024, readers crave informative, engaging, and well-written content that solves their problems, answers their questions, or entertains them. Invest time in crafting valuable blog posts, articles, or videos that resonate with your target audience.

  • Focus on evergreen content: Create content that remains relevant for a long time, attracting consistent traffic and boosting your earning potential.
  • Incorporate multimedia: Spice up your content with captivating images, infographics, or even videos to enhance reader engagement and improve SEO.
  • Maintain consistency: Develop a regular publishing schedule to build anticipation and keep your audience coming back for more.

3. The Power of SEO:

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) ensures your blog ranks high in search engine results for relevant keywords. This increases organic traffic, the lifeblood of any monetization strategy.

  • Keyword research: Use keyword research tools to identify terms your target audience searches for. Strategically incorporate these keywords into your content naturally.
  • Technical SEO: Optimize your blog’s loading speed, mobile responsiveness, and overall technical aspects to improve search engine ranking.
  • Backlink building: Encourage other websites to link back to your content, boosting your blog’s authority in the eyes of search engines.

4. Monetization Magic: Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing allows you to earn commissions by promoting other companies’ products or services. When a reader clicks on your affiliate link and makes a purchase, you get a commission.

  • Choose relevant affiliates: Promote products or services that align with your niche and resonate with your audience.
  • Transparency is key: Disclose your affiliate relationships clearly to your readers and build trust.
  • Integrate strategically: Don’t just bombard readers with links. Weave affiliate promotions naturally into your content, highlighting the value proposition.

5. Display Advertising: A Classic Approach

Display advertising involves placing banner ads, text ads, or other visual elements on your blog. When a reader clicks on an ad, you earn revenue.

  • Choose reputable ad networks: Partner with established ad networks that offer competitive rates and relevant ads for your audience.
  • Strategic ad placement: Place ads thoughtfully, avoiding an overwhelming experience for readers.
  • Track your performance: Monitor ad clicks and conversions to measure the effectiveness of your ad placements and optimize for better results.

6. Offer Premium Content:

Providing exclusive, in-depth content behind a paywall can generate additional income. This could be premium blog posts, ebooks, online courses, or webinars.

  • Deliver exceptional value: Ensure your premium content offers significant value that justifies the price tag.
  • Multiple pricing options: Consider offering tiered subscription plans to cater to different audience needs and budgets.
  • Promote effectively: Highlight the benefits of your premium content and encourage readers to subscribe.

7. Coaching and Consulting:

Leverage your expertise by offering coaching or consulting services related to your niche. Readers who find your content valuable may be interested in personalized guidance.

  • Position yourself as an expert: Showcase your qualifications, experience, and client testimonials to build trust and establish your credibility.
  • Offer free consultations: Provide a limited free consultation to potential clients, allowing them to experience your expertise firsthand.
  • Develop clear packages: Outline different coaching or consulting packages with varying time commitments and pricing structures.

8. The Power of Community: Online Events and Webinars

Host online events or webinars related to your niche. These events offer valuable content while also providing an opportunity to promote other monetization avenues.

  • Interactive and engaging: Structure your online events to be interactive with polls, Q&A sessions, or live chats. Click here to learn more about image marketing with Q&A sessions and live chats.

9. Embrace the Power of Email Marketing:

Building an email list allows you to foster stronger relationships with your audience and promote your content and offerings directly.

  • Offer valuable incentives: Encourage readers to subscribe by offering exclusive content, discounts, or early access to new products.
  • Segmentation is key: Segment your email list based on reader interests to send targeted campaigns that resonate more effectively.
  • Regular communication: Maintain consistent communication with your subscribers through engaging newsletters or updates.

10. Sell Your Own Products:

Take your expertise to the next level by creating and selling your own products. This could be physical merchandise, digital downloads, or even printables related to your niche.

  • Identify audience needs: Develop products that address the specific needs and desires of your target audience.
  • High-quality offerings: Invest in creating high-quality products that offer exceptional value and user experience.
  • Utilize multiple platforms: Sell your products through your blog, online marketplaces, or even social media platforms.

11. Sponsorships and Brand Collaborations:

Partner with brands or businesses relevant to your niche for sponsored content or collaborations. This can be a lucrative way to leverage your audience and generate income.

  • Maintain editorial control: While working with sponsors, ensure you retain editorial control to maintain your blog’s authenticity and audience trust.
  • Disclosures are essential: Clearly disclose sponsored content to readers, upholding transparency and ethical practices.
  • Align with your niche: Partner with brands that complement your content and resonate with your audience.

12. Freelancing and Paid Writing Opportunities:

Your blog can serve as a springboard for freelance writing opportunities. Showcase your writing skills and expertise through your blog content, attracting potential clients.

  • Target relevant publications: Identify online publications, websites, or magazines related to your niche and pitch your writing services.
  • High-quality samples: Include high-quality blog posts from your site as writing samples when pitching to potential clients.
  • Develop strong writing skills: Continuously hone your writing skills and stay updated on current trends in your niche to deliver exceptional work.

Conclusion:

Building a successful blog that generates income requires dedication, strategic planning, and high-quality content. In today’s digital age, there are numerous opportunities to make money online through blogging. By utilizing a combination of methods such as affiliate marketing, sponsored content, and selling digital products or services, you can leverage your blog’s potential and achieve financial success.

Remember, consistency in posting, engaging with your audience, and staying adaptable to trends are key to thriving in the ever-evolving blogosphere. Embrace new strategies, refine your approaches, and always keep your readers at the forefront of your content creation journey. With dedication and the right approach, your blog has the potential to become a valuable source of income and a platform for sharing your knowledge and passion with the world, making money online while doing what you love.

Image Credit: DepositPhotos



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Snapchat Explores New Messaging Retention Feature: A Game-Changer or Risky Move?

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Snapchat Explores New Messaging Retention Feature: A Game-Changer or Risky Move?

In a recent announcement, Snapchat revealed a groundbreaking update that challenges its traditional design ethos. The platform is experimenting with an option that allows users to defy the 24-hour auto-delete rule, a feature synonymous with Snapchat’s ephemeral messaging model.

The proposed change aims to introduce a “Never delete” option in messaging retention settings, aligning Snapchat more closely with conventional messaging apps. While this move may blur Snapchat’s distinctive selling point, Snap appears convinced of its necessity.

According to Snap, the decision stems from user feedback and a commitment to innovation based on user needs. The company aims to provide greater flexibility and control over conversations, catering to the preferences of its community.

Currently undergoing trials in select markets, the new feature empowers users to adjust retention settings on a conversation-by-conversation basis. Flexibility remains paramount, with participants able to modify settings within chats and receive in-chat notifications to ensure transparency.

Snapchat underscores that the default auto-delete feature will persist, reinforcing its design philosophy centered on ephemerality. However, with the app gaining traction as a primary messaging platform, the option offers users a means to preserve longer chat histories.

The update marks a pivotal moment for Snapchat, renowned for its disappearing message premise, especially popular among younger demographics. Retaining this focus has been pivotal to Snapchat’s identity, but the shift suggests a broader strategy aimed at diversifying its user base.

This strategy may appeal particularly to older demographics, potentially extending Snapchat’s relevance as users age. By emulating features of conventional messaging platforms, Snapchat seeks to enhance its appeal and broaden its reach.

Yet, the introduction of message retention poses questions about Snapchat’s uniqueness. While addressing user demands, the risk of diluting Snapchat’s distinctiveness looms large.

As Snapchat ventures into uncharted territory, the outcome of this experiment remains uncertain. Will message retention propel Snapchat to new heights, or will it compromise the platform’s uniqueness?

Only time will tell.

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Catering to specific audience boosts your business, says accountant turned coach

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Catering to specific audience boosts your business, says accountant turned coach

While it is tempting to try to appeal to a broad audience, the founder of alcohol-free coaching service Just the Tonic, Sandra Parker, believes the best thing you can do for your business is focus on your niche. Here’s how she did just that.

When running a business, reaching out to as many clients as possible can be tempting. But it also risks making your marketing “too generic,” warns Sandra Parker, the founder of Just The Tonic Coaching.

“From the very start of my business, I knew exactly who I could help and who I couldn’t,” Parker told My Biggest Lessons.

Parker struggled with alcohol dependence as a young professional. Today, her business targets high-achieving individuals who face challenges similar to those she had early in her career.

“I understand their frustrations, I understand their fears, and I understand their coping mechanisms and the stories they’re telling themselves,” Parker said. “Because of that, I’m able to market very effectively, to speak in a language that they understand, and am able to reach them.” 

“I believe that it’s really important that you know exactly who your customer or your client is, and you target them, and you resist the temptation to make your marketing too generic to try and reach everyone,” she explained.

“If you speak specifically to your target clients, you will reach them, and I believe that’s the way that you’re going to be more successful.

Watch the video for more of Sandra Parker’s biggest lessons.

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