Smart phones can be and are used sometimes as internet marketing tools. It’s kind of exciting that the new BlackBerry phones are finally arriving. BlackBerry is now the new name for the company that makes them too. No more RIM or Research In Motion. BlackBerry is a cool name that stems from the famous keyboards and their shape with small buttons that looked like the fruit used on the classic first mobile phones made by the company.

The new BlackBerry smart phones Z10 and Q10 are here and soon to be available to be purchased widely.

Look at the picture of the Z10 with 4.2 inch screen for which there is already available a screen protector for less than ten dollars.

Will people buy them in large enough numbers to strengthen the company and make it regain some of the lost market share?

I personally think so but some people think that the opposite will happen. Watch the video below to witness a discussion on this subject. It’s not just opinions either. Some facts you may not know are revealed inside the video too.

So what do you think about the discussion and which of the opinions expressed there do you lean towards?

For those of you who haven’t yet watched the video, I have a request: Have a look at it. Even if you favor the iPhone, the Z10 actually has almost the same size of screen as the iPhone 5 (just 0.2 of an inch longer) and it looks a bit similar, or if you dig the Samsung smart phones with their increasingly larger and larger screens, there is something in the video about your gadgets and the companies that make them too.

After watching the video or even if you skipped doing that, not so cool behavior LOL, what do you think will become of BlackBerry?

Will they do much better than just survive, will they barely survive and be bought by another company or will they slowly disappear from the scene?

Leave your comment and expand on why you think what you think will happen.

Then like the post on Facebook, tweet it and google+ it and bookmark it so that more people will find it and join the discussion.

Authored by Vance Sova


Is Google A Bully That You Have To Suck Up To?

Last night I published a review post inside of which I remarked on the fact that Google search results aren’t still showing the most valuable stuff at the top or near the top in spite of all their recent updates. I also mentioned the subject for which posts in languages other than English were higher in search results than some posts in English and that keyword baiting posts were close to the top. I added two more unflattering remarks about Google further down the post which you can read here.

The punishment for doing that was swift. Within a few short hours the PR of my blog was degraded and the search results for my main keywords, like email list building, went down by 4 pages.

I wrote those things because they were true and because it was something that I could plainly see and couldn’t ignore and not because I like Google bashing or hate Google. In fact, if you go back through my blog and read what I wrote about Google, you will find that, with a few exceptions that express my puzzlement about why they do certain things, what I wrote about them is pretty positive.

Update: After a long time the distorted display in Chrome of some pages that I wrote about in one of my previous posts has been finally fixed and Chrome now displays them as well as Firefox. I have noticed it just now at 1:50 p.m PST on Monday, February 04, 2013, although it could have been fixed a few days ago but not much longer than that.

Update 2: 

Since this particular post was published my blog was knocked down by further 6 pages in Google search results. Any comments on that? This update is as of February 06, 2013. Below is the text of the original post.

A few months ago I created a category called “Understanding Google” because I’m not the only one who doesn’t always understand what they are doing and especially the reasons why they do it.

I do not begrudge Google their dominant position and I always wanted to believe that they didn’t abuse it. However, if they do abuse their position I’m not going to turn a blind eye to it.

What do you think is going on? Could it be a pure coincidence that within hours of my post in which I state what I clearly observe about Google, which happens to be unflattering to them, my blog’s PR is degraded and my blog’s placement in search results for my key keyword phrases is knocked down by 3 to 4 pages?

If it’s not a coincidence but a punishment for daring to say what I believe is the truth, then I wonder where we are. That would be a very depressing state of affairs. It would be like living in a communist system during the Cold War where everything is censored, where almost everybody is afraid to speak the truth because they don’t want to go to jail and have the members of their own family and even distant relatives punished for it too.

Today I have also noticed that the blogs whose authors are in a large number of Google+ circles are placed high in Google search results. That could be just a reward for being popular. But the fact that a very few significant online people that I know are very active on Google+ makes me wonder if Google rewards those who are very active there the same way that very active communist party members were rewarded in the Cold War era by the communist monster machine.

Could we be in Orwell’s kind of era with Google lording it over?

I hope not but it sure seems to increasingly look like it.

What do you think, am I stretching this too far or is there something to what I just wrote? Go ahead and make a comment.

Are you going to stay low and like a sheep bleat whatever Google wants to hear or are you going to speak the truth as you see it, no matter how you may be punished for it by the almighty Google?

Tweet the post, like it on Facebook, you can even google+ it and bookmark it so that others can find and read the post and join the conversation.


Authored by Vance Sova


The first thing John Chow says in the video on top of the module 6 about monetizing your blog is “don’t do it until you establish your reader base.” Then he goes on to say to go and review the module on List Building. He recommends that you go over all the 5 modules covered so far but the module on list building is especially important.

According to John Chow, most bloggers monetize their blogs with advertising too soon. They send their first time readers away, through the ads, never to see them come back to their blog again, for a few cents that they may get from Google Adsense or whatever.

A Note on Current Google Search Results

By the way, as of Febuary 03, 2013 two of my Blogging with John Chow review posts are found in Google search results placed #634 and 635. Granted it’s not bad out of around 2.5 million results but on the other hand it’s a placing well behind classical trick review posts with “Is It A Scam?” or “Don’t Buy Before You Read This” in their titles and reviews in languages other than English. Perhaps it’s due to the fact that I know John Chow personally and Google doesn’t think that for that reason I’m qualified to write impartial reviews of his products. That could be a valid reason, except that there is nothing in my reviews urging people to buy anything. And how would that explain the posts which are just keyword baiting being much higher in search results? It seems that all the Google updates aren’t still doing the job Google claims they are intended for, which is giving the readers the best results.

Something exciting: Have a look at John Chow in the video below:

Now back to the review of Blogging with John Chow

Blogs = Cash

“… So, when you create a big enough blog with enough readers and update them with fresh, interesting content on a regular basis, you have a petri dish primed for monetization.” Of course this needs to be qualified. Blogs don’t automatically translate to cash. They will at first actually cost you cash.

John Chow points out that even with a lot of traffic, blog monetization is not easy. And monetization is not just for profit. Blogging and things associated with it, like hosting and autoresponder cost money (the two mentioned could cost you easily $300 per month and that’s assuming that your time devoted to blogging is free). So unless you want to be losing money blogging you need to make enough from monetizing your blog to cover your costs.

John goes on to say that: “…Thankfully, the strategies I’m about to show you will do MUCH better than just covering your basic expenses.” Then he shows a graph of how he grew his site.

Create an Editorial Plan

You need to decide what you’re willing to accept as monetization for your blog. While most readers will support your efforts to monetize your blog, you need to be careful with what kinds of ads may be pushing it too far and alienate them.

John offers 7 questions which you should ask yourself before monetizing any components of your site. Below are a few of them:

1. What types of products and services will benefit your readers?

2. What would you be annoyed at if it were on another site you use?

4. Would you personally vouch for the product you are promoting to your readers?

Affiliate Marketing

To John this is the most powerful advertising that is personalized to his audience.

He says that it’s very simple and that it makes an amazing use of the list you created in the previous chapter on list building.

He then in step 1 goes into how to integrate affiliate marketing into your blog, how to find a product you want to promote and he mentions things not to do.

In step 2 he strongly advises to read the promotional materials and to  actually use the product yourself.

In step 3 he advises to write or record a review for the product and gives instructions on how to go about that.

In step 4 John describes how to integrate that review content into your blog and in step 5 how to follow up with your readers.

The above is followed by a list of Recommended Affiliate Marketing Tools,

Recommended Affiliate Marketing Networks and

Using These Tools to Make Money.

Other Forms of Advertising on Your Blog

John explains a bit about each of the following types of ads:

Media Selling, Google Adsense, Amazon Ads, Banners from Affiliate Products.

And here is an excerpt from what he says after that:

“…Your website, as it grows, is a fertile land that increases in value.. As soon as you reach the point where you are comfortable placing ads, take advantage of that traffic and start monetizing.”

Amazon Product Ads

John Chow says that one of the fastest growing forms of affiliate marketing is physical product marketing through the Amazon marketplace and goes on to give 4 reason for this:

It’s Easy,

Those Products Convert,

The World is Your Shopping Cart,

Huge Upsell Opportunities.


John says that what Google became for online search (as imperfect as it is – the remark is mine), Amazon has become for online commerce.

Defining and Charging for Ad Slots

John gives some instructions and pointers on this subject. The main idea is to make sure that you don’t give your ad space too cheaply.

After this section John goes into

Adsense Strategies

Under five headings, he goes quite deeply into this subject which is kind of odd because when he’s done with it you’ll find a headline which says:

Why I Don’t Use AdSense

Under this revealing title he gives several reasons which are:

I Make More Money with My Own Ads,

Controlling What Appears,

Bad Targeting.

He explains what he means next to each reason.

Then he also mentions Google algorithm glitches and repeats what he mentioned close to the top of this module: people leave your site when they click on a Google Ad. (As if this was not enough, Google then goes on to degrade the rating for your site because people don’t stay on it long enough – remark is mine).

This concludes the part 5 of my Blogging with John Chow review. Update September 06, 2017: The course by John Chow reviewed above is no longer available. However the review contains a lot of valuable points and so I have decided to keep the post. There is an excellent course on blogging which is available and it’s by a famous blogger who’s friends with John Chow as well. You can check it out by clicking on the banner below.

You can also watch a video about the famous blogger, his students success and what he has to say about blogging and the online business. That’s at the next link below:

The Next Step

Authored by Vance Sova


List building is probably the most important part of internet marketing. Whether you have an online business or a brick and mortar one, you need to get a list of leads and a list of customers. Otherwise you’ll have no long term, sustainable business.

It helps a lot to have a blog before you start building an email list. If you missed my last 2 review posts of Blogging With John Chow which are about setting up a blog and blog content respectively, click on the links with the word blog in them in this sentence and read those posts.

Now we are ready to have a look at the fifth module of Blogging With John Chow course.

Module 5 – List Building

This module, as all the other modules so far, starts with a video with John Chow. In it John is talking about list building and the importance of starting to build your list right away. This video is over 4 minutes long.

Then, in text form, John in 5 paragraphs talks more about the importance of building a list. He cautions: “…your list needs to be built around the same principles as your blog -value, value, value.”

He also shares one of his emails sent to a fresh subscriber.

The Three Step Process

Step 1 – Bribe People to Join your List

Step 2 – Provide Valuable Information Regularly

Step 3 – Call them to Action

Note: I’d like to politely disagree with the word “bribe” John uses. I prefer to use the words  “give incentive” or “give the reason why” instead.

The word bribe is short and to the point but it’s not really what transpires. Bribe is given in illegal and under the table activities. In honest and legitimate businesses people give free samples, free information or free estimate incentives. Those are good reasons why people are willing to give their contact information.

The note above is just to clarify the intent behind the word John uses. So, please, keep it in mind. It actually becomes very obvious what he means when you read what he says later.

First, the Bribe

In nine paragraphs of text John expands on this theme. He goes on to say things like: “…when you ask someone to sign up to your email list, they must give you information – usually a name and an email address – and for that, you’d better bring the goods.” …”You over deliver. Just like you do in every blog post you write, video you record or image you share…”

What a Good Freebie Looks Like

John lists and describes 6 different options some of which are:

Video Course


Free eBook

After that John shows a screenshot of his site where his freebie and opt in box are visible.

Provide Valuable Information Regularly

In 7 paragraphs John discusses this topic and makes statements like the one below:

“…once you have someone on your list, your number one job is to make sure they stay there.”

The Content Magnet

The key here is consistency. It’s covered in 3 paragraphs.

Reprint and Enhance

John covers some strategies about what kind of information you can send to your subscribers. One of them is to reprint your blog post and send it out with some extra content.

Other Great Content

Send them other content that is not on your blog. For example webinars, free reports, videos. The idea here is to create a relationship with your subscribers.

Call them to Action

John gives a lot of information and very useful points and examples in more than two dozen paragraphs under this heading. I cannot quote everything in this review for obvious reasons. I can’t give away the store. But you can get an idea from the excerpts below:

“This is where you start making your move…When you send an email loaded with content, it should contain at least one call to action. Here’s why. You don’t know how many emails one person will read. If someone only reads one out of every five emails you send, it’s very easy for them to miss a pitch. If you include a pitch in every message, they will see it no matter which message they read.”

There is an example of the kind of email that is likely to drive people away – the hard sell and of an email that is likely to be gratefully accepted – the easy going and personalized soft sell.

Strategies to Build Your List

After four short paragraphs John continues on with

The Squeeze Page

After covering in 2 paragraphs what a squeeze page is in general John says that the traditional blog has the following capture methods:

Sidebar Opt in

Popover Opt in

The sidebar opt in is easily ignored and often is. The popover opt in is harder to ignore but people can close it right away.

The third option which John uses and gives a picture example of from his blog is a squeeze page.

He concludes the text under this heading by saying:

“You can then link to this page from any of your posts. This is effective if you are discussing something directly related to the freebie you are giving away. Don’t oversell  it…But don’t undersell it either…”

Email Suppression

Here John talks about the fact that you will not necessarily want all your emails to go to everyone on your list. Under a paragraph of text on this subject there is a near 6 minute video where John Chow is showing some of his AWeber tricks related to this. Since this is a YouTube video I decided to embed it here.

Watch John Chow’s AWeber Tricks in the video below:

How to Create a Squeeze Page in 10 Minutes

John points out that there are a lot of courses about how to create a squeeze page but if you are in a hurry it doesn’t have to be complicated.

The Headline

“Your headline is the most important part of the page…it should do three things.”

Introduce a Problem

Introduce a Solution

Define the Terms

“Remember, the goal is not to tell your readers what your page does, but to describe to them why they should care…They want to know what’s in it for them.”

The Video

To John Chow making a video seems very simple. He recognizes that to other people it may not be so, which is why he devotes 3 paragraphs to making sure that he points out what is most important to keep in mind and to do when making a video to ensure it’s effective. He also tells you what is usually the best length for this type of video.

The Opt In

After one paragraph of text there are screen shots from setting up the opt in in AWeber autoresponder.

Growing and Monetizing 

Ad Swaps and Solo Ads

A squeeze page works if you can drive traffic to that page. However, if you don’t yet have the traffic coming to your blog, consider these two methods to generate subscribers fast, says John Chow.

He explains in 7 more paragraphs what they are and how they work. While Ad Swaps are not costing money the Solo Ads have to be paid for with your hard earned cash.

Instant Monetization

John is describing a way to cover the cost of Solo Ads which has worked for him in the past in 3 steps.

Step 1 – Create Your Squeeze Page

Step 2 – Create a Thank You Page

Step 3 – Sell Something

Freebie Promotions

“…create a sales page (a bigger and badder version of your squeeze page) and send people there with active promotions.”

The Importance of a List

In different words the importance of building and having an email list is touched on again is four short paragraphs.

That concludes Module 5.

What are your thoughts and views about list building and email marketing? Do you think that it’s as important as everybody seems to be saying?


Comment on this blog post, like it on Facebook, tweet it, google+ it and bookmark it on your favorite bookmarking sites to enable others to find it and to join the conversation.

Update September 06, 2017: This product on blogging by John Chow reviewed above is no longer available. However, there is a suitable alternative course on blogging by a famous blogger. Check it out by clicking on the banner below.

Authored by Vance Sova