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May 2013

June 11, 2013

Things were generally down for me in May.  Traffic was down from around 72k in April to just over 61k in May.  This is probably partly due to my problems with the previous hosting company and the migration to the new host, but I’m not sure I can really blame it all on that.  Traffic seems to be down sort of generally, and I suspect the weather has more to do with it than anything.

My earnings were down from last month, too.  My grand total was $85.08, which is actually not far from last month if you deduct the extra $100 event I did in April.  No opportunities like that presented themselves in May.  Here is the amazing breakdown:

HyperX: $50.74
AdSense: $33.98
Amazon: $0.36 (jealous?)

I keep feeling like I could do better with AdSense, but I haven’t really had much desire to learn it.  Besides that, I keep hearing horrible stories of people being banned from AdSense for no apparent reason, without any hope of reinstatement.  I just don’t think I can count on Google to provide my income.  At the very least, I don’t want all my eggs in that basket.

I had a phone consultation this week with a guy who suggested I find private sponsors instead of using an ad network.  I told him it sounded hard to find them, and hard to manage, but he seemed to think I could make a fair amount more money, and they wouldn’t be too hard to find.  The next day, he sent me the contact info of a woman who he seemed to think might want to try it out for a month at $100, but she never replied to my e-mail, so I’m not sure that will turn into anything.

Social media stats are up across the board:

Facebook: 1071
Twitter: 937
Google +: 786
Pinterest: 2591
Instagram: 206
E-mail: 284
Klout: 63

It felt good to cross that magical 1000 number with the Facebook fans, but I did nothing to celebrate or acknowledge it.  Perhaps I should have.  The real gem is the e-mail subscribers, and I do for sure need to work on growing that number.  After talking with the same consultant, I do think I should be doing a separate newsletter 1-2x/month that I can use to make some money.  This is where I could use affiliate programs, or promote my own products.

I talked to my publisher friend this month about my granola book, and how frustrated I was with it.  We ended up deciding to do 10 books with 10 recipes each.  We started with “10 Summer Mocktails” and amazingly, it’s already basically done!  I have made and photographed all the mocktails, and had a cover designed, and she is just finishing up the editing.  Yay!  I will try to finish one about summer salads in the next couple weeks, but this will be a bit harder.  I used about 5 recipes I had on my site already for the Mocktail book, but I have zero salads on my site, so I’m starting from scratch.  I many end up doing that granola book after all!

LESSONS FROM JUNE:

  • Whatever I’m doing on G+ is working.  While my numbers were down across the board, traffic from Google was actually up this month.
  • I talked to a friend about resistance, which is what led to my change in e-book plans.  She said if you feel resistance, like something is just way harder than it should be, and you’ve tried to push through it but can’t, then it is probably time for a new plan.  It’s amazing how fast that mocktail book came together after how difficult the granola book was.
  • Good hosting is worth it’s weight in gold.

ACCOUNTABILITY TO LAST MONTH’S GOALS:

  • Keep learning G+?  Sort of.  I did find some systems to help me, but I have really been neglecting it lately.  I just really hate using G+.  Maybe I should start learning Bing instead, in case the world starts to hate Google.
  • Granola Book?  Again, sort of.  Nothing specifically on the granola, but I did re-negotiate the plan, and book 1 of 10 is done already.  Can’t feel bad about that.
  • Editorial Calendar changes?  Done.  In my head, anyway.  I’ve decide to post on Mondays and Thursdays, and just rotate through cookies, desserts, and snacks/breakfast/beverages.  I could stand to get more specific here, though.
  • Find new ways to get paid?  Kind of frustrated about this.  I contacted TapInfluence TWICE and they never got back to me.  Pollinate has been useless, as has Business 2 Blogger and SITS.  I’m starting to doubt that this is my path to wealth.  I may just focus on private sponsors.
  • Streamline plugins? Again, sort of.  I disabled several during the blog migration.  Some will end up being gone for good, but some need to get up and running again.

GOALS FOR JUNE:

  • Finish the salad book.
  • Get through the 4th of July group post.
  • Increase my G+ posting.
  • Do at least one newsletter for my e-mail subscribers.

Honestly, that’s probably enough for this month.  I’ve been feeling really overwhelmed, and I want to leave a little more time for my kids this summer.  I have some other personal projects that will require my time as well, so I think I’ll keep it light this month.

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