4 Ways to Promote Your Blog

4 Ways to Promote Your Blog

One of the big reasons people with a blog have trouble, in the beginning, is because of their lack of promotion. For whatever reason, some people are scared to promote it. They think readers will just automatically come to their site. Life doesn’t work like that. You have to get out and let the world know that your blog exists. Below I’ve compiled four ways that EVERY person can use to help them promote their blog.

Social Media

The first way that you can promote your blog is through social media. The opportunities are endless. You have sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to share your latest post with your friends and followers. If you’re like me, you don’t have the same people on each site so sharing things about your blog on each social media site is a must.

Make sure that you promote your posts several times a day. People are online at different times of the day for various reasons. If you post something in the morning, your followers that work at night might miss it. It’s good to post items at least three times a day.

YouTube

YouTube is the world’s 2nd biggest search engine. Making videos on YouTube gives you a worldwide audience. If your videos are quality, the benefits of uploading them could be huge depending on what your blog is about. You may be asking the question “What if I’m not good at creating videos?” There is a site called Fiverr where you can pay someone $5 to help do multiple tasks. One of the tasks that people can do on there is to create or edit videos for people. Make sure you check Fiverr out when you get a chance.

Word of Mouth

The third way to promote your blog is by using good old fashion word of mouth. I’m not sure why, but people don’t do this as often as they should. You can start off by telling your friends and family members first. Then you can ask them for referrals. Depending on what type of blog you have you can also talk to your colleagues about it.

Make a T-shirt

The last way that you can promote your blog is by getting a couple of shirts made and wear them around the town. I’m actually in the process of getting a few shirts printed that has The Butler Journal on the front. I plan on wearing them to places such as the mall or to sporting events. Make sure you get a couple of extra shirts printed as well. You can give those shirts to friends and family and ask them to wear them every once in a while. You can’t beat that type of free promo.

To summarize, the four ways of promotion that I discussed today are to use social media, create content for YouTube, use word of mouth and make a t-shirt. Since this post is about promoting, make sure you follow me on social media.

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Which one of these ways has worked the best for you when promoting your blog? Do you have any other ways that you have used to promote that was listed?

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5 Haunted Locations in the United States

5 haunted locations in the united states

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Can you believe that Halloween is two weeks away? A lot of people have been watching scary movies or preparing for costume parties all month. Whether you believe in ghost or not, several locations around the U.S. claim to be haunted. I’ve visited a few of these places. Today, I want to share with you five haunted locations in the United States.

Savannah, GA 

If you’ve been following my site, you know that Savannah, GA is one of my favorite cities. I went to college at Savannah State University and ended up living in the city for nearly nine years. During my time there, I have heard a lot of stories about the city being haunted. I have even been on a ghost tour down there.  I’m not 100% sure if I believe in ghost or not but, I will say that some things can’t be explained. I did see a couple of things that I couldn’t explain. Savannah is the oldest city in GA. Some of the areas that are supposedly haunted are Fort Pulaski, Bonaventure Cemetery, The Pirates House Restaurant and the Moon River Brewing Company.

New Orleans

New Orleans has a reputation for being a fun city to visit. That reputation is accurate, but that’s another post for another time. It has also has been labeled as one of the most haunted cities in the country. I have been to New Orleans a few times. I haven’t really seen anything too spooky. Some of the places that are considered to be haunted are St. Louis Cemetery No. 1, La Pavillon Hotel and Canal Street at City Park Avenue.

Alcatraz Penitentiary 

The third location on the list is Alcatraz Penitentiary. It is located in San Francisco, California. The Los Angeles Times described Alcatraz as “the most notorious federal penitentiary that the US has ever known.” Some of the well-known criminals that stayed there were Bumpy Johnson, Al Capone, and George “Machine Gun” Kelly. Alcatraz was very dangerous. There were many deaths and suicides when it was open. Many guards and officials claimed to have experienced supernatural activity. Alcatraz closed in the 1960’s. Today it is currently a museum.

St. Augustine, FL

St. Augustine is the oldest city in the state of Florida. It’s about 30-40 minutes south of Jacksonville. Some of the locations that are said to be haunted are the Spanish Military Hospital, The Old Jail, and the St. Augustine Lighthouse. You can choose from several haunted tours to check out.

Washington, D.C.

Washington, D.C is another area that is reportedly haunted. Several ex-presidents such as Abraham Lincoln and Thomas Jefferson are said to haunt the White House. Some of the other locations that may be haunted are The Capitol, The Octagon House, and The National Theatre.

I’ve been to a few of these cities before. I didn’t see anything spooky in any of them except Savannah. Maybe I need to visit the others in the future to find out if I see anything that I can’t explain.

Do you believe in ghost? Have you ever been to these 5 haunted locations in the United States?

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5 Side Hustle Mistakes to Avoid

5 Side Hustle Mistakes to AvoidWhat’s going on everyone? Raise your hand if you like a good side hustle. I’m sure many of you raised your hands. If you’ve been reading my site for a while, you know that I love a good side hustle. Side hustling has changed my life. I’ve been able to pay off some debt, save an emergency fund and do other things because of the side hustles.

Over the years, I’ve done several side hustles such as selling mix CDs. Selling t-shirts, freelance writing and flipping items on eBay. Those side hustles have done pretty well for me. That’s not always the case. I’ve made some side hustle mistakes over the years. If you are a side hustler, I’m sure you have as well. In today’s post, I want to share with you several side hustle mistakes that people can make.

Doing too many things at once

Sometimes people can want to change their financial situation so badly that they try to do multiple side hustles at one time. In most cases that will not work. Attempting to do too many side hustles is not the best idea. You can spread yourself way too thin. For example, how could you expect to make a lot of side hustle money if you are driving for Uber, freelance writing, doing odd jobs and taking surveys on Swagbucks? You won’t make nearly as much money trying to do all four of them as you would if you focused on two. I’d focus on the two that you like best.

In the past, I made a huge mistake trying to do too many side hustles. I failed miserably. My side hustle income started growing for the better when I focused on 2-3 side hustles. Narrowing down your list can be difficult for some, but you have to focus on 2-3 of them. Once you start making money from a couple of them and have a good system in place, then you can try some more. Just make sure that the income from the successful side hustles doesn’t suffer. You should also try a new side hustle if your previous ones didn’t make any money.

Not understanding a side hustle

Sometimes people attempt a side hustle without truly understanding it all the way. They do it because they see everyone else doing it. Doing that will waste your time, and it will potentially cost you money. I’ve seen a lot of people start blogging as a side hustle. They saw others doing it and immediately jumped into it. Three months later, they’ve stopped blogging and they also wasted money on a domain and hosting. They didn’t understand the work that comes with maintaining a successful blog. Before you choose a side hustle, make sure that you know everything about it. You will save yourself time and money by doing that.




Pyramid Schemes

I hate pyramid schemes. I fell for two of them before. I’ll discuss one of them here. The summer after my freshman year in college, I joined a company that promoted Noni Juice. Back then, Noni juice was the wave. The juice was made in Tahiti. It supposedly helped people with a lot of ailments such as high blood pressure and weight loss. It also was supposed to give people more energy. They had a great payout plan that showed how much money you could make with the company. All you had to do was pay a one-time startup fee, a monthly fee and sell about four bottles of the juice per month (The juice cost $40 per bottle). You could also make money by getting people to sign up under you. You would get a percentage of their sales each month.

As a 19-year-old, I ate that shit up. I couldn’t wait to make a lot of money selling Noni juice. A few months went by, and I quit. It was harder than I thought it would be. I sold about 5-6 bottles during my time. For selling those bottles, I got for a whopping $18. At that moment, I was angry that I wasted my time. Now I’m glad that I went through that experience. It was a hell of a learning lesson. I try to help my friends now and steer them clear of pyramid schemes.

If you’re on FB, you’ve seen several of these pyramid schemes over the years. Wake up now, 5 Linx, and Iso Tea is just a few of them that were out there. The people that used to bug you and jump in your inbox asking you if you had time to come to a presentation were not making any real money. If they were, all their posts wouldn’t be about trying to get 5 – 10 more people to sign up.

Doing a side hustle because your friends are

We all have friends that do different side hustles. Some of them may want you to join a program or participate in a side hustle that they are doing If you are not comfortable with it, then don’t do it. You don’t owe your friends anything. If they keep asking or bugging you, ignore them. It may not be easy, but you can’t afford to waste your time doing a side hustle that you are not interested in.

Rates too low

This is another mistake that I made. When I first started freelancing, my rates were too low. I was just happy to have clients. That was one of the biggest mistakes that I made. I should have raised my rates earlier. I was writing a lot and not making nearly enough. After discussing things with my mastermind group, I doubled my rates. It made a big difference.

If you provide a service to someone make sure that you review your rates. Time is money. There is no reason that you shortchange yourself. Most of your clients shouldn’t have a problem if you raise your rates. If they do, you’ll find other clients that value you.

Many people including myself have made side hustle mistakes over the years. They happen from time to time. Don’t beat yourself up if you’ve made one. Learn from it and move on.

What side hustle mistakes have you made?

 

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College Planning For High School Students

College Planning For High School StudentsWhat’s going on everyone? Do you remember what high school was like? High school was alright for me. I graduated more than fifteen years ago. I remember going to football and basketball games. Once 11th grade came around, I knew that it was time to start focusing on my future. I knew that I wanted to go to college, but didn’t know exactly what to do. Thankfully, I had people such as my mentor and my mom to help me out.

Today I want to go over college planning for high school students. I will have some tips for juniors and seniors.

Junior Year

Make a list of possible majors and careers

You might not know exactly what you want to do in life and that’s fine. However, you should write down a list of things that interest you. Think about what kind of career that you may way to have. Don’t worry if you get stuck. I changed my major a couple of times in college.

Make a list of colleges that you’re interested in

Create a list of colleges that you are interested. Make sure that the major that you are considering is offered at the school. Your list should have at least five schools on there. You can add or subtract schools from your list after you do more research. The list of schools that I considered going to was Savannah State University, Johnson C. Smith University, FAMU, North Carolina A&T and Morris Brown.

Schedule visits

Schedule visits to the schools that you are interested in. This should be down in the springtime. If you’re tight on money, visit one or two of your choices. I only visited Savannah State. That was enough for me. I chose to continue my education at SSU.

Create a calendar

Make a calendar with dates and deadlines for important tests, applications, and paperwork. This is crucial. You want to make sure that you adhere to all deadlines. Turning something in late or not at all could jeopardize your college decision.

Talk to your guidance counselor

If you don’t know who the guidance counselor is, take some time to get to know them. They will help you with any questions that you have about high school and college. They will also be able to guide you towards scholarship opportunities

Make sure that you are progressing towards graduation

Continue to attend class and make good grades. As a junior, you can’t afford to slack up. You haven’t even made it to the 12th grade yet. Stay focused and keep your GPA up.

Register for all senior year courses that you need for graduation

When it’s time to register for your senior classes, make sure you choose the right ones. You want to make sure that all your classes and that you will be able to graduate next May or June without any problems.

Start Testing

You should take the PSAT in October. It’s required for you to be eligible for National Merit, National Achievement, or National Hispanic Scholarships. The PSAT will also give you practice for the SAT as well.

Take the ACT/SAT

You do not need to take both exams unless you want to. Schools accept both exams, but you only need to take one. I only took the SAT while I was in high school.

Register early

Register at least a month before the test. It will give you ample time to study and prepare. The ACT/SAT aren’t easy tests. You can’t just walk in off the street and expect to get a high score. Taking time to study and prep will help you though.

AP Courses

If you plan on taking AP courses, register to take them in the spring.

Build your resume

Get involved with extracurricular activities, volunteer projects and sports that you enjoy. There are various clubs that you can join. Figure out what you’re interested in and check them out. I wish I would have participated in more groups in high school.

Portfolio

Create a portfolio of your best papers, reports, and projects. Highlight your special skills and interests. If you won any awards, make sure you have some documentation and list that on your resume.

Get a summer job or internship

People love to chill and relax during the summer. You can do that later. This is the time for you to either get a job or an internship. Both opportunities can help you out in the long run. Your summer job can help you pay for the college application fees. Your internship can give you a foot in the door for a possible career after you get our college degree.




Explore your financial options

Attend an open house and financial aid workshops at your colleges of interest. This is key. Some people don’t go to college because they think they can’t afford it. At financial workshops, the speakers will go over different options. That can include scholarships, grants, and loans.

Scholarships

There are thousands of scholarships out there. You just have to find them. There are several places to look for them. I wrote a post featuring ten places to look for scholarships. Check it out here.

Senior Year

Complete testing

If you haven’t taken to ACT or SAT yet, take it.  Don’t forget to register for the test at least one month in advance.

Make your decisions and apply to colleges

Remember that list of schools that you came up with during your junior year? It is now time to apply to the schools that you are still considering. Make sure that you fully complete the applications. Also, make sure that you have the money ready for the application fees.

Copies

Keep copies of everything you submit and make note of submission dates. You need those things for your records.

Admission Packets

If you receive an admission packet, follow all directions for acceptance, orientation, and other requirements. Read through the information thoroughly.

Continue building your resume

Keep a file of important documents and notes, including copies of report cards, test scores, and lists of awards and honors.

Leadership opportunities

Assume leadership roles in school and extra-curricular clubs, activities, and sports. Doing that will help to shape you as a person. Leadership opportunities also show that you are good with people.

Apply for the FAFSA which is available after January 1st

The FAFSA is the free application for federal student aid. It determines your eligibility for federal financial aid. It is good to apply for financial aid as soon as possible.

Deadlines

Make sure that you pay attention to deadlines. The colleges that you apply to will have a priority financial aid deadline. Make sure that you turn in ever document before that date.

Continue to search for scholarships

I’m not a fan of student loan debt. It’s one of the reasons I still can’t do some things that I want to in life. My suggestion for you is to continue your scholarship search. The money is out there, but you have to go out and find it. Here’s the link some scholarships again.

Successfully finish high school

Senioritis is real. Halfway through my senior year, I began to feel it. You will too, but don’t let it stop you. Stay on course to complete all of your core classwork for graduation.

Transcripts

Request that your high school sends your official transcript to the college that you decide to choose.

Decide on a school to attend

Once you started receiving acceptance letters, decide which school you want to attend. Send back all corresponding info to the school. Review your award letter and make sure that everything looks good. If you have any questions, call the school.

Preparing for college can be tricky if you don’t know what to do. Hopefully, this post has made college planning for high school students just a little easier.

 

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What To Do If You Are Looking For a New Job

What To Do If You Are Looking For a New JobA few years ago I was in between jobs. I tried doing my own thing but realized that it was best to go back to working a full-time job again. It took me 8 months, but I was able to finally get another full-time job. A lot happened during that time. I applied to hundreds of jobs. I also worked two part gigs. I had to have some money coming in so I didn’t care where it was coming from.

In today’s post, I want to share with you different things that you can do if you are looking for a new job.

Continue to apply

One thing that you have to do is to continue to apply for jobs. Even if you apply and don’t hear anything back, continue to do it. It’s a numbers game. Your next job could be around the corner. I made it a habit to apply to about 40 jobs each week.  You have to keep applying. You won’t get a job without doing so.

Update your resume

The next thing that you should do is make sure that your resume is up to date. I update my resume whenever I get a new job. I also added relevant skills to it. Depending on your situation, it may be good to have a couple of different versions of your resume available.

Customize your cover letter for each position

This may take a little more time, but you want to make sure that you customize your cover letter for each job that you are applying for. Different jobs call for different skills. Your cover letter should state that you have skills for the particular position. A generic cover letter will not work. I can’t lie, I used to be lazy and use one. That’s probably the reason that I didn’t have more interviews when I was applying for jobs a few years ago.

Don’t let emotions get the best of you

We’re all human. We get frustrated from time to time. Don’t let looking for a full-time gig get you riled up emotionally. Things happen for a reason. Even though it may be hard, stay positive. If you get a lot of rejections, keep going. Your new job will be on the was sooner than later.

Apply for legit companies

During my last job search, I saw that certain sites allow scammers to put fake jobs on their websites. There are so many scams out there asking people to send money or ask them to deposit checks in their account when they haven’t even done any work. Don’t fall for any of those scams. My advice is to look for work on legitimate websites such as Indeed and Career Builder. I am on the fence with Craigslist. They don’t usually have that many good jobs in the Atlanta area. It may be different for you though depending on where you live.

Don’t just apply for any job

Typically I wouldn’t just apply for any type of job. I’d only apply for jobs that you’re interested in. If you’re not working, by all means, apply for any and everything so that you can get some money coming in. If you are working part-time, apply for jobs that you qualify for or think that you could do.

Continue to utilize your network

This is something that everyone should do, but they don’t. You should utilize your network. Utilizing your network can yield big returns. If you think you don’t have a network think again. If you have a Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn account you have a network. Networking with those people can lead you to your next full-time job.

Looking for a job can take a while. Some people are lucky and can get hired quickly, while it takes a while for others. It took me 8 months to get a full-time position again. As long as you keep applying and staying focused, you will get hired again.

What is the longest that you went without a full-time job? What are some things that you did when you were looking for a new job?

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Assemble Your Own Career From A Gig

Assemble Your Own Career From A GigMost of us grew up in a world where the professional career reigned. In the decades that followed the era encapsulated in Mad Men, the model for family life was a wife that stayed at home with the kids and the housework, and a husband who toiled in an office during the daylight hours. A career was the engine by which life was fostered, and a county’s quota for factory workers and foot soldiers was met.

Today, more and more people are departing this model, because for many, it is no longer necessary. The country doesn’t need hundreds of thousands of manly men to labor in industrial factories, or risk their lives by the millions in ethically dubious international wars. Despite the cultural turmoil of this age, we live in an era of relative peace and prosperity, where most modern people don’t have to constantly struggle to survive. Work is becoming a question of personal fulfillment, not as the only possible means by which to meet basic survival needs.

Good paying jobs are also becoming more specialized. People who get the juiciest science, technology, engineering and mathematics jobs are few and far between. Where fifty years ago a community might be able to churn out 100 adequately paid low-mid-skilled workers, the same community may only produce 1 or 2 specialists who are employable at a high level in this era of innovation.

All of these factors conspire to produce the gig economy we are currently enjoying. People who are not suited to a specialized career, because of education, personal lifestyle, or personality, are able to trawl the internet and their local region for small jobs which, when combined with others, can provide all the income opportunities of a traditional career, without the hassle of going into the office everyday and forever performing the same task.


This is not to say that these gigs require less sophistication than traditional day jobs. They simply result from the decentralization that is disrupting modern employment. Spoiler alert: the internet did it.

New users are flocking to spread betting brokers like ETX both as an opportunity for regular cash infusions in a career built from diverse income sources, and as a way to learn the skills and knowledge that makes great traditional investors. All of this can be performed on a computer, with research about commodities, currencies, securities, and various assets that can be found from commonly available news and research sources. New users won’t become professional investors overnight, but it’s easy to see how this kind of work can teach important skills while being a novel income source.

Individuals are also flocking to various freelancing opportunities that the internet makes available to all. Companies are learning that it’s easier to employ some workers who will never set foot in the main office. These workers are cheaper because they don’t have to be insured and because their ongoing employment depends on a consistent level of productivity. In exchange, these freelancers get freedom of schedule and location, without the stresses and commute of a normal work life.

As the push for nationalized health care and other benefit programs seem ever more likely to pass in the coming years, it’s easy to imagine a much larger gig economy, one where workers choose various small jobs that fit their skills and enjoyment. While some enjoy traditional careers, the rest won’t be tied to an office. Employment will become ever more international and employees with me more location-independent. The gig economy is only going to grow, despite heated arguments to the contrary. So why not start now? It may take some effort, but you can cobble together an amazing career for yourself, with work from many sources.

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September 2017 Round Up

September 2017 Round Up

Happy Friday everyone. My second post for today is my September 2017 round up. Every two months, I share ten articles that I enjoyed. Check out this month’s entries.

Chonce from My Debt Epiphany gives us  5 Unexpected Truths About Self-Employment. This is an excellent read for all my entrepreneurs out there.

Lauren from Financial Best Life gets real in this post. She tells us Why She Quit Being an Entrepreneur.

Billy courtesy of Budgets Are Sexy tells us How He Survived Prison and Accidentally Found His Path to Wealth.

Blossom from Young Adult Money writes How I Pay Off My Debt While Still In School.

This next post is for my sports fans. Maximum Cents tells us Don’t Gamble Away Your Sundays.




Frugal Asian Finance shares with us 5 Downsides of Personal Finance Blogging.

Alexis from Fitnancials tells us 17 Jobs That Pay Up to $65,000 A Year With No College Degree.

Francisco from Passive Income Wise shows us How He Tripled His Affiliate Income in 4 Months.

The Wall Street Playboys tell us that Human Nature and How to Profit From It.

Kim from Work Hard Travel Well gives us 6 Lessons Travel Has Taught Her. I know that a lot of people can relate to #4.

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