Blog Carnivals: An Inexpensive Way to Promote Your Business Website

Do you have a weblog for your SMB (small to medium business)? Want a no-cost, effective way to promote your weblog and thus your business? Do you have a couple of hours per week to spend doing a bit of promotion?

The answer is Blog Carnivals, and you can utilize them in two effective ways:

  1. Submitting articles to get exposure at “host” weblogs.
  2. Hosting a carnival, which draws web traffic and hyperlinks from other weblogs.

Here are some of the benefits of participating in blog carnivals:

  1. Have an inexpensive (as in free) way to promote your weblog, website and business.
  2. Gain exposure to other like-minded bloggers and possibly business owners.
  3. Gain exposure to readers of other link-minded bloggers’ blogs.
  4. Get links back to your weblog, which builds both reader traffic and authority in the search engines.
  5. Gain authority about a certain topic, either by submitting quality articles, or by choosing quality article submissions for your own carnival. (There’s no rule that says you must accept everything, but be diplomatic about it. Or simply don’t mention anything that’s been left out.)

You do not necessarily need to start a new carnival. Search the massive list at the Blog Carnival website. Find a dozen or so suitable carnivals, preferably weekly, and try to submit your best article of the week to your list.

Note: Many carnival hosts do not like multiple submissions from one blogger for the same edition. Err on the side of caution and only submit one per week, if a carnival is weekly. Some are bi-weekly or longer between editions. So if you start submitting to a lot of carnivals, track submissions in a spreadsheet. I like to use Google Docs and Spreadsheets because you can click on an URL and have a browser window open to that page. Everything stays in a browser framework. This makes it far easier track and submit articles each week, especially if you use a multi-tabbed web browser such as Mozilla/ Firefox, Netscape or Opera.

If you want to host a carnival, check existing ones. Hosts will often state that they’re looking for rotating hosts. If you don’t find anything suitable, you can consider starting your own carnival. However, before you do, consider a few things:

  1. Build a bit of authority for your blog first, possibly by submitting to carnivals for a few weeks.
  2. It takes time to look over entries. You could cheat and let every submission in. The Blog Carnival has a new feature where they automatically generate the HTML code for a carnival edition based on all pending submissions. It takes 5 seconds instead of a an hour or more to read entries. But if you do this, without filtering entries, you may end up with some poor quality articles and thus lose any authority your blog has gained.
  3. Don’t be afraid to reject a submission if it does not seem relevant or is just an article trying to sell something via an affiliate link. People make mistakes or just don’t followed instructions about what type of articles a carnival is looking for. One oddity taking place is use of software that chops up a real article and rearranges it into what appears to a new article. And then someone will submit this to a carnival You do not want to publish links to this sort of garbage.

It takes a bit of effort and organization, but if you utilize blog carnivals on a regular basis, it can be a powerful way to build up your weblog and business.


Carnival of Small Business and Startups #1

Welcome to the first edition of the Small Business and Startups. As many entries as possible have been including, based on my time to read through each. Here are the first 20 entries. If your entry is not here, it may appear in the next edition, unless it is either not relevant to the Carnival theme, promotes your services, or promotes specific affiliate products.

If you did make it in to this edition, please give a link back as soon as you can. Preference for subsequent entries is given to new bloggers (those not already selected in an edition) and those who have linked back to editions they’ve been in. If you submit regularly, and get in but don’t link back, then your own readers don’t benefit with opportunity of being introduced to other blogs – which is part of the reason for a blog carnival: networking.

Where provided, summaries of articles have been published here, though in future editions, I will try to provide my own summaries. Enjoy.

  1. How to Start an Online Store by Ant of The Beef Jerky Blog.
  2. The Lawsuit Risks of Having a Website by Michelle Cramer of Great FX Small Business Tips. “In a lawsuit-happy world, just having a website, an essential part of today’s successful business, can result in a courtroom battle. This post lists some things to look out for.”
  3. 20 Ways to Add Value to Your Products and Services by Terry Dean of Integrity Business Blog.
  4. How to Gain a Big Advantage by Being Small by Mason Hipp of SmallFuel Marketing Blog. “An article that explores the various advantages small business owners have over bigger businesses.”
  5. John Assaraf and Murray Smith Interview by Scott Allen of About Entrepreneurs. “John Assaraf (one of the stars of “The Secret”) and Murray Smith (of Indian Motorcycle fame) talk with About.com Entrepreneurs Guide Scott Allen about entrepreneurial passion, success mindset, learning from failure, Law of Attraction, changing the world. Audio and full transcript both included.”
  6. Get More Web Site Traffic, Increase Web Site Conversion & Strategic Customer Acquisition by Jason Koeppe of Jason Koeppe’s Strategic Internet Marketing Blog.
  7. 7 Phrases Successful People Would Never Say by Edith Yeung of Edith Yeung.Com: Dream. Think. Act.
  8. How a Failing Restaurant’s Rebound can Help You Build Your List by Leo Dimilo of Idiot Affiliate.
  9. 10 Hot Blog Traffic Tips to try today! by Eve Lester of WordPress ReWorked.
  10. 5 Best Ways to Keep Your Clients by Darrell A. Williams of Right-Hand-Man Virtual Assistant Services – BLOG.
  11. Making a Great Impression With Customers by Krishna De of Biz Growth News.
  12. How To Come Up With Good Business Ideas by Warren Wong of INTJ Personal Development.
  13. Building a plan Part 4a: Get to know your team (New Hires) by Karl Goldfield of Coaching Sales Champions.
  14. 6 Tips to Recovering From a Typo in Your Printed Sales Letter or Brochure by Jim Logan of BusinessLeaderCentral.com. “It’s a nightmare situation, one without explanation or excuse. You have a tight budget, little room for financial error, and somehow it happened. You spent the money to print 5000 sales letters or brochures and afterwards discovered a typo. After you kick yourself repeatedly, here’s what you can do.”
  15. Discounts Abound for Small-Business Owners by George Courtney Jr of The Authentic Bartender Blog.
  16. Business 101: Teaching Myself Entrepreneurship by Silicon Valley Blogger of The Digerati Life.
  17. Create Your Treasure Map To Riches by Millionaire Mommy Next Door of Millionaire Mommy Next Door.
  18. Find your Sweet Spot by Skip Shuda of The Cheap Revolution. Startup advice, free and cost-effective (cheap) resources and some deep thinking about technology entrepreneurs and their startups.
  19. End-to-End Online Marketing by Chris Denny of Lead Optimize. Tighten up all aspects of your online marketing to turn your visitors into customers.
  20. How to Make $100,000 a Year, $7 At a Time by CapForge of CapForge.

Note: Several of the submissions were good articles but they were about finding work-at-home jobs, which this carnival is not about. This carnival targets existing small businesses and startups, or entrepreneurs on the verge. What advice can you give them – business and technical – to help them towards success. There’s a wide spectrum of topics, including branding, identity, marketing, hiring, online efforts, success, productivity and more.

Other types of articles not included are those not relevant or promoting services or an affiliate product. If you have an article that you think fits in, please use the Blog Carnival submission form. One entry per person per week (Monday through Sunday), please.


Carnival of Small Business and Startups #2

Welcome to the second edition of the Small Business and Startups. As many entries as possible have been including, based on my time to read through each. If your entry is not here, it may appear in the next edition, unless it is either not relevant to the Carnival theme, promotes your services, or promotes specific affiliate products.

If you did make it in to this edition, please give a link back as soon as you can. Preference for subsequent entries is given to new bloggers (those not already selected in an edition) and those who have linked back to editions they’ve been in. If you submit regularly, and get in but don’t link back, then your own readers don’t benefit with opportunity of being introduced to other blogs – which is part of the reason for a blog carnival: networking.

Where provided, summaries of articles have been published here, though in future editions, I will try to provide my own summaries, when time permits. Enjoy.

  1. Entrepreneurship 101: Is Entrepreneurship Right For You? by Daniel Sweet of Free Resume And Career Toolbox Blog. It’s an unfortunate truth that not everyone is capable of entrepreneurial success. It takes a certain kind of personality. Daniel has a new series of articles that may help you determine if entrepreneurship suits you. This one is the index, along with an introduction.
  2. Get More Done with Activity Logs by Dr. Robert Karlsberg of The Road to CEO blog. Having trouble with your productivity? Dr. Karlsberg discusses how keeping activity logs can benefit you, and offers a PDF download of a sample log sheet.
  3. 10 Reasons Why I Love Google by Jimson Lee of Speed Endurance. Bootstrappers and startups are always strapped for cash. And software can be very expensive. So how can you not love free software. Jimson lists ten web-based applications or services that Google offers for free. (I might be wrong, but I thought Google Apps Premier edition is only free for 30 days.)
  4. Not So Smart After All by Mike Buckley of Mine Your Own Business. Mike offers an amusing story of why it’s important for businesses to maintain integrity.
  5. 3 Huge Steps On How To Leap From The Security Of A Job To A Home Business by Cade Krueger of Small Business Opportunity. Not everyone finds it easy to go from a salaried job to a starting a business, and sometimes running it from home is more fearsome. Cade offers a substantial explanation of three steps that you can take to make the leap.
  6. Planning Out a Short Term Project by Matt of Realigned Living. As the title suggests, Matt points out that planning isn’t just for big/ long-term projects.
  7. There are Times When Features are Better Than Benefits by Jim Logan of Jim Logan. We typically market to consumers in terms of the benefits of a product or service. Jim suggests that sometimes it’s better to talk about features.
  8. If At First You Don’t Succeed by Adnan of Entrepreneur Buzz. Despite the title, Adnan’s article is about being cautious about sharks when you start an online business. Although, if you don’t succeed the first time around… Well, you know.
  9. 13 Things a Successful Entrepreneur Must Know & Take Action On by Edith Yeung of Edith Yeung.Com: Dream. Think. Act. Edith discusses thirteen building blocks that entrepreneurs of any industry should take note of.
  10. Advertising Jingles and Commercials – Radio & TV by Matt Hanson of Matt’s Creative Advertising Blog. Matt offers five rules to consider if you are planning on using running ad jingles on radio and TV.
  11. How to Write a Headline and Grab Your Prospect by the Eyeballs! by Chris Tackett of Direct Marketing News. If your company needs to do direct marketing to gain customers, read Chris’ very detailed copywriting guidelines.
  12. You Can Make More Working Less by Eric Hudin of Everyday Marketing Ideas. Eric offers up the radical idea that you can earn more by working less, provided you learn to be more efficient in your tasks.
  13. 5 Distractions To The Nesting Entrepreneur by Ant of The Beef Jerky Blog. Ant cautions “nesting” entrepreneurs of five distractions that they may face. These are entrepreneurs that are still dipping a toe into the idea of going into business and haven’t fully committed.
  14. How to Influence Others by Terry Dean of Integrity Business Blog. Terry offers six tips for positively influencing other people as part of your general business proceedings.

Notes
Here are some reasons for an article’s exclusion.

  • Resubmitting the same article to a carnival. I keep all unpublished entries that meet the requirements and publish them when I can. If an article does not meet requirements, it gets deleted in my list. Not honoring this rule means permanent exclusion from this carnival as my time is limited and I don’t want to have to read it all over again.
  • I’ve become fairly tolerant of the occasional typo or bad grammar, but if an article consistently shows poor grammar or spelling, it will not be included.
  • Submitting articles where 90% of the content are quotations from someone else’s article.
  • Articles you took from elsewhere, that someone else wrote and had published elsewhere.
  • Articles about home-based businesses are okay, home-based jobs are not. There’s a distinction: having your own business, which this carnival is focused on.
  • Not relevant or promoting services or an affiliate product.

To summarize, this carnival targets existing small businesses and startups, or entrepreneurs on the verge. What advice can you give them – business and technical – to help them towards success? There’s a wide spectrum of topics, including branding, identity, marketing, hiring, online efforts, success, productivity and more.

If you have an article that you think fits in, please use the Blog Carnival submission form. One entry per person per week (Monday through Sunday), please.


Carnival of Small Business and Startups #3

Welcome to the third edition of the Small Business and Startups (CoSBaS #3). As many entries as possible have been including, based on my time to read through each. If your entry is not here, it may appear in the next edition, unless it is either not relevant to the Carnival theme, promotes your services, or promotes specific affiliate products.

If you did make it in to this edition, please give a link back as soon as you can. If you submit regularly, and get in but don’t link back, then your own readers don’t benefit with the opportunity of being introduced to other blogs – which is part of the reason for a blog carnival: networking. Enjoy.

Featured Posts

Here are this week’s featured posts.

  1. How to React to Criticism by Dr. Robert Karlsberg and Dr. Jane Adler of The Road to CEO. “I am human and I need to be loved/ just like everybody else does,” said Morrissey in his The Smiths song How Soon is Now? No wonder most of us react badly when we’re criticized. Who can blame us? But criticism can help us, say the good Doctors, and they present a strategy for how to benefit from it.
  2. What Happens if Your Clients Don’t Pay? by James Mitchell of FocusMinded.com. Just yesterday, a blogger friend told me that one client isn’t responding to his messages and hasn’t paid their invoice. I suggested he publish their name on his blog, if they didn’t make any effort to pay within 30 days. James lists some other options that are available to you if you have a non-paying client.

Other Entries

Here are the remaining entries for this edition.

  1. Finding The Right Information About Franchise Opportunities by Tom Stanley of Tom’s Franchise Information Blog.
  2. How to Create Your Own Online Store in an Hour Or Less by Matthew Paulson of Finance Is Personal.
  3. The Balance of a Leader by Michelle Cramer of GreatFX Small Business Tips.
  4. How I Became a Millionaire While Working In My Pajamas by Millionaire Mommy of Millionaire Mommy Next Door.
  5. Top Ten Tips for Women Who Lead Men by Alvaro Fernandez of Brain Fitness Blog.
  6. Startup Required Reading: Top 100 VC Bloggers by Sagar Satapathy of Bootstrapper.
  7. The Business Blogging Toolset: 100 Resources for Entrepreneur-Writers by Sunny of Bootstrapper.
  8. How to Write a Short Bio or “About Me” Page by Barbra Sundquist of Become a Certified Coach.
  9. My Partner’s Not Doing Enough Work! by Warren Wong of Personal Development for INTJs.

That’s it for this edition. If you have an article that you think fits in, please use the Blog Carnival submission form. A couple of notes to consider before entering:

  1. If you submitted your article on or after Aug 5th, it may appear in the next carnival.
  2. Please do not resubmit the same article to the same carnival. Go check out the other three blog carnivals that I am managing, in case there’s a fit for your article.
  3. One entry per person per week (Monday through Sunday), please. I am now deleting the entries of anyone who submits more than one per week. It’s up to you to choose one good entry, not me.

To summarize, this carnival targets existing small businesses and startups, or entrepreneurs on the verge. What advice can you give them – business and technical – to help them towards success? There’s a wide spectrum of topics, including branding, identity, marketing, hiring, online efforts, success, productivity and more.


Carnival of Small Business and Startups #4

Welcome to the fourth edition of the Small Business and Startups (CoSBaS #4). If your entry is not here, it may appear in the next edition, unless it is either not relevant to the Carnival theme, promotes your services, or promotes specific affiliate products.

If you did make it in to this edition, please support this carnival by giving a link back to this edition as soon as you can. If you submit regularly, and get in but don’t link back, then your own readers don’t benefit with the opportunity of being introduced to other blogs – which is part of the reason for a blog carnival: networking. Enjoy.

Featured Posts

Here are this week’s featured posts.

  1. Simplified Online Marketing by Becky McCray.
  2. A Motivation Secret of Top Performing Managers by Dr. Robert Karlsberg and Dr. Jane Adler.
  3. The 21 Success Secrets of Self-Made Millionaires by Susan Velez.

Other Entries

Here are the remaining entries for this edition.

  1. Seeking a Dream by Michelle Cramer.
  2. The Name Game – Why the Right Name is Important by Jim Smoot.
  3. Make People Comfortable By Greeting Them Right by Warren Wong.
  4. Planning a Business Trip by Mike Harmon.
  5. Are You A Good Facilitator? by Louise Manning.
  6. Enhancing Human Performance by Chris Russell.
  7. Amazon the Services Operating Ecosystem by Abhishek Tiwari.
  8. Want to Waste Some More Time Before You Start Your Business? by Stefan Töpfer.
  9. Going to the Top Too Fast by Wilson Ng.

That’s it for this edition. If you have an article that you think fits in, please use the Blog Carnival submission form. A couple of notes to consider before entering:

  1. If you submitted your article on or after Aug 19th, it may appear in the next carnival.
  2. Please do not resubmit the same article to the same carnival. Go check out the other three blog carnivals that I am managing, in case there’s a fit for your article.
  3. One entry per person per week (Monday through Sunday), please. I am now deleting the entries of anyone who submits more than one per week. It’s up to you to choose one good entry, not me.

To summarize, this carnival targets existing small businesses and startups, or entrepreneurs on the verge. What advice can you give them – business and technical – to help them towards success? There’s a wide spectrum of topics, including branding, identity, marketing, hiring, online efforts, success, productivity and more.


Carnival of Small Business and Startups #5

Welcome to the fifth edition of the Small Business and Startups (CoSBaS #5). If your entry is not here, it may appear in the next edition, unless it is either not relevant to the Carnival theme, promotes your services, or promotes specific affiliate products.

If you did make it in to this edition, please support this carnival by giving a link back to this edition as soon as you can. If you submit regularly, and get in but don’t link back, then your own readers don’t benefit with the opportunity of being introduced to other blogs – which is part of the reason for a blog carnival: networking. Enjoy.

Featured Posts

Here are this week’s featured posts.

  1. 5 Ways to Act Like an Expert in Online Communities by Scott Allen.
  2. The Ten Habits of Highly Effective Brains by Alvaro Fernandez.
  3. Do You Have An Abundant Mindset? by Warren Wong.

Weekly Picks

Here are the remaining entries for this edition.

  1. 5 Things You Can Do To Improve Your Marketing Overnight by Eric Hudin.
  2. 7 Ways to Expand Your Products and Services by Terry Dean.
  3. It’s Up To You – Make Customer Service A Positive Experience by Jason Rakowski.
  4. Keys to Effective Holiday Marketing in 2007 by Frances Palaschuk.
  5. Spending Those Hard Earned Dollars On Advertising by Matt Hanson
  6. The Challenge of Providing Choice by Wilson Ng.
  7. Top Ten Franchise Opportunities for $20,000 by Tom Stanley.

That’s it for this edition. If you have an article that you think fits in, please use the Blog Carnival submission form. A couple of notes to consider before entering:

  1. If you submitted your article on or after Aug 24st, it may appear in the next carnival.
  2. Please do not resubmit the same article to the same carnival. Go check out the other three blog carnivals that I am managing, in case there’s a fit for your article.
  3. One entry per person per week (Monday through Sunday), please.

To summarize, this carnival targets existing small businesses and startups, or entrepreneurs on the verge. What advice can you give them – business and technical – to help them towards success? There’s a wide spectrum of topics, including branding, identity, marketing, hiring, online efforts, success, productivity and more. This carnival is not about home-based businesses, specifically, although on occasion I’ll accept related articles if they are general in scope.

Carnival of Small Business and Startups #6

Welcome to the sixth edition of the Carnival of Small Business and Startups (CoSBaS #6). If your entry is not here, it may appear in the next edition, unless it is either not relevant to the Carnival theme, promotes your services, or promotes specific affiliate products.

If you did make it in to this edition, please support this carnival by giving a link back to this edition as soon as you can. If you submit regularly, and get in but don’t link back, then your own readers don’t benefit with the opportunity of being introduced to other blogs – which is part of the reason for a blog carnival: networking. Enjoy.

Weekly Picks

Here are this week’s weekly picks.

  1. Ben Yoskovitz: Warning: Do You Know Your Best Customers?
  2. Jim Smoot: Difference Between A Manager and A Leader.
  3. Warren Wong: Be A Good Manager By Letting People Learn And Grow.
  4. Sue Massey: Do You Know How to Delegate Effectively?
  5. Michelle Cramer: Inexpensive Ways to Conduct Marketing Research.
  6. Chris Russell: Office White Noise.
  7. Nenad Ristic: Attribution Theory.
  8. Satish Talim: Setting Up An IT Company In India.
  9. Jenny How: China 102nd Canton Fair (Chinese Export Commodity Fair) 2007.

That’s it for this edition. If you have an article that you think fits in, please use the Blog Carnival submission form. A couple of notes to consider before entering:

  1. If you submitted your article on or after Sep 8th, it may appear in the next carnival.
  2. Please do not resubmit the same article to the same carnival. Go check out the other three blog carnivals that I am managing, in case there’s a fit for your article.
  3. One entry per person per week (Monday through Sunday), please.

To summarize, this carnival targets existing small businesses and startups, or entrepreneurs on the verge. What advice can you give them – business and technical – to help them towards success? There’s a wide spectrum of topics, including branding, identity, marketing, hiring, online efforts, success, productivity and more. This carnival is not about home-based businesses, specifically, although on occasion I’ll accept related articles if they are general in scope.


Carnival of Small Business and Startups #7

Welcome to the seventh edition of the Carnival of Small Business and Startups (CoSBaS #7). If your entry is not here, it may appear in the next edition, unless it is either not relevant to the Carnival theme, promotes your services, or promotes specific affiliate products.

If you did make it in to this edition, please support this carnival by giving a link back to this edition as soon as you can.

Editor’s Picks

Here are this edition’s Editor’s picks.

  1. Khalid Hajsaleh: Yeah, I’m Gonna Need You to Come in on Saturday. This would be darn funny if it weren’t so scarily true. As a former telecom company employee, I have an intimate understanding of what Khalid so accurately highlights in this article. But maybe you’ll get a good, wistful laugh out of it. Having been an assistant project manager, on the other hand, and knowing what “needs to be done”, I can only wonder what goes through the heads of some managers. Warning: some foul language.
  2. SavingWithMe: 6 Small Businesses I Should Have Started In College. If you’re still in college, consider a few of these small businesses before you graduate. But you might want to think twice before running your own pedicab/ rickshaw. They’re a safety hazard on the road, and not to mention a hazard to your health – unless you think inhaling carbon monoxide from hundreds of cars all day is healthy. (You’re not moving as fast as a regular bicycle.) I love Jerry Seinfeld, but he did one bad thing: popularizing rickshaws in N. America for the past 15 or so years.One additional option: If you can cook, expand #5 to include becoming a personal chef to your college mates. Tell them that instead of them spending loads on takeout, you’ll make them a nice meal each day for a few dollars, with leftovers. Get a few students to buy in, and you can make them all the same meal, make some money or at least eat free.

Weekly Picks

Here are this edition’s regular picks.

  1. Gavin Ingham: Cold-Calling Tips for Getting Through to the Decision Maker.
  2. Edith Yeung: The 5 Rules of Writing Effective Email.
  3. Lorraine Cohen: How Are You Networking?
  4. Todd Goldfarb: 8 Tactics for Marketing a Small Business.
  5. Chris Tackett: 5 Steps To Turn More Leads Into Cash!
  6. Erik: Write A Successful Business Plan On Your Own.
  7. Michelle Cramer: Implementing a Wellness Program.
  8. Chris Russell: Improve Employee Productivity – Put Your Policy and Procedure Manuals Online.

That’s it for this edition. If you have an article that you think fits in, please use the Blog Carnival submission form. A couple of notes to consider before entering:

  1. If you submitted your article on or after Sep 22nd, it may appear in the next carnival.
  2. Please do not resubmit the same article to the same carnival. Go check out the other three blog carnivals that I am managing, in case there’s a better fit for your article. I am pretty picky about categories.
  3. One entry per person per week (Monday through Sunday), please.

To summarize, this carnival targets existing small businesses and startups, or entrepreneurs on the verge. What advice can you give them – business and technical – to help them towards success? There’s a wide spectrum of topics, including branding, identity, marketing, hiring, online efforts, success, productivity and more. This carnival is not about home-based businesses, specifically, although on occasion I’ll accept related articles if they are general in scope.