Today I welcome our guest Mr. Sherman Smith for a chat. Sherman happens to be a Blogger and Internet marketer. In this interview he was able to give an insight of his experiences in the online world – how he dealt with failure and overcame the challenges he encountered. He revealed some strategies which he applied to ensure the growth of his online business, and then he gave some blogging tips for beginners who are still starting out on blogging.
Less i forget; he is a good salsa dancer, so after reading this interview you may have to hook him up for some serious lessons on salsa dance[lol].
The details of this chat is a bit lengthy so as usual, get a glass of wine or juice if available, and enjoy this conversation with Mr. Sherman
Blogging Tips for Beginners – An Exclusive Interview with Sherman Smith
Chinedu: Hello Mr Sherman, we are pleased to have you here with us. Welcome to my blog.
Sherman: It’s a pleasure to be here and thank you Joseph for giving me this opportunity.
Chinedu: Please tell us more about yourself.
Sherman: I reside in sunny Southern California which is where I was born and raised. I have a degree in Computer Information Systems and work for a school district as one of the computer technicians.
Chinedu: What was your reason for going into blogging, and for how long have you been in the blogosphere?
Sherman: When I was in Network Marketing back in 2010, my sponsor recommended that I go into blogging even though I didn’t believe anyone would read any of my posts LOL.. but I got the courage to start it and the rest is history.
Chinedu: How many blogs do you have?
Sherman: I only have one blog
Chinedu: What are/is the main idea(s) of your blog(s) and what kind of service(s) do you render?
Sherman: My blog is geared towards anyone, specifically those with home businesses that want to start doing online marketing with a focus on Blogging for personal branding. I promote an online marketing system as well as other tools and plugins that marketers can use to enhance their home businesses.
Chinedu: How much time do you dedicate to your blog in a day, week or month? What measures do you take to ensure that you keep track of this?
Sherman: It’s on a weekly basis and I dedicate between 30 minutes to an hour a day. Or at least I make the effort to. I really don’t have a specific system to keep track of this. What I usually do is come up with a title for the following week’s blog post and use that as the indicator to start my next post.
Chinedu: How much time do you think is sufficient for a newbie to dedicate to a blog in order to achieve success?
Sherman: That really depends on the person and the time that they have. But if you have the fundamentals in place as far as plugins, themes, opt-in boxes, etc.. it shouldn’t take a long time. I say at least 30 minutes a day
Chinedu: At what frequency do you think a new blogger is supposed to publish posts in order to keep up in the blogosphere?
Sherman: As far as frequency, you want to be smart about it. From my experience, I’ve had more success with posting once a week as oppose to posting every day. You really want to focus on engagement and interaction with other bloggers by commenting, sharing their posts and also replying to comments on your blog. On top of that you want to engage with other bloggers on social media. It creates a strong synergy resulting in more of a family unit.
Chinedu: Your blog attracts a good number of comments and i guess your traffic range would be high as well. Would you mind discussing your monthly traffic stats?
Sherman: I really don’t want to discuss the traffic stats, but I do want to emphasize that as far as traffic is concern, you want to focus on generating more detailed targeted traffic. If you’re in network marketing, you don’t want to just focus on network marketing traffic. You want to focus on those people who have a strong interest in the products/services in your industry who are open to doing network marketing. This is why it’s important to pay attention to your traffic stats. I for once use Google Analytics to figure out who my market is and how to improve the targeted traffic coming to my blog.
Chinedu: Keeping blogging aside; do you have any other job(s) or parenting responsibility? If yes; how do you manage this together with your blogging career?
Sherman: I have no kids but I do work full time (8 hrs/day, 5 days/week) as a computer technician. I also give private lessons in salsa dancing on the side whenever there is a chance.
As far as managing, I tend to squeeze enough time each morning, afternoon, and night to work on my blog. I also use automated tools that helps promote my blog posts
Chinedu: Wow! You dance salsa? I will surely come for lessons in no distant time [lol].
What do you engage yourself with during your leisure hours?
Sherman: During my leisure hours I’m always on YouTube learning something or watching a movie LOL… I love YouTube. Besides that I’m usually out salsa dancing or at the gym.
Chinedu: What really interests you most about blogging, and what frustrates you most as well?
Sherman: It was really about what I learn from other blogs with a focus on home businesses and how to grow it online. When I was in college I didn’t understand why students would major in Marketing. To me it seemed like a real easy major, up until I started blogging and doing online marketing. This really burst my bubble! I came to realization of how important personal branding, social proof, difference in good and bad content, etc.
The one thing I really like is sharing something I just learned or sharing my past experiences with others. I get really stoked when people find my content valuable for them to apply. This is when I realized that being able to help others in this manner is really my life’s purpose.
Also Read: Nosa Ero Nosa Shares his Blogging Experience
Chinedu: What do you think is currently the most effective method of driving traffic to a blog?
Sherman: There is no one way of doing this, but from my experience, the best way is through paid advertising if you want to get fast results. Besides that, using the free strategies of commenting and engaging those who are within your niche.
Chinedu: What are you secrets for attaining this level of success in your blogging career?
Sherman: It’s really keeping it simple and being consistent with it. But one thing you want to keep checking for are your statistics. You want to use tools like Google Analytics to see how you’re doing so far and figure out ways to improve.
The simplest thing you want to do is comment and engage on other blogs as well as your own. You want to figure out who has “authority rank” in the blogosphere within your niche.
Chinedu: As a blogger, have you ever experience failure or felt inferior? If yes; how did you tackle all of these?
Sherman: Oh yes, failure at times can be a constant thing, and also I felt inferior. But if blogging is something that you really have a passion for, then you’ll figure out eventually how to turn those failures into successes and the inferiority complex will dissipate.
Chinedu: Would you mind giving us an insight of your other experiences while climbing the success ladder?
Sherman: I started around 2010, so right around that time all you need to concentrate on was SEO even if the content wasn’t that valuable. But then around 2011, that’s when you noticed the Google Updates started making a big voice. So all of the old tactics and tools I used before didn’t work. Blogger took a different routine, and it was, and still is one long educational process.
I do have admit that I took some time off from blogging. I started focusing more on paid methods like Paid Per Click and Solo Ads. I did get a lot of leads from them, but very low sales. By the end of 2013, that’s when I realized that you must brand yourself and focus on building rapport and relationships with others. That’s the benefit of blogging. Other’s can see what you’re all about before they make a decision to connect with you, or even do business with you.
Chinedu: If you could turn back the hands of time to your life as a newbie, what corrections would you have made?
Sherman: First and foremost, I would use my blog to build my email list as well as engage with others like I’m doing now.
I would have focus a little less on SEO and more on delivering more valuable content as well as promote my blog a lot more than I did.
I would also would’ve focus more on marketing metrics using tools like Google Analytics.
Chinedu: How do you monetize your blog? And what is your most effective means of making money online?
Sherman: I have done Reviews on different tools and themes, as well as an option box for the online marketing system I promote mainly for those that are in network marketing and want to promote their business online.
Chinedu: Among the existing Social Media platforms, which do you spend more time on and what is your reason for spending more time on it?
Sherman: I spend more time on Facebook and Twitter.
The reason for Facebook is because its the site I’ve grown my accustomed to, and for twitter, I use it specifically on my phone to maintain my interaction with other bloggers.
Chinedu: Ever since you ventured into blogging, what do you consider your biggest challenge?
I had challenges. Writing and Engaging LOL… Not the best challenges when it comes to blogging, right?
I was always a horrible writer, but in due time with blogger I keep improving by taking the advice from other bloggers. I don’t know where I would be without them.
As far as engaging and interaction, socializing with others is a weakness of mine. I consider myself more of an introvert. Shy sometimes, but more introvert. I really like to do my own thing, but other people have mentioned that I need to come out of my shell a bit more, so that’s what I’ve been working on for the past year.
Chinedu: As a blogger with much experience, what principle(s) do you suggest for every blogger to hold on to?
Sherman: Be the best YOU as a blogger. Don’t be afraid to express your own opinions and your own beliefs. This is what makes you unique, and you’ll find that the right people will be attracted to who you are!
Chinedu: Mention some bloggers whom you admire and look up to, and tell us how each had contributed to your blogging career?
Sherman: There’s quite a few to name… Ryan Biddulph, Adrienne Smith, Harleena Singh, Enstine Muki, Sylvian Nuccio… I actually wrote a blog post where I gave homage to each one… here’s the post
Chinedu: No doubt, every new blogger needs a mentor to guide him/her. What is your say on this? Do you think it is advisable for a blogger to hold unto just one, or many mentors? Please give reasons for your answer.
Sherman: Anyone that has reached a level of success you want to get to and you admire, is going to end up being your mentor, whether directly or indirectly. A lot of home business entrepreneurs follow the teachings of Napoleon Hill and Dale Carnegie still even though they have already transitioned.
So if you can find someone that will mentor you directly, then great! But I believe bloggers should also keep an open mind to what’s out there. Whatever your mentor may not know, someone else may have the information and experience that come with it.
Chinedu: When did you earn your first income from blogging?
Sherman: In 2011
Chinedu: Would you mind telling us your monthly earning from blogging?
Sherman: I never share what I make. Sorry
Chinedu: What is your say on email marketing? What strategies have you used for increasing your number of subscribers?
Sherman: I have used both PPC and Solo Ads. Email marketing is a great way to build trust with those that subscribe. There are quite a few people who only use email marketing to brand themselves instead of a blog. So this is a great option as well.
Chinedu: Mention your top blogging tools for improving your site performance.
Sherman: I use Kingged.com
Revive Old Post
Facebook Boost Option
Chinedu: I guess you are an American, what can you say about the American bloggers of today? What kind of bloggers do you think America will be able to produce in the future?
Sherman: I would say that American bloggers are a little bit more open and free with their writing if you know what I mean. From my standpoint they’re more liberal in saying what they feel more so, but outside of that, I believe bloggers from other countries are more technical than American bloggers. This is what I also see in the future
Chinedu: Discuss your source of inspiration all through your days of blogging.
Sherman: My source of inspiration is just looking back at how far I came in the blogosphere and sticking to this passion.
Chinedu: Would you advise a child of yours to venture into blogging?
Sherman: Yes, especially if a child of mine is introverted like me 🙂
Chinedu: Being an experienced blogger and online personality for years, what changes do you think should be made to this blog to improve our site performance?
Sherman: The site is very clean, and there’s not too much I can change. I would add more images pertaining to each point made on each post, have between 1000 to 1500 words on each one, and make each point stand out more as far as headings.
Also read: A Chat With Larry Frank
Chinedu: Thanks for the advice. Would you mind giving a motivation statement for the newbies and others who might be reading this conversation?
Sherman: I remember reading this quote some years back and it stuck with me. Especially when I get into arguments, which I rarely do, trying to prove my point
“You cannot teach a man anything; you can only help him to find it within himself.” ~ Galileo
This question reminds me of the “selling the sizzle, and not the steak” approach when it comes to sales. You can always conjure something up within the soul of people for them, and only them to realize it themselves so they can take credit for it.
Chinedu: Nice piece there. It was really wonderful having you here for this chat, thanks for coming, have a pleasant day ahead!
I hope you enjoyed, and tapped something from this interview with Mr. Sherman Smith.
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