Here's the best SEO optimization tip (yes, I know the "o" in SEO stands for "optimization" already -- lots of people search for "SEO OPTIMIZATION" so I'm going with those keywords!) that I got out of all the stuff I learned at BLOGHER07 in my Chi-town hometown:
Put dashes in your image file names!
All this time I've been naming my pics-a-plenty, but I didn't realize how important it was to put dashes in between my words so that I can receive lots more traffic from Google images.
I learned this great SEO optimization tip from Arienna Schweber, who moderated the panel on which I spoke, called "Professional Blogging: Ways and Means" -- all about making money online.
(I've already been putting descriptions in my ALT tags the way Arienna's boss Darren explains in this post.)
And since Arienna bravely admitted she makes anywhere from $100,000 - $999,999 per year as one of the channel editors for Darren Rowse's B5Media, I trust she knows what she's talking about.
16-Year-Old Making Nearly $1,000 Per Month Posting 1 or 2 Times Per Month!
Another cool person on our panel was 16-year-old Chloe Spencer, who wanted to make some extra money and started the NeoPets Cheats Site.
Chloe shared that her site earns her 30 bucks a day, and gets around 11,000 pageviews each day -- without much posting at all!
Stephan Spencer, Chloe's dad, was videotaping our whole session like a proud papa, so I'm hoping he puts up the video for all to see.
(I'm checking for new BlogHer07 videos being uploaded all the time.)
Wine, Women...and Money
Those are my personal themes for the conference attended by nearly 1,000 women (and some guys sprinkled in for seasoning.)
The best times I had were sitting back soaking up the good red wine as I talked with Valencia Roner, not an angry black woman at all, but quite the opposite -- a sister among three brothers who was engaging and just easy to be around.
God blew my mind as I traipsed into the W Hotel in Chicago, shoring up myself with short-skirted and walk-like-you-belong-here-self-talk confidence.
I was happy I didn't blow off the invitation to wine and dine with Real Simple magazine editors -- who feted me with tuna tartar dishes as they examined my brain for web happenings.
When they projected the image of my most recent blog earnings post onto the screen in front of the room, the small dinner crowd of mommy bloggers and Yahoo and CNN big wigs hushed -- and I could barely believe how far favor could take one.
That post about money is the same one that begat the invitation to speak in the first place, which begat a courting afterward with the Senior Editor of the newly launched EbonyJet.com site, as well as a Business Week reporter working on another piece about blogger salaries.
Killing My Shyness With Kindness
Then there was the odd-yet-warm-and-familiar feeling you get when images jump off your computer screen and turn into three dimensional living and breathing flesh and bone in front of your face.
That's how I felt when the original eMom at Home herself, Wendy Piersall, appeared right in front of me, telling me I was as beautiful as my pic.
"Liz Strauss is saving a seat for me," Wendy said, blowing me off. (Kidding.)
I took it in stride. But Wendy came back again and again as I encountered her in ensuing days, just as comforting in real life as her blog culture projects.
Munching on hot dogs or chatting in bathroom lines, women like these made me feel less like the odd girl out in the high school cafeteria, and more like part of the in crowd.
When Black Women Get Together...
...we just can't help but snicker at how we all automatically congregate, like moths drawn to our brown-skinned flame.
Not that I intended to pigeon-hole myself into some kind of mocha-hued corner during the first cocktail party on the first night, but I was having too much fun to leave, chatting with sistahs like Lynne D. Johnson, a straight-forward Senior Editor at Fast Company.
At least until my purse started vibrating and I answered it.
"I feel like I have a curfew," I said to Lynne, after hanging up with my husband, on his way to scoop me up.
Heading back to her native New York land on Saturday, Lynne gave me a hug (as Valencia had) like old chums in the Grand Ballroom seconds before Elizabeth Edwards took the stage.
I'll be back...
Overall, the BlogHer07 atmosphere was good and contagious. Full of geeky girls and kooky liberals.
A big "You rock!" to the Daring Young Mom who had more guts than I did in my go-along-get-along state in a room full of Democrats to say she thought conservatives were being given short shrift.
It was my first BlogHer, but I have a feeling it will be far from my last.
The Chicago Tribune picked up on the event -- thanks Daddy for the hardcopy! -- and many more news media orgs writing about BlogHer as well.
Blog on, girl geeks. Blog on.
Hey! Where ya going? Don't leave without:
And check out my other sites:
WatchFreeEpisodes.com -- Watch full and partial episodes of your favorite TV shows and movies online -- all for free!
FindTheAnswers.com -- Okay, I'm just tryin' to give this one some link love to get a Google Pagerank