Plurk is Twitter on METH *

* Phrase stolen from Snoop Bloggy Blog‘s Plurk Page.

Ok, I know I was just posting some BS about Twitter, and how you all need to follow me there.  But today the flavor of the day is PLURK.   It’s another micro-blogging social media platform, like Twitter and Pownce.  But this one is SIIICK.  So far no slow down (we’ll see how long that lasts) and the features are cool.  Super crazy ajaxy coolness.

Everybody, I changed my mind.  Follow me on PLURK instead.   Or at least until I change my mind again.  Or at least try it out for a bit to see if you like it, since there’s too much to explain about it and my attention span is shortening by the sec…


Micro-Blogging; Come Follow Me on Twitter!

If you’re like me (a completely A.D.D. web geek) your attention span is probably really shor..

So short I couldn’t even finish writing that sentence…

So let’s get to the point then.  Come follow me on Twitter.  Micro-blogging.  Fast.   Click here and win fabulous prizes!


Enough with the SEO Fundamentalism!

According to my last check on Wikipedia, fundamentalism is a “deep and totalistic commitment” to a belief… usually of religious or moral nature. But what I have seen in the SEO community far too often is a “holier than thou” thumping of the general SEO population, that is by nature, narrow.

Now don’t get me wrong, I have morals. I stick to my personal set of ethics, both in my personal and professional life. They might not be the same as your values, but that doesn’t mean they are wrong.

Last week I stumbled (social) on a very entertaining story (bait). So entertaining in fact, I thought I would share it with some friends (viral) not realizing it was written by an well known SEO (bad ass). The story was about a 13 year old who stole a credit card to play halo with hookers. Who doesn’t want to read about that? It’s HILARIOUS! So hilarious in fact, it ended up getting mainstream media coverage from the likes of Fox News and such.

The story did not claim it was actual news, or even true for that matter. It was an entertaining anecdote, and people ate it up. Except for a whole bunch of SEOs who reacted harshly to it. Reading the sphinn comments on the story really started to test my patience. It felt like I was hanging out with my neighbors who always try to save me and take me to their church… which I am not a fan of BTW if you are reading this Eric.

Sentiments like “Social Media is ruined forever” and “SEO sunk to a new low” are preachy, at best. Jill Whalen, you and me go way back from my days at HighRankings, and the last thing I want is for you to feel offended here… but I don’t want to go to the SEO Church of Link Morality or subscribe to somebody else’s code of ethics. Establish your own, that’s fine and respectable. Just don’t thump us with them. We can all decide own how we choose to operate.

There is no black and white. Everything is shades of gray. We all must way the risks and rewards for our own actions, and think laterally. Sure, there are times I do wish others would up their own set of personal or professional ethics, but I’m not going to be the one preaching it to them. I’ll do what I do, you do what you do. Just don’t tell me what to do and we’ll be cool. Cool?


Corporate SEOs: Time to Give Yourself a Raise

Salaries for Corporate SEO Professionals vary drastically. So how do you know you’re getting paid what you deserve? Let’s explore a few ways to look at it, and at the end of this post, a one size fits all solution to bring to your higher ups for getting that raise!

First, let’s look at profitability. As a marketing guy, you probably have a pretty good idea how much is spent on promotions, and how much revenue your company generates from it. You might even be privy to information about fixed operating costs. In the best case scenario, your company even posts it profitability. If the company you work for is a cash cow, you can probably use profitability as a good selling point on getting an increased salary. ESPECIALLY if you can track it directly to your own individual efforts.

Let’s say your company nets 100 million annually, and you drive 30 million in profit while only spending a few million. There’s probably no good reason you should be making 50k yearly. If you work for a smaller company or a start up, chances are good you’re not producing hundreds or tens of millions in net revenue. In this case, check out the trends in your specific industry, and especially your company’s profit.

If there’s a big upside on the horizon, but little money going around at the moment, here’s your move: Sit tight at a lower salary for a while, but talk to your boss or CEO and plant the seed. Let them know you are OK with working at a lower salary temporarily, because you intend on helping to grow the company and to reap the benefits when that growth happens. From that point, track your performance (you should already be doing this anyways). If your company turns a corner and starts posting larger profits, and you have been doing more than your share, it’s probably a great time to remind your boss or CEO about your previous conversation and try to schedule a meeting.

Next, get a good idea about how much others who perform your specific job function earn, especially in your zip code. Salary.com is your friend. There are some awesome charts you can print out and keep on file. Use these on the big day when you approach your boss or CEO. I just performed a quick search on Web Promotion Specialist earnings in my zip code. Do the same for your exact title, or closest match.

As a rule of thumb, hiring managers are usually comfortable hiring new professionals in the 25% to 50% range according to Salary.com. If you want to demand more than that, you better know your stuff inside and out, have some concrete evidence or prior performance, and have a darn good sales pitch prepared. Oh, and people love pretty graphs and / or pie charts. Make some from your previous job(s) and keep them on file.

Another more risky technique of getting a raise is to feel out the market for YOU. Even in economically repressed times, there are always companies looking for web gurus. If your boss or CEO isn’t very receptive to chatting about your eventual raise, look for a job. Get an offer, and present it to your boss or CEO with the opportunity to match (provided you want to stay at your current job). If they cannot match, you can always jump ship to the next company willing to pay more.

But be careful, this is a higher risk technique. Both companies could look at your differently, possibly negatively, if you play hard ball. Do not use this technique if you think you can make headway in the politically correct way, or especially if you are somewhat easily replaced. Nobody want a high maintenance individualist on their team.

Even if there are valid reasons that you cannot have a pay increase, there’s always title. Getting a better title sometimes is easy if you pitch the company that you won’t cost any more. The better your title, the more likely your next job will pay better. Especially if the company you work for is not a start up. (side note: Titles at start ups, very small companies, or family businesses don’t usually carry the same weight from a hiring manager’s perspective. I can’t even count how many times I have interviewed CEOs from their own web design firm or music label who are looking for an entry level position.)

And finally, here is your one size fits all solution. 60% of the time, it works every time (thanks Anchor Man). But be forewarned, this magic formula will ONLY work if you can provide results. You MUST drive more volume than your current level. If you do, you have a raise. And without further ado, here is your formula.

Take your current salary, and cut it an half. Take your current performance metrics (hopefully sales volume or profitability) and devise a pay for performance monthly bonus structure, which sums up annually to half of your salary. Make sure you have a few versions of your bonus plan just in case your logic is disputed, make sure you have accurate reporting already in place. You want this plan to be bullet proof before you present it.

Here’s an example of the plan in action. Let’s just say you drove 100k in directly trackable profit for your company last year and you are currently paid 50k. Why not change your salary to 25k with a 25% profit share for volume you are pushing through your channels? This would show that your new plan would pay you exactly the same as last year.

Now here’s the kicker… If you drive 200k next year, your performance means you got an automatic raise to 75k. If you post a cool million, you just made yourself 275k. If that happens, and you used this method of negotiation, I’ll gladly accept checks for 10% of your earnings increase, made payable to Chris Hooley. No seriously, I’m OK with it. Email me. We’ll talk.

“I want my salary cut in half, and a fair bonus ONLY based on my performance” is not a hard pitch. For top level execs, it’s easy to swallow because you cut your fixed costs and only pay out if you are earning more. It’s a win-win situation.

Before you schedule your meeting, have those pretty graphs and charts printed out. Have your Salary.com info on hand. Look good, get plenty of rest, and put on your salesman hat (the one with the extra charm and wit). Be confident. Then go in and tell your boss you want a paycut, and that you only want to be paid if you provide results.


Why SEOs Love Speaking at Conferences

When I first got into SEO and SEM, my motivation was 1 part money and 5 parts making a name for myself. You probably already know my M.O. – I am THE Constant Self Promoter. Teachers called me disruptive, my peers called me an “attention whore” (along with a host of other profanities, depending on the day), my parents called me “driven”, “loud”, or “a ham”. It doesn’t matter what you call it, the fact is people who are like me, marketers, where born to attain the spotlight. And speaking at conferences is just one way people like me can validate themselves.

Let me just restate that and start another paragrach with it… Marketers where born to attain the spotlight. Now hold that thought.

In no particular order, here are the reasons SEOs love to speak at conferences:

  • Self Validation – It is typical human behavior to seek approval by being recognized by a social group, particularly one that a person associates with or strives to be a part of.
  • Money – Some get paid to speak, but that’s not really where the money is. The more you speak, the higher premium you can ask for when landing clients.
  • Chicks – I haven’t seen an actual female girl get hot for a dude who preached all there is to know about URL cannonicalization. But I bet conference groupies exist, and I bet there are some opportunistic SEOs who have wielded their badges to score some ‘tang. And on the flip side, girls can prolly land douchebags dudes as well, if they got that speaking mojo working for them.
  • Ego – Being respected or acknowledged for anything , no matter what your field, gives people a boost in self confidence. Just admit it, it feels good. In fact, just slide this bullet right under Self Validation and minimize the rest of the bullets, because IMO that’s really the main factor.
  • Your Boss Told You To – There are a couple firms that make a pretty good revenue stream from speaking gigs… they take talented, likable people, and show them all there is to know. Next thing you know, their firm is represented in all kinds of conferences, not just the big ones.
  • Free Drinks – It’s awesome when you have fanboys loading you up all week. Extend your hand while at any conference bar, and BOOM! Magically you have a fresh cold beer.

From the time I wrote my first blog post till now, I’ve held a secret that I never told anybody. I wanted to speak at conferences too. Feels good to finally get that out. I wanted the stage, the notoriety, and the approval of my peers. I wanted people to know who I am. And I wanted to shape what they know about me, my talking smart into a microphone while people write stuff down.

In my quest to feed my alpha male ego, I went on to start numerous joke bands just so I could be on stage. I posted inflammatory comments on blogs and forums just to get people going. And I made a *lot* of noise at conferences while others polished their professionalism and furthered their careers right in front of me.

Oddly enough I never had the guts to pursue the whole speaking thing. I was like that awkward teenage boy who likes that one girl but is afraid to talk to her. I never put one ounce into attempting to land a speaking gig. I felt like Chris Farley in Tommy Boy when he explains his salesmanship to the waitress. “I pet the speaking gig, I love the speaking gig, I squish the speaking gig, AAAHHHHHH I killed it! I killed my speaking gig!”

Do you want to know the reason I never pursued it? Honestly, I think my frail alpha male ego couldn’t take the rejection if I didn’t make it. I was afraid to look like that guy who tried to do it and failed. So I went about my business, being loud and noticed, but in a different (albeit more idiotic) way. Plus, I spoke at this one seminar and even though I think I did pretty good, I didn’t like the nervous feeling. It actually wasn’t as fun as I thought it would be. But I did feel self important, which was cool I guess.

I’m seeing a lot of SEOs, especially a lot of new kids on the block, getting out there and getting known. I remember that feeling. But now, I’m at a different stage in my career. I’m no longer afraid to talk about my secret crush on the idea of speaking at conferences, because I actually don’t really care for the idea anymore. I’ll just leave that to the people who are already pretty darn good at it. My focus is a little different now.

My girlfriend feeds my ego. My job makes me money. I don’t need chicks anymore; I have the one I want. My ego is big enough already, and I don’t need free drinks. In fact, I’d be glad to buy one for you!

And for the record, let me be 100% clear about my intentions here… I JUST WANT TO PWN MY MARKETS.

Damn it feels good to be a self actualized web marketing gangsta! (and feel free to speak about this post at your next gig eh?)


Perfect SEO – Rick Astley + Your Logo Doing Karaoke!

While perusing some of the premium content over at SEOmoz for some new nuggets, I found the answer. The magic bullet. The ONE thing I need on my blog to harness the sheer link power of the internet.

And this was the result:

Rick Astley Doing Karaoke with NextStudent

Now, I just sit back and wait for the ranks to ROLL right in! Thanks Mozzers!!

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Relevence is KEY, Even Off-Page!

You know the importance of themes, relevant content, and relevant website links. But do you understand the value of staying relevant offline, or even what that means?

Ask yourself this question: Are YOU really relevant?

Does your website properly reflect who YOU are, who your company IS? If the answer is no, you might be trying to rank for the wrong phrase. You might not be transparent. You might be faking it, and it’s only a matter of time before everybody, including Google, figures that out.

Google knows who I am. Lately, I haven’t been the crazy guy at conferences that many of you have come to know me as, because now I am a corporate SEO. I was relevant to conference junkie SEO types, with loud stunts and what not. Now I don’t even make the list, where less than a year ago I was a shoe in.

Why do YOU think that is? Is it because I don’t blog like I used to? Is it because I am no longer whoring all the blogs and forums? Is it because I am underground, or maybe even the exact opposite of that? Sold out?

The answer is simple. Lately my focus has been on my business, my corporate SEO gig, and my family. This is where I am relevant now. I rank for phrases that ARE relevant for me, and for my business. I’m not going to rank for SEO Blogger, SEO Blog, Captain Thundercock (yet) because I am currently more focused, thus relevant, in different areas.

The new key is transparency. 5 years ago links could be programmed or harvested rather easily, today you have to be who and what you are talking about. It’s easier that way anyways.

Don’t chase a false dream. You don’t wanna be that guy. Be the guy who IS what you SAY you are, even off-page, and the rest will be easier.


Corporate Web Design Project- SOOOO 2.0!

For y’all who didn’t know, NextStudent is having a web design contest worth $2,000 for the winner. I was thinking… (which hurt a little but I digress) this project is actually pretty web 2.0-ish. Think about it… Here’s some neat buzzwords and how the relate to NextStudent’s current web design project:

  • U.G.C. – User Generated Content: Dude, the DESIGN for our company’s new makeover will be generated by the PEOPLE! That’s soooo social!
  • Social Voting: The PUBLIC can VOTE on the design they want to see as the new face of NextStudent
  • Blog: The NextStudent Redesign Contest Website is actually “just another wordpress weblog!” (that’s a play on words for the default blog description in WP, in case ya didn’t know)
  • S.M.O. – Social Media Optimization: The winner of the contest with get a link on NextStudent.com, but more importantly all accepted design submissions can get a link on the design site itself and on my blog and a few other mentions. Blog links are sooo what S.M.O. is about!
  • Networking: Everybody who participates is AUTOMATICALLY my best friend. Unless you hate me in which case you don’t have to actually be my friend. Ok that aint much of a prize but who cares I wanted to put it in there.
  • Money: Ok not exactly 2.0, money is pretty old school but you can still make a bunch of it ($2,000) if you win the contest!
  • Awesome: Hell yeah it is. And you ah too.

So hey do me a favor eh, tell some people about this contest. Especially if you think they’ll participate OR talk about it (especailly if they talk about it on their blogs and stuff, that’s always awesome)

w0rd.


St. Patrick’s Day – S.E.S. New York Style!

The only thing that could possibly be more Irish for the SEM community is moving the SES to Boston… check that, I guess you could have it in IRELAND, but I digress…

NEW YORK FUCKIN’ CITY! S.E.S. Pub Crawl! St. Patrick’s Day!! I don’t know what YOUR plans are, but if you’re a REAL web marketer, you’re probably a party animal like the rest of us. If you’re a REAL party animal, you probably like pubs and pub crawls. If you REALLY like pubs or pub crawls, you’re probably Irish (and even if you aren’t you still pretend you are on St. Patty’s Day).

Here’s the deal, there is a prefect intersection of BAD ASS happening this Monday, in New York Fuckin’ City. I don’t know what YOUR plans are yet but drop them cuz the real bad asses in our industry will be doing ONE THING ONLY. And that’s whoopin’ it up, drinking green beer and Guinness (or Irish Whiskey if you’re extremely bad ass), and talking about how awesome Chris Hooley is during the S.E.S. Pub Crawl!

More details to come, but be ready mofos!

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7 Healthy Activities for Dads and Daughters

Being a single dad means wearing a lot of hats. Dad, mom, chef, doctor, teacher, coach, and sometimes when I am lucky, activity coordinator. Being in charge of the activities means I don’t have to play house, have a tea party, or pretend I am a Disney prince… all activities that I grin and bear with a smile, none of which I am particularly fond of (especially being the Prince, I keep telling her if she’s the Princess, I am the KING!)

After a while, I’ve started to figure out some ways to spend time with my kiddo while maintaining some semblance of manliness AND getting some exercise at the same time. It helps that she’s almost 5 now and is able to partake in more vigorous activities but I digress. Here are 7 great active ideas for Dad’s with little girls who like me, don’t have enough time to both play with the kiddo and get in their daily exercise!

1) Weight Lifting – Daddy Style

Daddy Style weightlifting means your weights are… your kid! It’s free, requires no travel, and it can be done right on your living room floor. My daughter loves to be bench pressed, curled, lifted, leg lifted, etc. We also take turns with sets. She tries bench pressing my arm or leg, and tests her strength. It’s a great way to teach your daughter how to exercise, and to motivate her to try harder or challenge herself. The only problem I’ve encountered in getting a real workout here is that she’s only 45 pounds. I can’t exactly mass build when benching a toddler.

2) Pretend Wrestling

This one is the easiest; and again this one’s free! Kids love to be “roughed up” as long as you aren’t actually rough at all. It’s also the perfect time to teach appropriate boundaries. We have tons of fun pretending we are boxers or professional wrestlers while we pretend to punch, block, kick, or grapple in ways that don’t hurt your “opponent”. I’ll often lift her up over my head pretending I tossed her out of the ring, while slowly lowering her to the ground and pretend shouting “nooooooo!” Gives me a little of that healthy muscle burn, and give her a laugh from being suspended in mid air.

3) Karaoke Dance Parties

This activity isn’t exactly free since it requires music… and for my reputation’s sake this can only be done if the blinds are closed. But this is one of my guilty pleasure and secretly one of my favorites.

I have a playlist on my iPod that has a ton of 80s music (with no swears of course!) sprinkled in with some Hannah Montana and a few No Doubt songs for good measure. We crank up the iPod dock and use one of her brushes as a microphone and we pretend to do concerts for her dolls, or we’ll even make up silly dance routines. I use this opportunity to dance like a maniac, bordering physical comedy. She laughs like a maniac, bordering asthma attacks.  However if the general population ever saw this, there would be a lot more crying than laughing… either from me, or those watching it.

4) Playing the Wii

This might be the manliest activity on my list. What guy doesn’t like video games? Especially ones their 4-5 year old daughter likes too! When we play Wii bowling, to increase the healthy factor, we pretend to run down the isle just like real bowling and we even jump when we release the ball. It doesn’t help my accuracy much, but at least we’re getting active and having some fun.

5) Going Out “Discovering”

The outdoors can be fantastical to a child-if they have the right guide. We’ll walk down the street and I’ll help her climb random objects pretending they are something from out of this world. Sometimes we’ll find a trail and climb hills, large rocks, or small mountains and pretend we’re discovering new lands.  Sometimes I’ll even let her load up her wagon with dolls and we went for a walk around the block pretending we were tour guides.

6) Target Jumping

This one is a real hit with the kids.  All you gotta do is set “targets” around the house or outside.  I often use my finger against a wall or a washable marker.  Set your targets at various heights just near the top of your daughter’s max jumping height.  Give her a route around the house, and she must touch or slap each target.  If the target is too high, lower it a bit.  Too low?  Add another higher one.  Use your watch like a stop watch and time her like it’s an obstacle course (I often make up times and keep yelling “GO GO GO! You’re Gonna Break the Record!”.  20 minutes of this and she’ll be napping in no time!

There are a bunch of variations in this game, where you can follow her around the “course” and hit your own targets, or if your daughter has friends over you can line them all up and use your finger against the wall and adjust for each of their jumping abilities.   If you’re tired, just lean against the wall and set various targets with your hand or finger.  If you wanna rev up, get outside and make it challenging for both of you.  You’d be surprised at how much fun your little one will have with this one.

7) Tasting Parties

A tasting party is when you choose a couple of new foods (we usually do exotic fruits) and see what they taste like.  I usually take my daughter to the grocery store so we can look at different fruits and vegetables to figure out which we would like to try that day.  Then we take them home, wash them together, and prepare them to be served (I usually handle anything that has to do with a knife!)  Then we set our plates, and take turns tasting things and explaining what they taste like.  This is a perfect way to refuel after some exhausting play time AND to replace junk food snacks with healthier alternatives.

8) BONUS ACTIVITY: Take a nap!

Because both you and your kid are probably worn out now!

If anybody else knows of any other healthy activities for Dads and Daughters, comment here and let me know what YOU do.  I’m always looking for new ways to bond with my kid and keep that Daddy Belly in check!  Plus, this could be a good resource for people who started like me, having NO IDEA how to raise a little girl.  Single dads (like me) especially could probably use a little guidance sometimes.


NextStudent’s Web Marketing Team

Web Marketing at NextStudent. For those who don’t already know, I am Chris Hooley, Corporate SEO, and the guy who runs the NextStudent Web Marketing Department. Just thought I’d get that part out of the way so this post didn’t seem so random…

It’s been a crazy year in Student Loan Land, with the big banks and federal government putting the shake down on student lenders (at the expense of students, and much to the chagrin of financial aid officers). Kids are going to have a tough time finding money to pay for school this upcoming semester because of the perfect storm of bad legislation, tough credit markets, and a virtually lifeless capital market. Big banks are looking at this as a boon, a perfect opportunity to swallow up market share. So they are spending MORE despite the fact that the loans are losing them lots of money right now. I’m even watching them trying to work their SEO, and (cough! choke) get social.

Imagine that, fighting off the big banks with deep pockets every day… Feels like Rocky vs. the steroid guy from Russia.

Well fortunately for NextStudent (and all borrowers who find out how great we are!) the Web Marketing Team is holding it down. We’re the big guys around here on the interwebs! We’ve been training like Sly Stallone and we’ll never give up! Get off my Google B of A. Keep up the Chase, Wells F. The web is My Citi!

Ok enough of the bad plays on words. It’s Saturday Night, I should save the bad jokes for my attempt at getting social (aka going to Santisi Bros. with some buddies).

The deal is, the webmarketing team at NextStudent is a powerhouse. We’re more than strong at all of our core competencies, we’re a collective ROCKY. You might be able to get some licks in, but we never give up and we are always on the top. The people I work with are some of the slickest, smartest, and most motivated people I’ve ever met. All aspects of our web marketing repertoire are handled by the best and the brightest. We’re corporate, we’re out there, and we’re helping define the edge that bigger guys can hardly even fathom. Good luck monetary monoliths. BRING IT ON!!!

Rocky – OUT!


Resurrecting the BEST Blog Post in SEO History

Chris Hooley Talks Chris Hooley, SEO, and Awesomeness in General

That.  Just. Happened.


Don’t You Have Anything Better to Do?

It’s election year… time for smoke and mirrors!

I was hoping to catch some ESPN before heading to work, and instead of seeing “The Plays of the Week” I am watching a congressional hearing.  About baseball.  Not Iraq.  Not the recession.  Not about the so called “Economic Stimulus Package”.  About BASEBALL.

And two weeks ago, we had senators snooping around NFL Football.

And a few years ago we had all the media talking about a blow job.

Wanna know why they are talking about this stuff?  So the masses don’t look closer at what’s really going on… like the “War of Terror”.  The fact that the Democrats screwed up student loans so bad that kids won’t be able to get into school this upcoming fall.   The fact that Republicans screwed up consumer finance so bad that people can’t buy houses.  The fact that our dollar is doing so bad that vacation spots won’t even accept it any longer.

We’re going to hell in a handbasket here folks.  Hold on tight, times is gonna get real rough!

Maybe we should be doing one of our world famous “pre-emptive strikes” on a few select morons who are running this country into the ground…


Frikkin Yahoo! I Just Want My flickr and MyBlogLog Accounts Back!

Yahoo! – “chasing Google and frustrating users since 1998” (TM)

I bought a premier flickr account and I haven’t been able to log in for MONTHS. Why? Because they switched log in systems, and nobody inside flickr is responding to my desperate pleas for help. I paid good money for my premier account, and I can’t even manage MY OWN PHOTOS. Photos that rank well in search engines for MY OWN NAME. I am helpless to remove some personal pictures that I no longer really want up there… photos that I paid to manage on their site.

You might ask “Chris, why did you take so long to blog about this? The most recent pictures are like 6 months old!” – You’re right. I forgot all about how mad I was about flickr until I decided to log into MyBlogLog account, which again prompted me to use a new log in that I don’t even have. Now I can’t get in there either.

Now I’m frustrated as hell trying to create a new Yahoo! ID, but my name is already taken (likely by some spam bot since there are only a handful of Chris Hooleys in the world). And once I settle on a user name that I don’t even want, I have no idea how to get those linked to my flickr and MyBlogLog accounts. It’s just stupid. And typical.

Hopefully somebody from Yahoo! reads this post and can get me some kind of help… but I doubt it.

In the meantime, my iGoogle, GMail, Adwords, Adsense, Optimizer, and bazillion other Google gadgets I am using are still working flawlessly. An I have Googlers calling me pretty frequently (even got a Googler visit coming soon) to make sure everything is still working. Just thought I’d throw that out there…


Affiliate Summit and Elite Retreat

I’ve never actually been to Affiliate Summit.  I’ve had a few people offer discounts to get into the event (I can’t for the life of me recall who was offering me passes, if you still exist HIT ME UP!)  I’m still teetering on the edge here.  Should I go?  Should I bring my affiliate peeps?

As for the Elite Retreat, people already know I am a HUGE advocate of this event.   If you are thinking of going and you need some info about it, feel free to contact me directly.  I’ll gladly explain why I am such a huge fan and what it has done for me personally.   If you are defintely going and you haven’t bought your tickets yet, hook a brother up and buy it through my affiliate link so I can make a few bucks!


Ok So The Patriots Lost… At LEAST I was on TV!

I have so much to say about my experience but the pain is too strong to write it all right now. But like every dark cloud, even THE Biggest Disappointment in Sports History had a shining moment for me. I was on TV! Watch the clip and relish my huge fame and instant popularity!

Wow, that movie was terrific eh? Send all movie script roles to me via my contact page!


CHRIS HOOLEY HAS TICKETS TO THE SUPERBOWL!!!

Anybody need some? I can get them to you at the last minute. I live in AZ. There are very few of these bad boys left on the planet!

(I just magically turned into a ticket broker!!)

Superbowl Tickets


Chris Hooley is Going to the SUPERBOWL!!!

I can’t believe it… I’m having daily heart palpitations. I am going to be there when history is made. I am going to the biggest football game ever. Ever. This is the year Tom Brady and the Patriots make history!!

I’ll be in section 406 row 10. Watch for me on TV, I’m gonna do my best to hog the camera for at least one second to cement my immortality too. I’m high up, so the camera won’t likley be buzzing around where I sit, but my HELMET will insure that even if I am on for ONE GLIMPSE that I will be easy to spot.

Go Patriots! This is the biggest event I have ever headed to. I feel like I am going to explode!!


I Love San Diego!

I bet those guys over at Ed Loan Funding (another Student Loan Consolidation Company in S.D.) are NOT partying it up right now.

WAY TO GO PATRIOTS!!!


The FASTEST Way to Lose Momentum on Your Blog

Tired of all those pesky readers on your blog?  Sick of all that annoying traffic?  Had enough of building a community, getting links, or comments on your blog posts?  Well I have a revolutionary solution!  It’s simple, easy, and FAST!  It’s a secret I’ve utilized on several occasions; EVERY time it resulted in a drop in traffic, subscribers, readers and all those other problems that come with owning a popular blog.

The secret?  *looks both ways* sshhhhhh…. (it’s easy, just stop writing for a while).  60% of the time it works EVERY time!

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Tom Brady Secrets!

If you’re a fan of Tom Brady, or funny random blogging, go check out Tom Brady Secrets. HILARIOUS stuff!

FYI- Jeff Dempsey contributed a ton to this blog, which is probably why it is so funny!


Biggest Loser Competition, Part Deuce :-(

I was pretty bragadocious in my last post about how to drop pounds FAST, eh?  Well here’s a follow up a lot of you health nuts will love.  Some may even get to say “Told ya so” but whatev…

So the Atkins diet made me lose 12 pounds in a week.  It also made me lethargic, irritable, and hungry.  My insides didn’t feel right, my immune system was lowered (I missed 2 days of work after getting really sick with what should have been a light cold), and my chest actually hurt inside like I was having heart problems.  All of this in ONE WEEK!

So I quit.  I ate kinda normal, got a little more active, and I gained most of the weight back.  In 2 days.  Now, my net loss is more like 3 pounds.  Not too impressive.

Moral of the story: Don’t do atkins unless you are near the very tail end of your weight loss competition.  It sucks.


Clarity and Brevity


All In One SEO Pack Plugin for WordPress

Absolutely rocks.  I’ve never put much effort into trying to get links to this site or rank it for anything, so my template was not SEO friendly.  I just got sick of seeing bad title tags on my site but didn’t want to spend any time or effort editing PHP so I did a lil research and and found the answer.

The All In One SEO Pack is the bomb.  SEO suggestion for the day: use it and love it. (if you don’t already)

That’s all I gotta say about that.


3 Quick and Easy Steps to Becoming THE Biggest Loser!

My extended family has decided to have BIGGEST LOSER competition. The rules are simple. Each entrant pays 10 dollars to buy in. Every Tuesday we take our weight and send a picture of our scale as proof. After two months, the person who has lost the highest percentage of their body weight wins the pot!

Well it’s been one week. After losing almost 12 pounds, I thought I would outline my strategies for anybody who made the resolution to lose weight for the new years. 12 pounds in a week is a LOT of weight eh? Well here’s how I did it:

  1. Hardcore Atkins: follow the diet religiously, NO straying at all
  2. Treadmill Daily: at least 20 minutes
  3. Cry Every Time You See, Smell, or Even Think of ANY Food that’s Not Bacon

If you don’t mind heart disease, irritability, bad breath, and weird stuff happening with your insides, and you want to lose a lot of weight fast, try this out and see if you can a really big loser too!

I feel like crap…

Has anybody else succeeded with any other crash diets? Any tips or tricks on how to shed pounds fast? More importantly, anybody ever get on one of these diets and learn how NOT to gain all the weight back once they stop?


Are you WITH Me or AGAINST Me? The Terrel Owens Factor

I like to think of Corporate America like it’s professional sports. Marketing, Sales, Operations, Finance, and IT superstars are no different than professional athletes with year round free agency. Some demand a high salary, some are lunch pale hard workers who roll up their sleeves, some are loud and brash and can make or break any company depending on their mood.

Like Terrel Owens.

T.O. is one of the best receivers ever in the history of the NFL, but his constant demand for the spotlight and bad attitude when he’s losing was like a cancer to prior teams. He moves to another team that allows him to be himself and enables him to work the way he wants, and next thing you know he’s the role model in the locker room and he’s doing everything he can to help his team win. He’s a player that needs an organization to bend a little to make room for his ego, and rewards that organization if they do.

On the other hand you have an organization with strong and strict leadership that does not bend; the New England Patriots. They would NEVER hire T.O. because HE won’t bend to their will. But their system can make known malcontents (Randy Moss, Cory Dillon) successful and happy players who conform and become part of the team. And they win. Big time.

Corporate America is no different. Some organizations have such strong leadership, and such great vision, that employees work twice as hard to keep up the winning tradition. The scary thing is however, that some employees are so good at what they do that they can single handedly change a corporation and it’s future. And sometimes, there are employees who are cancer. It’s scary when you have a sueprstar like Terrel Owens who can propel your team to the highest highs, or crumble the foundation of the organization.

The question is how to handle something like that? Do you pamper him like Dallas (seems to be working, right?) or do you fire him and look for people who can conform? And think, do you want to face that guy on the field if you do let him go?

There’s some thinkbait for you execs and CEOs who have stars in your corporation. Is your team strong enough to do without your star? Can you afford to pamper your execs who deliver on a consistent basis? Is it even worth it? Do the rules change when somebody is that important? Is ANYBODY that important?


Bulldozer with Ballerina Shoes

Today’s advice for you corporate climbers is short and sweet. Be a bulldozer with ballerina shoes. If you KNOW you are right, you KNOW your decision is best for your company (and yourself) then you can’t accept a “no” right? Problem is that egos, agendas, and personalities can sometimes cloud a company’s decision making ability. And as a good get-along-guy or get-along-girl (which is what you need to be to get anything done in executive management) you must understand how important it is to keep people happy… or better yet how to NOT piss people off. Sometimes you need to dance.

Sometimes it’s tough when your decisions face opposition. But when your decision is right, you need to push forward. There IS no “no”. Become a bulldozer with ballerina shoes. Dance around what you can, roll over if you have to, but push forward no matter what stands in your way.


Guess Who’s Blogging Again!

Me!

I’ve spent too long minoring in the majors and majoring in the minors. I gotta get back to what got me where I am at today. For those who have forgotten who I am, I’m Chris Hooley. The Fonzie of SEO. I work for the best Student Loan Company on the web. I am a father, a son, a sumo wrestler, and an interpretive dancer / figure skater.  I will be your guide to pimping the web and pwning corporate America.  Stay tuned kiddies, I’m back with a vengeance!!


How to Launch Dozens of Blogs

There has to be a better way.  I have dozens domains that I want to create sites out of.  Free templates that I can edit myself.  Access to tons of awesome writers.  But creating the sites takes hours!  Set up hosting, configure, upload files, configure, install database, configure, etc etc etc.  It’s a pain in the arse.  Then once the sites are up, they crash from too much traffic (third host in 6 months, all the same problem)

These sites don’t have enough income potential to spend big dollars hosting them, but if I launch them all and keep my writers pounding out awesome stuff and driving traffic eventually these sites will be worth the effort.  But for now, no upsidedown-ski on hosting costs.

Anybody know a better, more efficient way to pound out lots of real wordpress blogs?  I am not looking for splog software, I just want to build out my sites so I don’t have all my chickens in one basket so to speak.


Playing to Your Strengths

“You know Tiger… you’re pretty good at Golf, but you suck at swimming. You need to practice swimming. You’re already good at golf anyways.”

-stupid person talking to Tiger Woods.

In SEO, business, and life in general, there are two ways of thinking about strengths versus weaknesses. One train of thought says to work on your weak points, the other is to work on the strengths. Both have valid logic behind them, but this chicken / egg controversy can have crippling effects on your plans if you aren’t careful.

I’m saying today, right here right now, that there is ONLY one way to look at this. Play to your strengths.

Let’s apply this to the world of SEO as an example.

On one hand we have a programmer; keen at logic and finding loopholes. You should be the person writing the bots, developing the dynamic content systems, analyzing the metrics, etc. You shouldn’t be writing that linkbait article or trying to force yourself to be to social butterfly online.

On the other hand; we have a writer or communicator. You should be the one creating social pieces, making buddies and networking, and using your programmer’s scripts to publish and push this content. You shouldn’t need to develop the scripts yourself.

Just think if famous football coach Bill Belicheck thought to manage his team by playing to his weaknesses. “I know Tom Brady can throw, but he sucks at tackling. He will be practicing at noseguard this week. Vince sucks at throwing, so he will be working with the quarterback coach.”

Ridonkulous.

So what’s different about business? The answer is nothing. You are wasting your time if you are trying to spend all day trying to make everybody understand all aspects of your business. That’s your job when you are the boss. Your management team might need to work on their weaknesses, since they are working with your future superstars, but don’t distract your superstars from shining in THEIR jobs by giving them the same distractions! FOCUS!

Point black you play to your strengths and hire for your weaknesses. Let the strongest people work their magic. Let positions build themselves out of your people’s talent. Don’t waste everybody’s time by distracting those who are strong in certain areas.


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