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Should We Boycott Squidoo? (Part 2)

by PotPieGirl on August 12, 2009 · 17 comments

Let Me Try This One More Time =)


Apparently there was some confusion about my last post regarding boycotting Squidoo. First off, my apologies if the points I was trying to make were unclear. It also seems from the comments that folks wanted to know if *I* thought we should boycott Squidoo….and I didn’t flat out give my answer. While I thought I was clear, it seems I was clear as mud… so let’s try this one more time.



Should We Boycott Squidoo?


I mainly was asking this question to all of YOU. I really wanted to know if YOU planned to boycott using the Squidoo site. I already know what *I* think…hahaha!

However, you, my readers, must not know what I think. According to this thread I just found in the Squidoo forum, I must have been VERY unclear now, and in years past, when I talk about Squidoo.

And that is MY bad.

So, based on that, I will ask MYSELF what I think about boycotting Squidoo (yes, I am talking to myself…and answering myself…again).



“PotPieGirl, do you plan to boycott Squidoo?”




“PotPieGirl, Do you think that other online marketers should boycott Squidoo?”




“PotPieGirl, do you think other marketers should still use Squidoo if it does NOT fit with their current online marketing plans or topics?”




If anyone thinks *I* plan to boycott Squidoo, they’ve lost their mind (and I mean that in the nicest possible way, of course).

Did you know there are over 700 sites out there that will allow you to make a free blog? There are over 460 free article directory sites and there is no telling how many free forums and social bookmarking sites and social networking sites there are – all allowing us to get our content online and found for free. Oh, and video sharing sites, and podcast sites…. and review sites, and RSS sites, and document and software sharing sites, and Press Release sites…. and on and on and on…all allowing us each to have a voice online for FREE.

I don’t plan to boycott a single one of them. If they don’t fit in with what I need, I simply won’t use them.

Free sites are designed to be authority-getters, link-getters, and traffic-getters. They are not designed to be MONEY-getters. However, in my opinion, Squidoo has made itself one of the rare sites online that will allow it to also be a money-getting site. Squidoo shares their revenue with you and allows affiliate links. That’s rare.

Squidoo has allowed affiliate links since Day 1 (and they still do). Squidoo allows you to use THEIR affiliate links via their earnings modules (like the eBay module or the Amazon module) and split the commission with you.

Squidoo knows folks sell stuff on their lenses  ;)

In fact, recently Megan Casey (Editor-in-Chief for Squidoo) made a post on the Squidoo blog about a new, more interactive module/feature they are planning to add to Squidoo.  Creating things on your lens that promotes people to participate can make your lens more “sticky” – ie, people stay on your lens, read, and click when you want them to.

In Megans post she said,



When they can answer that, they’re more likely to dive in and participate as well, or at least get stickier and stay on your lens a little longer (until you tell them to leave, by recommending some action for them to take, like buying a book or visiting a blog).



Squidoo knows we make lenses to get reader interaction AND to get readers to sites WE recommend….and yes, to make money.

That makes Squidoo unique from most of the other free sites, doesn’t it? And, in my opinion, Squidoo is the perfect place to learn how to start affiliate marketing, testing markets, and getting some online income coming IN.

Once you have your own sites, Squidoo is the perfect place to also build a brand, promote your area of expertise or your business or your eBay store or your charity or your own product…

BUT…

You have to play by the rules.

If what you want to talk about is not allowed on the Squidoo site, then I would feel safe to say that Squidoo may not be the right site for you. However, that is a choice YOU would have to make for yourself. What *I* am doing may not apply to what you are doing.

Ok, now the big question…



“PotPieGirl, are you just saying this because One Week Marketing is another Squidoo guide?”




First off, One Week Marketing is not “just another Squidoo guide”… it is a beginners internet marketing guide, it is an internet marketing exposure guide, it is an action plan that focuses on using free sites and free methods to begin to make money online OR to gain exposure for your current online projects, your business, or your service OR both.

OWM was created by me to help ME clear the massive confusion I was experiencing while trying to make sense of internet marketing. It took me quite some time to break thru the brick wall of jumbled confusion, but once I did, it was all soooooo much easier for me.

It just so happens that Squidoo is a site that I focus on in One Week Marketing, but not ONLY Squidoo…and OWM does not have to be implemented on Squidoo. It works pretty dog-gone well on lots of free sites.

The main thing about One Week Marketing that I think either people miss (or haven’t read it to find out) is what is REALLY learned following the action plan.



Let’s do a brief over-view:

- Learn how to find a market
- Learn how to pick 5 or so relevant, low-competition keywords in that market
- Learn how to create a web page for each of those long-tail keywords
- Learn how to link those pages together for maximum exposure
- Learn how to get those web pages indexed by Google and other search engines
- Learn how to get traffic to those web pages



Wait a minute, doesn’t that sound like building a small niche website?


Why, yes it does ;)


The beauty of One Week Marketing is that while many think they are only learning Squidoo marketing, they are in fact actually learning about online marketing…. oh, and using free methods.

What makes me feel really good is what *I* personally discovered when I started using the OWM Action Plan for my own online marketing. One day (in November 2007 to be exact), I realized it was time to reinvest some of my earnings from free methods and start to make my own sites.

When it came time to make my first niche site, I realized I already knew about picking the topic/niche… I already knew how to pick the keywords… I already knew how and why to link my pages together…I already knew how to get it indexed…. I already knew how to get traffic to it.

All I had to learn was how to use WordPress to build those niche blogs (which I teach for free at 6StepNicheSites.com ). The rest is very much the same.

It was quite the defining moment for me when I realized I already knew the basics for niche marketing online – and I haven’t looked back since.

After almost a year of One Week Marketing being available, I know that others….many others… have had that defining moment, too. They have gone on to twist and turn the OWM Action Plan into their own secret recipe – used it on all kinds of sites – added all kinds of sites – but they have had their defining moment and ran with it.

That feels AWESOME.



Internet marketing has flat out changed my life. No, not just my bank account, but my LIFE. I started with nothing – maybe less than nothing – and with the help of free sites like Squidoo, with pure grit and relentless determination, and with VERY little sleep, I turned that nothing into a nice heap of something and I’m still working it every, single day.

And now I know that with the help of 5 pdf guides from me, others are doing the same thing – taking nothing and turning into a whole heap of something. They didn’t let policy changes, or nay-sayers, or Google changes, or any of that get in their way.

They just keep moving forward. I am so proud of each and every one of you!

However, fact remains – and it’s in my face every, single day, that the majority of folks just don’t “get it” – or haven’t “gotten it” yet. Sadly, many quit any form of internet marketing long before they even give their brain a chance to experience their defining moment.

And that… well, that breaks my heart.



To summarize…


No, I am not boycotting Squidoo. No, I do not think other new online marketers should boycott Squidoo, either. However, it is a choice that you make for yourself.

So, let me ask the question I really wanted to hear the answer to from everyone…

Do YOU think YOU should boycott Squidoo?





{ 17 comments }

Gunter Eibl from GetArticlesDone.com August 12, 2009 at 5:56 am

Hehe. Boycotting squidoo wouldn’t make much sense anyway I guess. They have now over 2 million pages/lenses indexed. They now have what they wanted and even if they don’t own the content, they 100% control it…

Gunter

Martin - Security. August 12, 2009 at 9:18 am

“Squidoo is the perfect place to also build a brand, promote your area of expertise or your business or your eBay store or your charity or your own product…

BUT…

You have to play by the rules.”

That sums it up nicely I think.

Squidoo is still very useful, but not a basket that I’d put all my eggs in.

Dom August 12, 2009 at 9:35 am

While newbies might have think OWM taught them things that could be applied only to Squidoo and thus were highly frustrated by Squidoo’s new policies, I’ve never thought you would have wanted us to boycott Squidoo and perfectly understood what you meant after having read your first article on this subject.

You might have lively reactions but they are the ones of an honest person who’s not afraid of saying of what she thinks. Until now everything I’ve read from you made sense and that’s what makes a great marketer out of you.

Even if I don’t have any other choice than moving my Squidon’t lenses (some of them are two years old), and even if I already have my personal websites I don’t plan to leave Squidoo either. It’s a nice program that small amount after small amount helps people fund their main business as well as offer an income to those that prefer to not have to handle their own website and host.

Keep up the great job!

Dom,
Addams Family Halloween Costumes

Cat August 12, 2009 at 9:59 am

I’ve no idea why those folks didn’t understand your last post – I thought your position was perfectly clear! Perhaps they were just skimming and didn’t bother to actually read it in detail. I don’t think you need to worry about your writing – it IS clear, and it’s hardly your fault if people don’t bother to read properly, or have limited comprehension skills.

Richard August 12, 2009 at 10:36 am

Great post, pot pie girl and great site. I much to do with my Wordpress blog and i want to know Squidoo as well. I believe you know how it all works. Thanks

Adrian Donaldson August 12, 2009 at 10:57 am

I don’t plan to specifically boycott Squidoo but given my experience or lack of it, it will just be part of my traffic generating methods. I’m certainly not going to rely on it for any serious income, but if I earn a few quid – well it’ll be a bonus providing I can find topics that are of interest to somebody other than myself. Always reading PotPieGirl though :-)

Carol August 12, 2009 at 11:53 am

Great posts (both of them). Don’t worry about being unclear…. I understood what you were saying.

IMO, Why boycott a site just because some of their policies have changed to clean up some of the overwhelming amount of spammy lenses? Personally, when someone blatantly crams their sales and products (meaning multiple links and spammy topics on multiple lenses (sites)) down my throat, I tend to click away for good. The Internet and all its free and paid sites is Free for everyone to use, so IMHO, if you aren’t happy with one free sites’ policies you don’t have to use it.

But if you:
Play by the rules and are ethical and moral in your marketing tactics, Squidoo is still a great site to have in your marketing plan. I know I will continue to use it for what it’s for: one small link among many in my marketing campaign.

Azghar August 12, 2009 at 11:59 am

Well said PPG. Squidoo works well if you play by their rules and be creative. Why create a lens on a topic that has too much competition? Be creative and provide useful info for your viewer.

Cat August 12, 2009 at 12:30 pm

Forgot to answer your question in my last comment – no, I won’t be boycotting Squidoo (though I hope the spammers do lol). I think that they’re right to tighten things up – unfortunately a lot of people do take the stuff that is taught in places like WA or even OWM, and use it to spam the site with poor quality hard-sell lenses (while ignoring all the advice about providing value to the reader too), so I can see why they’re unhappy with some of the affiliate activity on the site. And while it’s a shame for those who make high quality lenses on banned topics (and I’m one of them), there are plenty of other places to use, or they can, as you say, start their own sites.

Personally I prefer to use my own sites as landing pages these days, and see Squidoo more as another article directory – good for a backlink, but it’s not my main focus, and my business won’t collapse if some of my lens topics end up on the Squid-don’t list. But for new people without their own sites, who are willing to make the effort to produce high quality, non-spammy lenses based around keywords that aren’t already saturated on the site, then it’s still a good place on which to make a start. I can understand why those who have based their business around it and have now lost their lenses and income are reacting negatively, but it’s unwise to put all your eggs in one basket/on one site, and boycotting it completely is a bit of an over-reaction IMO.

Mark August 12, 2009 at 1:16 pm

To answer your question – NO!! Changes were needed as Squidoo was in danger of turning into a bit of a spamfest. I would still like more clarity though on which are the topics that are not allowed.

So far I have had just one lens hit the spamfilter, but with a couple of pretty minor amendments all was sorted and is now back online!

Keep up the good work PPG!!

Josh August 12, 2009 at 1:57 pm

First I should say that I just read your first post on the subject and think it was crystal clear. But, as you say, brevity isn’t your thing, and I’m guessing most people didn’t read that far down :) You explained very well how Squidoo allows so many things that similar sites do not.

I totally agree that Squidoo needs to clear out the black hatters that make it so hard for us to get a fair shake anymore. I like the more restrictive rules because it weeds out the lazy and/or unethical marketers, leaving me with less competition.

CC August 12, 2009 at 3:06 pm

PPG, don’t worry about the naysayers. I guess you can’t be successful without all that “stuff” coming along with it. I thought your post was perfectly clear, but some just don’t want to hear it.

I marvel at the link you posted on the Squidoo forum where one poster was saying she just could not live with herself if she sold products she hasn’t tried. HUH? Has she ever worked at a store? Did she try every product before ringing it up?

TELLING people about a product that is available is called marketing. There is nothing wrong with marketing. Adults have the right to do their own due diligence to see if the product works for their needs.

Off my soapbox now…..

CC

Barry August 12, 2009 at 3:50 pm

I like the fact Squidoo polices their site, given they more or less allow instant publishing of all non-filtered content.

I’ve always been of the opinion that if my content was bad it oughtta get whacked or not be approved in the first place – saves me the embarrassment of the public seeing bad content with my name on it.

Now if we could just figure out a way to whack all the plagarists out there who steal and alter content, don’t publish source links and remove resource box backlinks… I’d be a lot happier.

Joan Adams August 12, 2009 at 5:10 pm

My goodness! Of course you did not say boycott Squidoo!
Personally, I am thankful to be part of an organization like Squidoo – who is interested in keeping the site as spam-free as possible!

I am thankful every day for lessons I learn from OWM – People who use OWM to make tacky junky lenses – in an effort to make a million dollars overnight — are simply not following the simple directions in the book! Use personal stories and original content.

3dogs August 13, 2009 at 4:14 pm

Just out of curiosity – you mention 700 blogging sites. Do you have a list of those sites (like you have lists of directories/bookmarking sites?)

Forest August 28, 2009 at 10:06 pm

Hi Jennifer,

On recommendation of Josh Spaulding I purchased your guide a while ago and read it with great delight from start to finish. I am very familiar with wordpress and not at all unfamiliar with IM. However I still had a lot of light up moments. I have been traveling for a few months so have not had a chance to put it into practise.

However I am almsot settled now and am looking forward to puting some of your methods to work, probably starting right off with a niche site.

Thanks so much,
Forest.
Frugal Living Blog

mike October 14, 2009 at 12:13 am

Hi Jennifer,

I found your information through WA and I wanted to ask you a question –

I had followed your informaiton posted on WA and my lenses were indexed within 24 hours. 3 of them with a PR of 6 and 8. Very exciting. That was two days ago.

Today I wanted to check and see if I had any traffic and now my lenses are no longer indexed – NONE OF THEM :(

Is there something you can shed some light on for me? It is rather frustrating and then I hear about all of this stuff that Google hates Squidoo, etc.

Any help you can provide would be absolutely fantastic.

Sincerely,

Mike

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