Wednesday, February 11, 2009

My Love Affair With Squidoo

So, I'm trying to think of a topic for a new Squidoo Lens.
Another informative lens on Mineral Makeup?
Perhaps a home-business or sales advice blog?
Maybe it's time to delve into soap or bath & body?

For those who are not familiar with Squidoo:

"Squidoo LLC was founded in 2005 by bestselling author, noted blogger, speaker and Original Squid, Seth Godin. The stated function of the site is to make it easy for people to create free pages (called "lenses") on their interests, and to earn royalties for their good content. Nearly 40% of all Squidoo users donate the royalties they earn from the site to charity. There are more than 900,000 handbuilt lenses on Squidoo." -, by Seth Godin

I Love, Love, Love Squidoo!

Not only can I show I'm an afficianado of something - even just a tiny little something - but I've found it an incredibly helpful sales tool!

Prime example - I just received a question from a potential client: "How do I go about choosing (mineral makeup) colors that are right for me?"

My Answer? "Please take a moment and go to for help in determining your skin tone and choosing the shades that will suit you best."

Clear, concise and Bellissima looks like the primo expert on the topic because we're 'published'.

But a lot of research goes into my lenses - trust me.

Deciding on a topic, naming the lens, choosing the URL (of which I've discovered I've done a terrible job!), forming the outline - those are all the easy parts. I usually put in hours of research from a variety of different, reputable sources before writing on a topic. Then lots of fact-checking, editing and proofing. It has taken me up to 2 weeks to a month to post a lens.

And then the fun part - choosing the modules!

Which ones go best with my topic?
Which ones are most interesting?
How about a few fun ones?

And then there are the ones that earn money. The obvious choice, of course, is eBay, since I have a few items for sale. But it's also important to choose those that are compatible with my topic, so as not to lose the interest of the reader. Amazon works when I can choose relatable items. Zazzle promotes my brand name. But the other choices just don't work well with most of my current topics... Orbitz, for example.

And then designing the lens. Choices, Choices, Choices! Adding a Talk Bubble or Post-It Note makes it fun, adding a Poll makes it interactive, adding Reader Feedback keeps me humble, adding Links helps promote more Indie businesses... my choices will either keep the reader interested or make them move on to the next lens!

And next - promotion. Time to announce to the World my accomplishment! I can send out a Squidcast, Twitter about it, add the link to MySpace & Facebook, announce it on my website and blog. Time to get readers and ratings. If I'm lucky, my lens will get 5 Stars, Favorited and Lensrolled! If I'm really lucky, I may even get the Lens of the Day!

Oh, the joys of The Wonderful World of Squidoo!

Ahhhh - I feel inspired just talking about it!
I guess I'm off to start reasearching and writing.

Oh, and the topic?
I haven't decided that yet!
But I'll keep you updated!

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