Category Archives: Blogging

I hate you stats (even though I need you)

Statistics can be complex for dumb people like me.  BUT they can be made super easy, if you display the stats in an easy way.

Here’s the kind of stats I personally like seeing:

This is a HEAT-MAP overlay of my site from my CrazyEgg statistics.  The more people click on a certain part of the site, the more it “heats up” on the image:

nevblog-crazyegg-stats-heatmap-550px

 

This is a CONFETTI overlay of NevBlog.com from my CrazyEgg statistics:
nevblog-crazyegg-stats-confetti-550px

Same stats in both pictures, but different types of presentation.

The point is within a SECOND you can tell what’s being clicked on….and what’s not being clicked on.

Now, my blog has been sort of “tweaked” because of these stats, so everything is getting clicked on a fair amount, but it wasn’t always that way.

The main goal was to tweak the site so the email signup gets lots of attention.  The next goal was to make sure all the links were at least semi getting clicked on. Then I removed all the stuff that NEVER got clicked on.

#ghettostats

 

 

BONUS COOL FACT:
On the confetti overlay, you can see these “lines” every few inches.  Those are from mobile users scrolling!  Cool!

Attending a nerdy conference FinCon

So this past weekend I attended a conference for financial bloggers called FinCon.

I honestly didn’t know this existed until a friend said he was going.  So at the last minute I decided “what the hell” and tried to go.

The idea of a bunch of nerds who blog about their finances online getting together at a conference made me laugh.  FREAKIN LOSERS!!

Then I realized I was one of the first people online to publicly list his finances online……
And that my blog is literally named “Neville’s Financial Blog”……….

So I started to make some plans for headed to St. Louis for it, but FinCon was already sold out, and every hotel within 1.5 miles of the conference center was sold out! (apparently the St. Louis Cardinals was in the finals and the stadium was right next to the event).

Bummer.

Fortunately they had a “ticket exchange” and a “roommate exchange” for late stragglers like to me, so I scalped a ticket and found a roommate to split a room with.

Now I’ve actually been to a lot of conferences over the years, and it’s pretty clear the same thing happens each time:

You get a certain amount of value out of the speakers and events, but you get the MOST value from just meeting other people at the conference.  

So if Lazy Larry stays home and watches every speech online and takes notes….he’ll come away with some good nuggets of information.

But if Friendly Freddy actually goes to the conference, and even misses a few of the sessions because he’s hungover……he will still get more out of the conference than Lazy Larry because he’s at the conference mingling, making friends, going out to breakfast/lunch/dinner with all the other nerds at the conference and building up a network of like-minded people.    

Anyhow……soon after arriving I realized FinCon is the ONLY place where it’s appropriate to walk up to a stranger and ask
“Hi, what’s your blog??”

Even more interesting was that you’d usually have heard of the persons blog.
A conversation begins.
Interesting things are shared.
Friends are made.

Enough babbling, here’s some of the trip in pictures:

A selfie of me on the train (I didn’t know St. Louis had a decent train)?  I’m jealous.
fincon2

This was my roommate Romeo, who was more responsible than me and made proper room plans ahead of time!
fincon14

Pretty quick you meet people you sort of know already through their blogs and make friends:
fincon5

Billy and Steve…..I’m taking a wild guess they’re probably talking about blogs:
fincon3

Pat Flynn was such a cool guy.  I’d read his stuff before, and it was great hearing him talk and getting to know him better.
fincon10

The St. Louis Arch.  I saw it 20 years ago with my family.  The building on the left was the Hyatt where everyone stayed, and the arch was LITERALLY right out the window, a very cool view!
fincon9

Naturally I took a handstand picture under the Arch:
fincon6

On Friday night there was a party at the Hilton in this super-awesome rooftop club/restaurant thing they had.  It had complete panorama views of the city, the Arch, and overlooked one of the final games for the Cardinals.

It was so cool to hear/see the roar of the crowds from above!
fincon7

This next picture won’t mean much to anyone else, but I’m including it here so I remember this:
Derek Halpern waived his speaking at the conference and instead told them “I’ll speak if you spend all the money on an open-bar closing party.”  After that party was done, a group of 30+ people were trying to get cabs to a different place, and logistically it wasn’t working out very well.

Out of the clear blue, a big-ass party bus pulls up, opens the door, and a woman holding a giant can of Budweiser gets out and goes, “Need a ride??”

We all pile in and get a ride to the bar we were trying to go to.

I ASSUMED the woman worked for Budweiser and this was some promotional stunt.  Turns out it was a church bus and the driver was just trying to make extra money!  It was just one of those funny moments where you think, “That couldn’t have worked out ANY better!”
fincon12
heart 2 heart ministries

Then Patt Flynn showed us that he can dance really well….
fincon13

And then some of us had a fancy-chmancy Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse dinner (get the filet):
fincon11

And that was FinCon!
Sincerely,
Neville Medhora


P.S.  
While I learned a lot from going to the sessions, the main benefits of these conferences comes from making new friends and hearing stories you otherwise wouldn’t just sitting behind a computer.

Now I wish there was some more time for me to hang out in Austin, but this weekend (Oct. 24th – 27th, 2013) I’ll be going to vegas for a small copywriting conference.

It’s going to be between 50 and 80 people, and some of the copywriting legends like John Carlton and Joe Sugarman will be there.  THIS is a huge opportunity to hear some of the really big-time guys speak….but more importantly……hang out with them for the whole weekend on a personal level.

I also happen to be taking one person WITH me to the conference for free.  If you wanna be that person, register here: (Monday is the last day to enter, I’m picking the winner Tuesday morning)!
http://www.kopywritingkourse.com/vegas/

How to profit from hackers

Here’s a quick business idea (more like “consulting”) one of you can run with.

I got this “Pharma Hack” on my WordPress blog a few days ago.  Apparently it doesn’t have any effect on WordPress blogs, except it changes your title tags in your database (so you can’t easily change them) to promote pills…..this is what it did to my search rankings:

Sooooo……apparently NevBlog now sells Viagra :-)

It’s actually not a “hack” but rather a small “exploit”.

ANYHOW, I ended up paying to get it removed (yet it still came back).  I REALLLLLYYY wanted to do a search for “WordPress Pharma Hack” and see a sponsored result saying:

….instead I found nothing.

I had to personally call Chris Pearson who wrote the most detailed post about the pharma hack to get a recommendation for the removal of this brilliant little exploit.

But these large-scale exploits seem like a GREAT opportunity for WordPress junkies to make a bunch of extra money.  If someone charged $200+ to just “take care of this shit” for me….I would’ve GLADDLLLY paid.

-Nev

 

P.S.  In case you’re wondering, I’m currently moving this blog to WPengine  and they’re cleaning it up right now.

Fringe benefits of owning a blog: Interviews

Haha…today I was awoken by a phone call from a reporter in Montreal about Car2Go.   Apparently he was searching for people who had used the cars frequently and could talk about them from experience.

Unfortunately only Hamburg and Ulm Germany are the other places besides Austin that have had Car2Go for over a year…so his only English-speaking and time-zone-similar place to call was Austin.

So he did some basic searching and found…me!

So after a 10 minute interview or so…he said I would be on the radio broadcasting to all of Montreal how cool Car2Go is!  I’ll try to find the clip at some point…

It’s one of those funny side benefits of posting random stuff on a blog :-)

It kind of reminded me about the random call I got to speak to poor people in Sierra Leon (and accidentally pissed one of them off)!

NevBlog on Mint.com’s original marketing plan

Hahaha….perusing through some interesting reading material the other day I stumbled upon a post by Noah Kagan who formulated Mint.com’s original marketing plan and recently released it to the public.

Mint.com made a big buzz when after only two years they sold for $170,000,000 dollars…..You can see a cool speech about it here: Aaron Patzer Mint.com Speech.

Anywhozzit, I looked at the very first page of their marketing plan and who do I see?  NevBlog.com!

So what does it mean to be on the first page of a $170,000,000 marketing plan?

Unfortunately, absolutely nothing.

But it did make me smile :-)

P.S. I guess the only result of this is Noah constantly bums on my couch…running his entire AppSumo company from his MacBook Air.  I get to pick his brain, and in return he gets to eat all the bananas and cashews he wants :-)

P.P.S. On a totally random Noah-note, since I’ve been filming all these videos for the Behind The Scenes product and plan on doing more videos, I needed a camera with better video quality (but mainly better sound pickup).  I was riding on the back of Noah’s scooter to a concert he got free tix to.    So this was my first test video when I got my new Canon S95 camera…featuring Noah’s Jew-fro head:

Get Random

Bear with me as this blog changes its layout.

The blog is simply a hobby, so it doesn’t take priority….meaning it’ll slowly improve.

One cool thing I added is the RANDOM button.

Where will it take you???  WHO KNOWS?!?!?!

I also put one on HouseOfRave:

Getta good look…

….because the last thing to complete on my August 2010 goals is re-design this blog.

————–

I’m just

testing out the

way this theme

displays different

styles of text on
blog posts

Nordstrom Return Policy Traffic and Hilarity

For the longest time I’ve looked at my Google Analytics for NevBlog.com and noticed one post consistently in the top 10:

My Nordstrom Return Policy post!  Weird huh? This was a simple little post I did back in…2009..no…2007….no….2005 which has somehow topped the rankings for the search term “Nordstrom Return Policy.”

As I recall, up until a year ago it was #1 in the Google search results, now it resides at number 2:

What’s HILARIOUS to me is how many clicks, comments and stupid debates the post gets!  I’ve actually deleted many of the comments in the past, but now I’ve just plain stopped reading/moderating them.

The ONLY REASON I expect someone would visit that post is because it’s ranked so highly in Google, and on the actual Nordstroms page you can’t leave a comment.

On my dinky little post, people can feel free to air their opinions.  It seems like a lot of pissed off Nordstroms sales people visit the page.

Often these people are anonymous, so who knows how accurate their feedback is….

While that post does give my blog a lot more traffic, that traffic has an astoundingly high 94.71% bounce rate! This tells me that people searching for information about the Nordstrom return policy are not that interested in me.  What a shame.

It’s always funny to see what random articles gain traction!