This is a summary of the talk and presentation that I delivered at the 2nd annual Digital Citizens Indaba on the Marketing and Monetising panel. My fellow presenters were Laurian Clemence and Matthew Buckland.

I started out telling the story of how I attended the 1st DCI conference last year, met Emeka Okafor, and ended up being awarded a TED Global Fellowship. It’s very difficult to place a monetary value on the experience gained from this event. Simply put the money for my travel, accommodation and conference fees are approximately US$10,000 or more.

Next I showcased my personal development blog, some of the structural elements like the Aweber email subscription form, the TAG cloud, the notable plugin that allows readers to submit my blog postings to Digg, Reddit and other social bookmarking websites. Inside the WordPress Dashboard I pointed out the growing list of incoming links from Blogrolls as the quality of articles has increased over time. There is a direct correlation between this narrowing of my focus, writing more original content, and the increase in traffic I’ve experienced since January 2007.

Next I showed how easy it is to include your blog’s RSS feed into your Facebook profile. There is a regular amount of traffic coming from Facebook users and I’m looking into merging my feeds using Yahoo! Pipes so that I can get even more exposure through Facebook. My LinkedIn profile brings high quality traffic to my this blog.

Next I displayed a awesome graph and quoted some research on a blog entry about how to become an expert. The essence of this is that you need to have persistence and specifically look to continuously improve what you do to set you apart from the drop-outs and the amateurs in your industry. The best example of this Steve Pavlina’s blog and I highly recommend the two articles: Confessions of an A-list blogger and How to make money from your blog, as well as all his podcasts.

5 Steps to becoming an Expert

  • Choose Your Topic (Niche) – it’s very important to differentiate your blog from others in your industry. So spend time using Google Blogsearch or Technorati to checkout your competition.?
  • Read Books – According to Dr John Demartini if you read 72-85 books on one topic it’s the equivalent of completing a Ph.D on that topic.
  • Interview Experts/People – By interviewing experts you can learn from them and also get to know them personally as people.
  • Participate > Online Discussions – It’s very important to go and find where your people are having online discussions and contribute to those. Start with forums, they have been around since before blogs became the rage and some are exceptionally influential.
  • Write Articles Not Blogs – What can I say. This is a must read by Jakob Nielsen.
      Download the presentation from here: