Izea: It could still be a good Idea!

In today’s email, Gordon from Customer Love at Payperpost ‘reached out’ to me with the following email:

Hi Kenneth,

I recently read your blog post titled, “payperpost and socialspark: is it time to give up posting for pennies?”

I wanted to reach out to you to see if you could elaborate on your problems/concerns. In particular, regarding your frustrations with getting your SocialSpark post approved.

Your feedback would be extremely beneficial, as we are always trying to improve our services and products to meet the needs of our customers.

Best Regards,
Gordon King
Manager, Customer Love

IZEA – Innovations in Social Media

I’m glad that Gordon and Izea are really interested in what is going on with their bloggers. At the risk of boring my readers, I’m recapping what has been going on:


Thank you for your email. I appreciate your interest…. I am afraid this is a rather long email… hope you don’t mind….

PPP Frustrations

I’ve been thinking about this for a while… I’ve not been successful in getting many opps at all under PPP recently despite having (at the time) a blog with Alexa est. 150K, Tech. 30K, PR2, and a REALRank of approx. 850. I have approx. 100 visitors a day and it’s doubled since last year. While I realize that there are a lot of good bloggers out there competing with me, I’ve just been experiencing too many troubles in finding any opps at all on PPP. In fact, I did about five since October 2007 or so. Part of is that I’m living in Asia (hence segmented out of most US opps despite (DESPITE) most of my traffic being US based (approx. 75% is based in N. America).

Other Streams

Naturally, I was happy to accept a recent advertiser that included an in-post advertising block. Since I hadn’t done any opps in a while, I felt this was okay. I actually forgot that it was likely against the TOS for PPP. Then in February/March, I had two opps rejected for that reason. I wrote and told PPP that it was a problem because I had an offer for advertising that included a three month period. Additionally, it came in at a time when I hadn’t done any opps for a while so I was glad to take the advertising opportunity, if only to develop the advertising side of my business and defray some of my hosting costs.

I then asked that my blog be temporarily removed from PPP at that point, because I was getting nothing despite being in hot segments of the market and my blog no longer ‘qualified’. When SS came along, I was excited to take part in that, because I thought it would be a maturer form of PPP, and I loved the community aspects. But for various reasons, the system is really only starting up.

I opted to try the sponsorships which seem to be running now. And I took and created a couple of sparks, too. Then I took a real opp for $5.50. I wasn’t so concerned about the amount of money, but I took a while to write it, added a couple of pictures, as well as the compulsory requirements. I wanted to try out the system.

SS: is it still PPP 2.0?

I forgot that the original TOS in PPP still applied and when it was rejected, I consulted the TOS (in SS – non-existent) and found the reasons:

  • 1. in post advertising
  • 2. in post distractors links (for the image credit no less)
  • 3. quoting their website
  • 4. an inpost link to an affiliate product
  • 5. re-redesign my frontpage (which no longer includes full-posts for every item either).

While I could have removed 2~4 without difficulty, the banner rotator I’m using doesn’t permit post opt-outs, so I would have to disable the ENTIRE inpost ads for the ENTIRE blog thus invalidating part of my agreement with that advertiser. I’d have probably had to refund the money, too. Meaning that for a five dollar post, I would have lost much more than that. In addition, I’d have had to re-edit the post; remove the image; turn off my affiliate campaign for that keyword; submit a Ticket; and resubmit my post to await a final decision.

Is it worth the effort for me to do PPP?

Quite frankly, in addition to the time I already spent improving my blog, adding income streams, building traffic, it was NOT WORTH THE EFFORT! Seriously, I’m not kidding. I spent more than three hours alone redesigning the frontpage of my blog… and I’m gradually moving it towards a magazine format.

This doesn’t include any of the concerns about further licensing (and no-recompense) of my product WITHOUT my permission… but you can read about that in my post. In other words, I’d write that $5.00 post, I’d have to write two posts (before and after), hack my blog, allow it to be used again and again by the advertiser (with credit), as well as causing traffic to leave my website, risking PR again, … it just seem to work for me.

If there were more a stream of work, I’d consider some of the changes I mentioned, but for one opp in two months.

Change the TOS! Pretty please!

So, I’m afraid that unless SS modifies its terms somewhat from PPP, I won’t be much posting in future for you. My blog is no longer qualified, and it’s stuck somewhere between being a small blog (ideal for PPP/SS IMHO) and a major blog.

I will look for other ways in SS for me to earn revenue, keep your customers happy and increase the profile of both our companies. I’m doing the banners right now for the first time. Who knows perhaps some aspects of the SS program will allow more adventuresome advertising means than inpost advertising.

I really appreciate the work and effort that the staff at PPP have put in over the past years, and I can only say thank you for everything you’ve done. It’s been a real thrill. You can definitely count me as a satisfied customer. I’d have to give you all at least an A++ for everything…

It just seems that PPP/SS and InvestorBlogger are going in different directions right now… I hope that our paths cross again.

Best Wishes – Kenneth

I don’t expect to see any magic bullets, but we might see some discussion in the company about how to manage those blogs that fall between the cracks. Who knows?

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