Blogging is Back, with Darren Rowse

In the beginning, there was blogging. And for businesses looking to build an audience that helped grow the bottom line, it was good.
In fact, many of the leaders in the digital marketing space started as blogs and evolved into multi-million dollar businesses. I personally have immense gratitude for what Rainmaker Digital has been able to achieve, and it all traces back to the early Copyblogger audience.
Then, around 2008, “business blogging” gave way to the term “content marketing.” Eight years later, as we wind up 2016, we’re drowning in content, and there’s no mistaking that much of it is just poorly disguised traditional marketing.
Something seems to have gotten lost along the way. The original business blogs provided valuable content, sure … but that content was delivered with perhaps the more important ingredient — a relatable and reliable human voice.
To be clear, blogging never went away. But perhaps it’s time to go back to the roots of business blogging to rediscover the foundational aspect of content that actually works as marketing, even though it doesn’t “feel” like marketing.
Tune in to listen to my conversation with the great Darren Rowse of ProBlogger. You’ll hear how the entire content marketing movement truly began, where blogging is going, and why we all need to first return to the foundational element of human connection before we focus on fancy automation, strategic funnels, and conversion optimization.
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Content Curation in an Age of Fake News, with Dave Pell

It’s been almost two years since I started Further, my curated email newsletter about personal growth. And there’s no mistaking that the project was inspired by Dave Pell’s NextDraft.
Content curation is all about becoming a trusted editorial source that finds the best information within a certain topic from amongst the valueless clickbait and mediocre dross that overruns the web. Pell’s NextDraft takes on the daunting task of delivering “the day’s most fascinating news,” plus commentary that’s often better than the links themselves.
Even though Further is a side project for me, I’m an advocate for smart curation due to the valuable service it provides in a world of excess content. And because it’s centered around an email audience, it can become the catalyst for a thriving business based on sponsorships, affiliate marketing, or promoting your own products and services.
Now curation is becoming more important than ever. Trust in media has never been lower, and the new norm of social content distribution allows fake information and fluff to go viral — which amplifies the skepticism.
Listen in to my conversation with Pell to understand how to become a trusted editorial voice for a valuable audience. More importantly, understand how curation can restore trust in the media sources that you trust.
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Tim Ferriss on Finding and Focusing On What Truly Matters

Tim Ferris broke into popular consciousness nine years ago with the release of The 4-Hour Workweek. He’s gone on to create a series of books based on the “4-Hour” concept.
That’s in addition to a wildly popular blog, podcast, and even a TV show. But in economic terms, all of that pales in comparison to Tim’s success as an angel investor; he’s scored early positions in Uber, Twitter, Evernote, Shopify, and Facebook.
So, it was somewhat of a shock to hear that Tim is stepping away from new investments. And you’ll be more than a bit surprised to hear what he’s focusing on next, and more importantly … why.
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Gary Vaynerchuk on Playing the Long Game

Back in 2006, Gary Vaynerchuk started a daily video show that turned wine criticism on its head. More importantly, it took his family wine business from $3 million-a-year to a $60 million-a-year ecommerce juggernaut.
From there, Gary did something that surprised a lot of people, including me. He started a digital marketing agency called VaynerMedia.
Wait … what? Why would someone who could move that level of product want to build a service business? Isn’t that going backwards?
Not so fast. As you’ll hear in this candid interview, Gary’s plan involves what has now become familiar to Unemployable listeners — doing this thing now in order to set the stage for bigger and better things down the road.
In other words, true entrepreneurs are always playing the long game. Listen in for amazing insights from one of the most outspoken advocates for the unemployable.
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Create Your First WordPress Product, with Chris Lema

In just over a decade, WordPress has become the most popular content management system on the web. And as with any hugely popular open source movement, there are plenty of for-profit companies providing premium themes, plugins, hosting, and support.
Is it too late for you to get involved? Evidence suggests the contrary — that WordPress is just getting started. But you do need to identify a distinct business problem to solve.
As a non-technical founder myself, a decade ago I was under the misconception that the code is what matters. And it does, but the most elegant code in the world matters very little if the functionality of the software isn’t addressing a true user need.

That means you don’t need to have technical skills to create your first WordPress product — you need empathy and the ability to solve a problem. WordPress expert Chris Lema joins us today to get you on the right path for open-source software success.
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Tips for Crowdfunding a New Product (Or Your Entire Business), with Khierstyn Ross

As you likely know, crowdfunding is a way to raise money for a project or venture by pulling contributions from a large number of people, usually online. In 2015 alone, crowdfunding generated an estimated over $34 billion (USD) worldwide.
You may not know, however, that the first instance of online crowdfunding dates way back to 1997, when fans underwrote an entire U.S. tour for the British rock group Marillion — raising $60,000 in donations via a fan-based internet campaign.
Even I developed our first product by selling something that didn’t yet exist in 2007 — going from zero to six figures in a week — almost two years before Kickstarter was founded. Both are examples of how having an existing audience is the key ingredient for getting people to invest in your ideas.

Now we do have Kickstarter, Indigogo, GoFundMe, and scores of niche crowdfunding platforms. This leads people to make the mistake that these platforms provide the audience, and entrepreneurs just bring that great idea.
Nope, same as it ever was — your existing audience is still crucial to amplify the benefits of a crowdfunding platform, and your audience must be developed first. Today we’re chatting with Khierstyn Ross, who helps entrepreneurs start early, putting into place the necessary ingredients for a successful crowdfunding campaign, and she happily shares her expertise with the Unemployable audience.
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How to Build a Business that Sets You Free, with Sol Orwell

Startup, raise money, cash out, repeat. That’s the narrative that Silicon Valley feeds you.
Problem is, that approach is not only statistically rare, it’s rarely successful. Most venture-backed companies fail, plain and simple.
On the other hand, we have the narrative of the typical small business owner. Long hours for long years in order to create a meaningful business and an enduring legacy.
But what if you took a different approach? What if you started a business that supported you while you walk away to enjoy life?
And when the urge strikes you to start the next thing, you do it — simply because that’s what you want to do. Sounds liberating, right?

That’s the approach taken by serial entrepreneur Sol Orwell, co-founder of Rather than positioning himself as indispensable to the organizations he creates, Sol works to make himself redundant, and then trusts his second-in-command to run things while he pursues other adventures.
We’ve talked about this issue in the past Unemployable episode Why Freedom is More Important Than Money or Status. Today you’ll hear from another person who lives that attitude, with tips for making it happen for yourself.
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SEO that Grows Your Business with John Jantsch

Of all the components of a holistic online marketing strategy, search engine optimization (“SEO”) seems to mystify many the most. And it’s true that years back, the key to ranking well in Google was a form of dark art.
That’s changed in recent years. Google’s algorithm has gotten smarter, and is more distinctly tuned in to what the audience thinks is relevant and valuable for a given search term, rather than what we as marketers would prefer to rank well.

As my friend Rae Hoffman says, “Google doesn’t want to make websites popular, they want to rank popular websites.” In other words, get traffic rich by creating content that people want and value first, and Google will make you even richer.
Another friend of mine, John Jantsch of Duct Tape Marketing, has just co-authored a book called SEO for Growth, and it’s a completely up-to-date examination of what it takes to do well in search engines. I was honored that John asked me to contribute the foreword, and long-time readers of Copyblogger will see the natural evolution of tactics and strategies we’ve talked about for a decade.
Tune in for valuable tips on the modern practice of SEO. More importantly, discover how to execute on an SEO strategy that grows your business, not just your search traffic.
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How to Find Your Next Big Thing

Entrepreneurs and independent business people are always working on the next thing, often on the side while we maintain our current income. And as your mind begins to see the world in a more entrepreneurial way, you’ll spot opportunity everywhere.
A good problem to have, right? But we know that pure economic opportunity and even the status that comes with success are not enough to make you happy.
You need that avalanche of good ideas, because you need a process to get rid of the ones that are not a good fit for who you are, and who you’d like to become through the work you choose.

Looking back over my own evolution, I started off perhaps making some choices for the wrong reasons, but adapted my process in the last 10 years to match opportunity with who I am.
Today’s guest, Jenny Blake, opens Season Three of Unemployable having written a book I think we all wish we could have had years ago. It’s called Pivot: The Only Move That Matters Is Your Next One, and it reveals an adaptable process that will help you weed out the wrong ideas faster, and get rolling on your next big thing.
Listen in for some great tips.
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