“I’m looking to secure about 200k to finance a multi-niche exciting blog”

Over on BofA’s Small Business Community, someone asked (“Securing business financing“):

Hello! and Happy New Year!

I was wondering could someone please advise me on ways I can secure business financing for my business, operating since January 2009. I already know that I will not be approve for traditional financing so I am not seeking traditional loans.

I’m looking to secure about 200k to finance a multi-niche exciting blog. I need to hire a team of Social Media Manager, SEO experts, Writers, Editors to make it one of the top ten blogs. We will also put together an expert panel that will offer live on-line training services, also.

I am looking for non-traditional sources of financing. I do have a business and marketing plan. Thanks for your input.

startup funding panel

 

Seems safe to say they are almost definitely going to have a hard time finding funding for a multi-niche blog, but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible…

My response sent them to a blog post of highlights from the recent Access to Capital event (“Want Funding? 54 Insights from…“) that included videos, presentations, tips, etc. on topics like alternative funding, startup funding and crowdfunding.  My hope was to inspire them to seek out a resource they might not have otherwise considered… but know there must be other resources out there.

Where would you send someone looking for a non-traditional source to fund their business? 

Publishing from my phone???

About a wek ago I decided to stop trying to make do with my blackberry and bought an iPhone… I’ve spent the past week playing with apps and found some great ones, although I haven’t tried publishing a blog post using the wordpress app, so here goes…

By the way, (assuming the photo upload works like I think it will), here’s the apps that have made my home screen so far:

4realz is now Facebook Connnected

I don’t know about you, but the idea of adding Google Friend Connect to my blogs never really enticed me…. It seemed like just another MyBlogLog.

However, I’m kind of a Facebook Junkie, and so when I had a few minutes, I decided to look into Facebook Connect.  It’s pretty darn similar to Google Connect in that users (you!) can “join” a blog and it will display “recent” visitors.   However, the one HUGE benefit is that when configured correctly (there’s a bit more to this than I expected), users can push “comments” to their news feeds… and I’m pretty sure there’ll be other ways of integrating content created on the blog into Facebook in the near future.

With that in mind I installed and configured the facebook connect plugin from sociable.es.

Here are the major features that are enabled now (and I highly recommend you test them out!):

1) Connect with the site

  • that’s as simple as clicking on the bottom at the top of the right panel)

2) Push a comment to your Facebook Feed

  • That’s as simple as leaving a comment once you’re logged in & following the prompt that asks if you really want to push your comment to your profile
  • Interestingly, if you’re connected to FB, then the tool will override the “gravatar” avatar with your profile photo from FB

3) Invite others

  • Why not go ahead and spread some luv, 4realz-style!
  • If you’re looking for permission, then I hearby give you permission to invite people to read 4realz.  😉

4) Update your profile

  • If you want your comments to link back to your blog/website, then you’ll need to update your profile on the site (look for the “edit profile” text once you are logged in on the top right panel)

That’s all for now.   I thought I’d test it out on 4realz for a few days and if everything works well, then this is definitely something I’ll push to Rain City Guide soon.

REBlogWorld Presentation: With a Little Help from my Friends

I spent the better part of today completing the first draft of my presentation for next week’s REBlogWorld in Las Vegas!  (If you haven’t registered yet, it’s getting late, but there is still time to sign up: afflilate link.)

For my presentation I wanted to create something a bit more advanced than I usual cover,  so I decided to focus on the lessons I’ve learned from running Rain City Guide over the past three and a half years, as well as give tips to real estate professionals on how they can run their own group sites.   Truth is, I’ve seen so many people try to intimate Rain City Guide over the years, but almost all of them have failed to catch fire…  and rarely am I surprised since so few people do it right.

I’m calling the presentation “With a Little Help from my Friends” for reasons that will be obvious to most and especially those that attend.

And now I want your help.  I’ve been talking about the Rain City Guide for so long that I feel like I must be missing some obvious stuff and would love your feedback.  

Profile on BlogWorld Wiki
Profile on BlogWorld Wiki

Are there any questions you have about how Rain City Guide works?   Are there any group blog topics or etiquette that you’d like to see me cover? And, obviously, if you ask a great question, I’ll make sure to answer it in the comments so you can benefit even if you don’t make it out to Vegas.  🙂

Bonus head’s up to other speakers: The BlogWorld folks put up a wiki page for each speaker that seems to be ranking pretty well on many of your names.   I’d highly recommend taking a few minutes to complete your page.  Here’s mine, Dustin Luther at Blogworld, as an example.

Introducing the 4realz Hotlist

I’ve had this idea for a long time about how cool it would be to open up a blog to the general public with only minimal moderation to keep out spam, but I could never put all the pieces together until the wonderful folks at WordPress created a twitter-like theme called Prologue.

It was at that point that I knew I had to move 4realz.net to a self-hosted environment so I could realize this long-held dream and open up the site to the rest of you.  Well, after messing with the code for a while to get the site to operate just how I wanted, I’m ready to release what I’m calling the 4realz Hotlist.

4realz Hotlist Screenshot
4realz Hotlist Screenshot

So, here’s the idea…   Once you register with the Hotlist you’ll be able to submit articles to be published on the site.   And because I’m going to be very liberal in what I let get published on the Hotlist, it just became quite trivial to give yourself a link from the 4realz.net domain.

Here’s one way to think about the 4realz Hotlist.   After you write a blog post that you know is great, think to yourself: why did I write this post?   If you can sum it up in one sentence, then publish that one sentence as your 4realz mini-post along with a nice link back to your site.

With that said, don’t limit your activity to simply promoting your own stuff.   You can also use the Hotlist to promote just about anything interesting you find on the web.  And if you check out how I’ve been using the tool over the past few weeks, you’ll see that I’ve been embeding YouTube videos, photos, and generally linking out to anything that catches my eye.

But here’s the catch, I really want to encourage clever, interesting and/or insightful mini-posts.  So to put the incentives in the right places, I’m going to publish the highlights each week here on 4realz.net (Carnival of Real Estate style) AND include the highlights in my weekly emails that go out to many of the most influential people in online real estate.  This means that a clever one-liner is likely to get you some great traffic, some nice inbound links, and in front of some interesting people.

But enough about the tool… You really have to try it out to get a feel for how cool it is to publish a blog post from the homepage a blog, so get over to the Hotlist, register for an account and start posting!

ActiveRain Launches Outside Blogs

And a few folks from the 4realz community got to test it out early.   My new “outside” blog is at http://tyr.activerain.com/, but if I was feeling really savvy, I would have given it my own domain name, (as in http://4realz-on-ar.com/ ).  It’s pretty cool that they offer this as a free service since even sites like wordpress.com, which has lowered the barrier pretty darn low, charges $10/year for this service.

My only real knock against the set-up so far is that the available “themes” are pretty limited and require that you put your photo in the right sidepanel… not exactly something I want, but it likely will appeal to agents.

As Brad says in this AR post, this service has been a long time in the making… And Brad might not know just how long considering Jon talks about being inspired to create this type of feature after attending one of my seminars from Feb ’07 in this Sellsius blog post!  😉

(Also interesting in that it looks like Roberta Murphy probably coined the phrase “outside” blog in a follow up comment of that thread!  If you haven’t seen the thread recently, it’s definitely worth checking out.)