Ann Hampton Callaway and Liz Callaway– Listen to that harmony at the end of the song! (I could swim in that!) Many You Tubes available from these talented sisters. Learn more at Ann’s website, and Liz’s website–enjoy!
Today I’m thinking about search engine optimization (SEO) and social media uses for cabaret singers, so my tip for you today is this: consider starting a cabaret blog.
Most cabaret entertainers are looking for ways to self promote. Advertising can get very expensive, which is why so many of us turn to social media outlets, because they are free, outside of the costs of Internet access and your computer or palm device. It does make sense that the more people hear about you on a regular basis, the more your name will get lodged into their memory. This can lead to them wanting to learn more about you and what you do, which is hopefully the goal of your online activities.
I would like you to consider adding a cabaret blog to your list of online resources that you use to promote yourself and your cabaret act. There are several benefits to the cabaret entertainer:
- you can start blogging for free
- you can embed pictures that show you in action at a performance, or more informal pictures to give visitors to your blog a sense of who you are, or to add humor
- You can embed video, and use your blog as a powerful audition tool
- You can announce your upcoming performances
- You even have the potential to earn a little or a lot of money from your blog, depending upon how it is set up and how much time you put into it
- If you allow comments, you can start conversations with readers, and gain more visitors that may decide to transition into audience members–this is networking online
- If you attach your blog to your cabaret website, you can use the content that you write in your blog to help raise the level of your website in search engine results lists. You want to be at the top of these lists, so it’s easy for people to find you. You can do this by adding selected keywords to your blog content at strategic points.
Admittedly, blogging is easier if you enjoy writing, but many cabaret artists do a lot of writing anyway, of your patter, for example, and thus blogging is simply another form of creative writing for you.
You can write a post whenever you feel like it, although if you add posts to your blog regularly, at least once a week, it will help to draw readers to your blog, because they know there will be something new and fresh there.
If you use a free blogging service, such as wordpress.com or blogger, two popular ones, they make it very easy for you because they do all the heavy html coding for you, so all you really have to do is write your posts. It can be customized as you get more proficient at blogging.
You can leave it at that, keep it simple, and add your blog to your existing cabaret website in order to have one more feature that your fans will appreciate, because it is another way that you can keep in touch with them.
Another benefit that comes with a cabaret blog is that you can set up your blog so that when you publish a post, an announcement automatically goes out to your Facebook fan page as well as your Twitter fan page. This helps you save time–with one post, it shows up in three different areas, with three different readerships, so you get triple the effect.
If you wish to try to make money on your cabaret blog, you will need to set it up as a self-hosted site. You can’t put ads from an ad network up on a free blog. (In fact, this is one of the reasons why I left the free blog, because I started to get a little visitor traffic at my blog, and they started putting their own ads up on my blog. They get the money, and you don’t, and they are doing it off of your hard work of writing all the posts. Of course, you are getting free service in return. I thought I could do better on my own.) You must have a couple of items, which have recurring fees, in place in order to do this:
- a registered domain name for your blog
- a hosting service
With a self-hosted blog, you can then hook it up to an ad network to quickly and fairly easily get started with trying to earn income from the blog. Google Ad Sense is widely used for this purpose, and is a free service for bloggers. (Google doesn’t pay me to say nice things about them–as a matter of fact, there is a lot that I don’t like about Google, but I am using some of their services, and some have been useful to me, so this is just my opinion or public-record facts about how some of their services work.) After Google checks out your blog and approves it, you will start to see advertisements on the blog. Once you are approved, if you have more than one blog, you are free to place ads on all of them. You can place them where you want them, and you can block certain ads so they do not appear on your blog, so there is a certain amount of control that you can exert over the types of advertisements that are placed on your blog. Ad Sense will pay you electronically or by check when your ads have earned $100. There are several other ad networks besides Ad Sense as well, and some pay when your ads have earned as little as $5-10. When you have a large enough visitor base, say, when you routinely have 2,000 visitors or hits to your blog per day, you could also begin to offer advertising space on your own, and this is another way to have the cabaret blog make some money. (You can get a lot of information about your blog, visitor reading habits when they are at your blog, and much more through a free program such as Google Analytics, or others.) Some people write ebooks, and sell them on their blog for money. Other people offer services, such as lessons or workshops or your cabaret shows, or are guest speakers for events, and they earn money from that as well. Once you have a large enough readership, these types of things are possible.
Getting readers and visitors to your blog all comes down to writing good posts on your blog. Your posts need to show your personality, and it helps a lot of they are entertaining and funny, or entertaining and thought-provoking. But funny is better has been my experience. And then you need to let potential readers know of your blog’s existence. This is where the networking comes in.
I will write more about these topics as we go along with Tip Tuesday at McElrath Cabaret.
Hope these tips help–let us know what other topics you’d like to see us cover here, and we’ll do our best to work through them!
Have you started your own cabaret blog? Please leave a link to it in the comments below. Do you have any other cabaret show tips you’d like to share? Do tell down in the comments! We always love to hear from our readers!
ps–The Cabaret Soiree Link Party is still going strong–you can visit anytime to click on the links and see what others have posted, or you can share your own recent cabaret blog or cabaret website link from now through Thursday. Link is below.
Weekly Post Lineup At McElrath Cabaret:
Tuesdays: Cabaret Tip Tuesday
Wednesdays: Ask A Cabaret Question
Thursdays: Featured Cabaret Blog, Website, Performer
Fridays: Cabaret Through Time