Sep 232014
 

TrustAre readers of online content comfortable with sponsored posts? According to a new study, no. Most are confused and feel deceived.

Sponsored posts, for those not in the know, is also known as advertorial or native advertising. In our field, it means a company has paid (in cash or in kind) a blogger or website writer to write an endorsement. It must be disclosed as such, according to the FTC.

I first questioned writing content in exchange for pay or Continue reading »

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Sep 162014
 

Like-Love-Social MediaA few months ago, in exchange for appearing on a panel, the conference paid my expenses.

During the event, I wanted to share photos of the meals on Facebook and Twitter. I also knew the conference organizers were expecting speakers to promote the event on social media.

So I did the wrong thing. I posted a few photos, and I didn’t say my meals were comped. It felt slimy! I didn’t want to! (Cue whining.)

That was wrong, by law in the US. (I hope no FTC officials are reading this.) From now on, I’m either not post anything on Continue reading »

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Aug 122014
 
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Here’s the top of one of Laura’s pressure cooker infographics. She’s made three so far. Click on the image to see the entire infographic.

A guest post by Laura Pazzaglia

Infographics are taking the web by storm. They can be read and understood in a flash and shared, shared and shared. The best infographics tell a story (albeit very short) and convey useful information in a fun way.

I’d always wanted to make an infographic but didn’t think I had the tools or design skills to do so. Then I saw two posts from a marketing blog that promised Continue reading »

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May 272014
 

Frusted-BloggerA well-known food blogger loves to forward outrageous requests from food companies to me. I’ve kept them them in a file, until now, when I got her permission to share them.

As you know from the countless emails you delete, food companies want product coverage from bloggers. Nothing wrong with that, of course. It’s just the way  Continue reading »

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May 202014
 
Stephanie-Stiavetti- Anime

Tech guru Stephanie Stiavetti

A guest post by Stephanie Stiavetti

I’m sure you’re familiar with the term Search Engine Optimization (SEO), one of the biggest time sucks we food bloggers endure to get more people to our blogs.

There’s no way around doing this work, as all bloggers must bend the knee to Our Great Google Overlords, with the exception of a handful of folks who are so insanely popular that they transcend the realm of mortal blogging (*cough*Ree*cough*).

The problem with keeping our websites search engine-friendly, however, is that every so often, Google changes the rules. And inevitably, for months following these changes, my inbox is flooded with the doleful cries of bloggers who have lost a chunk of their traffic.

If you’re smart, though, it won’t matter how Google alters its algorithm. All you have to do is produce good content and avoid questionable SEO practices. There are countless finer points, a few of which I’ll get to in a moment, but the fact remains that you’ll need not fear even the most Machiavellian changes Google makes to its ranking methods.

Here are a few tips for maintaining your trusted liege status to The Goog. They’re easy enough so that even if you’re  Continue reading »

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Apr 222014
 

Disappointed GuyAt a recent conference, I persuaded an executive to give me some dirt about working with food bloggers, as long as he could do so anonymously.

He’s been in the food business for 30 years, working for large food manufacturers, a worldwide commodity board, and a dried fruit company. Now he’s a consultant to six food companies, supplying post-ready recipes to bloggers, and inviting them on tours and to attend trade shows as media.

He might take 80 bloggers on a four-day tour on behalf of a company or board, for example. In addition to their expenses, he pays bloggers Continue reading »

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Apr 012014
 
Food blogger and cookbook author David Lebovitz. (All photos by Ed Anderson.)

Food blogger and cookbook author David Lebovitz. (All photos by Ed Anderson.)

Writing books is both a struggle and a joy. That was David Lebovitz’s experience for his latest cookbook, My Paris Kitchen. It’s full of stories of his life in Paris, with gorgeous photos for classic and modern recipes. I caught up with David on email, to ask about his writing process and philosophy:

Q. Why did you want a book with so many stories? The recipes often have a story in front of the headnote! That’s a lot of work.

A. We all spend so much time online, madly scrolling through things and clicking around, that I’ve realized how much I miss sitting in a chair (or curling up in bed), with a book. The idea of My Paris Kitchen was to present a personalized picture of Paris. I like telling stories and the story of the book is how I Continue reading »

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