Summer Entrepreneurial Experiences

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Week 8: Final Week

Thursday, August 1, 2013 2:58 pm

My final week has come to an end, and it is amazing how quickly my eight weeks working on HipHopMixtape.org have passed. I came in to this experience with high expectations for growth of my blog. I was very successful in reaching my overall goal of growing the blog, but I still have some work to do on growing overall Google rankings. Growing social media presence and revenue were also goals of mine, both of which were accomplished. Overall I am very happy with the experience and what it has taught me.

This week we have had a lot of success from a mixtape by Berner titled Drugstore Cowboy that was supposed to release on the 24th of July. It was never released and there is no word from Berner on a new release date. However, this post did quite well in generating visitors to the site, seeing that we had a link on the first page of Google. We had two days with over 600 viewers each, as well as big days every day this week from this post. I have also worked on the SEO of the site. I have realized that having the page optimized is key to increasing its rankings in Google. This realization has led me to perform several updates to the site, and install several plug ins that will help with performance and SEO. Purchasing a new twitter tool this week is already helping to increase twitter followers. Having done a lot to boost followers this summer, I have noticed a great increase in traffic from twitter alone. It has been a little more difficult to build a following on Facebook, but I am hoping that some of the Twitter success can be leveraged in to more Facebook likes.

This week has marked the end of July, and our visitors have increased significantly from June. Views in July were just over 8,000, this is a number that I am very proud of. Seeing that views have grown both in June and July, I am excited to see even more growth in August. Advertising revenue has also increased from June, and several days have been very profitable. I am incredibly happy with this growth in July. August should be an even better month as I continue to work on growing the blog.

This experience this summer has done a lot to help shape my goals moving forward. My adviser, Lynn Book, told me to think more about long term goals, and as I write this final post I feel that I have a strong grasp on my long term goals. My site FreeHipHopInstrumental.com has done incredibly well considering it is only two months old. It has had a day that hit 162 visitors, and many days that have reached over 100 visitors. I have realized that there is very little competition for hip hop instrumental sites. Seeing the low design quality of sites selling hip hop beats, I feel there is a big opportunity to monetize my new instrumental site by selling beats, or sending viewers to a new site where I sell beats. As I move forward, I will continue to work on HipHopMixtape.org, as well as working to develop a site that sells beats. This opportunity has given me the chance to discover new career goals, and I am more excited than ever for the future.

Week 7

Wednesday, July 24, 2013 3:41 pm

I am really excited about the success of my blog FreeHipHopInstrumental.com. This site is really new, but already it has a decent amount of traffic coming in and post pages are ranking really well in Google for related keywords. I’ve realized that there is so much competition among music blogs for search engine rankings, but very little competition to rank for keywords related to instrumentals (beats of hit rap songs without the vocals). Moving forward, I am continuing to work on this site along with HipHopMixtape.org. There is definitely more room to monetize, FreeHipHopInstrumental.com, and I can see this eventually being an opportunity to move in to selling beats on the internet.

I have been brainstorming a lot this week about the Facebook page, and how to grow its involvement. I have prepared several methods that I am going to pursue this week to grow the page. First off, I am going to host a competition. Everyone who likes the page and posts a comment will be entered to win a free mixtape review on the site. These cost $20, and there has been a consistent stream of people ordering them. Promoting this contest to our large following on Twitter should do well to spread the word. Also I will be offering a playlist for free download through the Facebook page. You will only be able to download this playlist if you have already liked the page. Hopefully, this will give people incentive to like the page.

I am looking forward to working this week on building the Facebook page and I am excited about what the future holds with FreeHipHopInstrumental.com.

Week 6:

Tuesday, July 16, 2013 3:57 pm

This week I have continued to make blog posts covering recent hip hop releases. There’s a little less music coming out now that we are further into the summer, but there’s is still some quality stuff being released. Along with several paid posts that were put up on HipHopMixtape.org, I put up ananticipatoryposts for new mixtapes from Berner and Cam’ron, both of which have done very well to drive in traffic to the site.

As an exploration in to making a site to sell hip hop beats, I have been working on FreeHipHopInstrumental.com, which has been bring me a lot of success. From the nine posts I have put up so far, I have been able to generate a lot of visitors, including ninety-six in one day. I am really excited about these results and I am planning on posting more often to this site, since it has such a great potential for growth.

I will continue to work on search engine optimization this week, in hope to move up in the search engines a little bit. This is a long andtediousprocess, but I am hoping that my work on this will pay off by the end of the summer.

Week 5: A New Month

Tuesday, July 9, 2013 2:43 pm

Another great week has passed and I am proud to report that my websites traffic stats have continued to increase from week to week. With a little slow down in new music releasing, there have been fewer mixtapes to post about. I have put up a few videos tosupplementthis and I have spent a lot of time working on my second site, HipHopFreeDownloads.com.

Now that June is over, I am able to report that HipHopMixtape.org made $100 in revenue for the month of June. This may not seem like much, but this past month has been the most profitable month ever. With our increased presence on Twitter, there has been a lot of people paying for mixtape reviews. Twitter has proven to be a great tool to link up with upcoming artists who are looking to have their music promoted.

I am a little disappointed at how long it has taken to move the site up in Google ranking. Seeing that increasing the site’s ranking was one of my original goals, I am surprisedI haven’t had more success with this so far. This week I want to focus on tackling this issue. I plan on having someone look at the site to make sure it is optimized for search engines the best it can. I will work off these suggestions and also work to build links pointing to my site.

Week 4: Goals for the Future

Tuesday, July 2, 2013 7:50 pm

This week I finally got the chance to meet with Lynn Book, my adviser for this project. It was great to update her on my progress so far this summer and receive a little insight on where I should go from here. We talked about long term goals with my project, covering where I see my site and my career in five years. She helped me to realize that my site is a great hobby and will generate a little bit of income, but I should start thinking about how my love for hip hop and website creation should work in to my career in the long run. From this, I have begun to brainstorm ideas on how to grow my hip hop blog in to an idea that can generate a full time income.

Taking inspiration from the conversation Lynn and I had, I have begun to work harder on two new sites I have created. One covers hip hop singles that are newly released, the other covers instrumentals that are released of popular hip hop songs. The first site is HipHopFreeDownloads.com and the second is FreeHipHopInstrumental.com. Both these sites have done quite well in the first several weeks to build traffic and I am hoping to continue expanding these two sites along with HipHopMixtape.org. The hope is that I can eventually use the traffic from these two sites to promote a website that sells hip hop beats for rappers to rap on top of.

One of the realizations I have come to in the past week is that I need to put more written content in my posts on my hip hop site, in order for them to rank better on search engines. I am planning to write around 250 words on the posts I put up this week, and hopefully this will help my posts to rank higher and lead to more traffic overall.

I will continue to work on the Facebook page as well as post consistently to all of the sites I am now working on.

Week 3: Continuing to Grow

Tuesday, June 25, 2013 3:26 pm

Week 3 has come to an end and I am proud of another successful week. This week I focused on getting traffic to individual posts to help build the overall visitors to the site. I was really happy with the success I was able to have with these posts. Asher Roth is releasing a new mixtape today, which I posted about several days ago. I am quite happy that this post alone has gotten forty five views just in the past two days. I wrote a press release for the release of Asher’s new mixtape the Greenhouse Effect Vol. 2 that is now ranking fifth on Google for that exact keyword. It is awesome to see this page competing with huge hip hop sites like HotNewHipHop.com, XXLmag.com, 2DopeBoyz.com and Asher Roth’s personal website.

Now instead of updating the blog weekly, I have began to do daily updates, which has proven to drive in a steady stream of traffic from many different posts. This, along with being more active on Facebook and Twitter, has proven to be a great marketing strategy. The results show, as my stats have steadily been increasing over the past three weeks, and I am hoping for an even bigger week this week.

I am continuing to work on getting the site ranked higher in Google overall , and I have hired someone to work on building back links to my site to help its overall popularity on Google. This is a process that takes several weeks but I am expecting a significant result once it is completed.

This week, I will keep plugging away making blog posts everyday. I want to focus on getting Facebook likes up and having a larger presence on Youtube. Until next time.

Week 2: In the Swing of Things

Monday, June 17, 2013 3:30 pm

As I finish up week two, I am quite happy with what I was able to get done. I feel like I am finally in the swing of things and have a good idea of what needs to get done to continue growing my blog. With summer in full force, there continues to be a constant stream of really good music coming out. This week I posted up several projects of small time artists. Then I reviewed a new mixtape from Problem, entitled The Separation. I used a youtube video and several other promotional methods to boost my post. My goal was to get this post ranking highly in Google, but unfortunately I didn’t have much success with this.

I actually had more success with some of the reviews for smaller artists. The great thing about these reviews is that artists are really excited to share them with their fans. Although they don’t usually have as many fans as big name artists, the fans they do have are very loyal. I hope to continue to build relationships with upcoming artists to get HipHopMixtape.org spread around through Facebook and Twitter.

I have spent some money for some work to be done on my site to boost its rankings in Google. This should help a lot to get the site ranking higher for the keyword “Hip Hop Mixtape” and several other keywords I am currently ranking quite well for. I am looking forward to seeing the results of this work.

As a small side project this past week I worked hard to finish a second hip hop site I have had in the works for several weeks. This site is HipHopFreeDownloads.com. I will use this site to help promote HipHopMixtape.org. I hope to follow the same model I did with HipHopMixtape.org and build the sites ranking in search engines. From my research, I believe this site will do quite well in the search engines, so I am very excited to see the results.

Week 1: The Beginning

Tuesday, June 11, 2013 6:01 pm

As a sophomore in High School I set out to create a blog called HipHopMixtape.org, centered around my love for hip hop music. When I started this blog I didn’t want to create another regular old music blog. My plan was to target the search keyword “hip hop mixtape” and hopefully by ranking my site on the first page of top search engines like Google, I would drive a ton a visitors to my site. I achieved my goal and I was soon averaging 1o0 views a day. Although I was motivated to rank high in Google, I also started the blog to share good mixtapes to fellow hip hop fans. (A mixtape is a promotional album that a hip hop artist releases for free download online.) I continued to post quality music and the results showed as my blog continued to grow. In college I have found less time to work on my blog and although around 250 views are coming in per day, the blog has a large potential for growth with a little more work.

Week one I set out to lay down the ground work to begin building my blog. First, I needed to conduct some must needed updates to the version of WordPress I was running on my site, also updating some of the plug ins I was using. After conducting these updates, I was ready to get going. This week was a great week to get started blogging considering all of the great mixtapes that came out in the last few weeks. I immediately posted up Logic Young Sinatra: Welcome to Forever, which is an incredible mixtape. If you have any interest in hip hop and you haven’t heard this mixtape, I highly suggest you check it out. In addition to the Logic post, I put up a few mixtapes from up and coming artists that I heard of through email and Facebook. I finally have time to spend on promoting the mixtapes I review through Facebook and Twitter, which has created some great feedback on the reviews I have done. It is awesome to promote high quality music from artists that are struggling to get to the big time.

As the first week comes to an end, I am excited about the ground work I have laid down moving forward with the blog. The site is ready to go and is looking better than ever. As I continue to make more posts my Google ranking will only go up and I will have even more pages that will be indexed in top search engines. I love the relationships with hip hop artists I have been developing through social media, and it is great to know I am helping to bring good music to the masses.

This coming week I am going to focus on moving my blog up in search engine rankings for several keywords that I am already ranking highly for. I will continue to make posts of popular mixtapes that I am currently listening to. With a promotional model I once to use I will begin to promote these reviews and hopefully significantly boost my blogs visitors. Until next week…

-Will

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