Hello friends, after a short break Friday Coffee is back in to action and today we have a very young, but an established blogger Saksham Talwar. When I first visited his blog I had no idea that it was run by a mere 16 year old. Saksham knows how to run a successful blog and he is very close to enter the Alexa 20K club. I was very interested to have an interview with Saksham because I always wondered how such an young guy runs a popular blog and I was very keen to learn some new tips from him.
So here we goes:
1. This may be a usual boring interview question, but for the sake of formality, please tell us a little about you?
Well yeah, it’s a boring question. But it’s necessary to answer this as many here might not know me. For those who don’t know me, I am Saksham Talwar, a 16 year old blogger from Mumbai making a decent amount of money online by affiliate marketing and providing web services.
2. How did you get in to blogging? Is it was just a hobby for you or do you considered it as a profession right from the beginning?
I started blogging when I was 13 without having a clue that blogging can actually earn me dollars! I started blogging just as a hobby and with time as I came across Adsense, affiliate programs I decided to give them a chance and make a few dollars!
Well the first few months were quite good. I was learning a lot, meeting a lot of different people especially bloggers who gave their own views on blogging, my blog posts, etc. Traffic-wise the months were not that bad, but considering that the blog was just a couple of weeks old, I got a decent amount of traffic. During the initial days I got most of my traffic from blog commentating which worked like a charm then. Later on as I became familiar with guest blogging, link building I started to use these ways as well.
4. Blog commenting was one of the most important traffic source for your blog. Do you have any particular strategy for blog commenting? Can you share some tips to get best out of our comments?
My strategy was to focus on building relations, not links or get traffic. So a simple strategy you can follow is Choose proper blogs related to your blog niche (I recommend new blogs) -> Comment AFTER reading their posts (Don’t comment just for getting links or keeping traffic in mind. Don’t forget to follow the commenting policy) -> Praise the blogger if you like his / her posts and if you find anything wrong (mistakes, typos) don’t be shy of telling about it to the blogger.
5. If you were to start all over what 3 things would you do first?
a. Choose a good domain name.
b. Write a couple of good blog posts.
c. Build links via guest blogging, blog commentating, etc.
The ‘b’ part is the most important one!
6. You handle both blogging and education at the same time. How do you manage your time for both? Can you share your time managing tips? I particularly interested to hear your suggestions because I am an Engineering student and I always sucks at time management
It’s really easy. I maintain a time table for my daily work. For example, I have a fixed study time, a fixed time during which I do nothing but blog, fixed breaks, etc. It’s easy. As you’re pursuing engineering, you may have to sacrifice the time you “may” spend to watch television or any other activity.
Rojish: I don’t spend much time watching television, but I am a good sleeper, need to cut few of my sleeping hours
7. Within 2 years of blogging your blog attained a PR 4. Can you share the steps you have done to achieve this? What are other SEO techniques you regularly use in your blog?
Well getting a PR 4 isn’t that hard. To be true my blog reached PR 3 just by blog commentating and very few guest posts. To take it to PR 4, I used article marketing, guest blogging, more blog commentating, etc. It consumed more time, but you can see the results!
8. You are person who are very active in social networking sites. In your opinion is it good for bloggers to invest their time in social media?
I think yes. I think it’s important to be a part of active Facebook groups. You meet a lot of experienced people there, get knowledge, etc. Replying to status messages occasionally, participating in discussions, commenting on fan pages, photos will also help you build relations with bloggers which are very important if you want to be a good blogger and marketer.
9. Do you think bloggers should monetize their blog right from the beginning or after building some reputation? In your opinion which is the best way of monetizing the blog?
Monetizing right from the beginning and monetizing after you build a reputation, both have their PRO’S and CON’s. Monetizing from beginning will give you an idea of which ways will earn you more, you can track your earnings with time (as your blog progresses), performance, etc.
Monetizing after you build reputation is also a good idea. Well I prefer the first one. People these days don’t care if the site or blog has ads, what they want are GOOD information. So if you have good blog posts, there is no offence in advertising!
10. Here are some quick questions needing quick reply’s:
a. Which is the best blog post you wrote so far?
I like this one: 99 Tips For Building A Better Blog Easily
b. What was the worst decision in your blogging life?
The worst decision in my blogging life was when I sold a blogroll link to get a few dollars (of course when my blog was in an initial stage).
c. If Google completely remove your blog from search results, what will be your next move?
I don’t think Google will do that because I am a very much white hat webmaster but if it decides to, I will try finding the reason, modify my blog accordingly, file for a Google review.
d. Who is your blogging idol?
I follow a lot of people especially Amit Bhawani, Darren Rowse, etc.
e. Your favorite quote?
“Honesty is the best policy” – I learnt this when I was a lil’ kid, but still it works and helps me go ahead and ahead!
I also like, “Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out.”
11. Do you have any big announcements or future projects which you‘d like to tell us? Can you share some details about your new project Snatch Us (nice name, really cool :))
Aha, I prefer keeping my projects a secret. Well I have in mind a design related project and a few blogs. I give the credit of the name Snatch Us to Navjot, he was the one who suggested it and I liked it instantly!
12. How can others get in touch with you?
You can connect with me at http://twitter.com/bloggingj and https://www.facebook.com/sakshamtalwar
Also you can e-mail me at info[at]bloggingjunction.com
Thanks for featuring me here
Thanks for your time Saksham, you give me some solid tips. Wishing you all the best for your blogging success.