Why Alltop Rocks, and How to Get Listed There
You know I'm always on the troll to discover new ways to help you maximize your presence on the Internet. Here's one of my latest discoveries and how you can take advantage of it. Alltop is a "content aggregator" that collects "all the top" Web-based blog posts and news articles in different categories and makes them easily accessible at one website. Alltop devotes each page at its website to a different category. Fashion, beauty, autism, Christianity, photography, wine, yoga, zoology, nursing, HIV, gardening, sports, social media … You name it, and it's either at Alltop or it will be soon. Guess what my favorite Alltop category is?
You guessed it: small business. And its a good thing too because yesterday, I was informed that Indie Business Blog's application to be included in Alltop's small business category was accepted. (UPDATE: On November 4, I was informed by Alltop that my blog feed was also added to their "women" category.)This is a very good thing for my blog, and I think it might be a good one for yours too. So this post details the steps I took to get listed in Alltop. There's no right or wrong way to do this. This is just what worked for me. At the end of the post, find out how to get a copy of my Alltop pitch, which you can use as a template for your own pitch.
When people log onto the Internet, they are usually looking for information. Alltop's purpose is to aggregate or collect this information in one place, thereby making it easier, faster and more efficient for people to find the information they are looking for. Not only does Alltop aggregate the content via a feed from the content originator, it separates this content into categories. This makes it easier for an Alltop site visitor to find quality information that interests them all in one place.
When you log onto your favorite search engine and enter key words, what happens? You get dozens if not hundreds of pages of potentially relevant website links. Where do you start? How do you know that the content you find is going to be useful? You don't know, until you take the time to click on it. While search engines can still be useful, Alltop adds a new dimension to your search for information by collecting what you are interested in by subject matter and making several quality links on that subject available to you in one place.
Alltop "clears" the links it includes at its website in terms of relevance and timeliness. No more clicking on a link that sounds good, only to find that it's from an article dated May 3, 1987.
As of mid-September, there were 213 topics at Alltop. I'm sure they've added more by now. I believe that Alltop will make it easier for more people to find out about the Indie Business Blog, and that's why I wanted to be included. Would you like to be listed at a site that makes it easier for people to find out about you, and which touts itself as the place to find "all the top information" on the Internet? Darn skippy you do! That's why I'm going to tell you how I got listed at Alltop. Maybe my strategy will work for you too. Here's what I did.
My Alltop Strategy
1. Learn About Alltop
Just as I would not pitch a magazine without first knowing as much as possible about the publication, I didn't want to ask Alltop to include me until I knew how it worked and what its purpose was. So the first thing I did was make sure I was a good fit. I did this by visiting the founder's, Guy Kawasaki's, blog. There, I discovered how and why Alltop was created.
2. Make Sure Your Blog Is a Good Fit
I invested some time reading through Guy's blog (a very good investment of time, by the way!), and then grabbed some coffee and delved into Alltop. My goal was to find out what was so special about the blogs Guy included there. I focused on small business and entrepreneurship, but you focus on the topics you cover in your blog.
My search revealed several helpful things. First, while many of the blogs were custom designed, many others were not. Some were pretty plain in fact. No bells and whistles, no fancy videos or flashy graphics. A few of the blogs were even hosted on free platforms like Blogger. But no matter where a blog was hosted or what subject matter it covered, it was well written and had "curb appeal." That is, from the time you hit the home page, you could tell that someone cared. Someone was keeping cobwebs from forming and updating the blog regularly with fresh, relevant content — the ultimate search engine candy.
3. Make Your Best Pitch!
Once I decided that my blog was up to snuff based on what I saw at Alltop, I went to Alltop's About Page to read more about Alltop and to find out exactly how to submit my blog for consideration. On September 29, I dusted off an email to Guy and the Alltop team. I treated it like a cover letter, with my blog serving as my resume.
My Alltop Pitch
I divided my email message into 3 parts.
- I started with a little Alltop praise, and then introduced Indie Business Blog as a blog that is relevant and unique in the small business category
- The meat of the email was highlights of some of my more popular and insightful blog posts in different categories, with a focus on posts with video, my take on current events and photos of me with members of the Indie Beauty Network
- I concluded with an indication that I was willing to answer any questions Alltop had or provide any additional information in support of my application. I also left all of my contact information at the bottom, including other website links, to show that I am socially well connected online.
Later that day, I got an email from Alltop confirming receipt of my application and asking me to complete an online form to help them evaluate my application. It took about 60 seconds to submit the form.
On October 6, I received a note welcoming me to the Small Business Alltop family. Yipppee! So now, I can display the cool button you see on the right column of my blog.
So that's how I did it. If you give it a shot, remember to make sure your blog is updated regularly and well maintained. No cobwebs are allowed at Alltop. Plus, be sure to cite a few examples of why your blog adds value — like videos or your own especially unique or uncommon perspective on the topic you want to be listed under.
OK so that's it. Now it's your turn. Let me know how it works out.
What about you?
Would you like to explore whether it's a good idea to pitch your blog to Alltop? If so, maybe you'd like to get a copy of the email I sent to pitch my blog. I'm happy to email it to you if you leave a short comment here telling me briefly why you enjoy the Indie Business Blog. That's a fair exchange, don't you think?
Related Posts (to help you whip your blog into Alltop shape!)
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