Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Associated Content Hires Patrick Keane as CEO

Big news at AC this week--we've got a new CEO!

Patrick Keane started in AC's New York offices on Monday, March 30. He brings deep experience in digital media, advertising and technology to AC and we're very proud to have him on board.

Patrick comes to AC from CBS Interactive, where he was EVP and Chief Marketing Officer. At CBS he was responsible for sales strategy, consumer marketing, advertising operations, field marketing, and research and analytics for all properties across sports, news and entertainment.

Prior to joining CBS, Keane spent more than four years at Google. He was head of advertising sales strategy responsible for developing and managing the strategic plans and relationships and was the original founder of Zeitgeist, Google's annual thought leadership forum. Patrick also built and led Google's North American field marketing team.

Prior to Google, Keane was at Jupiter Research.

You'll be hearing more about Patrick as he gets settled and we introduce him to the AC Community. If you're curious you can read more about the him on the WSJ's All Things D blog, on Reuters and on PaidContent.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

AC Meetup & Workshop in Brooklyn on April 2 at 7:00 pm

**UPDATE: This event has been postponed. Stay tuned for a new date**

Associated Content is hosting a Brooklyn meetup and workshop on Thursday, April 2, 2009 at 7:00 pm.

This is a great opportunity for NYC Sources to get out and meet some fellow AC contributors and employees in person. Don't you want to know what we look like?

We'll be joined by other local writers who are interested in learning more about AC and how to make money by writing for the Web.

* When: Thursday, April 2 from 7:00 - 8:30 pm
* Where: Freebird Books, 123 Columbia St. (Between Kane & DeGraw), Brooklyn, NY 11231, (phone)718.643.8484
* Who: AC Sources, employees, and other local writers

If you're a meetup.com member, you can RSVP here. Otherwise, drop me a line via AC and let me know if you'd like to attend.

We will serve drinks, snacks, coffee and great conversation--I hope that you can come and meet us in person!

If you can't make it to Brooklyn on April 2nd, I'll be scheduling an event in Manhattan later this spring.

Final note: this is my 100th AC blog post! Thanks for reading--be sure to stick around for the next 100!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Finding the Funny on Associated Content

Looking for a laugh? AC has lots of hilarious folks posting videos, poems and humorous essays. Below are just a few of the people who stand out in the humor section of AC.

Nutuba writes clever wordplay lessons that will make sure you never misuse "hopefully" or "nauseous" again. He also writes A Christmas Story-esque nostalgia pieces about childhood mishaps and sweetly humorous fatherhood moments. If you like your humor smart without sarcasm, visit his profile often.

Greenhill writes poetry about an obsessive relationship with AC, "I used to go outside with the dog and play, Now I sit at the computer all day." There's also the scandalously-titled "My Husband Beats Me up Every Morning."

TheBarefoot needs no introduction. He's a well-known figure on AC.com and is very funny in long form as well as in his frequent, shorter Forum posts. Check out "911 Calls from McDonald's Prove Darwin was Wrong About Natural Selection" and his guide for college students choosing a major.

KValentine, who has been mentioned on the AC blog before, publishes a charming, giddy series of videos between dolls Cosette and Eponine. The two of them discuss everything from Final Fantasy video games to the Dollectable convention.

Loose Cannon is a relatively recent signup already making waves at AC with his edgy, sarcastic humor. Pay attention to him now, because he's planning on going places. Want to scam Starbucks for free coffee or hear his strong feelings on the financial bailout? Don't miss out on his blog, either. You can find a link to it from his profile.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Publish Content for a Chance to Win an Amazon Kindle 2

It's sweepstakes time again--now through March 31, every piece of content you submit and publish for Upfront Payment (Exclusive or Non-Exclusive license) will be an entry in our current publishing sweepstakes.

One lucky winner will receive an Amazon Kindle 2 Digital Reader!

This gadget has gotten a great reception since it debuted just a few weeks ago. Check out some of Kindle 2's features in this AC article or read Time.com's review from 3/19 here.

Limit 10 entries per person. Deadline for submissions is 11:59 Eastern, on Tuesday, March 31. Winner will be randomly selected and notified on April 13, 2009. Click here for full contest rules.

Friday Potpurri

Happy Friday!

Check out a brief roundup of all things Associated Content:

Source Pam Pleasant was interviewed by a local TV news program in MO. She demonstrated her money-saving techniques. Her AC articles got her on there, and we’re mentioned at the very end of the broadcast. Watch Pam's interview here.

AC is in another article about earning money in a tough economy, this time in the April issue of Women's Day Magazine. Check out "9 Ways to Boost Your Income" online or buy a hard copy at your local newsstand.

We're also on a good list of places where wannabe travel writers on the Graduate Degree Blog can “learn what it takes to be a travel writer, how to improve your writing, and ways to increase your chance of success.”

Add the Best of AC Health Twitter name to your follow list and see what's new and noteworthy in our health section.

Finally, if page view (and earning) acceleration has been on your mind lately, read Vikas D. Reddy's excellent article on the subject here.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

AC's SXSWi Wrap-up

We are back! It was an awesome, busy four days for Associated Content in Austin, TX at SXSWi.

AC had a booth on the SXSW trade show floor where we met movers and shakers in all areas of online work, from programming to promotion. Bloggers, artists, designers and early adopters were everywhere in Austin, socializing and attending panels and parties. Our eco-friendly AC notebooks were a popular giveaway and we even met a few Sources! Thanks Christine Cadena for the t-shirt--it was great to meet you in person!

AC reps attended keynotes by Tony Hsieh of Zappos.com and Nate Silver of 538. We took notes at panels with titles like "User Generated Content: State of the Union," "Building Your Brand with Web 2.0 Tools" and "Journey to the Center of Design" and brought back the advice offered by the experts to share with our coworkers and make AC an even better place to be.

Twitter and iPhones (when they were working) were all the rage (Foursquare, a new location-based social networking game from the makers of Dodgeball had some buzz, expect to hear more about it in the coming months). Since the trade show was also mixed in with the Film portion of SXSW, we met a slew of video producers eager to check out AC's video platform and make some money off of the traffic their work gets (as opposed to posting it for no monetary returns elsewhere).

Everyone we met was very excited about the idea of publishing their content on AC for money and exposure. People were eager to get started, and we'll see an influx of new Sources as a result of our outreach at SXSW within the next couple of weeks. Please give them a hearty AC welcome. It's good to be home!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Associated Content at South by Southwest Interactive

South by Southwest Interactive Festival starts this weekend, and AC will be there! It's our first trip as a company to SXSW and we're really excited to do a ton of networking, socializing, panel-attending and general conferencing.

If you're going (I already know a few Sources who are), stop by our stand. We're #528 and will be giving away some quality swag and even a cash prize sweepstakes. We'd love to meet you in person!

We issued a few SXSW and Austin assignments in order to help other attendees find out what not to miss in Austin and to give people who couldn't make it a way to feel in on the on the action. You can see a guide to Interactive parties and lounges here and here. Check out an Interactive speaker lineup here.

Austin is an awesome town, with great food and amazing music. I'm particularly interested in this sure-to-be controversial article about the Top 5 BBQ restaurants in Austin. And the best honky tonk bars.

Need to get around Austin without a car? Here's how. Looking for a late night snack? This article has the best spots to eat after hours. There for the music? Check out an article on the ten best record stores in Austin.

It's going to be an awesome couple of days at SXSWi. We'll do a blog post or two from there about the panels, speakers and other events. Visit the official SXSW website for more information.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

This Week on Associated Content

After a lot of research and discussion, we are making a few changes to some of the descriptions used at Associated Content.

These changes are being made for one big reason: To be as clear, open and accessible as possible for any site visitor and contributor to understand what AC offers. Some of our traditional descriptions, while totally familiar to those of you who have been with us for a while, often required some explanation for people unfamiliar with AC.

Starting this week, Content Producers will be referred to as “Sources.” We are making this change so that it is clear to visitors that every contributor to Associated Content is a source for valuable information.

Additionally, “Calls for Content” are now, simply, going to be called “assignments.” Our transparent system of offering you original topic ideas and set upfront payments -- hundreds of them every week -- remains exactly the same. Our goal was to make it more obvious what this system was all about.

We appreciate it might be an adjustment, but nothing is changing about your profile, content, status or the way AC works – particularly our unique payment system.

You, our Sources, are still AC’s greatest strength, and your title will convey that to everyone who connects with your content.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Get Started Promoting Your Content

Are you taking advantage of the new tools AC has developed to help you share your content across the Web?

If you’re not already using Auto-Post and Content Widgets, get started! Make sure you take every opportunity to engage your audience and increase your page views.


Auto-Post allows you to easily share your work on Associated Content with your Facebook friends, Twitter followers and WordPress blog readers. Simply fill in your account details on our Auto-Post page, and links to your content will be posted automatically, every time you publish.

Not currently using Facebook, Twitter or WordPress? Check out these Content Producer tutorials:

Getting Started on Facebook by Sylvia Cochran
Using Twitter to Promote Your Content by Lisaswrite
Starting a WordPress Blog by Nina Rotz

Once you’re set up on Facebook, Twitter or WordPress, start using Auto-Post right away! It's an easy, automated way to promote your content and keep your contacts in the loop.

Remember, you can also manually post your content (or other CPs’ content) to any social media site you use (MySpace, Blogger, Digg, etc.) by clicking the promotion box located underneath every piece.

Content Widgets

We partnered with Newsgator to create custom widgets that make your content more portable than ever. Click the “Widget / Feed” link right above your CP profile page to preview your own, personalized widget, which automatically displays your 5 most recent pieces of content. Simply copy and paste the code we provide to add the widget to your Blog, MySpace profile or any other personal website that accepts HTML code.

You can also create custom widgets that pull in work by other CPs or popular content from around the site on our custom RSS / widget page. Look in the left column of this blog for a visual on our Newsgator widgets.

If you need any help setting up Auto-Post or Content Widgets, please email community at associated content.com. You’re welcome to share your feed back as well – we’d love to hear how you’re using these tools to promote your work on AC.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

AC Now Providing Daily Page View Updates

Great news! Associated Content now updates every Content Producer's estimated page views on a daily basis.

Daily updates mean that you’ll be able to watch in close to real time how your content is performing. This is something our Community has been requesting for a long time, and we’re thrilled to be able to offer it to our CPs.

Now, please keep in mind that these numbers are only estimations until we’ve had a chance to verify them. We verify all page views at the end of the month in order to sure that they're coming from legitimate sources (instead of bots or other blackhat methods) before processing Performance Payments, and adjust the numbers when necessary.

We hope you’ll enjoy receiving daily insight into the popularity of the content you publish on AC!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Associated Content in the Wall St. Journal

You've heard us talk about how AC is a great way to supplement your income because we're paying out our CPs every week, even as the economy stays tough.

Today, the Wall Street Journal included Associated Content in an article entitled, "Selling Expertise On the Internet For Extra Cash." Along with Amazon's Mechanical Turk and LivePerson, they highlighted us as a place to create content in a topic that you're an expert in and earn money on it!

They even interviewed 2008's CP of the Year, Sabah Karimi for the article. She has some good advice to offer in there, so follow the link above or click here to read the article.