I Need Your Help: A Little Link Love?

Hello again, all. I’m going to make it short and sweet today with a little user-participation experiment that I need your help with.

Here’s the problem, although it’s one of those good problems to have. As you know, every day I take one of your emails and turn it into a blog post where I answer your questions, give you advice, etc.

Apparently you guys are liking that, because now I’m getting about 8-10 emails per day. Which is outstanding, because I never have to waste much time figuring out what to write about every day — I’ve always got a ton of backlogged emails available to me.

But it doesn’t take a math genius to figure out that I’m digging myself a hole that’s eventually going to harm both of us — if I’m stacking up 8 emails in reserve for every one that I blog about, then I’ll never get to all of them in a timely fashion, and you’ll never get the answers that you want (and I believe I can give you).

As I think most of you also know, I am the CEO of StraightForward Interactive, so I don’t have time to spend all day, every day, doing these blog posts. However, I do find them a lot more fun that my real job, so I’d like to find a way to justify spending more time answering more questions for you guys every day. And I know that a lot of you would greatly appreciate it if I answered your questions FASTER.

So, how do I do that? Well, obviously I could start charging a small fee to answer your questions within, say, 48 hours — but I don’t know, that would sorta make me feel like a dickhead, to be honest. Can’t rule it out in the future if my daily question load gets up into the 40 or 50+ range, but for now, I don’t feel comfortable asking for that.

HOWEVER, there is one thing that would benefit me greatly that you could perhaps help me out with while keeping your beer money, and that’s linking to this site from your own website, if you have one. (A distant second would be giving me a shout and a link to the site from your Facebook status).

I’m looking to grow the site a great deal (obviously), and I’ll tell you straight out that I would love to set this particular series of events into motion:

a) Get tons and tons more students coming to the site, and then;
b) Increase the advertising revenue to the site by, oh, about a factor of 10
c) Hand off my StraightForward Interactive duties to my partners and answer your questions, give you advice, etc., FULL TIME. (Yes, believe it or not I would love to do this full-time).

So, a GIANT help to me in that regard would be a simple link from your site or blog to outlawstudent.com. That kind of thing really helps out with my search engine rankings, which of course is a great, great leap toward getting a lot more students over to the site.

And in return, I’ll promise to answer your question within, say, 48 hours. Does that sound fair?

And remember, I’m not saying you need to give me a linkback in order to answer your questions AT ALL — I will answer ALL the questions you send me in due time, regardless of whether you link to me, I promise. (I know not everyone has a website or a Facebook account, after all).

What do you guys think of that? Let me know in the comments below, and please give me your answer in my little poll here.

[poll id=”2″]

Thanks for supporting me and this site! I appreciate all your questions and I promise to keep giving you the best advice I can. Have a good night!

39 thoughts on “I Need Your Help: A Little Link Love?”

  1. I don’t see a problem with that–as long as you still aim to answer all of the emails, which you said you do! How would you propose the facebook status thing would work–would we have to add you as a friend on facebook first, then?

  2. I’m not saying I know everything there is to know, but I certaintly know the most about financial aid in my school and in my networking circle.

    I’d be willing to work on the blog! 😉

  3. I don’t ever have any questions for you (other than that whole, unspoken, “will you give me money please?” one), but I do find your writing immensely entertaining so I’ll put your site in my blog roll anyway.

  4. Well, I don’t have a relevant website, but I’m a regular reader and have enjoyed watching this blog evolve from spam into something I look forward to reading. I can tweet/facebook your site, but I’m also seconding Sam Kelley’s offer. As a college student with 1.5 years experience in the recruiting industry, I know a thing or two, and would love to help you out by answering some letters. Plus, answering dilemmas about college choices, scholarships, and financial aid sounds like something right up my alley.

  5. I always love how straight you are about things… no sugar coating with you!

    I have also thoroughly enjoyed watching this blog evolve into what it is now, and I’m sure it won’t take that much nudging to become even more popular. I’ve liked some of your blogs on Facebook – how would I ‘become a fan’ of yours on there?

    And I’d love to help in any other way I can (except for financially – I know that’s what we all want, and I’m not just not there right now – sorry)!

  6. Josh, my website gets jack for traffic- I believe I’m its only visitor, not having set up adwords, content…. much of anything or any Google goodness….. however on Facebook I’ve over a thousand friends and acquaintances……the majority of which all have college educations- (ah, and yes, college-aged children!)……..
    So- Give ME Scholarships and I’ll spread the word, er…..link……
    just kidding, half kidding….
    However much I’d love to keep you my little secret- you are rad and yes….. deserve to be shared…..

  7. No website or blog for me, but for those of you who are connected, this is probably a great idea. I just hope you’ll continue to answer email and post these thought provoking letters from students.

  8. No website or blog here, either. But lots of success finding scholarship money, thankfully. My only deal is for those of us without tons of computer or networking connections – which is me. I don’t really have lots of questions, but if I did, would hate to be left out in the cold because of my technology lack.

  9. Ali Asghar Joyo

    It is my subject to answer all type of questions because I know the psycho of people.One who asks question there might be something very charmful and answer will be in fair.In case of love question becomes important because it comes out of heart replete with spiritual feelings.

  10. I happen to be an exception, but the vast majority of your readers fit into a rough stereotype that doesn’t typically merit owning a website. Those of us that do (Hi) don’t really have any traffic (hell, mine hasn’t been updated in over a year because I just contract privately right now). I’ll be glad to post a linkback on my website that gets 3 hits a week, 2 of which are from bots and the rest from typos, but I’d say that Facebook would probably be a better way to spread your word anyways. Considering that your reader’s friends are probably in similar social groupings (fresh out of High School in need of college funding), and this group spreads word faster than a linkback ever could, it’s quite a bit faster. Social marketing wins again.

  11. Well Josh,
    I just started a website of my own for my piano students. I would love to add you as a link, especially for my high school students, but I cannot because of some of the “flavorful” words you use in your blog. (My students range from 3 – 80 years in age.) Don’t get me wrong though, I read your blog almost daily because 1) I think your blogs are “straightforward” and highly entertaining and 2) I am returning to school and always on the lookout for more money. I WILL send this link to my high school seniors and college students.
    Don’t change your writing style when you become rich & famous.
    Like some of the previous poster’s stated, if you need assistance, I’d love to assist.

  12. All sounds good, but here’s another idea to cut down on your email-reply workload: refuse to answer emailed questions that do not use punctuation and/or correct spelling. Anybody who plans to go to college will need these skills anyway…

  13. Thanks so much for all the advise you present here. These are really enjoyable reads. I will definitely post on Facebook :]

  14. Zerihun Abera

    everyday is everyday, everyday there are every things. managing all things are the most difficult thing. but managing some of it is the reason why we exist on this earth.
    thank you.

  15. Posted a recommendation for the site on facebook. Also joined the “Give Me Scholarships!” group on there for this site

  16. Ibrahim Lexson

    I have been looking for good advice, that should help me to continue my study in the current university of Juba.What can I do to get someone sponsor me in thesame university, since I couldn”t continue, becouse of finance?

  17. I’ll definitely post it on Facebook or something to get the word out – but what about the backlogged e-mails? Will you get to them eventually? Or only answer new questions in 48 hours?

  18. I think this might give people with a website or facebook page an unfair advantage. I know quite a few science and engineering students that don’t have facebook pages or websites. Maybe there is a more fair way to do this in the long run… like answering all the people who link to you within 48 hours, but once you start working on this full-time, making sure you try to answer all e-mails received within 2 weeks or so? I’m just concerned that some of the people who don’t live online will not get the help they need on time.

  19. Here is a way to get a lot of followers on Twitter Judge Josh;
    But I also liked you with my Facebook and linked to your site.
    Thanks for the help and yes I voted for “totally acceptable” agreed….
    “Dont sweat the petty things, just pet the sweaty things,
    P.S. So sorry to hear about your black lab..I thought about you today during my off internet time…I thought we were going to have to have poor 12 yr old SnoopieDog put down this morning but the vet bought us some more time with some meds and pain killers for him. Now I am happy to say he is back home and fine….to my amazement…
    I had even said my goodbyes to him…unnecessarily…thank you God or modern medicine or both….But I know I shall one day face your same pain.(for real)

  20. I am not totally understanding what you are asking of me in this email. Is there is any risks to my privacy with this? I would need more information on this subject before I could or would be able to decide on this.
    I am not sure if I deleted my self from receiving educational tips. I was getting duplicate emails from someone called scuzzy and found it was annoying to always have to delete one. I do find many of your postings interesting and would like to continuing to receive these.
    Thank You

  21. @Cait: Thanks for the Facebook question, that’s a good one that needs clarification. I think I have it figured out:

    If you go to this page (http://www.facebook.com/pages/Judge-Josh-Barsch/103509186351915) and click the “like” button (where you used to “become a fan”), that’s a great start. Then, you can tag me in a link from your status. If you’re not sure how to do this, just type the “@” sign in your status when you’re about to make a reference to my page; then, a dropdown will appear containing all your contacts and things you like. Select “Judge Josh Barsch” from that dropdown, and then it’ll be linked from your profile (and I’ll also be notified by Facebook), so we should be good.

    Make sense? Let me know, and thanks for everyone’s input on this.

  22. @ Ashley & Allie & Eddie — Thanks!

    @ Brittany — My “fan page” (or whatever they’re calling it now) is here: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Judge-Josh-Barsch/103509186351915. Thanks for your kind words!

    @Everyone Else — Thanks very much for the support. I will definitely answer all questions that come in, regardless of whether anyone links to me. I actually have an assistant helping me out now, taking your emails and moving them into draft blog posts so that I can spend more of my time answering and less with the less glamorous administrative details.

    Thanks again for your support and for voting in the poll. Hopefully this will result in a big increase in output for me eventually.

    — Josh

  23. I don’t think Ali Asghar Joyo knows how to construct proper sentences, which I find amusing given that he wishes to give advice. Also, I believe he is taking your article title too literally, and is thus providing nonsensical input.

    On a serious note, I enjoy reading your interesting articles, which I usually have no use for but help me get a better general understanding of education-related topics and may hopefully help me in the future.

    Keep it up!

  24. I added you to my hi5 page. It is not as popular than Facebook but I think it is better than not adding you at all. You definitely deserve this! Thank you for all you have done so far!

  25. why not just answer some of the more unique questions here and some privately. the private ones won’t need as much time to answer because you’ll just be giving them a straight forward answer.

    It won’t be long before the questions will begin repeating themselves (if they haven’t already) and you can just refer them to a past blog that answers their question.

  26. @ Bob Saget

    I think that Ali Asghar Joyo used a language translator. Stuff comes out pretty funny when they translate from *whatever language* to english!

  27. Hey, Josh. {Bye the way… that is my only son’s name (38)}.

    I have a website I am just beginning–whendidwestart.wordpress.com–partly because you said it would be a good idea. I am also probably one of my only visitors, presently. Actually, when my friends visit, they have yet to leave comments–instead they phone me back or email me directly to tell me they visited. But I have actually sent your link to friends and talk about things I have seen here almost daily.

    I stopped adding to it for a minute (few days) to understand better the difference it made depending on what pages I put where and to read the material I found on becoming a blogger to see if I understood where I might be screwing up this process somewhat. Also to reconsider that I was using wordpress.com vs. wordpress.org.

    Following one of the links I found here on your site took me to blogvertise.com. I began with blogspot and one of the women I met at Haliburton School of The Arts promotes social media. She suggested that I would probably be happier using wordpress.com to start because of the user-friendly features. I spend time setting it up, uploading images, and trying to figure out how to use the widgets properly. The boyfriend of my 20 yr old had begun to critique what I had done so far when I happened upon the site of instructional videos at becomeablogger.com.

    The suggestion made there was to look at different forums and sites that interest me and to find my passion by watching how I feel about my growing discussions in certain environments. I have begun to learn more about blogging and will add you to my site as quickly as I can figure out how–shouldn’t be too too difficult. Tee hee–well… maybe once I get the hang of certain features and widgets, right? But prior to reading your request, I was noticing how much time I give to funding discussions and issues concerned with the ageing process. Or more specifically, ageing with dignity.

    Remember, that I returned to school as a recovery from shock, because I was grieving at the loss of both my parents (cancer-both in their 80’s) over a 5 year period.

    I have a spot on facebook. I read direct email more than I visit facebook. When I study, I get even less facebook time. But I do upgrade my input and status and it provides a means of keeping up with some of my classmates, instructors, and family members. I guess I can figure out how to include you there. Does that help to answer your question about my support of what you are proposing?

    What I would like to understand is why some of the names (in the conversations here) link to elsewhere and others don’t. Would you take the time to explain what it is that does that?

    Is this your idea of an affiliate program test launch?

    If you would like to supply the required info to add you to my facebook (and other sites), that would work. It would be to your advantage to supply those of us eager (yet still inept) novices with a video for each site you would have us attach you to!!!!

    Perhaps Gideon Shalwick would like to interview you on becomeablogger.com? Just a thought.

  28. No website for you yet.As a Non-Traditional Student who has been reading all of your blogs faithfully since i signed up, I Would definitely post you on my facebook as soon as i find you lol

  29. I have never asked a question here, but I always read this blog because I really like learning about every single process there is in college and beyond. Also, I am all for cheaper education and finding scholarships. That way I can be a mentor to my friends and family that are going/will be going through college. Putting a link to your website is the least we could all do for all the information shared here. I posted your blog in my facebook account and in my blog. Thanks for everything!

  30. So, unlike most people who use computers, I can not consider myself a ‘technophobe’. I am terrible when it comes to computers and am more likely to crash the computer than to get what I want out of it. I’m lucky I can do my research papers, check my email, and get to this site without much problems. I would love to post a link on my facebook page, but the problem is I don’t know how… If someone could help me out there, that would be great! I love coming here and getting information, because I always find the information useful. Thank you for doing that for us!

  31. Linked to you from Myyearbook and Myspace, and on facebook too. Still waiting for a responce to my earlier asked question though. I wish you good luck getting this whole thing kicked off, and I understand that every little bit helps! 🙂

  32. hey people please help mei’m student from algéria i’ll get my vétérinary graduate in summer 2013 i plan to continue my highs studies in américa and i need scholar ship please help me

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