Example

First and foremost, let me start off with a working definition of a private cloud. A private cloud (also known as an enterprise cloud) is “a cloud computing infrastructure created by an organization for its own internal use.” Organizations may develop such a private cloud instead of using other infrastructures, this is a convenient way for an organization to store sensitive data and host internal information. You can identify a private cloud verses a public cloud mainly by their use of an independent server and network infrastructure with internal data centers that are set up within a firewall.

Within the different forms of cloud computing, there are different deployment methods whether it is public, private or a hybrid, private clouds have been able to address the disadvantages of public cloud computing. It is my goal throughout this entry to give a brief overview of the strengths and weaknesses of hosting on a managed private cloud and what you need to know.

Strengths of Hosting on a Managed Private Cloud

One great thing about hosting on a private cloud is the available control. These clouds may also be called on premises clouds being that they are hosted on site rather than by a separate vendor. Organizations using a private cloud have a large amount of control of the software used to create the cloud, implementation of its security, the network set-up and the available operating systems. Organizations therefore also have full control of their data and information. Maintaining their own data gives them complete responsibility. Using someone else’s infrastructure, or public cloud, one loses that amount of control that is available when hosting from a private cloud.

Location is another strong advantage of a private cloud verse public clouds. Having direct access to the server makes it easier to move data in or out of the cloud. Locations to the server, keeps your information tangible and close at hand and reduces the need for outsourced IT support. The internal location also increases the performance and transfer rates. As the private cloud functions within a firewall, it allows for these higher transfer rates.

A third strength of hosting on a private cloud would be security. Assuming the network is closed to outside, it is a great deal easier to secure. Going back to the control issue, you are able to control the network’s security with your own judgment.

Weaknesses of Hosting on a Managed Private Cloud

The largest weakness to hosting on an enterprise cloud is the work put into creating and maintaining the cloud. As building a cloud is an intricate process, it may be easier to use a different, pre-existing, infrastructure.

Another weakness would be the shear cost of hosting on a managed private cloud. There are hidden costs involved in complying to regulations, IT support, backing up data, recovery or restoration, and troubleshooting. With the new technology, these costs may fluctuate while the practice gets perfected.

Hopefully I have addressed your issues with a private cloud and have left you with a clearer knowledge of the topic. If you are interested in private clouds but are concerned more of its weaknesses, I encourage you to look further into hybrid clouds as they have been designed to address the weaknesses of both public and private clouds.

This article was written by Sebastian Brown, a technology veteran and hosting expert. For all your hosting needs, check out Rackspace.com. Rackspace is a company that delivers enterprise-level hosting services to businesses of all sizes. Check out Rackspace by clicking here.

Cloud image by unifiedphoto

Example

One of the top reasons blogs are successful online over top news and informational sites is the growing, active community that breeds around the words that go live when you hit the publish button.

That personal connection between blogger/reader and reader/reader is what keeps your subscribers coming back for more time and time again (in addition to your kick ass content). This uniqueness of community within blogging is the driving force that continues to create traffic and profits in the blogging industry. However, while there is a ton of information out there on building community in your blogging, there are several things that you need to keep in mind when you are trying to build community in your own corner of the web.

Not All Communities Communicate In The Same Way

While the blogging niche is known of commenting on blog articles, the rest of the online world is not necessarily going to communicate in the same way. I see a lot of bloggers in sports, technology or other niches that try to force the blog commenting down the throats of their readers to find only one or two comments on an article that is getting thousands of pageviews. The reality…their readers want to communicate and form a community around a different online asset.

When you are looking to form an active community around your blog, you need to take a serious look at how members of your niche are communicating online in other areas. Here are a couple of examples to look for…

  • Online Forums and Bulletin Boards
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • MySpace
  • Special Interest Sites – Flickr.com, etc.

When you figure out how your audience wants to communicate online, you have to either bring your brand and your blog to them (Facebook Fan pages, Twitter lists, etc.), or create your own asset on your blog (example: add a forum to your site).

Building Communities Takes Serious Time And Effort

To bringing the community atmosphere to your blog takes a lot of time and effort. Luckily, this investment pays off in a big way as you create dedicated and loyal readers in the process that will promote your blog and increase your bottom line. If you are serious about building up this asset in your blogging, you have to be ready for the long haul as it is not an overnight process.

Commenting On Articles – If your readers like to comment on articles, be prepared to answer as many comments as you can to foster that connection between blogger/reader. Also, tailor your content by asking questions and having a defined opinion to breed more comments on articles and between readers. If you have a handful of regular subscribers that provide feedback, reach out to them and ask for some help with getting comments started on articles. The first comment is sometimes the hardest to get…

Jump Starting Forums – Online forums are one of the hardest resources online to get started. However, they can be a HUGE resource in your blogging for repeat visits, pageviews and traffic to your blog articles. You are going to need the help of contests, active moderators to start topics and constant replying to topics within your forum to create the stickiness that successful forums require.

Creating Online Profiles and Driving Traffic To Them – If your readers prefer communicating on social media sites like Twitter for Facebook, you have to build up credible online profiles in each of these online resources. This means you have to have professional looking avatars and background, onsite promotion tools to drive traffic to the profiles and constant/consistent updates to keep fresh content following. One of the easiest ways to create community around your social profiles is to ask questions related to your niche (also great for spurring blog content ideas), but you have to put in the effort to attract followers so you actually have people that will answer!

Strong Communities = Success Online

The most successful blogs online have some version of a community asset on their blog. In most cases, successful bloggers combine multiple community assets to further increase their spread online and attract different kinds of internet users in the process.

If you are serious about making a serious run at online success, your involvement with communication and interaction is key to fostering a community atmosphere around your online real-estate.

Example

No…I do not mean jump in a 747…that is a ride. What if a man could really fly?

If you asked anyone 20 years ago if a man could fly, I bet the answer you would receive would a be a definitive no. Are you crazy?! Man can’t fly! Of course, like most things in life, there are people out there that have the drive and the passion to bring what would seem to be unachievable in reality by defying odds and forever changing what we consider normal. Jeb Corliss and his wing suit prove in this video that man can fly and it looks like it has to be the coolest thing on the planet…at this point in time. What does this have to do with you and does it really relate to blogging? Well…watch the video first and then scroll below.

Defying Odds To Achieve Greatness

All of the greatest inventions of our time or companies that rise to new heights are all founded on one basic principle when it all boils down to it.

They take an idea and achieve the unimaginable.

Throughout life…we live in a set of rules. You drive on a specific side of a road, you buy your groceries in a certain way, you have to watch your favorite show on a specific channel with pre-chosen commercials and then you wake up…day in and day out…at the same time to go to the same job and repeat the same tasks. These are the rules we live in as consumers within our communities.

If we want to break into greatness…in life or with our blogs/companies…we have to step outside the barriers to progress and think outside the box. We have to break the conventional rules of thought and bring something new to the table that connects with large audiences. We have to create that wow moment that forever changes the perspective of the people we come in contact with. It is up to us…as the idea people to come up with the alternatives.

Let me ask you another question…if someone asked you 10 years ago if a single person could achieve high 6 figure salaries with nothing but a domain name and an idea…would you have said yes?

It is time for you to fly

Right now, we live in a crazy world where the Internet has opened up more opportunities for decision makers than ever before. We are on the edge of greatness and have achieved it in many ways. Bloggers are now seen as news sources that can alter how audiences consume content. No longer are we 100% dependent upon newspapers and magazines to get the latest news or digest our obsessions. Bloggers just like you are providing this content on a daily basis and making a really good living from it.

The trick…you have to fly. You have to take that leap and come up with your ideas that are going to rock your niche. You have to have the determination and guts to go after that idea and make it a reality for yourself and your readers. Do you think Jeb Corliss started flying overnight? Absolutely not. There are going to be trials…there are going to be roadblocks…there are going to be people that will tell you it can’t be done. But, with hard work, dedication and a unique idea…you can defy the odds and fly, but you have to believe in yourself, your idea and be willing to make that jump.

Are you willing to fly?

Example

With the ultimate goal of pulling monetary value out of your content, you have to figure out how to extract dollars out of words. While we drive traffic to our blogs to get more eyes on our content, if you really want to make it online full-time, you have to build up a digital empire by applying underground blogging secrets that extract money out of your content.

We watch bloggers everyday do it wrong. They post up content, promote it on Twitter and Facebook, sit back and wait for a social media traffic spike and then rinse and repeat. Meanwhile, they keep checking their stats and wondering…”why am I not making any money?”

You are not making any money because content publishing on its own is not a monetization effort. Have you ever looked at a blog and wondered, “how the hell does this site make so much money?!” It is because 90% of all of the income made online (unless you have as much traffic as Perez Hilton and…if you are reading this post…you aren’t) is actually made off-site. If you are really planning on making money in your blogging, you have to realize that your blog content is the means of attracting more readers and your off-site marketing and promotion is your means of monetizing those readers.

So what can you include in your digital empire to actually generate income? While there are dozens of ways to generate revenue…here are the big three.

  1. It’s All In The List – The word email list makes most people flinch up and run for the hills. However, it is still the #1 resource online for generating income. Before you start thinking you have to be an email spammer to make money, that is actually the complete opposite from the truth. Your email list is your means to build up trust and respect with your readers…not spam the crap out of them. Your email list is a collection of your loyal minions that help you grow your business past the couple bucks a day stage. With that respect…comes responsibility to continue delivering the goods (both free and paid).
  2. Your Own Products – When you sell a product (eBooks, tangible goods, services), you income is generated outside of your normal blog content. By providing valuable resources and goods, you further solidify your reputation online and…through that…you create repeat business. The big question you have to ask yourself is…”what do my readers want to spend their money on in my niche?” Once you find the answer to that question, it is up to you to provide the solution.
  3. Exposure – The online world is growing rapidly. With major print productions looking to online resources as a way to evolve and grow, more readers are looking to digital resources over typical print. This opens a huge door for entrepreneurs looking to make it big as you no longer have to compete with the high, up-front capital investment required for print. With enough traffic (and email newsletter subscribers), you are able to provide exposure for companies in your niche for advertising. However, this requires you to step outside of the online world and go after the advertising dollars. If you are planning on putting up an “advertise with us” and sit back and wait for the offers…you are going to be consistently waiting. You have to be willing to put yourself out there, step outside the box and cold contact potential advertisers.

The key to success online is through diversification. If you can take one thing from vastly successful corporations, it is that diversification is the one thing that keeps a profit driven company consistent over the longhaul. By constantly evolving and adding in different methods of income generation, you are able to weather storms with ease.

What would happen if your primary income stream went away tomorrow?

The scary question that most bloggers never ask themselves. With as many viable income streams as you can manage coming into your digital empire, you are able to consistently grow and not worry about disastrous situations. You just keep rolling on…expanding and growing while others falter.