Archives for October 2016

How to Write Interesting Articles for your Blog

MG Blog Series

I am sitting in a coffee shop across two people. One of the guys is in his twenties and he’s wearing a red jacket and the other is an elderly fellow who is probably in his late 30s. Both of them are playing chess, and they seem very engrossed with the game. Occasionally, they would raise their voices. This made me think if chess was really that exciting.

We often form judgements, even for the things that we have never tried before. For blogging, we think that it’s only for people who know how to construct perfect sentences. My personal opinion though of blogging is that it can also just be a personal diary — where you write down your own thoughts and feelings. When you have trouble relaying thoughts using sentences, I’m sure you research about how to write it and, then, you learn something new. Writing and blogging consistently makes you a better writer, a better blogger.

Consistency is the name of the game. But, if you write posts every day or even every week, won’t you run out of things to say? How do you write interesting topics for your blog? How do you come up with new ideas?

For today’s post, I will share some tips on how I do it.

1) First, I think of topics and articles that I would want to read about. If you write about topics that you yourself will not be interested in reading, then don’t expect your audience to be interested in reading it, too!

2) Next, write articles in an tone that fits your brand personality. If you usually use a serious tone with a bit of wit, then write that topic that way. If you speak street slang, then inject some words in street slang. The important thing is that the type of audience that you want to attract will probably speak the same language as you, so use the same tone.

3) Write articles in an angle that your market will want to know more about. I, personally, admit that I am a nerd. I love writing articles with a business or marketing angle. Even when I review (haha!), I write it in an angle that would be appealing to aspiring entrepreneurs or current start-up founders or marketing professionals. I do this, because I know that my market is someone who would be interested in reading these stuff, that I find interesting.

4) Lastly, try not to sound like the writer of other articles that talk about the same topic. I know that avoiding reading other articles or blog posts of the same topic is hard. You need to do it for research, etc. I notice though that when I read other stuff, I tend to sound like the writer that I just read. So what I do is I take down notes, and then write my own article the next day and not on the same day of my research.

So those are my blogging tips for this Friday. I hope that I gave you helpful tips on how to write interesting articles for your blog. Before I say goodbye today, I would like to invite you to join me and Marv for a webinar on November 4. The webinar is 7 Steps to Make Money from your Blog.

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I’m sure this will be helpful to all of you, my loyal readers, especially to those who already have blogs or those who are thinking of starting a blog so that they can earn extra income. All you need to do is to register. CLICK HERE TO REGISTER.

Talk to you again on Friday! 🙂

 

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Traveling with your Kids to Davao!

Earlier this year, I went to Davao for a business trip. I was able to book a flight to Davao at a great deal so I decided to bring my husband and our daughter, too. Among the three of us, my daughter was the one who had the best time! Now, when you ask her what her favorite place is, she will, without hesitation, answer Davao!

We only stayed in Davao for a short time and didn’t really get to go around that much, but we successfully managed to make it memorable for our little one. Given limited budget and limited time, traveling with your kids to Davao is really worth it! It’s a safe and clean place to travel to.

We stayed in a hotel called North Zen Hotel. I loved the location of the place and the rates were affordable. The hotel was clean and each floor had wi-fi access (which we needed since we worked remotely). There were tables and chairs on each floor that allowed us me to work with my business partner.

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For our meeting, we had it at The Boardroom Office Space along Loyola St, Poblacion District, Davao City, Davao del Sur. This venue is the perfect place to hold team meetings and to set up mini workshops in Davao. There is this cute cafe near the area also called Blooming Days. They have great coffee and a very homey ambiance!

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Mommy Ginger in Davao 3

After my meetings, we had a few days to go around Davao. Since we had a two year old with us, we chose places that would appeal to her. We went to the Davao Crocodile Park, Japanese Tunnel and Eden Nature Park and Resort. We also got to eat at Lito’s Park and bought pastries and “pasalubong” at Lola Abon’s.

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Davao Crocodile Park

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Davao Crocodile Park was the most memorable place for my daughter. The crocodiles in that park were humongous. One was thrice or quadruple the size of a person. There was also a huge nursery of baby crocodiles. The nursery was a huge swimming pool type of area with little crocodiles that filled it, almost one on top of the other.

Aside from crocodiles, there were other animals there. We turned it into a learning experience for our daughter and mentioned the names of on animal after another so she remembers how each one looks like.

Eden Nature Park and Resort

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Eden Nature Park and Resort was a more relaxing place. It was a huge expanse of greenery, split into different sections where you can do different activities. A big portion of it was an aviary. It was interesting to see the different kinds of birds, with different colors, shapes and sizes.

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Another activity, was swinging in a hanging rope. This rope would go from one end of the field to another. It was an ‘Indiana Jones’ moment for my husband and my daughter.

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My daughter’s favorite activity though was fishing. They had a fishing village, where you can catch fish and either cook it or let it go again. They had little huts all around that area where you can enjoy eating with your friends and family!

Japanese Tunnel Resort and Restaurant

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We went to another historical place, known as The Japanese Tunnel. The tour guide said that the tunnel was created during World War II by the Filipino slaves and prisoners of wars. This tunnel was as the hideout of the Japanese soldiers and their belongings. It was so cool going through the tunnel. There was a prayer room with a replica of a Japanese Golden Buddha. The guide also showed us the prison cell, which was so small. The area was for Filipino prisoners who defiled the Japanese soldiers.

It was a memorable trip, especially for my little one. I suggest this itinerary for anyone going to Davao with a kid!

Hope this article helps you, mommies and daddies! Looking for cheap flights to Bacolod for next year! I’ll definitely share with you our Bacolod adventure!

 

How to Write Relatable Blog Titles

MG Blog Series

It’s been a few days that my blog has been wonky. I told my husband to help me move my blog to a new host, either to Bluehost or to a new Hostgator account. He has been so busy lately that he doesn’t have time for it. I may seem like I know the technical side of blogging (sure I now how widgets work and how plug-ins work), but I don’t — REALLY. But, what I know also is that the success of one’s blog relies heavily on the understanding or your audience. It relies deeply on how interesting or engaging your posts are. Sure, I can get someone to teach you get-rich-quickly tips on blogging, but they would all say that it those that create great content will still have an advantage.

So for the next few weeks, hopefully every Friday (if my time permits), I will write something that I know about blogging. I will create my own blog series! For today, I am bent on teaching you how to create relatable titles.

I love the word RELATABLE. It is a word that we take for granted, but in my eyes, being relatable is very important when you are creating an engaging blog title. Relatable means that you really understand your readers, and you give them the content that they want and they deserve. In blogging, we take titles for granted, but it’s really the first thing that the readers sees. If they see and like the article, they click and read further. Okay, so how do we create relatable titles?

Step 1: Listen to how your readers sound. Assuming that you know your specific market, look for at least 3-5 samples from your reader base, and talk to them about the topic that you have in mind. Be very observant of the words that they use. Write words that stood out in the conversation — what word or group of words did they use.

Step 2: Now that you know “how” they sound, it’s time to empathize. Put yourself in the shoes of your reader. If they were searching about the topic online, what do you think they will type? What words or what set of words would they use. This particular method is also a rough way on how to identify keywords. Write these words or set of words.

Step 3: Identify the kind of content that they are looking for when they search for the topic at hand. Will they search for steps, tips, photos, experiences, etc. Keep this in mind!

Step 4: Mix and jumble words and come up with combinations that they would think would be unique and catchy enough to read. Also infuse the kind or type of article that they would look for. If they are searching for a guide, try to use the word “GUIDE”. For those looking for method or process, try to us “STEPS”. If they want to learn about a particular topic, you can use “HOW TO” (this the reason why I used the title above).

These are the ways on how I come up with the titles that I use for my blogpost. There are some titles, too, that are a bit overly dramatic or vague, but these titles that I use are intentionally used and crafted to be that way. Most of those will probably contain personal thoughts and feelings (wherein I wouldn’t really care about SEO or rankings).

Just as a thank you for watching this, I am giving you a FREE VIDEO where my friend Marv De Leon talks about (Click on this: The Essentials of an Epic Blog.) I’d like to think that we are all striving to be one!

Hope you enjoyed my post today! Until next Friday for another entry for my Blog Series!

 

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Some Would Just Sit. But I’m not the Type.

While some of us would just sit and complain about things that happen to them or to everyone else, I prefer to stand, walk or even run around and do something about it. I am just not the type. Although, I am not the type who would openly rally for change, too. Even if I talk a lot, I say what I think and believe (with gusto and passion), but I don’t force my thoughts and beliefs on anyone. I hate conflict and I believe in respecting each other’s opinions. I am the type who would likely manoeuvre through things in the background to make change happen.

Let me tell you a secret though. I always seem so ready and able to conquer the world, but sometimes,  I’m scared.

I’m scared that I may not be as brilliant enough or as influential enough. I fear that I might be too optimistic. I know what I’m doing then suddenly I don’t, and I’m scared that it has always been the latter rather than the former. I look at my team and I think I know what they’re thinking, then suddenly, I doubt myself and my leadership skills. Yes, I doubt myself, and thinking about these things make me crazy.

What happens next is that I recognize my “craziness” and drop all of these thoughts and just say YES. Yes, to opportunities (that make sense) that come my way. A particular moment when I said YES recently was when I was invited to represent the country for the DLD Tel Aviv Innovation Festival. I represented our start-up TAXUMO, our online, end-to-end tax assistance SaaS that helps small business owners and professionals process their taxes. I went there together with another founder, May Montero of Tambio. We are both part of the growing number of Ideaspace startups.*

Start Tel Aviv

Start Tel Aviv

For Start Tel Aviv, I was part of a delegation that was composed of 33 women from 31 countries. Hearing the stories of these strong, determined women made me feel so blessed. Why blessed? I was thinking that there is a high chance that most of these women will be the reason for a lot of improvements and positive change in the world. We’re talking about women who create prosthetics, solar panels that charge mobile phone, hardware that measures water level in crops, job platforms that changes peoples lives, application for speech therapy of gifted children and a whole lot more! I tell you, if you were amidst these ladies, you will definitely stand up and think of ways on how you can make this world a better place.

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Some of the thoughts that I had during that trip are that 1) there are a lot of talented people that we fail to see, and 2) let us not waste our talents.

We fail to see talented people around us, and we fail to allow ourselves to be “touched or moved” by them and their stories, because we are too involved with ourselves or we are too frightened to see what’s beyond the enclosure that we built for ourselves. Stepping out and listening to the stories and experiences of others are ways of developing ourselves and widening our view of things. Talking to others may even point you to the right and clearer direction.

I come across people with great skill and talent, and oftentimes, I become excited for them. I see that they have bright futures ahead of them. But somewhere along the way, I see them missing out on great opportunities. I see them turn blind to the things that could have changed their lives for the better, and I can’t do anything about it. I am just sad that most of us don’t see that they have what it takes to make a huge impact.

In Tel Aviv, I learned saw something clearly. I saw that it was mostly the fear of failing that was stopping us — stopping us from trying, from seeing the world, from talking to people, from pursuing our dreams, from using our talents, from living. It was fear acting like a magnet, which leads us to sit forever more in that chair of complacency.

Aren’t you tired of sitting? Break loose and stand up. Stand up for your family. Stand up for your passions and for dreams. Shake away the fear. We all need to stick together and encourage one another. Let’s be more tolerant of failure — we’re all imperfect.

Stand up.

 

*Thank you to the Israeli Government, the Embassy of Israel and to Ideaspace for the opportunity.

 

Simple yet Perfect — Happy 7th Wedding Anniversary

I love songs. Songs are simple yet they’re perfect for lifting up moods. I play tunes when I feel stressed, anxious, depressed, lonely and sad, and it almost instantly picks my mood up.

I also love that with the simple use of lyrics, hymns and melodies, you can convey emotions that you can’t express by just merely “telling” a person how you feel. With songs, a gush of emotions and feelings are injected in a simple sentence. Songs tell stories and convey messages that hit right at the mark of how you feel about another person or situation.

On the 17th of October, my husband and I will celebrate 7 years of marriage.

Photo Credits: Dino Lara http://www.dinolarablog.com/?p=5598

Photo Credits: Dino Lara http://www.dinolarablog.com/?p=5598

7 years is a long time, though it seems like it was just yesterday when this tall guy with braces came and picked me up from my house. Ever since that day, my life completely changed. I never felt as safe and secure in my life. Thank you, Ej, for always making me feel that way. Thank you for showing me that life shouldn’t be so serious (haha! because I always am). Thank you for always reminding me that family is important, and that I should love and value myself more, that I should set aside time for myself, too.

Panggah, I thought of giving you something that would tell you exactly how I feel.  Here it is…

Thank you for being my rock. Thank you for putting up with all of my crazy ideas, my tendency to be a workaholic, my insecurities, etc. etc. etc. I truly wish that you receive more blessings, because you are such a great person. I always ask myself what I did to deserve you. You are the kindest person I know.

I’ll always be here for you. I love you.

Ginger

 


Video/Song from OSerenade:

https://www.facebook.com/oSerenadeOfficial/?fref=ts

 

 

 

The Philippine Homeschool Conference 2016

Parents need to have the numerous and the best options when it comes to raising their children. It nice to see how a lot of things have changed since the time of our parents. I remember growing up without all of these new technology: no iPads, no smart phones, no internet. And with all of these new things, the available channels for our children to learn new things have increased exponentially, too.

With the fast paced lifestyle and with information readily available, lifestyle, habits and mindsets have also changed. In terms of education, the only choice that we had before was to go to school (as we know it) and listen to our teacher. A new option though has risen which is now believed to be an equally great option — homeschooling. Homeschooling or home education is when the parents personally teach their children.

For those who want to learn more about homeschooling, please do attend this conference!

 

PHC 2016-For Social Media Posts (with logos) -As of Sept 27)

This year, HAPI, in cooperation with Philam Life, is setting up the PHC to be even bigger and better than before. This event is set to take place from 7 a.m. (start of registration) to 6 p.m. on October 22, 2016 at the SMX Convention Center, SMX Aura Premier in Taguig City, the PHC 2016 with the theme “From Roots to Wings: Homeschooling through the Stages”.

Hoping to meet the needs and address the concerns of homeschooling families at different stages – from learning more about homeschooling, getting started, and staying the course perhaps even up to the end of high school – the theme was inspired by the following lines of this poem:

“If I could give you just two things,
One would be Roots, the other, Wings.”
Roots, not to tie you to the ground,
But to guide you to
where your fulfillment is found
The nourishing start, the firm
foundation,
The source of your inner determination.
Wings to soar over obstacles,
wings to fly free,
Wings to glide to the heights of the
best you can be.”

Bearing the theme in mind, the PHC 2016’s line-up of speakers includes international and local speakers who are passionate homeschooling advocates, and are also experienced homeschoolers. The PHC 2016 Expo is also sure to delight any homeschooler with its offerings of products and services that can help them provide their kids with a rich learning experience.

I guarantee that this event will not disappoint. If you want to know more about the Philippine Homeschool Conference 2016, please any of the following:

The Philippine Homeschool Conference Website: http://www.educatingforlife.co/

The Philippine Homeschool Conference Facebook Event: https://www.facebook.com/events/144585029291112/

Zero to Hero : How to Start your Own Business From Nothing!

My daughter found this life coaching book which I found in National Bookstore late last year. I started writing and answering some of the pages, but stopped after around 5-6 pages. Hey, it wasn’t a case of laziness, but the book encouraged contemplation. I’m not kidding! It made me think about my life, my skills and my weaknesses.

My dad used to tell me that there were some people that had “the golden touch” when it comes to business. Whatever they touch, turns into gold. I’d like to think my dad was that way. I always wanted to have that golden touch, too. When I was a kid, I frequently wondered about creating something out of nothing.

I equate creating business ideas to making magic. What people see is the end result of every magic act, but what actually occurs beforehand, is deep observation, a deep understanding of how the audience will react and skills needed to complete the act.

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In this workshop on the 15th, these great speakers will actually teach you how to create something out of nothing — from Zero to Hero! Zero to Hero is a half-day conference dedicated for those who would like to start their own businesses from scratch, using zero or very minimal capital. If I were still in college or just graduated, I would have attended this conference. Parents, encourage your kids to start having the entrepreneurial mindset early in life!

Here is the program!

PROGRAM:

Part I. “Dream Works” – Idea Creation for Business by P.L.U.S. Factor

Part II. “Blazing The Trail” – Sharing of Actual Success Stories of Crowd-funded Start-Ups by Mr. Patch Dulay, founder and CEO of The Spark Project

Part III. “Moneytize It” – Earning from Your Core Gifts by Ms. Aileen Santos, Relationship Coach, Trainer & Author

Part IV. “Magnetic Marketing” – Informing the World of Your Product/ Service by Mr. Ferdinand Bondoy, Managing Director & Partner of ComCo Southeast Asia

Part V. “Altruistic Legacy” – The Responsibility of an Entrepreneur by Mr. Edmund Lee, President & CEO of Caylum Trading Institute

ABOUT THE SPEAKERS of ZERO TO HERO:

Patrick “Patch” Dulay is a startup enabler. He is the founder and CEO of The Spark Project, an online crowdfunding platform for passion-driven Filipino projects.

As a lifelong learner and teacher, his passion for education and entrepreneurship inspires him to serve entrepreneurs by providing them access to tools that help accelerate their business ideas to reality. He’s an experienced resource speaker and facilitator on various topics like crowdfunding, social entrepreneurship, business model canvas, lean startup, innovation and design both here and abroad. He’s been conducting workshops and mentoring entrepreneurs young and old since 2013.

As an innovation and program consultant, he has worked with Ayala Land Inc. in mounting IDEA’YALA, the flagship youth challenge of the Ayala Malls crowdsourcing innovative ideas that shape the mall of the future.

Patch got his undergraduate degree in Management Information Systems at the Ateneo de Manila University in 2005. He completed his Master’s degree in Global E-business at the University of Lille, France in 2010. Patch also spent two years as a lecturer in the Department Information Systems and Computer Sciences at the Ateneo de Manila University.

He is one of 4 Filipino delegates chosen to be part of the Economic Empowerment cohort of the Young South East Asian Leaders Initiative Professional Fellows Program (YSEALI PFP) for Spring 2016, and the current Entrepreneurship head of the Global Shapers Community Manila hub.

Aileen Santos is a Relationship Coach & A-ha! Trainer whose workshops, training products, and personal growth & professional development programs bring about self-directed transformation and lasting change.
She has a Master’s Degree in Counseling Psychology and is a Certified Professional Coach. She has also been happily married for more than 13 years and has a passion for helping more people build more rewarding relationships of their own.

Aileen is a Certified Professional Coach with a Master’s Degree in Counseling Psychology,
and she develops & delivers customized training programs that address issues of
Leadership, Team Dynamics, Communication, and Personal-Professional Development
in order to bring about creative solutions & self-directed transformation.

Ferdinand “Ferds” Bondoy is a champion of strategic integration, a multi-awarded communications practitioner with core expertise in Integrated Marketing Communications, Strategic Communications Planning, Brand / Consumer Marketing, Digital Strategy and Integration, Influencer Marketing, Media Maximization, Events Management, and Video Production.

He is the former Vice President of global communications firm, Fleishman Hillard Pte. Ltd., and lead the Manila office’s Digital and Consumer Marketing practice groups that service brands like Electrolux, KakaoTalk, SM Lifestyle Entertainment, 51Talk, Anytime Fitness, Krem-Top, Nobu Hotel, Volkswagen, Pru Life UK, Pioneer Insurance, Mentos, M&M’s and WWF, among others.

He already serviced some of the biggest global and local brands in the industry such as Globe Telecom, First Metro Investment, Luen Thai, Shell, Spain Tourism Board, Converse, P&G, GSK, Wyeth, Rockwell, Cortal SQR, Dulcolax, Philam Life, Philips, Skyscanner, AirAsia, Isla Lipana, HP and Abbott, among others. He also managed advocacy campaigns for reputable NGOs like UNICEF and World Vision.

The campaigns and projects he led were recognized by the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) Quill Awards such as “P&G’s 3-Pid Handog Edukasyon (Gift of Education)”, “GSK’s Tour of Hope”, “Safeguard’s Global Handwashing Day”, “Electrolux’s Clothes & Hugs (Washing Marathon)”, “WWF’s Earth Hour”, and “SM Lifestyle’s Championing the Champions ice skating program”.

The Public Relations Society of the Philippines’ (PRSP) Anvil Awards honored his works for “Icons at MoA Arena: the Launch of Mall of Asia Arena”, “WWF’s Earth Hour” and “Electrolux’s Discover-E: Advocating the Neo Filipino Cuisine”

Recently, the Electrolux Discover-E campaign also bagged the Bronze Award from UA&P Asia-Pacific Tambuli Awards. KakaoTalk’s disaster relief program on the other hand won the InnoCSR AIM Responsibility Award.

Edmund Lee is the President and CEO of Caylum Trading Institute (CTI), a private, financial educational institute that focuses on developing professional traders who can execute effective trading strategies across global markets. The institution is dedicated to offering a well-founded education. It’s primary purpose is to produce skilled and competent trading professionals who have been supplemented with formal market training and practical application of the systems.

Edmund worked as an analyst for COL Financial and Citisecurities where he analyzed various companies using different valuation methods, designed financial models in the mining and consumer sectors, and formulated research reports, including industry and company backgrounds.

Edmund got his undergraduate degree in Management, major in Entrepreneurial Development at the Ateneo de Manila University in 2010. He completed his Master of Science (MSc), Global Finance at New York University – Leonard N. Stern School of Business last year, and is also a Chartered Financial Analyst.

I highly encourage you to sign up now for ZERO TO HERO! Please click on this link: http://manilaworkshops.com/events/zerotohero