Blogging for Special Needs Children: Meet Dawn Marie Perkins at TheMommaKnows.com
Dawn Marie Perkins is a full-time homeschooling Momma of 18 years. Hospital Certified Nursing Assistant and a fit mom with a totally self-taught geeky side.
She lives in Eastern Washington with her husband, the youngest two of their six children. Her Dad, two yappy Pomeranians and an assortment of backyard chickens.
Most of Dawn’s listeners are parents of children who have special needs.
Dawn has two blogs, and her primary blog is called – The Momma Knows Dot Com which is a niche blog that she created as a homeschool blog where she focuses mainly writing about children with special needs.
Dawn loves the tech thing and blogging, so she started Dawn Marie Perkins Dot Com, where she typically does most of her brainstorming.
Dawn doesn’t consider herself to be the typical ‘mommy blogger’ and at the moment she is focused in on The Momma Knows and dedicates her time and support to helping these children with special needs.
On this Episode of The Blog Chronicles, we will come to understand what it takes to care for these children at the same time as blogging on the subject to help and educate parents with special needs children.
*How blogging about these special needs has actually helped a lot of parents and children dealing with these problems.
*What it takes to deal with these children who need extra special care and one particular child that Dawn has raised from a baby who was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder.
Autism spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a condition that affects social interaction, communication, interests and behaviour. In children with ASD, the symptoms are present before three years of age, although a diagnosis can sometimes be made after the age of three.
*One of Dawns top posts is a warning about a new kid drug they call ‘INCENSE’ (synthetic marijuana) and how you can spot the signs if your child is using and what you can do to get help as soon as possible.
*How discriminating about ones faith has taught Dawn that ‘putting people in boxes’ is not really showing what you really stand for. Dawn wants her audience to know that she is very open to all denominations and her help is widely spread to all and everyone.
*How social media is not really Dawns’ strong point of communication, and so much more to gain from this interesting and I’d say extremely brave lady.
Okay, let’s dive straight into my chat with Dawn Marie Perkins on The Blog Chronicles!
Please feel free to leave any comments for Dawn or me in the Comments Box below.
[bctt tweet=”Blogging for parents of children with special needs:” username=”buildurownblog”]
Dawn Marie Perkins Interview Transcript
( For those who enjoy reading.)
Matthew Loomis: Hi Dawn.
Welcome to the Show!
Dawn Marie Perkins: It’s good to be here!
Matthew Loomis: How are things up in the great Northwest.
I think you’re up in Washington State?
Dawn Marie Perkins: Yeah.
I live in Eastern Washington.
So, Spring is trying to happen and nothing is happening. We had hail the day before yesterday and it’s supposed to be eighty tomorrow.
Matthew Loomis: That sounds like Missouri, up and down.
Dawn Marie Perkins: We had really strange weather until about mid-June when Spring and Summer both sort of merged we’ve had really short Summers.
Matthew Loomis: That’s interesting.
I know that the weather is different up there, but I also know that you’ve got some great bloggers up in your neck of the woods.
David Boozer is a friend of mine.
He is a really good blogger and blogging coach down in Oregon, which isn’t that far I guess from you.
I know the great copy-writer and blogger Ray Edwards is up in Washington State.
Have you heard of Ben Settle? He’s a copywriter and email expert.
I know that he is based somewhere in the Oregon area. So, yeah, there is a lot of great blogging talent up in your neck of the woods.
Dawn Marie Perkins: I’m about five hours from Oregon.
Well, eight hours from Portland. Five hours from Seattle and fifteen minutes from Idaho.
Matthew Loomis: Oh, okay.
I’ve always wanted to go to Idaho.
Dawn Marie Perkins: I’m about as far East as you can get without being in Idaho.
When Did You Create Your Two Blogs and What Did You Call Them?
Matthew Loomis: Okay, great!
Dawn, let’s talk about you and your blogging today.
You’re a blogger on two different blogs, Can you tell us the name of each of your websites and when did you start them.
Dawn Marie Perkins: My primary blog is The Momma Knows Dot Com.
It’s gone through many phases and it’s metamorphosis from 2005 until today.
As it stands this particular blog with its dot com is seven years old. I basically merged content from my original blog in 2005 to a second blog to this one. So some of the posts that are on my current blog I wrote back in 2005.
Matthew Loomis: So you’ve been going at it for ten-years twelve-years?
Dawn Marie Perkins: Yeah.
Matthew Loomis: Now, you also have another blog.
Can you tell us a little bit about your second blog?
Dawn Marie Perkins: I do.
The second blog, I wanted to have a blog that I could sort of separate my content.
The Momma Knows is actually a home school mom, niche, blog and I write about special needs.
Another thing that I love is tech and blogging and all of the little ins and outs of that.
So, I have teamed up with a friend, years ago and we did a couple of webinars together on getting started blogging. We used to do this thing called The Blog Right Party, where we would get together with a group of ten or so other bloggers and help them produce content very quickly without a bunch of posts in one sitting and things like that.
I would say about maybe eight years ago. I had really liked that and I had done some tutorials on my blog and had done a series on Amazon and all of that all on my home school blog and I thought that I really should separate things.
I started Dawn Marie Perkins Dot Com, to be able to kind of separate the two audiences a bit and along with that blog, on there I just sort of brainstorm.
I write things on there that I wouldn’t typically write on my home school blog. That blog is really neglected these days and I don’t write a lot on there, I have lots and lots of posts and drafts.
I need to sit down and spend some time there, but I just haven’t lately.
What Is Your Main Focus On The Momma Knows Blog?
Matthew Loomis: So, you’re spending the majority of your time on The Momma Knows website?
Dawn Marie Perkins: Yes.
Can You Tell Us What You Do On The Momma Knows Website?
Matthew Loomis: Can you tell us a little bit more about what that website is all about?
Dawn Marie Perkins: Well, my readers are all parents, I think.
They are predominately homeschoolers but not all of them.
Many have kids on the Autism Spectrum of others with special needs. I have a sixteen-year-old on Spectrum and we didn’t get him diagnosed until he was eleven.
He’s had special needs since birth and so this blog sort of started along with that homeschooling with me kind of going,
”This is what we’re doing right now and this is what we should be doing and this is what’s helping him.”
It became a support thing for other parents that were going through similar struggles. That is what just continued and I write a lot about homeschooling and a lot about special needs and a lot of parental encouragement type posts.
I don’t consider myself a ”mommy blogger,” you won’t see toy reviews on my site.
I don’t do ”TOYSRUS” or any of the typical ”mommy blogger” ”Capri-Sun” and all of that, I don’t even go there.
Matthew Loomis: It’s good to define that.
I was wanting to talk about that a little bit.
The name of your website ”The Momma Knows,” I think sometimes we might automatically think “mom blog” but very quickly, once you get into your content, you see though it’s not the typical ”mom blog.”
I’m learning more as I’m studying this whole niche that mom blogs actually, that’s a very broad umbrella and there’s a lot of sub-niches in the ”mom blog” umbrella.
I think you’re a good example of that because you have drilled down your niche.
You’re not just blogging to homeschooling parents but it looks and sounds like you’ve drilled that down even further and your targeting parents with special needs children.
Is that correct?
Dawn Marie Perkins: Somewhat, yes.
We have kids that are going and gone. I have my remaining two teenagers at home.
We’ve also been through some rough stuff with a teenager, and so parents dealing with teenage problems also.
One of the top posts on my blog is an informational blog warning parents about a new fad in kid drugs called ”incense.”
TEEN USE OF SYNTHETIC MARIJUANA, SIMILAR TO INCENSE IN APPEARANCE AND SMELL, IS ON THE RISE.
SIGNS OF K2 INTOXICATION INCLUDE SOME OF THE SIMILAR SIGNS OF MARIJUANA INTOXICATION.
Sluggishness or being “out of it”
Slow or slurred speech
Incense odour on them or their clothes that will most likely not be unpleasant.
If you suspect your teen is high on incense (or anything else for that matter), let them know that you know, and monitor them to watch for adverse side effects. If they are irrational, out of control, or having trouble breathing or understanding conversation, medical intervention may be needed. And always, in case of emergency, call 911.
It’s the second most popular post on my blog year-round.
It’s a warning for parents of teenagers. We went through a really rough period with one of our kids a long time ago and I wrote a lot during that time on how we were dealing with certain issues of what works and what doesn’t and all of that, so a lot of parents just parenting.
Matthew Loomis: Okay, so parenting more in general.
Is there more of a home school focus on it?
Dawn Marie Perkins: Definitely.
Matthew Loomis: Yeah, that’s a growing audience from what I read.
Dawn Marie Perkins: It is.
Dawn, Can You Share With Us On Your Faith?
Matthew Loomis: Dawn, I also noticed in your content you share a lot about your faith.
I was wondering, do you consider your blog a Faith blogger or a Christian blogger?
Or are you just being yourself and being transparent with your spiritual life through your content?
Dawn Marie Perkins: That’s an interesting question.
I actually don’t write about that much anymore.
I did for years, if you would have asked me that ten years ago, I would have said, ”Yes, I am definitely a ”Christian mom blogger,”
”Christian home school blogger.”
These days I wouldn’t necessarily say that. Am I a Christian? Yes!
But, I really don’t like to see people so nichified or put in a box so tightly that no one else can come in.
While my faith is important to me and I do touch on it from time to time these days, that is not my main focus on my site. What I was discovering particularly amongst the homeschoolers that I knew in my area and others that I had met through my blog and other online avenues.
As Christian bloggers and Christian homeschoolers are some of the tightest most…(I don’t know how to say this properly.) I don’t know how to say this… but ,they’re very unwelcoming to those who don’t believe exactly like them.
I guess that’s the easiest way to say it.
I don’t think that’s right and I think that if a non-Christian home school mom with a kid on the Autism Spectrum is needing some support, I am not going to exclude her because she doesn’t go to the same denomination of church that I do.
Matthew Loomis: Right!
Dawn Marie Perkins: Some blogs come across that way.
I just didn’t feel comfortable with that when I’m contacted by somebody who is an atheist and who say, ”I’m really struggling with this I can’t even find a curriculum and my homeschooling can’t help me because I don’t want their stuff…”
It’s frustrating to hear that the faith I claim is so unwelcoming!
I didn’t want my blog to be that way…
That’s why it’s not locked into homeschooling either.
There are a lot of people who read my blog whose kids are in home school and they are very free to comment and very free to email me, here’s is what I relate to and how would you deal with this.
I’ve got an IEP meeting coming up and I don’t really want to go to it. I have suggestions for them too because I’ve also been there. We’ve done school, we’ve had kids in school and kids out of school.
What Is The Response From Parents To Your Blog About Homeschooling Children?
Matthew Loomis: Dawn.
Have you ever had a parent tell you that because of them reading your blog over time that they’ve made a decision to home school their children?
Dawn Marie Perkins: I have.
That’s really a neat feeling that, I was able to encourage people in that direction.
I’ll be honest, I’ve also encouraged people in the other direction too.
Matthew Loomis: Interesting.
Dawn Marie Perkins:Yeah.
It’s not for everybody.
It’s just not!
When you have a child with more needs than you were physically or emotionally able to meet all day long, sometimes you need some extra help and there is nothing wrong with that.
Again, that’s why I try not to stick to one particular mantra or whatever you want to call it, because really, parents just need support.
That’s just the way I feel. I want to be able to do that without saying to someone, ”Well. this is the only way to do it.” There is enough of that going around.
Are You Sharing Your Experiences On Your Blog?
Matthew Loomis: I’m in the blogging niche, so I’m laughing right now about that.
What sort of feedback are you getting from people in general aside from that?
That’s a pretty amazing story right there!
Did you share that on your blog, did you tell that story?
Dawn Marie Perkins: Ummm… I don’t know.
Matthew Loomis: About the parent that decided to home school because of your blog?
I think you should if you haven’t!
Dawn Marie Perkins: I don’t think I did!
Things happen in email conversations and through comments and Facebook.
Matthew Loomis: Right.
Dawn Marie Perkins: Yeah, I know.
I don’t think I have shared that before.
Matthew Loomis: Okay, well that’s pretty fantastic.
What’s some other feedback that you’re getting from folks? Even some negative feedback?
If you’re willing to share that what are some other things that people have emailed you or told you on social media?
Dawn Marie Perkins: Social media is not my friend.
I don’t like social media, especially Facebook, it drives me crazy!!!
It’s so hard to get reached. It’s so hard to get interaction or engagement, especially on Facebook these days.
Instagram is fantastic and I like Twitter, but Facebook is not my friend.
I have people who email me questions, that’s very common.
Questions about, what should I do? Where do I find this? Who do I contact? That sort of thing.
Then I have lots of Facebook messages from parents who say, “Oh you know what, when you said such and such that really helped me out a lot and I appreciate that.”
For a parent to admit they’re not having a great time 100% of the time, especially to do it on social media? It’s kind of a big deal because it seems like everyone tends to live in their airbrushed Instagram and filtered lives, particularly if you’re a blogger.
I have so many friends who blog. I go to blog conferences and I’ve got a couple of conferences I try to attend fairly as often as I can.
Matthew Loomis: Which two are those?
Dawn Marie Perkins: I go to the 2:1 Conference.
Which is a conference specifically for homeschooling parents who are in the blogging niche, there are home school parents who blog.
Matthew Loomis: Fantastic!
Dawn Marie Perkins: Sponsored by several large curriculum companies and they spoil us rotten when the time comes.
I have to travel a thousand miles to go to these conferences because they’re always all over the place. The other one I haven’t been to in a few years. I went to it the first few years which was the Allume Conference and I believe the last time it was held was maybe a year ago and it was in South Carolina.
“Our humanity comes to its fullest bloom in giving.
We become beautiful people when we give whatever we can give: a smile, a handshake, a kiss, an embrace, a word of love, a present, a part of our life … all of our life.”
– Henri Nouwen
I am hoping to go to Digital Co Lab probably next year I’m not sure. We’re not going to make it this year because we’re moving.
Digital Co Lab in San Diego, which is put on by a blog friend of mine, Tony Anderson. A fantastic conference for bloggers and those in social media to really help them push their businesses forward.
How Often Do You Publish Posts On Your Blog – The Momma Knows?
Matthew Loomis: Fantastic!
For those who are listening, there are links to those conferences in The Show Notes if you want to check that out.
Dawn, how often do you publish new content typically?
Dawn Marie Perkins: About once a week.
I used to way back when I first started blogging, I would put out about three to five posts a week.
I stayed up until 2 O’Clock in the morning!
Everything I have done revolved around my blog it seems, and after a number of years I got really burned out on that, especially since I was participating in so may roundups and things like that and I ran a roundup post.
It seemed every post I wrote was for one of those.
Whatever the theme for that particular one was that was what I wrote and it got to where I was writing for a weekly roundup.
I wasn’t really writing the way that I wanted to or what I wanted to, something had to give, and eventually I got really tired and slowed way down.
Now, I’m starting to pick it back up again, I’m also working on downloadable curriculum and I’m writing some of my own products. So that’s taking some of my time.
I’ve also been in the middle of some full-fledged content audit for the past year. I deleted…nine hundred and fifty posts. I’ve still got almost eight hundred.
Matthew Loomis: I see.
Were those content pieces that you didn’t see any hope of re-purposing?
Dawn Marie Perkins: Some of them I actually didn’t delete.
Some of them I drafted because I’m going to re-purpose them.
Some of them were combined into why I took two or three posts that were okay. I put all of the content together and came up with a really good post.
Matthew Loomis: That’s a good idea!
Dawn Marie Perkins: I have republished those.
What’s remaining are posts that are great or good that could be updated and maybe they need images.
Way back no one put images on.
People had dial-up and it took too long to load the pictures and if you did, lots of people would complain that your site took too long to load because there were so many pictures.
It was a long time ago!
So I filtered back over them really making them into pieces that have good depth, good content, good images and Google likes them.
Matthew Loomis: Right.
What’s your favourite post you’ve ever published before?
Dawn Marie Perkins: Oh, gosh.
That’s not an easy question, it’s really not.
Probably the one about my boys’ adoptions, and that’s not a big post either, so probably that one because of the sentimental part of it.
I don’t know.
Other than that I don’t think I could name one. I just don’t even know and I’ve been so steeped in going back reading over all my old content and brushing it up and revising it.
And adding to it that and I’m becoming really happy with what’s there. I don’t think I could really name one of them…
Are You Monetizing your blog in any way?
Matthew Loomis: I can relate.
That would be a difficult question for me to answer as well.
I’m curious Dawn, are you using email marketing to promote your blog?
Dawn Marie Perkins: I am.
I use a service called Mailer Lite which is relatively new.
They have so many fantastic features, autoresponder, landing pages, everything, and they’re free for up to a thousand subscribers so…
Matthew Loomis: How do you spell that?
M A I L E R L I T E
Dawn Marie Perkins: M A I L E R L I T E
Matthew Loomis: We will be linking to that in The Show Notes.
Dawn Marie Perkins: Yeah.
They are wonderful!
Matthew Loomis: I’ll have to check that out.
I haven’t heard of them.
Dawn Marie Perkins: I guess they’ve only been around about three years.
I found them in…I want to say January I was using Mad Mimi I was okay with Mad Mimi.
Somebody had pointed me to Mailer Lite, so I decided to check it out. They have better functionality for free than Mad Mimi had building to their first… So I’ve been really happy with it.
Matthew Loomis: So.
You do an email newsletter, how often do you send that out?
Dawn Marie Perkins: Weekly.
Matthew Loomis: Weekly?
Dawn Marie Perkins: I do them weekly and I use a number of different opt-in freebies that lead people to my list.
I don’t inundate them with email, though I do send a weekly newsletter.
Usually, it’s additional content, it’s supposed to be just for my subscribers and then I also point them to one or two posts that are on my site and then maybe share a couple of other posts from other sources.
Other resources or whatever I found over the course of the week.
What Other Social Media Platforms Are Working For You?
Matthew Loomis: So you’re marketing your blog through email marketing.
Let’s talk a bit about social media.
We know that you love Instagram and you hate Facebook.
I’d like to know a little bit about why Instagram is working so well for you and tell us if there is anything else.
Are you using Pinterest and Google Plus and some other places as well?
Dawn Marie Perkins: Yeah.
I was one of the first adopters of Google Plus.
Matthew Loomis: Okay.
Dawn Marie Perkins: I was right off the bat.
I really jumped on that one…
I’m not really good at using Google Plus. But I’ve become better and it’s come back on my radar again. I like Google Plus and I see potential there.
From what I’ve read, when you promote your work on Google Plus it kind of reinforces Google to look more favourably on someone.
I don’t feel great about using it, but I do understand the potential there.
It’s always kind of off the radar so I have to make a conscious effort.
I use Buffer for the majority of my social media stuff, Buffer has Google Plus, so that’s what helped me.
Matthew Loomis: Right.
Dawn Marie Perkins: I love Instagram.
I can be myself on Instagram.
I don’t cater to homeschoolers or anything.
I view Instagram as a way for my readers to actually see what my life is like. So once in a while, I post a workout picture or I will share a picture of my son.
He is into Karate and Brazilian Jujitsu.
He’s very much into MMA (Mixed Martial Arts) and he’s fourteen and he loves it. I share those, I share those and I share quotes, that’s the one thing I do regularly.
I belong to an Instagram pod which is sort of under-the-radar way of getting more likes and shares and comments on your Instagram posts.
We have a group of bloggers, some friends of mine from a conference that we all went to. We share each other’s stuff and we put our posts into a group message that everybody goes through and we help each other out.
I like Instagram because it has better reach.
It has great reach on Facebook.
Matthew Loomis: That’s true, they’re connected.
Dawn Marie Perkins: I show my Instagram post on my Facebook page.
The Momma Knows Facebook Page and those posts have great reach because of posting on Facebook from Instagram.
How Can You ”Be Yourself” On Instagram?
Matthew Loomis: I have a question about Instagram.
It’s interesting that you said that you could be yourself on Instagram.
Does that mean that you are showing pictures of yourself when you’re not having a great day or behind the scenes, something goes wrong, or what do you mean by that?
Dawn Marie Perkins: Everything!
I am not a selfie person.
I’m not, and if you look at my Instagram in the last year, there might be five selfies of myself. I don’t like it and I don’t follow people who post selfies either.
But, pieces of my life that I don’t necessarily write about a lot. There just little things, like the Mother’s Day cards I got from my kids.
These are some manly men teenage boys and it say’s ”I love you, mommy.” You know, stuff like that, I wouldn’t write about that on my blog but it’s there.
My son got to pilot an aeroplane for Civil Air Patrol two weeks ago.
He got to pilot an aeroplane so…Yeah, it was just super exciting.
I ran a 12 kilometre a few weeks ago and I shared a couple of photos from that.
Matthew Loomis: Oh wow!
Tell your son that the BUILD YOUR OWN BLOG listeners thank him for his service.
Dawn Marie Perkins: Thank you.
He’s not serving yet, he’s only sixteen
Matthew Loomis: Oh, I see.
I thought you said that you had some older children.
I got mixed-up there.
Dawn Marie Perkins: I do but this son is only sixteen.
He is on Civil Air Patrol.
That is like JROTC. (Juniors Reserve Officers’ Training Corps.)
It’s the junior high school version of that for the Airforce.
Matthew Loomis: Oh, okay 🙂
Dawn Marie Perkins: Whereas ROTC is Reserve Officers’ Training Corps.
Young Marines is the Marine, and every service branch has a Youth Cadette Division.
That’s what Civil Air Patrol is.
So yeah, he got to pilot a plane.
Matthew Loomis: Good for him!
The reason why I was asking or bringing this up about Instagram is that you talked about how you don’t like how so many bloggers just show the best sides of themselves and airbrushed photos and all of that.
Instagram kind of has that reputation at times so I was wondering if you were doing something a little different there…You know?
Dawn Marie Perkins: I share some things there occasionally.
Matthew Loomis: And you’re finding that these posts on Instagram are effective?
Dawn Marie Perkins: Yeah, just the interaction that I get.
I get comments, I get likes, I get shares.
I like the fact that, Instagram still has some community to it. Even though that’s what Facebook is designed for because they keep changing their algorithms, they make it so unfriendly.
They make it so difficult for your posts to get out if you’re using a page. For me, it’s almost pointless. I have friends whose Facebook reach is unbelievable, I have never been able to do that.
I don’t know if I don’t dedicate enough time to it or what it just doesn’t seem worth it to me.
Matthew Loomis: Let’s move on to your website.
Dawn Marie Perkins Dot Com
You have a free course called – 31 Day’s To Earning With Amazon A Beginners Guide.
Can you tell us a little bit more about this course and what it has to offer?
Dawn Marie Perkins: Well it’s funny because it isn’t a course.
It was actually a 31-day series I did for a visit in October that people did the 31-day series, that’s what it was.
I wrote it maybe five years ago and the reason why I wrote it was because several blog friends of mine kept asking me, ”I don’t even know how to use Amazon, how is it that you’re making money with Amazon, I don’t get it?”
I just started out as a tutorial. Basically, how to start, I think the second post shows how to sign up for it. I actually need to go back to the entire thing and get new screenshots and everything because they’ve changed somethings and it’s time for me to update that.
That will probably turn out to be an eBook eventually.
Matthew Loomis: Sounds great!
Dawn Marie Perkins: That is a really popular series that I had originally published on my home school blog.
That was my motivation for starting the second blog was to get that off my site.
Matthew Loomis: So you’re transitioning some of your content.
That’s not really home school related to Dawn Marie Perkins Dot Com?
Dawn Marie Perkins: It kind of flows back and forth.
There have been times when I thought, ”Why am I doing this to blogs it’s too much…?” But really I I have been able to as I’m going through my content to audit on the home school blog.
I have been able to pull some posts that were really good and I just moved them to the other one because they fit better.
Matthew Loomis: Speaking about Amazon.
Let’s talk a little bit about monetizations, but, I do use Amazon.
How are your websites monetized at this point?
Dawn Marie Perkins: I do not have a lot of monetization.
I use Amazon links, I use Amazon TPM Ads, which is a new thing they started, I believe last year and they didn’t let all their affiliates use this.
You had to apply for the program and be let in. I have a friend who has been an Amazon affiliate for a number of years but never really used the links, she’s never really done much with it. So when she applied for the CPM program it took her six months to get in.
They just never got back in touch with her.
She just found out a couple of weeks ago that she was approved, which I think she applied back in September.
CPM is okay, it depends on the posts. I insert those ads just like you would a Google Analytics it’s awesome and I use Adsense too, Adsense is the filler.
It doesn’t make me a ton of money, I’ve only gotten a couple of payouts from Adsense. But CPM pays out monthly which is nice.
The I also use some other form of advertising. I have a header banner and I also insert affiliate banners into posts. I try to be selective and I don’t overwhelm anybody with banners and ads and all that, but here and there where I can I will.
Matthew Loomis: You seem like you know a pretty good amount about Amazon affiliation.
What would you recommend for someone like me who lives in Missouri?
Missouri is one of those States where Amazon doesn’t have affiliates, do you know anything about that?
Dawn Marie Perkins: I know a little bit about it.
It’s not just Amazon!
Aren’t there other ad networks that are also not willing to go there because of that?
Matthew Loomis: That could be.
I haven’t dug into those other networks.
Dawn Marie Perkins: I have heard of other people that applied for foreign Amazon accounts…
I wouldn’t recommend it, they will catch you. They’re really good with sniffing out things so it’s really hard to get around that.
I don’t even know. I don’t even have an answer for you.
I would say that because Amazon is such a big entity but, I would say if your pages are high enough, look to other ad networks and look to other companies.
Matthew Loomis: Okay, yeah.
Dawn Marie Perkins: So if you are really big into widgets?
Find a company that has an affiliate program that sells widgets.
Matthew Loomis: So you’re saying if it’s books, then maybe consider…?
Dawn Marie Perkins: Barnes and Noble.
Matthew Loomis: Barnes and Noble?
Dawn Marie Perkins: Or any other affiliate program.
There are a few big booksellers that you could promote for besides Amazon.
There is also Walmart.
I don’t know what the criteria are to become a Walmart affiliate though. I think that they might have a minimum of page views or something.
Matthew Loomis: So Walmart, Target…
Dawn Marie Perkins: They might not.
I don’t know because I haven’t tried.
Like I said I’m not a typical mommy blogger so I don’t generally go to Target, Walmart and all of that. I’m not looking for affiliations there necessarily.
Matthew Loomis: I would love to use Amazon.
But right now they just don’t do it for Missouri.
Dawn Marie Perkins: Walmart does have an affiliate program.
If you use affiliate networks like Commission Junction.
???…sale that’s two that pop into my head right off the bat. I use both of them.
You can find hundreds and hundreds of companies to affiliate with. Otherwise, you can just Google the name of the company JCPenney and then the word affiliate and see what comes up.
Other times you can find affiliate programs just by doing them.
How Has Blogging Made A Difference In Your Life?
Matthew Loomis: Good stuff!
Thank’s for letting us know that Dawn!
Dawn, it’s been great having you on The Blog Chronicles today.
I want to close with the question that I ask all my guests
Dawn, how has blogging changed your life?
Dawn Marie Perkins: Oh WOW!
Blogging really pulled me out of my shell as far as getting to know people.
Because when you meet people online eventually you’re going to meet them in person.
Back in the early days of the internet, everybody was an axe-murderer!
The first time I met another blogger it turned out that she lived in my city and she and I had met at a McDonald’s to have lunch with our kids and my husband swore I was going to be killed in the parking lot.
She was just a mom like me and we had little kids and it was fun!
Blogging has changed the way that I look at everything because I filter things through the lens of, ”Ha, that would be interesting to write about, I want to know more about that!”
Just being on the internet, the information is everywhere.
I want to look into things and the next thing I know that I’m sure about and then I’m writing about what I just found out or what I just learned.
It’s definitely made me a better writer!
I’ve taken writing courses online and gone to seminars and things like that at conferences on writing and I’ve learned a lot from those things and realised, the way I speak and the way I write, they’re really similar
Matthew Loomis: So, you write like you talk?
Dawn Marie Perkins: I do.
I use better grammar when I write.
Yes, I do write the way I talk and I have heard people say that “Oh wow you sound like just like you do in your posts.” Well, yes I do.
I try not to be too formal or stuffy or stiff or anything like that because that’s not me.
A lot of that is about just being REAL!
Matthew Loomis: Right, keeping it a hundred.
It sounds like you found your voice.
Dawn Marie Perkins: I did and it took a long time.
Matthew Loomis: How long would you say it took?
Dawn Marie Perkins: From my first blog?
Probably, I’m looking at notes I actually wrote stuff down so that I would remember what to tell you.
Probably in the neighbourhood of 2007 – 2008…, so three or four years it took me to find my own voice. I didn’t really get comfortable with that until about five or six years ago.
Matthew Loomis: So your persistence has really paid off?
Dawn Marie Perkins: Oh definitely!
I think it writing that’s a big deal.
”You have to keep doing it, you don’t get to be a better writer by not writing and you don’t get to be a better blogger by not blogging!”
Connect With Dawn Marie Perkins On Social Media.
Matthew Loomis: That’s a great place to close here today.
Can you give us your handles?
Dawn Marie Perkins: On Instagram, I’m @TheMommaKnows
Facebook, I am The Momma Knows
Twitter, I am @DawnMPerkins
(I was Momma Knows for years, I decided to change it and when I had a change of heart about a month later somebody had stolen my Twitter handle.)
Google Plus. I’m just Dawn Perkins
Matthew Loomis: That’s good.
There are links for all those channels for Dawn in The Show Notes page.
Dawn, thank you for coming on The Blog Chronicles today it’s been a real pleasure meeting you and getting to know you.
Dawn Marie Perkins: Absolutely!
Thank you very much, it’s been fun!
The Show Notes
Dawn Marie Perkins – firstname.lastname@example.org
Be sure to stay tuned for the next informative episode of THE BLOG CHRONICLES!
I’ll see you next time on The Blog Chronicles!