Somebody is giving me money to tell you about their website. This is instructive in two ways: first, there are all sorts of ways of making money online; and second, there are all sorts of ways of getting people to look at your website.

A while back, I signed up to a service called Review Me, which organises a paid blog review service.

Anyone can submit their website, categorise it, and submit it for review. The cost of the review depends entirely on the popularity of the blog on which it is reviewed. The going rate, if you’re interested, for a review here on New Music Strategies is US$60 — of which I get half and Review Me gets the other half.

Over time, I’ve been offered a few of these by the site, and I’ve just turned them down.

I joined for research purposes. This is not how I make my money, and I’m not interested in telling you about things I don’t think are valuable. But I always told myself that if I found something I thought was worth your while bothering about, I’m not above accepting a little pocketmoney in exchange for the information.

Website review: The Music Blogger

The Music Blogger is actually a blog run by two bloggers: Derrick Fung and Vivien Tse — both accomplished musicians in their own right. They attended Toronto’s Royal Conservatory of Music, where Vivien is still a student. Derrick has worked for Microsoft in Canada.

In 2004, the two of them ran a popular website that gave musicians access to sheet music online, and they’ve recently launched this new site, aimed at giving advice to musicians in the areas of recording, performance, marketing and equipment.

Don’t think of them as young and inexperienced. Think of them as fresh and innovative. If that helps.

They’ve only been going with this site a little while, but the information that’s there is largely relevant, useful and (generally speaking) worth reading.

Derrick brings a business head to the whole affair — so you’ll get a lot of talk of setting goals and maintaining budgets — but these are all in the context of establishing a home project recording studio, so you’ll no doubt forgive a lot of corporate-speak in the interests of a successful setup.

Previous posts include links to PDF files of sheet music including Bette Midler’s The Rose, Christina Aguilera’s Hurt, Pachelbel’s Canon and Scott Joplin’s Maple Leaf Rag — as well as a discussion of singer Elliot Yamin’s profile online, which they have somehow inexplicably linked to Canada Day.

It’s early days, but it looks like this will be one of those sites to bookmark or subscribe to the RSS feed for the odd bit of useful information that comes along once in a while. It lacks focus, but then… whose website doesn’t?

I get the impression that this site will find its feet, just as New Music Strategies did, through helpful feedback from regular readers. I give it 6.5 Coolfers out of a possible 10 Coolfers.

Of course, through The Newswire, I’m always telling you about new websites and articles worth checking out, so actually The Music Blogger could have saved themselves a bit of cash by just sending me an email — but then they’d have had to find me, or I’d have to find them, and perhaps some things are worth paying a bit of cash for in order to drive a bit of traffic.

At any rate, I’m very grateful, and I hope this proves to be money well spent on their part.

I intend to buy myself a very nice bottle of single malt whisky with the proceeds. I will, of course, have to pay some money out of my own pocket to supplement the US$30 I just earned in order to do that.

I also intend not to do the sponsored review thing again in a hurry — unless, of course, it might be actually worth your while reading it.