Chuck, man, gotta watch Chuck!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Fall season this year in the US had given us quite a number of interesting shows- Reaper, a re-imagining of The Bionic Woman and Flash Gordon, Private Practice (that Grey's Anatomy spin-off), The Sarah Connor Chronicles- right on top of all your other favorite returning TV series.

One show that has, undoubtedly, got me looking forward to a new episode every week is NBC's Chuck. Bravo, NBC, totally good call, picking this show up.

I best describe it as Alias-meets-The OC-meets-40-Year-Old Virgin. Straight out of their success with The OC, Josh Schwartz and McG team up once again, but instead of another young adult drama, they came up with a nice little comedy- and it frackin' works!

End result: you have a TV show that's fun and entertaining. Lots of eye candy for both chicks and dudes (man, I've been a fan of Yvonne Strahovski since episode 1- woohoo!), lots of funny geek references (even funnier if you're a geek yourself), lots of witty exchanges and a killer soundtrack.

Remind me to get you guys a soundtrack listing in the not-so-distant future.

The show has been running for a little over 5 episodes now, and so far, it never fails to entertain. Too bad NBC has taken down all its clips from YouTube. But, hey, all is not lost- you can have a taste of Chuck on the main NBC website right here!

Check it out now, funk soul brutha!


One at a Time...

Saturday, October 27, 2007

I suppose I've realized it's one of my failings. I always try to get into too many things at any given time.

Take for example blogging. See, I know it's probably a good thing to just have ONE MAIN BLOG. You know, stick to what you're really passionate about and come up with an all-encompassing theme and just focus on JUST THAT.

After an inspiring workshop with Abe (last October 20, with Money Talks), it was supposed to be all clear- have a focus. If you want to have a blog working well for you, have a clear focus (aside from other useful tips he so generously shared).

Okay, so maybe I've gone a little over-enthusiastic and came up with, like, ten or twelve blogs or so. Could be more- who's keeping track anyway?

I got one for pretty much every single facet of my 30-something lifestyle- writing, music, business, cats (lasercats!), pc gaming, tv & movies, stress management, radio, marketing- well, you get the idea.

Perhaps the best way to go about it is to consolidate the little blogs into a certain interest-group blog, and then those into one main blog.

Yikes! More blogs!

There's no problem, I suppose, with having 50 million blogs. But you can only dedicate so much time to churning out content- which you can only post on a finite number of blogs- unless you have an entire army of keyboard monkeys on a constant mindlink to your brain at your disposal. Which is rather unlikely in most cases.

Let's think of it now as a restructuring of sorts. Pretty much in the same way as we re-evaluate our lives every so often, the so do we re-evaluate our online lifestyle. Has to be done, right?

Good God, maybe it's just me. Over-obsessive-at-times little ol' me.

But what the heck. It starts today, with this blog :) More later.


All About Renzie!

Monday, October 22, 2007

Lived all my 34 years (as of this writing) in Metro Manila, Philippines. Although I took up Physical Therapy (never took the boards, never practiced) in UP Manila, my career has always been with broadcasting and marketing. So I saw action as a DJ, event host, radio commercial talent/producer, writer & editor, researcher, segment producer, events manager, and finally ashead of sales and integrated marketing communication (with Mellow 94.7 for my last 3 years with them).

I decided to take a break from radio to pursue other things. So in January of 2006, I took a long vacation- caught up with my reading, working out, a little bit of travel- finally culminating in a leisurely trip to Singapore in March. It was there that I've decided to get into writing- thus the series of blogs. Had also hoped to get a few other projects off the ground- like my own travel agency, my own production house, my own marketing communications company, and my ultimate goal- my own toys and hobbies company.

After working for various companies (been a salary-man for the past 14-15 years or so...), I've realized that nothing is as important as doing your own thing. Which is what I'm going for these days- hence all these different projects and collaborations with different partners- the next big thing is just waiting to happen, really.

I love meeting new people- mainly for the purpose of networking and business. I love tossing great ideas around, watching them mutate into something no one's ever imagined. Most importantly, I love keeping my life stress-free and easy-going.

What I'm Doing Right Now.

Right now, I'm Program Director for 105.1 Crossover, a smooth jazz and easy-listening radio station operating from Quezon City in the Philippines. Which means I handle day-to-day operations of said radio station, which includes pretty much anything and everything that goes on the air.

As I am immersed in traditional media, I'm also a strong advocate of New Media- I blog a lot, and I have quite a number of blogs at the moment, and I help beginner bloggers find their way. Along those lines, I'm learning as much as I can about Internet Marketing (including Search Engine Optimization/Marketing and Social Media Optimization), E-Commerce and Online Trading.

I have my own little New Media company, and an Events Management group. I've done the preliminary paperwork on my Tours & Travel Agency, but I think I need a special twist or niche to it before I'm satisfied enough to launch it.

Some Truly Shameless Self-Promotion
(but hey, it's MY blog)

As many of you already know, I've embarked on a project to give myself a better presence online. I mean, now that I'm into the whole writing-SEO-SEM-SMO thing, I might as well use myself as a guinea pig, right?

Right on!

So, what do we have goin' on right now? It seems that I have taken a liking to Blogger and Wordpress for blogs, and Facebook online networking. There are actually several blogs up, each one for a particular topic of interest.

Check these out:

Blogspot. Great place. Functionally simple, very user-friendly, and easy-to-use. You have three blogs going on at Blogspot at the moment, and here they are:

  • "Blog. Blogger. Bloggest!" My flagship website- it's main purpose is to facilitate learning how to build an effective blog with basics of SEO and SEM and stuff. Great for beginners who'd like to learn about getting into the blogging lifestyle.
  • "Renzies Rants and Raves" A highly opinionated blog with my personal reviews on certain pop culture and lifestyle elements. Read about what I think about technology, restaurants, spas, movies and books.
  • "My Thoughts In Stereo" is all about my personal take on the radio, music and recording industries. It also has my personal recommendations on music and music mixes. Music appreciation for all, baby, yeah!
There are actually more, but they're all in various stages of development at the moment, not quite ready to launch just yet.Wordpress. They got great templates and formats that make your blog look real kick-ass. A little complicated, but it's truly awesome once you get the hang of things. Really worth your while to try your hand at it.
  • "The Life & Times of The Renzie Man". This one's all about me. Bachelor livin', grindin' and kickin' it in Metro Manila. Great for people who'd like to have a look of how it is to live solo in the Philippines.
  • "Keyboard Monkeys!" Resources for writers everywhere. Look, I'm new myself. So here's a little something for everyone who's decided to devote some time blogging and maybe writing for a living- sure helps pay the rent!
LiveJournal. Real simple, almost spartan- but fairly functional enough. The beauty of it is in the privacy. Seems to link in nicely with Vox, but I'll have to figure this one out a little bit more.
For social networking, we have the aforementioned Facebook. We also have one on Multiply. But we also have profiles on Friendster, MySpace, Flickr, Flixster and Tagged.

So yeah. Wow, that's a whole lot of stuff to keep track of, huh? I suppose maintaining them is gonna be a bitch. At least until I figure something out.

Oh well.

Other Things About Me.

As you very well know, I've been living on my own for the past 15 years. I have a pad in Mandaluyong City, with two very intelligent, very affectionate cats- The Chloe (a mackerel tortie) and The Noobie (a gray-and-white brindled).

I've been going out with my girlfriend Cristina for almost seven years now, and we're both into new wave music, smooth jazz, good food, late night movies, spa weekends, travel, and lots of World of Warcraft.

Cheers, everyone!


Renzie Baluyut: Past, Present and Future.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Just a little shameless self-promotion, ladies and gentlemen.

I have had a number of clients ask what I was all about, aside from what they may have gleaned from my various work available online.

Nothing much, just a little backgrounder on me. Pardon the way I refer to myself in the third person.



Renzie Baluyut.  In SG, March 2007.Renzie took up BS Physical Therapy in UP Manila in 1990, initially with plans of being a neurosurgeon. But an opportunity to join a radio station came in 1994, which he took. So began his career as a professional broadcaster as a DJ for Maximum Music 99.5RT.

Shortly afterwards, he discovered more ways to capitalize on his new-found skillsets- turning to doing voice-over work for TV and radio commercials, as well as AVPs. He was also frequently hired as an emcee for parties, corporate functions, product launches and even weddings.

He briefly worked for Ad Farm- a production house based in Makati where he gained an appreciation for digital audio editing and production.

He joined the FBS Radio Network (then Mellow Touch 94.7) as one of its first live announcers in 1996, shortly after the same family bought 99.5RT.

It was in 94.7 that Renzie was placed in charge of all audio broadcast promotional materials, initiated a music library and produced several concept radio shows.

Past Stints.

Renzie Baluyut discovered his love for events management in 1998. Instead of actively pursuing an MA in Broadcast Communication in UP Diliman, he thought that the campus scene at the time was a perfect opportunity to make money doing events.

Along with a few partners, Renzie got involved in producing all kinds of campus concerts with big-name acts for the next two years. Besides concerts, Renzie also helped manage clothing sales, online gaming tournaments, workshops and seminars.

For two years, Renzie saw action in the call center industry as an Operations Supervisor for Easycall (which in 2002, became e-Performax). Thereafter, he worked closely with a number of other contact centers, helping out with managing events and other employee retention and recruitment programs.

After 10 years with Mellow 94.7, Renzie opted for an early retirement package. He served the last 3 years as the radio station's Sales and Integrated Marketing Communications Manager.

Current Efforts.

After a brief hiatus from the radio industry, Renzie Baluyut tried his hand out at different things.

He turned to blogging in March 2007, and decided to pursue a career as a professional blogger in November of the same year, developing online content for blogging networks, clients and his own independent projects.

He also set up a couple of businesses- a marketing communications company, a travel agency and an events group.

In May 2007, he signed up to work for an online retailer and distribution company based in Sydney, Australia. There he learned Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Search Engine Marketing (SEM) and Social Media Optimization (SMO), which he continues to practice today.

His most active effort online at the moment is "Blog. Blogger. Bloggest!" an online repository of tips, techniques and tutorials for the begginer- to intermediate-level blogging enthusiast.

Renzie is currently Program Director for 105.1 Crossover DWBM-FM, a commercial radio station that plays smooth jazz, rhythm and blues and sophisticated yet popular easy-listening favorites.


The SEO Notebook: Renzie Dabbles In Search Engine Optimization, Pt. 2

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Welcome to my series of notebooks on Search Engine Optimization, or SEO. No, I am no expert- I'm just a regular dude trying to understand this entirely new craft. These notebooks are for fellow "newbies" at SEO. I've compiled these notes, partially from what I do at work (developing content and optimizing sites for an Australian-based online retailer), but more from personal research, and to a lesser extent, what I have observed thus far.

Comments and questions are welcome. I will do my best to answer them, or at least point you to where you can get your answers.

Our previous post dealt with a brief overview on Search Engine Optimization.
This is Part 2 of the ongoing SEO Notebook Project, which will cover a brief history of SEO, and SEO as a marketing tool.


A Short History of SEO

It used to be that webmasters submit their pages or URL's to various search engines, which would then send a spider to "crawl" the page, then come back with the information and get everything indexed.
After a while, site owners then recognized the value of having their sites highly ranked and visible. So in order to boost visibility and to gain better placement in search engine results pages, white hat and black hat SEO practitioners were then employed.
Now you have to remember that back then, search algorithms mostly relied on webmaster-provided information (meta tags), so many early SEO practitioners abused this particular dependence to artificially increase page impressions (and therefore increase ad revenue). But now, search engines have become a lot more sophisticated, developing ranking algorithms that take into account other things that webmasters can't readily manipulate.
Then came the concept of page rank: an algorithm that rates the prominence of web pages based on the quantity and strength of inbound links: links coming into your site from other sites. It is all about discoverability- the likelihood of some surfer randomly surfing the web to check out your site, because he followed links from some other site.
Google entered the picture, considering not just PageRank and hyperlink analysis, but also other on-page factors. In fact, the true formula to coming up with the page rank can change from time to time, and usually without the knowledge of the general public, even SEO practitioners.
In any case, Google, Yahoo and MSN Live don't fully disclose any of these other considerations and on-page factors, so schemes like link farms don't have much of an impact anymore.
If you want to read up on notable SEO's, you may want to look up these guys: Rand Fishkin, Barry Schwartz, Aaron Wall and Jill Whalen. Look them up, and check out their forums and blogs.

A Note On Webmasters and Search Engines

There seems to be a developing relationship between Search engines and the SEO industry, with a push towards more responsible optimization activity. In fact, some search engines have already provided information and guidelines to help with site optimization.
Check Google's Sitemaps Program. Also, Yahoo! Site Explorer lets webmasters submit URLs, determine how many pages are in the Yahoo! index and view link information.

SEO as a Marketing Strategy

Fact: Researchers scan a SERP from top to bottom, and left to right. So placement is key.
But the number of search engine referrals does not guarantee sales. In fact, SEO might not be an appropriate strategy for every website, so other Internet Marketing strategies may actually be more effective- depending on your goals.
Successful Internet Marketing campaign uses a mix of organic results + paid advertising on search engines/other pages + high quality content + keeping tech issues to a minimum + good analytics program.
In addition to generating traffic and boosting page rank for your site, there must be an effort to always improve your site's conversion rate- so it really is all about being able to engage your incoming traffic into getting them to do what you want them to do: sign up for a service, purchase something, leave a few posts, click on a few links, etc.
Website operators should liberate themselves from dependence on search engine traffic (because many do), because in reality, their main sources of traffic are links from other websites.

SEO and International Markets

Take note: While Google, Yahoo and MSN may be your top 3 search engines, other search engines could actually be better in some regions in the world.
We all know that Google remains the dominant search engine worldwide as of 2007, with more than 75% of all searches. But did you know that...

  • In Russia, Yandex controls 50% of the paid advertising revenue.
  • In China, Baidu leads in market share.
When tapping international markets, you may consider translation of web pages, registration of a domain name (with a top level domain in the target market), and web hosting that provides a local IP address.
Otherwise, the fundamental elements of SEO are essentially the same, regardless of language.


More SEO topics for discussion later on. Part 3 of the ongoing SEO Notebook Project will cover SEO basics, or How To Improve Your Page Ranking.



Essential Cool in Digital Media, Pop Culture and the Internet, with Renzie |

The Life & Times of The Renzie Man

Keyboard Monkeys! | Tips, Tricks and Advice for the Digital Entrepreneur

How to Change the World, by Guy Kawasaki

Barfield Management - Make Money Online, Stocks, Forex, Mutual Funds Philippines

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