Announcing…Maven Secrets 5.0!


Dear OAP Friends,

I was convinced by the recent successful batch of Maven Secrets 4.0 to continue to offer this one-of-a-kind mentoring and coaching program in Manila. I was touched when they created this farewell graduation video (by the videocamproject) after completing the 90-day program.

Maven Secrets 5.0 is my private mentoring, coaching and education program that teaches aspiring internet entrepreneurs and professional bloggers the secrets of Our Awesome Planet. I will personally guide each student with a combination of one-on-one sessions, weekly group coaching and mastermind sessions in AIM over the period of 90 days.

Click on this link to learn more about Maven Secrets 5.0.

What’s new in Maven Secrets 5.0?

  • I’ve integrated the secrets and learnings on how we successfully marketed Mercato Centrale/ Midnight Mercato, which is recognized as one of the most successful weekend lifestyle markets in Manila in a span of 4 months.
  • A new module focusing on Online Reputation Management, especially on how to defend your brand against a Black Hat PR campaign from the dark side of media.
  • Remote/online students are now accepted because I’m designing the program for 100% online training. If successful, this will be the last batch of face-to-face coaching format.
  • I’ve included a bonus module on the Secrets of Facebook Marketing.
  • I’ve recognized that this program is not for everyone, so you have to apply before you get accepted in the program.

Visit this link to learn more about Maven Secrets 5.0.

To apply, kindly fill up the application form for Maven Secrets 5.0.

I would appreciate it if you could forward this to your family and friends who might be looking for this type of program.

Live an Awesome Life,

Call or Text Me: +63917 5683-627 (LOVE-OAP)
Follow Me FacebookTwitterFlickr Youtube

Full Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

P.S. In every batch, I usually give out a few scholarships. As a tradition, the recipient in the last batch gets to create and launch the scholarship contest for the next scholar.

Check out: My Prosperity ProjectWin P50,000 Worth of Scholarships from Maven Secrets

P.P.S. For batch 5, check out this awesome deal: Top Bidder gets a Maven Secrets 5.0 Blogging Course worth P50,000.

Again, here’s the link to the full details of Maven Secrets 5.0.


In Search of Apprentices

Dear OAP friends,

I’m looking for two to three people who will work with me for the next 6 months to scale up Our Awesome Planet in 2011. These people will be involved with running existing projects, marketing them online via social media, and conceptualizing / executing new exciting internet projects.

My goal is to offer first hand experience with launching awesome projects in Manila online or offline, with full interaction with the market. After the apprenticeship, you should be able to start your own projects or find a great job working as a social media practitioner.

Read more


Watch out for Our Awesome Planet TV in 2011!

I’m excited to share with you the preview of Our Awesome Planet TV to be shown in time for summer 2011. 🙂 It will be broadcasted on The Filipino Channel to entice our kababayans to explore the Philippines more. 🙂

We are also planning to broadcast it on a local ABS-CBN affiliated channel on Friday, 12mn timeslot. But for those who won’t be able to catch it on TV, we will broadcast it on OurAwesomePlanet.TV!

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Food Writing Tips: Earn Some Cash in Between Bites

Here are some pro-food writing tips from my friends from Writer's Block Philippines:

Bagnet Bicol Express

How do you cross over from being a passionate foodie to a credible and published food writer? Try these tips from the writing experts:

1. Select an interesting subject that has not yet been featured in other websites or magazines

Food features can be more than just about food. Aside from the food itself, other possible features may include new restaurants, chefs, and recipes. Just make sure that the topic is unique or that’s you’re presenting it in a different angle.

For instance, when writing about family recipes (sometimes called “heirloom recipes”), mention its unique history, what makes the family behind it special, any unique innovations that have been passed on through the generations, and so on. Magazine editors value writers who can present ideas from a perspective that sets the publication apart from the rest of the pack.

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[Survey] OAP Live an Awesome Life Planner Cover Design

Which among the Live An Awesome Life Planner Covers would you like?

I have an exciting project that OAP readers would love. I’m working on an interactive planner in partnership with the best planner designers in Manila. I’ll share some more details in succeeding blog posts. For now, can you help me decide which cover design should I use for the OAP | Live an Awesome Life Planner?

Please vote for your favorite OAP Live an Awesome Life Planner Cover Design!

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4 Powerful Reasons Why You Should Join Maven Secrets 4.0

Maven Secrets Batch 3.0 Graduation Dinner

We just completed Maven Secrets 3.0, and due to insistent demand, I’m launching Maven Secrets 4.0 from August to November 2010.

I would like to invite you to join this 90-day program. Here are 4 Powerful Reasons Why You Should Join Maven Secrets 4.0:

1. Be part of the Last Maven Secrets. This will be the LAST coaching/mastermind face-to-face group that I will be conducting for the year. If you want to capitalize on the Internet Marketing Boom in 2011, now is the time to set up your internet marketing business.

2. Attend IM-BC 2010 for FREE. You can attend the two-day Internet Marketing Boot Camp 2010 for FREE (worth P12,294) as an early registration bonus for the Maven Secrets 4.0 Program.

Read more


[Contest] Top Blogging Tools I use in OAP; What’s yours?

Top Blogging Tools I use in OAP; What’s yours?

Contest Duration: July 12, Monday, 12.00am to July 25, Sunday, 11.59pm

I’m often asked variants of this question: What camera / hosting / tools do you use for blogging? 

So, for this blog post, I would like to share my answer to that question with you, but I also want to know what blogging tools you use.

As an incentive, the best answer (via the comments section, blog post or Facebook entry) will win my favorite Flip Ultra 120 HD 120 minutesThanks to Flip Camera Manila Distributor for sponsoring the prize for the contest!

My Top Blogging Tools

  • Blog Hosting: Typepad Pro

Typepad is a managed hosting service that has the easy blogging interface of Blogger and the sophistication and nice template of WordPress. I love Typepad because I don’t need to worry about hosting, bandwidth and security of the site. I’ve been using Typepad ever since I started. And Seth Godin also uses typepad.

  • Digital Camera: Canon 20d 17-40mm L Lens

Ninety-five percent of the photos you see in OAP are produced using my Canon 20d. I love Canon — this has been my camera ever since I started. What makes the food shots crisp in OAP is the fine 17-40 L lens by Canon. The other 5% is produced by my back-up camera (when my Canon is in the shop for repairs).

  • Video Blogging Camera: Flip Ultra HD Camera 120 minutes

I love Flip because you can shoot a video and immediately upload it to YouTube in a matter of minutes. The video is HD quality and the audio is quite good already in a relatively quiet environment. For blogging, use the Ultra HD version and not any other version if you want to publish the video in your blog.

  • Mobile Phone and Subscription: iPhone 3G with Globe

These days, you already need a GPS-enabled camera so that you can participate in location-based services like Four Square. I like the simplicity and seemless integration of the iPhone with my Mac and other online services.

I’m a proud Globe subscriber ever since — 0917-LOVEOAP (5683627).

  • Laptop and Blogging Client: MacBook Pro with ECTO

I love Mac! It is easy to use, especially for blogging. I specifically use a Macbook Pro version so that it can handle my simple video editing needs.

There is a special blogging client called ECTO (for MAC only) where you can blog offline and just publish your post when you are online. Also, ECTO can manage multiple blogs in multiple platforms.

  • Photo Editing, Watermarking and Hosting Tool: Lightroom 2.0 with Flickr.

After 5 years of blogging in OAP, I now have 78,841 photos, and they all need to be managed. I have all my photos managed by Lightroom, which automates a lot of the post-processing like cropping, renaming the filenames, placing the watermark, and automatically uploading it to Flickr.

I would recommend you also use a separate photo hosting tool like Flickr instead of just uploading your photos to your own server or hosting platform.


That’s it! Now it’s your turn. What are the top tools you use for blogging?

To officially enter the contest, just put your answer or link your answer in the comments section of this blog post. Deadline for the contest is on July 25, Sunday, 11.59pm. 🙂

And the winner is…

for all the great entries! It was actually very very hard to choose. I
didn’t expect a lot of people to join so thank you all for joining!

I learned a lot from the entry of the winner and it made me rethink
the webhosting I use and the putting watermarks on my photos. You should
read the winning entry.

The Geekette Speaketh’s My Blogging Tools

Congratulations Charo, you just won a Flip Ultra HD Camera!  To claim, just email my wife [email protected] and we will arrange a meet-up 🙂

As a runner up, I need to mention this post because I like it:
Cher Cabula’s Mindbox My Top Blogging Tools

Live an Awesome Life,

Call or Text Me: +63917 5683-627 (LOVE-OAP)
Follow Me FacebookTwitterFlickrYoutube

Disclosure: We are distributors of the Flip Ultra

The Flip Ultra HD camera selling price is at P9,995. Yes, it is now locally available in Manila! Just email my wife at [email protected] or text/call her +63917 5318949 if you are interested. Ask for the special OAP friend discount. 🙂

P.S. Join Maven Secrets 4: A 90-day Internet Marketing and Professional Blogging Program!


10 Common Mistakes Freelance Writers Should Avoid

( My freelance writer friends are launching their first How to Jumpstart Your Freelance Writing Career Workshop this coming Saturday, April 24. They are among the best Freelance Writers in the country today. I’ve asked them to share some of their learnings with OAP readers. Enjoy! )

10 Common Mistakes Freelance Writers Should Avoid
by Writer’s Block Philippines — Ana Santos (, Nikka Sarthou &
Nina Terol-Zialcita (

Like any other business, you need to organize a working system to manage your own freelance career – all three of us found that out the hard way. We want to share with you what we have learned from our personal experiences, so you’ll know what mistakes to steer clear of and what to do about it. Here are 10 tips to help you become more successful as a freelance writer. 

1. Never take contracts for granted. As a freelancer, the only person who can ensure your financial and professional security is yourself. Pay special attention to contracts and terms of reference, and don’t be satisfied with simple verbal agreements. Learn to operate like a small business and keep yourself protected from abusive colleagues or from lawsuits from clients. 

2. Be clear about the scope of work. It’s easy to assume your scope of work when you’re simply writing an article for a publication. However, the minute you start taking on larger projects with more tasks and more coordination work (managing a publication, for example), be clear about your scope of work and expectations from both your clients and team mates. Never assume anything and always put terms, conditions, and payment agreements in black-and-white. 

3. Even when dealing with friends, be professional. It’s easy to cross professional boundaries when dealing with friends whom you’ve known for a long time and whom you trust. However, when it comes to freelancing and managing your own micro-enterprise, you need to draw professional lines. Let friends sign contracts and agreements, prepare payment vouchers, mind your paperwork, do everything professionally.

Read more

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Or a guide for your next destination?

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Or a guide for your next destination?

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