Monday, March 31, 2008

Death of the long sales page - requiem

Another datum surfaces, again from recent browsing. Saw a sales page that just when on and on and on with video series after video series and ended off with several scroll-downs of testimonials.

While long sales pages are useful - they depend on content. Real content.

What drives a sales page is the story. Read Collier, Vitale, etc.

A sales page isn't a over-filled shopping cart full of sugar-enriched fast-food.

It's another conversation. You have to get and keep your viewers' interest - all the way down your page.

The particular sales page which set me off was simply a dozen or two NEW HOT VIDEO SERIES! - each and all with clever graphics. OK, so I got that the guy likes to do videos. Great.

But what happened to my mouse - it started to scroll down the page faster and faster and faster. Then I finally saw the guarantee, right after the testimonials. I didn't bother to stick around to read his PS. It was what goes for a "standard" sales page these days.

However, that approach is pretty dead - except to the 2-3% who will buy anything.

What the guy should have done with this was to offer a teaser, which he did, and then simply link to all these video series. Each video series would then have its own sales page and would link to the same sign-up page. (When you build like this, you are actually creating a mini-net and can actually get some good organic SEO pagerank and wind up higher on Google when you do - but that's another story...) But every single page would have great value.

Even long testimonials can go on another page - or in a side column.

I know that people are trying to keep viewers on that one page with few choices to click somewhere else. But in doing that, they also then encourage use of the back button (or close tab button).

You have to have a story and keep to that story.

You have to give real value in what you offer. Sure, make it pretty, but don't over-glam it. Keep it nice, but not too ritzy. Even diamond-sellers are known for understated elegance. The design of the page develops trust. When you design like a used-car salesman, you get people avoiding the lot.

While the rumors of the long sales page's death are exaggerated, there are more than a few which should never have been born.

Keep your viewer experience first to keep your viewers

Just came back from visiting a site from a comment link. Didn't have a great experience, but did run into something we could learn from.

This is a critique of that site.

Looked nice. First problem - violated the old 10-second rule of Internet use, which is: if the viewer doesn't see something they want in 10 seconds, they'll go somewhere else.

Now on the face of it, it's a nice site. They get you on their mail list and then give you audio clips - about 43 of them. On the face of it, it looks like value. Problem is, that's a lot of bandwidth and these audio's don't load quickly. Also, audio has the problem that it's linear. You have to listen to the whole thing in order, can't skip around. (We won't go into the audio quality, or content.)

On this site, you simply have the name of the interviewer and guest for each audio - not what that person is, what they talk about, why you should listen. There's a promo link for each speaker, but it has the same problem - no data.

So: the conclusion is that this site is a sham. Not that it is, but that's the impression.

To improve this?

0. Redesign the page from the "WIIFM" (What's in it for me?) viewpoint of the viewer. Figure the person is coming for more data on eBay sales. So tell them why they should listen to these interviews and why they are VITAL to their success.

1. Don't assume all your audience is audio-centric. Most Internet viewers are more visually-oriented, the audio is a neat marketing gimmick and an excellent way to give valuable data, but it shouldn't be the only way to get information. As above, audio is limited, and might not fit into the viewer's schedule - a lot of people would rather have podcasts and listen to them while exercising, commuting, etc. They don't want to have to keep your page open to listen to these audios - again, that 10-second rule. If your page isn't incredibly valuable, don't figure they're going to come back.

2. Get better hosting - faster downloads. Don't try to host everything from your own little server. Pay someone with big pipes to let your stuff come down. I didn't have time to listen right then, so I set a Firefox plug-in download helper to let me get their stuff (even though they thought they had it protected behind a swf button) so I could listen to it when I had the time. And promptly ran into bottlenecks even getting the audio at all.

3. Offer other versions of this data, which are more easily scanned. If you really have valuable data, then offer a pdf mini-version which has your links in it. As well, you could very easily set up a powerpoint and then create a talking slideshow (slidecast) on This way people could find out what you are saying very quickly.

4. Same goes for your links. I clicked on a couple of them and was promptly told I needed to sign up for another mail-list - or buy into someone else's program. Fat chance. Give me a free download, or some reason to do so. Look, I just skipped the 5-part audio so I could maybe find out something from the link. When the link is just another landing page - skip it. If I click through on a few of these links and they are all just opt-in feeders, then the whole thing looks like a scam.

Quick summary: 40-some audios at 30 minutes a piece = 10 hours of stuff to listen to. No alternatives. Links are more opt-in landing pages, with no data on them. Little value here.


a. Set up the audio with summaries of what is being said, who the person is and what the take-away should be. Offer a short intro audio for each series. Intro should have who that person is and why that audio is important - excerpt best clips, etc.

b. Transcribe the audio and create a downloadable PDF with your links and ads in it, as well as giveaway and resell rights. Makes your data viral.

c. Put more visuals into this. Create a powerpoint and slidecast so that you can embed this into your page.

d. Better - host the whole thing as a blog (you can still do a members-only scene) and podcast these audios, so people can get them more easily.

e. And repeat these for your links. Give real value so people rave about your site to others.

Bottom line: you have to give great service, great value. Right behind King Content is Queen Choice. Give people options of how to get your data. Don't straight-jacket them into a single channel for their data.

AND - allow them and encourage them to download your data and re-purpose it, encourage them to share it and profit from it. This is how you get them spreading your conversation and helping you increase your base. This is where you move from static pages and organic SEO over into the social media word-of-mouth.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Social Marketing Made Simple - Beer Parties and Caterers

A review of The Social Marketing Blueprint Formula:

Thumbs down.
The language (see quote below) doesn't get any better when you get inside the book. Thick as molasses in winter.

Look, you're trying to boost four things:
* Viewers (Traffic)
* Conversions to subscribers (They opt-in to your mail list.)
* Conversions to buyers (They buy something from you.)
* Upsells and Cross-sells ("Super-size?" and "Fries with that?")

Social media doesn't work the way marketers think it should. But they're stuck in an old world.

This guy has done a great job on figuring it out. But he never gets over being complex. And his "testimonials" are just more of the same. Lingo club practice meeting. Useless.

Think of his system as this:

Two circles, one inside the other. Inner circle is a roaring party going on. Outside that is caterers, selling chairs, tables, and beer to those inside. You don't go inside that party to try to pitch them buying more stuff from you. They'll throw you out on your ear. They have to come out because they're thirsty or have run out of things to sit on or put their beer bottles on.

That's the marketing problem with social media/networks, as faced by our current set-up. Old style marketing are the caterers. They're trying to sell to the party-animals inside, but aren't invited to the party.

Two approaches:
1) Be a "good old boy", take off your tie and jacket, and then join the party, sending in some free beer from time to time. You know, different varieties from what they're drinking. (Educate them that there are many better-tasting beers than that one which they buy all the time.)
2) Have some friends on the inside who are in charge of ordering beer - and need chairs and tables. Means finding and building relationships.

So in marketing to social networks, either get on the inside or develop connections.

Like I said before, you have to copy life insurance salesmen who joined a dozen social clubs and got their sales on the side - after the meetings and other functions.

You really, really, really have to get over the idea that you can just spam your way to sales inside these social media. They will shut you down faster than the door to an out-house in summer.

You have to work like a salesman with clients - not consumers - CLIENTS. Their success is your success.

Marketing is a true conversation. Creating a buzz isn't like buying an ad to "Buy Beanos!". You don't work the numbers as a percentage of exposures people see. You don't have the numbers like spammers do, where 2-3% will buy anything you put in front of them - where it's just a numbers scene.

No, if you don't give them quality, you're out on your keister. If you do, then you'll get upwards of 40 or 50% or more using and re-using your stuff. And to boot, they'll tell you how you can improve it to sell more of it.

So, read this guy's report - several times through. It actually starts making sense when you get the jargon-osis (swelling of jargon) out of your system.

But the starting point is to get over the basic premise of this report, that you're a standard old fuddy-duddy advertiser trying to pitch your "Buy Beanos!" campaign by finding more places to put your ads.

Join the conversation. Bring some beer samples. And tell them that there's much more comfortable chairs and sturdier tables - if they want you to get them some. And isn't that band just great?

The Social Marketing Blueprint Formula:

"The report above introduces a formula for neatly categorizing all of the various functions of thousands of social networks into an easy to understand system (formula) that (when implemented to create a blueprint) will yield an exponential traffic effect. In other words, by using the social networks in a systematic (and planned) way, you achieve a significant amount of traffic leverage on the back end for a little bit of effort on the front end."

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Managed Grazing Makes for Happy, Fat Livestock - Managed Blog Posts make for Happy Clients and Fat Bank Accounts.

One of my more interesting RSS feeds brought me this great metaphor.

Her interesting approach to of explaining her marketing as "nomadic grazing" has even more application than she knows.  Let's draw on my expertise as a farmer for a bit (now it's not all cow manure, so bear with me...)

Managed grazing is all the rage right now. It turns out that if you leave your cattle in just a piece of a pasture - enough to allow them to graze for about 3 or 4 days, they will actually just eat that amount and get used to moving every few days to fresh, high pasture. You actually can get about 60-70 percent more grazing from this method. Means you have to organize for it, and have other things like water and salt/minerals available, but it actually is better for the cows and gives you more exercise.

As a metaphor for marketing, you can say that you have certain niches which are your pastures. Say you are into self help (like me). Now you have one pasture which is, say, Law of Attraction. Another would be money. Another would be health. Another would be success. Another might be personal efficiency. Each one of these could be broken down into smaller sub-pastures. (Health has diet, fitness, wellness, insurance, etc.) You could blog on one sub-topic each week, moving to a different topic in the same genre every month.  And your audience then gets more well-rounded, plus is able to get different data on various subjects which are useful to them. People love diversity.

This metaphor also has everything to do with your sales funnel. Say you've moved a client (person or corporation) from the bottom to the top of your funnel in a certain area. Now, start them over at the bottom in a new area. A company might have worked over improving the health education of their individual staff, up to the point that they shipped several off to a pricey seminar you held on the subject. Now start them over with personal efficiency.  Once you've gotten them to buy everything you have in that subject, start them in on a new one, such as success goals.   You can see that each of these will affect the bottom line of that company, and so will pay for their investment in your work.

You want to manage your own grazing, your own personal output - and you want to manage your clients' grazing. Both of you get fat and happy, both of you are expanding your income and success levels.

So be nomadic. If this method has allowed tribes to survive for thousands of years on this planet, there must be something to it...

The inevitable truth, though, is that marketing your content to new audiences takes time — probably several hours a week, in fact. This is time not everyone feels they have. My advice, and what I intend on doing myself, is to subtract the needed time from my inward looking strategies and focus it once again on reaching out. You might write one less post per week on your own blog and write a guest-post somewhere else instead, for example.Never forget to look outwards * By guest-posting on popular blogs or well targeted blogs. * By writing list posts designed to please social media and your existing audience. * By asking for social media votes from friends and contacts. Let’s face it — social media is not as organic as it used to be. * By pitching links to your content at other blogs and websites in your niche. * By becoming genuinely involved and active in the social media service you’re most likely to be successful with.
Nomadic Growth: Moving to Greener Pastures
Blogged with the Flock Browser

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Hint: You Don't Market TO Social Media, You Market THROUGH Social Media

Don't know if I was clear enough through my recent posts. Social Media Marketing does exist, but not the way people are telling it. Because they are trying to monetize hits and so on from their use of Social Media to spread the word about their product.

Doesn't work - at least not that well. Because those in social media are more there for the experience, and do not have a track-record of subscribing and buying. Promoting to Social Media might give you more views on your site, but that's about it. Waiting for these to translate to sales is futile.

Now, how you could make use of this - get much better (and faster) Google rankings. So other people can find your product better. Do a social marketing blitz (video, slideshare, podcast, squidoo lens) on your product - and these all point to a single-page mini-web that then gives an offer which they can buy there or opt-in to your list (buyers also have to opt-in).

Better would be to run a consecutive series of entertaining segments to promote your site. And probably a contest as well. All these will (properly done) create a mini-buzz, which will then send traffic to your site - and THEN you can monetize it.

A lot of these mini-buzzes, especially for related products, and you have a brand and a standard to uphold.

You are the corporation and you have the product. How you create conversations and interact with your clientèle will prove the viability of your brand - and the money you are going to be making...

Do you market TO the social media? No. Can't be done without incredible overhead (like starting your own social media site). But you CAN use the social media to popularize your product, if you treat them honestly, appeal to their motivations, allow them to interact with you.

Online Millions are like drilling for oil or finding gold - you have to know where to look

If you've been following my latest posts, then you'll have seen my last "Eureka!" where I bounced off that brick wall for the umpteenth time, scrapes and all. My sudden realization wasn't that the wall existed, it was that I had to start looking.

I have been pitching books for some time now, though I don't think it's actually been much over a year that I started writing them and expecting to hit the Mother Lode. My studies into this created "An Online Millionaire Plan", since I saw people making millions and they were using the same techniques.

Lately, I had moved from SEO over into social media, only to find that I still had no relevant and positive way of "generating leads" so I could get subscribers over into my mail list.

However, that phrase is in quotes, as it doesn't mean anything unless you know some background in sales.

Social Media "Marketing" is an oxymoron. People are there to socialize, not to buy things. Your marketing (means "creating a market", right?) takes place person to person outside your interactions in that social media.

What makes social media marketing fail is that people are approaching it like they have other marketing - interruptive, non-sequitur advertising (aka: spam). But social media is carrying on real conversations. So if you are going to sell anything, it is going to have to be worth the overhead you are investing - which is considerable.

Back to my collision-bruised ego. The Aha moment was that in order to sell, you actually have to GO TO WHERE PEOPLE WANT TO BUY. I should have realized this long ago. You see, I do caricatures in the summer at festivals and fairs. It's great work, and pays more than my day job if I do it right. However, I learned long ago that you had to go to events where people actually are buying things.

Some of this is location, some of this is timing, some of it is pricing and presentation. But the main thing is to find people who have money burning a hole in their pocket.

For instance. County fairs are great, but people are mostly local and get paid by the weekend. During the week, you get mostly lookie-loo's who only walk around looking at things and will suck everything free off your display.

So I found that I was extremely busy doing caricatures when people had money to pay for things - which is after they got paid, by the weekend. Means I'm better off doing venues where there is only one or two days to buy things. People are on a "better buy it now" scene - since it's not going to be there tomorrow. Literally.

Another point - people want caricatures of their grandkids or kids. So when the strollers leave, I'm out of there. Teens mostly don't want to sit still that long, and have hormones telling them to do many other things. Older folks mostly only do it when someone else wants their picture.

So a two-day festival for kids would be the ideal.

Back to our subject of Online Millionaires. It hit me when I was studying social marketing that you needed to get into communities where people expect to buy things. Like eBay.

And that is the key to affiliate sales, ala' Michael Campbell's "Nothing But Net". He was selling specific items to people who were looking for particular things. Using the Internet made selling these much easier, because of the search function.

Now, how I lead myself off the cliff with SEO and social marketing is that these two enable you to quickly take over prime search engine real estate for keywords and hold them.

That doesn't mean you are going to sell anything. Ouch.

The underlying premise to An Online Millionaire Plan is that you are going to attract business and convert every visitor (or a lot of them) into paying subscribers. Note the word paying.

This "reverse funnel" scene is funny, because all they are doing is getting people to pay for a service first, and then put them on their subscriber list - in order to sell them really high-priced items later. But they already bought once. So the pump is primed and ready for action.

Enter eBay, where you automatically get their email when they buy something from you. Here's a reverse funnel in action - and has been for some time. What people haven't been doing is to collect those email addresses and continue to sell to them.

One clue I had on this was looking up Rich Schefren. Makes money hand over fist by giving seminars. He's on Stumbleupon - but doesn't really use it. Few friends, few sites listed. Because he's busy helping people build their businesses out in the brick-and-mortar world.

Is anybody getting rich off social media? Yes, but they are the ones who put the servers and programmers together to create the social network - and then are selling advertising to pay for it all.

But I've railed and ranted about the addiction of advertising. And given you example after example of how quality service and quality product is what brings you return customers.

And so our research target narrows down to eBay.

eBay itself is profitable by raking in commission fees off every sale. They have people looking to buy things. They have a rating system to tell how good a seller is. There is a working marketplace here.

What is our approach, though? Long tail niches - yes. Online stores, yes. We are going to use eBay as our marketing frontman and then build our business from the traffic this brings to us.

For a book publisher with lots of books?
  • Deal in information products - no overhead
  • Put your most demanded products up first. Link to their Lulu site for credibility (set it up so Lulu does only the POD version, so you don't conflict with their download scene - or price it higher on eBay, but you are running a promotional special auction...)
  • Otherwise, learn everything there is to know about auctions and run a successful auction-business
  • Capture every single email and put them into your mailing list - ensure they can opt-out. But survey them and find out if they'd like to get a newsletter on the subject of your books - or what you're publishing that month...
  • When you create a new book, offer it to these earlier buyers first, before you put it up on either Lulu or eBay.
And there you go - a list of paying subscribers that you can create new product to sell to. Meanwhile, you've got more customers finding your stuff all the time. And you continue to get prime search engine real estate through all your successful approaches. Plus, you add on affiliate sales via Clickbank, so that your library of books are sold on many different venues than just through your own personal work.

Of course, this means I'm going to add some data to An Online Millionaire Plan - but then, that's what this is all about, after all...

Monday, March 24, 2008

Social Media isn't Marketing - it's a Conversation

Even when I'm dense, I get pretty close to the mark.

People don't use social media to buy things, or sell things. (That's eBay's community.) People use social media to discuss things. They are seeking meaning in their lives by examining others' views about things. That's why people like stories, that's why people like to talk about things.

Social Media Marketing doesn't actually exist.

True, marketing is a conversation, and there are tons of conversations going on in these social media. But that doesn't mean they translate to sales. So get over it. People like to have conversations because they are fun. That's right - fun.

If you're trying to convert people to subscribers, you're way, way off the beam. Go back to article marketing. Go back to affiliate marketing. Go back to forum marketing.

Social Media is like the insurance salesman who joins half a dozen social groups. Meeting people is a way to find potential leads. Simple. But the sales talks take place waaay after that group meeting is over. They come to that salesman because they need some insurance and they know he deals in it. But as a salesman, he can contact them at their workplace and ask if they need some more insurance...

You don't try to spam social media - it doesn't work. Same way link-farms don't work.

There are lots of reasons to participate in social media. One is to make your research easier - you match up with people who have the same interests and find what they've already studied up on. The below selection from Ann Smarty says all I've been trying to find out today.

I spend hours looking up one blogger who had won all these awards and was so hot, only to find out that he was trying to market through Stumbleupon and others and by the end of it (nearly 180 scraped pages later), reversed himself thoroughly.

It's true that you can get search engine traffic easily through social media. But you can also get this by simply posting Slidecasts or posting to Internet Archives.

Look - search engines are after new, quality content. Period. Because that's what people want. Social media are another way for people to find new content - find what their friends are looking at.

You want people to find your site interesting - create great content. Period.

If you have something worth subscribing to, they will. Provide great content regularly through that subscription and you'll keep them.

I spent today double-checking my work on marketing ideas through social media, and found that I was right and wrong at the same time.

And found that where I should really be spending my time in selling stuff is on that great community - eBay. They've got blogs there and shops and all sorts of ways to send traffic to your site - who want to buy stuff.

However, the real key - as Ann covers below - is to be social on the social networks, and then you can get people interested in what you do and who need your product.

(I edit and publish self help books, so should socialize around self improvement groups and so on, eh? A book on marketing would be best sold to marketers - and so I should become part of marketing social groups, right? That is, if my analogy of the insurance salesman above works out...)

Social Media Marketing - Think Long-Term:

"Web marketers who view social media as a promotional tool can be roughly divided into three categories:

1) Those who blatantly spam (in a hope to get quick traffic). They usually have no valuable content to offer the community and their main goal is to get people click on an ad.
2) Those who link bait (hoping that their article will generate some links from other bloggers). These webmasters usually focus on a catchy scandalous headlines with no truly valuable post following it;
3) Those who strive to become a part of the community and establish business or friendly connections with niche webmasters."
First, I found out about Matt Cutts (from Colin MacDougal).

Then I found Mat Cutts' blog.

Now I'm busy digesting this entity also-known-as Matt Cutts. [My comments and understanding in this type style.]

His March 10th blog goes:

SEO Advice: Getting Links

Okay, here are some ways to get high-quality links without emailing, paying, or even paying attention to search engines:

Provide a useful one-time service.

It really doesn’t take very much. [And then he gives some examples. Service has to be useful. For each one-time service, you would need to get their email so you could continue the conversation.]

Provide an ongoing service:
  • Web-based services like Bloglines are a great example.

Become a resource:

  • You can do this with a personal or company blog. Blogs are a great way to get link love or just to get your word out.
  • If blogs sound scary, start out with newsletters. Or studies. Or surveys. Or white papers.
  • Once a company (I’ll call them site A) that does language translations asked me why they didn’t rank as highly as another website (I’ll call them site B). When I checked it out, site A had very little content, just 5-6 pages with contact info and a short description of what they did. It was like an online brochure. So what did site B have? They offered a tutorial about the difference between Katakana, Hiragana, and Kanji, plus they showed how to write a few characters. Who would you link to, the empty brochure site or the site with tutorial pages? [KEY POINT HERE. Content is king. Also-rans are wannabes.]

Provide valuable information.

Be the first. Be the first means coming up with a creative idea that catches the fancy of the web.

Who appointed Loren Baker the judge of the best search blogs? No one at all: he just saw a creative opportunity and took it.

Get an article written about you. Be aware that controversy gets attention, but can also affect how people perceive you. If you bait people too often, that affects your reputation. [Last point is key, and I remind people of it in Maven Matrix Manifesto Exposed - you can be polarizing to get attention and start a discussion, but the "Rich Jerk" is actually cutting his own throat by driving away potential traffic.]

Open up your product:

[Here Matt tells of his proclivity to hack and build with Linux. What these producers are doing is opening up their product to the community - to allow people to contribute to their product.]

- - - -

The Nutshell:

Provide a one-time or continuing service.
Just ensure you get subscriptions so you can continue the marketing conversations
Become a resource; provide information.
Internet is built on Information, Choice, and Speed. By becoming a de facto authority, you then are providing another service - people can go to you for information and compare your story to others.
Open up your product. Host a community.
Some do this with their blog, others will form a wiki. Communities are powerful things.

How to tell about what you know to be true - keyword modifiers and organic SEO

Brought to my attention by SEOSmarty, this is a fascinating piece.

While I bring you the below as immediately useful, there is also more data on the page about what search engines like to find on your page. Bulleted lists, blockquotes - surprise, surprise - just the things people like to read (compare with the copywriting section of An Online Millionaire Plan).

Essentially, usable content is king.

Always back up your social media marketing with sound organic SEO techniques.

How to Grow an Organic Search Ranking using Thematic Search Modifiers | SEO Design Solutions SEO Blog: "The “most searched” obvious keyword modifiers first;

* Company
* Services
* Professional
* Best
* Top
* Leading
* Internet
* Organization
* Marketing
* Business
* Solution
* Online

Then the less obvious “Money Phrases”, such as:

* Rates
* Pricing
* Deals
* Affordable
* Offers
* Packages
* Quality

Then the GEO Specific Local Search Modifiers Such as:

* City Name
* Surrounding Suburbs
* State (including abbreviations NYC, IL, FL, WA, etc.)
* County Name"

How to publish your work - and why we're here...

These plethora of niches, what do they tell us? Of the "many paths up the mountain", you won't know other paths unless you sample them, they won't know of your successes unless you publish broadly and through several venues.

My current ways to post:

Text - for my own use.
Blog - for other subscribers (and I maintain a separate blog for each type of message depending on relative content.)
Static mini-web -
Press release -
Slidecast - much wider approach, and picked up by search engines extremely rapidly
Stumbleupon / social media - much, much, wider way of telling people about something
Video - a pretty saturated medium, but again - wide in ability to let people know

(My blogs all send emails to my gmail account, where they are automatically archived and able to be searched through Desktop Search - so I can find anything I've written. Nice for research, as long as you remember your own keywords...)

Reasons for all this posting? Because others might get some use, some traction, get some lessons from my own learnings.

And I'm here, like the rest of us, to learn and to continue to evolve. But my progress is limited only by how I help others.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Consolidating your Social Media Efforts - Maven Matrix Experiment

How to get the best mileage from your social media - save your fuel and time.

SOCIAL MEDIA: Online Marketing Better than SEO

I found something on one of my blog researches which has eaten up most of my week and thrown my schedule to the birds.

This was the Maven Matrix Manifesto (which I won't link as it's behind several people's opt-in forms - and available from many sources).

I was entranced by it, because of its audacity. There was something to learn here. And I knew that most people wouldn't get what made it work, so I had something to say about this.

To study it, I created a PowerPoint (OpenOffice odp) for a SlideShare upload. Then recorded the soundtrack for it, which was going to go up on Internet Archives. Turned out to be about 50 minutes. And this is a long upload in both cases.

I messed up the upload and so decided to split up the whole thing and make it under 10 minutes for each piece - so that if I couldn't get the slideshares to work right, then I'd be able to recreate it in Camtasia and upload to You Tube.

(You can see that I'm a great believer in write once, publish many times/many formats.)

After all this editing and re-uploading these smaller files and their soundtracks, I then had some working "slidecasts" (finally).

By then, I had also written a long essay on my analysis of this MMM. I had also created an 8+ minute video in camtasia of only my summary.

Posted that video on youtube. Posted the summary on my blog and then linked to the slidecast (first of the series) and the video, plus the soundtracks. (You'll have to see the post on A Modern View, as I'm too tired to link all these properly here all over again...)

Then I started social posting everything - only to find that things were showing up on Google faster than I could actually do that. The stuff showed up as top - when I didn't social post it at all. My blog was up in the top four within minutes. YouTube didn't show up at all, yet.

So I'm rethinking these. Consider your blog as the index page for all your various media excursions. Write the press release, write a nice blog post. Link in everything you created in this area. Everything. Then just social post that one blog entry (its permalink). And sit back.

If you're hitting the top social media, the search engines are already camping on their doorsteps. You'll just be messing with their heads and tripping them up. Now, the caveat here is to make sure that your links aren't no follow in your blog post.

I'd still work from building the (optimized) mini-web first. Get that FTP going while you build the slidecast and video. Because where you can, you're going to link back to that web site - and that web site is going to be doing the organic thing of building up your page rank, link reputation, etc. If you don't do it first, then you'll never get around to it. And you can always come back for more later.

a. Text first: Write a review (product or book) and a press release.
b. Mini-web, using that text.
c. Press release submitted, linking to mini-web, articles submitted - using that review copy.
d. Slideshare
1. Presentation (save as PDF to keep fonts) upload to
2. Sound track - upload to
3. Create slidecast.
e. Create video from above through Camtasia. Post to YouTube and similar.
f. Blog about all the above, embedding the slideshare, video and linking to everything else.
1. Now social post that single blog entry.

f. Squidoo, linking in the video, blog, etc.

Following that sequence should keep you on the social media happy-list.

Key here is to use the exact same keywords in all your titles. Then you take over the top rankings.

- - -

All of this is no good unless you can convert search engine results into subscribers...

I'll scratch my head on this one and post something ingenious when I finish the research on it.

What does Genius do with all the leftover ideas?

Getting ideas is easy - doing something with them is the next point. Personally, I keep a note-pad open on my screen all the time. When I'm away from my computer, I have a physical notepad with me, pencil ready. But then, I've always had an active imagination - it's just in the last few years that I've been able to start recording most of what flits through - not everything, but I'm getting better at this.

There's another post on Genius,

hope you liked it.

The SECOND most-asked question is: “Rich, how do you come up with so many ideas for all these reports, manifestos, blog posts, and so on?”

I don’t tell you this to boast or “posture”; the truth is, I believe almost everybody has lots of ideas. Maybe just as many ideas as me.

But most people don’t capture the ideas they do have.If you develop a reliable way of capturing your ideas, and you can put them into a system that allows you to work with them and develop them, you’ll be cranking out ideas, products, and information like crazy.It’s not that tough.
Download - Jay Abraham Mindmap + Doctrine 2 Announcement | Strategic Profits - Business Coaching For Internet Marketing Entrepreneurs
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Monday, March 17, 2008

How to Feed Your Press Kit to Reporters as Fast as They Can Take It

Here's some interesting data to add to your online press kit:

The Care and Feeding of the Press:

"Make the site deadline-friendly. Put the PR contact info where a reporter can find it.

Our biggest complaint about press pages is the lack of contact information. Ideally, each PR person on staff (as well as PR agency staff assigned to the account) will be listed online, with e-mail IDs, addresses, and telephone numbers. If the company offers more than one product, list each PR person's areas of responsibility.

When we're trying to find a PR contact, we're probably already late for something. If the Press Shortcut (how I long to see those words!) is part of an image map, make sure that section of the graphic is a separate image with it's own ALT="Press Shortcut" in the image coding. Try to put your whole text alternative menu or link to a text alternative page at the top of the site.

One of the worst things you can do is require that a press person register for access to the media section of the Web site. We know all the reasons that you chose to implement that policy, but we don't care. If we're writing a review, we're apt to access this sort of information at 11:00pm PST on Sunday night when the review is due at 8:00am EST. If we aren't yet writing about your company, you've presented us with one more barrier to doing business with you.

The press page should also include links to recent and not-so-recent press releases. Put the price and platform info both in the press release and in the details page about the product itself. Just because a press release on the Web is accessible to the unruly masses doesn't mean it shouldn't include a "For additional information" line with a contact person's name, phone number, and e-mail address.

The news and feature reporters among us also like a page listing the company executives, with their titles and a downloadable picture.

On the product page, give me facts about the product. It amazes us how many people leave out the price; last we checked, this was, in fact, a capitalist economy, and price is an important factor to consider before buying something.

Technical specs don't need to be on the main page, necessarily, but a link to them is useful.

Keep graphics to a minimum. A nice compact GIF or JPG of the product is plenty. If you want to offer product graphics suitable for inclusion in a print magazine -- it's a nice touch -- offer it as a downloadable link, in both zipped and stuffed files; don't force us to view them."

Gloom and Doom about "Recession" - not for online retailers...

If you listen to the news (and I really feel sorry for those who take them seriously), you'll notice that Obama has just inherited a full scale recession and has his vice-president Clinton all over government bail-outs while he reinstitutes FDR's socialist programs...

No, seriously - look, the global economy goes through a recession about every six years or so. And presidents don't cause recessions, they are just the fall guys for it. Recessions are just adjustments. They become Depressions when the government steps in and tries to solve things.

Current problem? Greedy bankers and real estate companies. Situation was over-valued houses and the scam that a house is an "asset" you pay on for 30 years. (Assets make you money, they don't cost you money. A house that is fully paid off is an asset. A rental house or an apartment complex that are bringing in more money than they cost you to maintain are assets.)

What to do? Ride it out. Let a few banks get swallowed up for a fraction of what they're worth. Make some bogus real estate agents go get a real job, instead of scamming people.

How to ride it out? Online marketing and sales. If you hadn't noticed, people are buying more and more online every single year, regardless of the brick-and-mortar folks. Actually, near exponential growth.

Paypal accepts Euros - doesn't it?

Cheaper dollar means Europe can buy more from us. This makes our agricultural products very nice-looking. And so we can quit subsidizing our farmers by paying them to not raise crops. Yes, the stuff we import is going to cost more. So we make more locally - sounds like some jobs are going to be coming back from overseas...

Oh - and what happens with the rest of the planet? Well, they are pretty much tied in with us, so our recession is their recession. The Euro is high right now? Don't look over your shoulder - things balance out over time.

But if you're selling your product through the Internet, especially low-input products like information, you can say, "Recession, what recession?" - because your overseas friends will see incredible value in your now-bargain-priced-in-American-dollars product.

What about all of the gloom and doom stories fretting about the economic slowdown impacting spending on marketing and advertising in general? Hotchkiss said that the increased growth in search marketing is happening at the expense of print magazine advertising, website development and other marketing functions. "It shows that people are looking at reallocation of budgets—we've heard that anecdotally from clients as well," he said.

The North American SEM industry grew to $12.2 billion in 2007, a 30% increase over 2006 spending of $9.4 billion. While the growth rate slowed from the torrid 62% increase in 2006 spending, total spend nonetheless exceeded earlier projections of $11.5 billion for 2007. And significantly, North American SEM spending is now projected to grow to $25.2 billion in 2011, up significantly from the $18.6 billion forecast a year ago.

The drivers behind the higher estimate are advertiser demand, rising costs of keywords and pay-per-click campaigns, an increase in the number of small-to-midsized businesses using search engine marketing, greater consumer participation in search and increased interest in behavioral and demographic targeting of searchers.
The State Of Search Engine Marketing 2007
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The real resource to preserve

The one resource you have to preserve and enhance is TIME.

How much are you worth per year, per month, per day, per minute?

You have so much time - only so much time - on this planet. All economics is based on how to get paid more per amount of time you invest in something. Means how much you earn.

I'm from that old Earl Nightingale school where you have to create value in order to earn money. Provide the service first and then your money comes in.

(Marketing is just letting people know your product exists and how good it really is at solving their problems.)

You get paid (as Nightingale points out in his famous recording) as much as you are worth - or as much as you think you're worth. Because your own sense of self-worth is what determines your dollar worth.

Back this us a bit - what keeps you from going for that really great job, the one with the high-priced salary? Whether you think you're worth it.

How about striking out on your own - making your own success from a part-time business?

Don't think you can? There's your failure staring you in the face.

Self Improvement is a category many, many people follow - as it's basic to their survival. And changing your attitude makes a lot of economic sense, doesn't it?

My day job shoved this home to me this weekend. People trying to do an honest day's work and get paid for it - yet some bean-counters in the office with too much time on their hands raising a stink about whether your time was all "accounted for"... Meaning: Why am I still at that job?

Answer is to redouble my efforts to get my "own time" job to get going, making money hand over fist.

Because the money I earn is dependent on what I think I deserve.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Birth of a Sales Tool - a farce from Fast Company's Chris Dannen

The problem with this piece is that while he touts that Sohn is "reinventing" sales, he is really only paying for qualified leads - which is as old as Rome's 7 Hills. Dannen hasn't done his homework - or is overly enamoured by Sohn.

BUT - the interesting thing to note in this piece is the way it is written. You could actually write such an article and float it into existence under a nom-de-plume and get it rolling around the blogosphere as a buzz in and of itself. The style isn't that much different from a press release married with an interview. The questions are short, the answers long.

Consider this "interview" I did with the "Midwest Journal".

It's just not that hard to do.

But don't buy this guy's claim. He's just re-marketing an old saw for new woodcutters. And the first person he sold was this writer...
The product of his observations -- called Salesconx -- is an online marketplace for sales contacts, where salespeople sell each other contact information about the folks in their Rolodex. Let's say you're a seasoned salesperson; other Salesconx users can pay you a small fee (usually about $100) for an online "introduction" in which you introduce them to one of your contacts. The idea is that every introduction be mutually beneficial; a snowplow salesman, for example, might connect a tire salesman and a truck salesman. Sohn hopes the marketplace will be trustworthy enough that it will allow top salespeople to leave inefficient practices like cold-calling or mass-emailing behind. Think of it as LinkedIn meets eBay.
Birth of a Sales Tool: LinkedIn Meets eBay - CRM - Salesconx - Evan Sohn | Fast Company
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Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Miss your Niche? Try LSI branding to SEO-theme your website..

Here's why you can expand your niche with a long keyword - and great copy.

Or you can miss your intended rankings entirely.

You see, they've changed the rules somewhat. Pagerank isn't what it used to be.

Search Engines have always been in the Service business. They want to give people what they are looking for. So your copy tells a great deal about what you're talking about - it isn't just optimizing your H1 tags, your title and linking text - although these are still important.

LSI does start to explain why you can have very little competition in title, headings, and links, yet still not take the top spot. You are going to have to do some homework on those top ten sites in order to figure out how to out-LSI them for that niche. Means analyzing their keywords, their meta, and their potential keywords so your copy approaches "Search Engine Zen".

OR - you could simply write your copy and work out the natural keywords and theme you are using, then utilize that keyword to get ranked.

The first geek-approach is more hard work, but will probably keep you in top standings for whatever affiliate product you are promoting. And PPC ads, if you are making money that way.

The second laid-back-approach may not have the big numbers, but will cement you in that niche regardless of the pure "organic" SEO attempts to knock you out.

Practically, if you marry up social media with LSI, you can see why rankings are shifting (subtly) away from pagerank as a sole ingredient in search engine real-estate (above the fold front page - top 5). People are voting and that is where the search engines are going. Pocketbooks rule.

SEO LSI : ecommerce solutions, small business and work from home ecommerce strategies.:

"The LSI enabled search platform is more effective because it does not focus on a bunch of keywords. The best example of this I have seen is when you search for Tiger Woods, the search engine will not look for web pages that use the keywords 'tiger' and 'woods'. It will present a collection of pages that are related to the theme of Golf. This is what is called relevance feedback. i.e. during the past x months most people who searched for 'Tiger Woods' clicked on a link to a 'golf' related web site.

This is where the 'general' opinion of what LSI is goes astray slightly. Many assume it is an algorithm that is bolted on to a search engine. I think it better to think of LSI as a 'concept' and that word is important to remember. If we mentally tie in the phrase ' artificial intelligence' to LSI technology you should begin to see the importance of it."

[This page, BTW, is mostly an overlong article which sells their product. It's not devoid of commercial slant...]

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Creating the Optimal Social Media Magnet Site

You should be able to create an optimal social media magnet site, using what you know from SEO and Viral Marketing

Value is the real underlying scene. If you have great stuff, and have bookmarked it yourself, and made plenty of friends out there in social media land - plus consistently participate in making their blogs filled out with comments - and have all the easy social bookmark buttons available at the bottom of very blog post, as well as on the top or whereever they can find them easily,  then you should be able to make a real resource site that draws attention.

Relevance is the next key word. Your site has to contribute to what's going on.

Timely and Consistent come up next. You are going to have to have regular new data, and this should really be of a social media value, meaning podcasting, video, unique images from Flickr, etc.  Definately Slideshare's. Lots of content, regularly posted and valuable.

One approach to this I've recently heard of is to post a snippet to your blog, which links you your website for the full data. So you keep the blog-readers happy and also get traffic to your web. RSS readers should be able to get the whole thing quickly.

The world has gone social - get on board...
So, the question, “Should you pay any attention to social bookmarking?” becomes “How do I take advantage of social bookmarking?” And the answer is, make your site worthy of bookmarking. Bookmarks appear to web crawlers as links to your page, and that makes them very valuable SEO tools. For some search engines, the more bookmarks that lead back to your site, the more “votes” you have on their popularity scale.

So, visit some of the social bookmarking sites on the Internet. Learn how they work. And set up your own account. Then, create your own list of links that includes your web sites, as well as other web sites that users might find relevant or useful.

On the web-site side, be sure to include the code snippets provided by social bookmarking organizations that allow users to tag your site easily. Then, maintain it all. Don’t just forget your account completely. If you do, eventually it will disappear and all the advantage of having one will go as well. Instead, continue using social bookmarking. Over time, the rewards will be increased traffic to your web site
SEO & Marketing Tips

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Offer rebates instead of discounts and get more income with less overhead

This piece, from PaidSurveys, tells a neat idea to give an actual bonus which people don't take advantage of - so they have to do something to get it, a great catch for freebie-seekers.

With fewer of those to support, your overhead is less and your profits greater. As well, if you set it up right, you'll have these people opt-in to a "paid" list of yours which is filled with people who already bought - so have a greater chance of buying again, depending on your service delivered and the conversations you build with them.

Customers will flock to what they perceive as a great deal. A rebate off the regular price is a great way to do that. Many times popular products have earned name recognition. Customers often type the product’s name into search engines in order to find your affiliate product.

When they do find your affiliate website, you can hook them with a rebate. You could feasibly offer a product to customers at a 25% discount off of the regular price. A customer will jump at the chance to receive a discount.

Don’t give the discount immediately however. Offer a 25% rebate instead. Why? Offering the 25% discount up front will guarantee that you sell them the product for a lower price, but a rebate of 25% on the other hand is not often utilized. For one reason or another people do not often follow up on the rebate. Only about 15-20% of customers remember to send in the rebate. This is to your advantage.

As example, let’s say the product costs $100. Your commission is 60% so you will earn $60. You can offer a rebate of 25% that amounts to $25 off. Therefore, if the customer takes you up on the rebate offer then you will make $35. However, like I said, most customers do not follow through with the rebate so you earn $60 even though you initially hooked them with the 25% rebate.

How should you offer the rebate? Explain that if the customer orders directly from your website link that the rebate is valid. Request that they send in a receipt regarding their purchase. State that the rebate is valid 60 days after purchase. You'll want to make sure to wait until 60 days have passed to make sure they haven't already requested a refund. It is very easy to pay a rebate through Paypal or by old-fashioned check.

If you are risk taker you can increase the rebate amount. It is up to your level of risk aversion and experience.

It is true that anyone could purchase a program through their own affiliate link and have massive savings up to 75%. But guess what? Most people don’t realize they can save money doing this. So point them to your affiliate link instead.

The major benefit of offering a rebate is that it distinguishes your affiliate from other competing affiliates. There maybe several other affiliates selling the same product, but you are selling the product at a discount price (with the rebate).

Sunday, March 9, 2008

SexySEO tells you how to behave yourself...

Blogiquette? Social Media Manners?

Regardless, this sexy SEOer put this quite nicely and is worth repeating and reposting. (And, as a male, I'd love to have her photo as a background on my computer if it wouldn't offend my co-workers...) But then, that's my genes, not how I generally act on the web...

Here are some very simple rules which I think could help you to build a good and strong reputation on the Internet based on much more valuable assets than just your appearance regardless whether you have boobs or otherwise:

* Arrogant
* Annoying
* Detached
* Attention Seeker

* Friendly
* Really interested in people
* Polite (always even if you are very angry)
* Nicer, wiser, kinder, tolerant and patient with everyoneIt is so easy, really!

No one could see your face, you've got plenty of time to think, re-think and think again before you post your message. So show off in full every single good side of you!

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A Theory of Taking over a Niche by a Thousand Small Cuts

Got a new bull today - actually, a bull-calf. A Galloway Beltie that I hope to improve our herd with the better forage efficiencies and carcass-quality. Cost as much as a full-grown Angus.

Of course, I then was thinking how marketing our farm products would fit with our niche-social marketing tools.

Hit me - Ag is probably a very un-optimized Web scene, since it's below most people's awareness, being that it isn't very Internet-intensive and deals in actual products. (Means it would be a great place for an affiliate sales force.)

True, it's relatively low hits - and that makes it prime for long-tail niche-hunting.

Go for what people use, instead of what it is - recipes, for instance, raise the hits much higher.

But the object we are selling is a crop which is raised annually. Harvest, package, promote, deliver. Simple. Not that sequence - you promote first (once you know that you can produce the product on a routine basis).

Our concern here is marketing - our theory: take over more and more niches until you control the search engines (or at least have above-the-fold placement on Google for hundreds of niches in this area).

That's right - hundreds.

You see, there is one product, but many ways to promote it. So these niches will want a top producer (and marketer) to fill them.

This is only a marketing sketch - just the broad strokes.

Rough sequence depends on finding keyword niches you can exploit/fulfill and then doing a sequence of:
  1. mini-webs, building into a mini-net
  2. press releases
  3. blogging
  4. articles
  5. and social media coverage of everything
We know that the use of social media will efficiently take over Google rankings. We also know that an optimized site - built up with lots of pages over time - will hold top rankings against all new-comers. And article-marketing cements your place, since it gives lots of links, if not so much pagerank to your site.

Your site, needless to say, is built to convert viewers to subscribers.

On Google Trends, we start off with finding that "local" and "natural" beat out organic. The terms "beef, meat, organic" are all much lower.

A preliminary check shows that both "locally-raised" and "local natural" beef and meat are four terms which apparently have no real competition as far as SEO'd sites. (Doesn't mean we won't have some inadvertant competition from mega-sites - like government pages and educational sites.)

I've not gone for high-ranking words like "recipe" right off the bat - simply because of their popularity. Let's build from the near-bottom up, by taking areas where there are hits, but few pages and less supply for that demand.

By searching for more and more of these niches, then tying them all into the mini-net which grabs their email and gives them real value - you have a way to get them into your buyer's market.

But there are really tons of long-tail keywords which have similar value and talk about the same thing. Natural Meat, Natural Beef, Grass Fed Beef, Pasture-finished beef, natural steak, local farm steak, local farm beef, grass fed angus beef - all of these are the same product, but have different search terms.

Grab all these niches and then you'll have the Long Tail starting to become the Big Kahuna of beef production. Service them well on your mail-list and you'll have lots of orders coming in for whatever you can produce... or at least that's the theory.

Practically, since you keep adding mini-webs to your mini-net every week, you then start getting some sizeable pagerank and so you maintain your top position that you grabbed by letting the social media in on your pages.

- - - -

Now let's digress to search terms for awhile, long tail and everything.

I did something interesting recently and did a video about what I found:

I started out with "online world peace" and inadvertently did "online world peace plan" and "online world peace lecture". Interestingly, since I was also promoting my self help books, I showed up on searches like "self help world peace plan" and "self help world peace" - taking over niches that I wasn't particularly aiming for.

I've tried another experiment - using "Creating the Web 2.0 Buzz: Beyond Search Engine Optimization" with no web site, just social media. Put that title up as a blog post, a Squidoo lens, and it's the title of my new book. Meanwhile, posted an article all over the place with just that title in it. Oh, yes - that's the title of the above video.

Yes, I come up under both "Creating the Web 2.0 Buzz" and "Beyond Search Engine Optimization" for those efforts. I'm also up for "creating search engine buzz" and "web 2.0 buzz search" and probably others.

The point is that really long tail keywords will break down and spill over into other long-tail niches. (I should probably do a video and slideshare on this as well, plus more social media submissions on it - fascinating idea.)

You don't just limit yourself to repeating a four-word mantra over and over on a mini-web and expect to get anywhere. You have to repeat a six (or eight) as above - exactly the same - over and over and over. You have relatively the same content, but exactly the same title (doesn't have to be, but it helps...) and republish this in various formats over and over.

Now, you want to create your mini-web first, so that it can be linked, and it helps if you already have the video, MP3, AND slideshare posted before you blog, social bookmark, press release, and article market about it. This sends people to these media, which drives up your ratings on these - and hopefully drives people to your site.

Keywords can be viral - if they're long enough.

- - - -

A note on YouTube versus SlideShare - go the former if you can, or both.

My You Tube version (above) was posted the same day as the Slideshare version (below).

The results on YouTube: 14 views, no favorites, no embeds.

Results on Slideshare: 861 views, 5 favorites, 49 downloads, 23 embeds. And I have five blogs which posted this slideshare which have sent traffic to that page.

(And I prefer the quality of the slideshare product much better...)

Here's what I'm talking about - go ahead and compare the two...

Your comment?

- - - -


Creating The Web 2.0 Buzz: Beyond Search Engine Optimization

You can create a Web 2.0 Buzz which can get you both immediate and long-lasting results beyond "search engine optimization" as currently practiced.

How do you do that?

  • Most SEO is built around establishing keywords prominently on your pages.
  • Web 2.0 uses all the "New Media" to spread the word for you.
  • When you use your keywords in your social bookmarks, your site becomes "viral" - other people spread it for you.
  • Using audio, video, and slideshows, people tell others about your stuff.
  • And search engines love Web 2.0 more than static pages.
  • So use "New Media" to promote your static pages and get top real estate in the search engines.

This book gives you all the theory and examples of how you can create a Web 2.0 buzz and use it to bring paying subscribers to your mailing lists.

Sign up for An Online Millionaire Plan Newsletter!

Friday, March 7, 2008

What's wrong with these titles?

Basic Priniciple: Headlines have to contain an obvious (if implied) benefit - and the first paragraph needs to explain it and interest the reader enough to keep them reading.

There are some obvious hits and misses on these titles and their subheads.

I was sent this by email from a whitepaper promotion mailing list. You can see right off whether that title is showing any benefits even without knowing what they are talking about. But when their subtitle also misses the mark, you can see that their efforts are wasted, since no one is going to download their whitepaper if they are that obtuse.

AMD/IBM: Blade Center Power Efficiency
Of course it's easy being green--at least, when your processor uses 75% less power while maintaining its speed.

EMC: Distributed Capture Meets Enterprise Capture
Maximize your existing resources to capture, manage and store paper-based content.

Motorola: Good Architecture and Security
They need mobile access. You need to sleep at night. Get what you both want.

IBM/Intel/Novell: Solution for Open Virtualization Helps Provide Server Consolidation
Much better to reduce your server count now, rather than pay to acquire, house, cool and maintain them...only to have to recycle them later.

Ounce Labs: New Application Security Regulations
Build in compliance.

Novell: An Automated Approach to Vista Deployments
Easy there, Junior. This ain't your mommy's or daddy's Windows install.

St. Bernard Software: Hybrid Security Solutions
Take a new approach to meeting the secure content management challenge.

Software AG: Are You Ready to Embrace SOA? Let's Talk!
Step 1: Cut through the BS of SOA.

Apple Music Event 2001 - The First Ever iPod Introduction
A portable handheld device that can hold 1,000 songs? Nah, it'll never fly.

- - - -

If you want to see some interesting results from social media marketing, search for "Creating the Web 2.0 buzz" without the quotes and you'll see how far my latest research has resulted in Google Rankings.

And it was all literally done in an afternoon...

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Clues to Social Media Marketing

Here's the clue to marketing via social media:

Social media can help increase awareness by:

a. generating links to content, and typically the more links, and the more links from authority sites, the more people view the linked to author’s content as authoritative. At the same time, increased links lead to increased positioning in Google, Yahoo, and MSN, and many people take high rankings in search engines to mean that the omnipotent Google itself has decided that the site is an authority. Don’t underestimate this ‘omnipotence power’! Search has higher conversion rates than most other media, which means it is viewed less as advertising and more as trusted referrals.

b. helping forge more online friends through outright networking, than necessarily via content. Once again, the more friends/fans someone has, the more they are viewed as an authority, and the more likely they are to have others view their work and musings as authoritative.
Using Social Media to Build Authority

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SEOmoz | Identifying the Linkerati

This nice post from way back in March 06, lays out some important clues as to who will be/is running and "guiding" our social media (more like trying to head cats - anyone who's worked with livestock knows that they lead better than they "herd".)

I don't hold this to be a sacrosanct list, nor are the importances the same they were in '06 - but this is a starting/jumping off point...

Oftentimes, when I describe the concept of linkbait to clients, it's critical to also describe those folks who are the targets of linkbait - I'll call them the "Linkerati". Let's explore the culture of these most valued of web-dwelling souls:
 * Bloggers - probably the most targetable and directly influenced folks, bloggers are an excellent source of traffic, links and the spread of your content's idea virus.
_ * Forum posters - although the links these folks put up don't often result in great search engine value, the traffic can be positive and the possibility that other likely linkers will come through to visit is also high.
_ * Web News Writers - a rare species, but exceptionally valuable, these folks control the news outlets on the web, including places like C|Net, Wired News, Yahoo! & MSN's online news portals, etc.
_ * Content Creators - These folks are building or beefing up websites and are seeking valuable resources to link out to. Most frequently, you'll find them linking to the sites they find valuable in the top 5-10 results at the search engines (another reason why "the rich get richer")
 _ * Resource Editors - Another rare breed, these folks work at government institutions, no-profit organizations and educational establishments and are looking to add content to their pages or directories.
_ * Social Taggers - These folks don't provide direct links, but if they and their friends at Digg,, Reddit & Furl love you, you're in for a real treat - thousands of visitors and the opportunity to be in front of hundreds of link-hungry bloggers.
_ * Viral Connectors - The viral crowd doesn't directly link to you, but by sending out a blast e-mail, posting to an IRC channel or telling their friends about your site over dinner, they're spreading the word. Some of them can be very powerful, and they're not demographically distinct - a well-connected grandmother may know people in the media, executives of businesses and other highly placed and valuable minds.
* Journalists - Online or offline creators of "news" content, these influencers are among the most valuable of all the linkerati. A reporter for the Wall Street Journal, New York Times or the Seattle Weekly all have reach and ability to create links to your site, although it's often in a second-hand fashion (as some sites don't directly link out, but many bloggers "pick up" news items and do).

Any others I'm forgetting about?
SEOmoz | Identifying the Linkerati

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Wednesday, March 5, 2008

The continuing slow death of SEO...

And so the reason for SEO dying that slow death. People are still needing search engines for their normal traffic. However, search engines like Google are giving more sway to the social media.

So we then are being lead down a very social trail - by people who know that the search engines can be managed through social channels (and probably sensationalist media which are populist-oriented, however degraded it makes them...Yellow Journalism also had excessive rumors about its death.)

Understand humankind and you will know where all this is leading us. Understand hope and you will find how to solve that puzzle.

The Tiny Linkerati
According to a Pew Internet May 6 study, 49% of the US audience are those that have “few “tech assets” and limited use of technology”. The survey goes on to show how little of the US audience are among the Web 2.0 Internet savvy. They are so little of them. Is it worth the effort on being on Yelp, Twitter, Digg, MySpace etc to appeal to them?

Of Course, It Depends
It is important to understand that you can create online marketing success without getting caught in the buzz about about “influencers” or the Linkerati. It depends what market your client and your customers are in. Of course, innovation carries risk - but this is not to forsake the long-hanging fruit for risk taking and vice-versa. You need both.
SEO is Dead! Where is Your Audience Searching? at Emergence Media

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SEO is Dead! Where is Your Audience Searching? at Emergence Media

Fascinating view from a year ago. SEO being dead and all, it's a very slow death.

And so, what drives people and what are they looking for. See my book for some "old" starter material on Virus Marketing

SEO is Dead! Well, maybe your Google SEO

Why is SEO important? Because the majority of people search on the Internet to find things…reviews, contact numbers, shopping etc. But what is Search? Google? Yahoo?If you’re search engine optimization campaign is targeting Google, then what are you doing about the “searches” on, Technorati, StumbleUpon, Yelp, Wikipedia, Oodle and even Digg? Maybe those searches are not for the mainstream (yet), but it maybe where the Linkerati, the savvy “Influencers”, go?Is your SEO really just “Google Search Optimization”? Have you brainstormed with your marketing team to see if your company, product and/or service needs to do more?
SEO is Dead! Where is Your Audience Searching? at Emergence Media

- - - -


Creating The Web 2.0 Buzz: Beyond Search Engine OptimizationCreating The Web 2.0 Buzz: Beyond Search Engine Optimization

Print: $24.50

Download: $17.00

You can create a Web 2.0 Buzz which can get you both immediate and long-lasting results beyond "search engine optimization" as currently practiced.

How do you do that?

  • Most SEO is built around establishing keywords prominently on your pages.
  • Web 2.0 uses all the "New Media" to spread the word for you.
  • When you use your keywords in your social bookmarks, your site becomes "viral" - other people spread it for you.
  • Using audio, video, and slideshows, people tell others about your stuff.
  • And search engines love Web 2.0 more than static pages.
  • So use "New Media" to promote your static pages and get top real estate in the search engines.

This book gives you all the theory and examples of how you can create a Web 2.0 buzz and use it to bring paying subscribers to your mailing lists.

Sign up for An Online Millionaire Plan Newsletter!

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Tuesday, March 4, 2008

A Rough Sequence to Setting up Affiliiate Sales

What to do with all those freebie PLR packages, ebooks, and other stuff taking space on your hard-drive?

Post 'em. Make some money off them.

This has been the problem I've had - lots and lots of stuff with sales pages and all that, ready for someone to put on their web-site. Some is downright crap, others aren't so bad - if you know what to do with them.

And that's my forte - making sense of stuff. That's why I researched out and compiled An Online Millionaire Plan. So first, I'd make sense out of all this stuff. Second, so I could help you make sense out of all of it...

But either I've been put off by the slogging, detail-oriented work of it all, or simply had too much of it to mess with. So these things stacked up. And I wound up with too much to fit on a single DVD (over 4 gigs)!

Now, as I covered in another post, I've been having some success in marketing and all the detail work which goes with this. Found it was actually pretty simple to put all these things up online.

In the back of my head, I've had the rough organization sketched out - keep everything tidy by area, and then put a master page with the text I wrote for that section. Then post and link all the various sales pages, along with mini-webs to support (and market) them.

And oddly, An Online Millionaire Plan should become a course one day - setting things up this way would help people get through the basics and then invest in the good stuff and get the bonus stuff for their own re-purposing, so they could work it over and make their own money from it.

Same for my other sites. I have just tons of public-domain self-help books that I've collected (and other public-domain books, as well). These can be posted and worked up, as I can study and do a review of each of these books - which then send to a sales page. The mini-web is simply my book review cut up into several pieces, an ad on each page to buy that book (from me). The value here is that I'm reviewing that book and telling them related books, plus offering them a download package of personally edited books which are easy to read and understand (the problem with free downloads is that you get what you pay for - always an uncertain result.) That's my Go Thunk Yourself Personal Development Library.

Secrets to the Law of Attraction goes the same way. I have some eighteen or more books (and this gets added to everytime I turn around) which need their own review site/mini-web and a specific sales page.

The interesting thing here is that while I get a lot of subscribers from Lulu to my mail-lists, I don't get the sales I should. Reason being is that they don't allow you a lot of room to make a proper sales page. However, they do allow you to "iframe" in an external page. So a version of these sales pages would then pop-up inside Lulu bookstore and give a better sales version - which Lulu would benefit from. Allow downloads there as well as printed books, but get those viewers to come to my site via mail-list opt-in.

What's happened recently is my needing to slice up all these sections of An Online Millionaire Plan and get them out as individual ebooks. In doing this, I can now set up my sections of various salable products - which leads right into getting Affiliate sales going.

Now all of this is a lot of work. And I'm a bit behind on other stuff in general.

But if you go back to the top of this, you'll see the plan. One product, one broadcast, per producct-line per week. And this means one mini-web per product-line per week - about 12 pages weekly - or probably 600 mini-web pagess going over into my mini-net, at 150 pages per product-line per year.

All of these optimized and giving page rank up miserly. And setting me up for massive affiliate sales.

Everyone wins.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Finding Virus "Sneezers" on the "Net - SEO and Social Bookmarking

OK, search engines as we knew them are a dying dinosaur breed - which explains why Google has such a fondness for social bookmarks.

This blog post also explains why Stumbleupon is popular and a best first choice for anyone getting into social bookmarking and networking.

My happiest point is that it plugs right into Firefox and and be accessed easily. So you can bookmark your own stuff without worrying about "spamming" the system. (My current complain with a particular newsfeed-type bookmarking system is that they tell you right off to not put anything in about yourself...)

But my use of social bookmarking is changing and may in fact change the bulk of what I am doing in SEO - make me more social meanwhile ;)

Internet Marketing Secrets Blog | Tips | Ideas | Strategies: "

I was doing a little article on copywriting and found myself bookmarking several web pages in my own browser. Then it just kind of dawned on me… what would happen if I social bookmarked all these sites? There must be other people interested in the same things as me.

So, I joined StumbleUpon and snagged their toolbar. That way, any time I saw a page I liked, I could bookmark it without having to leave the page and visit the StumbleUpon site.

The result was way cool… 444 unique visitors in less than 48 hours. Yes, there are a lot of people interested in marketing, seo and copywriting, just like me. Within hours, people were visiting and commenting on the sites that I had bookmarked.

I thought that I'd investigate a handful of the 4.5 million StumbleUpon users and ask them a few questions. I discovered that most users are very passionate about the site and log on every single day. I wanted to find out… "Why StumbleUpon?"

Stumbler Jenny S. told me, "The sites you find here are way better than Google because your friends are recommending them. It's easy to find people that like the same types of authors and that means I don't waste time reading things I won't like."

Stumbler Karl B. told me, "I find the best sites that help me in my line of work. It's all sorted and tagged by my colleagues."

And finally Stumbler Danny C. revealed, "It's my starting page and my search engine. I get the best info this way! Not just the sites that are the best SEO'd or the best at gaming Google. I get real quality sites that are recommended by my friends."

Beware Mr. Google you silly old hare. "