Friday, February 27, 2009

How To Know When Internet Marketing Works

Have you ever bought an Internet Marketing product, and as you're watching/listening/reading it, you're thinking to yourself: "yea, that all sounds good, but how do I know that it really works?"

I recently purchased a product about using google adwords.

I've been listening the the MP3s on my ipod every morning and afternoon while I'm stuck in traffic (not on the headphones, that would be dangerous; I have a cord to plug it into the car's audio system). Two of the lessons were about building landing pages, and incorporating upsells.

Well, as their describing landing pages, and the importance of a good headline, they explained that most people will read the headline, then immediately scroll all the way to the bottom of the page ... presumably to see how much it costs. LOL, have these guys been spying on me? That is EXACTLY what I do when I'm thinking about buying an information product.

Maybe they just got lucky.

Then, when their describing the upsell, they talked about a technique called "the bucket system", where after you've made the initial purchase, they make you an "irresistible offer" ... something along the lines of: "each of these products normally sell for $97 each, but since we appreciate you as a customer, you can choose any single product for $67, and get the other 3 FREE".

Guess who bought 4 more products after his initial purchase?

Either I'm a world class sucker, or these guys really know what the heck they're talking about.

Needless to say, I'm intently listening to the rest of their audios ... and I definitely feel like I've already gotten my money's worth. ;-)

Keep havin FuN!
Todd
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Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Are Your Facebook Friends Really Your Friends ?

I guess I'm fairly lucky (or some might say unlucky) when it comes to social media. I have a couple hundred Twitter followers, and even fewer friends on Facebook. My problem is, sometimes even just a few hundred feels like too many.

I may be one of the few marketers, who doesn't really have a burning desire to have many, many more mutual "friends".

I've been feeling this way for a while now.

So, when I came across these two posts:
Should I "unfriend" my Facebook friends?

... and the post that inspired it:
It’s Not You It’s Me - My Goodbye To Facebook Friends

... you can probably imagine that the message kind of hit home with me.

As I said, unlike these guys, I don't have thousands of "friends" to wade through. But, my son and daughter, who live with their mom did just get facebook accounts recently. I sure would hate to miss one of their updates because my feed is filled up with messages from people I may barely even "know" telling me all about what they're marketing, lasted post on their blog, or inviting me to be a knight, or fill out a movie quiz ... you get the idea.

No, I think I'd much rather have a couple of dozen "friends" who are people I actually know.

I doubt I'll be "unfriending" anybody who regularly reads and comments here on my blog ... but if I do, please realize it's nothing personal ... and actually, if you comment enough here that I recognize your name, then I would consider you a friend anyway.

Thoughts? Opinions?

Todd
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Thursday, February 19, 2009

10 Laws of Leadership

About a week or so ago, I signed for an online success course to get some addtional training, that I can use to help better lead the growing team in my candle business.

Yesterday, as part of the 15-day online boot camp, I received this list in my email box:

10 Laws of Leadership:

1. The Leader must have a dream larger than those he/she leads.
2. The Leader must have an attitude superior to those he/she leads.
3. The Leader is responsible and admits when he/she has made a mistake.
4. The Leader is a decision maker.
5. The Leader puts those he/she leads first.
6. The Leader sets the example by being in the front of the pack.
7. The Leader displays a commitment to integrity and character.
8. The Leader strives for excellence in all things.
9. The Leader displays a commitment to personal growth.
10. The Leader has the highest level of persistence and determination.

The action item to go along with this list, was to write it down on a piece of paper, and rate myself on a scale of 1 to 10 in each area. Then over the coming weeks and months, I'll periodically re-evaluate myself, and update the ratings. My goal is to honestly become a "10" in each area.

I thought any leaders, or budding leaders, who might be reading this, might also want to do this exercise themselves.

Hope it helps ...

Todd
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Sunday, February 15, 2009

Twitter Automated Direct Messages

To Unfollow or not to Unfollow.

That is the question I find myself asking more and more lately, as notices of new twitter direct messages arrive at my inbox. Rather than an opportunity to connect with an old friend, or learn something about a potential new friend, almost all of these direct messages are something along the lines of ...

"Thanks for following me on Twitter! Check out www.Iwanttosellyousomethingoverpricedthatyouprobablydontneedanyway.com"

SIERRA MADRE, CA - MAY 29:  Seventieth anniver...
Image by Getty Images via Daylife


You know what's really ironic? When I get a message that someone is following me, and/or before I decide to follow someone else on Twitter; one of the first things I do is see if they have a website listed in their profile, and go check it out. Why spam me with a direct message asking me to look at something that I've probably already seen anyway?

Since I'm (theoretically) a "marketer" myself, I always have to chuckle when I find myself lamenting the fact that some sort of online site has been "discovered" by lazy marketers, who have developed lazy marketer tools, and are rapidly in the process of making the site less enjoyable and useful for non-lazy marketers.

Oh well, such is life.

lol, that's my rant for today. I hope you're all having a FuN weekend.

Todd





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Thursday, February 12, 2009

Moving Day

The movers will be here in a little over an hour. Fortunately, I'm pretty sure we got all the last minute organizing done yesterday. I'm just going to make this quick post, then retire my MacBook Pro to it's back pack, and let it join the rest of our "keep here" stuff in the "safe room" (the one with the big masking tape X on the door saying "movers, don't take this stuff").

We're not actually leaving Hawaii until the 1st of April. But, with our stuff about to head out the door, it's definitely sinking in, that I only have so many Hawaii sunsets left to see as a resident ... next time we'll just be tourists like everyone else.

Even so, as I went through my routine of "what's good about this", it was quite easy to come up with something I won't miss about paradise ... the Hawaii traffic. Here's hoping Texas traffic is at least a tad bit better.
;-)

Ok, Ana just came in and pointed out that I do still have more to do ... surround sound speakers are still up on the wall.

"See" you on Friday or Saturday.

Keep havin FuN!
Todd
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Saturday, February 7, 2009

Whats Good About This?

If there was ever such a thing as a "magic question" I suspect this may be it.

Iraq Sunrise



I've been accused from time to time of being too optimistic. lol, my glass is usually 3/4 full.

Even if optimism doesn't come quite that naturally to you, it is possible to find something of a silver lining in almost any situation in which you find yourself. It's not necessarily "easy", but it is "simple" (wow, how many things in life does that describe?).

Here's how it works ...

Next time you find yourself angry, upset, worried, stressed out, etc., Stop and Take a Deep Breath; then ask yourself "what's good about this?"

Don't worry if nothing comes to you at first.

Keep asking the question "what's good about this?", until you come up with something workable.

I guarantee you, no matter how bad the situation may seem, if you ask this question enough times, you Will find something "good" to take away your experience.

Focusing on your answer will help you to more quickly let go of your current worry or stress.

BTW, this works especially well when used in conjunction with Smile Therapy.

lol, and in case you're wondering what inspired this post ... I'm currently cleaning out my closet, getting ready for the movers to come on Thursday (we will be stationed at Ft Hood, Texas as of April 1st).

I'll admit, I've had to use this technique several times already this morning. ;-)

Keep havin FuN!
Todd

p.s. Credit where credit is due (sort of). I learned about this question several years ago from a book. Unfortunately, I can't remember which book it was. If it comes back to me, and/or somebody tells me, I will update this post with a link.
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Thursday, February 5, 2009

Media Bias

Just my opinion ...



When I hear people complain about bias in the news media, I can't help but laugh. Grave concern about this "problem" is endemic among BOTH my Conservative, and my Liberal friends.


Just one little complication to the argument ...

When it comes to news (especially as it relates to politics), "Bias" is pretty much in the eye of the beholder.

- If a news story agrees with your opinion, or supports your candidate, it's judged to be "fair".

- If on the other hand, a news story is critical of your views, and/or supports the views of those you disagree with, it's quite obviously "biased".

The really funny thing is; in today's day and age, when you sit down at your computer, turn on the tv, or even head over to the town bookstore, you're almost guaranteed to find hundreds, if not thousands, of stories and articles of BOTH the "fair", and the "biased" variety.

Media bias may have been a valid concern back in the 70s or even the early 80s, when there were only a couple of TV channels, and no Internet to offer variety from the news and opinion in the local paper. But in 2008, no matter what your political persuasion or interest advocacy, you are almost guaranteed to be able to find ample media sources that support and lend credence to ideas and opinions that you already hold.

Here's the real kicker for me; the next time you hear someone complain about media bias, check this out ...

- You will almost Never hear someone complain that they themselves feel uninformed because the media is too biased.

- The concern is almost Always that other people (who are obviously less savvy) may in some way be influenced by the biased media ... and thus form views and opinions that are "wrong".

That should tell you all you need to know about whether this a Real issue or not.

Just my opinion of course,
Todd
;-)
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Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Do You Promote Your Comments?

lol, I apologize in advance if this post comes off as a little "self serving". ;-)

But seriously, do you currently make any sort of an effort to promote and/or increase exposure for blog posts that you leave comments on?

... and if not, why not?

I mean, if you take the time to go out and find DoFollow blogs (especially ones that allow you to use your keywords in a link); then you write a thoughtful comment that adds value to the post; isn't it to your advantage to do what you can to increase the chances that as many people (and search bots) as possible also see that post?

I will admit, I haven't always been real good about doing this myself.

But lately (and in the future), if I read a post that I like enough to comment on, I will try to give it a Stumble, a Tweet, or maybe even add the url to my next BMD run.

I don't know about you, but I'm blogging for the long term. The majority of posts that I comment on right now are low/unranked. If I can give them a little nudge towards one day becoming PR3-PR5 pages (that will be passing on some of that juice to me via my comment link) I'm having a heck of a hard time trying to come up with any good reason not to do it.

Can you think of any?

Keep havin FuN!
Todd
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Monday, February 2, 2009

Reverse Fate

I have kind of a funny way of looking at "fate" ...

I don't believe that any of our futures are predetermined, or destined to be. Each day, we make literally millions of little decisions that each have an impact on what our future will bring, and the next set of choices we will be presented.

In short, whether we realize it or not, we do have control of our imminent destiny.

But, here's where my view of things gets a little more interesting ...

I also absolutely believe that everything that has happened to us in the past ... whether 10 seconds, or 10 years ago ... has happened for a reason.

Once it's done, we couldn't have changed it if we wanted to.

However, we can (and should) use our past (even Very recent) to guide our future decision making.

Two main "truths" I (try to) take away from my theory:

1) Nothing ever "happens to" us. One way or another we made a decision (or more likely many decisions) that put in a each and every situation we find ourselves.

2) If we accept the premise that everything in the past happened for a reason, it's almost guaranteed that the greatest lessons and opportunities will often come from the circumstances that seem to make the Least Sense at the time.

I sometimes ... ok, often ... struggle with both of these "truths".

At the same time though, there is something very liberating about this set of beliefs. I can't change the past, and I have control over my future. lol, unless I really suck at decision making, that's a pretty hopeful message.

So what are some of your beliefs about fate and destiny?

Todd
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