Online Marketing Systems | Titus Hoskins

This is a great article by Titus Hoskins. You can add the “press release” to the list below.

Creating Simple Online Marketing Systems That Work!

When I started with my first website around 10 years ago, I foolishly thought all I had to do was create some great content and people would flock to my site. Sometimes that does happen but most times it does not. 10 years later I now know the difference. I know I really have to work the Internet if I want my sites to be successful. These are marketing systems that I put into place to promote my sites and gather quality traffic in order to produce the sales. My marketing systems take into account countless strategies that produce the quality traffic. It’s not just one method of getting traffic but many. I use many marketing tactics to build up a complex, yet very simple marketing system that works.

It all comes down to promotion. You have to promote your site in numerous ways. Some of my favorites are:

Article marketing – writing  simple how-to articles on the topic of your site and distributing them all over the web. Over the years this simple technique has brought in the most quality traffic to my sites.

I use keyword marketing to get my chosen keyword phrases to the top of the search engines. I concentrate most of my efforts on Google because it brings in the most traffic. Achieving top rankings will give you interested visitors and buyers.

I use blogs and RSS feeds to connect my sites to all the media sites and online bookmarking communities. Don’t underestimate the important of these media sites in your marketing. I just read in WebProNews that Facebook can drive more traffic than Google to many sites.

I use link bait like free ebooks, free reports, free ecourses... if you give out valuable content that people want – they will link to your site, bringing in more visitors and customers. I also use the PPC programs such as Google Adwords which can produce quality traffic to your sites.

I use follow-up emails to produce repeat traffic to my sites. This is one essential marketing tactic every online marketer must use if they want to fully benefit from their traffic. The concept here is not to directly sell to potential customers but give them valuable information that they need and want.

Weekly newsletters and/or ezines are another good way of building relationships with your site’s visitors. It is also an excellent way of getting repeat traffic to your sites. Another marketing tactic is to establish your site or yourself as an expert on the topic of your site. People will look and come to you for information on your topic. Building online credibility is often overlooked by many marketers but it is essential to your online success. If people respect your opinion,they will seek you out.

Participating in online communities and forums is one obvious way to establish your expertise in a given area. These forums are also an excellent source of quality traffic to your sites. As you can see from above, creating a successful web site or business takes a lot of promotion and work. Don’t just sit back and wait for things to happen – instead become pro-active and make things happen.

Write articles and distribute them. Write viral ebooks and special reports. Do PPC advertising. Start building your contact lists. Do a regular ezine or newsletter.

Participate in forums... Create a simple, yet complex system, of connections all over the web. These links/connections will draw in quality traffic that will make your site successful. Build up a whole combination of traffic sources for your site and you will create a marketing system that works.

Just get out there and do it!

For more ideas on marketing and marketing tools go to this online blog: http://www.bizwaremagic.com/weblog/

About RSS Feeds | Michael J Ross | Computoredge

I am still learning about RSS Feeds. Below is an excerpt from an article by Mr. Michael J Ross about “Real Simple Syndication”. I found it very useful.

RSS on Your Web Site

“Share your site’s updates quickly and painlessly.”

by Michael J. Ross

Some people use the Internet simply for checking their e-mail messages or visiting one or two favorite Web sites. But for the majority of “Netizens” out there, visiting dozens of sites every day is the norm. Admittedly, some of these sites are visited not because they offer fresh content updated daily, but rather because they offer a frequently used service, such as online banking. But these utility sites are certainly outnumbered by “discretionary” sites that serve up the latest news from the worlds of finance, politics, sports and more.

For all of us who hop from one well-worn site to another, it can easily become tedious and time-consuming to have to visit each one of these sites, determine what content we have not seen before, and filter out content on topics that are of no interest to us. Most if not all of these news junkies must sometimes wonder, “If only my computer could do this for me.” Well, it can, if those favorite sites of yours are packaging up their content in RSS format and not just as Web pages. More of them are doing so all the time, and in this article we will discuss some ways that you can do the same for your own site.

But first, for the benefit of those readers who may be unfamiliar with RSS, let’s consider what it is and how it can be spotted in the wild. When it first emerged on the scene in 1999, and during the following few years, RSS was an acronym for a couple of different names. But nowadays, just about everyone has agreed that it stands for “Really Simple Syndication.” In basic terms, it is a standard and highly structured format for publishing online content, designed to be read by computer programs.

Just as a newswire service will distribute its journalists’ contributions as “syndication,” any Web site can syndicate its own news. This stream of content is known as an RSS feed. As a result of using a standardized form of organizing the content, each RSS feed is thereby made easily readable by Web-based and desktop applications, known as RSS readers or aggregators. Google Reader and BlogBridge are examples of each category, respectively. All newsreaders, including these two, allow you to specify all the sites whose RSS feeds you would like to subscribe to, and how you can filter and combine the content to suit your needs.

To determine if any one of your favorite sites is offered in RSS format, go to the site’s home page and look for the standard RSS feed icon. It usually is located at the bottom of the home page or up in the right-hand corner, oftentimes close to the entry fields for searching the site or logging in.

All of the major Web browsers—including Firefox, Opera, and Microsoft’s Internet Explorer 7—will display the RSS icon in or near their address bars.

Major news sites, probably without exception, make their content available globally to all RSS users. You may be wondering if you could do the same, and what methods would be available for doing so. It depends upon the source of the content that you want to share with the world.

Original J. Whiting cartoon

For the complete original article visit:

03/06/09 RSS on Your Web Site: Share your site’s updates quickly and painlessly.

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Michael J. Ross is a Web developer, writer, and freelance editor. He creates Web sites that help entrepreneurs turn their ideas into profitable online businesses.

Internet Scams | Fraud | Wally Wang

A few days ago I received an email, which supposedly came from Google, asking me for my account information and password in order to do some sort of upgrade so that I could continue my service. I smelled phishing and proceeded to delete. Here is an article from computoredge about a variety of Internet scams.

“Con artists have expanded their reach.”
by Wally Wang from
www.computoredge.com

“If you’re an experienced Internet user, you’ve probably heard of the Nigerian 419 scam. This is where you get an unsolicited e-mail from a stranger overseas, claiming that they need your help in releasing millions of dollars. In exchange for your help, this benevolent stranger is willing to pay you part of the money, which you can claim by paying an initial fee, ostensibly to bribe an official or pay bank fees.

If you send this unknown person money, they’ll keep dangling the promise of millions of dollars awaiting you, but only if you continue sending additional cash to overcome an inevitable barrage of problems. Each time you send money, you’ll be more inclined to send more to avoid losing the “investment” you’ve already made in this incredible offer. The con artists will happily keep up this pretense as long as you keep sending money.

Fool Me Twice

If victims ever wake up to the fact that they’ve been conned, they’ll have to face the shame of being duped for several months along with whatever amount of money they sent out while getting nothing in return. And now the con artists often circle back a second time around.

Suddenly, you may find another unsolicited e-mail, stating that a special antifraud division has tracked down the con artists who have scammed you. If you want this government agency to recover your lost money, you’ll need to fill out some official-looking documents along with paying a processing fee.

Needless to say, many victims are so angry at the con artists and lusting for revenge that they’ll eagerly fill out this bogus document and send in the processing fee—only to have the vicious cycle repeat all over again.

Supposedly, this antifraud government agency needs to bribe more officials or pay additional fees to keep the con artists in jail so they can be brought to court. Once again, you’ll need to keep sending money to these con artists, who are very likely the same con artists who bilked you initially. (After all, how else would they know that you were conned in the first place?)

The original Nigerian 419 scam has ripped off people for thousands of dollars and continues duping people to this day. This added twist of ripping off the same people a second time, by masquerading as a government antifraud agency, is another development designed to catch victims off guard and steal their money before they realize what’s happening.

Spear Phishing on Facebook

As more people wise up to unsolicited e-mail scams, con artists are resorting to something called spear phishing. Where phishing involves sending out mass e-mails with the same scam letter, knowing that a small percentage of people will always take the bait, spear phishing involves targeting specific people. One of the most popular ways to spear phish is through social networking sites such as Facebook.

Like other social-networking sites, Facebook lets you reveal details about yourself, which any stranger can read. Plus, you can link to your friends and read personal details about these people, which a stranger can also read.

Now con artists will target a specific individual, using personal information found on that person’s Facebook page and any of their friends’ Facebook pages. If you suddenly receive an e-mail containing information that only you and your friends know about, suddenly that unsolicited e-mail sounds far more credible. Of course, the con artist is simply using your own information against you.

Even more insidious is that con artists will often contact you through Facebook and provide a link, which leads to an error message and an official-looking Facebook login page. When you retype your password and account into this bogus page, the con artist now has the information needed to hijack your Facebook account and masquerade as you.

Using your Facebook account, the con artist can now contact all of your friends with a frightening story of how you traveled overseas and lost your wallet and passport or some other sob story. Since your friends are receiving these messages directly from your Facebook account, they have no reason not to believe it isn’t you. More than likely, they’ll wire the necessary money to the overseas account that the con artist provides, and never see their money again.

Trust No One

The simplest way to protect yourself from online scams is to trust no one online, not even your own friends and relatives. If a con artist hijacks an e-mail or Facebook account, receiving a message from a trusted source is still no guarantee that you aren’t being scammed.

If you do receive a message from a friend, asking for money, contact that person through another method, such as by phone. Try asking your “friend” a question that only your real friend could possibly know.

Besides not trusting anyone on the Internet, a second golden rule is to never send money to an unfamiliar recipient. Even if you recognize the bank’s name, don’t follow the instructions given to you in an e-mail message, but contact the bank by phone or in person. Circumventing the con artist’s communication channel can identify a scam by asking a bank official to verify the information you received.

Con artists are never going to go away. With the Internet, con artists have just expanded their reach.

For further protection, keep yourself educated about the variety of online scams out there by visiting OnGuard Online.

To really protect yourself, never give money to anyone. That will protect you from con artists along with isolating you from most of your relatives, who can often be the biggest scam artists of them all.

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In the early days, before Wally became an Internationally renowned comedian, computer book writer, and generally cool guy, Wally Wang used to hang around The Byte Buyer dangling participles with Jack Dunning (
http://www.computoredge.com/) and go to the gym to pump iron with Dan Gookin.

Wally is responsible for Microsoft Office 2007 for Dummies, Breaking Into Acting for Dummies, Beginning Programming All-in-One Reference for Dummies, and Mac All-in-One Reference for Dummies from http://www.dummies.com, as well as, Steal This Computer Book 4.0, Visual Basic Express 2005: Now Playing, and My New Mac from http://www.nostarch.com. He is also the co-author of Strategic Entrepreneurism from http://www.selectbooks.com.


How Many Websites do you Need? | Titus Hoskins

This is an excerpt from an article by Titus Hoskins:

“Actually, some online marketers don’t even have a site of their own and instead they promote other affiliate sites and products with their marketing. While I don’t personally recommend this route, many successful marketers have taken it and are quite happy with not having to bother with the whole business of running an online site of their own.

But you should have at least one main site, your flagship, your address on the web where people can find you. This also gives you an online identity. It tells everyone this is the area or subject matter you’re promoting…

For years I had one main site which kept me extremely busy and earned me a modest online income. I still have this site and yes it still keeps me busy and it is still profitable.

So why build more sites?

Mainly because as you proceed with your online marketing, you will find niches that require their own sites. You have to expand and branch out from your main site. The new sites are connected and supported with your old one. It is a very effective way of building more quality traffic and business.

But the main reason to build new sites is to prepare yourself for the future. You must stake your claim in all those “keyword domains” that still can be had at the moment.”

To know more visit http://www.bizwaremagic.com/

Twitter | Computoredge | Jim Trageser

If you wonder about Twitter as I do sometimes, check this interesting article.

“Is Twitter the Next ICQ?” by Jim Trageser

If you’re tech-savvy enough to be reading ComputorEdge, (www.computoredge.com) then you’ve most likely heard of Twitter.com—the current hot topic in tech media. In early April, CNN and actor Ashton Kutcher held a contest to see who could get to 1 million Twitter followers first.

The actor won. It seems that everyone is on Twitter—you can twit or send tweets. Little applets let you put your Twitter updates in your MySpace or Facebook or blog pages.All of which is very impressive, as is the growth in the number of people with Twitter accounts.

But what does it mean? Not much if some compelling reason to use Twitter doesn’t emerge.

What It IsTwitter is simply a broadcast of your “status”—like what MySpace and Facebook already offer on your profile, but untethered to a specific site.You type in what you’re doing, or whatever else you want to share with your subscribers—a news headline, a new YouTube video—and then they are notified based on their own preferences (e-mail or text to their cell, or simply an update the next time they log in to Twitter.com). It’s sort of a centralized version of texting on your cell phone or instant messaging on your PC. But I still have to ask: So what?

Where’s the Beef?

Look at the example of instant messaging. Five years ago, IM was hot hot hot. It seemed like everyone was jumping on the IM bandwagon—AOL had AIM, Yahoo had its own, so did Netscape and Microsoft—and the big buzz was whether Google was really going to issue its own IM client. And a small company named ICQ was among the IM leaders simply by virtue of being among the first to have an IM client and protocol.

The fact that none of the above clients were compatible with one another even had members of Congress threatening to pass laws compelling interoperability—the fear being that if we weren’t all able to chat with one another on our PCs that, well, I’m not really sure what the fear was.Whatever it was, it didn’t come to pass, because instant messaging is utterly passé. Sure, there are still people IMing each other. Heck, for that matter, some people still write letters to each other. In longhand. And mail them, with stamps and everything.

Whatever.

The reality is that the proliferation of cell phones and the drop in price for text messaging on those phones doomed instant messaging as a ubiquitous (and thus, perhaps, massively profitable) means of communication. Nobody IMs anymore because instant messaging isn’t nearly as universal as texting. Let’s face it: No matter how sleek your laptop, it’s a heck of a lot more cumbersome than a cell phone.

The MySpace Model?

And now Twitter is all the rage—we even had a seminar on using Twitter at my place of employment recently. The woman who led it covered all the bases and gave a very nice, comprehensive presentation on how to use Twitter to strengthen our business—but at the conclusion, I was left wondering if we weren’t putting the cart before the horse. By a couple miles.

More recently even than IM, MySpace.com was the hot tech app. Designed to make it easy for bands to share their music and tour schedules (and thus build up fan bases independently of the record labels), MySpace exploded in popularity. Until just a couple years ago, it was the most popular destination Web site (trailing only Google and Yahoo in total visitors). Everybody had a MySpace page.

And you know what? MySpace is still a hugely popular site—but it no longer has the all-valuable cachet of the Next Big Thing. Facebook took that away, and—until Twitter sprung on the scene—was the media darling of the Internet.Long-Term Success. So the point of all this meandering is to say that I wouldn’t wager too heavily on Twitter’s long-term financial potential.

Success is fleeting, and never more so than in the tech world.Particularly when the value of your brand isn’t immediately evident. MySpace’s basic design remains geared toward helping bands build a following. My Space may not be the dominating one-size-fits-all social network it once was, but it remains a robust online community due to its strength at connecting musicians to fans.

Facebook may be the more dominant generic social network now, due to the fact that it is designed to help friends and family connect and stay in touch. But it’s not quite as good at helping bands promote themselves—so MySpace still has that niche. But with its online games, polls and other entertainment, Facebook is probably the more fun way to spend an evening. So both sites could end up being here to stay indefinitely.

But what does Twitter offer?

A way to let your friends know what you’re doing? To share a link to another Web site? You can do all those things with your friends on MySpace and Facebook already. There just doesn’t seem anything particularly unique or compelling about Twitter. It’s interesting (sort of); it’s got the media buzz going. But will it last?As we’ve seen with IM, and with Linux before that (remember when Linux was going to replace Windows as the operating system of choice on PCs?) and MySpace after (and tons of other examples, from WinAmp to BeOS), the media is a fickle mistress.With a particularly short attention span.

Jim Trageser can be reached via his Web site. Jim is the Publisher/Editor of Turbula.net, an odd little online publication to which truly talented people seem strangely compelled to send interesting works for others to enjoy. Visit www.turbula.net.

Outdated Seo Tactics | Website Magazine | Blog Comment Spamming

In the May issue of  Website magazine I found an interesting article on blog comment spamming as an outdated SEO tactic; it was doubly interesting since I get a lot of comment spamming.

It says that a lot of webmasters still aggressively pursue this method as their primary link building strategy, when in fact Google introduced “nofollow” link tags (signal to search engine spiders to ignore a link) and is known to devalue links in blog comments.

The reasonable and legitimate alternative, says the magazine, is to write interesting , well-written and thought-provoking content, which will generate editorial links — naturally occurring links from other blogs and news sources that search engines value far more than comments in blog posts.

To read about more outdated SEO tactics visit:  Website Magazine

Malashock Dance | The Coming Studio Series | On The Spot

I saw the Studio Series: On the spot at Malashock Dance last Sunday. I thought it was interesting that he was having the dancers in their own space and unaware of each other,  just as most of us go through life: unaware in self-reflection. I wonder if they’ll finish the piece in awareness. He doesn’t know yet. I guess I’ll have to stay tuned.

If you missed it, there will be another Studio Series showing next month (May 15-16) to show the work in progress, and the full performance will be next spring at the San Diego Museum of Art. They will  have some videos and photos posted on their blog between now and then to show how things are going. Please check: www.malashockdance.org/blog

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