Posts Tagged ‘Business’

Finding the Best Web Designer

Thursday, May 13th, 2010

Why Are Web Designers Such Flakes?  A Reality Check.

Circling the drain of unresponsive or missing in action web designers is a common dilemma.  The Question is this:  As a self-respecting author with a plan and a purpose, how do you choose a designer you can afford and rely upon?

As a small publisher, or self-published author, you are faced with the high-cost of publishing a book.  Your ever-growing budget includes editors, book cover and interior design, maybe a book coach or adviser, printing costs, fulfillment needs, marketing … my goodness, where does it end?  When does the author start making money?  Well, this is a question for another article all together. The point here is, how much should you allocate to the added expense of (more…)

Buying Stock Images—Have We Met before?

Wednesday, April 21st, 2010

I’ve always advocated the use of images to break up text on the screen and draw attention to your words. After, all a picture’s worth a 1,000 words right? Well yes, but, here’s an interesting thought. What if everyone is using the same photo? What then?

Since I opened my design house (Monkey C Media) in 2004 I’ve become acutely aware of how common stock images are worldwide. One micro-stock house is iStock.com – which of course is an inexpensive place to buy royalty free stock photography and images. It’s a great tool for finding just the right image to place on your postcard, website, in blog posts, and even on your book cover. Unfortunately, the secret is out.

It’s kind of creepy. Everywhere I go I see the same five people advertising myriad products and services. They are on billboards, in magazine ads, on the home page of medical sites, attorney websites, family counseling sites, and believe it or not, I’ve even seen these same people posing as the legitimate owners of various companies. These people really get around.

Stock images are a necessary evil; they make it possible for anyone to buy relatively high-quality images to promote themselves. So, what do you do? First, check and see how many downloads your desired image has had before choosing it to represent your company. Second, look into a more exclusive stock house like Getty Images where the images will be more expensive, but the usage way lower. Third, consider hiring a photographer. When it comes to your brand, the investment will be worth it.

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Be One With Your URL

Monday, April 19th, 2010

Word to the Wise: Don’t lose your URL. Many people are tempted to purchase a URL (domain name, like www.Jeniffer Thompson.com for example) for five years or more so they don’t have to think about it again. Well guess what—you do want to think about. I can’t tell you how many calls I’ve received from someone whose website went down because they let a URL expire. What’s worse, is that most of those people had no idea where they purchased the URL or how to get it back.

Quick TIP: if you can’t remember where you purchased your URL, you can find out here: http://whois.domaintools.com. This website will tell you who purchased it, when it expires/expired, and most importantly the email associated with that URL.

How does this happen? Well, a Registrar will notify you that a URL is getting ready to expire, but if you no longer use that email address, you’ll never get the notification. Once a URL expires, you have 30 days to get it back, otherwise it becomes available for purchase from anyone. Yikes.

With time, URLs become “seasoned.” This means that they are ranked and indexed by search engines like Google. This takes time and is valuable to your Internet Marketing efforts. If you lose your URL, you’ll have to start all over and that is, well, that’s unnecessarily tragic.

So, don’t think of your URL as something you need to buy and forget, think of it as your anchor, the foundation for all of your work. Without it, things begin to crumble, if not completely crash.

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