Monthly Archives: September 2011

Sep 30

The 168-Hour Work Week

By mikefilsaime | Uncategorized

One Friday morning, after an unusually strong cup of coffee, I dreamt up an idea for a book called the 168-Hour Work Week. This revolutionary, self-help manual will teach you how to explode your productivity by filling every hour of your life with profitable activity. Learn how – with a little imagination – you can link any activity to your work and make every action feed back into your business.

Setup a permanent camcorder on your dining room table and you can record training videos while you eat. Take a stack of business cards with you when you take your kids to the park, and you can market your services to the other parents there. Keep a stack of marketing books in the bathroom and . . . you know . . . .

The real clincher though, is that the book title is unassailable. It’s only a matter of time before Tim Ferriss is outdone by someone with a 3-hour work week plan, whereas my book title takes productivity to its ultimate conclusion (admittedly there are the 28-Hour Day theorists but those people are just nuts).

Obviously I’m just kidding around, but hopefully this serves to illustrate the difference between possibility and practicality. As in, just because something is possible, doesn’t mean that it’s likely to happen or that it’s a good idea.

Truthfully, I like the 4-Hour Work Week. Really. It’s a great title. It’s so good the book could be filled with nothing but blank pages and it would still sell in its millions. It calls to our inner laziness with a claim that is highly improbable but is too tantalizing to ignore.

Personally, I could never work just four hours a week, because I enjoy what I do too much to limit myself to such a paltry amount of time. But then isn’t that the point? If you like the idea of only working four hours a week, then it’s most likely because you don’t enjoy your work in the first place. If I had the choice of working four hours a week unblocking sewer lines, or working 60 hours a week as an internet marketer, I’d choose the latter without a moment’s hesitation.

Before trying to whittle your work time down to a handful of hours per week, perhaps you should consider whether you’re really satisfied with your choice of career, especially if you’re angling to be a 7-figure, internet marketer. Because let me tell you what every internet marketing “Guru” already knows: NO-ONE gets to that status on just four hours a week.

I recall a recent video by a popular internet marketer (I won’t identify him directly, but his name begins with “F” and ends with “rank Kern”) in which he gave a tour of his house, highlighting the fruits of his many successes. Yet along the way, I counted about seven or eight computers scattered across his house. And that was before we got to see his external office!

Is it too much of an assumption to suggest that if someone keeps that many computers around, they spend a lot of time using them? “F” has made a LOT of money online, but I very much doubt that he achieved this by working one morning per week and then surfing for the remaining six and a half days.

I’m not saying that “F” doesn’t spend a great deal of his time enjoying life to its fullest but, in all likelihood, like myself and many other successful internet marketers that I know, his schedule will be more along the lines of what is sometimes called a “Lifestyle Business.”

I prefer to call it:

Work Hard – Play Hard

In practical terms, it’s nigh on impossible to say how many hours a week I work, because I have no specific schedule. If I’m on vacation, I work zero hours, but if I’m working to a product launch date, then I might end up working 36 hours straight. This is not unusual.

Mike Filsaime once told me that when working on one particular launch, he worked for 3-4 days straight with just a couple hours sleep a night. I know many other internet marketers who can work 80-100 hours in a week, but then they follow that with a couple of weeks off. Does this shock you? If you think about this business in practical terms, then it shouldn’t.

An internet marketer’s success is, for the most part, driven by personality. You can outsource the creation of the product, the writing of the sales copy, the management of the affiliates, and so on, but it’s still your name on the book, your face at the seminars, your experience and wisdom being communicated. There are huge parts of this process that simply cannot be compressed into handy, four-hour per week, pieces.

Let’s say, for example, that I’m going to attend an internet marketing event and deliver a two-hour lecture. How long does is that going to take me? If you’re thinking the answer is “two hours” then, frankly, you’re not thinking.

As well as delivering the lecture, I also have to:

  • Learn and experience the information that goes into the lecture.
  • Write my speaking notes and create the visual slides.
  • Travel to the seminar location (sometimes half-way around the world).
  • Spend countless hours before and after the lecture, catching up and networking with business colleagues and new contacts.

Given how much I enjoy them, it can be difficult to categorize everything on the above list as work, but they are all essential parts of my business. I would go so far as to suggest that everyone who engages in this kind of work absolutely loves the majority of this process; it would be very difficult to summon up the energy and enthusiasm required if they didn’t.

Work hard, play hard, is right; it’s simply that the work part is rarely emphasized. No matter how enjoyable it may be, the word carries connotations of stressful, uninteresting, unfulfilling jobs for minimum wage. “Work” does not sell, regardless of whether or not you choose to use the “hard” suffix. Instead we choose to focus on the rewards. They require no qualification and are universally appreciated.

We might state that our latest and greatest product is “unsuitable for lazy, undisciplined individuals who don’t want to get ahead” but as no-one is ever going to put themselves into this category, the effect is a positive one.

Outsourcing is an essential part of working online. If you never get to grips with it, you’ll always be underperforming and overworked. Is a 4-hour work week possible? Technically, yes. Is it a worthwhile objective? I think not. Reducing the hours you work to leave more time to spend with your family and to make your efforts more productive is a great goal to have, but you don’t need to get down to four hours per week to achieve it.

Anything less than 35 hours work per week is going to leave you with a lifestyle that is far more manageable than the vast majority of the working population. Alternatively, you may find that working three long weeks, followed by one week vacation every month, is even more effective.

In fact, let’s go completely nuts and stop counting. If you have a career that you enjoy, you’ll eventually find it difficult to figure out where the play ends and the work begins. Work Hard, Play Hard, might not sound as glamorous as a 4-Hour Work Week but, right now, there are far more people living and enjoying the former, than the latter.

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By Gary Ambrose
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This article first appeared in the September 2009 issue of the MarketingDotCom newsletter. You can get a free copy of the latest issue for the price of shipping at http://the7figuresecrets.com

Sep 27

Wal-Mart and TESCO Lead the Way with Private Label Rights

By mikefilsaime | Uncategorized , upsell

You’d be forgiven for thinking that Private Label Rights (PLR) is a uniquely eccentric quirk of the Internet Marketing industry. The truth is that some of the biggest retailers in the world are using PLR, including Wal-Mart, TESCO and Giant. The fact that even the medium and smaller store franchises are following suit gives us a pretty big hint that this is a profitable way to go. Incredibly, this strategy is said to have increased profits for the big franchises by as much as 300 percent!

Obviously I’m not suggesting that the big stores are stocking PLR versions of Internet Marketing eBooks and videos. I’m referring to the well-established trend of selling grocery products labeled with the store’s own brand. This is a different form of PLR but the principle is exactly the same. A supplier creates the products and the store pays to have their name and brand printed on the outside.

Think I’m stretching the definition of PLR a bit? Go and have a look at www.privatelabelfoods.com and see for yourself.

This practice has become so prevalent that in some cases product brands are complaining about having to fight for shelf space. No longer are they just competing with one another, they now also have the might of the huge retail chains to contend with. And don’t think this is a practice unique to the western world; Giant is a huge chain of retail stores in Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei, Indonesia and UAE, that also sells a wide range of their own brand products.

So how can you imitate this success by using PLR in your Internet business? Well if your current income stream is mainly from Affiliate Marketing, why not also offer private label products under your own name and brand. The more choices you give your prospects, the more money you can potentially make.

Think of it like this. If a consumer buys a regular branded product, the store profits from their mark-up – a little bit like when you earn a commission for selling someone else’s eBook or software as an affiliate. If the consumer buys a private labeled store-branded product, the store keeps the entire sale, minus their private labeling costs – exactly as you would if you sold an eBook or software under your own name.

I’m not suggesting for a minute that you should give up on Affiliate Marketing but if you offer one or more alternatives in the form of your own privately labeled products, you stand to increase your profits significantly. In practice, you can do this by putting your product’s advertisement next to the one you are promoting for as an affiliate, whether it’s on a blog post, a sponsored ad, in a member’s area, on a thank you page and so on.

This is so easy to do. These smart retailers don’t go to the trouble of creating their own brand products from scratch, they simply purchase Private Label Rights to existing materials and ingredients, add their own twist, and paste their brand onto the packaging. Voila… they’re ready to go. Likewise, you don’t have to create your own digital products from scratch. You can do exactly the same with Private Label Rights to digital products, whether it be eBooks, reports, audio, video, graphic files, software, scripts… you name it!

Don’t turn your nose up at PLR or dismiss it as an Internet Marketing fad or gimmick. The big store franchises have been using PLR for years and their range is still growing. If it’s good enough for international, multi-billion dollar businesses, isn’t it worth applying it to your business as well?

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By Edmund Loh
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This article first appeared in the September 2009 issue of the MarketingDotCom newsletter. You can get a free copy of the latest issue for the price of shipping at http://the7figuresecrets.com

Sep 23

To Buy or Not to Buy, That is the Question

By mikefilsaime | Uncategorized

In the hectic, sometimes downright chaotic, world of Internet Marketing, there are no shortage of buying decisions. In fact it seems as if we’re constantly presented with the opportunity to acquire some sort of new software, marketing tool, or information product; as businesspeople we may also find ourselves weighing the decision to buy a new computer, or a new VOIP provider, and so forth.

The stream of latest and greatest products and services never ends. It’s so easy to get caught up in the current, and desire to grab every shiny new item that comes our way.

And let’s be honest – If you’re on a handful of good mailing lists you also have a whole team of assistant buyers urging you to help yourself to the new product or service their JV partners have released.

There have probably been occasions when you knew instantly you needed, or at least wanted, a particular product, so you bought without hesitation. However, at other times, you may not have been sure of the right course. Almost certainly at one point or another you have asked yourself the question:

“Should I or shouldn’t I buy this new product?”

When seeking the answer to the above question, I pose yet another important query to myself: “Is this product compatible with my goals and objectives, or will it be a diversion that takes my attention away from the solid direction I’ve already chosen?”

As an entrepreneur, every action you take is either leading you in the direction of your ultimate goals or it is taking you into another direction, away from your objective. A purchase is definitely an action and thus follows the same rule of thumb; every time you buy a new software application, marketing course or membership, you will either be doing something to further your cause or you’ll be throwing a wrench into the system by investing in a distraction.

The bottom line is pretty simple. You should base your decision to buy on whether or not doing so will move you forward in terms of reaching your goals. Where you are on your journey will also be a major contributing factor to this decision process.

There will be times when an offer doesn’t resonate or make sense given your current position. This doesn’t mean the product or service isn’t good, it could be totally awesome, but if it’s not something that will fit into your current action plan it will do more harm than good. It’s very important to understand this and to be comfortable passing on items that look great but don’t serve your current needs. Making an impulse decision to buy a program that’s not right for you is a waste of money, time and emotional energy.

How well a potential product will serve your needs is the most important factor in a buying decision. In fact the value received from a purchase is an even greater factor than whether or not you think you have the money to make the investment in the first place.

When you see an offer that feels perfect, and really fits into where you are and where you’re going, you absolutely should buy. Don’t let minor inconveniences like not having enough funds in the bank stop you from getting access to the things that will take your business to new levels.

Understand – I’m NOT telling you to borrow money or bounce a check! I’m simply advising you to, if it’s necessary, bring a little creativity into play to seal the deal.

A great example of this is the story about how Mike purchased InstantBuzz. Rather than forking over the $85,000 up front, he arranged a payment plan with the previous owner. In this way the site actually paid for itself. He accomplished this by implementing some aggressive promotions and generating the revenue from new memberships and advertising sales.

On many occasions our students have used the same ingenuity to purchase offers they couldn’t afford with outright cash payments. Obviously this kind of arrangement will only work if you have and use the time to leverage a product or program in the correct way to generate the revenue for the payoff.

This is only one example of how a little creativity can help you take advantage of an amazing offer. My point is simply that, when an opportunity is right, you need to go for it! “I don’t have the money” will not help you reach your goals.

In summary, your buying decision should be all about whether or not the offer will move you in the desired direction. If it won’t, let it go. When a product or service will help you attain your goals and be more effective in your business, you should definitely go for it.

A final caveat is in order – there’s nothing wrong with looking for a deal or waiting on a solid discount. Even when a product or service is a definite yes for you, it’s always a good idea to explore all your options and determine if you can get a better deal through another vendor or by simply waiting a short period. This will also give you a little time to raise some needed funds. Just don’t take too long.

For example, when the new iPhone 3GS was released, my price to upgrade would have been $699. However by waiting only one month, I would be eligible for an upgrade at only $299. I decided the extra $400 was not justifiable and that four weeks was a short time to wait for the better deal.

Interestingly, on the night before the phone’s launch I was told AT&T changed their policy and I was now eligible for the new phone upgrade for only $299. I didn’t have to wait another month after all but, because I was willing to do so, I hadn’t handed over $699 a few days before. I ended up with exactly the product I wanted and a saving of $400!

I added this story to moderate my earlier statements about jumping on an offer without hesitation. Sometimes waiting a couple of days, especially on major purchases, IS a good idea; this is a subtle distinction that you’ll have to make using your own best judgment.

I hope you’ve found this content useful, and not just as a consumer. As a marketer, remember that your customers will be using this and other advice to make their buying decisions. Now that you understand some of the thought processes involved with making a smart buy, you can use strategies and bonuses to become more appealing to your target consumers.

Until next time, stay tuned with what I’m up to at: http://twitter.com/tombeal

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By Tom Beal
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This article first appeared in the August 2009 issue of the MarketingDotCom newsletter. You can get a free copy of the latest issue for the price of shipping at http://the7figuresecrets.com

Sep 20

Free-Range Leads and Freshly Squeezed Google Juice

By mikefilsaime | upsell

What if – in just five minutes – you could get an unlimited amount of targeted leads in any niche AND receive the added bonus of inbound links to your sites?

As hard as it may be to believe, five minutes after reading this article you could have exactly that. The deceptively simple system that I’m about to reveal, utilizes free Google tools that do all the work while you reap all the benefits.

Step 1 – Choose your keywords.

Go to the Google Adwords Keyword Tool (http://tinyurl.com/gatool) and enter your most basic keywords. Use the results to make a list of the keywords and phrases that apply well to your products.

Step 2 – Ask the questions.

For each item on your list, create a question that includes the keyword or phrase. Try and put yourself in the position of someone who is a potential customer for your product and think about the logical questions they might ask that could be answered by your product.

For example, if you have a Web traffic related product, and you’re analysing the key phrase, “free web traffic”, this could become: “how do I get free web traffic?”

In most cases, this system will work best if you include the question mark and also put quotation marks around the question (you’ll see why in a moment). To build a longer list and increase the volume of leads you receive, create variations of each question. Continuing the above example, you could try:

  • “how can I get free web traffic?”
  • “where can I get free web traffic?
  • “an easy way to get free web traffic?”

Step 3 – Open a new Gmail account.

Go to http://mail.google.com and create an account with a name related to your leads. Keep it simple and memorable.

Step 4 – Create Google Alerts.

The final step of this easy system is to go to http://www.google.com/alerts and create an individual Google Alert for each question on your list. Set your new Gmail address as the destination for the notifications.

Within the first 15 minutes you will have brand new leads for your business.

What the…?

You might already have figured it out, but let’s take a moment to understand why this system works.

The Google Alerts tool will send you a notification when it locates a page in its index that contains the key phrases you’ve specified. This is why the use of quotes and question marks is important; it ensures you only receive notifications for pages that contain the exact words in the exact order.

Although some of the alerts you receive will be unsuitable, many of the notifications will be for blog posts, forum posts, Yahoo Answers, etc, where people are asking the exact questions that your product can answer.

So that’s targeted leads, free of charge, using a system that takes just a few minutes to create, and even less time to duplicate!

Don’t waste them.

To get the maximum return from these leads, you need to be systematic in your approach. Check your new Gmail address once per day, twice per week or at some other specified interval. Stick to your plan and don’t just sit on this email address – that’s simply a time waster.

As the leads come in, visit the sites and figure out how you can add value to the page. Focus on what you can do to answer the questions you find without running the risk of being accused of spamming. Promote your product subtly by including a link as an aside, rather than making it the central topic of your post.

Blog Posts: Add a comment that responds to the content of the article, or contributes to the discussion in the existing comments. You can then link to your site from your name and run little risk of being flagged as comment spam.

Yahoo Answers: The same principle above applies, but use your sales page as the reference link.

Forum Posts: Same again, but place a discreet link or advert in your signature. You’ll need to register an account with the forum and check the rules carefully to understand what is and isn’t permitted in terms of self-promotion.

In all instances, if you truly help people, you’re unlikely to receive spam accusations and other visitors to the page are much more likely to check out your product with sincere interest. Be thorough but don’t force it, and don’t feel obliged to act on every single result. If you can’t add anything worthwhile, move on to the next lead.

Some of the Google Alerts you create will bring you a dozen or more results every day, while others may produce nothing for weeks. Either way, the results are all that matter. Remember that it only takes a few seconds to set up each alert and, if the term doesn’t bring in results, you’ll never be bothered with an email.

Advanced marketers will recognise that this system is ideal work for outsourcing; just be sure to train the people you hire to post messages and links responsibly. Adding value to the blogs and forums they post to should always be the priority.

Google Juice

If a term is popping up like crazy in your alerts then the odds are good that, not only are people posting this question online, but even more are carrying out Google searches using this exact key phrase. This identifies it as a great term for which to optimize your site. If you receive an alert, then Google MUST already know about this page and have it listed in their index; this means that link juice from these pages may be especially valuable.

Incredibly, the above system already involves placing a link to your site as part of the process. Improving your rankings in the search engines can be achieved without any additional work! However, do take care to vary the anchor text wherever possible. Otherwise your linking profile could start to form a pattern and the benefit may be lost.

Don’t presume that the simplicity of this system means mediocre results. This is a very powerful technique, and the sooner you integrate it into your marketing efforts, the better.

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By Ross Goldberg
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This article first appeared in the August 2009 issue of the MarketingDotCom newsletter. You can get a free copy of the latest issue for the price of shipping at http://the7figuresecrets.com

Sep 20

MDC Monthly Preview – October 2011

By mikefilsaime | Uncategorized

What’s inside the October 2011 issue of MDC Monthly?

PPC – Perfectly Targeted

  • 5 PPC mistakes you must avoid.
  • How to create the perfect video landing page.
  • 4 essential PPC tools that won’t cost you a dime.
  • How to beat Dynamic Keyword Insertion without spending hours (or even days) creating multiple ads.
  • Life beyond Adwords – The alternative PPC options to which you should be paying attention.

“A Life-Time Value” with Robert Puddy

  • A simple formula for calculating the life-time value of a customer.
  • How to ensure profits from your Traffic Exchange campaigns.

“The Content Vacuum” with Joel Williams

  • How to resurrect your enthusiasm for creating new blog posts.
  • 4 simple ways to gain inspiration for creating new content.

“Just Jing It” with Omar Martin

  • Why Jing should be your #1 tool for screen-capture and lightning-fast video creation.
  • 4 essential uses for Jing and where to find dozens more.

“Quitting is Not an Option” with Anik Singal

  • How to create the “Stick to it” mindset.
  • Why Super Affiliates survive the hard times.

“The Death of the Three Rs” with Jennifer Syrkiewicz

  • Why the Internet killed the need for writing skills.
  • Why you don’t need to be an expert wordsmith to be . . . an expert wordsmith.

Latest book reviews:

  • The Third Screen: Marketing to Your Customers in a World Gone Mobile” by Chuck Martin.
  • Guerrilla Marketing for a Bulletproof Career” by Jay Conrad Levinson and Andrew Neitlich.

Additional features:

  • Internet Marketing News
  • Reader Revolution
  • Two evergreen articles from September 2010.
  • “Free Advice and Worth Every Penny” with Dafydd Manton

Don’t miss the October 2011 edition of MDC Monthly!
You can get a free trial copy shipped to your door by clicking here.

Sep 16

Is Traffic REALLY the Solution?

By mikefilsaime | Uncategorized

I’m sometimes accused of being too blunt and that, by not sugar-coating my comments, I alienate my audience. To which I usually reply, “What a complete load of utter rubbish!”

The late English writer, Sir Malcolm Bradbury, said “The English are polite by telling lies. The Americans are polite by telling the truth.” I may be British but, if that statement is true, then in this instance I would have to say that the US has a clear advantage. In this part of the world is seems that many prefer a comfortable ignorance over an awkward truth.

All of which is a long-winded way of saying that, although you may often find my articles outspoken, you can be assured that I won’t hold something back out of a misguided sense of propriety.

For example: I have to be honest and say that when someone asks how they can drive more traffic to their website, I can’t help but think that what they’re REALLY saying is that their website is unprofitable, they have no idea how to fix it, and they’re hoping that if they flood their site with enough traffic this will magically fill their PayPal account.

I reach this conclusion because there are dozens and dozens of different ways to drive a virtually unlimited stream of traffic to a website, providing you don’t mind paying for it. If you know that for every $1 you spend on advertising you make $3 in sales, are you going to worry about generating free traffic or are you going to spend more dollars and get it instantly?

Getting free traffic is certainly desirable but if you’re unwilling to pay for at least some of it, this strongly suggests that your online business isn’t profitable and you’re looking for a quick fix.

Sending traffic to a site that doesn’t convert isn’t going to solve your problems, if anything it will add to them. No matter how much traffic you send to a badly converting site it will never be enough. Until you get over the “I need more traffic” mindset and get into the “I need to optimize my system” mindset, you are always going to struggle.

The rationale behind this warped thinking is the idea that you can drive free traffic to a website until it starts making money, and then use that money to purchase more traffic. It’s a nice idea in theory, but this approach is too slow and the sources of free traffic can skew your results.

What you need is a strong burst of targeted traffic over a relatively short space of time, so you can tweak and improve your sales process. Paying for traffic to do test runs is not that expensive and in the long run is much more cost-effective. Even small off-line businesses will spend $1000+ a year to be listed in the Yellow Pages or to distribute fliers. If you can’t afford to spend $100 on Pay-Per-Click traffic to get your metrics then I would question your commitment to your online business.

Times may be tight, but cutting back on a few luxuries or selling a few household items on eBay will give you the budget you need to get started. If even that proves to be too much of a struggle, find one or two people with a moderately sized mailing list in your niche and offer then 100% commissions for directing some of their readers to your site. You won’t find it too difficult to find people agreeable to those terms and it’s worth giving away some of your short-term profits if you can use that traffic to perfect your system.

Let’s walk through the process using the example of a lead-capture page offering a free gift in exchange for a name and email address, with a one-time-offer on the back-end.

You want to start by improving the conversion rate of your lead-capture page. Even if your one-time-offer is converting slowly, by getting the lead-capture page right to begin with, you’re at least building a mailing list that can be monetized in other ways later on.

Split-testing a lead capture page is far easier than most people realize. All you have to do is create a duplicate of your page, changing just one item, such as the headline, the bullet points, the images, etc. Open a free account at www.google.com/websiteoptimizer and follow the simple instructions for setting up your test. It basically involves pasting a couple of lines of code into the two versions of the page that you want to compare, and also into the “thank you” page.

Drive traffic to your lead-capture page until you have a clear winner and then create a duplicate of this page, making sure you change something different this time. Keep testing until the conversion rate of your lead-capture page is satisfactory and then work on improving the conversion rate of your one-time-offer.

Once you know how much profit each visitor is worth on average, then you know how much you can afford to pay for traffic, and still turn a profit. You can still work on building up some free traffic sources as well but once you have that nailed down, deciding to spend $1000 on traffic, knowing you’re going to make $3000, isn’t a difficult choice.

The really scary thing about this exercise? You only have to do it a couple of times and you’ll have a mailing list that can drive enough traffic on its own to test the conversions of your next website.

These days I use my time to find ways to squeeze another 1% conversion rate out of my existing traffic, and my credit card to increase the traffic when I achieve that.

It seems strange that traffic generation is one of the most sought after skills in the IM industry, when you can open an account with Google Adwords and start driving targeted traffic within a few minutes. For the most part, people are simply asking the wrong question. Traffic generation is only restricted by one thing: your willingness to pay for it.

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By Robert Puddy
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This article first appeared in the August 2009 issue of the MarketingDotCom newsletter. You can get a free copy of the latest issue for the price of shipping at http://the7figuresecrets.com

Sep 13

WordPress Plugged

By mikefilsaime | Uncategorized

In an ever-growing market of blog platforms, WordPress stands tall, primarily because of the ever-growing collection of plugins. The range of exciting modifications that are available – often free of charge – is endless, making it the perfect tool for internet marketers and small business websites.

The following WordPress plugins are all highly recommended, they won’t cost you a cent, and they’re designed to improve your blog or protect it.

1. Akismet [http://akismet.com]
Akismet is generally recognized as the most effective tool for tackling blog spam. It reviews each comment posted to your blog and, when it identifies spam, it blocks it from appearing on your site. It rarely misses comment spam, and false- positives are rare.

This plugin is so good, WordPress automatically installs it for you as part of the basic setup, but you need to manually activate it before it will start to work. Check the “Plugins” area in the WordPress control panel and if Akismet is in your “Inactive Plugins” list, just click to activate it.

Akismet

2. All in One SEO Pack [http://tinyurl.com/wpseopack]
SEO is a particularly important factor for blogs because search engines have a special fondness for their content-oriented focus. This plugin gives you easy control over those crucial META tags – Title, Description, and Keywords – for every single post.

If you’re experienced in SEO, you’ll be pleased to note that additional options allow you to specify default parameters for automatically generating META tags, as well as an easy way to apply “noindex” to the category and archive sections of the blog.

3. WordPress Database Backup [http://tinyurl.com/wpbkup]
I learnt about the importance of creating backups of your work the hard way! On one of my early sites I lost two whole years of work in one go. Learning to create backups as part of your daily routine is a job that is easy to put off but this plugin means that procrastination can no longer be excused. With just a few clicks, WordPress Database Backup creates backups of your core WordPress tables (as well as other tables of your choice) and compiles them into one file, ready for you to download and store safely.

4. WordPress e-Commerce [http://tinyurl.com/wpselling]
If you thought blogging was just about articles, then you’ve underestimated the power and flexibility of the WordPress platform. With this state-of-the-art e-Commerce plugin, you can start selling digital or physical products, directly from your blog!

5. Ultimate Google Analytics [http://tinyurl.com/wptracking]
Working in conjunction with your Google Analytics account, this plugin lets you track the outgoing links that your visitors use on your blog, without having to manually tag every single link.

6. WP Cache [http://tinyurl.com/wpcache]
The speed with which your blog pages load will often determine whether someone will continue browsing your site or will go elsewhere. Even an additional second or two can make all the difference. This plugin caches your blog pages into static files, so your visitors don’t have to wait for every page to be compiled from scratch.

Many WordPress users won’t notice a great deal of difference when using this plugin but, if your server is particularly slow, or if you get a large volume of traffic in a short space of time, WP Cache can make a huge boost to the performance of your blog.

These six plugins above will give you an excellent start in optimizing your WordPress site, and allowing it to perform to its fullest potential. One word of warning however, to keep everything running smoothly, make sure you check the plugins that you’ve installed on a regular basis to see if there are any updates that need to be downloaded.

There are many more useful plugins out there and it’s worth having a look to see what’s available. On the official WordPress website alone, there is a directory of over 5000 to browse through [http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/].

For more Great Useful Tips visit my blog: http://www.smashingblog.com

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By Lucius Saltibus
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This article first appeared in the August 2009 issue of the MarketingDotCom newsletter. You can get a free copy of the latest issue for the price of shipping at http://the7figuresecrets.com

Sep 11

Remembering 9/11 – What Were You Doing That Day?

By mikefilsaime | Uncategorized

Hey Guys,

We live in a post 9/11 world. I actually remember when you would get off the plane and people would greet you at the gate as soon as you exited the plane b/c they did not need a boarding pass to get to the gate.

I remember getting the call from my wife at 8:30 or so in the morning to put on the TV.

The first plane had hit.

I called my dad and we watched together wondering how a plane could not avoid that target.

And then the 2nd plane hit and instantly witness horror. I knew then like you all did we were under attack. We were at war with evil.

I knew right there, the world would never be the same. I was scared there would be more. And as we know there was.

I cried from shock as I spoke to my dad. I did not know what to do. I needed to connect with everyone but did not know if I should shower, drive, call people.

I was so scared.

I watch the news for 1 more hour as more bad news unfolded and the towers fell.

I wondered who I knew that was in NY City.

I showered and drove to work and when I got there everyone and the customers at the Toyota dealership were watching the TV in the waiting room.

Many were crying.

We went to the 4th floor and I looked out to NYC and I saw the skyline and the smoke pummeling into the sky.

I was shocked.

The world stopped for about 3 days. Who would come to buy a car? We literally went to work to watch 24 hour news and a customer would come in and we felt like saying “Really, you need to buy are car now??” But we still had to do our jobs.

I had not started marketing yet. In fact it was 11 months later I found Franks Instant Internet Empires (the first course I ever saw.)

Life was different then.

I think the country is stronger now.

I am taking the day off to remember those that died and those that died in the line of duty and reflect on how happy I am to be in this world and have great friends and family.

I am tankful to have you all in my life.

What were you doing the day it happen and how
did you find out?

Thanks,

Mike Filsaime

Sep 09

Five + Five = Five

By mikefilsaime | Uncategorized

How to Stay On Track with Your Five-Year Goal

Obviously there’s a problem with the math in the title of this article; we both know five plus five does not equal five. This is just a motivational equation I use to help people tackle one of the most difficult aspects of wealth building or personal development: The long-term goal.

You’ve heard it before, probably numerous times: Long-term goals are critical to your success. This is easy enough to grasp from a conceptual position but most people struggle with the idea of how to stay focused on a goal over a long period of time.

In this article I’m going to show you how to set, not just any long-term objective, but a five-year goal! I’ll also explain how you can always check whether or not you’re keeping on track. In the formula shown in the title, the final Five represents your five-year goal. The ‘Five + Five’ represents the secret formula for attaining it.

Before moving forward you need to decide (if you haven’t already) where you want to be five years from now. It’s good to have a complete vision that encompasses all areas of your life; this vision may entail numerous goals for the areas of wealth, health, relationships, and so forth. Deciding on your five-year goal is really something only you can do but I will give you the following advice:

Don’t worry about what you think is “realistic”. Instead, decide what you really want your life to look like in five years and resolve that you can and will see this vision through to completion. Let’s look at the Five + Five part of the formula you’ll use for nailing your five-year goal.

The first Five represents the five people in your life with whom you spend the most time. Think it over, then list the five people in your life that you socialize with the most. These are probably your friends and close family members but business associates may also be included.

Once you know who these people are, spend a few minutes taking a good look at them. Do they share your vision of the world? Are they setting goals and moving in directions that are in alignment with your hopes and dreams? Or do they have radically different ideals, values and agendas? Be brutally honest – your success depends upon it.

The key to unlocking your desired future is total awareness of both your thinking, and the thinking of your closest associates. It’s true to say, you become not only what you think about but also who you spend most of your time with. Do you know any fabulously wealthy people who hang out in the housing projects with their five unemployed friends? How many personal trainers do you know who spend most of their time at the bar with out-of-shape binge drinkers?

If your goals include being healthy, wealthy and happy but your group of friends are a bunch of overweight smokers, heavily in debt, never have cash in their pockets and constantly gripe about their lives… Guess what? The odds of your success in the realms of health, wealth and happiness are slim to none. The world is absolutely full of people who set wonderful goals, even start working toward those goals, but ultimately never attain what they claim to want. Why? A poor choice in “friends”.

The people who hold you down like a pair of cement boots are not your true friends; especially if they openly berate your high aspirations and deliberately attempt to keep you in their comfort zone. True friends celebrate your ideals and want to see you be as happy as possible. You must surround yourself with people who are on the same life path and who have the same or very similar goals; internalize this notion and you can achieve any goals in life.

The second Five is about the information or content you are putting into your mind and represents the last five books or CDs you have absorbed. Go ahead and list these now.

If you can’t remember the last books or audios you checked out then you’re definitely not doing enough of either! Successful people in all walks of life, almost without exception, spend time reading and listening to audios in their field, on a regular basis. This is a habit you must develop if you want to experience your optimal achievements.

Sadly, the average person in the U.S. reads only one book per year after high school. This likely has a direct correlation with the fact that, by the age of 65, the average person is also dead broke and can’t afford to support themselves in retirement.

It’s imperative that you fill your mind with content that serves your ideals and challenges you to push forward to new heights. This includes books and audios in the genres of business, marketing, health, personal development, even philosophy. The books or CDs on your list will tell you a lot about how you’re programming yourself to think. If the list has five great titles that encourage productivity, then you’re on track, otherwise you need to create a new list of titles and get to work on them right away!

The last Five, or the sum of the formula, is your five-year goal. You can tell, based on the first two numbers, whether or not you are currently on track with this goal. The people you spend your time with and the books and audios you absorb into your unconscious mind will have the most dramatic impact on your future. Take this to heart and get to work making any changes needed in both your group of friends and your monthly reading list.

Success is simple, but not easy. It takes the ability to grow, stretch, search, and enjoy everyday as you progress towards your 5-year goal. Give my simple but powerful “Five + Five = Five” formula a try and let me know how it works for you.

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By John Di Lemme
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This article first appeared in the August 2009 issue of the MarketingDotCom newsletter. You can get a free copy of the latest issue for the price of shipping at http://the7figuresecrets.com

Sep 06

Tweet Soup – Twitter Never Tasted So Good

By mikefilsaime | Uncategorized

Maybe you’re like I was a few years ago. Maybe you’re thinking what I used to think:

“Twitter is short for Time Waster”

or

“Twitter is just not a business tool”

or

“I joined Twitter and I just don’t get it”

I’ve introduced a number of people to Twitter and I hear things like this all the time. Especially the last statement. Typically what happens is that someone will join up, invite some of their friends and then, lo and behold, sit there impotently waiting around for something to happen.

Although the founders of Twitter claim that it’s just a micro-blogging tool, it really has become a rudimentary social network. This means that if you want to get anything out of Twitter, you’re going to need:

  • A Network (people you follow and people who follow you)
  • Social Interaction with said people

If you’re jumping into Twitter and looking at it primarily as a way to make money, I promise that you’re going to fail miserably and fail quickly. Turning a profit from your Twitter activity IS possible, but there are a number of steps that precede it:

  1. Get a good network of followers going. As already mentioned
  2. Build relationships with your network.
  3. Get your followers to click on your links & tell others about you by “retweeting” (forwarding your message to their followers).
  4. Then, and only then, consider how you might monetize the network.

In fact I recommend that you don’t even bother thinking about making any money with your twitter contacts until you’ve got at least 5000 followers.

Whoa! 5000 followers? “How,” you might ask, “am I going to get 5000 followers?”

Simple… Follow other people first.

There are stacks of strategies out there but this is the one that works far better than any other because it’s based on the law of reciprocity. You follow someone… they follow you back. Depending on your industry or niche, you can expect anywhere from 20 to 50% of people you follow to follow you back.

Whoa, whoa, whoa… hold on a second, Harris. What do you mean, “depending on my niche or industry?”

Ah, almost forgot… That’s another really cool thing about Twitter.

You can develop a really TARGETED list of people who are actually interested in what you have to say.

You happen to be the only YOU there is, so create yourself a great profile and background for your Twitter account that shows what YOU are really about. Not all, but some people will be attracted to you and your interests.

To find Twitter users that are in your niche or share your interests, go to a service like MrTweet.com, WeFollow.com or Twibes.com. Just type in your keywords and you can easily pick out the most popular people in your industry. But don’t stop there; follow their FOLLOWERS as well.

That’s right – follow the “popular kid’s” followers.

There are a number of automated ways to do this but a lot of people still do it by hand or even have an assistant do it for them. Either way you wanna slice it, you’re going to want to follow a few hundred people a day to really see who will follow you back.

Once you start implementing this strategy you’re also going to want to regularly “clean house”. About once a week, Un-Follow anyone that’s not following you back. This will keep your ratios of following to followers in line.

I should warn you that this tactic is a little sneaky. Some say it’s not “real” or you’re “cheating” or something like that. I say, as long as YOU are a REAL person and you interact in a REAL way, it doesn’t matter *how* you get your followers. Lately I’ve been seeing a lot of differing opinions from people about this particular aspect of Twitter.

One thing I’ve seen a lot of conversation about, is that there are people who find it odd that others (me included) go through our list of followers and un-follow people who don’t follow us back. The common view is that this is, somehow, rude behavior.

I have a slightly different opinion about that and I’ll be happy to share it with you.

I picture Twitter a lot like a cocktail party. I’m mingling and hanging out. There are a bunch of people in the room and I get to float around and engage in conversation with people on a variety of topics. It’s a lot of fun. I get to make connections and meet lots of new people.

The thing is… there’s always the guy in the corner with the lampshade on his head.

You know the one. I’ve tried to connect with him, thrown out a joke or two, but the guy’s pretty wrapped up in his own little world. He’s got a small audience of seekers that just love that lampshade bit, but he’s not paying a bit of attention to me.

So I walk away.

Is that rude? I don’t think so. Nor do I think that unfollowing people who don’t follow me back is either. Twitter is a big, ongoing conversation. I want to talk, have people respond, and have others even retweet what I have to say. Why waste time with people who don’t want my attention and don’t want to give me any of theirs?

At any rate, it’s very important that you only un-follow people once per week (maybe twice if you’re ballsy), otherwise you will awaken the Twitter gods and they could very well suspend your account. I have a pattern that I adhere to and I highly recommend you do so too.

  • Every Day – follow a few hundred people.
  • Once Per Week – Un-Follow people who haven’t followed you back.

This will get you thousands of followers per month and you’ll be at that magic number of 5000 in no time. Remember, the main formula is:

  1. Get followers.
  2. Build relationships with them.
  3. Get them clicking & retweeting.
  4. Make money.

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By Harris Fellman
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This article first appeared in the August 2009 issue of the MarketingDotCom newsletter. You can get a free copy of the latest issue for the price of shipping at http://the7figuresecrets.com