The Square

July 1, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

Technology never ceases to amaze me (both the phenomenal ways it positively impacts our lives and the disturbing things people do to others utilizing technology).  This is fortunate for me since I spend most of my day working with people’s shopping carts and websites.  Today was no different.

Today, I went with my Mom and my youngest to the Farmer’s Market.  I meant to drive by an ATM to grab some cash but managed to not see a single ATM on my way to the market.  Farmer’s Markets are one of the few places these days where the currency is primarily dollar bills and coins!  Oh the horror!

As I browsed from vendor to vendor sampling the goodies – I even sampled peach ketchup which wasn’t entirely awful but that’s another story – I decided I needed the yummy black pepper goat cheese enough to borrow some cash from my Mom.  However, to my delight I saw their “We accept Credit Cards” sign.  I whipped out my debit card and the cheese guy whipped out his iphone and “The Square”.

Here’s the amazing part, this little 1″ square device swipes my card, asks me to sign the screen of his phone with my finger and requests either my cell phone or email address.  And……..Viola!  Before the cheese is even in my bag a receipt has been texted to my phone.

It’s amazing to me the number of ways that technology impacts our lives!  Less than a few years ago, I would have sadly left the cheese behind kicking myself because I forgot to bring some cash.  Today, in a matter of seconds, I’ve paid for it, received a receipt and been awed in the process.

The cheese was super yummy.  Technology is amazing.  Life is good.

P.S.  If you are interested in finding out more about The Square – check it out here- https://squareup.com/  (No affiliate link, just a plain ‘ole link to their site)

P.P.S.  The peach ketchup was somewhat like Peach Butter just less sweet and with more of a kick.  Give it a try sometime.

Easy Timer: Great WordPress Plug-In

March 3, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

Today I had a request from a client to insert an auto date script into their salespage.  No problem!  It’s a quick five minute update to a salespage, right?

Only one problem, this salespage is in WordPress and apparently the theme or WordPress doesn’t like the script.  In Firefox it simply ignored the script.  In Internet Explorer, the salespage ceased to display anything after the script, Why the two browsers treated the script differently and the beauty of Firefox is content for another blog post.

So what is a WordPress girl to do?  Find a plug-in of course!  And find a plug-in I did.  Easy Timer is a great plug-in to insert today’s date as well as various countdowns!  All you do is install the plug in and add simple short codes to you post or page.  Fabulous!

Not only will the plug-in display today’s date……

August 21, 2017

It will tell you what time it is… It’s 10:50.

And it will also countdown to important dates. For instance…

I hope you enjoyed this post!

Thanks for stopping by! I’d love to hear what WordPress plug-ins you find essential. Leave a comment below.

P.S. If you are a client don’t worry – I am not taking off for “National Goof Off Day.” 🙂

Inspiration In Odd Places

April 22, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

If I’m known for anything it is generally for scrapbooking. A simple google of my name will find lots of scrapbook pages featuring my kids and then other people’s layouts using my digital designs.  This evening I was seeking some inspiration for a scrapbook page and found this fun website with lots of terrific life lessons that apply to life, work and hobby. Here are just a few of my favorites that I thought you might like too.   If you like them or the website, visit and leave a comment or find a post-it that speaks to you and share with your list, readers or followers.

worklikeudont

makethemostofto

knowurownworth

giveitalluvgot

donethingthat

Hope you enjoyed these post-its of wisdom!

The Cobbler’s Children Have No Shoes

April 21, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

I’m sure you have heard the phrase before which basically says that because the cobbler is so busy earning money making shoes for other people, his own children have no shoes.  That is more or less the story of my blog and website.  I am very blessed with great clients who keep me busy with their own work as well as a steady stream of referrals and new clients.  Thus, my own blog and website look terrible.  In the next few weeks, I will be rolling out a new look, new services and packages, a portfolio and more!  In the meantime, please bear with me.

Here are a few recent projects that I am  excited to share with you and will be part of the portfolio being added to the site in May.

Blog Redesign:  The Power Publicist

Blog Layout, Header Design, Wishlist Member Set Up: Parent Coaching for Autism

Header Design: Easy Affiliate Management

Blog Layout and Header Design: Healthy Mom Happy Kids

Designing WordPress blogs and setting up membership programs using WishList Member is one of my favorite things to do. If you are interested in finding out more or working together, please use the contact form and let’s get started!

WordPress Plug-Ins to Protect Your Blog or Website

April 7, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

WordPress is one of the most popular blogging platforms used by home businesses and entrepreneurs. It’s out of the box robustness, do-it-yourself ease of use and search engine friendliness has meant that many people are also choosing to use WordPress for their main website too.

To protect your blog or website, there are many excellent WordPress plug-ins that you can use. Below are several plug-ins to install that will protect your blog in the event of a server crash, hack or other unfortunate event.

Automatically Update Your WordPress Version

WordPress is constantly evolving. The WordPress developers work feverishly to make WordPress as user-friendly as possible as well as keeping it up-to-date with trends and changes in the Internet and search engines. As a result, a new version of WordPress is released every few months or more. This could be a big hassle, except – as you might have guessed, there is a plug-in to help you stay current.

WordPress Automatic Upgrade is exactly as it sounds. It will prompt you through 5 easy steps to updating your version of WordPress. Previously you had to download the software, upload it to your server and install the upgrade. This plug-in saves users lots of time and frustration!

WordPress upgrades often involve closing up security holes that hackers have unveiled to wreak their havoc. Keeping your WordPress version current is important to the security of your site.

Back Up Your Blog Automatically

Imagine the devastation of having months or years of posts on your blog and losing it all to a hacker or a server crash. No worries if you have the following plug-ins installed!

WordPress BackUp is an essential plug-in for all bloggers and blog administrators. This plug-in automatically backs up your theme, plug-ins and uploads file. You can schedule the frequency of the backups and have the files zipped and emailed to an address you designate. This plug-in should be considered a “required” plug-in for all bloggers.

WP-DBManager allows you to automatically schedule the back up your WordPress database. This plug-in can backup, repair, restore and fix your database. It too should be considered a “required” plug-in.

The combination of these two plug-ins will protect you in the event of a blog disaster.

In general WordPress is a very stable platform. Aside from the automatic upgrade, hopefully you will never need these plug-ins. However, the ease of installing these plug-ins and the value they can provide if disaster were to occur, make them essential for any blogger or WordPress website owner.  I strongly encourage you to protect your site by adding these plug-ins as soon as possible.

What are Joint Venture Giveaways?

April 2, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

A Joint Venture Giveaways can be a wonderful way to expand your reach, build your list and participate in a wonderful event that supports multiple entrepreneurs and small business owners. I have multiple clients who participate in Joint Venture Giveaways or coordinate them and I have seen first hand the benefit they offer in terms of list and client-base building.

What Exactly Is A Joint Venture Giveaway?

The name makes it sound great but what exactly does it mean? A joint venture giveaway is an event where business owners provide free products in order to draw in customers. By partnering with other business owners, you are able to connect with members of their community and share what you have to offer. In turn, your community learns about the other joint venture partners participating.

Everyone loves freebies, potential customers and clients included.  Joint venture giveaways aren’t just any freebie. Joint venture giveaways are an opportunity to showcase what you have to offer.  They are an opportunity to share your talents and skills with a whole new audience and therefore what you giveaway is important and should offer real value.

Joint venture giveaways are often created around an event such as a Telesummit or a particular holiday.  Since the events we are discussing are online events, the free giveaways are almost always digital in nature. This allows potential customers to instantly receive your free giveaway.

There are many products that you can give away. Ebooks and article packs are very popular and, if you are not a writer, can easily be picked up from a PLR site. Have you made a video? Recorded an interviewed you did with someone? These are all very popular and easy to pull together giveaways.

How You Can Participate

Joint ventures can be general or specific.  For instance, some joint ventures are created to inform people about creating traffic for their website or how to get free publicity. Others might be more general such as self improvement or health. Be on the lookout and keep your ears open and you’ll hear about many joint venture giveaway opportunities.

There are two ways to be involved in a joint venture giveaway. First you can participate and get involved. Find out what is being offered, sign up and take advantage of the giveaways. You  may find that you will learn about new tools, memberships and products that can help you in your business.

Another way to participate in a joint venture giveaway is to be a contributor. As a contributor you would be one of the many business people offering a free giveaway.  In exchange for your giveaway, members are required to opt-in to your list. This is an excellent opportunity to grow your list and impress potential customers with your terrific giveaway.

From the highly recognized Internet marketer to a newbie, anyone can take part in joint venture giveaways if they are serious about building their list and growing their business.  When you hear about a joint venture giveaway, step forward and ask how you can participate. While some events are closed, many business owners will be honored that you wanted to participate and welcome you to join in, especially if you have good content to offer.  After all the more businesses who participate in the giveaway, the wider the audience that all participants can possibly reach.  Ultimately, it is a win-win for everyone involved!

Customizing Your Opt-In Box

March 3, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Have you seen aWeber’s new Opt-in Box customization feature?  It is fantastic! No more boring opt-in boxes.  aWeber has included multiple templates, color schemes, themes and ways to customize it to match your site and catch people’s attention.  In addition, you can save it and tweak it for later. I’m most impressed and glad to see aWeber listening to and acting upon customer suggestions.

Thanks for stopping by! Have a great day!

Mutual Respect is Key to VA-Client Relationships

January 14, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Yesterday I received a phone call from a client who simply called to tell me that she has my invoice and hasn’t forgotten about it.  She’s a very good client and pays my invoices in a timely manner so truthfully, I really wasn’t very concerned.  She explained that she is waiting for a very large payment from one of her clients that has delayed her personal bills as well as my invoice.

Why do I mention this? Because I so appreciate her show of respect for me, my business and family needs.  As business owners  and entrepreneurs, we understand that things happen. Most of us have experienced this first hand ourselves. Not only did she show me respect, she also saved me time and energy. I didn’t spend time sending an email asking if she had received it or to send a 2nd invoice. Also, I didn’t spend any energy worrying about it.  Now I can manage my expectations and cash flow accordingly.

The few minutes it took her to call me, tell me  that she has my invoice and that it is a priority meant so much to me.

Mutual respect is so important to a healthy Client-Virtual Assistant relationship. Without mutual respect it is very easy for resentment to build up, poor communication and ultimately contract termination.

Whether you are a VA or work with a VA, take the extra minute and make that phone call. It will go miles toward a productive and profitable relationship for all parties.

10 Tips for Using Videos to Market Your Business by Lisa Wells

October 23, 2009 by · Leave a Comment 

I decided to share this article by Lisa Wells not only because it is terrific content, but to issue myself and anyone else who isn’t using video yet on their website or blog to take the leap and record a video and add it to your site. It’s one of my goals for the coming week!

If you get busy and do a recording, link me up here. I’d love to see it! Thanks for visiting!
dreamstime_11293721Copyright 2009, Lisa Wells. Article reprinted with permission.

Even if you’re not selling video-based products, you should be using video to market your business. That’s because different customers respond better to video than they do to text. When you use both text and video, you’re reaching a wider audience than you would with text alone.

Here then are 10 tips and tricks for using video to market your business…

1. Keep ’em short

Whether you’re loading videos on YouTube.com or you’re using them to pre-sell products on your blog or site, keep them short (around five minutes or so)… especially if your audience includes people who don’t know you. If needed, break a long video into multiple smaller videos.

2. Post videos on your sales pages

You can use video sales letters to highlight the main points of your regular sales letter. You can also use videos to demonstrate what the product is and how easy it is to use. You may also get your satisfied customers to give you video testimonials. (Uh, you’ll notice that I did NOT do this on my sales page – bad hair month, lame excuse I know).

3. Choose your keywords carefully

If you’re loading your videos onto YouTube, choose keywords that your market is currently using to find information in your niche. You may also choose keywords that match those being used alongside other popular videos in your niche.

4. Know your purpose before you start

Before you film, choose one purpose for your video. Is it to get subscribers? Send traffic to your blog or membership site? Pre-sell a product? Whatever the reason, base your entire video around that singular goal. Don’t confuse your viewer by giving more than one option.

5. Create a call to action

You should create at least one call to action in your video, where you tell people exactly what you want them to do and why (e.g., “Go to www.AskMrVideo.com to grab Part 2 of this video – but hurry, you can only get it free for a limited time!”)

6. Encourage comments

If you’re posting your video on YouTube, on your blog or other social sites, encourage comments (even controversial ones). The more people talk about your video, the more your visitors will return to your page to see what’s new in the discussion.

7. Use other social sites to jumpstart the viral effect

If you want your video to go viral, you need to advertise it. One way to do that is to link to or embed your video on your other social media site pages, like Twitter or MySpace.

8. Blog about your video

Another way to advertise your video is to blog about it. If you embed your video on your blog, then encourage your visitors to bookmark it using Digg.com, StumbleUpon.com or similar.

9. Ask your JV partners to share your video with their prospects and customers

Yet another away to advertise your video is by asking your joint venture partners / affiliates to mention it in their newsletters, blog about it, and share it with their social media contacts.

10. Put a video on a CD/DVD and give it away for free

You can build a physical mailing list by putting your video on a CD or DVD and giving it away for free to those who give you a mailing address. (You can just charge for shipping.) Be sure to include an upsell at the end of your video.

You can use videos to pre-sell products, demonstrate products, teach your prospects, drive traffic to your sites, and grow your mailing list. Start applying these tips today – you’ll be amazed at what video marketing can do for you!

For tons of video tips, tricks, you name it, visit AskMrVideo.com and don’t forget to join his newsletter list!

Copyright 2009, Lisa Wells. Article reprinted with permission. Lisa Wells is a Certified eMarketing Associate who partners with successful coaches, consultants, and online marketers, managing their online marketing needs. Move your business to the next level and up your e-marketing game – sign up for her FREE e-course at http://www.eMarketingToolboxEssentials.com.

Do you have too much on your plate?

October 21, 2009 by · Leave a Comment 

tmohpwThat’s a rhetorical question.  Who doesn’t these days!  Well Melissa McCreery has teamed up with more than 10 extraordinary women entrepreneurs to help you clear off your plate and start enjoying your life more!

Dr. Melissa McCreery, psychologist and an internationally certified life coach, created Too Much on Her Plate Week to celebrate women who are looking to take control and make changes in their lives to become more successful.

Find out more and receive the incredible free gifts that are being given away here.  When you sign up you’ll learn the secrets of how to get fit, stay healthy, grow a business, achieve your goals and much more. And don’t worry, there’s nothing to buy. You won’t see a sales pitch once you sign up.

I have been downloading, reading and listening like crazy.  Soon my plate will be clearer and I hope you’ll find some relief too.  Thanks for visiting!

P.S. I’d love you to leave a comment and let me know what you think of the new look!