Posts Tagged web tools

The Web Marketing Connection

Image courtesy of Sommai from freedigitalphotos.net

Image courtesy of Sommai from freedigitalphotos.net

In the hustle and bustle of running a business it can be easy to be confused and concerned about the things that matter. You’re trying to run the business, your mind full of daily details, it’s easy to miss out on what should or could be happening in the business.

Not everyone is good at all areas of the business, many are technically adept at the ‘doing’ side of the business, others more marketing or management focussed. So when things happen you need to know about to grow your business you can soon be overwhelmed. Let’s take marketing for instance.

In the ‘good old days’ marketing was a somewhat simpler affair, sales reps would drop in and sell you everything from T.V. space to to print advertising and sign writing, to name a few. These days there seems to be a more to it.

The technology revolution means people are now hassled via email and directly by organisations saying they can get their website on the first page of google, others say your website needs updating, oh and  how is that email campaign going… The list of questions, technical details and so on is seemingly endless.

Also know that some of these people can provide you with a solution that may not work, it may look alright to you but in the back end functionality details can be missed and performance may not be all you want it to be.

Like anything in business there are times when you have to trust your gut instinct about the people you are dealing with and the way you want to do business. Knowing if the technology solution is right for you can be a minefield but also know that with some research and effective questioning you can find more answers without being too bogged down with ‘techno babble’ here are a few points to consider…

The sales rep says…

  • We can get you on the first page of google – Any body can get on the first page if they google their own business name, ask them to show you examples of sites they have done which have achieved this ranking with appropriate key words. Now call that business and ask them what they thought of the web company in question
  • We can give you an email campaign that works for just $x per month – That’s good any examples of that? Do you have a red hot copy writer that will work directly with me to create sales letter type emails that will suit my prospects?
  • We can link with your social media – Yep so can I, generally it’s a no brainer to add in a link to your site
  • We make it so you can add in new info to your site – Great but is there a catch? Do you train me how to do that? Any others you have done that for? There are free options on the web for creating websites that you can add information to, photo’s videos, text etc so you should have full control of the content on your site.
  • We look after you – That’s great, but can I still have the access details for the hosting, the domain name registration etc so IF I change my mind I can take my web details elsewhere? Some will baulk at this, wanting you to be a customer for life. Others will give you all the details you need to be in control
  • It won’t cost much – For now… What about ongoing monthly fees and what do you get for that ongoing fee? Support? If you are on a tight budget you probably want to think twice about any ongoing fees and charges

There’s a start, I guess it’s all about due diligence in the end, just watch out for the technical details where the sales rep will want to confuse you with foot work, dazzle you with charm and deliver a knockout punch you may regret in the long run.

Here are some other web based marketing articles you might like to check out Content marketing Social media for business Using face book for business

Regards

http://stevegray.biz

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My favourite web tools. Part 1

My Favourites tools for the webThis isn’t a long list. In fact it’s only a few. However, they are products that I use every single day, and i’ve actually come to rely heavily on them, so I guess a short list of quality is better than a long list of lower quality, right? This is part 1, part 2 & 3 will follow in the coming weeks.

Part 1 – Roboform.

If you are like me, you have dozens, if not hundreds of log ins and passwords to remember.

I have several websites and blogs to manage and they each have a log in for the blog, one for the forum, one for the admin etc etc, I bank accounts, supplier sites – the list goes on. As of today, I have 212 log ins to various websites, all needing me to remember the URL, the log in name, and the password – yeah, that surprised even me 🙂

I also use the web a lot these days, like most of us, for purchasing, researching, enquiring products and services. So i’m constantly filling in forms – Name, address, age, hair colour……. – very time consuming.

About two years ago, I found the very nifty product – Roboform. Roboform is a little bit of software you load straight onto your PC that securely stores all your personal info.

RoboForm’s Key Features are;

  • So Easy – You remember one password, RoboForm remembers the rest. I suggest you don’t use your beagle’s name, ok?
  • Saves Time – With ONE CLICK RoboForm goes to a website and logs you in automatically. I can log into any site on the list – no finding the site, no remembering the log in, no remembering the password.
  • Saves More Time – RoboForm also fills long registration and checkout forms with one click. Roboform will fill in just about any form you find on the web. I save lots of time when signing up for service, newsletter, buying a product, making an enquiry. I’ve found a few it wont work with, like java applet stuff, but even then you can copy and paste faster then you can type it all in.
  • Secures Your Information – Stores passwords on YOUR computer, protects them with AES encryption. Hey, nothing is bullet proof, but Roboform’s encryption is far stronger than having your browser store your passwords in the cache.
  • Strengthens Passwords – Generates random passwords that hackers cannot guess. A strong password has, letters (a mix of upper and lower case), symbols, numbers, is min 8 digits long, and is apparently random in appearance. So, a strong password looks like this – 1&xT44B! – a weak password would be – Franklin (your beagle’s name that you use for every password, banking, your blog, your facebook, the lot!) The problem is of course, how do you possibly remember a password like the strong one, let alone remember dozens or hundreds of different ones? Roboform features a password generator that you can set to generate passwords of different length, different types of digits (numbers, upper / lower case text, symbols). It will fill the forms on the fly, and copy the password to you clipboard if the form you are using won’t allow auto fill in (some more secure sites like banks won’t allow auto fill in to stop robots)
  • Fights Phishing – Phishing is when you get those emails from a bank or PayPal or some such asking you to log in and confirm your details. Often these fake sites look so real that many unsuspecting users will “log in” and hand their name and password to the thieves on a silver platter.Fills passwords only on matching web sites. Just for the record, your bank will NEVER email you and ask you to log in.
  • Defeats Keyloggers – Somewhere along the line, we have all been infected by a malicious virus. A common threat are keyloggers, simply put, a virus records every keystroke, and send a small text file to the data thief at a pre-determined time. Roboform doesn’t use the keyboard to fill in your passwords, or to fill forms (like credit card forms), so keyloggers are rendered ineffective. You can also use your mouse to fill in the master password, so even that can be kept secure.
  • Simple to Use – Just download RoboForm and learn as you go. It really is intuitive and easy to use. Even if you are very new to the interweb, you will be Roboforming like a pro in no time.

There are a few other features – you can find more details here – too many for me to detail, but the three above are the ones I use every day. In fact, i’m using it right now. I can quickly and easily skip between different sites. At the moment i’m working from home, so i’m skipping between logging into the work network, Vertical Response, the WordPress log in for this blog, and the admin for www.freepromotips.com.au. Too easy!

The good folks at Robofrom also have a portable version – Roboform2go – for installation onto a usb. You can take that with you and log in on any PC (the portable version doesn’t work on your Mac)

When you buy Roboform, you also get access to the online system, which means you can even log into your account from anywhere without Roboform2go (I find having a USB easier and more convenient myself)

It’s ready to go for PC’s, but they haven’t yet produced a MAC friendly version. I’m told that will come, but for the moment they have created a system utilising the online product, and a java applet that sits in your safari or firefox menu bar (it may work in other browsers, but I don’t know. I only use Safari of Firefox on my Mac)

If you think that sounds good, you can trial it free or buy it here.

That’s my favourite web tool.Part 2 next week – Goodsync.

Bren

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