Monday, March 30, 2009

"Make Your Website Talk"

Have you noticed the latest online craze? No, it's not how to make a million dollars overnight, checkblueright although that idiotic idea is still floating around... It's adding voice to your website. "Ma Bell" meets the Internet, so to speak. If you spend any amount of time online I'm sure you've seen a number of sites employing this technology.

So who's behind this phenomenon and what's the benefit of adding voice to your website? I'm so glad you asked. In the cold, impersonal world of the Net,your voice adds a touch of warmth and personalization that can increase credibility, thus raising your conversion rate. Sound good? (No pun intended.) Of course it does.

So now that you're considering adding the sweet sound of your voice to your site, where might you want to use it? Depending on your website's content and theme, there are a variety of ways to incorporate your voice into it. For example:

- You might place a welcome message on your front page, summarizing your site's highlights, informing visitors of what they'll find, and thanking them for stopping by.

- If you have an "about us" page on your site, you might want to record a brief message to accompany your background info. This will help people feel as if they're actually meeting you.

- Since testimonials are a great enhancement to any site imagine if you actually added them in your customer's own voice. If you use one of the phone recording services you could give them the number and they could easily record how they feel about your products/services.

- If your site has been featured in an online interview or radio show, imagine including this audio in our site. Just think of it as your very own live press room.

One thing to consider is the quality of your voice. If it's not all that pleasant to listen to, you may want to employ the help of a friend, or you could hire a "professional" voice-over service. Do a search at Google and you'll find plenty of options. One such service is

So now that you're actually thinking of recording something and adding it to your site, how do you do it? There are many different ways, some more expensive then others. Let's examine some of your choices a little more closely.

1) MP3 Sound Stream:

Creates streaming audio from MP3 or Wav files. Produces high quality output for only $39.95.

2) Audio Player Pro:

Starting at only $47.00. This produces a code that you can paste onto your website that will enable the viewers' default player.

3) Audio Generator:

Streaming audio using just your browser. Easy to use, you can phone in your message or use MP3 files. Excellent sound quality. After recording your message paste some code onto your site and a button appears with your audio. $29.95 monthly.

4) SoundNails:

This program converts several MP3 files into the popular Flash format. The sounds can then be played in streaming mode without the need of a player like (Windows Media Player or Real Player) in a user-friendly way. 30 day free trial is available, with two versions offered ranging from $10.00 to $65.00.

5) Sonic Memo

Includes a step-by-step tutorial. You'll have to create your own MP3 files and upload them to your server. If you record WAV files, you'll have to first convert them to MP3 format. This software sells for $97.00.

6) Instant Audio:

Just record a message by phone and your website or e-mail is instantly audio-enabled. To check their sound quality call the phone number listed on the site, leave a message, then hit the play button on the site to listen. This service will cost you 29.95 a month.

Other Resources of Interest:

Free ebook that shows you how to add audio to your site at absolutely no cost to you. The book is rebrandable if you sign up for the affiliate program.

Internet Audio Guy:

Some pretty good resources here on adding audio, and if you subscribe to the ezine, you receive a 22-page free report entitled "Web Pages with Sound and Video."

Your site has been sending non-verbal messages for years; now it's time to break free and let it send a message everyone can hear. Adding audio to your website is not only easy to do, it can help you gain the trust of your site's visitors, thus increasing your conversion rate. So stop wasting your time and money, and start getting the sales you may be missing.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

“Death Through a Window”

A few days ago as I was going about my usual daily routine when I heard the sound of a blaring firewindow truck. When I looked out the window I saw a frantic woman in the driveway across the street waving her hands as the local police pulled up in the driveway. An ambulance arrived and took its place next to the police car, as a fire truck parked on the street. Definitely a lot of commotion going on at an elderly woman's home which is usually very quiet.

Almost as if watching a movie I couldn't tear myself away from the window as I watched the woman explaining that she could see the lady who lived in the house clearly through the window but when she rang the doorbell there was no response. The police decided to bust the glass and go in. I saw the emergency squad rush in with the gurney. When they came out less then 5 minutes later with no patient onboard. I just knew she was dead. My boyfriend said he saw the flutter of a white sheet through the front window of her home as they covered her body.

Not long after the fire truck and ambulance left leaving only the cop to stand guard over the body until the men in black came for her. My sister said when there's a death the police will stay until the body is picked up. I found it so strange that the police have to guard someone who is dead. I mean, do they think someone is going to run away with the corpse? Is she going to get up and walk away on her own? I don't think so. I found the whole process very strange.

Hours went by and family members started arriving and hugging each other in the driveway. Most certainly trying to console each other. The cop kept moving his car and pacing back and forth in the driveway as more and more people filled up the home.

The woman who lived there was old. I didn't know her that well, but I would presume her to be in her eighties. My dogs barked at her every day as she walked to her mailbox to pick up her daily correspondence. Now they would bark no more. This quiet woman who seemed to be so independent was now gone. Her whole life came to an end on this Spring like day. Was she sick? or did God just decide her time here was through? I had so many questions about someone I really didn't even know. I mean I saw her pull in and out of her driveway, her family and friends would come to visit, but to say I knew her. No, I did not. Yet, I felt sad that day knowing as everyone rushed about with their daily activities that this woman who had a family of her own, was now dead.

Her whole life came down to waiting for two guys in black suits to take her away. Take her away from where she had lived her entire married life. From the home where she had raised her children, created a life for herself and her husband, where so many memories were made. Now they were taking her away......and I couldn't stop staring out that window as they slowly drove down the street with the body of a woman whom I saw yesterday getting her mail and today was dead. There was just something not right about all of it.

I know we all have to die someday, but to be honest it scares me. None of us know when it will come or how it will all end. I just hope that when my time comes people will say kind things about me and my family and friends will miss me. I hope that I will have done worthy things and leave the world a little better of a place then it was when I entered. What can I do that might live on forever long after I'm gone.

We all wonder "what's the point?" What happens to us when we die? where do we go? Do our souls really leave our bodies and travel on? Until we each experience death for ourselves we'll never really know the answer to these questions. All I knew as I stared out the window that day was that death had come calling right across the street. I felt a sign of relief that it wasn't one of my family members or someone I deeply loved, but yet it was someone who mattered to someone else.

I slowly closed the blinds feeling safer already from deaths outstretched hand,and went back to my mundane daily existence but I couldn't shake the sad feelings I had as my day was interrupted by "death through a window".

Friday, March 20, 2009

“ Makes it Easy for Others to Retweet Your Tweets”

I’ve been using Twitter a lot more lately and discovering more ways to take advantage of this twitter_button push type of marketing. I’m sure everyone has their own reasons for using it and specific types of “tweets” they like to get. Me, I like interesting sites and articles. Things I can learn from to help me with  my online marketing. Not so much interested in what you had for dinner last night or what you’re watching on TV. Sorry. I know it makes you human, but not so much what I want to know. TMI…..

If you use Twitter you know how important it is to get others to “retweet” your tweets. If you don’t know that means they take what you sent out and send it out to their followers. This is called “retweeting”. 

Here’s a really slick service called RTLinks that shortens your link and at the same time makes it simple for others to retweet your message. When you shorten a link the page that comes up when someone clicks on that link has a frame at the top which includes a link to easily “retweet”, a link to your profile. Simple to use and free. Check it out at

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Google Chrome Gets an Update

It's no secret that I love all things Google. They have a knack for taking good things on the net and making them even better. Hell, if they could rule the world, that would be OK with me. Do you use their Chrome browser? If you do you might want to know that they released an updated beta version which you can download at the link above.

So what's new and improved? According to the Google Blog it's speed. They claim it's 25% faster on their V8 benchmark and 35% faster on the Sunspider benchmark than the current stable version.

I'll admit I haven't played with Chrome a lot. I did download it on my desktop but my boyfriend uses it a lot more then I do. It's a pretty plain browser but it gets the job done. I don't think their going to take over Internet Explorer or FireFox anytime soon, but it's a nice addition to the browser family.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Seems as if every time I turn on the TV or open a newspaper it's all bad news. More people out of work, more people losing their homes, this company going bankrupt, that one going bankrupt. It's all so negative I'm getting to the point where I don't even want to watch the news. Can we just say something positive for once? I really think that all of this negativity just breeds more of the same. Anyone with me on this?

Well, I've got something good for you. If you're looking for a job this site, Razume will help you with your resume. You can build your own resume using their "ResumeBuilder" or if you already have one you can upload it and receive high-quality feedback on it. So how much is all of this expertise going to cost you? Absolutely nothing. Isn't that music to your ears? Yes Virginia, there really is a Santa Claus and sometimes you can get something for nothing. So if you need resume help strap on your hiking boots and get over to

Another cool site, since we're talking about finding a job is - Just type in the kind of work you're looking for and it goes out and searches thousands of job boards, newspaper classifieds, and company websites. Can you say "EASY".

I hope you find these two sites helpful and next time you see someone who's down take a minute to do something nice for them or say something positive. One person really can make a difference.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

NOTE: The following is a guest post from one of my favorite internet marketing mentors. Why I Love Affiliate Marketing - Part 1 By Jimmy D. Brown of "Affiliatenaire"

Do you find yourself "starting" to create your own product to sell online, but never "finishing" it? One of the things I love about affiliate marketing is --

** You don't need to create your own products **

Many people find the idea of creating their own products tobe an overwhelming and even paralyzing task.

* I don't have any good ideas!* I'm not a writer!* There's too much competition!* I don't know how to set everything up!* I can't figure out where to start!* It's too hard!

These are just a few of the valid reasons many people givewhen it comes to not creating their own products to sell. I'm sure with a few minutes of brainstorming, we could come up with a list of many more.

With affiliate marketing, you don't need your own products.You simply promote someone else's already proven successful offer for a commission.

And, truth be told, even if you ARE a writer and you DO havelots of ideas and you CAN figure it all out...

** Nobody wants to create new products all the time **

As good as you may be, you don't know everything! Why try to create a product on every topic imaginable in your market when you can earn just as much money by simply promoting someone else's really good offer as one of yourprofit streams?

That's why I love affiliate marketing. You don't need to create your own products.
Jimmy D. Brown is the author of "Affiliatenaire", teaching you how to create big-time affiliate commission checks in only 1-3 hours each week. Discover how you can get cash in the bank without a website, experience or even an idea! Visit

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

"The Fast-Track to Using Google Adwords"

google_00235_thumb Remember back when Al Gore allegedly said he "invented the Internet?" Well, he didn't, it was Google. Alright, I'm kidding, but sometimes it does appear that way. Google has consistently launched one killer application after another, and they weren't playing around when they entered into the pay-per-click arena with their "Adwords" program. Adwords is one of the largest online advertising networks, reaching more than 80% of all Internet users.

So how does it work? You choose keywords/phrases that are related to your products/services, write the text ads that will be shown when someone performs a search for your keywords, set a daily budget and the cost you want to pay every time someone clicks on your ad (C.P.C), and you're ready to run. There is no activation fee and no minimum monthly spend amount.

Ads are called "sponsored links", and appear along with search results on Google, as well as other affiliated search engines and "content sites" in the Google Network. This type of keyword based advertising will help you to reach a highly targeted audience quickly and easily. Not only can you run text ads, but also image/animated ads - even video. If you're a beginner at pay-per-click marketing, I would suggest you start out with text ads. You'll need to "learn to walk" before you run.

So what does a text ad look like? It consists of a 25 character headline, a description that is 2 lines of no more than 35 characters, and what's called a "display url". This url can reflect any domain you like because when it is clicked upon, the browser will take them to your "destination url". This is set up behind the scenes and does not appear in the ad itself.

A 3 line text ad might sound like a lot of room, but it's not. You've got a small area to make a huge impact on the searcher and make them want to click. Don't underestimate the power of a well written ad. If you don't know a lot about how to write "good copy", I suggest you study up. You'll want to include what's referred to as a "call to action" somewhere in the description. You'll also want to include your keywords if possible in your title and ad copy so they will appear in a bold font when your ad is displayed. For help see:

You also need to send them to the page that's most relevant to your ad copy. This page is called a "landing page", and you'll want to make sure it converts. A conversion happens when the visitor performs the action you intended. For example, signs up for your newsletter, buys your product, etc. With Adwords conversion tracking you'll be given a snippet of code to paste on your web page wherever any conversion takes place. For example, your thank you page. This allows you to track how well your pages are converting. You can also use Google Analytics. For more see:

Now that landing page load time is being factored into "quality score", you'll also want to pay attention to your page's load time. Quicker is better. For more information on this topic see....

Now, let's talk about keywords. The biggest mistake most people make is choosing single keywords. You're much better off with two and three word combinations. For example if you sell dog food, instead of targeting a generic term like "dogs", you'd be better off selecting "dog food". Remember, these keywords will be responsible for triggering your ads to appear, so do your homework and choose wisely. Targeting the wrong keywords can be a very expensive lesson. For help in choosing keywords use Google's tool located at-

When setting up your keywords, you'll also need to choose what's called a "match type". Here are your options:

1) Broad Match: The default setting. Searchers can
enter your keywords in any order and your ads
appear. Not the best option for targeted traffic.
2) Phrase Match: Your keywords must appear in
the exact order for your ads to appear. This is
more targeted than Broad Match.

3) Exact Match: This is the most targeted option.
The searcher must type in your key-phrase
exactly for your ads to appear.

4) Negative Match: You choose words you don't
want your ads to appear for when searched upon. For
example, typing in the word “-free” would stop your ads
from appearing if someone typed that word before
your key-phrase.

So who decides which ads will appear at the top? This is called "ad rank". Ads with the highest ad rank will appear at the top. Here's the formula, at least at this time as it's always open to change. Ad Rank=C.P.C. (cost per click) X Quality Score To understand this formula you'll need to know what factors go into "quality score".

Quality Score is determined by :

1) How relevant the keywords and ad copy are to the search query.

2) "The historical Click-through rate of the ad, and of the matched keyword on Google".

3) It also includes your account history, which looks at the click through rate of your keywords and ads.

4) Landing page load time.

And, according to Google "other relevant factors". One tip to increase your ad rank is to increase your cost per click, and improve your ad copy and keywords in order to increase your quality score. Ad ranking is determined slightly differently for the search network compared to the content network.

For the content network it looks like this:

Ad Rank= Content Bid X Quality Score

What is the difference between the Content Network and Search Network? Good question. I thought you'd never ask. This is another option you'll have to decide upon when setting up your account. If you choose "search sites", your ads are displayed on search results pages only. Google's search network consists of: AOL, Netscape, Earthlink, Compuserve, AT&T, Worldnet,,, Froogle and of course Google itself.

If you choose for your ads to appear in the "content network", this includes community websites, online publications and other information based sites that choose to display Adwords ads. Partners in the content network include sites such as: Google's Gmail, About, Lycos, NY, Infospace, Reed Business, HowStuffWorks,, Food Network, HGTV, and many other content based websites. Ads are targeted to the content of the individual pages.

You'll also have some control over where your ads appear and don't appear with what's called "placement targeting". You can actually pick and choose from websites you'd like your ads to appear on, or not to appear on. For more on placement targeting see

You can opt in to both search and content networks, or just one.

At this point you're probably thinking this is a lot to learn. And you're right - it is, but there are plenty of online resources to help you such as:

Adwords Help Center

Adwords blog

Google is a powerful Internet giant and makes for a mighty advertising partner. Make sure you harness some of that muscle, and you too can become an Internet force to be reckoned with.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Google Adsense Launches New Ad Format "Expandable Ads"

Google Adsense is a great way to make a little side income with your website. Google announced today a new ad format called "Expandable Ads". These are rich media ads that when clicked by the user, expands the ad beyond the original size of the ad unit. Expandable ads are run on Google's content network. To find out more go to:

Monday, March 02, 2009

My New NetBook

I just finished watching "The Girls Next Door" and I gotta tell ya I'm a bit choked up. Yea, yea, go ahead and have your fun, but I really loved that show. Those damn twins had to come in and ruin everything. The kicker is Holly is the one who discovered them and brought them home in the first place. Then they turn around and take over the mansion. See what happens when you're nice.

Anyway, I wanted to fill you in on this cool little netbook I recently purchased. They call em e-machines or netbooks as they're way smaller then your traditional notebook and their sole purpose really is to surf the web and email. From the first time I say one in Cosco I had to have one. Now I have my trusty IBM workhorse so I really didn't need one, but I love gadgets and for a little over 300.00 how could I resist.

The one I bought is by ASUS and you can get a look at it here:

The look of it is very sleek. It's shiny ebony case is very designer looking but it does have a drawback of holding onto my fingerprints. The FBI would love this thing (LOL). It has a high-resolution screen at 1024X600 but if you don't mind scrolling you can set it higher if you like. Wireless is built in so cyber cafe here I come. It also has 160 GB of storage, 1.3 Megapixel WebCamera. It has an Intel Atom N270 1.6GH processor inside with an 8.9" LCD display. There's also a nice multimedia memory slot in the front for your camera or phone card which makes it easy to upload your pictures.

I've always been an XP fan and this comes pre-loaded with Win XP home edition and Microsoft Works for your document creation. The keyboard is not that much smaller but it does take some getting use to and the touch mouse is new for me. I'd also like to see the mouse selection controls to be a little easier on the fingers. Besides that this thing is really tough. I know you're jealous, aren't ya. The size is unbelievable at about 10.47" X 7.53" and it weighs about 3Lbs. This one was a little heavier then some of the other models I looked at but it came with a 6 volt battery. Most of them come with a 3 or 4 volt so you'll want to pay attention to that when deciding on which one you want. To me the whole point of a netbook is to be wireless and what good would it be if the battery was dead all the time. This one should last about 5 hours on a full charge.

So there you have it. Merle has a new toy and now I'm off to play.

Sunday, March 01, 2009

"100 Percent GiveAway Looking for JV Partners"

I just wanted to let you know.. 100 Percent Giveaway is set to launch soon! Like the name says, this giveaway offers 100% commission on all upgrades made by contributors and members that you invite.

Some of the biggest names in the business are going to be promoting this event, directing tons of members and new leads to your gift.

All you have to do is sign up, submit a gift, and promote the event to start earning 100% commissions while building your list! The event opens its doors on March 20th.

Hurry up and get in on this while you can! The sooner you start promoting the better!