Be careful how you list names on your cell phone! Be Safe!
This lady has changed her habit of how she lists her names on her mobile phone after her handbag was stolen. Her handbag which contained her mobile phone, Credit card, purse…etc…. was stolen.
20 minutes later when she called her Hubby, from a pay phone telling him what had happened. Hubby says “I’ve just received your sms text asking about our Pin number. I replied a little while ago.”
They rushed down to the bank, the bank staff told them all the money was already withdrawn. The pickpocket had actually used the stolen hand phone to text “hubby” in the contact list and got hold of the pin number. Within 20 minutes he had withdrawn all the money from the bank account.
The lesson: Do not disclose the relationship between you and the people in your contact list. Avoid using names like Home, Honey, Hubby, sweetheart,Sayang…… Dad, Mum etc……. And very importantly, when sensitive info is being asked thru texts, CONFIRM by calling back.
Also, when you’re being texted by friends or family to meet them somewhere, be sure to call back to confirm that the message came from them. If you don’t reach them, be very careful about going places to meet “family and friends” who text you.
Psssst! Want to read a really bad sales letter? Check this one out.
A DECADE OF R&D IS FINALLY PAYING OFF I’m writing to you today to let you know about the really terrific coffeemaker I’ve developed. First of all, I know it’s TRULY terrific because I spent years studying coffeemakers of all kinds, from drip to perk to electric. I then expanded my field of research to include the commercial coffeemakers, and I learned all the possible secrets of what makes the java flow at the big café chains. Now, SEVEN YEARS LATER, I’m ready to let you in on the fruits of all my RESEARCH. I’ve developed the EZ CAFÉ and, let me tell you, it will make all other coffeemakers you have ever seen pale by comparison.
This is a modified version of a real sales letter. What’s wrong with it? Well, just about everything.
The headline is all about the writer and does not speak to the customer. Plus, it uses some business jargon — “R&D” for research and development — so it has an industry insider tone, which may actually confuse some consumers. We’re given absolutely no idea what the 10 years of work refers to. And we’re given no reason to care, either.
Nothing in the headline or the copy mentions “WIFM,” or “what’s in it for me.” As a potential customer, I’m lost. The headline alone bored me. The copy emphasizes all the wrong things and drones on about the years of development rather than the payoff I expect. Why should I care?
To be effective, a sales letter must JUMP out at you. It must grab your attention with a compelling promise for the reader and then deliver on it.
Besides a powerful headline, your sales letter must have an immediate clear benefit for the intended target. Then it must build a reader’s trust. It should make generous use of “you” and “your” — so it is clear the customer’s needs come first, not your desire to sell something.
Be upfront and bold about promising a prize or a tangible reward in exchange for time and attention. Forget cute or clever lead-ins. Begin by simply explaining “WIFM,” or “what’s in it for me.”
I’ve got more writing tips coming, but let me back up a bit and talk about your primary vehicle: direct mail.
Hitting your targets
After a hot romance with e-mail, marketers are again gravitating toward direct mail as they figure out how to use all possible channels to send seamless messages. In addition, companies are more sophisticated now about selecting the time and the medium that works best for each product. E-mail can be extremely effective. But direct mail remains the best way to reach the most targeted list.
Before writing any sales letter, of course, you must do the homework of acquiring and analyzing appropriate lists of targeted customers (for more on renting lists, see Microsoft’s Sales Leads for small businesses).
Sales letters are the most customized form of direct-mail marketing. Brochures or fliers, however glossy, tend to be impersonal and may be dismissed as “junk mail.” By contrast, sales letters should address the customer by name and need. You’re one step ahead.
The idea is to offer solutions that speak directly to your customer’s problems and challenges, whether that’s business-to-consumer or business-to-business.
To send out the right sales letter, harness these 11 tips from a cross-section of sales experts, coaches and trainers:
Build trust. Besides the benefit billed at the letter’s opening, you can bolster interest and inject pizzazz by adding high-profile endorsements from associates or former clients. “I put a testimonial quote from a marquee name at the top of my letter,” says Anne Miller, a New York City sales trainer who leverages compliments from such clients as Salomon Smith Barney, Estée Lauder and The New York Times.
Get to bona fides, quick. “You need to establish credibility and be believable by the second paragraph,” says sales coach Daryl Logullo at Strategic Impact in Vero Beach, Fla. This is where you explain who you are, why you’re so cool (or smart or cheap or special or useful) and what you have to offer. How you package that information, of course, varies with your targets and your products.
List a case study
Describe a success story
Outline key benefits of your product (besides the first one)
Define a problem and how you solved it for a client (don’t name names)
Avoid being long-winded or boring in this “credentials” section, cautions Bette Price, a management consultant based in Addison, Texas. “Be unique. Don’t just offer some generalized statement.”
Make it memorable. One of the advantages of a sales letter is that prospects can tuck it away for later action. “Great mailers have staying power-sometimes they will end up on a refrigerator door or a bulletin board for years,” says Wilson Zehr, chief executive of LaunchPoint, a Portland, Ore., direct-mail provider. He suggests you include reasons for your customers to spend more time with the letter and therefore more time considering your offer. For example, a computer repair service might include the top 10 tips for PC maintenance.
Emphasize good looks. “Design your document for visual impact,” says Deborah Dumaine, author of “Instant-Answer Guide to Business Writing: An A-Z Source for Today’s Business Writer.” “Make it easy to navigate so your reader reaches for it first-ahead of the competition’s.”
You can easily create professional-looking templates for your sales letter that use your company logo, branding and colors with Microsoft Publisher 2003, part of the Microsoft Office Small Business suite. Also, check out a related article, “5 tips and tricks for using Word for business,” to learn how to create sales letter templates with Microsoft Word.
Include a call to action. “Inform the reader about what he or she should do next,” says Joe Hage at MRA, a branding agency in Syracuse, N.Y. “An example is: ‘Please call me on my cell phone (917-555-0000) before Friday, the 28th.'” Or, say you’ll follow up with a phone call or more material. Then, of course, make sure you do.
And include an incentive. Always explain when, why and how customers should act, says Patti Abbate of Sunrise Public Relations in Needham, Mass. “Then, include an incentive for acting sooner, such as a discount, special offer or something free.”
Resist “Mail Merge.” Despite the ease and speed with which technology can “find and replace” in electronic documents, don’t succumb to the temptation of form letters. “The best sales letters, especially when dealing with your own current list, are quite individualized,” says Shel Horowitz, author of “Principled Profit: Marketing That Puts People First.”
Tap your database for information about a customer’s sales history and preferences. Then send specialized letters whenever it’s appropriate. “If you notice it’s been six months since a customer has been in, it might be time for a friendly ‘We miss you’ letter with an offer specific to that customer,” suggests Horowitz.
Forge connections. Similarly, don’t get caught up in pushing services or products. You want to develop a long-term relationship with the customer, not pressure him into one discounted sale. Use your letter to investigate whether you can solve customer problems or meet needs. Try to build a relationship that will last into the future.
Test. Test. Test. When you’re planning a bulk mailing, in contrast to a selected best-customer target, send out a few versions of the sales letter to small groups of targets. Then see what pulls.
Hit the right notes. “Your letter should sound like you,” says Annette Richmond, a career coach in Rowayton, Conn. If your style is casual and informal, you don’t want to create a stiff pitch letter, filled with bizspeak and corporate jargon. Match your letter to the way you do business.
One last tip: Before sending out the letters, calculate the highest possible response you can handle. Make sure the volume of your mail drop correlates to that expected response. You wouldn’t want to create the perfect pitch and then be unable to fulfill all the orders that come flooding in, would you?
Joanna L. Krotz writes about small-business marketing and management issues. She is the co-author of the “Microsoft Small Business Kit” and runs Muse2Muse Productions, a New York City-based custom publisher. Additional articles by Joanna can be found on www.microsoft.com/smallbusiness.
High definition will inevitably become a widespread if not universal television broadcast format. However, it’s not yet clear when that will happen. So it’s also not yet clear when high definition camcorders will be routinely required for acquisition for non-fiction programmes. With that in mind, this E-zine aims to give some background to high definition technology and the Sony high definition camcorders currently available.
High Definition – Formats and Camcorders Before venturing into the world of high definition, it should be said that our UK-based clients primarily use Digital Betacam and DV Cam camcorders and we find minimal demand for HD Cam. Our American clients are using HD Cam more frequently than our British clients but Beta-SP remains the format they most commonly request.
Two High Definition Formats To begin with, the future of high definition broadcasting is unclear. There are two HD formats being considered for transmission. One is 720p (720 horizontal lines or rows of pixels in the image) and the other is 1080i (1080 horizontal lines or rows of pixels in the image). The “p” stands for progressive scan and the “i” stands for interlaced scan but more on this later. Panasonic manufactures the camcorders that generate 720 horizontal lines and Sony manufactures the camcorders that generate 1080 horizontal lines. The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) has suggested for discussion using 720p for public service broadcasters but say that does not mean they favour 720p as the standard HD format for transmission. Trade magazines say BSkyB plans to broadcast both 720p and 1080i in a service that will begin sometime in 2006 although I was recently told 1080i may be the only format they use for transmission.
The Sony 1080-line system has one clear advantage over Panasonic’s 720-line system. Each image contains more than two million pixels (1920 vertical lines x 1080 horizontal lines) compared to 900,000 pixels (1280 vertical lines x 720 horizontal lines) in an image from a Panasonic high definition camcorder. This gives a superior picture. The advantage of the 720-line system is it takes less transmission bandwidth to broadcast.
Now to the difference between “interlaced” and “progressive” scan. These terms refer to the way television images are processed for transmission.
Interlaced Scan Standard definition television broadcast signals are processed by television sets in an “interlaced scan” format. This means the screen first scans the odd numbered horizontal image lines, or rows of pixels, sequentially from top to bottom (1, 3, 5, etc). It then returns to the top and scans the even numbered lines (2, 4, 6, etc). In summary, the full picture from top to bottom is first made with half the information there and half of it missing. Then the missing information is filled in. In the PAL standard, each of these two processes takes 1/50th of a second so the entire process takes 1/25th of a second.
Progressive Scan “Progressive” scan differs from interlaced scan in that the image is displayed on a screen by scanning each line (or row of pixels) in a sequential order rather than an alternate order, as is done with interlaced scan. In other words, in progressive scan, the image lines are scanned in numerical order (1,2,3) down the screen from top to bottom, instead of in an alternate order (lines or rows 1,3,5, etc… followed by lines or rows 2,4,6). By progressively scanning the image onto a screen every 25th of a second rather than “interlacing” alternate lines every 50th of a second, a smoother, more detailed, image can be produced on the screen that is perfectly suited for viewing fine details and is also less susceptible to interlace flicker. The Sony range of camcorders offer both interlaced and progressive scan functions in a range of settings.
Procam Television and High Definition Camcorders As a facilities company, we are moving into the HD Cam market – but cautiously. We have Sony models but have not purchased any Panasonic products. This is only in response to what our clients have requested most. Below is a summary of each model and what it offers from the lowest to the highest priced model.
Sony HVR-Z1P This is one high definition camcorder we can recommend using immediately without exception. We purchased 15 of them in February of this year. It is an upgrade of the DSR-PD170P compact camcorder. The main reason for the unqualified recommendation is that the camera has a 16:9 chip so it shoots true wide screen images. It also delivers superior pictures.
Sony HDW-730S High Definition camcorder The 730S is geared towards mainstream television programming rather than film or high end television drama productions. It shoots using the interlaced function only and can be switched between 50i and 59.94i. Progressive scan is not possible with the 730S. But if you don’t need to use progressive scan and you’re shooting for television, this camcorder produces excellent images and it allows you to shoot HD Cam on close to a standard definition budget.
Sony HDW-750P High Definition Camcorder The HDW-750P offers the choice of shooting 25 frames per second in progressive scan mode (25P) to give your pictures a film look or of shooting 50 fields per second interlaced (50i) to conform to the PAL broadcasting standard. The camcorder has a 2.2 million-pixel FIT CCD, which is a step up from the IT CCD in the 730S, and Advanced Digital Signal Processing (ADSP).
Sony HDW-F900 Multi-format Cine Alta High Definition camcorder This is the top of Sony’s high definition (1080 lines x 1920 pixels) camcorder range. The F900 offers the ability to shoot in any setting you might want. In progressive scan, it can shoot 23.98, 24, 25, 29.94 or 30 frames per second. In interlaced, it can shoot 50, 59.94 or 60Hz. This means you can shoot for any standard anywhere in the world. If you are shooting for cinema release, the F900 is the only Sony camcorder that can shoot 24P (24 frames per second film standard).
Panasonic AJ-HDC27 The Panasonic range includes the AJ-HDC27 VariCam. This is a DVCPRO HD camcorder that offers variable frame rates which can be set from 4-fps to 60-fps in single frame increments at the touch of a button. The question we have about Panasonic high definition camcorders is does going from the 625 lines offered by current PAL standard definition cameras to the 720 lines offered by Panasonic’s high definition format really merit the investment required in acquisition and post production equipment? It’s something to consider.
Thank you for reading this and please visit our web site http://www.procamtv.com/ to find out how we can meet you production kit and crewing needs. About The Author Cal Barton began working in television for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation in Vancouver in 1982. His background includes directing coverage of major international news stories, directing documentaries and directing and vision mixing for multi-camera shoots.
by: Suzanne MorrisonWriting articles is one of the best ways to promote your website and best of all it is free! You don’t need to be an expert on the topic you are writing about – just pick an area that is related to the theme of your website, do a bit of research using a search engine and before you know it you will have more knowledge on that subject than most.
Submitting your Article to Directories
Once you've written your article, you can submit it to article directories for free. There are hundreds of article directories on the web so I won't list them all here as you can easily find them by searching on Google, but to get you started, here are the directories that I have had the highest exposure from in the past: </p><ul><li> <a href="http://www.articlecity.com/" target="_blank">Article City</a> </li><li> <a href="http://www.articledashboard.com/" target="_blank">Article Dashboard</a> </li><li> <a href="http://www.article-directory.net/" target="_blank">Article Directory</a> </li><li> <a href="http://www.ezinearticles.com/" target="_blank">Ezine Articles</a> </li><li> <a href="http://www.goarticles.com/" target="_blank">Go Articles</a> </li><li> <a href="http://www.ideamarketers.com/" target="_blank">Idea Marketers</a> </li><li> <a href="http://www.internethomebusinessarticles.com/" target="_blank">Internet Home Business Articles</a> </li><li> <a href="http://searchwarp.com/" target="_blank">Search Warp</a> </li></ul> <p> Be careful to follow the formatting instructions for each article directory. Most directories require articles to be submitted with no formatting. It will save you time if you create an unformatted article with no hard line breaks (apart from between paragraphs) in a text document. It also helps to prepare a short description of your article along with your keywords as some directories also require this information to be submitted with the article. </p> <p> Also, don't forget to include a a resource box at the end of your article. This is your chance to tell everyone about you and your website. If someone has taken the time to read your article to the end, the chances are that they will be interested in finding out more. This is your opportunity to gain another targeted visitor to your site. </p> <h2>Article Submission Tools and Software</h2> <p> If you don't have time to manually submit your article to all of the article directories, you may want to consider paying to have someone to do this for you. There are various websites offering this service, but the most comprehensive and value for money article submission service that I am aware of is <a href="http://www.articlemarketer.com/?a_aid=407e966f" onmouseover="window.status='http://www.articlemarketer.com/';return true;" onmouseout="window.status='';return true;" target="_blank">Article Marketer</a> </p> <p> Alternatively you could use software to automate your article submissions e.g. </p><ul><li><a href="http://www.homebiz-direct.com/article-post-robot.html" target="_blank">Article Post Robot</a> - allows you to submit your articles automatically to over 240 article directories and over 50 announcement lists. You can read a <a href="http://www.homebiz-direct.com/blog/2006/03/review-of-article-post-robot.html" target="_blank">review of Article Post Robot here</a>. </li><li>Article Announcer - this software allows you to automatically submit your articles to all the article directories, ezine owners and announcement lists. Check out my blog for a <a href="http://www.homebiz-direct.com/blog/2005/07/article-announcer-review.html">review of Article Announcer</a>. </li><li>Ezine Announcer - allows you to automatically submit all your articles to article directories (and your ezines to ezine directories). If you write articles regularly or have your own ezine this software is a great time saver. </li></ul> <h2>Don't want to write your own articles?</h2> <p> If you really don't want to write your own articles, one solution is to pay someone else to write an article for you. <a href="http://www.1shoppingcart.com/app/?af=554447" target="_blank">Just Articles</a> is one such service that I recommend for writing you a professional article for a reasonable price. This is known as Ghost Writing - the article is original and 100% yours to add your name and resource box to. </p> <p> An alternative to getting your articles ghost written is to use <a href="http://www.homebiz-direct.com/private-label-rights.html"> Private Label Rights Articles</a>. The best way to ensure a high quality selection of articles is to join a membership site such as <a href="https://paydotcom.com/r/7757/suzannem/281880/" target="_blank">Niche Content Avalanche</a> as they ensure that they keep the number of their members low (which means content that is more exclusively yours) and require all members to modify the PLR articles provided by at least 20%. </p> <p> An even cheaper option is to buy a package such as the <a href="http://hop.clickbank.net/?suzannem/vatool" onmouseover="window.status='http://www.ldpublishing.com/viralarticletoolkit.html' ;return true;" onmouseout="window.status='';return true;" target="_blank">Viral Article Toolkit</a>. If you buy this, you receive 199 rebrandable articles, which you can use and publish with your own personal resource box. You can change these articles in any way you like to make them more personal, or you can just leave them as they are. </p> <p> Once you start writing all these articles and getting them published you will find that the number of visitors to your site increase and your search engine ranking will also be given a boost as a result of all these extra back links.<br />
Copyright 2004 Darren Power If you read my previous article you will know that the goal of these articles is to teach you ways to get started making money online without having to spend any money. This is the second in the series and this time we deal with having your own blog. There are endless ways of making money once you have traffic, and your blog will get you traffic. The income we will be looking at today will come from Google Adsense. There are multiple benefits to having a blog including the low cost (or no cost), the resources that will help you get traffic to your blog and the fact that you can provide your blog as an RSS feed. An RSS feed will allow readers to automatically receive your updates into their RSS reader. Let’s get started with our 6 steps.
1. Set up your blog. You will need to decide what you are going to blog about. You should decide on a theme and name your blog appropriately. There are a number of free ways to set up a blog & to have it hosted for free. We will go with Blogger.com for our first blog. Blogger will allow you to set up a blog for free they will host it for free and they will ping search engines every time you update, meaning you will get spidered & found. Visit blogger.com & click the button on the front page labelled ‘create your blog now’ then follow the step by step instructions that Blogger provide. Some key settings you will want to get right are: I) ‘Host your blog at Blogger’ = Yes II) ‘Add your blog to our listings’ = Yes III) ‘Ping Weblogs.com’ = Yes IV) ‘Publish Site Feed’ = Yes
2. Write some content. Before we move any further there has to be some information on the site & that means that you have to make some entries. You can write some of these entries yourself & some can be quotes from sites of interest to your reader that you can post using the Google Toolbar. You can download the Google toolbar for free at toolbar.google.com. The toolbar includes a Blogger button. When you visit a site that has something of interest to your readers you can highlight the appropriate text & click the Blogger button. The content will then be added to your blog along with a link back to the site.
4. Write some more content. Try and keep your content coming at regular intervals as a number of directories will check on your site at regular intervals & the smarter ones will visit on a schedule based on your update schedule. They will probably determine this in the hours after you first submit to them. Which is what we will do next.
5. Submit your site to Blog & RSS directories. Because you are hosting at Blogger, Weblogs.com will already be notified when you update your blog. (That means that every time you make a new entry they are automatically notified) You will need to manually submit to the various other directories some of which will require a link on your site to theirs. You can add these links to your template below your Blogger logo. For a list of directories to get you started visit www.themoneyseed.com/rss
6. Keep writing interesting content. Ideally you want people to come back again and again. As with customers its harder to get a new visitor than to keep existing visitors. So make it interesting, in fact make it so interesting that they can’t help but tell all their friends about it also. As with most free ways to make money this will take time to get going, but if you can build a following you will make money.