Webconsuls Blog

Friday, October 19, 2012

Are You Too Busy To Stay Connected?

Staying connected can be exhausting, even with a ThunderShirt!

Are you too busy to stay connected? 


It seems we've been too busy. The last time we published a post on this blog was June 12, 2012. There...we admit it. Staying connected should be easy in today's world. We have so many platforms like FACEBOOK, TWITTER, YouTube and GOOGLE+...but the business of working with our clients has had to be our priority over the past few months. We have added some new clients which included new designs, we've worked with some clients with mobile website conversions, there are always updates to be done, staying abreast of SEO and SMO news and we are always coaching our clients on blogging and staying connected. But as they say: "The cobbler's kids have no shoes and the plumber's house has leaky pipes."

Guiding new clients...

The other day a client asked about the best way to stay connected. The first rule is really "just do it!" If you want a FACEBOOK page, then remember very few people are going to "like" your page and stay engaged if you don't take the time to let them know what is new with your business. Some clients want a full briefing about staying connected in the virtual world, including a history of social media.

Copyblogger comes to the rescue...

Today's RSS feed included a link to Copyblogger's latest post: A History of Social Media. And Copyblogger said we could share this history with our own readers. So here goes...be prepared it will take you back 41 years!

A History of Social Media [Infographic] - Infographic
Like this infographic? Get more content marketing tips from Copyblogger.

What else keeps us busy?

If the infographic didn't exhaust you and if you are anything like Webconsuls and our team, then there are probably 50 items on your daily "to do" list. New projects are always fun, it gives us a chance to learn more about our clients and the latest technology.

What's on your "to do" list today? 

 

 

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Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Google+ Local Takes Over Google Places Neighborhood

English: Google+ wordmark (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Keeping up with Google Places was almost  considered a full time job. On May 30, 2012, GOOGLE announced that Google Places will now be integrated with Google+ and have a new name Google + Local! I don't know about you, but I am exhausted.

The Google announcement was published on what they call their Google and Your Business Blog. This article was posted by Jen Fitzpatrick, VP Engineering. I don't know Ms. Fitzpatrick, but I am pretty sure she is very proud of Google's latest update; however, I feel she may not have any idea what is involved with running a small business that has come to depend upon Google for generating local business.

Have you met Dave, Dave and Dave of Staples fame? Watch their commercial.  Then tell me if as a small business owner you don't often feel like Dave.



If you are having trouble viewing the video, you can see it here.

Ok, let's get back to Google + Local.  What I am going to do is provide you with is a list of good articles that discuss this news in pretty straightforward language.  As Greg Sterling, Contributing Editor at Search Engine Land warned:

"Business owners will probably have a somewhat more difficult transition than consumers, as they’re compelled now to pay attention to Google+ — in a big way. They now ignore Google+ at their own peril."

Related Articles and Video:
Goodbye Google Places, hello more Google Plus
Google Talks More About Google Places & Google+ Local
Hello, Google+ Local!
New Google+ Local Replaces Google Places
What happened to Google Places? 
Google Places Is Over, Company Makes Google+ The Center of Gravity for Local Search



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Saturday, May 26, 2012

Remembering Memorial Day - History, Honor, and Humor

This post was originally published in 2009, but we thought it still a good way to learn about Memorial Day and share some personal stories. Happy Memorial Day Weekend 2012!
__________________

This weekend, more particularly this coming Monday, May 25, 2009, Americans will "celebrate" Memorial Day. I thought today I would spend a few minutes remembering Memorial Day, with some history, honor and humor.

As a youngster I came to know Memorial Day as May 30th, celebrated really as a day to remember those who had given their life in service to our country. It didn't really matter what day of the week May 30th occurred, it was a Federal holiday, a day off from school and it meant we would proudly display the American Flag on our home and we would attend a parade. After all I grew up in a military town, just outside San Diego, CA, and my father was a retired Naval officer. These parades weren't always grand, but they were a nice tradition.

If you would like to learn more about the history of Memorial Day there is a very interesting Library of Congress web page with wonderful information. Two historical items of interest:

1. "In 1971, federal law changed the observance of the holiday to the last Monday in May and extended the honor to all soldiers who died in American wars."
2. "Protocol for flying the American flag on Memorial Day includes raising it quickly to the top of the pole at sunrise, immediately lowering it to half-staff until noon, and displaying it at full staff from noon until sunset."
Additionally, I came across a History Channel presentation of the history of Taps and the playing of Taps for our fallen military. Here is the YouTube video.



Memorial Day is to be a day to honor those of our armed services who died during an American War or as a result of an American war. But since my father's passing in 1979, I always like to honor him on days like Memorial Day and Veterans Day. I have talked about my father, Joseph Eagen, in other blog posts. He led a very interesting life, but what defined his adult life was his commitment to the US Navy. On December 30, 1935, at the age of 17 years 11 months, he completed his Navy enlistment application. He needed his mother's permission to enlist! Ten months later, on October 13, 1936, his enlistment was approved. For the next 17 years he served and was retired due to a service connected disability on June 30, 1953. The photo shown here is one that I have always loved. My father is the tall one on the right. I believe it was taken in China between July 9, 1937 and November 3, 1938, when he served aboard the U.S.S. Augusta. What I love about this photo is the sheer expression of joy in my father's sparkling eyes and smile. (By the way, the dark mark on his cheek is just a defect in a very old photo.)

Now you are probably wondering how I could ever remember Memorial Day with humor. Well, this story will take you to a day in my life at Cranmore Mountain Lodge, located in Carroll County, Town of Conway, Village of Kearsarge, New Hampshire. The year is 1987. Our country inn was situated on plus or minus seven acres and our property line went up a hill to abut the property line of the Kearsarge Cemetery. This cemetery is very, very old and it is the type of cemetery that people will often visit to do headstone rubbings.


On this Memorial Day 1987 a lady came to the inn. She introduced herself as a member of the Kearsarge Cemetery Association and she wanted to know if we were aware that our two young sons had been visiting the cemetery with her grandson, Eric. I told her I didn't know they had climbed the hill to the Cemetery and then she asked me if I noticed that my children were running around outside with many little American Flags in their hands. I told her I had noticed that and that is when she told me that Aaron (6.5 years), Dan (3 years)and Eric (4 years) had "raided" the cemetery and removed all of the Memorial Day flags that had been placed to honor the war dead!

As you celebrate Memorial Day take time out of your weekend to remember those who gave their lives for our country. And let me know how you remember Memorial Day.
P.S. I do not know the names of the other two young men in the photo with my father. Should anyone out there in the world wide web recognize them, please let me know.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Best Selling iPhone Apps 2008

This a list of the Best Selling iPhone Apps 2008 with a short description:


1. Koi Pond: Imagine gazing into a pond of crystal clear water.
Picture bright, playful koi swimming through its shallow depths.
So close... Can you touch them?



2. Texas Hold'em:Play like a pro against realistic opponents or with your friends over a Wi-Fi Network. Use all of the hints, tips, tells, and your mastery to gain access to exclusive rooms with higher-stakes and even bigger rewards!



3. Moto Chaser: Moto Chaser is an all-out pedal to the metal motorcycle race in the palm of your hand! With turns, jumps, and evil bikers lurking just around the bend.



4. Crash Bandicoot: Nitro Kart 3D: The richest 3D kart racing experience! Speed your way through 12 thrilling tracks and multiple environments! Race and battle against zany opponents and turn them to dust with 8 devastating weapons.



5. Super Monkey Ball: Let's Roll! Guide a cute little monkey encased in a transparent ball to victory by tilting and rolling him through a variety of slopes and turns.



6. Cro-Mag Rally: Cro-Mag Rally is the wildest racing 3D game since man invented the wheel! You are a speed-hungry caveman named Brog who races through the Stone, Bronze, and Iron Ages.


7. Enigmo: A 3D puzzle game where you direct animated streams of flowing liquid so that the droplets get to their destination.



8. PocketGuitar: Turns your iPhone or iPod touch into a virtual guitar. You can press and strum strings, just like a real guitar.



9. Recorder: Record memos, discussions, interviews and ideas on your iPhone. Use it as a voice recorder or a sound recorder. Record for seconds or hours. Extremely simple one button interface.



10. iBeer: Brew and drink beer on your iPhone and iPod touch. This hilarious sight-gag is fully interactive and behaves like a real glass of beer thanks to the iPhone sensors and our spare time.

itunes Update and the iTunes DJ


Apple released a new iTunes Update and the iTunes DJ. The iTunes Remote turns your iPhone or iPod touch into a dedicated, wireless remote control for any iTunes library on your local network, whether you're running iTunes on Windows or OS X. Take control of your music via iPhone! iTunes DJ allows your friends and family to have a say in whats being listened to. Setting up Remote is simple and safe. A unique passcode pairs your iPod touch or iPhone with your computer and Apple TV.

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Open Office 3 Will Stand Up to the Test

OpenOffice.org 3 is the leading open-source office software suite for word processing, spreadsheets, presentations, graphics, databases and more. It is available in many languages and works on all common computers. It stores all your data in an international open standard format and can also read and write files from other common office software packages. It can be downloaded and used completely free of charge for any purpose.

I have been using Microsoft Office ever since I was a kid. It is very easy for a person to ignore the other amazing software available. I recently upgraded to Windows 7 which did not come with Microsoft Office; I decided I would try some of the open-source software out there. I downloaded OpenOffice.org 3 with a bit of skepticism, I had trouble believing that OpenOffice.org 3 will stands up to the test.

So far I have not come across anything that I could not accomplish with OpenOffice.org 3. On top of that, it was completely free, which is quite a bit less than Microsoft Office at $149.99. That being said, I think it will be hard for me to ever use Microsoft Office again. Give it a Try, I do not think you will find yourself disappointed.
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Sunday, May 20, 2012

Shazam or Midomi, Your Choice

Midomi is the ultimate music search tool because it is powered by your voice. Sing, hum, or whistle to instantly find your favorite music and connect with a community that shares your musical interests.

At midomi you can create your own profile, sing your favorite songs and share them with your friends and get discovered by other midomi users. You can listen to and rate others' musical performances, see their pictures, send them messages, buy original music, and more.


Back in 2002, Shazam launched a unique technology, enabling music lovers to identify tunes anywhere - using just their mobile phone. Now six years on, Shazam has been used by more than 20 million people in over 60 countries deployed by leading industry handset manufacturers and more than 75 carriers. Earlier this year it passed a key milestone of over 100 million iDs and continues to go from strength to strength.

Both Shazam and Midomi offer features like tagging music with artist name and song title, linking to music videos on YouTube, and sharing your tagged music with a friend via email. However, this is where similarities end and Midomi takes it to the next level. With the additional methods of tagging (Say, Sing, and Type) and a database of music samples, Midomi is more feature-rich. If you own a iPhone, I strongly suggest downloading both of these applications. Shazam or Midomi, Your Choice!

Where's Joel H Google Employee?

This week I have been researching reported problems with Google maps. I have read through many forums, blogs, and news articles; however, last night I came across a Google forum in "Maps help". The topic was Incorrect information in Google Maps / local business center and the poster opens her post with this statement "To the poor already-beaten-up soul at Google who looks at and responds to these issues..." I implore you to read through this forum. It starts on April 1, 2009, and on April 6th Joel H Google Employee joins the forum to aid these Google users. Before you know it people are posting from all over the world and Joel H is being besieged with questions and he is responsive through April 22. Others keep posting but no word from Joel H. Where's Joel H Google employee?

I googled this phrase {Joel H Google employee} and found mention of him in other blog posts and other Google maps forums. I will say this, Joel H seems to want to help and if you read these forums carefully you will see he even admits when he is wrong.

I am going to give you two examples of what I have witnessed in Google maps for two of our clients.
  • La Fuente Restaurant in Tucson, AZ: Their Google map listing under local results for Mexican Restaurants Tucson AZ suddenly displayed the wrong domain name (that of a locksmith) and the wrong phone number.
  • Kingsleigh Inn Southwest Harbor, ME: Suddenly their Google map listing under local results for lodging Southwest Harbor ME disappeared; however, the inn next door to them is listed - including 78 reviews of the Kingsleigh and a number of photos of the Kingsleigh Inn!
I can only assume that somewhere worlds have started to collide in Google maps. I don't know why...some talk about duplicate listings, scrapings, mergings, suppressions, conflating listings...the bottom line is this is a "free" service offered by Google. I could offer the old adage "it is worth what you paid for it"...but really if your listing is wrong through no fault of your own how much is this costing your business?

My advice to every business owner is to check your listing. Take the time to review and learn about Google's Local Business Center.

I hope Joel H Google Employee reappears in these forums and that Google can solve the "implosion" mystery. Let's remember these listings are the lifelines for many businesses, this is not a game of "Where's Waldo".

Glyder is the future of iPhone gaming!

I have had my iPhone now for almost a year and have had the opportunity to experience several great applications in the way of utilities and games. The utilities have all been useful in one way or another, but the games have been disappointments! Just recently I was turned on to a new game that is worth taking interest in.

Upon downloading this game I was skeptical, I thought that this game might be better than the other games I have installed on my iPhone; but I was not optimistic about this game being worth the dollar I was about to spend. I could not have been more wrong about Glyder, for Glyder is the future of iPhone gaming!

Fly through and engage in hard tests while piloting a futurist hang-glider. This is a game where a steady hand is of the up most importance, free flight is not something that is easy - one's depth perception, I found out quickly, is key to survival.



"Eryn has been sucked into a dimensional rift and is left in a world that is not her own. Take control of her glider and help her explore the magical surroundings.

Soar over the majestic and peaceful Rift Valley. Take a death-defying flight through the Dark Pinnacle. Unearth the Lost Kingdom. Explore the wonders of Ambrosia. Discover the secret that lies above The Mushrooms, and delve into the Hidden Depths. Perform fun gliding maneuvers like power dives and dolphining and fly into thermals to soar high into the sky. Collect crystals, take trips, earn achievements, and help Eryn unlock a portal home."

Download and install Glyder on your iPhone, I promise you will not be disappointed! iPhone gaming can only go uphill from here on out, the application companies have made a enough terrible apps that I think it's time for a change.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

GOOGLE's Penguin OPUS 1

Another famous penguin - OPUS (circa 1985)
There has been much written about GOOGLE's Penguin update which was released on April 24, 2012. This is one of the latest algorithm updates that GOOGLE has been working on - to improve search results. But let's try to remember: improvement, like beauty, is usually in the eye of the beholder. Indeed some businesses have seen their results improve, while others have witnessed a free fall.

The purpose of today's post is to share with our readers and our clients some good resources to understand GOOGLE's Penguin goals and take a little time to review your site. Here are a few things to consider:
  1. GOOGLE like every major player in search engines is making updates all of the time. Some updates gain more notoriety and some happen quietly. To appreciate how often GOOGLE updates their algorithms, take a peek at this algorithm change history
  2. GOOGLE is known for naming their updates. This is a common practice in the IT world or any project driven business. It makes discussing or recalling the project, that much easier.
  3. GOOGLE does share their best practices guidelines. They encourage webmasters to read and understand their Quality Guidelines. However, if you have a website for the purposes of promoting your business, be proactive and read the guidelines, most of it is written for the non-technical person. 
  4. A good rule to follow when creating and updating your site: "Say what you do and do what you say!" Create one great site, avoid duplicate content and mirrored sites. Or as GOOGLE says: "Create a useful, information-rich site, and write pages that clearly and accurately describe your content."
As promised, below we will provide links to a few interesting articles about Penguin. You might also like to watch these videos of GOOGLE's Matt Cutts discussing penalties and webspam.



Sunday, April 29, 2012

Focus On Your Facebook Profile Picture

facebook logo
We know it seems like of late we have focused a lot on business Facebook pages. A couple of weeks ago we talked about putting some finishing touches on your business page. Then we shared the evolution of Webconsuls' Facebook cover photo. But here's the catch: Like we said before, it seems Facebook is never finished and always evolving.  So today let's talk about your business profile picture.

On April 18, 2012, Facebook page managers received the following message in their weekly Facebook page update.
"On April 26, we will be updating the size of the profile picture on all Pages. We are letting you know about this small change in advance so that you can update your profile picture on April 26. The new profile picture will be 160 x 160 pixels and will sit at 23 pixels from the left and 210 pixels from the top of the Page."
A number of articles have been written about this update. The best and most clearly written with great visualizations is Facebook to Increase Profile Picture Size for Pages. Take the time to read this article. Want to see a variety of Facebook pages? Visit Facebook's Discover Pages page.

Here are a few hints to consider when you are updating your profile picture:
  1. It does not need to be a picture of just your logo. Many logos are horizontal and do not fit neatly into a square.  For example, Coca-Cola has a horizontal logo, but their profile picture is of a Coke bottle which sends a complete message. 
  2. If your profile picture is not sized correctly it will be blurry. You know you have seen many business pages with blurry profile pictures. Just last week we helped our client Clear View Business Solutions update their profile picture. 
  3. You can opt to incorporate your "logo" in your cover photo and have your profile picture feature a product, people or a tagline/written message
  4. If you are struggling with your logo, reach out to your web design company or a friend. Try to have different sizes and shapes for your logo. Remember your Facebook page could be your first and last impression!
Here you can see the latest version of our Facebook page. Notice the Profile Picture got slightly larger in the past couple of days.  Remember you can click on the image to make it larger.


Hope you will leave a comment and let us know what is your favorite business Facebook page.
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Friday, April 13, 2012

Facebook Cover Photo Features Webconsuls Team

Two weeks ago I talked about adding some finishing touches to your Facebook business page. In particular, I urged you to create your business Facebook "cover photo" and to think through what message you wanted to send with that photo. Of late, I used our Webconsuls Facebook page to feature our clients' Facebook cover photos. All the while, I was working with our Webconsuls' team members to determine what our cover photo should say about us.

Here is a little of how this process went: We are not a traditional brick and mortar business, so we knew we wouldn't present a photo of our storefront. We also knew that our team members live in five different states and three time zones, so getting together for a group shot was not going to happen. Additionally, we felt that taking the approach that we use on our Twitter page, that is listing our services, would not really make us unique or tell our story.

So how do we tell Webconsuls' story? What makes us unique?  I remember when Dick and Dennis first decided to form Webconsuls. They went back and forth about what to name their business, how would they convey their vision.  The good news is they committed this history to a press release and here is what they wrote November 16, 1999.
'The name Webconsuls was chosen very deliberately. A consul is an official appointed by a government to advance the commercial interest of its citizens in a foreign country. Webconsuls is conceived as describing "a firm which advances the commercial interest of its clients on the World Wide Web." As Dick Fay recently remarked, "Web sites do not automatically produce dollars. Success is realized when web sites are carefully marketed and targeted, those activities being integrated into a tailored, well–orchestrated business campaign."'
And so, between a few emails and phone calls the Webconsuls' team decided our cover photo should be a collage of the team members. It is not about being techies or understanding all the latest software and tools, but more about being people who work with other people to promote the success of our clients' businesses. It is a collaborative process and we think that is what our current cover photo says.

Webconsuls' FACEBOOK Cover Photo April 2012 - click on it to enlarge!
What do you think? Notice I said current, because we can refresh it and keep it vital. Like any collage it tells a story...Dennis, Judy and Dick meeting 31 years ago at an ARCO training seminar, Malik's college graduation and enjoying a California sunset, Heidi receiving her master's from NYU and "horsing around", Alycia and Bill celebrating their wedding in Hawaii, Dick supporting his beloved DUKE and the Phillies, Dennis meeting with clients, Daniel working with animals and 'dressing to the nines', Keith enjoying life and supporting the Toronto Blue jays...the story goes on.

We look forward to your comments or stop by our FACEBOOK page and "like" us.

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Saturday, March 31, 2012

Facebook: Add Some Finishing Touches To Your Business Page

Ready! Set! Go! Today is the day that business owners will wake up to see the new look of their business Facebook page. Notice I didn't say final or finished look. Because as we all heard in this scene from the movie Social Network...Facebook will never be finished.
Eduardo Saverin: So when will it be finished?
Mark Zuckerberg:
It won't be finished. That's the point. The way fashion's never finished.
Eduardo Saverin:
What?
Mark Zuckerberg:
Fashion, fashion is never finished.
Eduardo Saverin:
You're talking about fashion? Really, you?
Mark Zuckerberg:
I'm talking about the idea of it. And I'm saying that it's never finished.
Eduardo Saverin:
Okay. But they manage to make money selling pants.
There was a time when I thought the most critical statement from this scene was "It won't be finished." But today I am thinking that Eduardo Saverin's closing line "Okay. But they manage to make money selling pants" really is the more important message for a business Facebook page. Your business Facebook page should contribute to your bottom line in some way...it certainly should not be a liability. Come to think about it, I covered this topic two years ago when I posted: Nine Tips For Managing A Business Facebook Page.

Today I thought I would do two things:
  1. Show you how our Webconsuls' Facebook page looks today, because we will start updating it and you can follow the progress by "liking" us today and staying tuned. 
  2. Share a great blog post from Copyblogger. How To Create A Cover Photo For Your Facebook Timeline. Read this post carefully, as it tells you what the cover photo may "not do" according to Facebook's terms. Also if you read some of the comments, you will notice that people have shared a link to their Facebook page with their new Cover Photo.
Now, just so we have a record, you know like a real old fashion scrapbook: Here is a snapshot of Webconsuls' Facebook Page, March 31, 2012.

Webconsuls' Facebook Page 03/31/2012 (click to see larger version)

If you have already updated your cover photo, please share a link in the comments. I am going to post a link to this article on our Facebook page.  Remember: Like our page and check back to see our updates!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

GOOGLE Wave Says Its Final Good-Bye

Just about two and one-half years ago I wrote a post about GOOGLE's WAVE. The post was entitled Eight Google WAVE Invitations - Is Anybody Going to Wave Back?   Guess what? Nobody waved back.  So I thought I would do a public service announcement for our clients and regular readers to let you know it is official.  The sun is setting on the final wave

Today I received the following email message from The Wave Team:

Dear Wavers,


More than a year ago we announced that Google Wave would no longer be developed as a separate product. Back in November 2011, we shared the specific dates for ending this maintenance period and shutting down Wave. Google Wave is now in read-only mode. This is reminder that the Wave service will be turned off on April 30, 2012. You will be able to continue exporting individual waves using the existing PDF export feature until the Google Wave service is turned off. We encourage you to export any important data before April 30, 2012.


If you would like to continue using Wave, there are a number of open source projects, including Apache Wave. There is also an open source project called Walkaround that includes an experimental feature that lets you import all your Waves from Google. This feature will also work until the Wave service is turned off on April 30, 2012.


For more details, please see our help center.


Yours sincerely,


The Wave Team
The following YouTube video is dedicated to The Wave Team.


Friday, March 16, 2012

BLOGGER, Thank You For Listening!

Image representing Blogger as depicted in Crun...Image via CrunchBase
Over the past couple of years I have written about such things as designing for the guest experience and not being shy about offering a suggestion to a business, no matter how big or small the business entity. I have also talked about the importance of saying "Thank You!"

Today I want to share a story of how I made a suggestion to Google's BLOGGER design team and at the same time say "BLOGGER, Thank you for listening!"

First a little background.  It would be helpful if you Google this phrase: external links should open new window. You are going to see a lot of search engine result pages (SERP). Millions! The bottom line is this, good design promotes good user experience and if your web page or blog post includes links to other pages, then when the user clicks on the link a new browser page should open. After all, you want your reader/client/customer to be able to find their way back to your site and the cleanest way to do that is to open a new window.

If you understand HTML coding, then you know having a link open in a new window is a simple piece of code: target="_blank".  But you need to know where to place the code and therein lies the problem with guiding and teaching clients on how to use a blogging platform and how to insure their external links will open in a new window.  

Over the past few years I made the acquaintance of some of the BLOGGER team while attending Blog World Expo. And they always encourage you to send them suggestions.  In January 2011,  I sent an email to Brett Wiltshire which included the following suggestion:
         "When inserting a link in the blog text it would be wonderful if the user could easily check a box in the EDIT LINK BOX that says  “open in a new browser” . Some users know how to insert the html code < target=”_blank”>, but this can be  very hard to teach to clients."
About six weeks ago, I was working on a client's blog and realized the BLOGGER team acted on my suggestion. Or I choose to think they liked my suggestion! See the screen shot below:

See the little check box "Open this link in a new window"? This little enhancement is such a time saver for the writer and the reader.

Thank you, BLOGGER, for listening. 
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Tuesday, March 6, 2012

National Proofreading Day Is March 8, 2012

Did you know March 8, 2012, is National Proofreading Day? The very fact that there is such day must imply that proofreading is important. Don't you think?  I know Jay Leno's nightly routine continues to include making fun of proofreading errors. For myself I will tell you that I spend an inordinate amount of time proofreading our clients' submitted text for their websites, newsletters, blogs, etc. I also spend time reading blogs that deal with text content and the power of good content, as it applies to making a good impression with potential customers and current customers.

You might think when it comes to proofreading that I am only concerned with assisting our own customers. This is not the case. Do you remember when I wrote "Bystander Effects on Broken Blogs and Websites"? Basically I really believe that if you come across a glaring error on someone's site or blog you should do the right thing - tell them! They will appreciate it. Go ahead "pay it forward".

We all make mistakes. Our eyes play tricks on us. We can read something so many times that we don't "see" the mistakes. For that reason, many companies (large and small) have staff that edit and proof text multiple times prior to going to "press."

So today I want to share with you 15 Grammar Goofs That Make You Look Silly.  These tips are coming to you by way of Brian Clark at Copyblogger. Believe me when I tell you that almost every day I learn something helpful from the Copyblogger team.

Enjoy and remember to pass this on to others and "pay it forward".

15 Grammar Goofs That Make You Look Silly
Like this infographic? Get more copywriting tips from Copyblogger.
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Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Do You Have A Business GOOGLE Plus Page?

Do you have a business Google Plus page? A number of our clients have inquired about setting up a Google+ page for their businesses.  We have been trying to stay abreast of this new social media arena and for a couple of months I have been gathering article links to share with our clients. (You can see these and more below.) But in the meantime...

First: Watch A Short Video from GOOGLE



 Second: Check Out Useful Print Screens of How to Start Creating Your Business Google Plus Page


On your GOOGLE+ home page look for the "Create a Google+ Page in the right margin and CLICK





















Pick a Category and get started


















Third: Consider Buying Chris Brogan's Latest Book
Now you are probably thinking this might be strange advice. But consider this: Chris' latest book is "Google+ for Business: How Google's Social Network Changes Everything" and according to the McClatchy-Tribune News Service Chris Brogan's book is one of the top 25 books that Corporate America is reading.  Go ahead and visit Amazon, (not an affiliate link) you can read reviews and/or buy the paperback book, the Kindle Edition or an audible Audio Edition. Here's why I think you will find Chris' book helpful:
  • If you read Chris's blog, then you already know he is a good writer. His writing is interesting, but at the same time easy to follow. 
  • We have introduced you to Chris many times here at Webconsuls.  Chris should not be a stranger to you.
Fourth: Enjoy A Video of Chris Discussing GOOGLE+ For Business 







Ok, this is our full report.  We hope you find all of this information helpful.  Remember, as a business owner you really need to understand and manage this social media platform for yourself.  Only you can tell your story...

Would love to read your comments...
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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Pushing the Reset Button on Webconsuls' Blog

Time flies, good times or not. I realized the other day that we have not posted here since November 15, 2011. That's 90+ days, one quarter of a year or three months! Like many bloggers who take a hiatus, we have plenty of good reasons why we haven't written lately. Let's see:
  • Holidays are always a good excuse. In the last 90 days we have celebrated some or all of these holidays: Thanksgiving, Christmas, Chanukah, New Years, Martin Luther King Day, Presidents' Day, Valentines...
  • Closing out the year-end books for any business can and does take time.
  • Vacations or business trips impact all of our schedules
  • Working with new clients, designing new web sites is always a good way to spend time
I think it is obvious that the above list could go on ad nauseum.  I am also pretty sure you get the point, time is precious and we need to manage our time to accomplish all that we would like to with our blog, personal or business. Isn't this what we tell our clients? Engage!!!

Let me tell you what really brought this point home to me. Last week one of my favorite bloggers, Julien Smith, posted "A Short Contest".  He was asking his regular and new readers to tweet a quote from one of his posts.  I was game and here is the quote that I tweeted:
If you aren't current, you may as well not exist.
Julien's quote "If you aren't current, you may as well not exist" isn't just about social media in general or blogging in particular; it really has to do with all aspects of our lives and the success of our businesses. Be inquisitive, learn about new software, read about new business concepts, dust off the shelves, do an inventory, wash the windows, and don't cheat yourself or your clients.  And as another blogging friend says: "Don't cheat on your blog!"

Today I am pushing the reset button on Webconsuls' blog. I hope you will subscribe and if you want to share some stories about how you "reset" your blog, please leave a comment.

A Tucson sunset can inspire you to push the reset button!

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