by Mark Rose
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Below are short excerpts from various sections of the book.
"I have over 100 active, current clients and I’m usually working with about a dozen of them at any period of time. While I love operating my own business, I am frustrated seeing clients and businesses making mistakes, or at least not being the best they can be. Although budget constraints can limit marketing, many times businesses make detrimental choices simply because they don’t know any better. They don’t realize there are better ways to do things. The worst situations are those in which I meet with new clients who describe the work their previous marketing company had been doing, and I realize they’ve been scammed out of hundreds, and in some cases, thousands of dollars."
"When you send email attachments, the receiver will likely not see them in the same way, or order, that you attached them. There are dozens of different email programs – each with its own particular way of dealing with attachments. While you might add an attachment that shows up as a picture in the body of your email, the recipient might only see it as an icon that needs to be opened separately. A problem often occurs when clients are sending or receiving multiple attachments. The confusion is created when the client refers to one of several attachments. Attachments do not necessarily appear in the same order as they were sent. Numerous times, a client will email me things and refer to the attached files as the “first one” or “third picture” or something like that. Inevitably, if I use the “third file”, it will be the wrong one. To avoid communication issues, always refer to your attachments by file name."
"Images and logos have always been very important to businesses. Years ago businesses would need to hire printers and designers to put together brochures and marketing materials. There was never a need for most businesses to understand the ins and outs of images and design. But today, with quality laser printers and computer software, many businesses are doing things themselves. It’s a great way to save money, but poor images, mistakes, and lack of knowledge can waste your time and hurt your business in the long run. I’ve seen the resulting problems time and time again.
Also with the popularity of social media like Facebook, businesses now need a “presence” online. Most small businesses don’t have the budgets to hire a trained and experienced staff member to deal with these issues (although it’s a great idea). So business owners and managers do things themselves… and while I applaud their efforts, they sometimes make things worse. For example, I see many restaurants posting photos of their meals. Half of the time, the look of the food in the photos makes me say to myself, “I’m never going there!” It’s frustrating because with just a little bit of knowledge, those same photos could look amazing. (If you’re a restaurant owner/manager, you’re in luck because all my secrets are revealed below!)"
"Don’t fall for the “Have your website registered with over 100 website directories and search engines” scam. Sure, there may be hundreds of website directories and search engines, but only about three or four of them matter. The other websites just exist for advertising revenue and to collect email addresses to which they can send spam. My recommendation is to purchase only your domain name and nothing else. You can always add the other features later if need be."
"I’ve spoken to dozens of clients who come to me after not being happy with the firm they hired for search engine optimization. Some clients were paying over $500 a month for this service! In the 15+ years I’ve been programming websites, I’ve never needed to do ANYTHING on a monthly basis to ensure a website does well in search engines at the regional level. The website simply needs to be programmed correctly from the start.
"Many clients come to me believing they need a “blog” in order to do well with search engines. This is incorrect. The only thing you need on your website is content. If you have plenty of content throughout your site, you don’t need a blog. But if the blog is the method you use to fill the website with content, then sure… go for it. If you do have a blog, I suggest hosting it on Blogger to take advantage of Google’s services. Google owns Blogger, and your blog can tie in nicely with your Google+ page and Google’s other services. This will also help you with Google’s search results. A WordPress website may be great for blogging, but when search engines are important, WordPress won’t help you the way Blogger can. Host your blog on Blogger, and make sure it links to your website."
"Don’t fall for SEO companies or advertising that offers placement in 200+ search engines and directories expecting more visibility and more customers. Even if you are placed in all those directories as promised, most of them will be websites that are never visited… websites that only exist to sell advertising and collect valid email addresses that can be sold to email marketing companies for spamming. You won’t receive more clients, only more junk mail… and lots of it."
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