Tuesday, March 31, 2009

"Excellence" is not necessary to succeed

"Excellence" is not necessary.

It's kind of like the old joke about the two hikers who cross paths with an angry bear.

As the bear approaches, one hiker takes off his boots and pulls a pair of running shoes from his backpack.

"What the heck are you doing?" asks his friend. "You can't outrun a bear!"

"I don't need to," the first hiker replies. "I just have to outrun you."

You don't have to outrun a standard of perfection. Beating your competitors—who are standing still or moving slowly—is plenty good enough.

Click HERE for the full article from Marketing Profs

Greg Cryns Wahm Search Engine - affordable advertising

Monday, March 30, 2009

Building Backlinksfor Beginners

Building backlinks is one of the most important things you can do for your website. For the uninitiated, backlinks are links from other websites that are pointing back to your site. They are also known as incoming links and inbound links. As an internet marketer, backlinks are vitally important to your success.

Backlinks help your website move up in importance on search engine pages. With a large quantity of backlinks, your website will move up in the rankings for your selected keywords. The more backlinks you have to your site, the better. However, not all backlinks are created equally! As you learn in this report, you need to have the right type of backlinks in order to move up in the rankings.

When websites first started linking to each other, backlinks were used by webmasters to suggest other websites that he or she enjoyed and wanted to pass on to the visitors. This still happens quite a bit but these days backlinks are an important part of a webmaster's Internet marketing strategy.

Search engines like Google use the number of backlinks a website has in order to determine its relevance. If your site has 10 other sites pointing to it with a link and the keyword phrase "make money online," the search engines spiders will be able to determine that your site has to do with making money online.

If you have a hundred sites pointing to your site and using the keyword phrase "make money online", that is even better! The sites that are linking back to your site have to meet certain standards in order to be counted as "votes" for your site and that keyword phrase. In this report, you will learn the most effective linking strategies in order to quickly and efficiently move your site up in the rankings.

Basic Backlinks Concepts

Before we get into the exact strategies for building backlinks to your website, you need to be familiar with a few important concepts. These terms will help you understand backlinks so you can put them to good use with your own Internet marketing projects.

Although there are several different search engines, for the purpose of simplicity we will be talking about how to increase your rankings in Google. Google is by far the most popular search engine and if you can rank well there you can be sure that your sites are ranking well in other search engines like Yahoo and MSN.

Google also gives you the added benefit of the page ranking system. Google has a way of evaluating each website and giving it a page rank of anywhere from 1 to 10. The higher the page rank, the more important a website is in the eyes of Google.

This is important when you are building backlinks. When a high page rank website links to your site, Google will begin to see your site as more important as well. In the Internet marketing world, this is known as passing along "link juice." You will get more link juice from having a PR 5 website link to you than having a PR 1 website link to you.

Links come in different varieties - one way links and reciprocal links. One-way links are links from another website to you with no link going the other way. Reciprocal links occur when both you and the other website are linked to one another, kind of like in a "scratch my back I'll scratch your" type situation.

Google will also look for the relevancy of the websites that are linking to your site. This is called "link relevancy" and it is an important thing to remember when you are looking for backlinks. For example, if you have parenting, home repair and relationship advice blogs pointing to your make money online blog, these links won't be seen as valuable as other make money online blogs pointing to you.

However, the most important thing to do is get backlinks. If it comes down between having irrelevant links and no links at all, always go with the irrelevant links.

Another important concept is no follow. It used to be that all links coming back to your website were treated equally. These days however some websites, blogs and forums use no follow HTML tags to avoid giving popularity to links.

Basically, nofollow tags tell search engine spiders that the link that will appear next is not relevant or important. Many sites, blogs and forums participate in what is being called the "do follow" movement. You'll see how these sites come into play a little later in this report.

Another important concept is anchor text. If you're familiar with HTML, you know that anchor text is the text it is used in place of a URL. This text will appear in blue and have an underline. When a visitor clicks on that word or phrase their web browser will take them to that website.

The HTML code for building anchor text looks like this:

Your Anchor text

For forums, you can usually use the following code:

[URL=http://www.yoursitehere.com]Your Anchor text[/URL]

When you choose anchor text for linking to your website you should do some keyword research to find out which turns you should be targeting. By using these keywords as your anchor text, you'll increase in the rankings for those keywords.

There are many methods to get free backlinks to your website, which you'll see in this report, but I should also mention paid links. You can pay to get backlinks that will help boost the importance of your website. For some people, buying links from a service like Text Link Ads is an efficient way to reach the top of the results page for competitive keywords.

Building Backlinks Step by Step - for FREE!

Now that you know the basics in the world of building backlinks, it's time to start building traffic and link juice. As previously mentioned, there are many ways to build quality backlinks to your site. These methods cost nothing but time, or maybe some outsourcing costs if you choose to go that route.

Keep in mind that backlink-building is a slow and steady process. If you build too many backlinks too quickly, you may be seen as a spammer in the eyes of Google. This is especially true if you have a brand new site. A large explosion in backlinks spells "black hat seo" to the Google spiders. It's best to develop a strategy from these methods and build your backlinks up over time.

We'll go in depth on each of these methods in this report so you can put this advice to work for you immediately.

Article Marketing

This is by far one of the most effective ways of increasing your backlinks and improving your site's ranking. In a nutshell, article marketing is accomplished by writing a series of short articles and then distributing them to article directories. Each one of these articles has a relevant back link with anchor text that you choose.

To use article marketing to your advantage you simply come up with a list of keywords that you would like to target. Write, or have written, articles that use each of these keywords in the title and several times throughout the body of the article.

After the articles have been written, submit them to several different article directories. You should choose 20 to 30 quality directories that have a good page rank. Remember that these article directories will be sending link juice your way, so you shouldn't just post to any directory you find.

Ezine articles (http://www.ezinearticles.com), Go articles (http://www.goarticles.com) and SearchWarp (http://www.searchwarp.com) should be at the top of your list for directory submissions. Automated article submitting programs like Article Post Robot (http://www.articlepostrobot.com) make this process very simple.

The second benefit to submitting to article directories is that your article can get picked up and distributed on other blogs and websites with your backlink intact. For this reason, it's absolutely necessary that you create quality articles that are genuinely helpful to your niche. If you're not sure what to write about, try reading several articles in your niche to get topic ideas.

When you first start out, you should write and submit at least 10 articles using relevant keywords to your website. In the bio box of each article, be sure to use a link back to your site with the relevant anchor text. Submit pan and manage least an article per week in order to continue building backlinks. This is an ongoing strategy that will build lots of backlinks over time.

Commenting on Do Follow Blogs

Do follow blogs are blogs that have opted to remove then no follow instructions from the comments section. This means that any comments that you make on these blogs will send link juice back to your website.

Commenting on do follow blogs is a quick strategy that you can use to build more backlinks for your site. Just as with the other techniques in this report karma you should give preference to relevant, do follow blogs.

Do follow blogs are relatively easy to find. When a blog is a dofollow blog, the webmaster normally advertises this fact proudly. The do follow movement is growing and it is becoming possible to find do follow blogs in every niche you can imagine.

One of the simplest way is to find do follow blogs is to search for the popular "U comment, I follow" image in Google images. This is an image that do follow bloggers use to set themselves apart from their no follow peers.

You can also visit the directory Do Follow Blogs (http://www.dofollowblogs.com) for a succinct list of do follow blogs. You can also find a frequently updated directory at http://www.feverishthoughts.com/do-follow-bloggers/.

Develop a schedule for commenting on do you follow blogs within your niche. Don't let this become a time wasting activity. Visit five to 10 relevant blogs in your niche each week and make comments.

The one important thing to remember is that when you post on these blogs you should make your comments relevant and appealing. Don't spam them with comments. Do follow bloggers generally don't approve comments that seem like spam. Read the post and take a bit of time to come up with something relevant.

Posting on Do Follow Forums

Some forums have no follow tags that prevent you from getting backlinks from posting on their site. However, there is a growing list of sites that uses the do follow tags. Just like do follow blogs, you can get a great deal of link juice from popular forums.

Forums are terrific for backlinks because they normally have very high page ranks. They also have a good deal of activity so it's easy to stay involved and post frequently. The more posts that you have, the more backlinks you create around the 'net.

There is a frequently updated list of do follow forums here: http://www.dollarsblog.com/dofollow-forums/. Although this list is comprehensive, you shouldn't try to join more than a handful of forums for the sake of your sanity!

Participating in a forum can be a real distraction if you let it be. Don't get sucked into spending all day at a forum and pretending that you are working. Go a few times and week and participate in conversations that appeal to you and your niche.

Remember that slightly relevant backlinks are better than no links at all. If you don't find something that relates to your niche in this list, just try an Internet marketing forum or other general forum to build backlinks.

By visiting a do follow forum frequently, but not so much that it interrupts your productivity, you can build a stable of backlinks that will grow your site's ranking.

Social Bookmarking for Backlinks

Social bookmarking is a portion of Web 2.0 that will help you build quality backlinks quickly. Bookmarking websites allow you and other users to bookmark websites as their favorites and share them with others.

Suddenly instead of having a favorites list locked away in a web browser, everyone's favorites are out in the open. People can share their favorites, and if your website is one of those favorites, it can quickly be passed along to others who are interested in your niche topic.

Using social bookmarking, you can gain backlinks to important pages in your website or on your blog. Simply join a few popular social bookmarking sites like:








Each time you have a new post or add a section to your website, you should submit a link to these directories. Many Internet marketers have even banded together to exchange social bookmarks, therefore increasing the number of backlinks that each person gets.

If you belong to a social networking site like Twitter.com or Facebook.com, you may be able to ask for "a Stumble" or a post in order to increase your backlinks. If you have a number or marketers on your friends list who understand the concept, they can help you increase your page rank.

The only problem with some social bookmarking sites is that they have no follow tags in their links. You can waste a lot of time by submitting to sites that aren't going to give you the benefit that you think they are. You can help automate the process by using a social bookmarking utility like http://socialposter.com/ .

Socialposter.com helps you easily submit to a variety of social bookmarking sites all at once. Not only does it help you save time but you'll also be ensured that the sites you submit to will provide you with do follow links.

Submitting to SEO Friendly Directories

Although web link directories have faded in popularity over the last few years, they are still a terrific source of "link juice." SEO friendly directories will list your website among others that are relevant to your topic.

Unlike the other methods, listing your site in directories is a onetime process. You may want to start with this first and then start building up the other activities as you develop your other backlink building strategies.

Although you only submit your link to a directory once, you can submit to as many relevant directories as you can find. You can start your search here: http://info.vilesilencer.com/top

It's important t look at the directories you are submitting to carefully. You should avoid directories that use redirects or dynamic URLs. These sites basically leave you without any benefit at all. Ideally, you'll want one-way links from quality directories to your website.

Greg Cryns
Fresh and very high quality PLR articles

Use Article Marketing to get more good backlinks to your blog or website

Article marketing is a wonderful way to build backlinks to your website. Article marketing consists of writing articles that relate to the content of your website and then submitting them to a variety of article directories. These directories supply content to a wide variety of webmasters, provided that they keep the links in the articles intact.

By providing articles to article directories, you can build a broad network of sites, newsletters, forums, and more, that link back to your website. When site owners publish your content, they agree that all links in the article will be kept intact. Your links back to your site, bio, and affiliate links (if permitted), are all included in the article any time it is published.

Article marketing provides backlinks to your site in two ways. First, when the article is originally published on the directory, it adds a backlink to your site from the directory site. Most article directories have a relatively high PR, so this backlink can be an excellent addition to your link building efforts.

Secondly, your article provides backlinks from any website that publishes it. This means that your article continues to work building links back to your site, long after its initial publication.

Articles are also great for driving traffic to your site from the article directories themselves. Directories like ezinearticles.com get thousands of visitors per day, and your articles can accumulate hundreds to thousands of page views quite quickly. These articles can be an excellent source of traffic to your site.

When beginning an article marketing campaign, focus on long tail keyword research. Find keywords with high search volume and low competition to be sure your articles are ranked well in the search engines. From there, it's all downhill!

It's relatively easy to use article marketing to build a network of traffic to your site. Even better, you can do so while driving traffic at the same time. Article marketing is truly content marketing at its best - if you can write or hire a ghostwriter, you can build a huge network of backlinks for your site at no extra cost to you.

Greg Cryns
Wahm Search Engine

Top 10 RSS Feed Websites

Bloggers know the value of RSS feeds and RSS syndication. RSS feed websites update regularly, then send the information out to all their subscribers- who are following your blog.

The real bonus here is that subscribers get a link to your most recent content. That means people who read your blog don't have to check it regularly to know when you've got fresh content up.

Create the backlink once, get it refreshed every time you update your site. That's value for your money. More backlinks means you get indexed quickly, your posts carry more weight, and search engines send their crawler programs to your site more often. Here's a few of some of the best ones.

* RssHugger.com: This is a newer website that pushes your blog. The really cool thing is that you can get your own page on their site for 10 years just for putting up a review of them. Scratch their back, and they'll scratch yours.

* FeedBomb.com: This one categorizes blogs by topic, making it easier for people to find you. It's easy to add your feed, and it doesn't cost you anything.

* Postami.com: There is tons of content on the main page, along with very easily laid out sidebars. Fairly straightforward, and they get lots of traffic, so it's a pretty safe bet.

* FeedsFarm.com: FeedsFarm indexes over 14,000,000 news articles, searches them, and puts them out for all to see- not to shabby for FREE.

* DayTimeNews.com: They collect RSS feed information from all over the globe and deliver it with amazing speed. It's free, easy, and works.

* FeedBase.net: They routinely rotate their front page displays, cataloging thousands of feeds. There is a fee for using this service, but you keep in kind that if they can charge a fee, they HAVE the ability to deliver the required traffic.

* FeedBoy.com: This is an ad-supported cataloging site with multiple levels of user interface. The even have a section for games if you want to goof off for a bit.

* Feed24.com: A Dutch website which features the most recent news stories and blog posts. Also free to get your feed catalogued.

* Chordata.com: This is an extensive RSS feed data cataloging website. They also cover Atom feeds, which can be just as beneficial.

* Feedest.com: This site actually uses intelligence to learn how users like to surf the Internet and tailors the information to each one in particular.

There you have it - a list of the ten best RSS Feed Websites. Put them to use building links for your website today!

Greg Cryns
20000 Credit Card Debt

Tips on How to Build Backlinks for Your Website

Using techniques such as forum posting, blog commenting, directory submission, and more, you can build up your site's traffic bit by bit. This article discusses ways to build backlinks for your website - read on to learn more!

1. Press Releases: By writing short press releases and submitting them to a variety of sites, you can quickly get the word out about your site. Look for a unique or newsworthy angle to keep the reader interested.

2. SEO Blog Posts: Include your keywords as anchor text when linking internally on your site, as well as when linking out. This will increase the SEO ranking of your site.

3. Article Submission: Write unique articles and submit them to article directories to build high quality backlinks. This technique allows you to obtain a high PR backlink from the article directory's site.

4. Yahoo Answers: Answer relevant questions on Yahoo Answers and link back to your site - this provides a quick, quality backlink

5. Post on Relevant Forms: Post on a variety of forums in your niche, and link back to your site whenever appropriate. Also add your site's link in your signature file, where allowed. Avoid spamming the forum, however, as this will only give you a bad reputation.

6. Social Bookmarking: Regularly bookmark your individual sites or pages on social bookmarking sites like Digg and StumbleUpon, and encourage your friends to do the same. Again, avoid spamming - you don't want to get your account deleted.

7. Blog Commenting - Leave relevant comments on blogs in your niche. Be sure that these are informational, high-quality posts. Your goal is to have people who are reading the comments click over to your blog. Don't leave comments that are not relevant or that don't contain good information.

8. Link Directory Submissions - These can be useful if the directory contains good quality links. Avoid link directories that have unrelated links or seem spammy.

9. Niche Directory Submissions - These can be great sources of traffic, as long as the links are high quality. Try to find directories that specialize in your site's niche.

By using these techniques, it's easier than you'd think to build a network of backlinks to your website. Backlinks increase your website's page rank, and will therefore increase your traffic. By spending a small amount of time each day building traffic, you're sure to see an increase in the number of visitors to your site. Doing a little bit of work each day on traffic is a great investment that will pay off over time.

Greg Cryns
Wahm Search Engine

How to get backlinks on blogs

5 Tips for Obtaining Links on Blogs

Every online business owner loves backlinks. Backlinks help increase the traffic to your site, ad revenue, and affiliate product sales. They're just a good thing all around. Not every webmaster, though, knows how to increase their backlinks.

Well, there are several ways you can do just that. Buying blog reviews may be questionable in some circles, but it can help you out a lot in this respect, and here's how to get the most out of your efforts:

1. Watch out for blogs that only post reviews. All review blogs don't usually rank very high in big search engines because there usually isn't very much original or fresh content. Think about it. What is the guarantee that you would read a blog for more than 10 seconds once you found out it's all essentially advertising? Not good. Unless your product is prominently featured, nobody is likely to see it.

2. When you decide on a site that you want to push your product, you'll be given the chance to describe your product to the blogger. Be careful here, and make your descriptions differ for each different site. Nobody gets all good reviews, and certainly not all websites use the same wording. Asking some sites to give an honest review, even if it's a mediocre one, can often lend an air of honesty and reliability to a review.

3. Take a cue from the music business. Have you ever heard the word 'payola'? It comes from the old days of radio when a record company would PAY a DJ to play whatever record (VICTROLA in the early days) they wanted to push that week. Pay + Victrola= payola. Buying blog posts works the same way, except that it's not illegal.

4. Have you seen a review of your product that you really like? Help that blogger out by helping them. Use bookmarking sites to promote their blog, specifically the part that mentions your product. Stumble it, Digg it, Propeller it; whatever you do, don't let that link sink into obscurity. Most bloggers would be thrilled to find out that someone is doing some promotion for them for free.

5. Not all bloggers are willing to sell space on their sites. There are blog review services that will find willing bloggers and connect you to them. Typically, they will have tons of blogs to choose from, so browse the sites to find the ones that most closely match your product's target audience. This takes that little bit of extra effort of contacting a blogger and negotiating for what amounts to advertising space, which can be quite annoying.

If you decide to buy backlinks for your site, be sure to choose reputable sites. If possible, avoid sites that only post reviews. Spend time researching the best blogs to promote your product, and be sure to approach only bloggers who sell review space on their sites. If you find a positive review of your product, be sure to take the time to promote it through social bookmarking sites, as well. By following these easy tips, you'll have developed a great method for obtaining backlinks for your site.

Greg Cryns
Wahm Search Engine

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Active Listening

I know a very successful business consultant. When her prospect hesitates to sign a contract with her she asks, "Do you need a different pen?" Don't talk yourself out of a sale. Learn how to perfect your active listening skills to increase your business success.

Stop Talking and Start Listening!

© 2006 Mary Ellen Warner

If you are talking, you cannot listen. In order to hear what another person has to say, you
have to stop talking and start listening!

It is necessary for you to recognize the difference between listening, and waiting for your
turn to talk. They are not the same activity.

Listening is focusing on the other person and giving them the space they need to share
information. Waiting for your turn to speak is focusing on you!

How do you improve your listening skills after you stop talking?

First, you have to want to listen. You have to believe the person speaking has something
valuable to say, and that you will benefit from the information revealed.

Your clients will tell you what they need, if you give them an opportunity. If you focus
on what you believe they need, you risk sending them on their way without a sale.

Communication is not just about you talking about your product or service. It is about
listening to the concerns of your customers.

Several years ago my husband and I had decided to downsize and were in the market for
a condo. We visited the model of a new development that looked very attractive.

The salesman was determined to tell me all about the kitchen and the wonderful features
that were included. My husband remarked to him that the kitchen was very low on my
priority list and that he was wasting his breath.

What did matter to us was the policy on companion animals because we had three cats.

The agent said he did not know the policy, but thought the rules allowed only one animal.

He completely dismissed the need and went back to talking about the kitchen.

We left shortly thereafter and did not bother to return any calls from the salesman.

We visited another complex the same day that had a real estate professional who stopped
talking and listened!

In order to not waste our time, we decided to ask immediately about the policy on cats.

The agent was well prepared and knew the answer to an inquiry about companion
animals. Cats and dogs were welcome!

The agent also wanted to tell me about the kitchen. I still was not very interested, but
much more willing to listen since my top need was met. We purchased the condo and
moved in with all three kitties!

Second, you have to give yourself the space to listen. If you life is full of clutter, you
have neither the time, nor the energy, to pay attention.

I have assisted hundreds of people to become more organized. In the process, it has
become very obvious to me that poor management of resources will create barriers to
effective communication.

You cannot listen when your mind is racing. You cannot focus when you are running
late. You cannot give people space to talk when you have no space of your own!

Is your paperwork a disaster? Do you over-schedule yourself? Are you buried in clutter?
What issue is creating barriers to your listening ability?

If your first thought is, “I don’t have time for this”, consider how successful you are and
decide if you are satisfied!

What can you do? There are hundreds of articles and books on organizing and clutter
control. You are sure to find clues that match your behavior style and provide ideas to
make necessary changes.

Perhaps you need to work with a life coach to design a plan that will allow you overcome
the barriers you are creating.

You have the power to stop talking and start listening! You have the ability to develop
your listening skills! You have the potential to create space in your life by proper
management of your resources!

Why not begin today?

Mary Ellen Warner, MSA, DTM is a speaker, author and coach who works with people to
overcome barriers to effective communication. Learn more about Mary Ellen and her
new book Stand Out in the Crowd! Effective Communication Skills for the Real Estate
Professional at www.marbilwarner.com or contact her at maryellen@marbilwarner.com .

Greg Cryns
Wahm Search Engine

The Telephone can waste a lot of your precious time

There are scores of time wasters that invade and undermine your productivity. One of the most troublesome is not so obvious because using it usually assumes it is a productive activity - the telephone!

Don’t Touch That Phone!

Mary Ellen Warner ©2005 All Rights Reserved

Do you make just one more phone call, when you do not have the time to do so? Do you
answer the phone, when you know that it will make you late?

Are you creating barriers to effective communication with your telephone manners? Take
immediate action to eliminate obstacles to successful communication.

This is an easy fix. Don’t touch that phone! It really is that simple.

Create an opportunity to overcome barriers to effective communication. Determine what
time you must leave to adhere to your schedule and then honor that time. Do NOT touch
that phone. Do not make just one more call. Do not answer just one more call.

What happens when you try to squeeze in just one more call? You are expecting voice
mail, but you reach a person. You must now communicate -- not just leave a brief

However, you are in a hurry so you do not adequately present your information. Or, the
person has questions for you, and you are not prepared. You have just annoyed the person
you called!

If you are frequently late for appointments, do you realize that making a phone call to
announce that you will be late is not conductive to effective communication. Remember
it is much easier to communicate with someone that you have not irritated!

What if you pick up the ringing phone when you know that you must leave or have
someone waiting? How well do you listen to the caller? Do you exchange information or
do you create more problems for yourself because of your lack of focus?

If you are thinking, “you don’t understand, I have to make or take this call”, consider
how satisfied you are with your life. Are people frequently frustrated with you? Do you
have misunderstandings caused by poor communication?

A woman in one of my workshops shared how discouraged she was because she worked
extra hours every single day. She explained that phone never stopped ringing and she
continued to answer even through her work day was finished.

Apparently, at some point each day, she would accept the fact the phone would ring all
night long and that she might never leave unless she stopped answering. Understand that
she was not staffing an emergency line!

People had come to expect her to answer after hours. She was in danger of major burnout.
What action did she take? She set a time to stop answering and honored that time. This is
a simple, but not easy, action to implement. Habits require time to change!

Normal hours ended at five o’clock but she frequently worked past seven every day. She
started off by deciding that she would stop answering the phone at six-thirty. When she
was comfortable with that, she moved the time back to six, then five-thirty and eventually
five o’clock.

Change of behavior improved her communication with customers. It became easier to
listen when she was not upset about the late calls. This change also improved the quality
of her personal life since she was not so exasperated with her professional life.

What are you going to do today to establish your telephone policy? What steps are you
taking to overcome barriers to effective communication?

Mary Ellen Warner, MSA, DTM is a speaker, author and coach who works with people to
overcome barriers to effective communication. Learn more about Mary Ellen at
www.marbilwarner.com or contact her at maryellen@marbilwarner.com.

Greg Cryns
Nursing Programs Online - a great career

Multitasking - is it holding you back?

Multitasking can be a bane rather than a boon for many people. How many times have you turned on the radio or an audio podcast while you are working only to find later that you have no recollection of what was said?

There is a lot to be said for total focus on the really important stuff like making a living, for example.

Hidden Cost of Multitasking

Mary Ellen Warner ©2005 All Rights Reserved

Busy! Busy! Busy! Everyone is busy! What is the solution? Many people believe that
multitasking is the answer. I agree, if you are a computer. Computers are masters of

What is multitasking? It is the ability to execute more than one task at the same time, a
task being a program. We are talking computers here folks.

The computer switches from one program to another so quickly that it gives the
appearance of executing all of the programs at the same time. The key word is, of course,

Unfortunately, many people use the theory of multitasking to arrange their lives. I
frequently encounter people who believe that they are capable of performing several tasks
at the same time. They aren’t! Multitasking has become the problem.

Consider the cost you will experience, in both your personal and professional lives, when
multitasking and attempting to communicate.

How many mistakes have you made because you didn’t really hear what the other person
was telling you? If the person is a client or a prospect, this can be very costly. If the
person is your spouse or significant other, it can be even more costly!

Multitasking is a barrier to effective communication. It is necessary to focus, especially
when you are listening. Because I have a profound hearing loss, I know that I have to pay
attention to the person who is speaking. I am a better listener because I am hard of

Since I cannot hear you if your back is turned to me, I believe you cannot hear me. If you
turn away, to shuffle your papers or look around at other people, I stop talking. Do you
know how many times people have said, “go on … keep talking… I am listening”.
No you are not! I don’t usually say that our loud -- but I do think it. Are your clients in
the same position? It is not possible to engage in meaningful conversation with the person
in front of you, to answer the phone, and to interact with other people in the near vicinity.
However, how many try to do that in their office every day?

What is the solution? You must determine what is essential. You must focus on what is
important. You must do one task at a time.

Remember, the computer is able to switch from one program to another so quickly that is
gives the appearance of executing all of the programs at the same time. You are not a

Recognize the cost you will experience, in both your personal and professional lives,
when multitasking and attempting to communicate.

Mary Ellen Warner, MSA, DTM is a speaker, author and coach who works with people to
overcome barriers to effective communication. Learn more about Mary Ellen at
www.marbilwarner.com or contact her at maryellen@marbilwarner.com .

Greg Cryns
Check out the opportunity in a nursing career

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Link schemes - what does Google say?

If you don't believe me, you may believe Google.Here is a summary on link schemes at Google's Webmasters/Site owners Help

Google is very emphatic about participating in link schemes.

Generally speaking, the important links are those coming into your website, not going out, though good outgoing links are part of what the Internet is all about.

The Google search results are based on (in part) checking on who is liking to you. "The quantity, quality, and relevance of links count towards your rating." says Google.

Particiaption in link schemes and and will be penalized. Some examples include
*any scheme where the intention is simply to have Google smile on you, manipulation of Page Rank.
* Excessive reciprocal links (though Google does not assign a number to "excessive")
* Buying and selling links that pass Page Rank

When making a decision about adding content to your website, ask yourself "Is this going to be beneficial for my page's visitors?" If not, don't post it.

Trust me, you don't want to have to face up to Google's wrath. Greg Cryns Wahm Search Engine . .

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Latest Google Trends

What are we searching for this week? The economy? Iraq? Congressional BS?

I wish. Here are the top 5 fastest rising search terms in the last 90 days:

5. IRS

4. Rihanna

3. Chris Brown - domestic violence

2. American Idol

1. Inauguration

Greg Cryns
Wahm Search Engine - affordable advertising

Backlink schemes are unhealthy for your website

Since backlinks appear to be one of the strongest parts of the Google algorithm, it is not surprising that cottage industries are offering "solutions" to your need for backlinks. Beware. What is good for the spammer is not necessarily good for you.

This morning I received this SPAM email from some dorks who want to manipulate Google.

Seems they have some powerful websites and they want me to share in the "juicy backlinks" from those websites, for a fee, of course.


Do You Need Better Rankings at Google, Yahoo, MSN and all other Search Engines?

Our database of TOP SITES FOR JUICY BACKLINKS is the ANSWER you've been looking for!
Join us TODAY and you will have them all linking to your website! Send us an email or a reply to (scam email link) if you are interested! Best Wishes, The Top Links DB team

< /snip >

How often do we receive junk email like this? How many times do we need to remind everyone that Google hates this type of black hat strategy and that we will get penalized sooner or later.

How often do we need to tell people that what they need is simply good, solid content and a desire to enhance the experience of our visitors?

How often do you wake up in the morning to find your website on page 2 or nowhere after being on page one of the search engines?

These spammers remind me of the people who rule Wall St. They are willing to do whatever enriches themselves even if the know their tactics will destroy us.

Photo by:

Greg Cryns

Wahm Searh Engine - affordable advertising

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Cool YouTube jump trick

Add a bit of code at the end of the YouTube URL to make the video be presented from a specific TIME in the video.

Let's say you want to show your friends this video "Social Networking in Plain English"

Here is the main URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6a_KF7TYKVc

If you click that link you will be transported to the YouTube page as usual.

But if you add "#t=51s" it will be started from 51 seconds into the video.

The "t" = "time". "51" is the number of seconds into the video.


Another example. One of my favorite movie scenes can be found in the Bourne Ultimatim trailer. But how do I help my friends see the exact scene immediately instead of watching the whole trailer from the beginning?

I say "click this link to see my fave Bourne scene!"



Cool, eh?

Props to Sage Lewis for showing me this trick.

Greg Cryns
Wahm Search Engine
but you want them to see only a small part of the video.

Social marketing - don't miss the boat

Social Network Marketing is
not something that many business owners think is profitable. "I just don't believe it works," is something I hear a lot out there in the real world. If they don't say it they show it by not doing it.

Below is a video by Sage Lewis. According to his bio on the Search Engine Guide blog: "Video blogger Sage Lewis keeps you up to date with what's hot in the world of search engines."

I'm not sure if I agree 100% with what Sage says about the real (realized) value of social network marketing but he has an engaging way of saying it. I believe video marketing has so much to offer that it will eventually catch up to and perhaps even surpass text marketing.

Yes, Facebook is populated by millions of younger people and some older people (like me). But are those people buyers of the products I offer? More often they are not.

But, I think businessowners need to take a look at social marketing and get a presence on the largest social properties. I am not saying they need to use a lot of resources to push a marketing effort there. Just get a feel for it, my small business friends.

Remember, if you don't believe in Hell, then you better be right! ;)


Greg Cryns
Wahm Search Engine

The Mighty Mo Website Design and Small Biz Promotion

Monday, March 23, 2009

Twitter scores another customer service home run

This is to show that companies can profit with social networking on the Internet. It also shows how fast things can happen there, too.

Yesterday I saw a tweet from one of my followers on Twitter, @JoanneSardini

Joanne said, "The power of Twitter strikes again! Why can't life problems all be solved this easily - Thanks guys!!"

Well, this sure interested me since I am always looking for proof that social networking works.

Here is the first tweet about the problem:
"Just had a horrible experience with Shoebuy.com - they need to meet @zappos for some customer service advice! I got told off on the phone"

The second tweet about the problem:
"All I did was had a different billing address from my shipping address - not so unusual, right? "Not for shoebuy.com - not cool!!!"

I sent a message to Joanne asking if she would sent a description of the incident to post here. Joanne agreed and sent me this email message today.


My online shoe buying experience took a knock over the past 2 days but ShoeBuy.com certainly redeemed themselves.

I ordered two pairs of shoes and used a credit card with a different name and billing address than the shipping info.

Not a big deal, thought.

ShoeBuy emailed me and asked me to call their processing dept. I did. They wanted to speak to the cardholder.

This is where it gets a bit sticky.

The cardholder is my Mom who happens to live in Scotland. I told them they couldn’t talk to her on this number.

Before I even had a chance to give her email or phone number I was told my order was being canceled – for my mother’s security.

OK, I get the point and appreciate that they were protecting her credit card but this is when it gets bad. I suggested that if they are concerned with cardholder security, they should ask for cardholder contact info at order time.

The woman on the phone rudely interrupted me. To make a long story short, I hung up the phone with a bad feeling (and no shoes!).

In an angry mood, I went to Twitter and made three tweets about my experience (you can pull them from my page) suggesting that ShoeBuy.com could learn from Zappos great customer service.

Just 20 minutes later I answered my phone at home. A manager from ShoeBuy was on the phone. He apologized for my problem and immediately processed my order and graciously gave me 15% discount.

I told the manager that I would go back to Twitter and tell people about the excellent service I received from ShoeBuy. I was very happy with their speedy remedy. When he heard this he was very happy that I was satisfied.

ShoeBuy obviously closely monitors its online presence. The man I spoke to couldn’t have been more apologetic or nicer about the situation.

Great example of using Twitter to monitor and turn a negative into a positive!

Joanne Sardini
Director of Sales and Owner Services
Edgartown Residence Club
Colonial Inn of Martha's Vineyard
Phone: 800-465-2810

< /snip >

In a span of one short hour Joanne told her followers on Twitter about her problem and ShoeBuy turned that complaint into a very happy customer. In addition, many people now have a warm and fuzzy feeling about ShoeBuy. They are likely to pick up some additional sales, possibly some immediate sales. Joanne has almost 2,000 followers.

Today I will post this blog. Another group of people will hear the good news about ShoeBuy.

The ROI of monitoring Twitter for ShoeBuy, at least, is apparent if not measurable. My faith in social networking got a big boost as well.

Photo by Jerry Wong

Greg Cryns
20000 Credit Card Debt
Wahm Search Engine

Sunday, March 22, 2009

The Barrettsmith Sisters - a Closer Look Behind the Curtain of American Idol

I wrote this piece for the local paper a couple of years ago. The Barretsmith sisters lived a couple miles from our house. We are friends of this lovely family

Hope you enjoy it.


The Barrettsmith Sisters - a Closer Look Behind the Curtain of American Idol

There is no doubt that Brooke and Leah Barrettsmith of Spring Grove had the adventure of a lifetime competing on Fox’s megahit TV show American Idol. Before we explore their experiences, here is a short description of how the show works in case you've never seen the show.

Before getting a plane ticket to Hollywood, a contestant must first endure three days of grueling auditions in one of the major U.S. cities chosen to host the preliminary auditions. The producers of American Idol are well aware that the success of the show is based on people without talent as well as those who have IT. Many people tune in just to see the judges ridicule a contestant to the point of tears or to watch the contestant’s angry reaction to being sent packing. For example, in this year’s show two male twins are feature because they are very outspoken about the judges and verbally protective of each other. Another contestant called “Cowboy” jumped on the judges’ desk to sing part of his song.

The camera is focused on the expressions of the American Idol judges, Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul and Randy Jackson as much as on the contestants. Cowell’s scathing comments are now ritual and crowd-pleasing. Abdul and Jackson regularly criticize Cowell. At times the contestant’s talent is so obviously second rate that all three judges can barely contain their laughter.

Contestants must be U.S. citizens and between the ages of 16 and 28. This year 16 year-old contestant Kevin Covais revealed that talent transcends age. At the opposite pole is prematurely gray 28 year-old Kevin Hicks whose unique voice might carry him to the finals.

The top 24 semifinalists are removed from public contact much like a secluded jury. The must take drug tests. Some contestants have been disqualified during the show for failing these tests. All contestants must sign a contract that prevents them from using cell phones except for family calls and emergencies and the Internet where they might discuss the show in a chat room. They may not watch TV news shows or listen to radio shows or read the newspapers. TV fans take over the voting on the phone at this point. The judges are consulted and make comments on performances but they no longer vote at this level.

The “finalists” are the last 12 contestants. The drama heightens after weeks of further eliminations until a single contestant is chosen as the winner

The adventure of Brooke and Leah Barrettsmith began on a cool day in September, 2005. They arrived at Soldier Field in downtown Chicago at 5:00 am escorted by their father, Rev. Scott Barrettsmith. “We needed to be there early enough to get a good place in line,” said Brooke. Nearly 20,000 contestants auditioned in Chicago that day. Some of them were from New Orleans because that city was picked as an audition center but it was washed away by Hurricane Katrina.

Contestants were led into the Soldier Field in groups of 300. Brooke and Leah wanted to audition together so they held hands. “Don’t separate us!” they said to American Idol employees.

Only 300 hopefuls survived the first day. Brooke and Leah were relieved to be one of them. “There were thousands of totally depressed people there,” said Scott. The Barrettsmiths spent their nights at a nearby hotel. “We literally got the last available room,” said Scott.

Days two and three were as hectic as the first. American Idol executive producers told the Barrettsmiths the “needed personality” to move on. “I had no problem showing personality,” said Brooke. Brooke befriended Mandisa, a semifinalist from Tennesse. “I can tell you are a Christian,” said Mandisa. “Girl, let’s pray!” When told that Leah planned to sing a Christian song called “Blessed” the producers said they preferred secular songs. “They did not want to show favoritism,” said Leah. During the audition, though, Leah sang “Blessed” anyway. “I was having trouble with my first selection and just stopped and switched,” said Leah.

“We asked to go into the audition together,” said Brooke. In an unusual move the producers permitted that. In an televised interview Leah said, “I believe in my sister and she believe in me just as much so I love her and we are going to do this together as much as we can.”

For the first time Brooke and Leah confronted the now famous American Idol judges, Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul and Randy Jackson.

Brooke led off and sang a short section of her Shoop Shoop song. Then Leah sang. Randy said to Leah, “I like your voice I think you are good. I would say yes to Leah.” Paula Abdul said, “I think you are both talented and different in your own ways, so I’m either going to say ‘yes’ to both, or ‘no’. Simon said, “Well, I would say ‘no’ to both of you.” There was a short silence. Then Randy said, “We have a quandary, judges.” Simon said, “I am going to apply Randy’s ‘yes’ to both of you, so now it is down to Paula.” Paula said, “I love my sister. I love the fact that you are here together supporting each other. I think you both need to work, but you can do that and come back to Hollywood.” Brooke and Leah reacted with happy exclamations and a big hug. Meanwhile Randy said, “Welcome to Hollywood, sisters, sisters!”

Brooke and Leah told the producers about the Richardson corn maze. Sensing a good story the producers sent a camera crew to Spring Grove to film the sisters playing in and around the corn maze. “The filming took about 10 hours including dinner with the crew,” said Brooke. “All that for a two minute segment.”

In Hollywood

The next stage of auditions began on December 4th in Hollywood. “About 200 people out of tens of thousands made it to Hollywood,” said Brooke. Brooke and Leah made the trip without parents or relatives. They spent the first day touring Hollywood with half of the contestants while the other half went through auditions. They wore distinctive American Idol tags to promote the show in Los Angeles. They stayed in a hotel, two to a room. “The show did not skimp on the accommodations,” said Leah.

Both were successful in their first audition. In the second audition Randy said to Leah, “You didn’t bring it today. It’s the end of the road.”

Leah was surprised by the action. “What you see on television is not always the way it actually happened,” said Leah. “They do a lot of editing to make the show more dramatic. When I was singing, for example, it appeared that the audience was bored and quiet on TV. Actually the audience was cheering and clapping while I sang. They were yelling ‘let her through!’ “ At another point you see Leah looking startled on TV as though she was reacting to the negative decision. “That shot was totally taken at another time and edited into the space,” said Leah.

The show puts the contestants into small groups for one segment. “I don’t know why they make us sing with a group,” said Leah. “It really has nothing to do with why we are there. I think they are trying to put a lot of stress on the contestants for the TV cameras. They are very strict. You better not be a minute late for a meeting. They treat you like dogs.”

Brooke backed up Leah’s concerns. “They love the crying and the drama. They love to frighten you,” said Brooke. “Sometimes the judges are totally acting. They seemed to be faking.”

“I think they are pushing for a guy to win this year,” said Brooke. “They are focused on guy talent.”

American Idol rules say that a contestant cannot be signed professionally. The show makes the contestants sign a contract that restricts their professional activity for one full year. “We are locked up until August,” said Brooke.

Leah will soon be moving to Nashville to continue her singing career. “I will be doing more mainstream music,” said Leah.

Brooke is committed to remaining in the Christian music scene. “Christian music is much more relevant now,” said Brooke. “My career has taken a turn for the better. God used American Idol to change me. I am now even more into music ministry.”

Greg Cryns is the founder of http://www.mchenryonline.com McHenry Online. He is also a local correspondent for the Richmond Report in northern Illinois and the founder of http://www.wahmsearchengine.com - Wahm Search Engine