Monday, August 31, 2009

David after Youtube

David Devore took his kid to the dentist. He videoed his son in the back seat during the trip home. The son was talking nonsense and acting like he was high. He was.

David Devore (the father) submitted the video of his drugged up son to Youtube. The rest is history.

The Youtube hit-o-meter went nuts. It read 28 MILLION visits to that page.

If you visit the video page now, you are likely to see ads for many products. See the one in the square next to the video picture? Google made a deal with David Devore to share in the clickthrough revenue on the page, just like they do for the Adsense folks.

Devore made $25,000 so far. He will continue to make money as long as people keep forwarding the video to their friends via email. He made a "viral" video. That's what the ad people call it.

You could also share in profits if you create a video like this one and get REALLY lucky.

Since it is quite impossible to make a viral video, we can piggyback on a successful video like this guy did:

Greg Cryns
Wordpress website creation and SEO promotion

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Computer joke

Computer trouble!

I was having trouble with my computer. So I called Timmy, the 11 year old next door whose bedroom looks like Mission Control, and asked him to come over.

Timmy clicked a couple of buttons and solved the problem.

As he was walking away, I called after him, 'So, what was wrong?

He replied, 'It was an ID ten T error.'

I didn't want to appear stupid, but nonetheless inquired, 'An, ID ten T error? What's that? In case I need to fix it again.'

Timmy grinned. 'Haven't you ever heard of an ID ten T error before?''

No,' I replied.

'Write it down,' he said, 'and I think you'll figure it out.'

So I wrote down: I D 1 0 T

I used to like the little shit.

Greg Cryns
The Mighty Mo Website design and SEO promotion

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Building the list - a few techniques

Building a good, responsive email list is a lot of hard work. Make no mistake about that.

Here are some techniques people use to get people to join their email list:

1. Blogging - in my opinion, this must be done. You need a place to send people to check you out. If you send them to a formal website, you risk losing them.

2. Social networking - this helps people to get to know and trust you. If you have a good blog, people will join your newsletter list if they like your personality and your approach to business. You can use Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn to show people where your blog is.

3. Video - don't pass this one by. I have not done this yet, but I will because I personally prefer to learn from videos than reading text so I figure there are plenty more people who are like me. You need to do a lot of writing, though, to pick up the people who are not video oriented. Using a comination of blogging and video is very powerful.

4. Podcasting - some people prefer the radio style audio format rather than video. As one fellow said, if you look like a dork, do podcasting. Well, you don't have to actually have your mug in the video. You could simply do a show and tell like this . I am not a big fan of podcasting.

Make a sign for your desk so you will see it every day when you sit down to do your tasks.


Not saying that is the only way to succeed. Not at all. But if you are going to be successful online, it is, in my opinion, the best way.

Continuing the list building adventure tomorrow. Must see a doctor in a bit. Nothing life threatening, just needs to be done.

Greg Cryns
The Mighty Mo Website Design and SEO Promotion

Monday, August 24, 2009

It's time to build your email list, NOW

For the next month I will spend a lot of my time reasearching about how to build an email list and making it happen. Go away distractions! ;)

Why? Because I don't have a good email list now, certainly not one with a critical mass of subscribers. I know I need one. I had an "ah-ha" moment recently as an SEO person.

If you have a good responsive list then you can fire your SEO person. Think about that. It's huge!

So often I've read posts by very successful people that say if they had it all to do over again they would have started their email lists sooner.

Sorry to report that the email list journey is a walk on a very hard, rocky road. Having said that, there is an expensive way to build an email list. You can use Google Adwords. This would involve spending a few thousand dollars. I realize that most of us don't have that much money to invest.

But I will use Adwords to some extent because I believe so strongly in a lists's long term value and I have some money to put into the effort. I also think that, in general, the quality of a subscriber who comes through your blog or website is much higher than an Adwords subscriber.

By the way, I do not believe that Twitter followers can substitute for an email list unless you have alreeady achieved guru status. In other words, for 99.9% of us, Twitter is not equal.

Like most things that are worthwhile, building a good email list is certainly not an easy task. But don't let that scare you away since this might be your one and only chance to become self-sufficient on the Internet.

I know the basic routine about building a list. But I want you to realize that building the list is essentially two tasks: 1) setting up your autoresponder to deliver your messages; 2) finding targeted people who want information about your niche and then getting them to put their email address into the all-important email form to subscribe.

These are separate tasks. The first is technical and can be accomplished rather quickly. The second takes a little longer.

Here is a short list of the things you need to do to try to create a good responsive list.

1. But a domain name and set up a hosting account.

2. Rent an autoresponder (Awever and Constant Contact come to mind)

3. You must offer your website visitor a reason to hand over his/her valuable email address and join your newsletter. If you have a lot of people who already trust you (think big numbers of blog comments) your content may be enough to get them to sign on. More likely, you will need to entice the visitor with an eBook or report as a reward.

4. You must set up a landing page, a "squeeze" page that hands over the eBook and puts the person on the email list. This is where you put your "opt-in" form.

5. Then you must advertise the fact that you want people to join your newsletter email list. Usually you do this on your blog or website but you could use social media sites like Twitter if you know how to do it without being shunned for over-selling.

6. That is the easy part. Now you must figure out a way to bring in a lot of people to your blog or website.

So, it looks easy, right. No way. It might take you a year to obtain a few hundred subscribers. Some people do that much faster. I will be writing about various ways to attract subscribers in the future.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

SEO: key phrase tool

When you are looking for keyword phrases to add to your posts, take a look at Google Fight.

Here you can enter two competing phrases and find out which one Google has listed in its database.

Credit John Alexander with this find.

Greg Cryns

Wordpress design and small business promotions

Postcard Marketing Hands-Off Case Study

Postcard Marketing Hands-Off Case Study #2 -Speakers Bureaus
by Marcia Yudkin

Here's a postcard campaign that was profitable for me some years back.

To get more speaking engagements, I wanted to be represented by more speakersbureaus. However, bureaus were inundated with information kits and phone callsfrom wannabes.

Therefore, I decided to offer to help bureaus market themselves better. Thiswould cut through the clutter, and I'd come to their attention as a marketingexpert and a speaker on marketing, in a back-handed way.

I obtained a mailing list of directors of speakers bureaus and created apostcard containing one of my Marketing Minute newsletters. Besides thecomplete text of my 180-word Marketing Minute, the card invited them tosubscribe to get tips on growing their business from my no-cost weekly emailnewsletter.

Six times in one year, I mailed a card like this to the speakers bureaudirectors. The card was the same each time except that it contained the text ofa different Marketing Minute.

When I did this campaign, it was before the advent of online postcard marketingcompanies. I changed the master file in my computer, took a printout of thecard contents to my local Kinko's, they printed up the cards on card stock thatthey cut into quarters, I stuck on the bureau mailing labels and stamps, andfinally dropped them at the post office.

Today, the process is much simpler. You can design a postcard template online,cut and paste new content into it for each new mailing, upload the data file forthe postcard recipients just once, and have or anotheronline postcard print-and-mail company print and send the cards for you. There's no need to touch or mess with mailing labels, stamps or even thepostcards. Just place the order and it's done.

And my results? One bureau owner hired me for copywriting from the firstmailing and lined up a speaking engagement for me a year later. Three otherbureau owners I mailed to added me to their roster, with two additional bookingscoming out of that. Several other bureau owners joined my Marketing Minute listand purchased products or services from me years later, or referred others whodid so.

Financially, the campaign brought me at least fifteen times as much in revenuesas I spent, with results trickling in for more than seven years.

And I didn't make a single cold call to a bureau owner, which for me was anunspeakably big plus!

Your payoff from postcards could certainly be as satisfying as mine.

Veteran postcard marketer, consultant and author Marcia Yudkin is the creator ofThe Mighty Postcard Marketing Course, which teaches the strategic, logistical,design and copywriting secrets of successful postcard marketing. Download a freeone-hour audio interview in which she and the co-owner of a postcard printingand mailing firm reveal the basics of marketing with postcards:

Greg Cryns
Send Out Cards - Postcards

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

5 observations about using Twitter for business

This post may look like heresy to people who love and enjoy Twitter. I am not slamming social networking which I consider a very valuable tool. I am blasting the idea that Twitter is the best place to do your business social networking, though. Please remember my emphasis is on BUSINESS relationships. Personal relationships are probably another issue.

I am not happy with my attempt to establish solid business relationships with other business people on Twitter. I suspect most others feel this way but am I wrong? Let me know.

I have well over 4,000 followers. I've learned that having a lot of followers does not translate into more people to talk to, or more people to do much at all. It is true that I never see the posts of most of my followers. Is that shocking? If you have a lot of followers I think you agree. If you have under 200 followers, you may be surprised.

There are three very solid relationships I have established on Twitter. In each case I had a telephone conversation with these people. I do have a few excellent relationships where I did not have a phone call, but they are far from as strong or lasting.

Here are some of my observations about Twitter for business:

1. If you find a great business link you want to rush to show it to your followers. I get that feeling all the time. I want to share it with my friends. It may be a waste of time as far as getting people to know you.

Why? Because I've clicked on hundreds of good business links and learned a ton from them, but later I have no idea who sent them on Twitter, nor do I care.

So, why do it? I guess you could argue that this makes the fabric of Twitter much richer and more valuable. I agree. There are plenty of good reasons to visit Twitter other than to sell your wares or services.

However, it makes me want to make fewer posts and also to get away from providing links since that takes a lot of time if you post a lot of them.

2. I learned that if I put an @(name) in a post, the person I am targeting will see that post.

Sometimes I post a question or observation to all of my followers. They may be "what do you think of the new Facebook app" or "Google turned over a subscriber name to a potential lawsuit. Agree?" A gal posted an answer to a question I posted generally yesterday. I knew that because I searched @calgreg .

Then I send a DM to the gal "If I had posted the question 10 minutes later, would you EVER have seen it". She said NO, PROBABLY NOT. Think about that. How many of your followers see anything you post? If they follow a lot of people the strongest chance is that they will hardly ever see your posts unless you @ them.

3. If you @ someone in your post, they will see it almost 100% of the time (at least that is true of the people that follow me). I've come to realize that people do a search for @ posts with their name in it A LOT. They use Twitter Search or another software tool to get their @ posts.

This is good to know. Let's say you find someone whose Profile strikes you and makes you want to contact them. You could @ them immediately after you follow them. That will probably get their attention and they will be more likely to follow you. Then you can DM the person. Now you have something going on.

4. Don't be a sucker to sign up and pay big money for online coaching or courses that teach you how to get a lot of followers on Twitter. Some people make their living giving these courses and selling eBooks about how to get followers. In my opinion, totally worthless. This flies in the face of a post I made many months ago when I quoted Guy Kawaski who said "If you say you don't want more followers, you are a liar." Guy may have other reasons to still want a lot of followers, but he's in a different league than you and I are, friends. He gets most of his followers, I think, without much effort.

5. My tests show that less than 2% of your followers will see any one post you make. In fact, I bet that it is only half that many since my test involved posting 8 times in one day. I'd love to see some other results if you have them.


I will push to get people to accept my phone call to them as a greeting, not to sell them anything. I will do that by sending them a DM that says something like "Let's talk and meet the old fashioned way - on the phone? Call me at 805-226-8354 or I can call you." Since I've not tested this yet I can't give you results. But I will say, if I don't get much response, I will be spending a lot less time on Twitter, for sure.

What do you think?

Greg Cryns Wordpress design and promotion at The Mighty Mo

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Postcard Marketing: Recession Rescue Case Study

Postcard Marketing: Recession Rescue Case Study
by Marcia Yudkin

Someone asked me if postcards are a good marketing tool for a recession. Yes,they are! Indeed, postcards pulled me out of the 1990-91 recession.

With a business partner, I'd started a training company in writing skills andrented an office at the prestigious Statler Office Building, adjacent to thePark Plaza Hotel in Boston. As the recession deepened, companies froze theirtraining budgets, and all of our hot training leads evaporated.

However, I had two significant assets to exploit. First, our office rentincluded access to a classy conference room we could reserve as much as wewanted, and second, I had a list of 3,000 people who'd been in one of my adulteducation classes on writing in the previous two years.

I wrote up three classes we could give in the conference room, reserved thedates and mailed postcards to my list. People called to sign up! For the nextfew years, until the economy recovered, postcards reliably filled our classes.

Several lessons I learned about postcard marketing during those years remaintrue today.

1) Responses from a "warm" list of people who know you will always be greaterthan responses from strangers. Our classes were $99 each, and I'm not sure thepostcards would have yielded such a nice profit had they been sent to "cold"prospects.

2) For seminars, you need sizable mailings to get enough participants to fillthe room. The response rate would have been the same had I sent just 1,000postcards, but that might not have generated enough people for each class.

3) Consistency and repetition help. I mailed postcards every two months for anew round of classes, always using magenta card stock from the Kinko's copycenter. From what people said when they signed up, it was clear they had cometo recognize the hot pink postcards as coming from me. People paid moreattention to the postcards as time went on, not less.

4) Color attracts, but images are optional. I used boldface strategically onthe postcards to create a readable layout, but the cards contained no images รข€“only words. If you look at galleries of sample postcards online, you'll see nopure-text samples, but for certain purposes they can work extremely well.

One thing that's changed since postcards pulled me out of that recession is thatyou no longer have to mess with address labels and stamps or postal permits tosend postcards. Choose the right postcard vendor, and you can design yourpostcard online, upload your database and order the cards sent on a specificdate. It's so much easier now!

Veteran postcard marketer, consultant and author Marcia Yudkin is the creator ofThe Mighty Postcard Marketing Course, which teaches the strategic, logistical,design and copywriting secrets of successful postcard marketing. Download a freeone-hour audio interview in which she and the co-owner of a postcard printingand mailing firm reveal the basics of marketing with postcards:

Greg Cryns
Wordpress website creation and SEO

When we were young and goofy kids

Picture: The Magnificient Mile in Chicago.

I received an interesting message from a friend in Chicago. He is a good friend and a very successful doctor now.

This post sure has nothing to do with internet, marketing, small business. But I just felt I needed to post it as it says a lot about life from an older guy's perspective.


Had an interesting experience Sunday.

We went to the Air and Water Show to watch from an apartment at 1300 LSD. There was a storm and we were late.

So while walking over many groups were leaving the beach and going home. I saw all these rag tag kids running around goofing off. How inappropriate for the Gold Coast!

Watching from above LSD the rest were running around the lakefront. Poorly dressed in large groups. I laughed...that was me 50 yrs ago. My mother would always drag us down to such events. She would always allow us to bring friends.

And we were those same poorly dressed kids running around having fun being looked down on by the Gold Coast.

But then we never even knew it.

That may have something to do with the way I experience the world now also. It made me feel a little uncomfortable in the condo with all those folks from the Gold Coast.

But I did have to have a silly grin come to my face every time I saw those knuckleheads carrying on in ways inappropriate for the Gold Coast.

< /snip >

Greg Cryns
Visit All About Paso Robles

Friday, August 14, 2009

New unsubscribe option at Gmail

Google made it easier to unsubscribe from email lists.
Here is what you need to do:
1. check the box next to the email you want Google to work on
2. click the "Spam" button
3. a box (shown above) will come up that provides a place to choose the appropriate action for you

For more details at the official Google blog:
Greg Cryns

Thursday, August 13, 2009

What is a longtail key phrase?

If you read much about SEO you will come across the term "longtail keyword" or its cousin "longtail key phrase."

When search engines started, people tended to search for information on the web by entering a single word at the search engine prompt. So, if they were looking for a new men's suit, they may have typed simply "suit" or "clothes."

Over time, the search engines became more sophisticated providing much higher quality SERPS (Search Engine Results Pages). People stretched the envelope by searching for phrases like "men's suits" or "gaberdine suits."

Still later people began to search for "men's suits in Minneapolis, MN" or "polka dot bikini swim suits." You get the idea. Sure, people were always using long keyword searches but the number grew when they knew the search engines would return valuable websites specific to their search.

My SEO mentor always says "take the low hanging fruit." What he means is that use methods to get people to your website that are not incredibly difficult. Take the easy, low hanging fruit first. The "fruit" is, of course, targeted visitors.

To get your website on the first page of any search engine is getting more difficult each day. To try to get in the first three results for a one or two word key phrase in a comptetive niche is next to impossible since there are many factors that are involved in making that happen.

The longer the search phrase the better chance the searcher is a potential buyer for you. I think that is true. For example, someone searching for "pool maintenance in Paso Robles, CA" is not taking a search joy ride. He is probably wanting to solve a problem he is having with his pool and maybe looking to change who he wants to service the pool. I will gladly pay for that type of lead all day long.

So, if you have a page on your website meta tag titled "Pool maintenance in Paso Robles, CA" coupled with a good creative description meta tag then you may have a good chance of being seen in the search engine. Now put in a nice article on that page with limited use of that keyword phrase "Pool maintenance in Paso Robles, CA" .

This will often be all you need to get on the main page of the search engine. Couple that with well written text on the landing page (good copy) and you are in an outstanding position to pick up some new customers.

And that is the name of the game, isn't it?

Greg Cryns
Expert website design and small business promotion

Monday, August 10, 2009

Blog comments: at least try to be useful, ok?

Maybe you have seen the buzz out there about blog spam commenting.

Spam comments are those that do little to add good ideas to the discussion. What is the point of posting "Nice article!" or "Good job!" unless it is just to get brownie points with the person who wrote the blog? I guess you could make the argument that you were just in a hurry and wanted to show the blogger that you cared.

Well, I'm not buying that. I think you are more likely, in that case, to be trying to get someone to click to your website or to get some google juice.

Another issue I have with blog comments is that there is not much social interaction going on if the commentors are not talking to each other, and not just to the blogger. Here is an example of a blogger who gets involved and obviously (and successfully) gets some interaction among the posters:

I think there is much to be gained by reading good comments. I do it all the time. More often, I click on the commentor's name to see what he or she is doing on their blog. To me that is great value as so much of what I read in comments is just a lot of bruhaha.

Another problem I have with comments is that they are just too long. I mean, you should by now be able to pack a lot of punch in 140 characters. (ok, maybe a couple of paragraphs) But to blather on and on, give me a break. You aren't that smart. (and neither am I)

End of rant. Have a great day!

Greg Cryns

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Social networking: the world's best profile page


I have been on the lookout for a good linked profile page for quite a while. I think I've found a winner.

Check out:

There it is. A magnificient page. I won't describe it except to say I feel like I know Gina now even though I discovered her only this morning. Notice that she uses the main page of her personal blog as THE profile.

Now I need to discover just who I am and put up a page like Gina's.

What do you think?

Greg Cryns
Get a Wordpress website that looks like a website, not a blog

Why I repeat my tweets

For the past month I have been repeating some of my better tweets.

Why? Most of my followers did not see the tweets to begin with.

I know I sound like a broken record on this topic, but I think it bears repeating because many still believe in the big lies. I don't think many people understand how short their reach is with any single tweet. It is very short. In fact, I am wondering if Twitter is not so great as a connection for social networking. In many ways, Facebook and LinkedIn kick Twitter's butt.

Back to topic, as @guykawasaki pointed out, to think that your followers are reading you 24 x 7 x 365 is absurd. I would go further. If 2% of your followers are doing that, I think you have overestimated the number. If you notice, many cable news shows repeat their stories.

I think many experienced Twitter folks are now checking only for direct messages or for any @ tweets with their name in it.

What do you think?

Greg Cryns


Tuesday, August 4, 2009

9 Website startup tasks

We had a conference phone call with our new client who provides a volunteer travel service to Africa. This concept is new to me but the work needed to launch a new website is similar for all new websites. She asked for some advice on SEO. Here are my recommendations to get the website up and running.

1. Employ an Adwords campaign for "micro lending" and "volunteer travel" as soon as your website it up and running. You can limit the amount you want to spend per day until we get some action.

2. Set up an auto responder - Aweber or ConstantContact - start a mailing list.

3. Make a blog post a minimum of 3 times a week, the more the better

4. Employ social networking: add LinkedIn and Twitter profiles in addition to Facebook. Claim your presence on the turf.

5. Local - There are some things we can do to make you the go-to person where you live.

6. Buy a domain name with "volunteer travel" in it. Maybe also one for "micro lending". Domains cost about $10 per year each.

7. Get working on those articles. You don't have to wait to have your site live to do that. Refine the lists I sent to your specs.

8. Get an incoming link or two to your website from a .edu or .org site - extremely helpful for Google's trust - a major link project is costly

9. Think of your website as part of your business structure, not separate. Many business people think of the site as the poor stepchild.

There is much more involved to getting targeted traffic. This is just for starters.

Greg Cryns


Sunday, August 2, 2009

Aweber auto responder - $1 for first 30 days trial

If you wonder what it is like to have and use an autoresponder, Aweber is offering a $1.00 thirty day trial.

I use Aweber. There are other auto-responders but Aweber is preferred by many people.

Here is the link:

Try it. You'll like it!

Greg Cryns
WordPress website design and small business promotion