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October 27 2014

Expect the best Christmas sales yet online

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This year there is something lurking in the back of every American’s mind, right or wrong, good or bad, and that is Ebola.

Nobody logically thinks they are going to get it, but it strikes a very primal fear in all of us. It is not only the fear that we are going to catch it, but the fear that we are going to spread it to the people we love. Fun post huh?

I have faith in our CDC and our government. The few cases that came in were aggressively handled, and after being trained the past decades about HIV, we all are very conscious about the importance of a virus spreading in the U.S.

My prediction though is if there are even a few more cases of Ebola showing up in the U.S. over the next few months, that there will be a low level concern about being in big crowded groups. We will see if this is true or not when Thanksgiving rolls around and the shopping takes off.

If there are more than 3 or 4 more cases of Ebola showing up in the U.S. in the next few months, then expect the biggest shopping season online you have ever seen.

As for your health, don’t drink and drive this holiday season, eat a lot more veggis, and be kind to those around you.  Take a walk every day, and you will protect your health much more than you will worrying about Ebola. Merry Christmas, I am going to the beach now then meeting friends flying in from out of the country :)

October 18 2014

Google Penguin Update may have just happened

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Check your rankings and analytic, and you may see some changes.

As I always say, people love to give easy to understand names and classification to Google’s changes.

Google’s algorithm on the other hand, as we study it constantly, is constantly getting little tweeks.

One interesting change I saw over the past months, and especially a lot more today, that normally would not be considered a penguin change, is for a B to B category, seeing a bunch of local results such as yelp, and yellow pages, being shoved up to the top of the rankings.

Keep me posted on what you see.

October 14 2014

Facebook Stickers are a Game Changer

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monkey-pizzaAmerica, and I am assuming the rest of the world, is slowly becoming less and less literate.

People don’t read books, text, or instruction manuals nearly as much as they did 50 years ago.

I am not saying this is bad, it is just different.

Communication does not need to go through words, but words do allow for very technical nuances to be communicated.

Facebook has brilliantly identified our lack of ability to communicate clearly through words anymore and have given us stickers.

By now I am sure you have seen the cutesy little stickers available when you comment. Just hit the smiley face.

As a quick test, on my own wall and on the wall of an internet marketers group I belong to, I started a thread saying you could just use stickers.

It is one of the quickest filling threads I have ever seen, and definitely the most colorful.

It allows you to be cute, colorful, and creative all with a click of just one button.

We used to do this a long time ago, but it fell out of style.

Welcome back to hieroglyphics.

I aint judging, just different.

October 3 2014

Facebook Ad with Video we are running for our backroom event at Pubcon.

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At Pubcon 2014 we are throwing parties and special events.

It sounds simple enough. Shoot a video. Put it on your page. Run ads to it.

In actual practice it is surprisingly complicated, and there is very little written about how to do it.

Works like a bomb though.

The biggest problem I know most of you have, is not having an authentic message you believe in to put on the video.

The whole trick to shooting video for the internet, is just to say what you feel and not try to fake it at all.

I am doing a marketing event at Pubcon 2014. It will be a bit of a pubcon party, in our suite at the Wynn.

We are marketing to companies grossing $50 million dollars per year or more.

So how do you impress someone controlling that kind of budget?

I know these guys, I work with them every day.

They are not impressed by your clothes, or your car, or your home. Obviously you don’t want to show up with a ripped tshirt with food on it either, but trying to outspend them in appearance is not what they care about.

The only thing they care about is how much is this going to cost, how much is it going to make, and how long is it going to take? Also, there better not be any liability, legal or other as a result. If you hit those points, you win.

Sure you don’t look like a super model and neither do I. They don’t care about that either.

So a simple video describing what you are doing, and helping to answer those points above.

I don’t want to give away the entire story either, so you give the broad overview, and then lead them on to the next content that will tell them more if they are interested.

We use this same basic flow for lead gen for our clients as well.

Here is how you do it.

Create a video and upload it from your facebook page.

Make sure you are logged in as the page admin and not yourself or it may not work.

Write a bitchen compelling headline.

Select a frame of your face on the video for the still that people will be interested in. (good looking not required)

Click the title of your post so you can get the url of the post, not the page.

Go to facebook ads to create a new one.

Click on Page Post Engagements

Paste the URL in when asked.

Fill in the demographics, ad some money and post.

Here is the actual ad that I am promoting as we speak.

 

August 31 2014

Survey Monkey Alternative

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If you have followed me over the years you have seen me connect, connect, connect, connect over and over with the biggest players in our industry. My email list is huge and full of executives, owners, investors, and movers and shakers in the internet business world.

One of my best ways to connect with these folks is using niche events. Today I am going to go over exactly how to do this..

Back in 2007 when I first went gung-ho networking and building my list, people were not even using the term opt in or lead gen commonly.

I wasn’t trying to be a laser effective internet marketer, but instead just did what seemed natural. I cared about the people in the industry and wanted to connect with them.

So naturally when I held my first big poker tournament at Pubcon, I used a Survey Monkey survey to find out where they wanted the tournament, what they wanted to drink, what was important in terms of prizes, when it should start, when it should end, and even the design of the t-shirt.

Here is a walk through on how to use Wufoo to create a survey in literally a few minutes.

As a result I developed what became one of the first, most popular, and longest lasting events in the internet business world.

We chose survey monkey at the time because it made so much sense on so many levels.

The funny thing is that I recently heard about a course that teaches you how to use surveys like this for lead gen.

As soon as someone fills out a survey, if you get their contact info, they become a lead.

If you are reading this post, and have been to Pubcon in the past 10  years, there is a high chance that you ended up on my email list because of this.

More about the Pubcon story and how I used wufoo and survey monkey.

Lately we have been experimenting using the Survey Monkey Alternative WuFoo. I can only describe it as being lighter, and more agile than Survey Monkey, but very powerful, and easy to use. (Full Disclosure, Survey Monkey is partnering with us but everything I am saying here is exactly true.)

I find now when I am making a survey that I am putting more thought into, and where I want more control of things like urls, and how the results are going to be processed in the final analysis I tend to use Survey Monkey.

When I want to get up a survey really fast, or if I want to embed the survey on a facebook page, or on a webpage such as wordpress, I grab wufoo.

A few months ago on Facebook and Youtube I saw people becoming really alarmed about the Japanese radiation spreading to the U.S., especially into the fish supply. I asked people I knew, and there were people who seriously were really concerned about radiation and our food supply.

Whenever there is a crazy fear in the world I look to see if there is something I can do to fix it, provide people with real information, and alleviate their fears.

It suddenly occurred to me that the solution to worrying about radiation, was to know if your food was radioactive.

Being a doctor, and having a strong science background, the obvious solution to me was a Geiger counter.

Turns out your average Geiger Counter will not work with food. Since the amount of food you would measure is so small, you need an antenna that surrounds the food to pick up the random particle that would shoot out from the food in an unpredictable direction at unpredictable intervals.

This meant we would need to have these Geiger Counters custom built. I checked around, the technology was all there, and it would just require an investment to get a few thousand of them built.

Decades ago I had learned to test my marketing before building the product.

So I put up a page with a WuFoo form on a wordpress page to gather information from the visitors. If this worked, this also could end up being my lead generation page.

I ran a few hundred dollars of facebook ads to the form.

We got some clicks. We also got a few form fills on the Wufoo form of people requesting more information.

I had expected a possible flood of interest on this, but got an average responses and not a flood.

Another big project jumped in front of me, so I dropped the Geiger Counter idea, since it did not fly immediately.

The moral of the story is that I saved tens of thousands of dollars to get the Geiger Counters produced, and the time it would have taken me to perfect ads, and maybe then would have made a small profit.

I have been solidly sold by all my influencers on launching quickly and cheaply, and then seeing what the results are. The amount of money I have saved by not committing to a new product until it has been tested is enormous.

The ability to get a wordpress site up in 15 minutes, put Wufoo on it, and run facebook ads to the Wufoo survey to gauge interest, saves me a fortune every year.

Like the idea?

Go get a great idea, a free Wufoo Account, a facebook page or a wordpress blog, a facebook account with your credit card in, and you can be testing your idea within the hour for ten bucks worth of ads.

 

 

August 8 2014

Facebook and Pho

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I just sat down at a new Vietnamese place in San Diego. LOL, now their yelp review will rank well in Google, and they will never know why!

The place is awesome, just opened 3 months ago.

I was talking to the owner about Facebook ads. 5 Minutes later I had an add up and running to his facebook page.

Such a powerful technology. I don’t think any of us have even begun to grasp the power of this thing.

I am proud to have been part of it since the very early days of facebook advertising. (Even though Harrison Gevirtz literally beat me by years at the age of 15!)

Welcome people who live in the Zip, are between the ages of 30 and 45! Enjoy your dinner! :)

August 3 2014

Hostgator Can Not Get Me Access To My Server

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So a year ago hostgator forced us to change dedicated servers. That story was documented then. Over time we have been working to move our websites to new hosting companies. So far all of that has gone well. We still have some sites hosted on hostgator.

Tonight I needed to get access to my WHM. I have been on the phone with Host Gator for 22 minutes, and they have been unable to change my password to give me access to my server.

This is no exaggeration, about the 6th time in the past year we have had a similar conversation with them.

They are very nice and apologetic, but somehow can not get the most basic function of the server, the ability to log in and out of it, to work.

Really the only reason I am writing this, is a hope that someone there will finally take enough responsibility to fix this for us.

It will still be some months before we are finished migrating all of our sites off of hostgator.

They have with no exaggeration caused me an extra 40 or more hours of work this past year, all because of the forced server migration when I was traveling, while begging them not to do it.

 

June 4 2014

Authority Labs New User Interface Rocks

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Now I bet Brian is going to tell me that this was updated 9  months ago and I missed it.

I normally never go on their site, but we are trying to sort out some issues that come up when local listings pop up in Google sometimes, and then are not seen later, so I was called in to figure it out.

Authority labs is doing great on this, it is just Google that keeps changing whether they show the local listings or not for this client.

If you have not seen the new interface go check it out.

You guys did a really good job on it.

Super clear. Sharp self explanatory logos. Easy to find your way around. No unnessesary options, just the things you need, and an easy way to get to support for the things not described. I know from the past that they get back to you lightening fast.

Brian and Chase, I am imagine how much work went into the design. Love it!

March 31 2014

Naked Juice – Not Cool What you Did

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I have been a huge fan of Naked Juice for decades.

I have bought probably tens of thousands of dollars of their products and consumed them over the past decades.

They even worked with me to help the San Diego firefighters when the City of San Diego could not supply the firefighters with enough food the first few days of the big fires. For this they are still appreciated.

I have promoted them.

I had not seen Naked Juice around as much as I used to the past year.

I had thought they just were not selling as well.

According to multiple reports in the news, Naked Juice got popped by mislabeling their juices.

They were using additives as sweeteners and bulking agents that are genetically modified, and made in factories.

I feel betrayed. Not cool.

Another one of my allies that I have done deals with Whole Foods has been selling this stuff for decades. This tarnishes their reputation. Whole Foods is one of the most ethical companies in the U.S., and have saved an untold number of lives. I have known many of their executives. The guys at the top of Whole Foods are there for real to do good for the planet. One of their executives from Follow Your Heart, has been living what they say for almost half a century now.

Many of us spend an enormous amount of time and energy to put the healthiest things possible into our bodies.

The exact items they are reported to have used were Archer Daniels Midland’s Fibersol-2 (“a soluble corn fiber that acts as a low-calorie bulking agent”), fructooligosaccharides (an alternative sweetener), and genetically modified soy.

I am hitting 50 years old in a few months, and have more energy, enthusiasm and am more mentally quick than most 25 year olds I know.

Not a small part of this is due to my eating very clean food since I was 16 years old.

Virtually no artificial flavors, artificial colors, or preservatives. I eat organic when possible, and take the best vitamins I can find.

I don’t drink, and I don’t take drugs.

Do not mess with my food supply.

If a company wants to make crap and sell poor health to the masses, that is their choice, and the choice of those who buy them.

But you best label your products accurately. If you tell me it is made with fruit and fruit juice it better be.

If Gypsy Boots were still alive right now he would throw a football right through your window.

March 20 2014

Going to Leadscon

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Next week we will be doing our thing at Leadscon.

If you follow what I do, you will know that after Shoemoney’s Elite retreat, and our own thinktank, Leadscon is one of the absolute best events of the year. If you haven’t been before I highly recommend it. It was started by a friend of mine named Jay Weintraub. Jay hit the nail on the head in terms of figuring out a niche to build an internet conference around.

The guys who go to Leadscon are for the most part serious about what they do. Leadgen is not a hope and pray method of marketing, but a very measurable game where most of the people know their numbers.

You would be shocked at how many large companies I work with who really don’t know what a visitor is worth, what a lead is worth, or even what the long term value of a sale is. The guys at Leadscon have this data down cold.

Leadscon is now being headed up by Cory Smith whose company, Access Intel purchased Leadscon. This is their first year running it, and Jay is still heavily involved. I expect it to be a great show and I am excited to go next week.