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Small Business Taxes Gone Wild In California

I estimate that 99% of Californians do not understand the implications of the new small business tax that Governor Jerry Brown signed into law yesterday. This law would mandates online sellers like and to start collecting sales taxes on items shipped to California if they have some sort of relationship with an affiliate. [...]


You Got the Opt-in, Now What? Here Are Some Top Email Strategies

The first part of email marketing is to get your visitor to opt-in your email list. Once they opt-in, the visitor becomes a prospect. The second part of email marketing is to move the prospect along your marketing funnel towards them becoming a customer. An important element of that is relationship marketing done via trust. [...]


Linkedin Company Page Follows the Leaders Facebook and Yelp

There was a time when Linkedin was cool. Well, maybe “cool” is too strong of a word for this early social networking site. Let’s just say that Linkedin was *the* place to network as a business professional. You sign up for Linkedin, you make connections with people you work with, you ask for a recommendation, [...]


A Way to Promote Your Business with Facebook Events

Let’s assume you’ve already set up your own Facebook profile and a separate Facebook Page for your business. Maybe you’ve also created a Facebook Group that relates to a type of product or service that your business provides. What are some ways that you can promote the special events your business sponsors? One way is [...]

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How to Remove Antispyware Soft

Marketing online is fraught with risks. One category is business risk. The other category is technical risk. Business risk is when you try to execute a digital marketing strategy and it fails. Technical risk includes the risk of not implementing your websites and/or scripts correctly. But technical risk also includes the risk from cyber-attacks. One of the most common form is viruses pretending to be a friendly program ... like a trojan horse. This blog is about how to remove Antispyware Soft. … Read More...

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Advertising Headlines Exposed

In my last post, I talked about how magazine headline writers are the best. There are many valuable lessons an online marketer can learn simply by reading the millions of magazine headlines in existence. Don’t think that you have to read them all. Read as much as you can and see if you can spot the following patterns.

Numbers Count. Many people hate math. Their minds grow numb at the sight of adding numbers longer than 3 digits. But for some psychological reason, people seem to trust information that is presented to them more when there are numbers attached. For example, the first ad said, “617 pieces that will change your life.” Notice that the ad didn’t just say, “Pieces that will change your life.” The ad was very specific. People also trust numbers that aren’t neat like 600. Rather, 617 implies that someone actually took the time to count the pieces so the information presented must be trustworthy.

Sentence Length Matters. The longest “sentence” out of the 8 ads that I showed you last time from the magazine’s front cover was 21 characters long. It read, “(and we should know!).” There is a reason for this. People scan for sound bites when they read. You have to create short sound bites that grabs your prospect’s attention as they are bombarded by information coming from the hundred other magazines on the rack.

Notice that Google took a page out of magazine advertising strategies when they created their online advertising platform, Adwords. Each Adwords ad is limited to 3 lines of text and 1 line for the display URL. In the 3 lines of text, you are limited to 25 characters for the first line which serves as your headline. You have 35 characters for the 2nd line and 35 characters for the third line. The reason behind this is simple…sound bites. As with magazine advertising, you are bombarded with information when you get the results back from doing a Google search. People will make a decision on what to click within seconds.

Bolding and CAPS. The ads that I showed from the magazine utilized three style elements: one is bolding, two is capitalization, and three is color. The goal of using bolding and caps is to avoid monotony for your reader. It’s also to point out an important element like a number, for example. For search engine PPC advertising, you will only have one style element to work with – CAPS. But this is not a hindrance because a lot can be done with CAPS. We’ll cover this in another article.

Instant and Easy. The truth is most people are lazy. We’ve been program to want instant and want it now. Nobody wants to exercise and eat less to lose weight. They want a weight loss pill. Nobody wants to buy the giant 65″ plasma TV three years from now when they’ve saved up enough money. They want to take the TV home today with the easy payment plan. And nobody wants to build up their look, they want, “Instant Glamour: The Only Makeup Item You’ll Need.” Only one makeup item? That’s hard to believe… I’ll take two.

These four advertising headline tricks should get you on your way to creating your own swipe file of the best magazine ads out there. After reading through a few of these ads, you will undoubtedly begin to see the patterns that are repeated over and over again. You’ll see the same patterns in sports magazines, kid magazines, women magazines, car magazines, and so on. The reason for this is they work. Plain, simple, and easy.


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Magazine Ad Sales Down But Not Out

Yes it is true that magazine ad sales are down. According to recent figures, magazine ad pages, a measure of magazine ad sales, is down around 12% year over year. So where are companies spending their advertising dollars? While the recession has taken a big bite out of ad spending, many companies have also shifted their advertising dollars to online media. There is direct evidence of this in the rise of Google Pay Per Click rates over the last few years.

Even though offline channels like newspaper advertising, and now magazine advertising, have gone down, their advertising methods have not. As business owners and online marketers, we can still learn a lot from these offline channels. Let’s take a look at magazine advertising, for example. Before a magazine can sell advertising, it must first sell itself to customers perusing the magazine aisle in supermarkets or in bookstores like Borders.

The way that magazine writers do this is to create compelling mini-headlines. Cosmo magazine is the master at doing this. Here are some examples of the type of eye-catching headlines that you would see on a cover. There are a total of 8 mini-headlines that try to convince customers to pick up a copy. This is very much like what online advertisers do with PPC on

The mini-headlines on the cover of might read:

pieces that
will change
your life



worth of
free gifts!
PAGE 236

How just
5 pieces
can get you
the week
PAGE 212

your look

in one
simple step

(and we should know!)



Jenny Lauren
The strong
and sexy type

I tried to preserve the colors, caps, and bolding schemes that Lucky used to capture people’s attention. Study these mini-headlines and sub-headlines. This is the kind of wording that magazine advertisers have to try and capture and hold a passerby’s attention. Usually, you only have 3 seconds or less before people choose.

Study these examples. They represent excellent copy writing. In the next blog post, we’ll study these headlines in more detail.


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Business of Marketing Free

Survivors of the early Internet or Web 1.0 undoubtedly remember that the business of marketing “free” online was all that was required to secure millions of dollars in venture capital funding. The business of marketing went something like this in 1999: Dream up a great widget (no need to flush it out); build a website; show venture capitalists your website; tell them a great story about how it will scale if they just add money; get the money and build up the website; give widget for free to get subscribers and a few customers; make a few dollars back on a few million dollars worth of investments; file for IPO; cash check; repeat. Simple, right?

Of course I left a few details out of the above marketing process in order to make this article short, but the main story back then remains the same … build it, give it away for free, and they will come. You can always make up the dollars you lose to acquire each customer by your volume. The scary thing about this marketing scheme was that it almost worked. Some of these Web 1.0 companies built up subscriber lists of hundreds of thousands. A few built lists of millions. Today we realize, as they did back then, that a confirmed subscriber list with full contact information is worth a lot of money. The problem back in Web 1.0 was that they did not have a back end strategy to their marketing funnel. So they spent the money to acquire the subscriber list but they didn’t have a way to make money off of that list.

Here is how you can make money today in the business of marketing free information. You can do this in 7 easy steps. Keep in mind that this is but one strategy. Be creative. There are many ways to build a list of followers online using Web 2.0.

1) First you will need a place to store your subscriber list. I’ve tried many services, both free and paid, and this service is the best in terms of deliverability of your email and ease of use. Sign up at their website below:

2) Create a 10 part how-to video series or a 10 part how-to article series or a 10 part how-to audio series on something that you know how to do really well. One example might be on how to use Photoshop to remove wrinkles or shrink some wide body curves. Another example might be on how to make the best smoothies that rival Jamba juice. A third example might be on how to remove spyware from your computer without having to spend a lot of money for a technician. Use your talents and know-how to create this free information series.

3) If you created a video series, post it on YouTube. But here is the trick: Take the signup email that you received from and put it as the first piece of text in your YouTube video description. YouTube will make this a hyper-link. What this means is that when viewers click on the link to learn more about your really useful how-to video, they will be prompted to sign up to your list to see the next video in the series.

Here is how to test the sequence: Show video one, then ask them to click on your YouTube link to see video two. Use lowcostautoresponder to send them to video two without much fuss. However, put a note at the end of video two and in your confirmation email that if they want to see video three, they will have to confirm their subscription to your list. If they confirm, they will be sent to videos three, four, five, and so on. If they don’t confirm, you’ll know right away that your video was not very appealing to them. You don’t want that prospect on your list anyways.

4) Post videos three, four, five and so on on Google video and make them private. This prevents the general public from being able to find your video. Take a note of these video URLs on Google and put it in your autoresponder.

5) Advertise your YouTube video by:

a) Asking your friends to rate and comment on it.
b) Point links to your video by submitting the very same video on other video sites like Veoh, Viddler, Google video, Yahoo video, and so on.
c) Ping your YouTube video URL.
d) Hand bookmark your video URL.
e) Write an article about your video and submit it to with a link pointing to your video. Then ping your article on Goarticles and bookmark it too.

6) Once people subscribe to your list, write a series of 10 to 20 autoresponder messages. Talk about your how-to subject in more detail. Let them know that your “ezine” or “newsletter” is supported by sponsors. If you need sponsored offers to use to make money from your list, I suggest you sign up here for free. They don’t accept every application, but if you mention that Alex Tran sent you, you will stand a better chance of getting in.

7) Ask them to go to your YouTube videos and rate them and leave their comments.

That’s it!! You can do the same for your how-to articles or your how-to audios.

Good luck and happy subscriber list building. About the only piece that you will have to pay for is the autoresponder. It sure is a whole lot cheaper than VC money though. Trust me on this…

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