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Free eBook – How to Make Money Messing Around on Facebook

You might as well, you waste away precious hours on Facebook weekly…get paid for it!

facebook-money

Click to get started!

 

Social Media, Hashtags on Twitter and Blogging for Business

twitter-hashtag-infographic1

By Michelle Duffy

So you want to market your business online through social media marketing? Don’t know where to start? Well, here are some strategies to get you started, including the power of hashtags on Twitter. (A subject I will cover again later.) They are free and easy to apply and great for any small business or if you simply work from home to make money in your chosen industry, along with using the best apps for iPhone.

  • Instagram account for business – One of the key actions to have come out of Instagram is that small businesses across the planet are embracing this relatively new phenomena to market their business. Visitors engage with platforms of color and image (as well as short videos too) and see a different side to businesses. It shows a very human side of a company thus proving that it’s not just sell, sell, sell. Take action on Instagram if you haven’t already. A cool little app for your iPhone, it allows you to engage with your customers even when you’re not in the office or in fact, not even at work.
  • Facebook and Twitter – FB is still the favorite of the world with Twitter hashtags coming up as a close second. The saying goes, your friends are who you talk to on FB, on Twitter, you talk to the world. Hashtags are a must on Twitter although they are still frowned upon on FB and Facebook marketing. Although people do use them, I am inclined not to as they hold no purpose in how people use FB for searching, and therefore, not the ideal way to make money for your business. There is a rule of three on Twitter, so if you want to use hashtags on Twitter, never use more than that. You don’t want to be caught spamming on either site, or FB would shut your page down. Hashtag your keyword in the search box and see what people are saying about it. Join in the conversation if you can and answer questions if they have any. This is a free thing to do and it will get you noticed by the world.
  • Facebook Advertising – You don’t have to sign up for FB’s high advert charges either, although I would make use of their ads manager as you can use this to see the demographics of your audience. The tools on FB allow you to see exactly how many people you could address who are on FB already. FB will calculate the number of people who match your ‘ideal customer’ criteria (so if you haven’t done this, do it! It’s highly valuable!) I would also recommend getting your friends to share your business page and so on. Join groups on FB who already have an interest in the area or the product you are marketing, and watch the discussions on these pages, and join in. Once people see you as an expert, they are more likely to trust you, and therefore buy from you. The way to benefit from all these social media platforms is to be consistent with your content and link them all together for easy posting. The best Apps for iPhone and Android hardware for this are free and makes this process very easy. I recommend a free Hootsuite account to get you started.
  • YouTube - Should not to be ruled out and is growing steadily in social media marketing. It is used as a search engine by a growing number of people (you will also be able to link a Google+ account to this too and has rocketed marketing success. Mainly for the bigger companies but small businesses are homing in on it too. All owned by Google of course, it is the big G word you need to impress on the net!) I would certainly consider making films about you, your team, product and give demonstrations on how to use your product or if it’s a service, use the video to tell them how they will benefit from using your service. People need to know what the benefits are.

socialmediaicons

The Art of Has, Which So..

  • As a mantra, always remember this… ‘Has, Which, So.’ In other words… tell your customers what you have or what your product has, then tell them what that service/product will do. ‘So’… tell them the benefit of them using the service/product. You will need to use this type of content on your website too. Have fun with your videos. Add music (free music of course – a number of sites will offer free music) and credits, also add a link to your website at the beginning and the end of the film. Don’t make it longer than three minutes – people tend to get bored if it goes on longer than this. Bear this in mind with your podcasts too. AudioBoom for business is an excellent place to upload podcasts very easily. They do all the formating for you and you can download the app so that you can podcast and upload on the move. Three minutes on this site will get you a free account. If you want to do podcasts an hour-long, then you will need to pay. Around $60 for the year is a sound investment, but the free account will serve just as well.
  • Blogging - Can’t stress this enough. Use WordPress (loved and adored by Google) – I also advize a plugin called Squirrly SEO. Along with the Google AdWords Keyword Tool, it will maximize your chances of hitting the fist page in Google results. It is a tool that sits next to your posts in the editing stage and will help you make the most out of using keywords that Google looks for. Use the Google Keyword Tool to find the keywords that your customers are likely to use to find you. You tap in a keyword and the plugin will tell you who is searching that word, talking about it from news items sourced instantly and from social media feeds. It will even give you a range of copyright free images to use, so the hard work is being done for you. It will also tell you as you write if your post is Google friendly and how to maximize it. You get the first 40 keywords free, then you need to pay after that and it’s about $6-$9 per month. An excellent investment and not breaking the bank. Of course with your blog, you can share it all over the place including other sites like Empire Avenue and Tumblr.

REMEMBER! Google loves links and you will score highly with G if you have a lot of incoming links to your site from other sites. The best way to do this is share your content as stated above. Always make sure that the links are from sites who are reputable and loved by Google. Don’t simply ask people to link your site from any old plae. Google will spot you and you will lose credit with them. Post your articles on places like ezinearticles.com – another favored site by Google. If you are not sure of something Google it first. Google your keywords and see what comes up – the first page is your competition. There is also an E-zine plugin for WordPress which allows you to post your article the minute you publish it on your blog. I would use WP’s plugins to the hilt. They are brilliant and useful, especially the All In One SEO plugin, which I highly recommend and it will do all the SEO for your site.

Michelle is the editor and writer at The Vintage Business Digital Magazine and is also festival co-organizer of The Vintage Belles Annual Festival in Warwick. Owner of TVG Productions and promotional film maker, she guest speaks all over the UK at events and fairs on better marketing for small businesses in the craft and vintage field. She also writes The Vintage Girl Newsletter which is the longest running publication in the field, and has personally seen the development of several businesses in the UK and the U.S reaching success in their industries.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Michelle_Duffy
http://EzineArticles.com/?Social-Media,-Hashtags-on-Twitter-and-Blogging-for-Business&id=8891735


 

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Branding – How Do YOU Appear on Facebook?

brand-identity-logo-explained1By Terry D Kozlyk

Late to the party, many small and medium size businesses are discovering Facebook as a tool for promoting and branding themselves. In the past few years, the term “branding” has been a hot business topic, created by the media hype around advertising using social media. But I never fully understood the term “branding”, its implications and the practice, until I started actively participating, reading and writing on my Facebook timeline.

My main reason for exposing myself to the world of Facebook, was simply to understand how it works. I wanted to see if there was merit in using Facebook, as over a billion users worldwide were doing. Whether I connected with my classmates from 30+ years ago or not, was furthest from my mind. What I did discover was that not only is Facebook a powerful branding tool for business but how individuals are unwittingly using it to create a personal brand that may come back to haunt them.

There was much that I didn’t know about Facebook. But by “LIKE-ing” a few people I knew, a few more from my club and hometown classmates, I began to build a repertoire of scrolling real-time news. It wasn’t more than a year of regular weekly readings, that the light finally came on for me. Clear as day, I realized how several of my “friends” have casted, stereotyped, say “branded” themselves, and NOT in a good way. I saw a pattern from their postings, that I could have easily used to describe or introduce them, if I was ever asked. I began to label and think of them, specifically by how frequently and what they posted on their timeline. They have managed to “brand” themselves.

I began to detect a consistent pattern with many. Is that how I want to be described or thought of? There was the person that would post just family pics of events with their grand kids. This is commendable, but maybe in a closed family Facebook sub-page; not your general friends list. There was the person who posted pictures that made me wonder, “What am I missing here? Why is this picture being broadcast? It’s just a picture!” All it proved was that they knew how to take a picture and how to post to Facebook. Nice, I thought. They have a heartbeat. There was the friend who spoke of deep inner feelings. Sure; just thinking out loud perhaps, but maybe don’t be posting into words. People will sense you are emotionally unstable and incapable of dealing with everyday life. Then there was the world traveler that would post pictures daily from across the globe. Obviously not current and just drawing from years past vacations. Then there was the person who posts 10 times per day. Well, that person clearly does not have a life and needs constant attention. Some may come across as activists. That’s when I discovered I can UN-follow these while still leaving them in my friends list. And believe me, I did.

branding-marketing-sellingSo before you write on your timeline, and then click POST, ask yourself the following 4 questions.

1) What is the purpose of my post?

Are you hoping to inspire, inform, motivate, instigate or call-to-action someone? Are you sharing an experience with a picture hoping to get some feedback from others? Or are you just blowing off some steam, perhaps getting onto a soapbox and ranting about an incident that happened to you? Are you hoping for support or sympathy? If you are writing in the “heat of the moment” and saturated with emotion such as anger or vindictiveness, then close your laptop and go for a good walk or other physical activity. Yes, writing can very good therapy, so continue writing, but do so in your personal journal, not your Facebook timeline. No one is interested in reading your thoughts repeatedly.

2) Am I comfortable with others repeating my comments attached to my name?

This is more inline with the “gossip session” or water cooler talk, when others may talk about you behind your back. We can’t control gossip about us, so make sure it is gossip you are comfortable having proliferate about you. Hearing your comments in the third person may make the hairs on the back of your neck standup.

3) If this was my last post, would I want to be remembered by it?

Think legacy. What do you want to leave behind for others or society in general? In what light would you like others to talk about you?

4) Is there any value to my post?

Sometimes we get carried away and when others look at our post, they ask themselves, “So what? Why are you telling me this?” This is more along the lines of the “What’s in it for me?” question. If not, then write your post so it will be of value to others.

Today, more than ever, most people reading something are looking for specifics that will bring them value, knowledge or absolute riches. They just don’t want to be an audience, giving their precious time to you, the aspiring author who is going to write the next best seller which will turn into the #1 movie of the year. If not, then your post is simply “noise” and your contacts may not only “un-follow” but also remove you as a friend completely.

brandRemember, when you are posting on Facebook, you are talking to the world. Statements will never be retracted or deleted. Your post may even proliferate and haunt you with someone re-posting on other social media. Even if deleted, people who have already read your post may remember you by that lasting impression you gave them. People can make their minds up about you very quickly and can stereotype you as an activist, anti-whatever and just plain dangerous to have around. Don’t place yourself in the “court of public opinion”. Also, some potential employers hire social media consultants to compile a social media profile of you. Seeing pictures of you volunteering your time with a worthy charity in a developing country is a good thing. But pictures of you getting blasted at the bar on the week-ends, well, not so much.

Facebook is a powerful social media tool. It levels the playing field between a lowly individual and a multi-million dollar company. Done right, you can project as good as the big companies. Use it to showcase your strengths, ambitions and accomplishments. Use it to inspire and summon others to their cause. Use it to stay connected. Use it to develop and advertise “your brand”. I hope my experience with Facebook and tips above will help you “brand” yourself in the best possible light. As a test, you can connect with me on Facebook and practice what I shared above.

Terry is a freelance speaker, writer and the principle content creator and curator (CCC) at TDKtalks.com

His video, audio and written content is disseminated through his website, Slideshare, iTunes, and Ezine Articles.

Terry, a dynamic speaker who listens to his audience, is personable, energetic and passionate about connecting with people. His presentations can be thought-provoking, motivating, inspiring or just entertaining.

Be sure to read Terry’s other articles at http://www.TDKtalks.com

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Terry_D_Kozlyk
http://EzineArticles.com/?Branding—How-Do-YOU-Appear-on-Facebook?&id=8881934

 

 

Top Story: 5 Things Men Think (But Do Not Say) About Women

male brain

By Joe M K

Estimated reading time: 2 minutes, 9 seconds. Contains 431 words

What do men really think about women? Find out 5 harsh truths here.

1. Your bubbliness and extroversion does not distract us from the fact that you are fat.

Observe a group of girls in a bar. There is always one who is louder, acts crazy and seems to dance and drink more than everyone else. She’s very talkative and laughs a lot – she’s the centre of attention in the group. She’s usually the fat chick. Yep, you can be all lively and friendly, but ultimately, you’re fat and therefore unattractive. All the laughter in the world will not bring us any closer to your bed.

2. A friend doesn’t mean someone who is only on your Facebook.

Her: You know my friend Rachel, right?

Him: Erm, not sure.

Her: You know, the one who just had the baby? She was a temp in the office next door for a week last year, haven’t seen her since.

Him: OK, what about Rachel?

Her: I think I will invite her to my birthday party, she just had a baby and put on a bit of weight, she was posting on Facebook how depressed she was so a party will be good for her. Plus, I really miss her.

No, she is not your friend. You have not had any contact with this person with whom you probably only exchanged a couple of words in the one week she worked there.

3. Your IQ, job title and educational background means nothing if you are not physically attractive.

Top lawyer? Filthy-rich banker? PhD in biochemistry? If you’re not hot, we don’t care. We are not interested in your career or how strong and independent you are. We value beauty above all. Men don’t cheat because they find someone more intelligent than their partners – fact.

4. We prefer women who had less sexual partners. We do not value your experience – we’d rather teach you.

OK, you give great head, but in the back of our minds is not only the pleasure you’re giving us but also how many times you’ve given it to other men. As girlfriend material, we’d rather have a virgin with an open mind willing to learn than a sex goddess in bed.

5. We really don’t care which top looks better with that skirt.

Her: this one, or this one? I think I prefer this one, though I’m not sure, ’cause this one looks good too?!?

Him: whatever.

We mean it, we really do. For men there is no difference between the light green and the dark green top, they both look nice. It’s just a piece of clothing, just choose one and wear it.

Did you like this article? More at: http://www.bravenewman.net/about/

Brave New Man covers a wide range of subjects which are pertinent to the 21st century man.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Joe_M_K
http://EzineArticles.com/?5-Things-Men-Think-(But-Do-Not-Say)-About-Women&id=8693880

 

 

#ImSoFlint Takes Over Social Media: Get all updates here!

Flint is the largest city and county seat of Genesee County in the State of Michigan. It is located along the Flint River, 66 miles (106 km) northwest of Detroit. According to the 2010 census, Flint has a population of 102,434, making it the seventh largest city in Michigan.

Source – Wikipedia

#ImSoFlint on Twitter

#ImSoFlint on Facebook

A series of tweets by Facebook and Twitter users took over social media this week where those of us who grew up in Flint and are still living there, or in the area, proclaimed our Flint Pride, fond memories and funny stories with the rest of the world. Or anyone that cared

I was born and raised in Flint, Michigan. I currently live right outside of Flint, or shall I say, down the street from Flint in Burton. I work and sometimes play in Flint. I also have a section of this network devoted of Flint (Flint Positive Spotlight). So, I am definitely So Flint!

However, like most things on social media, it is playing out (see getting on my nerves) quickly. But, I won’t complain too much. Flint is usually in the media for negative reasons so I’m happy to join the crowd. It’s fun. And, other than love we all need more fun.

What makes you So Flint?

imsoflint

 

Are You Suffering From Over-Sharing Syndrome?

Growing Social Media

Social networks are amazing at keeping you in contact with your friends and families at all times. Back in the day, we had to call someone on their home phone in the hope that they may pick up, or rock up at their house in the hopes they may be home, only to ring the doorbell and find no one there. Nowadays finding out where anyone is and what he or she is doing is a text message, mobile phone call, WhatsApp, Skype call or Facebook message away. Great for staying in contact but it also has become a crutch on society and even been referred to as “an infectious disease”.

Nowadays with knowing exactly where your friends are and whom they are with constantly via the tap of a finger or click of a mouse, has basically turned us into a society of over-sharers. There are two types of sufferers, the people who do the over-sharing, and the people who overly consume what is shared.

“Here, let me update 3 social media networks before I even get out of bed”

There are quite a few social networks, but the most influential are the following: Facebook. Twitter. Instagram. Google+. LinkedIn. Chances are you not only are accessing at least one of these a day, but you are actively posting on others too. So to see if you are an over-sharer, I think if you answer yes to any of the following questions, it may be time to slow down with the constant updates which are spamming your friends and followers time lines:

- Have you posted at least five updated statuses, and it isn’t even 10am
– Have you posted three pictures of things you have done today, not only on a single network, but multiple networks?
– Have you commented on statuses and comments with your own opinion about something you are not directly involved in?
– Have you liked each and every post and made a comment about how great whatever you liked is and how you also have/want the same thing

There is nothing wrong with the occasional post about a great restaurant you are at, and the amazing meal that is sitting in front of you, but most of your friends and family (and strangers who you have met just once and made friends with for no reason) do not need to know that you just woke up, had a great breakfast, were stuck in traffic on the way to work, relieved you got to work, having a great day at work, ate a sandwich for lunch, hate office politics, cannot wait to get home, finally got home, watching your favorite series, and about to jump into bed. If that sounds like your average day on social media networks with regards to what you are posting, it is probably best to dull it down a bit.

“I know what you did last summer”

Even though you may not be an over-sharer, you may still suffer from over-sharing syndrome. Picture this scenario, you meet up with a friend who you have not seen in ages and the conversation kicks off. Now, your friend is an over sharer, and you, read everything and anything that gets posted on your social networks, so you are able to finish every story they tell two minutes into hearing it. Sadly people who show these signs, are often seen to have addictive personalities, so it may be something to keep an eye on.

So try and stay away from the clutter that is your timeline. Only check in a few times a day, and only follow and friend the people who you actually going to add some value to your life or you really care about. For all the others, unfriend them or worst case, just hide their feeds from your timeline, as it is one way to stop being forced to hear how Jane and John’s kid is finally on solids. Your settings are key here, and you can get some web privacy software to manage your privacy, just to give you some indication of how much you are sharing in the online world.

Cut it out

The rule of thumb is this, if it is not adding value to anyone else’s life, then you should not post it. So think about it, if you are about to post something online that if you read on someone else’s profile and think it is arbitrary, would you still post it?

The fact you can link your Facebook to your Twitter account and Instagram to Facebook, does not mean you should. Keep your Facebook for staying in contact with friends and family, use Twitter to follow the people you are interested in and post insightful anecdotes, and just use Instagram for your photos. Chances are your friends are already follow you on all of the platforms, so no point in spamming them, and if they really wanted to see what you had for lunch, at least they will know not to follow your Instagram account.

Featured images:

By Sam Wright

Sam Wright is a business journalist based in Norwich, Norfolk.

Facebook Turns 10 and Gives Users “A Look Back” Film

I love it! Thanks, Facebook!

Senia and DangerousClick image to view our film and get your own!

Bad Ideas I Had in 2013 and Other Things That Haven’t Panned Out…Yet!

I wrote an optimistic blog on December 31, 2012 titled, Dangerous Lee’s Top Life Events of 2012 & Resolutions for 2013, in an attempt to write great things into existence and in the blog I go on and on about some of the good and bad experiences I had in 2012 and I proceed to talk about all the cool things I had planned for 2013.  Well, let’s just say that I have not gotten in better shape and I’m not worried about it, I also shot a pilot for a TV show in 2013 and I have absolutely no idea where that stands and I’m also not going to worry about that,”Dangermas” sucked and no one, including me, gave a damn about it other than Senia and I got rid of my P.O. Box because most of the mail I received went straight to recycling. However, I did start recycling all paper products in 2013 as I said I would, so I am proud of that achievement. We gotta help the planet.

I am also proud and quite frankly shocked that I have been able to survive on less than $10,000 a year. There’s gotta be some type of recognition given to me and others like me. Getting by on less than $10,000 a year is a feat. Currently, I am driving a car that’s about to blow a gasket without tags or insurance, I’m hoping to get my student loans in deferment or forbearance for the hundredth time, I haven’t payed Consumers Energy in a few months, I owe Comcast more than I typically make in a month, I can’t always pay Senia’s monthly $17 violin rental on time and I sell what decent things I do own to consignment stores for extra money. I’m making it work. I really will survive.

Senia makes all A’s, we currently have a roof over our heads, food, our health (mine is questionable), electricity (we didn’t even lose power during a recent widespread power outage), we also currently have cable, phone and internet service, but most importantly we have supporters – my mother and people like you. Yes, you reading this helps!

DANGERMASLOGO

I had high hopes. I guess that’s why this is so big. SMH *laughing at myself

In 2013, I also tried to give the ladies some weekly eye candy by featuring Hotties and while it seemed to work when I directly posted sexy images of men on Facebook, no one was checking for them once I placed them here at the network first. I thought: Zuckerberg is already a millionaire! Facebook does not need your extra hits, I do! Then I felt bad because that’s a selfish thought, but then I was OK with it because I’m broke as hell.

I also had many open calls to feature people or their business including an opportunity for music artists called, The D List, but it didn’t get many bites. Most of the people that ended up on The D List got there because I found them, not because they contacted me. Then again, being on The D List is often considered a bad thing. Maybe people didn’t get that the “D” stood for Dangerous and who am I to change the meaning that most are familiar with?!

will write for money

T-shirt I designed and wore – Will Write 4 Money.

I had a vision for this network and it was obviously a bad one or one that is ahead of its time. Can you believe that the three most popular articles featured this year are about nail polish, nurses and engineers? I can’t. And, no matter how hard I’ve tried I can’t get an intern to save my life. So, 2014 will be the year I stop trying so hard. 2013 was the year I was doing the most. In 2014, I will not be featuring tons of guest content by other writers as I have been for the last two years. It’s been said that insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. I haven’t gone completely insane…yet, so it’s time to change the plan.

Most of the content featured at DangerousLee.Biz  in 2014 will be written or created by me. It’s time to be selfish. It’s time to focus on myself, my writing and my art; not other people’s art. I want to be more open and honest about my life and how I feel so that’s exactly what I am going to do. My main role was that of Publisher and Editor in Chief, now it’s time for me to get back to being an artist full time. My head is too small for all these hats.

LeighandSenia

Click image to support our fundraiser and get an official Dangerous Lee t-shirt!

2013 wasn’t all bad. Every website in the network was nominated for a Black Weblog Award and DangerousLee.Biz was selected as a Top Fashion Blog to Follow in 2013. I also created BlackGirlsAllowed.com because I am more than disgusted by the negative reputation, ugly image and lies being told as truths about Black women, so I am focusing on changing it to be more of what it really is from my POV and the POV of other Black women all over the world. SimplySenia.com has, to my delight and surprise, recently become monetized. With 5,327 ad impressions in November, Senia’s website made a whopping $12.43. Compare that to DangerousLee.Biz’s 316,919 ad impressions in November that equaled $642.93. Needless to say we’ve got to increase our viewer/readership greatly in 2014 if we want to increase our monthly and yearly income.

I’m not making any resolutions or huge plans for 2014, but I’m definitely hitting the reset button. I’m going deeper into bohemian/hippie mode. I’m gonna go with the flow to see what comes my way and deal with it all accordingly. I can’t wait to see how this turns out.

And yes, I’m still single. Interested men please inquire. Tips: Men I find physically and sexually attractive are Michael Ely, Blair Underwood and Wentworth Miller. To find out what else I like in my men you should read Keep Your Panties Up and Your Skirt Down, chapter – Dating Dangerous Lee ;)

Romantic Gestures You Can Make Online

The internet is often accused of ruining relationships or of making us less sociable. While it helps to connect us with more people, many believe that it has replaced quality relationships with a quantity of more shallow acquaintances. If you’re the kind of person who now sits up in bed next to their partner tapping away on Facebook, then you might be guilty of just that.

But in fact it’s not the fault of the internet at all. Just as guns don’t kill people, nor does the internet ruin relationships – it’s all in the way you use it.

And actually, the web can be a rather romantic tool when used correctly. There are plenty of amazing gestures you can make online using the tools provided by the web, so read on to see some of the most romantic.

1. Buy Something on Fiverr

Fiverr is a website where you can pay for a huge range of services and products for five dollars. That might not sound like very much to spend on a big romantic gesture but as you should know by now it isn’t about how much you spend as much as what you spend it on. There are countless romantic gifts on Fiverr, particularly in the lead-up to Valentine’s day, so if you want to get someone to sing ‘I love you’ to your partner in Italian, or to write your names in the sand on some remote beach, then Fiverr can help you to do just that.

2. Create a Ring

Jewelry has long been associated with romance, but often it’s not all that personal and doesn’t take all that much effort. The web can change all that though, by allowing you to create your own jewelry and personalize it in a number of ways. One of the best and most romantic options here is to create a ring using 3D printing technology – in other words you create a 3D model and then have it printed out in gold or silver. Then mount a diamond or another piece of jewelry into it, and you can end up creating a ring that’s completely unique and that you put a lot of effort into. Not quite up to that challenge? Then you could always just find a website where you can get rings engraved and have a nice message put onto it to add a more personal touch.

3. Name a Star

Another thing you can do to make a big impression on your loved one is to name a star. This is something you can do pretty easily on eBay and it doesn’t cost that much. The official-ness of this process is debatable, but either way the gesture is incredibly romantic and a sure way to get some brownie points.

4. Public Displays

Public displays have always been one of the ultimate ways to be romantic and demonstrate your love for your partner, but if you’re shy of proposing in a restaurant then you could always decide to propose on Facebook instead. Or if you aren’t quite there yet then you could always demonstrate your love and devotion online in another way – that might mean just writing a heart-felt message on Facebook about how much you love your partner, or it might just mean changing your status to ‘in a relationship’. Note that some people will hate you making too much of a scene in front of friends and strangers – the trick is gauging it right and knowing what your partner would like.

5. Create a Website

Another traditional way to show your love for someone is to create a work of art or write a song about them. The web though creates a number of other ways to capture your partner’s likeness: why not create a personal website for them to show your dedication? Or alternatively why not create a website for their business or their passion to help them make their dreams come true? That’s the sort of support that can really build your relationship and it’s a great way to put your web-skills to romantic use.

This article is contributed by Ryan Hall, an employee at Lior Diamonds, online providers of double halo diamond engagement rings in Chicago. A culinary enthusiast, Ryan loves to cook for his friends and family whenever he gets the time.

Dangerous Lee Bitstrip of the Day: Stop Supporting TMZ!

tmz bitstripI created this Bitstrip to make a point about how so many of you are hypnotized by online media outlets like Bossip and TMZ and fail to support independent media in the same way. Low and behold, a day after I created it, TMZ posted a story with a poll asking if Black people should be referred to as Niggas or African Americans. Why? Because Suge Knight doesn’t want to be called African American because he’s not from Africa. Suge Knight is stupid.  Stop supporting bullshit media. I’ve never had a real issue with TMZ until now, but his story is just irresponsible. They’ve lost my clicks.

Should You Believe Everything That Little Bird Told You?

It’s hard to be sure that anything online is true – people’s profiles can be deceptive, there’s sales patter everywhere, adverts make astounding claims and gossip and unsubstantiated rumor abound. So when it comes to uber-hyped share launches, like Facebook and Twitter, should you really believe everything that the little bird tells you? The launch of Twitter recently has prompted record numbers of purchases in overseas stock by investors from the UK, however, but should you be one of them?

A_little_birdy_told_me_by_blanklives

The Historical Perspective

Some investors will remember the “dotcom” bubble that burst far more spectacularly and had far more troubling effects than the feared millennium bug had done a couple of years earlier. Underlying the dotcom disaster was the fact that most companies were valued on the number of clicks that they received. This was translated into wildly inaccurate valuations that bore little or no relation to their actual holdings, sales or profits. Investors soon discovered their investments were worth very little and the bubble burst.

Heck, History’s Repetitive, Isn’t It?

The problem with the recent raft of share launches is similar; number of users has been identified as a key valuation tool but the potential for advertising revenue on sites is unclear. Some users (I’m admitting nothing) simply block the senders of promotional tweets, to limit their exposure to unwanted interruptions while discussing what they’re eating (and where) with a global community of millions. The competition is also growing with social media sites including Facebook, LinkedIn and Google, all grabbing shares of the market.

Technology Meets the Human Element

However, the technology can be more ‘ropey’ than investors realize. The advertising model that sites like this use is possibly flawed; it’s based on the idea of interrupting their clients mid-search (or chat) with unwanted ads (not necessarily a popular approach). Sites also profile users; I checked how Google had evaluated me, in the interests of research, and discovered, much to my surprise, that I’m a sixty-something woman with a fondness for football and knitting. As it happens, I’m none of the above. Algorithms, it seems, may spot patterns, but rarely inconsistencies.

The People’s Choice?

Of course, investment is all about risk. Twitter et al are certainly popular, growing and becoming something of a ‘utility’ in many people’s lives. This factor may well be an important consideration. When new technology transforms into an everyday utility this indicates two things; one that it’s here to stay and two; that it’s become ‘normal’ to people. While some nefarious users may block promotional tweets, and be pleased Google has them so wrong that the adverts that appear when searching are utterly irrelevant, it’s fairly clear that these brands are massively popular with the majority of people. Not only are they part of everyday life, but they utilize the powerful word of mouth model sales method that has to be the oldest one known to man (and woman). As these companies grow and develop they will find new ways to increase their sophistication in regards to selling, and long term profits may well soar. For investors in at the ground level today there may be some significant returns in the future. Twitter and other social networking investments should be considered fairly risky but as part of a portfolio, for the long-haul, they may well pay off.

Samantha Smith is an experienced blogger who likes to blog about investing. She has written blogs for a lot of companies, one of these being Green EK Investments.

Dangerous Black Woman: Shawntel Asemota White

“I’m black, but you’re just jealous because you’re not a pretty black girl like me, inside and out.”

Shawntel

My classmate left me distraught as she told me boldly and confidently that I was “an ugly black girl.” I ran home to my mother, tears in eyes, certain that being black meant being ugly and that it was a label I could never get rid of. I said to my mother, “Mommy, am I black and ugly?” She said to me, with her encouraging eyes, “Yes, precious. You are black, but you are certainly not ugly. The next time she comes to you saying you’re black and ugly, you just tell her ‘Yes, I’m black, but you’re just jealous because you’re not a pretty black girl like me, inside and out.”

These were the words my mother said to me that day and it has stuck with me for the rest of my life. Certainly the content of the message has changed, but the meaning behind the message hasn’t: no matter what people say, don’t believe them. You know who you are and that’s all that matters. No one can say anything about you that you don’t agree with. That was the last day I allowed anyone to say anything negative about me. It was the last time I allowed people’s ignorant opinions belittle me. And it was the day I became empowered.

Our media will have us believe that black women can’t get along and that it is in our nature to tear each other down. That we lack the skills to empower each other and to build ourselves into a dynamic group. That we would rather talk about each other, throw champagne in each others’ face, or disrespect each other for the sheer thrill of getting noticed. That’s not my story.

I’ve always been one to triumph over my trials…I’ve always been resilient. Even when all the cards were stacked against me and it seemed like there was no hope left, I was the one who not only would remain optimistic and hopeful but would try my best to empower others to be the same. Sometimes, when you are down, being empowering to others is  the only way to get back up in those dark moments.

The mark of a Dangerous Black Woman is one who is not only empowered, but empowers others. It is those women who can take their misgivings and empower others because that is where they get their light in the middle of a dark tunnel.

I am a Dangerous Black Woman because I believe in the motto of my mother’s country, “out of many, one people.” As Dangerous Black Women: out of many, we are one.

Bio:

Shawntel Asemota White learned early on that her purpose is to inspire others. She believes life is a series of stories that we are involved in and every moment is an opportunity to create a new line in our story. She considers herself a storyteller because she believes every event has a story to tell and it is her job to tell it in a compelling way. She created The SOA Brand, formerly SOA Event Concepts, a creative services agency that tells stories through visual design, creative strategy, and cultivated experiences that connects people to people and brands to people. She hopes to continue to grow this brand, making it the go to agency for inspired opportunities and stories.

Social media handles:

Twitter: @soaeventconcept

Facebook: www.facebook.com/SOAeventconcepts

Instagram: @soaeventconcepts

Why ‘NO’ Is the Hardest Word for Women to Say Confidently

Serious young woman giving stop gesture

By Margaret A Sims

Remember the famous sentence – Love is never having to say you are sorry - from the movie Love Story? It spawned a thousand jokes. Some people believe that sorry is the hardest word. I place No at the top of the list and especially relating to unwanted gifts of clothing and unwanted fashion advice.

Why is No so hard a sentence?

It is estimated that you will hear the word No at least 120,000 times over your lifetime.

As a Baby Boomer child, you were probably taught that you could happily say Yes or Yes please without a second thought or the need to add an explanation. You were taught to be polite and not hurt anyone else’s feelings. When you asked for something and got a No answer, sometimes you accepted it, especially if you were just trying it on. At other times you added that dreaded why? Then your parents or whoever explained, justified, apologized, procrastinated, fudged, lied or got angry.

That is how many of us learned that Yes is a complete sentence and No is not.

With age and experience, you have also learned that some people play games. They are desperate for you to say Yes because what it will be an advantage to them but not to you.

Clothes are personal statements of who you are. You can learn to say No and mean it without justifying or explaining.

Saying No is About Setting Boundaries

Boundaries are necessary so that you have control over your life and your wardrobe.

Every time you let someone else talk you into taking or buying clothes you do not want or that do not suit you, they, not you, are controlling your life. You may not see them often or ever again but they are still living in your head.

No is a way of setting your boundaries and claiming your right to determine who you really are and who you want to be. It is a way to teach others how to treat you.

Saying No is Not a Personal Rejection

People say No for lots of reasons. Most of their reasons are not personal rejections of you. Also, most of your Nos are not personal rejections of the other person.

Saying No honestly helps people learn that you are not exactly like them. They can then decide if they want to discover who you really are and that is a much more interesting person than they first imagined.

Four No Techniques

There are many people who will teach you how to say No.

Allan and Barbara Pease, the body language experts, teach a ‘You are Right. But… ‘ technique in their 2006 book, Easy Peasy People Skills for Life. This involves acknowledging the other person’s truth which is the You are right words at the beginning of your sentence. Then you add your truth beginning with the words but or but for me which asserts your right to have a different opinion to the other person.

William Ury, a negotiator, teaches a ‘Yes. No. Yes’ technique in his 2007 book, The Power of a Positive No. Your first Yes asserts your values. Your No respectfully states your boundaries. Your second Yes is an invitation to an alternative, positive solution.

Byron Katie, a psychologist, teaches an ‘and no’ technique in her 2005 book, I Need Your Love – Is that True, which she co-authored with Michael Katz. This again starts with repeating the other person’s truth. Then you add the simple words and no to the end of your sentence without any explanation.

Finally there is always a straight and simple ‘No’ or ‘No thank you’ if that suits you better.

Do Not Argue. Re-state Your Position.

This is the key point. As No is a complete sentence, you need to stand firm in your own personal power and refuse to be drawn into an argument.

Follow these basic guidelines -

• Make your statement calmly and firmly.

• If necessary, repeat your original statement as many times as you need to.

• You have the right to say No without explanation or justification.

Last Words

Remember the words of William Ury, – ‘If you can learn to say No skilfully and wisely, you can create what you want, protect what you value and change what does not work.’

Margaret Sims of babyboomerpersonalstylist.com.au is the Baby Boomer Personal Stylist. She is an Image Consultant and Modern Dressing Expert. Margaret helps you, a Baby Boomer woman, dress to SHINE when mediocre is not good enough for you. Starting with a Personal In-Home Styling of your wardrobe, she shows you how to create more modern and exciting combinations from your current clothes and accessories.

Go to http://babyboomerpersonalstylist.wordpress.com – to read more articles on fashion. Be sure to go to the bottom of any article to sign up for the ‘Baby Boomer Personal Style’ eZine with hints and tips delivered to your Inbox every Thursday.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Margaret_A_Sims

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Infographic: Why Cyber Monday is the New Black Friday

Cyber Monday is a term-turned consumer holiday that falls on the Monday after Thanksgiving each year in the US. The term “Cyber Monday” was originally coined by Shop.org in 2005, and has since become a well-known phrase across the Internet. The internet-based consumer holiday features deals on everything from household goods and digital subscriptions to new electronics and video game consoles. Shopping online is often much more convenient than dealing with other consumers at stores during Black Friday, which is why Cyber Monday is becoming more popular each year.

Protecting Yourself During Cyber Monday

Although Cyber Monday is a great online holiday to receive great deals and discounts, it can also be highly dangerous when shopping online if you are not careful with the websites you choose to share your personal financial data with before checking out.

Always verify the retailer’s website when you are shopping online by checking the site’s URL. Many websites that have secure online shopping will show a lock icon in the URL section of the site, verifying it has a SSL, or secure sockets layer certificate. You can also check the footer of the website for security stamps and verification logos before checking out or entering personal information into the website.

Avoid clicking on shared images you find on social media networks such as Facebook and Twitter, especially during Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Many links that are shared on social media networks during shopping frenzies are often “phishing” sites, that will ask for your email, passwords and potentially financial information.

Biggest Websites During Cyber Monday

Shoppers seem to flock to Amazon, with 35 million visitors in 2012, a 36% increase from 2011. Walmart has also seen a drastic increase in shoppers during Cyber Monday, with 18.6 million visitors in 2012, up more than 21% since 2011. In addition to Amazon and Walmart’s official online stores, Best Buy received more than 9.3 million visitors during Cyber Monday in 2012, an increase of more than 10% altogether in 2011. However, Target received 4 million visitors in 2012 during Cyber Monday, down 4% since 2011. J.C. Penney also found themselves with a decrease in visitors in 2012 with 5.3 million, a 1% decrease from 2011.

Source: Best Computer Science Schools

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