Category Archives: Communication

How to Keep your businenss Mojo going.

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As a small business owner, I know a little something about trying to balance life and work.  I also know just how hard it is to motivate yourself every day and keep your clients, family and yourself on an even keel.

Can someone do this for meSome days it is really hard to keep yourself from throwing in the towel and getting a paying job, but you know in your heart of hearts that that won’t really work for you.  You left that behind to do what you love right?  So, why after a year or so do you start feeling like you made a mistake?

Once  the rush of actually getting a business off the ground and trying to make a go of it has faded into the daily grind of running your business it can become very, very hard to stay motivated. Especially since you probably don’t have the cash to hire help just yet.

Additionally, your spouse, while supportive at fist,  is starting to get nervous about the actual money being deposited into the bank account and may start to become, shall we say, less than supportive.

So, what is the answer?
Continue reading How to Keep your businenss Mojo going.

Promise of sight for the visually impaired

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Photo by Art M

Researchers at the University of Texas are exploring seeing by stimulating the brains visual cortex to create images and shapes!

This research it is hoped will lead to a prosthesis that will assist the visually impaired to see by stimulating the brain and making one aware of “seeing”.

Professor Michael Beauchamp is experimenting with the portion of the brain that generates phosphenes which create the illusion of a flash of light.  It this can be controlled it would allow the seeing of shapes and letters.

According to author  in the article entitled “Neuroscientists could help people see with their “mind’s eye” in the June 6, 2012  of Gizmag, “Such a device could work by integrating a webcam in the frame of the subject’s eyeglasses: the tiny camera would wirelessly relay information to a computer chip implanted in a person’s brain. The chip would then stimulate the appropriate parts of the visual cortex to allow the brain to experience images”.  Doctor Borghino thinks this might be about 5 years away.

If he is correct, this could open up a whole world to the visually impaired.

In the TED talk below, Neurologist and author Oliver Sacks talks about Charles Bonnett syndrome. This is an illustration of the part of the brain that already generates “seeing” in the visually impaired in the form of “lucid hallucinations”.  Listen to his vivid description on TED.  Always worth a listen!

We see not only with our eyes but with our brains.   Neurologist and author Oliver Sacks on TED.

 

Easy and Affordable Way to Prevent Data Theft From Your USB Portable Storage Devices

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Today I read about an affordable, portable USB encryption device that I wanted to share with you.

I think this is a great way to protect you PHR (Personal Health Record) and be able to carry it with you.

The device uses military grade AES 256-bit hardware encryption via a FIPS certified crypto engine.  Which translated into English means it is super safe it is the best encryption there is, secure enough to protect classified military information designated as Top Secret.

This device is easy to use, and is an affordable way to keep any removable data safe.

PC Magazine  published a review of the hardware encryption device, CipherUSB.  This nifty little device is $29.95 and applies hardware based encryption to any storage device that attaches to your USB device.

This device gives you a way to keep that data on your flash drive, flash media, flash card, protable USB hard drive and optical media safe.  It can also encrypt on Blue-Ray, DVD or CD disc.

This great little device is a product of Addonics Technologies

Here is how it works.

Continue reading Easy and Affordable Way to Prevent Data Theft From Your USB Portable Storage Devices

You know my methods, Watson

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Watson_AvatarThe most famous Jeopardy player, Watson the IBM computer, is poised to become Doctor Watson.

The Watson health care advisory board was recently formed. This panel comprised of members of the health care community, was formed for the purpose of identifying health care issues that could be positivity impacted by Watson.

Watson‘s analytic and decision support, evidenced based reasoning, and understanding of language processing, holds big potential in medical advancement.  Watson can quickly analyze large amounts of data and understand relationships within that data to help improve the quality of patient outcomes.

IBM has teamed with Wellpoint to bring the Watson Technology to Market.  This is the very first commercial application of Watsons’ technology.

Continue reading You know my methods, Watson

20 ways to connect with your target audience

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marketing toolsOnce you know how to reach your target audice you need some tools to use to reach them.  The tools you choose will depend on your business and what will work and not work for you.  You also need to consider your skills.  If you don’t speak well, and you want to produce a video, perhaps you need to hire someone to produce that video for you.

Shamless plug, I will be launching an e-learing series early next year so keep a look out for it.  I will let you know when it is completed so follow me on twitter and facebook so you don’t miss the big launch and your chance to get the course for free

  1. Blog/Vlog – Write a blog, comment on others blogs (leave a link to your website if they let you). Don’t market to them, inform or educate them, offer special deals or fresh ideas.  You need to write content that people want to read.
  2. E-Learning Service – Did you ever consider teaching what you know?  There have been some very successful e-learning services and classes developed for the internet.  You know your business better than anyone so how about teaching what you know to others?  To do this share information with real life examples of what you are teaching.  Continue reading 20 ways to connect with your target audience

10 ways to use Social Media to grow your business.

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The whole purpose of social networking is to engage in networking.  Let me put it this way, you don’t go to a traditional networking event and market your business.  You go and connect with others.  You don’t sell your business products or services you sell yourself it is the same with social networking.   Below are 10 ways to use social media to grow your business. Before you consider any post make sure it stays true to your brand.  Inform, educate, listen, ask questions, interact and have a conversation in short, be human. Continue reading 10 ways to use Social Media to grow your business.

Can I get someone to do this for me?

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Can someone do this for meMany times I am asked if I can write blog posts for others.

I could, but it is better if I don’t.  You want your unique personality or the voice of your company reflected in the blog posts.  That won’t happen, if an outsider writes the post for you.

Does that mean you need to write every post?  Not necessarily. Sometimes a good post is a new event, or some other form of new information you have published elsewhere.

Sometimes, even the most faithful blogger faces writers block. So what is a writer to do?  Look at what you have already written in your email or questions you have answered for inspiration for that next blog post.  A lot of the time, it is clients questions that gets me writing a post.

You can drive yourself crazy with social media, email marketing, blogging…if you don’t automate a lot of it.  There are a lot of programs for small business to use to help with the automation process.

Programs such as, iContact and Constant Contact will allow you to create, send, track and integrate your messages with social media with ease and efficiency.  There are also other Customer contact and management solutions for small and midsized businesses.  Automation can be a great if you do it correctly.

Automation without a plan can be a disaster.  The best way to see if something can be automated, is to pay attention to the information that you routinely send out.   Even if you just put together a template that you use in your email program this will help to save you time when you need to send routine email.  I always do this for information requests.

The answer to the question can someone do it for me?  Is yes, sometimes someone can.

How to begin integrating Social Media into your Marketing Plan

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How do I Integrate Social Media into my existing marketing plan and not go crazy trying?

Facebook LogoUse what you already know and move it into the social arena.  You spend every day with your clients and customers; you interact with them so you already know what they want to know.  Just take that and find a way to apply it in the social media environment.

 

Your personality is why people spend time with you.  Take that personality on-line and you will find success.

Don’t just jump on the latest social media band wagon, figure out what will work for your business.  Maybe interacting on forums and answering technical questions will work better for computer repair persons, while blogging on Active Rain might work better for Real Estate Professionals.

There is a place where your customers hang out on line.  Find that place and observe your customers interacting on-line.  Then orient yourself, stick your toe in the water a little, answer a question, talk to a couple of members and see things click.  Decide is this something you can stick with? Does it work with your marketing strategy for attracting clients or customers?  Then act, get involved and stay involved.

Each type of business is different and reaches their audience in different way, not every business needs to use social media to do that.  It won’t work for everyone.  You also need to realize that just hitting people over the head with your message is not the right way to approach social media.  I have friends on facebook that are in real estate and the only time I see a post from them is when they have a listing.  What makes them think I even care?  I am not interested in your listing, I am interested in learning about you as a person and when I figure out you’re a realtor and I am in the market for your services, I will let you know.

Don’t tell me you are the greatest tech support person on the earth every day.  Do tell me if you have a special I should be taking advantage of but don’t beat me over the head with it.

It you’re a tech support person on a forum, I want your technical knowledge and will thank you for it and when I need it again, I will seek you out, especially if you post to the forum regularly.

By now, you get the idea, in order to effectively market yourself using social media you need to have a strategy and use that strategy and adjust that strategy that focuses on longevity.  If you’re not in it for the long haul, don’t even stick your toe in the water.  Find another way to market your business that you will stick with.

Once you get yourself established and known the next step is to get people to spread your ideas.

Making Time for Social Media Marketing.

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If I had a nickle…So many small business owners tell me they just don’t have time for Social Media Marketing.  They know they should do it but, where on earth do you find the time?

It is really not the time. There are really six problems that keep small business from using social media to reach new clients.  Business owners need to understand the following.

How to Integrate Social Media into your existing marketing plan and not go crazy trying.

Choosing the right Social Media for your business to reach the right audience.

Can I get someone to do this for me?

What in the world am I going to tell people?

Once I get started with this, is there a way to make it easy?

Will this investment of time really pay off?

All of these issues keep us frozen and unable to even get started with social media.  Before we even think about how to address the issue of keeping up with posting to our sites we have to figure out how all of this Social Media fits into our overall business marketing plan.

It helps to remember that social media is only PART of your overall marketing program.  So you need to choose social media that will reach your target audience and will enhance your marketing program.

 

 

 

 

Changing Focus

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Over the next few months you will see some minor changes to this site. I will begin to focus on small business Technical Computer and Marketing Support Services

I always offered software support and hardware repair services and this has always been the most interesting and rewarding part of what I do.  When your computer just won’t work and you need it NOW there is nothing better than having someone around who can fix it a save all your stuff.

I wanted to focus on technical/software support alone but my clients keep asking for Social Media Support so I have decided to focus my attention on both for a while.

In January I returned to school  (on line of coarse) to begin to apply my technical skills to the health care field.  So over the next few months the site will be re-designed to reflect these changes.  You will still be able to find great tools and marketing ideas but a lot of what will be happening in the  future will be health related.