Monday, November 5, 2012

Helping Your Kids Use Social Networking Websites Safely

As an involved parent, you probably already know that keeping an online journal or a rapidly updating 'profile page' on popular social networking sites (MySpace, Bebo, LiveSpaces or Facebook) is common practice amongst teens and preteens. Often, these websites can be viewed by any person with Internet access and this can put your child at risk.

On most social networking websites, children can post profiles that include videos, photos, and personal information such as their address, phone number, birthday, and full names. Kids use these sites to connect with others, whether they're halfway around the world or right next door. The sites often allow for instant messaging, games, and other communication tools.

Unfortunately, some of the information posted on social networking sites could make your child vulnerable to predators. Keep reading for five great ways to help your child use social networking websites safely.

1. Don't use full names. If you're going to allow your child to use social networking sites, have them use a nickname or their first name, but never full names.

2. Monitor your child's profile. Insist on access to view and monitor your child's public page. Check for any private personal information, such as addresses or cell numbers, that could pose a security risk to your child.

3. Never allow your child to meet anyone in person who they've only met online. Children can be in serious danger if they go to meet people whom they've only met through the Internet.

4. Consider setting site restrictions. Most social networking sites allow users to set privacy settings, therefore making their profiles available only to certain approved users. This is a good way to limit access to your child's information.

5. Remove the page. If your child refuses to abide by your safety rules, consider contacting the web site and having the page removed or investigating the use of Internet filtering tools to block access to the site.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

1 Simple Secret For Small Busines Owners

This article is from your MYB Consultancy for small business owners, in fact any business owner

Online Business Education – Operational Risk Management Training

All you need to get going is 1 Simple Secret that gets you started towards achieving your goals…

Small business Owners - Can you see what you want?
Too many business owners just can’t see it…
Do you see what happens to a business owner when they don’t know what they want?
You wonder where they see the business going? Who is there anywhere that can lead them forward if they can’t see where they want to go.

As a business consultant I have found that secret!!

If you knew a very, very simple secret would you use it? I just bet you would…

Here it is! ...See your business picture...

You must be able to see your very own business picture.

You need to know what your business, your life looks like to you. How else do you know what you want or if in fact you actually get to where you want to go???? How will you know when you get there?

We all do it – consciously and sub consciously – we visualise, we create that picture in our minds. Anything you have ever really wanted you could actually see it clearly in your mind, before you got it. That’s what drove you to getting it. Part of knowing what you want is being able to see what you want.

If you can’t see it, you can’t reach for it….its so, so important to create that business picture. Sit there quietly, close your eyes and look for it. Create it if you haven’t already.

Everything that you do is a product of what you see – like it or not. If you don’t see it you will be flat, without purpose and scattered. When the going gets a bit tough as it surely will at times, search your mind for your very own success picture and keep it in focus. It’s a great pick-me-up. But more than that – you have something to reach for. If your picture is somewhat blurred – tidy it up, make it smart and desirable.

Ask any successful business owner to tell you about their PICTURE, and they can and will tell you.

In business it is called VISION – this is the very first step on your pathway to success.

1 Simple Secret - Make your picture a beautiful one

Take advantage of FREE online business coaching and masimise your Operational Risk Management Training Opportunity.

More tips for becoming a successful small business owner can be found at my website:

Know Your Business "Picture"
Elaine Masters
Business Consultant & Coach
Master Your Business
Online Business Education
Operational Risk Management Training

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

"Who Loves Money" Review

"Making Money Online is Easy Right? It Can Be if You Know What You're Doing"

"Who Loves Money" will teach you how to earn money online, and best of all, it's free. We've reviewed all of the top "making money" programs online and have created this site to help you determine which products and services will actually help you make money online!

Lesson #1: How Does Someone Make Money Online?

There are many ways to make money online, but the most common, and most lucrative way to make money online is to sell products for companies willing to share the profits with you. The process of marketing to people online is called "Internet Marketing" and it is a multi billion dollar industry. Hundreds of thousands of people, just like yourself, are making money online everyday by partnering with companies who pay commissions based on sales that you help generate.

This sounds difficult but it's not because these companies have "Affiliate Programs" setup for their partners (Affiliates). You can partner with thousands of companies online and start selling their products in literally minutes. So how do you start selling a companies products as an Affiliate? Simple, all you need to do is send visitors to their websites. This sounds simple, and it is, but finding the right kind of traffic and enough of it is more difficult. Products like "Who Loves Money" can teach you how to find high converting traffic for VERY low cost and can actually teach you how to get started with Internet Marketing for nearly ZERO investment.

Lesson #2: What If I have No Experience?

The most common misconception about Internet Marketing is that only people with good computer knowledge and marketing skills can take part. This is NOT the case.

You DO NOT NEED a website
You DO NOT NEED your own product
You DO NOT NEED any previous experience (none)
What you will need is a guide to help you learn how to get started.

Lesson #3: Be careful who you choose to learn from

Everyone has heard of being "Scammed" on the Internet, and although this is only somewhat true, many people have learned about making money online from companies who do not have good reputations in the Internet Marketing world.

There are many products out there tha offer old, rehased, and plajorized material that WILL NOT help you make money online. Anyone can tell you how to put up an advertisement on Google Adwords, but few people can tell you how to connect with the right customers. The problem with these so called "Guru's" is that they don't use the techniques they write about on their own Internet Marketing endeavors so they cannot explain how the techniques work. That's the sad truth.

There is no such thing as "Getting Rich Quick" on the Internet. It doesn't matter what you hear, you will never make money on the Internet overnight. Internet Marketing is a real business and it takes time to grow your business to a point where you are earning $500 / day. If you are dedicated to learning the correct techniques and are willing to put in the work, you WILL achieve your goals of making big money online.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

'Tis The Season!

‘Tis the season to begin gift shopping once again. But, rather than battle crowds, weather and fatigue, we have the greatest invention of our generation—online shopping!

I love online shopping. I love the convenience of sitting in my robe, with a snack and drink close by, the TV on or a CD playing, and being able to choose any hour of the day or night to shop. And best of all, not having to battle traffic, rude crowds, or SNOW!

I love pretty much all online shopping, but one of my favorites is gift baskets. Gift baskets have been around for a long time, but seem to have really come into their own with the popularity of online shopping. They are the ultimate in easy gifting! And they make it easy with secure checkouts, personalized gift cards, and time-sensitive to-the-door delivery.

Whatever the occasion; whoever the intended recipient, there’s a fun and appropriate gift basket to be found. And for those of us with the spirit of adventure, some sites even offer customizable baskets. Many of the gift basket sites are really one-stop gift shopping—offering flowers and plants, wines, food baskets, corporate gifts and special gifts for kids.

I spent about an hour recently on one of my favorites, and managed to clear my list of a birthday gift for my 10-year old niece; an anniversary gift for my sister and brother-in-law; flowers for my “adopted mom” who recently underwent knee-replacement surgery; and a congratulations basket for a dear friend who recently had twins!

Being the frugal person that I am, one year I decided I would make and mail my own gift baskets. It was very time consuming, very expensive, but fun for a one-time activity. I created a home entertainment basket with microwave popcorn, Milk Duds and Raisinets, a few well-chosen video tapes (before DVDs became the in-thing!) and a few other items. Being of Italian descent, my favorite home-spun basket is called “A Taste of Italy.” It includes pasta, sauce, good Romano cheese, bread sticks, olive oil, wine and some delicious traditional Italian cookies!

Probably the only thing more fun than shopping for or creating gift baskets is receiving one. Several years ago I received this huge basket of the most incredible English muffins. Thick, exquisite muffins in every possible flavor. Needless to say I shared my bounty – and the next year went to the site and ordered several baskets for folks on my list. Another basket that really impressed me was the one our realtor sent after we bought a house. It had all the fixings for an intimate housewarming party, including a lovely bottle of wine.

I have to admit, the “gift box” from a well-known cheese company left me a little flat. I couldn’t get over that the entire box, which I know was not inexpensive, consisted of about four of those 2 ounce bars of cheese, a small jar of mustard, small package of crackers and a few hard candies. Definitely less-than impressive!

I really do LOVE online shopping. And I really love the ease and convenience of gift baskets! So next month, you’re likely to find me in front of the fireplace with my laptop busily choosing and sending out lots of holiday greetings around the country without having to put on shoes!

If you haven’t already joined the ranks of online shoppers, do yourself a favor and try going the online shopping/gift basket route. I guarantee you’ll enjoy the holiday season a whole lot more!

Monday, September 10, 2012

"stop Educating Your Prospect!"

Companies spend thousands of dollars every year building product knowledge "Universities". They send their sales people to these product schools to learn the features and benefits of their products. They have them go through the process of becoming "product" experts, with the hope that the expertise they gain will propel them to sales success.

Unwittingly, they promote and fund a process that ends up creating "non supportive beliefs" in the minds of their sales people that can actually inhibit their success and lose them both sales revenue and profit margins. Those beliefs include the following:

Disseminating product knowledge to my prospect will build my credibility and make sales.

In order for the prospect to understand the value of my offer I must educate them.

Unfortunately, we have found this type of thinking, or "non supportive beliefs", end up creating very difficult selling problems. Once we understand the problems these non supportive beliefs create we can begin to change both our thinking and behavior that will lead us to greater success in sales.

Although being credible to your prospect is important , we believe that having them trust you to provide a solution that will limit the risk they take in making a decision to buy from you is much more important. The way you build that trust is by demonstrating to your prospect, through a complete understanding of their problems, that you reduce the chance of making a mistake in the recommendation you make.

Logically, to gain an understanding of what your prospect needs, would require us to ask questions. Through your questions, you gain a greater understanding of their situation and thereby lower the risk of making a recommendation that is inconsistent with what they need. Asking questions about typical problems and understanding the impact they have on your prospect is much more important than giving out information.

Also, we have found that educating your prospect about your value allows them to use your information and recommendations as a way to "shop" you against the competition, frequently building RFP's and RFQ's around the unique value you have educated them about. This "shopping" model allows them to get competitive bids built around your recommendations that literally extinguish your value and end up creating sameness. This "free consulting" is particularly frustrating and damaging to our technology and intangible service customers.

Educating your prospect may make you feel good but it will end up being your downfall. It's a dead end street that will force you to define your difference by a low price!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

"The Secret" To Working From Home

By now, you have probably heard about “The Secret.” Oprah Winfrey and Larry King have interviewed the people who contributed to the creation of “The Secret” DVD and book.

So if you do not know what “The Secret” is, I am going to tell you. “The Secret” is the “Law of Attraction.” This means that everything that happens to you, good or bad, occurs because you have attracted it by your thoughts. In other words, you will attract what you think about most. For example, if you think that you are going to fail at something, you most certainly will. These thoughts also cause our feelings. So if we think negatively, we will also feel this way. This attracts more negative experiences and more negative people into our lives. But if we feel good, we will attract more things that make us feel good. Therefore, whatever you are thinking and feeling today, is creating your current and future situations. Unfortunately, what most people do not realize is that what they are thinking about most is what they do not want.

Now, you may be asking yourself what this has to do with your life. The answer is that it allows you to control your life’s destiny, rather than life’s events controlling you. So if your goal is to be a work-at-home mom, there is a way to do this. Instead of thinking that you have to go to a job that you do not like, begin to think about what you do want. Stop focusing on what you don’t want. Then, believe that what you want has already come to pass, even if you do not yet know HOW it will. Then imagine how it would feel to be a successful work-at-home mom. Focus on the feeling of walking away from your job and what it would feel like to attend your daughter’s first day of preschool, for example.

Another important concept is that you need to take on an “attitude of gratitude,” in being grateful for all that you already have. Until this occurs, the creators of “The Secret” say that nothing new can come into your life. You need to see your past as a positive experience of things learned, before you can move on to fulfilling your goals and dreams. This is especially true if you have tried other work-from-home endeavors that were not successful.

As quoted by James Ray when interviewed by Oprah Winfrey, “Success is when you’re living the gifts and talents within yourself.”

In summary, success is not for the elite. It’s for everyone. And if your dream is to work from home, you can do it too by applying the principles from “The Secret.”

Saturday, September 8, 2012

"Please" & "Thank You" . . . Still The Realtor's Best Tools

The gurus vary a bit on the exact statistic, but all will tell you: Top salespeople in virtually every industry become that way because they have developed the habit of sending personal, heart-felt "Thank You" cards to their customers. As a result -- they get more referrals (a lot more referrals) -- and consistently out perform their competitors by as much as 10 to 1.

Most Realtors (and Lenders, Insurance Agents, & Financial Advisors for that matter) know this -- but fewer than 5% do it consistently. Fewer still, actually use this simple strategy to ask for referrals.

For these categories particularly, REFERRALS are the lifeblood of their business. In my town (Atlanta), the President of any given networking organization (BNI, Le' Tip, Power Core, Freedom Builders . . . you name it), is almost always from one of these fields. It's a good strategy. It works. But that's just it -- It's one good strategy.

One good strategy -- that can easily be 10X more effective by putting a new twist on the proven discipline of sending "Thank You" cards.

STEP ONE: Re-dedicate yourself to consistently sending "Thank You" cards to your customers. Even if you do it the old fashioned way (There's a better way -- a completely automated, yet incredibly personalized way -- and it costs a great deal less) . . . but even if you do this the old fashioned way of going to the local card store, sitting at your desk to write each note, stuff and stamp the envelope . . . the ROI is phenomenal.

STEP TWO: Send "Thank You" Cards to the people you buy from.

ALMOST NO ONE DOES THIS (maybe 5% of the 5% who do anything with "Thank You" cards at all) -- and it's Pure Gold !!!

STEP THREE: Send "Thank You" cards to people from your networking groups when they give you referrals. (I sometimes include a Starbucks gift card.)

STEP FOUR: Use personalized greeting cards for "cross promotion" with your networking group members -- to their expanded network.

Buy cards that are blank on the inside (or use the "better way" Referral System my clients & I do). On one side: a note from you, briefly explaining that (Jerry) suggested (Don) might be interested in knowing about you and your product / service. On the other side: a brief note from (Jerry) endorsing you. The card is addressed from (Jerry) and sent to people he knows and likes . . . people who know & trust him.

This costs you next to nothing, and will generate referrals for you and Jerry both. Include Jerry's picture above his note, and this card will live on his friend's desk or refrigerator indefinitely. People don't throw away cards with their friends' pictures in them.

STEP FIVE: Send just 2 unexpected cards a year (Thank You, Congratulations, Happy New Year **, whatever) to each customer, vendor, and networking contact in your database.

** I sent Happy New Year's cards this year -- with Stone's 2007 Resolutions . . . Huge Hit !!! Several in-bound phone calls, often starting with "Thanks for the card, I've been meaning to call you . . ."

FINAL TIP: If you periodically attend those more general networking events (like Chamber and Association meetings) -- you can (and should) let the other person do all the talking. All you need is their business card after the conversation. (Sometimes I'll write a little note on the back -- one specific thing from the conversation.) Send them a "Nice Meeting" you card. Again, precious few in your field or any other do this. Include your picture, and you'll be amazed at the response.

Yeah -- Great Ideas, but now the cat's out of the bag. Everyone will start doing this.

Think again . . .

No, what "everyone" will be doing (if anything) is the same old tired company sponsored newsletter / postcard program (I get 'em every week).

Fewer than 5% -- the 5% who consistently source articles like this to explore ideas for growing their business -- will see this article. Fewer still will take the actions I'm recommending. (For some, it's just too simple and too inexpensive to work.)

That leaves you . . . the less than 1/4 of 1% of Realtors who will start applying this simple, effective 5 point strategy -- and begin generating more referrals than you can handle.

Enjoy ! . . . and please share your Success Stories with me.