Ezine Advertising Myths

The freedom of speech, the lack of education plus the others' herd instinct create some monsters … the myths. It is said "A fool throws a stone into a lake and twenty wise men can not stop the ripples."

Let's see what some ezine advertising "experts" discovered and many other followers spread everywhere they could …

1) Ezine Advertising Does not Work Anymore

Article marketing does not work. PPC does not work. Ezine advertising does not work. Actually for some people nothing works. You know why? They are busy spreading rumors instead of investing in their education.

Well, it's not our problem what other people are doing, but do you know what the real problem is? There is no one "up there" to force us to wear badges.

Whaaat? Badges?

For example, how nice would it be if an "I'm dumb" badge were added to someone who tries to drive with the tank of his brand new Mercedes empty? When that person will tell you, "Hey, those new cars are good for nothing", you'll take a look at his badge, say politely "I see …" and then you'll run away quickly without further telling all your friends the "bad" news you've just heard …

2) The Longer the Waiting Time, the Better the Ezine

If the waiting time for publishing your solo ad is long (over 4-6 weeks), you found a gem. If you read articles about advertising in ezines it's impossible to notice this "wonderful" idea.

Let me tell you something quickly …

During the last 6 months, the waiting time for solo ads to be published in my own "Ezine Advertising Info Newsletter" was at least 2 months. And you know what? My newsletter is NOT a gem. I wish it were, but it's not.

By the way, I just checked something … I'm not wearing any embarrassing bassing ;-)

3) The Higher the Number of Subscribers, the Better the Advertisers' Result

First of all, the result depends very much on you. Therefore, if you promote a poor quality product, if your landing page is not good, if your ad copy the same, it does not matter the number of subscribers. You will fail anyway.

On the other hand, most of the times a very big number of subscribers hides something: the list is stale, or email addresses are purchased leads (a big No-No), or even the number of subscribers is fake.

Let me quote from the most recent report issued by a reputable email marketing company: " Messages delivered to small and medium lists have far greater open and click rates than messages delivered to lists containing 1000 or more subscribers. and click rates, but mailings to smaller lists may be targeted better, contain more relevant content or have more recent subscribers. "(MailerMailer, Email Marketing Metrics Report issued on May 2009)

This report is not based on beliefs or amateur tiny size tests, but on the analysis of over 300 million messages across 21 industries sent through MailerMailer between July 1st and December 21, 2008.

There are many other ezine advertising myths (such as "Buy only solo ads and top sponsor ads.)") But I did not plan to post a novel here …

To Your Success, Whatever You Do!
Adrian Jock

Power of Branding and Freedom of Poetry

Maya Angelou once said (I'm paraphrasing) '' the purpose of all life is to be able to live like a poet one day. '' She went on to say that since poets already live like poets, their lives were not a postpone project, but the-ultimate-goal-realized by default.

How many times we have heard of those retirement dreams … the narratives that inevitably start with '' one day I'd like to … '' and continues with a description of one idyllic state or another … a beach house in Key West … playing golf eight hours a day in Arizona … buying a summer house in Florida and moving for good … writing (ah, at long last) that great novel, the chapters of which are lying somewhere inside those moldy cardboard boxes in the basement … to take the oath of chastity and join a monastery or a yoga ashram … take that trip to the Far East … or maybe even to throw itself with passion into a cause that is much larger than one's own limited life, like a political party, a crusade, a fund-raising juggernaut perhaps … on and on.

But underneath it all the aim is to arrive at that sublime state of inner peace and gentleness, something ill-defined but real, fuzzy but warm, a feeling that we feel is our birthright. Underneath it all we do not all point the gyroscopes of our lives to that nebulous state of elation and redemption that we sometimes refer to as '' poetic ''?

The rest is mostly a life-long process of branding ourselves as a desirable product in this increasingly globalized and fickle marketplace.

A brand is a total image with a price, a consistent package with defined and perceived borders. We are engineers. Attorneys. Machinists. Singers. Doctors. Teachers. Experts. Go-to guys. Ministers. Project managers. Historians. Curators. Tank drivers. Chefs. Shrinks. Plumbing … and, yes, Poets. Poets come in branded varieties as well. There is even a '' Poet Laurate '' for the whole United States (for the last few years we were extremely fortunate to have Billy Collins and Stanley Kunits and Ted Kooser as the PT Person).

All branding by definition shuns contradiction and ambivalence like a plague.

Fuzzy logic is fine for hi-tech digital cam-recorders but not for the experts that command healthy speaking fees. CEOs and four star generals are not expected to wear their troubling questions on their sleeves. Researchers at NIH do not get grants and doctors for not knowing what to do in the face of a new virus strain.

If things do not make sense outside a certain framework, then a branded professional knows how not to step outside that framework. A brand provides reproducible solutions to carefully-worded questions. Existentential panic does not command a premium price on the capitalist auction block.

Poetry, on the other hand, is a vulnerable exploration into everything that is left out by branding. It has no guarantees. No guidelines.

You can certainly encourage people to write poems. But I'm not sure at all if you can '' teach '' how to write poetry with the kind of money-back-guarantee bravado that is commonplace for a successful brand.

It is the only Odyssey that each person has to take all alone, go out and wander in the world, meet his demons, take them on one by one, beat them and return home victorious … only to do the same all over again the very next day.

Poetry, to use an analogy that Billy Collins has used in an Alaskan Quarterly Review interview, is like finding something curious sticking out from the sand in a desert and removing all that sand to discover the rest of the intriguing object. In that, poetry represents a vast freedom to rediscover all that is hidden from or by power.

Poetry raises all the in-between states and ambiguities censored by branding. So it is subversive by default.

However in that subversion there is also a deep affirmation of the most basic human value of all – freedom. That's despite the only thing branding can not buy and sell in the marketplace. A brand's power depends only on consumption. Poetry, on the other hand, is free the moment it is produced.

Our world needs more poets get into branded power play. Certainly someone like Leopold Sedar Senghor, a poet who became a statesman, will be remembered for his uplifting and dignified approach to international conflict. And conversely, I hope more branded professionals get into poetry as a way to humanize the market place of good and services.

What if the United Nations held a Poetry Workshop for one day of the year, with mandatory participation for all heads of state?

What if everyone in the world voted for the best Power Poet of the year through the Internet and the winner was declared on Valentine's Day?

Or what if Fortune 500 companies had poetry classes for their managers? Would not that be the ultimate out-of-the-box thinking and problem-solving bonanza on stereoids?

And what would happen if before one country attacked another, the presidents and top generals from both sides were forced to lock themselves in a room and write at least one poem, expressing why they hate the "other guys" and why they must fight? What if those poems were then distributed to the citizens of both nations and the world? Perhaps they would still go on and fight. And otherwise, just a tiny little shivering perhaps, they would not.

Without poetic abilities, branding easily degrades into a repetition of the past. If you are building a bridge, repetition of the past experience might actually be a beneficial discipline since no one wants to re-discover trigonometry every time there is a river to cross.

But in much more complex affairs of the heart, of which I consider international politics to institute just a small subset, the vulnerable freedom of a poem could be the only thing standing between our endangered humanity and the discovery of our birthright freedom – and even perhaps salvation.

Hiking Boots – Parts And Construction

When shopping for a pair of hiking boots, it is important to know how they are made. No, you do not need to know how to make your own, but you have to understand what goes into them and how it affects the comfort and durability – the overall quality – of the hiking boots. In this article I will describe the parts of a hiking boot, what they are made of, and how they come together to form the ideal hiking boot for you.

Like any shoe, a hiking boot consists of an upper and a sole joined together by a welt and with an inlet at the front covered by a tongue, and the whole is lined with various pads and cushions. I will discuss each of those parts in detail, in terms of what they are made of and what to look for in various types of hiking boots.

Sole and Welt

Let's start at the bottom. The soul of the hiking boot is the sole.

Soles are usually made of synthetic rubber in varying degrees of hardness. A harder sole will last longer, but generally will have poorer Traction on hard surfaces (such as bare rock) and will provide less cushioning. A softer sole gives you the cushioning you need for long hikes and the transaction you need on rough ground, but it will wear out faster.

Manufacturers have made their trade-offs in choosing the materials to make their boots out of. The final choice is up to you when you choose which boot to buy. If you expect to do most of your hiking on soft surfaces, such as desert sand or bare soil, you might lean more towards harder soles. But most of us hike on fairly rugged trails with a good deal of bare rock, and we need the traction of a softer sole.

Inside the sole is a shank. It is a stiffening structure, either fiberglass or steel, that prevails the sole of the boot from twisting and that provides arch support. Shanks may be only three-quarter or half-length. Hiking shoes generally have no shank at all, deriving all their stiffness from the molded rubber sole. Good day-hiking boots may have a full-length fiberglass shank. High-quality backpacking boots will give you the choice of fiberglass or steel. It will depend on how strong you need your hiking boots to be, and how heavy.

Look for deep, knobby tread. Deep cuts in the sole allow water and mud to flow out so you can get traction. "Fake" hiking boots, designed to look like hiking boots but not to perform like them, may have thinner soles and shallow tread. Working boots also may have shallow tread, and they generally have harder soles than hiking boots have.

The welt is the connection between the sole and the upper. Virtually all hiking boots these days are glued together rather than sewn. If you are buying a very expensive pair of backpacking boots, give preference to a sewn welt. Boots with a sewn welt will be easier to resole when the original sole wears out. For hiking shoes or day-hiking boots, when the sole wears out, the upper is not worth salvaging, either, so a glued welt is just fine.

Upper

The upper of the hiking boot brings warmth, protects the sides of your feet from rocks and brush, and repels water. It must also allow your feet to "breathe," so that moisture from perspiration will not build up inside the boots and cause blisters.

Uppers of hiking boots are usually at least partially made of leather. High-quality backpacking boots are often made of full-grain leather (leather that has not been split). Lighter boots may be made of split-grain leather (leather that has been split or sued on one side), or a combination of split-grain leather with various fabrics.

Fabrics that are combined with leather are usually some type of nylon. Heavy nylon wears almost as well as leather, and it is much lighter and cheaper than leather.

In any hiking boot, especially those made of combinations of leather and fabric, there will be seams. Seams are bad. Seams are points of failure. Seams are points of wear, as one panel of the boot rubs against another. Seams are penetrations that are difficult to waterproof.

The uppers of backpacking boots are sometimes made of a single piece of full-grain leather with only one seam at the back. This is good, for all the reasons that seams are bad, but it is expensive.

You're going to have to deal with seams. But as you shop for hiking boots, look for customer reviews that mention failure or undue wearing of the seams, and avoid those brands.

Inlet and Tongue

There are two things to look for in the inlet and the tongue:

1. How the laces are attached and adjusted

2. How the tongue is attached to the sides of the inlet

The inlet may be provided with eyelets, D-rings, hooks, and webbing, alone or in combination. They each have these advantages and disadvantages:

* Eyelets: Simplest and most durable way to lace a boot. Not so easily adjusted.

* D-rings: Easier to adjust than eyelets, more durable than hooks. More failure-prone than eyelets. (They can break, and they can tear out of the leather.)

* Hooks: Easiest to adjust of all lace attachments. Subject to getting hooked on brush, or bent or broken in impacts with boulders, main cause of breakage of laces.

* Webbing: Cause less chafing of laces, slightly easier to adjust than eyelets, slightly more durable than D-rings. More failure-prone than eyelets.

The most common lace attachment of any hiking boot is eyelets below ankle-level and hooks above. You may see eyelets all the way up, as in classic military-style combat boots, or a combination of either D-rings or webbing with hooks.

The attachment of the tongue is a critical factor in how waterproof the hiking boots are. Provided the leather and / or fabric and seams of the upper are waterproof, water will not get into the boots until it gets higher than the attachment point of the tongue.

Most hiking shoes and day-hiking boots have the tongue attached all the way to the top. If the tongue is not fully attached, consider carefully wherever you will need that extra inch or two of waterproofing.

High-rise backpacking boots have the tongue attached only partway up, but that still reaches higher than most day-hiking boots. It's difficult to get the boot on and off if the tongue is attached very high.

Linings and Pads

There are many pieces that go into the lining and padding of a hiking boot, but two in particular you need to pay attention to:

1. The sole lining

2. The scree collar

The sole lining must be appropriately cushioned. You want a firm, durable surface in immediate contact with your socks, but enough cushioning below that to absorb impact.

The scree collar is a cushion around the top of most hiking boots. It enables you to pull the boots tight enough to keep out loose rocks ("scree") but without chafing against your ankle and Achilles tendon. This is the thickest and softest cushion in the whole hiking boot. It must be soft enough to conform to your ankle and Achilles tendon as they move, and still keep close enough contact with your leg to keep the rocks out.

Very high hiking boots, such as military-style combat boots, may have no scree collar at all. The height of the boot is what keeps the rocks out.

Throughout, the lining and padding of the hiking boots must be thick enough to provide warm, durable enough to last, and smooth enough that it will not cause chafing and blisters.

Conclusion

So, these are the things you need to pay attention to when going a pair of hiking boots. Be prepared to compromise, and pay attention to which features are really important to the style of hiking you intend to do.

Brand Marketing Online – Creating Your Loyal Customer Base The Easy Way

Brand marketing online is easier than your think these days. The average business owner has no clue about the simple tools that you will read about here. Many of your competition are spending thousands of dollars in advertising and not making the impact they desire. You can stand out from the crowd with these easy and cheap tools of the marketing business. There are a lot of really good ways to brand yourself, but here are what we feel are three of the best performers.

Create a massive and loyal customer base with these simple and cheap marketing tools.

1) Blog Site - The very best tool for brand marketing online is a common blog site. You will be amazed how simple it is to set one up and get your information on it. This marketing platform can be adjusted by just about anyone who can use a word processor. The blog site will use small programs that are called plug-in to automate a lot of the customization. These work much like the apps on our phones. Each does a different thing and there are thousands of them out there. You can also host all kinds of files, posts, and media on them as well. You can set up a membership section to allow for additional information or savings to go to your loyal customers. Blogs are very powerful and inexpensive to run.

2) Flip Style Camera - A camera is an easy thing to get these days. There are a multitude of styles and brands out on the market. If you are brand marketing online, you really do not need to spend a lot of money on these at all. $ 150 would be the most, but I just got a nice one for $ 99. Shop round. You really want one that takes decent stills and HD is always preferred for your marketing videos. Now what will you us this for? In marketing there is a hierarchy of impacts from written, still pictures, audio, video, and then a combination of all of them? You will want to use your new toy, I mean tool, to capture and share all of those. Pictures and video about your business and your life in general will allow your customers to get the sense that they know you. That is very powerful in marketing. People do not buy from companies; they buy from people they trust. Get a camera and start shooting everything!

3) Facebook Page - This is where your brand marketing online will really start to take off. Use the other two tools in conjunction with this one and you will be on top of the industry in no time. Now we are not talking about a Facebook account profile page. We mean a page or what they used to call a fan page. This will let you post and have more than 5000 users that like it. The key factor is the likes and you can use your camera to add valuable information about your industry here. Just remember that you are never to market or try to sell anything on this page. This is just to inform. You can sell from your blog site and you can move people between the two seasons freely.

When you are brand marketing online, you are selling yourself at the same time as you are mentioning your business. It is important to become a person in the eyes of your customers. As they get to know you, they will begin to trust you and your judgment. That is important to any sales relationship. So no matter what it is you are trying to sell these three tools, if used properly, will make all the difference to your success. The largest factor to consider now is the education on how to best use these tools. Finding a solid marketing and mentoring group will make it easier to accomplish your marketing goals.