I Wish Smarter Meetings Were the “PowerPoint Killer,” Not Google Presentations (Presently)

Google’s Expected to roll out their “PowerPoint” killer soon, if not today. Even though I was one of the engineers on Harvard Graphics (PowerPoint was called the “Harvard Graphics Killer”) I am really a advocate leaving slide shows out of meetings. It’s far too easy to create slides. You need people staring at you at a table giving you feedback with their body language, good and bad. You need to know that you got through to them. Will Google’s “PowerPoint” just make more awful presentations for us all to sit through?

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Congratulations RV Sani-Con and Lannie Stegall

My long term e-commerce and SEO client RVSani-Con recently sold to Thetford Corporation, an Ann Arbor Based RV Parts Supplier. RV Sani-Con makes waste management systems for RVs – a product you will appreciate in an increasing amount proportional to the amount of time you spend with your rig. “The acquisition supports our long-term strategies…

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The Brand Gap

A brand is a person’s gut feeling, because brands are defined by individuals, not companies, markets, or crowds because people are emotional, intuitive beings. Great slide deck, nicely done.

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Managed Rights Media & User Created Content- Birth of a Litigation Underground?

It’s the era of user-created content. Is there a minefield being laid by more and more sophisticated crawling tools employed by the stock agencies, the increase in user-created media, and the pinch felt by artists as microstock and low-cost stock shops grow. For those of us managing dozens or even hundreds of sites, it is very, very easy for an unauthorized image or illustration to make its way into a website. And then the fur will fly.

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Abandonment: Leaving Live Customers for Phone Calls Makes ZERO Sense

Retail stores don’t seem to realize the importance of customer touch points. That phone call ringing in the background is not as important as customers already in the building. If that phone rings a few times, both the receptionist and the salespeople need to have confidence it will then ring to someone else for handling or to a well designed voice mail solution. Leaving a customer during the sales process is simply throwing away the entire process people have worked hard on up to that point.

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SEO Spam Deconstructed

It would seem ludicrous to even consider SEO services that send garbage SPAM, but amazingly I talk to people at least once per week who have “gave them a shot” because it “surely can’t hurt anything.” In fact, it can hurt a LOT of things. Here’s a deconstruction of the spam itself.

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Google, Bing and the Loss of Social Forgiveness in Search

Is it constitutional for a government agency to keep a criminal history public indefinitely crawlable on Google, arguably providing, through its results pages, a public criminal history without a statute of limitations of any type? What if expungement is impractical due to the indexing activity of search spiders? Are we forever locking past mistakes in the strata of the web?

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You Can’t Fit All Flavors on One Cone

I was really happy to find Pamela Slim’s article “I’m just not into you” – Kicking lukewarm passions to the curb” in her ezine. It’s really a good read – and can help clarify some thinking if you find yourself muddled in luke-warm pseudo-projects that are weighing down your dreams.

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An Assumption of Focus is Blurry Indeed

When you look at your web pages you focus like nobody else in the world. You look at each part of it thinking about the effort that went into the design. You might feel proud or relieved it is done. You know the reasons you put certain text in certain places, or remember the steps…

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Testing Designs (and Designers Testing)

Jakob Nielson’s latest Alertbox is the longest-read enewsletter in my list. In the latest Alertbox, he points out “designers can get so caught up in their own theories about how users ought to behave that they forget to test for cases in which people behave differently” Could it be that the mechanics of setting up multivariate testing neutralizes this “worry”? Should variable definition be more of a part of the web design process?

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Three Simple Ideas For Yahoo! Search Marketing From The Trenches

So as I work on some Yahoo Search Marketing campaigns this weekend I was thinking about Yahoo!’s woes and come to think of three features that might help Panama for advanced PPC campaign managers, ground level. These ideas would all play into the “improved performance/sales per search” effort, which in turn gets search marketers to spend more of their clients money in the channel.

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Franchise Ranking “Magazines” are Flawed

Franchises need to toot their own horns. A lot. The press release engine needs fuel. And a plethora of magazines with glossy covers are ready and waiting to stroke their collective egos in front of entrepreneurs craving an escape from the 9 to 5. But with the possible exception of Entrepreneur magazine, most would do well to ignore these publications completely and do their own research.

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SMX Group Photo – Enhanced

The Flickr Version was a little dark…

A Zoomable/Pannable version coming as soon as (if) photographer sends me the high-res version.

For now… click to zoom

Search Engine Land has a SMX page with tons of links to other blogs related to the conference.

“The Dip”: Quitting to Win

In your web project, do you have parts that dead-end, with little chance of making you the best in your industry? Are there areas you should focus on in hopes of reaching the other side of the dip, joining the elite players of your business? Are you ready to sort those out, focus on the ones that matter and discard the rest?

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TIP for conference presenters offering downloads

If you’re presenting at a conference and using a powerpoint deck or some illustrations, don’t post a URL for your stuff to be downloaded. This is a blind method that will not provide you with valuable information about the people who came to retrieve it.

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SMX Rocked – wrap up

Okay just a short wrap up post here. SMX advanced was terrific. I’m walking away with a notebook full of tips, a bunch of new friends, and a great first experience. I look forward to the Local/Mobile conference in Denver.

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SMX Advanced 2007 – Impressive! (And thanks to all who’ve welcomed a first timer!)

To anyone at the show right now reading over this….. thanks for making a first-timer feel so welcome – it’s been awesome. I’ve met some folks who not only were very approachable but ready and enthusiastic about conversations with a first-timer. I definitely try not to be the “interruption guy” but have managed to at least chat with some who I’ve wanted to meet for a long time and had extended conversation with many who I respect in the industry.

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On-The-Fly Google Adwords: Part 1 of 3 – the Ads

It’s important that you design your advertising “funnel” to retain the confidence of the searcher from first click through ordering. I thought I’d show you a few tricks that have proven themselves over the years, starting with the most basic – the Google Keyword Insertion method, then talking about Dynamic Landing pages, and ultimately specialized product linkages from ads.

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