The Net Effect – How Your Blog, Social Networking and Websites Work Together

Posted by Marty Dickinson on Apr 30, 2009

Web sites used to be designed with the primary intent to push pages of content onto the public through search engines. But, when social networking began, the traditional Web site became more of a second, higher-level form of introduction. First people would meet each other on the social network and then your newly found friend would eventually click on something to get to your main Web site.

But, traditional Web sites still today are too slow to keep up with the traffic and conversations that result from the many forms of social networking available on the Internet. When someone becomes introduced to you on Twitter, Facebook or Linked-in types of sites, and THEN they visit your Web site, they are usually wanting to interact with you more.

If you don’t know how to use Dreamweaver or have given up trying to learn your high-end Joomla or Drupal install, it’s just not that motivating to offer to pay someone to make changes or additions to a Web site every day. This potential for interaction is gone unless they pick up the phone to call you or send an email to you.

I’d like to suggest that the importance of a blog has reached a whole new level. Your blog is now at the heart of your entire social traffic flow as shown in this diagram:

Whatever interaction you have on social sites eventually should flow to your blog where you can encourage further interaction. Then, once someone is ready to really look at the services you offer, they are directed to your main Web site.

Note too that the “Net Effect” of using your blog as the very heart of your social gathering place is your ability to add new content quickly and even automate it to be pushed right back to the very social networks you are already receiving traffic from.

Join me on my new Linked-in Group where discussions are already underway for a variety of subjects related to how blogs interact with social networking. We’re calling it

The Social Blogger Group at Linked-in:

I hope to see you on Linkedin soon!

Calculate Number of Characters – Great for Twitter, Google AdWords

Posted by Marty Dickinson on Apr 30, 2009

Here’s a nice little script for those lazy moments where we just don’t want to open up MS Word or Open Office to dump our sentences into a document just to calculate the number of characters.

This free script provided by JavaScript Kit

Paying Ghost Writers and Plagiarism: Geting Articles Written for Cheap Can Cost You Later

Posted by Marty Dickinson on Apr 29, 2009

If you’re on my Tuesday Triplet e-mail distribution list, you’re just one week away from receiving a startling new report about how Article Marketing is back with a vengeance! In fact, article marketing done-the-right-way is so hot and so impactful that any business owner, author or speaker would be crazy to not at least look into the new results people are getting and the evolving strategies for how to actually conduct an article marketing campaign.

With any new or re-emerging strategy comes the desire for a lot of people to get the job done on the cheap. That means hiring people you don’t know and have never met through e-lance or craigslist or some other recruiter connector to lands such as India, Philappines, or Russia to write a series of articles for pennies on the dollar for you to promote online.

If you believe outsourcing is the way to go for you, then have at it. Just remember that if your discount ghost writer happens to steal someone’s article content already published online or off-line, YOU are the one that will suffer the legalities that follow.

Here’s an example. I just got this email today from a guy that offers one of the many article marketing tools we use at my main Internet marketing company HereNextYear, Inc. A portion of that e-mail reads as follows:

Over the last month we have had not one, but two cases of blatant
plagiarism affect our authors and of course, our publishers. Unfortunately
plagiarism is something that has been plaguing writers and publishers for a
long time and neither the Wizard, nor newspapers and magazines, are

So, as writers or commissioners of articles, it is your responsibility to
make sure the writers you hire are not just stealing articles and selling
them to you. Both cases of plagiarism in these cases were delivered by
Elance writers to the unsuspecting clients. Now that is not to say that it
is Elance's fault, as it is not. There are unscrupulous people in every
walk of life that are just out for the money. Just have a look at the
current state of the world's financial affairs at the moment.

In any case, if you are outsourcing your articles to be written - please,
please, please, check your articles for originality before posting them.
Ultimately the negative responses will land on you if you don't, as the
resource boxes have your name and are pointing to your URL.

There is duplicate content checking software available that can check your
article for plagiarism before you send it out. Or you can take one of the
more unique sentences in the article; enclose it in quotes (") and run a
search to see if there are any exact matches in Google. And if there are
you can check to see if the article is identical."

- – -

Now, let me share another example to illustrate the difference. A new client is into stock trading training and has developed a system to teach others to day trade. He came to us needing a 5-page white paper expanded into something that would promote his training program. My “in-house” English speaking, American copywriter altered his document into something that would appeal to the audience intended.

We are just starting to launch this site, so I can’t give you any real numbers yet as to its effectiveness. But, the point is that our client doesn’t even have to think for a minute of getting a visit by the FBI or some phone call threatening a fine for plagiarism. Why? Because he knows exactly who will be re-writing that article.

Yes, article marketing is huge right now. But, just like it was a big deal 5 years ago, so was plagiarism back then. And, now it’s back with the new advent of article marketing.

Take your chances with the low-budget companies. Or, find someone you know personally that you might have to pay a bit more, but it will be well worth it to have your peace of mind.

Why Your Goal Should be to Get 2000 Followers on Twitter

Posted by Marty Dickinson on Apr 21, 2009

If you don’t already have 2000 people following you on Twitter, that should be your primary focus until you have exceeded the 2000 mark. Get there as fast as possible now so that you don’t have to worry about it later. Why is this so important?

For almost everyone I’ve met or talked to about Twitter that has less than 500 followers, the entire process seems like such a waste of time for them. But, something changes when you get to 1000 followers. You begin to see Twitter in a different light; one that offers the true potential everyone is always talking about.

If you have less than 2000 Twitter followers, take the challenge right now to develop a plan for getting 2000 and more followers on Twitter.

How to Get 2000 or More Followers on Twitter

Posted by Marty Dickinson on Apr 21, 2009

I’m not quite there yet, but by the end of the month, I surely will have 2000+ followers on Twitter. It took me a while to learn how the big boys Tweet and I think I’ve got it now. There are a few tools to use, a few things to automate, and a few tricks to get you ahead that not a lot of people are talking about. But, I’m going to divulge the secrets right here for you for free in thanks to all the people who have helped me for free with my own Twitter journey.

Here’s the summary of steps you will need to get 2000 or more followers on Twitter, beyond just the basics of setting up an account and without tweeting day and night hoping people miraculously follow you by the hundreds, because it just doesn’t work that way:

Get a free account at – Certainly one of the most essential Twitter tools available, here you will be able to add a setting to automatically follow anyone who follows you as well as create automated posts ahead of time. Here’s a screenshot to show how a post is added and scheduled for delivery to Twitter in 5 steps.

1) Add a new Tweet
2) Shorten any long urls you might be pointing people to
3) Publish right now or
4) Set a specific time and date by clicking on the calendar image
5) Include distribution of your Tweets in your rss reader

Tweet Later screen shot for adding a new Tweet automatically border=2

Tweet Later screen shot for adding a new Tweet automatically

Add a custom background (theme) to your Twitter profile – Every highly followed Tweeter I’ve come across has a custom background (also known as a theme) promoting their Web sites and products. Using default settings for Twitter backgrounds just looks like you’re not a seasoned Twitter user. Adding a custom theme increases Twitter followers all by itself by giving you the opportunity to show creativity while remaining professional

Plan for 3 sets of 5 Tweets minimum per day – You won’t have to do this forever. Remember, we’re just trying to get you to 2000 followers within a short amount of time. Use your TweetLater account to add scheduling Tweets so that you hit 3 different groups of people at different times throughout the day. I usually focus on the 8:30-10am, 2-4pm, and 8-10pm crowd.

You can post about several topics such as:

Use – This free utility allows you to see profiles of Tweeters who agree to follow those who are willing to follow them. So, by simply going through one profile at a time, you can find people who you are interested in following or who might prove to be even potential customers for you. The prerequisite for being part of this rather secret program is that you have to be willing to follow others who choose to follow you.

Lots of people get hung up with this concept of “being followed.” I got an email once from a guy I followed and he literally said “Who are you and why did you choose to follow me?”

Geez! Pretty harsh ‘ay? Just goes to show that not everyone grasps what Twitter is really about. It’s about exposing yourself to a larger amount of people than you could ever meet for the same price FREE!

Use – This free tool allows you to see all the people you are following who are not following you. Sure, someone might follow you initially but they can “UNfollow” you anytime they want to. You will need to delete several unfollowers so that you have room to follow others while on your way to acquiring 2000 followers of your own (people following you).

I’ve been suggesting for a while now that using Twitter is a great way to get started on the Internet without spending a penny. If you use those five components together, you will be on your way to getting 2000 or more followers on Twitter.

Single Brew Gourmet Coffee Great for Skiing and Inlaws

Posted by Marty Dickinson on Apr 20, 2009

Single Brew Gourmet Coffee in tea bag style containers is great for skiing, camping, and visiting with the inlaws.Single Brew Gourmet Coffee in tea bag style containers is great for skiing, camping, and visiting with the inlaws.Closing day at Copper Mountain yesterday, I was having lunch in the upper lodge called Solitude Station. The downstairs restaurant was closed but fortunately I brought my lunch. They were cooking burgers on the grill outside and there was a condiment stand, a couple of microwaves, some cups in the dispenser, and a large container of hot water. That was it, but that’s all I needed to get my coffee fix!

A new client gave me a few samples of his famous “Single Brew” coffee before Christmas. My mother visited for Christmas Day and we broke open our first package, which was about the size of a large tea bag. We didn’t even bring out our coffee pot that day to make our traditional presents opening coffee. With these, you just dip the bag into hot water in your cup and your ready to roll. We both instantly fell in love with the taste. No cream or sugar needed!

Anyway, I thought we had drank them all over Christmas but on Saturday I found one straggler in the cabinet so I brought it to Copper to have for lunch. The single serve single brew bags are nice and flat and durable so I wasn’t worried about them getting torn inside my backpack as I skied around for the morning.

After my sandwich, I grabbed a cup of the boiling hot water and dipped my Single Brew coffee bag into the water and walked outside to sit in the warm sun and watch the other skiers go by. One guy could smell the coffee as he walked by and asked where I got my coffee because he didn’t see any for sale inside. I had to laugh as I told him this was “gourmet single brew single serve coffee that I brought from home, but you can always buy some for the next time at”

He laughed and said “You say that like you own the company.” I replied with, “No, I just know the owner but it sure is good stuff.”

This summer I’m looking forward to bringing some Single Brew packets with me to Arkansas where we visit inlaws. None of them drink coffee and I always feel out of place lugging their coffee pot out just for me. This way, I’ll be able to just stick boil some water in a cup and stick it in the microwave.

Single Brew single serve gourmet coffee gets my highest recommendation.


Posted by Marty Dickinson on Apr 20, 2009

The EMDASH is one of the most mis-used, neglected, mysterious marks in the written language. Toss the Internet in there requiring HTML to make the emdash and a whole can of worms opens up for the novice coder. Using a CMS or blog software like WordPress can empower even the most tech UNsavvy administrator to create their own words on an html page, but what happens when they want to emphasize something in a sentence?

Instead of using a proper emdash, which looks like — the writer comes up with convenient alternatives like italic text (hard to read), improperly used quote marks (just wrong gramatically), underlining (making people think there is a link to click), over use of bolding (a real turn off), improper use of two hyphens — (my favorite!), or just plain USING CAPITAL LETTERS, which we all know and love :).

So, what do we do about this emdash for the web? It’s simple. The code to use for wherever you want to place emdash html code is — (or — but I usually use the — so I’m assured it will work right in older browser versions too).

Here’s how it works.

1) Open your editor so that you are in HTML view
2) Write your sentence for where you want emdash html code to go
3) Add html code between the two words for where you want your emdash to appear

Here’s a correct example:

[Showing HTML] Then I fell in the water—really cold water!
[Result] Then I fell in the water—really cold water!

Not this:

[Showing HTML] Then I fell in the water — really cold water!
[Result] Then I fell in the water — really cold water!

See how I have a space on either side of the html code? That’s not right. A proper emdash needs to butt up to each word.

Overcoming Disinterest in Conducting Webinars

Posted by Marty Dickinson on Apr 20, 2009

Every day I get at least 5 e-mail invitations to attend another
“don’t miss it” webinar and I’ll bet you do too. Nearly every webinar I’ve attended in just the past six months alone, I’ve found myself checking e-mail, making Twitter posts, letting the dog out and even taking phone calls “during” the webinar!

Maybe that’s why I’ve been reluctant to dive-in to the webinar scene with full force figuring attendees wouldn’t even be paying attention.

But then, last month I sat-in on a webinar that changed everything as I (along with an audience of about 200) was completely engaged—for almost two hours—and even wanted more!

Now, here’s an important fact: In this crazy economy, there is more NEED for people to learn new things QUICKLY and they don’t have the money or time to attend as many (or any) live in-person conferences and workshops.

As a result, more people than ever before are turning to webinars to both learn from and deliver content to the public and you and I MUST learn how to conduct webinars the right way and NOW.

Ever since that ah-ha moment last month, I’ve been on a personal crusade to find the ultimate process for delivering the most impactful webinar imaginable. And, I found it right in my back yard in Denver Colorado.

Join me, Marty Dickinson, as I interview Mike Zabinski and Judith Briles of the Denver-based company, Webinar Mentor, and together we will discover the true secrets and correct process of conducting webinars to promote your book, speaking, consulting or product business.

This rare and complimentary webinar event will be on Tuesday morning, May 5th at 9:00 AM (Mountain Time) and will last about 45 minutes with 10 minutes of question and answer time.

Of all the “don’t miss it” webinar promotions you and I get by e-mail, it feels kind of silly for me to suggest that THIS is the one most critical, absolutely essential webinar to attend of the year.

But, it is! Especially if you have been avoiding getting involved with webinars like I have. This could be your turning point and it definitely will be for me.

Claim Your Spot Now as you must register to attend.

I hope to meet you on the webinar.

All the best,
Marty Dickinson
HereNextYear, Inc.

P.S. Special Bonus!

I’ve worked out a special arrangement with Judith and Mike to give each attendee access to a brand new tool created by the Webinar Mentor. We’ll tell you more about it on the webinar, but for now, let’s just say the tool was designed to help you evaluate the potential of your webinar program…before you even conduct the webinar. This tool alone is worth $100 or more and you get it as an added bonus. The only way to get it is to attend the webinar on Tuesday morning, May 5th, at 9:00 A.M. (mountain time).

Online Marketing Summit Comes to Denver June 4, 2009

Posted by Marty Dickinson on Apr 20, 2009

Really this is just a placeholder for myself so that I remember to sign-up for this but it would be great to see you there too! Come find me and say HI on June 4, 2009 in Denver at the Online Marketing Summit, touring 13 cities over the coming few months.