Monday, April 20, 2009

Looking for jobs in all the right places

You may not have thought of this lately; we have gotten so used to looking for jobs in the Sunday paper. But the internet is a great place to, if not find a job, get an idea of the myriad of different kinds of jobs available today. Many of the job offers are scams, so be careful to check them out. Be sure to go to reputable sites to get an idea of the variety that exists. The digital world is crawling with positions, full and part time that just may be calling for the skills you already possess. If your job has been cut back or if you've lost it, due to the recession, a part-time or home-placed job may be just the thing for you.

Try browsing through some of the sites, such as . Some of the job offers that seem to be popular now are: tutorer, childcare/nanny, wedding or event planner, free-lance writer, caterer, desktop publisher, and many more. All of these can be done from home. You may just be looking for a second part-time job to tide you over until there's an upswing in the economy. Or, maybe, you're happy with your present job. Now's the time to try out the skills you may have in areas other than your present job or career. It may just turn into something long-term.

I'm not suggesting that you hire someone to help you find a job, although that may be an option. I am suggesting that you get your creative juices going and identify the skills that you may or may not even know you have, and use them to your advantage. As a result of our many and varied past experiences, we all have skills we don't necessarily use in the workplace. Focus on those skills. Delve into your passion. A hobby can be turned into a business. Look at some of the skills you learned in those pottery or photography classes. Explore tutorials on the internet that pique your interest. You may know more than you think you do.

I have a friend who liked making her own jewelry. She came up with the idea of using chain maille to create rings, bracelets, and necklaces. She has since turned that passion into a business by the name of Rapt in Maille (clever?) Check it out: . Another friend loved gardening in her own backyard. She turned that passion into a garden design business. My hairdresser decided she wanted to work for herself, so she started her own salon in her home.

My assistant, at my B&B, remarked this morning "...sure, there are blue collar and low paying jobs available out there, but what business man is going to want to drive a truck?" Well, I answered her, if you're a business man, driving a truck may just get your foot in the door and turn into an opportuniy for you to start your own trucking business. It takes a little time and thought and large amounts of energy, passion, and work, but it's definitely possible. Think about it!

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Thursday, April 16, 2009

Eight No-Fail Steps for E-Commerce Marketing

By Jamila White, “The E-Commerce Diva” (Guest blogger)

Blank StareI know how to get a blank stare from just about any e-commerce web site owner. All I have to do is ask them about their web site marketing plan! When I ask them about their web site marketing plan, I get that look. First the eyebrows go up. Then the eyes glaze over for a minute. And then the stammering begins.

“Uh, well, you know – I have my URL on my business card.”

“I, ah, I’m going to start an e-mail newsletter.”

Some of them may even mention something about “search engines.”But practically no one has a plan! And you know how the old saying goes: “Failure to plan is a plan to fail.”

Most small business owners I talk to are frustrated. They think their web site is a big waste of money. An “online business card.” A “marketing expense” that doesn’t return any of its investment.

And no wonder:

You’ve spent thousands on a pretty web design. You shell out dough each and every month for web site hosting. You may even be paying a webmaster to update the web site regularly. And month after month, year after year, the sales barely trickle in.

Marketing your web site is frustrating. It’s confusing! So we end up doing what all of us do when we’re frustrated and confused: deal with it “later.” And later never comes.

Know what? It’s not your fault! No one ever taught you how to market on the Internet, this new medium. (They sure didn’t cover that in my marketing class when I was in school.) And there’s all that hype on the Internet – so called web marketing gurus who’ve made millions online. But guess what? The only thing they’ve ever sold is reports and e-books on – what else – “how to market on the Internet.” They’ve never packed and shipped a box or ran down the street after the UPS guy.

But what if there was a formula you could follow, a step-by-step guide to creating an online sales machine?

After 10 years of marketing and selling on the web, I’ve boiled it down to a winning eight-step formula. This formula works for any web business, for any product from amber gemstone jewelry to zebra-print home accessories. In a nutshell, the eight no-fail steps of this formula are:

  1. Define Your Goals: With no clearly defined purpose, your web site can’t succeed. Be specific with each goal, adding both an amount and a timeframe.
  2. Take a Snapshot: How’s your web site performing now? Know your traffic stats and your “three magic numbers.”
  3. Define Your Market: Who are you talking to? Be specific about who your products are for, and where these customers exist.
  4. Get Them There: Build targeted web traffic by getting your target audience’s attention and creating an ongoing dialog.
  5. Turn Site Visitors into Customers: Once you’ve gotten them to your web site, make sure you seal the deal before they leave. Know what they’re looking for, and what information they need to make a purchasing decision. Give it to them, then ask for the sale.
  6. Increase Their Spending: Would you like some fries with that hamburger? Since they’ve got their wallet open, ask for the add-on or upsell.
  7. Get Them Back: It’s cheaper to get an old customer to buy again than it is to recruit a new one. Make the experience memorable, and make the next one convenient.
  8. Get Their Friends: A happy customer can be your best sales tool. Empower them to spread the word about your products and web site.

When you work each of these steps, your e-commerce marketing can’t fail.

© Copyright Jamila White. All rights reserved.

About the Author:

Jamila White, “The E-Commerce Diva™”, helps small business owners develop their web marketing strategy to attract new customers and sell more products during her six-week “Supersize Your Web Sales”™ Tele-Bootcamp. Learn more at

NOTE: You are welcome to forward or “reprint” this article online as long as it remains complete and unaltered (including the “about the author” info at the end and the copyright notice) with live web links, and you send a copy of your reprint to

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Friday, April 3, 2009

Women in peril.....raped, beaten and murdered by loved ones

Ann Jones is a journalist and the author of a groundbreaking series of books on violence against women, including "Next Time She'll Be Dead," on battering, and "Women Who Kill", a contemporary classic to be reissued this fall by the Feminist Press, with a new introduction from which this post is adapted. She serves as a gender advisor to the UN.

I came across the following article by Ann Jones on a blog entitled Truthout. It begins:
.... "Wake up, America. The boys are coming home, and they're not the boys who went away........."

"On New Year's Day, the New York Times welcomed the advent of 2009 by reporting that, since returning from Iraq, nine members of the Fort Carson, Colorado, Fourth Brigade Combat team had been charged with homicide. Five of the murders they were responsible for took place in 2008 when, in addition, "charges of domestic violence, rape and sexual assault" at the base rose sharply. Some of the murder victims were chosen at random; four were fellow soldiers - all men. Three were wives or girlfriends. This shouldn't be a surprise..........." Read more.....
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