Start From Scratch!
December 27, 1999
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Reaching Great Minds Online
December 27, 1999 Issue #25
Mike Valentine, Editor,


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Starting from Scratch

by Mike Banks Valentine

Have you wondered what that final step to online success really
is? Nearly every new website promises that they will provide
your business the success that has so far eluded you. If you
were to just follow their advice, (and pay them for it) YOU'LL
be the next internet success story! NOT!

Here is the real secret -- Start from scratch!

What will bring you and your online business success is plain
old determination and tenacity. Create an e-mail newsletter
and patiently build your subscriber base until you reach a
level (about 1000) where advertisers are willing you pay you
to run their advertising message. (Our current sponsor teaches
how to do that! ;-)

Patiently submit your site to search engines and learn the
effective use of Metatags in your HTML until your search engine
placement begins to bring significant traffic to your site.

Once that traffic reaches a sustainable 20,000 visitors monthly
you'll find advertisers willing to pay you to run banner ads on
your pages and related companies willing to work joint venture
deals for cross promotion on their sites or in their newsletter.

Then you can begin to use "PAID" services to promote your site
and advertise for you. Each step leads to the next. There is no
magic formula beyond providing valuable content to your web
site visitors, offering free information or software that they
are interested in.

Then give them a reason to return to your site by offering
regularly changing content. In order to grab and *hold* surfers'
attention you need to provide them something that makes it
worth their time to type your web address in to their browser!

At WebSite101 we use the following Freebies to generate traffic:

Free Ezine Content
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Free Web Resources
Free Weekly Web Tips
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Finding and offering these great services has been worthwhile
for our traffic to the tune of 30,000 visitors monthly! Each of
them are listed and linked from the front page of our site as
the first thing visitors see. It has taken between six months
and a year of hard work, research and networking to achieve.

I want to thank you, our readers, for the support that's taken
WebSite101 to success and hope that our weekly tips and our
advertisers have proven valuable to your business.

Here's to a great 2000 for your business, your loved ones
and your life! Cheers!


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Tell Them Who You Really Are

by Wanda Loskot

There is a lot of talk about building loyalty and trust on the
Internet. Various strategies and techniques have been discussed,
different strategies orchestrated. Yet, it seems the majority of
people miss the main ingredient of this trust-building process:
being vulnerable.

The old advice "give before asking" applies here, as well. To
earn someone's trust, we need to trust first. Just as people
are preconditioned to smile in response to someone else's smile,
we are naturally interested in people who display a genuine
interest in us, and we find it easier those who trust us first.

A friend of mine will not share a picture of herself with
visitors because she feels too unattractive. Another friend
doesn't even want to disclose that she *is* a woman because
she feels that some people will not take a female-owned
business seriously enough. One of my male friends, a Black
American, shared with me that he will never show his photo on the
web, because he knows that some people will refuse to buy from
him only because of the color of his skin.

I even know a business owner who is so concerned about the
possibility of being harassed that he doesn't display his name,
phone number or address on his website (funny thing is that the
first thing you will see when you visit his domain is the
annoying java script box asking you for your own name).

I agree that, sadly, some people refuse to do business with a
woman only because she is a woman. And there are too many of
those who will not buy from a person of color. Some buyers want
to deal only with a large company, even if they know that you
will solve their problem for less money. No matter how good you
are, some people will reject you for a very superficial reason.

That's fine. A blessing in disguise, really. Consider that *they*
didn't qualify to do business with you - not vice versa. After
all, why would *you* want to do business with someone like that?

The Internet is a huge place, full of wonderful, progressive
people with imagination. People who are able to make intelligent
and rational decisions based on facts and on their own values.
Look for these kind of contacts on the Internet. Build your
website and your Internet presence with them in mind - not with
the others. And once they come to you, don't alienate them by
hiding your face and by telling them half truths. Trust their
intelligence and common sense.

The more truthful you are with your true prospects and customers,
the more comfortable, safe, and non-threatening they feel with
you. Don't be afraid of being vulnerable. A few people might be
turned off by some of your characteristics, some might even try
to ridicule you. But those you would really like to do business
with in the long run will recognize who you are, will identify
with you, and will be inspired to trust you.

Share with visitors who you really are - show them your values,
your photograph, even your shortcomings. People will respect you
for this more than you might think and they will drawn to you.
Ironically, it is one of the major trust building factors.

* * * * * *

Wanda Loskot is professional business coach -- sign up for her
FREE teleclass "Seven Strategies For Lasting Internet Success"
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Copyright 1999 Mike Valentine

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  June 9, 2001