Linking Campaign for Online Success
August 21, 2000

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Reaching Great Minds Online
August 21, 2000 Issue #57
Mike Valentine, Editor,

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==> Feature: Linking Critical to Success Online
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Linking is a Basic Necessity of Online Business
by Mike Banks Valentine

First, I'd like to offer my apologies to those of you who don't
know and use HTML coding. If you use WYSIWYG web authoring tools
then you may as well only read the first half of this article.
I'm not sure it's possible to follow these suggestions if you
don't write your own HTML code. I know that you can insert code
in most editors, but each varies. It's worth looking up in your
instructions though, because linking is critical to your site!

In a "linking campaign" your goal is to have many sites link to
yours, which gives you visibility among high traffic sites where
interested surfers may see your link. This technique packs a two-
fisted punch, since it also increases your search engine relevance,
the more sites that link to you suggests a wider interest in your
business. You can check your link relevancy by pasting the following
into your browser "address" or "location" window (replace WebSite101
with your URL):
(Cut and paste if your email program breaks this link to two lines)

Or go to and type ""
into the search box (without the quotes) and hit the search button.
The result is a list of sites that link to yours. If you look above
the yellow bar just above the results and to the right side, you'll
see a total number listed. My search reads "About 306 Pages Found"

What this does is check how many other web sites refer to yours
via a link to your URL from their websites. In order to facilitate
this, I recommend establishing a linking "page" at your site to
allow sites of a complementary nature to link to you easily. I have
a page at my site that you may view to see what I'm talking about:

This means that you set up linking graphics with your logo and/or
some catchy text to attract attention and provide the HTML code so
that those who don't know how to write HTML can easily set up their
pages with links to your site. There are additional techniques as
well, If you use a service called "LinksToYou" and keep it updated
monthly, you can instantly get hundreds of sites linked to yours.
{ )

This is all part of what is done in a linking campaign.

There is a little trick to providing the HTML code for your visitors
to *see* on your page which requires some coding slight of hand. Due
to the nature of code, it is meant to be invisible and making it
show up requires the following:

Those < brackets > that define HTML to a web browser make the
contents within them disappear, so you must use code that defines
a bracket, rather than using the bracket itself. That code is &lt;
for < the left-facing bracket and &gt; for the > right-facing
bracket. So in order to make the HTML show up on an HTML page,
you must use &lt; and &gt; in place of all of those brackets in
order for them to show up on screen.

The simplest way to understand this is to go to the link page at:

and choosing "View" and then "Page Source" from your browser menu.
This will let you *see* the code necessary to *display* code in a
browser. I recommend using a background color in the area you've
created to display your HTML to separate it from the rest of the
page as well as using "comment" tags to show the start and finish
of your links. Comment tags are designed to allow you to create
instructions or comments in HTML that don't show up in a browser.

A comment tag is meant to be invisible too, so you will need to use
those &lt; and &gt; characters to *make* THEM visible as well.

&lt;!-- Link END --&gt; will show up in a browser as
<!-- Link END --> and when cut and pasted by your
visitor, they will become invisible code used in their HTML source.

The easiest link to provide is a text link and it can be used in
email as well as on a web page. Tbe following is the text we provide
at WebSite101:

&lt;!-- Text Link START --&gt;

&lt;A HREF="" TARGET="_top"&gt;
WebSite 101&lt;a/&gt; offers an entertaining and easy small-biz
e-commerce tutorial to get your business up and running
on the web!&lt;a/&gt;

&lt;!-- Text Link END --&gt;

This appears on a web page as follows:

<!-- Text Link START -->

<A HREF="" TARGET="_top">
WebSite 101<a/> offers an entertaining and easy small-biz
e-commerce tutorial to get your business up and running
on the web!<a/>

<!-- Text Link END -->

Note the TARGET="top" in the code? This insures that if your link
is used in a framed site, that the resulting page will break out
of the frameset.

The importance of setting up a linking page on your site can't be
underestimated when it comes to gaining that all-important traffic
to your site. It really is quite simple to do, no matter how hard
it is to explain! ;-)

Good luck with your linking campaign!

MIke Banks Valentine loves working online and creates the
WebSite101 "Reading List" Weekly Netrepreneur Tip Sheet
Weekly Ezine emphasizing small business on the Internet
Subscribe by e-
No matter where you go, there you are - online in business.

Please Take Our Survey For Members Only! Free Service Offer!
by Mike Banks Valentine

This week I am making a special request of the subscribers of
this newsletter to take a moment and respond to a short survey
we've prepared to determine interest in a new Suite of Services
for Small Business Entrepreneurs. It should take no more than
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This suite of services is to be a subscription based service to
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Mike Banks Valentine


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"Drug Companies Pay Firm to Track Consumers on the Web"
by Paul Siegel

This is the L.A. Times headline that hit me. Here is the latest in
tracking done by Big Business without your consent. The outfit is
called Pharmatrak, and it is used by Pfizer, Pharmacia,
SmithKline, Beacham, Glaxo Wellcome, Aventis Pharmaceuticals,
Nvarti Pharmaceuticals, American Home Products, Hoffman-
LaRocke, and others.

Pharmatrak uses "cookies." Originally, "cookies" were introduced
to "help" the visitor to a given site. But now this outfit evidently
combines information from many "cookies" to form patterns and
profiles. And they do this without the visitor's permission.

Pharmatrak claims that its clients may improve their websites from
the information provided. But read what they say on their site:

"In the future, we may develop products and services which collect
data that, when used in conjunction with the tracking data base,
could enable a direct identification of certain individual visitors."

Is there such a thing as privacy anymore?

Does it make any difference whether you use opt-out or opt-in?

Small Business debates whether to use opt-out or opt-in. Big
Business does not debate. Their only question is, "How can we
find out everything we want to know?" And they are doing it
surreptitiously. Today, an outfit like Pharmatrak has 11 "snoop
stations." Tomorrow, they or a similar company, may have 100 or
1000 "snoop stations."

Privacy is being obliterated systematically.

Privacy is being replaced with BIG BROTHER. The great Internet,
the great decentralizer, the wonderful level playing field, the hope of
the little fellow all over the Globe, will be squashed by BIG

BIG BROTHER is coming, not from the government, but from Big
Business. They say they are gathering information to "help the
consumer." But what about those of us who do not want their

BIG BROTHER is killing, not only privacy, but Small Business. All
this snooping is bringing more and more power into the hands of
Big Business. Small Business cannot compete. It does not have
the same kind of resources for snooping that Big Busness has. If
snooping is not stopped, much of Small Business will disappear
from the Net.

If nothing is done about snooping, eventually the Internet will be
dead even for Big Business. Would you be willing to make
everything in your life available to BIG BROTHER?

Let's fight to stop BIG BROTHER snooping. .

Paul is a provocative keynote speaker on Internet Marketing and
Community Building. He is the founder of the Learning Fountain
Network, at, and moderator of
LearningFOUNT, a discussion list on Business Problem Solving.
To subscribe, send a blank email to: mailto:LearningFOUNT- Because of his performance on the
platform, he is called Paul -the soarING- Siegel.

Please take the time to help WebSite101 to serve you and
your business better by taking our survey at this URL:

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MORE MONEY THAN BRAINS Finance & Money Humor

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Copyright 2000 Mike Valentine

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  June 9, 2001