Archive for Guest Posts

04 Jan 2013

Thoughts Astray: A founders story by Josh Bachrach of Stable Company

No Comments Guest Posts

I admire entrepreneurs of all types. I’ve known Josh for a few years and wanted to share with you the zeal that only founders have. Notice how this is different than how an employee talks about their company—even without the F word!

Ever since I can remember, clothes have been important to me. Not only clothes, but the way I look and feel wearing them. “Look Good, Feel Good” has always been my personal motif. When I was younger, I started skateboarding and that has always influenced my lifestyle. The way I wear my s*** has always been a bit different. Sometimes I like being different.

I remember what dumb-ass kids my friends and I were, back when we were like fifteen; we used to be really into skinny jeans. I don’t mean skinny jeans like the rappers wear now, I mean skinny ass jeans. We would go to Kohl’s when we didn’t have money for the KREW jeans we liked, and secretly cop Levi’s girl jeans and try not to tell anyone. It’s funny looking back on that now and seeing how much my style has changed.
There is just something really cool about 90′s Skateboard type fashion that I’ve always been interested in. Ever since I was a little kid skating the rail my Dad rigged together for me, I imagined myself being involved in the skate world one way or another. However, I never thought I’d be on the clothing side of it, or business side for that matter… Its pretty f***ing crazy, actually.
When James had the idea for Stable clothing company, I was into it instantly. There was no way I couldn’t jump on it right away. The stuff he does is fucking genius. When you look at everything Jiberish has ever done that is good and has sold out, its been designed by James, or Blake. When it came down to it, I knew that no matter what, I was going to be a part of Stable solely because of James creative capability.
I’ve always f***ed around with art, but its never been something I’m comfortable with. That’s why James is perfect. He’s the best at what he does. He takes this business to the next level. We combine our ideas and come up with stuff we love.
Its my dream to see Stable up there as one of the big street-wear companies in the next couple of years, but we all have our wishes. Wherever we end up, its going to be an amazing experience. It’s been an amazing past three months, and I look forward to many more.
About Stable
Stable is a company that delivers well-designed, limited production apparel and accessories at a compatible price to discerning clientele. We are targeting males in their late teens up to their early thirties who get their news and information from blogs and through social networking outlets. While other brands are targeting this particular consumer, none are taking the dark, cynical approach we have in design, giving us an unexploited niche.
We really want people to connect with us and see that we are just like them. We are making the clothes we love and that we think other people will like. Timeless effort goes into our designs and production. From sitting down and deciding what we want each capsule to look like, to actually screen printing clothes we strive for success.
 The name Stable gives the brand an ironic underpinning, what with the dark elements of instability, but theoretically could morph the brand into a literal interpretation, a Stable platform; a Stable company.
Mission statement
Stable was conceived to provide well-designed, thought through apparel and accessories at an affordable price to a discerning consumer that demands exclusivity. It is an effort to fuse accessibility and personality with exclusiveness and luxury.
We like to live by the idea of working hard and always staying humble. Striving to bring people the coolest stuff we can.
We always feel that if we keep our cool, there is no way that people won’t think We are cool and if they don’t like us, that is whatever. We like to make things that We love and stay true to our dreams. We don’t want to change for anyone and We know people will respect that.
Read what else Josh has to say at the Stable clothing Blog. Get some fresh new urban threads at their online Shop , and while you’re at it, like them on Facebook.
29 Feb 2012

603% Growth from Sponsored Stories- What One Small Biz Learned

6 Comments facebook marketing and advertising, Guest Posts

This is a guest blog post by Kathy Hipple of Noosphere Marketing

Sada Shop increased its fan base by over 600% in just two months by launching a clever quiz and a fun contest, and adding sponsored ads to amplify their fans’ response. Here’s how we did it:

  • Devise an engaging contest or quiz idea to engage your prospective fans.
  • Find an app that works (we chose Wildfire)
  • Support your contest or quiz with Facebook and Search ads
  • Keep posting engaging content on your page to support the quiz or contest
  • Use sponsored stories to reach your fans’ friends — leverage the real power of social media
  • Use sponsored posts to amplify news of the contest or quiz and anything topical that builds on the growing fan base

Sada Shop, a Saudi-based online concept shop, which sells fabulous design products, Sadashop.com, had just launched at the time of the contest. Of course, the ultimate goal has been to increase organic traffic to the site – check out these results.

 

We at Noosphere Marketing helped Sada Shop launch a True You Personality Quiz and a Worst Gift Ever Contest (for a chance to win the Best Gift Ever). We targeted people throughout the Middle East who would appreciate Sada Shop’s unique designs that are in stock for fast, local shipping. (They also ship worldwide.)

We used a Wildfire app to launch the both the quiz and the contest. We drove traffic to the Facebook page through Google and Facebook ads.

The True You Personality Quiz determined whether each respondent was a Secret Rebel, a Jetsetter, a Zen Goddess, a Good Girl, or a Fashionista. (Fashionista was the winner, if you must know. Jetsetter, and Secret Rebels, were close runners-up.)

Our primary goal for the Quiz, which ran for one month, was to drive awareness of Sada Shop and increase likes. We increased likes from 160 to 1600 in four weeks, and during one week of the contest, Sada Shop was #3 on SocialWatchList.com in Facebook fan page growth for the Middle East and North Africa; edging out many large brands.

We also built an email list, as most respondents gave their email addresses in case they won a prize. Some questions asked about ideal gifts, best ways to spend time, favorite fashion items, and dreamy travel spots. Talk about market research for the Sada Shop team, who want to offer their customers compelling products that meet their secret fantasies.

Throughout the Quiz and Contests, Sada Shop kept posting regularly, about awesome fashion and eco-friendly design throughout the world. They are passionate about great design and wanted their wall to reflect this. You can see for yourself.

Since the Quiz was such a success – 1500+ entries in a month, an 18% entry rate. – we wanted to keep the fan growth momentum and engagement with the Sada Shop fan page. We then launched another contest, again using Wildfire App. We asked participants to describe their Worst Gift Ever, and to describe what they would consider an ideal gift. Again, we’re primarily trying to build on the existing fan base, add to the email list, and gain crucial market research about “ideal gifts” that would make up for the Worst Gifts.

Throughout the two months we ran the quiz and contest, we wanted to build on Sada Shop’s existing fan base. In particular, we wanted to reach new fans, ideally through the friends of existing fans, to amplify the existing fan base. To do this, we ran Sponsored Stories ads.

Sponsored stories ads ensure that Sada Shop would appear in the Friends of our existing Fans’ newsfeeds, saying, “(THIS FAN) likes Sada Shop.” As social media research suggests, Friends of Friends are 3-4 times more likely to like a page if one of their friends already likes the page.

In particular, we were really focused on increasing the number of People Talking About Us (PTAs) People Talking About us has increased, as you can see. This is super important, because it means your ads are reaching the friends of your fans and it increases your Edge Rank. A high Edge Rank helps your ads appear in the newsfeeds of your fans’ friends:

We also added a created Page Post Ad, featuring a recent post about Madonna, who was wearing a Leigh & Luca scarf, which Sada Shop carries. We wanted to target people in the region who already like Madonna and are interested in Fashion. We thought this might be a great way to introduce them to Sada Shop, in case they’d missed the original post. Madonna had just performed at the Super Bowl, and the post had been popular on the page, and we wanted to build on that popularity.

Since Sada Shop posts regularly – great fashion design and eco-friendly designs — we have incorporated Sponsored Stories for almost all their posts. We can also build on what others’ are writing about them. Recently, a blogger wrote about Sada Shop and we wanted to amplify the impact of the blog post. See our example below:

We also were able to promote Valentine’s Day, by running a Sponsored Story ad about a Sada Shop pillow:

When I reached out to Dennis Yu of BlitzLocal, for his advice, he was super-helpful. His session at #OMS2012 “How To Plan, Execute, and Measure Like the Pros”, and his one-on-one help afterword really helped increase fans and drive organic traffic to one of Noosphere Marketing’s clients in the Middle East. Thank you, Dennis and BlitzLocal, for the great tips!

Noosphere Marketing helps companies — especially entrepreneurs, e-commerce, and women-owned businesses –with their online marketing with their online marketing. We use a thoughtful combination of savvy traditional marketing expertise and sassy online expertise. Its co-founder, Kathy Hipple, especially enjoys helping entrepreneurs realize their vision.


20 Aug 2011

Employees and Students: One Trait to Rule them All

No Comments Guest Posts, people management

An Article by Keith Wilcox

When I was in high school, I was a good runner. It wasn’t just in my head either; I won all sorts of fancy awards during my junior and senior years. I was good in college, too, but that’s a different story. I had the one trait that I thought mattered in a runner – natural ability and a high threshold for pain. My coaches, on the other hand, didn’t like me very much. One coach in particular, it seemed at the time, made a special point to thwart my self-imagined rightful place on the team. I never made the varsity team as a freshman despite the fact that I ran varsity times and regularly beat other varsity runners. I thought it was the height of injustice, but in hind sight I can see why I didn’t make it. It had nothing to do with my speed; it was because I rarely practiced and, when I did, I would make a joke out of it and spend my time distracting anybody within range of my shenanigans. It wasn’t clear to me until I got to college that the one trait that really matters in life is passion coupled with a willingness to learn. I eventually did learn my lessons, but it was a tough road. Most people never get it, and it’s one factor that makes hiring new employees a pain and firing them routine.

Get a Job, Keep a Job:

It’s one thing to fake your way through a job interview. It’s an entirely different matter to fake your way through a whole job. Do you know why people spend so much effort complaining about cubicle jobs yet almost no effort in finding alternate employment? It’s because this most common of employee subspecies can easily escape detection as a fraud in its current, and comfortable, habitat.  It has the luxury to complain about a job that affords it the ability to hide behind the redundancy of a multi-tiered corporation. Why would it ever risk detection in the big bad world of competition if it’s every need is already being cared for, it’s only sacrifice being freedom? This employee would convulse if it ever had to work for a boss who actually paid attention to how little, if any, daily work gets done.

Keeping a job in which your boss cares about results means that hiding isn’t an option. You’ll have to take some risks; perhaps also, when entrusted with responsibility, you’ll be required to make few command decisions. You’ll fail a few times in the learning process. Bosses tend to be upset when screw up happen, and you might spend some time being upset with each other as a result of mistakes, but don’t worry because the thing a boss, a good boss, really wants to hear is that you’ve learned something by the mistake and are enthusiastic about trying again (it would help of course if the boss also admitted his mistakes, but don’t hold your breath on that). Anybody of reasonable intelligence can keep employment provided he/she actually cares about the job at hand. Working for a boss stinks most of the time because bosses can be assholes with enormous, unwarranted egos.  But,  here’s the thing about wanting to learn that makes this risk worthwhile for the right person: when the time comes, and you’ve accumulated enough knowledge and experience, you can become your own boss with your own company. Isn’t that a nice little side effect of passion and dedication?

Washouts Like to Complain: Inoculate with Competency

I love to complain when things don’t go my way. I played a bad round of golf? Oh, it was because the grass was a little moist. I fell off my bike? It was clearly that damn rock that jumped out in front of me! I’ve even seen my kid complain about losing a tennis match because his serves didn’t go in. Serves are, incidentally, a prime ingredient in tennis; he could have been more convincing if he’d complained about a bug flying up his nose or something. Sports, academics, or whatever. It doesn’t matter – The fault for failure lies directly at the feet of the one doing the failing notwithstanding external, unpredictable influences. Losing is no great sin. Everybody does it. Making excuses, therefore, is unnecessary as long as you want to get up to try again. My boy’s coach doesn’t want to see sulking or some contorted look of dejection. Buck up, camper! Quit yer bitchin’ and try again! Competency doesn’t come as a natural right or like a union raise. It comes through actively searching for it. Good bosses, coaches and teachers (sometimes one and the same) know that their best students are the ones who want to be in the classroom. They can do without the naysayers or class clowns who do nothing but drag down the beating heart of the organization.

15 Mar 2010

Giving Your Business A Reality Check

No Comments Guest Posts, local advertising

This is a guest post from David Kenward, the Mental Coach.  I’ve chatted with him a few times and see how his services can add amazing value to help folks perform under pressure, whether sports or business.  Watch the videos on his site to see…

In the film Chocolat, the protagonist (who made chocolates and owned a small retail chocolate store) had a specialty of finding each person’s favorite chocolate treat.  She was doing what she was best at and worked with people who came in because they wanted what she provided.

I wonder what would have happened if someone would have come into her store and said they didn’t like chocolate, or didn’t know if they did or didn’t have enough money to buy, but wanted her to spend her valuable time and resources on them while good customers (who like chocolate, have money and want to buy) would be forced to wait and might leave the store in frustration without making a purchase.

Does this happen in your business?  Do you know what you are best at, but waste your time with potential customers who really aren’t a good fit?  I used to do this because I know the specialized service I provide (helping people overcome mental blocks holding them back) is what I’m best at and can help nearly everyone.

But, what I discovered is that many potential customers either don’t think they have a problem or don’t really want to fix it.  Also, like the great article on the “Five Magic Words to Grow Your Business” pointed out, a lot of people don’t have the resources to fix it, don’t want to invest in themselves to fix it or discount the value of the service.

I would feel bad because I know how helpful my service is and so I’d reduce my fees and try to convert every customer (even those who were just a bad fit).  The result was I didn’t have many good customers, my profit didn’t reflect the value of my service, the business was stagnant and I felt really frustrated.

Then I gave myself a business reality check, revisited the phrase: “I don’t have to hit my head against the wall to know it’s going to hurt” and embraced the concept of those “Five Magic Words.”  I increased my fees to reflect the value of my service, created a screening process to find the potential customers who would be a good fit and spent my time and effort on them.

The result is happy customers, increased profit and my business continues to grow.

Take a step back and look at your business – are you doing what you are best at and spending your time and resources on the right customers, the ones you really want, the ones that will help your business grow?  If not, give yourself a reality check and re-tool if you need to.  This is the road to consistently staying focused, motivated and on-track and enjoying your business.

12 Feb 2010

Online Marketing from the Pest Control Tech.

2 Comments affiliate marketing, Guest Posts, local advertising

Online Marketing is like Monopoly.

In the game of Monopoly you roll the dice, land on property, buy un-owned property, pay rent, develop property, collect rent and pass go. The problem many people have with this game is that they leave the game to luck and many hate the game because they rely on luck.

“I hate Monopoly, it’s all about luck.”, “It’s about the dice and buying the property first.”

If you feel that way about Monopoly, then I’m sorry, but you are missing some key elements and you are focusing on the wrong things and you will most likely lose.

Get a property.

Fortunately the online game of marketing removes some of those barriers for you. Online you have similar opportunities to buy property and develop property. Luckily you don’t roll a die to buy a property! But if someone else got there first then you are out of luck. Game over. Pack up. Go home. …OR, get the whole picture. The property, while key, is only one element. When I play Monopoly I typically don’t even go for Boardwalk, I go for the two brown ones right after GO. What you can’t recall the names of the cheap brown properties? That would be Mediterranean and Baltic, in the classic version. Internet Branding isn’t everything. There are plenty of people making money off of “Free” wordpress blogs, ebay, squido pages, Blogger Blogs, and so on.

Don’t really wholly on luck. If you really wholly on luck then you will lose when your luck runs out.

Develop your property.

The only way to make money in Monopoly is by collecting rent from visitors and passing Go… okay, minus the chance beauty pageant. FAT CHANCE! There are more beautiful people in the world then there are actors, models, and superstars combined. To collect rent you have to get visitors. To collect more rent you have to develop your property, i.e. target those visitors, direct visitors to goal. Ask Tim Ash about directing visitors, or just read his book. Targeting visitors can be the hunting portion. PPC and SEO fall under targeting practice. Directing visitors is getting them to buy, sign-up, call, or convert. If you don’t have a goal then you are not playing the game. It may be repetitive, but I am going to say it again, “Do you want visitors or do you want customers?” Yes, there is the argument that you must have visitors to get customers… Blah, Blah, Blah, …And what comes first, the chicken or the egg? Clearly you must have visitors to your property to collect rent. But if you are not watching the game and they move on before you collect rent then you lose. PAY ATTENTION TO YOUR VISITORS IF YOU WANT TO COLLECT RENT. That’s really what Landing Page Optimization is all about. It’s “Listening to your Customers.” Every great company listens to their customers. …Okay, there are “nice players” that will pay you rent even when you don’t ask them to. So, you can leave your property undeveloped and wait for those nice people that will pay you on occasion. And most people aren’t that nice! So we are not talking about domain squatting here; we are talking about developing your property by optimizing your site.

Make Money: Win the Marketing Game

Never lose site of the whole picture. Don’t get too caught up in a few small details. A sports car is made up of thousands of parts working together. All playing a role. All important. But to go off on just how important the exhaust is and only work on the air flow out, while ignoring air flow in, will only make you look ignorant and or arrogant. So can make money by, speeding around the board in your sports car, or by building your property to collect more rent, or sell later.

Some key elements to Monopoly Strategy.

1- Get a monopoly.

2- Cash flow.

3- Negotiate.

Most people that rely on luck or think Monopoly is all about luck only see the first element and totally miss the second two. How often do the two losers join forces to beat the big guy? That’s negotiation. The two little guys are negotiating. Asking for 3 free stays on their properties to cover their rent, may be better than letting them sell out real cheap to the other players.

Creating a Monopoly Online

Creating a monopoly online usually requires you to find a monopoly waiting to be had and dominating it before it ever appears on the radar. These obviously are rare and like the cheap brown spots, often not worth as much. Take for instance Austin Scorpion Control. Many websites will have more visitors an hour then that website will have in a month. But, it will be hard to take over their positions on Google. And while the positions where cheap when they were undeveloped and unnoticed, the cost now is a bit higher. Not to mention the fact that you would need an exterminator that actually wants and likes to take on scorpion problems. Most exterminators don’t specialize in scorpion control. The second way to gain a monopoly, NEGOATION. Have you tried searching “cheap domain name” online lately? Godaddy and its affiliates own most of the first page of Google. That’s a monopoly. Or you use Godaddy’s other tactic to gain a Monopoly…MONEY. Big super bowl ads. Lots of Money. Big SEO campaigns, lots of money. Going for a monopoly on Atlanta Pest Control is a lot harder than a monopoly on Alpharetta Pest Control, a North Atlanta, GA suburb. Therefore the money required to get there is a lot more. But what about the Negotiation? Hey, if you have a valuable piece of a monopoly that I want and I have a piece of a monopoly that you want, then let’s negotiate. Make a deal and trade. I could care less if you create a monopoly for home security systems in Chapel Hill. All I care about is bug control. I want a monopoly for Pest Control in Raleigh. What do know, we share matching properties… Chapel Hill, NC and Raleigh-Durham, NC. So I help you get your monopoly and you help me get mine. The catch is you have to be willing to let go of your property and link juice in exchange for the monopoly you really want.

There are powers that be that control small monopolies online in Direct TV, local locksmiths, unique travel accommodations, do-it-yourself pest control products, and chicken coops. You laugh, but that chicken coop guru is laughing all the way to the bank!

12 Dec 2009

Blogging is as Simple as Pulling your Head out of your Ass

9 Comments Guest Posts, search engine optimization

This is a guest post by Keith Wilcox

 

blogging

 

Okay, I admit it.  Some of the details can be a little challenging.  I still have to look up a bunch of HTML that I’m sure other bloggers know by heart.  I don’t know exactly how Google PR works, and I’ll be damned if Alexa rankings make any sense to me.  What I do know is that none of that would matter to me if I had never written my first article 6 months ago.  Even tentative steps are steps.  Blogging really is nothing more than having something to say and saying it.  Indeed, there are some basic rules to follow, none of which are complicated.  First, have a theme.  Second, be consistent.  Third, don’t give up.  That, in a nut shell, are the rules by which people, whether they be athletes, politicians or actors, become successful.  When you execute on those three principals then you can start worrying about the details.  Excuses don’t pay the bills, and good intentions are good for shit.  The only thing that matters is taking one step forward – then another.

 

The Theme:

 

how-i-homeschoolMy blog is all about being a homeschooling Stay at home Dad (SAHD).  Every article I write has some connection to parenting, fatherhood, children or education.  Of course, themed blogs are not necessary if all you’re doing is updating friends and families on your daily routine.  However, for the purpose of becoming a web presence, a theme is vital.  You must find a niche and become an expert.  Butterflies, massage therapy, speaker technology, fertilizer – just pick something and go with it.

 

Consistency:

 

One sure fired way to fail is to be flaky.  Nobody likes a quitter, and nobody likes to be kept waiting.  Readers will read your content if you have something interesting to say, but they won’t keep coming back without fresh news and insights.  There are certain blogs I read every day.  There are others that I read once a week.  I know when to come back because I know the update pattern to expect.  People who aren’t consistent get forgotten.

 

When the Going gets Tough:

 

Analytics SeptemberMy blog spent 2 months at 20 visitors a day.  It spent another two at about 100.  Then it suddenly shot up to 1200 visits a day for a month.  Now it’s back down to between 300 and 400.  By successful blogger standards my traffic numbers are somewhat pathetic.  But, the trend says I’m going in the right direction.  Sure I had a month over 1000 visitors per day.  Then I bombed.  I could spend my time fretting about that dip, or I could focus on the fact that I started at 20 and I’m still trending up.  I’m a long way from where I want to be, but I’m not giving up just because I bombed this month.  That’s the story of life.  Quitters never prosper.

 

The Details:

 

You’re not technically minded?  Neither am I.  I have a double major in History and Spanish.  What do I know about computers and the world of online advertising?  Well, I didn’t know anything before I started, that’s for sure.  Now I know a little, and thats the most I can say.  But, look at my blog.  I’ve asked a ton of questions to people who are experts at this stuff.  They’ve helped me, and I’ve learned.  Did I know who Shawn Collins was before I Started?  Nope.  And, I’ll bet he doesn’t know who the heck I am.  I read his blog though and listen to what he’s saying, and I’ve learned some things.  Dennis here has  been an invaluable resource for SEO advice.  You don’t have to be technical, you just have to be curious.

 

Logo Sample 2So, you want to be a blogger, but you haven’t started yet.  You’re probably more qualified than me; but, I’ve done something and you haven’t.  I might never be comfortable with my expertise or I might be worried about what people will say.  I might even be concerned that I’ll get badmouthed and threatened because of the things I say.  You can’t live your life in fear.  One step at a time, that’s all I’m asking.

20 Oct 2009

Creating the Perfect Storm- A guest post by Leigh Hanney

1 Comment Guest Posts, social media
This is a guest post by Leigh Hanney, Head of Marketing at RetailMeNot.com and Blogger at semsamurai.com
I talk to a lot of people about online marketing, some are super experienced and others are really only just starting out. But so often I hear the same story from both ends of the Perfect-Storm-in-Social-Network-acceptanceexperience spectrum… and I can’t help but feeling that too many people in the online marketing space have their blinkers on.
Rather than assessing many opportunities at once, they choose one channel and are running full steam ahead, without even a glance to the side…
A prefect example of this is someone who devotes their entire marketing budget and man-hours to PPC ‘because the ROI is so good’. Awesome, but there is something missing here.
PPC is great, and when it makes you money consistently all the more power to you. But as a channel PPC is something you have to invest in time and time again to ensure that same return continues. Don’t get me wrong, I love PPC and will continue to love PPC, but to be truly successful marketing online you have to broaden your horizons. You need to create the Perfect Storm.
There are so many other channels out there that can work fantastically well, but if you’re not trying them out, then you are missing out on capturing a larger potential audience. Facefrombloggertoinfluencerbook, Twitter, YouTube, email marketing, article marketing, SEO… this list goes on!
I like to think of executing a truly awesome online marketing strategy in terms of creating the perfect storm. Sure you can be super successful by managing an awesome PPC presence and delivering return on your spend every month, but imagine if you were also able to harness the power of Twitter followers, the social interactions of Facebook and the viral elements of Youtube…  Just imagine the potential.
Internet marketing is not just about kicking goals with one channel, it’s about connecting with your audience via as many channels as is possible. This then creates the perfect storm. And sitting right there in the middle where all these storms interconnect is you, reaping the rewards.
05 Oct 2009

Doing what you enjoy vs. doing what makes you rich

3 Comments Guest Posts

The following is a guest post by an affiliate who has being creating websites and doing various affiliate marketing for over 8 years.

heartjob-723851I could be making 10 times more money than I am right now. So why aren’t I? Because I enjoy what I’m doing. I’ve done a lot of affiliate marketing in the past and I must say, it is incredible how much money you can make, the problem for me is I don’t enjoy doing it full time anymore. What I do enjoy is blogging on work at home scams.

I’m not saying don’t do what makes you good money (because having money allows you to do the things you love), but if you don’t fully enjoy it try mixing inbiggie_math other things that you do enjoy. I still do various affiliate marketing every day but not anywhere near the level that I used too.I make less money doing what I enjoy and I am much happier because of it. Think about your future, will your current job or career make you proud? Maybe you don’t care yet, but someday you will. Someday you will realize that money isn’t everything. As the legendary Biggie Smalls put it, “Mo money mo problems”.

09 Sep 2009

Need some high performance headphones? Check these out!

1 Comment Guest Posts, social media

Bruce Forbes of Equation Audio sent us 3 sets of his awesome headphones for review.  In his words….

rp22x

The RP-22X’s were developed after we had perfected the RP-21’s as far as that design topology and material integration would allow.  The thing that is selling these headphones is they compete extremely well with many competitive models that are more expensive, yet considered inferior in performance.  Subjective?  Yes!  But the total numbers chosen at blind shoot-outs held around the country don’t lie.  RP’s win over 80% when compared to headphones at or above their published MSRP.  And well over 50% when compared too competitive models costing as much as 40% more.  Granted, there will always be subjective opinions that vary per headphone and even dependent on the sound source, type of music, etc.  But there is often a pleasant surprise to hear such great reproduction in general from a new brand, because there have been no serious alternatives to the major brands, only an increasing number of confusing models designed for arbitrarily designated applications.

The majority are purchased by musicians for tracking during sessions, same for engineers and they are very popular when the tracks go through the final mix and mastering process, particularly on the growing home studio front, where many DIY artists and engineers master their own CD’s.  Our number one application for the RP’s is tracking, with growing use in the HiFi market.  The RP-21 is smooth throughout the frequency bandwidth (about 20Hz-22kHz). Although they respond below and above that, the roll-off considerations make listing them useless for most practical applications.  We make fun of the ‘hype’ in the industry by listing a fantasy or some other comical response specification, because many companies list response frequencies below 10Hz, even 5Hz (more a feeling) and above 22kHz, in ranges bats and porpoises have yet to verify.

The public response for us taking the ‘let’s get real’ position has been overwhelmingly positive. Overall, the RP-21’s produce low aural and physical fatigue, generating pleasing, relatively accurate reproduction of most sources.  There’s very little ‘hype’ though some have remarked they felt the bass was augmented a bit.  We would agree except during in-house tests with similarly priced and type competitive headphones, the 21’s tend to get high marks for bass response sounding closer to a good pair of soffet mounted or larger near-field speakers in a well treated room.

logoHowever, the RP-21’s didn’t seem to deliver sufficient ‘ballistic’ response such as those associated with percussions and bass instruments requested by many extreme users, especially drummers and bass players, so we decided to create a product with those applications in mind.  We started with the RP-21 ear cups and added a higher mass diaphragm, coiled to accept more power and added a dual element ear pad that has a port or ear opening designed to compliment the acoustics and deliver more low frequency punch.  This enhanced low frequency response along with the added power handling capability provides an increase in percussive ballistics and bass signals of all types, without adding the typical sack of mud that some other competitive models reportedly add to the mix.  Bear in mind this added bass and percussive response does not compliment mixing multi-track recordings or listening to a well recorded orchestra.

RP-22X’s are not as flat or smooth as the RP-21’s, though you can boost the drum (ballistic mixes and bass instrument mixes) and rock on, The X is for extreme.  Remember to carefully elevate the volume to prevent accidental dangerous SPL- you rarely recover from nerve damage, never return to ‘good-as-new’ when you damage the tympanic membrane (ear drum), so I harp on the be responsible theme, even on the packaging.  Be kind to your ears and your future – use headphones responsibly!

The only time I prefer the 22x’s is when I want more kick and then I EQ or add the highs and mids I want to compensate for, producing quite an energetic and pleasing mix, though this is for limited use, due to prolonged higher SPL applications.

All things considered, the RP-21 and 22X headphones sell at a street price that literally blows away same priced headphones and seriously challenges many headphones that are priced higher.  That’s our mission and with these two products, and we have well achieved our goal.

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Dennis’ comment: If you want us to review your stuff, send it to our office address at:

BlitzLocal LLC
1490 W 121st Ave, Suite 101
Westminster, CO 80234

We don’t guarantee that it will be a positive review, but you will get at least a PR5 link.

03 Sep 2009

Want to be a well-known affiliate blogger? My interview with Murray Newlands

9 Comments affiliate marketing, Guest Posts, promoting yourself

murrayheadI was able to catch up Murray Newlands, a famous blogger. We were able to have nice about his work in affiliate marketing, and the secret behind site, Murraynewlands.com, an affiliate blog that came from nowhere and is now everywhere in Google and twitter. Not only has he some great content on his blog, but is getting picked up and noted all over the blogosphere. Google Famous Blogger and you will see his name, I even hear he is working on Celebrity Blogger!

Murray, what ideas are interesting to you at the moment?

Chris Brogan’s writing on Trust Agents hit a chord with me. I have been very successful as a blogger since launching my blog earlier this year. My SEO is great, and a large reason for this is the links that people give me. I put this down to the content which people do like, yes, but there is more to it than that. I get lots of links from some great people I know in the industry become they want to help me. I always try to help other and I have found that truly what goes around in the blogosphere comes around. You want to connect with people who will engage with you and you soon learn who can fulfill that need with you and who will not. Once you get a reputation being engaging and helping others, you are soon introduced to more people who will also interact with you. It is a virtues circle of people who help each other, and these people swim in schools.

Who are some bloggers I should be trying to connect with?

Greg Rollett http://www.rockstarlifestyledesign.com

Drew Benskpark.com

Heather Smith boatinginbeautifulbritishcolumbia.com

Joetech Joetech.com

Steve Hall Adrants.com

Shawn Collins blog.affiliatetip.com

Connie brainfoggles.com

Chris Brogan ChrisBrogan.com

Eric Schechter www.ericschechter.com

Missy Ward www.missyward.com

Rax www.raxraxrax.com

How does blogging fit in with your affiliate marketing work?

Well, I blog about my work, and writing is a great way to explore ideas and concepts as well as share industry news. It is also a good means of making new contacts within the industry many of whom I now do business with.

What fears do you have with blogging?

When I first started I was worried about what people would say about my blog, my writing, MY SPELLING. Now I am not so worried about that, what I do worry about is the people who I forget to say thank you too and the missed opportunities. There is so much going on and so little time. I also have other projects which are getting more demanding and taking me away from my blog. I am not giving up.

Footnote: Murray knows how to draw positive attention. He ranks on Dennis Yu via just one interview with me.

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