Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Can an Introvert Become an Extrovert?

There are a bunch of sites talking about how introverts can become extroverts and I thought I would chime in a bit ...I just don't buy it.--I think if you are shy, you can become less shy. I think you can be a shy extrovert. But I don't think that and introverrt can become an extrovert.

That said, there are lots of people who are introverts - all degrees there-of so there are some less introverted introverts. - On the other side - there are plenty of timid, shy, super-introverts with social anxiety... it all depends.

I am a proud introvert. Happy to spend quiet time by myself on occassion - but also happy to go out to a networking meeting and interact a little. Introversion is just defined by how one reacts to the interaction with others. Introverts may do it... but be exhausted by it. Enjoy it even... Extroverts will gain energy in the same situation.

Hope this helps clear it up.

- meg

Monday, December 26, 2005

Sick and Tired

I am a little worn down by the whole holiday thing today. I am sick. I have had this nasty little strep-like sore throat now since friday, and I have had enough.

It isn't that I didnt have a nice holiday--because I certainly did. It was great. I spent time with the family, My 2-year old son finally "got" the holiday, at least insomuch as he understood presents were for unwrapping and it is polite to "ooh" and "aw"when opening a gift. We had fun.

But back to me... I am sick. And being sick makes everything else miserable. I have a house full of nifty new things and I have hardly moved from the couch all day. I hate that. If I am going to spend all day on the couch it is because I have a lot to blog about, work to do on the laptop, or there are soap operas on... or all of the above. I am just not the "laying around the house for no reason" type.

But then, I must be feeling a little bit better because here I am, getting back on the horse (so to speak). I have not been a good little blogger lately, and it shows in my traffic and page rank on several of my blogs - not to mention the lengthy space between blog dates. A fair amount of time needs to be devoted to keeping these up to date, and I have been lacking on this. And with that I will add this entry to my new directive, to blog more regularly, 3 entries per week across my several blog responsibilities.

Some cool things about xmas - Nathan got a new toy box, and he seems to think is for playing in... but it is keeping him happy - happy baby = happy Meg.

Next cool thing is my new iRobot vacuum cleaner, which is one of those pieces of technology I wish I had gotten sooner. Who knew I would be so excited about a vacuum cleaner... but any mom of a crumb-making, cheerio-dropping kid would totally appreciate the turn-it-on-walk-away ease of this handly little appliance.

There are a ton of things that I need to get to - including my book marketing plan and laundry and SEO for my site and a ton of other clients - so I bet be going. But Happy Holidays to everyone out there. Sorry I was sick and miserable this weekend - but I do appreciate each and every one of you. Hopefully I will be back to my regular self tomorrow.

best,
meg

Saturday, December 24, 2005

There are some seriously crazy introverts out there!

Ok - I don't really mean crazy... I am not really going to analyze the sanity of others... tonight. And certainly being an introvert doesn't make someone crazy (it may make them normal). But Being a crazy introvert is still a possibility.

I have been seaching the blogosphere for ways to maket my book, reading other introvert's entries and the like and mostly they are people who are just figuring out that they are normal.. only they relate it to the world in their blogs as if it is the craziest thing in the world to want to be by themselves for a little bit.

So many of you out there (and myself included) need to come to terms with the fact that it is OK to take a walk, go read a book, take a nap in the middle of the day, or avoid the big company social gathering - it is OK. This doesn't make you anti-social (not necessarily, and if it did that would be OK too).

Being an introvert is just who you are. Just like being tall, or brown-eyed. Nothing you can do to change it, so you might as well stand tall, and get over it. Stop making excuses, and embrace that you can be yourself.

great idea, poor implementation

I have been waiting for my new t-shirt for a very long time. I was so exited when it arrived the other day. I can't really explain it, because really it is just a plain t-shirt, but it was special because I was amused by the irony of it was--you see the t-shirt clearly states "introvert". And of course that is funny, because by definnition, the introvert is not likey to wear a shirt bringing attention to themself. Well, except me--and only because I can see the unique marketing opporunities in doing so, given my book, not because I actually want people to see me wearing an "introvert" shirt.

So the shirt arrived and a got myself right down to the mall, where I could get my picture taken in the photo booth--That was my next brilliant idea you see... to have my picture taken in a photobooth where I could good off and be silly, but within the security of a private booth. Then I could use the picture on my website, etc.

So I went and sat in that booth and I couldn't do it... I could just not relax. The pictures show a stiff, uncomfortable person in a silly t-shirt. Arg. The introversion strikes again...

I will try again after the holidays...

-meg

Monday, December 12, 2005

Atlanta

So there should be some sort of a joke here: “An introvert walks into a bar…” But I wanted to send a special thank you to Brian in the “Last Call” bar in the Atlanta airport for keeping me company during my layover… your interesting conversation was much appreciated – and feel free to look me up if you ever find yourself in Rochester, NY.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

How to get 60 hours out of your 40 hour work week

Blogging at 10,000 feet, Continued. How to get 60 hours out of your 40 hour work week.

I have long been an avid user of background media. My television is almost always on, NPR plays on the radio while I drive. But I never actually just watch TV, or just listen to the radio. These are things that I do while I do other things. Wireless Internet has now allowed my to write a proposal for work AND watch the latest episode of LOST, maybe even simultaneously talk to my business partner on IM about marketing ideas and watch my son play with his new train. Better yet, my DVR will let me record that same episode of LOST and play it back, skipping through the commercials, faster, and at my leisure, buying me back the time lost by those commercials. It is a beautiful thing.

But I am in the message business. I need my messages to come across to the consumer and yet I am that person deleting my spam email while listening to a podcast, and fast-forwarding through the commercials. Product placement in TV or movies is a fine way to combat this, and yet, I have become so adept at accepting that I don’t catch every detail of a TV show, and filling in the gaps in my head, I am likely to miss product placement. I do the same thing when going to a website with banner ads. I filter. Filtering is what keeps my head from exploding.

People say that I am so busy – but really I am just trying to reach a level of efficiency, while not over-taxing my internal resources, which would in-turn render my activity unproductive. Balance is the ultimate goal. I really can bake cookies while writing a book. Because, after all, what else am I going to do… watch the cookies in the oven? No of course not, no body would expect me to. But the key is to not try to write, and iron and bake, and talk on the phone, and IM. You have to pick the activities that use the different parts of your brain, and let them work together, (you wouldn’t want to IM your boss what you just told your best friend about him, and it can happen—trust me).

As a person who works with hourly employees, logging time for customers is getting more difficult. Our employees can effectively multi-task several projects simultaneously, turning an 8 hour day into a day with 10 billable hours. Should I as an employer pay for someone who sat at their desk for 8 hours pay for those ten logged hours? Should the customer pay if the employee was also running reports for another client while coding their website? How do you figure this out? Can primary and secondary activities be graded as to assign the right amount of billable time to them? This brings up some important questions for me as a business owner, but as a business owner aren’t I doing the same thing? I will often delete old or spam emails while chatting on the phone, or broker deals while transporting my little one to day-care. Or load new software or test a site while printing out invoices. Can I log this time? Of course—why shouldn’t I? Why shouldn’t my employees?

Where this gets really tricky is that you can’t naturally expect that everyone can conduct their lives so efficiently. Multi-taking can be a bad-word. Too many people multi-task so much that they just don’t get anything accomplished—or well. Can you ask a potential employee how they can create time out of none? Focus, after all can be good.

And that goes back to my original statement about background media. How much do I lose by blogging and watching The Polar Express while traveling on a plane from California to Atlanta? I certainly couldn’t repeat the movie’s story-line in detail. Then again, maybe I am not missing much there. Maybe I am enhancing my blogging experience by throwing in some light entertainment.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Blogging at 10,000 feet

Ok – so actually I am a bit higher than that – but until they flash the details on the screen above my seat I won’t know. All I know is that at 10,000 feet I can use my laptop on the plane – and so I am.

Plane travel is such a strange thing. I have never actually been able to wrap my head around how planes actual fly. I mean I understand the math and physics of it… in theory, but the fact that it works is still pretty amazing. Even more amazing is that most airports now have wireless internet, (sometimes even free… except Atlanta today – those jerks…charging me for the Internet). I was able to get a fair amount of work done from the airports today. Emails, chatting with the folks at the office, research. It makes sense that so many people can now live wherever they wish and go wherever they wish without losing anything by being “on the road.” Technology rocks.

So I have been working out in my head is I would like to do seminars or classes, or coach introverts in business. It is a great niche – I am obviously qualified. The trick it how do you get people who are not naturally out-going to attend a seminar – or ask them to participate in a group coaching session. Of course it would be beneficial… however it is a bit of a conundrum. I wonder how that will work out.

I also need to start focusing on some promotional ideas for the book launch. I would have a launch party – but then how would I plan that. Throw a party for myself. Seems a bit too extroverted for me – especially given the book subject matter. I might have to employ my good friend Kelly… consummate extrovert – party planner extraordinaire… hm good idea. I could do a little party – invite my friends and perhaps the media. One or two people might show up. I could have books there to sign and sell. Lets see, what else. OOOH maybe I can get Stacy in on the mix – she will be around in January… those two ladies can make anything happen. It means I would have to buy some books – like maybe 100, maybe less, but wouldn’t want to run out. I will need food… hm. Ellie! I will have to do desserts… wonder what kind of discount I can get??? Wow, ok – I guess I need to go sell a couple Websites, and maybe ask Jackie how much the media center costs to rent. Also I should include Margaret in perhaps… since we should invite some clients. Yikes. I am busy J Also should make sure that the book is available by then.

Guess I have work to do. Plane rides are great places to brainstorm.
-meg

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Help - I need perspective

I help people with their websites. All day I point out ways to make them better, options to improve content and readability and navigation. And yet here I am with a newly launched Website that is unfocused, and I can't seem to figure out a way to make it make sense. Hopefully I will be able to take a step back and pull it together soon!

Monday, December 05, 2005

New Website Up and Running

My Website is officially launched. I have to massage the content still - but it is up. Check it out. and let me know what you think. I will be making ad

Under interesting facts about me. I haven't used an alarm clock in over 4 years. Now this might not seem too weird, as I am a bit of an insomniac, so why would someone who doesnt sleep need an alarm clock any way? Well, truth be told I do sleep - just a little.

I bring this up because this morning the alarm went off and seriously freaked me out. I have been sleeping ok recently and I was not prepared for that awful noise. Jumped from the bed and the alarm clock fell and hit my head. Another reason not to use an alarm clock.

And why did I feel the need to share that...well I sustained a head injury this morning, I can't be help accountable for the things I choose to blog about...

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Power Groups and Managing Large Networking Groups

We have an enormous networking group that meets every Friday. It is an incredible group called Brighton's Best BNI. And I wouldn't want to spend my Friday mornings any other way. I go to that meeting and I make money.

The thing about that group is that there are so many people it is hard for new members to get to know everyone - and it is hard for everyone to stay in tune with the specialties and the needs and wants of each member.

We have decided to make our large group work for us by breaking the group into smaller teams that will meet on a semi-regular basis... allowing members to meet 4-8 members at a time to chat, share ideas and learn about eachother.

I posted more on this subject at:
http://businessnetworkinggroups.blogspot.com/2005/11/power-groups-large-group-networking.html

Check it out!

- Meg

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

THANKS - giving

Thanksgiving is a time of reflection - of thanks - of family and friends.

Today was difficult. The day ended too soon and the projects weren't done that needed to be done.

But we are healthy - happy. I hired a great new salesperson this week. The work will get done.

Thank you to all my contacts, my supporters, my family, my friends, my co-workers, my clients, my neighbors. This holiday I want you to know how much I appreciate you - and how thankful I am.


OTHER THINGS I AM THANKFUL FOR:
Search Engine Optimization
Business Networking
Blogs
Sales People who know their shit
Readily available Wireless Internet
Lower gas prices
Websites that work

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

How Much is the Blog Worth

I found a cute little calculator online today that will determine how much your blog is worth - presumably based on links. This blog, as it turns out ios woth $6700 today - not bad... too bad I haven't seen $6700 from this blog. If you want to try it out there is a little link from this page... and for the record: My other blogs are worth nothing!



I suppose I will have to keep working on my link strategy.

- Meg

Sunday, November 13, 2005

The Art of Self-Promotion

I have been thinking of self-promotion a lot lately. Since my book will be out in about 6-8 weeks (and yes - I know that is after Christmas - arg) I have been trying to figure out how to proceed with promoting the book and in turn me (is is that the other way around).

The one thing I did figure out is "The Art of Self-Promotion" - is actually a cute title. Granted there are some similar Titles: Self Promotion for the Creative Person: Get the Word Out About Who You Are and What You Do by Lee Silber, and Art of Promotion: Creating Distinction Through Innovative Production Techniques by Lisa L. Cyr, but nothing quite the same. I guess as I try to market this book, it may lead into book number 2. Of course... it may not. If the first book doesnt sell, I cant see myself going through this frustration again!

But as far as Confessions goes... it is back at the publisher. Out of my hands again.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Great News

Just a quite note - I got my first online pre-order from a nice lady in Baton Rouge. I have no idea how she found me, but I am pretty pleased! It doesn point out the obvious... as in I need to ask on that form how they found me!

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Business Networking Groups - Rules, Regulations, Policies...

I am the vice-president of my BNI group right now. We have 35 members and average at least 5 guests each week (Friday morning's at Hawthorne's Restaurant--Rochester, NY--7am).

As VP - I am essentially in charge of the group. For whatever reason, they chose to make the presidents of BNI groups the "meeting leader" - but give them only that main responsibility, and making the VP the heavy... perhaps this is true of the country's Pres and VP...(That may be a discussion for another day).

So as such, the BNI Leadership for our area has rolled out a bunch of new "policies" - and renewed a lot things that should have been done all along...this makes me the bad guy a lot of the time.

I bring this up because it is just a business networking group...but BNI is run like a business. It is a business. And while some of the rules about attendance and participation may seem oppressive--but it is what keeps the group going, functionable, and profitable for the member.

--more on this later, but I did want to remind everyone that business networking is...work. And our group is one of the best in the country because we take our work seriously. If you are offended by rules about showing up on time, and professional behavior, then maybe a group like Brighton's Best, is not for you.

-Meg

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

It has been a while

It has been a while since I had the time to ramble on. Fact is I have been very busy - and not having so much of a sleep problem lately either. At least if you can consider getting 4-5 hours of sleep a night, "sleeping well" - which in my case I do.

"Lindsay the incredible editor" is currently wearing the "Lindsay the incredible proofreader" hat. I apparently can not spell, punctuate or use grammar appropriately... but then that is why I have an editor.

Still hoping to get the book out by Christmas, but I have asked for an extention from the publisher - so it may be tight.

On the BizNetix side, we have plenty of new clients - ranging from a satellite phone business to the Rochester International Marine Tattoo.

Tomorrow I am the guest Lecturer at SUNY Brockport - so I best be going to I can figure out what I am going to talk about!

-meg

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Tuesday - I think

There is much going on here. Ia m just back from Florida - a little vacation, although I spend the majority of it going through the manuscript of Confessions of an Introvert - yet again, before it was sent (today) to the proofreader. The book is better than ever - I just hope that that is enough. I am investigating selling the book at other outlets - such as WalMart and Hudson News (who have stores in airports) - so if anyone out there knows of successful authors who have broken into either of those markets, please let me know.

I can't remember if I mentioned this before, but my Website is in the middle of an overhaul... it will be done by the time the book is printed. But it is looking good.

Lots of great news on the BizNetix front - new clients, SEO successes and the like, but I am too tired to write well about that right now. I need to get my butt in gear and re-aquaint myself with my blogs... maybe starting tomorrow.

-meg

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Too Busy to Blog?

I have found myself very busy over the last few weeks - but that shouldn't be a reason not to blog. There are plenty of things to talk about, and blogging should be a priority. That said, it probably won't be...

The book, currently in manuscript form has returned from its editorial review from the publisher. There were some minor issues that I have addressed per their instructions and generally I was pleased with their feedback and constructive critism. I need to rework the first chapter a bit still, and I have requested a 2 week extension to polish the book up and get it to a proofreader, but still hoping to have it out by x-mas for purchase in Amazon and Barnes and Noble at the very least. Additional distribution may wait until January 2006.

My buddy Nick has updated the look of my Website in preparation for the launch of Confessions of an Introvert. It is reletively minor in appearance change, but the code is much cleaner. Nick put in a decent amount of time, and I appreciate his hard work on that.

I need to get some SEO research done for a prospect and do some writing/rewriting before I check out for the night. - until later...

Meghan Wier
www.meghanwier.com

Monday, October 03, 2005

Under the deadline - Friday

Friday was quite an interesting day, starting with a wine tasting at BNI, by Eric Amberg of Amberg Winery - a decent way to start the day. Followed by a meeting in Victor, where I left with two signed contracts for development. A quick drive home to relieve the husand of the baby while he took a business card and I finished packing. Then we took a trip to the airport, dealt with the delays and other joys or air travel with a toddler and arrived late in St. Louis. Had dinner with the parents, ran back to the hotel to hook into the wireless internet and send the manuscript and artwork for the book. Had it in by midnight, right on time, and right before the power supply died.

Spent next couple days doing family stuff. Happy the book is in, nervous that it isnt perfect.

Got notice that the pulisher has it in editorial review.

Ordered new power supply (still under warrenty)



busy week, and it is only Monday.

More info to follow as it is available.

meg

Friday, September 23, 2005

Quick update

I have almost gotten halfway through the edits for Confessions of an Introvert - I am a little behind - hoping to catch up over the weekend. With a little luck and a lot of work, I truly believe this will be the most comprehensive book about introverts and business success. I am off to BNI right now to drum up some SEO business. Then back to the office to get some work in before the weekend.
-Meg

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Search Engine Optimization, Rochester

I have been getting more traffic on my site for those seeking information on SEO and search engine optimization services in Rochester. And while SEO is a big part of my life, and I will continue to ramble of about it - I thought a place for just SEO stuff was prudent. I have made a new blog for SEO. Much of that info is rehashed stuff from Ramblings.... but all contained in one easy resource. So check that out if you are so inclined.

Besides I just deleted two blogs because I didn't have time to maintain them. So in true "over-achiever" form I filled the tiny gap of time I had freed up with that new time sink.

I am so predictable.

-Meg

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Bring it on.

I am a pretty nice person. Pretty nice. Usually. But tonight there is someone I'd like to have a serious conversation with. This person doesn't even know I exist in reality, but he is making me pretty darn crabby. He has no idea what I am willing to do to make his life miserable - watch out dude - I am going to start ordering pizzas and porn to your office. - every day every hour. Oh... and I am going to send that really annoying spam from displaced foreign royalty who have lost their fortunes, but, with your help (and bank account number) they can get it back, to reward you generously. You have no idea who you are messing with.

Phew - got that off my chest.

I am trying to keep the other blogs up to date. I am sure if you have been paying attention, you know that I am having a little problem with that... so I deleted 2 yesterday. The Networking in NY and the Networking for Women blogs weren't going anywhere, and the content was similar enough to the other blogs that I decided to focus my madness to the dozen other blogs. Besides, no one wants to read THAT much from me anyway (and if you do... have I mentioned my book?)

I did just update a posting on the How to Network blog - check that out if you get a chance. Good stuff - written in my casual, nonsensical way. (You know, if you like that sort of thing.)

The nice editor told me I have bad grammar. Oh, actually "sloppy" grammar. ( I wouldn't want to misquote her... that would be another no-no). But I am looking forward to getting the book back so that I can finish it up and get this project to the next phase.

Well, that is all for this evening. I have resorted to Tylenol PM to chase away the great ideas and pearls of wisdom that cloud my brain and keep me awake at night. Thusly, pretty soon I will close my eyes and slumber happily for 8 hours. Sleep, even for this insomniac, is welcome tonight.

-m

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Confessions - Update and Such

The editor will be mailing my book back to me (all marked up) tomorrow. She told me that "red pen was my friend." She also pointed out that I have bad grammar, and don't know how to use punctuation...which is all true. Also, she said I didn't need to be so excited!!! and that I can cut back on the exclaimation points a bit.

All good advice.

She was also nice enough to say that for the most part, the book was decently written, even if some of it did still need a little work. So I will be finishing that up - hopefully during the upcoming weekend.

That said - I am still working on several search engine optimization projects this week, in addition to the regular monthly reporting for the contract clients. New customers such as Security Behind Bars, Algrette Bridal Headwear, David Mack and Associates, and Serving New York will be getting the extra special attention as we tune, and report and link to as appropriate. Also renewed our agreement with Career Training Academy. So lots of work to do.

Luckily, I like work...

-meg

PS - Want to read some unedited chapters from Confessions of an Introvert? Check out the Confessions Blog.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Helpless

Today I am feeling a bit helpless. I have a friend who needs help but he has no way to communicate with me or I with him. This must be the feeling the thousands of people still suffering from the affects of Katrina have; their family members lost, displaced, spread out all over the country. It is a horrible feeling.

My friend John R. will probably never read this. But if he could, I would want him to know that we are out here - and we want to help. I hope he contacts me soon.

I may need a little help from my friends out there... if you are up for it.

Meg

Friday, September 09, 2005

BNI - Networking, Presentations, etc.

I do not like public speaking. Don't like it one bit. (see Confessions of an Introvert) But I do it, because it needs to be done. In the last few year I have gotten *almost* comfortable speaking to groups, especially the nice receptive, interesting ones.

I gave my 10 minute presentation today for my BNI (Brighton's Best BNI) in Rochester, NY. I think it went well, and I got a fair amount of positive feedback. It is nice to give a presentation to a room full of engaged, receptive audience members. It makes the trepidation subside.

BNI has been good to me that way. As a Networking group I have met some real power-house contacts, gotten a ton of great business, and been embraced by a friendly interesting group that supports me, and will laugh at my jokes, and be comfortable referring me to their contacts.

I have another networking group that I attend, but they have purposely been less strict about attendance, (BNI required attendance or a sub each week, with 6 absenses only per year). The group is falling apart. They always do. People complain about the strict guidlines and format of BNI, but it works... As long as you have a great group and you stick to the agenda.

There are challenges anytime you bring a group of people together to network, (or anything else) but today I am very grateful to my business networking group here in Rochester! Thank you Brighton's Best.

-meg

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Rochester PI - Mack and Associates

Rochester, NY Private Investigator David Mack of David Mack and Associates came into the office today to learn about search Engine Optimization. I want to welcome him as a new BizNetix SEO customer and recommend that you check his site out. Dave is a referral from another client, and I am happy to have had the chance to meet him, and look forward to watching his site bring him some fantastic new business.

-Meg

Monday, September 05, 2005

Being an insomniac... some benefits

I watch a lot of television. I actually listen to a lot of television, because I am not always watching - but often doing many things at once. Generally it is work, writing, that kind of thing. But the thing about being awake so much is that I get to enjoy a lot of television. And despite the pathetic "reality" shows and the poor excuses for entertainment out there, there are quite a few quality shows. My favorite shows are CSI, House, the new "Prison Break" show, Alias... that genre - but also the funnier stuff like Scrubs and Family Guy. Also can watch hours and hours of CNN, Discovery Channel, reality medical shows of any kind, the heart-wrenching stuff where babies are born and doctors save lives. Love that stuff. I also enjoy football, and Nascar - great for napping. In fact I can often nap while "watching tv" when I can't sleep any other way, the benefit of that being that I often "remember" a lot of the show/game. Very nerdy I know. Most likely unhealthy, but nothing new there. I am the poster child for unhealthy.

I read a lot too. (Yes, while watching TV...) I also spent most of the day online. In fact I have a really hard time watching TV unless the laptop is on too. It is amazing that I am not 1,000 lbs! Point is, my head is jammed packed of information. It is no wonder I have trouble sleeping. The upside here is that I can chat about nearly any topic, local mayorial race, Tom Cruise's latest interesting world-view, the stock market, MLS soccer, or the latest in technology. - Makes me unhealthy, but interesting!

I have been doing research on book promotion and editing - my topic de jour. I did hire an editor today. So I am looking forward to very positive results there. Also did a little update on the Meghan Wier Website. So, if you get a chance, check that out. I will be doing a more comprehensive overhaul after the cover art for the book is complete... sometime before the end of October.

And there it is, what's going on in Meg's head today...

Sunday, September 04, 2005

Is it possible to catch up?

I am falling behind again! Only a couple weeks back from my wonderful seclusive/reclusive vacation, I am once again feeling overwhelmed. And so, at the advice of a business coach, I am going to list my accomplishments this week:

Got hair cut
Ran Filter Store WebTrends report
Scheduled photo-shoot for book cover
Did a pre-interview of an editor
(oh, decided if I want the book to sell, I need a good editor!)
Read up on current SEO trends
Ran reports to see where my sites are placing (doing pretty good!)
Started reading The Introvert Advantage
Made a bunch of phone calls that have yet to be returned

Now the To-Do list would be longer, but I am too busy to make one...

On a total side note: Hurricaine Katrina - I got a call from a client this week with an "emergency". Let me tell you, I am very sympathetic to business people and their Web sites or email having - let me call them "challenges". But unless your home is under water, or completely demolished, unless your child is missing, unless everything you have known and loved is gone, unless armed looters are shooting at you while you try to deliver medical supplies to the sick and injured, you do not have an emergency. You have a challenge. I will assist you in your challenges, but please remember that even today, a week after the hurricaine hit shore, there are still people trapped in their attics and on their roofs, afraid, hungry, and dying. My heart breaks for these people -They have an emergency.

Saturday, September 03, 2005

Page Rank Further Explained

I received a comment this morning from someone (Anonymous) who wanted to know why anyone should focus on Page Rank...

The first thing I would like to say about that is please feel free to contact me at meg@rochester.rr.com with questions on search engine optimization. I will try to address your questions personally when time and the situation permits. While I love the comments, I am not always sure that the person interested in the answer is going to come back to the site for it. (If you don't feel comfortable posting your email on the Internet-like me - then leave a link to your Web site and your first name in the comment and I will track you down.)

Ok, the question repeated:
"I must be missing something with the whole pagerank thing. I mean, if I go after a keyword, and I get it to the top position in the search engines, why should I care at all about the pr that is going to show in the google bar. It shouldn't matter at all, to anyone. After all, the whole point is to grab those top positions, and you can do that just fine without having high google pr."

My answer: Page Rank is just one of the many factors that goes into determining your organic placement on Google. (Let me repeat that for affect: PR IS a factor that determines where you appear on the Search Engines.) The reason to focus on PR is that it is easy to affect as it is determined by links, and quality of links into your site. To the visitor's comment on how high positions can be grabbed without high page rank - yes! absolutely that is true. To be #1 on Google for the term "meghan wier", my site doesn't have to have a high PR at all... because there is hardly any competition. For a broader, or more highly sought after term, such as "Web design", the current highest ranking site (9/3/05) has a PR of 7. Trust me, if they had a 2, they wouln't even be on the first page... no matter how hard they tunred their site!

Of course Page Rank is not the only factor, but it is a BIG one. If two sites are built similarly, and have similar tuning, their only distinguishing factor may come down to who your friends are - and to Google, that mean who links to you.

Anonymous, I hope this answers your question on the importance of Page Rank - the rest of you out there... please do feel free to ask me via email, or leave your contact info for me and I will do my best to help you out.

... on a side note, I have been getting an influx of comments lately, a lot of "blog-spam". While I apreciate the interest in piggy-backing on my site, why don't you check out my Page Rank... which, in case you don't have a Google Tool Bar is a "1". And while I am working on getting that up, and no doubt I will... my PR is not going to rocket your PR anywhere. (Or drive any traffic to you what so ever). So go hop onto another site with a 3 or a 4... and stop getting my hopes up that I actually have people reading this blog! - (Oh, an I know when you are tring to be tricky about it... "I love your blog, check out my home loans site, I think you will find it interesting" - BS - you know I wont.)

-meg

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Meg's SEO rocks

Meg's SEO really works



...sorry couldn't help myself. I threw that in as an H1 tag just to see if it would get a boost in ranking. Hey, if you can't do a little SEO experimentation in a blog, what good is it...

Heard from a person in South Africa interested in my book. That was cool. I guess that is why the Internet rocks. - Well, and why I am an Search Engine Optimization genius--I can't wait to see if I can sell this thing!

(I mean "I can't wait TO SELL this thing" - think positive) Of course, by then the Google Gods will develop some sort of new algorithm just to screw with me...

Met with another dude today that said I had to stop thinking of myself as a "girl-geek" - interesting thought. I am obviously so much more that that, but the title is actually pretty cool for me. For so long I didn't really fit in to any particular category...it's nice to fit in! - But I suppose I am more SEO expert, Internet marketing consultant, business process manager, technologist, writer, supreme ruler of the universe... ok that last one is a hard sell. Labels are so cool. Actually I secretly like being a surprise when people meet me - I don't really look like a geek (and my SAT scores certainly wouldn't give my geek-ness away). I also never looked like I was a carpenter, (awesome carpenter by the way). So I suppose this is an ongoing problem for me... I'll work on it. :)

Monday, August 29, 2005

CONFESSIONS - update

Confessions of an Introvert has gone into the editing process! I think I am a month late on my orignial schedule - but that is ok, as long as I keep plugging. I have separated each of the 15 chapters into packets for 15 of my closest non-judgemental friends. From there it goes back for revisions and then on to the pros.

I also purchased The Introvert Advantage by Marti Olsen Laney today... it should be an interesting read and might inspire something in the polishing of my book. We will see - and I'll keep you posted if there is something of note. (of course I will have to find a spare moment or two to read it...)
-----------------------------------------------------------

I have been seeing some success on getting the targeted keyphrases for my book to rank on the engines:

introverts - Google has my meghanwier site, 4introverts page ranked on the 3rd page. I am happy with this for now given the broad term.

confessions of an introvert - www.meghanwier.com is ranked 5th on Google for "confessions of an introvert"

4 introverts - ranks www.meghanwier.com/4introverts.asp #1 on Google

The other engines are pretty good as well, such as MSN has one of my blogs, http://networking4introverts.blogspot.com ranked #5 for introverts and Yahoo has the Confessions Blog ranked #3 for "confessions of an introvert".

So - doing ok, need to keep working on it, adding to the other blogs and keeping things current. Hopefully the 28890 people who searched on "introvert" online last month will find the book interesting.

-----------------------------------------------------------

On another, mildly related note, here are a few of our latest SEO projects -

Security Behind Bars - Nighclub Security Training manual and training video
Algrette Bridal - Bridal headwear, veils, flowers and accessories
Specialty Tools - Tools and equipment for contractors and do-it-yourselfers
Rochester Machinery Suppliers - Large machinery, such as CNC Mills for sale, new and used

------------------------------------------------------------

- that's it for now - but I did want to share a little pic from my week at the lake to show you how wonderful it was.

- meg

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Nightclub Security - Why SEM is so cool

SEM (Search Engine Marketing) is a process by which the Internet is leveraged to gain name recognition, prospects, sell product, drive traffic etc.

One of my clients, Security Behind Bars, is going through the beginning processes of SEM. We are doing basic web site tuning, developing a link strategy, and working through getting the best ROI on an PPC campaign.

Search Engine Marketing is a beautiful thing. Results are far faster than traditional marketing, easier to modify, and more traceable to particular campaigns and initiatives. Essentially, we can determine if money spent brings the conversion we are seeking within weeks or days, (and sometimes within hours).

To learn more about Nightclub Security Training, go to: www.securitybehindbars.com
To learn more about Search Engine Marketing, contact Meg@meghanwier.com

-Meg

Thursday, August 25, 2005

I want a do-over! - the day that wasn't quite perfect

1) woke up late
2) bad hair
3) no time for breakfast
4) couldn't find baby's shoes
5) put baby in car sans shoes w/ half a banana and piece of wheat bread
6) crash into mom's car parked in driveway
7) drop baby off at sitter's, remembering upon arrival that it is my "snack day"
8) unable to print reports for client, try 6 different ways, finally get them
9) informed that there is a big stain on my pants
10) have to cancel another meeting with great client last minute (hate that!!)

...after that it got a bit better, but it was a doozy of a morning. I am working on finsihing up the book. I think by the 1st I will have it separated into chapters and printed for my close, non-judgemental friends to read and give me amazing positive feedback - with the goal to get it to the published my the end of September... I'll keep you posted.

-meg

Lose the paper... find the profits

BizNetix launched the LTP Solutions site today - Lose the Paper is a consulting company that trains, stategizes and implements the transition to a paperless office. Their clients include accountants, attorneys and technical companies. - check them out - they are a great company, with some cutting edge ideas on how to streamline process and build in efficiencies through technology.

Monday, August 22, 2005

ahhhhh. vacation

I am fresh off a week away at my family cottage on Cayuga Lake. What a nice week. I got a bit of the book written (not all done... but a decent dent). Came home to the email server being backed up w/ 100,000+ emails, clogged toilet, babysitter out of town, the house-painter cancelling at the last minute, a stack of bills, and piles and piles of laundry. Thank goodness for Kathy from Creators of Time, who delivered my groceries this morning.

Anyway, the time away was nice. I need to remember to do that more often. A lot more often.

H1 tags and SEO - one more step in the Optimization puzzle

Good article on H1 tags and SEO.

http://www.cssinsider.com/entry/1234000530052553/

The article focuses on Google's determination of rank based on H-tags... pretty good stuff.

-Meg

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Geographic Information, and its Importance for SEO

Very often someone will come to me looking to come up high on the search engines for a really broad term - like "gift baskets". And I have to be the person who brings them down to Earth... because 1) Most small business will have a hard time coming up for such a broad search term, (they don't have the money to compete) and 2) If they were to get this placement, it is likely that the majority of people who visit the site would not convert to actual customers.

When targeting keyphrases, it is important to chose phrases that will bring qualified traffic, and that they are obtainable. A good example is "Rochester SEO". Currently, BizNetix comes up pretty high in a Google Search for "SEO Rochester". However, on a search for just "SEO" places BizNetix somewhere - WAY out there.

...And, that is just fine. BizNetix would like people who visit the site to really be looking for them. People like to buy from local companies. By adding in the geographical word into the phrase, the likelyhood of the visitor staying and reading through the site... and even buying, rises considerably.

This got me thinking. I have not given any specific geographical information in this blog much at all. Perhaps you are looking for "Meghan Wier" online- You will be able to find me on Google without a problem. (1) I have a pretty uncommon name, and 2) There is a lot of fairly public information on me out on the WWW, 3) I did it on purpose to use as an example to my clients... so I would hope that I am out there )--- I think there may even be a couple pics in the Google Image Directory (some of which are not even me, by the way).

Anyhow, if you meet me out someplace, and I impress you with my wit and charm and incredible grasp of Internet Marketing, and remember just that my name is Meg, and that I do SEO in Rochester.... would you find me in Google? Yes... actually. (Try it out.), Ok, how about if you just remember my name is Meg and I live in Rochester....(Try it out). Nope... not a chance. You know why? Because of all the sites I have access to, I have never optimized my name and city. I guess I could write "Meg, Rochester, NY" at the end of all my blog posts... but more effective for me, and for your companies, would be to add additional information on the city or state you are doing business in (or wish to do business in).

Meghan Wier (Meg) is located in Rochester, NY, in the Upstate, NY Fingerlakes Region. Rochester is known for its Lilac Festival, Rochester Rhinos A-League Soccer Team, as well as the Rochester Amerks Hockey and Rochester Red Wings Baseball teams. Rochester is home to the University of Rochester and Rochester Institute of Technology, (RIT). Rochester is an easy drive to Buffalo, Syracuse, Niagara Falls, and the beautiful winery region of the Finger Lakes. Meg is a long-time Rochester resident, and is proud to call Upstate New York home.

...you think that will do it? Maybe. But at least it is a start.

-Meg, Rochester, NY

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Google Ranking details

I read too much. Here is a good link to info on how Google determines ranking. I would restate what they say, but that seems like a lot of work when you can read it from the source.

http://toprank.blogspot.com/2005/08/google-patent-dissected-at-ses.html
- by Lee Odden

(Remember to always "cite your source".... geez, that is the one thing I remember from business classes in college.)

Keyphrase Density

Another important SEO factor…. Keyphrase Density

Keyphrase Density is the number of times your keyphrase (not key-words, but key-phrases) appear in the visible text on your Web site). The important thing to note here is that your site must contain the phrases for which you would like to be ranked well on the search engines.

duh? maybe, but you would be surprised bring me keyphrases they want top show up for and they don't mention them a single time on their site...

I recommend using these keyphrases on the homepage, as well as devoting a decent section or page to each phrase as well. However, most important, is that the page continue to read well to the visitor, and maintain the overall message of the site. Generally, I find that if the site is well written and focused, (***and the phrases are appropriate***), keyphrase density will happen (almost) automatically.

That said, here are some guidelines I like to follow:
1) Use the keyphrase at least 3 times on the page devoted to that topic
2) Use the keyphrase at least once on the homepage
3) Make sure that the keyphrase is in the metas and the title where appropriate
4) Utilize links throughout the site to direct people to that page

…and there is so much more, but I can’t give all my secrets away in one post. (But just type in "keyphrase density" into Google and you will find gobs of good info).

So go boost your keyphrase density – I promise it will make a big difference!

Meg

Monday, August 08, 2005

Introverts: the ones with all the money.

I came across a good article on Introverts today - I thought I would share... It had a cool title, (part of which I "borrowed" for the title of this post), "How to Market to Introverts (you know, the ones with all the money)", By Nancy R. Fenn. Good stuff, and a quick read.

It got me thinking about the phone, (you will understand if you read the article, see #9). I don't even like to order a pizza, let alone make small talk on the phone. (Interesting for someone whose main responsibility is sales...hmmmm?) This might surprise some people, because I do talk...when I have to or when I am talking to someone, or about something, I truly enjoy.

The best way to communicate with me? Email. I love email. Email is the best invention for the introvert. Quick, easy, psudo-personal without the need for the chit-chat. Even better for me is the documented fact that I spoke to you. I have so much going on, that I very often forget phone conversations, or pieces there-of. I mean no offense to those who get me on the phone, but I have a lot going on. If you get me on the phone I am probably driving, my son is probably (hopefully) asleep in the car, and I am talking to you while I have about a million things swirling in my head. Email keeps a record, allows me to sort, file, think about what I want to say before I say it... all that. Email is my lifeline, the equilizer, the tool that makes me able to compete with the yappy people of the world who love to talk, and make deals because they are "so friendly".

I am not friendly--but I can play a friendly person in email!
______________________________________________________

Unrelated Note (sort-of)
I cannot wait to go to the cottage on the lake this Saturday. I will be unreachable - even by email. I need that quiet, far-away place to re-group. Now more than ever before in my life I need to get away, respect my "introvert" self, and be alone.
______________________________________________________
Meghan Wier

Sunday, August 07, 2005

Page Rank Explained

I came across a good explaination of Page Rank today. I can only assume it is accurate... it uses a pretty cool mathmatical equation that I just barely understand, and so it has to be right (--no one would go through that much trouble to try to confuse me otherwise.)

Seriously though, the thing I found most interesting was not how the PR is calculated, (I have found that PR is the one aspect of SEO that consistently makes sense) but rather, how PR is distributed from a site to a site. It confirms my belief that many links from one Website page do not help the recipients of the link as much as links from a page that does not link out frequently.

It also confirms the need for AS MUCH content as possible, on AS MANY pages as possible (as long as they contain quality content, appropriate links, good code, etc. etc.-- oh and the marketing people want me to say this..."readability for the actual human visitor")

Check this out: http://www.markhorrell.com/seo/pagerank.html
(sorry Mark, I wish I could contribute to your PR from my blog here... but obviously you get next to nothing from my PR of 1, distributed amongst all my links--sorry dude, but then again, you don't need it!)

...still on the never ending quest for the ultimate SEO - meg

Friday, August 05, 2005

Marketing to Women Online

I commented on this blog about how to market to women online. I thought I was particularly witty - scroll down, I am the 4th comment.

Click Here



-Meg

What is wrong with me?? - Confessions of a Workaholic

Ok - it is a gorgeous day, I know because I finally got out of my chair to get the mail. I am working from home today - and not for the reasons most people work at home, (to play video games and sleep in), but to actually get some work done. I have been able to work better at home ever since I gave up doing laundry, grocery shopping, house-cleaning and doing the dishes (those things used to distract me... but no more!)

So here I am, sitting on the couch with the laptop, 3 email windows open, 2 different Instant Messenger chats ongoing, a proposal, my book and and several websites on screen, when I could be sitting outside on the back porch, sipping some iced tea and enjoying the weather.

I could be weeding, or sleeping, or taking a walk.

I could be swimming, or reading a book...

But no, I'm inside, the laptop heating my lap to an uncomfortable temperature, working away.



Good thing that vacation is coming up, ( although I do plan on finishing the book that week...)

I am incurable.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Friendship

It was a roller-coaster of a week. Some of the worst moments of my life happened during the last few days, and it really puts things into perspective. Shows you who your friends are, and arent, and why and why not.

This week was a prime example of how a human can exist, although not well, with little to no food or sleep.

This week makes me grateful for the real things, the important people and for life.

This week I am grateful for apologies from otherwise reasonable people who behaved liked morons, for good doctors, for old friends, for good friends (old and new), for those who care without looking to gain something from it, for the future and for the brilliant people who surround me, teach me, and give me strength.

I am also grateful for the client who called me this morning to tell me I was "a genius".

No desire to ramble on about blogs, SEO, great web design or being shy... none of that seems worth it today.
-m

Monday, August 01, 2005

Monday

Monday evening... night maybe. Perhaps Tuesday by the time I finish the post. Decent day. Bummer of an evening. Nothing in particular, just a day that was.

Had some good SEO conversations today. I think that people must be getting sick if listening to me talk about Website Optimization. Maybe they are being polite by asking more questions. Who knows, as long as they buy more, and continue to humor me I suppose the system works.

hm. Guess I didn't make it to tomorrow with the posting of the blog...

Friday, July 29, 2005

Blog/Web content theft

I read an article today (http://www.marketingsherpa.com/1et/bestofweekly-07-25-05.htm#topic1) about how prevelant blog (and website) content theft is... and I got to thinking, boy, kids today are so lucky! In my day if you wanted to plagierize, you actually had to find a book on the subject (as in--in the library!) and then copy, word for word onto an actual piece of paper, or if you were really fortunate, type the words into your computer. (And if you had one of these, it didn't come with things like "spell-check"!)

Well - for goodness sake, what do we expect? Of course people are going to steal, (and if they are a little crafty, slightly re-word) what we post on the web... We put it out there. We made it easy to take... (and if you are like me, you tried to drive traffic to it, and make it really easy to find...). Best thing to do is copyright what you post, and then cross your fingers and call people on it when/if you catch them. (Or write things that are SO bad and unreadable that no one would want to copy it and call it their own!

For the record, if anyone wants to use something I wrote -- I would be honored (and perhaps surprised!), but do me a favor, (what was it that old business professor of mine said all the time???) CITE YOUR SOURCE. And the thing that would make me even happier... link to the article... expecially if you have a really great Page Rank!

(c) 2005 Meghan Wier



-Meg
Blog Writer
Networking Goddess
Introvert
Business Development Guru

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Blogging for cash

I have been reading a lot about how to use blogging for business, and even started a new blog on the subject. But beyond the whole "driving traffic", "gaining recognition" blah blah... stuff that I am always talking about I have decided to take it to a more basic level.

I have found blogs where people sell things, post advertisements, request donantions... which is all great - but how about blogging for money. Actually blogging for money...

Hey, I can do that, I think to myself. I have plenty to say, I can "link" and "alt" and "keyphrase density" with the best of them.

LET ME BLOG FOR YOU!!!

LIMITED TIME OFFER!!
No one has the time to blog all day - but you want to have a blog to relate to your customers, keep grandma up-todate and drive traffic to your "real site"...so Meg will write your blog about your tech company, your favorite movies, or your life as a world-famous runway model--whatever!
For $100/hour, your blog will be written in this same rambling psudo witty prose, with appropriate links and targeted keyphrases carefully--craftfully woven in.

Send payments to PAYPAL - meg@rochester.rr.com. First time customers are subject to a 5 hour minimum for blog set up and initial postings.

ok - just kidding.

Well, unless someone sends money.

-Meg

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Feeling Evil

In doing SEO for a couple clients this week I came up across a couple of their competition's sites. These site were ranking high - and beating out my clients for the targeted keyphrases.

And I don't like losing... so I did a little investigation.

They were ranking high by hiding text within the background of their sites. And to be honest I was a little shocked that people were still using this "old-school" trick to stuff keyphrases onto a page - and then to find it on two sites in one week... wow! (Flashback to all those horrible sites we saw 4-5+ years ago). Of course both sites were poorly designed, and not at all aestetically pleasing, so the hidden text was really the only thing that was keeping them on the first page!

Now, I am not naive, so I know there are lots of sites that do this, and yes it does work BUT it is still wrong. And beyond being wrong it can get your site in a lot of trouble with those "Google Gods". They are a bit strict on those things, if they know about them.

"But Meg, my site has had hidden text for years and I have a great ranking, Google doesn't care about little old me!" (I can hear you all talking out there... you naughty little spammers, stop being lazy and tune up that site properly!)

So, true... the hidden text is getting you that ranking. But Google will likely find out. And if not, then people like me will report you when our hard-earned SEO tuning on our client's sites is not garnishing the results it and we deserve.

I told you, I hate to lose.

Google has a page just for reporting those sites who are not following the "ethical standards", and I used it twice today to report those naughty, naughty sites!

So if you have hidden text... get rid of it, and do SEO right. (Or call me and I'll do it--for a small nominal fee).

If your competition is taking advantage of hidden text and it really pisses you off and you want to tell on them... Go here:

www.google.com/contact/spamreport.html

-m

uh oh!

INTERNAL DIALOGE
"Uh Oh, they are reading the blog..."
---"what did you expect to happen?"
"I dunno. I guess I wanted them to read it."
---"Alright, so what's your problem?"
"Uhhh, I guess there is no problem. I just didn't really think they would"
---"Well, they are. So what are you going to do now?"
"I suppose I will have to be careful what I say, provide interesting reading, link well and often and always use my blog for good, and not evil"
---"you are such a geek"
"I know."


Ok, so by you know/Have you heard, that I am a natually very shy introverted person who has become a "forced extrovert" in order to propel my business, meet new people and better my community./?

This blog thing is scary for people like me....It is one thing to have a blog, (it is just a diary/notebook/running to-do list/place to shamelessly self-promote), but an entirely different thing to have a blog, write religiously in the blog, and then advertise said blog all over town and in email blasts to my distribution list.

(and to build additional blogs and do the same...)

This blog is essentially telling people to get to know me... WOW--is that scary! Remember I don't like attention!/secretly crave admiration/would rather hide under my desk than go to a networking event. But I have been monitoring the traffic on this and the other blogs and honestly there isn't an enormous amount, however I know a few people are reading, (although not commenting--ahem...) I know because nearly every day a new person says : "hey, I read your blog about...(insert witty post name)"

That is both flattering and, again...scary.

And hey, people aren't saying, "That was a GREAT blog about alt text", or "You are so funny/such a good writer/interesting/very smart!"

They say "I read your blog."




ug.

So thank you for reading. Thank you for linking to me from your blogs/sites/well-ranked news articles. I will try to be funnier/smarter/more interesting/topical/focused, in the future.

Truly,
Meghan Wier
Blog Writer
Blog Maintainer
Blog Maniac

Monday, July 25, 2005

New Blog Link - Blogging for Business

New Blog: http://blogging4business.blogspot.com

Check it out, more to come.

-m

Blogging for Business

Security Behind Bars is the newest member of the Blogging for Business Community! I will be creating and maintaining their blogs as of today. The flagship blog Nightclub Security features information about the company and its video and training products for (you guessed it...) nightclub security! (and "nightclub liability", and "night club security", and "club security" for those of you noting that I was being a bit light on the keyphrase density in this post). Your feedback and link ideas are always welcome. The main site has a PR of 2 today... we should be able to make this jump up in the next 30 days.

More blogs to come and more blogging clients to come as well! Which likely means I will need to start a new blog... blogging for business. I will post the link ASAP.

Meg - blog maniac

Sunday, July 24, 2005

Alt Text and weekend SEO cramming

Water Lily picture from my computer to show where to add Alt text in your site to help increase keyword density and get your site to the top of the search engines.

Ok, so addmittedly my last couple posts have been a wee bit negative. My apologies.

And so, to throw a little balance into the mix, this evening I would like to discuss ALT TEXT!! yes that is right, I am going to change the mood with a lesson on Alt text.


For my non-seo/web savvy readers, Alt text is "Alternative text" that is text placed in the code for an image in an HTML page. If the image is not displayed, the ALT text can be presented instead. ALT text is especially useful to users of speaking browsers. The text should be a brief representation of the purpose of the image, not a description of the image. ALT text is frequently seen when users move the mouse over images. ALT text is read by the browsers and can increase the page ranking for targeted keyphrases.

I use Alt Text frequently, (and well) when optimizing our SEO client sites.

(...oh yeah, SEO = Search Engine Optimization)

I did tuning, or made recommendations for tuning to about 6 sites this weekend, and it still amazes me that people insist on calling naming their logo "logo" when they could call it "BizNetix, located in Rochester, NY, the premiere source for web site design and development search engine optimization and web site hosting". Now doesn't that make sense! (ok, calling it "BizNetix... does not make sense on any site excite the BizNetix site... but you know what I mean). Besides being more interesting, the engines read that text and add it into the mix when determining you ranking for tartgeted keyphrases. By including these phrases in your alt text, you are increasing the density and chance that you will be found.

Being found = more traffic.
More traffic = more customers.
More customers = more money.
More money = happy client.
Happy client = happy Meg.

Now, a word of caution. Do not abuse Alt Text. Do not write a book. Do not say a picture is something it isn't. Always make sure the Alt text relates to the site. Use words in the Alt text that are also used within the site. Do not... I repeat, so not use Alt Text to list all the possible keyphrases you want to be found on. ("book, big book, best book, yellow book, my book, books, bookity book, mispelled booke, bobs book", etc). This is naughty! You will suffer the wrath of the Google Gods, (and the "Yahoo Yoda", the "Alta Vista All-Mighty" etc.) They will eventually catch on, and knock you down a notch, if they are even that nice about it.

Alt text is just one of many tools I use when tuning a site, but it is one of the easiest for the site owner to do as well. Take a look at your site and see if you have missed an opportunity to pack in some keywords.

Now, don't you feel more cheery? I do.

Meghan Wier

SEO Expert

Want to know more about Search Engine Optimization? Read a great SEO Article. (I wrote it a while ago...so it is possible that it is a little out of date, although that doesnt mean it still isn't great!)

Thursday, July 21, 2005

How not to sell me something...

Dude calls today - for "the person making the marketing decisions".

Yeah, that would be me.

Starts talking to me about putting a listing on his portal site...blah blah blah, great testimonials, long-time business, success stories...etc.

I check out his site--Crappy page rank. I ask why I would want to list my site on his, when I have a significently better PR, and currently list well organically for my targeted keyphrases.

He doesn't know what a "Page Rank" is, but do I use the phone book?

huh??? phone book. "No, I do not use the phone book".

"well, my site is like an online phonebook" - -uh yeah, dude, I get that... (does he know who he is talking to?)

He goes on to ask again if I use the yellow pages..."no"... Dude! Pay attention. Then he says I must not be being honest with him...because everyone uses the phone book.

huh? He's trying to sell me a listing on a Website, and the selling point is that it is better than the yellow pages, and then calls me a liar to make his point.

um...dumb.

We talk a little, I give him a lesson on PR, tell him I did use a phone book once as a child to reach the "big girl table"...(attempting now to amuse myself through chatting about proper SEO techniques and antidotes about my past experiences with the phone book... ) Dude is like a broken record.

His script was not meant to deal with someone like me - aggressive, ADD, smart. WAY smarter than him...

So then I tell him that he can email me, (they guy is obviously mentally disturbed - or really bad at cold calling). He says that he doesn't like email, because it takes too long to talk to people.

uhhhh. "ok" I say... "look" DUDE "If you want to sell me something, and I tell you to email me, that that is the best way to contact me... do not fight with me... I AM THE CUSTOMER.

and dude, it's me... if you have been paying any attention, email will be the only way to get ahold of me (ever again... especially given this conversation).

Oh and... try not to call me a liar when trying to sell something to me. Even if I just told you your mommy is a pink elephant with a polka dot hat.... agree with me... I am the customer.

And for god's sake. When talking to an internet marketer with a specialty in SEO.... know your page rank.



"I would like to take you seriously, but to do so would be an affront to your intelligence" - George Bernard Shaw.

-m

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

A note on pet peeves

Admittedly, I am a bit high maintenance. I didn't used to be, I evolved into this--with the demands of the business, motherhood, life (--blogging...) I need things to go my way when they need to go my way.

That is not to say that when it needs to go your way, I might not bend a bit.. I will. I can be pretty accomodating. Especially if you are a client. Good clients get accomodated all the time.

However, I still have a lingering pet peeve. No matter who you are: client, prospect, family, friend of 15 years...If we have arranged to meet at a certain time...do not be late.

Now, traffic happens. Life gets crazy. 5, 10 minutes, more if you call.... IF YOU CALL.... I can be very accomodationg, and understanding.

But, if there is no traffic...no family emergency...no call to tell me you are on you way... Then that will serously piss me off.


just so you know.

-m

The cons of uber blogging

Alright - so if you have been paying attention, you know by now that I have a few blogs, and they are a bit more focused than this one, where I generally just babble. At least I try to keep them more focused...

Anyhow, I have been trying to kearn as much as I can about other people's success with blogging, especially in my areas of interest: blogging for networking, introverted bloggers, and blogging as an SEO tool.

The thing that is happening is that I am getting caught up in the voyeuristic nature of blogs. I keep reading about these people who are way more interesting than I am, funnier than I am... some are even weirder and more neurotic, any many are doing very similar things with their blogs and their businesses... etc.

So I am left feeling very...um. Normal. And a bit more interested in reading than writing.



at least there is a lot to read.
-m

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Blog content vs links... want to get noticed?

I found a good blog article today that discusses Blog content, links and SEO. I thought I would share, it explains some of the "method to meg's madness" (another blog for another day... but really, I have a plan).


http://blogbusinessworld.blogspot.com/2004/10/links-and-content-blogs-need-both.html

Obviously, the same applies to other Websites. That is: content and links, when used well and properly, will get you to the top of the search engines... of course a well-coded site goes a long way too!

Gaining Page Rank is more than just a hobby for me it is a passion... I am always searching for good quality information on SEO tips and techniques, please feel free to post great links and comments.

Meghan Wier

Yesterday was a good day...

Today isn't worth talking about.

So Let me tell you a little about yesterday. I talked to Prospect A, with whom I had met last week. He put me in touch w/ New Client B and New Client C. Sold them both yesterday from my cell phone while pacing in the conference room while my desk was being occupied... Love when that happens - Prospect A will likey become New Client A soon too. Love that.

Rest of the day was good - spent a lot of time on the phone... and new clients = more work. More work = more money, more money = happier meg.

happier meg = better world.

about that happy world:

I do need to revise my "google gods" statement. And so I decided to write the Google Gods a little note. Here is is, as I dont think anyone answers googlegods@google.com:

___________________________________________________

Dear Google Gods:

I do sincerely appreciate the page rank... I really do, besides my Main Blog, I have gained ranking on several of the other blogs, including an unusually high (but not undeserved, though premature) rank of 3 on the Networking as a Business Blog.

However, I cannot quite understand why you have reduced my page rank on my Web page from a high of 4 a couple weeks ago to a 2 now. Have I been sandboxed? Are my links in not good enough for you? Do I look like I am spamming you? (I swear, I am not spamming!) Is my domain name not registered long enough? Do you think I am a link farm? (I assure you I am not a link farm!) I just want to share with you some of the cool things happening in MEG WORLD.

Whatever I have done to offend you with my site I apologize. A PR of 2 un unsatisfactory. I know it is not pretty--to be honest it is more like a test site. I use it to see what things will work, to do a little self promotion, and to...well I used to, use it, just a little to help build page rank on some other sites. I mean - I am suppossed to be decent at this Search Engine Optimization thing! Did this upset you? I am sorry. I will unlink if you want. I just need a sign...GOOGLE GODS, give me a sign.

I can be reached via blog. Any of them.

Yours Truly,
SEO Girl

___________________________________________________
Here is the letter I wanted to write, but post here for your enjoyment:

You big jerk - stupid Google God, you think you are so cool... but you aren't. I am a real person, with a real message to share with the world. You keep changing the rules of the game... that hardly seems fair. But here is something you don't know...Google "god", I am smart... really smart, I learn every time you change something. I am watching you. I play nice, but I only let you think you are in winning! My curiosity and need to out-smart and out-wit you will push me to succeed; and it will push me to gain PR, no matter how many times you change the rules. So take that Google God - you are just an algorithm out there in cyberspace... - don't think you can get away with this! I will play your game... but I will play it better.

AND... I'm funny. You can't beat that. (Stupid Algorithm!)

SEO Girl
ROCHESTER NY

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Thank you to the Google Gods

I just noticed that Google has gifted me with a Page Rank.

Google Gods, thank you for your most precious gift, I will use it wisely. I will not let you down, I will strive to obtain higher ranking in your eyes through my good deeds, quality links and above average content.

Tonight I dance with joy, (and hope that my ranking is not some fluke due to "Google Dancing")

Your most humble servant,
SEO Girl

Motivation

It facinates me to find out what motivates other people to start their own companies. As I work with other business people there are re-occurring themes of the usual: money, prestiege, popularity, power. But the ones that are most interesting are the ones that people don't talk about: survival, passion, need for excitement, despiration, the fact that they are utterly otherwise unemployable and therefore must be their own bosses....

I am of course motivated by each of those with the one exception of popularity. Honestly, not so interested in popularity. Don't get me wrong, I'm glad there are a couple people out there besides my mother that can get past my quirkiness and want to be my friends but I don't generally care too much if I am popular... do however want admiration, respect, and appreciation.

On the other motivating factors, I also want to include "making a difference"--and that is what I'd like to "ramble" on about tonight. It has always been my motivation to "make a difference", be it on a single person's day, or on the community. Often times I am able to make a difference through my job, supplying solutions to other business's problems. That is an awesome feeling. It is that feeling that motivates me to do more, be more, push harder, be better. I love to make other people aware that they can have success... and motivate them to go after it!

I met with two gentlemen the other day - they have a small business out of a small town near Rochester. They are doing some cutting edge stuff, selling alternative energy products. They are doing ok... but nothing that is enabling either one of them to quit their "day jobs". For them the motivation is entreprenurial freedom, financial freedom, and... perhaps a little "saving the world".

I am hoping to be able to help them out a bit with some connections, maybe a little funding - of course some Web updates (done in stages to fit their budget) and give them a little motivation too.

The one guy had met with another "Sales Person" awhile back and he said "boy, you sure aren't like that other guy, you are way more flexible and willing to work with us" to which I said "that is because he was a good sales person trying to make a sale, I am a good business person trying to develop a partnership". He smiled, and told me it showed. He was so pumped up after leaving the meeting that he nearly skipped down the street. That makes me happy, and it is that which motivates me to go out there and work day and night to be that person for the other great businesses out there that need motivation... (and a Web site of course!)

Meghan Wier
Recharged after 11 hours of almost uninterrupted slumber the previous night...Weekends Rock.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Another Night

Great week from an RFP side - our Request a Propsal Page for the BizNetix.net site is doing its job, bring in new prospects. - very cool. I love when things work the way the are supposed to.

Did get to a couple prospect meetings this week, as well as had a couple good prospect calls with out-of-towners...

- Now I just need to get myself geared up to write those proposals! Work is work (you can quote me on that).

BNI in the morning, looking forward to seeing the gang, although need to close up some lose ends on some prospects generated from the group. It amazes me how long the sales cycle is sometimes! Regardless, the networking along is valuable enough to get me to a meeting at 7am each week. They are great people.

Special thank you to Bruce McClellen who hooked me up w/ a very nice guy this week who was able to help me keep a promise to a friend... Bruce is a Business Coach for Action International. I now owe Bruce a beer and a bucket of balls, (not necessarily in that order). Same for Kelly Saucke who took the time this week to help me re-capture, (or is that discover) my athletic ability with a private golf lesson. Not ready to take over the world yet, but I now am in that special group of people that carry a golf glove around with them....

Actually a pretty athletic week ... went rock climbing AND went to the driving range...hmm, and they say I'm a computer geek....hmmm

If I may, a "shout out" (do they still say that???) to my 3.2 blog readers. Thank you for indulging me with your occassional interest.

- On the book, no new progress in the last couple days, however I am looking forward to a week at the cottage in August to finish polishing up the content.

SEO continues - need to finish recomendations ASAP and get those out to the customers...running a couple days behind. again.

Updates and Development continue this week for:
www.mrsunitedstates.com
www.filterstore.com
www.aloi.com
www.getbusinessresults.com
www.biznetix.net
www.brambleberrybarn.com
www.phillipseuropean.com
www.losepaper.com
www.monroelitho.com
www.adair.com

etc.

Must get the evening moving... BNI in 9 hours.

Meghan Wier
www.meghanwier.com
www.biznetix.net
SEO Copywriter
Vice President, Business Development, BizNetix
http://confessionsofanintrovert.blogspot.com

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Habits

"Successful people aren't born that way. They became successful by establishing the habit of doing things unsuccessful people don't like to do. The successful people don't always like these things themselves; they just get on and do them." - Anonymous
Establishing my routine, working to learn more, be more, letting a lot go.
Trying to finish book. Doing well, moments of brilliance punctuated by complete and utter dribble. Need good editor.
and good english.
Work is good, busy, seeking time to find the pleasure in being busy, and doing good...(scatch that "doing well" - see afore mentioned "English" comment.)
Building alliances, fanning flames, stretching. Exploring opportunities, qualifying like crazy.
Maintaining, updating, gathering, reporting.
etc.
utterly exhausted.
-m

Sunday, July 10, 2005

Blogging for Money

I have come across a good resource for blogging for business - www.problogger.net. This seems to be a very comprehensive site - also I recently read this study, it is also very interesting (and lengthy, http://www.backbonemedia.com/blogsurvey/blogsurvey2005.pdf.

...I also wanted to let you know that I have started a BLOG dedicated to my first book - "Confessions of an Introvert-The Shy Girl's Guide to Busienss Networking". This can be found at http://confessionsofanintrovert.blogspot.com

Thursday, July 07, 2005

The Shy Girls Guide: Self-Promotion

I am not naturally one to draw attention to myself - but fact of the matter is... in order to get ahead, you can't wait to be noticed - here is an excerpt from CONFESSIONS OF AN INTROVERT...

The following is an excerpt from “Confessions of an Introvert - The Shy Girl’s Guide to Business Success” by Meghan Wier. Preorders of "Confessions of an Introvert" will be taken starting in September 2005. For more information, write to meghanwier@meghanwier.com .


TEN WAYS TO SELF-PROMOTE

OK, here it is—the big secret. If you wait around it may not happen, and you fall farther behind those who do. I’m sorry I had to break it to you. If you are invisible, it doesn’t matter how good you are, so be noticed! So how do you get that recognition? Here are some ways to self-promote!

1) Get a Web site or blog. Write about subjects that interest you, and that relate to your business. Establish yourself as an expert in your field.

2) Find a local business, or online publication that takes freelance writers, and write articles for it. You probably won’t get paid, but you can use these articles to say that you have been published (very important in some fields) and promote yourself and your business.

3) Get to know the media. Make an effort to know at least a couple members of your local media. Newspaper reporters, TV anchors, and news directors, editors, and radio personalities are all looking for great subjects to report on. By bringing these people into your network, you will become a valued and important resource. Give them a good story, and they will come back to you again and again. http://www.123oye.com/articles/work-life.htm

4) Find a PR buddy. Know another deserving, yet under-recognized individual that you can trust with a little “covert operation”? Share your hopes and dreams with this person, tell him or her about recognition you would like and offer to nominate your friend for an award, or write a public interest story in the paper about them. Ask them to do the same for you. Don’t be shy!

5) Send out a monthly or quarterly personal e-newsletter. An associate of mine sends out an email newsletter monthly to everyone in his distribution list. His is similar to a Christmas letter, (“we just moved into out new office; we have a new product at work; the weather has been great…”) and over the years I really feel like I have gotten to know him better from this monthly letter. Just remember that you are sending this out to your business associates, so don’t get too personal!

6) Have a professional bio written. Hire a professional resume and bio writer to write up a bio for you. This can be used on your Web site or when applying for executive positions, or when nominated for awards. A well written bio written by someone else can tout your accomplishments in ways you might feel uncomfortable doing yourself!

7) Offer to speak at seminars, or schedule your own. Speaking at seminars are a great way to promote yourself and your business. If this doesn’t feel comfortable for you, look for “round-tables” or panel discussions to speak at. They are more casual, and there will be more than one speaker.

8) Follow Up. The best way to be remembered is to follow up, and follow up with everything! Call to confirm meetings, call to make sure people got the information you sent, call, to make sure your clients are all set. Let your clients and prospects, and contacts know you are out there, and you are thinking of them.

9) Smile for the camera! Have a good professional photo taken and put that on your business cards, Web site, and/or company brochure. People will remember you more when they can put a face with a name.

10) Have a “tag-line”. When you introduce yourself, use a “tag-line” or a clever saying that will be remembered and will help others associate you with what you do.

Self-promotion is important to reaching the next levels of success and it can be done tastefully, and professionally. Look for opportunities, don’t be afraid to ask for help, and remember to keep your ultimate goals in mind!

(c) 2005 Meghan Wier

-MTW

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Catching up

I have been in Denver the last few days visiting my sister and brother-in-law. The Jake works for Ball Aerospace and a project he was working on called Deep Impact went successfully this weekend. Pretty exciting stuff. Did the Colorado stuff... hiking, shopping (ok I did more shopping than hiking)... and a fun time was had by all.

And now I am behind again!

But, I remain positive, I have made several pheonominal updates to work flow, and process, and in my case, some serious delegation!

We are currently working on a new site for LTP Solutions. They consult and coach businesses to "LOSE THE PAPER" and utilize technology to save time, save money, gain efficiencies and grow! The site should be launched soon, and I will keep you all up to date.

Another exciting project is The Filter Store. The Filter Store has been an SEO client for several years and they continue to a fair portion of their business online. We are doing a few updates to the site this week. Check them out at www.filterstore.com.

The Adair Law Web site is also in development, and should be launched before the end of the summer.

Another SEO client, BCC Software is another site to check out - just to see the huge amount of content. The site is a search engine magnet, full of wonderful information on bulk mailing and mailing software. More updates will be coming on that soon!

And so... here are the ares of interest today:
Outsourcing Personal "Chores"
Training Sales Assistant
Ordering more Business Cards
Wineries Vertical
Aloi Newsletter updates
Filterstore Updates
Brambleberry Barn Adwords Campaign
Spas Vertical
E-Business Association Updates
Blogging
Blogging
Blogging
The Book
The Book
The Book.


until later - meg

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Bloging and selling and bossing people around and stuff!

Looks like I have found myself a sales assistant finally! "The Dude", who has been with us for several months as intern/chief grunt/problem solver extraordinaire will be assisting me in selling our web site, SEO services, IT Services, and hosting. Very Cool - now I just have to get him up to speed!

...another neo web guru. Just what the world needs...

Also seeking some intervention from concierge and personal assistant company "Creators of Time". Who do just that.... create time. - I will take another weekend day please. They are a new Web hosting client... welcome to the family.

Got a little mention on the contact form is picking up speed. I love that. They are getting serious prospects from the site right on time. This is a great example of how a Web site can generate new business.

(I TOLD YOU SO!)

Had a great chat with my new friends from BCC software today. We will be doing some more SEO work for them. More on them later.

...Just heard on "Average Joe" that "Geek is Chique" - wow. who knew.

Created a new blog today for Blogging for Networking. I am going to be updating this regularly, and look forward to your comments as we explore how blogging can help us network--especially those of use who are socially challenged!

Which leads me to the Book: "Confessions of an Introvert-The Shy Girl's Guide to Reaching the Top". I will begin to start to take pre-orders at the end of the summer, so stay posted. (if you want to pre-order before that, email meghanwier@meghanwier.com. Also, under the advice of co-blogger Tom from Windsor I am going to start adding excerpts from the book to this, and some of the other Blogs.

until next time.


Meghan Wier
Chique Geek

Friday, June 24, 2005

what's that ride?

You know the one, at the amusement park where you stand against the inside wall and the ride spins and spins, and you stick to the wall and no matter how hard you try you can do anything but strain your neck just a little bit... and then the floor drops out.

wheeee!

Fun ride this week - full of fun people and problems solved. Equal amounts of not fun people and problems created - but at least...this week... it balanced out. (so far)

Anyone want to by a Website? We have gotten EVEN BETTER at integrating a content manager into a preexisting or in-development site. The app rocks, and it is so wasy to use. We have cut the install time nearly in half.

I am continuing to do SEO copywriting for some of our clients - and they are doing very well - we continue to see that good "search engine friendly" copy is key to optimization.

Adding to our service menu is IT Services. We have been doing this for a while - but haven't really marketed it. Chad the man is now for rent to remove viruses, set up email, network offices, etc, etc.

Not too much more to report - except the usual - check out all the blog and site links...

Meg