Monday, December 20, 2010

Packing your Emergency Kit for Winter Travel

Although there is no sign of winter when you leave for your trip, do NOT be fooled. Late in the fall, a blizzard can come roaring in without much warning. Be prepared. Be sure that you and your fellow travellers are protected should you be stranded in your car. Pack an emergency kit in your the trunk or the back seat of your car BEFORE you leave for your destination.

Please be aware that the temperature does not have to be below freezing to get hypothermia. Should you become stranded in the middle of a sudden snow storm or your car will not start, having a fully stocked emergency kit can save your life.

Most of us carry a cell phone with us, so in an emergency the first step we might take is to call for roadside assistance. However, depending on where you are traveling, be aware that there ARE still 'dead zones' where your cell phone may not get a signal. Also batteries die, rendering the cellphone useless. Be sure that someone knows the route your are traveling and your approximate arrival time, so they know where to send help if you don't arrive.

Here are the instructions for your emergency survival kit:

Take the time before your planned trip to purchase and pack the needed items. A duffel bag is great for packing your emergency gear. Small items such as spare batteries, flares, lighters and high calorie food, can be packed in a separate pocket. Keep lighters and flares dry by packing them in ziplock bags. High calorie foods to include are high in sugar content, like candy bars. These high energy foods help to provide energy to keep warm.

In zones where the temperature dips to below zero temperatures, bottled water may freeze. Include a candle and a metal container which can be used for melting snow for drinking water. Be sure and pack a fully stocked first aid kit in your duffel bag too. If you are on regular prescription medications be sure to have enough for a week or two in case you are stranded for several days.

A large sheathed knife should be placed on top of the first aid kit. Next, place some of your warmest blankets in several garbage bags. Garbage bags can be cut with neck and head holes to create an insulator. The second garbage bag does not need to be cut, only pulled over the legs. Depending on the number of people you have traveling with you, include at least one warm blanket, two large garbage bags and extra high calorie food for each person that may be with you in the car in an emergency. Keep in mind that children and the elderly can be more susceptible to hypothermia

If you become stranded, get your survival kit from the truck or the back seat as soon as possible. Once you have it in the car with you, be sure to keep the doors shut to retain as much heat inside as possible. Immediately take your road flares and set them up and return to your car. Stay in your car till help arrives. If your cell phone IS working or you have a service such as OnStar in your vehicle, use it. If such technology is NOT an option, STAY in your car till help arrives. Trying to 'go for help' and exposing yourself to the elements can result in hypothermia, or death!

Marilyn Swanson
Marswan International
marswan'at' (Replace the word 'at' with the @ symbol)

Here's a P.S. to this little post. After writing this article the author made a quick trip into town guessed car would not start. Thank goodness I was in town and a good Samaritan made a run back to his home to pick up his booster pack. A booster pack is definitely a good addition to the emergency travel kit! On days like today, roadside assistance had a waiting time for answering of 55 minutes, so I cannot even imagine what the response time would have been. A huge thank you to the good Samaritan who took time out of his day and went the extra mile to help out. In the spirit of good deeds, I will be paying it forward as the opportunity arises.

"Peace on earth will come to stay, When we live Christmas every day."
- Helen Steiner Rice

Back after a long absence

Well, it has been a while since my last post. Life has a way of taking us and opening our eyes to what the important things are....which is family. Family should always come first, before anything. My decision to take some time off with family at a very critical time was the best decision for me. Family first...always.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Successful Free Advertising

Internet marketing is almost the same as conventional marketing. There are needs, place, product, price and promotion. Advertising is the highest expense for most businesses. Without it, you might as well not have a business. Internet marketers must pay part of their commission on every sale for paid advertising, but free advertising gives complete commission without any loss. There are many free advertising companies on the internet that can provide you with cost free exposure(other than a little time). One such company offers Free Advertising and pays it's members to view other ads. It's good for advertisers AND good for members alike.

In putting up your free ads on the various free advertising sites, make your ad titles short but descriptive. Try to avoid words like "must see" and "wow". No buyers would search for those words. Use common keywords related to the placement category and your item, which buyer might use during the search.

The first thing in any marketing/sales process is building rapport. Advertising can help create a better environment where people become interested in listening to you and read your ads. If you pique their interest with a good ads, as well as reach them at an emotional point where they need, or even better want, your product and services, you have a much better opportunity of getting the job or closing the sale. Advertising gives your company or your business an edge by helping you to get your share of whatever business is around and by surpassing your competition.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Today, I will be going into something different, but necessary.....for those of you who are still forced to make a living in the 9 to 5 world and have to put up with corporate and social injustices and bullies. Before I start, let me share these words I found when I was researching my subject for today, and I quote:

~Nobody’s Friend~

My name is Gossip.

I have no respect for justice.

I maim without killing.

I break hearts and ruin lives.

I am cunning and malicious and gather strength with age.

The more I am quoted the more I am believed.

My victims are helpless. They cannot protect themselves against me because I have no name and no face.

To track me down is impossible. The harder you try, the more elusive I become.

I am nobody’s friend.

Once I tarnish a reputation, it is never the same.

I topple governments and wreck marriages.

I ruin careers and cause sleepless nights, heartaches and indigestion. I make innocent people cry in their pillows.

Even my name hisses. I am called Gossip.

I make headlines and headaches.

Before you repeat a story, ask yourself:

Is it true?
Is it harmless?
Is it necessary?
If it isn’t, don’t repeat it.

~ Author Unknown

Unfortunately, there are people who use gossip as a political tool to gain power and control in an organization. Don't be fooled. You might be surprised at who they are. Those threatened by others successes turn to this conspiracy tactic as a means to gain personal power. Their strategy is to isolate a targeted individual, play one person against another and hopefully turn employees and/or managers against them. Gossips do not work alone. It is not possible for them to successfully spread their venom unless they have listeners. If those who listen participate, they too become players in a very malicious undertaking. No one should be subjected to vindictive, malicious rumours, so if you are the recipient of such gossip, make sure it doesn’t go any further than you. You are the one that can very effectively put an end to it, by refusing to listen to it.....and if you do have knowledge of such malicious information, do not be the vehicle to carry it.
Gossip often crosses the “acceptable” line and morphs into something that can really hurt someone emotionally or practically (such as putting their job in jeopardy): saying something hurtful, spreading a negative rumor or saying something to be malicious, spiteful or vengeful and it can become a form of social bullying.

Those responsible for starting this should be aware that they are dealing in lies (which includes stretching of the truth or inferring what they perceive to be true), and that such antics illustrate their utter moral bankruptcy, and the contemptible state of their imaginations. While they may move forward they need to know that in behaving in this despicable manner, they will ever only be surrounded by their own kind, as it takes more than one person to to spew and one to listen intently, excited with the concept of spreading the poison further. They will continue to falsely befriend innocents, build a false trust with them and when it becomes convenient, they will turn on that person like they have done countless times in the past.

If you find that you are the target of malicious gossip such as the situations listed above, the following tips can help stop the gossip and protect your emotional health.

1. Approach the gossip. This should be done in a non-confrontational, but forthright, way. If you are certain the person has said something spiteful about you, you could say, “I found that comment to be offensive and would appreciate if you would refrain from this type of behavior in the future.”

Meanwhile, if you are not certain, but you suspect, the person has said a mean-spirited thing about you, you could say, “I have heard you saying some negative things about people in the office [or elsewhere] that I know are untrue. These comments are offensive and I’d appreciate you not spreading them around in the future.”

2. Seek help from a superior. Depending on the situation, there may be someone to whom you can report the gossip’s behavior. In an office, this would be a manager or human resources official. In a school setting, a teacher, principal, counselor or social worker. In an extreme public situation, a slander lawsuit is also an option.

3. Get it out in the open. If the gossip still persists, you can fight back by letting those in your social circle know that this particular person is saying untrue things about you. Once the group knows that someone is a malicious gossiper, they’re more likely to ignore what he or she says, and restrict their own dealings with the person as well.

4. Protect your emotions. Fortify yourself emotionally so that you feel confident, positive and at ease with yourself -- even in the face of malicious gossip. This is achieved by tapping into your natural ability to let go of any negative thought or feeling in the moment, including any insecurities, anger or resentments that may have popped up due to malicious gossip.

5. Don’t participate in malicious gossip yourself. You may be tempted to start a negative rumor of your own in retaliation against the gossiper. You should resist this temptation as you will be surrounding yourself in negative emotions (the same ones you are working on letting go) and your relationships may suffer if your friends, colleagues and loved ones fear you may start gossiping maliciously about them too!

Take heart, those of you who have experienced such nastiness first-hand.....with all the hard work you have been putting in on your online promotions, very soon your online ventures will be your sole means of support. You will be able to leave the maliciousness behind and move far ahead of them.

Blessing to all on the team who have been using their energies for good, for the success of the team. It makes the 9 to 5 world a bit more bearable for many.

(N.B...For those of you who believe in a higher power, you know that those who spread malicious gossip will eventually have to answer for their actions before the supreme judge......and he does not accept excuses for their maliciousness.

Do not go about spreading slander among your people" (Lev. 19:16). "If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless" (Jas. 1:26). "Men will have to give account on the day of judgment for every careless word they have spoken. For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned" (Matt. 12:36, 37). Gossip can be a cruel weapon, one that is turned on friends and enemies alike. It is completely against God’s standard of preserving unity and lifting one another up. It serves no purpose but a selfish one—there is no good result from gossip.)

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Adding the right keywords for your web content

So you have built a website and added an appropriate title. Then you throw in some great keywords as tags. However, there is more to building a great site than that. You need to know what people are typing into their search engines. Once you know this, you will be able to incorporate them into your site to generate a larger hit rate. Utilize the online keyword tools that are out there. They will tell what words generate the biggest hits. It is all about generating traffic that is specific to your needs and what you have to offer. Using several words as your key words will allow you to generate audience specification. This will help you link your page to a specific audience and generate real business not just general traffic. This still allows some of the general public to find you. Plus, it buys new business as well.

Many believe there cannot be a wrong keyword. Well...there can be many wrong keywords. What words work for some, may not do a thing for another. If you are only using one keyword and it is generic, you will not get a targeted audience. So, you might get some hits, but they probably won’t be of much value. Most of your hits will be browsers not buyers. You want to use multiple keywords that are related to your product and its uses. These keywords can be in the articles that you put on your site. They could be in your banner or promotion and even in the product description. You want to make sure that a search engine will pick up as may of your keywords as possible. This will bring you a targeted traffic that is specifically looking for what you have. Let’s use the following as an example of utilizing keywords effectively.

You have a web site devoted to candles. You have displayed several articles about candles and any other relevant information. This would include what to put them in, the different seasons, scented, unscented, or maybe the shape and size. You want to have a lot for people to hit on when they do their search. It can’t just be candles to be effective. Search engines list the top best sites based on what the person types in. Also, let it be known that most people type in phrases, no just a word. If you are a one-word wonder, you won’t make the first or probably the tenth page. You might never be seen. You want to have key phases and multiple key words that could possibly be typed into a search engine. If you type in just candle in your search box, you will see thousands of hits. Some of these will be relevant and some will not. You will see returns from Christmas candles, candle making, candle holders, candle supplies, and a whole lot more. You will even get links that have absolutely nothing to do with candles.

This is an online business person’s dream come true. You will truly benefit from this search. You will be able to work in as many of the results you got into your own site. Of course you must do this with in reason. You will be able to write articles pertaining specifically to what candles to use at Christmas, Easter and/or other holidays. You can write articles on types and styles of candle holders that are available for different candle types. In these articles, you now give people several great ideas of how and why they need candles for whatever reason and they can see your link and get them. You should have several linking pages with information that is useful to your visitors and encourages them to want to buy. The more diverse yet relevant information you have, the more hits from your keywords you will get. The visitor will be able to navigate through your site and see all they need to see and where to get it. Just by clicking in a few keywords that brought them to you.

Designing a good keyword base can just as much fun as effective. Writing about every possible angle of your business provides you with a great site that brings in hits and money. It also provides your buyers with great information and a trusting place to get their needs met.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Building a Successful Online Marketing Business

The Internet is full of "get rich quick" schemes that promise to make you millions in online marketing success. Most of these schemes just end up costing you more than you want to spend. There is no secret that will bring you to ultimate business success overnight. As an independent business owner, you will need to be responsible for trying and testing various methods that work for you. This will take time to build and develop a solid and effective base that will produce any good results. What works for one business may not work for yours. This could involve some trial and error. There are a few free techniques you can and should look into. Incorporate some tried and true methods that have been implemented successfully by others. These will help you build a successful online marketing business.

Make and use your own personalized opt-in list of targeted and interested prospects. Give them the link to your blog, which should be filled with great and interesting content. Your reader will offer you feedback. They will tell you what they want to see and they will get to know you better and have trust in you. Once you have some credibility with the audience you are going to be providing for, the products and services will be taken more seriously. Even your recommendations will go a long way once you have their trust. Join and participate with a discussion board or forum. You can easily establish yourself as a helpful person who is always willing to help. The members will come to know and trust you and discuss you with others, and new people. This type of respect can go a long way in marketing. You will also be able to link your website to your signature for everyone to see. Think of every post as a marketing tool.

Find all the high targeted and popular search engines and directories for your specific market. Work to get listed on them and get a rating. There are numerous sites that will fill this bill. You want to build your link popularity so your rating will increase and you will be listed as a good ranking site.