The Tenth Amendment is “Anti-Socialist” Folks!

February 22, 2010

Step 1: Do It.

Step 2: Talk About It.

vs.

Talk About It. (Change.)

Then Doing It. (But Not the Change we Expected.)

The Tenth Amendment:

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

The Texas Republican Primary is soon and I am anxious to see how it turns out. Politics will soon be hitting folks in Texas about as hard as the Winter Olympics and folks bearing the cold up North.

I agree with Rick. The tenth amendment is being ignored. The federal government is stepping out beyond the Constitution. Health care needs to be at the State and not Federal level. So many things are being targeted for take over by an out of control United States Federal Government who proceeds to grow beyond management.

Imagine the level of service they would be capable of providing if they became smaller units and departments such as the government of the State of Texas. Size is often the issue for organizations. Too many mid level managers… big issues. To few “decision makers” and nothing gets done. Over measure and nothing gets done. Under measure and make poor decisions. When times our changing, our government just like businesses must also change. We must roll with the punches. We must reach out and connect on a closer level. Something you can’t do behind doors and without a transparent form of mass communication and individual discussion. This also applies to self-proclaimed aristocracy type people who think they know what is best and pursue an agenda to quiet the voice of workers, clients, voters, tax payers, and colleagues. Like corporations and policies related to the Freedom of Speech.

Web 3.0 is coming. Obama’s young progressive and liberal supporters were the first to leverage the power of the internet. Tea-party minded folks who are upset with big government are now online. Facebook’s average user is 37 years old.

Just wait.

The Pro-Socialism and Anti-Freedom movement is taking off. Looks like we are going back to the battle front on Government Bail Outs, Take Overs, and Corruption. Social media opens up new forms of transparency. Exciting times indeed.

God Bless the Texas Republic. The roots of our history run deep. We have a common purpose. We have a common culture. We also welcome ideas that help us provide for others. We love our neighbors. On Sundays we bless our families, our schools and teachers, our friends, and our enemies.

I am a young Texas Conservative who always gets excited about discussions regarding the 10th Amendment!

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My Rant……..The Next Bubble.

February 16, 2010

After reading a new article regarding the internet SEM investments and recent venture capital funding to WebVisible (another $20M), Reach Local (original $55M back in Oct 2007), and Yodle (recently funded with another $38M) I wanted to comment about The Next Bubble. Let’s discuss the what where and why investors are hot for SEM, Search, and what I see is still  groundbreaking opportunity in local search marketing consulting, as Greg Sterling’s blog pointed out here in his blog titled Screenwerk.

The thing about this topic is that it is both political, thoughtful, and very personal to me.

If you look at the success of Google (information from Wiki:) over the “somewhat” recent years-

Google Inc. (NASDAQGOOG, FWB: GGQ1) is a multinational public cloud computing and Internet search technologies corporation that hosts and develops a number of Internet-based services and products, generating profit primarily from advertising through its AdWords program. Google was founded by Larry Page and Sergey Brin while the two were attending Stanford University as Ph.D. candidates. It was first incorporated as a privately held company on September 4, 1998, with its initial public offering to follow on August 19, 2004. Its headquarters, located in Mountain View, California, is often referred to as the Googleplex, which is derived from the number googolplex. The company’s stated mission from the outset was “to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful”, and the company’s unofficial slogan, coined by Google engineer Paul Buchheit, was Don’t be evil. It runs over one million servers in data centers around the world, processing over one billion search requests every day and about one petabyte of user-generated data each hour. Even the company’s name, Google, was a play on the large number googol to represent the large amount of information the company set out to organize.

From this house:

Google Started Here

to multi-million dollar complex in Mountain View California:

https://i1.wp.com/www.propertyinvesting.net/cgi-script/csNews/image_upload/default_2edb.googleplex.jpg

GooglePlex

Google is set to become the largest company in America.

Google Stock History

Google stock compared to GE and Exxon

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Selling phone book advertising sucks!

February 15, 2010

Looks like SuperMedia’s (post bankruptcy Idearc Media) CEO Scott Klein has moved from “Tonight Show” themed Friday afternoon employee broadcasts to YouTube….. is Hollywood next?

Interesting how he doesn’t mention Verizon Yellow Pages? Hmmm.

Apparently they’ve now accepted the fact that phone books are dying off and “in my opinion” only 10-20% effective due to the impact of digital and print directory saturation.

It has been said by some that Yellow Pages usage stats are likely wrong.

Local Business Information references according to TMPDM (the largest “phone book ad placing agency” in the U.S.)

Primary Source of Local Business Information

I assume that if the number was 28% in 2009, then in 2010 in a digital urban marketplace like Dallas – Fort Worth it will be sub 25%? Sounds fair?

I still see a bit of lip-service with the SuperGuarantee (ServiceMagic.com’s Service Guarantee, rebranded the SuperGuarantee by Klein) since I have yet to see actual numbers reported on credits to consumers.

Otherwise, I enjoyed the video. Thumbs up. Mr. Klein is great on camera~!

Mr. Klein needs to not worry about “YellowCrooks” outside his organization…. or Yellow Book for that matter. (In my opinion the growth of educated and expert Local Internet Marketers will eat phone book companies lunch if you ask me. SuperMedia will never be able to compete with a well educated and dedicated search engine optimizer.)

Back to the videos, Klein does a much better job than this guy:

Just watch him here:

Back on topic: I see a shift coming soon for the company. Cold-calling will be a thing of the past. It doesn’t work.

While at Idearc, I spent much of my time researching, testing, and “fooling” with search marketing. I am 28 years old and have not used a phone book to find a business since I was 17 (minus cold calling from phone books as a “Yellow Pages Media Consultant/Planner”

During the shift from print it was apparent to me that if you have to “sell” your services, they must not be a tremendous value to your client.

Personally, I prefer to teach vs sell. I won 3 President’s Awards while at Verizon/Idearc for sales…. it is not sales when you are teaching. It is called coaching.

Being a sales rep and being a “Small Business Advertising Coach” are two totally separate things. One is responsible for commissions and contracts, the other results, creativity, success, and strategy.

Unfortunately, Today, Yellow Pages Sales / “Media” Consultants do not sell advertising but really just sell advertising contracts.

When is the last time a “sales manager” took the time to make sure a client was getting results from the advertising that was agreed to?

Contracts to advertise on Google when Google themselves does not require such a thing? Why do you need contracts when you can deliver?

Transitioning to “Media Consultants” from “Cold Callers” is going to be a huge challenge for SuperMedia without intense focus and training (the last 7 years for me) on Search Marketing etc….

12 month contracts only work for phone book ads....

When your ad agency says: “We Succeed Only When Our Clients Succeed.”

Do they really mean it… or is it just lip-service?

The first step is to learn about Google Analytics!

How do you know what is going on with your website if you can’t measure the traffic?

Isn’t that like having a storefront but never watching the folks entering to see why they are not buying?

What about PPC landing pages?

Phone book companies focus on print ads but when it comes to your Google ads they send all the traffic to your home page with a proxy “mirror” site. Just as important as the ad in the phone book, you must focus on building landing pages that match the message, questions, answers, and intent of the consumer.

If you invest more than $400.00 per month for management of a Google AdWords & Yahoo campaign that has a monthly budget (bucket) of less than $3,000.00 per month……. you have been and/or are being SCREWED! (in my professional opinion)

Read the rest of this entry »


What is REALLY wrong with Yellow Pages company products and services?

February 4, 2010

Recently a few bankrupt Yellow Pages publishers sent letters to clients disclosing information regarding previous contracts and commitments.  Does this permit them to no longer follow SIZE & Seniority commitments to yellow pages clients?

Did you know that to curb massive revenue losses, as consumers have shifted away from print yellow pages phone books, the yellow pages industry is now offering ad seniority placement buyouts?

When Bell South began publishing mini-books other publishers quickly followed suit. When one does something… so does the other? Let’s not hope so!

Rumor is post-bankruptcy yellow pages directory publishers are considering offering “select clients” the option of jumping phone book directory placement (old contract agreements that outline size and seniority guidelines) with new “display ad placement buyout options”.

Seems like they will do anything to earn a buck, huh?

How can you trust a organization who fails to keep promises clients regarding these advertising investments. They made a commitment to the client that the ad they purchased would be placed by size and seniority from the date when the contract is signed. The print yellow pages industry has held the “decrease your ad and lose your discounts” AXE over clients heads to persuade clients into keeping ads for many years.  Is the Yellow Page industry selling products or services? Is the pricing fair? In my opinion the yellow pages industry needs to stick to products… not services.  Search Marketing service requires fulfillment and constant attention, something the print industry has very little experience in vs local advertising agencies.

Yellow Pages sites are attempting to become the local resellers of Google advertising. As a local search marketer, I don’t think the long contracts that leave little recourse and zero cancellation options in the event the Phone Book Companies PPC Management campaigns are not performing to expectations. In my opinion this is another means of continuing to grind the axe on cancellations. Without flexibility and a diverse offering (product portfolio) they are going to have continued issues with client churn.

Did you know that when you place advertising on Google’s AdWords interface, not only do you own the work produced when hiring a local search marketer, (I do not recommend  signing a 12 month contract , considering Google does not require such a contract to advertise) you also are able to see what changes your account manager and “PPC coach” made to your campaigns

PPC management Account Activity Reports prevent PPC Fraud by Google Guru

Next topic for Today:

Google Maps vs Yellow Pages searches:

Here is the graph continued and combined with Searches for Yellow Pages companies:

"Yellow Pages" is now obsolete

Who has experienced the greatest and/or most rapid decline in the Top IYP (Interactive Yellow Pages) & local search brand sites?


Notice how much Yelp.com gained compared to the decline of Superpages.com? This goes to show the consumer preference for review based sites  (and why Google was tendering an offer for Yelp.com)

FACT:  Did you know that Yellow Pages print directory usage has declined over 50%?

Has your “Yellow Page Rep” told you about the trends away from print and towards digital that is taking place?

Have print ad rates gone down to accomodate for the decline of print yellow pages and the industry fragmentation?

According to Greg Stewart from TMPDM, “Print Yellow Pages accounts for approx. 28% of Local Search.”

Primary Source of Local Business Information

I will go ahead and state my prediction: Yellow Pages Print usage will be less than 24% of Local Search by 2012! That means the phone books of 2005 (that were over 70+% of local search product or service queries) are now less than half as popular as they once were as a medium. (yet more phone books exist today than ever!

Do you think it is time the phone book publishing industry adapt to OPT IN vs a very misleading OPT OUT method? What are your thoughts? Take my poll!

Cheers,

Mike Stewart

“Your Dallas Local Google Guru”

BTW, Webformance Inc. will be offering call tracking to all clients. If you want to track your phone book, direct mail, email, Google, Video, Business Card, or other advertising investments and see which ones are really bringing the calls….. all you need to do is call: 214-267-9553!

“You can’t manage to get the best advertising if you can’t measure what advertising efforts work!” – Mike Stewart the Local Dallas Google Guru