Archive for the ‘Internet Marketing’ Category

Entrepreneurs and Students Wanted ASAP!

Posted on February 27th, 2013 by AndrewHazenCom  |  No Comments »

Admittedly I have a MAJOR addiction….domain names and start-ups; there I said it!!

Over the past 17+ years I have been procuring domain names and creating multi-million dollar web-based business models. Some of these have been developed and are currently generating millions of dollars of annual revenue but many, many domain names and business models sit idle waiting for YOU and/or your contacts to come a long and take charge!!

So here’s what I am looking for…..

- You have a CAN DO attitude
- You are a Type A person that does not ‘turn on’ at 9am and ‘turn off’ at 5pm…
- You do NOT feel entitled to a one-hour lunch and five personal days a year….
- You don’t just talk a great game….you EXECUTE and get shit done!
- You love to part of a team that takes an idea and turns it into a PROFITABLE business
- While You need guidance, you do NOT need hand holding….
- You are ready to be compensated based on performance and growth!!

You can be a student, intern, part-time, full-time; whatever…I am open!!

I look forward to hearing from YOU or your contacts
@AndrewHazen

Change of Direction for Monthlys(.)com

Posted on September 19th, 2012 by AndrewHazenCom  |  No Comments »

I received the following email today from the VP of Business Development for Monthlys.com –
——————————-
Dear Monthlys Merchant-

Good Morning. As fellow business owners, I am sure you are aware that the life of a start-up company can be fast and ever-changing. Monthlys has been evaluating its business model and searching for which pieces are gaining traction and which are not. This past week Monthlys.com has merged with another start-up here in Chicago and we have a new executive management team moving forward. That said, the decision has been made to change the overall strategic direction of the company moving forward. Rather than focusing on selling products and services on a subscription basis, Monthlys is going to focus on another core aspect of our business, a mobile application designed to provide small local service businesses a way to get their existing clients paying for their services through our mobile platform. This will be used instead of paper invoicing and the accounts receivables process that most local businesses currently utilize.

That said, we have decided at this time to change course and make a shift in our focus moving forward. Sadly, this means we will not be continuing on with you or your business in our current capacity. Sadly, there will not be any new orders moving ahead. Monthlys.com (the site) will be coming down. Monthlys is not going away, but we are taking a short hiatus to focus on this other segment of our business. We are excited for the changes and look forward to re-launching ourselves in the new future.

Lastly, I wanted to take this opportunity to personally thank you for your interest in partnering with Monthlys. We sincerely appreciate the opportunity you provided us and we wish you and your business great success. We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused you. We know this is sudden and we deeply apologize for that. We wish we could have sent you all a lot more orders. We appreciate you giving us a shot and working with us as we launched our product earlier this year.

Monthlys.com is currently processing all outstanding merchant payments and those checks will be going out on-time and on schedule this week. If you are expecting a final payment please be on the lookout for it in the mail.

If you have been pre-paid by Monthlys for any long-term subscription plans, we have been in touch with you directly. We expect that you will continue to honor these shipments for your consumers per our agreement with you.
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While it may be sad or disappointing to see Monthlys.com “change direction” you certainly have to give them some credit for trying and launching the platform in the first place…if not they may have always be thinking “If we only launched Monthlys.com as a monthly offering platform we could have built something big”….now they know!

@AndrewHazen

Court Orders Search Engines and Social Sites to De-Index Site

Posted on May 1st, 2012 by AndrewHazenCom  |  No Comments »

According to SFGate, Hermes International SCA, maker of Birkin handbags and silk scarves, won a judgment that includes $100 million in damages against 34 websites that sold fake copies of its luxury goods.

U.S. District Judge Denise Cote in New York ruled the sites, which didn’t defend themselves in court, sold items that infringed upon at least nine Hermes products including Birkin and Kelly handbags, wallets, watches, belts and jewelry.

Cote said the websites, with names such as HermesBags- Outlet.net, HermesBirkin-Bags.org and HermesOutletStore.Com, were liable for federal trademark counterfeiting and infringement. They had also disregarded her previous temporary orders restraining them from selling counterfeit Hermes items, Cote said.

The court also ordered that any money held by PayPal Inc. to be given to Hermes and ordered Internet Service Providers (ISP’s) and merchant account providers, as well as third-party processors and search engines including Google Inc., Microsoft Corp.’s Bing and Yahoo! Inc., to immediately stop providing services to the defendants or links to their sites.

The judge also directed social media companies including Facebook Inc. and Twitter Inc. to “de-index” and remove from any search pages links to the infringing defendants.

The order to the search engines and to the social networking companies to de-index the sites is an interesting one.

@AndrewHazen

NY Lawyers Approved for Deal of the Day Marketing

Posted on April 17th, 2012 by AndrewHazenCom  |  No Comments »

A dear attorney friend shared an article with me today that I found quite interesting given our recent success in selling products with daily deal sites….

Lawyers (of which I am one) who provide services to small businesses and individuals are particularly attracted to Internet applications that enable them to target potential clients before the client walks in the firm’s door.

Recently, the New York State Bar Association Committee on Professional Ethics issued an opinion in which it explored whether lawyers can market their services by using a deal of the day or a group coupon website. The committee’s opinion generally supported the use of these websites, offering attorneys yet another avenue to attract clients and develop new business, albeit with caveats and requirement as to how attorneys must conduct themselves in connection with these offerings under the Rules of Professional Conduct.

Based upon the facts, the committee opined as to whether an attorney may market legal services by participating in a “daily deal” or “group coupon” website. In its opinion, the committee pointed out that the use of a daily deal or group coupon website by a lawyer as a means of marketing legal services raises a number of issues:

• Whether the arrangement is an improper payment for a referral;

• Whether the amount received by a lawyer could, under certain circumstances, result in a prohibited excessive fee;

• Whether statements made by or on behalf of a lawyer are false or misleading or otherwise violate rules regarding lawyer advertising; and

• Whether the logistical arrangement of payment in advance for a legal service, before a lawyer has had the opportunity to check for conflicts or determine whether the lawyer is competent to perform the service and whether the client needs the service, constitutes a premature and improper formation of a lawyer-client relationship.

You can read the entire article here

@AndrewHazen

UH OH: Google Salesperson Promises “SEO Benefits” To Merchants Who Sign Up For New “Offers” Product

Posted on June 27th, 2011 by AndrewHazenCom  |  No Comments »

According to BusinessInsider.com, Google is gearing up to launch its Groupon-killer, Offers, in New York.

After talking with merchants who have signed up to provide deals through Offers, we’ve learned that Google’s deals product provides merchants several key advantages relative to Groupon, advantages that could shake up the deals business.

We’ve also learned that at least one Google Offers salesperson in New York is promising merchants that signing up Offers will provide “SEO benefits.”

Specifically, a merchant tells us, the Google salesperson promised that merchants who sign up for the program will become “No. 1 in Google.”

We/I will be watching this very carefully!

Trump Says “You’re Hired” to Prime Visibility

Posted on May 12th, 2011 by AndrewHazenCom  |  No Comments »

Trump Says You’re Hired to Prime Visibility

I am extremely proud to share that the company I founded, Prime Visibility, a full-service digital marketing firm, announced this week that it has been retained to work with the Trump Organization on several digital marketing initiatives.

Prime Visibility was hired to design, build and market TrumpVegasCondos.com and TrumpLV.com, two websites dedicated to the Trump International Hotel Las Vegas. Prime Visibility is currently optimizing and marketing both sites, building an online presence for the property and increasing the amount of qualified leads interested in purchasing the property’s luxury condominium units. Since the project’s launch, both websites have seen a dramatic increase in search results, traffic, page one rankings, and leads.

Prime Visibility was also hired to redesign 40WallStreet.com, the website for The Trump Building, the world renowned 72-story landmark address and tallest office building in downtown New York City. Prime Visibility completely redesigned the website in addition to adding a user-friendly navigation menu and content management system.

Most recently, Prime Visibility was retained to redesign and optimize TrumpChicago.com , the website promoting condominium units available for purchase at the Trump International Hotel & Tower® Chicago, and has been working on various digital marketing projects for the Ivanka Trump luxury jewelry collection.

We are extraordinarily excited to be working with the Trump Organization; they are extremely savvy and have passionate and devoted people on their team. Working with them is very rewarding.

I will also disclose, as a domainer, that I purchased TrumpVegas.com in an auction but of course I am giving the domain to my client and it already forwards to the project we are working on….

@AndrewHazen

Paid-Search Budgets Rise 26% For High-Tech Firms

Posted on April 15th, 2011 by AndrewHazenCom  |  No Comments »

According to MediaPost, High-tech companies spent 26% more on paid-search advertising in 1Q, compared with the year-ago quarter, and 6.4% sequentially, according to a report that search marketing firm Covario plans to release this week.

While the year-over-year percentage might seem a little steep, it’s important to note that spending dropped nearly 15% between 4Q 2009 and first-quarter 2010. Not since 2007, however, have companies in the high-tech industry invested more in paid-search campaigns during the first quarter, compared with the fourth.

In Covario’s 2010 end-of-year analysis, the company recommended that clients increase global paid-search budgets by 15% to 20% for 2011, compared with last year’s budgets. The company suggested the necessary increase would help high-tech companies maintain market share.

Cost-per-click (CPC) increases drove two-thirds of the growth in spending during the past two quarters worldwide. Improved monetization techniques by the search engines, such as Google, as well as purchases of expensive generic search terms propelled increases.

Covario expects click-through rates, CPCs and overall spending to increase on Google this year as a result of the impact Google Instant has on transferring clicks from natural search to paid search. The company “documented a rise of between 3% and 4% of all clicks transferring to paid search, meaning advertisers need to spend more on paid search for keywords where they do rank highly on natural search in order to maintain the same levels of traffic and conversions,” according to the report. (These are the listings where clicks will be transferred to paid search.)

Globally, advertisers spent 25% more on Google in the first quarter, compared with the year-ago quarter. Spending on Yahoo rose 28%; and Bing, 3.7%. Bing’s strength in the U.S. market drove weak investments throughout APAC and EMEA in the world, according to Covario.

In conversations with clients, Covario says the rise of CPCs and CPA rates in the U.S. continues to prompt companies to look overseas for large gains in paid-search advertising returns.

When breaking out campaign budgets for paid search globally this year, the Americas will get 60%, up between 8% and 12%, compared with the prior year. The APAC region will account for 22% of budgets — up between 20% and 25%; and EMEA at 18%, up between 30% and 35%, compared with 2010.

As for the Americas, Covario expects market share for Bing and Yahoo on the combined platform to stabilize this year at between 25% and 30%.

Google Ordered to Disclose Parked Domains Metrics

Posted on April 12th, 2011 by AndrewHazenCom  |  No Comments »

According to MediaPost, A judge presiding over a potential class-action lawsuit by search marketers against Google has ordered the company to divulge financial metrics associated with its “parked domain” and “errors” program, which place ads on sites with no editorial content.

The data that Google must disclose concerns its assessment of the quality of sites within its AdSense network, including its parked domain and errors pages. Among other information, Google must reveal the “conversion score value of the property source” — defined in the court order as “a metric Google uses to price clicks from Web sites contained in its network.”

Also, Google must reveal the “smart pricing discount,” or the discount that Google applies to clicks on some of its AdSense properties.

U.S. District Court Magistrate Judge Howard Lloyd in San Jose, Calif. ruled that Google should share this information with the marketers that are suing. The theory is that it sheds light into Google’s pricing formula for its parked domain program.

The legal battle between the marketers and Google dates back to 2008, when several companies filed lawsuits complaining that Google shouldn’t have placed them in its AdSense for Domains and AdSense for Errors programs. Those programs often serve ads on typo sites that people tend to visit by accident.

The marketers alleged that such pages are low-quality and yield fewer purchases or other conversions than ads that appear on Google’s search results pages. The marketers also said they believed that clicks on ads on parked domains “were unlikely to lead to desirable business outcomes, and that placement on such pages could damage their brands.”

Google counters that parked-domain ads “perform as well as or better than ads on Search and Display Network sites.” The company also argues in court papers that it didn’t mislead or harm any of the plaintiffs by placing their ads on parked domains or error sites. Google recently lost a bid to dismiss the lawsuit before trial, which means the marketers that are suing can continue to gather evidence in the case.

Stay tuned…..

@AndrewHazen

Online Opportunities With Your Offline Network

Posted on March 14th, 2011 by AndrewHazenCom  |  No Comments »

We’re all aware that strategic networking can significantly increase our business while allowing us to meet and help others.  Companies such as LinkedIn base their business model around it… But it is shocking to realize that a majority of business networking exists offline, which leaves tremendous Internet and other electronic networking opportunities unexplored with your offline network.

Traditional networking involves people getting together to discuss objectives, such as potential new customers, and searching for ways to help others attract business. Those that excel at networking are continuously seeking out new methods to assist others, such as asking existing clients if they are interested in the products or services of others in their network.

In addition to in-person events, marketers need to consider how Internet marketing can play an integral role in a successful networking campaign. Take the following case, for example: Lauren Hutton, a very well-known model and actress, has her own makeup line available at www.LaurenHutton.com. In searching for ways that Lauren can effectively and efficiently promote her product line, here is how the strategic Internet networking component comes into play:  After first identifying Lauren’s target audience, which is females ranging in age from 35 to 75, the best strategic path would include the following key elements:

An introductory offer sent via email
Such an email enables Lauren to inexpensively test offers such as discounts, free shipping and the ever-popular “buy one item and get another at a special price.” But first, we/Lauren must determine who will receive the offers. Again, Internet networking comes into play. Given Lauren’s target audience and our offline network/contacts, New York-based LoveMyShoes.com is a great strategic partner because its’ customer base represents the perfect demographic for Lauren’s product offering(s).

The LoveMyShoes.com email list contains 250,000+ names and email addresses of women aged 35 to 65 who buy shoes on the web. The bonus is that these women are already experienced and accustomed to purchasing online, so they should be comfortable shopping and buying Lauren’s products at LaurenHutton.com.

Lauren may encourage LoveMyShoes.com to distribute her information/email blast for free by either cross-promoting the site’s products in her email blasts or on her site, or by offering to compensate the company on a cost-per-acquisition basis. For example, for every order that Lauren receives based on the email blast, she might compensate LoveMyShoes.com to the tune of $15. Once details of the partnership are ironed out, LoveMyShoes sends the offer to its database directly, making it CAN-SPAM compliant.

Many other online networking opportunities also exist for Lauren. One of the people in my offline network sells high-end homes with values exceeding $1 million. Thus, his email list is a perfect fit for Lauren as it contains affluent women in the 35 – 50 age range. The same goes for high-end gyms and spas; targeting women via email who are fitness-obsessed and who want to look great too.

A display ad or promotion on a strategic partner’s website
In addition to introductory emails, acquiring real estate on networking contacts’ websites also works extremely well by putting businesses in front of their ideal audiences.

Take Metro Candy, for example. Prior to the Halloween season, it networked with a large Halloween costume website. The two websites promoted each other via display ads and promos. The partnership offers a prime example of Internet networking at its finest — both a trick and a treat that gave customers looking for Halloween costumes access to a huge stash of candy at a deep discount!

Networking affiliates
Does establishing networking affiliates involve paying other parties to be included in their email blasts or on their websites? Not necessarily. Marketers can avoid the exchange of money in online networking relationships and instead pursue free cross-promotions among related brands.

Another acceptable alternative involves offering others in your networking group a flat fee for each order or lead you acquired, which is typically referred to as cost-per-acquisition (CPA) deal. In a cost-per-acquisition model, one party compensates the other if and only if a beneficial conversion occurs, which could be in the form of a sale, lead, download, signup or other action.

When networking, it pays to take the extra step of exploring the many existing online opportunities within your offline circle. Think of it as profitable social networking for your business!

@AndrewHazen

Looking Beyond Your Rankings

Posted on February 10th, 2011 by AndrewHazenCom  |  No Comments »

Are you satisfied with your current search engine rankings?  Do you REALLY know the impact these rankings have on your business?  Do you look beyond your rankings?  Do you know how?

We all strive to achieve Top 5 organic search rankings in Google, Yahoo & Bing because most believe that having this prime visibility alone will generate business…this is not always so!  Other key metrics should be analyzed to ascertain the impact and effect of ALL your search rankings, not just those in the Top 5.

In reviewing your search engine rankings, the following questions should be asked:

  • How much traffic do the keyword and your ranking generate?
  • How many conversions does the ranking/traffic produce?
  • How does the traffic and conversions compare to when the ranking is higher/lower?
  • Have the web pages listed in the search results been optimized for conversion?
  • How many pages does a visitor from that keyword view?
  • How much time on site does the visitor average if they enter on a particular keyword?

Asking these questions and knowing this vital information is critical to the success of your business!  Think about it, you may proudly rank #1 in Google for a keyword that produces 5,000 visitors a week; however if you only generate 12 sales from that ranking (i.e. a 0.25% conversion rate) that’s not good!  Therein also lies the difference between a “SEO company” and a full service digital agency like Prime Visibility that goes beyond the rankings and does a deep dive into analytics and conversion optimization…

Obviously, I am a big proponent of analytics and conversion data….it drives our clients’ businesses and not knowing what happens beyond your rankings is like driving blindfolded on the highway.  If you are interested in learning more about analyzing your rankings, please do not hesitate to contact us.

@AndrewHazen