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Ebook Cover Sells Your Book

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2008
by Sck

Author: sanjeev

Do you buy ugly books? Probably not. Book covers sell books. Ask any bookstore manager. Ask any successful Web site that sells books. “Don’t judge a book by its cover.” We’ve all heard this saying before but the truth is, we all do it anyway. First impressions greatly influence how we judge people. Impressions are no less important when it comes to the items we buy. For example, imagine that you are looking through a magazine. You come to a page that has two nearly identical ads side by side. Both ads are selling books on the same subject. However, in one ad the book is shown with a plain cover with text only and no illustrations. In the other ad, the book has a colorful, illustrated cover, along with the text. Now, which ad is likely to catch your interest? Sure, the title and other text will go a long way to inform of the book’s contents. But, unconsciously you are going to be attracted to the illustrated cover. Your impression will be that this book has greater value. Simply put, you decide that “what you see is what you get” and that is usually enough to sway you to buy that particular book. Let’s say you visit two different Web sites, both selling an ebook about starting a home-based business. On one site, the book cover is a flat rectangle representing the basic shape of the front of a book. Furthermore, while it has some color and illustrations, these images have nothing to do with the subject of the book, plus the photo is a little blurry. The second site shows a three-dimensional ebook image. It “looks” like a real book. The picture conveys a mom working on a computer with a child on her lamp, representing a home-based computer business. Added to that, the photo and the colors on the cover image all work well together. Now, which ebook are you likely to be drawn to? Which one gives you a sense that it has greater value? Clearly, the one represented by the well-designed, 3D cover with a relevant image will influence you in a more positive way, and will more likely induce you to purchase that book. Every successful marketer learned back in Marketing 101 that the packaging will most often determine how well an item will sell. Successful Internet marketers of ebooks and software already know this. These ebook and software sellers understand the importance of the cover design (book or box). They use quality 3D images to represent their products and increase their perceived value. Let’s put it this way: You may have produced the world’s most important book on your subject, but who is going to know if nobody reads it? A quality ebook image is vital to your ebook sales! If you are selling a book on the Internet (heck, even if you are giving it away), your marketing success is going to depend on how potential buyers perceive its value. Put a little more crudely, dress your ebook in rags, showing a flat cover with no illustrations or inappropriate images, and no one will want it. Display your ebook in the equivalent of a tuxedo, a 3D cover with well-thought-out images, colors and title text, and you will instantly boost your ebook sales!

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Know the educational side of social networking sites

Saturday, June 21st, 2008
by Sue

Those hooked to social networking sites like Orkut, MySpace and Facebook, do not just kill their time online, but learn a range of new things, says a new University of Minnesota study, which has detailed the educational benefits of such websites.Orkut

Countering all the previous findings, this first-of-its kind study has also highlighted that low-income students are in many ways just as technologically savvy as their well-off counterparts.

The study was carried out for six months on students of thirteen urban high schools in the Midwest, between ages 16 to 18, belonging to families whose incomes were at or below the county median income (at or below 25,000 dollars) and who were taking part in an after school program, Admission Possible, aimed at improving college access for low-income youth.

It was found that 94 percent of the students participating in the study used the Internet, 8MySpace2 percent go online at home and 77 percent had a profile on a social networking site.

On being asked what they learn from using social networking sites, the students listed technology skills as the top lesson, followed by creativity, being open to new or diverse views and communication skills.

Other than the surveyed students, a follow-up, randomly selected subset were asked questions about their Internet activity as they navigated MySpace.

“What we found was that students using social networking sites are actually practicing the kinds of 21st century skills we want them to develop to be successful today,” saidFacebook Christine Greenhow, a learning technologies researcher in the university’s College of Education and Human Development and principal investigator of the study.

She added: “Students are developing a positive attitude towards using technology systems, editing and customizing content and thinking about online design and layout. They’re also sharing creative original work like poetry and film and practicing safe and responsible use of information and technology. The Web sites offer tremendous educational potential.”

Qualities that a good domain should have

Friday, June 20th, 2008
by Sck

Picking a good domain name is vital to the success or failure of your business. You may wonder how something so small and slight could have an impact on your business, but the best way to compare this is to think about how important location is to an offline business? If you do not have a good location, you are likely not going to get many visitors. The same holds true for a good domain name as well.

Here, you will discover the six qualities that a good domain name must have to ensure maximum success.

1.) Memorable

A good domain name must be memorable. Yes, we have the option of book marking a site that we enjoy; however, the hard truth is that many people do not take advantage of book marking. Therefore, it is necessary to ensure that your domain name is one that is easy to remember and makes an impact.

It should be easy, memorable, and straight forward. Avoid complexity and it is usually a good idea to avoid initials in most cases. The only exception to this rule would be if the letters represented the website name or business and was still easy to remember.

2.) Short and SweetShort and Sweet

Twenty characters is the maximum that you should use for a good domain name, ten is even better. A long and complicated domain name is not going to help you. Your best bet is to keep it short and sweet. A great domain name is less than ten characters; a good domain name is less than twenty characters. A bad domain name goes over twenty characters.

3.) Be Choosy On Your Extension

There are several domain extensions available to you such as .com, .net, .org, .tv, .info, .gov and so on. However, some of these work better than others and are more memorable at the same time. It is important to understand that some extensions alsoChoosy have restrictions such as .gov is reserved specifically for government websites. The .com domain name extension is the best by far, because it is the most widely used.

The .net extension is the second best, but be prepared most people will type .com before they will .net if they cannot remember which extension you use. The type of extension you use might also have a bearing on the type of website. Some people have come to expect certain things when a particular extension. For example, .org is typically used by not-for-profit organization and educational websites. The .info extensions are generally used for informational websites.

4.) Spelling Means Everything

Having a difficult to spell domain name could cause you some trouble. Again, many do not even make use of bookmarks; therefore, if your domain name is hard to spell, they may end up at a competitor’s website. A good domain name contains only words that are easy to pronounce, have a good combination of words or letters that are used in every day language, and does not contain foreign words that may be difficult to non-native speakers.

5.) Tells a Story

A good domain name should be descriptive and tell a story. In other words, when your visitors, customers, or potential customers see your domain name they should instantly be able to tell what they are going to find. For instance, if it is your business, a business name is good.

6.) Avoid Fancy Symbols

It is never a good idea to use numbers or hyphens within your domain name. Even if your domain name is memorable, many people will not pay attention to the symbols, which could lead them to someone else’s website.

Must Know - E mail etiquetts

Wednesday, June 18th, 2008
by Ann

Communication has come a long way. And, with the ever-rising popularity of the Internet as a vehicle for formal business communication, Netiquette, a relatively new concept, is a must-know for every professional. It is a set of
standards of acceptable behaviour you need to follow when online, and includes rules you need to follow while sending and receiving formal business missives.

Why do you require netiquette? For two reasons: It creates an impression of professionalism. And it ensures the correct message gets across. Some simple rules, if followed while sending e-mail, make all the difference between a good professional impression and a bad one.

Why are you writing to me?

State the purpose of your e-mail — it is a good practice to have a subject line that explains what follows and how high on the priority list it should be. This information has to be in two places:

i. The subject box, which is part of the compose e-mail form. Here, state the reason for your mail. If you are writing it to apply for leave, you could say ‘Leave application’.

ii. Subject line in the main e-mail body; just as you would in any formal business letter. Here, you could say:

Sub: Leave application, April 1-April 15 2006

Greet me right

Address people you don’t know as Mr, Mrs, Ms or Dr. Address someone by first name only if you are on a first name basis with each other; it is okay, under these circumstances, to use first names on a formal business missive.

If you do not know the name of the person, or whether it is a man or a woman, it is best to address the person concerned as: Dear Sir / Madam, Whomsoever it may concern, The Manager; etc.

And your point is? Get to the point.

Verbosity and extreme terseness are two ends of a spectrum, you should try for the middle — state your point without sounding rudely brief or chatty.

Remember to state your point and what you expect from the reader of your mail in clear terms. There should also be a clear structure — an introduction, body and conclusion.

2 use or not 2 use…

Never use ’sms-ese’ or informal abbreviations in your email. U instead of you, 2 instead of to or too, plz instead of please, thanx instead of thanks and 4 instead of for are a strict no-no.

While are all right for personal e-mail, they show a level of informality not encouraged in formal business communication. Frequently used abbreviations you may use include FYI (for your information), Pvt., Ltd., Co., etc., OK.

The magic of spells

Though using a spell check is a must, don’t rely on it completely. The most common areas of errors and confusion are — two, too and to.

For eg:

Wrong: I would like two order too other books two.

Correct: I would like to order two other books, too.

A hit or miss effort with spellings does not help — use a dictionary.

Write right

Good grammar is very important. A correctly framed sentence, with proper punctuation in place, is what you should aim at. Be very careful with commas, especially, as they change the meaning of a sentence.

A good example would be:

Wrong: All foreign tea, tree, oils are free from duty.

Correct: All foreign tea tree oils are free from duty.

Use action words and ‘I’ statements — they evoke a sense of reassurance in the reader. For eg:

On receipt of your earlier mail, I/ we have already set things in motion and I/ we assure you that you will receive your order on time.

I was responsible for the day-to-day working and administration of the office; planning, scheduling, and achieving targets were my areas of contribution.

Mind your P’s and Q’s

Though a friendly tone is encouraged, basic corporate etiquette rules do apply. So, maintain a well-mannered, friendly polite stance.

Gender-neutral language is politically correct — couch your e-mail accordingly. This essentially means you should not assume a person’s gender on the basis of the designation. Keep the e-mail neutral.

Attachment breeds detachment

With worms, viruses, and spam, nobody wants to open attachments anymore, not even if the e-mail is from one’s own mother. If you do need to send an attachment, confirm this with the recipient first.

Like an arrow shot from a bow

An e-mail is like the spoken word — once sent, you can’t recall it. By the time you press the recall button, chances are it has already reached and, with it, your recall message. This compounds the embarrassment. So, think before you dash off something.

The KISS rules

Keep It Short and Simple. Use simple sentences, words that don’t need a dictionary. Use universal formats — not all systems support HTML rich style, or tables and tabs. You could lose much by way of appearances if your recipient’s system can’t support all that fancy formatting you spent hours working on.

Smile please

Smileys and other emoticons are a way to add ‘body language’ to e-mail. When used appropriately and sparingly, smileys do bring a touch of personalisation to otherwise impersonal mail. Of course, due care with regards to the appropriateness of the communication must be taken.

You would not use emoticons in job application covering letters, while delivering bad news (delay in order, loss of job, etc). Use discretion.

Emoticons are generally used to add comfort to the communication or soften the blow. The most common smiley faces are probably these:

:-) OR :) Just a smile / can be used for greeting or making a point gently.

:-( OR :( To show mild displeasure or that something is not going the way you want it to.

;-) Equivalent to a wink — used to convey that a particular comment is a joke and not to be taken too seriously.

;-> To be used sparingly, and with people you know well, as this signifies a provocative comment.

Humor doesn’t travel

What seems funny to you may be offensive to someone else. Remember, humor doesn’t travel well. Jokes about religion, sports, political figures, and women may come across as tasteless and should be avoided at all costs.

Swift and prompt

Be prompt in replying. That is why we have the Internet. If a prompt response were not expected, one would use the postal service.


IF YOU WRITE IN CAPITALS, IT SEEMS AS IF YOU ARE SHOUTING. You could get really angry responses to your e-mail if you do so, and trigger a flame war.

Fw. Fw. Fw.

Do not forward chain letters — simply delete them. Also avoid forwarding them to professional contacts.

Shh… It’s a secret

If it is a secret, don’t send it via e-mail — you never know where it will end up.


Keep the thread of the message as part of your mail; this will help keep the context handy. The thread is the previous message/s in context to which this e-mail is being written. Last but not least, please, please read the e-mail before you click the ‘Send’ button. It will save you a lot of embarrassment and misunderstanding.

Want to make blogging work for your business?

Monday, June 16th, 2008
by Sck

Blogging is quickly becoming the new preferred for small business marketers. Mainly because of the amazing results they received when they blog regularly. And publicity isn’t the only benefit to blogging. There are many ways that blogging can add merit to your business. In fact, The Wall Street Journal recently featured The CWAHM blog in an article on how blogging can help small businesses create a buzz for their products and services. The results from this were amazing and prove that blogging truly works:

Here are the top ten ways to use blogs to increase your business revenue.

1. Ad revenue - Offering paid advertising on your blog is one of the easiest ways to see tangible evidence of the benefits of blogging.

2. Link swaps - Swapping links with other like-minded bloggers increases your standing with search engines. One of the biggest blogs available,, recently completed a survey in an attempt to find where bloggers get the most traffic? The overwhelming response? Google at 46%. This shows us how important search engine ranking are. Link swaps are just one way to improve yours.

3. Reviews - Another growing trend online is that of the customer review. People appreciate reading the thoughts of others before they purchase a product. It doesn’t seem to matter how big or small the product, either. Posting reviews of books you’ve read, CDs you love, etc, is a great way to generate traffic for your blog.

4. Free offers - Who doesn’t love a freebie? There are many ways of using freebies to your advantage.You can offer a free ebook when someone signs up for your newsletter is an easy way to build your subscriber base. Many blogs also offer contests for those who post comments or interact in other ways on the blog.

5. Blog tours - Being a part in a blog tour is like being the next stop along the railroad. If set up correctly, the tour will send participants from one blog to the next to read more about whatever topic the tour is covering. I’ve participated in many blog tours for book releases. It’s a lot of fun and a great way to bring new readers to your blog.

6. Networking - It goes without saying that building relationships withblogs.bmp people is one of the oldest ways of gaining long-time, loyal customers (or in this case, readers). Taking part in the comments discussion on blogs and forums is a great way to do this. The key, though, is to be authentic. Don’t simply blast places with the link to your blog; take part in the discussion and provide useful information - not just your URL.

7. Directories - Listing your blog in blog directories is probably not the best way to generate traffic, but it can be useful in certain ways. It’s a great way to connect with other like-minded bloggers and possibly generate some link exchanges, etc.

8. Press/Media - Getting media attention can be challenging. One great way to bring your blog to the attention of the media is to send out Press Releases when something newsworthy happens on your site. For instance, when I offered a free e-book on my site for Mother’s Day I put together a press release to announce it to the world.

9. Consistency - Posting on a regular basis is key. Try to find a schedule that works for you and stick to it. Even if you can’t blog every day, work to get posts out there two to three times a week. Most blogging software, including Wordpress and Blogger, allow you to set the date and time our post will be published. Utilize tools like this to keep your blog consistently updated with fresh, new content.

10. Updates - Finding ways to keep your readers informed is a sure-fire way to keep them coming back to your blog. There are a quite a few ways of accomplishing this, such as offering a newsletter, setting up a account, and making your RSS feeds easy to find and subscribe to.


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