The Cost Of The Virtual!

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Emboldened by his earlier encouraging experiences with the banking hawks Mr Thames Pond decided to carry on from there. He took a pledge to encounter any call from any credit card or banking executive with guts and intelligence. He must ensure that he refuse all unnecessary offers or entrapment. He’d no longer be vulnerable. And then, as usual, he got a call right away.

“Hello… am I speaking to Thames Pond please?”

“Who’s this please?”

“This is Moneycanny Sir, from UC bank!… Mr Pond?”

“Right, this is Pond. Thames Pond!”

“So nice to talk to you again! Good morning Sir!”

“Good morning. Ms err… !”

“Mr Pond… can I take just two minutes of your most precious time?”

“Regarding what?”

“Sir, you are one of our most privileged customers. We’ve reviewed your payment record over the years and found your credit history absolutely sound. Therefore, we’d like to offer you a rare privilege in terms of travel benefits. We are sending you a package of travel vouchers allowing you to have free five-star hotel comforts in various tourist locations you’d like to visit. We need your consent Sir so that we can forward that package to you readily.”

“You are giving me all these free, Milady?”

“Absolutely Sir! This is UC bank’s thanksgiving to one of our most privileged customers.”

“No payment? No hidden costs? Are you sure?”

“Yes Sir! All you have to do is to receive it!”

“Okay… in that case I can consider… Ms… er… !”

“Thanks Sir! Your package is worth more than – bucks. So there will be a service tax and other charges. You will pay an amount of – bucks for receiving the package. We’ll bill this amount in your next card statement… “

“Hey… wait a minute! What are you saying… I’ll have to pay to receive your benefits?”

“Right Sir! You are not making a payment, you are only paying taxes. Your package is worth a lot of money and so service charges apply naturally… “

“Wait a minute… you see… “

“Ours is one of the largest banks of the country with a huge network… “

“Hey! Ms… er… I’m not referring to your bank… I mean you see… that is you and see here! You see… er… you… see… I will have to take leave from my office… book tickets… plan it perfectly to be able to avail of your travel package, right? And considering your five-star privileges I must travel by air… I cannot just crawl and slog to land up there, no? Now, the problem is it may not materialize in that specified period of yours… due to so many reasons… “

“But Sir, we expect you definitely won’t let go of such a money-saving opportunity!”

“… Okay… you expect… I want too. But it is not in my hands. Now, if I fail to avail of your ‘free’ package why on earth should I pay you in advance? You send it… I’ll see, and then if I do travel and enjoy your five-star luxuries please bill the service charges… this makes perfect sense.”

“Sorry Sir! We offer you a value package and therefore we have to charge the service tax now only. Please confirm your agreement so that we can send it across immediately.”

“I’m sorry too… Milady! I cannot give my consent… ” He cut the line with relish.

Mr Pond watched his phone ring again. He rejected the call, deliriously happy. The process repeated itself one more time. Then silence as Mr Pond indulged himself a broad grin.

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Danger – Leather Soles of Shoes Can Be Treacherously Slippery

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LEATHER SOLES

This article explains why you don’t want to wear leather sole dress shoes. The basic reason is that leather is slippery, even when dry.

DRESS SHOES

Dress shoes must serve two functions. First, they should look dressy so that you radiate class and good taste to all who see you. This is especially important if you’re an attorney going to court or meeting clients. Your shoes and haircut will be inspected at these encounters. So you want your shoes to look dressy. Black leather is the best choice for the uppers of your shoes. But what about the soles?

LEATHER SOLES

Leather soles look great but are slippery, even on dry surfaces. Especially when new, they can be hazardous to your health because you can slip when walking on a hard floor, a street, or even a concrete sidewalk!

There are modifications that you can make to leather soles to render them a little less slippery, but these solutions are ultimately unsatisfactory. We’re talking about cutting a crisscross pattern into the leather soles with a sharp knife, or adding rosin to the soles the way boxers used to do to their boxing shoes. Neither solution is adequate. (Incidentally, most boxing shoes today are no longer made with leather soles, indicating that in the world of professional boxing athletes have learned the lesson of avoiding leather soles altogether.)

WHY RUBBER IS BETTER

Rubber soles are better than leather because they provides superior traction on every conceivable surface, including ice and snow. With modern technology, there’s no reason why a dress shoe should have a slippery leather sole. For example, Florsheim provides F-LITE EMAX rubber outsoles on some cap-toe dress shoes. A slightly more casual example is the Nunn Bush Maxwell black leather dress shoe. One of the nicest designs is the Prada ebony leather logo detail cap-toe Oxford with rubber soles, which retailed for $472 in 2011. Other quality dress shoes are also available with rubber soles.

If a shoe’s rubber soles don’t look too sporty, that is, if they don’t have corrugations or obvious sneaker-like patterns that can be seen from the side, then they’re a good choice. A manufacturer who knows about the value of rubber soles and how they provide better traction, is a manufacturer who will also take care of other details, such a style and construction.

It’s incorrect to say that only a leather sole looks dressy. Rubber soles can be constructed to look as dressy as leather, and they’re significantly more comfortable and safer than leather. As image consultants for attorneys and people from all walks of life, we advise clients to not only look dressy but also to wear comfortable safe footwear, and this means well designed rubber soles.

Copyright (c) 2011 William Cane

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Search Engine Marketing – The Past, The Present, And The Future

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1997 – 1999 were the early years of search engine era. Internet Marketing and more specifically search engine marketing mainly consisted of submitting your sites to the search engines. These “voices from the past” are still heard today when this or that Search Engine Optimization company and / or automatic submitting software will claim to do search engine promotion for you by submitting your site to hundreds and thousands engines and directories. The search engines’ indexing programs, called “robots” or “spiders”, looked through all of the HTML code of a page and used some page ranking algorithms that they kept in secret.

Those days were spammers’ Heaven: it was rather easy to get your site ranked high. You could just use your keywords lots of times on the page, in the META tags, HTML comments etc. and hide it from the human visitors by making the text tiny or completely invisible with the help of HTML tricks. The search engines didn’t have any sophisticated technique to recognize this kind of spam, and such sites usually got high rankings very easily. Today, you still can find some samples of this primitive optimization (however you will have to give it a hard try, because nowadays most of such Web projects have been banned by the search engines for excessive keyword usage).

The only exception was Yahoo which has always been indexed by humans who could in most cases identify and ban spamming pages.

Gradually, search engines started recognizing spam and applying corresponding penalties to Web pages using spam methods. However, search engine optimizers were always one step behind the search engines in finding new ways of cheating the indexing algorithms. Hence each search engine is committed to delivering only relevant results to its visitors, the engines needed to take control away from the spammers and auto-submitters. Many began to try different ways of indexing.

The Rise of Google

If someone is asked today about the first search engine to remember, the answer will be Google in 100% cases. Google has started its way to be the King of search engines in 2000 and in 2002 its right for this title has been firmly established, with around 70% of searches done on the Internet. While other search engines were focusing on transforming to universal portals, Google kept a simple and – which has become its distinctive feature – fast interface that solely targeted delivering relevant search results.

Google also developed advanced features such as indexing and searching PDF (portable document format) and SWF (shockwave flash) files. Additionally, Google’s sophisticated techniques to use the “off-the-page” factors made it extremely spam-resistant. Google’s dominance has become steady in 2000 with Yahoo having switched from Inktomi to Google as secondary search result provider. Now, Yahoo uses the combination of Overture’s and own search software and index repository, thus being fully independent on Google, however, without any slightest impact on the dominance of the latter.

Global Consolidation

By 2001, the results of all major engines were produced from a number of mixed / hybrid sources. Yahoo search results combined Yahoo-directory listings, Overture (PPC) results, and Google results. MSN provided results from Overture (PPC), LookSmart , and Inktomi.

The years 2002 and 2003 brought major reshuffles among search engines: in this period, Google purchased Blogger.com, Yahoo bought Inktomi, and AltaVista and AllTheWeb became a part of Overture. Also, there were many shifts caused by emerging search engine partnerships. Further in this course we will give you a complete and actual chart of relationships between the contemporary search engines.

Search Engine Marketing Today

If you thought nowadays search engine marketing can still be done by acquiring (and using) an auto-submission software, drop this idea since now on. Search engine marketing requires an integrated approach to improving site content, quality and popularity. For a Web site to reach its top potential, it must incorporate target audience analysis, competitive analysis, cost per click optimization, and – last but not least – copywriting and copyediting. And, because things keep changing, search engine marketers need to devote a good deal of time staying on top of the SEO industry and its trends.

Today very few (and mostly inexperienced) optimizers / marketers would use spam methods to achieve high ranking. In many cases, spamming and the so-called “black-hat” SEO is recognized by automatic spiders, for these become more and more intelligent. Even though we describe major spamming methods in the end of this course, we do it only in the sake of your awareness. We do NOT recommend using them, as there’s no guarantee at all they can help, whereas it’s very possible that your Web visibility can be seriously damaged as a result.

The Future of Search Engine Marketing

Search engines have already developed into sophisticated systems, and no doubt they will continue to enhance their technical aspect, with improved capabilities to index pages that are located deeply within the site (many links away from the initial page). Also, their abilities to handle dynamically generated pages (e.g. shopping carts) can be expected to grow. Among other perspective trends are advanced non-HTML content indexing (such as PDF and graphics), improved ability to rapidly integrate new content such as news using XML feeds or other technology, organization of search results into logical categories (sometimes referred to as clustering), and other advanced features. For insights into the future of search, you could visit Google Labs ( http://labs.google.com). This is the beta area where Google showcases some of its upcoming technologies.

However, the traditional “highest-bidder” approach makes SEM feel more and more like traditional print advertising. The Integrated Approach to SEM anticipates that in future, best marketing efforts will aim to leverage the three components: paid advertising and analytics, all-sided site and content optimization and qualitative off-the-page factors enhancement. That is why we prefer to call the functions provided by Web CEO “Search Engine Marketing” rather than “Search Engine Optimization”. When all is said and done, it is the traffic you get and the way this traffic converts that matters – not even your site rank on a search engine. You can rank worse than your competitor, yet the percentage of your visitors that turn into buyers will be so high that you actually outperform your competitor several times.

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