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Photoblogging Made Easy: Exploring Gallery Types

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Originally posted on WordPress.com News:

Photographs capture moments and bring life and color to our blogs, websites, and portfolios. In this age of digital storytelling, images are key elements in our narratives. With over 200 themes in the WordPress.com Theme Showcase , some designed for photography , there are many ways for you to tell your stories.

Photographers and photo bloggers can choose from a number of versatile premium themes to take their passion to the next level. But you don’t need a premium theme, or even a photoblogging theme, to display your images in polished, professional layouts. Let’s take a look at gorgeous image showcases on free themes that are great for personal blogging and writing, created with the built-in gallery options in your Media Manager.

Bushwick

Square tiles gallery on the Bushwick theme

First up is Bushwicka lightweight blogging theme we launched at the end of December. While ideal for bloggers…

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Twitter Services

Twitter Services

Ngozi Godwell @wainewarren Media Services

(Please visit my Twitter page to see what’s possible)

  • We create accounts for you.
  • We create tweets that are pre-approved before we tweet them. These include inspirational quotes, links to your site/events/ articles and products.
  • We grow your accounts using key word searches we find followers who will be interested in your work.)
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A little bit more about WordPress

Proven Track Record – WordPress is a platform that is currently managing near 25% of all new websites. Respected publications such as The New York Times and CNN employ WordPress for their website.
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 The Pin It button for browsers is a handy little tool that allows you to pin from websites, even if you’re not on Pinterest..

Want To Start Your Own Business?

3 Skills Every Entrepreneur Needs

Want to start your own business?

These three assets will lay the groundwork for success.

Surfer Skills 2

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While the young business grad was outwardly enthusiastic, I sensed an undercurrent of fear. With bright eyes and animated hands, she had spent 10 minutes describing her plans and goals. However, I could tell that–staring into the abyss of her adult life–she was a bit uneasy about her future.

She was right to be a little afraid. When carving a niche in the world of business and entrepreneurship, academic knowledge is rarely enough to guarantee success. To actually compete and win–particularly as an entrepreneur–you’ll need some additional skills.

I’d like to share three I picked up along the way.

Perseverance

We’ve all heard of the “fight or flight” response. There’s a third F-word (no, not that one) that often accompanies career fear: “freeze.”

When faced with an uncertain future, many people choose to do nothing. They worry and whittle away time on meaningless make-work. They’ll tell everyone about their great plans, but will spin and spit and do almost anything other than take positive steps to move their lives forward.

The simple truth is that every monumental endeavor can only be achieved in increments. In business, perseverance means leaning forward, walking one foot after the other into the chill entrepreneurial wind until you’ve reached your milestones and eventually achieved your goal.

Many people fail because they give up at the first sign of difficulty. On the other hand, almost every success story includes an element of endurance and determination. I’m no exception: I landed in Hawaii in the mid-1980s, down and out and in need of a job. A radio station news director rightly rebuffed me because I could hardly pronounce the names of the streets. Rather than complain or criticize, I bought a Hawaiian dictionary, promised myself I would learn five words a day, and worked like mad. Three years later, I was managing that radio station–and overseeing the guy who’d earlier turned me away.

  • Bonus tip: If you promise yourself to do at least one thing every day to further your plans, at the end of a year you will have made almost 400 positive steps to achieving your goals.

Respect

When someone says, “You don’t need to reinvent the wheel,” what they’re really saying is, “The wheel already exists–and it may be just fine as it is.” It’s good advice.

While there may be an opportunity for improvement in every corner of the business world, that’s not the same as saying that all corners need improving. Every industry has history. Study it. Understanding and respecting what has come before will help you identify core strengths, recognize new opportunities, and avoid a rehash of old failures.

The best single piece of management advice I ever got was over a cup of coffee with one of my company’s directors, billionaire developer and speedboat racer Tom Gentry. He told me, “Make the right hiring decisions in the first place, and a lot of other decisions never have to be made.” That gem has saved me a lot of grief over the years.

  • Bonus tip: Seek out the stories of the veterans, the founders, and the ground-breakers. Take them to coffee and take notes. You won’t be replaying their stories in your life’s plan, but you will benefit by understanding their experiences, missteps, and successes.

Innovation

Of course, you’ve got to be ready when “opportunity knocks.” In tough economic times, however, you could be waiting a long time for that tap on the door. You’re much better off making your own opportunity with a little bit of personal innovation.

Innovation is a specialized form of creativity in which the creation is both new and useful. Sending a birthday cake to the CEO of the company you want to partner with might be creative, but it’s not likely to succeed. To be productively innovative in that situation, you must come up with a new idea or method that will also work to further your goal of getting the deal.

Here’s a case in point: Back in the early ’90s, my production company wanted a business-oriented radio network to syndicate our new technology feature. Believe it or not, back then some people still didn’t believe technology news was important to business. Rather than pitch the network CEO with a couple of generic pieces, we produced a special series highlighting technologies that could directly benefit his company. As we played them for him, his eyes lit up–and because he got the idea, we got the contract. (We later learned the network actually purchased one of the software packages we profiled in the demo.)

  • Bonus tip: Ask yourself, “What are this person’s needs, beyond the obvious business deal?” Then, figure out how you can fill those needs in a creative and innovative fashion.

Of course, there are hundreds of other helpful skills for entrepreneurs; no single one will be a magic carpet to success. These three, however, will help any would-be entrepreneur get started in the right direction.

Ron Burley is a nationally recognized consumer advocate and serial entrepreneur. He is the author of Unscrewed: The Consumer’s Guide to Getting What You Paid For and senior partner at Brushfire Consulting. @consumerrebel

5 Worst Things You Can Say to a Customer

Never let these phrases pass the lips of your customer service team.

Taunting mouths

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Almost nothing leads to a customer service meltdown more quickly than the use of one particularly offensive phrase. You know it. Heck, we all know it. I don’t really even need to write it. However, just in case you’ve been hiding-out in a California commune or were raised in upper Albania, here it is:

‘That’s our policy.’

I’d wager that even as you read those words, you flashed-back to a past personal experience in which someone spoke them as if they were a magic wand that would miraculously make you go away. But, of course, you didn’t go away. You just became more frustrated, and more convinced that particular company had little interest in your eventual satisfaction.

In seminars, I call it “TOP,” and it is a phrase that is less than useless. It is destructive. TOP is the customer service equivalent to “That’s tough” or “You’re out of luck.” It’s primary purpose is to shut down a conversation. TOP only accelerates the transformation of current customers into a former customers, and was undoubtedly crafted by someone completely oblivious to the value of customer retention. Even worse, for some customers it’s a declaration of war. Every dispute-gone-viral tracked by my firm has involved some version of that terrible text.

Whenever someone tries TOP on me, I respond with a carefully crafted policy statement of my own, “Your internal policy decisions have nothing to do with my expectations of customer satisfaction.” And that’s the point, customers should not accept contract verbiage as an excuse for a less-than-promised product or service. “That’s our policy” might save a current sale, though all future business will likely be lost.

Now that I’ve lambasted TOP, here are a few more quips that should never leak from the lips of your customer service team:

‘There’s nothing I can do’

Your soon-to-be former customer replies, “Then why did I spend the last forty-five minutes on hold with you?” Plus, there’s always an option—returning the customer’s cash. Focus your team on problem solving rather than problem diverting. Give them the freedom to find creative alternatives. Reward them for innovative solutions and brushfires doused.

‘Would you mind holding for a moment?’

Of course they mind, and what if they say “No.” Better to be specific and direct. “I’m going to put you on hold while speak with my supervisor, and I’ll check back with you in a minute or so if I haven’t an answer by then.” Sure. It’s long-winded, but considerably more satisfying for your already frustrated customer.

‘You’ll have to go to our website.’

This is just another way of saying “I can’t help you.” Instead of making your customer hunt around with their browser after they’ve already waited on the phone, email them a link directly to the page or necessary file.

‘That’s the manufacturer’s responsibility.’

Or, as it’s sometimes put:  “Our business partner will have to help you.” You’re telling your customers that while you’re happy to take their money at the time of sale, you’re not willing to back them in a crunch. The underlying principle is that your customer doesn’t have a financial relationship with your partner, supplier, or manufacturer… and therefore no leverage in negotiating a remedy. You took the customer’s money. So, whatever the problem is, it’s your responsibility to fix.

Those are my top five offending phrases; feel free to chime in below with a few of your own.

Source: www.inc.com

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Five Small Business Tips

Five Small Business Tips

Written by  Lynne LaMaster

Five Small Business Tips

It’s a competitive world out there, but with these tips, you’ll be in the game.

Running a business is tough work! But our world today offers opportunities to market your business in exciting, cost effective ways. Unfortunately, if you don’t take advantage of those opportunities, it’s likely your competitor will. In the infographic below, here are some quick tips to get you going!


Via: MinePress.com http://www.prescottenews

3 Skills Every Entrepreneur Needs

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Originally posted on art.iculation:

Tweeting BirdTweets are meant to be short and sweet. Though, I’m not what you would call a conversationalist with a short and sweet style, but on twitter I’ve got to be precise to catch the attention of those online. Learning to fly like a bird takes skill and skills I’ve decided to learn. So can you.

With only 120 characters to say what needs to be said, twitter peeps seem to delight in quips, jokes and catchy headlines. This can be fun, but with limits of 120 characters per tweet it can also be a challenge to tweet like a professional without abbreviations.

Many online articles on mastering twitter pretty much same the same thing. Follow, tweet, #hashtag, share, be authentic and relevant. Most of all think of twitter as a big party. A place where people mix, mingle and chat about the stuff that’s interesting to them. And like any good party…

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Social Media

Welcome to my WordPress.com all about social media and my marketing tips. I stumbled on social media about twenty years ago. Anyway that is a different story.

How To Twitter “New to Twitter” and wondering how to get started? We’ve made this fun ‘how to twitter’ I will help you get going quickly. I will answer beginner questions such as how to set up your Twitter account, how to start tweeting, and how to use #hashtags and lists. You can call me on +44 (0)7908932597

Twitter And WordPress Page

My goal is to provide a service that allows you to discover and receive content from sources that interest you as well as to share your content with others.  I respect the ownership he content that users share and each user is responsible for the content he or she provides. Email me for further information at towardchange@yahoo.com to find out how I can assist you  with your Twitter profile.

 

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