Guest post by Ms. Harvey V. Chua, Makati, Manila, Philippines (Note from Judy. I am an amateur photographer and a Facebook fan of Harvey's husband, professional photographer John K. Chua. These wonderful people are involved many charities, including Visually Impaired Photographers. It's difficult to pinpoint one organization or community because they are all over the place spreading love and laughter. When I read the following, I knew I wanted to have it as a guest post, because I know the truth of Harvey's conclusion. This post is for everyone who has tried to help someone and in the end, wondered if their actions and words made any kind of an impression.) Meeting a former Adphoto photographer: while Kathy, John G and I were walking towards Mother Care at the Fort, we chanced upon a former Adphoto employee whom I had not seen since he left, about five years ago. I could not believe how he reacted to seeing me. He hugged me for a long time, and if I had not wriggled my way out of his tight embrace, he would not have let go, and when he did, he was in tears. I was deeply touched. Then he showed me pictures on his iPhone of his four-month old son. All I could say was, "Imagine that - you're now a father! To think that you were a kid when we took you in!" He was a student at La Salle, taking up computer science when he came to do OJT, and after the program, he refused to go back to school, and pleaded with us to hire him as an assistant. We did. When he was with us, he devoured all that John shared about photography. John never withholds when he teaches an apprentice, so this young man learned a lot. But the lessons that I tried to impart - on the business side, on marketing, on developing presentation and negotiation skills were lost on him - like many photographers, he was not interested. He stayed with us a few years, maturing as a photographer. He is now on his own, and I can imagine that whenever he faced business challenges, he probably heard my voice in his head. I suppose those lessons remained dormant while he was with us, like data that is inputted into a computer but simply ignored, but now that he is not only a photographer but also a business person, he discovers that it was there -has always been there - for him to retrieve. No lesson is really ever lost - when the right time comes, it will be used - this is what I love about teaching, and that was the affirmation that I received last night. 🙂
Guest post by Megan Perez
One of the reasons Google has been such a popular search engine is due to its largely uncluttered home page. Sure, you sometimes see the whimsical Google Doodle, but the page itself is free from ads. Earlier this week, this changed when Google posted a simple, yet rare ad on its page. The product? It was its own Nexus 7 tablet.
This was the first time that Google had any ad on its home page. The ad was subtle, so many people may not have noticed, but it opened the minds of many Internet marketers. What would you do if you could have an ad on the most powerful piece of Internet real estate? Since the ad would be on Google’s homepage, keyword research would be unnecessary. So how else could you ensure that it was effective?
Create an Incentive to Click
Even if the ad is on such a powerful page, it needs to invite the reader to click. A simple image may not be enough. A link for important information like “pricing” or “locations” can improve your click-through rate. You may also provide links for special deals or discounts. While you would want to stick with Google’s uncluttered appearance, you also want to ensure the viewer has a reason to click your add.
Be Prepared for a Surge
If you could put your ad on Google’s home page, you would need to be prepared for a surge in traffic on your site and increased sign ups with your email marketing efforts. It's inevitable that the world’s most powerful web page and a good ad pointing readers to your site would turn into increased traffic. So, how would you handle this?
First, you would need to make sure that your web site is ready to handle an increase in traffic without crashing. Then, you would need the help of a strong email-marketing client to handle the increased traffic and the number of email newsletters you would be sending. Finally, you would need to be certain the page the ad directs people to is one that converts into new newsletter signups, group members or product sales — depending on your goal.
Go Big or Go Home
The understated Nexus 7 tablet ad was big. It was not big enough to be obtrusive, but it was big enough to grab attention. Your ad would need to be big. Consider the Yellow Pages for a minute. What ads does your eye gravitate toward when you open the phone book? The large ones, right? Similarly, your ad on Google’s page would need to be large enough to grab the attention of people coming to the page to search.
Focus on Good Content
Once the ad is ready, you need to make sure your site has the content that will turn clicks into customers or generate repeat visitors. Your content needs to be original, thoughtful and well-written. If you can focus on breaking news in the market, you will do well. Always include a call to action as well, because this is where clicks become customers.
Chances are that Google will not soon repeat its home-page advertising. After all, it has grown into one of the most successful Internet giants without home-page ads, so why change what is already working? Still, it's fun to dream about what it would be like to own some space on the most important piece of the Internet.Megan Perez is a business communications major who is working on her M.B.A. She bought her first car with cash and wants to be the next Suze Orman.
Do you spend money on a product if the presentation looks unprofessional? Case in point: As my husband and I approached a small family restaurant, I spotted two hand-scrawled signs in the window: Help Wanted. Cook Wanted. Warning signals went off, but hunger prevailed. Once inside, we discovered that everything operated at the pace of a turtle. Food: adequate. When it came time to get our bill, we waited. And waited. Finally, we left our tip on the table and walked to the cash register. We weren't upset. The owner/manager had our sympathy (but they lost us as customers). Whether in the brick-and-mortar or brick-and-click world, people appreciate polished presentations, because this generally means they'll find a good product and/or service. Let's define "polish" and some of its components. The suggestions below aren't for glamour or glitz, but for readability. FONTS ON PAPER Most of us use serif fonts (like Times Roman & Times New Roman) for text. This type of font is designed so the reader's eye moves smoothly from letter to letter. The little squiggles (serifs) that are part of the letters are part of that process. Traditionally, sans serif fonts (no squiggles) are often used for headings, accounting, data entry, etc. They also complement serif fonts. Today's home and office (ink jet & laser) printers usually operate at a minimum of 300dpi (dots per inch). At 300dpi and higher, both types of fonts are readable. FONTS ON THE WEB Most screen resolutions are set at 72-100dpi. Web typography experts often suggest that at this low resolution, Web designers offer the best readability by using sans serif fonts such as Arial, Helvetica, and Verdana. This will undoubtedly change in years to come, but slowly. Most users will not replace their current monitors simply because better resolution is available. Designers may be the biggest exception. And who doesn't love the wider, bigger screens? Browsers usually default to Times Roman (Macs), and Times New Roman (PCs). I used Arial and Helvetica for the body text of this article. It may be worthwhile to use a sans serif font throughout the site, but it also takes time to add the required codes. NOTE: Some browsers ignore certain font commands/coding in tables if they are placed only at the beginning and end of an unordered or ordered list. You may need to code for each bulleted or numbered item within each table cell or they may default to Times Roman or Times New Roman. It's a judgment call. This is usually just for HTML. Most of today's websites use Content Management Systems (CMS). The text on a user's screen is almost always controlled by the fonts the user has on his/her system. That's why most designers using HTML give a minimum of two choices when writing the font face command. Some users, for various reasons, control the specific font and size their browser uses. Size is another, more difficult issue. You may learn that you can't please all the people all the time!! Read more about both of these issues and see examples in the Web Style Guide. Tip: Regardless of the font size, people using Windows can press the Ctrl key and the plus key together and increase the size.
Did you know there's a business protocol for folding letters? Someone contacted me recently and wanted to know the right way for a letter-size piece of paper to be folded. Here's what I found out: For 8 1/2 x 11 paper that is going in a #10 envelope, or other stationery with a No. 9 or Monarch envelope, or a No. 6 3/4 envelope, Gregg Reference Manual (1391) says:
- Bring the bottom third of the letter up and make a crease.
- Fold the top of the letter down to within 3/8 inch of the crease you made in step 1. Then make the second crease.