Tech Notes

Tech news outside the mainstream

Uncommon news and information with a technical twist and some topics that are a bit out there. Enjoy...

Start Up USA TV Show

StartUp-USAFound a great show on SC eTV, StartUp-USA.  The host Gary Bredow provides a candid and in depth view of start up companies and their founders.  Great for the aspiring entrepreneur and anyone that's considering stepping out on their own. .

They interviewed the owners of companies that had varying levels of success, each with a unique path of tribulations and victories.  I though the show was well done.  The interviewer asked the questions you'd want to know the answer to and a nice graphic visual on the funding timelines.

If their show isn't available in your area you can watch episodes from their website at StartUp-USA.com

Distributed Phone Systems - Ring Central

RingCentral

A few years ago I wanted to have a separate phone number for a startup company, but since we are only a few members, and in different locations, it needed to on a system we could all make calls from it and redirect for availability.  After trying a couple I've found RingCentral.com to be the best and most affordable.

Here are some of the key features for a small company that can make you look like a big well run operation.  First you choose a number for your business, then with their phone app, you to make and receive calls from your cell phone with the other number.  When some calls your business you can route them by extensions you set up to other employees cell phones and everyone can make make and receive calls from that number. It's one of many great features, plus you have logging to see what calls have been made. This feature is really helpful to make sure you don't miss or followed up on a call.  There's even a feature for direct digital recording your calls.

Take a test drive on RingCentral.com.

Content Marketing is Website Marketing

Site Marketing

Although this article is on the subject of content marketing it overlaps into all areas of digital marketing. I found this great article by Richard Darell while doing research for a strategic marketing plan for a new project. There's a detailed infographic included by ZenContent that helped me form the basis of my plan.

I was having a touch of writers block getting started on this marketing plan and can see when a business becomes too close to itself to be able to write effectively for their own products. Whether it is the lack of time or just the need for a fresh perspective, consider hiring professional content writers from ZenContent.

Promoting your website is essentially content marketing. Quality content gets a new customer to the door and engages the the ones that have already made purchases. Add a great domain name and building more engaging content provides the search engines with a bigger target to hit and will dynamically improve your SEO efforts.

Read more about content marketing at BitRebels.

Growth by Year 2020

Internet Growth by 2020As we approach the 4th quarter of fiscal year 2015, and soon to be at the midway point of this decade, I started to look at the predictions and indicators for internet growth by year 2020. Sounds futurist the year 2020 and I think we are starting to enter into the steeper slope of the curve now. In 2010 the internet had 1.7 billion users, today it has a little over 3.1 billion and by 2020 it should be at 5 billion. Check out the stats by country here on InternetWorldStats.com.

Forecasting the future of the internet is that hard to predict just look at what we do and ask yourself are we going to be doing any less of it. Twenty-five great points are listed in this article on Marketing in 2020 by Jeff Beer of FastCompany.com. By looking at marketing we can see the direction society is taking by observing the force trying to get in-front of the mass. Some key points I took away were virtual reality is reality, brand transparency and through technology it's about to get really personal.

Don't forget to consider the growth of the machine usage with the Internet of Things IoT. Both machine and human usage almost double in the next 5 years!

Mag Card - A Multi-Million Dollar Idea for the Taking

Mag CardHere's a great idea for the taking, the magnification card or Mag Card. In the extra space above the magnetic strip, during manufacturing process, create a clear magnification lens out of the card plastic or mold it into the card meld the surface so it doesn't pop out when flexed. The benefit being no need for a reading glass to see your bill or glance over a menu.

Great idea? Well it's here for anyone to develop and patent. I hold a design patent and several copyrights on other products. And after going through the patent process a couple of times, I've learned that if you're not going to make it your life's work and defended it into possible bankruptcy, it's really not worth doing.

The Mag Card has great potential and I'd just like to have one built into my debit card.  I'm hoping someone runs with this idea and makes the world a better place (leave the lawyers out of the loop).

The Mag Card was hatched in the early hours of the morning involving the perfect combination of alcohol, an attractive waitresses and a bar tab the size of a federal invoice.  If you decide to manufacture and end up making millions, throw a little this way.

Great Domain Names = Digital Assets


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Domain Pricing - The Value of Effective Media

There's a revolution in technology going on and for as many businesses that get it, many intelligent organizations still just do not. I get a few offers, most of them low, on different domain names every month and one of the questions I was asked by a potential purchaser was, how do I arrive at a price?

It's a fair question and to put an answer to it, here's the rationale behind the numbers. First, like real estate domain names are virtual property, but with several valuable added dimensions. Domains are the way customers find your business, remember your location and spread the news about your products. It's your business address for all practical purposes. Ninety percent of the people you do business with will never visit your business at it's physical location, but they'll all check your website, which is by way of your domain name.

Names that have more traffic or are capable of generating more traffic with short memorable names are worth more and their market demand is more. Like having a shop on main street vs. opening up a business on a rural road. A good memorable name that suits your business or product lines brings customers and helps them find their way back to you. Most company names are picked without the customer in mind or without any marketing considerations, just a name that means something to the organization on a somewhat emotional level. You can spend millions branding a odd name or bring the brand to your door with a descriptive name. And with domain names, you can have several or hundreds of names to drive traffic to your business.

The method, internet media. Consider the pro's and cons of different advertising media. There's print, TV, radio and internet. Print, I throw it out. It's garbage that comes with my printed mail. I haven't bought a newspaper in over 10 years at least and the last time I think I looked at a magazine, I was either in a doctors office or on a plane. Forget print, it's over. The postal service is nostalgic and I'd be willing to bet 100 percent privatized within 10 years. TV, I watch movies for the most part or change the channel during the commercials. Watching the Atlanta Falcons beat the Aint's in the season opener, I saw a couple of ads, but couldn't tell you what they were today. I'm moving in the direction of subscription TV like Netflix and Hulu. I'm not alone. Radio, okay you get ads in front of me while driving more often then I care to say. Occasionally, I am too lazy to load a playlist from my phone or all the stations that I have programmed in are in sync with their commercial's timed together. Traffic reports get me to tune in, but the rest of the noise I could do without. I get about half of percent of anything useful from radio news. The tone and rate of speech only ramps up tension. I'm working on weaseling out listening to main stream radio all together. Half the time I enjoy just listening to silence.

The internet has main access to get in-front of my eyes. I am on the net at home, at work, even while visiting a store in the mall I might be checking prices of a competitor on my phone. I have discretionary income and I move quickly. Like a lot of your customers, I have much to manage and like in the real world, I have to be street smart online and as nimble as a forest creature to find the best deals. I validate a business I am going to use based on the domain they have, how their website looks, works and if they have a phone number on their contact page. Usually I like a second opinion, options or it's just the way to complete due diligence by checking a few other sites. How I find that second, third or fourth site through search or by their domain name directly is potentially a company I'll be working with. CEO's of those companies are the CEO's that are likely to make their 17 percent growth targets and are the ones that get their bonuses. They're the one that get it. I price domain names comparable to other media even when that media is less effective.

30 seconds on Atlanta TV during prime time will cost you 30k and your money is gone just that fast. Most industry magazine ads will cost you upwards of 1200 per month for a four color, 1/2 to full page ad and you don't even know if anyone is reading it. Your domain name is yours perpetually. The internet is even more revolutionary as the phone system was when it came into being some 120 years ago and as fast as technology grows, the internet is not going to be replaced anytime soon. With a great domain name you look like the authority in your industry. Most clients will never see your office, I can't stress enough how important your online presence is. Technology is the only industry that has had double digit growth since the 70's and looks to be booming for the rest of man's existence. The slope of the curve is about to go vertical.

The short, memorable, brand-able, desirable names, and what other similar domains have sold for, makes for the price range listed. We encourage you to make offers on our domains and other available names. The cost, effectiveness and value is continually rising.

Domain Name Journal - The Domain News Blog


Short of fielding email inquiries about domain investing, I decided to create a series of posts featuring some of the domain sites read on a regular basis.

The undisputed authority for domain name news has to be Domain Name Journal. Ron Jackson, journalist and former news anchor built one of the most trusted blogs for reporting events and sales within the domain industry.

DNJournal.com is a weekly periodical and a must read for anyone in domain investing. Ron has a warm and intelligent style that emanates through the headlines to each in-depth cover story.