The Web For Business.com Blog

Internet marketing observations, perspectives, tips and tricks for your education and enlightenment.


1 Word of Advice: Backup

Mark Kawabe - Friday, October 03, 2014

This morning, I installed Windows updates that required a reboot of my desktop computer. No problem. Done it a thousand times before.

Except this time, the computer didn't start up.

Something went click, the UPS chirped, then nothing.

I pressed the power button.

Nothing.

I checked all the connections.

Nothing.

Technology is such a huge part of our lives that we take it for granted. I don't think most people realize just how much they rely on tech. It's when things go wrong that we suddenly realize how important our smartphone, laptops, desktops or other devices are.

Fortunately for me, my work is not stored on my computer. It's stored on an external hard drive which is incrementally backed up to another drive as I work. My most critical files are backed up to a cloud storage system. It's not the most robust backup strategy, but it allowed me to easily hook up my hard drive to my laptop and continue on with my day while my desktop waits at the shop to be repaired.

Informal conversations with other entrepreneurs and small business owners reveal a startling lack of concern about backing up data. Some folks (the majority) never back up. Others back up to a second hard drive in their machine. Fewer still back up to an external device or the cloud.

I'm amazed.

In this era of cheap technology, it is inexcusable to not back up your data.

I'm not going to tell you how to do it as there are plenty of websites that will tell you how. I just hope my story provides one more reminder, one more reason, one more example that persuades at least one person to start making backups of their data.

Will you be that one? I hope so. More for your sake than for mine.

Turning the Online Monster into your Servant

Mark Kawabe - Thursday, July 25, 2013

Websites. 1000 social media websites. Blogs. YouTube. SEO. There are thousands of ways to market online. What's a business to do? Here are some tips on how to turn the online monster you've created (or are thinking of creating) into your servant.

Plan

When managing your online presence seems overwhelming, it's probably because you didn't plan. If you don't know where you're going, you'll have no idea if you're getting there or not. Fortunately, you can change this whenever you want.

Implement

This is where many people start - they start doing before planning. If this sounds like you, take a deep breath, back away from your monitor and take some time to plan your activities. Make a schedule. Define your goals. Then work on making them happen.

Social media sites make it easy to implement. Slap up a post or a picture or comment and voila! You're done! But how do you know it's what's most beneficial?

Websites or other corporate social media tools that are not current demonstrate a failure to implement. Most businesses can improve in this area. My business included.

Measure

Do you know how many people read your last Facebook post? Did anyone like them? Do you know who they were? How did that Facebook post compare to the previous one - and the one before it?

How about your site traffic? Is it up or down from last month? How about your search engine rankings?

Not measuring the results of online activities means you're shooting at targets without knowing you've hit them. This is why many business owners say marketing online doesn't work for them. They or their staff don't measure the results they get.

Analyze, Study & Plan Again

So you've planned, implemented and measured. Can things be improved? Of course they can. Take what you've done and build on it to make it better.

If you don't know HOW to make it better, you're in luck. There are at least a few million pages of online advice (including this one) on how to improve every aspect of your online presence.

If you've read my earlier blog posts, you'll know this stuff isn't rocket science. It's "common sense" - but we all know how prevalent that is these days. I came across a website just before writing this post that proudly exclaimed their latest news on the homepage - except it was from 2011. When the primary purpose of a website is to create confidence about doing business with you, how does something like that benefit your business?

Most "problems" with websites and online marketing are solved by following the steps above. If you don't have time or patience to follow the prescription, then feel free to call "Dr. Mark" at 905-227-6667. I'd be happy to help you manage your online marketing needs so you don't have to.

What's New for YOU in 2012?

Mark Kawabe - Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Welcome to 2012. I'm glad you've made it this far. What's going to be new for you in 2012?

Here are my predictions about the changes most small business owners will make in 2012 to their online marketing efforts.

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If you don't see anything listed above, well, I hope you get my point.

It is my prediction that MOST small business owners will continue to market themselves online more or less the same as they've been doing.

I think there are many reasons for this, and they're remarkably similar to the reasons most other new years resolutions fail.

  • It's too much work.
  • I don't have time.
  • It won't make a big difference.
  • I don't know how I can do things better.
  • I don't have time to learn how to do things better.
  • I don't want to learn something new.

And so forth.

Most want results without the investment required to achieve them. That's nothing new.

What I'm hoping is new this year is for more people to choose to prove my predictions wrong.

I wish you peace, health, happiness and prosperity in 2012.

With my Best Regards,

Mark Kawabe