Friday, December 8, 2006

Top 10 Ways to Get Awesome Web Traffic Using Blogs

Like many important people before you – perhaps you’ve underestimated the power of blogging. Blogs can be used, not only as the single easiest way to get a listing in the search engine for your desired keywords, but also serve the fantastic purpose if building a relationship with your quickly growing list of readers, listeners and viewers.

After a light lunch today, I was left in the greatest mood. So I figured I would sit down and share with you 10 ways you can share my success and popularity using blogs.

1. Use a keyword specific blog title and description. When creating your blog, I just used the free service you’re asked to title or name your blog and give a short description. Take this chance to think a little.

Ask yourself:

a) Who do you want to read your blog?
b) What is your interest or topic - what will you enjoy writing about?

If you have a poetry blog for example – use the word poet or poetry in your title and description. You can research the popularity of your keywords use Overture’s free tool here:

2. Try to update often (short daily entries work great) using hand written or bot generated keyword rich informative content. Give your visitors something they want to read. I love to write so I create all my original posts, but if you have a site that needs traffic or a topic that you don’t know much about you can set up an automatically updating feed using other people’s blog posts, or articles. Each entry is seen as its own html page, so the engines see your blog as a multi-paged site, that is updated regularly and rich in links and keywords.

3. Create an interesting profile. Searchers and fellow bloggers love the fact you’re a real person, this helps to build personal relationships. Again, put a little time and effort into this one. Tons of people peek at your profile, and keeps track of all your views, so open up and share a little. Everything on your profile page is taken as a searchable keyword. Things like: what you like to do, your favorite movies and music, etc. Each one will get you listed under that topic in the directory.

4. One way to jump right in and get visitors and feedback immediately is by posting to similar blogs and linking back to your blog. Say you have a poetry blog: you can use Blogger’s search tool and your keyword – in this case "poetry” or &quotpoet.” (Another way to get a quick high listing is to search Google for example "poetry blog.”)

You can post a comment on their blog, just a short personal remark will do. Keep it polite, no one wants to hear negative criticism. Blogs are more personal than chartrooms or forums, and often contain personal views and opinions of the author, so don’t go stepping on toes. The point is to make contact, build relationships, and exchange links. More links to your blog equals more free targeted traffic for you.

5. RSS is your friend! Create an RSS feed, by hand or using Feedburner. This gives your readers the option to subscribe to your blog with just a click. What this means to you is 100% deliverability of all the content you write by the readers request – your posts are sent directly to your subscribers via their RSS reader otherwise known as an aggregator. They are personally notified every time you post to your blog. And best of all, no spam complaints ever, and they get every update you make – no blockers or filters. Total word freedom!

6. Spread your feed by submitting to RSS directories. This is a one time deal, and you can either search and do it manually or use the tool I used: RSS Automator (it finds and submits to tons of different directories for you).

Only submit each blog once. This is a lasting deal that could mess up your good standing if you do it multiple times. So to be sure you get a listing, only submit to directories once. (This is not the same thing as pinging; you can ping every time you update your blog.)

7. Ping your blog every time you update using pinging services like and This lets the directories know you have updated and added a new post to your blog.

8. Create a personalized or branded RSS reader/aggregator. Talk about top of mind awareness. You don’t have to be a programming genius for this one (though it helps.) There are a couple services that for a small one time fee will customize a reader for you, with your logo, header and graphics, and preload it with any media you want. So with this you’re sure to be seen and remembered every day. Check out one of the best services here:

9. People love to read you, but hearing you is even better. Give Podcasting a try - there are tons of ways to get started here. I would personally recommend for all your Podcasting needs. It uploads, stores, hosts, and sets up the RSS and pings for you. Like Podcasting for dummies. Then just submit your podcast to different directories and readers like Apple iTunes, and

10. Radio is great but now you can create a following by imitating the idiot box. Give your subscribers another way to obsess using Video-meets-Blogging or "The Vlog.” This is a medium that is far from saturated. The possibilities are endless, and you’re only limited to what you limit yourself. Though it has not been promoted too widely, the new Apple iTunes Podcasting feature supports Vlog subscriptions as well.

15 ways to grow money

Tired of “experiencing cash-flow interruptions”? Want to increase your net worth? The best way to accumulate money is to stop spending it on things you want but don’t really need, and to save and invest so your dollars will begin working for you. “Building your net worth doesn’t require a small fortune, but you do have to change spending habits and practice more self-control,” says Sherrin Ross Ingram, author of Wealth Mentality (Jourdan & Brown Publishing). By taking big and small steps, you can reduce expenses and achieve your financial goals. And if you follow just a few of these 15 tips, you can save $5,000 or more in just 12 months:

1 DON’T PASS UP FREE MONEY. “You can’t afford not to participate in your company-sponsored retirement plan. If your employer matches your 401(k) contributions, it is like free money,” says Gall Perry-Mason, coauthor with Glinda Bridgforth of Girl, Make Your Money Grow! (Broadway Books). And if your job offers a pretax savings plan for medical or child-care expenses, Ingram adds, “don’t pass it up.”

2 PAY ON TIME. Fees and penalties for late credit-card payments add up, and they take their toll on your credit rating, says Ingram. Pay more than the minimum due on credit-card bills so you can cut both the time you spend paying off the debt as well as interest payments.

3 DON’T BLOW A WINDFALL. Avoid scratching your spending itch when you get a bonus, an income-tax refund, a holiday monetary gift and any other extra money. Use it instead to pay down debt, put it into a savings account or invest it.

4 SHARE YOUR SPACE. Consider taking in a roommate, family member, friend or tenant to help cut rent or mortgage payments and utilities in half, says Bridgforth. If you shell out, say, $800 a month in living expenses, with a roomie, you can halve your costs and save $4,800 a year. The savings can be invested in your retirement account or socked away in an emergency fund.

5 GET A LOW-COST RIDE. “Because cars decrease in value the moment they’re driven off the dealer’s lot, it makes sense not to invest too much money in them if your net worth needs accelerating,” counsels Bridgforth. Expensive cars cost more to insure and repair, and their resale value can plummet significantly after three years, she adds. Compare prices and market values at, then shop around, and always negotiate the sticker price.

6 BECOME A LANDLORD. The equity in a home is a large source of wealth, says Robert G. Allen, coauthor of The One Minute Millionaire: The Enlightened Way to Wealth (Harmony). “But owning rental property is a powerful wealth builder. You buy property and someone else pays you rent, which often covers your expenses from owning it,” he explains. Meanwhile you increase your current monthly income, build long-term wealth, and receive tax deductions. The depreciation annual write-off on a $100,000 property amounts to more than $2,000, he points out.

7 TAKE A COFFEE BREAK. With a luxury latte going for about $3.50, you could easily shell out more than $1,200 a year for that daily caffeine fix. Purchase regular coffee or buy a jar of instant and make your own at the office, and you’ll save about $1,000 a year.

8 DON’T GET CLEANED OUT. Dry-cleaning bills can put a big dent in a budget. Perry-Mason suggests that you save on cleaning bills by using Dryel–or some other do-it-yourself dry-cleaning product for lightly soiled clothes–or washing items in Woolite. If you spend, say, $20 a month on professional dry cleaning, do it yourself and save up to $200 a year.

9 CLIP COUPONS. By snipping coupons from Sunday’s paper, you often can reap a windfall because many stores will double the amount of the coupon. This can save you as much as $20 to $30 each time you shop, about $1,040 a year.

10 SAVE ON TALK. You can save from $20 to $45 a month ($240 to $540 a year) by cutting off the extra features your telephone service provides or by switching to a company that charges two or four cents less per minute per call. “Many people are just too lazy to switch,” Allen says. “But that laziness costs them.”

11 BOX-LUNCH IT. Take your own lunch to work; if you normally spend $10 a day, that’s an extra $50 in your pocket on Friday, a saving of $2,500 annually. Leftovers from eating out or from last night’s home-cooked meal can make great lunches.

12 REFINANCE YOUR MORTGAGE. If you want to reduce your monthly mortgage payment to free up some cash, refinance at a lower interest rate if the estimated closing costs are low enough to make refinancing worthwhile. And if you call afford a higher monthly payment, go with a 15- or 20-year loan because you build equity faster and pay much less in interest, Bridgforth advises. For example, she points out, “with a $100,000 mortgage at 6 percent for 15 years, you pay $843 monthly in principal and interest, and $51,894 in interest over the life of the loan. With a 30 year mortgage, you pay $599 monthly but $103,961 in interest over the 30 years.”

13 DON’T EAT ALL YOUR EQUITY. “Excessively consolidating your credit-card debt into your refinanced mortgage or equity line of credit will devour your home equity and significantly lower your net worth,” Bridgforth cautions. If you run your credit cards up again and again and remedy the problem by using equity from your home, you may walk away empty-handed when you sell.

14 The sticker price of any item is rarely the lowest price a merchant will accept, says Ingram. After you decide what an item is worth to you and how much you’re willing to pay, then ask the merchant to give you “a better price.” That way you’ll know how much bargaining room you have.

15 PLAN AHEAD. “The more long-range planning you do, the cheaper your life becomes,” says Allen. For instance, if you buy an airline ticket less than a week before you’re ready to travel, you will generally pay full fare. If you get it three months in advance, you can save up to 50 percent, he reveals. Buy it two weeks before and you can knock 10 to 20 percent off the purchase price.

For a wealth of ideas on saving and growing your money, go to,, or the

20 Sure-Fire Ways To Get People to Link to Your Web Site

1. Offer other web sites free content to post on their web site.
Include your link on all of your content. The content should related to your web site because it will be in front of your target audience.

2. When you visit a web site you've enjoyed a lot, write a review for the site. Write about the benefits you gain from the web site. Tell them they can publish it on their web site if they link to your web site.

3. Allow other people to publish your e-zine on their web site. Include your web site's ad and link in each issue you publish. This may also help you increase the number of people that subscribe to your e-zine.

4. Market your web site as a free web book. Design your web site with a title page, table of contents, chapters, etc. Just allow other people to give away the web book by linking to your web site.

5. Give your visitors an instant article directory. Tell your visitors they can instantly add a free article directory to their web site by linking to yours. Just place your ad or banner ad on top of the article directory for your main web site.

6. Allow other web sites to use your discussion board for their web site visitors. Just have them link directly to the discussion board. Include your web sites ad or banner ad at the top of the discussion board.

7. Start a members only web site. Tell visitors what's in your members only site and what it costs to gain access. Offer them a free membership if, in exchange, they link to your web site.

8. Offer your visitors a free sign up to your affiliate program. Pay them commission to sell your products or services. Just give them an affiliate link to track their sales. People will link to your web site to make extra money.

9. Create your own award site for other web sites. Give the winners a graphic or text link to place on their web site when they win. This will link your web site to theirs and draw more traffic to your web site.

10. Are you an expert on a particular subject? Offer people free consulting via e-mail if, in exchange, they either link to your site. People will consider this a huge value because consulting fees can be very expensive.

11. When you purchase a product and it exceeds your expectations e-mail the business a testimonial. Make sure your statement is detailed. Give them permission to publish it on their web site if they link to your site.

12. Create a directory of web sites on a specific topic. Give people the option of adding the directory to their web site by linking to it. Put your business ad at the top of the directory's home page.

13. Exchange content with other web sites. You could trade articles, top ten lists, etc. Both parties could include a resource box at the end of the content.

14. Allow people to download software at no charge from your web site, if they link to your web site. The software could be freeware, shareware or demos.

15. Trade other forms of advertising to people that link to your web site. You could trade e-zine ads, print ads, autoresponder ads, classified ads, ebook ads, etc.

16. Give away web space to people for free. Since you are giving it away for free, request they link to your site by placing your ad or banner to the site.

17. Join or create a web ring. A web ring is a group of web sites on a similar subject agreeing to link together. To find a web ring to join type keywords "web rings" into your search engine of choice.

18. Create an online club or association. Tell your visitors what's included in the membership and what it costs to join. Offer them a free membership if, in exchange, they link to your web site.

19. Allow people to use an online service or utilities from your web site if, in exchange, they link to your web site. The online service could be an e-mail account, search engine submission, web page design, copywriting, proofreading, etc.

20. Offer a free e-book to your web site visitors. The ebook should be related to your target audience. Allow them to give the e-book to their own web site visitors by linking directly to your web site.

Top 10 Ways to Get a Technorati Top 100 Blogger to Link to Your Blog or Website

If you really want to pump up the traffic to your blog or website, at least temporarily, just get a link from any of the Technorati Top 100 bloggers. No, it’s not easy, but here are ten ways that might gitterdun for ya.

Disclaimer: I will not be held responsible for any legal action taken against you as a result of using these tactics.

1. Write almost anything that has to do with David Allen’s Getting Things Done, and send it to any Technorati Top 100 blogger who is a GTD fanatic.

2. Take a photo of yourself wearing a rubber nose and send it to any Technorati Top 100 blogger who likes that kind of thing.

3. Write a post suggesting that reading the blog of a particular Technorati Top 100 blogger may cure erectile dysfunction. Be sure to create a cool, funny graphic to go with it.

4. Create some cool, ingenius gadget hack, and send it to any Technorati Top 100 blogger who loves to write about cool, ingenius gadget hacks.

5. Launch a cool, new Web 2.0 company or application and have it reviewed by any Technorati Top 100 blogger who reviews cool, new Web 2.0 companies and applications.

6. Pick your favorite Technorati Top 100 blogger, and start stalking him (or her). Just make sure you get that all-important link before they lock you up and throw away the key.

7. Write anything that makes life easier for iPod users, and send it to any Technorati Top 100 blogger who likes to publish stuff that makes life easier for iPod users.

8. If you happen to get your hands on any embarrassing photos of A-list celebs, publish them on your blog, then send the link to your favorite Technorati Top 100 blogger who thrives on publishing such photos.

9. Pick your favorite Technorati Top 100 blogger, and name him or her your “Wanker of the Day.”

10. Write a blog post in the form of a list, and submit it to any Technorati Top 100 blogger who happens to be running a group writing project about blog posts in the form of a list.

10 Ways To Recover After Physical Exercises

The ability to recover from exercise is one of the determining factors in the long term success of any training program. The faster and more efficiently you can recover, the better your results will be. To speed up your progress you can use tips from below.

1) Take a post workout shake
Immediately after training, consume a mix of simple carbohydrates and rapidly absorbed protein. This drink should contain a two to one ratio of carbs to protein. A 200 pound man would consume roughly eighty grams of carbs and forty grams of protein. Doing this will help to reduce cortisol, which is a stress hormone that literally eats away muscle tissue, as well as start to shuttle nutrients to the muscles and begin the recovery process.

2) Take a contrast bath after training
This is an old technique that originated in Eastern Bloc countries many years ago to speed up the recovery of their elite athletes. After consuming your post workout shake; use this method of bathing in order to stimulate recovery. Begin by submerging yourself in hot water for one minute. Immediately jump into a tub of ice cold water for a minute. Repeat this process for up to ten minutes. This can also be done in the shower, which is more practical for most people.

3) Do not drop carbohydrate intake too low
Although low carb diets are in vogue these days, this is not an optimal approach for a hard training athlete. Even if you need to lose a good amount of body fat you should still be consuming at least 150-200 grams of carbs per day. Dropping carbs drastically will slow down your thyroid and testosterone production and cause losses in size and strength. To maximize your recovery, you must keep a decent amount of carbs in your diet.

4) Take naps
Naps are a great way to speed up your progress. During sleep, your body releases growth hormone and repairs the damage that has been done to your muscles during intense workouts. Taking a twenty to sixty minute nap once a day is a great way to see faster results.

5) Sleep eight to ten hours a night
As mentioned above, when you are sleeping you are growing bigger and stronger. Without sufficient sleep your results will be less than optimal.

6) Stretch on your off days
This is a great way to increase blood flow to the muscles which helps shuttle in the nutrients necessary for optimal recovery.

7) Avoid stress
This is obviously easier said than done, but it should be noted that excessive amounts of psychological or emotional stress can wreak havoc on your results.

8) Get a massage at least once a week
This is a great way to relax and speed up the healing process of sore muscles.

9) Do recovery workouts
By performing a very light, high rep workout the day after an intense training session and getting some blood into the muscles, you can actually accelerate your ability to recover. For example, the day after a heavy squat workout your legs are likely to be very sore. Instead of doing nothing, try doing 100 bodyweight only squats.

10) Take a week off
Every ten to twelve weeks, your body will start to break down and demand a rest. Taking a week off will actually allow you to get stronger and come back fresh and ready to train hard again. Remember, training is only half of the equation. Without proper recovery techniques your progress will never be optimal. Start using these methods today and watch your results skyrocket.

5 Ways to Overcome the Home Business Blues, Blahs, and Burnout

Why the heck am I doing this? What’s the point? I’m so sick of this $%#@!

spinning-platesThere comes a time in every home-based business life when you reach the point of blah. It has happened to every single person I’ve talked to who runs a home-based business. I, myself, know it well. Maybe you’ve hit what I call the Futility Factor, the point where you’re busting your hump and not seeing any results - working 16+ hours a day, seven days a week, for months to get your business off the ground. Or you’re a few years into it, and things are just getting stale. There are lots of reasons why it happens. The key is to know what to do, when it does.
Just Be With It

Your first option is to do nothing. Just be with your mood - wallow in it, feel it, accept it. Now granted, this is not the usual kind of advice for this stuff. But sometimes, it’s nice just to be with your funk. Churchill called it his black dog. Charles Schulz, the creator of Peanuts, used his melancholy moods to inspire his work. Don’t be afraid to be in a crappy mood once in a while - especially when it relates to your business. Running a home-based business is hard and you’re bound to get down about it. If it’s not a common thing, just sit with your cranky self. Sometimes it’s nice to give yourself permission to be in a foul mood. Enjoy it.
Go Back To Why

There’s a good reason why you decided to go into business for yourself in the first place. You set out on this road with a mission. During times of bad mojo, it helps to go back to that “why.” I’m guessing you’re a pretty smart person. You didn’t just jump into a home-based business without a plan. And even if you did, there was still a reason for it. Sit in a comfy chair, lie on the couch, or curl up in a ball on the floor, and think back to what it was like when you started. What drove you? Why did you make the decisions you did? Hopefully you are following your passion, so those feelings of excitement start flowing back in. It’s easy to get caught up in the day-to-day, and the BS that comes with running your own business. It’s important to regularly get back to that place of why you are here, and why you’re doing this. That initial spark can help get you back into full-flame mode.
Be of Service to Others

Many times, it’s helpful to stop making it all about you. I often find that the business blahs stem from the “poor me’s.” By stopping and thinking of how you can be of service to others, you interrupt that thinking, and start to see how what you’re doing is benefiting others. Again, I’m working off the assumption that you are doing something you love, that you have talent for, and that is providing value to others. If you’re running a pyramid scheme just to get rich, this ain’t going to help you. But if you are pursuing your dream, and contributing something of value, then chances are, what you’re doing is benefiting someone else. Ask yourself “how can I be of service to others?” That question alone is often enough to snap you out of your doldrums. Then follow that tread. Think of all the ways your business is providing a service to your fellow Earthlings. It’s a great feeling, and can give you a real boost to move forward.
Take the Day Off

If you’ve been working like mad, burnout is inevitable, even doing something you love. Remember to take time for yourself. Just taking a day to goof-off, see a move, or play with your kids is enough to help you get re-focused on your business. One of the wonderful things about working for yourself, is having the freedom to do this. Take a day off in the middle of the week, and if you need to make it up, work a little on the weekend. Rather than wait for a good day to take off, take a bad day off. Forget about it for a while, then come back refreshed with a new outlook.
Work On Your Favorite Stuff

Another pretty common reason for the business blues is spending a lot of time on the things that you have to do and not enough on the things you want to do. The reality of running a business requires a lot of things that aren’t fun, such as paperwork, filing, or cold calls (for some). These are things you have to do to keep things running smoothly. But if you need a boost, switch to doing the fun stuff - the things you associate with why you love doing what you do. It’s most likely true that you have to do the fun stuff anyway, that it’s part of your core business. So why not rearrange some things so you can work on them first. I’m not recommending putting off all the crappy stuff indefinitely. I’m a big proponent of the Eat that Frog strategy. But if you need a way to lift your mood, filling out tax forms probably isn’t going to do it (unless you’re a CPA and love that stuff - if so, that’s what you should do). You can always go back to that later. Procrastination isn’t always a bad thing.

Bad moods are a part of life, and running your own home business doesn’t make you immune. The bright side is that you are your own boss, so you don’t have to sit in a cube and just deal. You have the freedom to choose. Take advantage of it and learn to work with your moods as they come, and around them when you need to.

15 Ways to Improve your Business in 2007

What can Process Servers and Investigators do to Increase Revenue and Efficiency in the New Year?

A new year is fast approaching once again. For many process serving and investigation companies, business slows down for a few weeks allowing you to take the time to consider what you can do to improve business next year. At and, we talk to hundreds of process servers and investigators on a weekly basis about their advertising and marketing initiatives.

There are endless things you can do to improve and grow your business. But there are some very basic concepts, most of which don't cost anything, that you can apply to benefit your business in 2007.

1. Answer your phone!
At the risk of offending or being redundant, we are going to say it again. Answer your phone. If you have read our marketing articles in the past, you have surely heard this before. Making sure your calls get answered is the easiest and least expensive way of gaining more business. You may have to forward your calls to your cell phone, invest in a more sophisticated phone system or even hire an office assistant, but if calls go unanswered you are missing out on business.

"It's a concept that seems obvious. But when I really started to make a conscious effort to answer every single call that came through, it made a noticeable difference for my investigative agency," said Rebecca Krichevsky, owner of Alliance Background Investigation of Colorado, LLC.

We have heard people say, "I don't answer blocked calls" or "I don't answer calls from out-of-state", but if you are doing ANY form of advertising this thought process is very flawed. These could be calls from potential clients.

2. Expand your Service Offerings
You or one of your employees is at the courthouse on a weekly basis. Are you also providing document filing and retrieval services? You are also a notary public. Could you offer your customers a mobile notary service? You are a private investigator. Are you also providing legal support services such as process serving to your law firm clients?

If you are not offering your customers a full suite of legal support or investigative services, you could be leaving money on the table. What do your clients need that you can offer? If you don't know the answer to this question - ask them. It's possible your clients have needs that you are not aware of which you could monetize by spending little to no additional time.

Below is a list of services that you should consider, if you don't already offer them:

* process serving
* private investigations
* skip tracing
* document filing and retrieval
* notary services
* courier/messenger services
* bail bonds

3. Understand Marketing Basics
The only difference between you and the most successful companies in your industry is how you market your company. There are a lot of inexperienced and unprofessional companies in the process serving and investigative markets that are highly profitable simply because they understand the benefits of marketing. Marketing is what gets your customer to pick up the phone and literally touches every aspect of your company including:

* your company's name
* how you answer the phone
* your pricing
* company branding and brochures
* your web site
* company correspondence (emails, reports, invoices, letters)

If you have a few extra hours over the holiday season, pick up a book on marketing basics. Even if you have a degree in marketing, keeping a book like this handy will prove to be useful. Additionally, there are numerous e-newsletters and blogs you can find on the web that have great marketing ideas and tips. Spending just a few hours per week on marketing can have a dramatic impact on your business.

4. Advertise when business is good
As long as you are in business, you should always continue to market your services. It doesnt matter how well-known you are, you constantly need to have your brand in front of the buyers of your services. This is why you will see Budweiser, IBM and other Fortune 500 companies investing in multi-million dollar ads during the Super Bowl. A major component of marketing is brand recognition. When your customers see your company advertised on other web sites or trade publications, it helps build trust in your brand and the perception of a successful company. Additionally, continuing to advertise can help you land that dream client that is high volume, high margin and most importantly, low maintenance.

5. Advertise MORE when business in slow
The first thing people tend to cut when business is slow is their sales and marketing. This knee-jerk reaction is often an effort to save money, but can be counterproductive to the success of your business. This is when you should be marketing the most, not only because you need to increase business, but you have the time to reevaluate your marketing and advertising options. Take this time to identify new places where your customers may be going to locate service providers and think about additional marketing initiatives such as mailers, visiting potential clients, growing your referral network and so on.

If you are just starting to market your business, don't get frustrated if your marketing does not work overnight. Statistics show that it can take seven or more exposures to elicit a buying reaction from your potential customers.

6. Get involved in State and National Associations
Supporting national and state associations is critical to your livelihood as a process server or an investigator. Associations help educate you on what is happening in the industry and most importantly, they fight legislative initiatives that can negatively impact the profession. Associations are also a key component of your marketing mix. Inevitably your fellow members are going to refer enough business to your company over time to pay for your dues many times over.

7. Ask Your Customers for a Referral
Sometimes the best form of marketing is word-of-mouth marketing. Chances are that if you do a good job, your customers will refer you to their colleagues without being prompted. However, it does not hurt to ask them for the names and numbers of people who they feel could use your services. Being able to use your clients name when calling these firms dramatically increases the likelihood that you will get business from these referrals. If your client's firm is big enough, they could refer you to multiple people within their office.

8. Contact at least Three New Potential Clients Per Week
No one likes to make cold calls, but sometimes the only way you get business is by asking for it. Set aside just one hour per week to call on at least three new potential clients. Stop by their office when you are in the neighborhood or pick up the phone during down time to talk to a decision maker. Have brochures or printed material you can hand or mail to them. It may take multiple conversations to convert them into paying customers, but over time your persistence will pay off.

9. Improve customer service and communication with customers
One of the most common themes we hear from the buyers of legal support services is that they are not communicated with properly. Too often, they feel they have to check on status. As an investigator or process server you can remedy this by being over-communicative. Whenever service is attempted or there is a new update on a case, pick up the phone and let the customer know what that status is.

When it comes to customer service you should "under-promise" and "over-deliver." Never make promises you may not be able to keep. But when you exceed on your customers expectations you will have a very happy client.

10. Raise your Prices - Compete on Service, not on Price
Would you rather manage 50 serves that make you $10 each, or 10 serves that make you $50 each? On the investigation side, would you rather work 10 hours at $50 per hour or 5 hours at $100 per hour.

If you are not making a good margin on your services, raise your prices and let someone else work their tails off for the high volume low margin services. In an ideal world, you have a handful of customers who consistently send you business and are willing to spend good money for good service.

Sounds great, but how do you achieve this? The answer is to stop competing on price and start competing on service instead. Have better customer service, communicate with your customers more effectively and be available for them. By treating customers how you want to be treated, we have found that many customers -- not all of them -- are willing to pay a premium for excellent service.

11. Delegate Tasks
You can't do everything yourself and continue to operate a growing business. Eventually, you need to bring in help with bookkeeping, collections, data entry and other administrative tasks. Whether you get the help from a part-time employee or a family member, you need to delegate time-consuming tasks to others so you can focus on managing your business and managing your customers. If you already have additional human resources in the office, look at ways in which you increase efficiency by assigning specific tasks to your employees.

12. Use Technology to Improve Efficiency
With software and mobile technology, we now have the ability to run our businesses from our home, hotels and even the road. Smart phones and broadband cards for your laptop are becoming "must-haves" for investigators or process servers that spend a significant amount of time out of the office.

Additionally, many software packages exist that were developed specifically for process servers and investigators. These applications enable you to manage jobs, communicate with your clients, automate your billing and much more.

Take the time to do an audit of your daily operations. What tasks are the most time-consuming? Chances are that technology exists that can help you automate some of these processes, saving you time and money.

13. Build or Update Existing Web Site
If you don't have a web site yet, you need one. If you already have web site, but you haven't updated it in a few years, take the time to go through it to make sure all your information is accurate and up-to-date. You should be doing this at least a couple times per year. You should also avoid putting anything on your site that will require frequent updates such as a news or newsletter section. Chances are you will not have the time or resources to keep this current.

Use your web site as a tool to sell your company as experts in your field. The main goal of your web site as a service provider is to get customers to pick up the phone to call you. Your web site should be professional, clean and precise. Make sure your phone number is clearly visible at the top of each page.

14. Charge more for Private Individuals
Law firms, corporations and private individuals are all important to your business. Naturally, private parties are going to be less knowledgeable and ultimately, you are going to spend more time working with the private person as opposed to the law firm or corporate client. Many investigative and process serving firms have higher rates for private parties because of these reasons. Additionally, private parties are less likely to be repeat customers.

One way to make the process of working with private individuals easier is to provide them with a document that outlines what your service entails and when they should expect to be contacted by you. You may also want to consider putting this on your web site so it can be easily referenced.

15. Set, Plan and Track your Goals
To be successful in anything you need to have goals. To reach your goals you must have a plan. To make sure your plan is working, you must track your progress.

If your plan for 2007 is to double your business, what do you need to do to achieve this? Do you need to advertise more or hire more people? Make a plan to achieve this goal then check in on a monthly basis to see where adjustments need to be made. Just by being cognizant of your goals and your progress, you will put yourself in a positive mindset to help you achieve them.

We hope that this information helps you with your planning for 2007, or at least gives you something to think about. Not all businesses are the same and not all of these ideas are right for every company, but we all have room for improvement. If you are a or customer, we invite you to contact us at (877) 737-8366 or to talk about your marketing and advertising in 2007. Additionally, if you have feedback for us regarding how we can improve our services, we would like to hear from you!

About ServeReport
The ServeReport is an email newsletter that focuses on the latest news, events and legislative changes in the process serving and private investigation industries. Read past newsletters here: ServeReport: Process Server Newsletter Archive

10 Ways Microwave Ovens Can Destroy Your Health

Foods that have been subjected to microwave radiation are dangerous to our health. Microwave ovens heat food with high-frequency microwaves that force water molecules to heat up by violently vibrating them. This causes a fracturing of the molecules, and a rearrangement of the chemical composition of the food.

Besides irradiating food, electromagnetic fields and invisible microwave emissions can bypass the built-in shielding in microwave ovens, and can leak through aging door seals, allowing them to travel to other rooms of the house.

The history of microwave ovens dates back to World War II, when the Nazis began research and development of these devices. They were searching for ways to overcome the logistical problems of producing edible food in a short time, and to be able to reduce the amount and bulk of cooking fuels that would be required to support their planned operations for the military invasion of Russia.

At the end of the war, the United States' War Department and the Soviet Union obtained the German microwave research and some of the devices. They took them home for further study.
Adding to the German research from the early forties, the Russians continued to research the biological effects of microwave ovens and microwave-cooked food. Their findings led them, in 1976, to issue an international warning concerning the biological and environmental dangers of using such ovens and similar electronic frequency devices.

German and Russian researchers found that cooking food with microwaves:
* Produces cancer causing agents.
* Destroys nutritive values.
* Reduces the food's vital energy field content by 60-90%.

Humans who had direct exposure to microwaves but had not eaten irradiated food experienced:

* Long term cumulative loss of vital energies.
* Destabilized metabolism.
* Cell damage.
* Degeneration of electrical nerve impulses.
* Nervous and lymphatic systems damage.
* Hormone destabilization.
* Brainwave disturbances.
* Psychological disorders.

Conclusions on the effects of eating irradiated food included:

* Long term permanent brain damage.
* Alteration or loss of hormone production.
* Permanent damage within the human body.
* Stomach and intestinal tumors.
* Increase of cancer cells in human blood.
* Immune system deficiencies.
* Loss of memory, concentration, emotional instability, and a decrease of intelligence.

The use of microwave ovens is almost universal in restaurants and homes in North America. Considering the foregoing information, it is likely that serious damage at the human cellular level is being wrought throughout the western world.

Yet, as with many other aspects of our food, medicines, and environment, the cumulative effects of microwaves are gradual; when the onset of illness occurs, it is very hard to make the connection with the original cause.

For these reasons, in my opinion, the use of microwave ovens, and eating food and drinks that have been heated in them, is not advised.

Article Source: ABC Article Directory

Ron Garner, BEd, MSc, is the author of "Conscious Health." Now you can unravel the mystery of how the body operates, restore vitality, and learn how health problems can be reversed the Natural way. Just visit: