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 Adland Digest FREE Edition #553
  Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Information Your Business Needs RIGHT NOW

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Constructive Criticism: Can You Take It?

We've all heard the phrase "constructive criticism" throughout our lives when we do something that requires approval.  Whether you're a nursery school child who is putting together their first pyramid of blocks, a 6th grade student in art class with their first clay sculpture, or a 25 year old professional submitting a report to a superior, you'll probably wind up with some critical feedback from the person you're submitting to. 

We're all human and with different levels of resilience.  Some cry during soap operas and laugh while watching Titanic.  Some get frightened to death watching "The Ring" while others laugh hysterically during "The Grudge".

While there are varying degrees of interpretation, constructive criticism is often received as negative despite its positive intent.  There are two main reasons for this.  Either the person communicating has not conveyed their message clearly and diplomatically enough or the person receiving the criticism has not interpreted it correctly or takes it as a personal attack. 

If you're going to deliver constructive Criticism, remember that this is something best given in person.  Whenever possible, try to do a face-to-face meeting with anyone you give this type of feedback to.  For many, it's difficult enough to put themselves out there for evaluation and swallow feedback when in person let alone over an email or messaging program (about the coldest method of delivery for criticism of any kind).  Facial expression, tonality, and even a quick grasp of the hand can go a long way to providing the reassurance needed to make sure that constructive criticism is not misinterpreted and is used in a positive way.  Always focus on how to improve something by suggesting an alternative or a solution, not dismantle it by bringing to light what's wrong. 

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If you're the person who is getting criticized, keep in mind the difference between constructive and destructive criticism.  Constructive criticism will always have a positive spin that will address an improvable area.  "The colors on this illustration look super!  I think if we added just a touch more blue we'd be right on the money." is vastly different than "This drawing sucks."  Sadly, many people react the same way in both cases as if they had been told that their breath smells.  Embarrassment, resentment, sadness, and anger.  Take a step back and analyze what's been said and what you can gain from it.  If you gain nothing from it, chances are that it was not constructive criticism and hardly worth a moment's thought; brush it off.  If you're given something you could improve, try it.  It's an opportunity and not an obstacle.

Our egos tell us that anything we do is spectacular.  When we put something out there for the world to see and someone comes back with criticism of any kind, we often react poorly.  This is our ego quietly saying "How DARE you?".  When we listen too much to our egos, we leave little room to grow, learn, and improve because we think we know it all.  This is why every once in a while we see an out of work mainframe programmer desperately seeking employment being constantly turned down by newer, more technologically advanced companies.  This is why we see restaurants who refuse to adapt their menus to changing tastes and health concerns hanging "out of business" signs in their windows after years of serving loyal customers. 

If you respond well to constructive criticism and use it to your advantage, you will grow along with the world in every way. 

Live in harmony,

Michael Dela Cruz, Adland Digest Editor

  

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An Integrated Approach To Marketing Is The Key To Online Marketing
Copyright 2007 by Dhanushka Fernando


Marketing could be described as the key to any business succeeding & surviving in the corporate world. Integrated marketing, or IMC, captures all of the marketing mechanics that exist & utilizes them as a united force rather than let it run on its own individual course. This is all well and good, but what would the benefits be of integrated marketing? Well for starters, integrated marketing leads to an increase in coordination, efficiency and as a turn around create a cost reduction within the company or business.

This is evident in many online marketing campaigns that are launched on the web today that want to be successful. The majority of the online community makes buying/selling decisions or for that fact even registrations through interacting with many integrated marketing tactics.

Letís take a small look & give you a basic idea about all of this. Say you want to start your own business online, you have no start up capital but your enthusiasm is more than enough to compensate for the lack of funds. What do you do? Well you first spend days searching the web for a site that will offer you all the instruments needed to have that solid integrated marketing approach and have your own web site for you to customize, upload & later manage. After many restless nights of searching let me save you some precious time & direct you to a site that at first glance may look too good to be true! ekwa (www.ekwa.com), an innovative tool in web marketing which comprises of all these features to best suit your needs.

If you run a serious online business your website is probably the major contributing factor to your success, especially if itís well-designed, user-friendly and informative. The company website is the prime connection between you and your customer base, upon which every business relies. So, it makes sense that everything a person sees on a website should project an image that is consistent with your corporate identity.

ekwa provides web templates, hosting & one very power packed integrated viral marketing package that enables you to carry out your comprehensive viral marketing campaign. Apart from all that now ekwa introduces ekwa lite which wonít cost you 10$ not even 1$. You know what, donít even pull your wallet out as this entire ekwa lite package is absolutely FREE! www.ekwa.com integrates all of the needed marketing tools (blogs, publishing opportunities, having access to ekwa community, photo sharing, web site templates & many more) for you to succeed.

About The Author

Dhanushka Fernando Is the Media and Client Marketing Manager for ekwa Labs. Check out their new ekwa lite package for FREE by visiting http://www.ekwa.com.

Email : dhanushka@ekwa.com Web : www.ekwalabs.com, www.ekwa.com 

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The 3 New Strategies for Marketing Viral Success
Copyright 2007 by Daryl Campbell


In the b.i. days (before the internet), the success of a mom and pop store depended, among other things, on the big boys of industry. Once they came to town and set up shop, there was no more mom and pop. They were driven out of business by the sheer volume of the mega companies' advertising and capital. Not a pretty site.

The internet has gone a long way to reviving the mom and pop industry. It affords many small businesses the opportunity to compete by using simple cost effective techniques repeated on a continuous basis. One of the techniques is viral marketing commonly referred to as word of mouth.

In the old days viral marketing for small business owners had limited appeal. Yes they could be successful in that particular city, town or even region but it's still nothing compared to the global word of mouth that business owners can tap into right now thanks to the internet. Once you launch your viral marketing campaign, it requires very little follow up on your part and even this has been taken a step further with the emergence of Web 2.0.

Here are some new ways to get the best out of your viral marketing:

1. The Small Report.

There have been some excellent ebooks on the internet chock full of good information but let's face it: many people are not going to read them due to the length. Enter the small report. Putting together a five to ten page report can be done in no time. The same goes for reading it. We suffer from information overload in this day and age so giving people useful information in smaller quantities makes sense.

Find a hot topic and write several articles on it. Place the articles in a pdf file with your name and contact information branded on the report. Tell readers they are free to distribute your report as long as they do not alter it in any way. Then advertise your report in forums on your website and anywhere else you can think of. People want information fast and utilizing small reports is a good way to give them exactly that. It's also a good start to making money from your viral campaign.

2. Video

In 2005, Kevin McCarthy one of the pioneers of online marketing predicted that within a year there would be an explosion of online video. Prediction accomplished. The internet is at the dawning of the video revolution. It is becoming easier and easier to make a video and upload it to places like You Tube or Google Video. In fact Google bought You Tube late last year for 1.65 billion dollars. That's a good indicator of how things are going.

Like the small report, try to keep your video brief and to the point. While people would rather watch than read, you still don't want to overload them. The point of a using a viral video (like reports) for your business is to give visitors useful information but just enough. In the end you want them to get more information by going to your website

3. Folksonomies

Wikipedia defines folksonomy as "a user-generated taxonomy used to categorize and retrieve web content such as Web pages, photographs and Web links". In plain english what they are referring to is tagging; a way to not only retrieve information you want but more importantly to share that information with others. Tagging is nothing more than keywords specifically related to bookmarking social sites like Digg, Technorati or Delicious.

As an example let's say you join Technorati. You then make a video, tag it with the keyword phrase "funny online video" and upload it to your account. Now all individuals within the Technorati community will be able to access your video when they type in that particular keyword. This is very powerful. Tag viral and bookmarking social can put you in front of a large audience immediately.

No matter how new the strategies keep in mind if you want your viral marketing to truly take off then make sure its free. Charging money for your report or video will guarantee you a limited appeal. Free is a powerful psychological trigger for many of us so use it. Also make sure you are providing quality. No one is going to be in a hurry to pass around below average information.

The internet has in many ways leveled the playing field. Just stay alert to any new innovations and be ready to incorporate them into your internet web site marketing strategy. A smart viral marketing campaign can make any small business successful.


About The Author

Daryl Campbell is your internet marketing guide for more tips, tools, resources, free video coaching and up to the minute information. Make the business of growing your business easy and fun at http://winthemarket.com 
 

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