Richest Day in Betting – The 2009 Breeders Cup

breeders-cupThe betting world will hold its breath for two minutes or less eight times as horse racing enthusiasts celebrate the World Championships today, The 2009 Breeders’ Cup. $17 million in purse money will be given out to the winners on the dirt and turf. The Breeders’ Cup Classic is the granddaddy of them all pitting the notable Mine That Bird, Colonel John, and Summer Bird against a field of thirteen, with current 5/2 favorite Zenyatta, competing for the $5 million purse.

As reported back in May, the 2009 Kentucky Derby utilized social media to bring exclusive coverage to the horse racing world. The Breeders’ Cup is no different featuring a Facebook Page, Twitter account, and YouTube channel. Of course there is a slew of bloggers on site to bring you the inside scoop including one of my favorites ESPN’s Randy Moss. Make sure you sign up for the Daily Racing Form’s free membership to get all the news and information you need to be in the winnings.

The fun starts at 1:30 PM ET on ABC before moving over for the big races on ESPN at 3:30 PM ET.  So get out your racing form and start making your picks. The 2009 Breeders’ Cup is sure to be another wild ride.

Google: Can You Tell Me How to Get To Sesame Street?

big-bird-googleFor 40 years Sesame Street has brought learning and joy to children around the world. Google, the king of search land, has taken this week to pay their homage to Sesame Street dedicating their logo to the 40th year anniversary. It’s obvious that someone at Google has the same fond childhood memories of the PBS show as a kid.



bert-and-ernie-google


That’s right, I’m old enough to say I remember Cookie Monster when he actually ate cookies. While I applaud PBS for taking a stand and attempting to sway the toddlers of America to be active, I can’t see the correlation between Cookie Monster eating cookies or sugar snap peas. Veggie monster should have to go hang out on Veggie Tales.  Then we’ll all see how cheery and happy that tomato and cucumber really are.  I’m just thankful that Google’s logo, displayed below, isn’t filled with carrot and celery sticks.



cookie-monster-google



There’s been several attempts to create the same magic and replicate the cultural phenomenon that  Sesame Street has become. My personal favorite is Avenue Q, the Tony award winning musical. The adult themed parody transposes Sesame Street’s  Bert & Ernie (Rod & Nicky) and Cookie Monster (Trekkie Monster) into their twenties and thirties facing adult problems. The use of profanity on topics such as sex and drugs gives these lovable creatures a side to them you only daydreamed about. Singing songs like, ‘Everyone’s A Little Bit Racist‘, presents topics with charm and a smile. Like every Sesame Street show the Broadway show has the central theme of trying to find your purpose.



In the end, nothing can replace the original charm and magic Sesame Street has brought for generations. When Google spruces up their logo, you know it’s an event worth celebrating! So make up the letter and number of the day to count and rhyme your way back to yesterday.




Value of SEO

E-marketer.com reported a few months ago that it expects Internet marketers to spend at least $26 million on SEO. Those who are unfamiliar with the benefits or skill set needed to perform SEO services may feel this number is severely inflated. Small businesses are engaging in annual contracts worth thousands of dollars in attempt to tap into the wave Google and searchers have created. Thinking about ways to shave some money off of your budget? After a thorough examination, of what it would take to bring SEO in house for your small business, I believe you’ll understand why a outsourcing your SEO is worth the money.

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Local Search: The Future Is Now

In the world of Internet Marketing, algorithm’s dictate what the changes and trends will be. Though it’s not new, unique, or groundbreaking Local Search is the search of tomorrow. In Portland, OR we have a Local Search legend by the name of David Mimh who has served me the Local Search ‘Koolaid’ for over a year. I’m happy to say I’ve never turned down a glass and I’m glad I didn’t waste a drop because Local is becoming mainstream.

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A Change of Attitude Does The Body Good

It typically takes significant turmoil or angst to produce results. If you look at the world of business, politics, or sports at what point is true progress made? At what point do we look within ourselves and say, “this is unacceptable”? It seems that only after hitting rock bottom, or experiencing severe turmoil, that we actually make headway on our problems. When Flordia lost to Ole Miss last year, it produced Tim Tebow’s famous pledge and resulted in an eventual college football championship:

What about 8 years ago today on September 11th, 2001? I can’t recall a time in my life that our country was more united. If Tim Tebow is NOW going to work harder than anyone has ever seen before, why wasn’t he doing that before the Ole Miss game? If our country NOW pledges to be united and come together, why weren’t we doing this before 9/11? Why does it takes these types of events to produce the results we’ve witnessed? I don’t have an answer to that question, but I can answer questions about myself.

I personally believe that everyone regardless of age, race, gender, demographics, religion, occupation, or income should abide and follow the following four quotes:

Perception is Everything

Control the things that you can control

If you don’t have anything nice to say don’t say anything at all

Treat other’s how you want to be treated

I can’t think of a moment or situation in my life that you wouldn’t use these quotes. Your own personal happiness and success can be directly attributed to how you use these quotes. Lets break each one down:

Perception is Everything

Your perception is everything because you are what you’re perceived to be. I’m perceived to be a smart, funny, athletic, hard working, stubborn, negative, complaining, unsatisfied, pain in the ass, who is a recent college grad that is immature, and doesn’t know a fucking thing about the business world. As painful as it is for me to write this, because this is others perception of me, I am all of those things. Ideally you would want to be perceived as a likable, hardworking, indispensable person, but not everyone can. If the perception of you is that you’re a bullshitter, then you are a bullshitter. If people perceive that you’re a kiss ass, then you are a kiss ass. If people perceive that you don’t do anything at work all day, then you probably aren’t doing anything at work.

If people perceive you as an uplifting team player, then you are an uplifting team player. If people perceive you as an indispensable asset to your company, then you are an indispensable asset to your company. What can you do you enhance your perception? Lets take a look at quote number two for some added advice.

Control the things that you can control

You cannot control the fact that your coworker always complains about how busy they are, but they work eight to five, take a two hour lunch, and on average play five games of company foosball a day. You cannot control whether or not your coworkers complete their part of your project for you. You can’t control how people perceive you. What you can control is your attitude, your work ethic, your patience, and your overall quality of life. I can’t control how I’m perceived by others, but I can control what I say, my morale, my work ethic, and my education. What you can control correlates with the third quote.

If you don’t have anything nice to say don’t say anything at all

This is something that I can personally control and can also affect my perception. I’ve said a lot of bad things about a lot of people. I’ve complained, groaned, bitched, and argued. Unfortunately, what I say can affect and influence people’s perception of me and others regardless of my intentions. I may be being sarcastic or trying to make a joke, but calling someone a fat, lazy, asshole doesn’t help anyone. While this makes me feel better about myself, it’s negatively affecting the perception of me and the morale of others. This leads us to the fourth and final quote.

Treat others how you want to be treated

Treating others how you want to be treated means only saying things that are positive or constructively positive, controlling what you can control, and by treating others how you want to be treated you’re affecting your perception positively. If you hate that your boss is lazy and always drops work on you because he simply doesn’t want to do it, don’t dump your work on someone else or return the favor when you are finally in a position of authority. Shit doesn’t have to roll down hill if you control what you can control. If you’re tired of people telling you that’s wrong with you, don’t talk about what’s wrong with everyone else. Finally, if you want others to perceive you as a likable, hardworking, indispensable person then control what you can control, only discuss things with a positive frame of mind, and treat others how you want to be treated.

3 Languages All Marketers Should Be Familiar With

As an Internet Marketer, and hopes of becoming a Web Strategist, it’s vital for me to be able to break down code to properly implement search engine optimization and social media marketing. An understanding of a websites code allows me to determine what strengths and weaknesses they have. In addition, being able to read basic scripts, forms, and databases allows me to troubleshoot my website in case something isn’t working properly. Here are 3 languages all marketers should be familiar with to compete in the current market.

HTML

In the words of Dylan Boyd, “my two year old can write HTML.” Which means you should be able to also. Understanding and being able to write HTML isn’t geeky anymore. In fact, it’s imperative if you want to understand the basics of website construction, and HTML, to implement search engine optimization.

CSS

HTML and CSS go hand in hand. Without CSS your website will look like garbage. At the same time, CSS can be used to speed up the load time of your website, and create a professional and creative look without the use of flash. If you understand CSS you have the ability to replicate the look and feel of any website utilizing this language.

PHP

I had to really think of the usefulness a marketer would gain from understanding this language. Personally, I don’t know enough PHP to write an application, but I do know enough to read and understand what a simple script, or line of code is trying to accomplish. Learning php is not as easy or simplistic as HTML or CSS, but it allows you to troubleshoot the back end of websites. PHP is an actual programming language that has variables and arrays involved. My suggestion would be to analyze current scripts, functions, and programs to try and understand the language prior to diving head first.

Have any languages you think marketers should know? Add them to the list in a comment below.

The Portland Marathon Needs More Social Media Outlets

Since the 6th grade I’ve been an avid and active runner, but I’ve never run a marathon before. I ran cross country, the 1500m, and 3000m in high school and finally participated in the Hood to Coast when I reached college. The Nike / Kaiser Permanente 5 miler, The 8K Shamrock run, and the Run Like Hell 1/2 Marathon have all been checked off my list, but I never thought of trying to tackle the 26.2 miles that is the Portland Marathon.

I was severely dehydrated and nauseous to the point I didn’t know if I was going to be able to complete the race. Last year at the Hood to Coast I gave my team a severe scare when nearly 5 hours after my leg I still had not recovered and actually started to get the chills. In the end, I sucked it up, ate some food, drank some water, and completed the event. I was extremely disappointed and frustrated with my performance at the Hood to Coast. I made a vow to myself that on January 1st of 2009 I’d start my training for the next Hood to Coast which will not take place until mid-August.

I’m currently in week 19 of 32 for my Hood to Coast training. My weekly mileage is 39 miles and my long run for the week is 12 miles. I started looking at my projected training log and saw that by August my weekly mileage would be 50 miles and my long run would be 17 miles. Listening to my body, I could also feel that my long runs, of late, were not difficult, and in fact, depending on the pace, were quite easy no matter the mileage.

This is when I started to think I could complete, my dream goal, of running the Portland Marathon. Unfortunately, I didn’t have anywhere to turn for advice or guidance on my decision. I went to the Portland Marathon website hoping they’d have a Facebook account or forum to listen to stories and ask questions for those thinking about doing their first marathon, but they had nothing.

I understand the Portland Marathon is in the business of promoting their event and training programs, but wouldn’t it cut down their costs if they knew everyone could complete the run? While I wasn’t 100% convinced I should enter the Portland Marathon, their promotions of an increase in price by May 15th was enough to motivate me towards entering the race.

By creating a forum or utilizing social media the Portland Marathon could actively communicate with potential entrants and assist them with their decision to run the race or not. More seasoned marathoners could communicate with each other, exchange training programs, and give inspiring stories to the newbies who hope to just get across the finish line. My lofty goal, besides completing the Portland Marathon, is to qualify for the Boston Marathon with a 3:10 or below marathon.

Mens 6 Wardrobe Essentials

The past few weeks I’ve discussed fashion disasters and trends to avoid. I’ve also focused primarily on women’s fashion that, as I learned last week, was not typically ready-to-wear. In an effort to save face with my female readers I’ll be focusing on the males this week. I’ll also be focusing on what you should wear instead of what shouldn’t be worn. Inspired by Men Style.com’s 10 fashion essentials, here is my self proclaimed Men’s 6 wardrobe essentials.

    Dark Wash Jeans

dark-wash-jeans

You can dress them up or you can dress them down. They’re versatile and can be coordinated with most any kind or color of shoe. They’re perfect with a t-shirt or with a blazer.

    V-Neck Sweaters

v-neck-sweater

Another versatile piece for the wardrobe. You can wear it with a t-shirt underneath, a dress shirt with the collar tucked, a dress shirt with the collar out (or ala GQ), and wear it plain or with a blazer. The V-neck is a must because it allows you to layer properly unlike the crew neck which is designed to be worn all by itself.

    Black, Grey, and Navy Suit

black-suitgrey-suitnavy-suit

Black, Navy, and Gray are the standards you should have in your collection. Go with a two-button or three-button either one looks great. Pairing it up with a coordinated vest adds some nice flair.

    Black & Brown Dress Shoes

black-dress-shoesbrown-dress-shoes

Shoes can make or break a man’s outfit. Tie everything together with the classic black or brown dress shoe. I’m partial to the square toe mainly because I have clodhoppers for feet and need the extra width.

    Khakis

khakis

Not only is khaki any extremely versatile color the pants can be wore casual or dressy. Jeans can’t always been worn, but khakis can.

    Black & Brown Belt

reversible-belt

As part of being the total package, you need to complete your outfit with a belt. Personally, and I know this isn’t the norm, I’m a huge fan of the black and brown reversible belts. Maybe the quality is different and maybe they don’t last as long, because the buckle eventually breaks, but I love having that all-in-one feature.

The Web Enhances Music Collaboration

Music collaboration isn’t limited to your buddies and a garage anymore. The use of social media and the Internet has brought musicians and song writers alike together for the ultimate collaboration. Since February 2007,Kompoz has given musicians that outlet. Classic Rock video games like Guitar Hero and Rock Band bring non-musicians together, while Kompoz brings together the non-gamers. Music collaboration has a new home.

Prior to my discovery of Kompoz I didn’t know of any other way to create music than to meet fellow musicians around town at shows or at school. The growth of Pro Tools and Garage Band has given musicians a greater ability to record and distribute their work. With Kompoz, it doesn’t matter if I only have my drum set, because I can post my drum track on Kompoz and have anyone from around the world add in vocals, guitar, piano, or bass.

The Grateful Dead is arguably the greatest jam band of all time, but they weren’t formed in a digital world. The creation of sites like Kompoz makes me wonder where the direction music collaboration and composition will go. Will there come a time when a touring band previously played together only via the distribution of their individual instrumental tracks over the Internet? Only time will tell.

Spammy Linkbuilding Should STILL Be Intelligent

I receive on a daily basis five to ten spam comments on my blog. What I don’t understand is why bloggers, that are building out get rich quick blogs, continue to leave irrelevant comments on my social media and search marketing blog. If you’re going to tell me about penis pumps at least make the comment on a health niche blog! Blog commenting is an effective way to expand your link building efforts, but their are certain procedures you should follow.

Darren Rowse, of Problogger.net, has a great post with 11 tips on blog commenting that I highly recommend reading before engaging in any serious blog commenting link building strategy.

Once you’re finished with Darren’s post I’d make sure you add in these four ‘must have’s’ prior to commenting:

    You Must Have… Actually Read The Blog Post You’re Commenting On

– Yes I know this seems like a stretch, but how are you suppose to provide value and actually get people to visit your site if you can’t relate your comment to the post? Even if you copy and paste a line or quote specifically from the post, you can respond briefly prior to adding in your initiative.

    You Must Have… Previously Commented On At Least Two Other Posts

– Everyone has some kind of rational self interest when commenting on a blog. If you’re going to put a link in your comment pointing back to an article you wrote it should be somewhat related to the blog topic. If it’s a little off centered, and you’re a regular contributor, you’re less likely to get denied.

    You Must Have… Spell Checked & Grammatically Phrased Your Comment

– I’m a self proclaimed terrible speller and writer. I’d much rather give a speech face to face than write something on paper. Nothing screams spam like a misspelled, or English as a Second Language sounding comment. If you do make a blunder go back, delete your comment, and repost with the correct information. Jennifer Leggio wrote a great post on typos that talks about the importance of your writing.

    You Must Have… Allowed Another Blogger The Same Opportunity

– You’re more likely to have your comment accepted if you return the favor, regardless of how spammy it may look. The karma god of blogs will be out to get you if you’re always commenting with links and you never extend the same opportunity. The old saying, “you scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours,” goes a long ways in link building.

Unfortunately spammers don’t take the time to think through the basic concepts I’ve laid out. Imagine how much more effective, and sustainable, they’d be if they followed these procedures.