Saturday, March 21, 2009

click4africa - a brewing idea.

The more time I spend in the click exchanges, the more I am understanding what I'd like to do with what I've learned.

I would like to create a traffic exchange that caters specifically to people who are interested in using their time online to promote causes in Africa that they care about. I would be a place where African organizations in need of votes to win competitions could go to promote their latest online campaigns.

It would be a place where Ceris from Wales could spend 1/2 hour per day viewing other campaigns to help Africa and actions he could take to help, while at the same time viewing campaigns that other like-minded people care about and promoting the Kampala Junior League's proposal for a Life in Africa grant that he's been helping his KJT friends in uganda to put together.

It's not the income earning models in the traffic exchange market that offer the biggest insight into useful ways forward for the social sector, but the ability to create communities of like-minded people who agree to consider what others in the community are promoting.

I would so love to build an exchange where people like our old friends from Onet, our friends from and our friends from Razoo and Facebook - some of whom know each other and are actively involved in promoting wonderful grassroots projects in and for Africa - could come to find a receptive group of people who are willing to take time out of their day to click in support of their actions and initiatives.

After 3 months in the clickexchanges, I think that's my biggest takeaway. I'm pretty sure of the direction I'd like to eventually take with the knowledge I've gained.

By the way, I have owned the domain since late 2001 or early 2002. I just got a reminder from WHOIS that I still own it, so it's an old concept that's been freshly brought out from the back of the shelves of my mind, and I'm looking at it again for the first time in quite a while. We'll see where it goes from here.


Monday, February 16, 2009 a new member- owned and governed global village online

Have you claimed your free shares in me2everyone yet?

I've been seeing some blogosphere buzz about lately, and finally had a chance to check it out this weekend. WOW! This is one of the most intriguing and exciting online community concepts I've come across in a long time.

Imagine a MySpace/Facebook/Yuwie/SecondLife/eBay/GlobalGiving kind of space, that's enabled with integrated translation capacity. At me2everyone we can communicate online across language barriers in a space that's geared for social networking on steroids.

The whole thing is to be member-owned and member-governed. If you become a member, you become a shareholder, and you can earn more shares by participating at the site. It's 100% free to join, and if you are among the first 300,000 people to register during the pre-launch phase (happening now) you can get a bonus of 250 free shares - even more if others you tell about it decide to sign up too. There are no country restrictions.

The me2everyone business plan is based on a targeted advertising revenue model, and on becoming one of the most visited websites in the world by December 2012. Sometime around then, the plan is to make me2everyone a publicly traded company that's listed on global stock exchanges. Won't it be cool to watch our free shares grow in value!

But you have to hurry a bit! Since January 9 of this year, over 126,000 people have already signed up. I've been watching the member counter today in awe as 2,500+ people became members over the past 6 hours! Register to claim your free shares now, before the 300,000 member threshold is met, or the number of shares you receive for signing up will be lower.

One other thing to note about me2everyone is that they are currently recruiting a 300 member Global Executive committee to help shape inworld development. The details are quietly posted on the log-out page. The pdf documents linked from the logout page offer much more detail about the me2everyone plan (including financial projections) than the rest of the site currently does - well worth the read, and there is also an interesting part-time financial opportunity available to those selected for the Global Executive.

As I was reading I couldn't help think how perfect it would be to have some of my friends from and the old on the me2everyone Global Executive committee. I'm thinking that I will probably apply.

Whether you apply to the Global Executive or not, be sure to register for your free shares SOON - the worst thing that can happen is you'll get some extra email. If you don't sign up and me2everyone does become the next big thing... well, I'll let you finish that thought for yourself!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

The Bad Ethics of One Time Offers in Internet Marketing

The more I explore the Traffic Exchange marketplace, the more convinced I am that there's potential for the social sector to tap into the traffic and financial resources there.

At the same time I am becoming more and more disgusted with some of the predatory tactics that I'm seeing some people employ. I recently came upon an interesting example.

Internet Marketing Success Formula is advertised as a free ebook. The ebook is indeed free, and not only explains but also illustrates the trickery in using One Time Offers to make money on the free sign up process.

The author, Soren Jordansen is the owner of a couple of successful membeship sites. He's a known name in the marketplace and obviously his tactics work. He's probably even a fun guy. Quite frankly, however, it frightens me in the current economy that people would choose to prey on each other like Mr. Jordansen himself does and proposes that others should too.

The one time offer at IM Success Formula came after I'd signed up but before I actually had access to the ebook. In the OTO I was told I could rebrand the book and get my very own cash cranking One Time Offer page, including a bonus package of more rebrandable, resellable ebooks than anyone can possibly read in a year. All this promise of knowledge and a commission only job selling affiliate signups to the mystery programs listed inside could be mine for just $127, unless I would order right now and get it half off. Sixy something bucks.

From free to $60+ seemed an extraordinary leap for me, and I really didn't want all those ebooks. So I passed on the OTO and..... got a second chance offer! Forget the gazillion ebooks and the One Time Offer page this time - now I would just get to be an affiliate and rebrand the book. All this could be mine now but but never again at the low low price of $37.

Of course, I still hadn't seen the book and had no idea what links are in the book that I would want to re-brand. I'm not interested in doing the work to market Mr. Jordansen's book with my links if it means signing up for 2 dozen new sites that are going to distract me from other things. I wanted to actually see the book before shelling out $37 in a commitment to selling this product.

So I left that page open and went to check my email. There was the link to log into the IMSF site. Wanting to keep that 2nd chance offer open just in case, I logged into the site in another browser to check on the inside price for rebranding the book.

Lo and behold, the price for members who did not take the One Time Offer of $60+ or the Second Chance Offer of $37 can be an affiliate and rebrand the ebook for only $27.

So the whole one time offer and second chance offer thing at IMSF is a LIE. The offer does not represent a discount at all, but a higher price than if you just sign up for free ebook and upgrade later. What's more, I have very little doubt that were I to remain on Mr. Jordansen's mailing list and read his messages, I would eventually receive a special offer to upgrade (today only!) for a price even lower than $27.

Not only is it terribly sad that Mr. Jordansen's book is teaching people to lie and prey on human fear to be successful online, but think about it - anyone who suggests you should make an uninformed and rash decision about investments in your business is absolutely NOT thinking about YOUR success.

Making uninformed and rash decisions based on fear is NOT the way to build a successful business
- not in the online world and not in the offline world - ever. Anyone who suggests you should is not looking out for your best interest, but for their own.

If you're active in the Traffic Exchanges and you're reading this, please join me in fighting against this ugly practice.

Say no to One Time Offers at sign up.

You WILL receive more offers of discounts. There is no such thing as a one time offer, so decide right now that from today forward they will have no effect on you.

ALWAYS give yourself a chance to evaluate the free version of any product or service before you spend money upgrading. Once you're on the mailing list as a free member of any site, you will almost always continue to receive special offers to upgrade for a discounted price. If you decide to make an investment at that point, it will be based on a more informed and better thought-through decision about what you are actually paying for and why you want or need it.

If enough people stop responding to OTO's, then maybe they'll stop trashing up the Traffic Exchanges landscape so much. Sincerely speaking folks, there are ways to earn in the TE Marketplace that do not involve lying to your customers to get them to pay you more money. Money is too hard to come by these days for us to allow this kind of predatory tactic to be an acceptable norm. I know this model has been proven to work, but it simply can't be the only model that works... it's time for some kinder and gentler ways.

If you're at all active in the Traffic Exchanges, you should definitely read the Internet Marketing Success Formula. It's 41 pages and a real eye opener to the kinds of aggressive psycho-marketing techniques that I hate with a passion - and that you should learn about so that you can avoid falling prey to them.

It's certainly educational, and if you can possibly resist the One Time Offer(!) it's also FREE.

I would LOVE to hear your views.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

i4c Grand Opening Bonus details

If you become part of my paid downline before 25 March 2009 in any of the programs with *starred links* at my Internet4Change shop, then I will rotate your affiliate link for that program in the i4c shopfront for the remainder of the year (starting in April).

Once you've signed up for any of those free *starred link* programs and paid for an upgrade, then please send me your name, email address and affiliate link in a comment to this post.

I will crosscheck my downline information and let you know here and by email when your link has been put into rotation.

By the way, all comments to this blog are moderated, so your comment won't become public until I've had a chance to crosscheck your link. If you have any other questions, please submit them here.