Ten Questions You Must Ask Your Media Sales Rep

Advertising, as you probably already know, is simply one element of your overall marketing plan. But what an important element it is. It’s how most business owners expose their business opportunity to the masses, even if those “masses” are in their own backyards. Traditional media companies such as newspapers, radio and TV stations, magazines and outdoor billboard/signage firms hire sales people to sell their products to the business owners in their territory. They are hired and trained to sell their product. Let me repeat that for emphasis. They are hired and trained to sell their product. That means therefore, that they are NOT hired and trained to sell your product or service. They are NOT trained as marketers. They are NOT skilled copy writers. They make their money selling:30 and:60 second increments of time; space in column inches and outdoor exposure in blocks of weeks. That is what they get paid for. Sell the time and space, and get paid. End of story. Poor media salespeople have very skinny kids.

Despite these facts, I regularly see business owners turning their marketing and advertising responsibilities over to these uneducated, uninterested and altogether unsympathetic commission focused sellers. I can say these things because I’ve spent decades as one of those reps. I started out, as do most reps, with the Yellow Pages being told to “go out there kid and make your fortune”. I know what it’s like for my family to be totally dependent on my ability to convince someone to buy my stuff. And I’m really, really good at it.

Over the decades, I’ve learned that media sales reps can only be truly successful long-term if they personally take control of their education and development. The goal is to become a sustaining resource for their customers and/or clients. Again, the training programs most media outlets offer their sales people (if they offer one at all) are unbelievably bad. According to a recently published Harvard Business Review article, only 10% of the population can be considered “learning centred”. We’re the ones that seek out education by means of classes, lectures, CDs, DVDs, books, magazines and so forth. Logically, the remaining 90% of the population needs to be prodded, cajoled and externally motivated to learn something new on a consistent basis. That’s what sales managers are for.

I’ll say it again, business owners must stop handing their marketing and advertising responsibilities over to their media sales reps and start becoming accountable for the results themselves. I know that as a small business owner, time is tight. You’re overworked and often lack resources. You wake up early in the morning and go to bed late each night exhausted. But it doesn’t matter. Business owners must educate themselves with respects to marketing effectiveness and advertising strategies if they expect to generate the kind of profits required to “live the good life”.

Here are 10 questions you can ask your media sales rep to determine if they have made the transition from a sales amateur order taker, to a “sustaining resource” – someone you can count on for accurate and valuable advice to help grow your business in the years to come.

1. What marketing books have you read in the past 90 days?

Doesn’t it make sense that a well read media sales rep could be a real advantage for you? The local Chapters or Amazon book store is overflowing with excellent books on the subjects of advertising, media and marketing. Your sales rep needs to stay on top of the best-seller business charts. They need to know what is hot, what is working and what strategies have fallen by the wayside.

2. How do you keep yourself up to date with the changes taking place in the world of marketing?

This question will help you to understand how proactive your media sales rep really is. Encourage them to share magazine articles with you. What seminars or conferences have they attended? What do they know about the changes taking place in your industry? How are other businesses in other locations solving the challenges and problems you face with your business in your small town?

3. What are the top 10 marketing books I should have in my library?

I know, more reading. But it’s important. Ask your rep to provide a list of some of the best books on marketing and advertising for your personal library. Ask them to submit a brief book report and take the time to review it with them. You should have books on copy writing, direct response marketing, internet marketing, basic sales strategy, ad layout, marketing theory and alternative marketing strategies you can implement in your market.

4. What type of ongoing marketing educational material will you provide so I can continuously improve my skills?

Put the onus on your rep to provide you with educational material to expand your horizons. What is being done in other, totally unrelated industries that you can adapt to your own? What ideas can you beg, borrow or steal to make your marketing and advertising more effective? Asking the question also forces your sales rep to begin procuring information they can share with you. It forces them to become more aware of the world outside their office walls and encourages them to expand their own horizons.

5. What information will you provide for my staff to improve their sales skills?

Every small business owner needs help teaching and training their staff to become more effective sales people and better communicators. Media organizations have an inexhaustible supply of information available to them from supporting associations that you need to tap into. Ask your rep to collect articles, course material and industry-specific resources to help you with your staff training issues. Bring your media rep in-house and ask them to prepare a lunch time training session for your staff on selling best practices. If they won’t or can’t do it themselves, ask them to help source someone from the business community who would be willing to do it.

6. What is the name of your personal website?

Not the media outlet site. I’m talking about your sales reps personal website. Having a content rich website for their own customers and clients is the sign of a forward thinking, customer focused sales rep. It provides valuable information that you as a business owner can access according to your timetable. Much of the information your rep has collected can be made available on this site so the next time it’s 3:00 am and you can’t sleep, you can go to the site, download an article or two and educate yourself at your own pace.

7. What guarantees are you willing to make?

Ouch, this one hurts. If there’s one question a sales rep NEVER wants to hear it’s, “What guarantees will you make?” Here’s one guarantee you need to hear. “Your ad will run as promised and if for any reason we screw it up, you won’t have to call us…we’ll make it right!” Understand this. The sales rep cannot guarantee results. The best copy writer, the best photographer, layout designers, producers…they can’t guarantee results either. But you can certainly stack the odds in your favour. There are countless examples of advertisers who have successfully gone before you. I’ve found that many business owners don’t know the purpose of the ad they’re purchasing. They don’t articulate what the ad is supposed to do. And so they spend the money, fail to get a response – because they don’t know what to look for – and come back saying, “That ad you sold me didn’t work.”

Read my lips. Advertising ALWAYS works. It always does what it’s supposed to. And that is…It delivers your message. End of story. It is NOT the media that doesn’t work…it’s your ad! (Don’t believe me? Try this. Call your newspaper sales rep and ask them to insert a one line advertisement ANYWHERE in next weeks’ paper offering to pay $100,000.00 cold, hard cash to anyone who sees the ad and brings it into the store. Go ahead, try it…I dare you. You’ll find that newspaper you say “never works”, will work indeed!) Carve out the time to educate yourself how to write headlines that instantly grab the interest of your prospect and compel them to take action. Your body copy should flow in such a manner that it leads your engaged listener, viewer, or reader to a predetermined action. What exactly is it that you want your prospect to do? Find you online? Fill out a form or ballot? Drop by the store? Dial a phone number? Request a free report? Visit your website? Those are the types of specific, planned outcomes you can aim for.

8. Historically, how successful have other businesses in my category been when advertising with your media?

If absolutely no one in your business category has ever had any success generating a specific result or outcome using the salespersons’ recommended media, what makes you think you’ll fare differently? I’m not saying you can’t, I’m just saying “give me some data to support your proposal!” At the very least, the question will encourage your sales rep to do some research on your behalf. Ask your rep to find similar advertisers in other towns, maybe even in other countries that have had success. Radio stations and newspapers often have access to sales reps in different markets. Request their customers’ phone number or email address and begin a conversation with them. Agree to share your findings, your personal experiences – successes and failures – and in the process grow your own business network.

9. Please take a look at my last 3 ads (or scripts) and tell me how they rank on headline, body copy and call to action. What would you change?

This is a test. It’s another way of finding out if your media sales representative has ever taken the time to educate themselves on the finer points of marketing and advertising. Plenty of resources are available that will teach you how to evaluate the strength of your offerings’ headline, copy and call to action. I know of some copy writers who will write 20, 50 or 100 headlines before they even begin to write the body copy of the offer. How many headlines have you written, evaluated, discarded and adopted? You want your sales representative to help you, but you don’t want them making the final decision for you! This is your company, your product or service and no one knows more about it than you. I’m stunned when a client says, “I’m too busy to write an ad today. You do it and I’ll read it over before it goes to print (or air).” What do I know about styling hair, repairing a transmission, making cheesecake or neutering your pet? Squat is what.

Imagine you and I are in your jewellery store talking about an upcoming marketing campaign and a well dressed lady steps in and approaches you, obviously wanting some information. What business owner in their right mind would ask their media sales rep to handle the customer? “You talk to her, I’m too busy to sell a diamond today”. And yet that same business owner regularly asks their media sales rep to speak on their behalf to hundreds if not thousands of existing and potential customers.

10. How often will you be in contact with me during the next 12 months?

You have a right to establish your contact schedule with your media rep. It doesn’t always have to be a face to face visit. It could be an occasional lunch meeting, a weekly email update, a monthly ezine or sales call, but it should be planned with a definite outcome in mind. If a rep ever says, “What have you got for me today?” you should send them packing; call their sales manager and demand a new customer focused sales representative to care for your precious account. There you have it.

10 Questions You Must Ask Your Advertising Sales Rep To Boost Response and Save Big Money.

By now, you’ve probably come to realize that this isn’t easy. This is going to take time. You can’t implement everything at once, but you should be able to ask your sales rep a couple of questions during future meetings together and expect them to act upon their answers. The success of any marketing or advertising campaign you choose to put in place is 100% your responsibility. As with every professional service provider you engage, you should expect your media sales rep to take you seriously and provide you with the best advice and assistance possible to boost response and save big money!

Military Media Relations During Wars

There have been media reports that the military has been talking out of turn, and counter views have also been expressed on the topic by some supposed thinkers. It is not by individual perceptions that policies are made and the subject, in today’s context needs to debated with select examples of the world military media relations kept as a backdrop and the examples of using the various media tools as force multipliers.

Military has opened up to the media only recently. Kargil operation was the first televised war, which brought the conflict to peoples homes. It showed the war zone to the world and changed people’s perception on the pattern of conflict in high altitude areas. It reduced the gap between the military and the civilians and connected people with the lives of soldiers, who carry out their duties even at the peril of their lives. It is in their prompt response at the borders that our countrymen can remain comfortable at their homes. It was a bonding established and a national fervour built which brought about unity in diversity. The up front reportage altered the world opinion in our favour and justified the conflict, making Pakistan the bad guy. All this happened only because the media by India was handled with an aim, a vision and the public, in many ways participated in the conflict.

The negatives, to balance out, have also been true, with at times some media personnel being given preferential treatment by the military and the same media men, when rubbished on an occasion have been nasty in the reporting about the military. Such practices are reasonably common, despite the users in the game being quite aware, and such practices are bound to take place in a democratic system, yet it is important to analyse the reasons for the reporters adopting a sudden change in their outlook. It must be appreciated, after all, they are also individuals and bound to err and swing one way or the other to gauge the mood swing of the readers.

Just prior to Kargil, Kosovo happened, and just a little later the United Nations Force launched an operation in Sierra Leone. A brief mention of the two will facilitate in framing opinions on the media being used as a weapon system. While Kosovo was a ‘War of Will’ at least as projected by the western media, which gave only a one sided picture with Mr Reuben giving his daily briefings; the Sierra Leone intervention, despite the Indian contingent being actually responsible for the success of the mission, was over shadowed by the British media which highlighted the contributions made by the British troops in the success of the operations. However, damage control was carried out by the Indian Foreign Service at a later stage more as a reaction by sending the Indian media to cover the happenings, bringing to focus the Indian Army actions which brought about peace in the Region. More recently, the American coalition war in Iraq was again a reminder that a war can be projected as a justifiable war, if the events are doctored well and projected selectively.

The above examples bring to focus one important aspect, and that is, media has to be intelligently applied and it must be situation oriented. It cannot adorn a template which has to dittoed in all situations and the content also has to vary. An over or an under play will neither be good for the public nor for the military. The responses from the military have to be couched and well articulated. A total ban on interaction with the media will give rise to speculation and invariably result in misreporting. An over eager, inadequately thought of hurried response, is again likely to give a negative projection. The bait by the media will always be given with smiling faces approaching the military and wanting to be the first to report an incident and in the bargain getting access to an event. It may also be that the military, at times may feel that some other security agency may take the credit for the task accomplished and therefore prematurely reveal some details to pre-empt the other stake holders, which at times may result in tendering apologies at a later stage.

Such out of turn exposures to the media must be guarded against and that comes with fore thought and practice. Hence, it is important that media education is imparted to the military as a professional subject. It should be taught in schools of instructions right from entrée level and should be practiced over the years. The importance of the information warfare with media as a force multiplier has to be understood and it has to be correctly used as a weapon of decision making, a weapon of success.

Choosing Curriculum

After seven years of homeschooling I still don’t this curriculum thing down. I’m always asking myself, “Is this the right thing?” However, it’s the first thing new homeschoolers ask me, so I thought I’d pin down some concrete ideas to help make choosing curriculum easier.

Many homeschoolers like to use a set curriculum in a box, but I am not one of them. I like to mix and match. Unfortunately, this causes a lot of my problems. Since I’m always looking for something, I’m always wondering if I should get this history curriculum or that one? But I don’t think I could ever stay with a box curriculum and I always urge new homeschoolers to break out of that box, even just a little bit. So this article is focused more on those who enjoy some structure in their day and like to use workbooks and textbooks as well as supplement items such as videos and literature to correspond to what is learned.

So, naturally, the first step is to ask yourself the following questions:

What kind of homeschooling parent are you?
Do you desire structure? If so, a lot of structure or a little structure?
Are you a first time homeschooler?
Do you prefer to have lesson plans laid out for you?

Ask yourself these questions and Google homeschooling terms like unschooling, school at home, relaxed homeschooler, eclectic homeschooler, unit studies, classical homeschooling, literature based homeschooling and whatever other name you can think of. Read about these definitions. You will find that many people don’t stick to one definition of their homeschooling style, but by reading about these different types you will be more apt to discover what you are comfortable with as far as curriculum choices.

You also need to ask yourself What kind of learner is your child? Do they learn better if they hear something over and over? What about visualizing the subject in detail? Do they learn more by doing something, such as building a castle out of legos instead of just seeing it in a book? If your child is very young you may not know the answer to this question yet, so what are you to do? The answer to that is coming up. For others, there are some online tests to determine your child’s learning type. Just Google “learning styles” for more information.

Next, ask what are your goals for your children, for education and for life? These goals are based on the age of your child, their strengths and their weaknesses. What do you want to improve? If writing is poor, you may want to strengthen writing but not with a curriculum heavy in writing. If reading is slow and difficult, a literature based curriculum may not be right for your child.

What do you want to focus on during their studies for the upcoming year? Most parents not using a set curriculum get worried at this point. Remember, there is no such thing as a perfect curriculum. Even public schools teach different topics at different times of the year. They also change curriculum almost constantly. Usually the only subjects that build upon each other is math and English grammar. The various topics that cover science and social studies can by taught in any order during the elementary / middle school grade levels. It’s not until high school that the subjects are split into U.S. Literature, Grammar, British Literature, Physical Science, Chemistry and Biology. It doesn’t matter if your 5 year old learns about frogs before dogs or flowers before sea creatures, so relax as you begin to browse through homeschool catalogs and websites and thinking about all the possibilities.

So, now you have your goals. You know what type of learner your child is and you’ve taken into consideration your child’s strengths and weaknesses. You have an idea of a possible sequence you would like to follow. Now it’s time to look at curriculum.

There is so much out there and it’s amazing to think of all the material available. There are a lot of factors to choosing curriculum, such as religious or secular? What is the cost? Is it complete or do you need to purchase other items? How much parental time is needed for planning and teaching the material? Is the language easy or hard to understand? If your child is old enough, have your child look at the material with you if you can get some sample pages or see the curriculum at a book fair. Can they read and understand the instructions? Do they find it interesting? Do they like the format?

The biggest factor of curriculum seems to be the cost. When at all possible buy used, especially if it’s a new item you’ve never used before. If it’s a complete curriculum, see if you can buy just 1 subject to try out. If you love it, you can buy the entire set the following year. Most homeschool conferences and book fairs are around the end of the school year, usually in April or May. Have your top picks chosen before you go, or at least an idea of what you need with you before you go along with your budget. Don’t let the salespeople or frilly packaging make you spend more than intended. If you can’t find what you want used, then buy it at the cheapest new price you can find. Some online searching can dig up some great small homeschool bookstores that offer great programs at reasonable prices. If you are able to do so, keep the books clean and in good shape, then resell them to get money for the following year’s curriculum.

I also read homeschooling blogs to get ideas for William. Everyone is so creative. Sometimes I’ll read a blog where a mom explains how she helped her child understand a topic. I’ll hooray a bit to myself and let the mom know that my son was having the same problem and I’ll try her idea to see if it helps. This sharing of information is one of the best things about the Internet. If you read about a curriculum that helped one child improve a weakness, then find the website, check it out and see if it may help your child overcome the same weakness. Get involved in a homeschool group in the local area as well and find out what members are using for their children. Browse their books if possible so that you can really see what the curriculum is like before you buy.

While homeschooling is a lot of fun, remember don’t try to do too much. I loved the idea of a classical education, but that was my idea of fun, not William’s. Other stuff can be added in with time. When school time gets to be frustrating for everyone that’s when it’s time to cut some things back – whether it’s the extra activities outside the home or extra subjects that just aren’t working.

And the final thought about choosing a curriculum – everything changes. What you pick now may not be
right next year. But don’t choose curriculum out of desperation. Even if you withdraw your child in the middle of a school year in order to homeschool you don’t need to buy something quickly. You can take some time to let your child depress from school while you research and learn yourself. You never want to make a purchase in a rush.

Developing a Learning Curriculum For a Social Work Placement

Social work education and training has rarely been under so much scrutiny and the quality of practice learning is now very much in the spotlight.

The current scrutiny of the social work degree has led to an increased interest in the idea of a curriculum for social work practice learning. The GSCC recently called for an agreed National Curriculum for the social work degree, arguing that a National curriculum will improve quality in the degree and will mean that employers can be clearer about what to expect of newly qualified social workers.

Only a small number of Universities actually require practice educators to devise a practice learning curriculum, although most do encourage their use in recognition of the many benefits of a curriculum for practice learning.

In our experience, once they have found a framework, most practice educators are keen to develop a practice learning curriculum. There are various reasons for this:

* The curriculum will give some focus to the placement. It should also structure the learning process (although there will still be flexibility). This is important since placements can seem very short considering the amount of work there is to do.
* The use of a learning curriculum and the regular review process will ensure that nothing is “missed out” or taken over by other issues.
* A learning curriculum is particularly useful in off site practice learning situations. It ensures that the practice educator and on site supervisor are each aware of their own particular role in facilitating the student’s learning.
* A learning curriculum is particularly helpful if a practice educator finds themselves working with a failing or marginal student. They will be able to use the curriculum to reflect on whether the student has had sufficient learning opportunities. They can also revisit and amend the curriculum to support the student and supplement any action planning.
* Whilst the production of a learning curriculum is time consuming in itself, in the longer term it saves time.
* The development of a learning curriculum assists in improving placement planning and generally means that the practice educator and team will be better prepared to support the student.
* Curriculum development is in itself a useful learning experience for students and practice educators.
* A well designed curriculum which makes clear links to the National Occupational Standards assists practice educators when they come to completing the final assessment report on the student.

To develop a practice learning curriculum for a social work placement we would suggest that practice educators work through the following process:

Set the learning agenda
Think about:
* What does the student need to learn?
* What will the student be assessed on?

Select appropriate learning opportunities

Bear in mind:
* Any specific University requirements
* What can be provided in the setting
* Any specific learning needs the student has
* Theories of adult learning
* Student preferences about learning opportunities

Plan delivery of the opportunities

Think about:
* Who is best placed to provide the opportunities/support the student in accessing the opportunities?
* When is the best time to provide the opportunities?

Plan for review and evaluation

Ensure there are plans in place to review the effectiveness of the opportunities, to evaluate the curriculum etc. This will involve agreeing:
* Review dates
* Evaluation methods

Make links with assessment

Think about:
* How will the learning curriculum be linked into the assessment process?
* How will the student’s learning be assessed?
* What outcomes/evidence might be generated from the learning activities?

What the actual document looks like isn’t important. Some Universities provide a set format for practice teachers to use but most don’t. There is a huge variety in how a curriculum is recorded and documented and as long as it is accessible to both the practice educator and the student a practice educator has significant freedom in developing their own style.

Fox Backpacks For Men

The designs of Fox backpacks express the energy, optimism, and funky individuality of our age with bright colors and standout patterns, and come in many variants meant to be especially intriguing to women. The male side of the equation has not been neglected by these backpacks, either, however, and the sly emblem of the woodland creature can be found on many packs designed for men. These packs tend to make more use of solid colors and bulkier outlines, but are still extremely fashionable backpacks that fulfill the brash possibilities of contemporary aesthetics.

Types Of Fox Backpacks Include:

  • The Fox Flash Backpack is a basic black backpack made of rugged canvas, emblazoned with the “Fox” name and emblem in neon yellow. Zippered compartments, mesh pockets, and other storage areas are joined by a padded laptop sleeve in this design.
  • The Fox Natch Backpack is quite similar to the Flash, save that it features a slanting plaid design of white, light grey, taupe, and black. The same array of zippered pockets and compartments is present in this Fox backpack, as is the padded laptop sleeve. A single small “Fox” logo and the face of the fox itself appear on this bag in black.
  • The Fox Victory Backpack brings a hard-hitting biker aesthetic to the backpack design already seen in the Flash and Natch. A Fox head flanked by stylized wings and a skull and crossbones design accompanies jagged red and black “Fox” lettering that has much the same lightning bolt feel as the font used for SS emblems. Below, black on medium grey script declares “Honor Among Riders”. There is a laptop sleeve and other zippered spaces.
  • The Fox Shards Reload Backpack is designed the same as the Flash, Natch, and Victory, with a laptop compartments and zippered pockets. The backpack is medium grey and features a large, white, embroidered outline of the Fox backpack head, and blue “Fox” lettering.
  • The Fox Let’s Ride Backpack features extremely stylish grey herringbone cloth contrasting with black canvas. The fine, rich texture is offset by a black silhouette Fox head and herringbone lettering. There is a laptop compartment, zippered spaces, and a headphone port.
  • The Fox Step Up 2 Backpack is made up of blue and grey canvas with a large, bold, sweeping “fox” emblem including the fox’s head in front of the X. Numerous zippered compartments, a padded laptop sleeve, and two adjustable straps provide plenty of cargo carrying space.
  • The Fox Cyborg Backpack is a mix of plaid flannel and canvas in an ashen but striking plaid of light grey, dark grey, and black. Storage includes a padded laptop sleeve plus various voluminous, zippered pockets, including two large quadrangular compartments on the back. The Fox head appears on a knightly, heraldic shield that is quartered with the fox head, a checkerboard pattern, angled stripes, and a Gothic-lettering “F”.
  • The Fox Metric Backpack is a fairly simple black backpack with thin white and blue stripes suggesting wind, and a white and blue outline fox head to accompany these decorations. This Fox backpack for men includes a laptop sleeve, zippered compartment, and cargo straps for items that won’t fit inside. It, too, is made of canvas.
  • The Fox Showboat Backpack is also black with thin white outline “Fox” lettering in the lightning bolt shape seen on the Victory. Adjustable straps, zippered compartments, and a laptop sleeve fulfill the practical functions of this cutting edge Fox backpack.

When you need a reliable way to carry your laptop when travelling, you can count on Fox backpacks to provide it. Most of their backpacks contain a sleeve that will help keep your laptop safe from jolts and bumps, regardless of how active you are. Fox backpacks are just as tough as you are.

Discover Which Type of Collagen Face Products Actually Firm the Skin

Let’s face it, there are a TON of collagen face products on the market to choose from. How is it even possible to tell which ones are worth using? This article will explain EXACTLY what to takes to keep your skin as firm, elastic, and youthful as possible.

When it comes to the overall design of most collagen face products, most companies are going at it completely wrong. This may be because they do not want to investing the time and money it takes to design a truly effective product, or it may be because they only care about making extremely cheap products that people will more likely purchase. Either way as a consumer, I do not feel like it’s good business because what I ultimately want is results!

Speaking of results, let’s discuss what is necessary for collagen face products to do if you want to keep your skin as youthful and smooth as possible…

There are 4 major causes of aging skin, and the best collagen face products will address all of them.

The first one is inflammation. If left unchecked, inflammation will lead to the faster breakdown of important structural proteins in the skin. Excessive inflammation (both internally and externally) can lead to the production of toxic chemicals which can cause premature aging. Ingredients like Shea butter and babassu work well at reducing inflammation.

Secondly, you should really protect your skin against free radicals. These are unstable molecules that reek havoc on your skin and breakdown it’s cells. Things like excessive UV radiation, pollution, and a poor diet create more of these molecules in your body which makes it easier for wrinkles and fine lines to develop. I suggest looking for collagen face products with all-natural antioxidants like CoQ10, manuka honey, and natural vitamin E which will stabilize these molecules before they cause serious damage to your skin.

Third, it’s smart to prevent the moisture retention of your skin from diminishing as you age. Hyaluronic acid is a substance in all of your cells that is responsible for retaining water but as you get older, an enzyme called hyaluronidase breaks this substance down more and more. Ingredients like Japanese wakame will actually stop the activity of this enzyme so your skin can retain more moisture (which ultimately makes the skin much smoother).

And perhaps MOST IMPORTANTLY, the best collagen face products should contain ingredients that encourage and stimulate the production of more collagen and elastin protein, which are the primary structural proteins that determine how firm and elastic your skin is. DO NOT use products that actually contain these proteins as ingredients! They are worthless because the protein molecules themselves are far too large to actually penetrate through your skin!

Learning Perseverance

Learning perseverance is an undertaking with remarkable benefits for the learner. You stand to benefit intellectually, in leisure pursuits, and at your occupation. This character trait also provides physical, psychological, social, and spiritual benefits. Some would say it gives you an indomitable spirit. Let’s look at what you need to begin learning perseverance.

Learning perseverance requires the exercise of character. This is, itself, a character trait, but when learning perseverance, you will need to apply other character traits: commitment, decisiveness, determination, diligence, optimism, patience, persistence, purpose, resourcefulness, responsibility, self-control, and thoroughness.

You see, this is not an activity for the weak! So where do you begin? What must you do? What steps are involved in learning perseverance?

Define the Character Trait

Define the character trait first. Use a clear definition such as this:

This character trait begins by understanding that there are likely to be obstacles to an undertaking I plan, but with keen desire for the goal, takes clear, continuing action to move forward, overcoming every difficulty, even at personal sacrifice, and keeping at it until the goal is reached.

List Benefits

Learning perseverance of that sort requires work, and the next step is to list the benefits you can expect. Motivate yourself by writing down the positive consequences of this character trait. Here are a few examples to get you started:

· Intellectual benefits. Students of every age realize increased academic achievement as a result of learning perseverance. Even those of us who have left formal education improve intellectually through dogged persistence. Write specific intellectual benefits you would like to realize. Maybe you want to wrap your brain around a course in statistics or business law. Write it on your list. Maybe your child needs to master phonics. Add that to your list of intellectual consequences.

· Leisure benefits. You will probably not have to think long to list the leisure benefits of learning perseverance. You can gain more leisure time by persevering in required activities, but there is more. You can learn new hobbies, sports, and other leisure activities. You can increase your ability in those you already enjoy. Add specific consequences to your list.

· Occupational benefits. Those who are employed outside the home can increase their value to an employer by learning perseverance – sticking to each task until it is done well. Those who work at home have their own positive consequences. List them. Children who are learning perseverance can list the benefits of completing chores, caring for pets, etc.


Once you have listed the positive consequences of learning perseverance, you are ready to set personal goals. Goals are desires with due dates. Think about what you desire to accomplish. What do you desire to undertake in which “stick-to-it-ness” will be required? You may want to start with a small desire when you are still learning perseverance. Later, you can stretch to a great desire such as lifelong marriage!

Exercise decisiveness, Write out your specific desire and attach a due date. By what day and year do you want to have realized that desire to master a course in statistics? Be specific. Be decisive.

Start Strong

Learning perseverance itself is an activity that calls for a strong start. This is where the character trait of commitment enters the picture. Make a firm commitment that you will master this important life quality. You will train yourself to be a person who is known for firm resolve.

Changes, Obstacles, and Setbacks

An inescapable part of learning perseverance is the task of dealing with changes, obstacles, and setbacks.

You will need to exercise determination when someone or some situation changes an aspect of your goal. For example, a boss may change the procedure for a project. A teacher may change an assignment deadline. Each change will test your commitment. Determine ahead of time that you will keep at it, even when changes occur.

Obstacles are not only possible – they are also probable. As Murphy’s Law reminds us: anything that can go wrong will go wrong. You will have to exercise resourcefulness to find your way around roadblocks. You will need a strong dose of optimism to force yourself over the hurdles. Bumps in the road will try your patience. Just remember that it is all a part of learning perseverance. Exercise self-control and drive on toward the goal.

When you or your children are learning perseverance, you will sometimes think you are taking a step backward for every two steps forward. You know you are making progress, but setbacks keep stealing your momentum. Exercise persistence. Picture a bulldog with a big, juicy bone. You can grab the bone and pull, giving him a setback, but he will not let go of his bone, and neither should you.

Quitting Time

You have heard people say, “Winners never quit.” Maybe you yourself have said it. The saying has become common, possibly because so few of us stick with things to their conclusion.

Quitting is not always a bad thing, however. When children are learning perseverance, they need to learn that. If you yourself are learning perseverance, remind yourself that there is such a thing as a proper quitting time.

You can recognize quitting time by asking yourself why you want to quit. If the answer is “too hard,” “too long,” or “impossible,” you may be saying that you are lazy. It is time for diligence, not quitting.

Quitting is an activity, not a thought pattern.

If you find yourself drawn quickly and often to thoughts of quitting, you have not been learning perseverance. You have been training yourself in failure. You have programmed your mind to stop when you encounter obstacles instead of finding ways around them.

However, if you find yourself working through every obstacle, giving your all to a task or activity, you may reach a point where you realize that the cost is greater than the gain. You may learn that continuation will require a dishonest act or other moral sacrifice you had not foreseen. At that point, you may want to take the action of quitting.

An indomitable spirit can be good, but high moral values are more important than proving yourself unconquerable.


Learning perseverance requires work, but the rewards are great for those who stick with it.

Small Business Ideas – Learn Search Engine Optimization & Your Local & Online Business Will Bloom

If you take some time to learn what is called “search engine optimization” you can grow your local and online businesses to new heights. Whether you have a local hamburger shop on Main Street USA, or your do business solely on the web, search engine optimization, or SEO can place you high on Google’s search engines, and thus you will have a very good chance of being highly visible when people search for the kinds of products or services that you have. Almost every business has a website these days but how many of those businesses do any more than publish their site online and hope for the best. This is no way to do business. If you open a new restaurant or store, a lot of thought goes into location. After all, isn’t the old saying that success in business is all about location, location, location? Why would that be any different in the online virtual world than in the traditional real one? Here are some tips on how you can create a location online so that tons of traffic will drive by and see you.

When creating your website you should research what are called “keywords or keyword phrases.’ These are words and phrases that people enter into Google searches to look for information, products, and anything else that pops into their heads. The frequency of these keywords is documented, so to speak, by other online businesses like “NicheBOT Classic,” a keyword research tool site that is absolutely free to use. If you fill the text of your website and title with popular keywords and phrases that are relevant to your business then you will have a very good chance of placing on the first page of Google’s page rankings.

Did you also know that you can use social media sites like YouTube, Twitter, Facebook and Yahoo to upload videos about your business and products absolutely for free? Major corporations used to be the only ones who could get their messages out to a national and local audience. Now you can do the same without paying a cent. Do some homework on search engine optimization and how to use social media sites to boost sales and profits and your business within six to twelve months will have increased significantly. But that is only if you take action, stick to it, and follow through. You can do it. Start now.

Spreading The Good News Through Christian Newspapers

Christian News is a world apart from the usual news that comes out through the various media. What makes it different is the underlying message of Christianity. But it is not just for Christians and the news items or articles are not all about Christianity and the Bible. The articles are meant for the world audience and are about a wide variety of topics ranging from every day living to international politics. Christian News paper serves the purpose of upholding the values that Christ taught us with his life and making people realize the need for making a difference in this greed ridden world by living a life of service to all mankind.

For example, an article in a News website focused on the welfare program for the Haiti earthquake victims. The program is planned as a long term venture to provide material and spiritual support for the poor people. Another news item in an online Christian-News paper talks about the efforts of the Jews in Israel to protect the Christians in the land against oppression from Muslim terrorists. There also have been articles related to the issues and laws of gay marriages. So the articles and news items include regional and international affairs and messages based on Christian themes.

Christian websites are also a venue for people to seek guidance and counseling for various life issues. The Christian missionaries and experts in different fields will be very much ready to help you out from the teething problems that you face in daily life. Christian communities can keep in constant contact through these sites. The great experiences that you have had while living a fruitful life can be shared with others through News so that they can also avail of similar blessings in their own lives.

Christian News paper is one way to constantly open people’s eyes to the issues that the world is facing today. You can join hands with any Christian organization engaged in welfare activities through the websites. You can also give your views on any topic that you feel others should know about by submitting your articles, blog posts, or comments. Since a chief aim of News is to fight against the growing international tensions and social evils, most of the articles opine about the same. Overall, the core theme of loving thy neighbor like thyself is what drives Christian News paper forward, to make people feel the importance of transforming this world into a heavenly home.

Modern Age Communications – Its Pros & Cons

Charles E. Redfield defined ‘communication as a broad field of human interchange of facts and opinions and not the technologies of telephone, radio and the like.’ Little did he realise that to enhance this interchange and to enlarge the reach one is solely dependent on technology. Henceforth, the entire concept of mass communication came into being. Information technology has advanced so much in the recent years that it is now possible for the people, while sitting in the drawing rooms, to witness the events taking place in any part of the globe or even in the space. National boundaries hold no barrier.

‘Mass’ refers to the common man in large numbers who are now endowed with immense light to diminish ignorance. The source of light is the modern age technology agents that have imbibed in our day-to-day schedules just like inborn religion and culture. Internet is an addiction; television is the chewing gum for eyes; economy is reconstructing into e-commerce, and telecommunication is no longer a technical breakthrough.

Telecommunication as the Oxford reads, is a mode of communication over a distance, esp. by cable, telegraph, telephone, or broadcasting; or the branch of technology that deals with such communication(s). Hence, in general all that we communicate through a technology is telecommunication. It has varied aspects, each comprising of its own pros and cons. So rather than generalizing the massive concept, one should rather get to the in depth of each of these part and parcels of the term.

Print media proved its power long back when newspaper gave the hard facts of the Tipu Sultan’s war in 1798. The British government had to be really tough to curb down the power of this undying medium. They immediately announced harsh and strict acts like the Bengal Press Act and the milestone in history, the Language Act. Words in any broadcast media live in time and die easy, but prints continue to stay for years together. Though, in case of books it is a very slow process, newspapers are an indispensable part of our lives. In fact, nowadays, the newspapers have turned out to be detailed magazines that cater to the entire family, let it be kids, mothers, fathers or the grand parents. Especially, with the new concepts where all the newspapers are smudged with colours and flooded with pictures, one has to admit, a picture is worth a thousand words. Nevertheless, it always suffers a drawback, that is, limited viability for the literates only.

Television stands above all mediums because it gives you a virtual experience. Even in the hot month of May it can make you undergo the shivers of December. It enjoys an edge above the print media as in this case it is the medium that grabs your attention rather than you trying to concentrate on the medium. It gives you the sensations in an unmatched package that comprises of colours, dialogues, music, picture, virtual atmosphere, sound effects, brightness, n no of characters, and, much more, all in all you instead of being a viewer become a character in the whole setup. It is evident from the increasing number of channels that television is the most effective medium to hit the common man and percolate the level of communication at the grass root level. ‘Aaj tak’ came in as a revolution in the news networks and evoked the voice of individuals on a national pedestal. Another major example to prove the gigantic power of this past days’ ‘idiot box’ is the sensory pain and an emotional setback that the entire nation underwent on the death of ‘Mihir Virani’ in ‘Kyunki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi.’

Internet is a rather new concept and technically the most active one. Where it has come out with a boon such as e-mail, it has given us numerous banes. The Electronic Mail has overcome all the physical differences and cut short the time lapse. Needless to mention, all this was not possible without a once ‘accurate electronic calculating machine’, and today’s ‘versatile storage, calculating and operating device’ – Computer.

The shortcomings of the technologies can be analysed and justified with two contrast patterns of theories. The ‘Hypodermic’ or ‘Bullet’ theory reflects the fear or awe of mass media being used for massive propaganda. It suggests, that messages hit like magic bullets, shot directly into the receiver that are conceived to be passive and defenseless. To simplify it reads media to be extremely powerful and the consumers as naïve and malleable. This theory can be easily jeopardised with the ‘Individual Difference’ (ID) theory and the ‘Personal Influence’ (PI) theory. According to ID every individual consumer chooses his medium of exposure as per his convictions and beliefs (Selective Exposure) and reads into the received message in accordance with his preferences, perceptions, and needs (Selective Perception). PI explains the impact of ‘opinion leaders’ on the masses and how the perceptions are modified.

The youth with the selective exposure and perception and under the influence of opinion leaders have grown up to become ‘pre-mature adults’. Everyday we come across unheard and new psychological problems, increasing cases of suicides, and more and more patients of depression and AIDS. Though the problem cannot be attributed to any single factor, a major role is played by the unguarded cultural exposure that comes through internet, television, and media at large. The newest entries in this blind race are mobile phones that have created havocs with their untapped and easily accessible services that are Short Messaging Services (SMS) and the Multimedia Messaging Services (MMS). They are rising debates every month with their camera technology capturing private moments of public figures like Kareena Kapoor and raising question marks on a common man’s life with cases like DPS.

But mass media must be appreciated for its immense power in bringing about the world together. Visuals in America, miles away from India can be seen here through broadcasting technologies that too live. At times of emergencies like Tsunami all television channels gave up all their competitive rivalries and telecasted the ‘Telethon’ live on 15 television channels simultaneously to collect funds for relief purposes. In fact, this relief fund has been the greatest collection ever across the globe. The world felt the pain and grievances of the sufferers and came forward in their own sweet and heartfelt ways, whether big or small. It represented the grief and sorrow the country went through at the national level. Lately, the earthquake in northern India is being taken care of with the entire media.

To summarise, one can coin a simple statement – the global village is now rejuvenating in to a modern global city, with an immense zeal, that must be controlled and checked for the growing powers, in order to hold it, not only as a short term boon, but to not let it become a long term bane.