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Websites: Content Comes First

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It’s sometimes difficult to explain why content needs to come before website (or brochure) design. So when I saw  this article on, I knew I wanted to share it. I especially love the comparison of a website to a product package or a house. You can’t build the outside before you know what goes inside!

“Without good content, there’s no reason to visit a company’s website, read their tweets, open their emails, or care about anything they say. Most importantly, there’s no reason to interact with a company or build a relationship with them.” Lindsey Weintraub

“It’s time to stop building the house without knowing how many bedrooms it may need. It’s a paradigm shift in the way we think about building websites. But, it has to be done. Because you know what they call things that are beautiful, but have no function? Useless.” Mark Boulton

“If we design before we have content, we effectively create the packaging before we know what’s going to go in it. And if the content doesn’t fit the package, there are only two options: start from scratch, or try to jam the content into the existing package. We don’t want that.” Rian van der Merwe

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ArleneWebsites: Content Comes First

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Ramesh Balsekar said that “Self-Realization is effortless. What you are trying to find is what you already are.”

That’s why it’s effortless: you don’t have to DO anything. Just relax and BE yourSelf.

What are YOU looking for that you think you don’t have? What do you admire in others? Look inside now. What you admire in others you recognize because it is in you, too. That’s why you are able to notice it! The people in your life are simply mirrors to enable you to see yourself. Sit quietly for a moment, right now, and congratulate yourself on something. (Be specific!)

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Arlene(no title)

Open the doorway to a second (business!) date

Your job in starting a business conversation is to generate interest and rapport, and if there’s an overlap of interests, to get permission to stay in touch. You want to open a doorway to further conversation and make sure your listener sees the benefit of that happening.

One of the best ways to engage with someone is to make your message relevant to something they care about: themselves. Remember, people listen to WIIFM (what’s in it for me) and MMFG AM (make me feel good about myself ). You need to tune into THEIR ISSUES AND EMOTIONS and show you understand them before they’ll care about you.

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ArleneOpen the doorway to a second (business!) date

What’s your big WHY?

People don’t buy what you do so much as why you do it. That’s because people are tuned into WIIFM – what’s in it for me. All they care about is their desires and urgent needs. You need to get to that spot in them so they can perk up their ears and pay attention. When you talk only about what you do, they have no idea what that will accomplish and how it relates to their issues.

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ArleneWhat’s your big WHY?

Dare to stand out!

Is your need for belonging overpowering your desire to stand out and be noticed? Which is stronger? As a professional, you have something to offer people. Something that will help them and improve their life in some way. And you most likely do it in a unique YOU kind of way… That’s special!

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ArleneDare to stand out!

Seth Godin: How to get your ideas to spread

Remember having a lightbulb moment – an idea that just lit you up because you KNEW it could really help people? As you visualized it, you got so excited! But then when you try to market the idea, nothing much happens?

In this TED talk, marketing guru Seth Godin talks about how in a world of too many options and too little time, our obvious choice is to just ignore the ordinary stuff. He spells out why, when it comes to getting our attention, bad or bizarre ideas are more successful than boring ones.

I love the idea that it’s often not about the merit of an idea itself, but the ability to spread the word. Sliced bread was a total flop at first! Go figure! So have faith, people. Don’t beat yourself up – believe in yourself and stand out. Break out of boring! (And if this inspired you, use the share buttons below to spread the idea….)

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ArleneSeth Godin: How to get your ideas to spread

5 infomercial introductions that don’t bore people to death

It started with kids’ programs like Sesame Street. Now it’s twitter. People today have been conditioned to have very short attention spans. So whether you’re giving a major presentation or a short infomercial, you have only seconds to capture the attention of your audience and have them wanting to hear more.

There are a number of ways to do this.

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Arlene5 infomercial introductions that don’t bore people to death

Conquer your inner gremlin by being your authentic self

Have you ever experienced a huge success, then amidst the joy comes your inner gremlin, saying “Maybe this success was just a fluke…” Well, good news: you’re not alone!

Author Elizabeth Gilbert talks about her experience with this feeling in a recent TED talk.

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ArleneConquer your inner gremlin by being your authentic self

Elsa let it go & she felt great! Can YOU?

Have you seen “Frozen”? It’s full of inspiration! I particularly love it when Elsa sings “Let it Go” and finally figures out that she can be herself and not hold back her powers. She sings of freedom and self-acceptance in “Let it Go”. Here’s a video version of it:

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ArleneElsa let it go & she felt great! Can YOU?