Monthly Archives: December 2010

You use one every time, don’t you?

Veronica Robbins Unleashed contributes this!

Some people don’t think they need one, but they often end up regretting it later, you know. Using one gives you the confidence you need to really let go and focus on what you want to focus on. It also makes it more likely that you’ll have another successful opportunity in the near future.

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Internet Lessons – Dump Adwords (unless clicks = sales) and Dump Adsense (unless clicks = checks)

Google Adsense that gives you code that you embed in your site to display google advertisements.  It didn’t pay me well – but it paid Google well – so I took Google ads off my blog.  I figure if I ever get really popular, the advertisers can come ask me for space.  Until then, I am not allowing Google to earn another dime from my blog.

I got wiser to Google when I started using Adwords here at work.  Adwords are ads you build that Google will place on sites using Adsense.  Adwords ads cost money and you pay whenever someone clicks on the ads.  You choose keywords you want to advertise toward. Maybe you’ll choose “goat food” because you sell goat food on your web site.  You want people searching for the term goat food to find your site. 

So you want your ad to come up on the first page (on the right column) each time someone searches for the word goat food or you want it to appear on other people’s goat food web sites who use Adsense.  Google assigns a value to the term goat food that you pay per click.  If someone clicks on your ad, you pay the price per click that Google has established for that keyword.  I’ve paid from about .40 to $1.25 per click.  But I’ve seen clicks that cost a lot more than that.  The person who owns the web site where these ads are placed gets a small fraction of that money.  I used to get a penny, two, maybe three for ads on my site that got clicked.  Google takes the rest.

Adwords & Adsense work well for Google. The owners of the web sites do all the work to place the Adsense ads on their sites.  The Adwords advertiser does all the work to create the ads that are placed on web sites in anticipation that these clicks will turn into sales.   Google does no work  to create or place the ads.

Google’s work was to create the search engine, and two automated online systems; 1) Adsense that enables web site owners to place a Google money machine (ad server) on their site,  2) Adwords for advertisers to create ads that web site owners place on their sites and which Google places on their search web site.

Google is the ultimate middle man. In reality, Google skims almost 100% of the gross for perhaps 5% of the work.  Google’s overhead is a matter of keeping their search engine relevant and the Adwords and Adsense sites running.  Google does not even “sell” advertising, no sales force is needed.

Google is leasing space on millions of web sites using Adwords and Adsense at pennies on the dollar.  It’s a brilliant business model as long as web site owners don’t wise up and dump Google.  It took me several years to wise up.  The business model is sort of like land owners all over the country saying that Google can set up billboards on their land.  Google collects $1,000 -$10,000 a sign per year from advertisers and pays the landowner 1%.  The land owner even has to build the sign!  Internet land owners are eventually going to wise up and ask for a higher percentage or say get lost.

Google ads don’t make anyone rich but Google.

I Need an Electronic Garage Sale

I’ve got too much stuff. I say that now and then about my material things. I get tired of moving it around or dusting it and I give part of it away or sell it off. I foresee a looming problem though, too much electronic stuff.

Getting rid my extra unnecessaries around the house is easy. I grab a box or a bag and I fill it up and it either goes into the dumpster or to the trunk of the car for Goodwill. Easy as pie is what that is. But electronic junk isn’t as easy to deal with.

I currently have nearly 2,400 emails – read – in my in-box. I don’t know why they’re still there, I must have a reason, but it bugs me. I feel as though I should be dusting them, or sorting them, filing them, or discarding them. But the task is huge and each day it gets a little bigger as more emails come along.

I am afraid to look at my list of folders. Each folder has dozens of documents in it and many folders have more folders in them. The list of folders in my computer is too long to number and even if I could number it the number would only weigh on my mind.

Sorting electronic files is excruciatingly slow. It helps if everything is nicely sorted and filed by a recognizable name, but that doesn’t always happen for some reason and I end up with a long list of unfiled files sitting there rudely under the folder list.

If I held a garage sale of my material stuff tomorrow, someone would likely buy a glitter-covered pine cone that I made in the fifth grade. I can’t hold an electronic garage sale though, because nobody will buy a 100 page grant narrative even one that earned a client 10 million dollars.

Sometimes I wish a hacker would hack in and steal my electronic files all away. Sometimes I wish a friend’s 2 year old would come by and reduce my hard drive to electronic devastation with a well-tipped sippy cup. There are, after all, a number of fortunate circumstances that could ease my digital angst.

I feel like one of those people who have filled their garage with stuff and who now have one, maybe two, storage units full of the overflow. My electronic car is parked in the driveway as it were. I guess I will have to break down one day soon to clean out the digital detritus of my life before it becomes archeologically significant.

A clean hard drive, now that’s sexy.

Self Confidence is Important for Grant Writers

A grant writer who lacks self confidence in their writing is doomed to mediocrity or failure. It’s evident when someone writes how confident they are about their narrative. Grant Writers are writing persuasive technical narrative and to do so one must be self confident. There are any number of things that can lead a grant writer to lose confidence about a grant they’re writing.

Here is my top ten list of things that erodes my self confidence when I sit down to write a narrative.

1. I have either not read the RFP comprehensively, or I do not feel that I grasped it.

2. I have questions about the RFP that are unanswered and the granting agency either refuses to take questions or their staff is unavailable.

3. I have not spent enough time with the client to flesh out the program they want funding for.

4. I am short of time to write.

5. I am distracted by outside influences and personal problems.

6. I am unable to get needed signatures, letters of support, or MOU’s in a timely that that allow me to fully focus on the narrative.

7. I have not organized all components of the grant and feel at loose ends.

8. I am dependent on others to provide narrative information and they are slow to provide it.

9. I am having technical difficulties with my equipment that could threaten the writing process and/or digital files.

10. I have had one or more grants declined recently.

Using a positive voice in writing grant narratives is vital to convey ability and competence. Readers scoring a grant written with a confident voice feel secure that the objectives will be achieved. The grant maker seeks maximum assurance that the proposed project will be implemented and that it will successfully achieve the objectives. Confidence is fundamental to writing successful grants that are dependent on a positive, descriptive, technical narrative.

Confidence, now that’s sexy!

Photo Credit: Troy Stoi