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The advertising
industry is on
the verge of
being shattered
into a thousand
fragments due to
the knowledge explosion
and the proliferation
of new technologies.
There are no
more grand theories
that hold sway
over the entire
Michael Strangelove

Advertising is
one of the minor
arts, so don't
be intimidated
by it. Try
not to lose
your sense of
Keep it fun.
Robert Bly

is more
it seems.
John Gall

The System
is its own
John Gall

It's better to
do a few things
really well than
than to do
a lot of things
If you can't
make the necessary
commitments of
time and energy
to your
scale back
your plan.
John Sumser


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All material on
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© 1995. 1996. 1997 by IBN



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September 05, 1997

Wrinklies Online?

To the surprise of many who travel the information highway, the over 50 age group is the fastest growing segment of the population getting Internet connections and are fast emerging as the group most likely to lead the way to the promised riches of Internet commerce.

Not only are seniors on the Internet, people aged 50 and over are the most likely to buy online, according to a recent Baruch College-Harris Poll commissioned by Business Week Magazine.

The survey found 42% of those 65 and over have purchased something online, followed closely by the 50-to-64-year-olds, 39% of whom have made an online purchase.

The typical profile of the over 50 Internet user is a 57 year old grandparent who owns a car, has a higher than average education and has yearly household income in excess of $60,000.

The survey also found 19 percent of Internet users are 50 and over. This compares with only 13 percent just 8 months earlier.

Keith Gardner, spokesperson for the newly launched SeniorsSearch, only says, "It's not the least surprising that older folks are taking to the new information age technology. After all, this generation has readily adapted to more changes in technology than any group in history.

"In the coming months, consumer-electronics heavyweights including Philips Magnavox, Sega, and Sony will spend millions on ads to promote their new inexpensive TV/Web set top box products that will bring the information age and World Wide Web to millions of consumers everywhere and move the Internet revolution currently in its infancy, into high gear.

"Seniors are a prime target market for these new set top box products and once they get connected, there will be no stopping them," says Gardner.

"How are you going to keep them on the Home Shopping Channel, after they have seen the World Wide Web?"

Whoever woudda thunk it? --John Blower

September 04, 1997

Got those Search Engine Blues?

Here are some hints as to how to increase your visibility:

Meta Tags
Meta tag use can easily result in your site being listed in the top 5 - 10 on 3 major search engines. Secrets include pluralizing words (games vs game, for example), multiple occurrences of words in both upper AND lower case, and a well worded, descriptive statement describing the site.

Titles - creatively composed - can have an enormous effect on placement. Be prepared to experiment.

Rotating Graphics
Rotating graphics attract attention. In addition to placing items like the date or the last time the site was updated, consider rotating graphics. This feature allows you to create a unique look everytime someone returns to the site. It is a very simple but effective tool that is often underutilized.

Partnering with others
Consider allying with mailing and discussion lists associated with the theme of your site. Partnering can result in clients from the mailing/discussion list visiting your site and vice versa. If you are running a business site and are looking to expand, search out mailing lists related to the product or services you provide and consider joining forces.

Referrer Logs
Building a high traffic site means getting to know who is coming to your site and how they are finding you. Access your Referrer Logs and regularly use these to track how people are finding you. The benefits are that you can modify your meta tags and keywords to include words people use to find you.

After determining who links to you, send thank you notes and ask for additional ideas on how you might work together. Be creative and out going.

Developing a Gameplan
Develop a gameplan and share with site visitors what direction you are going. Don't be afraid to ask where THEY want to see the site go. Feedback from site visitors can allow you to provide maximum content and value. This accomplishes two very important opportunities - repeat visitors and referrals. Nothing is more satisfying than polling visitors and finding out that most heard about your site from a friend or relative. --John Blower

September 03, 1997

Seven Laws of Online Advertising

In the Spring 1995 issue of American Advertising, there appears, as a side-bar in a very good Ron MacLean interview with Kevin Wells of Ziff-Davis Interactive and Leslie Laredo of AT&T Interchange Online Network, the "Seven Laws of Cyber Advertising" by Leslie Laredo. They are worth repeating:

  • Exposure
    Pepper the cyberworld with multiple signposts - but don't put these signposts just anywhere. Position them adjacent to content that is relevant to your audience. Messages found in context are always of more value and, therefore, are likely to be sought out and remembered.

  • Frequency
    In cyberspace, message frequency is a function of user control. Get the user to come back by making your messages appealing, attractive and useful.

  • Time
    Be sensitive to delivery time and how fast information is retrieved. Realize that even a nanosecond delay may prompt a consumer to think about going elsewhere - or worse, to think about the cost of being online. Remember that graphics take longer to download. Use them sparingly, where they enhance a story - not where they simply look good.

  • Space
    Space is virtually unlimited online. Don't be afraid of raw volume of information. Make information accessible in layers. It should be easy for the consumer to find what s/he is looking for and skip the rest.

  • Customer Service
    Online users love e-mail and use it frequently to express their opinions. They will tell you (and others interested in your brand) what they think and what they want. They'll also expect a response from you. Use your infospace not only to sell, but also to provide post-sales support. This will build lifetime customers.

  • Feedback and Research
    Use your online space to collect user information. Measure feedback for usage patterns. Then use it to refine the content and organization of your ad. Don't be afraid to solicit feedback via surveys or electronic "suggestion boxes." Remember, the online user expects to be involved in a way that other consumers don't.

  • Tapping the Global Village
    Online often means global viewership. Your communication strategy cannot ignore worldwide reach. Make sure your internal organization is prepared to respond quickly to a global community of users, their orders, their advocacy (both positive and negative) and any new marketing opportunities that arise.

--John Blower

September 02, 1997

Sex Sells

Sexually explicit Web sites are accessed by employees at nearly three quarters of organizations surveyed, ON Technology reported in announcing the results of its survey of organizations that used ON Guard Internet Manager software to monitor employee Internet usage.

In addition, the organizations reported frequent access to other non-business sites including sports (one in 6 organizations), music (one in 7 organizations), and TV/radio/movies (one in 10).

The survey examined Internet usage for a range of industries including manufacturing, services, education and government/military. Respondents monitored Internet usage with the ON Guard Internet Manager, a software program that captures all network traffic to Web, FTP, Telnet and Gopher sites.

Adult entertainment is the number one income generator on the Internet according to a recent study.

The study showed that sex is the most frequently entered criteria in search engines despite the relatively small amount of domains providing adult entertainment. In a panel discussion during the annual meeting of the American Psychological Association, it was remarked that Internet sex offers information and education while being a perfect medium for human interaction for the socially challenged.

Are we surprised at these findings? No.

We are reminded of an article in the premiere issue of WIRED by Gerard Van Der Leun, in which he argued - very persuasively - that demand for sexually explicit material has been the driving force behind the expansion and development of all new technologies from the printing press on.

Maybe we're in the wrong business... --John Blower

September 01, 1997

Standards Guide

Nua is a respected internet consultancy and site developer based in Dublin, Ireland.

Based on their experience in designing and maintaining large corporate sites, Nua has developed a standards guide, The Nua Guide.

The Nua Guide offers concise guidelines on

  • Site maintenance and promotion;
  • Design and graphics;
  • HTML editing;
  • Email.

Webmastering covers the various skills needed to maintain and promote your site - making it a valuable piece of your marketing effort.

Design covers the production of graphics, suggested file sizes and making your site navigable by the widest variety of browsers.

There is a section detailing the correct use of HTML tags and applying common layout standards across a website.

The email section contains information on getting the best out of this under used tool to promote your company and services.

The Nua Guide will be available from Sept 1st for IRP1000 per year and will be password protected. --John Blower

Take a look at the Archives. We've indexed all the past issues with topic pointers.

Check out the Archives....130 Weeks of Back issues including:

August 31, 1997
  • Press Releases
  • Design Criteria
  • Online Seminars
  • Internet Myths
  • Narrowcast
August 24, 1997
  • 7 Cs of Successful Websites
  • Whisper It Not Aloud
  • Relationships
  • Real Call
  • More Email
August 17, 1997
  • PIU
  • Another Search Engine
  • SOHO
  • Dancing with the Gorilla
  • Deep Throat
August 10, 1997
  • Internet USA
  • Nation of Spammers
  • Lifetime Values
  • ENode
  • Tovarich
August 03, 1997
  • Too Good To Be True
  • Who's Pushing Whom
  • A Recent Poll
  • Sidebars
July 27, 1997
  • Talking The Talk
  • Modest Proposal
  • eMail Ads
  • Mark Me Up
July 20, 1997
  • Silence
  • WordsWork
  • Ugly
  • Video Banners
  • Virii
July 13, 1997
  • Some Print Resources
  • Security Breach
  • Bits and Pieces
  • Domain Confusion
  • Caxtonian Thinking...
July 06, 1997
  • Not Rocket Science
  • Money for Junque
  • Slow, Quick, Slow
  • WEBTV?
  • Cookie Cutter
June 29, 1997
  • Interoperability
  • Marketing Resource
  • Confereces
  • Industrial Strength Ideas
June 22, 1997
  • Promote One
  • Europa
  • Design Resource
  • Media Kits
  • Style Sheets
June 15, 1997
  • Using eMail
  • New Morality
  • Odds 'n' Sods
  • Fast Modems
  • Which Search Engine
June 08, 1997
  • Events
  • Hard Copies
  • Banning Junque
  • Another Survey
  • Networds
June 01, 1997
  • Shop Til You Drop
  • Coffee Time
  • Jaundiced
  • Push To Shove
May 25, 1997
  • Microscope
  • Gadfly
  • Marketing Your Site
Complete Indexed Archives(24 months of marketing and design) Complete Indexed Archives(24 months of marketing and design)

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All material on this site is © 1995, 1996 by IBN (The Internet Business Network), Mill Valley, CA 94941