Marketing: Positioning and How To Get There

One of the most commonly held assumptions about positioning a brand is that it is only a set of words put together and written up for publication. But that’s simply not so. It’s much, much more than that. In fact, that only describes the end process but it doesn’t describe the work of positioning a brand and what it actually involves.

So I’m writing this post to debunk that myth for those who are new to positioning, and positioning a brand. Positioning a brand deserves hours, days and even months of deep thinking, planning, informed by reliable market research full of qualitative data, for one. It demands rigorous debate, frank disagreement, and ruthless scrutiny.

During this thinking, planning and research process, it’s important to question and test the assumptions people hold. That helps to find gaps and weaknesses that your competitor might exploit.

Yes, quantitative data is important and helpful. But when you are counting on research to inform major decisions that have significant investments of resource and budget, then it doesn’t hurt to get qualitative information to help give a better understanding of why your audiences or viewers are making certain choices.

Qualitative information gives insightful information about the ‘why’ in people’s choices and attitudes.

When you are reaching out to hard-to-reach audiences and specific ethnic populations, qualitative data helps to understand differences in consumer behaviour.

By the way, when I’m referring to brand, I’m also referring to an organisation, a celebrity, a company or a political movement. A brand isn’t confined to just being a product, although technically speaking, one could say that an organisation is a product, so too is a celebrity.

When I am referring to markets, that is your audience, the people you are targeting, the people you want to speak to, connect with, and influence.

When I refer to the marketing mix in these conversations, it’s the 4 Ps: Price, Product, Promotion and Place.

So how do you get started on positioning? There’s a three-step process that’s tried and tested, and worth noting down for your marketing and communications discipline.  Let me start with the first step here.

  1. Segment Your Market
    This is a critical process in marketing. Divide the market up into segments into distinct subsets. There’s different ways you can segment your market, depending on a number of  factors. One thing about segmentation is that location is an important variable.

If you’d like to know more about the segmentation process and different ways to segment your markets, let me know by email.

Everyone’s Secret Weapon

I was exploring on Stumbleupon tonight and this wonderful visual popped up. It certainly speaks truth and I’m not a perfect human being, in case you hadn’t noticed, but I know in my heart that this adage works in work, home and life.

happy is the man

Visuals that Tell The Vaccine Story

I am constantly on the look out for fresh ways to tell a compelling story on subject matters that have no entertainment or celebrity value. Like health, for example.  As we continue to see advances in technology and on social media, there’s an abundance of opportunities to find these examples. So thanks to social media, here’s a couple of examples I’ve checked out this morning and I thought I’d share them with you.

Video 1
The subject matter is important. It’s about vaccines and they save millions of lives.  But despite the importance of the message, a large number of people would rather watch news with entertainment value, then a message that could save lives. So that’s a communications challenge to resolve.

Just as I was about to stop watching this video, the unidentified hand doing the infographic grabbed my attention. I couldn’t take my eyes of it. Admittedly, I was looking for something to keep me interested and the hand sketching the infographic did it for me.  And before you knew it, I was listening to Bill Gates, no problem. To help the infographic sketching work with the voice track, the pace has been sped up to flow with the narrative.  Conclusion: using the infographic with hand streaming with voice works.

Video 2

This is compelling to me because it starts with the personal story of a mother who has lost her baby. That is heartbreaking. Yet her energy and commitment trying to persuade mothers in Gambia to have their children vaccinated is heartwarming and inspiring. Vaccines saves children’s lives.  She is saving lives by helping to spread the message. And that’s an incredible legacy to come out of great loss and suffering.

An inspiring story of a mother and the grassroots efforts using song that worked at inspiring village families to have their children vaccinated. This visual tells the story of vaccines as a personal story, strongly and simply.

How to Increase Your Facebook Engagement

Poynter Institute has published an insightful piece on an issue that organisations in the public and private sector want answers to.  How to get the most engagement from your Facebook Like Page. More businesses in New Zealand are seeing the benefits of using social media platforms as an engagement tool.  So I thought I’d link you  to the post by clicking here . I would share and paraphrase it here for you but I’m a bit short on time today.


 

 

 

 

The Digital Divide Hasn’t Gone Away

At least one in four teenagers aged 12 to 17 in America are “cell- mostly” internet users, according to the latest PEW research.  In the developing world, cellphone access to the Internet is much more widespread than using laptops and computers.

20-08-2013 PEW Research on Teen Cell Internet Use

And that all seems fine and dandy in terms of rolling towards a mind-blowing digital technology revolution.  But Mashable writer Jessica Goodman reveals some worrying trends and impacts on skill development and learning for young people in a story headlined The Digital Divide is Still Leaving Americans Behind .

When it comes to teens and cellphone Internet access, it’s no longer as revolutionary as it first appeared to me.  I’ve dispensed with the assumption that a young person who can easily access the Internet on a cellphone, and tweet and facebook at 100 miles an hour, automatically has a high level of computer literacy. That’s not an absolute. Through one tech teacher’s experience, as reported in the Mashable story, it shows there are direct costs and consequences to learning and skill development for a young person whose primary access point to the Internet is cellphone.   Good insights.

There are questions to ask but those initial findings provides a strong starting point if you’re interested in solving a problem like, how to cut the costs and consequences.  I don’t know what the answers are, as yet, but I intend to find out sooner or later.

20-08-2013 Digital Divide America 2

20-08-2013 Digital Divide America

PolyFest Winners

Polyfest Manukau, Sat 16 March: St Paul's Collegiate, Ponsonby, wins First Place overall for boys schools

POLYFEST 2013, Manukau – Samoan Group, St Paul’s College, Ponsonby, Auckland.  Credit to Facebook S T Timoteo.

Pride beaming from their faces before they stepped onto the stage. One of them is my nephew, who, along with these fine young men, performed at Polyfest today. They’re representing St Paul’s Samoan Group and obviously they won. An all boys school, St Paul Samoan Group were the overall boys schools winner.

It’s incredible to think how far Polyfest has come since its early days.  Nowadays it’s regarded as the largest Maori and Pasifika cultural festival in the world. Who would have imagined that back in its early days? This secondary schools cultural festival began in 1976 at Southside’s Hillary College after a 16-year-old Otara student named Michael Rollo came up with the idea. Staff, students and parents supported the idea and off they went.  The aim of the Festival was to show pride in cultural identity, heritage and bring schools together to share this.  What was the catalyst for his idea? Where is Michael Rollo now? That’s what I wonder when I consider that the Festival has been going for over 36 years.

Meanwhile, this post is my way of celebrating my nephew for giving his all and doing his part to make their group a winning one.  He’s usually on the sports field and this was the first cultural group he’s ever joined to compete in Polyfest.

Young man, keep giving 110 percent, and then some, be it on stage, in classroom and on the sports field. I like it!

Familia Historia est Amazing

Two years ago, someone asked me to write down our Family Tree.  Ignoring my spare writing-to-do list waiting to be done, and always a long queue past my kitchen door, I went on a long search for my enigmatic ancestors.  I  have interviewed and quizzed family and strangers galore on family history, so intensely and persistently, this year.

There’s still a few unanswered questions buzzing around in my head. Like, what did they look like in the 1800s and 1900s?  What did they think about during their travels? Why did they go where they went? Is there any chance that I might have seen them in historical un-named photos?

When I face the ever-present reality of gaps in undocumented knowledge, I write down entire question lines that come to mind.  Yes, I recommend buying yourself a large book that you can record all your notes, thoughts, and findings.  I record every question, every line of enquiry, every possible scenario that comes to mind.

Those questions, and moreso the answers that come out of it, have helped sharpen lines of enquiries.  I could call myself a scientist with my hypothesis. My questions have tested long-held assumptions about family information. It has helped me correct information especially when I come across primary source evidence.

At this very moment, there’s nothing more thrilling in this chase than finding reliable information that verify my Family Tree.

http://youtu.be/Zzd64YvOqrk

Interested in family history? Click on the above link and watch that episode of the American version of Who Do You Think You Are.  It features Rosie O’Donnell, the US comedian, with family stories that just grabbed me. O’Donnell’s family history episode, unexpectedly, kept my eyes clued to the screen. I have a newfound respect for O’Donnell and her ancestors. It also has some useful tips on records to check (other than Census, birth and  death records).  Part 2 and 3 of this episode are on Youtube.

 Ciao

Visualizing Data

It’s a beautiful thing to come across data presented in the language of the eye.  After attending #ProjectRevolution the last two days, I’ve noticed that even more.  Presenting data visually, if you can, helps an audience to see patterns, relationships and their impact.  It compresses loads of data into an easily digestible form, most of the time.

NYtimes viz

New York Times graphic. Narrative Visualization: Telling Stories with Data. Edward Segel, Jeffrey Heer. IEEE Trans. Visualization & Comp. Graphics (Proc. InfoVis), 2010
PDF (1.4 MB)

There are plenty of data visualisation experts to learn from. Take a look at the Stanford Visualisation Group from which the New York Times graphic was plucked.  If you prefer to watch video, David McCandless, a data journalist, has a TED Talk on the beauty of data and how to present it in more engaging ways.

For example, look at your Facebook feed and the unsolicited data set of information coming through as people update their statuses.  That’s data.  Scary huh?  In the TED talk, McCandless shows a graph computed from more than 10,000 Facebook status updates  that identify trends each year when people tend to post about breaking up.  And you thought your  Facebook updates could never be scientifically analysed? He does far more than analyse your social media conversations.

So without further ado, here’s the TED talk with David McCandless. Visual data really is a beautiful thing!

David McCandless turns complex data sets (like worldwide military spending, media buzz, Facebook status updates) into beautiful, simple diagrams that tease out unseen patterns and connections. Good design, he suggests, is the best way to navigate information glut — and it may just change the way we see the world.

He draws beautiful conclusions from complex datasets — thus revealing unexpected insights into our world

This exciting topic on data takes me back, years ago, to an infant mental health conference I attended at the University of Sydney.  A clinical psychologist was asked how she was able to convince authorities to fund a programme for traumatised and abused children. Her answer was very simple and I learned a lot from what she said.

“I had the data”, she said. That was good enough for them.

By the way, I am still working on my series of  posts on my learnings from the digital technology conference. Will post my first one soon… sorry, I’m still on my social media hiatus. Back before Christmas.

Family History Searches: Ellis Island

I’m researching aspects of my family history and have been, off and on, for years.  My desire is to record family stories before time and death take them away.  Fortunate are those for whom there are ample records that provide a paper trail for researchers.  But when a culture has lived by an oral history for decades, using elders, songs and dances to tell those stories, it presents challenges and lost treasures.  When memories fail, when people don’t share the history, when the stories, songs and dances are no longer passed on, it presents a significant loss of treasures at this end.

Tonight, I took a break from researching to watch this story filled with archival film history of another era and another people.  Ellis Island, dubbed the Island of Tears,  is a remarkable American immigration story.  Historians estimate that almost half of all Americans today can trace their family history back to the Port of New York at Ellis Island. It was the port of entry for millions of European immigrants from 1892 to 1954.  With them came their dreams, hopes, sorrows, whatever they could to make a fresh start in a land of freedom. At some point in every family’s history, there is a story of immigration from one country to another.  This might be yours.

A Web Hunter That Overrides Google Effect

StumbleUpon is a free gift for consumers.  It answers so many consumer needs like when you’re too busy to surf the Net or dig deeper.   I love the big wide world out there online.  But I don’t always get to see what’s online in terms of the best content because I don’t have time to sit down and look for it.  Like sands in the hourglass, so are the days of our lives. Remember that line from those old soapies? My mother used to watch them back in the day.

So introducing StumbleUpon. Millions have used it before me. I’ve been a member of StumbleUpon for years but I’ve only begun to appreciate its power over the past year.

Who has time to see what’s out there, outside of what Google shows up?   Because, remember, Google also selects what you see and what you won’t see.  Plus, with Google results, we now know that you get a different result depending on your personal web history, rather than receiving results based on most popular or most used.

Most people, unless they are doing deep research, do not bother to look beyond the first 1 or 2 pages of Google results. Apparently (an SEO guru whispered that last bit to me). StumbleUpon over-rides the Google Effect by cherry picking using a different formula to Google’s. One that is based on your personal interests.  It delivers those interests to you in a visually appealing way, which makes it even more appealing.

Now going back to answering my own question.

The staff at StumbleUpon, obviously, have time to find websites you might be interested in looking at.  Think of them as your web content shoppers, cherry-picking through the best of the best of their spring, winter and summer collection.

The best part? The good people at StumbleUpon do it for you for free! How many SEOs gurus  do your work for free?  Exactly. I can count on one hand, or one finger, how many.

I literally stumbled upon StumbleUpon, and I thought I’d share it with you in case you were looking for something like this tool.

Ciao Bella!

Saying Goodbye to the Preposition Rule

Latin Class

As a writer,  I obsess over grammar rules.  I break grammar rules too, at times.  It’s a tricky one with the borderless world of the Internet because there are grammar rules that are country or culture-specific. But this, my friends, is not one of them.  The dreaded “preposition” rule.

In my early training as a writer/journalist, I came away with the distinct impression that it was not the done thing to end a sentence with a preposition.  But I have questioned that rule in my mind, through the years, whenever I am writing for the spoken word.

“Why is it ‘wrong’ to end a sentence with a preposition? … Who, upon seeing a cake in the office break room, says, ‘For whom is this cake?’ instead of ‘Who’s the cake for?’ Where did this rule come from?

Then, one day in the last year or so, I started noticing reporters, with ease and without guilt, using the preposition as the last word on a sentence.  So guess what?  I’d say that the fast talking world of social media status updates has changed that.  People are writing as they speak it.  People who haven’t been trained with the rules like me.  And it makes perfect sense.  When we’re speaking to people, we often end our sentences with a preposition. In broadcast writing, I was taught to write for the ear and the ear is the spoken rule.

The idea that ‘rules’ were more important than history, elegance, or actual practice … held writers and speakers in terror of making them. …

So my revolutionary grammar hat came back on when I came across this little gem of a book called You Are What You Speak .  It offers an explanation of how this grammar rule came about. By the way, reading it made me feel so much better about letting it go. Almost.

“The answer will surprise even most English teachers: John Dryden, the seventeenth-century poet less well-known as an early, influential stickler. In a 1672 essay, he criticized his literary predecessor Ben Jonson for writing ‘The bodies that these souls were frightened from.’ Why the prepositional bee in Dryden’s syntactical bonnet? This pseudo-rule probably springs from the same source many others do: the classical languages. Dryden said he liked to compose in Latin and translate into English, as he valued the precision and clarity he believed Latin required of writers. The preposition-final construction is impossible in Latin. Hence: it is impossible in English. Confused by his logic? Linguists remain so to this day. But once Dryden proclaimed the rule, it made its way into the first generation of English usage books roughly a century later and thence into the minds of two hundred years of English teachers and copy editors.

“The rule has no basis in clarity (‘Who’s that cake for?’ is perfectly clear); history (it was made up from whole cloth); literary tradition (Shakespeare, Jane Austen, Samuel Johnson, Lord Byron, Henry Adams, Lewis Carroll, James Joyce, and dozens of other great writers have violated it); or purity (it isn’t native to English but probably stolen from Latin; clause-final prepositions exist in English’s cousin languages such as Danish and Icelandic). Many people know that the Dryden rule is nonsense. From the great usage-book writer Henry Fowler in the early twentieth century, usage experts began to caution readers to ignore it. The New York Times flouts it. The ‘rule’ should be put to death, but it may never be. Even those who know it is ridiculous observe it for fear of annoying others.”
Author: Robert Lane Greene
Title: You Are What You Speak
2011. Pages: 33-34, 24-25

If  saying goodbye to the preposition rule is good enough for the New York Times, it’s good enough for the rest of us.

Silent Poverty

Poverty

Poverty (Photo credit: Teo's photo)

Had a thought-provoking day out this week.

Got back to my car and I was approached by a well-dressed Indian or Pakistani man begging for money to buy food.

It shocked me to see him, well dressed, well-spoken, asking me for money, in a part of town that has never seen beggars, in my experience.

I wonder, thinking about it today, whether it is a glimpse of what I call, the silent poverty in the middle-classes…

Posted this on my Facebook first.  Then I realised, this is something I can post here too.

The Painting

You must see this. It is so amazing and refreshing to watch.  This video, showing  the work of performance artist David Garibaldi, is a joy to watch. I have seen this video a number of times. Each time I’ve come away inspired by his gift. When I first saw it, it wasn’t on YouTube and didn’t have a headline or description. So I had no clue what he was painting until it became very obvious. He’s also painted other famous figures such as Michael Jackson, Martin Luther King and Albert Einstein.

In one of his videos, he talks about where it all started. He says he taught himself how to paint. How cool is that ?! [Wow, now  he's starting to give me ideas but no, I could never paint like him]. He credits Dennis Dent as the first rock and roll painter who fathered this form of art and one of his inspirations.

The Internet at Its Worst and Best

Internet Explorer 8 in InPrivate mode

Image via Wikipedia

I wrote a submission to the New Zealand Law Commission’s Review on the Regulatory Gaps and New Media. Phew. Mine was an 11th hour effort.  But I submitted because I believe there is value in participating in parliamentary and legislative processes.  That’s where the public has an opportunity to participate in the decision-making processes of Parliament.

If your voice isn’t represented there, then your voice isn’t represented there. And that’s a lost opportunity to speak up and express a valid viewpoint that might not be spoken by anyone else.

I’m a great believer in the benefits of robust and thought-provoking conversations on issues and topics, particularly when people hold a diversity of views and backgrounds. As an aside, I have found, though, that there are some common factors that make it beneficial.  Factors like shared goodwill, respect and trust between participants and leaders of the pack setting the example.

Fast forward to this morning.  A story about a significant privacy breach on the Internet this morning affecting an employee on the picket lines. The Privacy Act and the exemptions extended to news media is a topic raised in the Issues paper of the Review I’ve submitted on this week.

Radio New Zealand Morning Report interviewed a lawyer, John Edwards, who specialises in privacy law. Click here to listen.

It’s sometimes a mistake that employers and agencies make to think that because an individual participates in a public debate or comments on a matter that that gives some license or waiver to their privacy rights…There’s nothing in law to support that view – John Edwards speaking on Morning Report.

That privacy breach is mired in an industrial relations dispute where a battle rages for the hearts and minds of ordinary Kiwis. The stakes are high and the hurt and acrimony will, no doubt, linger for years to come. Reputations and goodwill are on the line.

That sort of privacy breach would never happen in the medical health sector. Clinicians and health authorities, in my experience, tightly guard people’s personal and health information, even at the risk of being  mis-reported or misrepresented by news media. A hat tip to health professionals for setting the gold standard.  Earlier this week, another story surfaced about privacy breaches, this time affecting clients in a government department. The latest update today.

Now that I have sufficiently depressed you with the nasty stuff on the Internet, it is worth noting the positives.

With the government department story, it’s a credit to the Minister of ACC Judith Collins that she acknowledged the department’s errors. That’s the best approach in risk communication, work that I’ve specialised in. Admit the mistake, take it on the chin, be honest and up front with the public. It allows the story to move on faster. It helps relationships to heal and eventually, hopefully, rebuild trust in the leadership. As long as words match the actions. The Privacy Commissioner has stepped in. Another re-assuring mechanism for the public. So our legal and parliamentary processes are full steam ahead here and that’s heartening news.

I doubt the  early developers of the Internet intended the Net to be used as a malicious tool to breach personal privacy and hurt people intentionally.

What about the Internet at its best?

Remember words like the Knowledge Economy? Information Highway? A broad description, I know, but it’s the Internet at its very best. I love discovering the multiple digital platforms people and organisations use to tell their story. Here’s a few sites and agents worth praising on the Internet.

  • The unsung heroes of the Internet: open source developers who create services and plugins to democratize the Internet and removing access barriers. They are outstanding in helping non-developers, that’s been my experience. They create plugins that help website and email owners identify the IP address and domain name if  there is nasty behaviour occurring via web email, comments, and so on.

The Internet’s Finest Hour

Filmed by Ilka Franzmann and aired on Al Jazeera and  available online, this story on video here captures the powerful example of the Internet doing life-saving work. I originally saw this documentary on Al Jazeera.  This is the latest on a story we all need to hear when people talk about the power of the Internet. It’s a humbling reminder.

We used to defend ourselves by bows and arrows.  But that doesn’t work anymore. Our modern weapon is the internet. This is the only way to ensure safety in our territory.

son of a chief of the Ashaninka tribe living in a region of the Amazon Rainforest

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What is a waterspout? Auckland had one

Two days ago, Auckland saw this gigantic waterspout in the afternoon. I saw it! What a thrill. Amazing. Beautiful in its formation and size.

Watched it for at least two minutes from one of the old buildings at Greenlane Hospital, now used as office floors.

Stunning and terrifying cloud formation bearing down near Sky Tower, or so we thought at the time.

It had a clear funnel of greyish puffiness spouting down.  We thought the spout, we were calling a tornado, was on land. It was, in fact, on water and far away from the tower.

Soon after, slightly confused by media stories and a stray comment from a learned colleague, calling it a “waterspout” (without any explanation why it’s not called a tornado), I asked a scientist  for answers. Wasn’t what I saw a tornado, I asked. It looked fierce and just like the tornadoes I see on telly, I said.

A waterspout, he said, is what it is called when it happens on the water. They are still dangerous for their impact and destructive power if there are boats in its vicinity. When they hit land, they are then called tornadoes. Even more dangerous on land because there are people everywhere.

Thank goodness this water spout stayed at sea and never came on terra firma. For one beautiful summer’s afternoon, most of us stood on land enjoying it safely funneling out at sea.

5 Starter Tips Before You Set Up Your Own Website and Blog

New WebsiteIf you are an absolute beginner who has never created your own website or blog, weblog, before and digital technology is a mystery, this blog post is for you.

I use the words “website” and “blog” interchangeably in this post, not because they are the same platform which they aren’t, but because these tips apply to both. I also refer to the blog as a “weblog”, a term I use interchangeably throughout this post.

 Before you start building, let’s get started with these tips to help you plan and prepare.

Tip 1

Determine your purpose for setting up a website or weblog

Knowing why you’re doing this will help you clearly identify your target audience, the features you’ll need, and what you hope your online presence will achieve.  Talk to trusted advisers and friends, brainstorm and/or mind-map with a group of friends or colleagues if you are unclear on the purpose of your website or blog.

Exercise

  • Why do you want to set up a website or weblog? Write down words and sentences that come to mind, without editing. Afterwards, go through your answers and narrow it down to a few sentences or one key sentence.


Tip 2

Identify your Audience

Do you know who you want to reach?  Knowing who you want to reach, who will read your blog for example, will help you decide the privacy settings you may wish to apply.

Exercise
Describe your audience, how old are they, what do they do, what do they do for leisure.

 If your target audience is a specific group of people, then you might want to consider having a private web or blog visible only to a select group, rather than an open website or weblog.

Tip 2

Choose content to post on your website

Photos. Images. Graphics. Flow Charts. PDF documents. Videos. Create a folder or box this will go in. The list can go on and on. You have a lot of material to use but that doesn’t mean that everything should go on the website. Review all the documents, material, photos and videos. Set up a folder organised with the content you wish to upload to the website.

Questions

  • Has your offline content been updated to reflect any changes or updates in your organisation?
  • Do you need to update any photos or graphics or logos before uploading?
  • Have people’s surnames and roles changed?
  • Are staff roles correctly stated?
  • If you are working with long documents, do you have a writer who can go through the long documents and help sharp content for the web?
  • Do you have a scanner?

Tip 3

Use Headings and Subheadings to Reflect Your Tone

Organise your thinking here. Take out the note pad and start to jot down broad categories or themes of the content. If you are setting up a website for lawyers or medical professionals, the headings will be more formal, straight to the point, and usually pre-determined according to work areas and clinical portfolios.

Standard websites headings:

  • Home Page (First page on the website)
  • About (Information on the organisation and who you are). This may also include sub-pages
  • Services (What work or services you offer the public or other audience)
  • Contact (this list phone numbers and contact staff or a web email form).

Tip 4

Brainstorm a name for your website or blog

Get inspired. This is worth the time it takes to come up with a name that fits for you. I love this part of setting up an online blog. It’s fun. Think about it as your headline. Be as creative as you wish, depending on the purpose of your blog.

I use my name for this blog simply because I had already purchased my domain name some years ago. I played with the headline on this blog, Vienna’s Blogdesk. I choose the word Blogdesk because I didn’t want to focus on any one subject or issue. I don’t know if there is a word called blogdesk. I merged two words as one.I wanted the freedom to write about whatever I wish to write about. Hence, blogdesk covers it all.

Whatever inspires you to be creative and come up with new ideas for a name, the better in your search for the right name for your website or blog.  Some people have done this over a chocolate party, apparently. Again, I’d recommend brainstorming a lot of names and not editing any out because often random words can piggy back on each other. And viola, before you know it, you have a name. If you’d like further direction on this, post a comment or email.

Tip 5

Decide to purchase a domain name or use a free web address.

There is no shortage of free web addresses you can use for your website. But there is usually a catch and you are limited to using the address they offer you. You wouldn’t be able to use viennarichards.org as a free web address. I paid for the domain name. I’d recommend that you buy your own domain name. Why? You have more control over the address, if it is available for purchase.

Coming up in my next blog post on this topic, I will share more tips about buying a domain name and having your website or blog hosted.

Albert Einstein Quotes and Mozart

Video says it all.

I’ll post the quotes in writing for those who cannot access this video, have used their limit of broadband, or are using a device to read text on this blog. These are the quotes from the first 2 minutes.

Albert Einstein

Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex and more violent. It takes a touch of genius, and a lot of courage, to move in the opposite direction.

Imagination is more important than knowledge.

The tragedy of life is what dies inside a man while he lives.

Anger dwells only in the bosom of fools.

The release of atomic energy has not created a new problem. It has merely made more urgent the necessity of solving an existing one.

To punish me for my contempt for authority, fate made me an authority myself.

Before God we are all equally wise and equally foolish.

When you look at yourself from a universal standpoint, something inside always reminds or informs you that there are bigger and better things to worry about.

Betterment of conditions the world over is not essentially dependent on scientific knowledge but on the fulfillment of human traditions and ideals.

Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts.

People do not grow old no matter how long we live. We never cease to stand like curious children before the great Mystery into which we were born.

The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing.

The fear of death is the most unjustified of all fears, for there’s no risk of accident for someone who’s dead.

The aim (of education) must be the training of independently acting and thinking individuals who, however, can see in the service to the community their highest life achievement.

It is a miracle that curiosity survives formal education.

The only thing that interferes with my learning is my education.

Education is what remains after one has forgotten everything he learned in school.

Common sense is the collection of prejudices acquired by age eighteen.

Few people are capable of expressing with equanimity opinions which differ from the prejudices of their social enviroment. Most people are incapable of forming such opinions.

may or may not be continued…

 

Steve Jobs on Loving What You Do

It’s the start of 2012 and I love this. So let me share it with you.

Apple’s Steve Jobs speaks about the need to have a lot of passion for what you’re doing because it’s so hard.

Without passion, any rational person would give up. So if you’re not having fun doing it, if you don’t absolutely love it, you’re going to give up. And the ones that didn’t love it, quit. Because they’re sane, right?…Who would put up with this stuff if you don’t love it?

Two Uncommon Hopefuls in America

The Year 2012 marks  a milestone. It’s the first time in my lifetime that I will have seen two publicly identified Mormons, or members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day speaking at CPAC in Washington D.C. on Februar...Saints, make it to the primary elections as  American presidential hopefuls.

What’s the world coming to? Well, America has adopted the message of change, thanks to President Barack Obama’s positive election campaign.

But will this be a stretch too far for many Americans? Findings of the PEW survey below prove interesting reading.

Republican candidates Mitt Romney and Jon Huntsman are both devout Mormons according to reports. Both very wealthy men from equally wealthy backgrounds. I haven’t read so much of Romney’s background but I have long found  Jon Huntsman’s entrepreneurial father’s story compelling reading.

What I find most interesting, with a son serving a mission, is that Romney and Huntsman also served full-time missions for the Church as young men.  Political pundits will pay little, if any, attention to their missionary service. So I’ll go for it. Romney served as a missionary in France and Huntsman served in Taiwan.  Not surprisingly, Romney reportedly speaks fluent French and Huntsman speaks fluent Mandarin. They both report a lifelong love for the people they served all those years ago. That tends to happen when you live, eat, laugh, sleep, cry and pray closely as family with people for two years or more.

Huntsman later served as the US Ambassador to China taking with him his ready fluency with Mandarin, thanks to the mission he served as a Mormon missionary. Unfortunately, one of the presidential hopeful and his team, Ron Paul, resorted to misrepresentation of his love for the people he served and his Mandarin fluency. They uploaded it 10 days ago in a nasty political attack posted here on youtube….http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tZeVqj-t1U0

So before anyone rushes off yet again and condemns Mormons to a life of myths and misunderstandings, I would recommend going direct to the source to find out what Mormons believe.  It just so happens that PEW had done just that. It busts some myths.

And one more thing.
If I was a voting American, identified as Mormon for my faith and Republican for my politics, I’d go with whatever direction Jon Huntsman gave on this. If I was a Democrat, Obama and Hillary Clinton all the way.