Making my work as comfortable as possible

the-dark-knight1.jpgI have found that the more that I am in love with my work environment, the more I love to work. This goes beyond loving what I do, which I do. My work environment is a pleasant place that I look forward to spending time in work mode. I recently bought a Herman Miller Mirra desk chair and it arrived yesterday ;). Note: this chair is not cheap but highly recommended.

I picked mine up from InterOffice Furniture in Fargo and had to wait about 3+ weeks to receive it. That seems like a long time but was well worth the wait. I decided to go with the Herman Miller chair after trying out a few different models and brands. The place where I bought the chair from was nice enough to let me try the chairs over a day or two each in order to determine what I needed. I have had mild back issues for a few years and a good chair makes a huge improvement.

I feel completely at home in my chair and even after a long day of sitting, my back still feels like a million bucks. I came to the point about two months ago that it was well worth the money to invest in an office chair and workspace to increase my productivity. If I love my space and am comfortable while working, it becomes even easier to do what I really love, my work. I am to the point where it is motivating and exciting to get up in the morning and start on the day. I hope both your workspace and environment are to the standards of your choosing.

Up until recently, I was using a patio chair as my office chair. Now that chair was actually better than some of the other desk chairs I have had in the past. I made sure I didn’t continue using that chair a day longer than I had to though. Do you have any office space / equipment horror stories? Lets hear them.

The Blog Card, Unconventional Blog Marketing Tool

Over the last couple of months I have taken a new approach to promoting my blog that you don’t really see anywhere else. A blogging business card (blog card) is a great way to exchange info and expand your readership to people outside your typical sphere of influence. Some of you may remember I held a business card design contest in an attempt to have a unique design that represented me and my blog the most.

It amazes me how many times I run into people on an airplane or at the doctor’s office who are interested in what I do and how I do it. At that point, I simply reach in my wallet and hand them a business card for my blog. People often forget that only a small fraction of Internet users regularly visit or operate blogs. Blogs can be a great store and wealth of information on a niche subject, and you should have a way for people to easily remember where to find your site. If you are interested in a topic and share your opinions on that, the chances are you know and will meet people who also like that same topic. We as humans like to talk about the things that interest us the most. When you have a political blog and you are talking politics with a stranger, how easy would it be to refer them to your site? How do you do that? Hand them your blog card.

The best part about a blog card is the fact that they are cheap and easy to have made. Just about every town has a place that can print blog cards, or thousands of online print stores can do the same. The cost is roughly about $35 for 250 individual cards, depending on design. I held a contest to have mine designed, but you could always swap or pay someone to design a very fitting card for you. I find that it is so easy to pass on a business card, and it is also pretty natural in our day and age. In order to ensure that the person receives the card and keeps it is another story. I simply hand write “$500 off first consulting” on the back of each card and say that is the only way to receive that discount. I don’t gives those cards to everyone, just the people I feel genuinely are interested in pursuing business relations. Now that business card has value, and things with attributed value seem to stick around on the desk or in the wallet for a long time.

As far as I can tell, I haven’t really run into any disadvantages with having a business card, unless you use them to present yourself or your blog as something that it is not. The key is to find ways that you can best exchange information and communicate to your current or potential readers. It is easy enough for people to find you online and to bookmark your site for later, but how do you get those same types of people to find you offline before online?

A great thing about the blog card is the ability to leave them anywhere, including the places your potential customers hang out. If you have a local bookstore in town that has a section of books or magazines that fits your niche, how simple is it to leave one of those card in the marketing books? I typically frequent Barns and Noble every other week. How much business or new readers could I get by leaving my blog card in a place like that? I don’t know, but if you are here and you found my card in a book, please feel free to leave a comment and let me know about your experience so far.

What’s your take on a blog card? How do you feel you could best use them to your advantage? Share your thoughts.

Unconventional Marketing Blog now #1

I was going to publish an earth-shattering post that would revolutionize online marketing through unconventional techniques, but I thought I would put that on hold. Instead, I’ll share with everyone that this blog is now #1 on Google (GOOG) for the keyword term Unconventional Marketing and Unconventional marketing Blog. Here is the pic.

Over the past month or two I have been floating between #2 and #3 depending on the day and weather, apparently. Now my goals are honing in on some other marketing terms as well as my name and Josh Blog. I never knew before blogging that there was another Josh Whitford in this world, but there is. And not only that, but he is an author and professor, thus holding the #1 spot for our names. In time. As far as the other terms go, I am slowly beginning to pick off the less searched for marketing terms and using those as the blog’s foundation before conquering others larger terms.

I have been developing SEO skills over the last two months as I questioned how to rank #1 for selected terms. What I have found is that ranking for keywords is pretty easy and straight forward, but depending on the terms can take a lot of time and effort to achieve. I hope to build up the skills and continue to use that to benefit this blog and those around me. If you are wondering where I learned about SEO here are the blogs you should visit. There are many more out there but these are the most legit I have found.

As a way of celebrating, I will offer 200 Entrecredits to the first 20 people to leave a comment on this post. If you don’t have Entrecard, I will offer up a free link on my blog roll instead. I will send the credits to the email you use in posting your comments.