Using Text Messaging to Market Your Business

Nowadays, it’s uncommon to see someone’s face, let alone make eye contact. Everyone is on their phones. They’re texting, Facebooking, Snapchatting, Tweeting, taking pictures and videos. It’s immediate gratification. At times it’s annoying. It’s the new way to market your business. You may as well embrace it and use it for good!

More people, Millennials in particular but not solely, communicate by text message. I’m in my 40’s (sshhh) and I can tell you that the best way to get in touch with me is via text. Retailers know this and are capitalizing on it. Every day, and I’m not exaggerating, I get a text from one of my favorite businesses with sale alerts and such. I also get notifications about local emergencies or road closures in my area. And as someone that likes to keep up on breaking news, I also get news alerts. This method of notification is convenient and to the point. When you’re busy, as most of us are, that is a huge plus.

You may already use emails to get the word out about happenings in your business, which is great. But if you want to move to the next level and increase your odds of being seen, consider text marketing. As mentioned earlier, texts are immediate and are opened faster than email. People receive an abundance of emails every day. Because of that, marketing emails get ignored much more frequently. I’m not insinuating that you should stop that avenue, instead, add on to it.

One of the great things about text marketing is that the customer (or potential customer) opts-in. This gives you permission to send SMS text messages. The great thing about opt-in prospects, is that they are showing interest in what you’re offering by signing up. This makes the “lead” much warmer and more likely to get results.

Then there’s the short and sweet aspect we love so much. A text message is typically a sentence or two. The likelihood of a text being read is much greater. Include whatever promotion you’re running and any “discount codes” if applicable. Include a link to direct them where to go to see further details within that text. That’s all the information you need to give and your customer needs to see.

Text marketing is also affordable! There are many platforms that offer group text programs. Much like sending emails, you’ll have a list that is used to send one text to all of your opted-in contacts. You can even schedule when a text is going out. I love scheduled texting. Many times I think of something at a crazy hour of the day (or night). It’s usually not an ideal time to send texts though. I construct a text and schedule it for a more reasonable hour, since I don’t always trust that I’ll remember. It’s brilliant.

Taking things yet another step, you can utilize texts to get feedback from your customers. You may have received surveys from your cell phone provider, for example, asking your opinion about their service. It’s an interactive tool that allows them to ask questions and for the customer to answer as they’re able. People being busy, will not always sit through one a 10-minute online survey. But with text surveys, we can answer a question and not answer the next one till we get back to our phones.

Since most people are owners of smartphones, you can reach more people than ever before. There are many resources online to find programs for group text campaigns. You’ll also be able to find some ideas on what types of promotions get the best results. And if you have a Millennial working for you, why not delegate that task to them!

Source by Roie Raites

Nice Girls Don’t Get the Corner Office 101 – A Book Summary

Dr. Frankel clearly identifies the common mistakes -101 in

all–that women commit unconsciously to sabotage their

careers. This book provides revolutionary guides to help

the women of today eliminate the girl-like behaviors they

became accustomed with, which hold them back professionally.

How You Play the Game

Unfortunately, women are not as trained to participate in

competitive sports. It is only recently that women started

making their marks in this field. Thus, most women do not

know the rules of the game of business. They simply do not

know how to play it–and more importantly, how to win it.

Some of the common mistakes women commit as they play the

game of business are: pretending it isn’t a game; playing

the game safely and within bounds; working hard; doing the

what you want; avoiding office politics; being the

conscience; protecting jerks; holding your tongue;

failing to capitalize on relationships; and, not

understanding the needs of your constituents.

How You Act

Being successful in the world of business is not only

dependent on your knowledge of how to play it. It is also

important to know how to act, professionally. Dr. Frankel

enumerates some unlikely behaviors in the workplace that

can be hard career busters.

These are: polling before making a decision; needing to

be liked; not needing to be liked; not asking questions

for fear of sounding stupid; acting like a man; telling

the whole truth and nothing but the truth (so help you

God); sharing too much personal information; being

overly concerned with offending others; denying the

importance of money; flirting; acquiescing to bullies;

decorating your office like your living room; feeding

others; offering a limp handshake; being financially

insecure; and, helping.

How You Think

Changing the way you think can greatly impact a change

in your career. Note the beliefs and thought patterns

you learn early in girlhood that you need to reconsider

and then eventually forget.

Some of these are: making miracles; taking full

responsibility; obediently following instructions;

viewing men in authority as father figures; limiting

your possibilities; ignoring the quid pro quo (something

that’s exchanged in return for something else); skipping

meetings; putting work ahead of your personal life;

letting people waste your time; prematurely abandoning

your career goals; ignoring the importance of network

relationships; refusing perks; making up negative

stories; and, striving for perfection.

How You Brand and Market Yourself

Marketing oneself is as important as marketing a

specific brand. Think of yourself as a brand that’s

needs to be marketed effectively. Alongside these come

some important points that women need to particularly

remember.

The following are some mistakes to avoid in marketing

yourself: falling to define your brand; minimizing your

work or position; using only your nickname or first name;

waiting to be noticed; refusing high-profile assignments;

being modest; staying in you safety zone; giving away

your ideas; working in stereotypical roles or

departments; ignoring feedback; and, being invisible;

How You Sound

Put special attention to your choice words, tone of voice,

speed of speech and thought organization process. These

usually matter more than the content of your speech. An

articulately delivered speech will help you be branded

as knowledgeable, confident and competent. Remember,

how you sound comprises 90% of your credibility.

Take note of these common mistakes: couching statements as

questions; using preambles; explaining; asking permission;

apologizing; using minimizing words; using qualifiers; not

answering the question; talking too fast; the inability to

speak the language of your business; using nonwords; using

touchy-feely language; sandwich-effect; speaking softly;

speaking at a higher-than-natural pitch; trailing voice

mails; failing to pause or reflect before responding.

How You Look

There is this common notion that “the best and the

brightest are rewarded with promotions and choice

assignments.” This is entirely wrong. Those who are

competent enough, sound and look good are the ones who

move forward in their careers. Statistically, research

shows that 55% of your credibility comes from how you

look; 38% from how you sound; and, only 7% from what

you actually say.

Carry yourself properly by avoiding these mistakes:

smiling inappropriately; taking up too little space;

using gestures inconsistent with your message; being

over- or underanimated; tilting your head; wearing

inappropriate makeup; wearing the wrong hairstyle;

dressing inappropriately; sitting on your foot; grooming

in public; sitting in meetings with your hands under

the table; wearing your reading glasses around your

neck; accessorizing too much; and, failing to maintain

eye contact;

How You Respond

It is important to know how to respond to the ways others

treat you. And some of the common pitfalls women do as a

response to a certain gesture are as follows:

Internalizing messages; believing others know more than

you; taking notes, getting coffee, and making copies;

tolerating inappropriate behavior; exhibiting too much

patience; accepting dead-end assignments; putting the

needs of others before your own; denying your power;

allowing yourself to be the scapegoat; accepting fait

accompli (irreversible or predetermined decisions);

permitting others’ mistakes to inconvenience you; being

the last to speak; playing the gender card; tolerating

sexual harassment; and, crying.

Source by Regine Azurin

Mortgage Brokers – Turn FSBOs Into Referral Goldmines With This Awesome Phone Script

Even with the housing marketing as crappy as it is, converting for sale by owners (FSBOs or also known as “fizzbos”) into referral sources is still an effective marketing strategy. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that you are only going for the opportunity to help that fizzbo get a purchase loan for his new home. The real goal is to develop a relationship with the homeowner so that you prequalify all of the potential buyer prospects interested in their home that’s for sale. Using a phone script will make this even easier.

Drive around your area and search for all the homes being sold “For Sale by Owner.” And if your area is like mine, there should be plenty of them. When you find one, write down the address, phone number, and sales price if it’s available (if they have a flyer, even better).

Once you have collected several addresses and phone numbers, it’s time to make the phone calls. Because FSBOs are heavily targeted by real estate agents, the homeowner will probably be very resistant to your phone call. You have to break through that resistance as soon as possible. And the best way to do this is to tell them early that you are not trying to get their money. Once they know that none of their money is at risk, they’ll be much more open to talking to you. Here’s the script to use:

FSBO: Hello?

You: Hi. Are you selling the beautiful home on 15 Oak Street?

FSBO: Yes I am. Who am I speaking to?

You: My name is Ken Johnson from ABC Mortgage and I was wondering what your sales price is on the home? Oh, and what’s your name by the way?

At this point, the fizzbo will be a little taken aback. His resistance is still high because he knows you are from a mortgage company, but you haven’t said anything yet to make him hang up on you.

FSBO: Well, my name is Bob and I’m wanting to get $200,000 for it. Now, why are you calling me?

You: Bob, I can hear the agitation in your voice, and I can probably guess why its there. Since you placed that for sale sign in your yard, you are most likely getting bombarded with calls from real estate agents wanting you to list your home with them. I can promise you that I’m not calling about that.

FSBO: Really? Then why are you calling?

You: I want to create a win-win partnership with you. One in that you sell your home quicker and with much less stress, and you don’t have to pay me a single penny.

FSBO: Well, I could use any help selling this house faster. But what’s in it for you?

You: Typically, during the time a house is listed for sale, it gets interest from dozens of potential buyers. Almost all of the prospects will not buy that particular home. But they still want to buy a home and probably need financing to make it happen. It is those buyer prospects that I want to get business from.

FSBO: Ok, I see. But how will you help me then?

You: I’m glad you asked that. Did you know that when it comes to selling a home “fore sale by owner”, most of the transactions never get completed? Were you aware of that?

FSBO: No, I wasn’t. Why is that?

You: The number one reason that those transactions never get to the closing table is because the financing was not properly established by the buyers. So they will go look at homes that they just can’t afford (because they haven’t been prequalified by a mortgage professional) and then go making offers. This results in a lot of wasted time (and plenty of stress) for the homeowner.

FSBO: So you’ll help me by prequalifying the buyers interested in my home?

You: Exactly! By allowing me to prequalify them (at absolutely no cost to you), you will only have to deal with those prospects who are financially able to purchase your home. Besides weeding out all of those buyers who can’t buy your home anyway, the process of prequalifying eliminates those prospects who are just “lookers.” You know, the ones who are always driving around looking at houses for sale, but never intend to buy them.

FSBO: Wow. So you’ll do that prequalifying for me, and I don’t have to pay you anything?

You: Nope. Not a single cent. I will make my commission from the buyers side. Does this win-win situation sound like a good idea to you?

FSBO: Yes it does. What’s the next step?

Once you have the FSBO onboard, everything else will be cake. Each FSBO relationship that you establish should be able to provide you with several buyer prospects. Having a few FSBO partnerships will generate a steady stream of purchase mortgage leads. And because the time to maintain them is minimal (its basically just prequalifying prospects once you have your partnership created), you can have a number of ongoing partnerships going on simultaneously. Just remember to come across as not wanting to get any of their money, and they will be much more willing to work with you.

Source by Joseph Pahl

Jay Kubassek Review – Is He Really a Direct Sales and Internet Marketing Guru?

Jay Kubassek has an impressive history in business as the co-owner of Carbon Copy Pro, affiliate of Wealth Masters International, and past affiliate with Liberty League International. This review will focus on Jay’s work and influence in the direct sales and internet marketing scene; however, he has an extensive background in many other businesses as an independent film producer, owner of six companies, a professional speaker and trainer, an international real estate developer and investor, and an extreme sport enthusiast. It is also noteworthy to mention his philanthropist contributions to the Name Campaign in Africa, the Toasting Timbo Foundation, The Children’s Institute for Autism, the Salvation Army, the Tracy McGrady Basketball Camp, Mount Sinai Juvenile Diabetes, and the National Breast Cancer Foundation. This review will help readers determine whether Jay is a reputable and quality man to join in business.

Jay’s history begins rather humbly as an employee at Midas. Although he had an entrepreneurial spirit from his teenage years, his success only came within the last five years. According to inference from a blog entry he made in March of 2009, Jay is in his early 30’s. His first business as a teenager included caring for the $5 million dollar family farm in Canada and speaking for sustainable agriculture conferences. Although he faced complete failure for the first three years in home-based businesses, one day Jay got involved in a business-likely Liberty League International-with no door to escape. He maxed out his credit cards, and it was a ‘run with it or die’ scenario. Within a few weeks, he had made back his initial investment of two grand, and 90 days into it he quit his job. Six months later he was making $20-30,000 in a month. He broke the $100,000 per month mark in his tenth month as he began to shift his business philosophy to help others achieve the same success as himself. Started in 2000, at one time LLI was the most rapidly expanding direct sales company of the decade. Jay became a top producer for the company; however, eventually Jay and many top producers left. This was most likely a result of the negative publicity from the company’s tarnished reputation due to a lawsuit filed by the Attorney General. One day, Jay and long-time associate Aaron Parkinson shared business ideas. Three months later they co-founded what now exists as Carbon Copy Pro.

The most popular and notable of Jay’s businesses is the evolution into the Carbon Copy Pro marketing system. This system promotes the Wealth Masters International company for which Kubassek is an affiliate. Suffice it to say, Carbon Copy Pro has a presence in 160 countries and has a net worth of $20 million dollars. The company achieved a high degree of initial success as many members reached $20-50,000 per month incomes. The essence of the system is it cuts down the learning curve that internet marketers experience by eliminating several previously necessary skills. As a combination product to complement Carbon Copy Pro, Jay produced BiB (Business-in-a-Box) as a startup tool in 2008 in order to level the playing field for online marketers.

Jay has been featured in a number of press articles, including Home Business Connection August 2008, Equestrio, the New York Observer, HoBO, and Forbes. He has each person’s best interest at heart, and although I am personally not affiliated with Jay Kubassek in any way, I highly recommend following the principles he teaches and at least researching and understanding his business opportunities. Jay’s history speaks for his integrity as a reputable businessman.

Source by Daniel Lucas

Small Business Social Media Talk is Cheap

Recently there seems to be a number of articles and adverts discussing social media for small business, particularly helping to integrate and provide social media services. Is it that small businesses are somehow different to their larger counterparts and need to be provided for in a different way?

The answer to this question isn’t a straight yes or no.

Most companies big or small adhere to rules of best business practice but because of the different size of the companies their internal structures differ greatly.

Larger businesses often develop into flat organizational structures with each separate department being responsible for decision making who then report to a senior manager whilst smaller companies have a taller, narrower structure with one or two decision makers responsible for the majority of company decisions, so much more multi-tasking involved.

In a report conducted over the last few months by King Fish Media in association with Junta 42 and Hubspot, 72% of businesses claimed that they have a social media policy in place and of the other companies, 80% of them claimed that they will be implementing one within the next year.

It’s almost hard to believe then that only 9% of these companies have a full time position within the company to handle all of the social media requirements. However these figures need to be put into context. Of all the businesses in this report, 77% of them were companies with 50 staff or fewer but only 3% had 500 – 1,000 employees.

We can begin to see the difference here between small and big business. The bigger businesses have taken the opportunity to benefit from this new and effective form of customer communication and marketing, a lot of them have sought professional advice from exterior professional companies and as a result have taken steps to set up specific departments or included their efforts into the existing marketing or PR departments. Smaller business can be seen to claim a strategy but as we can make out from these figures the majority have not committed enough resources or made the required effort to adopt a successful policy.

Examples of the success that social networking, communication and marketing can bring can clearly be seen by Starbucks, Ford and Dell who all have realistic budgets and professionals working on their campaigns.

Now I know that for many smaller companies the logistics of actually hiring a full time professional may be somewhat daunting, especially if you do not know what qualities you should be looking for or what kind of parameters to set your new employee.

Outsourcing the requirements of smaller companies makes far more business sense in most cases. Companies can consult or seek professional advice from social media companies and engage them on more favorable terms than hiring a full time employee.

In answer the original question then, it does appear that small and large companies should be treated differently when looking at their social media requirements and logistics. When it comes to their social media needs, small businesses are largely missing out on the benefits that a well executed campaign can bring them.

The place to start for a smaller business is to gather as much information as you can before jumping in.

PJD Social Media are for a limited time offering a 30 minute free consultation to help small businesses benefit from this great business channel. Arrange a call as all it will cost you is 30 minutes of your time but you can learn so much. Ask all the questions that you are unsure of, how to get started, how to maximize your time and effort and where you should be spending your time as well as the best ways to outsource part of your social media tasks.

Source by James J MacMillan

ThinkPad Laptops – Advantages, Features and Accessories

A ThinkPad laptop is a useful asset for any business to invest, due to its speed, reliability, convenience and security features. Their innovative designs offer key business solutions that enable businesses to increase productivity, while reducing overall costs of doing business simultaneously. ThinkPad laptops are great business tools for both large-scale and small business enterprises. Below are some of the key advantages of using ThinkPad laptops for your business.

Portability

ThinkPad laptops are portable, thereby allowing users to carry their work with them to any destination, which may be done while on transit. In this way, your work does not have to stop when you leave the office. ThinkPad laptops have inbuilt durability features to protect the laptop from damage while on transit, such as the shock-mounted hard drives and roll cages. Another protective feature available in select models is the Active Protection System, which is an airbag-like feature that helps to protect your hard drive from damage when it falls.

Data Protection and security

Some ThinkPad models have an integrated fingerprint reader and Password Manager, which enables users to replace hundreds of passwords with a single mouse click. In addition to this is the ThinkVantage Client Security Solution, which makes the ThinkPad laptop one of the most secure laptop brands in the market.

Moreover, ThinkPad laptops are designed to protect business data from loss through the inbuilt ThinkVantage Technologies. Such business data losses may be as a result of virus attacks or system failure. The Rescue and Recovery feature is one of the key ThinkVantage technologies which enable the business to retrieve lost data in the event of an OS failure, by simply pressing the ThinkVantage button located on the touch pad.

Reduced PC life-cycle costs

Another great feature of using the ThinkPad laptop is that the business will be able to enjoy significantly reduced PC life-cycle costs in the long run. This stems from the fact that only about 20% of the cost of owning a PC is lies its purchase price; while the remaining 80% stems from the costs incurred from support and maintenance. The great innovative ThinkVantage technologies of the ThinkPad laptop therefore help a business to significantly reduce their IT costs.

Energy efficiency

Another great advantage of the ThinkPad laptop is its energy efficiency, which makes it advantageous to use, not only for the business, but for the environment as well. This is through the inclusion of standard green features which aid in the reduction of waste, as well as power consumption. By reducing the power costs of the business, the ThinkPad laptop will indirectly, yet significantly contribute to the protection of the environment. Some of the great ThinkPad green features include the switchable graphics, fans and battery stretch features.

Innovative technology

ThinkPad laptops come with some of the latest and greatest innovative technologies and designs in the market. Some of these great new features and latest technologies are found in the ThinkPad W Series notebooks, which are a must have for any graphic designer or photographer. For example the W700 model has a second retractable 10.6″ screen, which can expand the display area by 39%. It also comes with an integrated digitizer and pen for digital media creation, CAD/CAM applications, multi-touch panel technology, the latest NVIDIA® Quadro FX®-based graphics, dedicated graphics processor and memory, X-Rite® color calibration for precise PANTONE® color matching, as well a consistently true display.

Great Accessories

ThinkPad laptops come with a world of great accessories to enhance the overall user experience. These include the Lenovo vertical PC and Monitor Stand, which allows for the combination of the desktop PC and monitor into one compact, space saving and flexible solution. This accessory helps users to optimize their workspace by holding the PC securely behind the monitor, thereby providing the perfect solution for space-constrained environments such as lobbies and retail stores.

Another must-have accessory is the Lenovo Mini Wireless Laser Mouse N10, which is an ambidextrous three-button wireless mouse with a tiny dongle. This accessory also comes with a smooth and precise laser sensor, and may be used by either left-handed or right-handed persons.

Another great ThinkPad laptop accessory is the ThinkPad and IdeaPad 90W Slim AC/DC Combo Adapter, which may power a notebook, cell phone or MP3 player. This is Lenovo’s thinnest power adapter, thereby making it very portable for use while traveling. It may be plugged into standard AC wall outlets and DC outlets found in both airplanes and automobiles.

Source by Joan One

Owner Operator Insurance – Non-Trucking, Bobtail & Unladen Liability Definitions and Impact

As in any business model, Motor Carriers (MC) utilizing Owner Operators (OO) enjoy certain benefits while also assuming additional risks. One such risk is the potential “uninsured” exposure of the OO while not in a “business use” capacity for the Motor Carrier. The MC’s Trucking or Commercial Auto Liability (AL) insurance policy provides coverage for the motor carriers’ owned units as well as any hired tractors and trailer during their time of hire. Coverage ceases for an Owner Operator once they are no longer in a “business use” capacity for the Motor Carrier. The concern is the OO continues to utilize their vehicle while displaying the MC placard and may not have other insurance available. Many times, the “deep” pocket of the MC is called upon to make the injured 3rd party whole.

Three products have been developed to address the coverage gap for the Owner Operator.

Non-trucking Liability:

Cost: Low

Protection to Motor Carriers Auto Liability: Low

Market Availability: High

Non-Trucking Liability provides protection for “personal use” by utilizing a Trucking or Commercial Auto Liability policy form and attaching a “business use” exclusion. The difficulty arises in that the definition of “business use” is not typically defined in the policy rather it is derived directly from various state and federal court decisions interpreting this phrase.

Unfortunately, “business use” has been interpreted very broadly and extends beyond “dispatch”. Following are some typical scenarios that would not be covered by the Non-trucking policy due to the broad interpretation of the “business use” exclusion:

  • OO drops load and his heading home to include a trip deviation to the grocery store (courts determine OO is owed a trip home)
  • OO takes vehicle to garage on weekend for maintenance (courts determine OO is maintaining unit in accordance with MC lease requirements)
  • OO is out of town, between loads. He goes to movie theatre. (courts determine OO is out of town at direction of MC)

Example of Coverage: OO utilizes their truck on personal time to run to grocery store and hits another vehicle.

Bobtail Liability:

Cost: Medium

Protection to Motor Carriers Auto Liability: Medium

Market Availability: Low

Many in the transportation industry use the same terminology for Bobtail Liability and Non Trucking Liability, when actually they are quite different. Bobtail defines coverage as “any time the trailer is unattached” whether or not the OO has been dispatched by the motor carrier.

Example of Coverage:

  • OO drops load and bobtails to pick up next load.
  • OO drops load at end of day and bobtails homes.
  • Be aware the Bobtail Policy will not respond anytime a trailer is attached, even if truly in a personal situation, e.g.:
  • OO brings homes an empty trailer and runs to the store on the weekend.
  • OO uses his tractor to a move a mobile home on weekend.
  • OO assists a friend in moving by pulling trailer with household goods

Unladen Liability:

Cost: High

Protection to Motor Carriers Auto Liability: High

Market Availability: Very Low (Per Class Basis)

Unladen Liability provides the least ambiguity in coverage and the broadest level of protection for the MC and OO. This policy provides coverage while bobtailing (no trailer attached) as well as while deadheading (trailer does not contain or carry any cargo – no bill of lading), regardless of dispatch. The difficulty with this coverage line is the low availability (typically not available in a master settlement deduct program; rather the OO’s need to obtain on a direct basis).

There are pros and cons to each of the coverage models which vary depending on the risk tolerance and the operations of the Motor Carrier and Owner Operator. Deciding on the right program can be critical to managing your risk. Enlist the help of a qualified insurance broker to review your current insurance programs and operations and to provide suggestions and options that best fit your needs.

Source by Trent Tillman

Sexual Self-Sufficiency Through Autofellatio and Autocunnilingus

Most people, especially in these trying economic times, are realizing the importance of living a self-sufficient life. This type of lifestyle allows one to live on their own, as they see fit, and take care of themselves in every conceivable fashion (by themselves). It’s a way for people to disconnect themselves from the tempestuous world we live in that seems to be filled with more lies, corruption, and greed every day.

The entire concept of being self-sufficient is another way of expressing/having Independence and Freedom.

When one gets properly self-sufficiently established, their lives are typically permeated by feelings of peace. One realizes that it is up to them, and only them, to be reliant on survival and creating an environment where they can rest happily, content, and safely. The greatest part is leaving the rest of the corruption, politics, and senseless garbage behind them.

I had a friend I went to high school with who went off to college. I spoke to him a few months later and he had something quite revealing to say. He stated that, in college, that he had to learn to take care of himself. He said that if he wanted to wear clean clothes, then he had to take the time out to wash them. If he didn’t wash them, then he only had dirty clothes to wear. If he wanted something to eat, he had to plan ahead and purchase food and then prepare to cook it if he wanted to eat. The next lesson he learned was that if he didn’t bother to clean the dishes after his last meal, that he had nothing clean to eat off of. If he didn’t pay the electric bill, then they would turn off his electricity…

It was an incredible awakening for him, as he had moved out of his family’s house to live on his own. He hadn’t realized how protected and cared for he was until he had to do it on his own. He realized that he had taken for granted all of the things that were provided to him by his parents. Now that he was on his own, with only himself to accept responsibility or blame for whatever occurred in his life, he was awakened by the smell of reality.

(I’ve often wondered if this isn’t one of the best lessons that universities, indirectly, really teach.)

Acquiring self-sufficiency takes on many methods and meanings. Some people want to have enough money that they can have the freedom to do what they want, whenever they want. This is surely a form of a sufficiency that offers comfort and freedom that most people desire. Just imagine winning the lottery and realizing that you don’t have to go to work tomorrow morning, if you don’t feel like it; and, if you so desire, you can walk into the office of your boss and quote the title of a song made famous by Johnny Paycheck. You know, the one where you tell your boss where to insert your job. If Country music isn’t your style, the Dead Kennedy’s did a more intensive cover of this song. Or if movies are your thing, the movie, of the same title, was released in 1981.

Sexuality can also become a form of self-sufficiency, too. The act of autofellatio is whereby a man can orally stimulate his own penis; where for women the similar act is called autocunnilingus. These abilities are simply extensions and creative forms of masturbation. However, with these “auto” techniques, one is able to explore and evoke pleasures that are hardly available with more conventional means of masturbation. This is what makes them special.

Learning these methods is certainly a way for people to become truly self-reliant in the sexual field. Allowing them to create a sexual independence or a sexual freedom, if they so desire. It’s one other tool for the toolbox of the individual who wants to realize autonomy.

Good luck.

Exploring unconventional methods of sexuality; methods that our ancestors enjoyed and impassioned themselves with, is one of my interests. Those men and women who are interested in autofellatio should read Yogafellatio. It is a book that helps guide men down this sexually exciting and interesting path.

Source by Kimi Kalfino

Why Buying Is A Better Option Than Renting

Many people are always torn between renting or buying a house. In today’s world when every cent matters, buying a house is presented by experts as a better option than renting. Here are some reasons why.

  • A purchased home builds equity over time

When you buy a house, it will build equity over time. Fraction of the monthly mortgage goes against the loan interest. In most arrangements, when the equity reaches 20%, it can be tapped for a home equity loan. It then allows the home owner to avail of lower interest rates or in some cases, longer repayment terms.

  • A purchased home qualifies the owner for some tax exemptions

There are tax benefits which the government accords exclusively to home owners. One of the best example is the homestead exemption. It varies from one state to another. But in general, the homestead tax exemption excludes a certain amount of the total purchase value of the house from accruing property taxes. Federal tax exemptions are also available.

  • A purchased home can become an income-generating property

If the time comes that you decide to purchase another property, you have the option to either sell your current house for more funds. If this is not an option and you still want to keep ownership – you can have it rented. The property will become an extra income stream for you.

  • A purchased home accords owners freedom and creativity

One of the reasons why many persons want to have their own spaces is to experience freedom. This freedom is not confined to privacy. Sometimes it also concerns about being able to express oneself in terms of designing and creativity.

In many cases, rented homes are furnished and designed by the property owners. The renters have to stick with what they can see with the property’s aesthetics.

In a purchased home, the owner can exercise freedom in whatever paint color he or she wants for his walls. The furniture and other fixtures also depends on the owner on how small or how big they can be along with the materials which should be used as home decor accessories.

  • A purchased home gives the owner a base to establish roots

Home buyers typically stay longer in a certain community or neighborhood for a long time. They become attached to that locality. Unlike renters who typically moves from time to time, home owners can establish their family’s roots in a certain place.

This is true for home owners who have child births in their purchased homes. Their children can call the place as their origin.

If you are still having a hard time choosing a property to buy, always remember that your local realtor is just a call away.

Source by Desare A Kohn-Laski

A Guide to Freight Forwarding

The types of sea shipping

There are many different types of ship used for international sea freight; the differences reflecting the various requirements of importers and exporters, with particular vessels used to transport different types of cargo. Below is a summary of the different types of vessels used:

· Roll-on roll-off, or ‘ro-ro’ vessels are used to carry both haulage and passenger vehicles

· Container vessels are used to transport standard 20′ or 40′ containers

· Tankers are used to carry bulk liquids, such as oil and gas

· General cargo ships will carry all types of loose packed cargo

· Bulk carriers are used for the transportation of large volume, single commodity loads, such as coal, grain and ores

Trade vessels essentially operate in two ways:

· As liner vessels operating on fixed routes, and usually with a standard tariff. This sector is dominated by roll-on roll-off vessels, container and general cargo ships

· Or as charter vessels operating according to the demands of the organsiation chartering them.

The way in which goods are transported onto ships

There are three main ways in which goods are transported on ships:

Loaded in containers

Container shipping dominates international shipments. The benefits of container shipping is the ease of intermodal transit, (ie containers can be off-loaded and transferred directly to a road or rail vehicle); the ability to offer a door to door service; the speed and efficiency of loading / unloading and the obvious financial impact of such and finally, the security of the goods during transit.

There are many different types of container, such as refrigerated and open topped containers, however the most commonly used containers are the 20ft & 40ft containers. Their respective dimensions and capacity are as follows:

20ft: 589cm x 235cm x 239cm (h) – capacity 33.2 cubic metres

40ft: 1,203cm x 235cm x 239cm (h) – capacity 67.7 cubic metres

Break bulk

Break bulk is a term used to refer to any non bulk goods which aren’t containerised, such as goods on pallets, crates, or in drums or sacks. This form of transportation tends to be used for specialist trades, such as fresh fruit and vegetables, or for transport to smaller ports which may not have the necessary infrastructure to handle container cargo.

In bulk

Used for the transportation of large quantities of certain commodities, such as coal, ore, oil etc.

Key international shipping routes

The main international shipping routes reflect the flow of world trade, with sailings being most frequent on those routes where the trade volumes are the largest and therefore demand the greatest.

For sailings into the UK, by far the busiest routes are those from the Far East, especially China. The North Atlantic route, which links Western Europe with the USA and Canada, is also a busy route. Sailings from the Middle East for the transport of oil, as well as routes to India, Australia, East and West Africa and Central and South America are also particularly busy.

Although there are services from the UK to all the main trading economies, if your goods are destined for a country with little trade with the UK, they may need to be transshipped to another local sailing during the final leg of the journey.

There will normally be a number of different options by which your goods can reach their final destination. These can be explored in detail by discussing them with freight forwarders who will have knowledge of the most cost effective and time efficient routes.

The costs of international shipping

There are a variety of factors which will impact the cost of moving goods by sea. Essentially there are two elements: the actual cost of the sea freight charged by the vessel operator, and the costs related to the handling and clearance of the goods at the ports of origin and destination.

Various factors will influence how these charges are calculated:

· The actual ocean freight is usually charged according to the shipping lines standard tariff, although larger shippers and certain freight forwarders may be able to negotiate preferential discounts

· Rates for charter vessels will depend on the supply and demand conditions prevalent at the time of charter

Other factors that will impact the final price include:

· The different rates for specific categories of cargo

· Congestion charges at the busier ports

· Currency adjustment factor (CAF), which takes into account the exchange rate changes during transit

· Bunker adjustment factor (BAF), which takes into account fuel price fluctuation

· Surcharges levied by the ports or shipping lines to cover the costs associated with different regulatory regimes

Another factor relating to containerised goods is whether or not you are shipping a full container load (FCL). Most shipping lines have tariffs based on container rates, making it far more economical to ship a full container. If your consignment is less than container load (LCL), it may be worth consolidating your cargo with that of other importers / exporters, in which case you will only pay for the weight and volume related to your own goods.

Establishing the most cost effective way to transport your goods can be a complicated task. You can either research and cost the various different options yourself, or employ the services of a freight forwarder to handle these issues for you..

Documentation for moving goods by sea

Transporting your goods by ocean shipping, as with most aspects of international trade requires the completion of a wide variety of documents. Below is a summary of the key documents:

Firstly you will need an Export Cargo Shipping Instruction which is a document that you provide to the shipping company which details your goods and your instructions for the shipment. If you employ the services of a freight forwarder they will complete this for you. You will also require one of the following:

· For hazardous cargo, a Dangerous Goods Note (DGN), which details the nature of the goods and the hazards they present

· For non hazardous cargo, a Standard Shipping Note (SSN), which provides the port of loading the information they require to handle your goods correctly.

In addition to the above, you will also require one of the following:

· A Bill of Lading. This is issued by the carrier and shows that the goods have been received. It also provides proof of a contract of carriage and acts as a document of title to the goods

· A Sea Waybill. This is similar to the bill of lading, the main difference being that it doesn’t confer title, therefore making it quicker and easier to use. A Sea Waybill is used where there exists a well established relationship between a buyer and seller or when ownership doesn’t actually change hands, for example when the goods are being shipped between divisions of the same company

For a detailed breakdown of industry terminology you may want to visit the Baltic Exchange website.

Marine transit insurance

Marine transit insurance doesn’t just cover the ocean shipping; it also covers the transport of the goods by road, rail or air.

To ensure that your cover is valid, you need to prove that you have an ‘insurable interest’ in the goods, which means proving that the goods belong to you. A shipping lines liability for the goods they transport is set by various international conventions and doesn’t always amount to the full value of the goods, which is why it is important to ensure that you have your own cover.

Contract of sale & insurance

There are several risks involved in international trade such as loss, damage and delay (such as detention at customs). How the risks are shared between the buyer and seller should be detailed in the sales using Incoterms.

Incoterms are a standard set of terms detailing precisely when responsibility for costs and risks moves from the seller to the buyer, and can impact your insurance costs as the more costs you are responsible for, the greater the insurance cover you will need.

In an ex-works (EXW) transaction, a seller is considered to have delivered the goods once they’ve been collected from the factory or warehouse. Therefore, from that point onward all risk passes to the buyer, as such the buyer needs to ensure that the goods are insured from that point onwards.

In a delivered-duty-paid (DDP) sale, the risk passes to the buyer only when the goods have arrived at their destination and have been cleared. In such a scenario a seller needs to insure the goods up to that point after which the risk is transferred to the buyer. Under a DDP sale the buyer or seller is under no obligation to contract for insurance. There are only two terms in Incoterms (CIF and CIP) which require insurance to be contracted; in both cases it is the seller’s obligation to insure.

Source by Daniel Parry