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AT&T Gets In The Small Business Help Game

I’ve been an AT&T customer for over 12 years, at least. I know my cell phone, with the same number, has been with them for at least that long. I currently use them for my DSL in my office location, and used to get a phone line with them, and even a 800-number in the past. So my point is, I know AT&T pretty well. We’ve had our disagreements and technical problems, but let’s be honest, who doesn’t?

Now AT&T is launching a new Web portal geared and targeted to small business owners (people like me). AT&T Small Business InSite. Oh, there’s a contest too, read below for that.

Small Business Resources, Small Business Information - AT&T Small Business InSite
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Obviously, it is their intent to promote themselves by providing a helpful resource of information for small business owners. Nothing wrong with that. In fact, it’s a great example of good solid content marketing that solves problems for the customer. I like the Idea Exchange idea. Reminds me of a place where people with similar challenges and opportunities can get together to share information. They have experts (how do I apply?) and even courses you can take. I can’t tell if you have to pay for them though. You need to login before you get details. Not sure I like that. There’s also a tips and tools page.

I like the idea here. It makes sense to do this. I just wish it was more comprehensive but perhaps that’s just because it’s new? I deal with small businesses every day. That’s me, and my customers, so I know what challenges we face. AT&T seems to understand that the best way to reach us as customers is to help us solve our problems. I appreciate that.

The Contest…

Don’t forget about the contest. It’s called the AT&T Small Biz Tech Makeover online contest. The winner(s) get expert advice and one year of free AT&T products and services. It will be awarded to the small business owner who can best explain his or her need for a technology makeover. I don’t know about you, but as a small business owner just starting out, I could have used a makeover back then. I know most small biz owners could, and SHOULD enter this contest.

If you want to participate in the contest, just complete the online form here and send in a short video with your story. Easy, and if you have subscribed to my OnlineVideoToolkit.com you would know how to make a Web video quickly by now. :)


Learn How To Start Your Own Online Forum

Ever wanted to start an online forum? I always have. If I could ever find a smaller niche that I loved enough I certainly would. But what software do I use for it? How does it make money? How do I get it going? Well, if you ever wanted to know the answers to those questions, listen to this podcast (below).

I talk with Patrick O’keefe who wrote the book entitled Managing Online Forums. We talk about these topics (show notes below):

What’s the difference between a forum and a blog?
What’s the biggest forums out there. Big-boards.com is a great example
Which software to use?
Self-policing members
Social networks vs. forums
Seesmic is threaded discussions, a forum
How do you get it started and keep it going?
How do you make money? Classified ads is a good choice. Adsense. Sponsorships.

Managing Online Forums: Everything You Need to Know to Create and Run Successful Community Discussion Boards

Every day, millions of users log on to their favorite online forums, communities and social spaces and interact with others to get advice and discuss everything from the latest news and trends to their hobbies and professions to whatever else strikes their fancy. Administrators have to lead these communities, deal with difficult users, manage staff members and make tough decisions.


Review Of Search Marketing Standard Magazine

Today I’m reviewing a magazine called Search Marketing Standard. Pretty good magazine that covers a lot of search and online marketing stuff.

I like to review magazines like this from time to time (listen to last week’s review of Website Magazine). Especially the ads. So take a listen and tell me what you think of my review.

If you have a magazine you’d like me to review just give me a jingle.


Audio: Website Magazine Review

The Friday before Memorial Day weekend here in the states is always a slow one. Lots of people extend the weekend and take today off. Not me, I’m working away.

I decided to do podcast today where I simply walk through a magazine and talk about what I saw/read. That magazine, this time is Website Magazine. I talk about the stories in the mag, and the ads, and anything else I come up with. It’s basically like a review of the magazine.

Please have a safe holiday weekend.


Audio: Do You Have A Losing Mentality?

So that’s the question you need to ask yourself. Are you a loser? Of course you’re not. But maybe you have a secret losing mentality that you don’t realize… a mentality that is keeping you from succeeding?

Look, I’m a Cleveland sports fan. I know losing. Nobody knows it better than us/me. But… what I’ve learned from being a Cleveland sports fan is very important. Listen to the short audio below to find out what I’ve learned about losing.

P.S. This is for you Jangro (Boston fan). I may have lost, again, but at least I have “character”. :)


What Color Is Your Flip Camera Submissions

A few weeks ago I asked you to shout out your color of your Flip camera in video or picture format on Flickr. By the way, you can still do this so c’mon and have some fun!

Here’s some video responses by a few people that got in on the fun. First is a video from the gang at Marketleverage. Second is a video from Missy Ward, and third is from Shawn Collins.

Check out the live Flickr stream for all the videos and photos.

Everything Is Show Business

Look. Don’t get fooled. A LOT of what you see on the Internets is “show business”. Loren Feldman is the best example. The guy is an entertainer who’s doing a “show”. It’s to entertain you and get attention. Ratings/traffic.

Mylee Cyrus and those “racy photos”… same thing. Paula Abdul reading scripts on American Idol… same thing. It’s all about ratings and if you think that this stuff isn’t planned out, you’re fooling yourself. It’s show business. Did you know that American Idol show producers get people to make up the signs people hold up before the show and hand them out to the crowd? Politics? Show business too. I encourage you to go watch a movie called Bob Roberts, especially since this is an election year.

Anyway, I’m simply trying to point out that if you want attention, fast, and a lot of it, you need to start thinking like you’re in show business. Me? I try to entertain, but I’m not going to sell myself out and be fake just for “ratings”. It works though, just look at 1938media.

Marketing With SMS (text messaging)?

So, how much SMS marketing have you done? If you’re like me… probably none. Yet. It’s coming. The first thing us marketers need to do is understand what SMS is. It’s text messaging. Imagine a double opt-in email sender, but through text.

Here’s an interview I did with the guys at Mobilestorm about SMS. Will be interesting to see how marketers use text to get messages out in the years to come.

What Color Is Your Flip? Show The World!

UPDATE!!! Click here to view the Flickr stream of tagged photos and videos for “myflipcamera”. Awesome!

My orange Flip camera is the best! I love this thing. What color is yours?

Here’s how you can participate. Take a picture or video of yourself and your flip and upload it to Flickr with the tag “myflipcamera”. I’ll feature all the images and/or videos here on JimKukral.com.

Did I mention that orange is the best? :) Show some pride in your Flip camera color choice. Orange will win!

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