Monday, October 26, 2009


1. Discover -In a nutshell, do your homework:

* Research competitors’ content. Whether you’re launching a blog, website or email campaign, determine what information is already out there and how it’s presented. How can you distinguish yourself?
* Concept your voice based on audience and type of content. If you’re providing quick tips and human interest pieces for consumers, your content voice will likely be more conversational. Are you offering in-depth, research-driven articles for a B2B audience? Your voice should be reflect that.
* Define the clear goals and message of your content. By failing to do so, you’ll have a difficult time building a solid readership. You also risk confusing the readers you do attract.

Content Strategy: Design2. Design
Step 2 is all about planning—making sure all the “i’s” have been dotted and the “t’s” have been crossed:

* Determine responsibilities. Before deploying a content marketing plan, ensure that you’ve outlined who will be the keeper of the content. If you aren’t able to hire a dedicated resource, it’s essential to appoint someone to incorporate content maintenance into his or her current responsibilities. Content maintenance could also entail tasking each employee to contribute one piece of content per month.
* Organize content. Is your content logically located on your site in a central place? Is it easy to search for a particular topic? If your readers have a difficult time navigating through your site to find useful content, they’re not likely to stick around for very long.

Content Strategy: Build3. Build
With Steps 1 and 2 complete, you’re ready to start putting the wheels in motion:

* Plan a style guide. Include as much information as possible regarding everything from tone and voice to target word count. Provide best practices for optimizing content and writing checklists.
* Create a copy deck. A copy deck is essentially a roadmap for your content pages, including text, graphics, advertising and links. It can be developed in stages, starting with writing a few paragraphs to describe the content.

Content Strategy: Deploy4. Deploy

With the first 3 steps in place, a content marketing strategy is finally ready for deployment:

* Maintain. It’s crucial to have a plan in place to continuously update content. Outdated content will quickly turn readers away. Plus, a stagnant site won’t do you any favors when it comes to search engines.
* Monitor. Leverage analytics tools to gauge what worked best and what failed. Look for patterns in the most popular types of content—i.e., checklists, charts, case studies. You can analyze virtually any variable, from optimal article length to most popular type of headline.

Content Strategy: Adjust5. Adjust

The final step to creating an effective content marketing strategy is ongoing:

* Respond. No content marketing strategy is perfect. Based on analytics reports, continuously tweak your content efforts to maximize results.





Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Knowing your Consumer & Staying Consistent

Hey peoples, it was another special one for those on the come up in your everyday business, whether it be artist, model, business owner, or entrepeneur. This week's Money & Music Show proved why we are getting so much attention. Simple answer, information that we can all apply to our everyday practice. The information that only true life experiences and everyday struggles can provide. So if you missed it, you know we got you as always...Click BELOW:

& Enjoy the MONEY & MUSIC SHOW - GET YOUR FINANCIAL TIPS RIGHT HERE! So get your pens, pencils, and notepads, & TAKE NOTES!!

Big thanks to your special guest, L.I., out of Rochester, NY. His name reps his music "Lyrically Intelligient", and proves why he's another Cool V Rated Next.

Not only did L.I. bring some heat on the show, but he also gave us some NEW Heat straight out of his studio, so you hear it first with Money & Music, because we wouldn't be Money with no Music. Enjoy... & Dj's download and get this heat on your airwaves, TODAY!!!

"We like it New"
"Skate Away"

L.I.'s Official Myspace Page:

Cool V, Money Mike, L.I., and our special callers were able to focus in on the importance of knowing your consumer, and while it's not easy to have a hot product, it's most important to know who you are going to market your product too. While you enjoy the music, here are some important tips to enjoying a successful business.

Knowing your Consumer

An important aspect of providing an effective customer/consumer experience is in the development of the sales strategy/plan. This comes from developing an in-depth knowledge of who your customer is. Your customer may be the same or entirely different than the consumer of your product or service. By definition, the consumer is the end user of your product. The customer is the entity who initially buys your product or service. To illustrate this point consider your product to be your CD. If the Record Store buys your CD's to sell at its stores, then they are your customer. When Johnny buys your CD at the local Record Store, he is your consumer. If Johnny would buy your CD online directly from you on your website, he would be both your customer and your consumer. The key difference you must remember to be effective in business is - you market to your consumers but you sell to your customers! A separate plan/strategy must be developed to both of these groups even if they are the same person. Many businesses fail to establish both an effective consumer based marketing plan and a great sales customer focused selling strategy. It is a one two punch combination you should NEVER be without. Just as in developing an understanding of your consumer, you must develop a through knowledge of your customer. This knowledge must be based on asking:

Who is your customer? What are their buying patterns? Why should they buy from you? How are you going to do business with them? What do you offer that your competitors do not? What is your value proposition?

The answers to these questions will help form the base of your sales strategy. Once you have the answers and in depth knowledge of your customer, you are now prepared to begin the development of the sales plan. In it, the plan should encompass the following:

What product am I selling? Why am I selling it? What value do I offer in the marketplace? Who is my consumer? What understanding do I offer of my consumer? What is the purchase cycle of this product? Where will my sells come from? How do I best merchandise this product? How easy is it to do business with me?

Whether or not your customer and consumer are different or the same, you must effectively address the above questions in your sales plan. Build a case as to why this person/merchant MUST (not should) buy your product from you and why not buying it is out of the question. The sales plan must exude confidence to the customer that you have developed a through understanding of your consumer and their buying needs. While at the same time convincing the customer you know them and their buying trends/needs as well. Most businesses fail to fully understand what is expected from them by their customer and actually know who their customer is? BE VERY SPECIFIC (female or male, ages 5-12, 13-18, 18-24, 24-35, 35+, 45+, 55+,, college student/blue collar worker/professional working mom/executive) . You need to take the time to do this to succeed, go out survey personally, find criticism, find likes/dislikes, the more information you have on your customer, the more focus you can have with your sales strategy/plan. You can have the best product in the world and if you can't convince anyone to buy it - what good is it?

Remember - an effective marketing and sales strategy is a one-two punch. To be effective you must develop and utilize both to your advantage. Market to the consumer with an understanding of who they are. Sell to the customer by knowing who and what they want.
**feel free to email "Cool V" and use him as a resource:
with any questions on how to set up an effective sales & marketing plan for your business needs.

Staying Consistent

In business, we all have to stay consistent at what we do to get ahead. Lack of consistency, shows lack of work ethic, lack of committment, or lack of passion or belief in what you do. When investing in yourself or your business, it is important to make sure once you decide to do something you do it to the best of your abilities and stay the course. There will be good times and tough times, but slow and steady will win the race. The same is for investing into your retirement plan or your insurances, stay committed with the understanding things will change overtime. It is up to you to accept change, be flexible to change, but most importantly stay consistent to your plan. "Money" Mike stressed the importance of starting small, beginning a retirement plan with the emphasis of establishing systematic investment into your plan, monthly. Like your business model, whether it be marketing or everyday tasks, the same should be consistent with your investment into yourself and future.

This link talks about staying invested in your retirement plan, when markets are up or down, as your retirement plan is for the long haul, so start early, start TODAY, start small, and most importantly stay COMMITTED to your long term goals.

If you don't want to listen too "Money" Mike and not wake up to the realities of our future retirement and incomes, then no need to read this article, as he continues to speak the truth.

This one is a WAKE UP CALL!!!

**feel free to email "Money Mike" and use him as a resource:
with any questions on how to set up your business's investment and or insurance plans, because Today is the Day to Start, not next week...see you then.

Friday, October 9, 2009





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Money & Music - How To Position My Business During The Recession (Great Info)

Money & Music - Wasteful Spending On the US Stimulis Package * PORK* (Are We Full Of It!)



Down Payment Blues: Musicians With Tax Trouble (Repost)

Source: Houston Press Blogs

Finished that tax return yet? Not to worry: you've still got a few hours until midnight, and the post offices are open late. Over the years, these musicians have gotten in hot water with their countries' internal-revenue collectors as well... Bono Forever a proponent of all things charitable, Bono took some flak from just about everybody when, following the implementation of Ireland's new $319,000 salary cap on tax breaks, he moved U2's publishing company to the Netherlands in 2006. He was blasted as a hypocrite for denying Ireland access to funds that would go to its poor. That criticism was not as common in America, where the populace is more used to seeing the wealthy duck under foreign tax shelters. (Frankly, we're not sure we'd trust the Irish government to handle our tax dollars, either.) Even so, Bono still carries the taint of copying the tax practices of towering corporate monsters such as Nike, Coca-Cola, Gucci and the Rolling Stones. Marc Anthony
marc anthony libre.jpg
Mr. Jennifer Lopez expressed what seemed to be genuine surprise when he learned that, between 2000 and 2004, his personal and business taxes had gone completely unpaid. Nobody had even tried to take care of it. Whoops! Anthony's touring and publishing companies, along with two of his managers, pled guilty to tax crimes and admitted their fraud. Since Anthony's tax record had been impeccable before he switched accountants, he was cleared of any suspicion and agreed to pay $2.5 million in back taxes, interest and penalties. Is it any wonder so many celebrities have serious trust issues? Britney Spears
britney spears zone.jpg
Around this time last year, Britney returned to a bikini-ready body, but her finances were still a bit bloated. On top of the $400,000 in legal fees she owed, the state of California alleged she owed nearly $24,000 in 2004 back taxes. A horrifying sum for most people, we have to assume Brit was able to handle it: in 2005, she gave $350,000 to the Hurricane Katrina relief efforts and donated $175,000 to Habitat for Humanity. So we think she'll be okay, although we're still hoping for a light hurricane season. Koko Taylor
koko taylor old school.jpg
Being an 80-year-old blues queen in failing health will not keep the IRS at bay. Taylor learned this last year, when the feds came after her for $400,000 she owed in back taxes and penalties. She claims not to have the money, and we believe her; her Chicago home is only worth $280,000 and anyone can tell you blues albums just aren't selling like they used to. (Rocks Off only knows a couple of people who still buy blues records - and they're music critics, so they have to.) Nonetheless, when Taylor tried to sue the IRS to force them to accept a lesser sum, she lost. Her current situation: the IRS may decide to collect what they're owed via a levy, which allows them to seize her property and/or garnish her wages. Yikes. Expect any new blues albums from Taylor to contain some choice sentiments towards the IRS, on the order of suggesting they go "Wang Dang Doodle" themselves. Aretha Franklin
aretha rare.jpg
According to Franklin, an accountant's error allowed her $700,000 home to slide into foreclosure, a mistake not corrected until the IRS came calling last year, demanding $19,192 in back taxes on the house. Far from destitute, Franklin said she would pay off the sum by the deadline, and even thanked the IRS for bringing the error to her attention. No further news was reported on this case until a couple of weeks later, when PETA offered to pay the IRS off themselves if Franklin agreed to never wear fur again. As far as we can tell, she didn't accept their offer. And look, we finished this entire item without a single "R-E-S-P-E-C-T" pun. Why? Because you deserve better. Willie Nelson
willie irs tapes.jpg
You didn't think we'd leave Willie out, did you? Every list of celebrities with tax problems has to include the man who, in 1990, was notified by the IRS that he owed more than $16 million. They sold his ranch, auctioned off his belongings, and accepted a royalty interest in Willie's album Who'll Buy My Memories? (The IRS Tapes). Okay, 1990 didn't seem like that long ago until we realized most people still used cassette tapes back then... wow. Anyway, did Willie let it get him down? No sir. He considered it an opportunity to "start all over again - just me and my acoustic guitar," playing solo shows to avoid subjecting his bandmates to IRS scrutiny. In the end, the IRS settled for $12.6 million before calling it a done deal, and Willie's friends wound up buying most of his stuff back for him. These days, the Red Headed Stranger is more interested in biodiesel fuel and marijuana legalization than accumulating further tax troubles.


Saturday, October 3, 2009

Famous Celebrities who Failed to PLAN

While these accounts highlight the horrors of improper estate planning for celebrities and they get the press, what about the average affluent American? You know who I'm referring to; the neighbor down the street, associate, friend and relative who has a net worth in excess of $1 million they're considered wealthy, affluent. Tragically, most are no better off than Senator Kerr, Karen Carpenter, Jerry Garcia, Sammy Davis Jr or even Elvis. In fact, statistics show that 70% have no logical plan to distribute their wealth from one generation to the next. They play right into the hands of the Federal Government. It's lunchtime for the hungry agents of the IRS and they're eating fast food and plenty of it.

Huge Estates: Good vs Bad Estate Planning

Nate King Cole
Economic Recovery Tax Act of 1981, commonly called ERTA. ERTA afforded substantial relief to many Americans in such areas as income taxes, capital gains taxes, and gift taxes. The most significant relief was in the area of estate taxation, the assessment you pay to transfer your estate to your heirs.Prior to ERTA, the tax rate on an estate valued over $60,000 started at 32 percent and quickly escalated to 75 percent. We distinctly remember hearing the sad story about the severe loss of Nat King Cole's estate during that time. When Mr. Cole passed away, his estate was valued at over $3.5 million. Unfortunately, after estate taxes and settlement costs, his daughter Natalie received less than $1 million.The real tragedy of pre-ERTA estate taxes, though, was felt by land owners, particularly farmers. Because farmers traditionally kept little cash on hand, the surviving spouse was often forced to liquidate a major portion of the farm to cover the enormous estate tax bill.

Sammy Davis Jr.

In 1990 the world lost one of it's greatest entertainers, Sammy Davis Jr. He thrilled audiences for years with his incredible talents. Unfortunately he failed miserably in one area--the ability to plan and manage his finances.Recently in the news, Sammy's wife Altovise was forced to hold an auction in an effort to raise the $7 million federal estate tax bill he left behind. With the help of a fund raiser she sold literally every personal memento from his tap shoes, to his gold record award for the hit song The Candy Man. The event was a success, but raised only $439,000, only a fraction of the massive tax bill. It certainly was not Sammy's goal to leave his wife with massive estate tax debts, but like most Americans he simply did not have a plan.

Jerry Garcia

Jerry Garcia, Mr. "Deadhead" himself, Jerry Garcia, the lead guitarist and lead singer of the Grateful Dead. As USA Today reported, "Even before Jerry's ashes had been scattered in the Ganges, his estate "was being picked over like a yard sale. Current and past wives, jilted lovers, family members, his acupuncturist, car dealer and personal trainer all were jockeying for a piece of the multimillion dollar spoils. One claim against Garcia's estate was even filed by a guy who said he spent time 'babysitting' the rock star during a drug binge." Much to the dismay of his rightful heirs, Jerry felt he was immortal, so why plan.

Karen Carpenter

Karen Carpenter, her voice was incomparable and her songs inspirational. Karen topped the charts with "We've Only Just Begun", and her successful career created an estate worth over $6 million. Unfortunately, Karen will be ranked amongst those who failed to plan.It should be noted that Karen did not completely forget to plan for her estate. No, in fact she was responsible enough to leave $2,721 in the bank, should any estate settlement expenses arise. For some reason she assumed that things would take care of themselves and the $2,721 she had in the bank would cover her debts. The result because her assets were illiquid and she only had $2,721 in cash, her family had to sell virtually everything and watched her fortune shrink by 58% simply because she failed to plan.

Elvis Presley

Elvis Presley Even the legendary Elvis Presley thought he didn't need to worry about the estate settlement costs. When he died he left an estate worth more than $10 million, but only $3 million went to his daughter, Lisa. A full 70% got sucked away through probate expenses and estate taxes that could have easily been avoided with some simple planning.

James Brown

Great Pla
Henry J. Kaiser Jr., the Executive Vice President for Kaiser Industries left a Gross Estate of $55,910,373. Henry had the foresight to set up several estate planning techniques. 1. He purchased a life insurance policy. 2. He had the stock in his corporations transferred before his death out of his estate into a trust, all with separate property; which after death was charged with paying all taxes, allowances and claims of decedent, and balance to Kaiser Family Foundation, a charitable organization. See Charitable Remainder Trust and Family Foundations, to see how you too can use the same techniques as Henry J. Kaiser Jr.

Bad Planning
Howard Gould, the last surviving son of Jay Gould, the famous railroad builder left a gross estate of $67,535,386. He did absolutely no planning and could not use a marital deduction because of divorce. He incurred a whopping $52,549,682 worth of estate settlement costs, leaving only $14,985,704 to his heirs. That's losing nearly 78% of his estate to settlement fees and taxes! In fact, $36,648,229 went to pay for Federal Estate Taxes making Howard one of Uncle Sam's most favorite tax payers. Congratulations Howard!* "Your Estate Research Service", Longman Group USA Inc., Longman Financial Services Institute, Inc. 1990.