After writing my earlier post about branding mistakes, I was listening to a Copyblogger* podcast and I was reminded how important it is to have your own domain name. More to the point, I was reminded WHY you want to have your content show up under YOUR domain name.
How many times have you heard about someone’s Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or other social media account being suspended? Just yesterday I read about a mommyblogger whose Instagram account was shut down over a minor terms of service violation regarding a photo. Right or wrong, all her content is no longer available. All her effort creating a page, getting likes, followers or whatever, and now it’s a big blank page.
The term is “digital sharecropping” and it applies when you put your content on any platform you don’t control. If someone else owns it, you’re beholden to them and subject to their whims. Without your own website – and your own domain name, you’re creating traffic for someone else. All that fuss you hear about SEO and Google page rank? You’re helping to build someone else’s reputation and traffic. Wouldn’t you rather have all of your effort benefit your own business instead of theirs?
Your Domain Name = Your Brand
Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying you should abandon social media. Not at all.
First, sharecropping extends to free websites and blogs too. Anyone remember Geocities.com? They had tens of thousands of websites hosted for free. They all vanished when Geocities closed their doors. Today, sites like blogger.com, web.com, weebly.com offer ways to get a free website. [Read more…] about Don’t Be A Digital Sharecropper
We all know how important branding is to your business. That’s why you worked endless hours on a name, a tag line, and a logo design. And don’t forget the effort you put in to make sure you could secure a domain name that matched! But, there’s a major piece in the branding puzzle that is often overlooked, and it defeats all the work you put in to create a consistent image. Fortunately, it’s easy – and cheap – to fix this huge branding mistake. I’ll tell you what it is in a minute. [Read more…] about The One Big Branding Mistake Businesses Make
[The following information comes from Google Apps for Business setup wizard]
Google Apps works great on iPhones and other iOS products, where you can access your email, contacts, and calendar using the device’s built-in apps. This is easy to set up, using Google Sync.
Want quick access to your apps? Skip all this and access your apps in a moblie browser by visiting http://mail.google.com/a/<your domain name> on mobile Safari.
Step 1: Sync an iPhone with Google Apps
After you enable Google Sync for your domain, have each user follow these instructions on their iPhone.
- Open the Settings application on the iPhone’s home screen.
- Open Accounts & Passwords.
- Tap Add Account….
- Select Microsoft Exchange. [NOTE: screens may be different depending on your version of iOS]
- In the Email field, enter your full Google Apps email address.
- Leave the Domain field blank.
- Enter your full Google Apps email address as the Username.
- Enter your Google Apps password as the Password.
- Tap Next at the top of your screen. (Choose Cancel if the Unable to Verify Certificate dialog appears.)
- When the new Server field appears, enter m.google.com.
- Press Next at the top of your screen again.
- Select the Google Apps services (Mail, Calendar, and Contacts) you want to sync.
- Unless you want to delete all the existing Contacts and Calendars on your phone, select the Keep on my iPhone option when prompted. This will also allow you to keep syncing with your computer via iTunes. To sync only the My Contacts group, you must choose to Delete Existing Contacts during the Google Sync install when prompted. If you choose to keep existing contacts, it will sync the contents of the “All Contacts” group instead. If there are no contacts on your phone, the latter will happen — the contents of your All Contacts group will be synced.
That’s it! You can now access Google Apps from your iPhone. If you have Push enabled on the phone, synchronization starts automatically. You can also just open the Mail, Calendar or Contacts app and wait a few seconds to start a sync.
[The following information comes from Google Apps for Business setup wizard]
Using Google Apps on an Android is really easy. Just add your Google Apps account to the phone, then select the services you want to use. Each user should follow these instructions on their own phone.
- Open the Accounts & Sync Settings screen on your phone. You can do this in Contacts by pressing Menu and touching Accounts, or directly in the Settings application.
- The Accounts & Sync Settings screen displays your current sync settings and a list of your current accounts.
- Touch Add account.
- Touch Google to add your Google Apps account.
- Touch Sign in when prompted for your Google Account.
- Enter your full Google Apps email address as your username, and then enter your password.
- Select which services you’d like to sync between your phone and Google Apps.
That’s it! You can now use Google Apps from your Android.
A great timesaver, this Mac and iPhone/iPad application allows you to assign shortcuts or abbreviations for commonly used phrases, signatures, email addresses, etc. If you use more than one computer, your shortcuts or snippets can sync via Dropbox. An added plus if you also use Windows, the TextExpander snippets and settings file can be used by the Windows app Breevy, allowing you to share the same shortcuts between both computers. TextExpander offers a free trial of the Mac version. TextExpander: (Mac): $34.95 (iPhone/iPad):$4.99
Do you use the same passwords for multiple websites? Do I need to tell you why this isn’t a good idea? Let me give you a recent example. A really big and popular website had their user account database hacked. Don’t ask which one, because this happened to more than just one site and it’s going to happen again and again. The hackers published a list of 300,000 or so email addresses, which were also the usernames. They then listed the top 20 passwords that people used, showing that we’re not as unique at creating passwords as we like to think. The hacked company, besides fixing the vulnerability in their system, also disabled the users’ accounts, then emailed all their users and required them to change their passwords, which is a perfectly fine response to take. As if this situation wasn’t bad enough, many other companies scanned the list for email addresses that matched users in their own systems, and then disabled THEIR accounts and required password changes, because they felt their users might have used the same password in their system too.
Clearly, we all suck when it comes to password security. Here’s how to do better and not also want to pull your hair out.
First, stop using the same password for multiple websites. Next, go download and evaluate 1Password. 1Password can keep track of the passwords you create, or it can generate complex passwords automatically. With 2 keystrokes you can be logged in to any website where you have an account. 1Password can also automatically save login details when you register for new websites. For years this was a “must have” application for Mac users. It’s now available for iPhone, iPad, Windows and Android users too. You create one master password to unlock your 1Password file and never worry about remembering passwords or account numbers again. 1Password also records software licenses and purchase information, notes your need to keep secure, credit card accounts, membership numbers for frequent flyer programs, hotel and rental car loyalty programs, even your passport number. It’s a pretty handy tool once you commit to actually using it. It will automatically keep the info in sync across multiple devices by using iCloud or Dropbox.
So how is this different from LastPass? Well, you’re in control of your data. That’s the big thing. You can choose to keep your password file only on your computer, but you better be backing up with something like Mozy if you choose to work that way. A little better is to synch your data (securely, of course) to Dropbox or iCloud. Now you can also access all your passwords from your smartphone or iPad as well. Away from your computer and phone but need to log onto a website? You can go to your iCloud or Dropbox account on the web (okay, yes, you’ll have to have your password memorized for that site as well. That’s the price you pay for leaving your phone at home. Give me a break; there’s always a tradeoff between security and flexibility. You have to choose how far you want to go one way or the other). Where was I? So you’ve logged in to iCloud or Dropbox and now there’s a web version of 1Password you can run to get to those passwords. It’s protected by the same master password you use for the 1Password app.
$49.99 for Mac or Windows versions with a combo of both for $69.99, but the smart deal is the combo family pack (5 users) for $99.99. $17.99 for iPhone/iPad. 30 day free trial for the desktop versions. A free trial is available.