Web 2.0 for Business

Web 2.0, finally is all the rage for big business, but does it really make sense to take advantage of all the social elements of Web 2.0 for your company? That depends on what you feel you can offer that could be a collaborative fun-fest. Yes, it is a good thing to put in the means to allow surfers to spread the word about your company, but unless your company has something cool, interesting or intriguing to send around, then nobody will interested.
Whether you sell robots that carry groceries for you or you are simply a typical brick and mortar type of business, there is always something cool show others. I’ve put together a few examples of what is good/bad to push out in the social world of Web 2.0.

Joe’s Bathroom Fitter Company –

Joe has a bathroom company that places new covers over old and deteriorating cast iron, fiberglass tubs. Joe wants to take advantage of social bookmarking to get the word out about his company.

Won’t Work: Joe’s webmaster submits a page or two of the website to Digg, StumbleUpon and a few other sites. He feels that there has to be somebody out there who is interested in refitting their tub. BUT what Joe doesn’t realize is that basic tub marketing is completely boring to the ADHD crowd of communities such as Digg. Webmaster submits the page with the title of “Modernize Your Bathroom with a Bath Fitter Today!” This would be a waste of time.

What MAY Work: Joe’s webmaster flips through a photo book of all past work done for customers, finds the most hideous looking bathroom photos, looks around the internet for some of the most “extreme” bathrooms and creates a special page containing these items on Joe’s Bathroom Fitter website. Webmaster then submits this cool page to the social networks. Webmaster submits the page with the title of “World’s Most Expensive Toilet!” Stuff like this spreads virally and could increase your web traffic, which may also increase your presence in the search engines.

WordPress 2.5.1 Security Update

Well, not only do I hate the new UI, but now I hate the fact that this is a big “Oops! We forgot a few things” patch for WordPress. Apparently there are 70 things that are “fixed” with this update.

Yes, I know, 2.5 is so cool because you can update to the latest version from within WordPress, however those of you who use Fantastico will be thrilled to see that the latest bug fix is not pushed out to Fantastico yet. It could be a week or so before we see the Fantastico update. I wouldn’t suggest auto-updating from within WordPress because I’m not sure how Fantastico will handle it.

What do you mean I can’t send more than 500 emails an hour?

angry-man This question was posed to me when I recently moved a client’s website to another hosting plan.  Yes, according to Hostgator, when signed up with their shared hosting plan, you are limited to 500 emails an hour for the whole website.  Seems like a nice ceiling, but when you have employees that need to send message to their distribution lists then that could possibly pose a problem.

What happens if you hit the 500 mark?  Well, every additional email will be tagged as undeliverable due to exceeding the hourly quota.

What was interesting to me was that they used to be with Brinkster.com, but didn’t have this problem.  I was curious and called Brinkster…they actually told me that their policy is no more than 500 emails per-day

This would leave me to believe that maybe they were sending emails out, but chances are 90% of the emails were sent to the undeliverable black hole of bad email messages that bounce and bounce and bounce.

There are two solutions to this problem.

1) Signup for the dedicated server option at hostgator – This allows you to send unlimited emails without having email lock-out issues.  The big problem with this solution is that it will cost you atleast $179 dollars a month.  BUT, if you want piece of mind and you don’t feel like signing up with a bulk emailing web service then this is your best bet.

2) Signup for a mailing list manager web service such as Aweber or Email Aces.  This way you can keep your bulk emailing initiatives on a separate server (as you should!).  Plus these sites are made just for bulk mailing and guarantee 90%+ delivery rates.

I personally prefer Aweber because you can easily setup “views” if your email prospects and even send out custom newsletters according to your views.

EmailAces is not as robust, but its entry-level list management setup is great for any noob to get started with bulk mailing.