Sunday, 31 August 2008

Another Charitable Excursion

Its Sunday again so rather than the normal internet marketing campaign I have produced another charitable lens on Squidoo.

You may have seen my lens for CLIC Sargent last week aimed at raising funds for my favorite charity.

Well this week I have done another one for the British Heart Foundation which will hopefully make lots of money and get people thinking about just how many of us have known people who have suffered a heart attack.

I personally have seen my father killed by a heart attack and had a serious fright when one of our other close relatives also suffered a sudden and unexpected heart attack recently. He very thankfully survived, had some very modern and up to date surgery and is feeling better than he has for a long time.

Thats the thing about your heart, a slow deterioration can suddenly turn into a very serious life threatening situation, but thanks to the research and development of new treatments sponsored by the likes of the BHF once discovered the whole situation can be turned around.

Why don't you have a look at the lens and see what you think, you may even fancy putting a pound or two in their direction to help with all the good work they do.

Anyway I will be back to the internet marketing trail again very soon so watch this space.

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Tuesday, 26 August 2008

Blatant Marketing Blog

If you have been following my blogs you will know that I left a job in technology , actually I was a technology manager working for an American oil and gas exploration company, but then I moved to France to set up a gite business with my wife .

So you could say that it has been a bit of a change of lifestyle to say the least.

Now I will be honest with you, there is not an awful lot of money to be made running a gite, the season is relatively short where the money is good and there is a natural ceiling to the earnings you can generate, hence the need for a blatant marketing blog campaign. Well I am not a politician and thought the truth might be quite refreshing.

So bottom line and what I want to get to is that we need to operate some other businesses and find additional ways of earning some money while we are living here in France. Not that I am knocking the gite business, we have had a brilliant first season as you can see on the quotes page for FRENCH HOLIDAYS AUDE , take a look to see what people who have stayed said about us.

Oh by the way, that was blatant marketing blog number 1

So now I would like to announce the arrival of my wifes brand new website, pushed out onto the world wide web this weekend, you can find it at CURTAINS AND CUSHIONS and it is a mix of a company catalog for her day to day business plus a shop window for my affiliate marketing business. Well I did say this was going to be a blatant marketing blog so what did you expect and oh yeah, that was number 2.

So having plugged the wifes new website lets move on to the other things I would like to talk about in other words my next blatant marketing blog, number 3.

I have done a series of lenses on Squidoo that explain exactly how to go about moving to France, there are 3 in the series so far and the lastest is called BUYING A HOUSE and is all about the legal proceedings associated with making a house purchase in France, I can almost hear you yawning from here, but I have to say the lenses are receiving pretty good reviews from seasoned Squidoor's and my first 2 have received 5 star ratings with the 3rd only finished yesterday so still out to court, obviously of most interest to people who would like to move to France but others may also find them mildly interesting.

So why I hear you asking are you doing these lenses, well the answer is that it is all part of my marketing strategy.

The theory is (and its a good one) that if you put useful information on the internet that people want access to, then eventually you will start to generate traffic to the information i.e. people will visit your website to find the information and likely share its existence with their friends and associates.

Now if as well as the information on the website you put links to relevant products and services associated with that information then there is a good chance that 1 0r 2 people will make a purchase or use your sponsored links to go and look at other relevant information or products. Notice the presence of the words useful and relevant associated with the information and or products because this really is the key to generating and keeping traffic on your website.

By the way if you are interested in affiliate marketing why don't you join up and see how you do, just click on the banner below and apply to join. All you need is a website (blog page even), some traffic (I guess someone reads your stuff) and a good reason why merchants would make you an affiliate, oh and I just gave you 2 but I am sure you can come up with your own.

Wow blatant marketing blog number 4 just slipped straight in there without taking a breath.

Anyway I am going to stop telling you all my secrets now and go to BLATANT MARKETING BLOG number 5 which is SELL, SELL, SELL or even better BUY, BUY, BUY

This requires me to make an assumption and my assumption is that everybody likes a bargain. So number 5 is that I am going to share with you some of the huge discounts I have been made privy to via the Affiliate Window. I am not going to mess about with a few pence here and there I am going for your 25%, 50%, 60% or 80% off deals that really mean something to your pocket.

So are you ready for a good browse, think of it as window shopping when you suddenly see a real bargain and its oh so hard to resist. Well don't resist go for it, because you don't know when you will get the next chance.

Hope you didn't miss out but the end of the month is here and I had to remove the August offers, when I get a chance I will take a look at the latest offers and do an update. Wouldn't want you guys to miss a good opportunity.

These great multiple award winning all-in-one sleeping solutions, ideal for summer sleepovers, camping or holidays, are now discounted by up to 33%. They feature some of our strongest children’s character brands including Thomas the Tank Engine, In the Night Garden, Disney Cars and many more…

We are offering our customers 50% off all our Egyptian Cotton Bedding range.

Happy shopping and that is it for the blatant marketing blog for the moment, but keep em peeled if I see more offers like this again you can be sure I will be doing an update, so bookmark this page and if you don't buy this time lets see if we can find a real deal that does meet with your approval.

Saturday, 23 August 2008

Doing my bit for charity

It's Saturday today so I have decided rather than working just for myself trying to get people to buy into my affiliate marketing promotions, which lets face it is what I normally do, I have decided to write whats called a lens for charity on Squidoo.

Squidoo is very similar to blogger in that you can produce mini websites for free and earn money through Adsense, Amazon or by putting your affiliate links onto the site.

With Squidoo they give you the option of putting all proceeds from a particular blog towards a charity of choice. I really liked that especially since I moved to France and could no longer make contributions from my corporate salary to my favorite charities, well I still do but its very modest and not as much as I would like to give.

Anyway the reason I like to give to this particular charity CLIC Sargent is because we once had first hand experience of what it is like to have a serious illness in the family with one of our grandchildren. I can assure you there is nothing worse than seeing a child seriously ill, well not in my opinion anyway.

You can see my lens at Raising Funds for CLIC Sargent
so take a look and see what I have said and see if you fancy making a purchase for charity or even better make a direct donation, especially a regular payment. You can be sure of one thing any donation will be put to good use and will help people when they really need it.

That said on Monday I will be back on the internet marketing trail and will be working on the next post for buying a house in France, this is going to be the legal process that you have to get through. Hopefully it will be interesting and helpful reading.

Sunday, 17 August 2008

Booking Heaven

Just a very quick note today, Sunday is supposed to be a day of rest. Well I was resting then I got a phonecall from someone who said they would like to book the gite So I said OK when would you like to come and the answer was August 2009. So here we are in our first season already taking bookings for 2009.

Got to say it is quite nice to get a booking for next year already and makes you think must be doing something right. Still I am not getting too cocky it was for August and we all know that is the easiest month to get rented out. What we really need to see are bookings for April, May and June so early days at the moment.

Anyway on another subject, I think it is about time I wrote something that might be useful for someone to read, rather than the inane babbling I have done so far. So it is watch this space, next week I should finish and take live my wifes website for soft furnishings and then I should have a bit of time to give some information on how we moved to France

  • how did we choose the area we live in
  • how did we find our house
  • what you do when you find a house
  • the move over
  • registering the business
  • registering the car
  • etc. etc.
You never know if someone out there is looking to do the same thing they might just benefit from knowing how we did it. So keep watching and I will try and put some info together soon.

Saturday, 16 August 2008

Changeover Day

Today is changeover day and we have a group of 8 people arriving after 4.00p.m, so this morning I have cleaned the pool cleared all the filters and tested the water. I have also swept the leaves from the front patio, hoovered right through the gite and then mopped all the floors.

Now I ask you, is that the life of a chief executive, I think not but my wife said when I make some decent money on the internet that I will be able to employ someone to do those jobs for me. So I snuck off wrote this and worked out how to put a Google adsense on my blog. From little acorns mighty oaks do grow, or thats the theory anyway.

I was pretty impressed to find I had some people visit our gite website from the bloggers website as well so someone must be reading this.

Anyway better go and finish my cleaning, I guess the executive life will have to wait for a little while longer, for the moment anyway.

Friday, 15 August 2008

Life in France

This is my first blog, so you will have to bear with me while I get to grips with what it's all about.

This time last year I was a technology manager working in the UK for an American company. Earlier this year my wife and I made the move to live in the south of France. We now run a gite and are about two thirds of the way through our bookings for our first season. Couldn't have gone much better really we were pretty much fully booked by the end of February and so far everyone who has been to stay have absolutely loved the place. Just as well really as right now it is our only means of income so quite a big gamble all in all.

If you want to look at our place you will need to go to

So what's next, we are both working hard trying to learn the language so that we can integrate better into our new country, we also have to be getting on with finding new ways to make a crust or two. My wife is a very good seamstress and should be able to find work producing soft furnishings probably for the English community over here.

Myself, its a different story, I have to find a way to use my technical background in a way that can be used here in France, not so easy when you are not a fluent French speaker. I am really getting into website design and have signed up to google adsense and affliliate marketing. Only time will tell if they can be made successful enough to provide an income, although I have to say in between maintaining our 300 year old house, looking after the facilities for the giters and trying to renovate our part of the accommodation I am really enjoying putting my websites together and trying to optimise them for higher traffic and making them potential income providers.

If anyone out there has got some good tips for me on how to optimise my internet marketing techniques, I would be very pleased to hear from them.

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