Sunday, September 30, 2012

Time Capsule Bobby

Today my youngest son turned 21. Robert Christopher Capone is my official muse for today’s blog on technology.

First, let me get this out of the way: Robert is by far my favorite child (named Robert).

Bobby is a “Nintendo Baby”. Born into the 90’s he grew up with no knowledge of corded telephones, manual typewriters or the things that most of us grew up with. Bobby had a computer before he had a bicycle.

When I turned 21, there were no cellular phones. Bobby never knew of cars that did not talk. He never knew of TV’s that did not come with remote controls, or toys that did not talk, and walk and even “think”.

When I was in college, there was no Google, no Internet and no Distance Learning. Micro computers were just getting started, and it was doubted that they would ever take off. The Apple computer was just a dream in Steve Job’s mind. When I was in school we had grease pencils on transparencies with overhead projectors. I had to go to the Purdue library to learn anything. Thank God for Melvil Dewey and the Dewey Decimal System.

Melvil, meet Siri.

Today we shall celebrate Bobby’s birthday, and we shall have a blast. Via Facebook, emails, texting and other such magic, everyone who can join us for the party shall certainly do so. Those who cannot come in person shall Tweet and Text their way to the party. We might even do Skype video calls on the 27 big screen TVs at

I am looking forward to this day probably more than anyone: NFL Football on 27 big screen TVs, all with friends and family - people from all around the world joining us for the party - both in person and via HD Video to our smartphones.

Ah yes, spending quality time today with Bobby Capone, my favorite time capsule.

Happy Birthday Bobby!

Sunday, September 23, 2012


  Your old computer can save a life.

Part I:
Youthaiti continues these projects with our Haitian partners to make a difference in the lives of rural Haitians. We hope to launch a Community-led sanitation awareness campaign in the upcoming months, to empower Haitians to make decisions about what is important to them in terms of sanitation in their communities. But once again, none of this can happen without your support. Getting supplies and trainers to distant rural areas costs money. It is only through your continued generosity that we are able to continue this work. I thank you again, for your support, and count on your continued generosity.

Gigi Pomerantz
Executive Director

Part II:
I am the Executve Director of the  The NYDLA’s mission is to establish a forum dedicated to the free exchange of ideas and information between corporate, academic, and government professionals, concerning the issues and technological changes in the field of Distance or "e-Learning" and how it can be utilized to improve human performance. Visit to learn more.

Part III:
MTP vendors like allow for any mobile device (including smartphones and computers) to work anywhere at anytime. Satellite powered phones and computers work away from access to electricity, such as in Haiti.

I have been involved in Haiti Relief ever since the earthquake. MTP vendors donated hundreds of Satellite phones collects used laptops and smartphones from vendors such as and  We ship these refurbished and/or donated laptops and phones to Haiti, where they are used for classrooms, and to create JOBS where no jobs could exist before. VoIP allows for anytime, anywhere communications, as long as you have power.

They don’t have many things in Haiti, but one thing they do have in great abundance is sunlight.

Technology in the right hands with the right guidance can change a life. People who had no hope, now can receive a quality education. An education that empowers Haitians to make decisions about what is important to them in terms of sanitation in their communities. A GREAT education, from the world’s best teachers, which leads to jobs. Jobs where they can earn money - great money - for their country. They can create their own sustainable solutions. All via technology based learning systems. But the magic of the Internet and great distance learning technology needs great people to make it all happen; great people to tie it all together.

People like Gigi Pomerantz.

I have been a salesman all my life. I love selling technology. Now, I get to sell hope for those who need it the most.  

The cost: $0. The ROI: priceless. Please donate to  

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Time to Buy

 My birthday is October 2nd. The Apple iPhone just had a birthday, too. When is it time to buy a new technology? The answer is really quite simple, and you will find it here, in today’s blog.

As I played with the iPhone 5 I wondered what the late Steve Jobs would have thought about the latest twist on Apple's best-selling device. The iPhone 5 has more than a few improvements, including a larger screen.

My opinion: Jobs would have been delighted with the iPhone 5. It has a blend of beauty, utility and versatility.

Apple will compel hordes of people to line up outside its stores before its Sept. 21 release in the U.S., Japan, Britain, Germany, France and four other countries. The dash to buy the iPhone 5 will be repeated again on Sept. 28 when it goes on sale in 22 other countries. All the models of the iPhone 5 will sell for the same prices as its predecessor, starting at $199 with a two-year data and calling plan. I was only given a few minutes with the iPhone 5 at Wednesday's launch event.

For many people, the iPhone is going to be a case of “love at first byte”. It's incredibly light and seems to be easier to hold. That means it might not be dropped as frequently as previous iPhones, reducing the chances of the display screen getting damaged.

One woman couldn't stop raving about how ideal the new design was for people with smaller hands. "All the other iPhones were made with men in mind (big hands) because they could easily slip from your grasp," she said. "Now we finally have an iPhone for women." Yeah, I have big hands. I guess I always had big hands and feet from birth (born on October 2nd, 1960). Wow, I have a birthday coming up soon.

The new iPhone also is easy on the eyes, thanks to a larger screen and its "Retina Display," the high-definition technology that Apple introduced in previous models. Video and photos looked amazing on the iPhone 5's bigger and better screen.

The iPhone 5's screen is a half-inch larger than previous generations, and Apple makes sure to take advantage of it. The extra space means you can now see five rows of apps on the home screen instead of the previous limit of four rows. Open the calendar and you can see five days of events on the screen in horizontal mode, instead of just three.

The larger screen comes to life with a tool called "Panorama" that automatically stitches together a series of pictures into a majestic vista. Panorama can be turned on simply by going into the iPhone 5's camera mode and then selecting it on an option menu. Once it's activated, an arrow guides you as you slowly pan the camera around whatever scenery you desire (if you move too fast, Panorama tells you to slow down and also advises you if you are moving the camera too high or low). Note to self: make sure there is a camera around on my birthday, on October 2nd.

OK, here is the rule for technology purchases: if the new technology improves your life by a factor of two, you can safely make the purchase (by a price factor of two). When it does not, you can wait for the price to come down, or wait for the competition to heat up.

60 sec/1 min x 60 min/1 hr x 24 hr/ 1 day x 365 days/ 1 year = 31536000 sec/year

Airlines had propeller powered planes years ago, so a trip from LA to NYC would take two to three times as long. Time was more valuable than the cost to replace all of the planes with the new jet engine technology. Typewriters worked just fine, until the more expensive word processors did the job in half the time. Digital cameras produced high quality finished photos in seconds, far better than waiting for your pictures to come back from the local drug store.

Time is more important than money; time is life. If the technology will find you more time, increase your work production, or allow you to manage your life (time) better, it is a good deal. If there is no “time” factor with the transaction, you probably don’t need it - no matter how shiny the new gizmo or gadget might be. There are of course other factors, but time is the big key to the technology purchase puzzle. Time vs. Shiny. Always go with time.

I am not one of those people who will stand in line to buy anything, even a new iPhone. Especially when my birthday is October 2nd. Yeah, I don’t think I will be “buying” the new iPhone this time around.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

A close shave!

You probably saw this video: It was famous for going viral (very quickly) last year. It still makes me laugh, even after a dozen views. 


But what I love is the “technology” behind the scenes. They used video. They used blogging. They used affinity marketing, association marketing, SEO, direct mail, and every other form of technology based marketing that I can think of. The eCommerce engine behind this company just flat out works. The value on the product jumps off the page; they took something that men (at least me) do every day - shaving - and connected with me in a very special way. And now I am blogging on it.

Guys, if you are not already a member, do it.  Ladies, you are not excluded, they have you covered as well. You can sign up for $1 per month.  I went for the $6 per month plan, but to each his own.

Now here is the point of today’s blog. Why did this model work so well for Dollar Shave Club? Can this “tell a friend” model work for other things?  Prepaid Cellular phones?  Diapers? Gas for your car? Your monthly electric bill?  Can this viral video market concept work for YOUR business? I think it can work for my business, and I am going to give it a shot.

The marketing technologies of today allow for some amazing things. Here is what I believe to be true: the success of Dollar Shave Club can be traced back to their video. That video is funny, it has a clear message, and it just flat out works. Without that entertaining video, the idea behind Dollar Shave Club would still be a good idea, the concept would still be a good concept. Having a video on that website was not mandatory. But that video was key to the entire process.

If that video did not exist, I say that Dollar Shave Club would not exist.

The holiday season is right around the corner. NOW is the time to get your eCommerce system ready for the big shopping day after Thanksgiving. We are in September - any day now the Holiday commercials will be hitting the airways. If you have not yet embraced the power of video for your own eCommerce website - what are you waiting for? It is working for me, and I think it will work for you as well.

Dollar Deodorant Club - I can see it now.

From the video: "........for every $20 you spend, $19 goes to Roger Federer....."

Saturday, September 1, 2012

I've fallen on my keyboard and I can't get up!

In honor of Labor Day, I am not working all weekend. No work for me on Monday, and no work on Tuesday. In fact, I really don’t remember the last time "the boss" did any real “work” at all. The Internet and wireless mobility changed the way the world works and plays forever. While I am golfing on Monday (and fishing on Tuesday) my company will be working - and making me money - while I stay out of the way.
 Virtual assistants offer a wide variety of services because we have such diverse professional backgrounds. There are virtual assistants who have computer programming and management backgrounds. Some have experience in direct sales, real estate, event planning, teaching, science, design, human resources and the list goes on. Virtual assisting is not the first profession most people get started in right out of college or high school. More than likely virtual assistants worked in other industries prior to becoming a virtual assistant. This is to your advantage because they are able to bring that experience to your project. 


Virtual assisting has been around for a while. However, it's still a new concept for many people who are getting started online as business owners, service providers, or freelancers. I have been an Entrepreneur since 1983. When I first heard the term “BPO” in 2005, I didn't fully understand it myself.  

Today, I own (our Business Process Outsourcing division at MTP).

When it comes to outsourcing or contracting with a virtual assistant you may not know what projects to give to them or even what services they provide. Think of the tasks you must do each day for your business. Are there some things you wish another person could handle for you? Maybe it's email, researching motivational quotes, writing article summaries, or scheduling posts for Hootsuite. All of which can be handed off to a professional virtual assistant.


When looking for a virtual assistant, consider the following service categories. This is an easy way to understand what all virtual assistants can provide for your business. Please note some virtual assistants offer services in all three categories - Administrative, Technical, and Creative.

An administrative virtual assistant may provide services such as customer support, responding to emails, answering phone calls, data entry, creating Excel spreadsheets or PowerPoint slides. She or he may also offer editing and proofing services. Or if your business does contests and giveaways, you'll need support to manage all of that for you. This is something that an administrative virtual assistant might provide.

A technical virtual assistant may provide provide services such as setting up your WordPress website, updating plugins, posting blog content or setting up your email newsletter. She or he may even do social media status updates, moderate online events and provide technical support. You'll even find technical virtual assistants who offer search engine optimization services and keyword research.

A creative virtual assistant may focus on projects that include graphic design work, locating images to be used on social media or blog posts. They may also be able to provide insight when it comes to colors and designs for your website or banner ads.

 Virtual assistants can also provide transcriptions services, invoice services, calendar management, and travel arrangements. If it's a task that you're currently doing or one that you are interested in having someone handle for you, more than likely there's a virtual assistant that offers those services. You'd be surprised at what's out there.

There are many more services virtual assistants can handle for you. As you're doing your research or getting referrals keep in mind what type service you're looking for. Is it more administrative, technical, or creative. The breakdown of services is a starter list to get your wheels turning in regards to what can be outsourced. There's nothing like writing out your blog post in Microsoft Word and emailing it to your virtual assistant to upload to WordPress and setup your newsletter. Or having someone create a spreadsheet with all of your blog posts along with shortened links to be scheduled to update on Facebook or Twitter.

If you're not a web researcher, there's no point in trying to force yourself to be one. I like to find people who enjoy the things that I don't so I can stay focused on what keeps me going regardless of challenges. At the beginning it may be fun to handle all the different things required in your business. However, as your business grows you'll quickly realize the importance of outsourcing. Even virtual assistants outsource! Everyone needs a team around them if it's nothing more than being available when you cannot be there for your most valuable clients.

As summer comes to a close, the holidays will be here before you know it. What happens to your online business then? Who handles the emails when you're on vacation with your family? Who prepares your newsletter or works with guest bloggers when you're out of the country? A virtual assistant is not meant to be a carbon copy of you, but they can add additional arms so you can get multiple things done at one time. 

We all need a support team and that's what a virtual assistant or BPO contractor can provide for your business.  

In today's global business world, the iPad and smartphone is the new corner office. Check out to learn more.