With the rise of social media, instant messaging and texting, many pundits are declaring the death of email. However, rumors of the demise of the medium are greatly exaggerated. Email continues to deliver the best return on investment of any advertising strategy.
In fact, for every dollar you spend on email marketing, you can expect to earn an average of $32 in business. However, there are some rules by which you must abide to avoid harassing potential customers, as well as ensuring you stay on the right side of the law.
The CAN-SPAM Act
Also known as the Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing Act, this 2003 regulation laid down the rules with which commercial email messages must comply to this day.
The act defines any electronic mail message advertising or promoting a commercial product or service—including email messaging promoting content on commercial websites—as a commercial message. Penalties for violations of the act are imposed by the Federal Trade Commission and include fines of up to $16,000 for each instance of a violation. In other words, if 100 emails sent on your behalf are determined to be in violation of some aspect of the regulation, you’ll pay up to $16,000 per message.
The Basic Rules
The primary purpose of the act is to minimize the amount of Spam emails floating around the ‘Net. Another goal is to ensure email users have as much choice as possible when it comes to receiving advertising messages. Whatever your endeavor, whether it’s selling cosmetics from home, marketing furniture or you’re learning how to sell an ebook online with a platform like Shopify, you must:
- Identify Yourself: The “From”, “To” and “Reply To” fields must contain accurate information so recipients know from whom the message originates and to where their response to it will go. Said simply, you must identify your business.
- Provide an Accurate Subject Line: The “Subject” field must contain information describing the nature of the email and it must be pertinent to the message. You can’t promise dancing kittens if the message is really about snaking clogged drains.
- Label the Message an Advertisement: The body of the message must tell recipients they are reading an advertisement. No pretending to be a long lost friend looking to hook them up with an amazing discovery you just found. There is an exception to this rule however. There is no need to make this disclosure if everyone on your mailing list has agreed in writing to accept advertisements from you.
- Stipulate a Physical Address: Even though you’re messaging over the ‘Net, you’re required to provide a standard postal address at which you can receive traditional mail. The address must be valid and it must be a mailbox you check on a regular basis.
- Allow Recipients to Opt-out: Every message must include an unsubscribe link to afford those who receive your messages an easy way to stop your transmissions. This typically takes the form of an “Unsubscribe” link at the bottom of the message. It must be readily discernable and you cannot make users jump through hoops to stop your messages.
- Fulfill Opt-out Requests in a Timely Fashion: Unsubscribe requests must be honored within 10 business days of receipt. This courtesy is to be provided free of charge. You are not allowed to ask for any personal information during this process, nor are you permitted to sell their email address to another company.
- Know What’s Being Done in your Name: In most cases, third party email marketing services are engaged to handle campaigns of this nature. This means you’ll leave compliance with these rules to an outside resource. However, you’re still held responsible for whatever actions they take. Before you turn your campaign over to a contractor, make sure they have a reputation for always operating within the law.
The Bottom Line
The best way to ensure success with an email campaign is to build your mailing list organically. That way, people on the receiving end have already agreed to hear from you and are more likely to respond to your entreaties. Yes, it takes longer to get your marketing effort up and running with this method, but the results are better and you’ll be less likely to irritate people.
Make Game Night A Whole New Type Of Fun
Take “family game night” to a whole other level with this outstanding quiz maker.
Let’s be honest – nowadays it is somewhat of a trying task to try and get the family together. Social media and online video games are the medium of entertainment that children and teens are so wholly engaged in.
With smartphones now becoming an integral part of our everyday life, gaining attention from others can be a difficult task and even more importantly trying to get the attention of our own family sometimes can be difficult.
However, “family game night” can be taken to a whole other level with a software called .
Typeform offers you the ability to out of anything you have interests in. If your kids are a lover of the famed and popular Star Wars franchise, then you can make a game out of that.
Or if your children are fans of the superhero movies – that have deluged the cinematic world – then you will also have the ability to create outstanding trivia games that will keep your children interested and entertained. But more importantly, it will be a great way to bring the family together for the family fun night.
This software allows you also better to promote your online business or to make better lesson plans if you are a teacher.
If you own a family business or if you are a stay at home mom and dad, as that is becoming quite popular, then you will be able to significantly boost your online sales and your online presence with Typeform as you will be able to interact with your customers and clients significantly. Many statistic have shown that more sales and more engagement are most often done when people can visually see something, i.e . With this online software, you will be able to gain and boost leads.
But the best part of all this are the learning quizzes that Typeform offers, which can turn Typeform from a fun game tool to a serious learning tool, without taking out the fun! This is a great way to prepare kids of any age for those inevitable exams that seem to be always coming up. And since kids already associate it with fun, they are much less likely to resist when it comes time to study.
If you aren’t quite sure where to start, no problem! Typeform offers a plethora of templates, from geography quizzes to trivia quizzes to math quizzes.
Make a quiz – and this is quite salient as this can also be used to help your child or kids to study for their test the next day. This is an outstanding way to prepare them for the day ahead and to help give them the confidence they will need to tackle the exam the next day.
Never again will studying be boring.
Take back your family fun night and enjoy what it is to be a family again.
The Secret Method for Establishing Your Child’s Financial Future
The innate drive I have as a parent to teach, influence, and leave a legacy for my children was unexpected. It was sparked at the hospital when they were born and hasn’t stopped since then.
While I was growing up, I wasn’t taught much about money, investing, business, and entrepreneurship. I had to learn a lot of painful lessons. I have been fortunate to establish a financial system from which my kids are already benefiting.
My system runs contrary to the traditional financial system parents and grandparents used to save for their kids’ future in many ways.
But the only way to get uncommon results is through uncommon means. This is my system for establishing for your child’s future.
The 529 plan, also called a qualified tuition plan, is a tax-advantaged savings plan designed to encourage saving for future college costs. These plans are very popular and have become a sacred cow, even though they have only been around since 1996.
When my two girls were born, my dad was insistent on contributing to a 529 plan for college. At the time, I was barely into my first job out of college and hadn’t learned what I teach now, so I decided to open one up.
Today, millions of people have them, and your kids and grandkids are attached to them. In my experience, saying no to a 529 plan is like telling a mother her baby is ugly.
I don’t want to say what you’re doing is bad. You’re planning for your child or grandchild’s financial well-being, which is commendable. But if you look at the nature of a 529 plan, it’s not set up for your best interests or the best interests of the child or grandchild.
It’s pitched to you as a benefit, but it’s just another way for Wall Street to sell you mutual funds and make money off your desire to do well by your kids.
The objective of the 529 plan is to put money away and pay for future college expenses while getting a tax benefit for doing so. The catch is, if the money is not used for college or some other qualified higher education expense, you have to pay penalties for withdrawing it. What if you don’t need the account anymore—your kid decides to skip college, for instance—and you want to use that money for something else? Is the penalty you pay on the 529 plan worth it from the beginning?
Additionally, the burden on families to completely fund college has an opportunity cost that is difficult to quantify. Because of that, the financial future of the family may be put in jeopardy. I have seen it bankrupt a few.
Here’s an example of what I mean. Assume your child is five years old and you have committed to taking care of their educational costs for a four-year degree.
Right now, the average annual cost to attend a public university is $25,000, rising by 5 percent a year. That means that by the time a five-year-old today is 18 and ready to go to college, tuition would be almost $50,000. Over four years, factoring in tuition rises, that comes to a total cost of $213,344.
For a 529 account to pay out that much when it’s needed, it has to start with $100,000 and earn a net 5 percent every year through graduation.
Or, you could just save $8,147 a year for 18 years.
To really drive this point home, the opportunity cost for the family during their later years is really where the price is paid.
If you saved $8,147 a year for 18 years and then let it grow past that point until your future retirement, your balance at the end of 35 years would be $551,602.
If you spent that down through a 20-year retirement, the cash flow would be $42,154.24 per year, for a total lost opportunity cost of: $843,084.80.
The opportunity cost that comes with following the typical college path doesn’t simply disappear if funded through a WMA—it only gives you more options.
You’re trying to prepare for something in the future that may not happen the way you think or may not happen at all. Consider the opportunity cost of that money—what that money could do between now and the time your child goes to college.
When I learned about what I do today, I cancelled the 529 plans I had and opened Wealth Maximization Accounts on each of my kids. Today, I have multiple policies for each of them.
However, the idea isn’t simply to treat these as 529 comparisons. The money inside a WMA can be used now, without any restrictions. In my experience, that has been a most powerful tool to teach kids, including my own, about money.
Instead of saying no to things they want, I can say yes. The money is borrowed against their policies, however, so it becomes their responsibility to pay it back. We call it our family bank.
For example, my daughter Meghan has used her policies to buy numerous types of electronics and a $400 gymnastics mat, amounting to thousands of dollars cumulatively. She had to create a payback plan before she was given the money. She felt she could earn enough for the payments by doing homework online and increasing the amount of babysitting she did in the neighborhood.
She also researched ways to earn bigger tips by giving better service, such as making little videos of the kids, making sure the house was cleaner than when the parents left, and leaving a handwritten note. This experience has given Meghan an appreciation for where money comes from, what a loan is, and what interest is—both the interest you pay and the interest you earn. I know that will benefit her in the future.
Wealth Maximization Accounts for your kids are the ideal way to teach them about money and also to prepare for their future purchases, such as a car, college, and beyond. Properly structured plans are a superior alternative to a 529 college savings plan. For more resources take a look at Paradigm Life.
My Dream Job as CEO of a Porn Company
If you would have told me five years ago that I was going to build a successful porn company, chances are I’d say you’re crazy (or probably call you something worse). But here I am, CEO and co-founder of ManyVids, and I could not be prouder or more professionally challenged. This is my dream job, and I wouldn’t change it for the world.
So how does a girl like me wind up in a place like this? It’s been a wild ride. Starting my own business was always in the cards, from setting up a lemonade stand as a child, to studying business in University. Everything seemed to be going according to plan as I was busy running my own clothing store, but when a flood destroyed my inventory and wiped me out financially, that’s when things went from bad to weird. Desperate for cash, a friend of mine suggested I could make some quick money as a cam girl. I had never heard the term before, so as soon as he explained that “camming” involved stripping or performing simulated sexual acts in front of a camera, I let him know exactly what I thought of his not-so modest proposal. There is no way I would EVER do something like that! But two weeks later, amid growing debt and no light at the end of the proverbial tunnel, there I was, adjusting the lighting, fixing my hair and setting up for my first cam show.
I soon put everything I had into being the best cam girl there was. I researched it day and night, worked on my wardrobe, my technique and building a loyal audience. Spending this time inside an industry that is pretty much in the unknown to most people, I was shocked to discover a world I had never given much thought to. The people who work in the adult entertainment business, from the men and women creating amateur cam videos to porn stars in adult films, they were all lovely, gentle, and clever human beings who deserved to be treated with respect and have greater control over what they do. Porn is a multi-billion-dollar industry and from what I can tell, these “porn stars” weren’t making their fair share of the profits.
So, I put on my entrepreneurial hat once again and decided to step away from in front of the camera to build a website that was an e-commerce platform for these sex workers that would make each one of them entrepreneurs as well. They would have their own marketplace, where they set up what they’d like to sell, setting the price, producing and promoting their content on their terms, and they would have full copyright ownership of their work, a huge deal in an industry full of pirated content. Plus, we would promote sex-positivity and raise awareness about the issue of abuse among sex workers. And so ManyVids was born. In the beginning it was just the three of us, Sed, my friend and now boyfriend who had originally introduced the idea of camming, along with our friend Gino. Together we worked in a basement apartment, the guys worked on the coding and the back end for the website and I came up with the marketing plans to launch our product and managed all the financial aspects of running the business.
After 3 months of intense work, things started to take off and it kept growing faster and faster. As the company grew, success came with a whole slew of different problems: basically, how do we keep up? There were cash flow problems, lack of resources, lack of experience, lack of time and lack of space. We converted our apartment into our official ManyVids Office. We kept one room to sleep in and transformed the rest of space for working. At that time, every decision we took was a huge risk. Because of the lack of funds, one wrong move and everything, the business, our dreams would be over. We hired our first team members without having the proper funds. We believe it was the right decision and it was. We moved the MV Offices from the basement apartment into a much bigger, much nicer office space, moving a few times as the team grew, to our current 16 000 square feet office in Montreal, Quebec.
Today, almost 4 years after the initial launch of ManyVids.com, the MV Team is composed of over 100 dedicated team members that believe in our vision and mission and wish to help adult content creators from all over the world become successful independent entrepreneurs.
At ManyVids, we have the utmost respect for all our strong and courageous MV Stars. There are over 17,200 performers on our site and the most important thing that we want to get across to them is this:
“You are not alone! You are important and you can and will accomplish amazing things in this world”.
I am incredibly proud of everything we’ve accomplished and it’s just the beginning. There is an incredible amount of work ahead of us that to help change perceptions and conditions for these people who give so much of themselves. I truly believe that it’s possible to have a profitable business that considers caring and helping a top priority that influences everything we do. What could be better than that?