Art works shared by virtualinfocom

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Art works shared by virtualinfocom

Indian Mobile gaming Industry

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India, with around 584 Million mobile subscribers represents one of the world’s largest, fastest growing, and highly untapped mobile gaming markets. Particularly, past few years have been quite revolutionary for the industry as it saw emergence of smartphones, GPS enabled sets, and 3G handsets. Consumers have also given tremendous response to the world class offerings of domestic and foreign players and accepted new revenue models, which are directly linked with industry’s developments and future expansion.
 Indian mobile gaming industry has secured one of the world’s fastest growth rates during the last five years. The massive mobile subscriber’s base, technically upgraded games, advanced smartphones, and 3G enabled handsets have provided much awaited boost to the industry, which grew more than fivefold during 2005-2009. In coming year also, the industry will continue to post staggering market growth. The projected CAGR growth of around 74% during 2010-2013 will help India become one of the most attractive destinations for foreign mobile game developers and distributors for investments and outsourcing services.

Domestic companies account for majority of the mobile gaming market in India. These homegrown companies have been witnessing rapid growth in their overall revenue compared to their foreign counterparts. However, it has been anticipated that, during the forecast period, entry of international majors will somewhat balance the market dynamics and result in competitive product pricing and overall improved quality. These proceedings will benefit the consumer most and will help propel industry’s future growth.


Digital Marketing

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There are 2 different forms of digital marketing, each of which has its pros and cons.

Pull
Pull digital marketing technologies involve the user having to seek out and directly select (or pull) the content, often via web search. Web site/blogs and streaming media (audio and video) are good examples of this. In each of these examples, users have a specific link (URL) to view the content.
Pros:
Since requests are inherently opt-in, the size of content is generally unlimited.
No advanced technology required to send static content, only to store/display it.
Cons:
Considerable marketing effort required for users to find the message/content.
Some types of marketing content may be blocked in mixed content scenarios (i.e.: Flash blockers)


Push
Push digital marketing technologies involve both the marketer (creator of the message) as well as the recipients (the user). Email, SMS, RSS are examples of push digital marketing. In each of these examples, the marketer has to send (push) the messages to the users (subscribers) in order for the message to be received. In the case of RSS, content is actually pulled on a periodic basis (polling), thus simulating a push.
Pros:
Faster delivery - push technologies can deliver content immediately as it becomes available.
Consistent delivery - some push platforms have single content types, making it difficult for the user to block content by type.
Better targeting - since push technology usually justifies subscription, more specific marketing data may be collected during registration, which allows for better targeting and more personalization.
Better data - marketing data can be correlated to each request for content, allowing marketers to see information such as user name as well as demographic and psychographic data.
Cons:
Smaller audience - push technology not implemented on common platforms generally need client and/or server software before content can be created, distributed, and/or viewed.
Higher cost - less popular platforms may have higher implementation costs.
Lesser discoverability - smaller audiences mean fewer views mean less visibility in search engines.

Social media : virtualinfocom

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Social media are media for social interaction, using highly accessible and scalable publishing techniques. Social media uses web-based technologies to turn communication into interactive dialogged. Andreas Kaplan and Michael Heinlein define social media as "a group of Internet-based applications that build on the ideological and technological foundations of Web 2.0, which allows the creation and exchange of user-generated content."
Businesses also refer to social media as consumer-generated media (CGM). Social media utilization is believed[who?] to be a driving force in defining the current time period as the Attention Age. A common thread running through all definitions of social media is a blending of technology and social interaction for the co-creation of value.

game development workshop by virtualinfocom and starting of indian gaming club

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tips to bootup your website : virtualinfocom

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  • There are over 400 million active websites &
  • The average person only gives a website 10 seconds before deciding whether the site is worth their time.
Which means, you've got ten seconds (or less) to:

1)    attract the viewer
2)    declare your message &
3)    get them to take action

A challenge for sure! But it's not impossible. To make the most of your website, you simply need to know a few basic psychological tricks.

Maximize the Focal Point
: Most online viewers can only focus on one thing at a time. So although you may have a bunch of great stuff on your site, find the focal point and make sure it's declaring your message loud and clear.

Make the Message Count: If it takes 2-3 seconds to read a sentence, that sentence better matter to the reader. Does your main message apply directly to the needs/wants of your target market? Don't be clever, elusive, or try to reach everyone. Focus on your target market and speak directly to their emotions.

Give Them Something to Do: Most viewers are searching for a site they can DO something on. Provide them with forums, blogs and other ways to connect with you and like-minded consumers. And don't forget to offer something free in exchange for their contact information.

Give Them a Reason to Return: Keep your site up-to-date and full of interesting, valuable information. When your viewers realize that you are constantly updating your site, they are much more likely to return.

Ten seconds is all you have to attract and keep prospects online. So, whatever else you do, be sure to collect lead information off your site. Even ten seconds gives you enough time to start building that relationship with your prospects.

You don't have to discover your own how to run a business

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One thing I've noticed is that entrepreneurs feel like they have to be innovative, creative, and singular in their sales and marketing. Now, of course you want your company to stand out from the crowd. Of course you need a unique selling proposition. But, you don't have to discover on your own how to run a business.

In other words, don't reinvent the wheel. Just find what others have done (and succeeded at) and then try it in your own business.

The great thing about being a business owner today is: the sales and marketing gurus have already tried most everything, and they've revealed ALL their secrets with us!

how to price products or services? Tips : virtualinfocom

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One of the greatest concerns of business owners is how to price their products or services. Often, consumers say, "Well I would buy it if it were in my price range." And, that idea tempts many business owners to lower their prices--just to sell more products.

However, as you already know, price reductions sometimes create more problems than they solve.

For example, price reductions:

Decrease net profits
Lead to the purchase of lower quality products
Increase customer demands to drop the price even lower!
Require even more sales to make up the difference in revenue
Need a larger quantity of products

And, in the end, as John Jantsch (author of Duct Tape Marketing) says, "There will always be someone willing to go out of business faster than you."

Remember this: price is not a benefit. Selling is not determined on the cost of your product. If you truly "sell" your customers and prospects, they will purchase your products/services no matter what price you determine.

If a customer or prospect doesn't buy...and they claim the cost had something to do with it...you can guess they probably wouldn't have purchased anyway.

As a marketer, your job is to sell your products and services. The actual art of selling has nothing to do with the price of the product. By the time your contacts find out about the price, they should be determined to purchase no matter what the cost.
So, find "real" benefits (value) to sell to your customers and prospects. Help them to see how great their life is with your product, and you've got a customer. Point out their current pain, and your contact will do anything to get rid of it.
Set your prices and hold fast. If you've marketed correctly, you will still have customers anxious to do business with you!

Virtualinfocom, Kolkata launches online animation tutorial ‘Pencil2Pixels

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Kolkata based Virtualinfocom (VIC) has launched online tutorial called ‘Pencil2Pixels‘ to help aspiring students understand and learn the basic skill sets of animation. A 20 page version of it is available online free of cost to give an idea on how animations are done and how you can create characters, shadow balance etc.
The original tutorial is a book of 135 pages which would be made available online topic wise in the due course of time. The book would be available at a cost of arount INR 350 in a month‘s time. Virtualinfocom has it cartoon character ‘Chankey‘ who trains the users on how to create animations and how to draw.
Speaking to AnimationXpress.comVirtualinfocom CEO Arijit Bhattacharyya said "Pencil2Pixels is created for the people who want to draw and want to be a part of Animations and Gaming Industry. This online tutorial will help a new comer or a professional to create good animations and make good comics with proper knowledge. It is basically created to encourage people to come into animation and gaming field as there is a dearth of really talented people in this field."

Virtualinfocom is also coming up with game developments tutorial for online medium and are now creating mobile based animations and mobile based games for different clients as well coming up with mobile based comics.Various topic are covered in the tutorial such as creating diagrams, basic drawing, drawing shapes, drawing human faces, trick stuff, solid with round and rectangle, the divided ball and plane method, comic heads, methods of checking, drawing a female body, figure in action, animated figures, digital drawing, bit-map images, vector images, three-dimensional images, Indian style animations, color composition, animate the characters, the perspective view for any animation, case study for a story board, lights - camera - animate, the basic film making setup, how to choose between formats and many more.

Social Media Properties : virtualinfocom

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Reach
Accessibility
Usability
Recency- Instant response
Permanence- faster than anything
Community-owned

Trust Factors
Using social media as a form of marketing has taken on whole new challenges. As the 2010 Trust Study indicates, it is most effective if marketing efforts through social media revolve around the genuine building of authority.
influence can be accomplished
"social question and answer sites" such as EHow and Yahoo! 
to make buying decisions based on what they read and see in platforms we call "social" but only if presented by someone they have come to trust
Different Types of Social Media
Collaborative projects
blogs and microblogs
 content communities
 social networking 
Sites
 virtual game worlds
 virtual communities
Technologies 
Blogs-Blogger, ExpressionEngine, LiveJournal, Open Diary, TypePad, Vox, WordPress, Xanga

Micro Blogs-Jaiku, Plurk, Posterous, Tumblr, Twitter, Qaiku, Yammer, Buzz

Picture-sharing- Flicker,deviantArt, Photobucket, Picasa, SmugMug, Zooomr, BetweenCreationVlogs-FMyLife, Foursquare

Wall-postings-Facebook, Hi5, LinkedIn, MySpace,Orkut, Tagged, XING

Email- yahoo, rediff, gmail, inmail

Instant Messaging- AOL, Booba

 Music-sharing-ccMixter, Pandora Radio, Last.fm, MySpace Music, ReverbNation.com, ShareTheMusic, The Hype Machine
Business reviews: Customer Lobby, Yelp, Inc.

 voice over IP – Skype

Virtual worlds- Active Worlds, Forterra Systems, Second Life, The Sims Online

Game sharing- Kongregate, Miniclip

Internet marketing

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Internet marketing, also referred to as i-marketing, web-marketing, online-marketing or e-Marketing, is the marketing of products or services over the Internet.
Internet marketing also includes marketing done via e-mail and wireless media. Management of digital customer data and electronic customer relationship management (ECRM) systems are also often grouped together under internet marketing.
Internet marketing also refers to the placement of media along many different stages of the customer engagement cycle through search engine marketing (SEM), search engine optimization (SEO), banner ads on specific websites, e-mail marketing, and Web 2.0 strategies.
Business models

E-commerce -consumers (B2C) or businesses (B2B)
lead-based websites
affiliate marketing(e-commerce business, single person, or a combination)
blackhat marketing-less than truthful methods
One-to-one approach-search marketing,peers
Appeal to specific interests-according to age group, gender, geography, and other general factors
Geo-targeting-location, organization, Internet Protocol (IP) address, ISP or other criteria.

What Happens When Customers Remember But the Company Forgets

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A former business owner told me a story the other day that may strike a familiar chord with those of you who have experienced a change in management and what it can do to an organization.
Having sold his business several years ago, Roy (not his real name) is in the middle of an employment contract. It's straight salary, with no incentives. Since the sale, the acquiring company has not invested in the business. This has led to customer dissatisfaction and an increase in complaints because of a decrease in quality.  Recently, Roy was informed by the new national sales director that henceforth all salespeople were to use a snazzy new software application -- one that manages customer complaints. "You can check off up to 50 complaint categories!" she told him, excitedly. Roy pointed out to the sales director that before the company was sold, there was no need for a system to management complaints, because there were only about five complaints a year out of perhaps 5,000 transactions. Now there are that many in a week. The company seems committed to doing a great job tracking the rise in complaints, but has no plan to address their cause.
Does this sound familiar to anyone?
Another company, a food franchise, has a large turnover of staff. A franchisee who has been in the system for nearly a decade wanted to purchase letterhead. The last time he needed it, he ordered it from the company's intranet. This letterhead was very high-end and beautifully designed, and even in these days of email communication, the franchisee used the letterhead to great advantage for proposals, thank-you notes to clients and other direct mail needs. Somewhere along the line, the franchisor decided there was no need to have printed letterhead and instead substituted a Word template that franchisees would print from their PCs.  Low-end, cheap, without any image.  When the franchisee inquired why the franchisor had stopped making the beautiful letterhead available, the response from the latest person to occupy the marketing manager chair was, "I didn't know there ever was letterhead."
The common problem in both these companies is the lack of institutional memory. In the first case, people in positions of authority have no clue what customers expect and have grown accustomed to, because new management is so eager to put their own fingerprint on the new operation that they are uninterested in what made the company valuable enough to purchase in the first place. In the second anecdote, the small details that created positive customer experience get lost as new people come on board and top management is so distracted by the usual operational chaos that they forget the details that made the business work so well.

small business information:Organize your time : virtualinfocom

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Professional organizers work with both individuals and companies to help them create and maintain organizational systems so they can become more efficient and productive. Some benefits of professional organizing as a small business include:

You don't need any specific training or education to be a professional organizer.

Your target market can be extensive.

You can sell ongoing services by organizing one part of a business or home at a time.

You can gain a sense of accomplishment by helping others get organized and teaching them how to maintain it.

There is a lot of information and training on organizational systems and philosophies available online.

You can help people with chronic disorganization and other disorders.

Some of the potential challenges of a professional organizer business include:

It can be difficult to find out what differentiates you from the competition.

You have to be comfortable entering the disorganized and cluttered homes and offices of your clients.

You may need a comfort level with physical as well as digital organization in order to fully help your clients.

Most professional organizers have high levels of patience and empathy.

Information technology Act

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In May this year, the department of Information technology under the ministry of Communication and information drew up draft rules under the amendments of the Information technology Act that seek to monitor, among other things, news content on the Web. The rules will be enforced shortly.

Sec 69 of the IT amendment Act, 2008, gives the Govt the power to intercept, monitor or decrypt any information transmitted, received or stored in any “computer resource” in a public or private place.

Under sec 2k of the IT Act, 2000 a “Computer resource” implies a “computer, computer system, net work, data, computer data base or software”.

The draft rule states that once a person complains against any information posted on Web, the authority concerned will decide whether it goes against the interests of the sovereignty or integrity of India, defense of India, security of the state, friendly relations with foreign states, public order or whether it amounts to incitement to commit any cognizable offence.

If it is felt that the information needs to be blocked, a request will be sent to “designated officer” selected by the Secretary of the Central IT dept. A committee headed by the designated officer will decide whether request should be accepted or not. If Committees recommendation is approved, the designated officer will ask the web host to take off the information from the web site within a prescribed time limit.

The IT Act, 2000 focused mainly on the decryption of messages. Sec 69 of the ITAct of the latest legislation broaden its scope by including interception and monitoring.

But the important features of the amendment are that the powers will be exercised not only when national security interests are threatened but also when cognizable offences are committed.

The argument in favour of the aforesaid rules is: 1. that though under constitution of India Article 19 guarantees freedom of expression, the reasonable restrictions for security of the country is allowed. No one has the right to post anything and everything on the web and national concerns will always take precedence. In USA also there are national centres to monitor web content, although there are considerable emphasis on the right to privacy and freedom of speech.

2. Among the existing laws in the country, Indian Telegraph Act, 1885 gives the Govt. the right to intercept messages or other forms of communication.

Clause 5(2) of the Act says: “On the occurrence of any public emergency or in the interest of public safety, the central Govt. or a state Govt.or any officer specially authorized in this behalf by the central Govt. or a state Govt. may ….direct that any message or class of messages to or from any person or class of persons or relating to any particular subject, brought for transmission by or transmitted or received by any telegraph………shall be intercepted or detained, or shall be disclosed to the Govt. making the order…..”

In 1991, People’s union for Civil Liberties challenged this clause on the ground of curb on fundamental right of expression.

Supreme Court observed that “Unless a public emergency has occurred or the interest of public safety demands, the authorities have no jurisdiction to exercise the powers”

Public emergency so defined by the Supreme Court was “prevailing of a sudden condition or state of affairs affecting the people at large calling for immediate action”

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Criticism: 1. Such stringent legal provisions subvert the very idea of freedom in cyberspace. If these rules are imposed, the biggest losers will be bloggers and independent citizen journalists who do not enjoy the kind of support that big media organizations do.

2. The beauty of web is that we can express ourselves freely and honestly. But how can we record our experiences and views sincerely when such rules can become a potent tool of abuse?

3. The most dangerous thing /lacunae in the draft rules under the Act is that there seems to be no provision to give affected web host a hearing before or after his or her portal is blocked. There in lies the arbitrariness of the draft rules. Why the affected party should not be given pre or post –decisional hearing.

4. What happens if the information is posted from outside India? The rule is silent on the aspect.

However the draft rules do have some safe guards. For example, a review committee will meet every two months to check whether or not orders to block portal have been issued in accordance with IT Act.

Trade Mark & Domain name : Tips from virtualinfocom

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Before the emergence of e-culture, intellectual property rights i.e. trade mark in the product is acquired through continuous promotion of the particular brand name by means of advertising through media, like the press, television, radio broadcast and other means. Now information about a particular product or a reputed brand name is easily accessible through the powerful search engines available on the internet. This factor has also opened a Pandora’s Box on the aspect of intellectual rights in domain names and their conflicts vis-à-vis the registered trade mark.

A domain name is the address of a business entity on the internet or cyberspace or a reference for having access to the business credentials of an entity. The conflict situation arises typically when in addition to registered trade mark approaches the registering authority for registration domain name on the internet in order to guide the potential customers to the site where more details about its product or services can be provided.

In all probability, the domain name chosen by such company has to be its registered trade mark/brand name or identical one. For example, Microsoft Inc would seek domain name such as Microsoft.com.

For registration of domain name a person can apply to Network solutions Inc of USA following the rules of Domain name registering policy of the registering authority India and cannot be allowed if there is infringement Trade mark and passing off as per Trade mark Act.

But where the Cyber squatter is situated in different country and contends that the fact of Trade mark having been registered in India was not known to him and Indian court have no jurisdiction over it.

In all probability, it would be situation of give and take that is the transfer of domain name takes place simultaneously with payment of a hefty compensation by the holder of a trade mark to the holder of the deceptive domain name. However where the holder of the trade mark instead of succumbing to the pressure of cyber squatter takes the matter to the administrative body that is WIPO for rectification of the domain name, his case is likely to be thrown out for want of evidence to prove bad faith.

How to write proposals for webninar : virtualinfocom

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Whether you are still presenting your products "face-to-face," or have embraced the benefits of webinars and online demonstrations, here is one technique that continues to drive results: use a selling script.

Every time you approach a prospect or customer, you should be prepared with a powerful and proven marketing script.

It seems to be unfashionable today to talk of sales scripts, but statistics overwhelmingly prove that a practiced presentation massively outperforms one that's simply delivered off the cuff. Yes, whether you're selling face-to-face or online, you need to be flexible and be able to cope with things that crop up, but you should not allow them to divert you from your main flow.

You must remember that your interaction with your prospects is a sales presentation and not a chat around the coffee table with your buddies. The purpose of your webinar, online demo, or meeting is to sell and make you money! And as sales is a process not an event, your process - your sales presentation - should be carefully planned, constructed, practiced, and delivered. Use a sales script because:

  • It makes your message consistent.
  • The results can be measured and the script improved.
  • It systematizes your business.
  • You can make a strong first impression (without blundering for something to say).
  • Prepares you for any prospect objections, questions, etc. without getting you off track.
One word of warning: Many times people who use sales scripts sound robotic and unnatural. You can still read a script and be real. And when you do both you will see an incredible increase in your sales

Virtual Infocom sets up new center in Jaipur

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Virtual Information & Communications, Kolkata (VIC) has recently launched its new center in Jaipur and also plans to open a production unit. With batch strength of 10 the first batch started on 1st august 2010 and the Jaipur operation is controlled by Amit Trivedi.

Speaking to AnimationXpress.com VIC CEO & Founder Arijit Bhattacheryya said "Jaipur is emerging as one of the hubs for engineering and high number of students are showing their interest in animation and game development but no institute provides the curriculum with affordable cost that we are providing. We see high potential among students and caliber for achieving excellence. We are going to start our production unit there soon, so that candidates from our institute can get a chance to be a part of our production team too."

The various courses offered are Game Development (PC, Mobile games, iPhone Games, Online Games) Game Design (PC, Mobile games, iPhone Games, Online Games), Animation, iPhone applications, iPhone Games, Web site Development & Design, Web Application Development and Graphics Design.

"We have experienced faculty who are currently involved in our production unit and are involved with the industry directly thus know the current market requirement and latest tips for success which they share with students to endeavor excellence and perfection. Students can learn the best and most updated technology which is used by the industry. These skills help them enter the industry with confidence and passion. Students work on live projects and have continuous interaction with production units and guests who will share their knowledge through seminars." added Arijit.
Advertisement

Virtual Infocom has started a fresh in-house animated series on how a child can grow, how she finds out about the world around her etc, so that parents can nourish a child properly with proper food and education and a child can make new friends and can make right decisions.

How to become successful in life : virtualinfocom

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The noted New Yorker writer Malcolm Gladwell’s 10,000hour rule theory in his Outliers: The story of success says that the key to success in any field is, to a large extent, a matter of practicing a specific task for a total of 10,000 hours which means 20 hours of work in a week continuously for 10 years. So genius may not be the only one or main ingredient to be successful symphony of a person’s life.
Gladwell cited the story of Christopher Langan who ended up working on a horse farm despite having an IQ of 195 vis-à-vis Albert Einstein’s score of 150. The writer blames the environment in which Langan grew up: ‘No one –not Rock stars, not professional athletes, not software billionaires, and not even geniuses--------------ever makes it alone’ he writes.
In contrast, Eastern traditions tend to attribute such results to innate or intrinsic causes or disciplines. The Bhagavad-Gita, for example, cautions against unintelligent (tamasic) or over passionate (rajasic) effort. The best results flow from Satvic practices: dispassionate or detached effort, abhyasa backed with vairagya.

So practice makes perfect but don’t loose your control-----------it takes time.

Each and every person has more spare time than he thinks. Most people don’t use their leisure time optimally. One reason is mental pre-occupation. If one loves his job, is self employed or thrive against impossible dead lines, one need to spend lots of time thinking about his work and not  to spend big chunks of leisure time in most frictionless ways------watching T.V., for example. 

virtualinfocom : Marketing Tips for your Company

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Are you used to doing things a certain way and can’t seem to break the habit? Old habits are hard to break which is why internet marketing can be tough if you do not evolve with the rest of the industry. You might have started doing things a certain way years ago, and found that they just don’t seem to work the same way they once did. That is not a coincidence that is actually the industry moving past you while you fail to evolve.
Consider changing things up in order to grow and evolve:


Approach: If something works online than great, but if it doesn’t work than you need to fix it. Marketing your business online is not the same as it was 3 years ago. Things change and you need to evolve with your approach otherwise you run the risk of cutting your audience short.

Brand: Is your online brand stale? Have you not rebranded your business since the day you started it? Branding online in today’s marketplace is very important. Customers really focus on brand recognition before they make purchases online and a stale non branded marketing approach online could work against any new potential sales.

Website: Consult a professional about your website if you haven’t touched it in five years. You might think it’s the cat’s bag but your audience might be seriously turned off by your website. Don’t outdate yourself by not updating your website. Design is very subjective but good design with strong conversion aspects is always going to be important. Don’t be stubborn about your website design and consult with someone who understands good business web design. It is more than just making things look appealing for your audience. It is all about leading your audience down a path. That path could be the messaging of your brand or leading them down the path to a website conversion.

The internet marketing space is not an area where you can get comfortable and set in your ways. Failure to evolve will result in brand death and in today’s marketplace you have to do everything you can in order to really stand out.


Digital Camera Guide : virtualinfocom

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Digital Camera Guide


This guide will tell you that plus get you a little more familiar with what these cameras are capable of.

Megapixels

When it comes to megapixels, the more the better. I recommend a minimum of 2, but 3 or 4 is great. We did a test to see if a camera with 2.3 megapixels (actually 1.92 - 1600 x 1200) could produce a good quality 8x10.

Turns out it can, if you have the right paper and printer. We used HP Premium Plus photo paper with an HP 970 series printer and made a fantastic 8 x 10. Remember, I was a professional photographer before I got into computing, so I know a good print when I see it :-)

The resolution at 8x10 (we had to crop in to make the picture proportional to 8x10) was only 150 DPI. Most printers would not make a real good 8x10 at that resolution, but this one did. So, if you want to be sure you can get good 8 x 10s, you may want to go with a 3 megapixel camera or better (that gives you around 200 DPI at 8x10 size, still not quite the optimum 300 DPI, but it looks good with the right printer).


Optical vs Digital Zoom

You've probably noticed that most digital cameras have both a specification for digital and optical zoom. Pay the most attention to the optical zoom.


The optical zoom magnifies (zooms in) using glass. The digital zoom basically crops out the edge of the picture to make the subject appear closer, causing you to lose resolution or to get an interpolated resolution (i.e. the camera adds pixels). Neither of which help image quality.

Finally, make sure you get enough (optical) zoom. A 2x zoom isn't going to do much for you. A 3x is the average you'll find in most digital cameras will probably be good for most uses. More on lenses later.

Connection

How does the camera connect to your computer? If you have a USB port in your computer, you'll want a camera that can connect via USB as opposed to a slow serial connection.

On the other hand, if your computer doesn't have a USB port, is there a serial connector available for the camera you're looking at? If so, is it a special order and how long does it take to get it?


Storage

What does the camera use to store images with? If it uses a memory stick, make sure you consider buying additional sticks when you get your camera. A typical 8 meg memory stick that comes with a 2 megapixel camera only holds 5 or 6 images at the camera's best quality.

Some cameras use a 3.5 inch disk for storage. Be careful of these!

Although it may sound like a good idea, a 3 megapixel camera at high resolution produces a 1 meg file (compressed!). That's only 1 picture per disk.

Here's a few more things to look out for when trying to make your digital camera purchase.


Picture Formats

When you're trying to decide on which digital camera to get, check and see how many different picture formats it supports.


You want something that can produce both uncompressed (usually TIFF) and compressed (usually JPEG) images. I personally use the high quality JPEG setting on my camera for most of my shooting. TIFFs are just too big and the difference in quality is not ascertainable by mere mortals.


You also want to be able to shoot at a lower resolution than the camera's maximum. That way, If you're running short on memory, you can squeeze a few more shots on your memory stick.


Auxiliary Lens / Flash

This was a biggie for me. While a 3x zoom may work for the "average" user, I needed something that allowed me to do some wide angle work as well as have a good telephoto lens.

So, the camera I purchased a few months back was a Nikon Coolpix 990 (note that this isn't the only camera that can accept lenses). It has auxiliary lenses that screw into the filter ring on the front of the lens. I now have an ultra-wide fisheye lens plus a nice telephoto.

In addition to lenses, I wanted a good flash. The flash that is built into most of these cameras gives you a top range of 15-20 feet - at best. I wanted a camera that could take a powerful auxiliary flash (again, the Nikon isn't the only camera that fits this requirement, but I liked it better than the rest). If you need more reach than the small built in flash can deliver, then make sure you can attach an external flash to any camera you consider.

As an added bonus, if you get a camera that can take an external flash, you can place that flash on a bracket and eliminate red-eye.


Flash Distance

Speaking of flashes, make sure you check the distance the built in flash is good for. You don't want a camera with a wimpy flash that only travels a few feet (well, unless you can get an external flash for it as described above).


Battery Type

This may not sound important, but it is. Anyone who owns a digital camera can tell you they eat batteries the way a sumo wrestler eats at a buffet.

Make sure the camera can run on regular (or rechargeable) "AA" type batteries. You don't want a camera that eats through expensive lithium batteries every 10 shots or so.

One thing to remember about digital cameras, they do eat through batteries. I recommend getting some Nickel Metal Hydride rechargeable for it. I have some for mine and they have saved me a fortune.


Final Notes

Choosing a digital camera isn't easy. There's a huge selection out there and only you can determine which features you need.

For instance, if you shoot wildlife photos, a small 3x zoom probably isn't going to cut it (unless you can attach auxiliary lenses to it). If you shoot lots of close-ups, make sure the camera has some sort of macro capability. If you shoot big group photos indoors, an external flash may be necessary.

My advice is to make a list of things you want to be able to do with the camera then go to somewhere that can help you make a good purchase decision.

Finally, buy the BEST camera you can possibly afford. Or wait until the price drops on one with the type of features you want.

Whom to Hire , Tips virtualinfocom

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Whether you employ one person, or fifty, choosing the right employees can be a challenge. How do you know which of the job applicants will be worth their weight in gold, and which will give you a run for your money? Well, the "secret" to hiring the right employee is to give equal weight to five different factors:


Education

Experience

Passion

Drive

Fit
Sometimes, the best applicant is not the one with 20 years of experience. Sometimes, the best applicant is not the one with the Master's degree. Focus your interview questions around all five traits, and the "right" employee will emerge.


What if it's a toss up? Look closely at the experience, because past experience is the best indicator of future success.


If you're struggling with current employees, here are four guidelines to determine it's time to let someone go:


You are doing (or re-doing) their work

They fail to reach their goals on a regular basis

The employee has not taken your admonishments to heart

They negatively impact other employees around them

Small business owners do not have the luxury of keeping poor or mediocre employees. You must keep only the best employees for your business. And, don't feel guilty for letting go of inefficient or unproductive persons. You're growing a business, not running a charity.


Plus, I've learned by experience that I'm not doing anyone any favors by keeping a bad employee around... not the employee, not my customers, not the rest of my staff, and not me!

Here are some ideas for making your website powerful:

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Include pictures and descriptions of your products (with a dynamic website, your visitors should be able to click through your products to find what they are interested in)



Display interesting facts and statistics

Include high interest stories (celebrity or newsworthy stories will quickly draw readers to your site)

Include customer testimonials

Produce blogs, forums, or user communities

Most viewers will give you about ten seconds to decide if your site is worth visiting. If you have interesting content and graphics, they'll give you a little more time. However, if you haven't used your space on the Internet to capture and retain their attention, the next thing you know, the person is gone.


Your website should attract viewers, and ultimately provide you with additional leads.

How to create news letters

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If you're like most companies, you're not using your newsletter for the marketing tool it is. You see many companies produce newsletters. But after a while, the purpose of the newsletter is lost and so is its impact. Here are a few tips for turning your newsletter into a powerful marketing strategy.

1. Determine what your readers want- too many newsletters are used simply to boast. Although your newsletter should promote your business, it's also a time to build your relationship with your prospects and customers. Be sure to discuss topics of interest and value for your customers and prospects.


2. Personalize your newsletter- there are hundreds of newsletters circulating on the Internet and in the mail. You need to make your newsletter stand out from the crowd. Making your newsletter uniquely you will make a difference. So be real. Feel free to include personality and emotion in your newsletter.


3. Make it look good- the visual aspect of your newsletter can make all the difference. Make it brief. (You only have the reader's attention for a few minutes.) Use bullets and appealing headlines. And include graphics.


4. Let your readers give you their opinion- ask your readers to comment on the newsletter. They will tell you what they liked, disliked, or want to see more of. Additionally, the interaction with your readers draws you closer to a sale.


5. Include your contact information- the ultimate purpose of the newsletter is to get more customers (through name recognition, relationship building, and promoting your products). However, without your contact information, those potential customers will never appear.


Create a newsletter worthy of your company and you'll drive your readers to future sales. Make it simple, make it short, and make it a powerful tool that reflects you and your business!

Can Financial Planning be done by Self.....???

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Can Financial Planning be done by Self.....???


In the Present Scenario planning is a necessity for everyone. Many think planning is required for only big plans or it is a tool for corporate, but Planning is required for Individuals also, to plan their finances at every stage of their life. Financial planning is nothing but the process of meeting life goals through a proper planning and management of finances. It helps an individual as well as corporate to translate their dreams and aspirations in to reality. It also helps you to provide meaning and direction to your financial decisions. Financial planning has to be done in a proper way, so that it can be implemented effectively.

Financial planning includes Personal Financial Planning as well as Corporate Financial Planning.
Personal financial planning consists of

•Educational Planning

•Health or Medical Insurance

•Tax Benefits on Housing loan

•Tax Benefits on Educational loans

Corporate Financial Planning includes

•Income Tax planning

•Risk Management/Insurance Planning

•Investment Planning

•Estate Planning.

Financial planning is important because it helps to manage your income more efficiently. It is important to increase cash flow and to keep an eye on spending habits and expenses. Proper financial planning will help in determining what should be done to create cash flow in order to make investment possible. It helps to build a long term capital-base and shape your financial future in terms of savings. With a strong capital base, you can have a wider portfolio of investment and it will help you to increase the wealth and to reduce the risk of investment. It helps us to distinguish investment opportunities appropriate to your financial situation. Financial planning can help in assessing the best investment opportunities. A good investment planning can transform your dream goals into realities. It is very important for your family to have financial security. This is possible only through proper financial planning with proper coverage and taking right policies. A systematic and structured saving and investment plan can be provided to fund children's education and to secure a comfortable retirement.


4 Important Steps to follow while Planning your Finances

Here are some of the important steps to be followed while planning your finances

•Analyzing Dreams

•Analyze your Financial status

•Proper Financial Planning

•Action the plan


Analyzing Dreams

In India most of the people have not analyzed their dreams and the ways of realizing the same. So it is very important for you to analyze your dreams so as to convert it into reality. Now you have to translate your dreams and aspirations in to money. Define the time frame within which you should be able to realize your dreams. If you think, it is difficult to meet all your goals within the specified time frame, prioritize your goals based on urgency and importance.


Analyze your Financial Status

It includes inventory of assets and liabilities (including securities holding, debts, insurance, etc), A description of the present arrangement for distribution of assets at death, Estimates of your income and expenditure, details of your insurance coverage and now analyzing Emotional status is very important, while designing a financial plan for you. It will decide your strength to take risk or not now. Develop a plan, the plan which you design, should take your present financial situation to the achievement of the objectives.



Proper Financial Planning

Based on the above steps, comprehensive financial plan should be framed which contain an analysis of all pertinent factors relating to your financial status. Your financial plan should consist of your personal data, goals and objectives, mention your issues and problems, specify assumptions, mention the balance sheet/ net worth for the financial year of your company, their should be proper cash flow management. Merely designing a plan, no matter how sound, does not constitute financial planning.


Action the Plan

A financial plan is useful to you only if it is put in to action. You have to ensure that the implementation is carried out in the manner and in accordance with the plan designed. Now it is very important to monitor the plan. Periodic reviews are the best form of monitoring. You should keep flexibility for a review if circumstances demand. Therefore, to finance your funds one should keep in mind the following steps mentioned so as to lead happy and safe life.

Options for financial planning

•Financial Planning Consultant Services

•Financial Planning Magazines

•Online Financial Planning

Financial Planning Consultant Services

Before choosing a financial planner or financial consultant services, check whether client's interest is the first priority for them, and that they also offers full explanation of the processes involved. One of the key issues in hiring a financial planner is how the planner is to be paid. Financial planners are not just investment advisors; they provide a broad range of services for a wide range of financial situations.

Financial Planning Magazines

Financial planning magazines provide helpful articles and insights on the common issues faced by people trying to plans for their financial future. They also give an idea about the different alternatives available in the market. They may also provide comparison of companies, quotes, rate financial planning tools available in the market and much more.
- - virtualinfocom

how to be an entrepreneur ? virtualinfocom

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An entrepreneur is an individual who undertakes financial risks and carries out new financial ventures.Out of the total productive population how many are really using the potential....? Strange but fact, due to lack of knowlegde and expert guidance we are not able to develop future entrepreneurs.

The word entrepreneur derives from the French words "entre" (to enter) and "prendre" (to take), and in a general sense applies to any person starting a new venture or trying a new opportunity. Entrepreneurship is a practice of starting a new business in response to new opportunities. A person who owns a business or enterprise is called an entrepreneur. In other words we can tell that an entrepreneur is a person who organizes and manages a business undertaking and assumes a risk for the sake of profit. Operating a business takes certain skills. Few people may not have all the skills needed to run a business, but they can compensate for their weaknesses by hiring efficient staffs or consultants and by becoming more knowledgeable through education or training.
Qualities of a successful Entrepreneur.


•Successful entrepreneurs are self motivated, they always encourage themselves at every step they take. They do not want any other motivating things other than their goals which motivate them.

•Successful entrepreneurs learn by failures. They take every failure as a lesson and stepping stone for success.

•A successful entrepreneur is a good manager. He knows how to manage his business and how to deal with threats.

•Successful entrepreneur is a good negotiator and a good communicator.

•Successful entrepreneur is a leader by nature. He analyses the things well and finds positive solutions.

•Successful entrepreneurs take calculated risks.

•Successful entrepreneurs prepared to make personal sacrifices to achieve success.

•Successful entrepreneurs are innovative in approach. They see things which others fail to recognize.

•Successful entrepreneurs always target the niche markets and new business opportunities.

•Successful entrepreneurs are action oriented; they do not spend time in dreaming about success. They make things happen.

•Successful entrepreneurs are professional in approach towards business

•Successful entrepreneurs learn from others.

Process of starting a company

The Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA), Government of India, is the main body which authorizes, regulates and sets rules on how to ' Register a Company in India '. The MCA primary focus is on 'Administration of the Companies Act, 1956' and other Acts and Rules & Regulations drafted for corporate sector.
Steps for Registering a Company in India


•Select a maximum of six new names indicating main objects of the company. Proper care for 'same or deceptively similar names' should be followed.

•Availability of name (s) can be made on eForm1 A by logging in to the portal. A fee of Rs. 500/- has to be paid along with the digital signature of the applicant.

•After approval, registration of the new company can be filed on forms (Form 1, 18 and 32) within six months of approval.

•Draft memorandum and articles of association; get ratified, print and stamped with appropriate stamp duty.

•Get the Memorandum and the Articles signed by at least two subscribers, provide details like father's name, occupation, address and the number of shares subscribed for and get identified.

•Memorandum and Article should bear date, later than stamp date.

Electronic forms and mandatory documents to ' Register a Company in India ' should further accompanied by, Declaration of compliance, Notice of situation of registered office of the company and Particulars of the Director's, Manager or Secretary. It should go with the digital signature, requisite fees and hard copy of Memorandum and Article of Association to the RoC. Then corporate identity is certified by RoC. Public Limited Companies and Part IX Companies have to stick to few more compliances for ' Company Registration in India '. The problems related to registration of a Company in India ‘have been substantially cut down with better and user friendly ' Process of Company Registration



Certificate of Incorporation

It is also referred to as articles of incorporation. It is the set of basic important rules governing the management of a company. It is the legal document essential for the formation of a company.



Certificate of incorporation consist of;

•Name of the corporation which is unique from any other corporation present in that jurisdiction.

•Names of board of directors who are main authority of the corporation.

•Objectives of the corporation or purpose of its formation.

•Location of the registered office of the corporation.

•Period of existence of corporation, whether permanent or for a limited period of time.

•Number of shares the corporate is authorized to issue.
Articles of association


Articles of associations are the regulations governing the relationship between directors of the company and the shareholders and are the basic necessities for the establishment of a company. It is the set of primary rules which directs working of a company. It tells about the general meeting of shareholders and their voting rights, forms in which notices are published by the company, bodies that do administration, and also tells about powers and functions of management of the company.



How to Manage a Company Successfully

Most of the people get business ideas but only a small percentage of people move forward to convert it into a business and only a few people can convert their business into a successful one. Converting a business into success needs strong dedication and passion. Following are some points which are essentials to convert a business into successful venture.

Be confident

Confidence and hard work are the best medicine to kill the failure. To be a successful person in business today needs good planning of future and this planning is possible only when entrepreneur is confident about his business.
Organize your business


To get success, a business needs to be well organized. A well organized business will help to complete a task effectively on time and also increases the preference by the customers.

Analysis of the competitionA well detailed analysis of the competitors and competition in the market is very much necessary for the survival and progress of the business. Success of a business depends on how a business can differentiates itself in the market with respect to other competitors, and this is possible only when it does market analysis.


Consistency in quality

This is the factor which keeps the customers stick to their business for long time. No matter whether a business deals with manufacturing or providing service it always should show consistency in service quality which builds loyalty in customers. Long term better quality ensures good customer loyalty and makes business successful.


Be creative and focused

Rome was not built in a day, like this a business cannot become successful over night; it requires long time hard work, dedication and sacrifies. Always focus should be on competitors and changes that happens in the market. Creativity helps to go ahead in the competition and helps to stay for long time.

Effective Marketing

Success of a business also depends upon its popularity in the market, this needs good advertising. Word of mouth is an effective way of advertising and in the initial stages low cost advertising is preferred for small business.

Venture Capital : to get funding for your business?

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Venture capitalists (VC) are those businessmen who are interested instart-up companies and who provide capital for such companies. It isnot necessary that venture capitalist must be a businessman. Theinvestment can be done by the individuals who have a high net worth orinvestable assets. The VC’s invest in a startup company and usuallythey ask for a share of partnership or ask for particular percentage ofshares from that company. If a person wants to become an entrepreneurthen he must start a new business and for starting up the business heneeds to have a business plan. It is not necessary that the plan has tobe a new idea for which he will need capital. The amount of capitaldepends upon the type of business that the entrepreneur is starting. Hecan get the required capital from many sources. The required capital,be it less or more depends upon the business plan. Some of the sourcesfrom which the entrepreneur can raise the required capital are;



Own funds

Venture capitalists

Angel investors

Partnership

Banks

From friends and relatives

Institutional investors

You may be wondering as to what is the need for a person to become aventure capitalist when he can earn money if he invests the same amountof money in his business, share market, in banks etc. There are manythings which play a very important role in converting a person into aventure capitalist.
How does it work?


You may be wondering as to what is the need for a person to become a venture capitalist when he can earn money if he invests the same amount of money in his business, share market, in banks etc. There are many things which play a very important role in converting a person into a venture capitalist.

•Social responsibility: A person who aims at becoming a venture capitalist is giving a contribution to the society by helping the young entrepreneurs to start their business and indirectly it means that they are helping in the improvement of the economy.

•They can get good returns if they invest in the stock market or in their own business but the returns that they get by investing in new business are far more and it comes very easily.

•They can dictate their terms in some matters when they are investing in a startup company whereas it cannot happen even if they are a managing director of a public company

•It involves a lot of risk to invest in startup companies and no doubt the venture capitalist is ready to take up that risk

•The main advantage is the capital gains. When VC puts money in the business the one thing he asks for is percentage of shares and when the company is doing extremely well and its share prices are very high, VC sells of the shares of that company to make a lot of money. It again depends upon VC whether he wants to sell or keep the shares.

The VC’s does not invest in each and every business opportunity that they come across. They invest in only those projects which they feel can definitely work and are capable of bringing them good returns. A study has shown that some of the VC’s invest in one project or business opportunity among the 400 or 500 projects that they have seen, it again depends upon the perception of the venture capitalist because some of them will be looking out for projects which are there in specific fields such as healthcare, fast-foods, medicines, technology oriented etc. Once the entrepreneur or the businessman who needs the capital approaches the VC there are certain conditions put forward by them. Some of them are

• A place in Board of Directors

• Percentage of shares

• Business partnership

• Reporting the progress of business

• The targets to be met
Process of getting the capital


The first step is that a business proposal is submitted to VC. Venture capitalist reviews the business proposal and if he feels that the business is worth investing then he calls the entrepreneur or the management team of that particular company for a discussion.



The second step is the Pre-liminary screening wherein the management team/ entrepreneur of the business sit and review the business plan or proposal. It is the one important stage where the management team/entrepreneur has to prepare well and convince the venture capitalist that the business plan will work out and for doing that they need to know even the minute details about the project because they can never anticipate the kind of questions that will be asked by venture capitalist.

The next step is Negotiating the investment. In this stage the amount that is needed for the proposal is discussed and both parties come to an understanding called as Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). The venture capitalist reviews the market study and market potential which has been carried out by the respective firm or by people who are specialized in this particular work. The venture capitalist also studies the industry carefully to obtain information about competitors, entry barriers, potential to exploit substantial niches, product life cycles, and distribution channels which will help in convincing him that the business plan is worth investing.

The final step is getting the approvals and the capital. In this step all the terms are negotiated and the investment proposal is submitted to venture capital board of directors and if it’s approved the legal documents are prepared. Then the VC provides the capital that they have decided in the MoU. The capital can be given in a lump sum or in installments depending upon what was decided during the meeting.
Selection of venture capitalist


Although the final decision of investing the money in a business lies in the hands of a Venture capitalist, the selection of a VC is definitely in the hands of an entrepreneur. It should not be mis-understood that the power lies in the hands of the entrepreneur because they need capital for setting up the business and they are in no condition to dictate the terms. The mistake that they do is to decide upon one VC and approach him for funding without knowing if that particular VC has got any preferences. It has been seen that venture capitalists have preferences regarding particular stages of investment, amount of investment, industry sectors and geographical location. It’s not only these things what an entrepreneur will look for in an Venture Capitalist, but other important things as to what will be the value addition that the VC brings in, what will be his style of doing business, the expertise and experience that he brings along with him.

Stages of financing

Let’s have a look at the general stages of financing. The steps given here are not universal because the modes and stages of financing depend upon the negotiations that have taken place between the VC and the entrepreneur/management. But these are the steps in which the financing happens most of the times


Step 1: seed financing or seed capital or concept stage financing

The entrepreneur or the main management is provided with a small amount of capital. In this stage the products or services are not being sold to the customers. In most of the cases it is seen that the entrepreneurs get the capital from the angel investors rather than the venture capitalists.


Step 2: startup financing

In this step a prototype of the product is built and is tested for the market viability. The search for the other team members and the technical specialists is on. There are very few venture capitalists that fund during this stage and again it’s the angel investors who come to the rescue of the entrepreneurs.



Step 3: First stage financingThis is the step where the VC’s will be looking to get involved with a company. For a company to reach this stage it requires at least a year and the management team is in place and is working in co-ordination. The sales may or may not be that great but if the product is accepted well in the market, the sales will definitely be on the rise


Step 4: second stage financing

The sales in this stage are rising and the company is looking to reduce the costs and increase the productivity and enter new markets. The funds in this phase are used for opening into new markets; increase the productivity, expansions etc.


Step 5: Third stage financing

The customer’s happiness, the sales figures are taking an exponential phase and the business is going on very well, these are some of the things which happen in this phase if everything goes as planned. The finance that the firm gets during this stage is used for increasing plant capacity, marketing, working capital and expansion.


Step 6: Bridge or Mezzanine financing

The company has successfully passed through the rough patches that arise during the initial years and is doing well now. The bridge financing is done to prepare the company for an Initial Public Offering (IPO) which includes clearing the debts and buying out the investors who are not strong enough to run a public company.

The next step is that the company or the firm goes for the IPO and raises the funds or capital.


The present scenario in India

There are number of Venture capital firms and individual VC’s in India. Some of the top VC firms are Sequoia Capital India, Ventureast, Intel Capital, Helion Venture Partners, DFJ India, Nexus India Capital etc. Apart from the firms there are individual VC’s such as one of the Infosys founder Mr. N.S.Raghavan, Vinod Khosla. They have been providing the capital for the budding entrepreneurs. The next addition to the list is Mr. Narayana Murthy who recently sold shares of worth Rs 180 crores to start a venture capital firm.

How do I File Income Tax Returns…..???

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Identify your sources of income under different Income Heads.
Keep Documents Ready


Before filing Tax you should know which documents you need to keep in hand in order to find out your tax-amount. You should identify the sources of income and place them under the right income heads.
 
Compute the gross Total Income (GTI)


Add up your earnings from the five income heads to arrive at total taxable income. To get your total taxable income, you will have to subtract the standard tax deductions (Section 80) from the gross income.
 
Step 4: Calculate deductions


Add up all your Section 80C and non-80C deductions and minus it from your gross total income.
 
Calculating Total Taxable Income


To get the Total Income on which the tax is to be paid reduce the total deductions from the gross total income. The income from house property and capital gains are taxable.


Finding your tax rates

Individual taxpayers are categorized as General, Women and Senior Citizens. Identify your category and check out your tax liability according to the tax slab applicable for assessment year 2010-11 or financial year 2009-10
Choosing the correct income tax return (ITR) form.


Based on your income sources, you need to choose your ITR form. Once the documents and the calculations are done, the process of filing tax enters the final phase.

Filing returns

Subtract your TDS from the tax liability that you computed earlier to ascertain if you are still to pay any taxes. If you still have a tax liability, get hold of Form 280, fill it up and deposit it in any bank along with the tax payable in cash or cheque before filing your returns.

Business Building Tips for Entrepreneurs

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As a business owner, you already know that people buy for emotional reasons. No matter how great your product or service is, apathetic consumers will simply dismiss it. You need to tap into their emotions if you're going to convince them that they need your product.

By manipulating the pleasure and pain triggers in your prospect, you will be catching their attention, and encouraging them to act (either to rid themselves of the pain, or to retain feelings of pleasure.)

Here are some tips for injecting pain and pleasure into your marketing messages:

Tell stories- people immediately connect with stories. If your story relates to an experience your prospect has had, they will immediately be reminded of the feelings they are fighting to avoid, or the feelings they'd love to feel again.

Make your prospect imagine- the mind is a powerful tool. Asking your prospect to visualize sets a stage for you to present painful / pleasurable situations. Tap into past experiences, or create hypothetical ones. When it comes to emotion, your prospect's brain will not make a distinction between fact and fiction.

Be confident in your product- when talking about your product or service, don't say what it might or could do for them. Explain what it will do. (Remember, your prospect needs to get rid of their pain or acquire pleasure as soon as possible. They need a guaranteed solution!)

Use the right words- make your message vibrant by using active verbs (example: Jane runs instead of Jane is running.) Also, use words associated with pleasure (babies, soft, relaxing etc.) or pain (dentist, suffering, trauma).

One last point: once you draw out the pain or pleasure, let your audience revel in it. Don't be too quick to move past the emotion. It's the emotion that moves people to action. If you can successfully incorporate emotional stimulation in your marketing messages, you will be transporting your prospect to a buying state!

Must Do Twitter SEO Tips

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I think it is crazy when I come across a Twitter account that doesn’t have a bio section filled in or even a URL in the domain section. How can you forget to put your website domain in your profile? Here are some ways to really keep your SEO elements moving in the right direction with your Twitter account.


Here are some of the top must do Twitter SEO tips to consider:

URL: Probably the most important thing. Don’t forget to have your URL visible in your profile. It only takes a few seconds to type in.

User Name: Your user name is also going to be listed in your domain so chose one wisely. If you pick something to cutesy you will have no chance of ranking in search results for your targeted keywords.

Description: Your description is used as the meta tag information for your profile so you can see where this would come in very handy to have optimized for your targeted keywords. Are you starting to see the overall goal of optimizing your profile?


Background: Take advantage of using your background to get more of your messaging across. You are allowed to upload your own background image so use it to either further your business brand or you can use the right hand side of the background to list some information about your services or your business.



Personality: Don’t let your profile seem like just a business even though you might be there to generate new leads. Try adding some personality to your profile. Ask your followers questions, have a contest show your audience that there is a human being behind that Twitter profile.



Hash Tags: This one is often overlooked by many people. If you drop a “#” before a word like SEO or any other keyword you might be targeting this will allow your tweet to show up in search results for when others search for that keyword.



Whenever dealing with any online social network or even a business profile optimization and SEO elements are very important. It doesn’t mean that it will rank all the time but if you are spending the time to create a profile you might as well make it 100% efficient in order to increase the possibilities of that profile ranking in search results.

Time To Break Your Old Marketing Habits

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Are you used to doing things a certain way and can’t seem to break the habit? Old habits are hard to break which is why internet marketing can be tough if you do not evolve with the rest of the industry. You might have started doing things a certain way years ago, and found that they just don’t seem to work the same way they once did. That is not a coincidence that is actually the industry moving past you while you fail to evolve.
Consider changing things up in order to grow and evolve:


Approach: If something works online than great, but if it doesn’t work than you need to fix it. Marketing your business online is not the same as it was 3 years ago. Things change and you need to evolve with your approach otherwise you run the risk of cutting your audience short.

Brand: Is your online brand stale? Have you not rebranded your business since the day you started it? Branding online in today’s marketplace is very important. Customers really focus on brand recognition before they make purchases online and a stale non branded marketing approach online could work against any new potential sales.

Website: Consult a professional about your website if you haven’t touched it in five years. You might think it’s the cat’s bag but your audience might be seriously turned off by your website. Don’t outdate yourself by not updating your website. Design is very subjective but good design with strong conversion aspects is always going to be important. Don’t be stubborn about your website design and consult with someone who understands good business web design. It is more than just making things look appealing for your audience. It is all about leading your audience down a path. That path could be the messaging of your brand or leading them down the path to a website conversion.

The internet marketing space is not an area where you can get comfortable and set in your ways. Failure to evolve will result in brand death and in today’s marketplace you have to do everything you can in order to really stand out.

Trust Is Now More Important Than Ever

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Everything online revolves around trust. It is not talked about that often but trust works on both sides of the spectrum. Your website visitors need trust in order to make any sort of contact with your business website and the search engines need to trust you in order to label you as an authority figure in the search engines. There are many ways to develop trust but it truly takes time. There is no cutting corners when developing your trust factor it just sort of happens over time as a business owner.

Age: As you spend a great deal of time in the search engines you can naturally start to build up your trust factor in the eyes of your audience and the search engines. Age shows stability in the eyes of the search engines.


Linking: When industry leading resources start to quote and link to your website you start to develop trust in the eyes of the audience reading that resource and also the search engines. If you are not a worthy business an industry leading resource will not use you to quote on their website.

Branding: This could work both ways but more so for your audience. Position yourself as a strong brand and over time people will look at you as an industry leading brand. A brand instantly builds trust in the eyes of your audience and customer. A fly by night will not spend the time to really build a brand online so make an effort to build up your appearance online.

Under Promise Over Deliver: This is a very old business slogan but when done correctly utilizing this mind set will increase your trust factor. Don’t over promise and not follow through because for the long term this will not help you in building and growing your online trust.

Build Relationships: Relationship building and trust go hand in hand. Try building relationships in almost any situation you find yourself in. A relationship with the right client or person of interest could lead to significant online activities. When others in your industry start to recommend you or your services in the online space you naturally build up your trust in many ways.

Trust has become a very important attribute to strive for as a business. Trust is what gets other people inquiring and wanting to learn more about your business. It allows for a much smoother sales cycle and process. It is something that is very important for businesses to want to achieve for their own business in order to make things that much more efficient.

To Advertise - not to Advertise.

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Have you ever heard the saying, "I know that I waste half of my advertising budget. The problem is I don't know which half!" It is this very philosophy that is prompting me to strongly inform you... advertising doesn't work! Let me show you why:

  • There is no way to track effectiveness (or ineffectiveness)
  • It's impersonal
  • The target audience is too large
  • It's costly to redo or improve
  • There is no call to action
What surprises me is the number of small business owners that save their marketing dollars just to waste them on ineffective advertising. Then, they complain because nothing is working and they don't have any customers.
I know what you're thinking, "Isn't advertising and marketing the same thing?" Well, not really. Let me explain the differences. Advertising includes: commercials, billboards, radio, and newspapers. Marketing includes: emails, letters, postcards, and fax.
So how is follow-up marketing better than advertising?
  • You can track response rates
  • You can quickly change campaigns that aren't working
  • You can specifically target your audience
  • It leads prospects to an immediate sell
If you really want to attract more customers, you will learn to market and leave the advertising to those gazillion dollar companies.

Things you must know about your customers

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Here are the 7 things you must know about your customers:

1. Their Name- Nothing speaks to an individual faster than their first name. Use it to build your relationship with your customer.

2. What They've Purchased- If you know what your customers purchased in the past, you have a good idea what they will buy again. (And won't waste your time promoting products of little to no interest.)

3. How Often They Purchase- Individuals who buy rarely from you may need additional encouragement‌more marketing. Whereas, consistent customers may not need extra sales pitches, but might benefit from a newsletter or coupon.

4. How Much They Spend (on average)- Why spend precious time pitching products to customers that they can't afford? It might embarrass your customer, shows your lack of personal interest, and may cause customers to lose interest.

5. The Last Time They Purchased- Have you lost a customer without even knowing it? Who's still loyal? Who has strayed (and needs to be brought back)?

6. Each Interaction You've Had With Them- Documentation is important for obvious reasons. But being able to "recall" previous conversations will make your customer feel important and appreciated.

7. How They Feel About Your Business- Feedback from your customers is the best way to improve your products/services, meet your customers needs, and attract more customers.

Note: Remembering each of your customers and all of these details about them is impossible. Be sure to keep an accurate database that can easily store and retrieve this information for you--and make you look like a star to your customers!

Your Attitude effects your customers

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Find Your Passion.

Running a business is tiring, time-consuming, and often frustrating. It's not uncommon for the "Entrepreneurial Light" to burn out. However, if you're not excited about your products or services, no one else is going to be. And, who wants to buy a product/service they're not enthusiastic about?

Quick tips for regaining your passion:

  • Write down all the reasons you love your products or services
  • Tell others the story of why you became an entrepreneur
  • Imagine what you want your business to look like in 5 years (even if it's unrealistic... perhaps especially if it's unrealistic!)
  • Read inspirational books, blogs, and articles about small business ownership
  • Take time to rejuvenate
Look, you became an entrepreneur for a reason. And, how you feel about your company is going to be reflected in the risks you'll take, the way you interact with your customers, and the amount of money you bring in!

Ray Kroc (founder of McDonald's) said, "If you work just for the money, you'll never make it, but if you love what you're doing, and always put the customer first, success will be yours."

Be passionate! Be excited! Learn to love your business, your customers, and the simple joys of small business ownership. Pass that passion on to your employees and customers, and you'll see a phenomenal difference in the growth and success of your business!

PHP - Functions, how to write functions using PHP ?

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Creating Your First PHP Function


When you create a function, you first need to give it a name, like myCompanyMotto.
It's with this function name that you will be able to call upon your function, so make it easy to type and understand.

The actual syntax for creating a function is pretty self-explanatory, but you can be the judge of that.
First, you must tell PHP that you want to create a function. You do this by typing the keyword function followed
by your function name and some other stuff (which we'll talk about later).

Here is how you would make a function called myCompanyMotto. Note: We still have
to fill in the code for myCompanyMotto.


PHP Code:

<?php
function myCompanyMotto(){
}
?>

Note: Your function name can start with a letter or underscore "_", but not a number!

With a properly formatted function in place, we can now fill in the code that we want our
function to execute. Do you see the curly braces in the above example "{ }"? These braces define
where our function's code goes. The opening curly brace "{" tells php that the function's code is starting and a closing
curly brace "}" tells PHP that our function is done!

We want our function to print out the company motto each time it's called, so that sounds like it's a job for the echo command!


PHP Code:

<?php
function myCompanyMotto(){
    echo "We deliver quantity, not quality!<br />";
}
?>

That's it! You have written your first PHP function from scratch! Notice that the code that appears within a function is just the same as any other PHP code.

Using Your PHP Function

Now that you have completed coding your PHP function, it's time to put it through a test run. Below
is a simple PHP script. Let's do two things: add the function code to it and use the function twice.

PHP Code:

<?php
echo "Welcome to Tizag.com <br />";
echo "Well, thanks for stopping by! <br />";
echo "and remember... <br />";
?>


PHP Code with Function:

<?php
function myCompanyMotto(){
    echo "We deliver quantity, not quality!<br />";
}
echo "Welcome to Tizag.com <br />";
myCompanyMotto();
echo "Well, thanks for stopping by! <br />";
echo "and remember... <br />";

myCompanyMotto();
?>

Display:

Welcome to Tizag.com

We deliver quantity, not quality!

Well, thanks for stopping by!

and remember...

We deliver quantity, not quality!



Although this was a simple example, it's important to understand that there
is a lot going on and there are a lot of areas to make errors. When you are creating a function, follow
these simple guidelines:

  • Always start your function with the keyword function
  • Remember that your function's code must be between the "{" and the "}"
  • When you are using your function, be sure you spell the function name correctly
  • Don't give up!

PHP Functions - Parameters

Another useful thing about functions is that you can send them information that
the function can then use. Our first function myCompanyMotto isn't all that
useful because all it does, and ever will do, is print out a single, unchanging string.

However, if we were to use parameters, then we would be able to add some extra functionality!
A parameter appears with the parentheses "( )" and looks just like a normal PHP variable.
Let's create a new function that creates a custom greeting based off of a person's name.

Our parameter will be the person's name and our function will concatenate this
name onto a greeting string. Here's what the code would look like.

PHP Code with Function:

<?php
function myGreeting($firstName){
    echo "Hello there ". $firstName . "!<br />";
}
?>


When we use our myGreeting function we have to send it a string containing someone's name, otherwise
it will break. When you add parameters, you also add more responsibility to you, the programmer!
Let's call our new function a few times with some common first names.

PHP Code:

<?php
function myGreeting($firstName){
    echo "Hello there ". $firstName . "!<br />";
}
myGreeting("Jack");
myGreeting("Ahmed");
myGreeting("Julie");
myGreeting("Charles");
?>

Display:


Hello there Jack!

Hello there Ahmed!

Hello there Julie!

Hello there Charles!

It is also possible to have multiple parameters in a function. To separate multiple parameters
PHP uses a comma ",". Let's modify our function to also include last names.

PHP Code:

<?php
function myGreeting($firstName, $lastName){
    echo "Hello there ". $firstName ." ". $lastName ."!<br />";
}
myGreeting("Jack", "Black");
myGreeting("Ahmed", "Zewail");
myGreeting("Julie", "Roberts");
myGreeting("Charles", "Schwab");
?>


Display:

Hello there Jack Black!

Hello there Ahmed Zewail!

Hello there Julie Roberts!

Hello there Charles Schwab!

PHP Functions - Returning Values

Besides being able to pass functions information, you can also have them return a value.
However, a function can only return one thing, although that thing can be any integer, float, array, string, etc. that you choose!

How does it return a value though? Well, when the function is used and finishes executing, it sort of changes from being a function name into being a value. To capture this value you can set a variable equal to the function. Something like:


  • $myVar = somefunction();

Let's demonstrate this returning of a value by using a simple function that returns the sum of two integers.

PHP Code:

<?php
function mySum($numX, $numY){
    $total = $numX + $numY;
    return $total; 
}
$myNumber = 0;

echo "Before the function, myNumber = ". $myNumber ."<br />";
$myNumber = mySum(3, 4); // Store the result of mySum in $myNumber
echo "After the function, myNumber = " . $myNumber ."<br />";
?>

Display:

Before the function, myNumber = 0

After the function, myNumber = 7

When we first print out the value of $myNumber it is still set to the original value of 0.
However, when we set $myNumber equal to the function mySum, $myNumber
is set equal to mySum's result. In this case, the result was 3 + 4 = 7, which was successfully
stored into $myNumber and displayed in the second echo statement!

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