How Has Blogging Changed Your Life?

March 30, 2011 marks the 4 year Anniversary of my blogging life with the creation of deansguide as the vehicle for publishing my messages and wrestling control away from the mass media stranglehold on information. Blogging has changed my life in many ways from providing a forum to prove my expertise to acting as common ground for my relationship with my girlfriend. It has opened up a world of knowledge and research, helped me network and connect with people throughout the world, and been the foundation for launching my writing and public speaking career. Yet with all of these wonderful developments there is still room for the fun, unusual, and bizarre occurrence .

Highlights and Lowlights on deansguide

  • Ed Okun:deansguide was the leading blog on 1031 Tax Group con artist Ed Okun and recognized as a repository and meeting place for victims of Okun to tell their story
  • US Attorney: deansguide was recognized by the US Attorney’s office in Richmond, VA as one of a handful of blogs allowed to publish information about the Ed Okun Ponzi scheme that bilked over $160 million from investors nationwide
  • Helping Victims:Elizabeth Callanan and 350 Okun “Train Wreck Victims” speak out on deansguide
  • Forbes: Mike Maello associate editor for contacted and consulted with me on the Okun story
  • Informant: I was contacted by “Mr. Miami” who was close to Okun’s wife and fed me breaking news information throughout Okun’s trial
  • Mob Ties: I received numerous phone threats by associates of Okun or his representatives to “stay quiet” about the investigation
  • Hell’s Angels: my first blog article was about the 50th Anniversary of the Oakland Hell’s Angels and the party planned for the occasion. I was contacted by a former Angel who approved of my writing and one man who claimed to be a member of the “81” who promised to make things “hard” if I didn’t watch what I published
  • 330,635 Views: the number of page views deansguide has garnered
  • 1,062: top traffic day on deansguide. Not huge but satisfying considering the blog’s many reiterations
  • Reuters, Nielsen, Fox Business, Computer Shopper, Chicago Sun-Times, Chicago Tribune and other media sites have republished deansguide articles
  • 700 & 2,000: deansguide has published 698 posts and I have written over 2,000 blog articles since I began blogging


I have met Kings, Queens and paupers through my writing. I have been threatened, harassed, and bullied. I have been lauded as a savior and scoffed at as a quack. My subject matter has included the Hell’s Angels, Real Estate, Social Media tips, wine, Mob figures, networking, Silicon Valley, business self help, and hundreds of other subjects. Throughout my writing experience one thing comes to mind- advice from one of my dearest friends “Chili Eye” Charles Henderson: “just let the bullets fly, write like you stole it. Write with a run and gun style.” Without Charlie’s encouragement I would have never started this blog- thank you my friend rest in peace brother!

Find New Business Within Your Local Business Community

If you are a Realtor, consultant, or service provider, targeting your local business community for leads is a huge opportunity if you understand how to begin the process. There are many different ways to begin prospecting your business community. Here is what I would do if I were in your shoes.

Steps to Prospecting Your Business Community

  • List: all contacts who are friends or acquintences working in your local business community. Prioritize the list by importance or level of executive.
  • Lunch & Learn: create a free lunch and learn curriculum based on your real estate knowledge and what you believe would attract a audience. Partner with an equally valuable affiate for a team lunch & learn.
  • HR: approach HR depts with your offer to perform free lunch (you buy) and learn workshop for their company at their facility. Offer sandwiches remember your food at Open Houses?
  • Media: contact your hyper local newspaper offer same thing for their staff. Contact real estate writers offering interview or blog content they can convert into a news piece.
  • Affiliates: contact your trusted inspector, title insurer, landscaper, stager anyone who works within the real estate industry who you have a relationship with currently. Look for ways to trade referrals.
  • Affiliate program: offer a commission (if legal in your state) to referring affiliates.


It’s all about offering free value to your target prospects. It’s also very important to be liked. Do NOT underestimate the “likeability” factor.

Forbes Names Top 100 Small Businesses in America

Can you name the top 10 small businesses in America? Do you work at one of the top 100 rated small businesses in America? If you can’t answer either question you have company. Many people don’t know the answer to this question because they follow news about the behemoths of industry, the giants of growth, or the latest and greatest.

Forbes, one of the leaders in business journalism, presents their list America’s 100 Best Small Companies. In a previous post I asked you if you were prospecting your business community. This article could act as a resource for generating leads. I will list the top 10 but you can find the entire list of 100 Best Small Companies here.

America’s 100 Best Small Companies: Top 10

1. Medifast

2. Interdigital

3. American Public Education

4. Deckers Outdoor

5. WebMD

6. Nutrisystem

7. National Presto Industries

8. Industrial Services of America

9. True Religion Apparel

10. Transcend Services

Find What’s New at Google New

Are you still fumbling around trying to keep up with all the new products and services Google offers? If you can’t seem to find everything all in one place, here’s a tip- Google built it. The “it” in this case is a new site called Google New. Tech expert Emily Chang summed it up best “Google seems to release a new product every week so they’ve created a site that’s the one place to find everything new from Google.”

Google New Tagline: “The one place to find everything new from Google.” They aren’t kidding either. The site is packed with everything from:

  • Publisher Tools
  • Developer Tools
  • Gmail announcements
  • Orkut
  • Docs features
  • SketchUp
  • Search
  • Mobile
  • Voice
  • Enterprise
  • Earth & Maps

The list of new items is extensive, appropriate for advanced or beginning technology users, and it is presented in simple, short writing text best for usability by the reader.

Example Reviews of What’s New

Are You Prospecting Your Business Community?

Fortune magazine’s “The World’s Most Admired Companies” article focuses on companies that are the most popular workplaces. Most of these employees are paid well. Many of these employees are on the move so relocation is a constant for these companies. With all of these positives, have you ever thought to target these companies in search of business? But how would you start?

Top 10 Most Admired Companies in the World

  1. Apple
  3. Berkshire Hathaway
  4. Southwest Airlines
  5. Proctor & Gamble
  6. Coca-Cola
  8. FedEx
  9. Microsoft
  10. McDonald’s

Human Resources & Your Connections

If you are willing to put the effort into wooing employees from top companies then you should consider two places to begin.

  • Connections: list all of your personal connections to employees, executives are a great source, and begin to make contact with them. Consider a phone call then follow up postal effort
  • Human Resources: if you don’t have any personal connections to employees or executives in your target firm then contact the HR department. Ask if you can provide a free lunch and learn session for employees, provide free estimates, or provide free one on one consultations Monitors Radiation Levels in U.S.

The horrific disaster impending in Japan with possibly four nuclear reactors near meltdown has people up and down the west coast very nervous. Although many experts and the American mass media are predicting no ill effects from radiation fall out, people in California and coastal states are worried. The fact that Los Angeles and San Francisco are experiencing panic buying of iodine tablets at pharmacies is proof that residents are worried.

Monitoring Radiation:

Although there is little that can be done outside of staying indoors during the purported period when possible fall out could be in the atmosphere over the Western U.S., there is one citizen run website that could help: Radiation Network.

According to the site is:

“Home of the National Radiation Map depicting environmental radiation levels across the United States updated in real time every minute. This is the first website where the average citizen (or anyone in the world) can see what radiation levels are anywhere in the United States at any time.”

How’s It Work?

A growing number of Radiation Monitoring Stations across the the U.S., using various models of Digital GeigerCounters, upload their radiation count data in real time to their computer using a data cable, and then over the Internet to

Jyri Engstrom’s Ditto: Future Check-ins Changing Geolocation

Combining both the algorithmic recommendations with recommendations flowing in real time from people you actually trust on your social network. That’s the holy grail, potentially that could replace the Google search we do todayJyri Engstrom

In his interview with Robert Scoble, Jyri Engstrom described what he called the “holy grail” as combining both the algorithmic recommendations with recommendations flowing in real time from people you actually trust on your social network. As a marketer, I have been waiting for somebody to provide a geolocation tool that gives us what Foursquare can not: future actions. Ditto the new geolocation iPhone app, created by Jyri Engstrom, is about to revolutionize the geolocation world and that of marketers.

What is Ditto?

Ditto is an iPhone app built by Co-founder of micro-blogging platform Jaiku and former Google executive Jyri Engstrom. Robert Scoble broke the news about Ditto and summed it up best:

“Foursquare lets you tell friends and businesses where you are. But today Ditto (an iPhone app) lets you tell those same people and businesses where you’ll be.”

Ditto: Leveraging the Future

Here are some of the interesting facts, significant differences, advantages, and benefits of Ditto for marketers:

  • Social Objects: unlike Foursquare, Ditto is not just about location. Social Objects according to Jyri are those things we “hang conversations around and pivot around”
  • Decision Points: people checking-in on Foursquare have already made their choice. Ditto allows marketers to “catch people before they arrive at a location or decision”
  • Discovery: according to Jyri, Ditto is about discovery. “It’s about a book to read, music to play and download, a movie to see, or a restaurant to go to
  • Lead Generation: it allows marketers to provide “advanced offers” that may solidify a future check-in
  • Competition: unlike Foursquare, Ditto allows marketers to compete for consumers and persuade them to change their decisions about a social object or location. Bring people to your product or service
  • Stream: a huge advantage Ditto has over Foursquare is the fact that Ditto allows users to see the stream of their friends and the stream of future check-ins by people they are not connected to in any way. Users can access information of future check-ins by vicinity
  • Partnership: Ditto has a syndication deal with Foursquare where upon arrival at a location of your future check-in, once within a predetermined distance, your arrival will be streamed to Foursquare as a Foursquare check-in