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About julieensor

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  1. To answer your question about 1SC... I don't really see how this would be feasible. You have to enter your contact info in your account, which is visible to everyone who receives a message or buys something from your 1SC account. That means that every email that goes out, whether to your list or the other VA's list would have the same contact info at the very bottom of the message. It's just not designed for more than one company to share. Re: wahmcart... I haven't used it, but I have heard nothing but good things about it. It may have a few limitations here and there, but overall it is supposed to be a great substitute for 1SC.
  2. Have you had any luck with this? I have a client this week who is interested in this, too...
  3. I bet! I remember a certain Red Headed Prank from last year. Now Arnie's got the real thing. Looks great, Tawnya!
  4. My cookbooks are all packed in boxes right now, but I love recipezaar for great recipes. Try this... http://www.recipezaar.com/recipes.php?q=brownies&ls=h Hershey's also has a recipe for their classic brownies here... http://www.hersheys.com/recipes/recipes/pr...=46&id=5008
  5. I have never once heard anyone say it with a long I (like "pine"). Funny. I think you're right, Sherra... it is supposed to be an electronic magazine, thus the "e-zeen" pronunciation.
  6. Congrats on ditching this guy! I'm sorry you had to put up with so much before you were finally rid of him. I think the easiest way to get your clients to respect your boundaries is to ESTABLISH and PROTECT them. For example, under NO circumstances do I give my home or cell number to a client. I do all of my work from my office, unless I'm out of town on a trip or something, and I have a voicemail system that emails me if I have a message. My voicemail can also be set to call my cell when someone leaves a message. Therefore, there is NO reason for them to have my personal phone numbers. And if you have to call a client using your home or cell, check with your phone company to find out how to turn on the caller ID block thing that keeps them from getting your number on their caller ID. Also, I am very clear with my clients about the days I am not available. They know that I work Mon-Fri, and occasionally on Saturdays by advanced request only. I do not work on Sundays or national holidays. I also have it in my contract that email is to be our primary form of communication, not telephone. If the phone rings when it is not convenient to talk, I don't hesitate to let it roll to voicemail, and when I get a voicemail from a client, 90% of the time I will respond via email. You really can give excellent customer service, as Caroline described, without sacrificing your personal time or sanity. Ultimately, though, it is up to each of us to establish and enforce those boundaries with our clients. And that is done by simply communicating clearly. If you do keep to a specific schedule, put your hours and holidays on your site, discuss them when you speak to a prospect, include them in your client welcome package, and mention them in your voicemail greeting. After that, you might send a reminder before a holiday that the office will be closed. You can also change your voicemail to say that all messages will be returned when the office reopens on Monday. All of these things are super simple, and they'll usually go a long way in communicating to your clients that you simply will not be available. No need to feel bad or apologize. I know I've never received an apology from a mechanic who wasn't open at 11:30 pm. They just open the next morning and are there ready to help. It's up to me to show up when they are open! Good luck in landing a fabulous new client who will appreciate and respect you AND your boundaries! P.S. And as for the yelling and cursing issue... that's an absolute no tolerance thing for me. They are entitled to be angry if something goes wrong, but they are never entitled to treat me disrespectfully, just as I wouldn't dream of yelling or cursing at them if something they do irritates me. That is certainly grounds for immediate termination, and I'm glad you stood up for yourself!
  7. Hi Jodie... I've been out of town, but I wanted to say that I like your final card & agree that the bottom line could be completely taken out unless it's actually adding new info. I think mine says something like, "Contact me today for a complimentary consultation."
  8. Sorry for the slow response... have been out of town. I went with Practice Pay Solutions, which is a part of the Authorize.net network. If you want my affiliate link, let me know.
  9. To me, it sounds like you have to either deal with PayPal's decision, which is obviously not in our best interest, or sue. No option for mediation or anything else anymore. After reading Tawnya's story recently, along with a couple of others with similar horrible stories, I was having serious doubts about continuing to use PayPal (which I have used and loved for many years). On top of that, I received a warning notice from PayPal about a month ago. It said something about how I needed to stop using my computer to sign up other people for PayPal accounts or something like that. Turns out that because I had processed the monthly retainer payment for one of my clients, I had been flagged in their system, as had her credit card. Her credit card was no longer eligible for payment processing without going through her PayPal account. Doesn't matter that I had a credit card authorization from her in writing... they didn't ask. They just blocked her credit card. The only way I was able to process the payment was to log into her PayPal account and send a payment using the credit card as the funding source. Good grief! Needless to say, I now have a merchant account, as of last week. And, surprisingly, it will not cost me any more money. The transaction fees are lower than what I was paying to PayPal, and even with the monthly merchant account fee, I'm coming out even (or maybe a little ahead) each month. AND I have an actual chargeback department to defend me, if the need ever arises. Goodbye PayPal... you were nice when I was starting out and had only small clients, but your lack of customer service for those of us BRINGING YOU BUSINESS will not cut it. In my (newly formed) opinion, a "real" merchant account is a MUST for any business with larger client payments to protect.
  10. For new clients who have no existing domain name or hosting account, I will set everything up for them, but I register the domain in THEIR NAME, completely unattached to my account, and it is paid for with their credit card, unless they have already paid me in advance (this is not a big risk to me because it's only $10/yr or less). Having the domain registered in their name is very important in order to be clear about who owns the site, and to be sure they are able to manage the domain if something were to happen to you. For hosting, which is simply rented storage space on the web, I usually host their site under my hosting account, unless they have asked for a specific host. If I did not have a hosting account that allowed me to resell the space to my clients, I would set up the hosting account in their name and pay for it with their credit card. That said, however, most of my clients already have a domain and hosting account set up in their name when they contact me for help. I always get their login information for the control panel with their domain registrar and host, and I have never had a problem with calling customer service for help, as long as I have access to their account online. With GoDaddy, you just have to look up their Call-in PIN number to get customer service to talk to you.
  11. I've used Audio Acrobat for most of my client needs, but there are certainly other options. If she's using Wordpress, you can just install an audio player plugin. If it's a regular static html site, you will need to embed an audio player. You can embed it on one page, or you can embed it in the site template if you are going to have audio on multiple pages. There are many players out there to choose from... * Wimpy has several you can purchase for very reasonable prices, and it's not as branded as many others. * Yahoo has a free one * Google has one (although I saw somewhere that there were some issues when using it outside of Gmail). You can find the code for it by Googling "Google MP3 Player" If you need more info, try Googling "embed audio player" or "embed media player" or "embed mp3 player" or embed streaming audio" and you will find tons of info, tutorials, and samples. Hope that helps!
  12. Hi Jodie, I, too, have my services listed on the front of my card, but you do have to be careful not to make it too cluttered. And to me, less is more when you're talking about business card design. I would suggest the following to tweak the first card... 1. Simplify style of company name. Use the same font, but keep it simple like it is on your site. I think the word art on the card makes it look a bit dated, and it takes away from the cool font you're using. Let the font itself be the attractive design element. 2. I agree with Levi, computer should be flipped or moved to the other side so that it is facing in, not out. My preference would be moving it to the right of your bus name. 3. Limit your list of services to 4-5 max and use simple non-graphic bullet points. I would suggest little diamonds since that's what you have on your site. 4. Make the font slightly smaller for either your services list OR your contact info. Hope that helps!
  13. I, too, used Naomi's spreadsheet to get started on my pricing, and it helped tremendously. I also recently found a great online hourly rate calculator at http://freelanceswitch.com/rates. Super easy to use!
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