If You Can Make It on YouTube, You Can Make It Anywhere

If You Can Make It on YouTube, You Can Make It AnywhereContributed by: Brynn Alexander

Even as recently as a decade ago, hopeful musicians who wanted to make it big generally relied on getting backing from a record company, and the chances of that happening to any given musician were pretty slim. These days, the playing field is a little more level, as YouTube has made it possible for anyone with an internet connection to access an audience of hundreds of millions of people across the globe.

It’s still rare for a musician to make the big time, even with the accessibility of self-promotion on the internet, but it does happen, and YouTube is now instrumental in seeing that the best up-and-coming musicians get the attention they deserve.

Probably the most famous example of an artist getting their start on YouTube is Justin Bieber. The young Canadian singer had nothing more than a karaoke machine, a YouTube account, and a voice of gold, and managed to turn that into a recipe for international superstardom. As any teenaged girl can tell you, he now sells out stadiums across the planet, and has a contract on Usher’s record label.

Greyson Chance has been called “the next Justin Bieber,” after he wowed the audience at his school festival by playing and singing a piano cover of a Lady Gaga song. His performance got uploaded to YouTube, and spread like wildfire across the internet. This led to attention from none other than Ellen Degeneres, who was looking for new artists to sign to her eleveneleven record label. Chance now has a contract with eleveneleven, and his debut album was released last year.

YouTube sensation Dondria wasn’t even looking to become a star when she first signed up for a YouTube account in 2006. She simply wanted to use the internet as a sounding board to assess whether she was a good singer, uploading videos of herself singing and asking for critiques. The verdict: the internet thought she was a great singer, and so did Jermaine Dupri – he liked her so much, he offered her a contract on the So So Def record label.

Esmée Denters had a similar start to Dondria, uploading casual videos of herself singing covers of popular R&B songs. Her sultry voice caught the attention of Justin Timberlake, who gave her a ticket to stardom and a record contract. She now has an album out and has toured with big-name artists like Enrique Iglesias.

If you’ve had dreams of being the next big music sensation, don’t hesitate, a YouTube account is free, and these artists have proven that you don’t need a lot of money or fancy recording equipment to upload a video that can launch a career.

About the author:
When Brynn isn’t scouring the internet for new music, videos, and her favorite viral features, she’s writing about music, festivals, and all things entertainment at Clickitticket.

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Amateur Night on the Internet is Over

Internet Applications

Internet Applications

As the Internet is growing up, the cost of reaching qualified buyers is going up. There is no longer space for amateurs in this highly competitive environment for ranking and conversion. While trying to pack up almost 19 years of doing business in the West Indian islands, a strange thing is happening to my brother and me. Business People who used to think our marketing services were too expensive are knocking on our door asking for advice on how to grow their business on the Internet. Thom and I went to a party on Saturday night where a lot of local business people showed up. We’ve known them for years on business and social levels. They were well aware of the fact that we have a two week window to move our operation up to Amelia Island with hardly any time to do anything else but pack and ship. Yet we walked out of the party with the feeling we had been involuntarily baited into reversed sales calls.

These men, who previously opted for cheaper “solutions” regarding their internet marketing, were now willing to accept that if we would take on the projects they pitched at us it would have to be long distance because we knew we could never finish them before our deadline of September 23. On Monday morning meetings were scheduled, projects were outlined and deposits were paid. This was quite a difference from the previous interactions with these same men who once rejected our pricing for marketing campaigns and web presence building. They have come to realize that Amateur Night on the Internet is over. And it had cost them a lot of money without results. Their Web sites were built by the stereo typical “cousins of the secretary’s first husband” who had acquired the basic knowledge of building an html or flash website in high school. Nothing wrong with the cousin who is trying to make an extra buck, but it’s like putting fishnet stockings on Mother Theresa and telling her to go out and hustle.

Many business owners have found out that their web presence is not doing anything for them beyond having a little billboard hidden in an immense jungle of hundreds of millions other sites and 30 billion web pages. They even found out that they often don’t own their own domain name (the cousin conveniently registered the domain to himself) and have absolutely no access to the back end of the Web site, allowing them to update or change content. When they are ready to change something it turns out that the secretary’s ex-cousin has moved on and the Web site is doing nothing but gather dust. Pretty much the same scenario I remember from the days that clients ordered 100,000 brochures because it saved on the print run, yet not spending a dime on the distribution strategy. The result: five years later the new office manager finds dozens of boxes with brochures in the back of the storeroom or in the attic. Money wasted, trees cut for nothing.

Selling on the Internet is not extremely hard, but it is a professional job. An internet professional is someone who spent years on learning the basics, who understands the interactions, who is up to date on platforms and software options and can adjust the course as technological and software challenges demand action. And we’re not even talking about the “secrets” of social media marketing like Twitter, Facebook and so on.

As on most of Amelia Island’s Web sites that we researched, Web sites here on St. Maarten were built on a static platform. The business owners’ expectations were high at the launch of the site, but tapered off as years of non-performance passed. In the new global economy they now want a piece of the pie. Just who gets a piece is often decided by their Internet presence. They understand the abbreviation GIGO (Garbage In Garbage Out). They would never think of facing a legal battle or a serious tax issue without the services of a good attorney or accountant. They are starting to understand that Amateur Night on the Internet has become a thing of the past. Internet presence requires professionals if you intend to sell your products and services.

It’s a new world out there and you can’t blame us for smiling a little when we sit with these same businessmen that for years ignored our advice and rejected our pricing. We’ve been at it for almost 15 years now and we’re just happy that the business world is catching on. We paid our dues while struggling to learn, absorb and put into practice anything and everything this new Cyberspace world has put in front of us. SearchAmelia has 4 people fulltime working daily on the site, and when I say daily I mean 10-15 hours a day…. each, in addition to six part time contributors.

We are proud for what we have accomplished by taking SearchAmelia in a little over a year to the top 0.5% of all websites on the global Internet. If you want to help us reaching the coveted price of becoming part of the top 100,000 Web sites in the world by December 31, 2009, drop me a note at publisher@searchamelia.com. You will learn and we all will benefit.

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Finding Financial Advice Using the Internet

using-the-internetIt’s not just family and friends that Americans are turning to for financial advice and support to cope with the prolonged recession; many have found a counselor in the Internet.

More than two-thirds of American adults — or 88 percent of U.S. Internet users — went online for help with recession-induced personal economic issues and to gather information on national economic problems, a study released on Wednesday said.

The Internet ranks high among sources of information and advice that people are seeking during hard times, especially when it comes to their personal finances and jobs, Pew Internet & American Life Project said.
“People are anxious about these hard times. They are more information-hungry than in normal times,” said Lee Rainie, director of the nonprofit group and co-author of the report, who pointed out that 79 percent of Americans were Internet users.

The current recession — considered by some to be the worst since the Great Depression of the 1930s — is unprecedented as it is the first time when people had such widespread access to the world wide web.
52 percent of American adults have either lost their jobs, seen their investments fall by more than half their value, suffered a pay cut or watched their house lose half its value during the downturn in the past year, according to the study, which is based on interviews with 2,253 adults.

U.S. employers cut far more jobs than expected in June and the unemployment rate hit 9.5 percent, the highest in nearly 26 years.
Creativity has been flowing online in the down economy. Overall, 34 percent of online economic users have created content and commentary about the recession in places like blogs, social network sites and Twitter, the study found.

“That is a large number of those who are exploiting the Internet to participate in the roiling online discussion about how we got into this mess and how we are going to get out of it,” Rainie said.
Among broadband users, the Internet was the top source for material on personal coping strategies during the recession, said the study.
Only broadcast media outpaced the Internet as sources of more general news about national economic affairs.

“It’s a mistake to think people are using only the Internet,” Rainie said. They are networking and using multiple sources, including human sources, he added.

The top three recession-related activities of these users were price comparisons, a general understanding or grasp of the economic downturn and new jobs, the study said.

Three percent of such users scoured the Internet for information about filing for bankruptcy. *
• source…Reuters