Not Dead Yet

Wow. I apologize for the month-long silence on this blog site… but I’m here, and if the Web Gods will give me a friggin’ break, I’ll begin posting every week again.

It’s not a particularly exciting story. One day early last month, my blog software decided it didn’t like being told what to do anymore. Kind of like the uber-computer Hal in the movie “2001”. I put four tech people on the problem, and no one could find a fix — the host blamed the application software, and vice versa.

As I watched from the sidelines, in horror, weeks bled away. People started emailing me, wondering if I’d been abducted by aliens, or had quit blogging, or what.

The Web, and all its wondrous abilities, is changing the world fast. Two years ago, my 84-year-old father had never been on the Internet… now he writes long, literate emails to everyone, and buys prescriptions from an online source in New Zealand. I used to be on the cutting edge, doing my banking and bill paying online. Now, the bank charges extra if you don’t do everything online.

However, misadventures like this are good reminders of how fragile everything is on the Web. I know some of the smartest and most tech-savvy entrepreneurs in the biz — guys earning fortunes online — who nevertheless still have their entire database vanish in a hard-drive burp, or get hacked by high school kids, or have their IDs stolen.

It’s the Wild West, and will be for the forseeable future… simply because there is no longer time for changes to settle in, and for all the unintended consequences of change to be realized and dealt with. The new rule is: If you’re finally comfortable with any application, you can bet it’s time for an upgrade or major realignment.

Which is doomed to cause all sorts of unpredictable havoc in your life.

It’s one thing to be kept on your toes. It’s another thing, though, to be constantly knocked off-balance.

Just one more reason to stay rooted in the classic stuff — good old-fashioned salesmanship, down-to-earth conversational copy, and becoming a go-to guy in your market. There will no longer be calming breaks in the information-overload flooding through every one of your prospects’ heads.

The best defense against becoming overwhelmed is to stay connected with reliable sources of good info. If you want to dominate your market, you need to be one of those sources. Part of the “reliable core” of the Web, where mysteries are figured out and handled.

I’m having a blast following the tribulations of huge advertisers finally trying to make the Web work for them — with their annoying pop-up nonsense, their desperate attempts to excite prospects with graphics and streaming video that won’t load, and especially their arrogance about never giving entrepreneurs their due.

It’s a wild free-for-all out there. Getting more unruly every day.

Just remember: The guys making the most money are taking advantage of the Web as a great delivery system for what you want to say. It’s not magic — just a really cool, really efficient (when it works) way to reach people.

If you’re in business, that reaching out needs to consist of a coherent sales conversation.

Anyway, I’m back. We’ll be futzing with the design of this blog, and I hope the archives will arrive intact… and, even more, I hope this new host and new software remains cooperative. I’ve got a lot to rant about, and I’m anxious to start posting regularly again.

We’re living in a real-time sci-fi novel. When it goes well, it’s the most fun I’ve ever had. When it goes sour, it’s like the zombies got loose.

Stay frosty. I’ll post again soon. If you have friends wondering what happened to me, please let them know I’m back, will ya?


John Carlton

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  • Ryan says:

    Glad you’re back.

    Stay cool-technology is chaotic. when the wild west is over everything’s going to be standardized.


  • Martin says:

    Yup. Was getting a bit worried there. Nice to hear from you.

  • Bill Erb says:

    Finally! I can comment! I never could on your previous blog.

    Great work. Keep it coming!


  • Joe Nicassio says:

    Hey John,

    No need to apologize for taking time off… you deserve it.
    Because web is like the wild west, the survivors are those that have a strong, long-term strategy in place.

    So many people are “sprinting” for the next technology, trick, or “lazy” way to make riches.

    My philosophy is different…

    I treat the web as a marathon, by focusing on the lifetime value of a customer.

    It’s all about the loyalty.

    And I do that by delivering a consistant, value added newsletter, that arrives like clockwork.

    Welcome back, and keep being a rebel!

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