Sunday, May 08, 2011

How to get an iPhone for about $50 or How I learned to properly recycle technology

Looking for a new iPhone for about $50? It's not a gimmick but rather a lesson. The answer is simple - sell your old iPhone on ebay and with the profit upgrade to a new iPhone.

In life, it's common to hoard objects such as photos, keepsakes and relics we tie with our past. Technology is not meant to be hoarded as keepsakes simply because they devalue immensely with each passing year. Many of us are still in the mindset that the technology that we're getting rid of should be thrown in a drawer somewhere where it will be uncovered many years from now.

It's important to recycle your goods so you don't accumulate waste. To keep a clean and active life, it's best not to drag yourself down with old objects that just create clutter.

I just sold 2 iPhones on ebay 3 days ago. The first iphone was my original iPhone 3G that went swimming with me in a pool. This poor phone has been submerged in water, had a cracked touchscreen and the headphones were destroyed. I sold my broken 3G iPhone for $70 all while donating 10% to the American Red Cross (thanks for the offer ebay). Why would someone by a damaged iPhone for so much - simple - with a little more than $35 and some know-how you could repair it and sell it unlocked and oversees for about $400! I'm doing someone out there a big favor by selling it for $70 even though it's useless for me.

With that $70 and a little patience I was able to buy another iPhone 3G for the same money and used it for a year. This iPhone was practically brand new. No scratches or dents. The box was perfectly intact as well.

Recently I was considering upgrading to an iPhone 4 White and I put my current iPhone 3G on ebay. Seven days later I learned that I got $143.00 for it. I opened a new browser window and immediately upgraded on AT&T's website. I received my phone 3 days later and that same day I put my original iPhone in the box it arrived just a year ago and out the door it went.

The Buyer paid for the shipping cost and got a Hell of a deal considering what they can turn that around for and sell it elsewhere. Total cost - $57 (ok, so it's not exactly $50 but you get it).

Why not sell it for more?
You can sell your iPhone oversees for a lot more money yourself. In order to do that, you should look more online into unlocking your phone.

Selling Internationally
Following the 80/20 Principle, I'd be dedicating more time having to pack the item, declare a customs form, pay additional shipping and spend more time on the sale. Rather, I prefer to think Locally and just sell it only in the US. If you use a Flat Rate Box and just apply that to your asking price - you can label it as FREE SHIPPING which attracts a larger audience.

Another reason to sell your phone on eBay is because many users are looking to keep their exact same plan without upgrading their phone so rather than buy insurance, they can buy a replica of their phone without having to upgrade and spend any additional money. Help people save money and get rid of your old hardware.

How to do it:
1. Sell your phone on eBay.
2. Upgrade your current plan or sign-up for a new plan: AT&T or Verizon

Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Track to drive to: Lung, Afterlife

Song of the day: Dubstep. Join me on this 80's-esque trip with glowing vocals and jittery high-hats of delight. Glimmering pleasure Lung's Afterlife is a track to end any night by.

Sunday, May 01, 2011

Track to drive to: Hasenheide

You're up and on your way to work. You pop in your iphone and connect it to your car stereo and you turn on the car. You're headed out of the driveway and on your way to start your day. Next 14 hours will be on the run - work, lunch, gym, action packed.

You load your iphone and crank the volume and put the volume on Max as you blast this from your car stereo. Turn up the A/C, lower the windows and California-cruise this bitch to high heaven.

This will be a weekly article that I'll set up a link to a track that rocks it. I'll provide a link to a track I think is awesome. Try it out and enjoy it. If you dig it - buy it. I don't profit. Just enjoy it. If you choose to be awesome and download it you have your choice:

1. Download it. Load it in the smartphone. Wake up - brush your teeth, get dressed. Get in the car, put it in drive and turn up the volume.

2. To my commuters, Wake up - brush your teeth, get dressed. Put the headphones on, lock the door and head out.

Either way, enjoy:

Mogwai - Hasenheide - B-side to Rano Pano off of Hardcore Will Never Die, but You Will.

Friday, September 11, 2009

A Marketing Plan for Promoting a Club or Bar

For the past several years, my main specialty has been online marketing. Being from Miami, this town runs on marketing. The club scene (known worldwide) are heavy hitters here in the world of marketing and there are some who have sparked movements of music down here. I've followed some of these people for years and learning what they do that shakes up the scene around here and I've taken notes. Recently, a friend of mine asked me for a solid plan to get his club up and running. Following what these movers and shakers have done around town I've compiled a quick marketing brief as an initial marketing plan. We plan on following the plan below and I'll update from time to time how this plan is redefined and shaped as an outcome. I'm sure there are a lot of you out there that want to start your own promotion company and are sick of handing out flyers as a "promoter". From someone who's full-time job is online marketing, try using some of these as pointers.

Marketing Plan for a Night Club

1. Twitter 2 messages a week (between 10am - 2pm as that's when most activity online is happening). People are stuck in their cubicles so it only makes sense that they rely on email, text messages and twitter as a form of entertainment.

2. Website - Facebook/Myspace profiles. Create a profile in as many social networking sites as you can. Even if you don't have a website, buy a domain and redirect it to your Facebook or Myspace pages.

3. Partners - Find yourself some online partners (online stores that sell fashion for the type of club or bar you are promoting. Exchange links with them so they have a link to your party night and they have a link on your website back to them. Try your best to make the links promotions like "MY NIGHTCLUB - buy one drink get one free with this link." This makes the link time-sensitive and appealing.

4. Pay for online/offline marketing. Don't rely on your friends to bring people. If you are looking to make a successful night, you need to invest some money.

4a. Google Adwords - $50/month budget
4b. Facebook Ads - $50/month budget
4c. Myspace Ads - $50/month budget
4d. Paid space advertisement in local alternative news press (2-3 weeks in advance of your party)
4e. Get an advertisement on your website through Google Adsense so you can make some money from the website.

5. Audio mix for the week as a Downloadable/Streaming Podcast. Get your resident DJ to record some of their mixing that night or ask them to make a mix at home that you can use to promote the club night. Most importantly, take down each show as soon as the next club night finishes so the mix is no longer available. Once again, making it time-sensitive forcing people to constantly return to your website.

6. Sell Locally. Get a local store to work with to sell your stuff (mixes, videos, flyers, etc...).

7. Locals Help Locals. Get a local store to sell their stuff at the club. Let's say you work with a local fashion store, try to get them to set up a stand (which is basically a 6-ft. table) at the bar, club and let them sell some of their stuff to patrons of your club. This allows the club to offer more to your patrons other than drinks and music. This also entices tourists to buy something before they leave. When else will you be in a nightclub in this particular city.

8. Online Video Commercials. Post videos and create a Youtube channel of clips of the club night. Show off your sexy crowd and get people to come by making music videos/commercials of your best night.

9. Get your photos out there. Get a dedicated photographer for the event. Don't ask your girl/boy-friend to do it (unless they are photographers). Get someone who actually likes photography and offer them free drinks and free admission for them and a number of guests. Most likely they know some photogenic people who will come with them to the club and make the nightclub look better in the photographs that they take. There are many photographers out there and it's their trade to make things look good. Take care of them. Also, allow them to have rights on the photos so they can promote your night while distributing their work as a portfolio. You never know where you will attract new fans.

10. Do the show in another city. Try taking your best night and throwing it in another bar in another city. This will give your nightclub a sense of being more than just a local night. Think of it like Hard Rock Cafe. It does seem impressive when you see so many shirts with so many cities labeled on them (e.g. Moscow, Miami, Seattle, Los Angeles). If you work with a local fasion shop and sell these during the club night, you may generate even more profit. Once again, pay particular attention to young tourists. Ask yourself, will they want a t-shirt saying "New York" from the airport or from your club night.

11. Email. Send an email at least 1 time a week that advertises your partners, photos, videos, music and your future events. Adhere to the 10am - 2pm rule I've noted in #1 above. Email marketing works. I'm not telling you to spam. Collect email addresses from your patrons at the door and offer them $1-2 off (if you charge at the door) for offering their email address. This entices them and your list will grow with time. Concentrate on this list to send email promotions and offer a link to Forward to a Friend.

Following the above plan we estimate growing at 10% each and every month. Try this plan yourself and let me know how it works for you. If you are a seasoned promoter and have more to contribute to this please contribute in the comments section and I'll update this post.

Friday, September 04, 2009

Where The US Economy Is Headed

Being informed is crutial to making an informed decision. Recently with all this talk of Health Care Reform, I decided on setting up a mailing list to get as much information I can from people I know in all walks of life. So far, one of the best articles I've read has to do with the rising cost of current Health Care and it's drain on the US Economy. Here's a great article about where the US Economy was in 2008 and where it is headed. One of the authors of this paper is David Walker, Former Comptroller of the United States (who was asked to leave the White House by Dick Cheney himself).

State of the Union's Finances: A Citizen's Guide

Quick Highlights:
- In 2008, the government subsidized private health care programs with more than $240 Billion.
- The cost of Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid add up to more than 40% of the National Budget (and it's expected to keep growing).
- Every year we don't balance the budget the US must take a loan from other countries and currently 48% of the Public Debt is held by foreign countries (China, Japan, etc...)