Transcript of Frankel's Free Clinic February 11, 2002

Jonathan Cohen ( (2/11/2002 9:00 AM): hi Rob - slim pickings today :)

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:00 AM): A sleepy greetings, boys! No milk for the coffee, so I'm dragging a bit today!

Jan Hviid Hemmingsen <> (2/11/2002 9:01 AM): Entered the room.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:01 AM): Jonathan, they show up in the first five minutes -- assuming that our lurkers don't jump in....

Jonathan Cohen ( (2/11/2002 9:01 AM): *nod*

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:01 AM): Hi Kris! What can I help you with today?

Kris Bell (2/11/2002 9:01 AM): I'm a newbie to the group so I may not say anything.

Ben Woodward ( (2/11/2002 9:01 AM): You should drink your java black, Rob. Wake ya right up...

Jonathan Cohen ( (2/11/2002 9:02 AM): I'm a bit sleepy myself

Ben Woodward ( (2/11/2002 9:02 AM): You just did, Kris. ;)

Kris Bell (2/11/2002 9:02 AM): Just looking in. Your chat was recommended by my business partner as a great format.

Terri Robinson ( (2/11/2002 9:02 AM): Entered the room.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:02 AM): Well, Kris, you can see what a formal group assembles here (tee hee) Jump in with whatever question you have, really.

Gloria ( (2/11/2002 9:02 AM): Entered the room.

Gloria ( (2/11/2002 9:03 AM): Morning everybody.

Terri Robinson ( (2/11/2002 9:03 AM): Greetings, Rob and everyone! *passing virtual milk to Rob*

John (2/11/2002 9:03 AM): Entered the room.

Kris Bell (2/11/2002 9:03 AM): Thanks much!

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:03 AM): It works to help people out when they need it. So....who's up first today?

Jan Hviid Hemmingsen <> (2/11/2002 9:03 AM): Maybe I can ask if anyone knows a good system for micropayments? Like Amazon's honor system, but cheaper to use.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:04 AM): Jan, what have you explored so far?

Jan Hviid Hemmingsen <> (2/11/2002 9:05 AM): Only the amazon one I must admit :) They charge 15 cents + 15% which makes it expense for small payments. This is about giving people a way to help out a community site in any small way they can.

Terri Robinson ( (2/11/2002 9:06 AM): Jan, I use PayPal and love them - they only charge about 3% on each transaction.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:06 AM): Well, I think what you've discovered is that micro-payments have a place of their own in the scheme of things. They don't work for everyone.

Gloria ( (2/11/2002 9:07 AM): Jan, have you checked out PayPal? They are offering some new options.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:07 AM): What kind of micropayment you use depends on what you're selling, to whom and for how much.

Pat Wilson (2/11/2002 9:07 AM): Entered the room.

Gloria ( (2/11/2002 9:07 AM): High Five to Terri. We know a good thing when we see it.

Pat Wilson (2/11/2002 9:08 AM): Hello folks; This is my first time...

Terri Robinson ( (2/11/2002 9:08 AM): :)

Jan Hviid Hemmingsen <> (2/11/2002 9:08 AM): As a non US resident is it close to impossible to get money out of PayPal unfortunately. Maybe they are more flexible now so I better check them again I guess...

Tamra ( (2/11/2002 9:08 AM): Entered the room.

Kris Bell (2/11/2002 9:09 AM): PayPal also doesn't recognize all banks -- it won't recognize ours so we won't use it.

Gloria ( (2/11/2002 9:09 AM): Jan, they have loosened up on the buy side. I'm not sure about paying the seller but it would be worth a look.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:09 AM): Jan, micropayments are great for recurring purchases over a large user base. They're really great for accessing bits of information, but you have to have a lot of people using them to make it pay out.

Curtiss Hayden (2/11/2002 9:09 AM): Entered the room.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:09 AM): Let me get this straight -- are you asking about merchant services or the actual micro payment software?

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:10 AM): Seems to me there were a few posts offering the service (at least the software side of it) on FrankelBiz a while back.

Pat Wilson (2/11/2002 9:11 AM): I'm just starting out in Canada. Do you know of any payment systems that are available to me?

Jan Hviid Hemmingsen <> (2/11/2002 9:11 AM): This is for a soccer community with hundreds of active members who asked for a way to give something back. I am looking for a way to let people contribute to the expenses of running it.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:11 AM): Jan, why not just set up a merchant account? It's really gotten affordable and works so smoothly.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:12 AM): Micro-payment stuff is not what I would recommend as your first solution here.

Jan Hviid Hemmingsen <> (2/11/2002 9:12 AM): Maybe I should look into that then. Can anyone recommend someone for that then?

Jonathan Cohen ( (2/11/2002 9:13 AM): Jan - are all their expenses monetary? Maybe someone could help out with the Web maintenance, etc.?

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:13 AM): A simple script is all you need to write. Just like the one I use for subscriptions of the Frankelink ads.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:13 AM): Jan, if you post this to FrankelBiz, you'll get pummeled with responses!

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:14 AM): Incidentally, if you click the link below in the banner for Brain Rickman, he can write the script for you. He did my stuff.

Jan Hviid Hemmingsen <> (2/11/2002 9:14 AM): I wonder if that is what I want though :) Sometimes there is such a thing as too much information...

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:14 AM): Curtiss, is there something you want to jump in with?

Gloria ( (2/11/2002 9:14 AM): If you do, Jan, I'd be interested in the responses you get. I have a client who already has a merchant account looking for a good solution.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:15 AM): Jan, you can customize it as much as you want. For the revenue, it's the most convenient solution I've found and very reliable, too.

Jan Hviid Hemmingsen <> (2/11/2002 9:16 AM): I think I will educate my on the area first Gloria. Then I will better equipped to ask the tough questions and find the right solution. I had just not considered it so far.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:16 AM): And it's actually cheaper than PayPal...of course you do have the merchant account fees, but they're not exorbitant....

Gloria ( (2/11/2002 9:17 AM): I have a question when we're ready for a new one.

Jan Hviid Hemmingsen <> (2/11/2002 9:17 AM): What script are you talking about Rob? And what does it do? I mean it has to be hooked up to some service somewhere? :)

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:18 AM): Yes, Jan. The script takes your user from your site to a secure page where they fill out their information and submit for payment. You're actually on your merchant account provider's site when it's secure.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:18 AM): Gloria?

Gloria ( (2/11/2002 9:19 AM): We are looking for investors for a bricks and mortar gallery which is an offshoot of our website.

Jan Hviid Hemmingsen <> (2/11/2002 9:19 AM): Okay, I will look through your site and see how it works. I never paid much attention to such things before except for security.

Gloria ( (2/11/2002 9:19 AM): The website is and the gallery will be Sawdust Studios. Would it be tacky to put a blurb on the website requesting investors?

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:20 AM): Tacky? Not really. Effective? Hmmm, I don't know. First, almost everyone who needs investors has an "Investor Relations" page, which is a coy way of saying, "Send Money"

"Jan Hviid Hemmingsen" <> (2/11/2002 9:21 AM): Entered the room.

Gloria ( (2/11/2002 9:21 AM): Does any come to mind that I might look at Rob?

Kris Bell (2/11/2002 9:21 AM): My business partner and I always recommend doing research into investors that would be most interested and networking your way to them.

Gloria ( (2/11/2002 9:21 AM): We've had contact from three venture capitalists but we aren't sure that's how we want to go.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:21 AM): Personally, I come from the school of "If you don't ask, you don't get." I figure that if they've already come to your site, they must have an interest in it. The basic error most entrepreneurs make is assuming that the people who show up are the people who invest.

Gloria ( (2/11/2002 9:22 AM): Do you think the two names would confuse people or dilute one or the other brand?

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:22 AM): Unfortunately, as you're about to find out, fans are not investors. Investors are investors. And most investors are driven by money, not passion.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:23 AM): Yes, Gloria, I do believe you have a brand confusion issue happening there. At this moment, I bet everyone here is wondering which one you want investors for....

Kris Bell (2/11/2002 9:23 AM): There are bound to be investors out there who are specifically interested in art ventures. I'd have to do some data mining to find out. Kinda like social venture funds--only art?

Gloria ( (2/11/2002 9:23 AM): Kris, any recommendations as to how to find investors? Lists or?

Tamra ( (2/11/2002 9:24 AM): The few Angel/VCs I know don't have *time* to surf the web looking for investments....

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:24 AM): If you have venture people coming forward, I would strongly advise you to take the meeting. It sure can't hurt and you'll know what you'll be up against -- for free.

Gloria ( (2/11/2002 9:24 AM): I see what you are saying Rob. How would I get the message across? The gallery has come about as a result of the website. And it is Sawdust Studios we need the money to open.

Tamra ( (2/11/2002 9:25 AM): The best way I know of to find an investor is to have someone refer you -- the personal touch is the only way to get your foot in the door.

Kris Bell (2/11/2002 9:25 AM): It's a long process, and one that my partner excels in. Most of our data mining is on the internet and takes time and diligence to find their bios and tastes, etc. Sorry there's no easy answer to that, Gloria.

Gloria ( (2/11/2002 9:26 AM): How about consultants for VC? We have a couple of those asking too.

Gloria ( (2/11/2002 9:26 AM): Thanks Tamra and Kris you just reinforced what I sort of knew but hated to recognize.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:26 AM): I agree. We were looking for backers for, but the only takers we had were from personal networks. And PM runs profitably with scalable operations.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:27 AM): You'd think that the money-hungry types would bark at that!

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:27 AM): Kris, what do you do?

Gloria ( (2/11/2002 9:27 AM): Anyone heard of Co-Venturer Partners?

Terri Robinson ( (2/11/2002 9:28 AM): Gloria, you may find some helpful information at too. Dee Power is a great resource on VC and Angel investor information.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:28 AM): Nope

Kris Bell (2/11/2002 9:28 AM): My partner, Cindy, and I do data mining, research, and small business consulting. We also run a website called ABC's of Small Business ( Cindy has been part of your forum many times.

Gloria ( (2/11/2002 9:29 AM): Thanks Terri. I'm writing it down.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:29 AM): Anyone else want to jump in with a real time, burning business issue?

When will we hear of the first i-legion success you think Rob? (2/11/2002 9:29 AM): Entered the room.

Tamra ( (2/11/2002 9:29 AM): check out also, and

John Charlesworth ( Professional Web Tracking) (2/11/2002 9:30 AM): Entered the room.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:30 AM): Uh oh, who got trapped by the server?

Gloria ( (2/11/2002 9:30 AM): Thanks Tamra resources are what I need.

Jan Hviid Hemmingsen <> (2/11/2002 9:31 AM): Entered the room.

Jan Hviid Hemmingsen <> (2/11/2002 9:31 AM): I did :(

Jan Hviid Hemmingsen <> (2/11/2002 9:31 AM): When will we hear of the first i-legion success you think Rob?

Tamra ( (2/11/2002 9:31 AM): (Gloria, I have a lot of them right now -- working on a web design for a new angel investor group so I've been researching -- I'll send you an email with a bunch of links)

Gloria ( (2/11/2002 9:32 AM): You're great Tamra. Thanks so much!

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:32 AM): Jan, not for a few months, at least, Jan. i-legions is a long lead time sell. It's a new concept and while it is grabbing some attention, it will be a while until the buy in can be publicized.

Kris Bell (2/11/2002 9:32 AM): Tamra, I'd like to know, too, when your website is up. I didn't load in my address before. It's Thanks!

Gloria ( (2/11/2002 9:33 AM): Jeez, Rob, this meeting really DOES work. Now how about i-legion?

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:34 AM): For example, it's a 15 month minimum commitment. We can be profitable by the fourth or sixth month, but the sell-in to the client can take three months.

Jan Hviid Hemmingsen <> (2/11/2002 9:35 AM): I think a lot will be interested to hear about it when you are ready. I do understand it takes time though :) One thing that confuses me is that you do not seem to narrow what communities you accept except on size. Do you have expertise or experts on all areas?

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:35 AM): I've only publicized i-legions to the online forums in which I participate, so we're still in a bit of soft launch here. Although we are aggressively moving forward with sales.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:37 AM): Jan, it doesn't matter what the business category is: we concentrate on deriving revenue from the user base, that's all. We are NOT help desk or customer service people. I-legions is about getting users to interact with each other via the brand -- the same way we all interact around the Frankel thing.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:38 AM): As a model of the program, you can see how it works among FrankelBees who migrate up to FrankelTips from free forums like this. With i-legions, businesses bolt on the service to mobilize users into interaction with each other. As you can see, this provide real value for everyone.

Jan Hviid Hemmingsen <> (2/11/2002 9:39 AM): Still, it must matter if it is a community of professionals or teens for example. I wonder if you are going to formalize your affiliate programme for it btw. I would be happy to have you as a part on Advertency :)

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:39 AM): It's funny, because when a client of mine tried to do this on their own, they ended up with a glorified help desk. Nothing more.

Kris Bell (2/11/2002 9:39 AM): That is a truly great model. I can see this being used in a myriad of ways.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:39 AM): They make the mistake of thinking that the interaction has to be between the brand and the user, when it actually needs to be between users via the brand.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:40 AM): Jan, there is a referral program in place for i-legions. I'll contact you after I finalize a few things on my end.

Jan Hviid Hemmingsen <> (2/11/2002 9:40 AM): It is kinda like Free to Fee vs. Free to Free+Fee :)

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:40 AM): For the moment, however, I can guarantee $1000 per closed lead.

Kris Bell (2/11/2002 9:40 AM): So, the brand is the "glue" and the site is a medium?

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:41 AM): Yeah, Kris, that's one way of saying it. Just like right here and now, nobody's paying anything, everyone's getting value through my brand.

Kris Bell (2/11/2002 9:43 AM): Gotcha! Now I know why Cindy wanted me in on your forum today ;-)

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:43 AM): Some here are subscribers to other products, some are not. But either way, the revenue is real and the brand exposure is positive.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:43 AM): Well, Kris, now you see it working in real time. If it really works, you're going to go back to your venture clients and recommend me for their clients as "the only solution to their branding problems"

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:44 AM): Hopefully, this shows it to you in real time.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:44 AM): Enough about me....anyone else with a business issue while we have time?

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:45 AM): Curtiss, you still here?

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:46 AM): Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?

Jan Hviid Hemmingsen <> (2/11/2002 9:47 AM): I have an easy one if no one else want to come forward? :)

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:47 AM): BTW, Kris, I keep the i-legions "glue" as much in e-mail (as opposed to web) as possible.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:47 AM): Go Jan.

Steven Brown (2/11/2002 9:48 AM): Entered the room.

Jan Hviid Hemmingsen <> (2/11/2002 9:48 AM): How do I decide what percentage to take in commission for brokering advertising? The rates are 30-50% it seems. I have decided on 30% of gross with a fixed volume based cost for ad management. I know it should align with my brand :)

Steven Brown (2/11/2002 9:49 AM): 15% is the norm in advertising

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:49 AM): Jan, how does that 30% impact any other agencies? Are you performing all the ad agencies' tasks or just placing media?

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:49 AM): TEN MINUTE WARNING

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:50 AM): Steven is correct. Most agencies begin with 15% of the gross, or 17.65% mark up from the net.

Jan Hviid Hemmingsen <> (2/11/2002 9:50 AM): What I do can compare to cyberreps and such places. It is one to one brokering, but from both sites so to speak. I represent the process rather than the parties. I guess I am half agency and half representative.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:51 AM): But there's very little that conforms to standard rates any more. For example, my agency doesn't place media so we only charge fees for creative development.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:51 AM): Jan, if your commission comes from agencies, then you're saying you're taking a percentage of their commissions, is that right?

Jan Hviid Hemmingsen <> (2/11/2002 9:52 AM): cyberreps is a rep though so they only represent publishers and sell to advertisers. I am trying to be something new and broker both ways and consider everyone clients.

Jan Hviid Hemmingsen <> (2/11/2002 9:53 AM): My commission is the difference between what the advertiser pays and the publisher receives :) I have only dealt with an agency once and they negotiated a price like everyone else.

John Charlesworth ( Professional Web Tracking) (2/11/2002 9:53 AM): Jan, do you anticipate having to deal with a perceived conflict of interest by representing both sides?

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:53 AM): Then I think your charge -- from a business point of view -- has to reflect a "same cost, but more efficient" kind of value.

Steven Brown (2/11/2002 9:55 AM): If you can do volume - like full page newsprint, you can work a net with the paper and add 15 points to buyers - we have that

Steven Brown (2/11/2002 9:55 AM): gets you into the 25+ point range

Jan Hviid Hemmingsen <> (2/11/2002 9:56 AM): I do not represent either side, but I understand what you mean. I make it very clear every where that I represent the opportunity for win-win and only have an interest in such arrangements. This is about relations first and deals second you could say.

Jan Hviid Hemmingsen <> (2/11/2002 9:57 AM): Every decision is taken by each party. I merely mediate and facilitate and administrate not least :)

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:57 AM): Personally, I see no conflict here if you're truly an "in between" broker. But boy, you better have a strong brand image as the fairest guy who ever walked the earth. otherwise, people will wonder why it's in their interest for you to get them the lowest rates....

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:58 AM): Jan, Steve brings up a good point: there is a strong perception about the market you're in. And I can tell you that innovation is a very rough road....

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:58 AM): (TWO MINUTES)

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:58 AM): Jan, I'm betting that you're going to spend a huge amount of time educating people, as I have to.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:59 AM): So get ready and have all that stuff set to go.

Jan Hviid Hemmingsen <> (2/11/2002 9:59 AM): Well, if everything was about price I would be dead in the water, but this is about much more I think.

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 9:59 AM): Your FAQ page is going to get a LOT of visitors!

Jan Hviid Hemmingsen <> (2/11/2002 10:00 AM): Well, the site is up and full of words@ :)

Kris Bell (2/11/2002 10:00 AM): Thanks, Rob, and everyone else. It's been a pleasure "meeting" you!

Terri Robinson ( (2/11/2002 10:00 AM): Rob, great session today! Thanks everyone! See you next week!

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 10:00 AM): Okay, folks, nice session with some new faces! Glad you made it! I'll see you al online!

Gloria ( (2/11/2002 10:00 AM): Great forum. See you all later.

Jan Hviid Hemmingsen <> (2/11/2002 10:00 AM): Finally I want to apologize for stealing the show, but everyone was so quiet :)

John Charlesworth ( Professional Web Tracking) (2/11/2002 10:01 AM): See y'all !

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 10:01 AM): It was good stuff, Jan. Don't sweat it!

Jonathan Cohen ( (2/11/2002 10:01 AM): later, all - have a great week!

Jonathan Cohen ( (2/11/2002 10:01 AM): thanks Rob

Rob Frankel ( (2/11/2002 10:01 AM): I told you earlier -- there was no coffee!

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