Transcript of Frankel's Free Clinic December 27, 1999

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 8:59 AM): Entered the room.

Terri ( (12/27/99 8:59 AM): hi Bob! I'm sure it will, JoAnna! (12/27/99 8:59 AM): Hello, Bob. You're new, aren't you?

Terri ( (12/27/99 9:00 AM): good morning, Rob! (12/27/99 9:00 AM): Happy Chaka Kahn, everyone! (my new favorite dumb joke)

Bob ( (12/27/99 9:00 AM): I've posted a few times before (Bob Adams) I remembered to put in my URL this time! (12/27/99 9:01 AM): Are you traveling, Rob?

Terri ( (12/27/99 9:01 AM): I'm not gonna ask, JoAnna! *grin* (12/27/99 9:02 AM): a-HA! It's funny how we know people by their domains & email addresses! (12/27/99 9:02 AM): (it's a pun on Chanukah... a bad one...)

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:02 AM): Greetings!

Terri ( (12/27/99 9:02 AM): Bob, what is MxCity?

Yancey ( (12/27/99 9:02 AM): Entered the room.

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:03 AM): I just got back from our Breakfast By The Bay F2F. Met with two FrankelBees...

Terri ( (12/27/99 9:03 AM): hi Yancy!

Bob ( (12/27/99 9:04 AM): MxCity is a vertical portal for healthcare folks

Yancey ( (12/27/99 9:04 AM): hi Terri

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:04 AM): You DO realize this is the last Free Clinic of the millennium. God, am I getting tired of that crap....

Andy TeBockhorst (12/27/99 9:04 AM): Entered the room. (12/27/99 9:04 AM): Who did you meet, Rob?

Andy TeBockhorst (12/27/99 9:05 AM): Morning Rob and everyone else!

Terri ( (12/27/99 9:05 AM): hi Andy! I hear that, Rob... like the whole world is gonna end *grin* (12/27/99 9:05 AM): So are the rest of us getting tired of that crap.. do you think that marketers will try to use the same ads for the end of 2000 for the "real" end of the millennium?

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:06 AM): I met Michele Allen and Rick Crandall. Michele is a virtual assistant and Rick is an author and marketing consultant.

Andy TeBockhorst (12/27/99 9:07 AM): As a typical marketing whore, I am surprised there hasn't been a LOT more millennium hype. I am tired of it though, ready for a new buzzword!

Glenda( (12/27/99 9:07 AM): Entered the room. (12/27/99 9:07 AM): how very cool! I wish I could have been there.

Yancey ( (12/27/99 9:07 AM): What does a virtual assistant do?

Terri ( (12/27/99 9:07 AM): Nice layout on the page, Bob - you probably should ditch the banner on the top of the page though - at least that's what all my advisors keep telling me :)

Terri ( (12/27/99 9:07 AM): hi Glenda!

Glenda( (12/27/99 9:08 AM): Hello everyone

Terri ( (12/27/99 9:08 AM): Andy, I just read an article about a new thing called Buzz Saw that finds "buzzwords" in editors incoming press releases and sends the PR back to the sender if there are too many of them!

Andy TeBockhorst (12/27/99 9:09 AM): HA! I love it! (12/27/99 9:09 AM): I've steered clear of any advertising on pages where I want to do the advertising... but I do have some generators on a LINKS page. (goto/headhunter/someothers) (12/27/99 9:10 AM): I think pages that have banners and have auto-popups with ads make a site look less professional. Opinions?

Bob ( (12/27/99 9:10 AM): Terri-Thanks for the feedback-what you see is our beta version, we are announcing the launch next week.

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:10 AM): A Virtual Assistant is basically an assistant that does whatever you need, by web contact. You pay as you need them. I like the concept a lot.

Terri ( (12/27/99 9:11 AM): you're right, JoAnna! I have just signed up with a REAL host with no pop-ups! Ta-Da! *G*

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:11 AM): For example, I talked with her about having a VA handle my speaking engagements for me....screening, booking, etc.

Bob ( (12/27/99 9:11 AM): I'm an old ad guy-so giving up a banner on prime real estate is tough to do.

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:12 AM): Terri: this is why I believe that the whole thing about free ISP's is a flash in the pan. They will never take over the market.

Yancey ( (12/27/99 9:12 AM): I would like to know the rates, please have her contact me. (12/27/99 9:12 AM): Bob, Is it a link-exchange, or is it a sold ad space kind of thing?

Glenda( (12/27/99 9:12 AM): Congrats Terri!

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:12 AM): Yancey, you mean Michele? Her e-mail is If you contact her, tell her that you found her here. She'll be blown away!

Terri ( (12/27/99 9:13 AM): They can't keep up with the customer service aspect, Rob .. I don't mind using free, but I think they are crazy not to offer an ad-free version along with it that you can pay for

Bob ( (12/27/99 9:13 AM): JoAnna-do you mean on the home page or within the content pages?

Yancey ( (12/27/99 9:13 AM): Yes, thanks, I will. (12/27/99 9:14 AM): the flowers ad on the home page. (that's what I see first)

Glenda( (12/27/99 9:14 AM): Hypermart offers an ad free option

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:14 AM): I agree Terri. And I think as more people use online seriously, you'll see more of them choosing to avoid the cheap look of a freebie service.

Terri ( (12/27/99 9:14 AM): thanks, Glenda! I planned to do that all along, but hadn't found one I liked for the right price :)

Bob ( (12/27/99 9:15 AM): The flowers ad is paid space, although I see you point about it conflicting with our message.

Yancey ( (12/27/99 9:16 AM): They say click through rates are continuing to decline. It better be to a very target market. (12/27/99 9:16 AM): I use a freespace for a couple of things... they're For an example, see to see how I did it....

Terri ( (12/27/99 9:16 AM): Bob, you should also check with your host - your guests will get an "unknown host" message if they don't put the www. into the URL .. it should go there even without that (12/27/99 9:17 AM): Bob, you should tell you host to make it go both ways (with the www and without) it can be done, and it should be FREE to do it!!

Bob ( (12/27/99 9:17 AM): Thanks Terri, I hadn't caught that.

Terri ( (12/27/99 9:18 AM): that's one of the better ones I have seen, JoAnna.. at least there is no pop-up or mandatory banner on top that flashes and acts crazy! (12/27/99 9:18 AM): I thought was pretty classy, as freepages go, so I'm turning a lot of people on to them.

Clayton T( (12/27/99 9:19 AM): Entered the room. (12/27/99 9:20 AM): Free Space is just that. and you often get what you pay for... but I like you get the closest thing to a free domain name!

Clayton T( (12/27/99 9:20 AM): Greetings:)

Terri ( (12/27/99 9:20 AM): I'm bookmarking it in my free site resources, JoAnna - thanks! Hi Clayton! (12/27/99 9:20 AM): (again, just an evangelist...I get nothing for telling you how cool they are)

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:20 AM): So anybody have any real business to discuss? (12/27/99 9:21 AM): (the room falls silent when Rob brings us back to task...)

Andy TeBockhorst (12/27/99 9:22 AM): hmmmmm (12/27/99 9:22 AM): Entered the room.

Terri ( (12/27/99 9:22 AM): how about Bob? He's the new guy *grin* (12/27/99 9:22 AM): Any body got any small business tax tips? I've got that looming over my head...

Terri ( (12/27/99 9:22 AM): hi Ronni!

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:23 AM): Have you tried Eva Rosenberg at She's a FrankelBee...

Bob ( (12/27/99 9:23 AM): Sure-pick on the new guy---feel free to visit our site for feedback-we haven't finished cleaning yet so be gentle

Clayton T( (12/27/99 9:24 AM): Rob, you always tell us to develop the brand first how do you show that to the vcs in the business plan? (12/27/99 9:24 AM): Yeah, make the new guy lay it on the table! (Morning, Ronni)

Andy TeBockhorst (12/27/99 9:24 AM): Along that same vein, I'm considering business setup options for the new year. Incorporation vs. partnership vs. sole ownership. Any thoughts?

Bob ( (12/27/99 9:24 AM): JoAnna, a good CPA is the best tax tip anyone can give--there's too much to know (12/27/99 9:24 AM): TaxMama = hilarious! (12/27/99 9:24 AM): Morning! Hope that everyone had a very nice holiday.

Bob ( (12/27/99 9:26 AM): Incorporating is good when you have to protect something such as intellectual property or significant revenue (over 200k)

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:26 AM): Yes, JoAnna, Eva will be speaking with me at the Abraham conference. She also puts out an e-newsletter with Q&A specifically for small businesses called AskTaxMama.

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:27 AM): Andy, depends on where you live. Generally, I like to use a corporation for several reasons:

Terri ( (12/27/99 9:27 AM): Andy, an interesting angle on whether to incorporate was mentioned in one of my discussion groups recently .. when they were applying for a bank loan they were able to say "I work for a corporation with employees, just like you" .. sort of an off the cuff observation for you all

Andy TeBockhorst (12/27/99 9:27 AM): Is it too much for me though? I will be doing )basically) freelance web design, etc. Do I really need to Incorporate... what is my exposure if I don't?

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:28 AM): First, as Bob says, it allows you to shield yourself from liability to a point...but mainly it separates your income from your personal income so you can treat it differently.

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:29 AM): With a corporation, for example, you can contribute way more to a deferred pension plan than any 401K or IRA would allow (12/27/99 9:29 AM): Andy, my CPA said that incorporation is the way to go... corporate veil = people who sue your business get only the biz's assets, not your personal assets

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:29 AM): You can also deduct lots more expenses from the corporation. And if you keep good records, any audit for a corporation won't spill over into your personal life. (12/27/99 9:29 AM): Entered the room.

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:30 AM): JoAnna, that's true if you are meticulous about your corp. If not, they can pierce the veil and go after you. (12/27/99 9:30 AM): I'm so new here that I'm not sure of the "rules." Am I allowed to jump right in with a question?

Andy TeBockhorst (12/27/99 9:30 AM): I have heard of web designers worrying about liability based on the success/failure and stability of the websites they design. Anyone have experience in this area?

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:31 AM): Andy, if you expect to generate over $50,000 in additional revenue, a corp is a good idea.

Andy TeBockhorst (12/27/99 9:31 AM): Ronni, feel free. We're an easy group!

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:31 AM): Wrong liability, Andy. Liability is when one of the corp's

Yancey ( (12/27/99 9:31 AM): It is a work for hire, you are not liable for their failure to market properly.

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:31 AM): products causes some damage....

Terri ( (12/27/99 9:31 AM): I have no experience in that myself, Andy - but I would imagine you could limit your liability by drawing up a good contract and let them know what you will do for them and make sure it says you don't guarantee they will get X number of visitors and such

Bob ( (12/27/99 9:32 AM): Andy, another value of incorporating is it's easier to take investors (for shares) as opposed to partners (12/27/99 9:32 AM): I've never heard of that, Andy! Terri's suggestion sounds like god practices, anyway. (12/27/99 9:33 AM): Ronni, better jump in with your questions!

Bob ( (12/27/99 9:33 AM): Sorry folks gotta go to a meeting. (12/27/99 9:33 AM): We sell streaming media services and I've been targeting web people as my primary market. But I think that I need to go directly to small business. Outside of zine advertising, what would you suggest as a good method?

Andy TeBockhorst (12/27/99 9:33 AM): Bye Bob!

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:34 AM): Ronni, you are correct in not approaching other vendors. I would sooner go direct to small businesses. I'm doing just that with a client now who sells online tradeshows.

Glenda( (12/27/99 9:35 AM): Have a good day Bob

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:35 AM): What you find is that most vendors are more interested in selling their own wares, and will use your service to pad their service list, not for the good of your product.

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:36 AM): Your best bet, IMHO, is finding those businesses who have made a serious commitment to online -- (12/27/99 9:36 AM): Ronni, got a potential lead for you: get in touch with Brandon from He might have some resources to share with you.

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:36 AM): then showing them how you can enhance their business with your service.

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:38 AM): Especially if you are in the new/growth phase, you want high-probability prospects. Prove yourself first, then show these other vendors that you're a proven product. It will make you stronger in negotiations. (12/27/99 9:38 AM): Rob, Is it "proper" to contact them directly? (12/27/99 9:38 AM): Thanks, Joanna! (12/27/99 9:38 AM): you know what, I'm typing in all kinds of URL's lately, where I used to just put in the but all of the sudden, they all seem to want that "www" ? anyone else experiencing this?

Andy TeBockhorst (12/27/99 9:39 AM): Gotta go gang... see you next week! Thanks as always for the good chat.

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:39 AM): You bet, Ronni. Who wouldn't want someone calling them up and saying that you're willing to help them out?

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:40 AM): The trick is to choose your targets wisely. Make sure you understand what they're trying to do, don't just sell your service.

Terri ( (12/27/99 9:40 AM): bye Andy! JoAnna, I only see that when the server/host isn't set up properly (12/27/99 9:40 AM): bye, Andy! (12/27/99 9:41 AM): How come so many hosts would be set up improperly? AAARRRGGGHHH! (okay, end of topic.) (12/27/99 9:41 AM): Also, is anyone else experiencing an overuse of FLASH on pages they'd go view?

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:42 AM): Yes, JoAnna, it seems that since NS and IE are shipping with Flash plugs pre-installed,, the world has come to believe that people like it. (12/27/99 9:42 AM): So you'd approach them by offering to assist them in enhancing their web site to make it more effective?

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:43 AM): Unfortunately, those same dopes don't realize that most people WITHOUT DSL or T-1 lines hate them. (12/27/99 9:43 AM): It seems to me that a lot of people are using flash where it's not necessary. It's smooth and attractive, but it's SO slow to load up.

sweetsoaps (12/27/99 9:44 AM): Entered the room.

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:44 AM): You got it, Ronni. For the time being, make it "one to one" marketing. You only need three or so to make you look successful to larger partners.

Yancey ( (12/27/99 9:44 AM): Ronni, in your "send us your tapes" message you are targeting the individual.

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:44 AM): That's also how you'll get referrals. (12/27/99 9:45 AM): yeah, like ME. I can't get dsl yet... Lots of people simply can't get it. I want their money, so I program so they can see my pages without frustrations!

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:45 AM): Get to know the owners, Ronni, and they'll tell their other pals about you. The first sales are the most important, because that's what establishes you in the business.

sweetsoaps (12/27/99 9:45 AM): Happy New Year to all!

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:45 AM): Of course, Jo Anna. That's why the most advanced technology I recommend might be Java rollovers...

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:46 AM): Everything else has to load up for 28.8 people. (12/27/99 9:46 AM): Thanks; I appreciate it. (12/27/99 9:46 AM): welcome, sweetsoaps... what's your name again?

sweetsoaps (12/27/99 9:47 AM): Ellen (12/27/99 9:47 AM): Hi, Ellen!

sweetsoaps (12/27/99 9:48 AM): Hi Ronni,, how are you doing now? (12/27/99 9:48 AM): I'm getting some good advice.

sweetsoaps (12/27/99 9:49 AM): Told ya! ha ha ha

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:49 AM): Oops..back in two minutes guys....

sweetsoaps (12/27/99 9:50 AM): Joanna.. you are a head hunter? (12/27/99 9:50 AM): Yancey, we have two sites. One is geared to small business and the other to consumers. All streaming media, but positioned differently.

Terri ( (12/27/99 9:50 AM): I'm the headhunter, Ellen :) (12/27/99 9:51 AM): Not really... I do HR for companies that don't have Human Resources managers. My friend Terri is more of a recruiter... but we can both offer advice.

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:51 AM): Back. TEN MINUTE WARNING

sweetsoaps (12/27/99 9:51 AM): ok.. My hubby is looking for a controller position in NJ

Terri ( (12/27/99 9:51 AM): I get the people for you and JoAnna helps you stay legal *grin* (12/27/99 9:52 AM): I'm in Los Angeles... I don't have much action on the east cost.

sweetsoaps (12/27/99 9:52 AM): presently working as controller for a hospital.. passed all CPA exams.. awaiting license

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:52 AM): JoAnna, have you been to (12/27/99 9:52 AM): no, but it sounds HILARIOUS! I'm going there right now...

Terri ( (12/27/99 9:53 AM): he should be very marketable having his CPA too, Ellen! (12/27/99 9:53 AM): Joanna, streaming media is great for training. I just wrote a zine article about it. Do you have any suggestions about how to reach some of these HR professionals?

sweetsoaps (12/27/99 9:53 AM): GEEZE I hope so! ha ha ha

sweetsoaps (12/27/99 9:54 AM): someone has to feed me! (12/27/99 9:54 AM): ack! More flash! You're killing me!

Terri ( (12/27/99 9:55 AM): *laffin* Take a look at my website Ellen.. there are some good resources there for him to see what jobs are available out there :)

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:55 AM): Try (12/27/99 9:55 AM): Ronni, we should talk offline. I'm sending you an email.

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:55 AM): Just curious about your reaction as an HR person...

sweetsoaps (12/27/99 9:56 AM): Entered the room. (12/27/99 9:56 AM): I'll look forward to it. Thanks!

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:57 AM): Final issue: which do you prefer, ICQ or AIM? I recently switched to AIM, mainly because it has a stock ticker...

sweetsoaps (12/27/99 9:57 AM): ok I saved both web sites (12/27/99 9:57 AM): well, the "skip animation" button doesn't work, and there's no info yet, so the jury is still out on hiho.....

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:57 AM): (LAST TWO MINUTES OF THE MILENNIUM) (12/27/99 9:58 AM): icq rocks. especially if you have Gerry's ICQ for Mac users.

Terri ( (12/27/99 9:58 AM): I prefer ICQ because I have had trouble in the past getting connected with AIM, Rob (12/27/99 9:58 AM): Entered the room. (12/27/99 9:58 AM): oh, let it REST, rob!

Yancey ( (12/27/99 9:58 AM): See you on the other side. (12/27/99 9:58 AM): dashing in at the last second

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:58 AM): You mean you're not tired of hearing "let's party like it's 1999?" (12/27/99 9:58 AM): My sincere best wishes to all for a very Happy New Year!

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 9:59 AM): Mary Engel? As in Engelbreit?

sweetsoaps (12/27/99 9:59 AM): Ronni stick around here after chat is over (12/27/99 9:59 AM): I think most of the active 'bees are icq users -- (Muhammad, me, Terri, David Beroff, the other soap lady, tori duff)

sweetsoaps (12/27/99 9:59 AM): Yea.. may the cyber gods look down on us all favorably! (12/27/99 10:00 AM): Are men supposed to know about Mary Engelbreit?

sweetsoaps (12/27/99 10:00 AM): who is the other soap lady? (12/27/99 10:00 AM): Looking forward to next time, when I'll be here for the whole thing!

sweetsoaps (12/27/99 10:00 AM): not likely Joanna

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 10:00 AM): They are when their fathers-in-law are licensees... (12/27/99 10:01 AM): Aren't there two soap ladies? The Soap Lady? (I forget her name too)

RobFrankel ( (12/27/99 10:01 AM): Okay, you millennial madcappers! That's it for this century! I'll see you online! I get to ride cable cars with my kids today!

Terri ( (12/27/99 10:01 AM): Have a great week, everyone... and remember to back-up all your files, just in case! *grin*

sweetsoaps (12/27/99 10:01 AM): there is a woman on the net named "the soap lady" I know of her (12/27/99 10:01 AM): AAAAhhh, okay. you're exempt, Rob. Bye! Have fun in SF!

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