10 Places to Win an iPad

WIN ME WIN ME!!! Tweet your way to a FREE iPad
Since the release of the iPad on Saturday, there have been a swarm of tweets to win an iPad from various companies. I've put together a list of companies to follow and tweet to get your chance to win that iPad as well as a few to be a Facebook Fan. Its easier to register than plugging all your info in each day. Just copy and paste but make sure to click the link so that you can follow them as that's a requirement. Good luck but just so you know, I've already entered them all... WHAT, it was purely for research.

So.. are you feelin lucky, punk!? :)
  1. Win an iPad to use w/ free @Logos Bible Software app for iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad! Details: http://bit.ly/L4ipad
  2. The free @digg app comes to your iphone! to celebrate they’re giving out a custom ipad everyday for 2 weeks! http://bit.ly/diggapp

  3. Your chance to win a BRAND NEW IPAD, or games like Aki, Mondo Solitaire, and Mr. Sudoku! #Ambrosia http://bit.ly/ASWiPad
  4. Follow Mogo today: http://twitter.com/mogomon
  5. I want my free iPad #websdotcom http://bit.ly/ipadme
  6. Tweet this: "Just entered to win a free iPad. Follow @eForCity and retweet to enter! www.eforcity.com/twittergiveaway.html #eForCityGiveaway
  7. DealCatcher is giving away a 16GB Wifi to one of their Facebook fans.
  8. I entered the Apple iPad Contest at @weekinrewind here: http://bit.ly/bTpS9K
  9. Apple iPad http://www.apple.com/ipad/ Retweet this and follow @Meritline to be entered to win a 16GB iPad. Seriously. #meritlinecontest
  10. Follow us on Twitter @Meritline and Retweet "Apple iPad http://www.apple.com/ipad/ Retweet this and follow @Meritline to be entered to win a 16GB iPad. Seriously. #meritlinecontest"
Good luck and if you win, be sure to let me know. I'd like to make sure I get visiting rights to it. hehe

Social Media Marketing 101

Today I was asked to speak at Nova Southeastern University about Social Media Marketing. The event was geared towards women who are looking to start a business or are a new business that just started. They had other speakers that talked about how to read your financial reports, become a certified woman business owner, get business grants and more.

I posted my slides on slideshare. Go ahead and take a look at it. I hope you find it informative.

I WANT to know about YOU!

I really do want to know about you. I swear!

I've come to the realization that even though I spend an exuberant amount of time on twitter and chat with a lot of people. I still don't know them as well as I would like. Some of them I've spent many nights with at a conference and while some of those moments can be quite personal the history behind how they got started is can be a mystery.

After I share my story with you, I'd like for you to post how you got involved in your business or profession.

In the Beginning:
From the time I was 8 years old till senior year in high school I wanted to be a marine biologist. I finally was able to take the classes and realized that everything I read in books was not how it was in this class. I guess you can say it took the romance out of it. Just so happened that I was dating an older guy that was just starting a cybercafe (circa 1996) and needed me to do a website. Now mind you, I barely was on a computer, I just helped build them. He handed me a how-to book, the notes and photos. I put together my first website. I enjoyed it. It was HORRIBLE. I then started looking into design schools. I had always been able to draw, paint, sculpt... anything artsy fartsy was for me.

Fastforward a year, I was in college, and I had landed my first job doing websites, I BS'd my way in and I was excited to start. First week I had no computer so I was able to learn that HTML thing. Turns out the company they hired me for wasn't doing as good as their... X-rated sites. Yes folks, thats where I learned my coding skills. Life was interesting but was good. I had also started teaching web design with my college teacher every saturday morning. I was dreaming HTML in my sleep literally.

Fastforward another year... I grew bored and there was no room for raises or management so I left. Moved on to freelance. I did very well. I was out on my own but never made it official. I'm 18.

Fastforward to May 1998, I went looking for a job and came out with office space and to start my own business. So here I am, 19 years old and taking one hell of a chance but that is always how I rolled. Leaping forward like the frogs I love. I figured how hard can it be. They will bring me the business. Ha!!!! Was a great lesson to learn.

Fastforward a year, I moved out of the office and to a home office. I hated the commute and having 2 of everything. I have had a home office ever since. I have always had an easy time with the discipline it takes to work from home. Life was great. Business was booming. I had attended my first networking and I was scared sh-tless. I had to go and tell these people about me and what I do. I had no one to lean on for support. My parents didn't understand and all my friends were in college or goofing off. Still I winged it!

I decided to go work for someone so that I could buy a place. I had no real income history because I worked for myself and had a great accountant. It was interesting to say the least. I had a great cubby friend but turns out my boss was a sex offender. He was 40 something and messed around with a 15yo. Shortly after learning that I left since the company was going to sh-t anyway. My exit interview lasted 2 hours and 4 pages. It's hard to work for others when you have managed your own business. It served its purpose. I had bought my condo and was back to doing the business again.

I was able to make it through the dot bomb era. I managed to keep growing. To get back into networking. Then I had a horrible accident. July 13, 2001 I had t-boned a truck. I was in my Jetta, no seatbelt and going 40MPH. I woke up minutes later after blacking out before my head hit the windshield. I woke up bloody, and people in my car talking to me. The car I hit was flipped on its side. The firefighters took me to the hospital. I hit on all of them even in my state of confusion. I had a golfball size hole on my head, my right hand (i'm right handed) was cut up, sliced up and full of glass. Even up to 2 weeks later, glass was still coming out of my hand. I had surgery on my head the next day. Yes, they sent me home with a hole in my head. Explains a lot I know. There was no evidence of the airbag going off and I should have been dead on the scene. I'm lucky and that moment was the wake up call to move forward. It wasn't an easy path however. Once one survives that, you start to question why you are alive and what if any is your purpose on this life.

I later joined NAWBO and my life changed after that. I no longer had to wing it. I had an ocean of mentors to help me. I learned how to network properly and with confidence. I got public speaking gigs. I won an award. I developed some of the best friendships and travel buddies from that group. Since then, it's been my mission to help other new business owners to not have to "wing it" through their business. In all honesty, I wouldn't trade what I did. They were all valuable life lessons. Interesting journeys.

Here were are and almost 12 years later, I've molded my business into a one-stop shop that is geared to helping most small business owners boost business. I've had the great opportunity in working with the 2007 and 2010 Superbowl committee as well as other large companies like Office Depot, Burger King, Jaguar. I've added new services including full color printing and social media marketing. I've seen amazing speakers at conferences and have met many of my great friends though those conferences and twitter. Even when business is slow, and it has been, there are still plenty of areas and people that give me inspiration to start new businesses and to give me the support and cheers to keep on trucking.

I am still actively involved in NAWBO and if you are a woman business owner, find a chapter near you and join. It's important to have that support system and resources at your fingertips.

So in a nutshell, that is where I came to be where I am now.

The day the Internet was saved... well SEO

This article is dedicated to a real superhero, She-Ra, AKA Rhea Drysdale.

For 2 years of battling in the courtroom and $17,000 later, with "he that shall not be named", over trademarking "SEO", Rhea won the battle on March 11, 2010. I'm ashamed to say that I had no idea what was going on, though I'm much more involved in the industry than 2 years ago.

However, since yesterday, the SEO industry has rallied to help recoup her expenses. While "db" tried to drag it on with no relevancy, she was persistant and hanged tough. I hate to see what the world would look like if she didn't step in for us.

It's amazing to see how tight knit the community is. Especially when they need to be there. It gives me a warm fuzzy feeling inside knowing that I'm part of this great community. That all those hours spent during the IM conferences actually do mean something and not just a bad hangover.

Thank you again Rhea for your time, effort and persistance. You are one in a million.

You can read her article here.

Geek Babe Barbie is the new KEWL

Tons of buzz going around about Computer Engineer Barbie. I'm thrilled personally. I remember when it wasn't cool to be a geek. Now, it's all the rage.Which is great but I'm sure we'll get some posers but that can be easily remedied because they will be called out as us geek gals have no problem telling it like it is. Those of you that know me, I'm pretty geeky and never hid it. I love anime, code and design, twitter, video games and Mythbusters, among 100s more. I come close to looking like geek barbie minus the extra pounds... I'm tall with my long blonde hair, blue eyes, and glasses, tho I don't have a pink laptop BUT I do have a red one. Does that count?

I'm surrounded on a daily basis, via Twitter, by awesome geeky gals (@kristy, @katemorris, @katebuckjr, @vicequeenmaria, @lyndseo, the list goes on and on). It's good that the movement is catching on. We deserve our time in the sun and I'm proud to be one of them. I am looking forward to proudly displaying my geek barbie in my office... next to my anime figurines. What... I did just say I love anime right!

Are you a geek gal? If so, tell me. Follow me on twitter, @amandastewart! I'd love to connect. Geek Gals Unite! Maybe I'll even compose a list... MAYBE!

3 unique things I love about #sofresh

The top 3 things I enjoyed about #sofresh

  1. Extra 30 minute break after each session
  2. The massage chairs
  3. Doubletree cookie and milk
I have more to write about but these are all unique to THIS conference.

Are you a social addict

This post is dedicated to my 15,000th Tweet! Thats right! 15,000!!!

Some may say I'm a social butterfly, but really, I'm just one helluva lucky person. I got involved with twitter back in March 2009. Its been the best relationship. I remember like it was just yesterday. @ShariMcConahay is the one to blame for setting us up. The first person I started to interact with was @MMwine. It was that initial engagement that had me going. I was going to my favorite Internet Marketing Conference #Pubcon and wanted to get to know the peeps that I'd be hanging out with all week. It was then I discovered the true power of Twitter and it was really the only way I knew what was going on from session to session as well as where everyone is at for parties. Which is really the most important.

Since then, I've made some of my best friends, @twittgoddess, @bachinaminuet, @vicequeenmaria @believepsalm91, @pamrockssofla and @katemorris just to name a few. The list is long and mighty my friends. Most of which have become my best friends and partners in crime.

Twitter is a place that gives you a choice of who your friends are. Not by growing up with them or because they are in the same path but because you chose to say "Follow".

Its the real deal. You can be who you are around them because well, they already know the trouble you cause, get into or are in. If someone doesn't like what you have to say then its as easy as "Unfollow". Which does happen and I take no offense.

The opportunities that have opened up also are amazing. Its also allowed me to create my own little tweetups like #Sushitweetup

What I'm getting at is that, without a doubt in my mind, I love my twitter friends and would do anything for them. While those that don't get twitter may think I'm crazy because they are internet friends, these are people that are in it. We've evolved from just tweeting but to face-to-face meetings and talking on the phone.

To you my friends, I am greatful every day for meeting you and having you in my life. I love you for you and all that you are. This post is dedicated to YOU.


Get your twitter mosaic here.