Chris Windley adds marketing and salesforce management to Rainmaker site

Posted by Chris on December 30th, 2009

When the M&A Rainmaker blogsite was first launched it focussed on selling, investing in, buying and raising finance for a business.

Actually, at the time of writing, we found ourselves driven toward the provision of ( internet ) marketing and salesforce management information and tips.

This is the way that I intend to proceed into 2010 i.e. to be driven by discussions with friends, colleagues and clients and publish this on the M&A Rainmaker site if appropriate.

In 2009 we had contributions from  sales and business consultant, Richard Spooner, who I have known for many years.  Again I intend to bring in specialists in particular areas where appropriate. Thanks are also appropriate to Nikki Pilkington ( for SEO and Internet Marketing advice ) and to Howard at Seventh Wave Media for contributions during 2009.

Social Networks are the key to High Google Rankings ??

Posted by Chris on December 30th, 2009

If I Google myself it’s mainly the social network entries that come to the top – LinkedIn, Facebook etc etc

Someone sent me this link today

to people who reckon that they can SEO your LinkedIn profile page so that you come to the top of Google. ( Of course we all know that there are no guarantees on this front !! ).

I just thought that it was interesting and a sign of the times !!

Asterisk based phone systems in Dorchester Dorset

Posted by Chris on December 22nd, 2009

If you are looking for Asterisk based phone systems in Dorchester Dorset then please give my friends at Poundbury Systems in Dorchester a call.

They  provide computer and Asterisk based telephone systems and related software, hardware and networks to small and medium sized businesses. They have many years of experience of doing so and  are technically very competent. 

They  use plain English wherever possible rather than technical jargon and  focus on what technology can do for your business rather than bits and bytes.

Many of thier customers have confirmed that they live up to thier philosophy and objectives and you will find customer testimonials in the news section on thier website.

Please contact Clare at Poundbury for clear, simple advice on how to make technology work for you.

IT services and solutions provider 365iT appoints Pieter Hooft as non-executive director

Posted by Chris on December 19th, 2009

IT services and solutions provider 365iT appoints Pieter Hooft as non-executive director

Appointment of Non-Executive Director

Basingstoke 21st December 2009: 365 iT plc, the IT services and solutions provider, is very pleased to announce the appointment of Pieter Hooft as a non-executive Director of the
Pieter Hooft is currently Managing Director of UK Investments for LMS Capital plc, the LSE listed international investment group. He has over 15 years’ investment experience in
management buyouts and development capital in the UK and across Europe.
Commenting on this appointment, Peter MacLean, 365 iT’s
chairman and chief executive, said: “I am delighted to
welcome Pieter to the Board. He has extensive experience of
helping companies achieve rapid and profitable growth and I
look forward to his contribution to the Board and to his
expertise and support for the continued development of the
Pieter previously worked at Apax Partners and JPMorgan
Partners. Since joining LMS Capital in November 2006, Pieter has joined the boards of
Updata Infrastructure Holdings Ltd, Entuity Ltd, Kizoom Ltd, ITS Engineered Systems Inc and
First Index Inc.
Pieter is a Dutch national and is fluent in French and German. He was educated in The
Netherlands and at HEC Paris.

Notes to the Editor
365 iT plc was founded in 2005 and now employs over 85 people. Through its wholly owned
subsidiaries (365 iTechnology Ltd, 5i Ltd and 7 Global Group Ltd), the group provides an extensive
range of IT services and solutions that address the nine strategic functional areas in IT operations and
management: IT Managed Services, Unified Communications, Business Continuity, Data Backup, IT
Security, Virtualisation, Networks, Storage Solutions and Infrastructure solutions.
Stephen Bean
Tel: +44 (0) 7747 100000

The Great Internet & Social Media Marketing Experiment – Day Three

Posted by Chris on December 19th, 2009

Yes, well it may APPEAR as though nothing has happened but actually – in the background it has.

I have been talking to Howard at Seventh Wave Media ( ) and Nikki at Nikki ( ) about what we are doing and I have one more ” adviser ” that I want to involve in the experiment.

Obviously the companies that we are working with have loads of other things to do other than this.

The main tasks that we have set have been for them to produce initial lists of what they want to be found on the Internet for. We have also given them an appreciation of the fact that when we try and get them found for these things ( and any others that we come up with after discussion ) some of them will be harder to do than others. So we are looking for some flexibility and lateral thinking. We also asked then to think about thier main products and services and then prioritise the keywords/phrases in line with what is most important to them.

Nikki made a great point which was that we not only need to look at what they want to be found for but also what it is worth putting the effort into being found for  ( effort/reward ratio ?? ). This made me think about a Cisco chart I once saw where they plotted all the things that they wanted to do from an Internet presence perspective on a graph of ” How difficult to do and how costly ” to ” What benefit would be derived from it ” and then picked off all the easy to do and derived great benefit points first and then left the harder more expensive and lower return ones until last.

This went well with the fact that we gave advice on the fact that some things are much harder to rank for than others and we have various ways of finding out how easy it will be to rank for different things.  If we can find relevant, less competitive keywords it will be much easier to be found and rank for these than it will be  for competitive ones.

Anyway we have initial lists back from both companies now and we are looking at these. I did have a bit of a test yesterday using Ecademy posts to see if I could get a ranking for a couple of the terms and I did get a number one listing for one of the terms within an hour and a middle of page one ranking for another within 12 hours. So, both of these terms look doable.

We have also asked the companies to get Google Webmaster Tools ( ) and Google Analytics ( )    installed on thier websites so that we can look at the effect that all of our effort has on traffic to thier website.

Remember, at the end of the day we are interested in how much business they get out of all this but first we will look to improve visibility, findability and then visitors to them and thier websites. We will be looking for all forms of inbound enquiries – emails, posts, phone calls etc etc

We also had a discussion about email-shots with one of the companies and I have put up a few comments about this both here on this blog and elsewhere. It was quite interesting looking at various email-shot companies and looking at what other people were doing with thier own email-shots. This led to an emphasis on the fact that email-shots are connected into the New Media Marketing Whirlpool in a number of ways eg the email-shot will refer people back to the website, offer links to eg Twitter,Facebook etc pages and needs a url with a relevant decsription so that the email can be posted on various Social Network and Information sites.


Posted by Chris on December 18th, 2009

It’s a bit techie but I have just been thinking about this area quite a bit. It’s fully explained in the link above.

So, simply we are talking about finding “achievable” keywords where achievable means that you have a chance of ranking high in Google for those keywords.

A simple way of finding keywords that are achievable is compiling a list of relevant keywords and then typing some of those keywords into Google and seeing how many results you get

The other day when I was very grateful to BMW Sytner High Wycombe ( for fixing my car )  I thought that I would say so publicly in a few places. I Googled ” BMW Sytner High Wycombe ” and saw that I got the following results:

  Results 110 of about 2,570 for bmw sytner high wycombe. (0.14 seconds)

Oh, ok I thought, so not that many then { ” BMW sytner ” gives Results 110 of about 30,600 for bmw sytner. (0.42 seconds) and ” BMW ” gives   Results 110 of about 183,000,000 for bmw. (0.21 seconds) }.

I wonder if I can get something to rank on the front page pretty quickly ???

I know ( because I have done it loads of times before and because it is a pretty highly ranked website to Google ) that I can post something on Ecademy and it will sometimes appear within 20 minutes or so ( Google index’s every 20 minutes ).

So ( at the time of writing ) this Google

has this post

In the middle of the front page. Hopefully BMW Sytner will appreciate the thought !!

As you will find out in a following post we are asking a couple of companies that we are working with to write a list of all the keywords that they want to be found for and then we are going to prioritise those and look at what we think we can rank high for pretty quickly.

email and Social Networks

Posted by Chris on December 17th, 2009

I don’t really consider myself to be an expert at email marketing ( but I know people who are very experienced ) but I have a couple of views in relation to email in association with social networks ( Facebook, Twitter, Ecademy, LinkedIn etc ) and information sites ( Digg, StumbleUpon,Delicious etc ).

The main thing that I want to see is a weblink for the email, ideally with a relevant url and /or a share facility so that the email can be posted on the Social Networks and Information sites.

This is the weblink for The Glan Christmas email that we have just done.

The reason that you want a web link is that you can then post this link to multiple social networking platforms very quickly.
Why is this important ?? Because you get VERY rapid exposure of your newsletter/news/announcements to ( depending on the number of SN connections you have ) thousands of people AND you get links back to your website ( in the case of The Glan emailer because the page is on The Glan website ).
So, you bang out your newsletter, then you post to eg Facebook ( that’s a couple of thousand viewers and a link back ), then Twitter ( same ) , then Ecademy ( same ) then LinkedIn ( same ) etc etc etc
In the space of minutes you have massive ( depending on the network of the person that posts ) exposure of the one piece of work. This is one aspect of what I call ” rippling ” ( think, you just dropped a pebble in the pond and the ripples are going out or you dropped one pebble in your email database pond, another in your Facebook pond, another in your Twitter pond etc etc )
Now, as I was writing this I was collecting together some recent email-shots that I had received and this one was of particular interest

for a number of reasons: It was in an area of interest to me ( cloud computing ) and it had a relevant weblink ( the one above ) and it had a share facility included. While I was looking around at the email I accidentally clicked on the ” Chat with an expert online ” button and that led to this conversation with Chloe:

Hello. welcome to CloudHosts. How can I help you today?

You are now chatting with Chloe

Chloe: Good afternoon

Chloe: Welcome to Cloudhosts, may I take your name please?

you: Hi Chloe

you: Chris Windley

Chloe: Hi there Chris! How can I help you today?

you: Hi Chloe, Got to be honest and say that I was looking at the emailer I just got and pressed the chat button by mistake !! I could lie but you know ..

Chloe: I appreciate your honesty! Is there anything I can help you with at all Chris? What did you think of the information in the email?

you: It is an area of interest and I was quite impressed with the email system ( and now the chat system !! ) !! You at FBT Media or UK Hosts ??

Chloe: I work for UKFast, which is a sister company of cloudhosts. We work closely with fresh business thinking to try and accelerate the business of our clients and new clients. I’m glad the chat system impresses!!! 🙂

you: Yep – I am impressed all around in fact I am blogging about this as we speak !! So I don’t waste your time let me review the email itself in more detail and come back to you. You obviously have my email and you can Google me for more info 🙂 Have a great day, Regards, Chris.

Chloe: Thanks Chris – please do not hesitate to get back to me my email address is and my number is 0800 458 4545

you: cool Chloe very cool 😉

Chloe: 🙂 I look forward to hearing from you Chris

you: Thank you.

Now, Chloe is a really nice girl and it’s clear that email marketing is not only connecting into the Social Media space but also leading you into direct discussion with people like Chloe.

Of course email-shots can also tell you when someone opened the email, if they re-open it, if they follow any links, if they forward it etc etc

So, although email-shots can be described as ” Push marketing ” they also bridge into ” Pull marketing “.  


Well done BMW Sytner High Wycombe !!

Posted by Chris on December 17th, 2009

Well done BMW Sytner High Wycombe !!

It’s got to be said that I have not been a fan of BMW service over the last few years but yesterday I was REALLY impressed with the service that I got from BMW Sytner High Wycombe. So impressed that I have posted this on Facebook and Twitter and sent them an email:

Chris Windley OMG !! Driving down the M40 today and the windscreen wipers decide to go out of sync and one rips the other off and throws it over the car !! eeeeek !! Worse – it’s the driver side ! worse – it’s sleeting !!! Anyway call BMW Sytner High Wycombe and Alison guides me in and gives me ( good ) coffee. Colin in service sort…s the car out AND gives me a very reasonable bill AND gets my car washed !!!!! Now this IS service. Missed my meeting but they had Internet access and I was on the phone anyway. Very impressed !!!

I am even more impressed to have recieved a text this morning asking how it went and for feedback !!!!

Basic Rules of Social Media ROI

Posted by Chris on December 17th, 2009

Very useful !!

SEO is not important any more !!

Posted by Chris on December 17th, 2009

How very interesting !!

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