Internet Marketing for Beginners: How to Build Your Own Website?

Internet Marketer BeginnerA question that has often been asked is “Can I build a website myself?” In other words can I start a business online myself which includes building my own website? The answer is yes-compared to just a year or two ago when building a website required that you knew a lot about html and other things, or you had to hire someone to build your website for you for a “pretty penny.” But my how times have quickly change when it comes to building a website and how easier it is to start a business online and get up and running for very little cost-and we’re talking about nice looking sites! Now there are free website builders where you don’t have to purchase a domain name. Just enter on any internet search “Free Web Builders” and choose one.

Reasons For Building Your Own Website

  • Sell a product
  • Promote a service
  • Share or promote information
  • Start your own blog
  • Start a membership site
  • Share something professional like photography
  • Share something personal like a family story or history

Of course if you’re wanting to sell multiple products or create an online store, then you would have to have a commercial website built for you.

Building Your Site

There’s one important thing about free websites and that is you do not own it yourself-they do. You build a website like a Word-press website for an example where you own everything on it. If you already did a search for free websites, you probably noticed one called Word-Press.com. But at Word-Press.org you can build you a site that is all yours. Just purchase a domain name for no more than $15.00 per year. Then you will have to pay for hosting of that domain name for no more than about $15.00 per month. Again you do a simple search online for “web hosting” and choose one you like. Most web hosting allow you to purchase the domain name also. Be sure you put a lot of thought in choosing your domain name since this is very important in internet marketing to help people find your business online. If you don’t want to do this, then you can use a free website builder.

Building a site at word-press.org however is something you can do all yourself but you may need some assistance with tasks such as theme selections and plug-ins. What theme would be a good theme for you and what plug-ins will you need and how to find them and install them?

Where To Find Help

This is where a Social Media Manager or a Social Media Virtual Assistant can help you-but with some cost. You can for example consider those with the “Let’s Get Social” Social Media Managers group headed by a young woman name Kate Buck Jr. These Social Media Managers trained under this logo, are also specifically trained to set-up Word-Press sites. So if you do happen to have a small start-up budget and would like a little help, these individuals are not hard to find on the web. An example of a very simple word-press site is this one where you are reading this post.

Building your own website has truly gotten a lot easier in recent times. Free website builders like “Weebly,” “Web.com,” or “Yola,” and many others have easy to follow instructions. But before you start any business or build a site, DO RESEARCH. What would be a good product or service to promote? How would you choose a good name for your website? For more information on branding, visit http://regjackonline.com/?p=218. To find out how to research a good niche, this article will be helpful to you at http://ezinearticles.com/?&id=6633136. And if you would like to speak with a Social Media Manager, just click here.

Start Building Your Site

Hopefully this information will help you to get started as a beginner. Once you get your website created, internet marketing begins. You will learn much more as you go along such as how to get people to find your site online. But for now, do good research and get started building your site.

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How to Use Videos to Drive Traffic to Your Website

Videos-How ToWhether you own a website for business or personal use, videos can be huge for bringing the outside-never before been to your market, to your website. There was a time when having a video on your website was a challenge to make, somewhat expensive, and time-consuming. But my how times have changed! With the emergence of social media sites and tools, video creation and use can be quite simple, inexpensive, and a lot of fun. Here are just a couple of ways to use videos to drive traffic to your business or personal site.

How to Create Videos That Guarantees Traffic to Your Site.

With a computer webcam, camcorder, or your mobile, create very short videos and save them to your hard drive. There are even software that will allow you to extract video footage from a video cassette at a small cost. How can this be accomplished?

How to Install Videos From A Video Camera to Your Computer.

One way is get the StashBox-a video editing application from StashSpace.Com that is very easy to use and has a great import directly from your camcorder option. The application is free. Go to http://www.stashspace.com and sign-up for an account (Free and Paid account levels). Then on the my account tab click on the StashBox icon. Their record directly from camcorder feature is very intuitive. They also have great pick up the phone customer support in case you need any help.
Also you can send your video tapes to StashSpace to be transferred into a digital format (only $7 tape). You can edit the video online or receive your video back on data DVD or portable hard drive.

How to Use YouTube.

1. You must first sign up for a free YouTube membership to upload videos. With your membership, you will also be able  to do things like create viewing playlists and comment on other videos.
2. To get started, the first thing you should do is click on the “Upload ” icon in the upper right corner of the YouTube home page.
3. Once you’ve lo-gin in , you’ll be able to begin the two-step video upload process. First, you’ll need to provide some information about the video you’re uploading.
4. On the next page, you’ll be able to upload your video file and specify the privacy settings (public or private): If you’d like to only select people you invite to be able to view your videos, choose “Private.” Otherwise, if you’d like anyone in the world to be able to view your videos, you should select the “Public” option.
5. To upload your video, press the “Browse” button to locate the video file on your computer and then press the “Upload Video” button:
Once you’re video has been uploaded, You Tube will automatically create an embedded code to copy and paste it to your website. Just click on the “Share” button and simply copy the code and paste it where your site ask for the code on your website dashboard.

Why Videos Draws Traffic.

There are many video tools and website to use besides YouTube. Vimeo.com and Tubemogul.com are also popular video sites to upload and share not just your own videos but theirs also. Remember that videos are SEO friendly-especially YouTube since it is owned by Google. Google loves websites that use videos and gives you a plus score when ranking your site.
Since it is said that a picture is worth a thousand words, so are good use of videos. Just keep in mind that the shorter your video the more effective it is.

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8 Effective Ways to Increase Your Social Media Reach

For most most of us, increasing your reach is the ultimate goal of establishing and maintaining a social media presence. But first things is first. In order to make social media an effective tool to reach out to others, you first need to generate a following — fans for your Facebook page, followers for your Twitter account and LinkedIn company page, etc.

The more fans and followers you have for your social media presence, the better reach you’ll have. And better reach means the potential to generate more leads for business. So at the very core of social media for lead generation, you must take steps to increase your reach. To help you get started, here are 8 effective ways to expand your social media reach.

8 Ways to Attract More Social Media Fans and Followers

1. Optimize Your Social Presence. First and foremost, you must make sure your presence is optimized. Make sure the bios/profiles for your social media accounts are complete and that they include clear and concise descriptions of your business, your company logo, and your website URL. And now that social media updates are included in search results, be sure you’re also optimizing your tweets, Facebook posts, and LinkedIn company status updates with keywords appropriate for your business, which could help you get found in search.

2. Promote Your Social Presence Everywhere. And by everywhere, we mean everywhere — on various pages of your website, on your blog, on signage in your storefront if you’re a local business, in print advertising, on your business cards, in your email marketing messages. Many social media sites now have official ‘follow’ buttons you can include on your website and blog. If not, you can create your own button and link it to your social media account. Twitter, for example, offers an official follow button that enables your site visitors to become a Twitter follower with just one click!

3. Share Useful, Valuable Content. It’s not just enough to promote your presence. You need to make your presence is something that’s worth following in the first place. Make sure your tweets, Facebook posts, and LinkedIn updates consist of valuable, useful, and engaging content. Avoid product-focused content, and instead, make your social updates consist of educational content that has the potential to attract more fans and followers. People follow brands in social media because they’re looking for something useful, not because they want to know about how great your products and services are.

4. Add Social Sharing Buttons to All Your Content. Just as you should be promoting your social presence in as many places as possible, you should also be enabling your site visitors and email subscribers to share your content with their personal networks as easily as possible. Add social sharing buttons (e.g. “Share on Facebook” “Tweet This,” etc.) to all of your content — on individual blog articles, in email messages, on landing pages for eBook and webinar downloads, within the pages of your eBooks, etc. By evangelizing your audience to share your content, you’ll have better potential to reach a broader audience that extends beyond your direct network of fans and followers. And if those people like the content that their friends are sharing with them, they may be inclined to become direct followers of you, too!

5. Find, Follow, and Build Relationships With People In Your Industry. Use tools like Tweet Grader, Twitter Search, and Twellow to identify other Twitter users in your industry. Start following them, participating in discussions, and engaging in conversations. Find and follow other influential bloggers and re-tweet their content. Follow back anyone who follows you. Participate in Twitter chats and hash tag conversations like #FollowFriday (#FF). Start following some of the people your followers (and the people you’re following) are following too!

6. Interact With Fans and Followers. Just as you should be regularly sharing educational, insightful content, you should also be monitoring your presence and interacting with your fans and followers. Ask questions, be engaging, and participate in discussions to create a presence worth following.

7. Create a Custom Facebook Welcome Page. Follow this quick tutorial to create a custom Facebook landing page tab to welcome first-time visitors of your Facebook page. Set the page as your ‘Default landing Tab’ (you can do this when you’re editing your page under ‘Manage Permissions’), and use the tab to encourage new visitors to ‘like’ you right off the bat!

8. Offer Incentives for New Fans/Followers. Make it so your social media presence is a must-follow. Research shows that 58% of Facebook users expect exclusive offers from business pages, so consider offering exclusive promotions and offers available only to your social media followers. Create a Facebook contest and make it a requirement for users to ‘like’ you in order to be eligible. Create an offer available only to Twitter followers that can’t be obtained elsewhere. Make it so that users need to follow you in order to receive specific perks.

Building your social media reach will take some time, but if you are committed, you’ll start seeing results.
By Pamela Vaughan at Hubspot.com
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Social Media Marketing: Can You Make Money Blogging?

The answer to this question is ‘of course you can!’ You just need to know how.

In this post I am going to explain the answer to the question ‘Can you make money blogging’ and show you how.

The first thing you need to do before setting up your new blog is to decide what niche you want to write about. Try and stick to something you know about, that way it makes it easier when your writing your posts. Also bear in mind that if the niche is too competitive then you will struggle to rank in Google and earn an income. If the niche is too narrow and un-competitive, there won’t be enough traffic or income potential you can tap into to make it worth the effort.

Once you have a niche you want to start blogging with, you will need to narrow that niche down a bit more and find keywords relating to that niche. Let’s take blogging for example, this can be narrowed down to ‘make money blogging’, ‘how to blog’, ‘can you make money blogging’ and so on. These keywords will be a lot easier to rank for than just ‘blogging.

Now you have your niche and keywords, how do you make money with your blog?

There are a few popular methods to monetize your blog, and the most popular is contextual advertising, where contextual ads are displayed along side your blog content on different areas of your page. The favorite being Google Adsense but there are many others available online.

Another popular choice is affiliate marketing, especially physical products from places like Amazon and eBay. All you have to do is search Amazon and Ebay for your chosen keyword and write about it and leave a link to that product. When someone buys that product you earn a commission.

If no physical products exist for your chosen keyword then you can try Clickbank, and write a review about an eBook instead and earn commissions on every sale you make.

Aside from contextual ads and affiliate marketing, you can look into selling advertising space on your blog (usually through banners). Where someone pays you a set fee to place a banner on your blog.

I hope I have answered this social media marketing question, ‘can you make money blogging’, as you can see there are many ways to make money from your blog.

By Lee Griffiths Of Working Online Blog

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6 Ways to Determine If Need a VA to Manage Social Media?

Virtual AssistantThis is a follow-up to an earlier post entitled “What Is A Social Media Virtual Assistant?”

 

 

A good question that I am frequently asked-but before I answer, as a business owner, you will need to determine a few things to set a solid foundation for your social media plan.

1) Solid Marketing Plan? Do you have a solid marketing plan?  NOT just social media,which is still the foundation and fabric of your outreach. Remember, social media (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, Comeoninside.com are all TOOLS). Just like in a tool box, some tools are more effective for some projects than others.
My biggest heartbreak is to see an overwhelmed business owner who thinks they “have” to be on Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin, and YouTube all at the same time. The dirty little secret is, not all social media platforms are good for all businesses. Truthfully, if you are promoting a message to the wrong  Twitter followers for example, how much valuable time would you be wasting?

2) Social Media Platforms List. Make a list of the social media platforms you currently have a profile on (i.e. Facebook Fan Page, Linkedin, Twitter, YouTube, Come on inside, etc.) This will help you determine if you want to continue on these platforms.

3) Social Media Time. How much time are you or your team spending ENGAGING on these platforms? Not just pre-posting or “pushing” your info, but genuinely interacting with your Facebook fans, Linkedin connections, Twitter followers, etc?

4) Social Media Presence. How much time do you WANT to spend on any given platform? What type of engagement do your client desire? What type of relationship are your clients asking from you?

5) Determine Time Needed. Once you have a determination of the amount of TIME needed, then you will know if a social media  assistant is a good fit.
Your time has to be worth something. Just like you are an expert in your field, your Social Media VA would be the same managing your online campaigns for you.

Based on approved guidelines the Social Media VA would be responsible for:
•Connecting with various types of professionals
•Updating content and making sure the content is linked with appropriate keywords, seo, etc.
•Distributing blogs and events to various locations. A lot of work.
•A good social media assistant or manager will give you statistics on what your social media plan is achieving. Platforms include but not limited to: Facebook Fan Pages, LinkedIn, YouTube, Twitter, etc.

I would recommend that a Social Media VA only answers or responds to people on your behalf, with the business owner’s consent. Some business owners will want to reply to negative conversations themselves, let’s say on Facebook or Twitter for example, or some will  leave that entirely up to you. So it’s good to have an experience or trained Social Media Manager to help you, if that being the case.

6) Your Time’s Value in Dollars. Once you know the amount of time your company is spending on relating in social media, you figure out the cost to your business for those hours. If your team used those hours in a different area of your business – how much more successful will you be? That dollar figure is your new “marketing” budget for a Social Media Virtual Assistant. Their hourly rates will vary depending on location or specialty, from about $40 to $70/ hour. If you want expert results, then you will welcome an expert on your team as well.

By Angel Lebak of Virtual Assistant Social Media.com

Regardless if you hire a Social Media VA now or wait until your budget allows, social media management is quickly becoming a part of many companies marketing plans. So to be sure you have the accurate tools on hand to get the desired results, just click here for Contact information for RTJ Online-Social Media Assistant.

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How to Craft a Killer “Elevator Pitch” For Your Business

This article will explain the elements of a powerful elevator pitch and then walk you through how to craft your own.

What is an Elevator Pitch?

This is the 30-60 second business description of what you do and why someone should work with you. It’s called an “Elevator Pitch” because it describes the challenge: “How would you explain your business and make a sale if fate placed you in an elevator with your dream prospect and you only had the time it takes to get from the top of the building to the bottom?”

Why Is Having an Elevator Pitch So Important?
You only have 30-60 seconds to make a powerful first impression. The attention span of the average person is just 30 seconds before their mind starts wandering. The other reason is people have less time today. You need to grab them quickly or lose them forever.

Essential Elements of a Powerful Elevator Pitch
1. Concise. Your pitch should take no longer than 30-60 seconds.

2. Clear. Use language that everyone understands. Don’t use fancy words thinking it will make you sound smarter. Your listener won’t understand you and you’ll have lost your opportunity to hook them.

3. Powerful. Use words that are powerful and strong. Deliver the “Sis-Boom-Bang” to grab their attention!

4. Visual. Use words that create a visual image in your listeners mind. This will make your message memorable.

5. Tell a Story. A short story, that is. A good story is essentially this: someone with a problem either finds a solution or faces tragedy. Either type of story can be used to illuminate what you do.

6. Targeted. A good elevator pitch is aimed for a specific audience. If you have target audiences that are vastly different, you might want to have a unique pitch for each.

7. Goal Oriented. A great elevator pitch is designed with a specific outcome in mind. What is your desired outcome? You may have different pitches depending on different objectives. For instance do you want to: make a sale , gain a prospect, enlist support for an idea, or earn a referral.

8. Has a Hook. This is the element that literally snags your listener’s interest and makes them want to know more. This is the phrase or words that strike a chord in your listener.
How to Craft Your Killer Elevator Pitch

  • Write down what you do. Write it several different ways. Try writing it at least 10-20 different ways. Don’t edit yourself at all. You will edit later. This first step is for generating ideas. Don’t hold back. Ideas can be goofy, serious, wild, funny, or conservative. It doesn’t matter. The goal is to get at many ideas as possible down on paper.
  • Write a very short story that illustrates what you do for people. If necessary, the story can be long. You will boil it down later. Paint a picture with words.
  • Write down your objective or goal. Do you want to make a sale, gain a prospect, enlist support for an idea, earn a referral, or something else?
  • Write 10-20 action statements. This is a statement or question designed to spur the action associated with your goal.
  • Record yourself. You can use Dragon Dictation if you don’t have a recording device. Dragon Dictation is a free phone based service that translates your messages into text as well as providing an online link to the original audio.
  • Let it sit. Come back to what you’ve written with fresh eyes and ears the next day or later on in the same day.
  • Highlight the good stuff. Listen and read through what you’ve recorded and written. Then either highlight or circle the phrases that hook you with clear, powerful, and visual words. Obviously not all the words will fall into these categories. You still need connector words, but you want them to be as few as possible.
  • Put the best pieces together. Again you’ll want to write down several versions of this much tighter pitch. Tell us what you do and why people should want to do business with you. Include elements from your story if you can fit it in.
  • Do a final edit cutting as many unnecessary words as possible. Rearrange words and phrases until it sounds just right. Again, the goal is 30-60 seconds maximum.
  • Dress Rehearsal. Run it by as many people as you can get to listen to you. Get feedback from colleagues, clients you trust, friends and family.
  • Done for now. Take your final elevator pitch and write it down. Memorize and practice it until it just slides off your tongue naturally.
  • Continue to improve. Over time, always be on the listen for phrases that you think could make your elevator pitch more clear and impactful. And then test it out. Every once in a while you will probably benefit by starting from scratch because things always change: you, your business , your goals, and your clients’ needs.

By K Stone of Life Learning Today

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10 Efficient Tips to Keep Your Personal Life and Still Be a Social Media Rockstar

I think we can all feel confident when saying “social media is here and here to stay.” What we probably are not so comfortable with is juggling our social media endeavors with our personal life. I’m sure social media doesn’t take away all of your personal life, but it can impose on it greatly if you aren’t careful. There are probably people who haven’t even begun to dabble in the social media
world for fear of not having time or it taking up too much time. Great point! However, at this point in the world, you really can’t afford not to be a part of social media. In either case, listed below are 10 tips to avoid losing out on life and how to manage your social media time.

1. Just Skim: When beginning a promotion, most of the first phase is conducting research and reading. Whether it’s Facebook, Twitter, blogs or websites, to cut down on time spent, just skim it. By doing this, you can pull what you feel is worth spending your time reading and not have to worry about the rest.

2. Use your RSS Feed: Be selective when subscribing to different RSS feeds, but definitely use it. Any information you want to catch up on will be listed there. These same rules apply to who you follow on Twitter and newsletters you subscribe to. Choose wisely and be sure whatever it is adding value.

3. Consider a Timer: If you’d really like to manage your online time, set an allotted amount of time dedicated for this. It may help to set a timer and when it goes off, you’ll know it’s time to move on to something else.

4. Automate whenever possible: Automating can be the key to your online happiness. When you have autoresponders or auto content generators in place they can save you scads of time. An easy and quick way to implement this might be your newsletter sign-ups. There are a variety of systems that will allow you to easily automate sign-ups. Even if you have a giveaway for signing up, the system can handle this too

5. Consolidate, Don’t Reiterate: If you are trying to keep up with everything, your Twitter, Facebook, Squidoo and a blog, there are ways to minimize updating them all. You can do so by doing it all at once. “How?” you ask. All of these programs can be linked together so when you update one, it will go out to all social media accounts. Many of these sites can be linked together and to a main site. This main site can be your blog, if you wish. Twitterfeed is a great place where you can update your Twitter, every time you update your blog. Your Twitter can be linked to Facebook and Squidoo.

6. Develop a Routine: Dedicate a specific time for social media on a regular basis and stick with it. It should be long enough to update your blog, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.

7. Stick to Essentials: The internet can be considered a great influence on “lost time.” One second you’re looking at a TV listing, and then something about how to make money online, and then possibly an ad for shoes we just have to have. Four hours later and you’ve found new interests in paranormal studies, cherry tomatoes and how to move to Alaska. Stick to what you were planning to do and then leave. Also, over time you will learn where to spend your time the best and it will get easier to stay on track.

8. Don’t be a Follower: Many people may give you their advice on which sites are the best for what. The thing to do is to decide which social media tool will benefit your needs the best. You don’t have to use them all, and if one isn’t working for you, go try a different one.

9. Plan: To make sure you’re spending this social media time wisely and to its full advantage, it may be good to make a simple plan. With your “dedicated social media time,” knowing to stick with the essentials and a routine put into place, developing a list of “to-dos” and goals around these should help you to stay focused. If you’re focused and determined, you’re bound not to waste any time.

10. Hire a Social Media Virtual Assistant: Ultimately, if you don’t feel you have time to even start a social media quest, or if you’ve tried and it’s just not for you but you still want to take advantage of all the awesomeness that it can bring, hiring a social media virtual assistant is another option and a fantastic idea. For example, http://regjackonline.com can help you quickly, effectively, and it’s affordable. Reggie at RTJ Online, can help create, manage and update all of your social media needs, which can be WAY more rewarding than doing it yourself if you feel like you’re in a crunch. So don’t miss that dinner date! Cruise on over to his website and see how many things he can do to help guide your social media presence, while keeping it updated and running efficiently.
By Dawn Pigoni of http://besocialworldwide.com

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What Your Body Language Say About You-Professionally

Whether it’s a business or personal interaction, multiple studies show that as much as 50-90% of the communication is nonverbal. That means that people who are addicted to text messaging and e-mail may be sending only half the message, and receivers often misinterpret even that half.

Yet the use of text messaging for business purposes continues to grow, in concert with more of Gen-Y entering the workplace, and a continuing increase in the global rate of texting by everyone. This total rate now exceeds seven billion texts sent per day, according to a new mobile marketing website (more than one per day for every person on earth).

But are these text messages an efficient and appropriate business tool? Where body language is part of the message, it definitely is not.

Sure, there are many cases where a 10-word text message, or 140 character social media tweet, will communicate a simple message more efficiently than a face-to-face discussion. But most business processes, like negotiating a contract, closing a sale, customer support, or managing employees, are much more complicated than just words.

Eye Contact

The eyes are the most powerful part of our body language, and can express everything from happiness, annoyance, interest, to pain. Frequent eye contact is interpreted as honesty and forthrightness. Staring is interpreted as too aggressive. These are obvious in person, but lost in a text message.

Posture

If you are trying to appear dominant or authoritative, stand erect with shoulders back. A slumped position usually indicates insecurity, guilt, or weakness. A dominant sounding text message, on the other hand, generates anger rather than acceptance.

Mirroring

 

Most people feel more comfortable and open with people in a similar position to themselves. An example would be sitting down to meet with a key vendor, rather than standing to deliver demands. Good managers practice this one for personnel issues.

Handshake

This, of course, comes into play to signal openness or goodwill at the beginning of an interaction, and agreement at the end. Remember, a nice firm palm-to-palm handshake is important for sincerity. This cultural icon is totally missing from text messages and e-mails.

Hand-to-face

Even when the words sound good, hand-to-face movements such as holding the chin or scratching the face shows concern or lack of conviction. If a person is covering his mouth while telling you something, he may be lying.

Facial Expression

A critical message delivered with a smiling face will have a totally different impact than one delivered with an angry face. “Smiley face emoticons” were invented to simulate this in text messages, but they don’t always work, because the sincerity is lost.

Arms and legs position

Folded arms or crossed legs, perhaps turning away slightly, indicates a lack of interest and detachment. Later uncrossed arms and legs may be a sign of acceptance of your position or terms.(Top image)  An extrovert will have toes pointed out, introvert will keep them pointed in. None of these come through in texting.

Space occupied

Some people stand up and move around to be more dominant, maybe even threatening. Even sitting, you can stretch your legs to occupy more space. Standing while talking on the phone will make your voice sound more urgent. Maybe all CAPS will satisfy this one.

Overall, the most successful people in business learn to use the right tool for the right job. I’m supportive of using text messaging for agreeing on a time and place for a customer visit, but when I read that text messages are the new pink slips for layoffs, that’s just wrong!

By Martin Zwilling of http://businessinsider.com.

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