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How To Erase Your Online Identity

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Online Identity Erase
So you want to go off the grid. There are various reasons why you might want to erase your online identity. You don’t like potential employers Googling you, or maybe you just want to be hard to find. Going off the grid depends on how much you put out there.

Erase or Deactivate All Social Media Accounts

Most of us have Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn accounts. Removing or deleting these accounts is the first step to deleting your online identity. Try to do a Google search of your name and chances are, the first results are the ones of your social media accounts. If you want to remove search results, set your profiles to private. It won't erase your online identity, but at least you won't show up on search engines. For Facebook and Twitter, there is a deactivate button that can erase your profile. LinkedIn has a "close your account" link. Google+ is trickier because it is tied to your entire Google account, including email, calendar, and other accounts you use Google to sign in for.

Remove Search Engine Results

Now that you've erased your social media footprint, start deleting unwanted search results. You will want to know where you're showing up so the first step is to Google yourself and bookmark the search results. You have to be patient here, because the only way to remove yourself from these websites is to communicate with the site owner directly. Drop them a quick email to ask them to delete you. These might be websites of old employers, family members who blog and mentioned you in one of their posts or donation pages you supported. This takes time, but eventually your name will be erased from these sites.You can also ask the search engine to remove the pages. Google, Google Images, and Bing have a request form you can fill out with the URL you don’t want to be indexed again. It does not always work, but it's still worth a shot.

Remove Background Check or Public Record

Information could still be out there so your next step is to check personal data by digging into databases. Some sites to check are:  Zabasearch - a database for telephone numbers and addresses.  Intelius – They perform background checks and criminal records. You can pay them to get results, but they can also be used so that you get the general idea by searching your name.  Spokeo – is like Intelius where you have to pay to get the exact results but can be used to get the general idea of what’s out there.  Pipl – aggregates searches and can be used to look for info that have slipped through the cracks.If you don’t want to go through results one by one, you can use services like DeleteMe to do all of this for you.

Delete Email Accounts

If you really want to stay off the grid, you will need to delete your email accounts. You can usually find instruction on how to delete your email account and profile by following instructions given by your email provider.

Be Anonymous

The Internet can be useful, but if you don’t want more records of yourself on the web, you can become anonymous by making fake accounts. You can join social media again by using a fake identity. This way, you remain anonymous but can still use the web. If you want access to email, you can create one with a different name with Gmail or Outlook. You can also use a pseudonym for services you need.Do not expect immediate results if you want to erase your online identity. Going off the grid cannot be accomplished in a day. Chances are, there will still be info about you even if you thought you've deleted everything and you will just have to learn to accept that.

Growth Hacking

One Thing Every Entrepreneur Needs To Do

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Nowadays there's no shortage of entrepreneurs and startups in any major city you visit.  Where ever there's a startup scene, there's bound to be plenty of entrepreneurs around every corner awaiting for their opportunity to shine.  Unfortunately the majority of entrepreneurs have a laundry long list of things to do, things they must do, and things they aspire to do one day, but very few of them have done the ONE thing that many successful entrepreneurs nowadays are starting to do.  Can you guess what it is?

Apply To Work At A Startup

That's right...applying for some free (or paid) internship work and actually coming to work.  It's a very basic and fundamental skill that very few of us ever learn to do.  Today's entrepreneurs are very different from entrepreneurs in the past in that they're more prideful and most of them will boast about quitting their high-paying job and bootstrapping their struggle.  Very few will tell a more modest yet realistic tale.

Why Work At A Startup?

Simply put, to run a successful company you have to understand how the company works and how each member fits into their role.  Just by working at a startup, you'll be able to see the realistic and down to earth culture that's unfiltered and true to it's nature.  Often times we only see or hear of a startup once they're past the "Struggle" stage, and you never see much of that stage in person.  You only hear about it in their stories and interviews, but you know it's inherently what made them so great today...was the fact that they survived that stage.  So what's a better way to experience and understand how successful startups navigate that early struggle stage than to actually work at one? So if you're an aspiring entrepreneur that's looking to take your first step, consider looking for an internship or a job at a startup near you and experience the early-struggle first hand before you decide to commit to one yourself.  You "will" definitely learn a trick, or two...or three.  And by the time it's your turn, you'll have MUCH better chances.
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Growth Hacking

6 Ways to Build Your Online Presence and Increase Sales in the Process

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If utilized properly, the internet has the power to increase your sales no matter the size of your business. This is because the internet has the power to reach a large scope of audience 24/7. Most people rely heavily on social media to increase their online presence with the hopes of increasing sales. Many people hesitate with online marketing thinking that it is expensive especially for small businesses. There is also the issue of competition in the internet which is fiercer compared to competition in the real world.However, if you really want to build your online presence and use it to boost your sales, there are ways of doing so. Here are 5 easy ways of building your online presence and increasing your sales.

Interact on Social Media

Social media is a flexible platform and ideal for small businesses to make their presence known. The key to having a successful social media presence is interacting with your followers on a regular preferably daily basis. If you don’t have time to monitor social media activities daily, assign an employee to do this for you.Interaction is important because customers want to feel important and appreciate it when their feelings and concerns are heard and addressed. Having a Facebook or Twitter presence has a big impact on customer loyalty. Aside from this, you can gain insight from your relationship with customers on social media.

Claim Your Online Real Estate

To increase your presence and boost sales, boost your brand presence by claiming your online real estate. Get on Google Maps, Google My Business, Foursquare, Yelp, create profiles in social media accounts like Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, Google+, Youtube and the like. This will help boost your SEO rankings too while giving your brand recognition.While you're at it, get reviews and testimonials. Pick good review sites such as Yelp, Facebook and Google My Business not only for brand recognition but also to boost your credibility as a business.

Invest In Paid Social Media Marketing

Paid advertising on social media can be a cost-effective way to get brand recognition and boost sales. One of the best reasons to invest in paid social media advertising is its ability to target a specific set of audience and analyze how effective it is in doing so. When you advertise on Facebook for example, it will ask you how much you are willing to pay per click every 1,000 impressions and give you feedback on how each impression converts into leads and sales.You can think of paid advertisements as giant billboards and TV adverts. By advertising on social media you are building an online presence by focusing your campaign on impressions instead of clicks and follows.

Invest in Paid Search Engine such as Google

One of the most powerful tool a website owner has for boosting sales is paid search engine advertising because it clearly states your customer's intention. When a customer searches for something on search engines, he or she is giving a clear signal of their needs and desires. Google for example, allows users to set keywords, choose specific categories and demographics ad location so that your target audience is narrowed down and you get results that is relevant to your content and promotion.

On-Site Blogging

Provide thought leadership for your customers and readers by writing a blog on your website. This can serve two purposes: you can boost your SEO content by causing your website to appear organically on search results page and blogs that show thought leadership for your industry gives customers and prospective customers a reason to trust you, making you and your business more credible and authoritative. These efforts will increase your SERPs rankings which can lead to a boost in leads and sales.Your blog should encourage customers and readers to contact you to discuss matters further. There are also some people who are just looking for advice instead of a purchase. If you give them expert advice, they are more likely to buy from you.

Participate In Industry Forums

As with blogs, participating in industry forums will make you more credible and authoritative in the eyes of your customers and prospective customers. The more credibility and authority you have, the more customers are likely to trust you. Forums are a great venue to build credibility and reputation and lots of forums allow signature links with your website or social media profiles embedded.However, it is good to remember that it is not about bombarding these forums with your offers and promotions. It is about adding value, building a credible online presence and establishing yourself or your business as an expert in your field or industry. If you get this right, sales will not be far behind.
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Business

New Tech in Old Places

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Our environments are made up of the places we frequent throughout life.  Most of us have a home, a job, and have gone to school.  With the advent of the internet, many of these classic environments are evolving to accommodate a world that is becoming evermore interconnected.  Here’s a look at how everyday spaces are integrating new technologies.

At Home

Like the vacuum cleaner and microwave, kitchen appliances were slow to evolve after their domestic debuts in the fifties.  Only now with the advent of appliances being “smart” are we seeing new innovations in the kitchen.  Everything at home from the fridge, security system, to the tv now come in “smart” options allowing devices to connect with each other and be accessed remotely.
Homes now have options to be built or retrofitted into being more sustainable.  It is already common to see homes fitted with solar panels, providing power not only to homeowners but also providing excess power to their cities.  New innovations in material science are creating solar panel “film” that can adhere to existing windows, providing homes and buildings more more aesthetic ways to capture clean energy.

In the Classroom

Education is an area that has infinite benefits to reap since the dawn of the internet.  Less than three decades ago it was rarity for a school to have a computer.  Today, it is a rarity for a school not to have one.  Learning is no longer limited to books and chalkboards. Creative new channels for learning are now being found through virtual and augmented reality, 3D printing, and game-based learning.Virtual and augmented reality adds a dimension of interactivity that is previously unprecedented.  Instead of simply looking at a page of a history book, students will soon be able to virtually visit different places and times.  Similarly, 3D printing offers the ability to add tactile experience when studying complexities such as molecules.  A 3D printer also gives students the opportunity to learn about custom manufacturing and design.Game-Based Learning is a brilliant new technique in teaching that combats student’s ever shortening attention spans.  This method concentrates on interactivity and “gameplay” in learning.  By incentivising students to “win” better grades, school will be less like pulling teeth and more like playing while learning.Cloud computing is an important next step in optimizing how students do their work.  Although a futurist classroom is on the cusp of reality, kids today can still use excuses like “my dog ate my homework”.  With cloud computing, students can efficiently turn in work, check into classes, and have discussions without their dog’s hungry involvement.

Building Efficiency into our Infrastructure

Many changes are not only happening inside but outside as well.  Our infrastructure is due for a technological makeover.  Many cities have begun to offer hubs for free wifi.  Many parks now offer charging stations and wifi.  In New York passengers can now take advantage of free internet service in select subway stops, increasing productivity for workers during their commute time.  Building materials themselves are going through their own evolutions.  Solar Roadway is a company manufacturing solar powered hexagonal road panels.  This year, the first road of this kind will be installed into a section of route 66.Innovators such as Elon Musk are introducing concepts such as a completely solar roof.  Creating an option for solar panels as a permanent fixture as opposed to temporary modular panels is the first step of many to building efficiency and sustainability into our environments. Many more advances in every field are beginning to grow in coevolution with our age old environments.  Increasing efficiency and connectivity is making the world a smaller and more convenient place.  Like archeologists admiring the engineering of Roman aqueducts, we will one day look back at this time and marvel at the progress and creativity our ingenuity has brought to fruition.  The world we live in today is literally, ‘the state of the art’.
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