Christian Ross

Proofreading is hard.

But it’s necessary.

In my Monday morning ‘down a rabbit hole,’ I was looking into a local restaurant for dinner with some friends for this evening. I hit their menu to see if there’s anything that I’d be interested in (there is) and then I got distracted by the rest of their website (as I often do). I ended up on the Blog page wondering just what a local Mexican restaurant might be blogging about these days. Riveting stuff for most of you, I’m sure.

While I applaud the efforts of any business to actually take heed of the recommendations we often give in the web world of, “provide your customers fresh and relevant content on your website,” it was easy to see that this blog has just been farmed out to a content factory to generically produce Mexican restaurant/food related content. I’m not dogging the practice or the effort but it doesn’t take an expert to see this content for what it is — in this case, blog posts written more for the SEO (search engine optimization) purpose of getting Google to send them traffic rather than focusing on content written for humans first.

The reason for me to come to my own blog and point all of this out? Just to note that if they’re going to continue utilizing a content creation company (which I fully applaud the utilization of a good one for a lot of businesses), I’d at least encourage them to proofread or a least loosely scan the content before (or just after) it gets posted on their website.

Case in point:

In their second most recent blog post titled, “How to Tell if You’re Eating at An Authentic Mexican Restaurant in Grapevine Texas,” I find it interesting that they conclude their entire blog post with the following lines, “If you are ready to experience some real authentic Mexican food Grapevine TX, contact us to make a reservation today. It will be our pleasure to serve you our most delicious dishes.”

I only call attention to the fact that they’re pretty clear in the few paragraphs prior, outlining what restaurants a diner should avoid due to the establishment’s inability to be “authentic.” The two that jumped out at me quickly were their points that Mexican restaurants selling ‘queso’ and ‘frozen margaritas’ were obviously inauthentic — and while I’m not here to dispute the authenticity of these statements — I would like to call the attention to their Dinner Menu page where they clearly are not afraid to sell me both queso (multiple types) and frozen margaritas.

Mesa Grapevine - Mexican food gaffe

But hey, something’s better than nothing, right?

If you need me this evening, you can find me dinning at the possibly-authentic Mesa Grapevine while sampling some of their finest queso and frozen margaritas.

P.S. Mesa, happy to give you a recommendation or two for content creation (or at least proofing help) companies if you’d like!

Make Your Bottle Count

Project7 has been a client of ours for going on probably 4-5 years now, we can’t get enough of them and hopefully they haven’t grown tired of us either. Their mission is ‘Products for Good’ and they are pioneers in the social entrepreneurship arena with a passion for making a difference. They’ve figured out a way to let you be a blessing to others just by making purchases you’re probably already making – gum, mints, water, etc.

We’re pretty stoked about their newest partnership just announced yesterday that will allow them to make an even greater impact on this world. From a marketer’s standpoint, I can’t think of a much easier partner brands with! Starting today, you can now purchase specially marked Project7 bottles of 7UP/Diet 7UP/Cherry 7UP/Diet Cherry 7UP and under the cap you will find a code that allows you to help make a difference in 3 easy steps:

Boom. Done. You just made an impact on this world.

To announce the partnership, they’ve created a pretty awesome stop motion video hand-drawn by one of my good buddies and all around talented guy, Darren Dunham. We’re really working hard to spread the word and would love it if you’d take 2.5 minutes to watch it and possibly even help spread the word about it! Would love to see this thing actually go viral and bring more attention to Project7 and all that they’re doing to bring change in this world. Shareable links below the video.

Make Your Bottle Count

Like it enough to share it?

If you’re the kind to post on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, or any of the other places you reside on the net, the best link to use is probably: http://project7.com/7up

The video is on both Vimeo and YouTube so whatever tickles your fancy.

The Listserve: Start a business

I’ve subscribed to The Listserve for a while now but never really been prompted to respond to anything. I won’t discourage you from subscribing on your own but I’ll also add that there’s not much your missing out by not subscribing. Currently, there’s 23,425 subscribers from around the world who agree to be sent one email per day from the Listserve Lottery Winner for that day with anything they want to write about. I signed up because I like the concept but most of the messages end up being, “just smile and it will all be better,” “if we all traveled the world would be a better place,” “down with organized religion cause it’s the root cause of all major conflict in the world,” and so forth.

I haven’t unsubscribed yet but if I get on one of those simplify-my-digital-life kicks, it is easily one of the lowest hanging fruits that I can chop off. There have been a few good nuggets sprinkled here and there so I guess that’s what has kept me around.

With that said, when I opened up my inbox this morning to browse what ground-breaking advice I was going to receive from yesterday’s lottery winner, I was actually prompted to respond for a first time. The writer posted a note about wanting to change careers, having a lack of completing a higher education degree, how long it might actually take her to gain said education (with age not being on her side), and a concern about what would happen if she no longer had her husband to help support her/supplement her meager income. She mentions having visions of being a nurse but again leans on the crutch of education.

As with most things, I’ve got two cents and since she asked for feedback, I figured I’d throw mine in. Below you will find my response to Dolores Yates in case you’re facing similar issues or desires in life. (more…)

Why I own a small business…

While having lunch with a buddy yesterday, a conversation we were having triggered a thought in my mind that is just slightly longer than what could fit in a tweet. It’s not a new idea to me, I’ve believed it now for 8+ years. It’s also not the only reason but does carry some significant weight in why I choose to work for myself instead of working for somebody else. It is, however, one that I rarely share publicly. So, for all eight of you reading, here’s (one of a few reasons) why I own a small business:

Working for myself has nothing to do with not being able to work for somebody else and everything to do with the thought that I can’t hack it for anybody else.

New Work Posted

While I’d like to do an overhaul of my work section (and possibly this entire blog), I figured I ought to at least throw some recent stuff up that I’ve been a part of to keep it fresh for another day.

Feel free to mosey on over and have a gander if you’d like: http://www.christianross.net/marriagetoday/

I’ve got a few more things I’ll probably add and I’m thinking I’ll pull it all into a single page at some point but this should at least show that I actually turn out work from time-to-time.

And, in case you’re looking or know someone that might be, I am available for contract work and would love the opportunity to show you how I might be able to serve you.