Invisible ads may get your business SEEN online.

A company recently requested me as a network contact on http://merchantcircle.com. I have to give this guy credit. http://theinvisiblehomepage.com.


It’s a great idea, he’s working to promote it, the ads are cheap and even though it could use a slicker look – he’s gonna make some money with it. As a person who does website maintenance, this site is a dream… only changing the url of the link and the “alt” tag for each ad?!?! Uber-easy. Concept is king for this site. 

I’ve seen something similar before, www.milliondollarhomepage.com but this is a good twist which brings a novelty and marketability to the idea. It doesn’t feel “stollen” to me. On this milliondollarhomepage site pixels were sold at $1 each in 10 x 10 blocks and they all had actual designs. This was a hugely publicized site, the owner did the talk show circuit, so the home paeg was literally filled with little glimmering images reminiscent of a litebrite board. If you go there now, the ads still appear and since it’s completely filled (sold out) you can buy a limited addition poster print of what the full page looks like. *rolls eyes* Come ON! This guy is just laughing his way to the bank while he thinks up his next website idea. haha.

More on FOAF, thanks to mglcel

ok mglcel, I checked out your http://foafdrive.com/ and I’m going to make a foaf file there. Oh, I’d never heard of geekcode before and I thought it would be fun so I played along for a while but it got soooo looong and out of date that I didn’t finish it. I’m also not afraid to say that it made me feel like kind of a dope. I admit to being obsessed with the internet, but I’m no programmer and I’m pretty clueless about all the languages they were talking about there. To each his own. But I digress…

The question I have about FOAF files is this. http://mybloglog.com/ generates a foaf file for you and makes it part of your profile. If I create a separate new foaf file and upload that to my website http://onyourmarkdesigns.com/ (as this site http://www.ldodds.com/foaf/foaf-a-matic said you should do with a filename foaf.rdf), will these two foaf files of mine compete with each other? Will it be like creating multiple profiles on a social networking site? It seems that having more than one foaf published online could only confuse the whole point of the thing.
Also, the one created by mybloglog doesn’t allow me to edit it myself in any way – when I view the file I can see that it’s basically linking to all my social media profiles and linking to all the people I list as a “contact” in mybloglog. So, say I know someone who has a foaf file on their site, we’ve agreed to link those files to each other, but they don’t have a mybloglog.com account. No can do, right?


Social Networking and FOAF files

I started slow with social networking. Like a lot of people, I began with myspace, then a youtube channel. I started to DIGG articles that caught my interest and I’ve had a personal blog for years. When I began to develop my business I joined linkedin, created a ryze page and accepted an invitation to naymz. I found another business on google through their merchant circle listing, so I posted a profile there and I quickly realized I was filling out profile after profile of the same information (or similar) and began to feel like I had stepped into quicksand. How could I possibly manage them all? How could I keep up with the networks that I created and NOT leave a picture or comment posted from a year and a half ago with cobwebs collecting in the corners of my profile? More importantly, if this strategy helped my business, how could I recommend a similar course of action for my clients to promote their own businesses? We have work to do and businesses to run – how many clients will realistically be able to kibitz online all day to stay “in the know” of their social networking communities?

This process may be getting easier. http://mybloglog.com and http://friendfeed.com are a couple of platforms that will help you manage all your social networking communities in the same place. I’ve recently taken advantage of the email signature created by mybloglog which allows you to add the icons of all your social networking services with links to those profiles at the bottom of each outgoing email. I LOVE that.

mybloglog also brought the FOAF file to my attention. This seems to be a separate file that acts as your universal profile. You have a picture, a bio, websites you author or participate in, social media services you belong to, all in one file. Wouldn’t it be great to use this file each time you join a new service? Just upload your FOAF file as though it were a picture and the service picks out the information and puts it into the appropriate fields? This would be too easy for spammers to create zillions of profiles I guess, but it sure would be easier for the small business owner. Maybe it’s already been done. I need to look into the applications of FOAF files some more.