January 15, 2021No Comments

Not Receiving Emails? What now?

If you are not receiving emails that you should be, please follow this guide to get to the bottom of the issue. Please understand that each ISP (Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo, etc.) Is different and one fix may not work for all of them. With that said, let us begin.

The Basics

First and foremost, check your spam folders. I know this may seem a bit ridiculous, however, often it’s the simple things that escape us the most. When it comes to mailing, each ISP has processes that they run on their end to ensure they are stopping you from receiving unwanted emails. This is not always perfect, though. We can still sometimes receive unwanted spam or miss important emails.

Second, are you using the web-based system for your email? If you are using something like the outlook app for instantly getting emails to your desktop rather than the web-based version, such as outlook.com or gmail.com, there may be a syncing issue that is causing your app to not receive the emails. 

Bear in mind, though, that some of the URLs for the web-based systems may not be as simple as Gmail. For example, Microsoft has Outlook, MSN and Hotmail. Please speak with your ISP or mail administrator to find out the correct URL for the service you are using.

Contacting your ISP or Mail Administrator for your Email

Your Mail Administrator is the one who manages and maintains all of your organization’s email systems. This will be the person monitoring all of the server performances and routing. Please contact them for additional information on troubleshooting this specific issue. This may be the beginning of another issue.

On the opposite side of things, you can contact your ISP. This would be the domain that your emails are coming into. This means your ISP (Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo, etc.) may be categorizing the emails from this particular sender as spam and not letting it get to your inbox. There are special cases where emails will not make it to either your inbox or your spam folder.

Gmail, for example, has one of the more aggressive spam filters out there. Each email is put through these filters before they make it to your inbox so they can be quarantined if they are deemed spam or harmful adware. In most cases, this works perfectly fine and continues to keep your inbox safe, however, this process can fail.

As mentioned before, your ISP may accidentally categorize an email or sender as spam and keep you from getting the emails that you subscribed to. Here, we will be going through how to speak with your ISP and get this resolved.

Gmail: Gmail may seem like the most difficult to get ahold of. But this may be due to how their contact process is set up. With Gmail, you must have an administrative account to contact support. If you have a personal email with them, then this is already taken care of. However, if the email in question is from an organization or business, you will need to have someone with an admin account, typically the owner of the company or the mail administrator, so they can get ahold of support for you.

With the administrator email, there will be a “?” at the top right of your page. Clicking this will bring up the support window. In the support window, at the bottom, please select “Contact Support”. You will have three options for contact: Phone, Chat, and Email. Proceed with whichever option is the most convenient for you.

Hotmail/Outlook: Using the web-based interface can be a bit challenging for some on the first go. However, once you get used to the interface it can be a breeze. While using the web-based interface, in the upper right-hand corner of your email page, there is a “?”. Clicking this icon will give you access to their help center. Here you can ask any questions (in their simplest forms) and get help based on issues others have had. However, should the search not help you, there is an option at the bottom of the answer given where you can select whether this helped. If it did not help, another text box will come forward allowing you to send your specific question directly to their support staff. Keep in mind, you have a 221 character limit.

Using the Outlook App is a bit easier. Once you have logged into your email through the app, use the navigation at the top of the window to head over to the “Help” tab. Once there, the second option from the left under this tab says “Contact”.

Yahoo: Yahoo’s help center is very well laid out for users. The interface is easy to navigate and easy on the eyes. In your Yahoo account, you can reach the help center. Once here, there will immediately be a list of their more frequently asked questions. To the left of this, there is a sidebar with additional options for your settings. Just below this is a blue “Contact Us” button. This is where you will be prompted to enter your email address and what service you are having problems with. Submitting this will begin an email conversation with support.

Yahoo also has an automated chat. Although you will not be speaking with a human, this chat is incredibly intuitive with the answers it can provide. By choosing one of the options it provides you with in the chat, it can better narrow down the best answer to your questions. Keep in mind that this is more of a troubleshooting option rather than speaking with live support.

Aol: This one may be the simplest. By going to help.aol.com, you will be greeted with a remarkably simple interface. Immediately, you will have a text box that allows you to ask whatever question you may need an answer to. This will give you a very general fix for your question.

However, at the bottom of the page in the help center, there is an option that says, “Email Us”. As you can expect, this will allow you to open an email conversation with support. Aol does have the option for 24/7 support but unfortunately this requires a paid subscription to their support services.

Comcast/Xfinity: This one, to many, is quite confusing. The reason being that Comcast owns Xfinity and provides their services through them. That said, you will need to contact Xfinity for any questions and concerns you may have with Comcast.

By going to xfinity.com/support, you will land on the xfinity support page. Much like Aol, there is an immediate text box where you can troubleshoot your questions. This text box as well as the one more to the bottom of the page, will link you to the virtual assistant. By submitting a question in either of these text boxes, a small pop-up window with the chat will open. Much like the assistant that Yahoo uses, you will only be speaking with a bot but it will be able to answer most, if not all, of your questions.

However, if you still want to speak with a live agent, simply type “Representative” into the pop-up window and it will attempt to connect you with an agent. Before it connects you, though, you will need to select the department you wish to seek support in.

Are you still have troubling receiving your emails? We can help! Contact us here! 

January 15, 2021No Comments

Why DIYing Your Website Leads to Disaster

Why You Should Not DIY Your Website

Which popular saying is true: “You can never pay someone cheaper than you can do it yourself” or “Doing things yourself will not achieve a result as good as if you’ve paid someone to do it”?  It probably depends on what you are wanting done, your skill level, and how much time you have. DIYing your website does not always align with these sayings. 

The first thing that comes to my mind is “quality“.

True, I could do it cheaper…for now. However, in the long run,
what will it cost? 

Take your marketing plan for example. You need not only a website, but a functioning, eye-catching website that has search-ability and drives traffic to you.  The importance of going digital has never been so obvious. Online orders and inquiries have skyrocketed in 2020. This trend is not likely to end. If you don’t have a website you are probably losing business and don’t even know it.

Now there are many options available. You can even build your own. Sounds great, right? Especially if you are tech-savvy.  But actually, it can be quite a challenge and eat up a lot of your time.

You need to make your website easy for your current and potential customers to find you, perform security updates, have strong SEO, great videos and still photos, updated contact information, etc. If you need to add a payment system for e-commerce it gets more complicated and becomes a bigger pain point that makes your head really spin!
Most DIYers put together a website and then never look at it again because it is such a hassle and they have to focus on doing their business. But you never know how much business you could be missing out on.

Digital55 has a small business package for only $99/month.

Digital55 has a small business package for only $99/month (e-commerce packages are also available). We handle all of the headaches for you. Not only will you get a great, modern looking website, you will also get full-service email marketing so you can let customers know how to get in touch with you or what new products or services you offer.  Plus, we’re now offering our Inugo Simple and Easy ™ CRM, at no extra charge, to help you organize your data, maximize efficiency and productivity, and analyze your sales funnel.

13 reasons you should not DIY your website:

    1. You can get exactly what you want. We make sure the spacing is perfect, everything is in a logical sequence, and provide the design based on your wants and needs.
    2. Experience matters. You are limited by your knowledge and creativity. You know your business; we know websites. Our Creative Department have decades of experience creating quality websites and can maximize your website with must-have such as Testimonials (says a lot about your business, increases your exposure and gives potential customers peace of mind) and a Product line.
    3. Small mistakes can cost you. Website maintenance is critical to a website. Failing to pay attention to it could delay deployment of your website  or cause it to go offline in the future.
    4. Additional perspective. We can show you what customers are looking for in a website or how to lay out your website template.
    5. Save money in the long run. Since most DIYers abandon their websites it can cost you more in the long run because you are missing sales opportunities or important updates.
    6. Lack of support. DIY website platforms are inexpensive because you use their template and you are pretty much on your own. They do not have support like Digital 55 offers.
    7. Editing is a struggle. Frustration is a common word we hear from DIYers. How do you access the backend of your website? How can you keep your website spacing and priority of items?
    8. Cheap DIY websites own your data and your customers’ data. Everyone is in business to make money. Did you ever wonder how or why some companies can offer websites cheaply? They share and sell your data and the data of your customers. If privacy matters to you, you need to go with a reputable company that you trust. Digital 55 never sells your data. You own your own data.
    9. Risk of being hacked.  We can attach an SSL certificate to ensure your website is secure.
    10. Maximize your uniqueness. We can help capture your unique business or product line without detracting from your message. Fresh content is important for your niche.
    11. Highlight what you offer. We can add an e-commerce component to your site so you can grab the sale quickly and almost effortlessly.
    12. SEO. We know what keywords are needed to maximize your Search Engine Optimization.
    13. Ease of use for you and your customers. We will build an easy to navigate website to avoid cart abandonment and maximize sales. 

Digital 55 wants to be your Digital Marketing Officer. Contact us today to get you ahead of your competition and get ready for a brand-new year!

January 15, 2021No Comments

Christmas will be here soon! Jennifer asks, “Are you ready?”

If you are a parent, you may be in some trouble. Often, trendy items go fast. What was last year's trend? I can't remember either. Christmas can be very stressful but it was not meant to be that way. It is a great time to see family and friends and exchange gifts. However, it has morphed into a frantic light hanging, tree getting and trimming, decorating, and buying frenzy. It is a beautiful time of year that is a favorite of children everywhere. They add to the pressure by requesting and hoping for the latest trends that may soon be forgotten. Remember that this is not what Christmas is truly about. How can we keep things in perspective? Take some time to reflect on the past year. Teach your children the true meaning of Christmas so you can start your own traditions instead of always struggling to keep up with the Joneses. 

Make Christmas simple.

One way to simplify Christmas in your life is to adopt a consistent strategy for gift-giving to allow kids to understand the true meaning, or to at least decrease the pressures of having to always get the perfect gift or latest craze. You could either choose a 3-gift limit (modeled after the first Christmas), a specific dollar limit and let them be involved in picking out their gifts, or consider this ingenious poem:

Something they Want, 

Something they Need,

Something they Wear,

Something they Read.

This is a great idea, especially if there are several pajama-clad youngsters presenting their lengthy list of desires that rivals the Naughty and Nice list. I would suggest arranging or giving the gifts that will cause them to open the "Something they Want" last. Perhaps the "Something they Need" could be a gift they give to someone less fortunate. Kids love giving and it helps to teach them to share with those who are not as blessed as they are. This can have a far-reaching impact. Commercialism tries to get kids to be focused on themselves. But when I talk to people who had some tough times growing up, they remembered and appreciated the Christmases where they did not have as much but spent time as a family. It's never too late to start a great new tradition or to cut out the old traditions that add to your stress.

Ideas for making a memorable Christmas:

Christmas breakfast or brunch, Play board games, Drive around looking at Christmas Lights, Bake a small batch of cookies and deliver them to friends or family you may not get to see around Christmas, Go to a local Christmas program, Get the kids involved with simple decorations. 

Don't over decorate (you want your family and friends to feel comfortable in your home, after all!) Last, but not least, let your digital marketer take care of your marketing needs so you can have the best Christmas ever!! Contact us here!

January 15, 2021No Comments

Tom’s Local Wine Tour Adventure Part 3

Northwest Ohio Wine Tour

If you live in NW Ohio you don’t have to travel far to have some fun on this wine tour; these wineries will be a destination you will enjoy.

Since Digital-55 is based in the Toledo / Maumee area, we will start your tour with the closest and head west.

Majestic Oak, Grand Rapids, OH (4.0 Star Rating)

This location is just 20-minutes west.  I visited this winery several years ago and wasn’t too impressed. However, not too long ago, some friends and I jumped in the car and we started our wine tour there. Wow, how things have changed!  The “Majestic Oak” was still there but things had grown.  Outdoor seating was wonderful, entertainment was fun, and one of my guests knew people in the band, so overall it was a very enjoyable experience.  Oh, and the wines are pretty-good as well.  http://www.majesticoakwinery.com/  13554 Mohler Rd, Grand Rapids, OH 43522

Lumberyard Winery, Napoleon, OH (3.5 Star Rating)

As the name implies, the location used to be a lumberyard in downtown Napoleon.  There are no vine-on locations, and the building doesn’t give me the feel of old world Italy, but the staff was friendly and people we met were enjoying the wine and entertainment. It was a great place for family gatherings.  http://www.thelumberyardwinery.com/  118 W Front St, Napoleon, OH 43545

Leisure Time Winery, Napoleon, OH (4.4 Star Rating)

This is definitely one of my favorite wineries in the region.  Why?  Wine, food, and entertainment.  When the band is on a break, you CAN hear the corn grow (snap, crackle, pop).  But this is really a very fun place … they have wines for all tastes, and a variety of foods whether you want a snack or meal.  This is just past Napoleon on Route 24, and then south a little.  It is well worth the drive.  This place has a ton of Google Ratings as well, averaging 4.8 so a lot of people agree with my recommendations.  https://leisuretimewinery.com/  16982 County Rd M2, Napoleon, OH 43545

Stoney Ridge Winery, Bryan, OH (3.8 Star Rating)

Stoney Ridge Winery is one of the furthest destinations on this wine tour, but if you combine it with one or two other wineries it contributes to an especially pleasant afternoon/evening.  This winery is also located in the country, but it is a nice facility and the wine is very good as well.  The outdoor seating, even in the Fall, is delightful.  In fact, they have great retail distribution in retail facilities in northwest Ohio.  https://www.stoneyridgewinery.com/   7144 Williams Co Rd 16, Bryan, OH 43506

Knotty Vines Farm & Winery, Wauseon, OH, Wauseon, OH (no star rating yet)

The Knotty Vine winery opened their doors for tastings in late December 2012.  Seating was expanded in 2015.  Even though most Ohio wineries are noted to offer sweet wines, the owners of the Knotty Vine are naming their own unique wines with titles like “American Red Wine, Final Blend, Vineyard Jewels, or Farmer’s Choice.  These are not your traditional Cabs, Merlots or Syrahs.  Even though I have not visited this winery yet, I plan to in the next few weeks.  Wauseon is close, so fire up the buggy and explore The Knotty Vine.

https://www.knottyvineswinery.com/   2920 County Road 19, Wauseon, OH  43567 

Did you know that Ohio offers a magazine called SIP in print and digital?  It is a fantastic resource and will be a valuable tool to discover Ohio wines.  Here is a link to the Ohio Wines website, http://www.findohiowines.com/about-ohio-wineries/order-wine-guides/. Complete the form and receive for free:

  • Ohio Wine Guide Booklet
  • The Ohio Wine Wheel … understand more about Ohio reds, whites, and pairings, and
  • SIP Magazine

Enjoy Ohio, our fantastic wines, and the best of our wineries.

Want to talk wine? Contact me and let's get something on the books!!

January 15, 2021No Comments

Small Business Marketing Package

All About our Small Business Marketing Package

If you are looking for a simple, cost efficient, time saving, and custom marketing package we have it right here for you! The Small Business Package saves you time and money by combining our digital marketing, lead generation, and productivity solutions into a convenient and affordable package.  

What’s Included? 

In your Small Business Package you receive a one page custom website, an email marketing strategy, and the Inugo Simple and Easy CRM. It has everything you need! There is an endless amount of opportunities that this package could bring you. Including, increase your productivity, increase lead generation, and drive more traffic to your website. Do not hesitate and get your Small Business Package today. 

Custom Website

Your new website will include your brand, social media integration, a clear call to action, an about section describing who you are, and a contact form to collect customer information. The website will include everything you need! On top of all of this your website will be user friendly, professional, and have a mobile responsive web design. Your website will be built on a strong infrastructure that will ensure your data is safe. 

Email Marketing

Having an email marketing strategy will help you reach your target audience and direct potential customers to your NEW website. All of our marketing templates are built to be mobile responsive and are personalized with your logo and messaging. Plus, you’ll also have access to reporting. This shows the delivery status, how many people opened your email, how many clicks you're getting, and other crucial information that will help you build a stronger relationship with your target audience. Your email marketing campaign will be brand specific to your business. Our email templates are innovative, fresh, and customized to your brand. 

Inugo Simple and Easy CRM

Every business is looking for solid lead generation programs to feed prospect information to its sales team. What better way than to use a customer relationship management tool? The Inugo Simple & Easy CRM, has been built specifically for small and medium-sized businesses. Inugo has upgrade packages that are able to integrate a campaign communication platform, customized instant quote tools, and integrate our anonymous website visitor identification tool. The platform can be set up to work with landing pages and auto-response systems as well. Start connecting lead generation, communications, and big data analytics into one effective tool.

Your Small Business Package is waiting here for you! 

Contact us here if you have any questions!

January 15, 2021No Comments

Tom’s Local Wine Tour Adventure Part 4

If you live in Ohio or Michigan, you have probably heard the Travel Michigan promotions on radio or TV and seen them on social media, too.  This wine blog will introduce you to some incredibly fun and friendly wineries in Southeastern Michigan.

Have you heard the saying, “You get what you give”?  Nearly all of the wineries I have ever visited have been fun … because I was looking for a place to have fun.  You get what you give!

If you’re ready for fun, I’m sure these Michigan wineries are ready for you.

Vintner’s Canton Winery, Canton, MI (4.2 Star Rating)

This winery is nestled in a shopping center … it sounded a little odd to me but once inside I was overwhelmed by the friendliness of everyone and totally forgot that they weren’t in the country.  They source great juices from around the world to make some amazing wines.  They have a great selection and can teach you to make your own wine as well.  This winery is worth weaving through the residential and industrial area to sit down and take a sip.  

https://www.vintnerscanton.com/, 8515 N Lilley Rd, Canton, MI 48187 

Pentamere Winery, Tecumseh, MI (4.0 Star Rating) 

This winery is in the downtown area of historic Tecumseh, MI.  Pentamere took a store in the middle of the block and opened up the main floor by literally removing the floor to reveal the vats and fermenters in the basement.  As with most wineries, several of the owners were on-site that day and as I asked questions, they took me to the basement so I could understand their answers more clearly while looking at their processing style.  

http://www.pentamerewinery.com/, 131 E Chicago Blvd, Tecumseh, MI 49286

Black Fire Winery, Tecumseh, MI (4.2 Star Rating) 

I drove about 5-miles northwest of Tecumseh, MI, and discovered Black Fire Winery.  Remember the saying, “Don’t judge a book by the cover”?  I have to admit that there were two things that shocked me when I arrived. First, there were a lot of cars in the parking lot jockeying for places to park (good sign) and second, it didn’t look like the image I had in my mind.  It didn’t look like a winery … but in all honesty, how many places in Ohio or Michigan really do?  Once inside, this place exploded into fun and friendly conversations. Also, of course, wine!  I just wasn’t expecting it to be this fun. The owner was a delight and always knew which wine to recommend no matter how someone defined their taste.  

http://www.blackfirewinery.com/, 1261 E Munger Rd, Tecumseh, MI 49286

Sandhill Crane Winery, Jackson, MI (3.5 Star Rating)

By guest writer, Melissa Whitlow:

Back in July, I asked Tom if he had ever been to Sandhill Crane Winery. Surprisingly, he said, “No.” One thing led to another and all of a sudden I had a fun little wine trip planned! I was so happy that Tom recommended this trip because I was able to visit a lot of the places he talked about in his blogs. When I went to Sandhill Crane, I was surprised at how big of a place it was. It sits right next to rows and rows of grapes and they had brats and burgers on the grill that you could order. It was a very casual and relaxing atmosphere with a retail store with about a wall and a half of wine to choose from. I was actually hoping for a tasting which they weren’t offering at the time. I did, however, enjoy a nice glass of white on a side deck that felt very secluded, even though there were plenty of people enjoying themselves at the front of the building. The staff were all very welcoming and it was a fun experience overall. Definitely check it out for yourself. 

https://www.sandhillcranevineyards.com/ 4724 Walz Rd, Jackson, MI 49201

Side note, you have to try this while in Jackson, MI:  While in the area, I encourage you to take a small break from the wineries and visit The Parlour of Jackson (4.8 Star-Rating)which is part of the Jackson Dairy.  You can get a meal, but your mind will be blown when you see a 24-scoop, hand dipped sundae walk past you in the hands of a happy family. 1401 Daniel Rd, Jackson, MI 49202

St. Julian Winery – Tasting Room, Dundee, MI (2.5 Star Rating)

In St. Julian’s defense, their Tasting Room is exactly as advertised … a tasting room.  This location is NOT a winery. I wanted it to be a winery so I could sit down and relax with a glass of wine.  My disappointing experience was my problem and not St. Julian’s.  The staff is friendly and they offer flights of wine hoping and expecting that it will lead to the purchase of a bottle or two.  This is a high traffic area across the street from Cabela’s, so they don’t have to depend on repeat business.  The wine is very good, so stop by and see what you think.

700 Freedom Ct, Dundee, MI 48131 

Did you know that Digital 55 has wine as an influence in its background?  We will tell that short story in the next Wine blog post.

Important:

As with previous posts, due to changes in operating conditions due to current situations, if you plan to visit any of these wineries, make sure you call ahead and double check the days and hours they are open.  

If you want to read more about local wineries check out our previous blog!

January 15, 2021No Comments

The Big Squeeze: Mammogram Experience

The Mammogram

We have all heard that taking charge of your healthcare is important.  But actually doing it can be rather intimidating, especially when it comes to getting your first mammogram. 

Most of us have known someone who found a breast lump at one point or another.  Whether they are benign or not, the possibility is terrifying.  So, the idea of going to look for something that you cannot actively feel seems like you are looking for trouble.  This is where being your own health care advocate becomes important.  Just because you can’t feel it, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t get checked. 

Most doctors don’t recommend women start getting yearly mammograms until they are in their 40’s (usually age 40-44).[1]  My mammogram journey began early because I have a family history of breast cancer.  In cases like mine doctors usually recommend biennial (every other year) screenings starting 10 years of age before the family member was diagnosed.

The Visit

There are always so many questions that run through my head before a new doctor visit; but this one is like no other.  What should I expect?  How long will I have to wait for the results?  Will it hurt?  Why couldn’t I wear perfume or deodorant?  Why is it so dark in here?

The nurses are very friendly and welcoming.  They readily answer any questions I have and have kind eyes behind their masks.  They lead me to a locker room where I am told to replace my top and bra with the cloth robe and lock up my belongings.  In the locker there I find a mini deodorant and bag of chocolates for after my visit.    

I am led to a dark room with the dreaded mammography machine (dun dun dunnn!)  There is one nurse in the room to help “position” you in the machine and another behind a window who can see what images are being taken by the machine.  Here is where I began to get some answers.  It was dark so that they could see the images, and no perfume or deodorant because they did not want it all over their super expensive machinery.  Also, despite the hype about mammograms being painful vice like devices, it is more uncomfortable than painful.  The ladies there tell me that my doctor should have my results within a week. 

Afterthoughts

While it was not the best experience of my life, it was far from the worst.  This is something I will have to do for many years to come, and I will always hope for the best outcome.  I would encourage other women to go get their mammograms done when asked to do so by their health care providers.  If you have any questions or concerns talk to your doctor, nurse practitioner, or friends who have been through this process.

 Let’s take the mystery out of mammograms and become advocates, not only for ourselves, but for each other.  Perhaps Serena Williams said it best when she told People Magazine, “Every woman’s success should be an inspiration to another.  We’re strongest when we cheer each other on.”  So ladies, let’s be each other’s advocates and cheerleaders in every aspect of life.        

If you have more thoughts or information about breast cancer awareness contact us here!

[1] American Cancer Society Guidelines for the Early Detection of Cancer, July 30, 2020, https://www.cancer.org/healthy/find-cancer-early/cancer-screening-guidelines/american-cancer-society-guidelines-for-the-early-detection-of-cancer.html

[2] Breast Cancer Screening Guidelines, 2020, https://www.mskcc.org/cancer-care/types/breast/mammograms-breast-exams/screening-guidelines-breast