Dear, dear readers, Jane is playing with a new toy...a new electronic, Internet toy...but we can't tell you much about it yet. It's a secret. Which is a clear indication that women can to keep a secret. Luckily, we will not have to keep this secret long. We are told that we may announce it in the very new future. Do keep in touch so you won't be left out!
Meanwhile, if you were expecting to read our Sunday Fiction Feature, we are sorry to disappoint. Last week, Jane purposely requested input from our valued readers-- some indication that our Sunday Fiction Feature was pleasing to you-- and, sad to say, we were rewarded with one, yes, only one, reply. A good reply. A positive reply. And, an offer to help our fiction look better on screen, for which we are grateful...but, one -- as Three Dog Night would attest to-- is the loneliest number and...not adequate for us to continue this subject line on Sunday's. We beg your pardon.
Therefore, let us share some current affairs. First of all, for those who are not totally sick of it, Businessweek has the subject of BLOGS on its cover this week. Almost all the blogs Jane visited before posting yesterday (for the first time in days...eons...lifetimes, it seemed!) talked about this lengthy article. Jane would like to compliment Businessweek for giving blogs the attention they deserve, but...we have a different take than most on these things--meaning blogs.
For us, blogs represent the ability of women to gather together and communicate via a community of more than just "like-minded" individuals. Women's blogs are conversations designed to reach out not only to each other, but to everyone in the universe. Blogs give women power: power to talk out loud while in a crowded room. Power to be transparent and honest, without fear of angry looks or clicking tongues (they exist, we know, but they cannot hurt us online). Power to use the net to connect at numerous levels, instead of just over coffee or via phone.
Instead of standing outside looking in, women with blogs are at the center of a growing phenomena in human communication. We may not have the numbers yet, -- the men still outscore us in blog numbers -- but we are at the center of this explosion precisely because blogging is writing and communicating and we do it so well! It's the equivalent of meeting for coffee on a Sunday afternoon, in small but effective groups; groups that exchange information about everything: life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
Sometimes, many times, that pursuit is starting a new business. At the recent women's conference Jane attended in Syracuse, NY, the over 500 women in attendance were all business owners. Business owners from some very non-traditional worlds.
One woman had run a relocation business for 20 years. She'd worked for Uncle Sam and the Pittsburgh airport (how you move an airport we can only speculate on...???).
Another woman's business was waste clean-up--not emptying garbage cans, mind you, true waste clean up! Her business is in the $7million range in revenue. There were also a great many talented women at this conference who were successful in those traditional roles society usually associates with women: librarian (not as easy a job as you may think), arts and crafts, marketing, and cooking. Jane learned a great deal at this conference.
We came away from that stimulating conference with new friends and dozens of resources for managing and growing our business. Resources such as the Count Me In For Women's Economic Independence funding site. A good link to have on YOUR site, dear reader, if you would market to women who shop online.
Back to blogging...Blogging for business is especially important for women, because women are starting new businesses in droves. We could cite stats...from the National Women's Business Center or the Government, but really, now, if you cannot trust Jane to tell you the truth-- who can you trust? Women in the new millennium are forsaking the corporate world to partner with significant others (husbands, fiances, sisters, brothers, fathers, uncles, good friends, and more) to begin new ventures, start new lives, enter new worlds. To be successful, they are looking for advice and assistance online, and we think they will find much of it through blogging.
To truly be on the up and up, we encourage you to visit Toby Bloomberg's blog post from April 04, and get a handle on just SOME of the women who are out there blogging their little hearts out. For fun, and profit.
Jane thinks...this is the start of a wonderful thing. We advise all readers to embrace their feminine side. Courting women via your website or blog is merely one way to attract new business this year. (thank you, Toby, for the loan of the graphic image.)
What's not to like about that?