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<lastBuildDate>Wed, 18 Oct 2023 16:39:23 +0000</lastBuildDate>
<title>Automotive Service Technician Career Preparation Opportunities</title>
<pubDate>Tue, 28 Mar 2023 12:03:33 +0000</pubDate>
<description><![CDATA[Upon getting information about an upcoming school science fair and the need to consider a topic of interest, many students will typically have no idea where to get started. While the science fair is typically a common occurrence in any school at any grade level, there are different types of topics that should be taken [...]]]></description>
<content:encoded><![CDATA[<p> Upon getting information about an upcoming school science fair and the need to consider a topic of interest, many students will typically have no idea where to get started. While the science fair is typically a common occurrence in any school at any grade level, there are different types of topics that should be taken a look at depending on the age of the student. After first taking a look at the many different categories of science projects, you will be able to locate a suitable choice of topic to take to the next level.There is a wide variety of categories that fall under the types of science projects that can be chosen for a school science fair. These include biology, chemistry, physics, microbiology, biochemistry, medicine, environmental, mathematics, engineering, and earth science. While you may not have yet learned very much in any of these categories, don’t be afraid to see what each one entails. Taking a good look at your interests will allow you to focus on the right direction to take.Many resources are also available for those who are unsure as to the topic they are wanting to use to create their science projects. If you take a look at the topics that fall under the biology category, you will likely notice that there are topics that deal with plants, animals, and humans. For those who are in 2nd grade or 3rd grade, an interesting topic may be to determine if ants are picky over what type of food they eat. While this topic might not be of interest to an 8th grader, it is certainly something in the biology category that an elementary school student would enjoy.Along with the biology category, a high school student may want to take a look at diffusion and osmosis in animal cells as this would be a more appropriate topic for the grade level. A student in 6th grade would be more advanced than an elementary school student, but not as advanced as a high school student. At this middle school grade level, a topic of how pH levels effect the lifespan of a tadpole may be of interest.Whichever resource is used to locate a topic for science projects, it is always a good idea to consider the grade level of the student prior to making a selection. It is always assumed to be best to have a project at an appropriate level in order to keep the attention of the student and provide a fun and enjoyable learning experience. </p>
<title>Automotive Advertising Agencies Prefer Marketing Platforms Vs Individual Vendor Applications</title>
<pubDate>Tue, 28 Mar 2023 11:35:22 +0000</pubDate>
<description><![CDATA[In today’s struggling economy and consolidating auto industry consumers, auto dealers and their automotive advertising agencies are demanding more for less. Consumers want to spend less time and money shopping for a vehicle and auto dealers have directed their automotive advertising agencies to deliver more reach, frequency, impressions — and of course vehicles — for [...]]]></description>
<content:encoded><![CDATA[<p> In today’s struggling economy and consolidating auto industry consumers, auto dealers and their automotive advertising agencies are demanding more for less. Consumers want to spend less time and money shopping for a vehicle and auto dealers have directed their automotive advertising agencies to deliver more reach, frequency, impressions — and of course vehicles — for less money with less effort since auto dealer’s staff’s have been reduced along with their advertising budgets.The first wave of solutions that satisfied consumers and auto dealers alike came with the growth of technology driven marketing applications that replicated proven real world selling processes to accommodate established consumer preferences. The Internet provided the efficient media required to effectively deliver the marketing message to a qualified consumer in a cost effective and scalable manner and several automotive advertising vendors developed applications that made the message more relevant and transparent for the consumer.A prime example of how the virtual world was built on the real world was in the explosive growth of video in online automotive advertising. A generation of consumers that grew up with television quickly gravitated to video on the World Wide Web. The search engines adjusted their algorithms to accommodate them by weighting video over copy or pictures in their search results. SiSTeR Technologies pioneered the automated Video Walk A-Round industry in 2006 before the search engines and auto dealers recognized the preference by consumers for video when surfing the web to purchase a new or pre-owned vehicle. As a result, SiSTeR Technologies has earned a reputation as a dedicated, innovative and progressive provider of video for the auto industry. SiSTeR produces comprehensive video analytical reports and has demonstrated that auto dealers using its video applications enjoy increased conversion rates, more calls and lead submission exceeding 70%.SiSTeR uses proprietary technology that creates an individual Video Walk A-Round for every vehicle in the dealers’ inventory using existing pictures, data and text. The production process is fully automated without placing any burden on the dealer. One of the most valued and unique features of their process is that every vehicle is described using a real human voice and the music and style of presentation are customized to fit the vehicle’s category.Potential car buyers are served by the video clips presented through SiSTer’s proprietary 3DF player that is integrated with most web site providers and all of the major industry portals. Thanks to their 3DF technology, SiSTeR provides the auto dealer with valuable information to quantify their R.O.I. including vehicle comparisons and user behavior when they interact with the video.Of equal importance to the auto dealer is the fact that the video clips are also uploaded to You Tube and indexed by Google. SiSTeR pioneered the video search engine in early 2008 as the first video provider for the automotive industry that integrated with You Tube. Today, vSEO has become an industry standard and SiSTeR was strategically positioned to take advantage by being the first to expand their application into a comprehensive platform that includes their professionally produced videos as well as a variety of complimentary products and services.According to Israel Alpert, the C.E.O. of SiSTeR Technologies — Many providers are trying to follow but none of them has the depth of expertise and experience that is required to achieve top position on Google’s search result. We just introduced VidBrid — a revolutionary technology that merges the vehicle presentation and the dealers’ branding with full motion video inserts that are perfectly synchronized with the voice over. Our productions are not just boring picture stitching or infomercials that turn the audience away. Our VidBrid technology not only captures the user’s attention but it allows the dealer and the service provider to customize the production to fit every vehicle and style as well as to include the dealers’ messaging, services and special offerings within the video production. Differentiation is the key to successful marketing and SiSTeR has taken that wisdom to the next level. Auto dealers are no longer limited to the same cookie-cutter, one production fits all video to market their vehicles and their auto dealerships.The true leverage of extending automotive advertising applications into platforms is realized when specialized platforms — such as SiSTeR Technologies Video Platform — merge with non-competing applications and/or platforms to enhance the solutions provided by both. SiSTeR has developed a national network of distinguished resellers, service providers and promoters that already have established platforms and/or applications. Their common goal is to expand their services to their auto dealer clients while improving the online shopping experience for consumers. Their expanding group of respected channel partners can point to direct engagement with large dealer groups. It has already earned them a pilot program with a major OEM which should be announced to the public at the 2010 NADA Convention scheduled in Orlando, February 13th though February 15th, 2010. With a combined network of over 600 sales people in the field supported by their philosophy and focus to stay on the cutting edge of video production and marketing to the auto industry they are recognized by many of their auto dealer clients as an innovative vendor partner who is extremely attentive to the auto dealer’s needs.ecarlist is an automotive advertising vendor with a variety of applications that comprise a marketing platform of their own. ecarlist recognized the proprietary nature of SiSTeR’s video platform and they recently became their latest channel partner. Their new reseller relationship with SiSTeR Technologies will enhance both platforms and provide added value to their shared customers. ecarlist provides a comprehensive inventory management application and appraisal tool tied to internet sourced market data as well as web site designs and support services which will benefit by their integration of SiSTeR’s video platform.I interviewed Len Critcher, the President of ecarlist, on my blog talk radio show, Automotive Advertising Experts, that aired on November 14th 2008. The new relationship between ecarlist and SiSTeR Technologies developed after the two companies recognized the value of combining their applications to better serve their auto dealer clients.Len Critcher is a dealer principal of eCarLink.com, a leading Internet dealership and CEO of ecarlist.com, a dealership software company in Dallas, TX. For five years, eCarLink.com has consistently sold over 1,000 vehicles per year exclusively through online marketing.Critcher has been profiled in Forbes Magazine, CBS News, American Way, and the Dallas Business Journal for his work. He is often asked to consult dealerships on best practices in selling/marketing online. Critcher’s dealership is currently ranked #8 nationally of ‘pre-owned retailers’ by Auto Dealer Monthly.ecarlist serves +/- 500 auto dealerships, including the largest Chevy dealership and the largest pre-owned Lexus dealership in the nation. They have been marketing their product for less than 2 years but they have recently expanded their offerings to include the following features and benefits;Inventory Listing Managementecarlist provides more than just inventory management capabilities. They are one of the most powerful listing tools available. ecarlist provides multiple ways to input inventory including feeds from a 3rd-party dealer service vendor, integration with an auto dealer’s legacy DMS, or vehicles can be entered manually making the process as painless and intuitive as possible.Powered by Chrome Systems, one of the most powerful and accurate VIN decoders available, after the initial decode all auto dealers are required to input in most cases is the price, mileage and description (if desired). Their VIN decode even provides available OEM colors and options for that particular make and model. Total and seamless integration with both CARFAX and AutoCheck allow the option to choose the source of a vehicle’s history report, and ecarlist is one of the first platforms to provide a quick-view CARFAX Highlights summary directly from the vehicle’s inventory page. No more wasting time opening and reviewing CARFAX reports!ecarlist’s description builder develops a seemingly-customized description about a vehicle without spending all of the extra time. Simply choose the categories to describe, click the check box by the respective description and finalize the arrangement of the descriptions. One of the things that make their description builder unique is the ability to save custom phrases and paragraphs-no more opening up word documents to copy/paste favorite openings or paragraphs. Simply type them once, save them to the ecarlist description builder and access them for all future listings. Their description builder will even update the year, make, model, price and mileage automatically into customized paragraphs, which will save even more time!Auto Dealers can preview their ad and send their inventory to all of the major sites using some of the most recognizable and acclaimed templates available with just one click. If an auto dealer prefers a unique, or more customized template, or they feel that there are some better web sites that they would like to use to advertise their inventory, ecarlist will help them achieve what will work best for their dealership.With ecarlist’s integrated, multi-site lead management system, auto dealers can view and reply to leads from many of the most popular marketing mediums directly from their ecarlist account. Auto dealers can choose to view leads based on date received or by vehicle. Even monitor all email communications in thread based formatting.Email Lead ManagementTheir included E-mail Lead Management system also allows auto dealers to respond to customer questions, accept/reject/counter eBay Best Offers, and avoid unwanted spam e-mails, which will ensure that auto dealers only receive e-mails that pertain to their business.Market Price AnalysisThe days of only monitoring a competing dealer’s specials down the street are over. The dealership of today must understand the National marketplace and must buy/price their inventory accordingly. There is an old saying, profit is made on the buy, not the sale. With ecarlist’s integrated Market Analysis system — dealerships are better equipped during the buying stage as well as the marketing and pricing stages. Auto dealers can use ecarlist to assess trade values looking at many forms of data including Black Book and eBay Motors Market Data. Auto dealers can compare inventory with ‘real-time’ VIN matched vehicles selling online and see exactly what competitors are asking.A new feature to be added to ecarlist in the near future is their Classified Market Analysis including Auto Trader and Cars.com. Also, improved inventory monitoring and inventory price alerts.Free Inventory Export to Multiple SitesFrom eBay Motors and AutoTrader, to Cars.com and Edmunds, auto dealers can list their vehicles to all of the most popular online advertising platforms with just one click.Free Window Sticker CreatorAuto Dealers can access customized window stickers and buyer’s guides, on demand, with their Window Sticker Creator. No more waiting for 3rd-party providers to put stickers on inventory, no more waiting for graphics companies to deliver stickers a week after they are ordered and no more paying someone else for something that auto dealers can do themselves for ¼ of the cost; simply click and print.eBay LOCAL Integrationecarlist is one of only a handful of eBay Motors Preferred Service Providers out of the 30,000+ vendors that eBay works with.Free Craigslist IntegrationAuto dealers can easily send all their inventory to one of the world’s largest free, online marketplaces. With more than 7 billion page views per month and an opportunity to selectively market vehicles in most of the country’s largest metropolitan areas for free, Craigslist is something auto dealers will definitely take advantage of. A full color ad, branded with dealership banners will ensure that vehicles get the attention they need from potential buyers.AutoTrader Tag LineThe eCarList AutoTrader Tag Line, provides the ability to precede each ad with a customer, sales-person specific greeting, that should increase the likelihood that a potential customer knows who to ask for to eliminate confusion on the showroom floor.Integrated Lease Quoting SystemAuto Dealers can populate their ads with auto-generated lease quotes using generic, make-specific or franchise-specific lease criteria (money factors, residuals, terms, etc.). No more manually entering terms on the back-end, no more guessing what the lease payment might be-ecarlist does the work for the auto dealer.DMS, CRM or Other 3rd-Party IntegrationDuplicate entry, switching back-and-forth between various web pages, reconciling an auto dealer’s inventory and corresponding leads all take up valuable time that should be better spent selling vehicles and making money. That is why ecarlist works so diligently to provide integrations with all of the necessary sources that auto dealers utilize on a daily basis. However, ecarlist goes one step further by ensuring the data from/to these sources are seamlessly integrated into the auto dealer’s account, so the dealer can manage and access everything they need from ecarlist without compromising functionality or accuracy.Manheim’s Online Vehicle Exchange (OVE) IntegrationLower transaction costs, guaranteed payment, exposure to a national audience of buying dealers…if an auto dealer wholesales any of their inventory, OVE is a necessity. ecarlist is proud to be one of the first 3rd-party partners of OVE by providing their auto dealers the ability to list and manage their vehicles directly to this new auction marketplace. All auto dealer clients need to get started is an eCarList account and their Manheim user-name and password.24-Hour Technical SupportAt ecarlist, customer support is paramount. From their technical support and sales representatives, to their executive officers, their goal is that virtually anyone and everyone on their team is accessible when their dealer clients need them most.Customized “Framing” Upon RequestFraming is a great way to make ads stand out, establish an online image and preserve dealership-specific branding. Additionally, framing decreases the likelihood that a dealership’s ‘likeness’ or vehicle photos will be used in a fraudulent manner by making it difficult for individuals to steal photos without spending a prohibitive amount of time editing them for use as their own.VIN Explosion Back-upAlthough, ecarlist took great care when researching and partnering with the most robust and accurate VIN decode company available, no VIN decoder has 100% success decoding VIN’s. That is why ecarlist is the first, and to their knowledge, only company around that cares enough about their auto dealer client’s time and the accuracy of their listings to employ a back-up VIN decode system. In the event an auto dealer’s initial VIN decode fails, eCarList wil automatically generate a VIN decode request with their back-up VIN decode partner, VinPOWER.The diverse and robust series of integrated applications that make up the ecarlist marketing platform provide a variety of solutions for the auto dealer clients of SiSTeR Technologies that SISTeR does not have the skills or resources to replicate. Similarly, ecarlist determined that the specialized skill sets of the SiSTeR development team and the extensive video platform that they have matured in the market represented a sufficient barrier to entry to deter ecarlist from trying to replicate their video solutions. The resulting integration of the complimentary applications/ platforms of the two automotive advertising vendors are a prime example of why automotive advertising agencies are turning to technology driven marketing platforms vs. individual applications to get more for less. </p>
<title>How To Get The Best Out Of Your Next Home Improvement Project</title>
<pubDate>Tue, 28 Mar 2023 09:38:34 +0000</pubDate>
<description><![CDATA[Conducting a house overhaul is an excellent way of increasing property’s functionality, beauty, and value. By selecting the right renovation projects, homeowners have a chance to pass a substantial portion of the expenses incurred to future owners in the form of increased property value. Historically, some projects have proven to enhance the value of any [...]]]></description>
<content:encoded><![CDATA[<p> Conducting a house overhaul is an excellent way of increasing property’s functionality, beauty, and value. By selecting the right renovation projects, homeowners have a chance to pass a substantial portion of the expenses incurred to future owners in the form of increased property value. Historically, some projects have proven to enhance the value of any house significantly. These projects include things such as kitchen and bathroom upgrade, landscaping, living room improvement and many more. The projects have proved to have a high return on investment regardless of the property’s location or the nature of real estate market.However, unless the renovations conducted are aimed at fixing design flaws or structural issues, it is unlikely for the homeowner to earn some return considering the cost of construction. It is, therefore, imperative for homeowners to have a clear understanding of the taste and preferences of prospective buyers when deciding the project to pursue. They should also do remodeling projects that resonate well with the property’s location to avoid making improvements that are far much above the average of the neighboring houses. They should realize that potential value gains will only be realized if buyers are willing to pay for the renovations.Kitchen Improvements That Can Add Value to Your HouseReal estate experts emphasize that if there is one place that you should give maximum attention when remodeling your home is the kitchen. In the modern days, the kitchen has become a multi-function room where, besides being a cooking place, it is a place for holding informal dinner parties and also a place for children can do their homework. With so many activities going on in this room, many buyers hold high the condition of the kitchen and won’t accept anything less than quality. Some of the areas that you can improve include:1. Cabinets and shelvesYour cabinetry is one item that can’t be sidelined when doing your makeover. Revamp your cabinet by painting it and the island bench with a characteristic dark color like brown or black. However, if the cabinet looks too heavy for the kitchen, you can remove some of the upper cabinet doors and leave open spaces that can be used to display crockery and other decorating items. Remember to fill and paint the hinge holes.2. FittingsKitchen accessories play a great role in completing the kitchen’s look. Even though it seems like it is a little effort, changing accessories make a tremendous impact. Replace broken handles, hinges, and knobs in your cabinet. You can also replace tap ware and install one with a complementing contemporary style. If you think of stainless steel accessories, then make them uniform.3. FlooringUpdating your current floor can make your kitchen look like an entirely different space. Get rid of tattered tiles and cracked floors. There are several floor coverings that you can use for your kitchen floor overhaul. These include floor coverings such as terracotta or porcelain tiles, ceramic, vinyl or wood. These coatings are readily available; they look great and can suit any budget. You can also sand and polish worn out floorboards.4. IlluminationWhether you want to brighten up the kitchen space or upgrade the fixtures, new lighting can enhance your kitchen outlook. There are various illuminating items to choose from such as pendants, down-lights or other range of stylish ceiling fixtures. You can also add an under cabinet lighting to highlight and display the various features of your kitchen. Proper illumination can also extend a theme developed through all your accessories and establish a characteristic look in your kitchen.5. Install a working islandResist the temptations of placing a bulky cube at the center of your room. Islands with open and airy look are more preferable. You should not burden an island with appliances, but if you want it to house a cook-top or a dishwasher-sink combo, try and maintain a light look.6. Kitchen countertopThe kitchen counter is an area that influences many of the kitchen palettes. You should, therefore, choose one that looks good, one that can withstand all kitchen activities and one that perfectly suits your budget. Let us take a look at some of the best kitchen counters you can use in your kitchen.• Granite Kitchen CountertopsThis is one of the most popular countertop available. This stone is rich in character. It has a unique color, grains, and customizable finishes. If it is appropriately sealed, the granite countertop is one of the most durable countertops out there.Pros of granite countertopGranite defies all typecasting, it is affordable, it is durable, and it comes in various colors. The stone also survives oils spills, knives, and hot potsConsCorners and edges can easily chip, and it requires a pro to repair them. It also needs sealing for stain protection after a certain period. Its price also increases with the color as some of the colors such as blue are rare to find.• Soapstone Kitchen CountersThis type of stones is commonly used in laboratories due to its ability to resist chemicals, stains, and bacteria. It is a perfect choice for the kitchen owing to its durability and stain resistance.Pros of soapstoneIts durability is unmatched. In the northwest of U.S, you can still find soapstone sinks and stoves from the 1800s still in operation. It is unaffected by heat and since it is neutral; it can’t be affected by acidic spills such as lemon juice or tomato juice.ConsBecause of its soft talc content, the soapstone edges and corners wear out in time.• TilesCeramic tiles come in various colors and patterns. They resonate well with other materials and works well on island top or back-splash.ProsIt is a bad conductor of heat; it is inexpensive and easy to install.ConsThe grout easily stains even when properly sealed and also it is highly susceptible to chipping and cracking at the corners and edges.Home remodeling can without any doubt increase your property’s value. However, the type of project you choose to perform on one part of your house should be consistent with all the other elements in it. Don’t overdo the details. For example, the kitchen design you choose should be compatible with the rest of your house. Doing more doesn’t guarantee you will get more. Only improve those areas that have a direct impact on the value of the house. </p>
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