On the front cover

front-coverIt’s not every day you find yourself on the news stands of America… on the front cover!!! Here we are, Dave and I, on the front cover of the July / August issue of Home Business Magazine.

Home Business Magazine has a readership of 210,000 home-based entrepreneurs and business owners; people who work from home; and telecommuters. HBM Online is loaded with content to help home-based business start-ups succeed.

Many thanks to the team at Home Business Magazine from all of us at Brownbook.net.



Brownbook Celebrates its First Birthday and a Year of Sustained Growth

Free free global business directory that anyone can edit now lists 28 million businesses worldwide

United Kingdom: Brownbook.net, the free global business directory that anyone can edit, is celebrating its first year in business; a year of sustained growth. Today, the site continues to thrive, with thousands of businesses being added, worldwide, every week. The international distribution of listed businesses can be seen here: http://www.brownbook.net/countries.

Brownbook also regularly enjoys positive reviews about the site; these left, for example, on Brownbook’s own listing page:

“Love it… Love it… Love it. This is SEO magic for the uninitiated. Simple, quick and powerful. Love it! Have recommended BrownBook to ALL my friends! Actor Expo Team, www.actorexpo.co.uk, May 25, 2009 17.23”

“I had a wonderful review of my business appear on my [Brownbook listing] a few days after signing up for your service. It was an unsolicited endorsement from a business associate. Right on! May 22, 2009 11.06”

Marc Lyne, co-founder: “We are currently listing 28 million businesses from all around the world. One of the reasons for Brownbook’s success, I would say, is that we never stop providing innovative new features to businesses, helping them to get found online. This keeps the site fresh and on its toes. Here are 2 of our latest enhancements, for example:

1. Stats counters and stat graph on every businesses page.

2. Bidget (Business Widget) for reviews. Now anyone can add their reviews that appear on Brownbook to any other website, blog or forum. See an example here: the Brownbook page for Onedrywash: http://www.brownbook.net/business/31008544/sjk-products-ltd, and their Brownbook reviews which they have placed on their own blog: http://onedrywash.blogspot.com

Brownbook included in a Forrester report for interactive marketing professionals


“Online Directories and Internet Yellow Pages in Europe”

This report by Forrester principal analyst, Nate Elliott, published on May 29, 2009 includes Brownbook.net among the online directories that it discusses. Here’s an excerpt:

UK-based directory Brownbook.net offers user reviews too but also takes the idea one step further: The entire directory is a wiki, allowing users to edit basic information like shops’ phone numbers, addresses, and store hours.

Source: Forrester Research, Inc

To buy this report, click here.

Video interviewing your customers

We used Skype to talk with a random selection of people who have added their businesses to Brownbook, we asked them why they did it and what they got from it. We recorded the interview in its entirety – no editing.

What we found was both interesting and revealing.

This is something we would advise every small business to do for many reasons:

  1. you get to find out what people really think about what you do
  2. you get to find out where they see the value in the service you provide (this may be very different from the reason you think people come to you rather than your competitor), this will enable you to tailor your advertising and marketing to be more effective in attracting new customers and keeping existing customers
  3. you get to hear of any improvements you can make, and solve any outstanding issues they have
  4. they get to see a human side to you and your business and hopefully hold you in higher regard, confirming their decision to use you and therefore they are more likely to recommend you to their friends
  5. by capturing the video call, you get to create an open and honest video of you and your customer that you can distribute on video sites like YouTube, add to your web site, add to Brownbook, blog about, twitter abot… etc, all of which will help you get found online
  6. you give something back to your customer by mentioning them in your video and adding links to their business, helping them also get found online

Here are our interviews with our customers from all round the World, see what they said and the gold-dust that they left us with:

Greg – Bush Marketingand a link to Gregs Brownbook page
Ines – Miamism.comand a link to Ines Brownbook page (great page with video reviews and more…)
Robert – R A Hilton Fine Jewelersand a link to Roberts Brownbook page
Anthony – Carpet Doctorsand a link to Anthonys Brownbook page (see the reviews Anthony has collected)
Veronica – Sort Out My Visaand a link to Veronicas Brownbook page (uploaded pictures)
Anthony Morris – OM2 Marketingand a link to Anthonys Brownbook page
Steve – Elite Advertising Consultantsand a link to Steves Brownbook page
Soren and Thomas – Pople Web Designand a link to Sorens Brownbook page
Stephane – French Tutoringand a link to Stephanes Brownbook page