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Tech Savvy Innkeeper
 
Jing is a tool that allows you to capture any part of a screen you are viewing, whether a document, a website, an email, anything in your view. With a couple clicks, you can crop and save a screenshot as an image file. For me, it's helpful in many ways. I've just gone through and captured each menu bar from my website (danamoos.com) and duplicated it for each page so that I could place it at the bottom of each page too. But my website (built by Weebly) doesn't have a template with a top and bottom menu bar. So my way around this was to create an image of the menu bar and embed the hyperlinks by using the ISDNtek from my previous post. I can then in my website editing screen, add the html code I create through ISDNtek to add tot he bottom of each page. So this post ties in two fabulous tools which can be used for so many things!

Here's how I did it:

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Step 1- I used Jing to create a snapshot of Google Maps.


Step 2- I used Photoshop Elements to add photos of each of my listings. You can use any photo editing site that allows you to create layers. Be aware of the size of your site where your image will appear and size it accordingly.


Step 3- I saved this as an image file.

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Step 4- go to ISDNtek for the site and easy how to instructions.

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Step 5- In order to add the image to the image mapper (ISDNtek) I had to upload to the internet in order to grab the "image URL". I added this to my Flickr photos, right clicked on the photo after it was uploaded and then copied the image URL. 


Step 6- then I went to ISDNtek and added the image URL.


Step 7- click on "New Link" and add the landing page for that link/image and add a caption. I repeated this for every listing/image I had, and sent each link to the dedicated listing landing page on my website.

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Step 8- click "make code" and copy the code. Anywhere you can embed html code you'll be able to add your newly mapped image. 


The result? check out the map on my website.


Next post: Jing how to...

 
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I found a simple way to image map (embedding multiple hyperlinks within one image). For me, it's a great way to provide links to my listings based on a map page. 

But imagine in the hospitality industry what you could do with it? You could show a map of your region and embed the area attractions, restaurants, you name it! Create a hiking trail map with beautiful views from each trail and embed them as a preview to what your guest will see along their way...endless possibilities!
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Perfect for the Tourism Industry...show your visitors the sights...
More views atop Cadillac Mountain Why we love Maine... Acadia National Park
 
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Just added some great tools to the website. I'm trying to keep this somewhat entry-level technology as I know that time is a precious commodity to innkeepers. Just keeping a blog current is often a big task, particularly when the property is open year round. As I find time savers or easy tools I will post them.

 
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CutePDF is a great way to capture a page of a document, a website, anything you would typically be able to send to print you can send to your computer as a PDF capture and then email it or upload it to Google Docs, etc. Example - I wanted to send 1 particular page of a 43 page building inspection report to a Seller's agent - I click "print", check the "page" button and select "print to CutePDF" and save it to my computer. I forward just that one page onto the Seller's agent. Easy as that. And it's free!
Click to set custom HTML
 
A friend of mine just told me to give dlvr.it a try instead of Feedburner. I will say, it's very easy to setup and link with other social network accounts. It provides real time stats and allows you to set up auto posts or post directly from the site to your accounts. I'll give it a test drive and report back...
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This photo below is Orange juice with Purple Basil and Cold River Vodka. But it could be served without the vodka at breakfast and makes a lovely presentation and unique taste. I submitted it to Tastespotting (along with sharing on Flickr among other photo sharing sites) and it brought me the most clicks through to my website of any referring site, in crazy volumes! The photo of the chocolate caramel shortbread square brought nearly as many clicks as well.
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We're all trying to drive visitors to our websites, right? One of the reasons guests stay at a bed and breakfast or inn over a hotel is often for the wonderful breakfast and baked goods they'll enjoy. Why not show off what you have to offer? Create a profile on one of these sites and start posting photos with recipes with a link to your website. It's free advertising and somewhat targeted, free advertising. Even if a browsing visitor isn't ready for a vacation, they may very well bookmark your site for future reference. That's all you can ask for!
I will say, Tastespotting is extremely particular about the quality of the photographs they approve - I've submitted at least a dozen and only had 9 approved. It's a beautiful site with some beautiful recipes and photos and provides a very high volume of hits so it's worth a shot! Foodbuzzallows you to post freely and has quite a volume of users as well. Give it a try!
 
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Twitter, Tweetdeck, Hootsuite, Seesmic...all ways to send "tweets" but all have quirks about them.

I've gone from Tweetdeck to Hootsuite and consider it an upgrade. We all start out with Twitter.com but when you become comfortable with Twitter, time to upgrade to something with more options. Hootsuite thus far, appears to be the least restrictive and allows the most number of columns (10) and multiple tabs, each with 10 columns. It's a great way to customize what you want to read by using search terms or hashtags. It's also a simple way to follow any mentions of your name, in addition to Google Alerts. Hootsuite has never crashed on me, is seldom down and allows you to post up to 5 sites simultaneously. Hootsuite uses Ow.ly to shorten URL's and allows tracking. If you upgrade from the free Hootsuite to the $6/month plan, you can post to more sites and can track your stats through Google Analytics which is definitely important to me since I have multiple websites. Save yourself some time by Hootsuite's multiple posting options. Give it a try!
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I posted this photo today on my Brokerage Blog as it relates to my real estate business. I like to feel that I am ALWAYS in touch and ALWAYS accessible (that might be a touch of OCD but that's just me). As an innkeeper, I did nearly the same thing - for those few hours where we might have had a break, we'd go hiking or sit and read on the rocks at the "beach", as long as we were within cell phone range. I'd carry a backpack with my iPhone and a copy of our reservation calendar and I'd be prepared to take reservations wherever, whenever. When a guest decides to make that inquiry or call, I figured I better be ready or they may go to the next inn that answers sooner. And that happens. It doesn't make you a slave to the business but rather gives you the freedom to enjoy while you are still "working"... Maybe it's my way of looking at things - after all, my glass is always half full...
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