Dealing with Sucuri Alerts

If you own a WordPress website and have the Sucuri plugin installed, there’s a good chance you may have received email alerts stating there was an attempted login with the following message like this:

Explanation: Someone failed to login to your site. If you are getting too many of these messages, it is likely your site is under a password guessing brute-force attack [1]. You can disable the failed login alerts from here [2]. Alternatively, you can consider to install a firewall between your website and your visitors to filter out these and other attacks, take a look at Sucuri CloudProxy [3].

Sucuri gives you a few options to deal with these annoying attempts to gain access to your website. One of the options is to install their Website Firewall. This is a great recommendation as this can prevent these attacks from ever even hitting your site at the WordPress level. But if you have multiple websites like I do, this can start racking up quite a monthly expense.

An alternative option is to add password protection on top of your wp-login.php page. Listed below are a few steps you can follow but if you don’t do it right you can get a “500 – Internal Server Error”. This can be remedied by taking the following steps to protect your login area:

Step 1: Create a .htpasswd file by using the .htpasswd generator here. Make sure to take note of your user name and password otherwise you won’t be able to login to your own site.

Step 2: Follow the directions here and add the suggested script to your .htaccess file in your WordPress root folder. Make sure to switch out the user name to the one you made in the .htpasswd file where it says “require user mysecretuser”

Step 3: Once the .htpasswd and .htaccess files have been updated and added to your hosting account try to log in to your website at domain.com/wp-login.php to see if the new popup window works. Enter in the new user credentials you created in step 1. If you see the WordPress login fields after the popup window you did it right.

But if not, this is where it might have gone wrong. The line “AuthUserFile ~/.htpasswd” needs to be changed to the proper full file system path. If it’s incorrect, you will most likely get an annoying “500 – Internal Server Error”.

Here’s what you need to do next. Create a file called anything dot php. For this example simply call it root.php. Add this code to the file, save and upload to your root folder:

<?php
echo $_SERVER[‘DOCUMENT_ROOT’];
?>

Go to your domain.com/root.php and you’ll get the exact full file system path. Copy and paste it into “AuthUserFile ~/.htpasswd”. It should now look something like “AuthUserFile /home/yourhostingaccountname/public_html/domain.com/.htpasswd”

Update your .htaccess file and you should be good to go. If the code above doesn’t work, go here to grab the code instead.

Once everything is working properly, make sure to remove your root.php file!

How to Delete Facebook Business Page Posts Using Business Manager

Frustrated with wasting your time looking around on Facebook for how the hell to delete a post on a business page? You’re not alone and all the Facebook help pages are totally useless. If you’re looking to delete Facebook Business Page posts using Business Manager, this is how you do it.

It’s simple really, once you know how to do it.

There are two ways to do this:

1) From your Page, click on the Settings link then scroll down to the Activity Log on the left. From there you will see your posts and be able to delete them accordingly.

 

 

2) Go to your Business Manager. You can click on the V drop down from the post. Here’s the link where XYZ is your business page: https://business.facebook.com/xyz/ or go to your Activity Log and delete them from there.

Happy deleting!

Opt out of SiriusXM Marketing and Direct Mail

If you’ve recently purchased a car from a dealer that has satellite radio installed in it, then you’ve probably been entered into the lead generation and call list for SiriusXM. This means you’ve received frequent sales calls followed by a barrage of relentless direct mailers asking to upgrade your membership to a paid account. Not into satellite radio? Here’s how to opt out.

  • First you must create an account with SiriusXM. Although contradictory to opting out, this is what I had to do to opt out of their mailers.
  • Once you’ve created an account, go to “My Account Info” then “Communication Preferences”, click on each accordion tab and opt out accordingly. That should do it.

When I first received their calls, I asked them to remove me from their list. It took a couple of calls but I finally don’t receive any more calls. The mailers did continue so this how I found out how to opt out of SiriusXM’s direct mail. Good luck!

Opt out of SiriusXM Radio direct mail

Opt Out of Catalog Mailers

Tired of getting catalog mailers? Want to opt of the following catalog mailers list below? Sign up for an account at Direct Marketing Association’s opt out list at DMAchoice.org. While you’re there you can also opt out of credit offers, magazine offers and other mail offers and finally put a stop to all direct mail marketing campaigns.

Here’s the DMA’s current list of companies and organizations they represent that you can you opt out of:

  • 1-800-Flowers.Com
  • AAFES
  • Abbey Press
  • ABLambdin
  • Achievement Products, Inc.
  • AJWright
  • AllPosters
  • American Eagle Outfitters
  • American Girl Brands, LLC
  • American Mint, LLC
  • AmeriMark Direct, L.L.C.
  • Anthony Richards
  • Anything Goes / dba Heavenly Treasures
  • Art.com
  • Autom
  • Back In The Saddle
  • Ballard Designs
  • Bass Pro Shops, Inc.
  • Beauty Botique
  • Bed Bath & Beyond
  • Daedalus Books, Inc.
  • Dave’s Novelty Catalogs
  • Dave’s Soda & Pet City
  • Day-Timers, Inc.
  • Dean & Deluca Brands Inc.
  • Deseret Book
  • Discount School Supply
  • Dixie Home Crafters
  • Donna Salyers’ Fabulous-Furs
  • Dover Saddlery
  • Dream Products, Inc.
  • Drs. Foster & Smith, Inc.
  • Early Childhood Manufacturers’ Direct (ECMD)
  • Eastern Mountain Sports
  • Easthill Group Inc. DBA The Eastwood Co
  • Eddie Bauer Holdings, Inc.
  • Essentials by Anthony Richards
  • Excelligence
  • Eximious, Inc.
  • Express, LLC
  • Hanesbrands Inc
  • Harriet Carter Gifts, Inc.
  • Harrington’s of Vermont, Inc.
  • Harry & David
  • Harvest Manor Farms
  • HCI Direct
  • Health Freedom Nutrition LLC
  • Healthy Living
  • Hearthsong
  • Hershey Company,The
  • Highlights for Children
  • Highplains Bison
  • HomeGoods
  • Improvements
  • In The Company of Dogs
  • J & J Commerce, Inc.
  • J & R Music World/ J & R Computer World
  • J Jill
  • J&P Cycles
  • J. W. Jung Seed Company
  • LEGO Brand Retail
  • Lenox Group Inc.
  • Levenger
  • Limited Brands
  • Loehmann’s
  • Long’s Electronics, Inc.
  • Lucky Brand Jeans
  • Macy’s East
  • Magellan’s Catalog
  • Magic Cabin
  • Marshalls
  • Maus & Hoffman Inc.
  • MediBadge, Inc.
  • Medifast, Inc.
  • Michael C. Fina
  • Musician’s Friend
  • Nancy’s Notions
  • National Wholesale Company, Inc.
  • NBTY, Inc.
  • New York & Company
  • Park Seed Company, Inc.
  • Passport International, Ltd.
  • Patagonia
  • Payless ShoeSource, Inc.
  • PB Teen
  • Peruvian Connection Ltd.
  • Petco Animal Supplies
  • Petsmart, Inc.
  • Pfaltzgraff
  • Pier 1 Imports, Inc.
  • PJT Inc. d/b/a River Street Sweets
  • Plow & Hearth
  • Potpourri
  • Potpourri Group, Inc.
  • Pottery Barn
  • Pottery Barn Bed and Bath
  • Pottery Barn Kids
  • Prestwick House, Inc.
  • Pyramid Collection,The
  • RadioShack Corporation
  • S. Wallace Edwards & Sons, Inc.
  • See’s Candies, Inc.
  • Serengeti
  • ShapeFx
  • Sheplers, Inc.
  • Shoes for Crews, LLC
  • Sierra Trading Post
  • SkyMall, Inc.
  • Smith + Noble
  • Soft Surroundings
  • Spiegel
  • Sportif Mail Order, Inc.
  • Sportsmith, L.L.C.
  • Staples, Inc.
  • Stitchery,The
  • Sturbridge Yankee Workshop
  • Summit Racing Equipment
  • Sundance Catalog Company LLC
  • Sunnyland Farms, Inc.
  • SunPorch Structures, Inc.
  • ULTA Salon Cosmetics Fragrance
  • Unicover Corporation
  • UniFirst Corp
  • UniFirst Corporation
  • United Retail Incorporated
  • United States Mint
  • Vector Marketing Corporation
  • Vermont Country Store,The
  • Victoria’s Secrets
  • Waterfront Media
  • west elm
  • West Marine
  • Whatever Works
  • White Flower Farm
  • Williams-Sonoma
  • Williams-Sonoma Home
  • Williamson-Dickie
  • Wind & Weather
  • Windsor Collection
  • Wine Enthusiast Companies

Online Marketing & More

I had the privilege to speak for some wonderful servicemen and servicewomen at the Fleet and Family Support Center on the Coronado Naval Base. Here is the SlideShare from my  presentation “Online Marketing & More” with notes listed below.

Presentation Online Marketing & More Overview

Contents from the slide:

  1. Online Marketing & More
    Ways to make money from the internet
    Where to register and host
    Content Management Systems (CMS)
    Blogging Will Get You More Traffic
    Leverage Technology and Time
    Niche Markets
    Marketing Funnels
    Marketing Avenues
    Keyword Volume
    Landing Pages
    Conversions
    Synopsis
    Q and A
  2. Introduction
    Phelan Riessen – Digithrive
    Previous business – Planet Apparel for 17 years
    Greek Fonts & Drop Shipping sites, Startups
    On the web since ’97, Prodigy ’91, BB’s before
    Twitter: @imagium
  3. Who’s selling what?
    • Who already has a business?
    • Who has a website for it?
    • Are you getting the results you want?
  4. Ways to Make Money Online
    • MLM’s
    • Drop ship
    • Products and services
    • Affiliate marketing
    • Digital downloads
    • E-commerce
    • Membership sites
  5. Places to Register and Host

    Email VS Gmail/Yahoo/AOL etc.
    Register one place
    Host another

  6. Content Management Systems
    Make use of technology and automation
    WordPress
    Drupal
    Joomla
    Uses a Framework
    Low cost, open source
    Plugins, Extensions
    Customizable
    Minimal use of HTML code
    Plenty of developers
  7. Blogging Gets Higher Traffic
    Optimize Your Automation with WordPress
    – Fresh Content
  8. Leverage Yourself
    E-lance, The 4-Hour Workweek and other ways to leverage time
    oDesk.com
    Elance.com
    Guru.com
    ScriptLance.com
    Freelancer.com
    GetACoder.com
    VirtualEmployee.com
    Affordable Programmers.com
    PeoplePerHour.com
    AmazonTurk.com
    Fiverr.com
    7Richer.com
    TenBux.com
    Gigbucks.com
    FiftyTown.com
    UpHype.com
    Zeerk.com
  9. Find a Niche Market
    Find a pain in the market and fix it
    Become the Authority
    Customers come to you
    Opportunities for articles – inbound links
    Able to attack and resolve their pains
    How to implement:
    Multiple websites
    Landing pages
    Check it over with your existing clients
    Test
    Utilize both Online and Offline advertising
    Strategies
    Speaking their language
    Benefits over features
    SEO opportunities
  10. Marketing Funnel
    X Visitors = X interests = X requests = X conversions
  11. Marketing Avenues
    Social media and networks – Facebook, Google +, LinkedIn, Twitter, Stumble Upon
    PPC – sponsored ads
    Building traffic – SEO, link building
  12. Finding Keywords
    https://adwords.google.com/select/KeywordToolExternal
  13. Landing Pages
    Social media and networks – Facebook, Google +, LinkedIn, Twitter, Stumble Upon
    PPC – sponsored ads
    Building traffic – SEO, link building
  14. Leverage Social Networks
    Fish where the fish are feeding
    Be the authority
  15. Website Conversions
    Pay Per Click Sponsored Ads
    Lead Captures or Give-a-way
    Conversions
    Do’s and Don’ts
  16. Start to Finish
    Find a Niche
    Build a Website
    Create a Campaign
    Conversion
    Test and Refine
    Rinse and Repeat
  17. Q & A

Customizing WordPress Themes

I recently presented “Customizing WordPress Themes” at the local San Diego Word Press user group run by Glenn Bradley.

The talk was on how to include jQuery into your own WordPress themes. The slideshare presentation probably makes great reference notes for those in attendance but not so much for those who are viewing it as a standalone document.

Here are my notes to go along with the slides…

Customizing word press themes for San Diego WordPress user group

Slide 1: Really simple, WordPress is awesome for blogs, basic sites, and brochure type sites. They are able to be themed and implemented relatively quickly. I like them much more than static HTML sites. No more wondering which version of content is the latest.

Slide 2: We’ve all spent way too much time looking through free themes on WordPress. There never exactly what you need or they cost too much. Template Monster is nice but frankly, when I’m working on my own theme I don’t want to spend a dime so I just wrangles WP’s twenty ten theme into my own custom themes as needed.

Slide 3: Most people using WordPress should know, changing the theme within WordPress admin is under Appearance > Themes section. In hosting the WordPress theme is under domain.com/wp-content/themes/name of them folder. Simply upload the theme into the directory and choose it within the admin themes section.

Slide 4: One really cool thing about WordPress themes is you can create multiple page templates and select which theme you want to use within your WordPress page.

Slide 5: A few examples of WordPress themes using jQuery image sliders were used in this presentation. Three of the four sites are live at the time of this blog post. Pro Restaurant Design is a recent site I launched targeting owners of restaurants. This WordPress theme is uses the Anything Slider. San Diego Sport and Spine uses Auto Image Rotator and Mindful Design uses Avia Slider.

Slide 6: There are a ton of sliders out there, including WordPress plugins using jQuery, MooTools, and Script.aculo.us. Finding one that fits you or your client’s needs isn’t easy as it seems. Searching for terms like jQuery Image Slider usually yields decent results.

Slide 7: If you’re not sure on how to implement JavaScript on a site, Kevin Miller put together a great how to example on his new site P51 Labs. Make sure the scripts you’re trying to implement work on static HTML sites before adding them to the WP themes. This will help alleviate you the pain whether it works at all or in the WordPress theme itself.

Slide 8: When customizing your own theme, start from the basics. Make sure you know where your blocks of content go before you start CSS’ing and DIV’ing them out. Wireframe your site layout first.

Slide 9: As you fill in details, keep in mind where your JavaScript files are going to reside. Typically within the header.php file but not always.

Slide 10: There are several files you need to consider when themeing WordPress templates. They are index.php, page.php, and single.php are the main ones, then archive, search etc. are also needed to be themed. Get your main pages in order first then you can update the others later.

Slide 11: The standard index.php file from the Twenty Ten theme uses the get_header () ;  call.

Slide 12: Change get_header () ; to get_header (home) ; and it will call the header-home.php file instead. In this file (header-home.php) you can modify the contents within the <head> area and add your specific .js files accordingly.

Slide 13: On any other page templates, all you’ll need to do is grab the dynamic content and wrap the CSS around it.

Slide 14: Customizing Widgets is easy. Just add this first set of code wherever you want the widget to show up on your site. Open up the functions.php file. Copy and paste the existing widget code, rename every instance of primary-widget-area and respective text to something you’ll recognize later and you should have a function custom named widget in your admin > appearance > widgets section as well as you page template.

Slide 15: Going back to the header file(s), simply add the code from your jQuery script. Best way is to grab it from the demo, strip out all unnecessary code and make sure it works on a static file, then migrate it over to your WordPress theme. Makes sure to comment code out everything as best as possible.

Slide 16: Using one of the HiFi, Page.ly Multi-edit, or More Fields plugins are a great way to get content on a page. Specifically HiFi will allow for scripts, CSS and other code to be injected into the header or footer files. Multi-edit and More Fields almost act like widgets. You can add content through the page admin area. You’ll have to find the correct snippet of code into the template though otherwise they won’t work at all. HeadCleaner helps clean up some of the code in case something breaks. Sometimes it works, sometimes not.

Slide 17: Use Firebug! What else can I say. Learn it, use it, love it.

Slide 18: As a digital content provider, I frown when my content gets plagiarized or stolen so I don’t like using this code. However when a client really really needs something to be cleaned up, CSS display none can work wonders: footerdiv {display:none;}

Slide 19: Conclusion…know CSS otherwise custom themeing won’t be fun. Test all pages like the search page, archives page and 404 pages and make sure to cross browser check your CSS including making sure you’re w3 compliant.

 

How to stop AT&T from sending mailers and advertisements

AT&T has been sending me relentless amounts of AT&T U-verse letters in the mail without any opt-out addresses to respond to. After a quick search on the Interwebs, I found this post on how to opt out of AT&T’s mailers.

Although the post had some great information I still don’t think it should be this hard to opt-out.

Please comment below if you know a better way to opt out. In the meantime here’s a few different methods from their post if you are a current AT&T customer:

  • Contact Information to address concerns- clicked on contact us- NO PHONE NUMBER. -but buried in text is a list of phone numbers –Contact
  • Email-Please e-mail us at  privacypolicy@ATT.com or write to AT&T Privacy Policy Manager, 208 South Akard, 27th Floor, Room 2750.04, Dallas, TX 75202 to address any concerns you may have about our privacy practices and policies.

If you are a not a AT&T customer:

Determined to be opt out, I emailed AT&T at their privacy policy email asking them how would be the best way to remove an address from their ad campaign. Surprisingly, I received a quick response from them in about 25 minutes. Their email said:

Thank you for writing the AT&T Privacy Policy Mailbox. Please provide your wireless telephone number and mailing address and we will process your request.

While we will strive to honor your request, you may receive an occasional mailing. To the extent that you receive unwanted U.S. Mail from any source, it is hoped you can make it available to a paper recycling program.

Sincerely,

AT&T Privacy Policy Inbox Manager

I promptly replied back with the respective information and received another email the next day confirming the removal:

Thank you for providing the requested information. Your request for Do-Not-Mail has been submitted for AT&T. Please allow up to 30 business days for the process to complete.

Sincerely,

AT&T Privacy Policy Inbox Manager

Kudos to AT&T for having a process to get names and addresses removed from their mail list, but seriously it shouldn’t be this difficult. In this day and age of automation this process should be much much easier.

How to Remove Unwanted Ads from Google AdSense

You've created a website with tons of seemingly related content and you're now looking to make your next million in related ad revenue through Google AdSense. But look, your Google ads are showing unrelated ads that no one will click on.

Here's the basic rundown on how to Remove Unwanted Ads from Google AdSense.

Step 1.

Login into your Google AdSense account.

How to Remove Unwanted Advertisers in Google AdSense - Part 1

Step 2.

Click AdSense Setup in the top tab. Click on Competitive Ad Filter.

How to Remove Unwanted Advertisers in Google AdSense - Part 2

Step 3.

Go to your own website and copy and paste all the URL addresses to remove from your webpage. For instance Godaddy ads seem to appear everywhere. I suggest copying and pasting all of them into NotePad.

How to Remove Unwanted Advertisers in Google AdSense - Part 3

Step 4.

Enter URLs to filter from ads on your content pages, then click Save changes. Changes may not take effect until up to a  few hours. Make sure you remove subpages or sub domains from the links and just input root domains if you want to eliminate the advertiser all together.

How to Remove Unwanted Advertisers in Google AdSense - Part 4

Step 5.

Check back to your website after the changes have been updated within the Google AdSense system. There might be more ads you need to remove. This can be an ongoing process, but keep trying anyway.