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About Jessica Albon

My first business was a Bug Babysitting Business. I was three. And I didn’t manage to sell the service to a single customer. Seems adults didn’t care about the well-being of their friendly insects while they were on vacation.

That first business being a flop, I went back to the drawing board, assessed my strengths and interests. I set up shop selling imaginary clothes washers in pink and black. (Mind you, this was long before appliances came in any pretty colors.) Turned out, I had quite a knack for selling imaginary products to imaginary customers.

Between three and nine, I ran all sorts of standard businesses–rock painting, lemonade selling, yard sales, etc. Some did well, some led to fights between partners, and some flopped.

From ages nine to twelve, I ran a successful babysitting business with several friends. I learned the insidious nature of family connections (a friend was paid $5/hour to watch her brothers and sisters, but her mom only paid $3.50 for non-relative sitters). I learned when a two-year-old decides he’s going to bite you, there’s not much you can do about it unless you’re willing to drop him (didn’t drop him, got bit).

After age twelve, I was ready to go into a more grown-up line of work. I started taking on design projects for friends and family. Looking back now, it was more because I felt working with computers would be much safer than working with toddlers, but it turned out to be a great choice.

I designed my first newsletter for a class assignment for the “Dragon Lady”–an English teacher not to be taken lightly. The newsletter was based on a book I’d read and my friends loved it. Of course, I was outdone by an extraordinarily talented friend who chose hand-done caligraphy over the computer, but nonetheless, I’d fallen in love.

And to this day, I still adore newsletters. There’s something about their utilitarian nature that appeals to my practical side. I like that they’re teaching tools first and foremost, pretty designs only second. Ideally, they look good and are enjoyable to read. They (should) leave a lasting impression on readers.

At their best, they forge a bond between writer and reader that’s not easily broken–and to me, that’s pretty extraordinary. In our world of disposible this and disposable that, people actually keep newsletters for years and years. And that’s saying something.

I also love the flexibility of online publishing. No wasted trees, ease of sending, and archivability all add up to a really super publishing method for most small business owners and independent entrepreneurs.

You can find out more about me by browsing my collection of websites:

The Newsletter Coach (where you are right now): This site is primarily set up to publish archives of my weekly newsletter Newsletters in Focus. Until January 2006, NIF will be focusing on a 12-month program to teach independent professionals how to publish a newsletter of influence.

The Write Exposure: This is my primary business site. At The Write Exposure, I help Independent Professionals create publishing programs that turn them into Indispensable Experts. If you’d like to learn how to become Indespensable in the eyes of your prospects and clients, this is the site to visit.

Newsletter Spa: A members-only site where talented Independent Professionals network and mastermind and get support and encouragement in reaching their goals.

Again, enjoy your time here. And, if you haven’t already, make sure to subscribe to receive Newsletters in Focus. By becoming a subscriber, you’ll receive discounts, special offers, (lots of freebies) and the weekly seminar on creating a Newsletter of Influence.

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