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Anyone who has ever visited the Virgin Islands has some sense of the evolution of this tropical island chain. Like most islands in the Caribbean the islands were first settled by natives mistakenly called “Indians” by Christopher Columbus. WhenColumbus discovered these islands back in 1493, he called them the Virgin Islands because he sensed they were virginal and ripe for the picking. Some sources use a myth about St. Ursula and her 11,000 virgins as the source for naming the islands. With the Spanish intrusion, slaves were introduced and a lively slave trade conducted.
Diseases the Europeans introduced to the native population wiped out two thirds of the native Indians. A slave rebellion in July 1858 freed the slaves but also restricted labor for the plantations. As a result the islands economy soured and plantation life became a thing of the past. Conditions improved slowly. Three islands in the chain were purchased by the US In 1917 and became the US Virgin Islands. A fourth island was added in the 1990s. Britain possessed seventy islands in the chain and Spain possessed four islands in the chain. The whole Virgin island chain went through a period of depression brought on by natural disasters and changing economies in the late 1800s and early 1900s.
It wasn’t until the mid 1950s that a new tourist industry was developed out of the ashes of lost dreams of gold and prosperity. National Parks dedicated to preserving and restoring the natural beauty of the islands were a big draw. Tourism remains a multi-million dollar industry for the Virgin Islands.
US Virgin Islands
St. Croix celebrates their emancipation from slavery every July 3rd. US History is tied to this island in two ways. Alexander Hamilton, our first Secretary of the Treasury was born here. Many Americans can trace their ancestors here and it gave people of color an ideal for freeing themselves. Black history tours are very popular.
British Virgin Islands
Financial services and offshore companies reign here. Tourism is also a big draw. Most tourists visit Virgin Gorda for its spectacular boulder formation known as “The Baths.” Others may visit St. Kitts which is actually an independent island in the chain.
Spanish Virgin Islands
Actually the two islands named as the Spanish Virgin Islands, Vieques and Culebra are now considered part of Puerto Rico and belong to the US. They came a part of the treaty the US signed with Spain in 1898. These islands are known for their great fishing industries and activities.
As you begin your approach, try to remember that overnight success may happen but it is rare. Building a complete financial portfolio can take many years of diligence. Be prepared to study and study again because there is nothing more risky than an educated investment. You want to design a plan that thrives regardless of external circumstances. That can entail both taking chances and playing it safe. The seasoned investment will attest diversity is key to a portfolio. The greatest financial risk is putting all your money in one place.
The less you know requires you learn, learn, learn. Stay up to date on fields you may want to invest in. Keep up with the latest news, trends and information. This will be invaluable when it’s time to make your investment and will also give you a sound foundation for tracking your investments. If you can find an ear in the industry, or an adviser, talk to it. There is no greater asset than someone that has already walked the path you want to be on.
The smart investor doesn’t dive into whatever is going to make the most money. They look at financial prospects that fit their lifestyle and talent. Some investors are skilled at commercial property rental. Others have an acumen for mutual funds or knowing when to get in and out of a growing investment bubble that’s likely to pop. Researching and investing in your interests enhances your chances of success and makes the endeavor far more interesting.
Developing a strategy for creating a strong financial portfolio is going to take time, effort, patience and a lot of forethought. But anyone willing to slowly build and wait will definitely reap the benefits.
Digital Marketing Today
2. Banner Advertising. Is your message smartly crafted and conveying the information people want and need? Are you call-to-actions clear and exact? Is targeting based on the customer’s geographical location, language and the most opportune time of day?
3. SEO Strategies. Search engine optimization is the cumulative strategies employed to get free organic traffic from natural search engine results. Consider your website’s level frequency of content. Does it address your customer’s needs? Website site architecture is critical for customer ease of navigation and making sure they get targeted information. Effective link building strategies can boost a website’s page rank. Social media footprints allow marketers to monitor what’s being said and being shared. Customers like to know you’re listening and that you’re willing to respond.
Blogging is essential for two reasons: it informs search engine algorithms that new content has been added to your website, and it (depending on the content) can quickly establish your company as an expert in its field.
Old School Advertising
While the digital marketing age is alive and well, old-school advertising and branding are still in play. Network and attend events. Stay involved and work with a variety of organizations and boards so as to build a solid base of friends and colleagues. Networking in your local community can help inform people about what your firm specializes in. Passing out business cards to friends and colleagues is still an effective means of sharing your brand with the world.
One of the best ways of staying ahead or on top of the competition is to monitor them on a daily basis. “Google” your competitor’s address (in parenthesis) to find out where they’re listed in local directories and in social media venues where they’re prominent. Study their keywords, messaging and how they interact with their customers. Offer a unique service or improve on their best practices.
Stay informed with what’s happening in your field. What marketing publications to you read and follow? Who are the marketing gurus in your field, and what’s their best marketing advice? We live in a world where the need to learn new things never stops.