Since 2007, I’ve been encouraging my clients to setup a gmail – GOOGLE’s free web-based email service to access, retrieve and send mail for their domain emails.  Some get it, some don’t.  So WHY should you YOU get a gMail account?  To illustrate my point, consider the following hypothetical marketing letter:

Dear Mr. Goodman, I’m writing to offer you a unique opportunity:  We realize that life if stressful and difficult so we’re are going to offer you an unprecedented service that will change your life forever!

  • Your time will no longer be cramped and disorganized because we will manage your time with nearly no interference.
  • Your children will no longer drive you insane because our service gets homework done, lunches made and toilets flushed.
  • Your house will always be “guest ready” with no effort on your part.
  • You will never have another stressful day in your life because our services will handle any situation just as you would without you having to “deal with it”

These services are offered to you at a fee of $0.00.

So what is the catch? Well, there really isn’t a “catch”.  In order to be able to  provide  you with the services listed above, we will need you to provide us with certain information.  We do ask that we may take some liberties with that information within the bounds of the law.  This means that if one of your children is an athlete, one of our discount sporting good partners may send you email or give you a call to offer you discounts on sporting goods.

Please contact us as soon as possible to get started on a stress free lifestyle!

Okay – maybe a little over the top.  But my point is that you have to give up something to get something else.  GMail and Google offer a slew of free services and you’re a fool if you’re not seizing the opportunity.  Here’s my feeble attempt to debunk myths and let you know why I, your average “Jay” love and adore my Gmail.

What is Gmail?

First things first, GMail is Google’s free web-based email service.  If was offered originally to a select group of people by invite only in 2004 then later offered to anyone in 2007.  At the time of this video, it offers over 7.5 Megs of free storage, excellent spam control and is accessible from PC’s, Phones and tablets.

Why do you want a Gmail account?

  1. Setup is easy (literally can be up and going in less than 2 mins!)
    1. Go to http://www.gmail.com
    2. Look for “Create An Account” and click.
    3. Fill out the 8 or so fields.
    4. Accept the terms of service and you are off to the races!
  2.  Accessibility
    1. Access it from anywhere you an internet connection.  There are also free apps on iPhone and Android making you
  3. Safe & Secure
    1. Google uses a secure ports to send and receive email
    2. Computer crash?  No backup?  No problem.
    3. Immediately gives you access to other google servers like, calendar, books and documents.
    4. Need to work on a word file?  Save it to google docs and access it later from home.
  4.   It’s a one-stop shop.
    1. No more fiddling around with forwarders and or going to your IT specialist to get your work emails to route to your blackberry.
    2. Calendars, docs – it’s all updated in real time.
    3. Got a bunch of email addresses?  You can import POP3 & IMAP email right into google.  (see my tutorial on how to import pop3 emails into google) In many cases, you can even import messages and folder structure! (out of the scope of this video, but if enough people ask, I’ll do a video on importing)
  5.  Spam Killer
    1. Dramatically decreases spam mail
    2. Will not allow you to open suspected malicious email which protects you and your computer.
  6.  Makes finding emails a piece of cake
    1. Search box
    2. Mouse over a recipient to pull all emails
    3. Advance search
  7.  MEG- o-space
    1. Currently just over 7.5 Megs FREE space
  8.  Organization
    1. Star important items
    2. Setup folders
    3. Setup filters
  9.  It’s FREE

Oh, yeah? Well what if google shuts down?

It’s certainly a valid concern.  If you’re going to lose sleep over it, you can setup google to download into an email program such as Outlook.  A person of your paranoia will no doubt have redundant backup on your computer (insert sarcastic tone here).  Sure, it’s possible.  Actually it has happened.  But considering that there are approximately 8,766 hours in a calendar year, .1% downtime (which is deemed as reasonable and acceptable) means they have a buffer of just under 9 hours/yr to be down for whatever reason.  More times than not, you’ll never know it.   I’m not overly concerned.  If google’s servers get shutdown, something tells me we’re going to have much bigger problems to deal with.

Privacy

Google has come under scrutiny because “they know too much”.   So does your bank, and your Doctor and your kids school.  It’s about trust.  And to this point, google hasn’t given me a reason not to trust that they will handle my private information with confidentiality and professionalism.   Could I go into my server and access my customers emails.  You bet.  Do I?  Not in over 12 years!  (Unless I was troubleshooting a problem.)  At last I checked, your credit history is pretty easy to access.  Better yet, if you really want to see how loose our society is with privacy, rifle through your neighbors garbage before pickup and see how much you can find out.  I bet it would change the way you discard items.

In my humble opinion, GOOGLE brings simplicity and efficiency into my life.  If that means they have the ability to read my email if they wish, so be it.  My Doctors office knows I take Adderall for Attention Deficit, do I think they are going to blab it to everyone? (wait – what was I saying?)… If it’s it too good to be true, the virtual Kool-Aid hasn’t killed me yet.

 

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