Monthly Archives: September 2015

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How To Handle Negative Reviews

How To Handle Negative Reviews

How To Handle Negative Reviews

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Guard Your Online Rep!

Guard Your Online Rep!


RTLcooperative Members Now Have FREE Rep management carried out by Alice.

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Fergus Muirhead Warns About Telephone Scammers

Fergus Muirhead Financial Adviser







Fergus Muirhead Warns About Telephone Scammers

Telephone scammers seem to have become more active in recent weeks. They’ll call you telling you they are from your bank and that you’ve been the victim of a fraud then they’ll ask you to confirm lots of your personal information so that they can verify your details.

The best advice is simple advise and it doesn’t get much more simple than- Don’t tell them anything.

Don’t give away any unsolicited information over the phone. Be suspicious and check everything out.

“I got an email from my bank the other week with details of a new promotion they were running, similar to the Santander 123 account. you had to register with them in order to start accumulating points and there was a link on the email to allow you to register. There was something not quite right about the tone and wording of the email and that put me on high alert.”

I happened to be passing the bank later that day and when I went in to check it all out it turns out that it was a genuine email, and a genuine offer, and I was able to register and start to take part while I was in the branch.

So it was all much ado about nothing but always better to be safe than sorry I think. Always report any suspicious activity on your account or in emails from your bank and remember that they will never phone you out of the blue and ask for passwords or pin numbers. If you do get a call that you’re hot sure about then you should hang up and call your bank immediately with details of the call.

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Road Traffic Consultancy Ltd and Corporate Track Days

Road Traffic Consultancy Ltd and Corporate Track Days


Driver awareness packages


Road Traffic Consultancy Ltd fronted by ex Strathclyde Police Traffic Department Officer

Keith Hale offers a highly successful and quickly cost effective individually tailored or fleet driver safety and awareness packages all of which offer greater road safety and improved vehicle fuel efficiency, lower accident rates and reduced sickness rates and of course you will be less likely to collect those horrible fixed penalty tickets!


If you then wish you can use your tips and awareness gained through Road Traffic Consultancy Ltd on town/country and motorway roads on the race track, yes they are transferrable skills!


Road Traffic Consultancy Ltd can also due to their expertise offer in-house transport management packages to avoid the potential pit falls and liabilities of the Corporate Homicide (Scotland) Act  placed upon businesses now.


How Corporate Track Days started


Once your employees have undertaken this driver awareness training, or simply as a team building exercise or bonding day why not consider a Corporate Track Day, undertaking driving on at Knockhill Racing Circuit, their rally stage, go-cart racing track, 4×4 driving or even skid control sessions.


The beginning of the offering of corporate track days began with Road Traffic Consultancy’s desire to help those working in corporate offices and sales roles to have the chance to take to the track to “legally burn some rubber” or  just to “let of steam” perhaps following a successful full corporate year or even a quarter.



In conjunction with Knockhill Race Track in Fife Road Traffic Consultancy Ltd has entered into this particular concept for those in corporate positions.


Getting into Gear with Corporate Track Days


Test your ultimate driving skills with corporate track days.


If you are used to being behind a desk and want to express your daring side, then you can look at the track days in Scotland for more adventure.  These full day/half day’s out even allow you to take your own vehicle to the track, or rely on the track vehicles to race others to the finish line and for the final prize or that elusive “time”.


Whatever your goal or dream, a fun day of on the road, or a track/rally/4×4/skid control and racing experience awaits.


Preparing for the Track


If you are ready to get on the track, then there are many options:


You have the option of bringing your own car as a part of the race experience (Trotter Independent Trader vans need not apply) this allows you to test your own vehicle in legal conditions against the clock.


If you want to do this then Road Traffic Consultancy Ltd can direct you to specialist insurance providers, who for the appropriate premium will allow insurance cover on your own vehicle on the track as your standard insurance is not current for these purposes.



Bonuses of Track Days in Scotland


Enjoy even more with the track days in Scotland that are being introduced.


To top off the races it can be arranged for you to drive with the resident Knockhill racing circuit former Scottish Rally Championship driver who will be at the wheel.


Not only will you want to race against others in your team, but will use the tips provided to you in prior driver awareness sessions and if you wanted you would be able to race against Keith Hale on the track!


This adds into even more fun with the competitive nature while allowing everyone to enjoy the best of the races and team building.


If you are interested in taking up the challenge to improve your organisations driving standards and be looked upon as a leading training provider within your corporate field in today’s very competitive  market and are looking to be “That bit different from the rest” or even simply want to race against your colleagues on the track in a safe controlled environment then take that first step and call Keith on 07776138095 or email him at and get that first meeting set up.

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5 Tools For Measuring Your Online Presence

Category : Uncategorized

RTLcooperative Monitor Your Online Image

RTLcooperative Monitor Your Online Image

5 Tools For Measuring Your Online Presence

Google Analytics
Though experts on the topic have indicated that relying on just one of the tools that are available is short-sighted, there is no doubt that if you have to choose just one, Google Analytics is the most popular (and arguably the most useful) of all of them. It has the advantage of being free, simple, and tells clearly and plainly how people are coming to your site and what they’re doing there once they arrive. There’s more information available for those who really want to dig, and it is incredibly user friendly.

Google Alert
Another useful and easy method of seeing whether your brand is being mentioned online, as well as what is being said about it, is to set up a Google Alert about yourself. You’ll receive an email every time reference is made to you, and you’ll be able to see exactly what is being said. How often you receive alerts is entirely up to you, and at the same time that you’re checking for news about yourself, you can also plug in an alert about your area of expertise or your competition so that you know what’s going on with them too.

If you are a Twitter user, TweetBeep is a tool that you’ll find worthwhile. Much like Google Alerts, it provides you with a notification when a Twitter conversation mentions you, and lets you track those conversations. The alerts update hourly, so you can stay aware of developing issues, and the real-time aspect provides you with the opportunity to respond immediately.
Bitly gives you the opportunity to see whether people are clicking on the links that you’re providing in your web outreach. Whether you’re blogging, tweeting, posting web-based articles, or emailing, it provides real time measures and tracking tools so that you can determine which of the information you’ve provided is of the most use to your followers.

This tool provides a report that lists all of the online search engines, including video, and lets you know how many times your brand is showing up on each. The program includes Google, Twitter, YouTube, Digg, Flickr, Yahoo and more, making it possible to see and measure a wealth of information in a single glance.

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Fergus Muirhead- 60 Secs on Best Budget Tips

Category : Uncategorized

Fergus Muirhead- 60 Secs on Best Budget Tips

In a brand new series listen to and watch Fergus Muirhead here as he explains common money and consumer issues in less than one minute.
This series will build up over the next few months into a valuable library of money and consumer tips, all delivered in a simple and straightforward way.

I’ve written about the importance of budgets before but now, for the first time, you can watch for 60 seconds and learn the basics of an effective budget. Part 2 to follow soon.


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Online Reputation Management

Reputation Management Infographic

Reputation Management Infographic

Online Reputation Management

These days the internet is omnipresent and as a result, it radically changed the business landscape. Today an engaging and updated website is necessary for business success. Back then, websites are static and only serve as a brochure where people only scan and check for offerings but today, if consumers happen to come across an outdated website, chances are they would close that tab to go find a more engaging site to avail services.

Aside from that, customers are no longer passive. If they find that your services are dissatisfying, chances are they’d tweet about it or post negative reviews online for the entire world to see. These are very detrimental to any business small or large. No one wants to avail the products or services of a business that has bad reputation.

So what can we do about this?

Put online reputation at the center of your business!

When you say online reputation it is simply how customers see your business online. Your website, your social media accounts, your customer reviews; all of these plays a vital role in managing your reputation online.

Tips to Manage your Online Reputation

  1. Create your Website – Creating a website is a must for any business. Make sure to highlight your services and offerings clearly. It is also important put out your business’ contact info as well as directions to your establishment to make you accessible to your customers.
  2. Set up your Social Media Accounts – Many business owners don’t realize the positive impact social media can bring to their business. It is a great marketing tool and it is free! It is a good way to bring your brand in front of billions of people and a lot of them could be your next client.
  3. Update – Setting up a website is not enough as you need to create content for your customers to read while they are browsing. Try to post a blog once a week to show your readers as well as other professionals in your field that you are an expert in your industry. The blog posts that you make should be focused on helping your current or potential customers in some way.

How to deal with Negative Reviews

Negative reviews can’t be avoided when running a business. You can never please everyone and some of them are keen to get their thoughts online. The internet can be quite vicious. Someone in your personal or professional life who wants to do damage to you can post their thoughts online putting your company’s name and reputation at stake. What do you do when this happens?

  1. Respond Quickly and Politely – In case of a complaint from a customer, a prompt “We are aware of the problem. We are working on it and will get back to you as soon as possible” is better than a late reply with information.
  2. Address Criticism – Never ignore negative comments hoping that it will somehow disappear because it won’t. People who read these comments will wait for your response regarding the matter and if there’s no explanation from your side then they would assume all those bad reviews were right. Address these criticisms as soon as you can.
  3. Understand them – Bad reviews are a way for you to learn more about your audience. Understand what their sentiments are and try to evaluate if their complaints are legitimate. Maybe there really is something wrong with your service. You can treat these criticisms as a way to improve your business in the future.
  4. Deal with Illegitimate Attackers – Everyone has a right to express their opinions but if what they say is false? Then defend your reputation at all costs. Don’t let them destroy something you worked so hard in building. Sometimes, if you don’t do something to defend your business, they might do it again until your online reputation is completely destroyed.

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The Need for Website SEO for Your Growing Online Business

The Need for Website SEO for Your Growing Online Business

A lot has changed in the way people do business today. With the Internet, it becomes much easier to reach out to customers at a personalised level and upgrading to a global scale is easier than ever before. In today’s digital age, a great website is mostly all that you need to interact with your audience and turn them into potential customers later on. It is also a fantastic way to “Start a lean business” ie test your ideas and see if there is strong consumer demand for the product or service you intend providing, before you go out and invest in a manufacturing process!


Create a Professional Website

Websites are very important because it is the first impression that potential customers will see receive. It establishes a  lasting impression that could make or break your relationship with them.

However, websites are not just limited to aesthetics and professional web design,  companies such as Soapbox Digital Media understand that. There is also a dire need to make sure that the site is created using clean, SEO-friendly code, so that they run fast and are easily searchable on the Internet. Otherwise, what use is a great-looking website when you have no audience to show it to?


Blogging for Your Business

There are really only so many keywords and phrases you can put in your website without making it look stuffed and forced. SEO experts such as Chris Cagienard who has been in the business for years attest to the effectiveness of blogging as a way to add fresh content into the site so that it looks, feels and reads as natural as possible – even if you are actually injecting important keywords, phrases and search terms into the article. There is a whole lot more to SEO success than just putting together some backlinks and Blog posts. There are deeply effective methods that allow Chris and the team at Soapbox to persuade Google that your site is worth ranking higher than your competitors. They are not going to explain those methods here but are happy to make themselves available for client consultations to demonstarte just wwhat they can bring to your SEO table.


“Roadtrafficlaw and Graham Walker Soliciotrs are clients of Soapbox Digital Media and I have no hesitation in recomending them to you. I have developed an online presence the hard way by creating my own sites and building SEO and then by trusting variuous folk over the years to help with the site development. Chris and his team far excel what you will get out there in the land SEO experts and Gurus”… Graham Walker Solicitor


When the Effort Is Just Too Much

It can all get to be a little too much for most of us. We need to concentrate on running our business and delivering what our present clients need not what our future clients may want.

If you are not technically inclined person, you can call for web design companies like Soapbox Digital Media which is made up of a group of Scotland’s most talented web designers and developers who aim to bring out the best of your business through their web design and SEO efforts.


Looking for SEO Scotland services is one tricky task, so make sure you check out a portfolio of past works to see how well they do their work. Chris Cagienard and his team of highly experienced digital marketers can help you with your SEO and online business woes by making sure that your site is clean, optimised and is of the highest quality. Soapbox Digital Media ensures results being delivered on time and on budget, every single time.

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Are You Consulting the Best Road Traffic Lawyer?

Graham Walker Solicitor

Graham Walker Solicitor

Are You Consulting the Best Road Traffic Lawyer?

A Road Traffic Lawyer is needed when things go wrong and you are facing a driving ban. Who do you choose and do you know what really matters when it comes to fighting a Mobile Phone Road Traffic Case?

No matter how many reminders from the police, the Government or Road Safety Organisations about not using your mobile phone while driving, there are still times when you just can’t help but pick up that call. If by any chance you’re already up to 9 penalty points on your driver’s license, and you got pulled over by the police because they say, you were using your phone, you may already need assistance from Graham Walker, Scotland’s leading road traffic lawyer.


Graham has been dubbed by the press as “Scotland’s Loophole Lawyer” you will get the message that he has earned a reputation amongst his peers and those who are “in the know” for his ability to spot opportunities to win a case where others fail. He has represented fellow solicitors, QCs, high ranking political figures as well as high powered business people and celebrities. fight “Mobile Phone” road traffic cases on the basis that the evidence needs to be examined rigorously. Often a video reconstruction is required to examine the police viewpoints, phone records may require to be obtained and lodged in court. Obtaining phone records in a Mobile Phone Road Traffic Case is not as straight forward as you might think and actually involves drafting and lodging a document with the higher, Sheriff court and having a hearing to allow the telecoms co to release the third party data to you. We are not looking to mitigate the offence with an excuse. Use of your mobile phone while on the road knows only one excuse and that is use in an Emergency (As defined in law…calling the police etc)

It doesn’t matter if you tell the officer that pulled you over that the phone call you had to make was an emergency, they’d still charge you with an offense until that issue has been checked out. However, with the help of Graham Walker Lawyer, you might be able to win the case in court. Here are some common reasons that clients have explained to us as being “Emergencies” They are not regarded as emergency telephone calls as far as the law is concerned.

Examples of when clients could not help but pick up that phone:

  • Your boss is calling, and you are expecting to be dealt with in a disciplinary hearing that may lose your job.
  • Your pregnant wife is calling you.
  • You remembered leaving the door at home unlocked.
  • An unknown number is calling, and curiosity makes you want to pick up that call.
  • Your child’s teacher or principal is calling you.


These are only a few of the many reasons why people can’t help but pick up the phone. As much as possible, you need to pull over when picking up the phone. Even when pulled over you may still be committing an offence if it looks to the police as though you are still in the process of driving. Switch that engine off.

Though using a hands-free device is presently considered safer (The jury is out on that research) this may actually be accepted by court to establish your defence so take photographs of your hands free set up. Try to show the police where it is and how it works. Don’t be surprised if they are not interested as they have made up their mind and “you are it”, as far as they are concerned.

Our main website at gives further advice and assistance and we have a free factsheet that you can obtain simply by getting in touch. No obligation and no sequence of Spam mails from uninvited authors!! I promise.

What if that phone call surprises you, distresses you or otherwise contributes to an accident of some kind? —whether it’s good or bad news—that causes you to drive off road, or collide with another road user, you can expect to be dealt with by way of a much more serious charge. Dangerous Driving or a contravention of Section 2 of the Road Traffic Act 1988 is what you can expect to face and that carries a 12 month ban minimum and an order to re sit your driving test. It’s bad enough to get into an accident by yourself but even worse when you have other people involved in that accident? If that happens you could be in the nightmarish position of facing causing a death by Dangerous Driving.


Road traffic law in Scotland is a complex and difficult area of practise and many general practitioners feel that it is best to refer such cases to specialist firms like Graham Walker and We work on a completely transparent process of rewarding such firms with a “Profit share” referral fee, they can receive 10% of our agreed fee or they may wish to discount the client’s fee by that 10% or have us make a charitable donation for that amount.

Police officers do sometimes get it wrong. In a split second they draw the wrong conclusion and the next thing is that you are facing a 3pp endorsement and a £100 fine or much worse a Totting Up ban of 6 months. However, if you need help in your defence or if you badly need to win this case, then you must consult with a road traffic lawyer such as Graham Walker.

 The police don’t need video/photo evidence to say that you’ve disobeyed the road traffic law in Scotland  so you definitely need a road traffic lawyer in order for you to win the case. Trust no one but a road traffic lawyer with 30 years of experience in Criminal Law with a  road traffic specialty—contact Scotland’s Loophole lawyer for a FREE case consultation today. Call Graham Walker on 0800 612 9597 today.

Road Traffic Law

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The Best Way To Take Notes

Hacking Chaos: The Cornell Method of Note-Taking


Taking notes by hand is better than typing your notes on a computer. Handwriting forces you to slow down and focus on what is important. This greatly increases comprehension.

That is where the Cornell Method comes in. The Cornell Method has you separate your notes into a note-taking portion, key points, and a summary. It is ideal for lawyers.1

Setting Up the Cornell Method

To arrange your notes in Cornell fashion, take your standard legal pad and draw a thick vertical line down the left-hand side of the paper, approximately 2-3 inches from the side of the page. Then draw a horizontal line all the way across the paper about two inches from the bottom of the page. You will end up with something like this:


You can also design one online and print it, or you can purchase Levenger pads optimized for the Cornell Method.

There. You are all done getting ready to take notes Cornell-style.

The Structure of the Cornell Method

Dividing your paper gives you three sections:

  1. The largest section is for note-taking.
  2. The left-hand margin is your key points and key questions section.
  3. The bottom is your summary.

Opinions differ wildly on what should happen with your notes section. Some people — particularly those that recommend it as a college study tool — subscribe to an elaborate set of rules about recording, reciting, reflecting, and reviewing. You probably do not need to go that deep. However, there is one principle that should guide you if you’re going to take notes using the Cornell Method: write less, not more.

If you have gotten used to taking notes on a laptop, you are already guilty of writing down too much. Treat your notes section like an outline. Shoot for key points, not a verbatim transcript. Think of that section as an outline you will return to later, after your lecture or meeting or motion hearing has finished.

The left-hand margin is your cue and recall section. When you are using Cornell as an academic note-taking method, the cue functions as a memorization and comprehension tool. You should be able to cover up your notes section, and answer any questions you posed to yourself in the cue section. You probably are not going to need to do that with your notes. Depending on what you are taking notes, this section can contain a series of questions, a roundup of notable points, or to get all business-speak, action items. You should be able to throw your entire notes section away and walk out of your meeting, hearing, or lecture with the key ideas intact. If you are the kind of person who likes to distill your oral arguments down to one notecard, this will seem pretty familiar.

The summary at the bottom is exactly what you would expect — a quick summary of the notes on that page. Internet nerds differ on whether you should do that right when you are done taking notes or after you have reviewed them. I tend to summarize right away. Otherwise, that summary section sits alone

How the Cornell Method Works For Me

It is not an exaggeration to say the Cornell Method helps me in every note-taking situation I have in my professional life.

In meetings, I use it to easily call out follow-up items by dumping them in the cue section. This can be anything from a statute I need to look up to a call I need to return. Pulling those to-do items and reminders out of the main text of the notes really highlights them. Every time I fall in love with a new type of notebook that does not have the Cornell margin, I go back to trying to just circle, underline, or highlight my follow up items and two things happen:

  1. My notes look like an utter mess
  2. I can’t easily find the things I want to do just by glancing at the page.

Pulling your next steps/to-dos/action items over into the left-hand column also works well if you like to reduce your notes to an actual to-do list you put on an index card, in a computer file, or a fancy Getting Things Done tickler file. That left-hand column is now functionally your list of next actions. In meeting situations, the summary usually ends up being nothing but the date, time, purpose, and attendees of the meeting. This gives me a way to file my notes easily.

When I am listening to someone else talk for any length of time, whether an opponent in court or speaker at a CLE, being forced to organize my notes Cornell-style on the fly means I am actively engaged. If I do not take handwritten notes, my mind drifts, and suddenly I’ve missed everything. Here, I use the notes section to force me into keeping a cohesive outline, even if the speaker wanders around a bit (as lawyers often do).

Then I use the recall section to break out big-picture points I’m going to address and key questions I’d like to ask. Again, pulling those things out of the notes section cleans up my notes visually, and creates a quick mini-outline that I can refer to quickly.

The arena in which I’ve definitely found the Cornell method most helpful is in organizing my own teaching notes. The notes section covers the main points of my lecture in an outline and forces me to stay on task. The recall section is my dumping ground for everything I can’t deal with in my notes without things getting messy. Questions I plan on asking appear there, linked to whichever part of the lecture they’re related to. Reminders to myself also go there when I’m re-reading notes before getting up to speak. Notes on sources, if I need to mention those, go in the side margin as well.

With that wide Cornell margin, my teaching notes last three or four semesters instead of one. This is because I’m able to use that recall section to highlight key changes I want to make next time I present the material. Finally, the summary functions like the tagging function in Evernote. I have got the week of the semester the lecture occurs, the name of the class, the major topics I’m covering that week, and a page number. This way, when I have shuffled and reshuffled the pages while speaking, I can easily put them back together again when I’m done (or let’s be honest, mid-lecture).

If you are hopelessly disorganized like me, but wish you were an organized person hacking your own tendencies towards chaos, you really can’t go wrong with taking your notes by hand using the Cornell Method to force you into a specific but flexible note-taking framework. All my notes — meeting notes, lecture notes, deposition notes — look and function the same, which means I always know where to put information when I am writing, and I always know how to find information when I’m reviewing later.

The Cornell Method is the only productivity tool that has stuck with me for more than a year, and I am never giving it up.