I Love You Teddy Bear and the Launch of the Steiff Bear

Was there ever a time in your life when you turned and whispered “I love you teddy bear” to your most cherished companion? The teddy bear that was with you, in your crib, from the day you were born? The one you came home and cried to when you fell off your bike and scraped your knee on the sidewalk? The one that kept you company when you were forced to remain indoors after your contracted chicken pox? If you never told your teddy bear how you felt about him or her, that would be a surprise. After all, teddy bears all over the world are used to hearing “I love you teddy bear,” at one time or another in their long lives.

Children everywhere (and even some adults), have been in love with their teddy bears ever since they were innocently first created as felt pincushions to be given to family and friends as gifts. What began as nothing more than a small elephant Margarete Steiff made in felt from a do-it-yourself pattern she found in a popular German magazine, turned into the most iconic plush toy of all time.

Maragarete was so pleased with the result of her first felt pincushion she decided to make others to give away. When children saw their mothers’ elephant pincushions, they claimed them for themselves, loving their size and softness. Margarete received so many requests for the pincushions, on December 29, 1889, she decided to start selling them. What had begun as merely a dressmaking business, quickly turned into the sale of soft toys (including lions, dogs, camels, monkeys, and donkeys), which eventually made up the majority of sales at Margarete’s company; 5,170 elephants were sold in 1886.

The company moved to larger premises in 1889 and went on to produce its first catalogue in 1892 which showcased its entire range of ‘toy’ animal products. In the same year, the company applied for a patent “for the making of animals and other figures to serve as playthings.” The launch of the first Steiff bear also took place in 1892 which was just one of many animals available for purchase in a set. The little bear was a hugely popular character and soon became the most important in the animal set.

The Steiff bear had begun its journey to what we would eventually see perfected and established as the world’s most popular toy.

And so too began the idea that one could be in love with their plush toys, specifically with the teddy bear. Saying “I love you teddy bear” to your favorite plush toy is no more unusual than saying it to the family dog or cat. Like with them, children and adults form close and passionate attachments to particular soft toys and as is the case, the “I love you teddy bear” sentiment really isn’t unusual at all.

Copyright Shelley Vassall, 2010.

New Product Launch Bonuses – Don’t Forget to Grab Yourself a Good One!

On the internet we are constantly seeing new product launches happening and I am sure you are aware that many of the affiliates who are offering the new product, also include bonuses to entice you to buy from them. But of course you don’t just buy the product itself, but keep your eyes open for the best bonus you can get your hands on, don’t you?

So, let me ask you: Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you were ready to buy a freshly launched Internet Marketing product, but then found yourself completely overwhelmed by the amount of bonuses scattered around all over the internet?

Most of those bonuses are of course products that don’t cost the affiliate a lot or nothing at all, like free PLR content they picked up some time ago and which has been lying forgotten in a draw until now. Occasionally though, you’ll find a little gem amongst all those bonuses on offer.

The person offering this bonus has actually put some thought into what people buying the original product would like to have with it, something that is helpful for the customer, who is parting with their hard earned cash or they will need to buy either immediately or at a later point in order to maximize the value of their new product.

Often those valuable bonuses are being bought from the sellers affiliate commission and some people sacrifice a good chunk of it in the hope to increase their profits for promoting this launch. And why not? It sounds like a win-win situation to me.

So let’s see how we can make sure that we are going to spot the gems amongst all the offered bonuses, so that you’ll get the most of any up-coming launches.

1 – Consider the product you are buying!

You first of all need to understand the nature of the product that you’re buying. Is it a product that helps you to get more done, have more time to yourself and increase your profits at the same time by ‘cloning’ yourself (like Dolly the sheep) and using other people to help you with all the tasks that need to be dealt with on a day to day basis? Or is it a ‘business in a box’ you are buying, or an ebook, or a course where you have to commit to be present at webinars, etc.? I am sure you get the idea!

2 – Will you need to buy anything else?

After you’ve bought the product, are you going to have to buy anything else in order to start making money? In our case, you’re are likely to need something to spend your extra leisure time on or something that’ll help you to communicate with your helpers and be more effective. If you already have every toy you could wish for – although somehow I doubt that, because, honestly, how can you EVER have ENOUGH toys! – and you have all communication covered, than you always have the option of considering what you’d like to have but wouldn’t necessary buy, or what information products could help you on your road to success.

3 – Where can I find my ideal bonus?

So you’ve made your decision and know what your ideal bonus package should look like. Now it’s time to start searching for it. It’s important that you search for it in quotes and add on the word ‘bonus’. For example:

“Productname” bonus

The result you are getting will give you a list of all the different bonus packages that are on offer. You can now either check out every single one yourself or, alternatively, try searching slightly differently. In our example you could search like this: “Productname” bonus “LiveScribe Pen”

Now you’ll get an overview of all the different bonus packages that are offering a LiveScribe Pen.

I would advise strongly that you don’t just buy the launch product through the first affiliate link you find. Think about it. The right bonus package can save you a lot of money, since you don’t have to buy the bonus yourself – this is especially the case when the bonus offers you an item that you’ll need at some point anyway, either in order to continue with- or be successful in the first place with your new product.

So do keep your eyes open for the optimal bonus for you and follow the suggestions in this article to make sure that you get hold of the best launch bonuses available.

New Equity Release Lender More2Life Launches New Products

Signs that the equity release market is beginning to spark into life again, can be evidenced by the re-emergence of a former lender in the market.

More2Life have joined forces with annuity specialist Partnership assurance to re-launch their impaired life roll-up lifetime mortgage plan.

Incorporating an impaired life facility & protected equity guarantee, the More2Life equity release plan can be seen to be opening a niche market for itself. The impaired life facility means that depending on health & lifestyle, a higher than normal tax free lump sum can be achieved, should serious health issues be present.

The More2Life equity release plan has been designed with three scenario’s in mind: -

1. Enhanced plus – industry leading maximum release, impaired life product

2. Enhanced protected – impaired life plan with ‘protected equity guarantee’

3. Protected plan – older applicants looking for a ‘protected equity guarantee’

Pitching the enhanced plus plan at the maximum release end of the market means that should the applicant qualify on medical grounds, they would have the highest lump sum currently available. This would even surpass the current Aviva Lump Sum Max product, although this would be at the expense of a higher interest rate with More2Life.

The following percentages are the maximum releases available on the Enhanced Plus: -

Age 55 23%

Age 60 28%

Age 65 33%

Age 70 38%

Age 80 48%

Age 90+ 54%

For example, an applicant aged 65 with a property valuation of £250,000 & meeting the underwriting criteria, can release a maximum of £82,500 on the enhanced plus plan.

The interest rate for this product will be 7.49% monthly.

The second product – ‘enhanced protected plan’ is also based on health & lifestyle grounds & again can provide an enhanced lump sum. However, to qualify for this equity release scheme the health situation will not be a serious as the enhanced plus. The interest rate for this plan is lower at 6.99% monthly.

Another feature of this plan is the ‘protected equity guarantee’ which is included & guarantees a percentage of the property for the children/beneficiaries on the eventual sale of the property.

The guarantee works as follows: -

Should the overall facility available be £80,000, yet only £40,000 is taken, then 50% of the final sale value will be protected on sale.

This can be an essential tool for applicants who wish to ensure that a guaranteed inheritance is passed onto their children.

The final option is the ‘protected plan’ which has no impaired life facility, but does include the protected equity guarantee. The interest rate is the same as the enhanced protected at 6.99% monthly.