Oops . . . or when things go wrong, suddenly, online

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error message copiedLate last night, just before heading for bed, I tried to take care of a few chores, including switching the forwarding of a domain within the server. A seemingly simple task — but things went very wrong, very quickly, when suddenly ALL of our company’s websites went blank and the server started sending error messages on five minute intervals.

Although I’m much more technically adept than many, I’m certainly not a technical expert. So last night, after having an email chat with technical support at my ISP (hostgator.com), I went to sleep with the problem unresolved.

Waking up this morning, with a planned weekend journey to New York City to start in just two hours, I had a challenge. No blog posting, of course. But no websites either, for constructionmarketingideas.com or any of our publications.

What to do . . .

I went to odesk.com, posted the job, and within a half hour, had about five candidates who could fix things for $50 or less. I didn’t have time to be careful — so looked at relevant client ratings and experience, and selected a contractor in India who said he could do the job for $30.00. With a leap of faith (but based on successful earlier experiences), I sent a message providing a snapshot of the error messages and server passwords, and headed with my family to the Syracuse, NY airport. (The three-hour drive saves hundreds of dollars in air fares.)

As we prepared to board our flight to New York, I discovered our contractor had solved the problem within one hour. Perhaps someone else would have bid less, but I don’t think any technician in North America would work for less. Problem solved, though the blog posting today is late, and a little off the marketing topic.

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