Knicks ‘upbeat’ despite disappointment over missing out on Durant

first_imgPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hosting MOST READ Panelo: Duterte ‘angry’ with SEA Games hosting hassles Kevin Durant out with Achilles injury; to undergo MRI on Tuesday PLAY LIST 03:12Kevin Durant out with Achilles injury; to undergo MRI on Tuesday00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next LATEST STORIES Urgent reply from Philippine ‍football chief World dragon boat champs out to make waves in SEA Games POC chief on SEA Games hosting glitches: ‘It’s normal’ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Cayetano: Senate, Drilon to be blamed for SEA Games mess PH beach spikers also eye spots to Continental Cup Duterte wants probe of SEA Games mess View comments After Durant signing, Nets add DeAndre Jordan to their frontcourt They came into free agency with about $70 million, most in the league and enough to sign two maximum contract players.Knicks President Steve Mills says the team understands that some Knicks fans would be disappointed, but says the team continues to be “upbeat and confident in our plans to rebuild the Knicks to compete for championships in the future, through the draft, targeted free agents and continuing to build around our core of young players.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSSingapore latest to raise issue on SEA Games food, logisticsSPORTSPalace wants Cayetano’s PHISGOC Foundation probed over corruption chargesThe Knicks agreed to deals with forward Julius Randle and Taj Gibson on Sunday night. FILE – New York Knicks President Steve Mills speaks at the unveiling of the Knicks’ jersey sponsorship with Squarespace at Madison Square Garden on October 10, 2017 in New York City. Abbie Parr/Getty Images/AFPThe Knicks say they are “upbeat” despite free agency opening with disappointing news.Kevin Durant announced he would sign with the Brooklyn Nets, taking away one of the best players available and limiting the type of splash the Knicks would be able to make.ADVERTISEMENTlast_img read more

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Here are 8 films to revive your sagging patriotism

first_imgIf you are one of those laidback kinds who would want to enjoy the Independence Day holiday lazying around, here are 8 movies to plug into that will re-ignite the patriotism in you:1. Ghare BaireBased on the novel Home and The World written by Rabindranath Tagore, the Bengali movie is based on the Indian nationalist movement and adds a domestic angle to the freedom struggle. Directed by Satyajit Ray, the film was released in 1984.Source: Pinterest2. RojaThis Tamil film directed by Mani Ratnam won three national awards including Best Film on National Integration. It was Roja which brought Ratnam into the national spotlight since the film dealt with the separatists’ struggle for Kashmiri independence.Photo: www.desirulez.me3. Chak De IndiaThis sports drama is the perfect amalgamation of sport and patriotism which made this movie a worldwide hit. After failing to score the winning goal against Pakistan, Kabir Khan, played by Shah Rukh Khan, is labelled a traitor. To redeem himself, he takes on the challenge of taking the Indian women’s hockey team to Australia for the world championship. You will find yourself cheering and feasting on your nails when the climax arrives.4. IndianThe 1996 Tamil film is the story of an ex-freedom fighter turning into a vigilante with some deft touches. Kamal Hassan stars in a double role along with Manisha Koirala and Urmila Matondkar.Photo: www.tamildurbar.com5. LagaanDirected by Ashutosh Gowariker, this depicts the plight and struggle of Indian farmers during East India Company rule wherein they were supposed to pay a very steep and exorbitant a land tax – Lagaan, thus the title of the film. The film uses emotions attached to cricket in the best way possible allowed by Bollywood. advertisement6. Keerthi ChakraThe 2006 Malayalam war film is based on true events related to the Kashmir insurgency.Source: KeralaTv7. Kittur ChennammaThis 1961 historical Kannada drama is based on Kittur Chennama, the freedom fighter who led an armed rebellion against the East India Company in 1824. Saroja Devi played the titular role.Source: Youtube8. Chhatrapati Shivaji There have been many versions of Chhatrapati Shivaji on silver screen, on small screen and even an animated version. Based on the exploits of the Maratha warrior king, the films dwell on his daring exploits under Mughal hegemony.Source: WebmallIndialast_img read more

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Viswanathan Anand suffers shocking first-round loss in Sinquefield Cup

first_imgFive-time world champion Viswanathan Anand suffered a surprising first round loss at the hands of Hikaru Nakamura of United States in the Sinquefield Cup here.Starting the tournament with a double black, Anand defended pretty well for a long time before Nakamura crashed through after persistent pressure.The first round of the event started with a bang with all games ending decisively.As in the first edition of the Grand Chess tour, Veselin Topalov of Bulgaria caused the biggest upset for the second time running when he defeated world champion Magnus Carlsen of Norway in what was a repeat of the Norway tournament opener in June this year.Anish Giri of Holland also repeated his success against Alexander Grischuk of Russia while in the other two games of the day, Levon Aronian of Armenia was brilliant in his fine victory against Fabiano Caruana of USA and Frenchman Maxime Vachier-Lagrave progressed at the expense of ‘wild-card’ Wesley So, also from the host federation.With five winners on the first day, the event has started in a unique way as in recent history such high number of decisive games are hard to find.Anand, however, was a little unlucky to lose from an equal position against Nakamura out of a Catalan opening where the Indian played black.Getting out of the opening unscathed, Anand had to defend patiently as Nakamura continued to hunt for an advantage and it was only after some errors by the former that the American picked up a pawn on move 40.advertisementAnand resigned after three more moves rather prematurely in opinion of some masters but the pressure was immense in addition to the material deficit.Carlsen lost after coming across a new idea by Topalov early in the opening. The World champion sacrificed a piece for some dangerous compensation but it was the calm response by the Bulgarian that saved him the blushes in the end.last_img read more

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LeBron James Blames China Mess on Houston Rockets General Manager’s ‘Misinformed’ Tweet

first_imgLos Angeles: Basketball superstar LeBron James has sharply criticised a Houston Rockets executive for angering China with a tweet supporting protesters in Hong Kong, saying the executive was “misinformed” and should have kept his mouth shut.The remarks by the Lakers forward are the most direct so far by a high-profile NBA figure in a controversy that has raised questions about the league’s future in China and sparked US accusations that Beijing was trying to regulate speech in other countries. Many in the US, including NBA Commissioner Adam Silver and top American politicians, have defended Rockets general manager Daryl Morey’s right to speak out, but James said the careless exercise of free speech can bring harm.”I believe he (Morey) wasn’t educated on the situation at hand, and he spoke,” James said before a pre-season game between the Lakers and Golden State Warriors.”So many people could have been harmed not only financially but physically, emotionally and spiritually. So just be careful with what we tweet, and we say, and we do,” added James, who is known for speaking out on hot-button issues.”Yes, we do have freedom of speech, but there can be a lot of negative that comes with that too.”James has a lucrative lifetime endorsement deal with Nike, which does big business in China, and he has made several promotional trips to the country.James’s Lakers and the Brooklyn Nets were thrust into the whirlwind when they arrived in China last week for a pair of exhibition games after Morey tweeted: “Fight for Freedom. Stand with Hong Kong.”Hong Kong has been rocked by months of protests ignited by now-scrapped legislation that would have allowed criminal suspects to be extradited from the semi-autonomous territory to China.The demonstrations have ballooned into a broader movement for more democratic freedom, but are portrayed within China as the lawless actions of violent separatists.HOT POTATOJames spoke out after a number of normally outspoken NBA figures like Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr and his star guard Stephen Curry drew criticism for declining to take a clear stand on the issue.James’s comments drew praise online in China, but harsh criticism in the United States.A hashtag lauding his remarks was the 12th most-searched on Tuesday on Weibo, China’s leading social media platform, with more than 64 million views.”Admirable. This American star has independent thinking and is responsible on weighty issues,” said one posting.But US critics pounced on James on Twitter, especially after he posted further comments complaining that the Morey situation had put his Lakers and the Nets through a “difficult week” in China.A number of posts said wryly that Hong Kong pro-democracy demonstrators and an estimated up to one million Chinese Muslims being held in prison-like camps in China also were “having a difficult week”.An initial NBA statement on Morey’s tweet was criticised in the US as too conciliatory toward China, drawing accusations that the world’s top basketball league was putting profit in the vast Chinese market before principle.But Silver subsequently further enraged China by defending Morey’s free speech rights and refusing to apologise.Following Morey’s comments, the NBA’s Chinese sponsors cut ties en masse, and the two Lakers-Nets exhibition games in China were pulled from the country’s TV screens. Get the best of News18 delivered to your inbox – subscribe to News18 Daybreak. Follow News18.com on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Telegram, TikTok and on YouTube, and stay in the know with what’s happening in the world around you – in real time. basketballChinahong kongHouston Rockets First Published: October 16, 2019, 11:41 PM ISTlast_img read more

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Mongolian coaches banned for three years for Rio strip

first_imgTwo Mongolian wrestling coaches who stripped off in protest at the judging at last month’s Rio Olympics have been suspended for three years, the sport’s international federation said on Wednesday. (Rio Olympics: Full Coverage)The Mongolia wrestling federation was also fined 50,000 Swiss francs ($51,366.34), United World Wrestling said on Twitter.Tserenbaatar Tsogtbayar and Byambarenchin Bayaraa undressed and hurled their shoes when their wrestler Mandakhnaran Ganzorig was denied victory for avoiding his Uzbek opponent in the dying seconds of a bronze medal contest.Ganzorig, leading Ikhtiyor Navruzov by seven points to six, taunted his opponent by dancing around him in the last 18 seconds of their 65kg match and was then carried around the ring in triumph by one of the coaches.But the judges adjusted the score to 7-7, penalising the Mongolian for ‘fleeing the hold’, and added a further point to the Uzbek’s score after a challenge from the Mongolian corner was rejected.The two Mongolian coaches advanced towards the judges, stripped off their shirts and shoes and hurled them to the floor.With the crowd erupting, one then took off his tracksuit bottoms and remonstrated with the judges wearing nothing but a pair of trunks.The incident, on the final Sunday, provided one of the memorable moments of the Olympics.last_img read more

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$40,000 Raised for Sandy Relief (And We’re Not Done Yet)

first_imgWe haven’t seen much by the way of snow this year, but last week – thanks to the help of all of you – our staffers faced blizzard conditions. Since launch, our #TwinterWonderland holiday card has raised more than $40,000 for Sandy relief – but we’re not stopping there.Until the New Year, we’ll continue to count all #TwinterWonderland tweets as $5 donations. And though we’re not stationed in the globe anymore, we’ve compiled some our favorite moments to share.Thanks for keeping the snow falling and the donations rising.last_img read more

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6 Things You Need to Know About Obamacare

first_imgHas an organization or university offered you an opportunity with a stipend? Whether it’s an internship or apprenticeship, a stipend is a set amount of money that helps offset living expenses. This fixed amount is financial support provided while you’re… Full Story,Truth is, there is a lot to be excited about when it comes to college: new friends, a new routine, (college parties!), and more independence. But along with all these perks, it’s also time to start thinking about your finances…. Full Story,A routing number is a unique number that identifies a specific banking institution. Each routing number is made up of nine digits. Routing numbers are sometimes referred to as an American Banker’s Association routing transit number or an ABA RTN…. Full Story,It’s stressful enough having a car loan over your head and staying on top of your monthly payments. But what if you have an upside-down car loan — in other words, the amount you owe on your set of wheels… Full Story,When you’re trying to get your financial house in order, it’s easy to get lost in the specifics. You might stress about how to adjust your budget, where to find some extra cash for the holidays or what funds to… Full Story,Shortly after graduating from New York University with a Master’s degree, Melanie Lockert turned to food stamps, as she worked her way out of $81,000 in student loans. “There were a lot of emotions around carrying that debt. It caused… Full Story,Traveling is one of the best things in life, and luckily, low funds don’t have to dash your dreams of enjoying an epic adventure. A wealth of destinations—both in the U.S. and abroad—are so affordable that even hardcore penny pinchers… Full Story,While we don’t yet have flying cars that collapse to the size of a suitcase, pneumatic tubes that transport us from room to room or machines that automatically bathe and clothe us in the morning, every day we’re getting closer… Full Story,Times have changed since Grams and Gramps were your age, looking to settle down and buy their first home. But today the house with the white picket fence—or that trendy loft in downtown—isn’t completely out of the question if you… Full Story,We recently hosted a Twitter chat as part of our #RealTalkSeries. And let’s just say, things definitely got real. Many of you joined us to discuss “taboo” and cringe-worthy money questions such as how to improve a bad credit score,… Full Storylast_img read more

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2014 Midyear Checkup List

first_imgGetting physically fit takes discipline, effort, and more than a little energy to get to where you want to be. Regularly moving your body and sticking to a fitness plan isn’t easy, and doing so is certainly commendable—and comes with… Full Story,Table of Contents Benefits of Working During Retirement Phased Retirement Types of Employment Recommended Jobs for Seniors  Resources for Seniors  Retirement looks different for everyone. Some people dream of playing golf and visiting their grandchildren, while others see it as… Full Story,A study conducted by Charles Schwab just last year found that three in five Americans live paycheck to paycheck, yet only one in four has a written financial plan. In fact, the majority of Americans are hesitant to receive any… Full Story,Life is unpredictable. Some days aren’t all sunshine, like when your car breaks down or your house needs a repair. These situations happen to everyone. That’s why it’s important to save while things are going well, so you can cover… Full Story,Structure is the key to growth. Without a solid foundation – and a road map for the future – it’s easy to spin your wheels and float through life without making any headway. Planning allows you to prioritize your time,… Full Story,Car accidents are not only scary but also a monumental hassle. That’s largely thanks to what comes after the accident itself.   After an accident, you’ll likely have to spend ample time on the phone with your insurer. Then there’s dealing… Full Story,If you’re a furloughed government employee, you are likely feeling a good deal of stress and uncertainty about how to manage your finances during the government shutdown. While missing a paycheck is a financial moment no one wants to experience,… Full Story,Buried underneath paying bills, digging out of a debt hole, and saving for your kids’ college is the marathon of money goals: retirement. Cue the fantasies of spending your days at a leisurely pace, working on The Great American Novel—at… Full Story,When I’m on top of finances, I’m all up in my money management apps, checking my balances and the swift progress I’ve been making on my savings goals. But when things aren’t going so hot? I’m like an ostrich with… Full Story,With all of today’s home-based tech gadgets and virtual personal assistants, smart homes are quickly becoming ubiquitous. And with high demand for connected products, so too comes ease of use, accessibility and affordability.   But as with all expenses, it’s important… Full Storylast_img read more

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Globetrotting Tips for International Travel

first_imgHas an organization or university offered you an opportunity with a stipend? Whether it’s an internship or apprenticeship, a stipend is a set amount of money that helps offset living expenses. This fixed amount is financial support provided while you’re… Full Story,Truth is, there is a lot to be excited about when it comes to college: new friends, a new routine, (college parties!), and more independence. But along with all these perks, it’s also time to start thinking about your finances…. Full Story,A routing number is a unique number that identifies a specific banking institution. Each routing number is made up of nine digits. Routing numbers are sometimes referred to as an American Banker’s Association routing transit number or an ABA RTN…. Full Story,It’s stressful enough having a car loan over your head and staying on top of your monthly payments. But what if you have an upside-down car loan — in other words, the amount you owe on your set of wheels… Full Story,When you’re trying to get your financial house in order, it’s easy to get lost in the specifics. You might stress about how to adjust your budget, where to find some extra cash for the holidays or what funds to… Full Story,Shortly after graduating from New York University with a Master’s degree, Melanie Lockert turned to food stamps, as she worked her way out of $81,000 in student loans. “There were a lot of emotions around carrying that debt. It caused… Full Story,Traveling is one of the best things in life, and luckily, low funds don’t have to dash your dreams of enjoying an epic adventure. A wealth of destinations—both in the U.S. and abroad—are so affordable that even hardcore penny pinchers… Full Story,While we don’t yet have flying cars that collapse to the size of a suitcase, pneumatic tubes that transport us from room to room or machines that automatically bathe and clothe us in the morning, every day we’re getting closer… Full Story,Times have changed since Grams and Gramps were your age, looking to settle down and buy their first home. But today the house with the white picket fence—or that trendy loft in downtown—isn’t completely out of the question if you… Full Story,We recently hosted a Twitter chat as part of our #RealTalkSeries. And let’s just say, things definitely got real. Many of you joined us to discuss “taboo” and cringe-worthy money questions such as how to improve a bad credit score,… Full Storylast_img read more

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Rotating night shifts a path to diabetes

first_imgWorking the night shift may play havoc with your blood sugar levels, a new study contends.For the study, researchers looked at data on more than 270,000 people in the United Kingdom and found that those who worked irregular or rotating shifts that included night shifts were 44 percent more likely to have type 2 diabetes than those who worked only days.“Shift work, particularly night shifts, disrupts social and biological rhythms, as well as sleep, and has been suggested to increase the risk of metabolic disorders, including type 2 diabetes,” said study co-first author Celine Vetter. She directs the University of Colorado’s Circadian and Sleep Epidemiology Laboratory.The more often a person worked an irregular night shift, the greater their risk for type 2 diabetes, the findings showed. For example, working nights less than three times a month increased the risk by 24 percent, but working nights more than eight times a month increased the risk by 36 percent.“Our study is one of the first to show a dose-response relationship, where the more often people work nights, the greater their likelihood of having the disease,” Vetter added in a university news release.However, working a permanent night shift was not linked to an increased risk of diabetes. The study authors suggested that these people might adapt to a consistent night-shift schedule, or perhaps they were “night owls” who had a natural tendency to be awake at night.About 15 million American workers have permanent night shifts, rotating shifts or shifts with irregular schedules, the study authors noted.If a person can’t avoid working nights, they may be able to reduce their health risks by eating a healthy diet, watching their weight, and getting enough exercise and sleep, Vetter advised.The findings could not prove a cause-and-effect relationship between rotating shift work and type 2 diabetes. But, other recent studies have also found associations between these work schedules and heart disease, diabetes and cancer.The new report was published online Feb. 12 in the journal Diabetes Care.last_img read more

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Which Countries Have Long-term Strategies to Reduce Emissions?

first_img 80 to 95% by 2050 below 1990 emissions levels The new Climate Watch module presents the 12 countries that have communicated long-term strategies and the goals contained therein. Those countries represent just over 32 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions. Japan Germany 80% or more by 2050 below 2005 emissions levels Source: Climate Watch11 long-term strategies include a quantified vision for emissions in 2050. These come in various forms. For example, Canada, France, Germany, Mexico, Ukraine, UK and the U.S. use “base year goals” (i.e. an emissions reduction goals relative to a certain historical emissions level). Japan states a percentage reduction goal (without specifying the reference year), while Czech Republic, Fiji and the Marshall Islands all have fixed-level goals, stating what emissions level will be achieved in 2050. Most goals are light on details.  For example, it is not always clear which sectors and gases are included in the long-term goal, which is the base year (in the case of Japan), whether offsets will be used to reach goals, or what accounting methodologies will be used to track and report on progress.Long-term strategies are also larger in scope than just the emission reduction goals they contain. They are a critical means of planning for the longer-term transitions required across the entire economy, while also helping to capitalize on the opportunities. Developing a long-term strategy is about creating a shared vision for a country that meets national development objectives as well as the global goals of the Paris Agreement.Among the countries that have formally communicated a long-term strategy, only Fiji and the Marshall Islands have set goals of achieving net-zero emissions by 2050. But there has been a recent swell of national commitments for net-zero emissions by 2050 or sooner outside of the Paris Agreement submissions process.In addition, a flurry of work is underway in more countries to get their long-term strategies finalized by the end of 2020.  For example, 28 countries have joined the 2050 Pathways Platform to develop their long-term strategies (among which 9 of these have already done so). China and India also recently committed to developing its long-term strategy by 2020. (Watch our recent webinar to learn more about the role long-term strategies will play at the upcoming U.N. Climate Action Summit).Long-term strategies are important guideposts for directing short- and medium-term climate action plans that lead to net-zero pathways. The Climate Watch long-term strategies tracker will be updated in real time as more long-term strategies are submitted and will be complemented with in-depth analysis of the specific contents in countries’ long-term low emissions development plans. Stay tuned. 31-34% by 2050 below 1990 emissions levels Fiji 75% by 2050 below 1990 emissions levels 50% by 2050 below 2000 emissions levels Quantified Vision for Emissions in 2050 Net zero GHG emissions by 2050 80% by 2050 below 1990 emissions levels 80% by 2050 below 2005 emissions levels 80% by 2050 (base year not specified) Ukraine France 39 Mt CO2e in 2050 Country At the UN Climate Action Summit next week, scores of countries are expected to announce their plans to accelerate and scale up global ambition to implement the Paris Agreement. UN Secretary General António Guterres has called on all world leaders to bring “plans and not speeches” and requested ambitious announcements of national strategies to reach net zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by midcentury.These long-term strategies (formally known as mid-century, long-term, low-greenhouse gas emissions development strategies under the Paris Agreement) are an essential piece of the puzzle to limit global warming. The 2018 UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) special report  is clear: limiting global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees C (2.7 degrees F) over pre-industrial levels will require action across multiple sectors and deal with a range of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and pollutants that drive climate change. Long-term strategies play a key role in driving these necessary transformations.The Paris Agreement invites all countries to communicate their long-term strategies to the UN by 2020. To date, 12 countries have formally done so. Many other countries have initiated domestic processes to meet this deadline. Climate Watch, WRI’s online platform offering data, visualization and analysis on countries’ climate data and actions, has launched a new module to track the long-term strategies as they are developed, showing where things stand and highlighting what has been committed in these strategies. Tools such as these are important for assessing progress toward meeting the global goals agreed to under the Paris Agreement.Climate Watch’s Long-term Strategy Tracker Czech Republic n/a (plan extends to 2025) Mexico Benin United States Carbon neutrality by 2050 Canada United Kingdom Marshall Islandslast_img read more

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4 Components of a Successful Internet Marketing Strategy

first_img Marketo . your Internet marketing starts with data. I was speaking with a small business owner the other day and I told her that I would take a look at the data from our analysis of her site. She asked me, “How do you have any data without looking at my webstats?”. That’s a logical question. PR firms that have “taken to the web” “time” is the most important ingredient in your internet marketing strategy data No matter who you hire, give them the data and software they need. Then, measure them based on their ability to generate leads for you. If you’re the expert at your business, your product, your customers’ challenges… don’t expect them to work in a vacuum. Whether you staff internally or outsource, you’ll need to guide their activities, motivate and inspire them and teach them about your business. Just like hiring any new employee, don’t expect them to produce leads in a vacuum. Internet marketing isn’t magic. There are no such things as magic internet marketing skills. Or Topics: or “. But, suffice to say that the software that powers your website should include all of what HubSpot’s software includes. Don’t just stop with a package that knows where your leads are coming from. Based on my experience, it’s very beneficial if your SEO analytics tools gather data from your analytics package and your customer relationship management integrates with your landing pages. or . But, you should use logic to govern your software selection. Askyourself, “Will the software give you all the tools you need to controlthe traffic you want to attract, the leads you need to generate, and the sales you want to make?” Compete Eloqua In a post a few months back, I argued that If you’d like to be one of the lucky ones, you should learn how to detect a good internet marketing services firm from a not-so-good one. Make sure the strategy that your web design and internet marketing firm presents to you covers the following 4 pieces of a successful internet marketing strategy: Techrigy , Grader tools SEO pixie dust As you can imagine, and Data online network much quicker. Your firm’s network will come in handy when launching your blog and building your readership, establishing credibility on social media sites, and sourcing content and building links for SEO. This may be obvious now, but you’ll be much more successful if you can connect online with your real world clients, suppliers and networking partners. If you can get your whole network blogging or using LinkedIn effectively, you’ll stand a much better chance of success yourself.  Software What software will power your website and internet marketing? You must ask this question of any internet marketing services firm you’re interviewing. Very few firms have this figured out. There are still way too many web designers creating websites by hand coding them from scratch. And there are way too many websites that aren’t built on an internet marketing platform. Most design firms will start pitching you by showing you mockups of pretty websites. Push back! Tell them that you know that the software is ultimately what’s going to enable an ROI. InfusionSoft Are you successful online? Do you have all 4 bases covered? Or did you skip one? What data do you use? What software are you using? What skills did you build internally? What tasks are you outsourcing and why? Are you building your network online? Moving your network online? Did you hire someone to help you with building your network online? HubSpot’s Internet Marketing Software content management system But, I’m not taking about traffic logs. I’m talking about data that is culled from the web about your website, your competitors’ websites, search engines, blogs and social media sites.  launch landing pages Skills to you that helps you start calculating the traffic, leads and sales you’ll get from internet marketing.  Marketing Strategy and However, if you’re going to outsource your internet marketing to a firm, you should find a firm that has a stable of writers at their disposal; a quant or two on staff to plot your strategy; and a grunt or two to help with your repetitive social media and link building activities. Also consider hiring a liberal arts major out of college or a journalist. Just make sure they can read graphs. This is the main reason why the HubSpot team created our free Share your experiences in the comments. , Your website isn’t an island on the web. A lot of factors determine whether you’re likely to get much traffic from search engines, other blogs and social media sites. A good firm will be able to estimate how much traffic you can get without looking at what you get now.  They should also be able to tell you how much work it’ll take to get that traffic.  But there is other data you should look at, too. If you plan to do a lot of pay per click advertising, you should start your research with Exact Target . If you’re looking for more advanced social media data, check out , you’d meet a lot of people very quickly. If you walked in alone, you might not get to talk to anyone worth talking to. The same thing applies on the web. Working with a firm with a similar network online as I have, can help you make progress much quicker.  Without their help, and the help from their established networks on the web, you’d be the new guy in the room for awhile. Working with a firm can help you build , and edit the right spots on your pages to do SEO. Make sure you have a Omniture . SpyFu Constant Contact Nielsen Online marketing analytics including Radian6 Aweber Data + Software + Skills + Network = Internet Marketing Success . You should definitely start email marketing. For small businesses, you should consider simple email marketing tools like .  If you’re a larger business with lots and lots of leads to nurture, you should consider tools like Since a well executed internet marketing strategy requires your time whether you outsource, do it yourself or hire someone, “lack of time” isn’t the best reason to outsource. However, a really good reason to outsource certain inbound marketing tasks is because the web is a network and your network is probably not on the web. A good internet marketing services firm has been creating content, building links, leveraging social media sites, blogging, etc for themselves and their clients for years. . Although website grader will tell you what mistakes you’re making, there are a bunch of tools included in HubSpot’s internet marketing software that give much more actionable information to aid with keyword research, on-page seo, off-page seo and social media marketing. Rick Roberge Depending on your circumstance, there are some other tools you should consider. If you run a very high volume site, you should consider a high end analytics package like or If you’re interviewing firms to design your website or plan your internet marketing strategy, they should be presenting What software do you need? We’re obviously a bit partial here. At some point, I will write a blog post called, “The Idiots Guide to Recreating . I still believe this. There is nothing about internet marketing that requires an advanced degree. If you have the right data and right software in place, all you really need is an interest in writing and the analytical skills required to read a graph. These skills are usually possessed by your average 11th grader.  Originally published Nov 20, 2008 10:06:00 AM, updated October 20 2016 are usually the best at building online networks.  They have the right skills. Web developers are usually not so good at this stuff.  Most companies start internet marketing by searching for an internet marketing services provider. They may get lucky and find a good one. But most companies are going to end up hiring a firm that only possesses half of what is required to make a client successful. For example, I have 700 readers on my blog, 500+ connections on LinkedIn/Facebook/Twitter, know lots of webmasters and have built 1,000s of links. If you could hire me to help you with your internet marketing, it’d be like hiring my sales coach to work a room with you in Central MA. If you were to walk into a networking event in Worcester, MA with Website Grader Network . Make sure you can Twitter Grader Don’t forget to share this post! 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10 Rules to Instantly Improve Your Presentations

first_imgHave you ever been listening to a presentation and viewed a slide that was so terrible it made you instantly want to walk out of the room?Good people make bad presentations. Why? Sometimes it’s because they think making a good one takes too long; other times it’s because they don’t understand what makes a great presentation. Recently, the brilliant folks at Duarte put on a slide:ology workshop here in Boston. While that workshop contained a wealth of useful information, Dan Zarella and I came up with 10 key rules for better presentations here at HubSpot . Today we offer our 10 rules to you as a simple test to make sure your presentations don’t suck.Free Download: 4 PowerPoint Presentation TemplatesHow to Design Great Presentations 1. No Bullets — Bullet points ruin presentations. Your audience can read your slides faster than you can read it to them. When you use bullet points, you take away from your talent as a speaker and reduce your meeting or presentation to a read-aloud session. Bullets work great in reports and documents, but keep them out of your presentations. 2. Start on Paper — PowerPoint is a great tool, but starting your presentations on the computer will only box you into the templates that Microsoft and your company has created. Instead, grab a couple pieces of paper and a stack of sticky notes. Treat each sticky note as a slide and write the overall idea of each slide needed on a stick note. Then peel and place them on the paper until you have a solid presentation outline that tells your story. During this process, it is common to reorder your sticky note slides several times. 3. The 30pt Rule — Your audience does not have super-human vision.  When you use text on your slides, use a font size no smaller than 30pt. Any smaller, and your audience won’t be able to read the text on your slides.  4. No Starbursts — What is a starburst? When you think about it, it’s really just a crazy circle that serves no purpose. When we refer to this rule, a better way to think about it is to make sure your slides are simple. Don’t use crazy shapes of clip art in an effort to “jazz up” your slides. Instead, think about what you can delete from your slide to make sure the message you are trying to communicate is clear. 5. 1 Thought Per Slide — Presentations give you the opportunity to tell your story and sell your ideas. When a slide is packed with five different ideas, your story is lost. When you are looking through your slides, make sure they only communicate one idea per slide. 6. Time-Limits, Not Slide-Limits — Does your company ask for “3 slides” for meetings? When you’re only allowed a set number of slides, it can lead you to break all of our above rules. Ask your manager to change the slide limit to a time limit. In a three-minute presentation, some presenters may use 20 slides or even more. By setting a time limit and not a slide limit, organizations can empower employees to give better presentations. 7. No Noise — Glance at a slide for a couple of seconds. Do you understand clearly what that slide is about? If you do not, then it likely has too much noise. Keeping slides simple is one of the most important steps you can take in making great presentations. 8. No Logo on Every Slide — If you are 20 minutes into a presentation and your audience doesn’t know who you are and what company you are with, then you have a major problem. This problem isn’t going to be solved by placing your company logo on every slide in your presentation. These logos add extra noise and distract from the story you are trying to tell. 9. No Chart Junk — Your presentation was likely not created for an academic class. Don’t fill it with complex charts that will take your audience a minute or more to determine the data point you are trying to emphasize. Make your data clear. If you are going to use a chart, make sure its takeaway is clear. Remember that, sometimes, posting a single stat on a slide can have more of an impact than an elaborate chart you plucked out of a pivot table. 10. Tell a Story — The first nine rules all support this one. As a presenter, your job is to tell a story. Make sure your presentations — both slides and speech — work together to tell a clear story. It should consist of essential story elements like conflict and humor. Tell a story! Will you follow these rules? What other rules would you add? Topics: Presentations Originally published May 17, 2010 2:00:00 PM, updated July 28 2017 Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

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Answered: 10 Common Social Media Marketing Questions

first_img Are B2B or B2C companies more social media friendly? In order to make your blogging content more shareable, consider adding social media buttons and enabling readers to further promote your posts. Facebook, for instance, offers “ If someone fills out a form on your site, you might want to learn more about them through LinkedIn and Twitter 2. and pick up some ideas from on their own. Consider sending them some 6. Can dipping your toe in the water be more detrimental than diving all the way in? Yes, when it comes to using social media for marketing your business. 10. inbound marketing HubSpot’s VP of Marketing Mike Volpe explained in a recent webinar Social media success should be measured using the same metrics you would use for any other inbound marketing campaign—traffic, leads and customers. Find a way to measure not only social media reach (number of followers, fans and connections), but also how this reach translates into leads and customers. At HubSpot, we do this through closed-loop marketing Photo credit: Do you have any other social media-related questions? Share them in the comments below and let’s see if we can find an answer! ,” embeddable features that can easily be integrated in your site. You could also save the social media icons as images and hyperlink them to link to specific status updates on Twitter. As part of our 8. , HubSpot also automatically adds the buttons you want to have featured on your posts. During the webinar, Mike used the phrase “social media intelligence,” which sparked some interest and led to a number of questions. He was referring to the insights a sales rep can receive using a lead’s social media profiles. It is important that you create your blog as part of your company site. This will bring you 3. Social media applies to both environments, B2B and B2C. Trying to isolate it to one type of business, as Mike pointed out, is like asking, “Does the phone apply to only certain types of businesses?” While its effectiveness might fluctuate based on specific industries and different types of networks, social media can be applicable to all environments. 4. Inbound Marketing book strong SEO benefits Social Media Any advice for companies with limited time/resources for social media? blogging platform Dipping your toe in the water by launching a small social media experiment or hiring an intern to manage community engagement will deliver insignificant or vague results. It is not going to change the way you are doing business. As Including social media in a company’s general marketing strategy often means changing a mindset. If your management team is not on board with such an approach, let them read the Here are 10 thought-provoking questions about social media 5. How does mobile marketing fit into social media? What do you mean by “Social Media Intelligence?” , for instance. Such intelligence can lead to more fruitful and effective conversations with prospects. . How do you go about creating and maintaining a blog? can help you find the right partner to work with. Topics: How do you know what the best channel is to reach your audience? , social media needs to be part of a comprehensive Case studies that emerged from the same webinar: How do you justify spending time on social media in companies where management isn’t onboard? How should organizations measure social media success? and enable you to develop recognition as an industry resource. In order to successfully maintain a blog, you will also need to figure out a scalable strategy. When brainstorming potential topic ideas, check your email outbox and the questions you have received from customers and prospects. It will be easy for you to turn these emails into blog posts. Marketing Automation Originally published Nov 8, 2010 11:00:00 AM, updated July 03 2013 While generally people want to be connected to the real industry experts, outsourcing marketing services can be an alternative solution for small companies that don’t have the time or resources to commit to inbound marketing. If you decide to go in that direction, don’t outsource to different agencies, but develop an integrated approach by making one agency as much of an expert in your industry as possible. are there to demonstrate this success.  1. Resident on Earth strategy in order to yield visible results. Inbound Marketing HubSpot’s Service Marketplace Mobile technology and social media both revolve around the concept of real-time interaction. Such platforms enable you to achieve instant access to information and peer feedback. What is more, both social networks and mobile are becoming more sensitive to people’s geographies and want to leverage location-based opportunities. The best way to evaluate what channel you should use to engage with your audience is by first observing what channel they use to reach you. Do people email you? Or do they leave comments on your blog? Maybe they prefer the 140 characters on Twitter to articulate a thought or share some feedback? Use such insights to develop a specific marketing campaign. While there might be times when you can shift conversations to another medium, first try to take into consideration people’s communication preferences. How do you add social buttons to your content? 7. Facebook and Twitter have actually increased the need and importance of blogging. As Mike mentioned during the webinar, a lot of HubSpot’s success on social media is thanks to our frequent blog posts. That enables people to ReTweet it, “like” it and comment on it. These two mediums work together rather than against each other. case studies 9. of companies in your industry that are doing well with social media. social plugins Have Facebook and Twitter diluted the effect or need to blog? Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

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Why Your Brain Lets You Make Grammar Mistakes (Even If You Know Better)

first_img Topics: Calling out other people’s grammar mistakes has become a favorite internet pastime.From news articles and blog posts to emails and tweets, if there’s an error in there, someone’s going to remark on it. Especially if it’s made by a brand. (Hey, we’re guilty of it, too.)And who could blame them? I also feel a certain sense of pride when I find a typo in a popular book. Sometimes I circle it with a pencil — you know, in case the publisher ever puts out a call for typos and I need to find it easily. You never know.But here’s the thing: Grammatical errors don’t necessarily mean the author didn’t know better. I could go on for days about the differences between “whether” and “weather” — and yet, for some reason, that one trips me up on a regular basis, especially when I’m texting.Download 6 Free Blog Post Templates NowWhy? Because our brains are wired in a way that makes us all susceptible to grammar slip-ups.Let that sink in for a second. No one is safe from making grammar mistakes — not even the Chief of the Grammar Police.In fact, some of the most common grammatical errors don’t happen because the writer is being careless; they happen because the writer is focused on their writing at a much higher level than the order of letters in a word.Let’s dig in to why.It’s Not Your FaultThink about how quickly you need to access words and interpret meaning when writing an email or having a conversation. Our brains don’t just stow away every individual word in our vocabularies in enormous storehouses, ready to be called upon, one-by-one, at a moment’s notice.Instead, most linguistic researchers agree that words are stored in groups according to the relationship between words. They call the process “word priming.”How does word priming work?In a study outlined in David A. Sousa’s How the Brain Learns to Read, subjects were presented with pairs of words. The first word was called the “prime,” and the second word was called the “target.” The prime was always a real word, but subjects were told the target could either be a real word or a non-word (like spretz). In the experiment, researchers showed the subjects the prime and the target, and the subjects had to decide as quickly as possible whether the target was a real word.In every case, people were much faster and more accurate in making decisions about target words that were related in meaning to the prime (like swan/goose) than they were if the prime and target were unrelated (like tulip/goose).Researchers suspect the reason it took less time for people to identify related pairs is because these words are actually physically closer to one another among the neurons in the brain, and that related words might be stored together in specific cerebral regions.Another way of framing our tendency to pair words together is that it simply becomes a habit.Dr. Tom Stafford, a cognitive psychologist at the University of Sheffield who studied Wikipedia edits to see what they reveal about how the brain processes language, told The Washington Post, “When you first start typing, you don’t have any habits. And then as you become fluid, that skill is based on the assemblage of routines that you don’t have to think about.”Both sets of research are complementary: Scientists have found that when people form habits (like learning to group related words together), the neurons in their brains can change their firing patterns so that these habits become more automated and take less mental energy when they’re repeated.What does this have to do with grammar mistakes?Andrew Heisel of The Washington Post uses this example:”If a friend texts that she’s ‘going to a concert’ and you want to tell her you’re also going, you might type, ‘I’m going, to,’ instead of ‘I’m going, too.’ Your brain is used to hearing the word ‘going’ followed by the word ‘to’ (as in going to work/school/etc.) and it just saw the phrase used that way in your friend’s text. Conversely, in sentences that should end with the preposition ‘to,’ people often write ‘too’ because that word more frequently concludes a sentence.”We all start out our emails and text messages and tweets with a specific concept we want to express, such as the fact that we’re also going to the concert. But when we actually type these concepts out, we unconsciously think about several options (like “going to” vs. “going, too”) and pick one. This process happens so quickly that we sometimes select the wrong one.We’re especially prone to error when we’re choosing between two words or phrases that sound the same.“Usually we pay a lot of attention to pronunciation while we’re typing because it’s usually a really good cue how to spell things,” says Maryellen MacDonald, a cognitive psychologist at the University of Madison-Wisconsin. “When someone types ‘Are dog is really cute,’ it’s not that they don’t know the difference between ‘are’ and ‘our’; it’s that the pronunciation of ‘our’ in the mind activated the spelling ‘our’ but also ‘are.’”This can happen with even the oddest of homophones, like when people mistakenly write “28” when they meant to type “20A.” An error like that puts the classic your/you’re and there/their mistakes into perspective a little bit more.Grammar Takes a Back Seat to MeaningIn the end, it all comes down to generalization — what WIRED’s Nick Stockton calls “the hallmark of all higher-level brain functions.”Generalization is the grouping strategy that helps our brains respond quickly to situations similar to one we’re already familiar with. It’s what helps us take in information, combine it with our habits and past experiences, and then extract meaning from it. And it’s fundamental to our ability to communicate.But, at the same time, it makes us prone to grammatical mistakes no matter how well we can write. Typos aren’t usually a result of stupidity or carelessness, Dr. Stafford explains. Instead, they often happen because trying to convey meaning in your writing is actually a very high-level task.”As with all high-level tasks, your brain generalizes simple, component parts (like turning letters into words and words into sentences) so it can focus on more complex tasks (like combining sentences into complex ideas),” writes Stockton.Of course, you should still proofread everything and get a fresh pair of eyes to look over your written work. But at least you can rest easier knowing that you made that typo in last week’s blog post not because you were ignorant or negligent, but because you were hyper-focused on conveying meaningful information to your readers.I know I will. Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Grammar Fails Originally published Jun 17, 2015 7:00:00 AM, updated October 07 2019last_img read more

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Confessions of a Jaded Conference Attendee: 5 Things I Loved About INBOUND

first_img Originally published Jul 24, 2015 12:00:00 PM, updated February 01 2017 Remember your very first conference?You carefully deliberated over every single session in the weeks leading up to it, bought a special outfit, and got a thrill when you finally arrived and saw your name covered in plastic.“My very own name tag? I’ll save this forever!”As the years progress, it can be hard to retain that type of excitement. After attending dozens and dozens of events, you begin to show the telltale signs of “conference fatigue” — namely, dumping the program in the trash can just past registration and making a beeline for the bar.  Last September leading up to HubSpot’s INBOUND event saw me at one of those jaded, gag-me-with-a-lanyard-already moments. My expectations were low, and I’ll admit, I only ended up going because I really, really wanted to hear some of the amazing keynote speakers.However, to my great surprise, I left the conference feeling invigorated, as if I had just experienced the mother of all marketing conferences.With that said, below you’ll find five things I ended up doing at last year’s INBOUND event that turned out to be awesome … but that I never would have expected.The Top 5 Things I Loved About INBOUND1) TrainingIf you’ve been looking not just for conference sessions, but for training and development opportunities in modern marketing, INBOUND is the place to be.I brought a team of marketing colleagues from my company to the show as part of their own education, and each one of them raved about all of the things they learned and the quality of the speakers. These presentations went far beyond just case studies and best practices. They were truly valuable learning sessions for marketers of all stripes.When we got back to the office, some of them even shared summaries of what they learned with their fellow team members who could not attend. Throughout the rest of the year, it was normal to hear people drop these lessons into conversations: “Well, as Rand Fishkin told me when I asked him about this at INBOUND…” and “The person who runs this kind of project at LinkedIn talked about this at INBOUND and she actually advises…”2) Recruiting Thousands upon thousands upon thousands of marketers. All interested in inbound marketing. Day after day. In the same building together — and sometimes even in the same room.Where could you find a better talent pool to recruit from, especially if you are looking for people who know how to use modern marketing software? INBOUND is a marketing recruiter and hiring manager’s dream come true. I met so many amazingly talented marketers at this conference, and it was clear to me that the best and brightest stars in marketing come out in full-force for the event (and not just from the United States). I met people who came from countries all over the world, including two people who had traveled to Boston from an inbound agency in Istanbul.Talk about opening up your recruitment efforts to a broader talent pool.3) Job HuntingAnother thing that struck me about INBOUND is that many people who attend are actively looking for new opportunities in their careers.While it’s great for hiring managers and recruiters, it’s also the perfect place to be if you’re fresh out of college, interested in moving into a different area of marketing, or simply looking for a new job. And I wasn’t the only one looking for marketing genius in between conference sessions. When I mentioned to a tech company CMO that I had been trying to fill certain positions, he admitted that the sole reason he and his directors were attending INBOUND was to keep an eye out for talent.4) Networking It goes without saying that you should network at conferences in general, but at a conference this large and full of so many marketers interested in learning and making connections, the act of networking somehow seems a lot easier.At INBOUND, the difference is that you’re surrounded by like-minded marketers. I’ve never been at a conference where people would so readily introduce themselves and instantly have things in common to talk about — whether they were a HubSpot customer, a partner, a vendor, or simply a die-hard fan. During one of the lunchtime breaks I had to take a phone call for work, and as soon as I put my phone down, an agency owner came over to talk to me. Her business was fascinating, and she couldn’t stop raving about inbound marketing and how it was transforming her life.Moral of the story? Passionate advocates of good, non-intrusive marketing methods are everywhere you look at INBOUND.5) Having FunLive concerts, special group events, food trucks, photo booths, happy hours … who knew a conference could be so much fun?  I had never attended a conference with such an amazing collection of people, let alone an agenda full of so many thoughtfully prepared, exciting activities for all of us.And that’s when it hit me. The reason I’d suffered from conference fatigue in the past was due to the fact that most conferences feel like work. And in many cases, they’re best comparable to a longer-than-normal workday in which you’re on your feet all day and then work again at night to catch up with your “day job.”In contrast, my experience at INBOUND was that the overall vibe is one of enjoyment and professional enrichment. It doesn’t feel like work. It feels like play — the kind of play that marketers need in order to fuel creativity, master new technologies, and further enhance our ever-expanding set of skills.If you need to get some training, recruit new team members, find a new job, network with peers, or simply let loose and have a great time, I hope to see you at INBOUND 2015.Yes, you’ll definitely get your own name tag, but will you want to save it forever? Nah — you’ll just want to come back again to get a new one … like I will this year. Inbound Marketing Topics: Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

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Making Changes to Your Website? Draw Inspiration From These 13 Web Designs

first_img Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack When you’re planning to make changes to your website, it helps to poke around other companies’ websites to see what they’re up to. How have they structured their navigations? Do they still use hero images? How many CTAs do they have? What do their mobile websites look like?While you’re certainly not trying to copy features exactly, seeing what others are doing can help you figure out what’s new in the fast-paced world of design and inspire new ideas for your own site.  Trouble is, it can be hard to randomly stumble across lots of great examples. So we decided to curate some in this very post to help inspire your next redesign. Before we dive into the websites themselves, it’s important to note that not every design is meant to look like Apple’s website and aesthetic. Of course everyone loves a “beautiful website” and smooth customer experience, but the end goal of any website is great usability — and that can have multiple definitions depending on your site purpose and target audience.Some designs you’ll love, others you’ll hate, and some you’ll think are just mediocre, but the important thing is that you’ll see and think about design elements that you hadn’t before. Take a moment to understand why a site might have been designed a certain way. A few tactics you might look for include:Use of imageryUse of videoUse of colorsUse and sizing of fontsLogo placementCTA placementResponsive designSocial media linksSearch boxHeadlinesPunctuationMenu barsBox designThe point of reviewing these designs isn’t for you to love all of them, but rather to find a few interesting design tactics that you can take back to your team. Let’s get to it. 1) Paul StuartWhy we like this site:The homepage does a few things well. First, site visitors are drawn to the screen by seeing visually captivating images of neckwear. While neckwear isn’t usually the most interesting subject, the use of bright imagery draws the eye. To the right of the image, the content states “light and bright late summer neckwear” … which is exactly what users are seeing. Between the imagery and the concise copy, the tone of the site makes it easy to understand what they’re selling — right in time to notice the “shop ties” CTA.What we would test: Increasing the size of the “shop ties” CTA.2) TutorSyncWhy we like this site:As soon as users arrive on this page, they know what the company does, and can decide whether they want to stay or leave. For those who are interested, the page displays three overlay boxes briefly highlighting a few credentials, as well as offerings for first-time purchasers. Finally, the contact options are well displayed and include both phone and form capabilities.What we would test: A new hero image to show tutors and students in an actual work setting.3) Laural HomeWhy we like this site:Laural Home’s homepage does a great job at making users feel relaxed, providing a light and unintimidating feeling with its choice of colors and font. In addition, users see a variety of sale-related CTAs, including 40% off dorm room items and free shipping on orders over $50. To make sure users know that Laural has new products in stock, the site also features a “20% on New Sizes” image-based CTA.What we would test: Testing an end date on the “40% off dorm sale” to drive urgency.4) LinguistikoWhy we like this site:Maybe it’s just our experience, but this image perfectly captures a situation at the office when language barriers can arise. It portrays an international conference call with people in the office speaking one language and the person on the other end of the call speaking another. It’s one of those things that’s hard for both sides, often leaving people saying “I need to improve my English, Spanish, German … etc.”… So why do we love this page? Because everything we just wrote about Linguistiko was thought within a second of seeing the homepage. You just get what they do.What we would test: Include a statistic in the headline about the professional benefits of learning a new language or the rise of people learning a second language for business.5) Laura Jayne Bridal DesignWhy we like this site:This site is laser-focused on one thing: bridal design. In the wedding industry, making a bride feel like she has the spotlight on her is essential to developing relationships that turn into sales, and this site definitely showcases that laser focus on the bride. In addition to bride-focused imagery, visitors have both primary and secondary CTA options available to them as they can view collections or contact the company via phone or form.What we would test: Different copy on the hero image CTA that invites the visitor to shop for that specific hair accessory or view how it fits into a specific outfit. 6) Fashion DeliveryWhy we like this site:While we don’t love being different just for the sake of being different, this site is different for the right reasons. By using a cartoon-based theme design, Fashion Delivery is creating its own private world that visitors enter into when arriving on the site. It works because the service — same-day clothing delivery — also seems like a fantasy. We also love the expiring clock letting visitors know that they still have time to order, but there is an expiration.What we would test: A phone number above the fold to answer last-minute questions about orders. The company may not be staffed to handle such an increase in call volume, but it would be a good test to run to see if the revenue generated would be worth an increase in hiring. 7) Heal Your LifeWhy we like this site:While we’ve all heard the phrase “you can’t be everything to everyone,” Heal Your Life has managed to offer a lot of things at once to their target market. For those looking for a life boost, the website offers a number of options for users to find what suits them best, including: daily affirmations, daily meditations, articles, audio, video, topics, contributions, blog articles, events, and shopping. However people feel comfortable engaging, Heal Your Life has a form of content, engagement, or product offering for them.What we would test: Include the number of members in the community in the sign-up CTA at the top of the page as a form of social proof.8) LilyWhy we like this site:Want to know how cool this product is? Just go to Lily’s website. A lot of companies struggle to portray how amazing their offering is via the company website — but not Lily. Upon arriving, visitors are instantly hooked, shown a bunch of press logos (making you feel silly if you haven’t heard of them) and then an amazing product video. The best part about the product is that it’s not even available yet, but the website still makes you want to pre-order it. What we would test: A different product image on the homepage, showing the product in action.9) Dallas ApartmentWhy we like this site:Direct response websites don’t have to look pretty — they just need to convert. Dallas Apartment, however, has found a way to make direct response look beautiful. The site instantly looks to capitalize on visitor urgency by offering phone numbers, hours of operation, and a CTA to call someone directly at Dallas Apartment. For those users that don’t want the primary “contact us now” CTA, the site also offers a less salesy offering with a “start your apartment search today” option.What we would test: An “apartment of the day” hero image with a CTA to book a tour today.10) Barre 3Why we like this site:Website visitors are in different mindsets when arriving on your site. Some are ready to convert, others want to learn more, and a bunch are just browsing. Barre 3 does a wonderful job at making sure they have something for everyone. First, they offer information on their physical locations for people who are looking for classes now. If you’re not interested in attending an in-person class, a CTA for online workouts is easily found next to the in-person class CTA. For those just perusing the site, Barre 3 offers great content and fashion offerings.What we would test: Using smart content in the hero image module to tailor the type of workout (online vs. in-person) to the visitor’s previous browsing habits. 11) Home Grown CowWhy we like this site:It’s hard to be both funny and informative, yet Home Grown Cow manages to accomplish both on their site. The product offering is all about farm to table, fresh and healthy meat options. By adding in one-liners such as “Chickens like your grandma knew,” they’re able to convey that the company cares about quality while also getting its audience to smile. Trust me, balancing both is harder than it looks.What we would test: The site offers links at the top for meat, poultry, dairy, seafood, and farms. We would consider testing a “specials” link for sales or special offerings that might be time-sensitive.12) MathaliciousWhy we like this site:There are three big reasons why I like this site. First, it’s clear what they do. Second, they bring a sense of humor to an often mundane and frustrating topic. Third, for people who want to learn more, additional links are clearly provided to the lessons page, about page, FAQs, and blog. These reasons all make it easy for their target audience to understand what they offer — and, you know, actually use it.What we would test: Include a statistic about how improving math skills can be beneficial later in life.13) Bean & BiteWhy we like this site:The reason we love Bean & Bite’s website is because it initially makes visitors feel like they’re in the restaurant reading the menu. As users browse through the site, the menu-style theme continues, giving you a sense of what the restaurant is like in real life.It’s not just pretty and unique though — Bean & Bite offers all of the information people need to know, great content, and even has a suggestion box. In addition, users can sign up to be members of the restaurant and find a location near them by entering in their zip code.What we would test: Whether the forms to sign up for membership and find a nearby location should be at the bottom or the top of the page. Want to see all 91 of the designs we considered for this post? Head on over to Crayon. Topics: Originally published Sep 1, 2015 6:00:00 AM, updated February 01 2017 Website Design Exampleslast_img read more

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Google AdWords Expanded Text Ads: Best Practices For The New Format

first_imgExpanded Text Ads (ETAs), announced in July of 2016, are considered by most industry observers to be the biggest change to Google Adwords in 16 years.Google’s new ETAs provide for an increase of 50 percent more ad space. Plus, ETAs pack in a few other exciting features as well.Numerous strategies and best practices have been developed over the years for the standard text ad format, but unfortunately, most of these don’t translate to expanded text ads. And, businesses are now having to scramble to update their ads before Google stops supporting the old format in January.Before we get into the nitty-gritty of how to best handle expanded text ads, let’s get to know them a bit better.Dissecting the Expanded Text AdBelow is a comparison between the expanded text ad format and the standard text ad format.SourceThe components of the expanded text ad are as follows:Two Headlines (Shown in lavender in the left side of the image above)As opposed to standard text ads, ETAs have two headlines — a main headline and a secondary headline. Each headline can use up to 30 characters, as compared to the prior format of one headline with 25 characters.Display URL and Path Fields (Shown in Green)When creating ETAs, the final URL has to be entered first (above the headlines) and the display URL is created automatically based on that. There are two optional path fields available to extend the display URL by up to 15 characters each.Description (Shown in Gray)ETAs have one long description field with a maximum length of 80 characters. This compares to two fields of 35 characters each with standard text ads.Now that we’ve gone over the guts of what makes ETAs, let’s get started on some best practices in order to take full advantage of them.1) Use Keywords and Convincing Copy in Your HeadlinesThe main headline is the section that most people will see first and pay attention to. Put your most vital information here and make sure to include the main keyword you are targeting in the associated ad group. If you have a long keyword term, then just put your entire keyword in the main headline.The secondary headline is best for supporting information. This is where you’ll reference the main benefit or USP of your product or service, or stress the urgency of your offer.Keep in mind that your secondary headline may not always be shown in full. This is because, while you’re allowed up to 30 characters, Google determines ad display based on pixel-count. For example, wider characters such as “W” take up more space. So, if your two headlines go over the allowed number of pixels, Google may trim down your secondary headline. In most cases, your ad preview will show how your ad will look but it is a good idea to allow some breathing room. Unlike standard text ads, you can now do so much more after adding your keywords. You have some creative freedom to craft a headline that demands attention. Use language that will appeal to your target audience to convince them to interact with your ad. This combination is sure to increase your click-through rates considerably.Below is an example of an expanded text ad that has been very successful. It blends in keywords (DDoS Protection and Stop DDoS) very well with urgency and value-add.Here is another example of a compelling ETA. It combines keywords (User Behavior Analytics) effectively with an attractive offer (Free Guide) and the target audience (CISO).2) Utilize the Description to Differentiate Your Product or ServiceAfter grabbing attention with your headline, use the description to provide supplementary information to convince searchers to click through to your page. The best way to utilize this section is to include an additional benefit, a feature, and a call-to-action (CTA) or offer. A CTA such as “Start Free Trial,” “Shop Now” or “Download Free Guide” will let users know exactly what to expect on your landing page and will boost conversions.Remember, the description is the final attempt to get a searcher to click-through to your site instead of others—so use your extra description space wisely. Be sure to differentiate your product or service from the competition and make sure that users know why your brand is their best option.3) Make the Best of the New Display URLThe two new display URL path fields are optional, but you will almost always want to use these. They are excellent places for adding your keywords. If you have a long keyword, you can break it up and use both path fields for your keyword. Otherwise use one field for the keyword and use the other for a call-to-action, especially if you were not able to do this in the description field.If you are creating an ad for a keyword containing a competitor name or a trademarked term, you are not allowed to use this keyword in the headlines or the description. But Google does allow you to use such a keyword in the URL path fields. This is the only way that you can get a competitor or trademarked term in your ad copy.4) Mobile Ad GuidelinesGiven that a large chunk of your audience will be using mobile devices to view your ads, you need to make sure that your ad works well on mobile.With standard text ads, Adwords allowed you to create separate mobile ads. However, ETAs don’t differentiate between devices, which means that the same ad and the same copy will be displayed to searchers across all devices. ETAs viewed from a mobile device may have headlines broken up into two lines if they’re too long. Because of this, it is important to format your ads in a way that will work effectively both on desktop and mobile devices.The mobile preview feature in the ad editor will show you how your mobile ad will likely look and you can adjust your copy based on that.5) A/B Test Your New and Old Format AdsWhile ETAs may show up for all the keywords in your ad group, they won’t necessarily attract more clicks than your standard text ads. In fact, it’s possible that you may even see a decline in your click through rate (CTR).Instead of dropping your old ads right away, try adding ETAs to the same ad groups with old ads that have served you well in the past. Compare the performance of the two, and alter and evolve your ETAs until they match or surpass your standard text ads.In most of our tests though, the expanded text ads have performed significantly better than standard ads. Below are some A/B tests that we have run.A/B Test 1: The 2 ETAs below had a combined CTR of 10.9% – an improvement of 26% over the already excellent 8.62% CTR of the old standard text ad during the same timeframe.A/B Test 2: The ETA below had a CTR of 5.49% – an improvement of 54% over the standard text ad.A/B Test 3: The ETA below had a CTR of 3.36% – an improvement of 167% over the standard text ad.6) Increasing Quality Score with ETAsHaving a good quality score for your keywords and ads is an absolute must for success with AdWords. In order to achieve high quality scores, you have to ensure that your ads are as relevant as possible to user search queries. It is also important to achieve a high click through rate for your ads, as this provides a direct signal to Google that users are finding your ad useful. There are a few key things to take into account when creating ETAs which will help your quality score.You should always include keywords in your headline as well as the display URL path fields. If you are bidding on a competitor name or trademarked term, and do not use it anywhere in your ad copy, you will get a very low quality score. So it is crucial to add these in the path fields of the display URL as we noted in the last section.You should also use as many ad extensions as possible with your ads. When combined with ETAs, this greatly increases the amount of screen space that you can claim with your ad, leading to high CTRs and high quality scores.Use ad extensions to further elaborate on the features, benefits, attributes and offers related to your products and services. Since you likely had to shorten these in your main ad, you can use extensions to fill in the gaps. Also add reviews, ratings, location and call information if you have these available, and they are relevant for your business.For example, consider the ad below that combines an ETA with call, callout, review, and sitelinks (with 2 line descriptions) ad extensions. That’s a significant chunk of Google’s search results page!7) Changing Old Ads to the New FormatIf you have a lot of standard text ads in your account, changing them all over to expanded text ads may seem a bit daunting. You can make your job a little easier by adding new ads in bulk.You can download your current ads to a CSV file, make all your changes, and then upload them back to your Adwords account. Using this approach will add new expanded text ads in the same ad groups and campaigns as your current ads. It will not remove any of your current ads. Here’s how you do it.Export Your Current AdsStep 1: In your AdWords account, click the Campaigns menu, then click on the Ads tabStep 2: Make sure the “All Enabled Ads” option is selectedStep 3: Click Edit > Download SpreadsheetStep 4: Choose Excel .CSV formatStep 5: Click “Advanced editing” and uncheck all boxes except “All Editable Columns”. Then click Download and save the file on your machine. Make ChangesStep 1: Open the CSV file in ExcelStep 2: For each ad that you want to create an expanded text ad for, add values in the Headline 1, Headline 2, Description, Path 1 and Path 2 columns. You can use values in the Ad, Description line 1 and Description line 2 columns (in the same row) as a guide since these represent your current ad.Step 3: Delete the Ad, Description line 1, Description line 2 and Display URL values from the same row.Step 4: Go to the Ad Type column and change “Text ad” to “Expanded text ad”Step 5: Repeat steps 2, 3 and 4 for each expanded text ad you want to create. NOTE: If you are new to this process, it will be best if you try and add only one expanded text ad the first time. In this case, you should just delete all rows other than the row you just edited.Step 6: Save the file as a CSVImport Your New AdsStep 1: In your AdWords account, click the Campaigns menu, then click on the Ads tabStep 2: Click Edit > Upload SpreadsheetStep 3: Choose the file you saved and click Upload and PreviewStep 4: Google will now show you the number of ads that will be added. This should be the no. of new expanded text ads that you added in step 2 of the Make Changes section above. If there are any problems with the data you added, it will be shown in this box.Step 5: Click on Preview changes. Even if you had any errors in step 4 above, you should do this to determine exactly where the problems are.Step 6: Verify that each expanded text ad is shown correctly in the previewStep 7: If everything looks good, click Approve changes to add your new ads. If you see any problems here, click Reject changes. Go back to your CSV file in Excel, fix the problems and then try again. ConclusionNow that you’ve got a better grasp on expanded text ads and how to use them, you can get started on your own ads. Remember, you don’t want to pause your standard ads just yet—these new processes are going to take a bit of practice before you become an expert.The clock is quickly running out; Google’s last day of standard text ad support is January 31, at which time we’ll all be forced to adopt the new expanded text ad format. Rather than scrambling at the last minute, it’s best to get started now. Work out the kinks and find out the best ad copy that works for you.  Don’t forget to share this post! Google Ads Topics: Originally published Nov 23, 2016 1:30:00 PM, updated November 23 2016last_img read more

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Prince Harry takes to ‘budgie smugglers’ as Meghan takes a break

first_imgSydney Prince Harry poses with Australian athletes taking part in the Invictus Games as Benjamin Yeomans holds up swimming trunks for the prince. Photograph: Rick Stevens/Reuters Share on WhatsApp Pinterest The Duke of Sussex donned a pair of tight swimming trunks – known to Australians as budgie smugglers – over his jeans on the first day of competition of the Invictus Games in Sydney.The trunks were presented to him when a sports presenter and two members of the Australian games team visited him at Admiralty House, the governor general’s residence where the royal couple are staying in Sydney.Dylan Alcott, who is a triple Paralympic gold medallist in wheelchair tennis and wheelchair basketball, said: “We gave him a gift. One of the athletes, Matt [Model], gave him a pair of budgie smugglers. And he put them on, over his jeans. It looks awesome.“He said: ‘Shall I put them on?’ We said: ‘One hundred percent.’ So he put them on. Good on him.” Share on Twitter Share on Messenger Reuse this content Twitter Support The Guardian The couple are currently part-way through a 16-day tour of Australia, New Zealand, Fiji and Tonga – their first official visit outside the UK and Ireland – with 76 events on their schedule. The duchess’s pregnancy was announced on the eve of the tour. Harry, who presented medals to competitors in the road bike time trial, also spoke to Paul Guest, who has an Invictus tattoo on his face. Guest, 54, from Essex, said his tattoos were once a way to hide, but they became a topic of conversation when the duke remembered him.The former serviceman, who toured Northern Ireland as a mine warfare specialist, said: “I used them so people would leave me alone and that I felt safe [but] they’ve enabled me to handle people more, they’ve got something to approach me about – they don’t talk to me about my disability, they talk to me about my tattoos.” Since you’re here… Facebook Share on Facebook Pinterest center_img Invictus Games news Monarchy Twitter Share via Email Share on Pinterest The duke and duchess attend a reception hosted by the Australian prime minister with Invictus Games competitors. Photograph: Steve Christo/AFP/Getty Images … we have a small favour to ask. More people, like you, are reading and supporting the Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we made the choice to keep our reporting open for all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford to pay. Whether we are up close or further away, the Guardian brings our readers a global perspective on the most critical issues of our lifetimes – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. We believe complex stories need context in order for us to truly understand them. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We hope you will consider supporting us today. We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism that’s open and independent. Every reader contribution, however big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Share on LinkedIn Facebook Talking about the trunks, he added: “I think it did wonders for him. It looked good. He should make it official. I reckon the duchess will love them. But who knows? Maybe not.”Earlier in the day, the duke met Invictus competitors at a cycling event – where another athlete appeared to ask him to sign a pair of swimming trunks.Royal sources said the duke had urged his pregnant wife to pace herself after a late night watching the games’ opening ceremony.The duchess pulled out of an arranged meeting with competitors to rest after Saturday’s ceremony overran by nearly two hours, leaving the duke to present the medals alone on Sunday morning. Topics Prince Harrylast_img read more

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Oklahoma State Named Top 10 Over-Performing NFL Producer

first_imgWhile you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up. The NFL Draft starts this Thursday, and Oklahoma State has some guys who hope their number (or name) is called early. And if it is, you can bet there’s a pretty good chance it’s going to lead to a successful NFL career.ESPN recently did a study on which schools produce the most underperforming and over-performing NFL players. The formula is a little bit convoluted so I’ll let them explain.Methodology: We pulled data from Pro-Football-Reference.com on the 3,831 players drafted since 2002 and broke them into eight position groups. Special teams are excluded since many of those players are acquired as undrafted free agents.Draft value: Picks are weighted by overall pick number, so early first-round picks carry more weight than late first-rounders.NFL performance: The formula for this factors in career Approximate Value, along with percentage of seasons as an All Pro/Pro Bowler/starter. The goal was to account for players like J.J. Watt who have been dominant over shorter stretches.Anyway, it essentially measures how good players are in the pro ranks against how many players a school puts there. The thinking being that the more pros you put in the NFL, the more All-Pros and/or elite starters you should hit on.Those who hit on fewer than what was expected scored low. Those who hit on more scored high. Oklahoma State was one of the 10 who hit on more. Here is the top 10.So basically Oklahoma State’s pros performed at a level that makes you think they got almost twice as many guys drafted as they actually did which is pretty great. Even with the Justin Gilbert flameout!“I watched [cornerback] Justin Gilbert play in the Big 12 for three years,” Bleacher Report’s Matt Miller told The Ringer. “He’s this 6-foot-tall, 200-pound corner that ran a 4.37, his three cone was sub-seven seconds, he was strong, and, athletically, he was everything you want. But Joe Thomas said it on Twitter. This is what happens when you don’t love football. It doesn’t matter how athletic you are, if you don’t love football, you’re not going to succeed.”Also Oklahoma State has had an absurd number of players that were drafted go on to make Pro Bowls.This includes Dez Bryant, Antonio Smith, Russell Okung, Kevin Williams and Dan Bailey. You can see the full list here (although ESPN only looked at the last 15 NFL Drafts).All of this is great of course, but I personally more about seeing a higher number of NFL Draft selections than I do the percentage of those who pan out on the pro level. That’s a selfish conceit, though, because I care more about Oklahoma State than I do about the Packers or 49ers or Bears.This data is less a indicator of which teams have performed well in college and more look at which colleges have gotten the right guys drafted. You would almost expect a school like OSU to score high here because, as the thinking goes, if somebody gets drafted out of Stillwater, they must really be good.Such is the perception, right or wrong, in college football and beyond.Still, it’s impressive that OSU has churned out so many high-quality players at the next level from a (relatively) small pool of candidates. Hopefully they can continue to increase both percentages as the Gundy era rolls on.last_img read more

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