Law student to be shifted to another college in U.P.

first_imgThe Supreme Court on Wednesday agreed with the Uttar Pradesh government’s offer to facilitate the transfer of a woman law student from Shahjahanpur, who had levelled harassment allegations against former Union Minister and BJP leader Swami Chinmayanand, and her brother to law colleges affiliated to the Bareilly University.Additional Solicitor General Vikramjit Bannerjee told a Bench led by Justice R. Banumathi that the siblings would be provided hostel facilities. “Their future is important,” the court said.The Bench requested the Bar Council of India (BCI) to increase the seats in the colleges where the woman and her brother would be shifted for LLM and LLB courses respectively.The top court disposed of the suo motu petition. It said the petition, filed by women lawyers last week, was entertained because the woman was missing at the time. She was subsequently traced to Rajasthan. The apex court had intervened and directed the State police, heading back to Shahjahanpur with her, to bring her to the Supreme Court instead. The Bench of Justices Banumathi and A.S. Bopannathen had an in-camera session with the woman. She conveyed to the judges that she did not want to continue her studies in the college run by Chinmayanand’s ashram at Shahjahanpur. She was allowed last week to stay back in Delhi with her parents for the time being.‘Free to go back’On Wednesday, the court said the woman and her parents were at liberty to go back to Shahjahanpur under Delhi Police escort.The court had on Monday directed the Uttar Pradesh government to set up an SIT, headed by an IG rank officer, to investigate the charges levelled by the woman, as well as two related FIRs. It said that an Allahabad High Court Bench would monitor the investigation.last_img read more

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Phogat sisters still await their cash awards

first_imgAt a time when the Haryana government is doing every bit to encourage girls to take up sport after Sakshi Malik’s bronze medal winning feat at the Rio Olympics, the famous Phogat sisters, who changed the face of women wrestling in the country, are still to get their cash awards of nearly Rs 60 lakh promised by the state government.A peeved Mahabir Phogat, who introduced his daughters – Geeta and Babita — and niece Vinesh – to the sport – has shot off a letter to Haryana Sports Minister Anil Vij and other top officials drawing their attention towards the pending cash prize which the Phogat sisters and their cousins – Geeta, Babita, Vinesh, Sangita and Ritu – were promised by the state government for their international achievements in wrestling for the past four years.Mahabir, who received the Dronacharya Award, is upset with the state government’s attitude towards his family. In the letter, a copy of which is with Mail Today, Mahabir writes: “On behalf of my daughters and niece, I wish to inform you that they have not received the cash awards for many of their national and international achievements from 2012-13 to 2014-15.””We had submitted their application forms for the cash awards in your office and even approached the head office in Panchkula many times. But till date, the girls have not received the cash awards for most of their medals.”Talking to Mail Today, Babita confirmed that the state government has ignored their requests despite several reminders. “Yes, our cash prizes are still pending. It’s been four years now,” she said.advertisementMahabir Phogat first shot to limelight after his elder daughter Geeta won gold medal at the 2010 Delhi Commonwealth Games and then became the first Indian woman wrestler to qualify for the Olympics. She also won a bronze medal at the world championships (2012). Following her footsteps, Babita and Vinesh also made it big at international events winning medals at the Commonwealth Games and Asian Games. Ritu and Sangita have also taken impressive strides at the junior level.It was heartbreak for Vinesh in Rio as she was forced to concede her 48kg bout against China’s Yanan Sun 1-2 after a freak knee injury. The 21-year-old Haryana grappler was leading 1-0 before she hurt her knee. Vinesh was taken off on a stretcher. She is now being treated in Mumbai.”All my expenses were paid by JSW so I didn’t ask anybody else for it. Haryana government has told me that they will provide whatever help I want. However, JSW took all the responsibility.”Well, it’s true that I am also yet to get my pending dues. I don’t know the exact amount, my brother knows it. I only work hard so that I win medals for my state and my country,” she said.Asked about her injury she said, “I am recovering well and hopefully very soon I will resume training with an eye on 2020 Tokyo Olympics.”The buzz around the Phogat sisters amplified when Aamir Khan signed up to play Mahabir in his upcoming movie Dangal. Mahabir is the sarpanch of village Balali in Haryana. His decision to train his daughters in a male dominated contact sport like wrestling – in a state where women are expected to keep their heads covered all times – has turned him into a poster boy for women emancipation in the state.last_img read more

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4 Things to Consider Before Becoming a Stay-at-Home Mom

first_img“4 Things to Consider Before Becoming a Stay-at-Home Mom” was provided by MoneyTalksNews.com.When considering the option of becoming a stay-at-home mom (or dad!), there is more to consider than just the loss of a paycheck. In fact, when you do the math, being a stay-at-home mom might actually save you money.Sometimes you can’t put a price on things — and the intangible benefits of being a stay-at-home parent is certainly one of them — at least it is to me.According to the most recent Census Bureau report, there are approximately 5.1 million stay-at-home moms in America. That equates to a little more than one out of every five married-couple family groups.Being a stay-at-home mom isn’t for everyone, though. After all, not only is it one of the most difficult jobs in the world, but it doesn’t come with a paycheck, either.According to a Salary.com study, if the average stay-at-home mom did get paid, her annual compensation in 2012 would be $112,962.Interestingly enough, a similar study by Salary.com in 2011 found that stay-at-home dads put in roughly half the time their female counterparts do. As a result, their compensation – assuming they actually got a paycheck – would only be $60,128 annually.But I digress.My mom was a stay-at-home parent and I still marvel at all the things she used to do: cooking, cleaning, shopping, paying bills, yard work, running errands, and shuttling me and my sister all over town – even when she wasn’t feeling well.My mother was responsible for a lot of our home maintenance, too. For example, when the walls needed a fresh coat of paint, she was on it. I even remember one year she spent the entire summer painstakingly stripping and restaining all the woodwork in our house (and there was a lot of it).I also have very fond memories of enjoying an after-school snack while I filled my mother in on the details of my day. After all these years, those moments are still fresh in my mind and, let me tell you, they are truly special.Needless to say, after debating the pros and cons of one income versus two, my wife and I decided to go the stay-at-home-mom route about 14 years ago. Yes, we’ve since forfeited well over a quarter-million dollars in lost salary over that time – but it’s a decision neither of us regrets.If you’re thinking about being a stay-at-home parent, here are a few financial tips and considerations you’ll need to keep in mind:Determine your expensesFor some families, the benefits of having an extra paycheck are often almost completely offset by additional taxes, childcare, and other work-related expenses. Even so, before making the jump from two incomes to one, you’ll first need to evaluate whether you can live within the confines of a reduced income.If you haven’t already done so, now is the time to determine all of your non-discretionary expenses – like your mortgage, utilities, insurance, groceries, and retirement contributions. Be sure to set aside money to handle unexpected expenses like car repairs or unexpected medical issues. Once you’ve done that, you’ll know how much you have left for the discretionary spending, like vacations and entertainment.Don’t forget to subtract your work-related expensesRemember, by staying home, you’ll end up saving money by eliminating work-related costs like childcare, commuting expenses, clothing, and lunches. And because you’ll have the time to cook more meals at home, it’s possible you’ll be eating out less, which leads to even more savings.Consider your alternativesIf you’ve cut your expenses to the bone and still can’t seem to make the bottom line work, don’t despair. There are alternatives to making it work, even while both parents are still working. For example, perhaps one parent can take advantage of 4-day/10-hour shifts or working part-time, and some people have enough flexibility with their work schedules to allow one parent to be home with the children while the other works.Don’t stop networkingBecause job loss is always a concern in a one-income family, it’s important that stay-at-home parents continue networking after leaving the workforce. Stay in touch with your old co-workers and business partners and, if you haven’t already done so, create a profile on an online professional networking site, like LinkedIn.Being a stay-at-home mom can be extremely rewarding, but it’s not a choice that works for every family. However, if you do want to stay home with your children and are in a position to make it work, following these guidelines will help make the endeavor a success. Post navigation Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window) Relatedlast_img read more

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What is the Average Cost of Being a Bridesmaid?

first_img Post navigation When I was a little girl, being a bridesmaid was something that I was excited about. But, as I got older and my friends started getting married and the bridesmaids started complaining about the price of the dress, the bridal shower and the bachelorette party, I realized that I didn’t really want to be a bridesmaid.I’ve been in a bridal party just once in my life. I was the matron-of-honor at my best friend’s wedding and she was the maid-of-honor at my wedding .It’s a great way to honor your close friends, but the cost of being a bridesmaid is also a great way to completely wreck your budget. My recommendation, unless you’re completely made of money, is to choose whose bridal party you’re in carefully.Stick with (being a bridesmaid) at the weddings of your besties. It’ll mean more to you and the brides, and you won’t go broke in the process.Getting PrettyOne of the more obvious expenses for bridesmaids is the cost of the dress and all the accessories to go along with it. The average cost of a bridesmaid dress is $150, and that’s before alterations. $150 is a lot to spend on a dress that will only be worn once.If you’re lucky, the bride will give you some say in the dress or you’ll end up with a dress that doesn’t scream “BRIDESMAID!” and that you can wear again.Along with paying for the dress, you’ll need to worry about getting shoes to match, some type of purse, and jewelry. Some brides do pay for the jewelry for their bridesmaids, which is nice, especially if the bride has great taste and you can wear the necklace or bracelet again.There’s also the cost of getting your hair and makeup done for the big day. Again, some brides choose to take the do-it-yourself route when it comes to hair and makeup (I know I did), which can be a big money-saver.Otherwise, you can expect to drop around $100 just to have someone put your hair up and put some eyeshadow on you.Paying for the ShowerThe bridal shower is another cost of being a bridesmaid. In some cases, the maid-of-honor foots the bill for the shower, in others, all the bridesmaids chip in.The average contribution is $50 per bridesmaid for planning and putting the shower together. Then there’s the cost of the gift, which is also around $50, plus the cost of travel.If you’re a bridesmaid planning a shower, I highly recommend having it in town and hosting it at someone’s home. There’s no need for a destination shower or for booking an expensive venue.The Bachelorette PartyThe bachelorette party can be another budget buster for the bridal party. Luckily, thanks to bachelorette party etiquette, cost can be lower than for the shower. You’re not expected to foot the bill for other guests at the party.According to bachelorette party etiquette, cost of things such as food and drink and the price of admission can be evenly distributed.Still, some brides plan on lavish parties. They might want to head to Vegas or to some other destination, which means that although you’re just paying for yourself, you might still shell out hundreds of dollars for a single night.The average bridesmaid drops nearly $400 on the bachelorette party.Cutting CostsAlthough you love your friends, you probably don’t want to spend more than $1,500 on a single wedding. There are some ways you can reduce the cost of being a bridesmaid, without hurting the bride’s feeling or looking cheap:Think about renting your dress. While once an area reserved for guys, there are a few designer dress rental services out there. You pay less and return the dress after the wedding, which means it won’t clutter up your closet, either.Combine the shower with the bachelorette party. Have the shower the day before the party, in the same location, to cut down on the cost of travel for guests and bridesmaids.Chip in for a gift with other bridesmaids. If you all work together, you can get the bride a truly spectacular present, while spending less money than you would if you went your own way.“What is the Real Cost of Being a Bridesmaid?” was written by Kelly Anderson.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window) Relatedlast_img read more

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Home Decor on a Dime: 10 Color Theory Tips to Make the Most of Your Space

first_imgThe average person may see anywhere between 4,000 and 10,000 ads in a single day. From binge-watching your favorite shows to checking the pile of coupons in your mailbox, advertisers have inundated our lives. Most of the ads we see… Full Story,Dressing up for Halloween is one of the best parts of the holiday, especially if you’re a creative person. But buying a Halloween costume can get expensive, with many costing more than $50 a pop. And unless you plan to… Full Story,You may not find it on an official calendar anywhere, but Friendsgiving is a newer holiday that has gained popularity in recent years. Much like Thanksgiving, Friendsgiving is a time to gather around the table with loved ones in the… Full Story,My birthday is on Halloween, so every year I get super excited. I plan what my costume will be, decide how I want to celebrate and text all my friends to let them know. Last year, I was finally able… Full Story,Not much of a football fan? Don’t know what all the cheesehead hat-wearing and face paint-smearing is all about? Skip hanging out at the local sports bar or sitting in the stands at a game, and put on your entrepreneurial… Full Story,Living paycheck to paycheck can feel like an endless scramble. Rent is due on the first but your paycheck won’t clear until the second. On top of everything, you need to pay for groceries, a bus ticket, and utilities before… Full Story,Decision fatigue is the decline in energy and focus you experience after making too many decisions. This mental drain causes your brain to abandon your willpower in order to seek more immediate rewards, which leads to poor decision making and… Full Story,If you ask a random person on the street what they do, chances are they have a lot of slashes and hyphens in their job titles. In this day and age, if you don’t have multiple sources of income… Full Story,Do you consider yourself a financially responsible young adult? Personally, I like to think that my finances are mostly in order. Rent, student loans, car payments—everything big is blocked off nicely. If the math works out right, I have a… Full Story,In the financial world, nothing evokes feelings of terror quite like the word “bankruptcy”. It’s become synonymous with a complete and utter collapse of one’s finances – a black hole that’s almost impossible to climb out of. When you declare… Full Storylast_img read more

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COP21 Glossary of Terms Guiding the Long-term Emissions-Reduction Goal

first_img Cannot provide clarity on the level and timing of long-term emissions reductions on its own Requires further specification on timing of carbon neutrality Can provide clarity on the level and timing of long-term emissions reductions on its own Achieved between 2080-2100. 40-70 percent below 1990 levels by 2050 and near zero or below by 2100 Requires further specification on timing and rate of decarbonization Global emissions peak by 2020 before declining afterward Cannot provide clarity on the level and timing of long-term emissions reductions on its own, unless accompanied by a long-term goal. Requires further specification on timing of climate neutrality Decarbonization Requires further specification on timing of net zero emissions Reduce CO2 emissions to net zero between 2055 and 2070, and all GHGs by 2080 and 2100. Achieved between 2055-2070. Would need quantified specification on type, level, and timeline of transformation Emissions transformation Peaking emissions Limit remaining budget to 1000 Gt CO2. Net-zero emissions The glossary of terms guiding the discussion on long-term signals for emissions reductions in the COP21 climate negotiations is complicated, to say the least. The international community’s goal of limiting warming below 2°C above preindustrial levels, if not 1.5°C,  to avoid the worst climate impacts does not provide much clarity for real-world actors, and, as a result, many countries and international stakeholders support including a complementary long-term goal to operationalize the 2°C goal in the Paris climate agreement.The current negotiating text offers multiple options for such a complementary goal.  This glossary disentangles the various terms guiding long-term emissions reductions and defines their implications for an international agreement limiting warming to below 2°C, or 1.5°C.Decarbonization is framed around decreasing the ratio of carbon dioxide (CO2) or all greenhouse gas emissions related to primary energy production. While full decarbonization means zero unabated (not captured by carbon sequestration or storage) CO2 emissions from energy generation and industrial processes, decarbonization doesn’t imply zero emissions, as emissions can be balanced by carbon sequestration if adequate reductions or enhanced carbon sinks exist. To effectively communicate the scale of change needed, the term must be accompanied by a timeframe and rates of decarbonization.Net zero carbon emissions is considered a synonym for carbon neutrality. One key difference, however, is carbon neutrality can be achieved at the domestic level with offsets from other jurisdictions, while net zero emissions does not have the same connotation (though theoretically could be met via offsets). Both terms risk overshooting the carbon budget unless complemented by short-term emissions reduction targets. Net zero GHG emissions can be confused with net-zero carbon emissions, but when accurately used, means all greenhouse gas emissions decline to zero, as opposed to just carbon dioxide. This is the same concept as net zero carbon emissions but conveys a net zero emissions target for CO2 and all non-CO2 gases. Carbon neutrality means annual zero net anthropogenic (human caused or influenced) CO2 emissions by a certain date. By definition, carbon neutrality means every ton of anthropogenic CO2 emitted is compensated with an equivalent amount of CO2 removed (e.g. via carbon sequestration), but this term has been used differently on occasion. For instance, Costa Rica’s INDC would “achieve Carbon Neutrality by 2021 with total net emissions comparable to total emissions in 2005,” while Ethiopia’s goal is to “achieve carbon-neutral middle-income status before 2025” and at the same time “limit its net greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in 2030 to 145 Mt CO2e or lower.” Instead of aiming at zero net emissions, some countries seem to misinterpret carbon neutrality as stabilizing emissions at a certain level.Climate neutrality is the same concept as carbon neutrality but rather than solely focusing on CO2 emissions, it extends to zero net anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions (i.e. including emissions beyond carbon dioxide).Peaking emissions means emissions reach a specific maximum level by a specific date before declining afterwards. For example, the world could commit to peaking emissions at 44 gigatonnes CO2e in 2020 before reducing afterwards. Peaking emissions is critical to determining the global emissions trajectory timeline and ambition. Any delay of the peak date will require more aggressive emissions-reduction targets in later years and may make achieving the 2°C goal riskier if not altogether impossible.Percentage emissions reductions by a certain date is another way of communicating specific emissions reductions to be achieved by a specific date in a quantitative manner. For example, this goal could be framed as a 70 percent emissions reduction below 1990 levels by 2050.Low-carbon (or low-emissions) transformation conveys intent to transform our systems (e.g. technology, energy, political, infrastructure) and limit warming to 2°C.  However, without being complemented by quantified targets (such as emissions reductions and renewable generation capacity) with specific timelines, the term is too vague to send accurate signals to curb GHG emissions.Carbon budget is the amount of CO2 the world can emit while still having a likely chance of limiting warming to the 2°C target. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fifth Assessment Report, issued in 2014, estimates the world has burned through two-thirds of the budget, and WRI calculates we could spend it entirely in two decades if emissions continue unabated.Sharing the carbon budget means sharing the estimated amount of cumulative CO2 emissions remaining for a likely chance (>66 percent) of achieving the 2°C goal. Unlike a goal reducing emissions a certain percentage by a certain date, a carbon budget goal limits cumulative emissions year after year, significantly reducing risks of overshooting the 2°C goal. Several countries like the United Kingdom and Norway have adopted a carbon budget approach, but it is not common practice. On its own, carbon budget sharing may not adequately create an emissions pathway with plausible decarbonization rates (e.g. we could quickly exhaust the carbon budget then require unprecedented annual emissions reduction rates in later decades).Clear Communication Can Create a Clear and Effective Emissions-Reduction TimelineClearly defining complementary long-term goals to the 2°C target are critical to communicating necessary emissions reductions and a set timeline to countries, cities and the private sector. While these individual goals are not mutually exclusive, it is possible that there may be a combination in the final wording of the agreement. Defined clearly, such goals are part of the package that will catalyze additional action leading up to 2030 and keep that 2 degrees C goal still within reach.To be effective, complementary long-term goals should:Be consistent with the most recent climate science; Limit long-term emissions, as well as cumulative emissions; Communicate clear dates, emissions levels and greenhouse gases covered; and Communicate a plausible emissions-reduction pathway that allows for a smooth transformation. What science tells us must happen for a likely chance of limiting warming to 2 degrees C (least cost) What is necessary to provide clarity on the level and timing of long-term emissions reductions Carbon neutrality Sharing the carbon budget Percent emissions reduction by a certain date Reduce CO2 emissions to net zero between 2055-2070, and all GHGs by 2080-2100. Climate neutrality Reduce CO2 emissions to net zero between 2055-2070, and all GHGs by 2080-2100.last_img read more

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What Makes a Partnership Transformational?

first_imgThe UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set global targets that can only be described as lofty — ending poverty and hunger, achieving gender equality, providing clean and affordable energy for all, and more. The question of how to achieve these ambitions is a big one on a lot of people’s minds.Partnerships will be key. The UN already recognizes this, with SDG 17 calling for “multi-stakeholder partnerships” to support achievement of the SDGs, especially in developing nations. A handful of global platforms have also been established to accelerate partnerships amongst businesses, governments and civil society, including Partnering for Green Growth and the Global Goals (P4G), IDH the Sustainable Trade Initiative and the UN’s 2030 Agenda Partnership Accelerator.But the question remains: What do these partnerships need to do in order to be transformative?What do Transformative Solutions Look Like?Transformation is admittedly a buzz word right now. While definitions of transformation abound both in the literature and among partnership experts, at their heart, transformative solutions are designed to:1. Address systemic problems.Many problems framed by the SDGs, such as environmental degradation and lack of energy access, are inherently complicated. There are multiple underlying issues and barriers that contribute to the problem, such as policies and institutions, relationships and power dynamics, and cultural factors and perceptions. Additionally, any given solution cannot guarantee delivery of a specific outcome. Transformative solutions themselves do not have to be complex, but they tend to focus on systemic problems and remove barriers that hold the problem in place.One of P4G’s partnerships, the Zero Emissions Bus Rapid Accelerator (ZEBRA), is doing just that in Mexico City, São Paulo and Medellin. In its aim to transform the public bus system from diesel to electric buses, the partnership has identified three underlying barriers to electric bus deployment: 1) limited understanding of business models for bus operations; 2) limited research on financing options; and 3) lack of financing for e-bus technology. ZEBRA is addressing these issues by identifying existing e-bus models that have overcome these challenges, and adapting the models to the project’s cities of interest. For instance, the partnership has looked to Santiago, Chile’s innovative approach in which bus operators run the e-bus transit system, but the buses themselves are owned by the power utility. This eliminates the need for up-front capital, the traditional burden of entry for bus operators. The power utility also wins because it provides a stronger energy grid (using wind energy) than a traditional bus owner could. It is also able to charge the buses at night when power loads are low.2. Change the status quo.Transformative solutions recognize that a key barrier to complex problems is that societies, governments, businesses and institutions are often working on an established pathway with ingrained behaviors. Disrupting the status quo can mean shifting power dynamics and gaining cultural acceptance for a totally new behavior.This year’s 2019 P4G State of the Art Partnership Award winner, Women’s Livelihood Bond Series, is a great example of a partnership that aims to change the status quo in terms of how women are viewed and valued in society. The partnership recognizes that women across Southeast Asia are particularly vulnerable to climate change, and are oftentimes excluded from economic activities and prevented from living a dignified life. The project addresses these issues by improving women’s access to affordable credit, insurance, markets and agricultural inputs and energy. The Bond is an innovative financial instrument that provides private capital to microfinance institutions and social enterprises, who in turn help low-income women build credit histories and transition from subsistence to sustainable livelihoods. The first Women’s Livelihood Bond was the world’s first impact investing instrument, and the first financial instrument to be listed on a stock exchange. It has raised $8 million in private capital to empower 385,000 women across Southeast Asia.3. Sustain impacts.Transformative change must be long-lasting. That means a partnership must be able to continue without philanthropic or development funding. One of the ways to consider this is through commerciality and creating a market where there currently isn’t one.P4G’s 2018 partnership, Energise Africa, is an excellent example of this. The partnership is focused on improving access to electricity for low-income households in Africa. Energise Africa allows ordinary individuals to invest in fixed-term bonds issued by solar companies, who then provide pay-as-you-go solar home systems to families across Africa. By offering an investment opportunity with support from the UK Department for International Development, as well as a guarantee on offer – up to $130 of capital invested for first-time investors – the partnership has been able to raise nearly $14 million in loans for businesses selling solar home systems in Africa. Expected annual returns have ranged on average from 5% to 7%.Partnerships to Achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)These are just a few examples of how partnerships can be transformative. We’re currently investigating how partnerships can drive SDG impact as part of WRI’s inaugural State-of-the-Art report on multi-stakeholder partnerships, which will be released in 2020. This report is part of a biennial series on partnerships, which aims to advance knowledge around the design of successful multi-stakeholder partnerships and their contribution to the SDGs.As we progress in our research, we welcome any comments from practitioners and researchers similarly interested in transformation and partnerships. Contact Erin Gray or Serena Li for more information.last_img read more

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B2B Marketing Tips from Rap Stars – Part II

first_imgAs a follow-up to my article and rappers and the insights they can provide to B2B marketing, I thought I would mention a couple other marketing tips that B2B marketers can learn from rap stars.  These were inspired by the many emails I received about the original article, so thanks for everyone who contacted me with thoughts and comments.  To see the first 4 tips, read the original article – 4 Tips on B2B Marketing from Rap Stars.1) It’s OK to appear in ads for other products/services.  Rappers are constantly promoting other products, even products not relevant to their music.  Method Man has been in a bunch of Right Guard deodorant commercials, and now Jay-Z is in a huge advertising deal with Budweiser for their new Budweiser Select beer.  While more traditional musicians usually avoid “going commercial” and being featured in advertising, most rappers embrace it.  Why?  Well, I think the answer is simple and is related to the “repetition is good” point from the original article.  The more time in front of people you can get, the more likely they are to remember you and develop an affection for you. “All PR is good PR.” So, even if you are taking about the benefits of the power stripe in Right Guard deodorant, people will still see you on TV and hear your voice and will be more likely to buy your album.  And the great part about this type of advertising, is you also get paid for it.2) It’s OK to promote other products/services in your product.  This seems very similar to the last point, but read carefully, because it is a bit different.  The last point relates to the benefits of you or your company being in advertising or promotion for other products, this point relates to you actually promoting other products or services as part of your own product.  There are lots of examples of this in rap music, but perhaps the most famous one was when Busta Rhymes created the hit song “Pass the Courvoisier”.  Courvoisier saw its sales increase by 4.5% initially (Q1 2002), and then even more after the song became an even bigger hit later that year.Other examples include rappers mentioning products such as Cristal champagne, Hummer trucks, Lexus cars, Timberland boot, Bacardi rum, and Nextel cell phones.  Early growth in Cadillac Escalade sales were largely driven by its prevalence in rap music.  “Escalade” was the top mentioned brand in early 2005 on the Billboard Top 20 singles, with 41 mentions (in just 20 songs!).  Most of these types of placements started without any monetary compensation, but that is changing.  Petey Pablo in his song “Freak-a-Leek”, rapped about gin in general, until he signed a deal with Seagrams, which saw sales rise 10% in urban markets after he changed the lyrics a bit.3)  Make sure to cross promote your own products.  Not only are rappers masters at promoting other companies products, but they also cross promote their own products in thier music.  P.Diddy always taks about how he wears Sean John apparel (his line of clothing named after his legal name) and Jay-Z often raps about hanging out at the 40/40 Club (his chain of clubs/upscale sports bars, one is in New York, one is coming in Las Vegas).  Many B2B marketing professionals feel a bit queasy about cross-promoting their brand, but if you do it effectively without detracting value from the original product, rappers are proving your customers won’t mind.4) All this promotion needs to be relevant and unobtrusive.  I have now written two decent length blog articles about rappers and marketing, yet if there really was a ton of annoying ads in rap music, none of these rappers would be selling millions of records.  How do they do it?  Be relevant and unobtrusive.  When rappers mention a brand in a song, it is not an in your face promotion where the song stops and a 5 second advertisement plays before the song begins again.  Usually the brand is just mentioned in a subtle way, fitting into the flow of the lyrics and not necessarily extolling the benefits of the product in a very detailed manner.  It is almost subliminal, but that is what makes it work.  And, of course, all of the brands they mention are relevant to the audience and the brand of the rapper.  You don’t hear them speaking about Depends or AARP.For more reading, check out this great article about marketing and rap music from BusinessWeek and another article with a lot of details about some of the promotion of liquor brands in rap music.I think this will be my last article about rappers and marketing for quite a while, so I thought I would end with one relevant quote that brings all of the marketing insights from rap music into a single sentence. As Jay-Z says in one of his songs, “I’m not a businessman; I’m a business, man.” Think about it. He’s right. Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Originally published Jul 10, 2007 2:01:00 PM, updated October 01 2019last_img read more

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Why Blogging Is Like Running for Small Business Owners

first_imgEvery time I run I am reminded that I am not a runner. It hurts. I kind of hate it. But, still, I run. I also know that the more I run, the more I get better at it. When I slack, it stays really, really hard. When I am consistent and committed, it gets easier, though never easy. The bottom line is, I run because it works. marketing annuity guarantees more, free, search-based traffic Download the free webinar Business Blogging For me, running seems to be the most efficient way for me to stay in somewhat fair condition. In about 45 minutes, I sweat out toxins and stress, I give my heart a good workout and I burn (at least some of) the excess summertime beer, margherita and ice-cream calories. blogging is your running Blogging is probably the most efficient and most effective way to drive traffic to your website. An hour or two per week and you are creating a My relationship with running is not unlike a lot of small business owners’ relationships with marketing. They are not Marketers. They are business owners. They wear many hats, too. They are CEOs, CFOs, sales people, customer service reps, account managers — and probably daughters, granddaughters, nieces and aunts. They are not marketers. But, like I need to exercise, they need to market. So, small business owners, though you may not be marketers, you do need to maintain a healthy business.  I say blog.  It just works. Topics: Webinar: Advanced Business Blogging . It just works. And, like running, if you are committed and consistent, it will get easier.center_img Learn how to build your business blog into an inbound marketing machine. . As a busy person, I know that doing my best to stay in shape is important. I feel better at the beginning of the day, I am more alert and I make better decisions.  If you are smart about your posts, you can assure that this new traffic is well targeted and qualified for . Originally published Aug 10, 2009 8:15:00 AM, updated October 20 2016 I run because like most people I am constantly on the go. I wear many hats. I work here at HubSpot. I am a spouse. I am a new mom. I am a sister, a daughter and a granddaughter. I am an aunt and a niece. to learn how to create a thriving blog. lead generation . Like running guarantees to burn calories, blogging absolutely It is important for any business of any size to build, grow and nurture a strong funnel of leads to keep the business healthy. In my experience as an Inbound Marketing Consultant, I would argue that as a small business owner, 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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BREAKING: Google+ Profile Images Now Appearing Beside Search Listings

first_img , we have dicovered that is change works for sites using the “rel=me” tag. Currently these sites include TechCrunch, Mashable, and GigaOm, but this list could soon include your site as well. The “rel=me” tag is a simple tag that a person can use across the web to tell Google that what may appear to be separate pages, are actually all about the same person. On her Google+ profile she links back to her Mashable profile in the “Links” area, and indicated that the link was about her via the checkbox when adding a link, so that it’s established that both profiles are the same person and reciprocal. How Does This Work? “rel=me” check out this post on Google’s Webmaster Forum This is a dramtic change to Google’s classic results page. It completely changes the visual weight of the results. Even though the mashable article is ranked fourth in this search, the addition of the image and name guide your eye to that link. This could have a significant impact on click-through rates for results that include an author image. Basically it is a three step process to get this to work for your website: Now google knows that the author of that article has a specific page. Google Updates Originally published Jul 22, 2011 7:00:00 AM, updated October 20 2016 Thanks to the keen eye of HubSpot resident SEO genius 1. These three steps explain how Google knows to show a certain profile images along side a specific result. To learn more about , but today we have our first major example. Google has begun to roll out a change to its search engine results page in which an author profile image and name appears at the far right of the individual search listing. Additionally the image and name links directly to the author’s Google+ profile page. On the linked page (http://mashable.com/author/jennifer-van-grove/), link to the Google+ profile for the author. Include the tag, AnchorText   Brian Whalley Topics: 3. . Have a link that includes rel=”author me” in your blog article. Such as like Jennifer’s does. has only been out for a few weeks and it is already having major impact on search engine optimization. We shared earlier this week general ideas about how Marketing Takeaway Google+ Google+ will impact search 2. is new but already having a major impact on Google Search. Including profile images of authors along site search listings is a major change to what had traditionally been a non-visual page. If you have a blog you should start using “rel=me” tags right away to have your Google+ profile image appear next to your resutls in an effort to make them more social and better stand out on the page. Keep an eye out for future cahnges to google’s search to make it more social. Google+ 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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Justice Lodha disappointed with Supreme Court judgement on BCCI reforms

first_imgJustice RM Lodha has expressed his disappointment on the Supreme Court judgment on the draft constitution of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI).The retired justice said the judgment has diluted the recommendations made by the committee chaired by him by taking out the foundation stone.”I will not say that I am shocked but I’m surely disappointed; because these were two fundamental recommendations made by us in our report and it would have introduced good reforms in the administration, management and governance sector. They have diluted the reforms (one State, one vote, and cooling off period of the office bearers) which had all been accepted by Supreme Court (on July 18, 2016),” Justice Lodha told ANI.He further said that the idea of Lodha panel recommendation was to break the monopoly of office-bearers who have been long in power.SC revokes ‘one state, one vote’ policy, approves BCCI’s draft constitution”Unless they are removed there won’t be space for newcomers. Our reforms were aimed to stop these officials from building their kingdom for six years,” Justice Lodha added.”Such reforms were needed to lay a strong foundation. We had worked very hard, spoken to so many stakeholders connected with the game. It had been a really a long and comprehensive exercise,” he added.According to the new amendments made in BCCI’s draft constitution, cooling-off period of the Board’s officials has been changed and the office bearers would now be allowed to serve two consecutive terms in the office instead of one.advertisementApart from that, the court discarded the ‘one state one vote’ policy, according to which the regional affiliates of the BCCI would not be eligible for thevoting rights. The court also granted full membership to Mumbai Cricket Association, Vidarbha, and Railways.(With ANI inputs)last_img read more

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11 Clever Ways for Marketers to Reconvert Their Leads

first_img Originally published Jun 27, 2012 9:00:00 AM, updated October 20 2016 Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack But it’s not just enough to have a resource center. It should also be easy for your site visitors to find. Link to your resource center on prominent pages on your website, like your homepage, ‘About Us’ page, and in your website navigation. Your goal should be to make it very intuitive for your visitors to navigate there.6) Use Top Content in Lead Nurturing CampaignsConsidering that reconversions are one of the main goals of lead nurturing, this is an obvious one. As you’re planning the workflows for your individual lead nurturing campaigns, incorporate your most relevant, top-performing offers.To determine which of your offers are your ‘top’ ones, analyze your offers’ lead-to-customer conversion rates as well as the top landing pages leads viewed before converting into customers, as these are the offers and landing pages with the most powerful influence. (For HubSpot customers, the Conversion Assists tool and the Landing Page Analytics tool can both help you conduct this analysis.)7) Include Secondary CTAs in Email MarketingAs we hinted at in number 3, sometimes your leads are ready to move themselves further down the sales funnel. So say you’re sending an email to promote your brand new ebook to a large segment of your list in which Johnny the prospect (remember him?) is included. At this point (because you’ve already implemented some of the tips we’ve already covered), Johnny has reconverted on a couple of your top-of-the-funnel offers, and he’s really starting to understand that he might just need your product/service to help him solve his problems.Now, you could just leave the email at that — a CTA for your new ebook, which Johnny might not really care about anymore. Or, you could also include a secondary call-to-action for one of your middle-of-the-funnel offers like a demo or a free product trial, which Johnny just might decide he’s ready for. Including that secondary CTA enables you to reconvert prospects who are ready to take that next step while also converting people who are still interested in that new ebook you’re promoting. Talk about a win-win! Say hello to Johnny the prospect. He’s to your right. Now imagine this scenario: Johnny has just arrived on your blog through a link to an article of yours he found in search. He enjoys the content, and decides to click on your lovely call-to-action promoting an ebook for more in-depth information on the subject. Johnny heads on over to that beautifully optimized landing page, fills out the form, clicks “Download Ebook Now,” and … BAM! Johnny the prospect is now Johnny the lead. Brush off your shoulders, marketer, your work here is done.Hmmm … not so fast. Chances are, if this is Johnny’s first interaction with your company, he’s probably not quite yet ready for a sales call. At this point, he may not even have a clue what you sell. So while Johnny is now technically a “lead,” he’s probably not the warmest one in your database (even though his smile may be). So what do you do with Johnny now? You have two choices: let Johnny read your ebook and then go about his life (which may or may not involve a visit back to your website), or try to reconvert him. The choice is yours, but we recommend the latter, considering that 50% of leads are qualified but not yet ready to buy, according to Gleanster Research.Why Reconversions MatterIf you haven’t already guessed, a reconversion is when a prospect converts on your website again. And the more times a prospect reconverts on your website, the better. Here’s why:More Engagement With Your Content & Your Brand: Every time a lead reconverts on one of your offers, they’re taking yet another opportunity to engage with you. And the more they engage with you, the more top-of-mind your brand is when they’re ready to make a purchasing decision, especially if they’ve found your content valuable. Better Educated Prospects: A side effect of more engagement, the more times a prospect reconverts on your website and consumes more of your content, the better educated they become about your expertise, products, and/or services.Better Lead Intelligence: Finally, the more reconversions you can generate, the richer your lead intelligence will be. The more you know about leads’ activity on your website and with your content, the more effectively you’ll be able to segment and personalize your email marketing messages, lead nurturing campaigns, and sales follow-up. Just consider the data from the Lyris Annual Email Optimizer Report. When asked to indicate their top three results, 39% of marketers who segmented their email lists experienced higher open rates, 28% experienced lower unsubscribe rates, and 24% experienced better deliverability and greater revenue. Essentially, getting more prospects to reconvert time and time again until they’re ready to buy is one of the goals of lead nurturing. But just as there’s more than one way to skin a cat, there’s more than one way to generate reconversions, so if you’re looking to reconvert more of your prospects, here are 11 great tips to help you do just that.11 Tips for Generating More Reconversions1) Display Relevant CTAs All Over Your WebsiteGive your prospects the opportunity to convert on a relevant offer, no matter what page on your website they’re visiting. This means creating and displaying calls-to-action (CTAs) throughout your website — on your homepage, on every blog post, within your product pages, the list goes on. The more simple opportunities someone has to convert, the more likely they’ll do so.Furthermore, be sure to align your CTA choices with the pages the prospect is visiting. For example, if they’re checking out your product pages, they’re likely to be further down the sales funnel, and more likely to be interested in a product-focused offer such as a free trial or a demo. If they’re on your blog, on the other hand, (which you know through your analytics generates a lot of first-time site visitors) a more top-of-the-funnel offer such as an educational ebook is probably a better fit. For more on this, check out our full post on how to select the right CTA for every page on your website.2) Use Thank-You Pages & Emails StrategicallySometimes, you can get a prospect who has only just converted on an offer to convert again right away. This is where thank-you pages and thank-you emails become your best weapons. A thank-you page is the web page you redirect your leads to after they’ve completed a form for an offer. It’s where you thank them for converting on your offer, and usually where you provide next steps, whether it be a link to the offer itself, or an indication that they’ll receive the offer via email or through some other method shortly. Similarly, a thank-you email can be triggered to provide the content or with further instructions on redeeming it.Use these tools strategically to generate more reconversions by placing CTAs for additional offers on thank-you pages or in thank-you emails. You could even test a conversion form itself on the thank-you page. As we stressed before, for the best bang for your buck, make sure the secondary offer you’re promoting is complementary to the first offer the lead converted on — in both subject matter and stage in the sales cycle. Lead Generation 8) Leverage Real Estate in Welcome EmailsSimilar to the thank-you email, welcome emails provide reconversion opportunities as well, especially when you consider that according to Skyline Technologies, welcome emails have an average open rate of 50-60%. Wowza! So if you send out an automated welcome email triggered when a prospect opts into your email database, for example, make sure that email is optimized with a CTA for reconversion. Check out this post to learn about 15 different ways you can reconvert leads via welcome emails. Talk about low-hanging fruit!  9) Get Personal and SegmentedWe’ve stressed the importance of segmentation and personalization before on this blog (and even earlier in this post), and it’s worth mentioning again. In order to have better success reconverting leads, offering targeted content and offers is a must. Be sure you’re carefully slicing and dicing your email list so you can provide more targeted content and offers to your contacts that they’re more likely to reconvert on. To get started with segmentation, check out this blog post for various ways you can segment your email database.10) Share Middle-of-the-Funnel Offers in Social MediaSocial media is a great channel for promoting offers, and the benefits don’t stop at generating just new leads. Your current leads are also hanging out (and probably following you) in social media, and chances are many of them would convert on later stage, middle-of-the-funnel offers they find there. In that case, don’t limit the offers you share in social media to ones that appeal just to people near the top of the funnel. Giving your followers options in terms of the offers you promote enables them to self-select the ones that appeal to their particular needs. 11) Nurture Leads With Content Similar to Their Interests in Social MediaWhat do you get when you combine number 9 (segmentation and personalization) and number 10 (social media promotion)? Social media lead nurturing! By leveraging the lead intelligence you have about your leads’ activities (what they’ve downloaded, pages they’ve visited, etc.), you can effectively nurture those leads in social media by sharing with them specific content and offers relevant to their interests. If your marketing database automatically checks for leads’ social media account information like HubSpot’s software does, you can easily identify your leads in social media and share appropriate content with them.For customers of HubSpot and HootSuite, our new integration makes this process even easier, enabling users to monitor their leads’ tweets in HootSuite to identify opportunities to follow up with a tweet.Implement these 11 reconversion tips, and Johnny the lead will be ready to convert into Johnny the customer in no time! Topics: 3) Include CTAs Within Other OffersEncourage leads to reconvert while they’re most engaged with your content by including calls-to-action within your offer content such as ebooks, webinars, and other downloads. If your leads are finding the content they’re already consuming to be valuable, they’ll be much more receptive to converting on other valuable offers. Thus, you’ll be able to reconvert them during the peak of their interest.  Include a mix of top-of-the-funnel and middle-of-the-funnel CTAs to reconvert different types of leads depending on their stage in the sales cycle. A CTA for a top-of-the-funnel offer will continue to nurture new leads, and a middle-of-the-funnel one will propel leads who are more sales-ready further down the funnel.4) Leverage Content Recommendation WidgetsSometimes just keeping visitors on your website can indirectly lead to more reconversions, especially after you’ve taken the time to implement our first tip. To keep visitors hanging around, try implementing a content recommendation widget on your blog, like Outbrain or Facebook’s Recommendations Plugin, as seen on the right-hand sidebar of this very blog. These widgets will suggest popular content to your readers and entice them to stick around. And if you’ve effectively optimized your website with CTAs, the more chances you’ll have to reconvert your leads.You can also manually recommend content and offers if you prefer not to install a recommendation widget. For example, you could manually add links to other relevant blog posts or offers at the bottoms of your blog posts, or even recommend related content on your products pages to help educate prospects about why that particular product or service you offer should be important to them.5) Make Offers Easy to FindCalls-to-action aren’t the only way to get visibility for your marketing offers on your website. Aggregate and organize your marketing offers into a resource center on your website so your leads can easily find self-select the offers they’re interested in. You can choose to organize this resource library by the offer subject or offer type — or both! For a sense of how you can organize your resource center, check out HubSpot’s own Marketing Resources section here.last_img read more

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7 Tell-Tale Signs Your Competitor Is a Total Shmuck

first_img Topics: You know what never goes out of fashion?The high road.Take it. I dare you. It may be way less satisfying than a life-long effort to dethrone one of your competitors, but even if you enjoy a few small victories here and there (or even the occasional epic victory), you still come out the other end looking like a total fool.Probably not the look you were going for.It’s why our parents taught us to play nice. To win with grace. To (all together now) take the high road. Because it’s not fun being on top if you had to stomp on people to get there. In fact, that doesn’t make you a winner at all … it makes you a massive loser. So if you’ve got a competitor that’s doing any of the things in this blog post, take heart in knowing that they are, indeed, acting like a total jerkazoid. Thanks to the magic of the internet, it’s a whole lot easier for everyone else to see their true colors, too. And if you find yourself guilty of any of these, you might want to reconsider the lovability of your marketing.1) Bidding on Your Branded KeywordsWhen someone types one of your branded keywords into a search engine — your company name, for example — it’s pretty fair to assume they’re looking for … well, you. I mean, unless your company name is shared by a bunch of other businesses, it’s kind of a given that you’re going to show up in the top search results. Why? Because Google’s in the business of providing the most relevant results possible, and they know your website is the most relevant result for a search for your company.That’s why it’s a total shmuck move for a competitor to try to outrank you for your own company name. And often, they try to do it using PPC — bidding on branded terms that are undeniably associated with your company, cloaking themselves to trick the searcher into thinking they’re really you, and desperately trying to take just a little share from you in the SERPs. Share that you earned, fair and square.Misleading searchers and wasting your money?! Nice move!2) Stealing Your ContentOn the other end of the spectrum, there are competitors who know you’re an awesome content creator and totally promote your content! And by “promote,” what we really mean is “steal.” As in, they leave out the minor detail that you actually created the content, and they just republished it. Yeah, copying and pasting is totally the same amount of effort as hours of researching, thinking, writing, and formatting.That’s right, it’s a sleazy thing to do considering how much time and effort content creation takes, but it happens all the time. You write an amazing ebook, a competitor grabs the content, rebrands it, and pretends they did all the work. Or perhaps you write a fantastic blog post, and they decide to hop on the bandwagon and do a slight reword of your content so they don’t get dinged for duplicate content in the SERPs … and then don’t give you any props for the mindshare.The thing that stinks the most about this scenario is that there’s so much content on the internet, it’s kind of easy to get away with this. Yes, maybe a handful of shrewd readers might pick up on the glaring similarities — or outright plagiarism — but this is one of those situations where you just have to rise above, and remember that in this day and age, nice guys and gals don’t finish last.3) Copying Everything You DoThere are ways competitors can copy you other than through your content. They could recreate your homepage, your pricing structure, your design scheme … pretty much anything. Honestly, I’m not sure if this is worse than stealing content or not. Sure, imitation is a form of flattery, but there’s a fine line between getting inspiration here and there and adapting an idea for your own benefit, and just straight up copying it. I mean, do you have any idea how much effort goes into determining a pricing structure, for example? I actually don’t … I just know it’s a ridiculous amount of time, and requires lots of people with really expensive degrees to figure out. So it’s kind of slimy to just sit back as a competitor figures out all the hard stuff, and then just snag it when they’re finished.But if you ever suspect one of your competitors is blatantly copying some aspect of your business, ask them to show their work, just like your high school math teacher! Bet they can’t explain why they made any of the changes they made ;-)4) Leaving Links to Their Content on Your ContentThis is just sad :-/When you put a link in the comments section of almost every blog on the internet, it’s a “no follow” link. That means, while you may think you’re getting link juice to your own site by leaving a generic comment on a blog and including a link to your website, you’re really just screaming out to readers “Hey! I don’t know how the internet works! Also, I’m trying to grab some of my competitor’s readers in a really blatant, lazy way!”Gain competitive market share by creating marketing people love. Not by link spamming.5) Grabbing Branded Domain Names and Social Media AccountsRemember when we talked about branded terms in the beginning of this post? It’s possible you’ll want to use one of your branded terms to launch a microsite, a Twitter account, a Facebook page, what have you. And sometimes, your competitors remember that and grab those accounts before you have the chance. Classy.There’s technically nothing wrong with this. Technically. But that doesn’t mean your competitors don’t look like total, absolute, and utter shmucks for doing it. Look, if you want to win the inbound marketing game, you don’t need to resort to cheap tactics. Win your game fair and square — victory will taste much sweeter.6) Talking Smack This one’s pretty straightforward. If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all. There’s no glory in calling out a competitor and berating them in your marketing. Even if it feels cathartic, you’re actually dragging yourself down with them — you look petty, even. Whether it’s something in particular that’s making your blood boil or they just generally grind your gears, don’t let your emotions get the best of you and start talking smack to leads and customers — the general public has gotten pretty good at identifying inappropriate behavior and calling out companies on their own. And if you find yourself the target of such sentiments from one of your competitors, take comfort in knowing that they’re the ones that look ridiculous, not you!7) Telling Flat Out Lies About YouHave you ever hopped on a sales call with a lead who is also considering a competitor’s solution, only to have them spill a boatload of lies that have been fed to them right from said competitor? You probably have, right? That is so the wrong way to approach marketing and sales, because when a lead figures out you were lying, they lose all trust in you. Why would anyone want to turn their money over to a company that’s selling something based on false pretenses? If your competitor ever stoops this low — to include flat out lies about your company in their marketing materials or sales conversations — politely explain the truth to your leads, and for goodness sake, never stoop to their level!What else can turn a competitor’s marketing from good-natured to shmucky?Image credit: uselessid Inbound Marketing Originally published Sep 6, 2012 9:00:00 AM, updated March 21 2013 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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30-Day Blog Challenge Tip #30: Go All In

first_img2. Create your blog domain.Next, you’ll need a place to host this and every other blog post you write. This requires choosing a content management system (CMS) and a website domain hosting service.Sign Up With a Content Management SystemA CMS helps you create a website domain where you’ll actually publish your blog. The CMS platforms available for you to sign up for can manage domains, where you create your own website; and subdomains, where you create a webpage that connects with an existing website.HubSpot customers host their website content through HubSpot’s content management system. Another popular option is a self-hosted WordPress website on WP Engine. Whether they create a domain or a subdomain to start their blog, they’ll need to choose a web domain hosting service after choosing their CMS.This is true for every blogger seeking to start their own blog on their own website.Register a Domain or Subdomain With a Website HostYour own blog domain will look like this: www.yourblog.com. The name between the two periods is up to you, as long as this domain name doesn’t yet exist on the internet.Want to create a subdomain for your blog? If you already own a cooking business at www.yourcompany.com, you might create a blog that looks like this: blog.yourcompany.com. In other words, your blog’s subdomain will live in its own section of yourcompany.com.Some CMSs offer subdomains as a free service, where your blog lives on the CMS, rather than your business’s website. For example, it might look like “yourblog.contentmanagementsystem.com.” However, in order to create a subdomain that belongs to a company website, you’ll need to register this subdomain with a website host.Most website hosting services charge very little to host an original domain — in fact, website costs can be as inexpensive as $3 per month. Here are five popular web hosting services to choose from:GoDaddyHostGatorDreamHostBluehostiPage3. Customize your blog’s theme.Once you have your blog domain set up, customize the appearance of your blog to reflect the theme of the content you plan on creating.Are you writing about sustainability and the environment? Green might be a color to keep in mind when designing the look and feel of your blog, as green is often associated with sustainability.If you already manage a website, and are writing your first blog post for that website, it’s important that your blog is consistent with this existing website, both in appearance and subject matter. Two things to include right away are:Logo. This can be your name or your business’s logo, either one helping to remind your readers who or what is publishing this content. How heavily you want to brand this blog, in relation to your main brand, is up to you.”About” page. You might already have an “About” blurb describing yourself or your business. Your blog’s “About” section is an extension of this higher-level statement. Think of it as your blog’s mission statement, which serves to support your company’s goals.4. Identify your first blog post’s topic.Before you even write anything, you need to pick a topic for your blog post. The topic can be pretty general to start with. For example, if you’re a plumber, you might start out thinking you want to write about leaky faucets.Then, as you do your research, you can expand the topic to discuss how to fix a leaky faucet based on the various causes of a faucet leak.You might not want to jump right into a “how-to” article for your first blog post, though, and that’s okay. Perhaps you’d like to write about modern types of faucet setups, or tell one particular success story you had rescuing a faucet before it flooded someone’s house.If a plumber’s first how-to article is about how to fix a leaky faucet, for example, here are four other types of sample blog post ideas a plumber might start with, based on the five free blog templates we’ve offered to you:List-based Post: 5 ways to fix a leaky faucetCurated Collection Post: 10 faucet and sink brands you should look into todaySlideShare Presentation: 5 types of faucets that should replace your old one (with pictures)News post: New study shows X% of people don’t replace their faucet on timeFind more examples of blog posts at the end of this step-by-step guide.If you’re having trouble coming up with topic ideas, check out this blog post from my colleague Ginny Soskey. In this post, Soskey walks through a helpful process for turning one idea into many. Similar to the “leaky faucet” examples above, she suggests that you “iterate off old topics to come up with unique and compelling new topics.” This can be done by:Changing the topic scopeAdjusting the time frameChoosing a new audienceTaking a positive/negative approachIntroducing a new format5. Come up with a working title.Then you might come up with a few different working titles — in other words, iterations or different ways of approaching that topic to help you focus your writing. For example, you might decide to narrow your topic to “Tools for Fixing Leaky Faucets” or “Common Causes of Leaky Faucets.” A working title is specific and will guide your post so you can start writing.Let’s take a real post as an example: “How to Choose a Solid Topic for Your Next Blog Post.” Appropriate, right? The topic, in this case, was probably simply “blogging.” Then the working title may have been something like, “The Process for Selecting a Blog Post Topic.” And the final title ended up being “How to Choose a Solid Topic for Your Next Blog Post.”See that evolution from topic, to working title, to final title? Even though the working title may not end up being the final title (more on that in a moment), it still provides enough information so you can focus your blog post on something more specific than a generic, overwhelming topic.6. Write an intro (and make it captivating).We’ve written more specifically about writing captivating introductions in the post, “How to Write an Introduction,” but let’s review, shall we?First, grab the reader’s attention. If you lose the reader in the first few paragraphs — or even sentences — of the introduction, they will stop reading even before they’ve given your post a fair shake. You can do this in a number of ways: tell a story or a joke, be empathetic, or grip the reader with an interesting fact or statistic.Then describe the purpose of the post and explain how it will address a problem the reader may be having. This will give the reader a reason to keep reading and give them a connection to how it will help them improve their work/lives. Here’s an example of a post that we think does a good job of attracting a reader’s attention right away:7. Organize your content in an outline.Sometimes, blog posts can have an overwhelming amount of information — for the reader and the writer. The trick is to organize the info so readers are not intimidated by the length or amount of content. The organization can take multiple forms — sections, lists, tips, whatever’s most appropriate. But it must be organized!Let’s take a look at the post, “How to Use Snapchat: A Detailed Look Into HubSpot’s Snapchat Strategy.” There is a lot of content in this post, so we broke it into a few different sections using the following headers: How to Setup Your Snapchat Account, Snaps vs. Stories: What’s the Difference?, and How to Use Snapchat for Business. These sections are then separated into sub-sections that to go into more detail and also make the content easier to read.To complete this step, all you really need to do is outline your post. That way, before you start writing, you know which points you want to cover, and the best order in which to do it. To make things even easier, you can also download and use our free blog post templates, which are pre-organized for five of the most common blog post types. Just fill in the blanks!8. Write your blog post!The next step — but not the last — is actually writing the content. We couldn’t forget about that, of course.Now that you have your outline/template, you’re ready to fill in the blanks. Use your outline as a guide and be sure to expand on all of your points as needed. Write about what you already know, and if necessary, do additional research to gather more information, examples, and data to back up your points, providing proper attribution when incorporating external sources. Need help finding accurate and compelling data to use in your post? Check out this roundup of sources — from Pew Research to Google Trends.If you find you’re having trouble stringing sentences together, you’re not alone. Finding your “flow” can be really challenging for a lot of folks. Luckily, there are a ton of tools you can lean on to help you improve your writing. Here are a few to get you started:Power Thesaurus: Stuck on a word? Power Thesaurus is a crowdsourced tool that provides users with a ton of alternative word choices from a community of writers.ZenPen: If you’re having trouble staying focused, check out this distraction-free writing tool. ZenPen creates a minimalist “writing zone” that’s designed to help you get words down without having to fuss with formatting right away.Cliché Finder: Feeling like your writing might be coming off a little cheesy? Identify instances where you can be more specific using this handy cliché tool.For a complete list of tools for improving your writing skills, check out this post. And if you’re looking for more direction, the following resources are chock-full of valuable writing advice:The Marketer’s Pocket Guide to Writing Well [Free Ebook]How to Write Compelling Copy: 7 Tips for Writing Content That ConvertsHow to Write With Clarity: 9 Tips for Simplifying Your MessageThe Kurt Vonnegut Guide to Great Copywriting: 8 Rules That Apply to AnyoneYour Blog Posts Are Boring: 9 Tips for Making Your Writing More InterestingThe Beginner’s Guide to Starting a Successful Blog in 20199. Edit/proofread your post, and fix your formatting.You’re not quite done yet, but you’re close! The editing process is an important part of blogging — don’t overlook it. Ask a grammar-conscious co-worker to copy, edit, and proofread your post, and consider enlisting the help of The Ultimate Editing Checklist (or try using a free grammar checker, like the one developed by Grammarly). And if you’re looking to brush up on your own self-editing skills, turn to these helpful posts for some tips and tricks to get you started:Confessions of a HubSpot Editor: 11 Editing Tips From the TrenchesHow to Become a More Efficient Editor: 12 Ways to Speed Up the Editorial Process10 Simple Edits That’ll Instantly Improve Any Piece of WritingWhen you’re ready to check your formatting, keep the following advice in mind …Featured ImageMake sure you choose a visually appealing and relevant image for your post. As social networks treat content with images more prominently, visuals are now more responsible than ever for the success of your blog content in social media. In fact, it’s been shown that content with relevant images receives 94% more views than content without relevant images.For help selecting an image for your post, read “How to Select the Perfect Image for Your Next Blog Post” — and pay close attention to the section about copyright law.Visual AppearanceNo one likes an ugly blog post. And it’s not just pictures that make a post visually appealing — it’s the formatting and organization of the post, too.In a properly formatted and visually appealing blog post, you’ll notice that header and sub-headers are used to break up large blocks of text — and those headers are styled consistently. Here’s an example of what that looks like:Also, screenshots should always have a similar, defined border (see screenshot above for example) so they don’t appear as if they’re floating in space. And that style should stay consistent from post to post.Maintaining this consistency makes your content (and your brand) look more professional, and makes it easier on the eyes.Topics/TagsTags are specific, public-facing keywords that describe a post. They also allow readers to browse for more content in the same category on your blog. Refrain from adding a laundry list of tags to each post. Instead, put some thought into a tagging strategy. Think of tags as “topics” or “categories,” and choose 10-20 tags that represent all the main topics you want to cover on your blog. Then stick to those.10. Insert a call-to-action (CTA) at the end.At the end of every blog post, you should have a CTA that indicates what you want the reader to do next — subscribe to your blog, download an ebook, register for a webinar or event, read a related article, etc. Typically, you think about the CTA being beneficial for the marketer. Your visitors read your blog post, they click on the CTA, and eventually you generate a lead. But the CTA is also a valuable resource for the person reading your content — use your CTAs to offer more content similar to the subject of the post they just finished reading.In the blog post, “What to Post on Instagram: 18 Photo & Video Ideas to Spark Inspiration,” for instance, readers are given actionable ideas for creating valuable Instagram content. At the end of the post is a CTA referring readers to download a comprehensive guide on how to use Instagram for business:See how that’s a win-win for everyone? Readers who want to learn more have the opportunity to do so, and the business receives a lead they can nurture … who may even become a customer! Learn more about how to choose the right CTA for every blog post in this article. And check out this collection of clever CTAs to inspire your own efforts.11. Optimize for on-page SEO.After you finish writing, go back and optimize your post for search.Don’t obsess over how many keywords to include. If there are opportunities to incorporate keywords you’re targeting, and it won’t impact reader experience, do it. If you can make your URL shorter and more keyword-friendly, go for it. But don’t cram keywords or shoot for some arbitrary keyword density — Google’s smarter than that!Here’s a little reminder of what you can and should look for:Meta DescriptionMeta descriptions are the descriptions below the post’s page title on Google’s search results pages. They provide searchers with a short summary of the post before clicking into it. They are ideally between 150-160 characters and start with a verb, such as “Learn,” “Read,” or “Discover.” While meta descriptions no longer factor into Google’s keyword ranking algorithm, they do give searchers a snapshot of what they will get by reading the post and can help improve your clickthrough rate from search.Page Title and HeadersMost blogging software uses your post title as your page title, which is the most important on-page SEO element at your disposal. But if you’ve followed our formula so far, you should already have a working title that will naturally include keywords/phrases your target audience is interested in. Don’t over-complicate your title by trying to fit keywords where they don’t naturally belong. That said, if there are clear opportunities to add keywords you’re targeting to your post title and headers, feel free to take them. Also, try to keep your headlines short — ideally, under 65 characters — so they don’t get truncated in search engine results.Anchor TextAnchor text is the word or words that link to another page — either on your website or on another website. Carefully select which keywords you want to link to other pages on your site, because search engines take that into consideration when ranking your page for certain keywords.It’s also important to consider which pages you link to. Consider linking to pages that you want to rank well for that keyword. You could end up getting it to rank on Google’s first page of results instead of its second page, and that ain’t small potatoes.Mobile OptimizationWith mobile devices now accounting for nearly 2 out of every 3 minutes spent online, having a website that is responsive or designed for mobile has become more and more critical. In addition to making sure your website’s visitors (including your blog’s visitors) have the best experience possible, optimizing for mobile will score your website some SEO points.Back in 2015, Google made a change to its algorithm that now penalizes sites that aren’t mobile optimized. This month (May 2016), Google rolled out their second version of the mobile-friendly algorithm update — creating a sense of urgency for the folks that have yet to update their websites. To make sure your site is getting the maximum SEO benefit possible, check out this free guide: How to Make a Mobile-Friendly Website: SEO Tips for a Post-“Mobilegeddon” World.12. Pick a catchy title.Last but not least, it’s time to spruce up that working title of yours. Luckily, we have a simple formula for writing catchy titles that will grab the attention of your reader. Here’s what to consider:Start with your working title.As you start to edit your title, keep in mind that it’s important to keep the title accurate and clear.Then, work on making your title sexy — whether it’s through strong language, alliteration, or another literary tactic.If you can, optimize for SEO by sneaking some keywords in there (only if it’s natural, though!).Finally, see if you can shorten it at all. No one likes a long, overwhelming title — and remember, Google prefers 65 characters or fewer before it truncates it on its search engine results pages.If you’ve mastered the steps above, learn about some way to take your blog posts to the next level in this post. Want some real examples of blog posts? See what your first blog post can look like, below, based on the topic you choose and the audience you’re targeting.Blog Post ExamplesList-Based PostThought Leadership PostCurated Collection PostSlideshare PresentationNewsjacking PostInfographic PostHow-to Post You’ve probably heard how paramount blogging is to the success of your marketing. But it’s important that you learn how to start a blog and write blog posts for it so that each article supports your business.Without a blog, your SEO can tank, you’ll have nothing to promote in social media, you’ll have no clout with your leads and customers, and you’ll have fewer pages to put those valuable calls-to-action that generate inbound leads.So why, oh why, does almost every marketer I talk to have a laundry list of excuses for why they can’t consistently blog?Maybe because, unless you’re one of the few people who actually like writing, business blogging kind of stinks. You have to find words, string them together into sentences … ugh, where do you even start?Download Now: 6 Free Blog Post TemplatesWell my friend, the time for excuses is over.What Is a Blog?A blog is literally short for “web log.” Blogs began in the early 1990s as an online journal for individuals to publish thoughts and stories on their own website. Bloggers then share their blog posts with other internet users. Blog posts used to be much more personal to the writer or group of writers than they are today.Today, people and organizations of all walks of life manage blogs to share analyses, instruction, criticisms, and other observations of an industry in which they are a rising expert.After you read this post, there will be absolutely no reason you can’t blog every single day — and do it quickly. Not only am I about to provide you with a simple blog post formula to follow, but I’m also going to give you free templates for creating five different types of blog posts:The How-To PostThe List-Based PostThe Curated Collection PostThe SlideShare Presentation PostThe Newsjacking PostWith all this blogging how-to, literally anyone can blog as long as they truly know the subject matter they’re writing about. And since you’re an expert in your industry, there’s no longer any reason you can’t sit down every day and hammer out an excellent blog post.Want to learn how to apply blogging and other forms of content marketing to your business? Check out HubSpot Academy’s free content marketing training resource page. Originally published May 6, 2019 7:30:00 PM, updated October 25 2019 How to Write a Blog Post1. Understand your audience.Before you start to write your first blog post, have a clear understanding of your target audience. What do they want to know about? What will resonate with them? This is where creating your buyer personas comes in handy. Consider what you know about your buyer personas and their interests while you’re coming up with a topic for your blog post.For instance, if your readers are millennials looking to start their own business, you probably don’t need to provide them with information about getting started in social media — most of them already have that down. You might, however, want to give them information about how to adjust their approach to social media from a more casual, personal one to a more business-savvy, networking-focused approach. That kind of tweak is what separates you from blogging about generic stuff to the stuff your audience really wants (and needs) to hear.Don’t have buyer personas in place for your business? Here are a few resources to help you get started:Create Buyer Personas for Your Business [Free Template]Blog Post: How to Create Detailed Buyer Personas for Your BusinessMakeMyPersona.com [Free Tool] Hi 👋 What’s your name?First NameLast NameHi null, what’s your email address?Email AddressAnd your phone number?Phone NumberWhat is your company’s name and website?CompanyWebsiteHow many employees work there?1Does your company provide any of the following services?Web DesignOnline MarketingSEO/SEMAdvertising Agency ServicesYesNoGet Your Free Templates Tell us a little about yourself below to gain access today: Topics:center_img Free Templates: Free Blog Post Templates How to Write a Blog Post Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack 1. List-Based PostExample: 10 Fresh Ways to Get Better Results From Your Blog PostsList-based posts are sometimes called “listicles,” a mix of the words “list” and “article.” These are articles that deliver information in the form of a list. A listicle uses subheaders to break down the blog post into individual pieces, helping readers skim and digest your content more easily. According to ClearVoice, listicles are among the most shared types of content on social media across 14 industries.As you can see in the example from our blog, above, listicles can offer various tips and methods for solving a problem.2. Thought Leadership PostExample: What I Wish I Had Known Before Writing My First BookThought leadership blog posts allow you to indulge in your expertise on a particular subject matter and share firsthand knowledge with your readers. These pieces — which can be written in the first person, like the post by Joanna Penn, shown above — help you build trust with your audience so people take your blog seriously as you continue to write for it.3. Curated Collection PostExample: 8 Examples of Evolution in ActionCurated collections are a special type of listicle blog post (the first blog post example, described above). But rather than sharing tips or methods of doing something, this type of blog post shares a list of real examples that all have something in common, in order to prove a larger point. In the example post above, Listverse shares eight real examples of evolution in action among eight different animals — starting with the peppered moth.4. Slideshare PresentationExample: The HubSpot Culture CodeSlideshare is a presentation tool owned by the social network, LinkedIn, that helps publishers package a lot of information into easily shareable slides. Think of it like a PowerPoint, but for the web. With this in mind, Slideshare blog posts help you promote your Slideshare so that it can generate a steady stream of visitors.Unlike blogs, Slideshare decks don’t often rank well on search engines, so they need a platform for getting their message out there to the people who are looking for it. By embedding and summarizing your Slideshare on a blog post, you can share a great deal of information and give it a chance to rank on Google at the same time.Need some Slideshare ideas? In the example above, we turned our company’s “Culture Code” into a Slideshare presentation that anyone can look through and take lessons from, and promoted it through a blog post.5. Newsjacking PostExample: Ivy Goes Mobile With New App for Designers”Newsjacking” is a nickname for “hijacking” your blog to break important news related to your industry. Therefore, the newsjack post is a type of article whose sole purpose is to garner consumers’ attention and, while offering them timeless professional advice, also prove your blog to be a trusted resource for learning about the big things that happen in your industry.The newsjack example above was published by Houzz, a home decor merchant and interior design resource, about a new mobile app that launched just for interior designers. Houzz didn’t launch the app, but the news of its launching is no less important to Houzz’s audience.6. Infographic PostExample: The Key Benefits of Studying Online [Infographic]The infographic post serves a similar purpose as the Slideshare post — the fourth example, explained above — in that it conveys information for which plain blog copy might not be the best format. For example, when you’re looking to share a lot of statistical information (without boring or confusing your readers), building this data into a well-designed, even fun-looking infographic can help keep your readers engaged with your content. It also helps readers remember the information long after they leave your website.7. How-to PostExample: How to Write a Blog Post: A Step-by-Step GuideFor our last example, you need not look any further than the blog post you’re reading right now! How-to guides like this one help solve a problem for your readers. They’re like a cookbook for your industry, walking your audience through a project step by step to improve their literacy on the subject. The more posts like this you create, the more equipped your readers will be to work with you and invest in the services you offer.Ready to blog? Don’t forget to download your six free blog post templates right here.last_img read more

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Want to Boost Office Productivity? Start With These Break Room Hacks [Infographic]

first_imgThere’s more to productivity at work than blocking Facebook or only checking your email at certain intervals. It turns out that taking breaks — and I don’t just mean for lunch — can do wonders for your long-term focus.That’s where your office’s break room comes in. But did you know that the atmosphere and contents of the break room can have an effect on the quality of these breaks?Over the course of my career, I’ve seen break rooms that provide healthy, hearty foods and furniture that encourages colleagues to connect with one another. I’ve also seen ones with blinding fluorescent lights and cabinets filled with packaged, processed foods that basically guarantee an afternoon sugar crash.Want your office break room to be an inviting place for employees to take their breaks? Check out the infographic below from Quill for tips on perfecting your break room’s atmosphere, from the best snack foods for boosting brainpower to which color schemes help reduce stress.203Save Topics: 203Save Originally published Aug 19, 2015 6:00:00 AM, updated February 01 2017center_img Productivity 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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Actor, Producer, and Podcast Host Alec Baldwin Joins #INBOUND16’s Keynote Lineup

first_imgIn addition to being an accomplished stage, film, and TV actor, Baldwin serves on the boards of several organizations, including The Hamptons International Film Festival, The New York Philharmonic, The Roundabout Theatre Company, and Guild Hall of East Hampton. He’s also an active supporter of The Actors Fund and The Public Theatre/New York Shakespeare Festival.Also on board for INBOUND 2016: Author and advisor Kim Scott and social media trailblazer Gary Vaynerchuk. Scott is the author of Radical Candor: How To Be a Kickass Boss Without Losing your Humanity, and has previously worked with companies like Twitter, Apple, Google, and Dropbox. (For more, check out our conversation with Scott on The Growth Show.) In addition to being the CEO of VaynerMedia, Vaynerchuk is a prolific public speaker, author, and host of the The #AskGaryVee Show. You can see the full announcement post over at INBOUND.com.Don’t want to miss these inspiring speakers at this year’s INBOUND? Click here to grab your ticket early! (Note: ticket prices will increase after Friday.) Originally published Apr 15, 2016 12:00:00 PM, updated February 01 2017 Topics: Conferencescenter_img From teaching us our ABCs — “always be closing” — in 1992’s Glengarry Glen Ross, to explaining how he can tackle tough problems with his A.S.S. methodology — “analyze, strategize, succeed” — on the hit comedy series 30 Rock, Alec Baldwin’s characters have always had a strong foothold in the business world.The real Alec Baldwin, as it turns out, also has a lot of business wisdom (and life lessons) to share. And for the past few years he’s been sharing that wisdom on Here’s The Thing, a podcast he’s been hosting since 2011.But before we get ahead of ourselves here, let’s make this official: We’re happy to announce that Mr. Baldwin will be joining us at this year’s INBOUND event as a keynote speaker.Here are some of the key reasons why we’re excited to have Baldwin at INBOUND 2016:He hosts the WNYC Studios-produced podcast Here’s The Thing. On the podcast, Baldwin interviews artists, performers, and policy makers and goes behind the scenes (e.g., inside offices, apartments, and dressing rooms) to better understand what makes people tick. 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 Clients Undervalue Your Agency (And How to Make It Stop)

first_img Agency and Client Relationship Originally published Jun 28, 2016 5:00:00 AM, updated February 01 2017 Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Topics: In Lady Windermere’s Fan, one of Oscar Wilde’s characters describes the cynic as someone “who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing.”It’s fair to call CEOs and CFOs cynics when it comes to their marketing budgets. Rarely do client-side decision makers report to their fellow C-suiters the value your agency provides. In the end, that usually means you aren’t communicating your value well, or strongly, enough.Either way, it’s a problem when clients are more focused on your invoices than your services.Nothing Is More Valuable Than Perceived ValueIf you reduce a client’s cost per lead and neither your client nor her C-suite knows it — has it really happened? (It’s the same old “does a falling tree make a sound in the forest when you’re not there?” conundrum.) Your clients’ perceived value of your services exerts significant influence on their perception of you and their decision about whether to stay with your agency (or not).In one famous study out of Stanford University, participants were given two glasses of the same exact wine, except they were told that one glass was from a $5 bottle of wine while the other was from a $45 bottle of wine. Guess which wine they thought tasted better?It works both ways. While price can be used to boost perceived value, increasing perceived value first can be used to validate higher pricing, expand relationships, or move to (higher) retainer agreements.Perceived value results from clearly understood and relevant quantifiable and qualitative factors. Fortunately, your agency has serious power to shape how your clients perceive your agency’s value.Start With the MetricsPerceived value is much broader than quantifiable ROI, but it’s certainly a necessary part. Especially when it comes to helping your client contacts chat up your value to their C-suite colleagues.Regular reporting and communication of the tangible benefits your work provides should be standard account management practice. Focus on the metrics that provide the greatest value back to the client.To do this well, your account managers and agency leadership need to understand each client’s vision of success. There’s a lot of good advice out there to hone in on revenue-based metrics, such as lifetime value and cost of acquisition (ignore the vanity metrics of shares and likes). In general, this is good advice for most clients.But what about the client whose priority is to show traction through a growing user base? This client is seeking a first round of venture capital funding, so showing proof of concept is far more important than showing paying customers.Prove your value with metrics. But first make sure they’re the right metrics. They must align with that specific client’s goals and priorities. When you show this sort of genuine and individualized attention, it impacts another factor influencing your perceived value — the overall customer experience your agency provides.Customer Experience Is More Than Customer ServiceBeing responsive and helpful is great customer service. But you’ve got to go further and create a superlative client experience that demonstrates high value: Value that differentiates your agency from all your competitors. Value that no other agency can even come close to touching.In the context of perceived value, the more useful questions are: How do your clients experience their relationship with your agency? Where does your agency fall in the “order taker versus strategic partner” dichotomy?After all, great marketing is all about spot-on positioning, right?Move away from the order-taker bucket and increase your perceived value by placing your services in context. This could mean providing clients more in-depth insight into:Their own competitive landscape and where your ideas and/or results fall within that contextThe level of expertise your team uses to design and execute a campaign or strategyHow your team’s work frees them to focus on their core functions and operationsIf You Don’t Value Your Team, Your Clients Won’t Either While you take steps to demonstrate the breadth and depth of your value to clients, make sure you’re not undermining your efforts with other actions that send the opposite message.For example, don’t discount your rates. You can negotiate, but don’t agree (or offer) price cuts. If a client has a genuine budget issue, then negotiate on issues like scope of services, extended timelines, or accelerated payment milestones. Agreeing to a price cut without getting anything of value in return tells the client they should have been paying the lower rate all along.Indeed, you should be setting your rates on a value basis, not a cost basis. There are numerous ways to do this, but the general premise of value-based pricing is to set your rates based on the value your work has for the client, not the cost-plus-profit it represents to you.Bake higher perceived value right into the cake at the start. Set your rates based on your client’s perceived value. If you know that a new customer means $200,000 in the first year of sales to your client, wouldn’t a $120,000 per year retainer be a bargain to him if you can deliver enough quality leads that he can close at least one customer?Setting value-based pricing forces your agency to get very clear on what kind of value work will deliver for a client, which makes it much easier to communicate that value back to your client.Then once the client agrees to your value-based pricing and you start delivering the value you promised, they’ll think what a great deal they got. And that’s precisely what you want your clients to think.last_img read more

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Nathan Hughes could miss England’s autumn campaign after citing for punch

first_imgShare on LinkedIn news Support The Guardian England rugby union team The Breakdown: sign up and get our weekly rugby union email. If Hughes is banned it would be a major setback for Wasps, who will already be without Dan Robson against Leinster. Robson will see a specialist on Wednesday but Wasps’ director of rugby, Dai Young, conceded the outlook was bleak for his in-form scrum-half. “It looked nasty on the weekend,” Young said. “It did not look too clever – we expect it is a nasty injury, but fingers crossed it is not too nasty.”Young is hopeful Joe Launchbury comes through training on Tuesday without any ill-effects to his knee injury but if not he is likely to require surgery, which would jeopardise his prospects of joining up with England later this month. “If there is no reaction we will plough ahead,” added Young. “If he doesn’t feel he’s in a position to train or doesn’t react well to it he will be sent back to the specialist.” Share on WhatsApp Reuse this content Share on Messenger Share via Email Topics … 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. Read more Rugby union: talking points from the weekend action Autumn internationals It could also mean he is unavailable to face Australia a week later if Wasps do not successfully argue at Hughes’s disciplinary hearing on Wednesday that their opening Premiership Rugby Cup fixture on 27 October should count towards any ban.There is no precedent because this is the inaugural season of the Premiership Rugby Cup, which has replaced the Anglo-Welsh Cup. Twelve months ago, however, Wasps successfully argued that an Anglo-Welsh Cup match should count when Hughes was banned by the Champions Cup organisers for striking Marcus Smith but Harlequins failed to do so on behalf of Joe Marler for a separate incident in the same match. A subsequent appeal went in Marler’s favour.Footage released by the RFU on Monday night shows Hughes connect with a punch to the left side of Ludlow’s head while he is being pinned on his back by the Gloucester flanker in the final minute of the match. If Hughes is found guilty any potential ban may also be reduced for mitigation but his ban for striking Smith will count against him. It would be a blow for England however, if he misses any of their autumn series, starting with the Springboks on 3 November. Ludlow has been cited for a stamp on Elliot Daly in a separate incident in Saturday’s match. Wasps Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Share on Pinterest Rugby union Nathan Hughes is facing the prospect of being suspended for all of England’s autumn internationals campaign after he was cited for punching Lewis Ludlow in the head during Wasps’ defeat by Gloucester on Saturday.Hughes’s absence would be a significant blow for Eddie Jones, whose options at No 8 have already been depleted by Sam Simmonds’s long‑term knee injury, and it would place even greater importance on the fitness of Billy Vunipola, who completed his first 80 minutes of the season last weekend.Hughes faces a six-week ban if he is found guilty because contact with the head means an automatic mid-range sanction. That would rule him out of Wasps’ European double header, which starts at Leinster on Friday, as well as England’s first three November fixtures against South Africa, New Zealand and Japan. Since you’re here…last_img read more

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Jarrick Bernard Breaks Down Oklahoma State Commitment

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. Louisiana safety Jarrick Bernard committed to Oklahoma State on Saturday, picking the Cowboys over more than a dozen listed offers from big names like Arkansas, Arizona State, Memphis, Texas Tech and others. He broke down his commitment in an interview and explained what stuck out about OSU and why he made the big move.“I went on an unofficial visit yesterday, and that’s what really sold me,” Bernard told PFB. “I just liked how the coaches connected with me and how they emphasized the importance of family, because that’s what my high school coach stresses a lot. So they really connected with what I’m used to and made it a comfortable experience for me.”As Hayden Barber noted this weekend, Bernard is the sixth safety to commit to OSU in the previous two classes. And at 6-foot-2, 200-pounds, he’s the tallest to join the fold just behind 6-foot-1 Tre Sterling, a 2017 signee.OSU loves its versatile athletes, which is why the coaches made the offer to Bernard several weeks ago. He says Dan Hammerschmidt, the secondary coach, has been on his trail since then. The relationship with Hammerschmidt and the comfort level with the coaching staff after the visit was all he needed to make the call.“He’s real cool,” Bernard said of Hammerschmidt, who will be his future secondary coach. “I really feel like he’s going to lead me in the right direction.”It’s no secret OSU has been on the hunt to proactively replace the production of Jordan Sterns and eventually of Tre Flowers, and on paper, Bernard is a match for the system. He is a rangy athlete who should be able to roam freely in the secondary. With all the physical tools readily available and high school production to match, Bernard has a chance to make a Tre Flowers-like impact on the back end of the defense for a long time as a Cowboy. But right now, he’s focused on the task at hand as a senior at Evangel Christian.“We’re looking really good,” he said. “We won state last year, so right now I’m just focused on going back-to-back.”last_img read more

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Film Room: James Washington’s Full Arsenal of Moves is Ridiculously Good

first_imgWashington has really strong hands too. There are countless examples where he is in a physical route with a DB and is able to bring the ball in that was heavily contested. Good example here where he is fighting with the DB virtually the entire route, catches the ball at an awkward point (on top of his helmet) and still able to come down with it.Watching James Washington is such a treat. Strong hands here to bring down ball w/physical coverage pic.twitter.com/uanJpNglxG— Adam Lunt (@AdamLunt817) May 24, 2017I don’t have a lot of criticism for Washington, but my main one would be developing a little more fluidity in his routes. He has tremendous speed but his acceleration/quickness could stand to improve a tad. He has a tendency to be a little stiff in/out of breaks and also in YAC situations. Here are two examples of where he shows great acceleration, but I didn’t see this enough.Nice awareness here to feel DB on outside, turn inside for nice YAC pic.twitter.com/BMk3rUvwHz— Adam Lunt (@AdamLunt817) May 24, 2017 Really nice acceleration here. pic.twitter.com/ZrXdFkwAfK— Adam Lunt (@AdamLunt817) May 24, 2017Also there were a few examples of where he has a tendency to drop a few balls. These are concentration drops, as he has excellent hands. I’m sure everyone remembers the wide open touchdown he dropped vs. Colorado. There are a few examples of this throughout the season. Drops happen, and specifically ones that are based on concentration can be fixed. I think that ideally would be something you would like to see Washington improve on going into this season.One thing to note about Washington is he isn’t tall. I fully expect him to go to the NFL combine and have a 5 as the first number in his height. It is truly shocking, because he plays like he is 6’3+. He is a long strider and has a high vertical so it is misleading.It will be interesting to see if that holds him back in the NFL Draft process, obviously we already know he can play at an extremely high right at X or Z (outside WR in OSU system) in college. There aren’t many true flanker-style WRs in the NFL who are under 6’0, so he will be a unique case.Random observation but he reminds me of Chris Chambers (former Miami Dolphins WR), who was also short but played much bigger than his size indicates.To wrap things up, I wanted to include this video because it’s hilarious. This is Washington’s 92-yard bomb on the first play of the Pitt game, this wasn’t viewable on the normal camera angle. This is a bad coverage bust, as there is an obvious miscommunication between the corner and safety. There ends up being 5 players defending Jalen Mckleskey, while James Washington (you know the best WR on the team), steaks by himself down the field wide open. Here’s to hoping for many more 92-yard TD catches in 2017!Monumental coverage bust. They sure as hell weren’t going to let Mckleskey catch this one! pic.twitter.com/eoHwSNLdon— Adam Lunt (@AdamLunt817) May 23, 2017 Friend of the blog Adam Lunt (follow him on Twitter) broke down some James Washington film recently after doing QB1 a few weeks ago. Hope you guys enjoy his evaluation of No. 28.James Washington is a really fun player to watch, bottom line. Over the past month I’ve watched a lot of film on college football players, and haven’t come away smiling and constantly shaking my head (in a good way) as much as I have when I watched James Washington play. He certainly isn’t without flaws, but he has some plays in his game that are simply unbelievable at times.To be up front, watching film of WRs is kind of difficult. A lot of the time you’re watching how they come out of breaks, or small movements here or there setting up DBs on routes. Those movements or breaks aren’t always in the frame of the camera, so it’s challenging to get a full read on them vs. other positions.The guys that do this stuff for a living will buy subscriptions or have better access to “All 22” type camera angles that will give you the whole picture, some of these are on YouTube but it’s somewhat limited. What you are able to gather is how they come off the line, and how they are able to go up and catch the ball, how physical they are etc. Just as I did with Mason Rudolph, I watched as many games as I could find on YouTube, these included ISU ’15, OU ’15, Pitt ’16, ISU ’16. Even though it was only 4 games I think it provided a good snapshot of his skill set and positive and negative aspects to his game. It also provided some solid clarity on progressions he made in his game from 2015 to the 2016 season, which were pretty significant.Where Washington really wins is creating separation based off his speed (obviously), but also his hands. He uses his hands and stiff arm to not only create separation from the DB to avoid any holding/grabbing, but also to provide a throwing window as well. He showed consistent ability to beat tight physical coverage, and his hands were critical here.Washington has an incredible ability to jump and grab high balls mid-route. Most people associate this skill with go routes or jump balls, but Washington has a knack for doing this all over the field. Here is a great example of what I’m referring to.He catches this ball behind his head. Mid stride, jumps high to snag ball. pic.twitter.com/HP8hgInvAX— Adam Lunt (@AdamLunt817) May 24, 2017The ball was thrown hard and high and he was able to elevate in the middle of a slant route to grab it. That isn’t normal, people.Speaking of go routes and jump balls….he is really good at those as well (shocking right?!?). He rarely gets out-bodied on these and does a tremendous job of using his hands and body to create space for himself to go elevate and catch the ball.Here is a good example of when he didn’t do this to put things in perspective.Good example of him getting out bodied by the DB. This doesn’t happen often. pic.twitter.com/pomqSNjF5q— Adam Lunt (@AdamLunt817) May 24, 2017The corner does a great job of pushing him outside of the hashes, and timing/spacing of the play is totally ruined.Washington does a great job of tracking balls, there were several examples of balls that were poorly thrown where he had to adjust and make the catch. Some of these were caught directly over his head, which is a very difficult task. He also does a great job of high-pointing catches and not letting balls fall into his arms/body. This was one of the biggest knocks on Justin Blackmon coming out, he didn’t high-point balls well and used his body too often to catch. This will get you in trouble eventually, and lead to more drops. The best receivers go up and catch the ball at its highest point where it’s least vulnerable from DBs.Really battles DB well here, creates separation and high points catch. Incomplete but great catch. pic.twitter.com/Bdz0XcXTvx— Adam Lunt (@AdamLunt817) May 24, 2017There were some really good examples of Washington recognizing the ball, creating space with his hands, and using excellent body control to make the catch. In this example you get it all, pair that with an excellent throw from Rudolph and that’s really tough to defend.Tremendous body control, hands. pic.twitter.com/5l4z6cFdtE— Adam Lunt (@AdamLunt817) May 24, 2017center_img While 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.last_img read more

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