Dillinger says Black, Bolts ‘getting sick’ of losing after 3rd straight loss

first_img“We’re 1-3 and there’s nothing to be happy about,” Dillinger said after Meralco suffered a 99-81 rout to TNT on Sunday.Black left the venue immediately after the loss and politely declined for an interview.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSLillard, Anthony lead Blazers over ThunderSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutout“The Philippine Cup has been our Achilles heel and every Philippine Cup, we get our ass kicked. I’m getting sick of it and our coach is getting sick of it.“Meralco lost grip of the game early after TNT staged a 16-3 run. Though Niño Canaleta helped the Bolts get to within five in the early moments of the third quarter, the KaTropa eventually pulled away for good, leading as high as 22, 92-70, late in the game thanks to their stupendous shooting from beyond the arc. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/ INQUIRER.netANTIPOLO — All of the losing and struggles in the Philippine Cup have taken its toll on Meralco.Bolts veteran swingman Jared Dillinger said the players as well as head coach Norman Black are “getting sick” of the losing.ADVERTISEMENT Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Dillinger, though, challenges his teammates to step up and show what they’re made of as the franchise eyes to finally end its misery every all-Filipino conference.“When you get two guys like Ranidel and Cliff out, as a team, that’s the opportunity for the guys below them to step up. It doesn’t have to mean scoring, getting the assists or rebound, it’s just making the right play, being a smart player. We just got to step up as a team,” he said.Meralco faces Kia on Wednesday with the cellar-dwelling squads both seeking to crack the upper echelon of the standings.“It’s a do-or-die. That’s gonna be a playoff game for us. Thank God, they beat Rain or Shine cause you don’t want to be that one team that gives the win to a team which lost 16 straight games. You don’t want to play teams like that. It’s gonna be tough for us,” he said. MOST READ Globe Business launches leading cloud-enabled and hardware-agnostic conferencing platform in PH Dillinger, however, knows that Meralco can’t get frustrated with its 1-3 slate as his team has no other choice but to go back to basics.“It’s a long season,” he said. “We have to go back, look at the film, get yelled out by our coach, look at all the mistakes that we made, but more importantly, we can’t press the panic button. We can’t point fingers. We have to first blame ourself within, ‘What did I do wrong?’ We won’t panic, but I got to admit, it’s not fun right now.”Asked what the Bolts are doing wrong that has led to a three-game skid, Dillinger said that it’s just the little things.“Sometimes you don’t make the extra pass or make the extra effort on defense. It’s a lot of small things that you won’t see really. After a lot of that, it adds up and you see what happened to us tonight. TNT didn’t do anything much. It’s a given that they played well, but they didn’t have any secret schemes against us. They just passed the ball around, they got open shots, our effort wasn’t there. We got to put up the intensity cause it sucks right now.”Also not helping Meralco’s cause is the injuries to Ranidel de Ocampo and Cliff Hodge, both of whom are integral pieces of Black’s rotation.ADVERTISEMENT Read Next 2 ‘newbie’ drug pushers fall in Lucena sting Slow and steady hope for near-extinct Bangladesh tortoises John Lloyd Cruz a dashing guest at Vhong Navarro’s wedding Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City View comments LATEST STORIES NEXT BLOCK ASIA 2.0 introduces GURUS AWARDS to recognize and reward industry influencers Rosario stars in TNT win a day after celebrating 26th birthday Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. last_img read more

Rower Dushyant only source of joy for India with bronze in single sculls

first_imgDushyant Chauhan during the lightweight men’s single sculls rowing event on Wednesday.Armyman Dushyant Chauhan probably wants to take the Chungju Tanhgeum Lake International Rowing Centre with him wherever he goes. The centre, situated 100km from the city, has been a lucky charm for him so far.Last year, Dushyant won silver in quadruple sculls at the world championships at this very site. And while the hardworking 21-year-old rower did falter over the final stretch of the 2000m lightweight single sculls final, he still picked up an Asian Games bronze medal on Wednesday.Unlike most other athletes at the Games, who live in veritable luxury at the athletes’ village, the rowers have to take the rough with the smooth. While their competitors get the best facilities to train, the Indians are consigned to the Hussain Sagar Lake in Hyderabad. A large part of their careers is wasted waging a battle for procuring top-class equipment.But their determination and hunger for success makes them get on with their jobs. Dushyant epitomises this spirit. Dushyant started as a kabaddi player before experts in the Indian Army felt he was suited to rowing. And the results are there to see as he pulled through a difficult field. Dushyant finished the first part of the race (1,000m) in one minute 49.08 seconds.In fact, he was, at that point, first in the field of six rowers, among whom Hong Kong’s Kwan Hoi Lok eventually ended up with the gold.The weather was cool and the wind conditions not difficult but it seemed the pressure got to Dushyant as he dropped to third over the last few hundred metres.advertisement”I thought I had better chances in this event,” said Dushyant, who dropped six kgs – from 78 to 72kg – in order to compete in this event. He timed 7 minutes 26.57 seconds, one and a half seconds behind Lok and half a second behind Korea’s Lee Haek-beom, who won silver.Dushyant is a firm believer in destiny and wears a gold chain with a pendant of Goddess Durga around his neck. As the Navratra festival approaches, he would certainly feel the medal is the Almighty’s blessing.last_img read more

Groundbreaking New ‘Personality Grader’ Makes Marketing Less Manic

first_img Personality Grader builds on HubSpot’s extensive expertise in social graphs, natural language processing and artificial intelligence. Here’s how it works: Personality Grader clusters, analyzes and measures the width and breadth of your online footprint across thousands of different social sites. The tool uses this data to calculate 4 variables that serve as input for a Personality Grade: Personality Grader Frequency Data-Driven Marketing , the newest member of the Grader family of free marketing tools The intelligence metric uses a combination of several different methods. Using a modified application of the Stanford-Binet test, we estimate a traditional intelligence quotient score. Then we temper that number by analyzing the Flesch-Kincaid grade level of the content you’re producing online.So, what are you waiting for? Head on over to Reach – Intelligence – Topics: Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Today, HubSpot is announcing a solution to that problem. – Using computational linguistics we are able to analyze the tone of the content you produce for the Web. We trained our system on a corpus that represents the different structures of text available on the social web. We’ve also built some biometric functionality into this part of the algorithm to analyze the facial emotions present in the photos you’ve uploaded to sites like Facebook and Flickr. , gives data-hungry marketers a simple way to benchmark their online personality. We hope this will help people see where improvements can be made. Next-Generation Personality Technology This is a measurement of the size of your social network, in terms of both first and Nth-order strong and weak connections. The algorithm also takes into account the amount of influence you wield over the other users in your social graph, in terms of how often you cause them to take specific actions. Borrowing from the field of social psychology, we are able to determine how much prestige your node represents to your social group. Sentiment unaware of their personality’s effect on their work. personality.grader.com and see how you can improve your personality. – This is a measure of your rate of content production and social interaction. We analyze the types of social actions you engage in to determine if they are accidental, regulated, regular or repeated. painfully Originally published Apr 1, 2009 8:13:00 AM, updated October 20 2016 Of course, up until now, some marketers have beenlast_img read more

Top 5 Marketing Stories of the Week: Back to Basics

first_img Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Usually after I go shopping, I want to wear everything at once. As a result, I find myself engulfed by clothing, most of which does not even match. Frustrated, I end up leaving the house in jeans and a t-shirt.It’s easy to get lost in the jumble of new media, to jump in headfirst, to overanalyze and forget to plan. This week it’s time to take a step back. This week, the top five marketing stories from InboundMarketing.com are all about getting back to basics. 1. How Truly Serious Are You About Being Social? Author: Beth Harte, The Harte of Marketing In this short post, Harte poses a truly thoughtful question: If Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn disappeared, what would you do with your social media efforts? Over a dozen comments have already been added, and there is a recurring theme among them. If you have a defined strategy and goals and know that social media is a platform, not a strategy, you should be just fine. Keep the conversation going, go where your customers are, and build your community.Lesson: Learn to Be Social Without Social Media2. The ROI of Social Networking Author: John Jantsch, Duct Tape Marketing The ROI of social media is consistently a hot topic among marketers. Jantsch approaches the problem in a different way. Beyond simply using social media, the question is, are you using it correctly?Jantsch suggests aligning your offline networking (read: luncheons, cocktail parties, trade associations) with your online networking by creating a set of objectives. This will help to “more easily identify the networks that make sense, the type of engagement you need to create, and, most importantly, how much time and energy you can afford to invest to reach your objectives.”Lesson: Align Your Objectives3. Twistory 101: It’s All About Small Business Author: John Battelle, Searchblog Way back in 2004, while the world watched Google steal Yahoo’s search market share, “the real drama was happening on the business side.” Specifically, the number of small business advertisers using AdSense over Overture was rapidly increasing, and this made the difference for Google.Battelle suggests that Twitter is taking a step in the right direction with their new business.twitter.com site, and especially their Twitter 101 handbook, by helping small businesses to use and leverage the site.Lesson: Small Businesses Can Equal Big Business For You4. The Flaw In Calculating Inbound v. Outbound Marketing Author: Trish Bertuzzi, The Bridge Group, Inc. In her post, Bertuzzi addresses the following issue: “Are we getting so caught up in the inbound v. outbound debate that we are forgetting the basics of good old fashioned human interaction? “She points out that no matter your thoughts on the inbound v. outbound issue, the important part is the interaction with the customer, everything else should come second.Lesson: Interact First, Analyze Later5. Small Business Marketing: 5 Rules of Great Content Author: Suzanne Vara Everyone talks about content. Make it relevant, make it thoughtful, and make it fresh. But sometimes people get caught up in the content of the content and forget about the basics.Vara discusses some simple rules that can make sure your content doesn’t get lost in translation. No matter how brilliant your ideas, you better be logical, clear and grammatically correct, or no one is going to want to read it.Lesson: Reread, Revise, RewritePhoto Credit: Ben Donley How to Generate Leads for Small Business Learn how small businesses can level the playing field and generate leads efficiently by leveraging inbound Internet marketing strategies and tools. Download our Lead Generation for Small Business Webinar. Originally published Jul 31, 2009 10:57:00 AM, updated October 01 2019last_img read more

Why Content & Curation is Critical to Business with @CC_Chapman [@InboundNow #14]

first_img For the full transcript of the show and the audio, head over here: Offer Something of Value on Your Site , joins us for another episode of of inbound marketing success and we cannot stress that enough. ! Far to many people wait strive for absolute perfection when creating content. C.C. is the founder of DigitalDads.com, a marketing consultant and frequently speaks at industry events on the topic of content marketing. This is a Content Creation CC-chapman.com C.C. Chapman, author of Thinking about what content you are going to produce doesn’t have to be rocket science. Start with a big idea and break it into smaller chunks Your brochure-ware website will not cut it anymore. You need a site that is the hub (no pun intended) of your industry that keeps prospects and customers coming back into your site. Content Rules Metrics For Content?Emily Evelina: Could you ask how to measure content value when clients are so hooked on SEO metrics? You talk about this in the book, what are some core metrics to keep an eye on? How to use content marketing and curation for your business The Shift Provide useful and valuable information that answers questions your would be buyers are searching for. Pulling together the top resources from your industry can be a great way to supplement the content you are producing. Originally published Mar 31, 2011 11:15:00 AM, updated October 20 2016 Content Rules Remember, content curation is not a replacement for content creation Make sure you are linking back to the originals and by all means try and add in your 2 cents as to why you are sharing the content. This is both to avoid penalties from Google and to add value and context to whats being shared. How curating content can be a powerful way to help supplement your content creation efforts and share valuable information with your community. Why producing content for your market is more important than ever. Perfection Is The Enemy of Shipping For more about the book see: This drags out blog posts, puts off that video being produced 8 months into the horizon, and nothing gets shipped. Not every piece of content will be the Mona Lisa, especially when starting out. These imperfections and rough spots when first getting into producing a piece of content helps share your companies authenticity with the world and shows a more human side to your business.center_img How Do Your Customer Consume Content? Creating (Good) Content Is Hard “The hardest thing is you really need to figure out what you want to create. Because let’s face it, content is a beast. Once you start doing it, to do it right, this is not a one and done thing. This isn’t, oh, we’re going to set up the website and then forget about it. This is something that has to become part of your core DNA, that you keep doing on a regular basis” How to get started in the content marketing game. In the show we talk about: “One of the first rules we laid out was you need to embrace that you’re a publisher.” OR start with smaller ideas and piece them together into something bigger. Creating content has to become a major part of your company and it’s not a one off project. It’s a continual process that you can refine over time. Repurposing content is key. Ask yourself “What else can we do with this?” Do a content audit of the pieces of content you have right now and tackle the beast one way or another.  “The key part is figuring up front how you’re going to measure. Say, for the next three months, we want to increase . . . one of the things I say is don’t say we want more views. Say we want to increase our viewership by 10,000 or whatever the number is. Pick the number that’s right for you. But then you can look at it and do it short term, look at three months. We want to increase our readership by X. Then you can look and go, “Did we hit it or did we not? How can we ramp it up even more?” “Oh, look we did do this with like no budget. What if we add some budget, what could we do then?”Content takes a while to get going. Connect with CC Online The content that you are creating online is what is going to bring in more organic traffic and help build your companies position as thought leaders in your space. Topics: ! and you can tweet him Content Curation Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack “Content curation is a great way, especially for small businesses or companies who don’t think they have the time to create all their own content, to pull together relevant content and share it with your community” Inbound Now How does your target audience consume content? In what scenarios do they commonly find themselves in? Do they typically have a long commute? Does your content need to be snack sized or can it be consumed in a longer time frame? critical piece Companies need to start thinking about themselves as content publishers. Reimagine Don’t Recycle @cc_chapman Ask yourself this question before you being creating different pieces of content. CC blogs regularly over onlast_img read more

How Valuable Is Social Media Really? [Chartoon]

first_img Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Originally published May 18, 2011 10:45:00 AM, updated July 03 2013 We took a look at the results of our 4500 customers during the month of April, and let Mythy the Unicorn and Takeaway Tim dive in.  Let’s see what they have to say about whether social media is useless when it comes to getting visitors and leads.  Social Media .” With that kind of a headline, we had to dig a little deeper. While social media can be hard to measure, we are big believers in it’s imact on a good inbound marketing strategy. (If you want to learn more about how to measure social media, check out the Topics:center_img Last month, our good friends over a Marketing Pilgrim wrote an interesting post titled ” Science of Analytics webinar this Thursday.)  Under 1% of Web Visits Come from Social Medialast_img read more

LinkedIn Surpasses MySpace as 2nd Most Popular Online Social Network [Data]

first_img top social network for business professionals can have a number of business benefits, including brand management, community building, content promotion, and lead generation, to name a few. With the rising popularity of social media, it behooves all businesses to start using them to achieve business goals. That said, MySpace has approximately 130 million active users, whereas LinkedIn has about 115 million. While one could argue for MySpace in this case, the numbers are still indicative that LinkedIn is growing in popularity — and MySpace is lagging. LinkedIn Marketing And according to CNN.com, MySpace may not keep their 3rd place status for very long. With MySpace experiencing half the traffic it did in June 2010 and Twitter accumulating 30.6 million visitors in June, Twitter Originally published Jul 12, 2011 12:40:00 PM, updated October 20 2016 Facebook, still in first place by far, amassed 160.8 million unique visitors in June. Has your company gotten started this news Fewer than 33.5 million Americans visited MySpace in June, falling off by about 1.4 million U.S. visitors from May. According to comScore, LinkedIn had 33.9 million unique visitors in June, an increase of about half a million from the month before. Marketing Takeaway: It looks like we’ll soon be looking at Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter as the big 3 of the social networking world.center_img Is your business utilizing these helpful marketing tools to its advantage? To be honest, when I first saw is expected to overtake MySpace as the 3rd-most popular social network in the next few months. Participating in social media Topics: and other social media sites for business? Photo Credit: Nan Palmero using LinkedIn Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack , I couldn’t believe MySpace was the second-most popular social network until now. And by “most popular,” we’re referring to web traffic here. LinkedIn, the , is now the number 2 most popular social network on the web. Here are the stats:last_img read more

8 Reasons You’ll Get Buried Alive Without Quality Content

first_img Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Topics: On last week’s episode of The Marketing Update, the marketing tip of the week was special. It took into account all the marketing news throughout 2011 and boiled it down to one main takeaway: Create quality content. And while we can discuss the importance of quality content ’til the cows come home, we’d like to provide some reasons why quality is so important. Perhaps that way, you can truly kick-start your 2012 marketing strategy with some inspiration to get your business blogging into full swing.What 2011 Indicated 1. Facebook’s Timeline Calls for More ContentThe new Facebook is here and brings with it features that call for some changes in Facebook marketing. The idea of posting once a day is out the door as News Feeds become populated with only the most recent updates. But posting more means you run the risk of being spammy if the messages you’re sending aren’t valuable. By creating more quality content, you’re able to post more and see greater Facebook marketing success, all by showing users what they’ll actually find is remarkable instead of shallow updates in attempt to grab their attention.2. Google News Standout Tag Features Quality ContentThis year, Google equipped journalists with a new meta tag called Standout. This tag allows journalists to include a certain tag in their posts to signal to Google News that the content published is feature-worthy and should be displayed at the top of Google News. As marketers, and especially as public relations specialists, we know the importance of not only creating content, but being recognized in content. By creating quality content, you’ll give your company the opportunity to be seen by reporters who may want to link to your story for their article. And if that content then becomes a feature story for that Google News search, then you’re gaining tons of free reach!3. Shelf Life of Social Media Suggests Need for More LinksAccording to URL shortening service Bitly, the ‘half life’ for a tweet (the time it takes a link to receive half the clicks it will ever receive after it reached its peak) is merely 2.8 hours, with Facebook closely behind at 3.2 hours. This means that you’ll need to be posting more frequently to social sites to keep your brand top of mind. But won’t people notice if you’re sending the same message every few hours? You need diverse content, but more importantly, all that content needs to be of high quality enough to keep users clicking, following, and liking. Otherwise, your social presence won’t increase, which eradicates a huge opportunity for growing your reach and getting your message heard.4. Google Cracks Down on Content FarmsGoogle targeted sites with spammy, low quality, and ad-littered content and kicked them to the curb (or at least to end of search engine results pages). This means that when you run a search, content that may have appeared on page one got booted to page 5, 20, or even 100+ because of their high volumes of junk. That means that in order to appear in results, you can’t just rely on SEO tactics. You need content that truly is high value and that, paired with SEO, will land in the top of results. I suppose marketing is one place where you don’t want any junk in the trunk. What 2012 Is Indicating5. Experts Predict Content Will Be CrucialWe asked some industry influencers how they thought companies will get found online in 2012. The majority included the importance of content. Jason Falls from Social Media Explorer says, “The days of top 10 lists and how-to’s are coming to a close. We’ve all got to get better at becoming awesome at content.” This would mean that you can’t fall into the habit of writing just one certain way. People will be constantly looking for better, fresher, and more unique content — and if you’re not providing it, they’ll head over to someone who is.6. Everyone Will Jump on the Content TrainA marketing prediction for 2012 from Small Biz Trends states that all business owners will truly step up and start nailing content creation. Thus, as the world becomes more adept at creating and publishing content, there will be even more content clutter than ever before. The only true way to stand out is to have remarkable content that outperforms the competition.7. Google May Be ‘Stealing’ Your ContentIn a guest post in the Harvard Business Review, HubSpot’s SEO Manager Brian Whalley talked about how Google will change web marketing in 2012. He writes, “Early in 2012, Google will expand how it incorporates data into its search results. For search queries that are direct questions, it will no longer be necessary to click through to a website.”This means that not only will questions be answered faster, but also that the answers will come from Google itself as it pulls the information from sites. So how can you get around this? Try making quality content (as if you didn’t see that coming) that answers common questions from your target audience. Doing this consistently will let users know who to turn to when they have a question about, say, what medication they should really be taking for their ear infection or what shoes to purchase for an upcoming marathon. Then they’ll skip the process of even asking Google and come straight to your site for further research.8. Content Won’t Be Exclusively Produced InternallyThe Content Marketing Institute gathered a plethora of predictions for 2012 content marketing. One respondent, Pam Didner, a marketing manager at Intel, said that, “Brand marketers will not only distribute their own content, but also start curating third-party content to reinforce their messages.”Do I hear the sound of guest blogging? I think I do. This means you need to do two things. One is to invite industry leaders to create content for you because this will be one way your customers will find you authoritative and valuable — you’re not trying to purport yourself as the only knowledgeable person in your industry. You recognize that others have valid input. This also means you should contribute guest blog posts to other industry thought leaders’ blogs. By making yourself available to convey your ideas to others, you are not only giving your company an inbound link, but you are opening your content to a whole new arena of people. And if it’s great quality, they’ll know who to go to for more information.Interested in learning more about quality content, specifically in the blogging arena? Join HubSpot for our fourth Twitter Chat tomorrow, January 3, 3:30 PM ET. We’ll discuss all things content related for your business’ inbound marketing strategy and answer your burning questions on the topic. The hashtag to follow along is #InboundChat. Content Creation Originally published Jan 2, 2012 3:00:00 PM, updated October 20 2016last_img read more

The Best and Worst Brand Mascots of All Time

first_img Topics: Branding Tony the Tiger. Count Chocula. The Keebler Elves. Brand mascots have been a part of our lives since we were little kids looking for the next sugar-packed treat to enjoy.But they extend beyond the hyper little kid target market. You know the Michelin Man? That half tire, half ghost-looking giant that represents, well, Michelin? He’s been around since the late 1800s! And though his look has changed since then (and now we have animation to bring him to life) there are many brand mascots that have been going strong for years.At the same time, there are other mascots that brands seem to hold on to for years despite an overwhelming distaste among the general public for their wily ways. This post will examine both extremes — the brand mascots we all love, and the ones we all love to hate. Let’s take a look, shall we?1) Old Spice GuyYou might know him as Isaiah Mustafa, but it’s more likely you know him as “The Old Spice Guy.” He took the world by storm with his ridiculously over the top manliness in the video campaign, “The Man Your Man Could Smell Like.” Don’t remember? Here, watch it again real quick:The campaign took off! Since then, the video has seen well over 41,000,000 views on YouTube, and the campaign has yielded countless more commercials, YouTube videos, and social media campaigns. In fact, when Mustafa gave real-time video responses to social media questions directed at him, it was the fastest-growing video campaign of all time, beating out Obama’s victory speech when he won the presidential election. And the thing is, it’s Mustafa that made the campaign successful — he’s hilarious, he’s good looking, he’s over the top, he’s the stereotype of what every man wants to be like, and the stereotype of what every man thinks his woman wants him to be like.2) London 2012 Olympic Games MascotsWhat the … what are these things?Apparently they’re named Wenlock and Mandeville, and according to The Atlantic Cities, they are modeled after, “droplets of steel fallen from the stadium.” Cuddly.The problem with these mascots — aside from having confusing names and being completely unidentifiable as an object, animal, or person of any sort — is that they don’t clearly identify with the city of London, or the Olympic Games in any way. As one blogger put it, “the logo looks like it was dropped on the floor and I think the mascots look like rejects from a kids television show.” In short, these things are super weird, the names aren’t memorable, and most people just plain don’t get it.3) Pillsbury DoughboyDid you know that the Pillsbury Doughboy actually has a real name? It’s Poppin’ Fresh, but come on, he’s the Pillsbury Doughboy to all of us. He was created by Leo Burnett in the 1960s, and that chubby little guy is pretty darn adorable. What brand mascots do you love, and which ones make you cringe?Image credit: HalloweenFashion Originally published May 24, 2012 4:30:00 PM, 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 He’s soft, fluffy, ticklish, and has a cute little laugh. What’s more, he aligns with the Pillsbury product in a way that makes sense — he’s essentially a ball of dough — but he’s also a pristinely white baker, so it doesn’t weird people out that he’s messing around with their food. The Pillsbury Doughboy is non-offensive, non-obnoxious, relevant to the product, charming, and has withstood the test of time.4) Mucinex’s Mr. MucusOn the other end of the spectrum, we have the offensive, obnoxious, and charmless Mr. Mucus. A representation of, well, mucus, this dirty little guy takes on an aggressive persona that tries to prevent you from getting better. The premise is that while he’s tough and stubborn, Mucinex is so strong that it can combat Mr. Mucus.The problem is … this thing is gross. Giving the side effects of an ailment a quippy name doesn’t make it cute, and his appearance certainly doesn’t do anything to help their cause. Business Insider published a study from E-Poll Market Research in which they ranked character awareness, appeal, and other attributes of 1600 brand mascots. How did Mr. Mucus fare in the results? 50% disliked Mr. Mucus, the second most reviled brand mascot in their survey.5) Dos Equis’ Most Interesting Man in the WorldHe’s kind of like the Chuck Norris of the beer industry. And like the Old Spice Guy, the Most Interesting Man in the World is one of those guys every man wants to be. He’s suave, intelligent, worldly, and wildly popular with men and women alike. If it’s out there, this guy’s seen it! Not only that, but he’s helping Dos Equis redefine their brand to be associated with all of those things. And isn’t that the point of a brand mascot?Plus, he has his own meme, which means the public has found him so captivating and humorous they want to riff off of him. This guy has gone viral! What more could a brand ask for from their mascot?6) Mr. SixNot as captivating, however, is Mr. Six, the mascot for amusement park Six Flags. An elderly gentleman like The Most Interesting Man in the World, Mr. Six hasn’t had the same positive effect on audiences.The same study that found Mr. Mucus to be extremely disagreeable also had respondents railing against Mr. Six, with 45% disliking him and calling him “creepy.” It probably doesn’t help that he’s always found dancing erratically to the Vengaboys’ “We Like to Party.” The combination of what some consider to be an annoying song and the disturbing image of what seems to be a young dancer dressed up in geriatric garb has understandably left a bad taste in people’s mouths. And as TIME Magazine put it, why use a creepy old guy to target kids?7) Geico GeckoGeico has had multiple sponsors, but the gecko has consistently risen to the top. Anyone remember the Geico Caveman? He still pops up from time to time, but certainly suffered from some overexposure. Then there was the inexplicable pile of dollar bills with two googly eyes on top. He didn’t do quite as well. The gecko, however, has managed to maintain his popularity since 1999 when he first debuted.Perhaps it’s the British Cockney accent, perhaps it’s that he’s kind of a cute little guy, but I believe his success is mostly tied to the fact that he can convey Geico’s message without being distracting. The Geico Caveman was creative and entertaining, sure, but so much so that people ran with the entertainment value and started offering him a sitcom. On the other end of the spectrum, the pile of dollar bills was a little too confusing to be an effective mascot — people spent more time trying to understand it and less time listening to Geico’s message. The Geico Gecko lets audiences actually listen to the Geico’s message.8) Offensive Sports TeamsI’m not going to call out any cities or team names specifically here, or show any team mascots that give a visual explanation of what I’m talking about. We’ve all heard it before, though. There are some teams that carry historical names that were at the time, or have since become, offensive to certain groups of people. While some say it’s historical and as such the names shouldn’t be changed, the bottom line is it offends people. Lots of them. And most marketers strive not to offend hundreds of thousands of people. Enough said.9) Twitter’s Blue Bird and Fail WhaleNever since the Viagra pill has a “little blue anything” been so in demand. But people love that little, blue Twitter bird …… and they love it’s counterpart, the big blue fail whale, just as much!What’s so great about these two mascots is not only that they’re cute (hey, cute goes a long way in marketing, especially when you’re trying to explain why your product is broken!), but that they have a very clean design. They are whimsical, fun, and easy to riff off of for both users and Twitter’s brand managers. That means they can be easily repurposed for plenty of different campaigns. You could see the little blue bird with a pumpkin pail on Halloween, the fail whale at a pool party in July, or you can just let the users create their own designs and scenarios which thousands of people have already done — just do a quick Google of these brand mascots to see what I mean!10) Burger King KingDoes that guy scare the bejeezus out of anyone else? The Burger King King acted as the fast food chain’s mascot for seven whole years. That’s right, it took seven years of scaring kids and adults alike for Burger King to realize their extremely literal mascot wasn’t the best fit for the burger joint. As TIME eloquently put it, this frightening mascot has been, “stalking people outside their homes and scaring young women” since 2004. Just take a look at this video — how would you feel if you saw that glassy plastic face outside of your window?last_img read more

7 Companies That Totally ‘Get’ Their Buyer Personas

first_img Originally published Oct 25, 2012 9:00:00 AM, updated July 28 2017 One of the first things any marketer needs to figure out is who the heck they’re marketing to. That exercise has come to manifest itself in what we in the biz call a “persona,” and there are some companies who have done an excellent job at not just figuring out who their target customer is, but marketing to them in just the right way.If you’ve ever seen a company’s marketing campaign and stopped to think, “Wow. They totally get me!” you’re looking at a company that gets their target audience, and how to market to them. (You’re also probably part of their target audience — but I digress.) It’s not easy to pull this kind of alignment off, so we thought it’d be good to give the marketers that are superb at it a shoutout. Plus, seeing how other companies match up their target personas’ proclivities with marketing activities should serve as guidance for those still trying to figure out how to create marketing their leads and customers will love. Let’s take a look at some companies that totally “get” their buyer personas!SeventeenLet’s start with a little bit of history, shall we? An article on The Awl about the history of Seventeen magazine — which was actually the inspiration for this blog post — highlighted the magazine’s target persona back in 1950. They created a persona named Teena based on survey data from teenage girls and their mothers during the mid 1940s. Here’s how they described Teena:Teena the High School Girl has a peck of problems. She’s what older folks call an awkward adolescent — too tall, too plump, too shy — a little too much of a lot of little things. But they’re big things to Teena. And though she doesn’t always take her troubles to her mother, Teena writes her favorite magazine for the tip-off on the clothes she wears, the food she eats, the lipstick she wields, the room she bunks in, the budget she keeps, the boy she has a crush on.Now, Seventeen has gone through many adaptations of who their prime buyer persona is — this is just who they were targeting in the 1950s. But just look how it manifested itself in their magazine:As you can see from the covers (or maybe not, it’s a little hard to read), there is a strong focus in their feature content on Teena’s insecurities and hang-ups — not that we endorse capitalizing on young girls’ insecurities, this is simply a demonstration, for better or worse, of personas aligning well with a brand’s marketing. For instance, they have content like “Diet with Ice Cream,” an entire “Boy-Girl Issue,” and a story called “Dates (how to get).” These are all things that high school girls are insecure about, and Seventeen channeled what was going on in high school girls’ minds to power their content strategy.AppleApple is known for their outstanding marketing campaigns, but it always seemed a little more geared towards the consumer marketing. No longer. Apple has refocused some of their efforts on a new segment of the market — the business professional who wants to use devices that make their job more effective and efficient. Take a look at an instance of this new persona focus in action in this iPad 2 advertisement:This ad shows the iPad 2 user looking at stock options, investment portfolios, and even images of the brain … a far cry from someone taking video of their family, or rocking out to a killer iTunes library. This commercial is far more akin to what a professional’s work routine might look like, and helps the business professional see how an Apple product might fit into their professional lives.MySpaceMySpace is back guys!!! Hard to believe, I know, because they had a big problem when Facebook came out. Previously, they marketed to people of all ages who wanted to stay connected on social networks. But Facebook proved to be the better and more robust tool. So MySpace redid their strategy — starting with their target persona — and began focusing on a persona that would work better for them: musicians. Many musicians got their start by posting their songs on MySpace, and with a strategy that gave musicians a better tool to market themselves, MySpace was saved. Here, see for yourself:The new redesign features “Listen Now” calls-to-action, thumbnails of album covers so people can immediately listen to their songs, even a feature that highlights events where the musicians are playing. The profiles also have a Pinterest-like set-up allowing viewers to see large pictures of the artist and all that they are doing, further promoting them and their music. This is much more like an interactive, shareable online record store — a site design that is much more appealing to that music-oriented persona.ZipcarZipcar’s main buyer persona is the millennial urban dweller. Zipcar’s services are typically offered large cities around the world, with high populations of millennials who either can’t afford a car, or don’t see the need to own one in the city. With its sharing-focused business model, users pay hourly or daily rates for user of a communal car, without having to worry about paying for things like gas and insurance. What a nice, unburdened lifestyle!When you look at the channels and tone that Zipcar uses in its marketing, it is obvious that this free-wheelin’ (pun intended) audience is who they’re targeting. Just look at this tweet aimed at the millennial world traveler, for instance:Or this tweet with the whimsical, and again, free wheelin’ hashtag, #thatswhereiroll:And the contests don’t end on Twitter — they carry them over to Facebook, too! Topics: In addition to being very responsive on their Twitter account, Zipcar uses it’s Facebook account to answer questions and host contests with its followers. Millennials in particular expect quick answers to their questions on social media, and Zipcar fulfills that expectation. To further appeal to this audience, they host weekly contests to give out fun stuff like free t-shirts and driving dollars. One of their current promotions even involves giving anyone half off Zipcar on Election Day to help millennials get to the voting polls easier. What makes Zipcar’s marketing effective for their persona is not only their responsiveness and tone of voice, but the channels they choose to focus on, too.Goodbye CrutchesOne of HubSpot’s customer, Goodbye Crutches, actually has four buyer personas! Andy the Athlete is an active 21-35 year old who has hurt themself in a sports related injury; Gerry the Grandparent is 55-75 years old, and worries about hurting themselves; Mary the Motivated Mom is 35-55 and has a full and active life, but has to worry about taking care of a family and kids; finally, Woody the Working Dad is concerned about being able to get things done around the house despite an injury. Take a look at how these different personas have manifested themselves in their blog content:This blog post, “Woman’s Guide to Dress For Success with Leg Cast,” is clearly directed at Mary the Motivated Mom — as is the CTA about how to have a great Halloween despite an injury you see on that sidebar to the right. If you keep reading their blog, you’ll find they have a fantastic mix of content that addresses the needs of all their different buyer personas, and they have the accompanying lead-gen content to back it up.JetBlue JetBlue’s buyer persona is the low budget traveler that wants a comfortable yet affordable solution to flying. They are typically a younger audience that likes to be reached through social media channels and, similar to Zipcar, expects quick responses from the company. That audience comes through in their marketing in the medium they use (Twitter, in this instance), the words they use (flying like a “boss”), and even the name of the Twitter handle (@JetBlueCheeps).JetBlue doesn’t just rely on social media to reach their audience, either. They’re leveraging email marketing to keep those “like a boss” campaign multi-channel!Procter & GambleProcter & Gamble produces thousands of products for households, so one of their target personas is, naturally, the person in charge of buying these items. Often this turns into a parent — particularly a mom — that P&G is trying to reach with their marketing. They did a particularly spectacular job with their 2012 Olympics campaign. Take a look, and maybe grab a tissue.In their “Raising an Olympian” campaign, P&G takes a look at the mother’s role in the olympian’s life, whether that’s bringing their child to practice early in the morning or helping them heal from sports injuries. P&G focuses the story more on the mother’s role in her child’s success, tugging on the heart strings of anyone who watches. Especially any mom who has ever gotten up at 5AM to rush their kid to practice. The ads end with “P&G: A proud sponsor of mothers” keeping the focus in the ad on their target persona — the mom who’s in charge of buying the household supplies.Want more inspiration? Learn about the things great marketers do every day in service of things like their buyer personas.center_img Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Buyer Personaslast_img read more

Feeling Awkward at a Networking Event? 3 Ways to Break the Ice

first_img Originally published Sep 27, 2013 1:00:00 PM, updated February 01 2017 Networking Topics: Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Did you know that Garth Brooks sang a song about the importance of networking?Well, pretty much. Here’s the scoop: Brooks left a relationship that wasn’t fruitful anymore, but because he has contacts all over the place, he knows he’ll be able to bounce back. And while Garth might be going through a rough breakup, he hit on a principle that we as professionals abide by: It’s all about who you know.Our contacts help us get jobs, mentor us, and provide us with a sounding board for professional questions. But before that person ends up as a trusted connection, you have to cultivate a mutually-beneficial relationship, one that provides value to your professional life in some way or another. You know what I’m talking about, people: Networking.If you cringed a bit at that word, it’s okay. For a lot of people, especially introverts, the thought of networking with complete strangers is about as awkward as it gets. The entire platform of networking has largely moved out of our local coffee shops and onto online sites like LinkedIn, taking the need to be physically present to cultivate relationships out of the equation. Unfortunately, that’s left some of the professional world feeling more comfortable interacting with people online than in person. But it’s important to be able to network both ways, so that you can get the most out of being in the workplace, going to industry events, and generally being able to have real-life professional conversations. There’s just something about that face-to-face conversation that can’t be replaced by a keyboard and a mouse.So, that’s why we came up with these 3 brilliant icebreakers for in-person networking that you can use anywhere — at work, at a conference, out to lunch with colleagues — to really hone on in the core skills of networking. Keep these icebreakers in your back pocket for your future networking events.The Networking Trifecta of Icebreakers#1. “Oh, you’re from [X Company]? How did you end up there?”No matter how good or bad you think you are at networking, you really can’t mess up with this question. At the surface, it’s a pretty standard question when getting to know someone. It’s a question the other person has undoubtedly answered before, so it won’t catch them off-guard. But for you, it’s a chance to practice a skill that many want, few have, and even fewer do well: Listening. You know when you’re telling a story and the other person seems really into it? They’re nodding at the appropriate times, probably giving you a few “oh yeah!’s” and “really?’s”? That’s because this person is giving you their undivided attention, and it makes you feel good, maybe even really confident about whatever you’re talking about. This is what you should aim to do with every professional conversation you have. One tip from Ivan Misner, the founder and chairman of business networking organization BNI, suggests that focusing on maintaining eye contact with the person you’re interacting with will help you listen better and drown out other distractions around you. If you’re networking at a big event, you’ll need to really be able to focus to practice listening.#2. “You know, I recently read that [insert relevant industry news here]. Have you heard about that?”Think about your favorite blog. Maybe you read it every day, or once a week, or maybe only once a month. No matter how frequently you read it, the point is that you keep coming back to that same blog instead of choosing a similar one with the same topic. And why wouldn’t you? It’s your favorite. And whether you know it or not, one of the reasons it’s your go-to source on whatever the topic is because it provides value to you in some way.If you want people to think of you, remember you, really connect with you on a personal level — you have to provide them with some value. And there’s nothing more valuable these days than the exchange of information. If you want to be perceived as an expert in your field, you need to contribute something of value to the conversations going on in your field.You can practice doing this in a safe place — your workplace. Find those people you really want to make a connection with and strike up a conversation in the kitchen about the latest and greatest article you’ve read.(Tip for HubSpot customers: It’s really easy to stay on top of industry news if you’re using Social Inbox. You can create streams of any keyword that’s relevant to your industry, or monitor a Twitter list of thought leaders.)#3. “Hey, I’d love your opinion on [your latest project]. Do you have a minute?”“Oh, you would?” At least, that’s what I think when someone asks me for help with something that’s important to them. It makes me feel appreciated, respected, and knowledgeable. Clearly I’ve devoted some time to whatever topic they’re asking me about, so it feels good to put what I know to good use.Now that you know that, pretend you’re the person who’s looking to make a connection with me. Why would you hesitate to ask my opinion or for my help on something if you know it makes me feel this way? There’s no reason to. So, don’t.In the Inc.com article “Networking Tips: Go From Awkward to Awesome,” author Patricia Fletcher explains that asking for someone’s advice about a topic they know well is a great way to get a conversation started and bonds formed. “It’s pretty cool,” she says, “to have your ask turn into a successful person’s thoughtful input on what they would do if they were in your shoes.” Take advantage of these successful people around you, either the ones you work with every day or thought leaders in your industry, by tapping into their knowledge and asking for help.Don’t Hesitate. Just Network.So the next time you’re faced with the opportunity to network in-person, don’t shy away. If you can remember the networking trifecta — listening, providing value, and asking for help — you’ll make those uber-important trusted connections that will serve you well in your professional years to come.And, once you’ve done it a few times, it’ll feel more and more natural until you find yourself doing this without thinking about it. You’ll be surprised how easy networking can be with a little strategy and the right tools. Because you know what? You never know when you’ll need to pull a Garth Brooks and call on some trusted connections for a little help.Image credit: langleyolast_img read more

How to Create a Pinterest Board for Halloween

first_img Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Originally published Oct 28, 2013 2:00:00 PM, updated February 01 2017 Topics: Pinterest Marketingcenter_img Guess what, guys … it’s October 28. I know, today’s date isn’t all that surprising, but it means that Halloween is on Thursday. I don’t know about you, but realizing that kinda freaked me out. For all of us who haven’t planned our costumes (cough, me, cough), you have less than a week to get one. For all of us who haven’t bought Halloween candy for trick-or-treaters (cough, me, cough), yeah, we gotta get on that. And for all of us who haven’t planned marketing activities around Halloween, we definitely need to get on that. If you’re a B2B brand, you may be asking “How could doing Halloween marketing help me reach my goals?” It’s simple: taking advantage of Halloween is just like newsjacking a story in your industry … but it has a wider appeal.In fact, according to the National Retail Federation, nearly one in 10 people in America (9.3%) will scour the visually appealing Pinterest for costume ideas, up from 7.1% last year. So, with such a huge audience interested and engaged with Halloween on Pinterest, there’s a huge — and easy — opportunity for you to plan some last-minute marketing activities for Halloween on the platform.Bonus: You won’t have to drop everything you have going on or inject any budget into the campaign — we’ve got all the resources you’ll need to build your board and we’ll walk you through how to do it in the post below. So read on to get the lowdown and then start whipping up your Pinterest campaign. The Resources You Need to Build the Perfect Halloween Pinterest Board Because we really love being meta (hey, that could be a cool costume, right?) we decided to put together a Pinterest board with allll the resources you need for Halloween Pinterest boards. Here you go! How to Put Your Halloween Board TogetherNeed help putting together your Halloween Pinterest board? All you have to do is follow the steps below.1) Pick your board topic — DIY-esque themes can work for any brand. You don’t have to be a B2C brand to rock Pinterest. The good news is that Pinterest users love DIY content … which is likely what you’re providing in your inbound marketing.For example, if you’re a finance company, chances are you’re writing about how to put a budget together on your blog. So, why not take it to the next level and create a Pinterest board about it? You could pin a free online calculator, your free budget template on your website, and some people to follow on Twitter for budgeting tips — but give it a Halloween twist.Okay, you want a real life example of how this works? Our friends over at AmeriFirst created an awesome Halloween-themed board called Zombie Home Buyers. Yep, a home mortgage company embraced Halloween and taught its Pinterest followers something new. Moral of the story here: Get creative! There are lots of ways you can incorporate Halloween into your Pinterest board — so whether you decide to compile a list of supplies for Halloween office parties or make a Ghoul’s Guide to Gardening Supplies, it’s up to you.2) Wrangle your content.Okay, you’ve got your board idea. Now, you’ve got to figure out what content you should be pinning. Just your own company’s blog posts and marketing offers? Influencer posts? Content from your community? Random images and articles?You should have a mixture of all of the above, but how much content from each category depends on your goals.If you’re trying to get leads from this Halloween board, for instance, you should have more lead gen content. If you’re trying to strengthen ties with influencers, try pinning more of their content. Want to engage your community? Repin more of their content. And if you want to get more followers, random images and articles that are relevant to your board topic are the way to go. Figure out your mix, find all the links you want to pin, and organize them in some way. I’d recommend an Excel or Google spreadsheet — that way, you can get a good understanding of the content source balance you’re trying to achieve. 3) Get or create the right imagery.You’ve got your theme, your links … now you want to make sure your images are top-notch. You can’t always rely on the link you’re pinning to pull in the right image — maybe the link isn’t written specifically for Halloween, so it doesn’t have great images, or maybe it just doesn’t have great images at all. Since images are the crux of your Pinterest board, you need to make sure every image is awesome. But how do you do that if you don’t have budget to buy high quality photos or design time? You just gotta know which resources to use. There are lots of helpful resources, tutorials, and free tools to help you create or find images. Here are a handful that we offer:The Marketer’s Crash Course in Visual Content Creation: Get some really helpful tips on design with this helpful crash course.Halloween Stock Photos: As a part of our holiday stock photo collection, we have a bunch of Halloween-specific photos that will set the mood for any pin you want to create. We also have a bunch of general or business-themed stock photos in case you want to use those, too.135 Free Icons: Get your graphic design on with these great icons. Use them in your favorite design program or simply copy and paste them into PowerPoint to create original graphics for your Pinterest followers.Create Five Fabulous Infographics in PowerPoint: Want to go above and beyond and create an infographic for Halloween? Download this template and follow the steps in this blog post to quickly create an infographic your followers will love.Make Your Board Halloween Colors: Want to change up images and graphics you have to be Halloween colors? Here’s how you do it in PowerPoint.4) Brand original content with watermarks.If you’re creating any graphics for Pinterest, don’t forget to brand it with your logo or website URL as watermark. The tough truth is that images regularly get stolen from Pinterest — so, if you want to defend your content, be sure to watermark it. It’s super simple to do: Just add text or logo at the bottom of your image. (If you want to get especially Halloween-y, you can use black and orange for font colors!)With a watermark, wherever your graphics travel outside of your Pinterest board, people will know your brand created it — which could be direct traffic and leads down the road for you, too. 5) Add a shortened URL with UTM parameters to your pin description. Editor’s note: Since publishing this post, Pinterest has allowed UTM tracking codes to be included on pins. If you need a refresher on UTM codes, click here.Alright, you’re all done fighting back prematurely against Halloween content thieves. What next? Go ahead and post already, right?Nope, you’ve gotta do one more thing before pinning. If you want to track the success of this Halloween marketing campaign (and prove to your boss that you should do something even better next year), you should include a URL in each pin’s description — that way, you can actually track clicks. And, if you include links back to your website, you should add UTM parameters as well to track this campaign’s success.  To be clear, URL you add in a description is different than the URL you add to the pin — the URL in the description is in the text below each pin. The reason you want to include a shortened URL in the description of the pin is because the URL attached to the pin won’t allow you to use shorted URLs or UTM parameters.While not everyone will be clicking on the link in the description, that extra link gives you a chance to collect more specific information from your Halloween Pinterest campaign.6) Add relevant Halloween keywords to your pin descriptions.You want to make it as easy as possible for people to discover your pins — so add popular, yet relevant, keywords about Halloween to your pins.They don’t necessarily need to be hashtags — though hashtags do help people discover additional content when viewing individual pins. Ones you should start with? #Halloween (obviously). Just be sure to do some Pinterest keyword research before you post so you can attract even more people to your pins through relevant, popular search terms.7) Strategically post your pins.Now, we’re ready to post. And this is where I’m going to get real with you. Lots of people will say that you should be adding one pin every hour on the hour so that you get more exposure in your followers’ newsfeeds. That strategy can work … that is, if you have all the time in the world and no meetings or obligations you need to do during your day.Yeah, exactly — that’s definitely not my life, and I doubt it’s yours either.Because of these time limitations, be realistic and strategic about your Halloween campaign. Think about your end goal before you start posting. Are you going to syndicate or embed this board elsewhere? Well then, just do it all at once since the board is the focus of your campaign, not individual pins. If you’re not going to embed this board elsewhere, block off three chunks of time throughout the day to post: once in the morning, once before lunch, and once in your mid-afternoon break. You could even set a calendar invite so you can be reminded to do it. Because you have planned out all the content already, it probably won’t take too long.The reason you want to spread out how often you’d post if you’re not syndicating it elsewhere? Individual pins are how you want your followers to discover your content. Make sense?Of course, it should be said that there are paid tools out there that can schedule pins for you: Curalate and Viraltag are two of the top options out there. It’s up to you whether you want to spend money on a one-off Halloween Pinterest board, but keep in mind there are definitely other (free) ways to make it all work. 8) Brag about your success to your boss … through data.So you put your board up and watched the followers, website traffic, and leads pour in through your closed-loop analytics? Awesome! Make sure your boss know how awesome you and your campaign are — objectively, of course. Compile a little campaign report that documents the key metrics and successes from the campaign. Be sure to talk about your overall growth numbers (followers, repins, comments, traffic to your website, and leads), but also consider including standout individual pin metrics.For example, let’s say one pin drove an insane number of leads. In this case, you’ll probably want to show your boss and explain why you think that pin performed well.If you want a simple way to show this campaign and the rest of your monthly metrics to your boss, we have a free downloadable template here. And that’s it! Once you have your campaign metrics in-hand and made your boss proud, you can use those learning for next time. It’s never too early to start planning for next Halloween. :)So go forth an have a pintastic Halloween campaign! If you want to share your boards with us in the comments, we’d love to see them.last_img read more

Who Should Own Your Content? Join the #GreatDebate

first_imgA few months ago, someone tweeted at me. It said, “Great article, @gsosk” with a link to a post I had written quite a long time ago for a company. I’m always deeply flattered when people share my content — especially if it’s something that’s come out a while ago. But this time, I didn’t know how to feel. See, this article was written by me and published long ago for another company … but it had been recently reposted by the company without my permission on a third party site under my name. The post was the same, but my bio wasn’t up to date.I felt icky about it. While I stand by everything I’ve written (I wouldn’t write it if I didn’t), the company had some tiny bit of control over my “personal brand” — that thing that helps me make connections with others in my industry, land future gigs, and you know, generally support myself. And that icky feeling got me thinking. Legally, the company has a right to use the content I created for them in any way they choose. They hired me and paid me to write it. It’s like with any other transaction — they paid for it, so they own it. But because my name is on the content, should I get some allowances in the whole ownership thing? In a world where your name or byline gets you your next gig, should companies completely own the content you’re creating?It’s a tricky situation that most of us will start to face as more people publish content for companies online. So, as the writer I am, I thought it’d be best to sort this whole shebang out through blogging. Introducing the Great DebateTo figure out this whole mess, we decided to host a day-long debate here on HubSpot’s Inbound Hub. Each post on the Marketing and Insiders sections will discuss the issue — but each post will be from a different perspective in the whole content ownership game. Here’s who will be joining us:Joe Chernov, future VP of Content at HubSpot, will weigh in from the employee perspective at 11:00 a.m. on the Marketing section. Check out Joe’s argument here and subscribe to the Marketing section here.John Bonini, Marketing Director at IMPACT, will argue from the company perspective at 11:00 a.m. on the Insiders section. Check out John’s perspective here and click here to subscribe to the Insiders section.Lisa Gulasy, Content Specialist at Kuno Creative, will weigh in at 2:00 p.m. with the ghostwriter perspective on the Insiders section. Check out Lisa’s argument here and click here to subscribe to the Insiders section.Barry Feldman, President of Feldman Creative, will give us the freelancer perspective on content ownership at 2:00 p.m. on the Marketing section. See Barry’s perspective on the whole debate by clicking here and subscribe to the Marketing section by clicking here.Pick a Side in the #GreatDebateWe don’t just want our contributors to weigh in on this issue — we want to hear what you think. How much ownership — if at all — should employees, freelancers, and ghostwriters have of the content they create? Have any of our contributors won you over? Leave a comment on one of the blog posts or tweet at us with the hashtag #greatdebate embedded within each post to let us know what you think. We’ll be doing a roundup at the end of the day featuring top comments, tweets, and blog posts about the issue as well as answers to some questions you may have for our contributors. So go on, weigh in! The Great Debate has begun.Tweets about “#greatdebate”Also be on the lookout for an additional post discussing this issue from the media’s perspective on Up and to the Right at 12 p.m. 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: Content Creation Originally published Dec 3, 2013 8:00:00 AM, updated February 01 2017last_img read more

The Definition of an Inbound Marketing Campaign [In Under 100 Words]

first_img Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Inbound marketing campaigns are concentrated efforts that align all of your marketing channels around a single message and goal.It starts with a marketing offer — something valuable and relevant for your audience that you promote through your marketing channels.Then, you nurture the leads from that offer and move them along your marketing funnel so they can become your customers. And don’t forget to measure and analyze your campaign.And that’s how you run an inbound marketing campaign! Get started with this quick-and-dirty campaigns checklist or a deep dive on how to run inbound marketing campaigns.Now get your campaign underway! Topics: Originally published Jan 11, 2014 8:00:00 AM, updated July 28 2017 Marketing Campaignslast_img read more

What Does Your Logo Color Really Mean? [Infographic]

first_img Topics: Save Well, that was fun. So, what do you think of these famous logos? What do these colors say about your own logo? Chime in with your opinions in the comments! Remember the last time you were at an event? You probably met a ton of people, shook a lot of hands, but remembered only a small few.Why is that? What characteristics did the people that stood out have? Maybe it was a unique Hawaiian shirt, or fancy blue glasses. You may not remember their name, but see that crazy shirt again, and you will surely remember the person and the conversation you had.Think of your brand’s logo like that crazy shirt. You want it to stick out in people’s minds, allowing them to recall your brand later on. Maybe it’s something unique in your logo, or something awesome your brand has done. Either way, your logo should be front of mind for your audience, and associated with your brand and product.Your logo says a lot about you, and can be very powerful. Have you ever wondered why Coca Cola rarely changes their famous red logo? Or why Pepsi spent a lot of money rebranding back in 2008? What about the highest valued brand in the world? Take a look at some of the most well known logos and brands in the world, researched and compiled by RubyMediaCorporation, and see what the hidden meaning behind each one is.Save Slogans & Taglinescenter_img Originally published Apr 9, 2014 1:00:00 PM, updated July 28 2017 Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

How to Be Successful on Twitter: 9 Surprising Stats to Know

first_img Topics: 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 Nov 25, 2014 4:00:00 AM, updated August 27 2017 Twitter Marketing Data There are 284 million monthly active users on Twitter and chances are, you’re one of them — we certainly are. Unfortunately, just because all of us are active on Twitter doesn’t mean we’re using it the right way. And thanks to SocialBro, we have new data from over 200,000 corporate tweets to prove what works on Twitter … and what doesn’t. While some of it confirmed what we suspected, we were also shocked by some of the results. Have a read below and let us know if any of these stats were surprising to you, too.Click here to access a free Twitter for Businesses kit.1) Tweets from businesses that contain images are 34% more likely to get retweeted than tweets from businesses with no image at all. (Click to tweet!)Are you using images on Twitter yet? If not, keep in mind that photo file sizes can be up to 5MB and animated GIFs can be up to 3MB. You can even tag other users in your photos — just like on Facebook! 2) Tweets from businesses with a URL placed in the middle of the tweet are 26% more likely to get retweeted than those with a URL placed at the beginning or end of the tweet. (Click to tweet!)I had no idea that this was the case and upon review, I was most often placing the URL at the end of the tweet — lesson learned!3) Tweets from businesses that include hashtags are 33% more likely to get retweeted than tweets without hashtags. (Click to tweet!)Be clever with your use of hashtags — keep them around 11 characters (more on that later) and even try to incorporate them into the actual copy of the tweet. 4) Tweets from businesses with one hashtag are 69% more likely to get retweets than those with two hashtags. (Click to tweet!)When it comes to hashtags, remember that more is less. 5) Hashtags with 11 or more characters get 117% more retweets than those within 6 and 10 characters. (Click to tweet!)That gives you just enough space to come up with something catchy and on-brand for your tweets.  6) Twitter direct message campaigns get on average a 300% higher click rate than one-off email campaigns. (Click to tweet!)SocialBro actually has a tool that allows you to create really targeted DM campaigns, keeping you from annoying or spamming your audience. 7) 90% of Twitter users who engage with Twitter-based marketing campaigns will not follow the company on Twitter after the campaign interaction. (Click to tweet!)90% is a massive number! Have you got a strategy in place to retain the reach from your Twitter marketing campaign after the campaign ends? Check out the best practices listed in The Science of Success on Twitter. 8) Businesses will on average lose 15% of new Twitter followers within three weeks unless they make an effort to engage early. (Click to tweet!)So if you do manage to convince the tweeps from your marketing campaign to follow you, the work doesn’t stop there. You need to retain your followers by being engaged with your community. Speak to them on a one-to-one basis, ask them questions, post funny, honest, and human tweets, and above all, share awesome, valuable content that they will find super valuable. 9) Over half (57%) of businesses are spending at least 50% more on Twitter marketing compared with two years ago, with 15% of respondents stating that their spending has tripled. (Click to tweet!)If you’re not experimenting with content amplification on Twitter yet, you’re missing out on a very big opportunity. Twitter’s targeting features could help you better reach your desired audience. last_img read more

Coachella, Tomorrowland, Bonnaroo & More: How Top Music Festivals Use Social Media

first_img Social Media Marketing Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack English music producer Simon Cowell once told Rolling Stone Magazine, “You have this amazing thing now called fan power. The whole world is linked through a laptop. It’s absolutely brilliant.”He was talking about music artists here, but this can apply to any type of event host or marketer. Social media allows us to promote our events more strategically, listen to and engage with our fans, enhance attendee experience, help measure the event’s overall success, and find areas for improvement in the next time you put it on.Music festivals have a lot to teach social media marketers about using Twitter and YouTube to promote and enhance attendee experience for their own events. To help extract some of these lessons, we looked at a few major music festivals in the U.S. and Europe.How do they use Twitter to ensure their event runs smoothly? How do they use YouTube for advertising?And how can they leverage Twitter engagement to identify the emotions their fans expressed before, during, and after the event?Let’s tune in to some of this year’s biggest festivals — from Coachella to Tomorrowland — to see how smartly they leveraged social media, using insights and metrics provided by advanced social media analytics tool Talkwalker.(And click here to learn everything you need to know about live-tweeting an event.)Making a Splash on YouTubeWhat better way to tell prospective attendees what your event is going to be like than showing them videos from past iterations?The folks who market Belgium’s famous music festival, Tomorrowland, got 37.4 million views and over 250,000 likes on their promotional video, as of this posting. That’s 10X as many views as Sziget, Coachella, EDC, EXIT, Lollapalooza, and Bonnaroo combined.Making Twitter a Reliable Place for InformationLooking for a way to amplify your message? Twitter is one of the best avenues for broadcasting constant and timely information about practicalities, codes of conduct, recycling, health and safety, on-site activities, and much more.For inspiration, let’s take a look at some of the best examples of how music festival marketers use Twitter during their events.1) Sharing logistical information2) Advising visitors to be eco-friendly and to keep the place clean3) Reminding people to take care of their health & safety4) Promoting on-site activitiesWhat happens if you ignore your attendees on Twitter?”Is there an infirmary?” “Which is the best parking entrance?” “Where can I see the program?” Nowadays, when event attendees have questions, many of them will turn to Twitter for answers — and they’ll expect a response. Quickly.Twitter is a great way for organizers to provide assistance to a wide audience in a timely and cost-effective manner, provided you use a good social monitoring system. This way, event hosts can both keep visitors happy and detect early signs of crisis, which will likely improve sales on-site and encourage attendees to come back again next time.In our social media analysis, we noticed that Electric Daisy Carnival, a music festival based in Las Vegas, wasn’t properly monitoring their Twitter feeds. They announced the hashtag #EDCHELP ahead of time as an official hashtag channel for all customer inquiries — and yet, no representative seemed to have taken charge of answering any of the questions and complaints posted on Twitter.The result? Regular festival-goers like Christopher Chen suddenly found themselves becoming spontaneous customer service agents. He saw that no one was answering people’s questions on the #EDCHELP hashtag and took it upon himself to provide information and advice to random fans.Here are the first tweets from Chen to @EDC_LastVegas, which he tagged with #EDCHELP:And here are some tweets from Chen to EDC attendees when he began replying to their questions:Depending how many people attend your event, make sure that you have enough people on staff to answer attendee’s questions on Twitter. (HubSpot customers: Learn how to create streams in the social monitoring tool here.)Drumming Up Excitement With HashtagsHashtags now play an essential role in increasing the social media presence of brands because they encourage discussions online. Once you choose and announce an official event hashtag, be sure to use it in every single tweet about the event, even if you have to shorten the copy of the tweet itself to make room.While many events create official hashtags (like EDC did with #EDCHELP), it’s also interesting to analyze the unofficial hashtags. These are hashtags attendees tweet that make sense to them when they don’t bother to look up the official hashtag.For example, the Budapest music festival Sziget’s trending hashtags this year included #Budapest (which is great news for the city’s tourist office) and #szitizen, which is related to their Mission:Szitizen game, an international game the music festival’s marketing team put on with the goal of inspiring the most dedicated Sziget fans to show the whole world what they got.From the chart below, you can also see that that the #szitizen hashtag was not once used in a negative way. From this, marketers can derive that a lot of people felt mostly positive about that campaign:Here were the trending hashtags for California-based festival Coachella (left) and Tennessee-based festival Bonnaroo (right), along with figures on their use over 30 days, both overall and split by positive and negative sentiment.Feel the Social Media VibesHow are people feeling about your event? We thought it would be fun to see how people were feeling about Lollapalooza, a Chicago-based music festival that takes place in late July and early August each year using the keyword cloud from social media monitoring tool Talkwalker.Vibes were positive: The word “excited” came up first in terms of volume with 633 hits over the last month in combination with the word “Lollapalooza.”It’s interesting to compare the performance of top keywords related to one event over a series of iterations. How did people feel about Lollapalooza last year compared to this year? Which words came up at what volume over the last few years?Keyword trends as a whole will also help you come up with the right wording in your next social media and SEO campaigns, and can ultimately help you differentiate your event.These are just a few of the social media marketing tips that we recommend to event marketers. Have more tips? Share with us in the comments, or tweet us at @Talkwalker. Topics: Originally published Aug 3, 2015 12:00:00 PM, updated August 26 2017last_img read more

11 Brilliant Tools for Organizing, Developing & Sharing Your Ideas

first_img Originally published Jan 4, 2016 8:00:00 AM, updated July 28 2017 Having an idea is one thing; executing on it is another entirely.Ideas come to us in all shapes and sizes, in all levels of importance, and at all different times of day. Sometimes, we get inspired by something we read online and want to capture it and comment on it. Other times, we come up with an idea out of nowhere and want to jot it down, or say it out loud into our phones before we forget it.When we have these ideas, it’s far too easy to forget them or let them slip through the cracks — especially if we don’t have a system for organizing them. Thankfully, there are some amazing tools out there that can help us track and organize ideas in all different situations.Here are the best tools out there for organizing your ideas — including note-taking tools, visual organization tools, collaboration tools, and general organization tools.Organizational Tools for Work:EvernoteMicrosoft OneNoteTrelloMindMeisterXMindPinterestGoogle DocsBasecampBoxGmailDiigo (Read this blog post to learn about more tools for organizing your email inbox.)11) DiigoPrice: Free for Basic, $7/yr. for Social, $40/yr. or $5/yr. for Standard, $59/yr. or $6/mo. for ProfessionalIf you want to organize your ideas by highlighting passages on webpages, adding sticky notes, and sharing with friends, then give Diigo a try. It’s a social bookmarking website that lets you tag and save online resources like webpages, and then highlight and add notes to the sections on those resources and webpages that inspire you or that you’d like to comment on. For example, if you see a website design you like and want to share it with a colleague along with comments, you can capture the page, mark it up, and share it.Using the Outliner feature, you can organize your links, references, and notes to create a simple but structured research base. Here’s a video from Diigo that shows you how it works:Diigo V4: Research ~ annotate, archive, organize from diigobuzz on Vimeo.Which tools do you use to organize your ideas? Share with us in the comments. Topics: Business Tools The Best Note-Taking Tools1) Evernote Price: Free for Basic, $24.99/yr. for Plus, or $49.99/yr. for PremiumEvernote is one of the better-known apps for note-taking and organizing information. I most often use it for organizing research and interview notes, drafting blog posts and ebooks, saving articles to read later, and storing important information — like my favorite code snippets — for easy access.The best part about it is that it syncs across all your devices. So if you think of your next big campaign idea when you’re out with friends, all you have to do is whip out your smartphone, open Evernote, and either jot down your idea, record your idea with its audio recording feature, or even take a picture.It also has a number of free add-on products that make saving stuff to Evernote easier, like their Chrome extension Evernote Web Clipper that lets you save texts, links, and images you see online into your Evernote account with one click. Image Credit: FocusalotLike what you see? Here’s another blog post we wrote on how using Evernote can simplify a marketer’s life.2) Microsoft OneNotePrice: FreeSimilar to Evernote, Microsoft Onenote lets you take notes and share them across all your devices. The kicker is that you need to be a Microsoft user: In order to access OneNote, your device has to have Microsoft Office installed or have access to the OneNote website. Also, unlike Evernote, it doesn’t have an audio recording capability.If that’s not a problem for you, OneNote can be a powerful tool. It lets you take and organize notes and import documents and images, including PDFs. Another cool feature? If you send or forward emails to me@onenote.com from your account, they’ll go straight into your notebook.There are a number of apps that connect directly with OneNote, too. One of my favorites is their integration with Feedly, which is a news aggregator app: You can save articles to OneNote directly from Feedly with one click.Image Credit: SnapFilesThe Best Visual Organization Tools3) Trello Price: Free for Basic, $8.33/user/mo. for Business Class, or $20.83/user/yr. for EnterpriseTrello is a well-known app that’s especially good for tracking and visualizing the progress of your ideas. Using their card-based layout, you can create a card for every idea and then jot notes in there, organize these ideas into categories or lists, create task lists and checklists within cards, color-code them, attach files, and so on. To track the progress of that idea, simply drag and drop the card into a new location.For example, I used to drag and drop blog post ideas among columns, which I named “Idea Backlog,” “In Queue,” “Research/Interview Stage,” “Draft in Progress,” “In Editorial,” “Scheduled,” and “Published.” Okay fine, the last one was called “DUNZO.” To each her own.Image Credit: Cloud Coach4) MindMeisterPrice: FreeIf you’re looking for more of a mind mapping tool for brainstorming and planning, MindMeister is a great choice. It has plenty of diagram templates to choose from, along with a built-in icon library to make organizing easier (and more fun). It is entirely web-based, though, so the interface isn’t quite as flexible as an app, and you’ll need working internet to access your mind maps.If you want to share your mind maps with others, you can share them publicly and/or collaborate with colleagues on them in real time. In the screenshot below, you’ll notice the chat feature open at the bottom.Image Credit: MindMeister5) XMindPrice: Free for Basic, $8.33/user/mo. for Business Class, or $20.83/user/yr. for EnterpriseWhile MindMeister is a great basic mind mapping tool, if you’re looking for something more professional, then XMind might be perfect for you. John Halko, mechanical design lead at prototyping company Oat Foundry, uses XMind to “organize everything from business strategies to product needs and specifications.”It offers cloud storage and automatically syncs across your Macs and PCs instead of existing entirely on the web, like MindMeister does. Plus, their recently redesigned interface is beautiful and intuitive. It has a plethora of predesigned templates and themes to choose from, along with an icon library.If you’re using one of the more advanced versions, you can map out the progress of different tasks using what they call a Gantt Chart — including start and end dates, assignee, priority, and progress. You can also use their Timeline feature to show events in chronological order to track milestones and schedules of different projects.Image Credit: XMind6) PinterestPrice: FreeFinally, if you’re just looking to organize ideas and inspiration, Pinterest is a simple, fun, and social way to do it in a visually pleasing way.When you’re brainstorming ideas for a piece of marketing content or a campaign, you might use Pinterest to save articles, visual content, or other useful pieces of information you find on the internet. That way, when you’re writing the post or looking for inspiration, you can go back to your boards. Another way to use Pinterest is to save images and other visual content for social media you can pull from at any point — like prepping for vacation.Here’s an example of someone who uses Pinterest to collect design ideas and inspiration:The Best Collaboration Tools7) Google DocsPrice: FreeWhile Google Docs can be a great note-taking tool thanks to its familiar, document-style layout, its best features are the ones related to collaborating with others. It’s super easy to share files, and multiple people can edit the same file — even at the same time and in real time. Watch this video to learn more about how to share using Google Docs:There are a few, lesser-known features in Google Docs related to collaboration. For example, if you want to ask questions about, make notes in, or highlight changes you’ve made in a Google Doc you’re working on, you can leave comments directly in the document. The comments can act as a conversation thread, as people can reply to them and carry on a conversation.Another example? The Revision History feature lets you see all of the changes you and someone else has ever made in a Google Doc, and when. Read about the awesome, lesser-known features of Google Docs here.(HubSpot customers: Did you know HubSpot integrates with Google Docs? Learn more here.)8) BasecampPrice: Free for Individual Account, $29/mo. for Team Account, $79/mo. for Team Account with ClientsThere are a lot of collaborative project management tools out there, but Basecamp is one of the best out there for managing projects, groups, and client work. It works really well for communication around teams and projects. Plus, the user interface is simple, intuitive, and easy to navigate. When you want to discuss projects and share files, you can use either the instant chat feature or forum-style messaging. The calendar function lets you schedule appointments, events, and milestones. The to-do list feature lets you list out shared team tasks — and, within each task, you can create a series of to-dos and assign them to individual team members, or leave them open for people to assign themselves.Image Credit: filehorse9) BoxPrice: $5/mo./user for Starter, $15/mo./user for Business, Individual Pricing Plans for EnterpriseIf you’re less interested in detailed collaboration and more into file sharing, Box is a great cloud-based platform where you can store, share, and manage all your company’s files. It’s private and secure, too, so any confidential business information you want to share can be stored safely. Plus, it’s accessible across all your devices, including mobile and tablet.While its file-sharing features are the most well-known, you can also collaborate with colleagues using the commenting, @mention-ing, and task assignment features. This is a great help in cutting down on email. If you want to stay updated on what’s happening with specific content, you can also choose to get notifications every time someone uploads, edits, comments, or downloads something.Finally, Box integrates with a number of apps you may already use regularly, like HubSpot (learn more here), Google Apps, Okta, Slack, and over 1,400 more. Here’s a promotional video right from the source that’ll give you some insight into their value proposition:General Organization Tools10) GmailPrice: FreeA lot of ideas, resources, and sources of inspiration are inevitably going to come at you through email — and it’s far too easy for these emails to get lost in your inbox. For many of us, our emails become our to-do lists, in a way. Some of our emails are threads around a pending projects, while others are ideas your boss sends you that you don’t want to forget.So, in addition to another organization tool, it’s really helpful to organize your email account in a way that makes it easy to find and sort through those emails. Thanks to Gmail’s labeling system and multiple inbox features, there are some great options for organizing your emails.The Multiple Inboxes feature lets you create new, mini inboxes alongside your primary inbox to organize your inbox into multiple sections based on email type. Click here for step-by-step instructions.The Special Stars labeling feature, alongside Multiple Inboxes, is my personal favorite: You can set up multiple inboxes to organize emails into categories, like “Needs Action/Reply,” “Awaiting Reply,” or “Delegated,” and then use “special stars” (i.e. one of Gmail’s labeling systems) to easily stick different emails into their appropriate inboxes with one click. Click here for step-by-step instructions. (Bonus: Achieving and maintaining inbox zero is also part of this methodology. 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

How to Draw Inspiration From the Most Unlikely Places

first_img Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Collaboration/Teamwork Topics: Originally published Mar 3, 2016 8:00:00 AM, updated February 01 2017 Writer’s block. Lack of focus. Laziness. The feeling can come in many different flavors, but they’re all tied to the same, underlying issue of simply being uninspired.Think of inspiration as the emotional equivalent of incentive. As an employee or a freelancer, you have an incentive (i.e. your paycheck) to do great work. It’s a very tangible, measurable thing that can motivate you.Inspiration, on the other hand, is considerably more abstract. It’s a feeling, or an influence, that not only motivates you, but also makes you feel good about the work that you’re doing. And that’s exactly why those moments of inspiration often come from the most unlikely of places.The Psychology of InspirationWhile inspiration was originally thought to be a spiritual or even supernatural phenomenon, research now shows that it’s rooted in three key, psychological components:Evocation: when a thought or memory is spontaneously triggered in your mindTranscendence: when you see something in a new way, or are able to move beyond a “usual” way of thinkingMotivation: when you’re compelled to express or actualize an ideaKnowing the underlying components of inspiration makes it easy to see why it’s such a powerful force. When you’re inspired, you’re not just motivated; you’re thinking in a new way, which can lead you to those big, breakthrough, “a-ha” moments. (Of course, knowledge is power when it comes to sparking these moments.)Unfortunately, we can’t feel like that all the time. And yet, in the workplace, we’re always expected to meet — and ideally, exceed — expectations … our inspiration levels notwithstanding.There are some well-known solutions to this inspiration problem, of course. For example, you could try going for a walk in nature, or meditating, or listening to inspirational music. (Might I suggest Survivor’s 1982 masterpiece, “Eye of the Tiger,” which pairs nicely with a can of Red Bull.)As someone who has to write and create on a daily basis, I’ve identified (with the help of science … thanks, science!) some less obvious strategies for upping your inspiration levels.How to Draw Inspiration From the Most Unlikely Places1) Embrace Your DaydreamsYou might think of daydreaming as an enemy of inspiration. After all, if you’re trying to come up with an innovative approach to solving a problem or completing a project, intense focus seems like it would be pretty critical.But alas, that’s not how inspiration works.In a daydream, you don’t have to be hindered by the stresses of pesky old reality. Instead, your mind is free to float between past and future; between real-life and fantasy. Your daydream might start with you revisiting that vacation you took last year … but before you know it, you’re envisioning what a vacation on Mars might be like. (Note to self: Remember to pack a spacesuit.)The inherent randomness of daydreaming makes it a perfect activity for triggering inspiration, as it can help you find connections between seemingly unrelated ideas. As psychologist Malia Fox Mason once told once told Psychology Today, “By allowing your mind the freedom to roam, the chances that you’re going to have an insight are much higher. It’s likely that you are going to recombine pieces of information in a novel way.”2) Pull an All-NighterIf you’re searching for inspiration, pulling an all-nighter could help you get in the right frame of mind. (Unless you’re a night owl, in which case you might want to try waking up early.) Here’s why.When you’re faced with an analytic problem (i.e. a problem that you can solve by systematically employing a known strategy), the research tells us that you should attack the problem during an optimal time of day. What that optimal time is will vary from person to person, but think of it as the time of day when you’re most alert and most able to tune out distractions.However, when you’re faced with an insight problem (i.e. a problem that can’t be solved through grinding, but requires a revelation or “a-ha” moment), that same research tells us that you’re better off attacking it during a non-optimal time of day.The underlying explanation here is tied closely to the daydreaming/inspiration phenomenon: When you’re feeling overtired, or otherwise “out of it,” you’re more susceptible to the influence of other ideas.”If you need to open your mind to alternative approaches and consider diverse options, it may be wise to do so when your filter is not so functional,” writes Cindi May for Scientific American. “You just may be able to see what you’ve been missing.”3) Get Outside of Your BubbleGo to the same bar or restaurant every Friday with the same group of friends? Watch the same show every Sunday night? Read the same publication every Monday morning?This, my friends, is your bubble. The same places, the same people, the same viewpoints … over and over and over.  If you’re looking to get inspired, you need to get outside of this bubble — from time to time, at least. Go to a different restaurant. Hang out with different friends. Watch a new show. Read a new publication.There isn’t a specific course of action you really need to follow here. The point is this: In order to prep your mind for inspiration, you need to take what you usually do, and change it. As was the case with daydreaming, this will help open you up to new ideas and help your mind make novel connections.In psychology, this is tied to the concept of “openness to experience.” Folks with a high level of openness to experience are more intellectually curious and prefer engaging in a variety of activities as opposed to sticking to a routine.Research suggests that there’s a correlation between openness to experience and how frequently people feel inspired. So if you’re serious about finding inspiration, give your schedule a shuffle and expose yourself to some different perspectives.4) Write Down Your Crappy IdeasAll of them.How many times have you stared at a blank screen, the cursor blinking, and you’re just waiting for inspiration to strike? Inside your brain, the wheels are turning; but every idea you come up with you immediately dismiss for one reason or another. Not practical. Too expensive. Would require renting a llama.Don’t let these ideas slip away. Instead, write them down. Every single one of them.Ultimately, having a hundred bad ideas in front of you is better than having no ideas in front of you. Despite their crappiness, these ideas can still help you feel inspired — and help you lead you to the good ideas. In fact, researchers have found that the more variance you have in the quality of your ideas (i.e., some are terrible, some are “meh,” and some are alright), the more likely you’ll be to arrive at truly great idea.5) Forget the Coffee; Grab a BeerTo be clear, beer is not a magical inspiration potion. That being said, beer and other alcoholic beverages (if consumed in reasonable quantities) can potentially help prime your brain for inspiration.Here’s a simplified look at how this works: When you drink a beer, the alcohol interferes with the neurons in your brain, causing a slowdown in how fast you’re able to process information (similar to what happens when you’re over-tired). The end result? You can’t focus on stuff very well. But, as we’ve already established, not focusing is actually key to feeling inspired.Bearing that in mind, coffee is probably the last thing you want to drink if you’re searching for inspiration. Unlike alcohol, caffeine (at least initially) helps you focus. And when you’re focused, you’re not able to make connections between different ideas as easily. Breaking that focus is what allows inspiration to seep in.(For a deeper dive on this topic, read this blog post for a deeper dive into how caffeine, alcohol and other substances affect creativity.)Where do you draw your inspiration? Share your tips and ideas in the comments section below.last_img read more

The Complete Guide to Instagram Advertising [Ebook]

first_img Topics: Instagram Marketing Originally published Jun 28, 2016 7:00:00 AM, updated October 30 2019 As of just last week, Instagram hit a major milestone: the platform doubled its monthly active users to 500 million in just two short years. What’s more, over half of those monthly users — 300 million, to be exact — are active on the platform daily. That’s a whole lot of action.All that said, it should come as no surprise that Instagram has become a place of interest for businesses. And with the massive potential audience in mind, those businesses are looking for ways to create meaningful, quality experiences through Instagram’s ad solutions.You see, ads on Instagram are separate from posts to your account, allowing for much more freedom and a bigger, more targeted audience than just your followers. And while you have to “pay to play,” the benefits of Instagram advertising are notable.To help you learn more about how to effectively advertise on Instagram, HubSpot teamed up with Iconosquare to bring you The Essential Guide to Instagram Advertising.Here are a few thing we cover in this guide:Integrating Instagram ads into your current advertising strategy.Setting clear campaign objectives focused on improving your business.Creating an optimized Instagram ad with our step by step guide.Monitoring performance metrics and moderating engagement with your Ads.Insights and takeaways from exclusive experimentation.Bonus: Cheat sheet “The Perfect Instagram Ad.”Download your copy here to get started with Instagram advertising today. 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