Harvest Your Losses and Pay Down Your Mortgage with Two New Services from Wealthfront and MortgageNudge

first_imgOne of the biggest tests for investors — and, for savvy investors, one of the biggest opportunities — is how they behave when the market gets rocky. There are essentially two things every investor can do when the market suffers a… Full Story,There are a number of reasons why it might be tempting to cash out your hard-earned 401k savings before retirement. From hefty car or home repairs to emergency medical expenses, sometimes unexpected circumstances cause us to seek out extra cash…. Full Story,2018 was a roller coaster for the stock market. If you’re an investor, you were probably impacted more than once – for better or worse. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA), Nasdaq Composite, and S&P 500 each hit new all-time… Full Story,You’re bound to make a few rookie errors when trying out anything for the first time, whether it’s making homemade greek yogurt, growing heirloom tomatoes, or learning to drive. After all, learning is a process, and trial and error is… Full Story,It’s easy to think of investments as existing in a vacuum. You contribute money, wait a certain amount of time and watch your portfolio grow. Where that money goes – and how it grows – are questions most people would… Full Story,Out of the main pillars of financial wellness—earn, save, spend, invest, and protect—investing can oftentimes feel like the scary, unknown thing lurking in the closet. Being frugal, creating a spending plan, and buying insurance seem to operate within the warm,… Full Story,Getting ahead financially is a game of inches. It’s about finding every trick, tip, and loophole you can find to maximize the growth potential of your money. There’s no topic where the phrase “work smarter, not harder” is more relevant…. Full Story,When you make a mistake in daily life, you usually have the opportunity to immediately make things right. If you spill soda on the floor, you can mop it up. If you burn the chicken you’re roasting for dinner, you… Full Story,One of the precious, oh-so-sweet things you give up when you go freelance is an employer-sponsored 401(k)—along with any matching contributions. But on the flipside, freelancers have quite a few options when it comes to saving for a retirement nest… Full Story,As the VP of Investments at a fintech company, it’s my job to pay close attention to the ever-changing trends and progress within the world of money. Working at Fundrise also means I’m directly involved with the development of the… Full Storylast_img read more

Mint.com Personal Finance Tips & Tricks

first_img Post navigation Managing your money can be intimidating, but the right mix of tools and techniques can make personal finance quite simple.For those of you who already stay on top of your personal finances through Mint.com, congrats! You’re already using a tool that’s powerful, reliable, simple and free to help you be good with your money.While most Mint users know the basics, there are still a few features you might not be aware of that can actually maximize your Mint experience and your bottom line.Did you know you can:Access a free credit scoreAvailable on both the web and mobile phones, you can get a  free credit score and credit report summary (no credit card required) so that you can learn what you score means, better understand the factors impacting you score, and learn how you can improve it – proving you with a more complete financial picture. All you have to do is log into your account, either online or using the mobile app, and you’ll see the option to get a free credit score when you’re looking at your account overview.Set remindersMint lets you set up alerts and reminders for things like upcoming bills, low balance or unusual spending so you never miss a payment and avoid late fees – ultimately saving you time and money.  Plus, Mint will also send you a summary of your spending and saving so you know exactly where you stand. All you have to do is log into your Mint.com account online, then select “Profile” then “Email & Alerts.” You can then select frequency as well as preferred email or SMS alerts.Create tagsA lot of people use categories in Mint for expenses, but not everyone takes advantage of Mint’s tagging feature. The tagging feature is one of the coolest and most useful features because it allows you to easily locate specific transactions at the point of need. Does your family own two cars? Tag each one individually to see how much you spend maintaining and fueling them every year. Building an extension on your patio? Tag the project to see how much it costs in relation to how much you had budgeted. To create a custom tag, you can simply click the “Edit Details” button found once you’ve clicked to edit a transaction and add your new tag (this can only be done using your online account). Then click the “I’m Done” button and check the box to assign the tag to that particular transaction.Create goalsWhether you’re saving for a new car, paying down credit card debt or planning for that dream vacation, Mint can help you get there with personalized, step-by-step recommendations. You can even plan for one-time-only expenses and recurring monthly expenses. Click on “Goals” and enter how much money you’d like to put aside. Set a date and link your goal to a specific account to easily stick to a savings plan.Mint is free to download and use from the App Store on iPhone, iPad and iPod touch as well as for Android smartphone and tablets at Google Play and on the Amazon Appstore.  Mint is also available in the Windows Store for Windows 8.1 and the Windows Phone Store for Windows Phone 8.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window) Relatedlast_img read more

Microsoft and Local Utility Partner to Green Virginia’s Grid

first_imgEarlier this month, Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe announced that the state will purchase 100 percent of the electricity generated from a new 20 megawatt (MW) solar project that Dominion Virginia Power will construct. The proposed project between the state and utility will generate enough clean energy to power the equivalent of 5,000 U.S. homes, making progress toward the utility’s goal of building 400 MW of renewable energy projects by 2020.But the deal wouldn’t have happened without one crucial third party—Microsoft.An Innovative Public-Private PartnershipMicrosoft committed to buy the project’s renewable energy certificates through a long-term, 25-year agreement; the state will buy the electricity generated over the same term (though only Microsoft will get credit for using the solar power, following industry best practices to avoid double-counting among energy consumers). This investment makes the project feasible by reducing the overall cost of its energy for the Commonwealth, saving taxpayers $1 million off the state’s electricity bill over the life of the agreement.Microsoft highlighted the project as an opportunity to bring the “long-term certainty needed to expand the amount of renewable energy available on the grid.”“We are excited that through this project we have created a viable new public-private partnership model for the company and look forward to expanding on this new approach,” said Rob Bernard, chief environmental and cities strategist.A Win-Win SolutionIt’s not just Virginia who benefits from the deal—it’s a win for all involved.Corporate energy buyers, like Microsoft, are setting increasingly ambitious sustainability goals, which requires access to new, grid-connected renewable energy at scale. Microsoft, having committed to be a carbon-neutral company, has long been investing in large renewable energy projects across the country. What makes this deal unique, and a first for the company, is that they have been able to partner directly with a local utility. By collaborating with Dominion Virginia Power and the Commonwealth of Virginia, Microsoft is able to bring new renewable energy directly to the grid that serves its Virginia data center. Dominion Virginia Power benefits from this agreement because it provides a more cost-effective pathway for building Virginia’s first large solar farm at no cost to other ratepayers. Dominion had proposed building this facility last year, paid for by average ratepayers, but state regulators rejected it as being too costly. The regulators’ concerns should be addressed with the involvement of Microsoft, a large, credit-worthy customer, as well as from the state buying the power.”This forward-looking partnership will assist us in our continued commitment to increase the renewable energy available to serve our customers in Virginia,” said Thomas F. Farrell, II, chairman, president and CEO of Dominion Resources, Inc. “Microsoft and the Commonwealth play key roles in making this large-scale solar project possible, and we look forward to working with them.”Bringing Innovative Solutions to the TableThe public-private partnership between Microsoft, the Commonwealth and Dominion Virginia Power embodies the type of innovative solution that can speed the transition to a clean energy future. To create these win-win deals, utilities and their large, corporate customers must collaborate to develop new ways to purchase renewable energy through the grid. The development of this deal was supported, in part, by a series of problem-solving workshops called the Utility Leadership Forums that WRI facilitates, with support from the World Wildlife Fund.These discussions between utility executives and some of their largest energy customers explore innovative arrangements to deliver the renewable energy big companies are looking for while providing value to the grid, under structures that regulators can approve. Microsoft, among other large energy customers, participated in a Utility Leadership Forum with Dominion Virginia Power, where they discussed the idea for the structure of the solar project. Microsoft and Dominion went on to turn the idea into reality.As large energy buyers continue to set more ambitious sustainability goals, scalable and replicable grid-connected renewable energy products provide a real opportunity for utilities to meet the evolving needs of their customers. More than 50 large energy customers have joined the Renewable Energy Buyers’ Principles, making clear their willingness to collaborate with utilities to bring more renewable energy to the grid. WRI is working with a number of these proactive traditional utilities across the United States, and 2016 promises to be a year that brings many more partnerships and solutions to the table.EDITOR’S NOTE, 3/31/16: A previous version of this blog post stated that it was Virginia’s goal to build 400 MW of renewable energy projects by 2020. It is actually Dominion Virginia Power’s goal. We have since corrected the error.last_img read more

Unlocking Climate Action: From Bogota City Hall to the President’s Desk and Back Again

first_imgThis post is part of a series on how virtuous interdependency brings greater climate action when national governments and regional, state and local governments and businesses work together.Because countries’ commitments are not enough, and cities, local governments and businesses can only do so much to keep climate impacts from reaching the most dangerous levels, we need to strengthen the mutually reinforcing relationship between national and subnational climate action to support and unlock greater ambition.To show how this relationship between cities and national governments can work, let’s start at the top: Bogota, Colombia, one of the most high-altitude capitals on Earth.At 8,600 feet above sea level, high on an Andean plateau, Bogotá is Colombia’s largest city with a population of 8 million. Its location has benefits, like abundant, year-round fresh water trickling down from moorlands and a relatively consistent cool year-round climate.These traits should make energy demands for Bogota’s buildings relatively low and straightforward compared with to its South American neighbors. That’s a good thing, since Colombia’s buildings produce roughly 45 percent of national emissions, so reducing building energy use is central to meeting its international climate commitments.But when Bogotá tried to implement building codes that were passed by the national government in 2015, the city found the policy lacked essential elements like guidance on where to set the baseline for energy efficiency.Breakneck Urban GrowthIn 2016, through the global Building Efficiency Accelerator (BEA), Bogotá committed publicly to implement a building energy code in city regulation and district plans. Within only six months of this commitment, city officials had held a launch workshop, won official support from multiple city departments and presented their 18-month work plan. By summer 2017, they had discovered the national codes’ shortcomings.The timing was particularly crucial due to the city’s breakneck pace of growth. By 2050, Bogotá plans to more than double its number of homes, from 2.3 million now to a total of 5 million and is already developing a new master plan that will determine how it will grow over the next 12 years.Mayor Enrique Peñalosa made it clear that this growth can’t come at a cost of doubling energy demand on its grid or polluting its air. So he sought a compromise.Together with BEA’s Colombian partner, Consejo Colombiano de Construcción Sostenible (CCCS), Bogotá city officials used the Building Efficiency Accelerator to contact the U.S.-based Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, which proved crucial to understanding how to best revise and implement the Colombian building code. Experts at the laboratory, which has evaluated building energy codes from multiple countries, were able to offer options for making Colombia’s legislation more realistic.Bogotá then enlisted local university researchers, utility executives and construction leaders to simulate how revising the legislation could make it more workable by the local construction sector.Informed by the results of technical and stakeholder analyses, Bogotá city staff, CCCS and the BEA created a protocol that made the national building code something Bogotá and other large Colombian cities could properly put in practice. That in turn enabled the mayor to commit to implementing the national code throughout the city’s master plan for urban redevelopment.“Through the BEA, we worked to deliver a policy that is adapted to the city’s needs and its climate and technical capacities,” said Juan Camilo González, advisor to the mayor.The final action plan was signed by the city’s planning and environment secretaries, accompanied by the mayor, fittingly, at a CCCS event.Extending Positive ImpactBuilding from its experience with Bogotá, CCCS then held several roundtables with the Colombian National Planning Department to inform national policy on sustainable buildings. In March 2018, the summary white paper was approved by the president and his cabinet, much to the delight of CCCS, Bogotá and their far-flung friends throughout the BEA network.On October 3, Bogotá announced its new policy for more energy-efficient construction, integrating the now implementable national building efficiency code into their master plan. The policy is expected to reduce energy and water use in new buildings by 20 percent and 30 percent, respectively.“Through the BEA, we have a unique opportunity to extend Bogotá’s positive impact to other cities in Colombia, in collaboration with the Ministry of Housing and the more than 25 stakeholders that participate in the program,” said Sarah Arboleda of Consejo Colombiano de Construcción Sostenible, Colombia’s Green Building Council.From the dizzying altitudes of Bogota to the president’s desk, and then out to all the cities of Colombia, this case demonstrates the sort of virtuous interdependency that is feasible between cities and their central governments — and what’s desperately needed to achieve climate action at the national and global scale.Better building efficiency policies can result in 25-50 percent reductions in energy demand from both new and existing buildings, saving money and reducing pollution. The Building Efficiency Accelerator, part of the UN Sustainable Energy for All (SE4All) campaign, works with subnational governments and global and local private and civil society partners to implement policies and programs to improve buildings. In its first two years, the BEA reached 253 cities with its resources and obtained 47 commitments on building efficiency action from 32 cities in 17 countries. Learn more at www.buildingefficiencyaccelerator.org.last_img read more

Monster Avocados and Bread Beer: 12 Technologies Fighting Food Waste

first_imgPreventing Food Loss at the Farm11. Solar-powered storageWakati’s solar-powered hydration device, essentially a small tent hooked up to a solar-powered humidifier, prolongs crop storage on small farms that don’t have access to refrigeration. Food losses near the farm are a significant concern in many developing countries, in part due to lack of adequate storage or cold chain technology. Improved storage not only prevents food loss for the environment’s sake, but it helps boost incomes for farmers.Food losses near the farm are a significant concern in many developing countries, in part due to lack of adequate storage. Photo by K. Stefanova/USAID 3. Bruised peach salsaCampbell Soup Company produces “Just Peachy,” a salsa made from peaches that are unfit for retail because they are undersized or blemished. In a creative move to address food waste and hunger at the same time, Campbell’s sells the salsa at farmers’ markets and grocery stores, and proceeds benefit the Food Bank of South Jersey.Yappah Protein Crisps are made from leftovers like chicken trimmings and spent grain. Photo by Kurman Communications, Inc./Flickr 8. Refrigerator thermometersDon’t underestimate the humble fridge thermometer. WRAP, the organization I used to lead, which is now led by Marcus Gover, argues that keeping your fridge at the right temperature is essential to stop food from spoiling early. WRAP says that in the UK, typical fridges are operating 2°C warmer than the recommended Food Standards Agency guideline of between 0-5 degrees (32-41°F).“In the UK, we found that nearly 290,000 tonnes of milk (639 million pounds) is thrown away every year from our homes,” Gover said. “That’s more than 490 million pints of milk as a nation, or 18-and-a-half pints per household. Reducing the temperature of our fridges to below 5°C could stop more than 50,000 tonnes (110 million pounds) of milk waste every year, saving shoppers £25 million ($33 million).”Optimized Foods9. Rind-less cheeseRoyal DSM, a global science-based company in nutrition, health and sustainable living, has created a product called “Pack-Age” for the cheese industry. Many cheeses develop a hard rind during their ripening process, which must be cut off if the cheese is processed into other products. Pack-Age is an alternative coating that allows cheese to ripen without forming a rind, enabling producers to use the whole cheese.“Pack-Age prevents mold formation, and since no dry, strong rind is formed, the whole cheese can be used for further processing such as slicing and grating,” said CEO Feike Sijbesma. “If all the Gouda and Parmesan cheese producers were to use Pack-Age in the production process, we could prevent the waste of around 200,000 tons of cheese per year.”10. Giant (and tiny) avocadosTesco launched a series of avocado innovations to waste less of this increasingly popular but hard-to-store food. After successfully introducing the “Avozilla,” a monster-sized avocado 5 times larger than the average, the grocery chain turned its attention in 2017 to the under-sized avocadoes normally rejected by farmers. Tesco once again created a marketing blitz, promoting these miniature, egg-sized avocadoes as “Zilla Eggs.” Last year, Tesco rolled out a combination of UV light treatment and improved packaging of its avocados, extending the shelf-life by two days, a development that was trialed for years.This kind of innovation is part of an ethos espoused by Tesco CEO Dave Lewis, who told The Grocer back in 2016: “Transparency, innovation, redistribution. In each area, there are very specific things we need to do to reduce global food waste.”Tesco is experimenting with ways to prolong the shelf life of avocados. Photo by olle svensson/Flickr Consider the last time you brought home a haul of fresh fruits and vegetables, looking forward to a week of healthy eating, only to have your berries go bad overnight, your greens wilt in the fridge and the avocados go soft on the counter. Wasting food can be frustrating, and a hit on your wallet.You’re hardly alone in these frustrations—the world has a staggering food waste problem. The UN Food and Agriculture Organization estimates that one-third of all food the world produces is lost or wasted. A quarter of the agriculture sector’s water, and land greater than the size of China, goes toward producing food that is ultimately uneaten. Meanwhile, 8 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions can be traced back to food loss and waste. WRI’s own research shows that tackling this inefficiency is vital for ensuring we can sustainably feed a world population of 10 billion people by 2050.Fortunately, retailers and others are increasingly coming up with clever ways to reduce food loss and waste in the supply chain and at stores, as well as helping all of us waste less food in our homes. Businesses led by members of Champions 12.3 – an international coalition of executives from government, civil society and business who are committed to achieving the UN’s global goal to halve food loss and waste by 2030 (Target 12.3) – and others are innovating new technologies, foods and strategies to minimize waste.Here are 12 innovations to know about:  Upcycling Surplus Food into New Products1. Red-and-green ketchupUnilever now uses both red and green tomatoes to make a ketchup for its Hellman’s brand. Tomato suppliers typically discard green tomatoes, leaving them to rot in fields while red tomatoes are sent off to be processed into ketchup. Unilever estimates that before this shift, its Spanish tomato supplier rejected 10 percent of the harvest.2. Bread beerIn 2016, activist Tristram Stuart launched a beer called Toast Ale, brewed with surplus bread. In the UK, where Stuart lives, bread tops the list of household food waste, with 24 million slices thrown out each day. That represents only half the problem, with sandwich factories and bakeries also discarding huge amounts. This is where Toast Ale has stepped in, using the grains from otherwise-wasted bread to replace malted barley. Proceeds from beer sales go to Feedback, a campaign group founded by Stuart to regenerate nature by transforming the food system. While the company has its roots in England, Toast Ale is also brewed in New York, Rio de Janeiro, Cape Town and Reykjavik.Stuart told Bloomberg, “I know bread was being wasted all over the world in industrial quantities while it is still absolutely fresh. I know that there is a distributed global network of craft brewers with whom there is culture of collaboration, talent, real openness and interest in cracking problems. And, of course, [there was already] a global network of food-waste fighters who were looking for entrepreneurial ways to turn food waste into revenue for non-profits.”Toast Ale is brewed with discarded bread. Photo by Jeremy Keith/Flickrcenter_img 4. Chips made from leftoversTyson Foods piloted a new product last year called ¡Yappah! Protein Crisps, made from rescued ingredients like leftover chicken breast trimmings, vegetable puree from juicing and spent grain from beer brewing.5. Ugly-fruit juiceIn Washington, D.C.,  two students at Georgetown University founded Misfit Juicery, a company that produces cold-pressed juice from area farms’ imperfect or surplus fruits. Misfit Juicery is one of a growing number of start-ups turning leftover produce into juices, soups, sauces and other upcycled food products.Refrigerator Technology6. Anti-ripening techAs they ripen, fruits and vegetables emit ethylene, which speeds up the ripening process in other produce. For those who can’t go through their groceries quickly enough, you can now turn to devices that absorb ethylene gas. Companies like Nanology and Bluapple have started manufacturing discs and pods that go inside your refrigerators or fruit bowls and help produce last longer.7. Smart refrigeratorsSome manufacturers are building fridges that can take pictures of their contents and send them to you while you’re out shopping, so you know exactly what you need—and what you don’t.Smart refrigerators can take photos and send them to people while they’re shopping. Photo by Morgaine/Flickr 12. Storage bags on steroidsThe International Rice Research Institute’s Super Bag is a low cost, multi-layered plastic bag for farmers in developing countries to use as airtight liners inside their usual cloth storage bags for grain and seeds. Storing crops in airtight containers can prolong their shelf life by months. The Super Bag seems like an obvious solution, but it is one that can make a difference for farmers – boosting their efficiency and in turn conserving natural resources.This list gives just a flavor of the kind of food system game-changers that can be achieved through technology and culinary innovation. It’s exciting to see what’s already underway, and the kinds of tech still on the horizon.Have other examples? Tweet them to @LizGoodwin.last_img read more

Here’s What Could Go Wrong with the Circular Economy—and How to Keep it on Track

first_imgThe circular economy—one that breaks the link between economic growth and use of limited resources and also cuts waste from the system—is on the minds of corporate sustainability professionals, governments and researchers. We are all excited about its potential to increase economic prosperity, derive more value from products and reduce emissions.But in the rush to realize the promise of a circular economy, we need to think through the possibility of unintended consequences. Will the jobs generated by circular innovations be better jobs? Who will get them? Circularity could reduce material extraction and waste through reuse—but at the cost of what other resources? Will circularity reduce consumption, or just maximize use of existing products?The circular economy is not a silver bullet for employment, sustainability and prosperity. Companies and governments must carefully measure the anticipated and actual impact of these actions and ensure they take us in the right direction—not into a circular but even less sustainable future. Here are three ways to do just that.1. Evaluate employment impactBicycle repair man in Lisbon, Portugal. Flickr/CENAS A PEDAL Circularity could fundamentally change the employment landscape, similar to the disruption technology has brought. Research indicates that the circular economy will provide new jobs, with the recycling industry alone already employing more than 1.5 million people worldwide. A 2015 report by WRAP and the Green Alliance looking at the role of the circular economy in revving up a lackluster United Kingdom jobs market estimated that 500,000 new jobs would be created in the UK alone by 2030. A study by Cambridge Econometrics, Trinomics and ICF concluded that shifting from virgin extraction to repair in the European Union would add 700,000 jobs, mainly in central and eastern Europe. However, these employment changes come at a cost. For example, in a world that relies less on virgin material extraction, there will be fewer mining jobs. According to the 2018 ILO report, while 18 million new green jobs are projected to be created by 2030, extracting and refining petroleum will lose one million.Measuring impact is a first step to addressing potential repercussions for those who lose from the transition. But as much as quantification is a challenge in environmental topics, in social issues it is even more complex and often subjective. For example, the jobs created by the circular economy may be different from existing jobs in scope and location. Perhaps repair will create more creatively fulfilling roles than mass production, but in an economy that values refurbishment over mass production, work may move closer to the consumer, potentially causing dislocation in regions that can least afford the job losses. Such topics are hard if not impossible to capture in a single metric, but that shouldn’t keep companies and governments from assessing the consequences of these actions.2. Compare waste reduction against the resource impact of recyclingZero waste and 100% circularity have become popular goals—but achieving them can be surprisingly resource-intensive and could lead to actions that compromise overall sustainability.For example, buying a plastic or steel can of coffee beans may seem like a better environmental choice than composite-material coffee bags because the cans, unlike the bags, can be recycled. But plastic cans take more than 5 megajoules of energy per 11.5 OZ volume to produce; steel, more than 4; but the bag, a little over 1. In fact, purchasing products based only on what is recyclable is a misguided way to make buying decisions. Recycling itself requires resources: paper must be reduced to pulp and reformulated with water, chemicals and energy. Metals are shredded or melted, requiring energy, before being reconstituted.Recycling is only worthwhile from a resource perspective if the resources required for recovery and recycling are less than those required for extraction and disposal. Some have even suggested that the circular economy could result in resource depletion if not carefully implemented. Perhaps zero waste should not be society’s ultimate aim. We need more research and impact-based metrics to understand the total effect of circularity on companies’, countries’ and even citizens’ sustainability efforts and identify the optimum recycling rate for each material.3. And don’t forget soaring levels of consumptionOne often-touted benefit of circularity is that it will reduce consumption of brand-new products. Since we published the paper The Elephant in the Boardroom, companies are more willing to discuss the challenge of endless growth in consumption, but we still have a long way to go. Circular economy can hinder as well as help the situation.Lower consumption will only be realized if we value longevity and reuse over the purchase of virgin material-based goods. That message has not yet been fully adopted by businesses, even those that are starting to understand the appeal of circular economy. A prominent fast fashion apparel company carries in many of its U.S. stores two prominent messages, often on adjacent boards. One reminds us to “rewear, reuse and recycle”—but right next to it is an equally prominent sign that reads “We have new stuff coming in every day, so why don’t you?”Fast fashion is still on the rise. Flickr/Emily Orpin Consumers still love to buy new clothes. Worldwide, the apparel and footwear market is projected to grow about 5% yearly through 2030, resulting in over 100 million tons of production. At least in richer nations, it’s easy to imagine a scenario where consumers clean out their closets, donate their clothes to thrift stores and then feel entitled to restock.The phenomenon calls to mind the Jevons paradox: increasing efficiency doesn’t lead to less consumption—it leads to more. In this case, the consumer feels good about resource savings in one area (contributing to the circular economy by donating old clothes), allowing them to rationalize using more resources in another (restocking the closet with new purchases).Companies must measure their impact on resources and set science-based targets that bound corporate actions within the confines of the planet’s resources. This will lead to new business models for growth and the associated change in consumer thinking that is not predicated on selling more new stuff.Circularity can be an effective way to achieve the transformation we need to make sustainable use of the planet’s resources. But pursuing circularity as an end in itself gives us a false sense of security and could even drive worse outcomes. To avoid this, we need metrics that keep us focused on the impacts we seek, together with targets that ensure we stay within the safe operating space and don’t venture beyond the ability of the planet to support society. Businesses and governments alike must implement circularity with deliberation and caution in order to optimize its impact and help society reap the benefits. WRI’s Circular Economy WorkWRI is committed to progress on the circular economy. We host the Platform for Accelerating the Circular Economy (PACE), which brings together leadership, expertise and learning to accelerate circular economy programs around the world. We also host P4G, which provides funding and facilitation to a range of projects within five key themes, including one on circular economy. last_img read more

Top 5 Inbound Marketing Articles to Start the Week: Make Love to Direct Traffic

first_img on The Marketing Spot Marketing Takeaway: business’ page on Google Places , by helping you lessen the occurrence of tactical arguments, improve your operations, and help your chief financial officer do his or her job. Avinash Kaushik Matt Ridings Use third party comments and social media marketing Take advantage of web analytics to reduce the crappiness of your funnel. Author: local search Web Analytics, The Wonder Cure for Funnel Crappiness Download the free video and why you should take advantage of the valuable opportunity it offers. Your About page should be personal and make it easy for site visitors to learn more about you. on Convince & Convert on Search Engine Land Marketing Takeaway: to establish credibility. Implement how web analytics can alleviate FC How to Maximize Your Google Places Page tools appropriately so you can correctly identify and give your direct traffic visitors the love they deserve. benefits, and tips for getting the most from your page through a five-minute video tutorial and three written tips: getting customer reviews, creating current content, and adding photos and videos. direct traffic doing. on Occam’s Razor Matt concludes his article by saying that you should measure the ROI of your social media programs as best as you can, but the inability to precisely measure ROI shouldn’t be an obstacle to social participation. Be human. Author: The article goes on to describe Certified Su 2. Is Our Addiction to ROI Killing Social Media? Don’t use meaningless jargon. Photo Credit: Make it easy to contact you. on Seth Godin’s Blog Measuring your marketing is important, but don’t obsess over ROI when it comes to He expresses the importance of maximizing your page, particularly for While we’re on the topic of web analytics, this Search Engine Land article cites a blog post by Seth Godin, which emphasizes the terrible, contagious disease that is Funnel Crappiness (FC). The solution? Web analytics, of course! Marketing Takeaway: Author: Marketing Takeaway: Jay Ehret Originally published Oct 4, 2010 8:00:00 AM, updated July 19 2013 1. Excellent Analytics Tip #18: Make Love to Your Direct Traffic web analytics Marketing Takeaway: measurements can be tied directly to financial transactions, but sometimes they can’t. Additionally, he recognizes the flaw in spending more time counting than actually Kaushik’s blog post focuses on the concept of article this week, isn’t kidding, and we agree. social media Inbound Marketing Topics: . In an industry where we’re obsessed with the ability to clearly demonstrate ROI, Matt dares to question whether measuring the ROI of social media campaigns is always necessary. His main point is that sometimes Direct traffic, in the words of Avinash, “contains all visits to your website wherein people arrived at your site directly (by typing the URL) or via a bookmark.” inbound marketing Rules for Your About Page Yup — you read the headline right. Avinash Kaushik, author of our top Author: Speaking of Seth Godin, we love the simple guidelines he offers in this article for an effective ‘About’ page. Because your About page is often the first page a person visits when accessing your website for the first time, he stresses the importance of making it humanized and welcoming. Godin’s five tips: Don’t use a stock photo of someone who isn’t you. Video: Marketing Analytics 101: How to Measure the Effectiveness of Your Website Seth Godin 4. Claim and optimize your Googl Evan LaPointe e Places page for local search benefits. Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack testimonials ? Google Places, says Ehret, is a modern-day version of the Yellow Pages, and it comes with a free ad for every business in the form of pages. Learn how to Measure the Effectiveness of Your Website. Kaushik discusses the value of visitors who have reached your site via direct traffic, in that they are the visitors who have proactively sought you out, not those you’ve “begged” to show up. He writes about how companies generally don’t give them the love they deserve and analyzes the reasons why. to learn how to Measure the Effectiveness of Your Website. 5. Have you claimed your 3. Author:last_img read more

4 Ways to Keep Facebook Fans From ‘Unliking’ Your Page

first_imgYour Facebook fan base is an incredibly powerful marketing asset. You should be aiming to grow the number of fans of your business page in order to continually expand your reach. At the very least, you should be looking to retain the fans you already have. But they already “Liked” your page, so you shouldn’t have to do much to keep them, right? Well, as it turns out, not only is this not true, but it’s actually a very dangerous assumption to make.Last fall, Facebook came out with the “Unlike” button, which allows fans to unsubscribe from business pages. According to a recent study by DDB and OpinionWay, this button could have serious implications for your Facebook page, considering the study found that 2 out of every 5 Facebook users “Unlike” business pages.A survey to find out why fans unsubscribe from brand pages revealed the following reasons:In another study conducted by ExactTarget and CoTweet earlier this year, research revealed that the top 4 reasons for fans hitting the “Unlike” button were companies posting too frequently (44%), fans’ desire to get rid of the clutter of marketing posts on their wall (43%), content becoming repetitive or boring over time (38%), and that fans only “Liked” the page to take advantage of a one-time offer (26%).With these daunting percentages, it may seem like the odds are stacked against you when it comes to retaining your Facebook fans. However, there are many things that you can do to avoid high “Unlike” rates.4 Ways to Keep Fans From “Unliking” Your Page1. Keep your posts interesting. The top two reasons fans unsubscribe from a page are because they’ve lost interest in the company or they’ve lost interest in the information the company is publishing. This means that your top strategy for retaining fans should be to publish interesting content. Don’t be repetitive or boring! No one likes to see the same messages in their news feeds over and over again. Facebook is social media, which means people are looking to have fun and read interesting things. Next time you write a status update or post a link to some content, ask yourself, “Does this sound exciting enough to make my fans want to read it?” If not, try to find a way to make it more interesting before you hit that “Post” button.2. Publish relevant, valuable content. Not only should the content you publish be interesting, it should also be relevant and valuable to your fans. Make your posts informative and helpful. Think education, not marketing pitch. The point of content marketing is to establish yourself as a thought leader and educate your reader base, thereby enticing them to want to learn more about your product and offers. So don’t use Facebook for direct sales. Use it for engagement that generates leads.3. Find a good balance for publishing frequency. Another top reason fans hit the “Unlike” button is because the company publishes too often, which gives fans of the page the feeling that they’re being flooded with updates. This can very easily become overwhelming and/or annoying, making it far more likely that fans will choose to unsubscribe from the page. On the other hand, though, 14% have “Unliked” a page because the company didn’t publish often enough. Publishing too infrequently leads the fans to either feel like there’s no point in remaining subscribed to the page, since they’re not getting any updates, or to lose interest in the company (and its page) and choose to unsubscribe. Find a posting frequency that maintains a good balance between these two extremes so you can keep your fans satisfied but still hungry for more. Which brings us to the final point…4. Keep them coming back for more. The ExactTarget and CoTweet study we mentioned earlier found that 26% of Facebook users only “Liked” a business page to take advantage of a one-time offer. Running a Facebook contest or promotional offer can be a great strategy for attracting more fans to your page, but don’t let it stop there. Once they have “Liked” your page, keep them engaged. Give them more reasons to be excited they are fans of your page, whether it’s new offers, unique content, exciting company and industry updates, or fun games, quizzes, and contests. In other words, make your fans glad they found your page through that one-time offer, not because of that one-time offer alone.There’s no shortage of ways to take advantage of a large fan base on Facebook to improve your marketing and extend your reach. So keep drawing in the fans, and once they’ve “Liked” you, use these tips to show them you’re too awesome to even consider “Unliking.”What do you do to keep your Facebook fans engaged? What makes you excited to join a fan page? Topics: Facebook Engagement Originally published Sep 21, 2011 5:00:00 PM, updated October 20 2016 Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_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

Finally, Facebook Makes It Easy to Run Contests

first_img Originally published Aug 28, 2013 11:22:00 AM, updated February 01 2017 Topics: Social Media Campaigns Anyone else feel like Facebook’s rolling out updates faster than the speed of light?It got to be so much I actually asked someone on our content team if we needed to update our Facebook for Business ebook — and she responded with a resounding, “uhhh YEAH.” So we did … and then Facebook went ahead and rolled out another update yesterday.The latest one is only a minor one, so don’t fret. But it’s really cool for anyone who has been doing Facebook marketing for several years — because those who have been doing Facebook marketing for a couple years have probably tried to run a contest at some point, and then learned that running a contest on Facebook is inordinately difficult to do according to its terms of use. Today, you no longer need to sweat it!Facebook Makes Page Promotions Easier to AdministerSo, why was it so hard before? In short, because Facebook used to require that you run promotions through an app. And that meant you had to hire a Facebook app developer — or be one yourself.I don’t know about you, but I don’t be one.Now, businesses can administer promotions on their Page Timelines, or if they really liked the old way of doing it, they can still use a Facebook app. That means you can now use your Page Timeline to:Collect entries into a contest or promotion by simply asking a user to post on your Page, comment on a post on your Page, like a Page post, or message your Page.Use Likes as a voting mechanism.Thank you, Facebook!So, What’s the Catch?There isn’t much of one, actually, just some rules to be cognizant of. It’s not a free-for-all, you know. ;-)Facebook is concerned with businesses being too aggressive in their promotions, and the impact that could have in content legitimacy. So, Facebook updated its Page Terms to prohibit Page administrators from tagging or encouraging people to tag themselves in content they’re not actually depicted in. This sounds like a really random scenario, but the picture Facebook paints is:”It’s OK to ask people to submit names of a new product in exchange for a chance to win a prize. It’s not OK to ask people to tag themselves in pictures of a new product in exchange for a chance to win a prize.”Makes sense. The other big change they made note of is that businesses may not run any of these contests or promotions on personal Timelines. For instance, you couldn’t ask users to share a piece of content on their timeline as an entry mechanism.If you’re looking for ideas for Facebook promotions or contests to run, check out this blog post; and be sure to bookmark Facebook’s updated promotion guidelines.Image credit: owenwbrown 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

The Right Way to Answer a Work Email

first_img Email Inbox Tips Originally published Apr 14, 2014 11:00:00 AM, updated November 20 2018 Topics: Here is an email exchange that just happened between Joe Chernov, our VP of Content, and me.Joe:Why don’t we have social share buttons on landing pages (or at least the page I’m seeing)? http://offers.hubspot.com/content-creation-templates?Diana:Several reasons: We ran A/B tests that determined that removing both the top nav and social share buttons increase conversion rates.Adding the social share button module increases page load times, decreasing conversion rates as well.I measured leads generated from the landing page social sharing buttons and compared to thank-you pages, these LP buttons generated very, very few leads each month.People are not ready to share content at this point, before they’ve seen the offer.Joe:This is how you answer a question! We should make this email exchange a blog post.And here, dear readers, is the blog post. The sad truth is we spend 28% of our workweeks reading, writing, or responding to emails. What a waste of time! I’m sure if you think about your past week, you’ve spent way more time in your email inbox than you’d have liked.Create a new, on-brand email signature in just a few clicks. Get started here. (It’s free.)Here are some tips on how to be a more efficient emailer, so you can spend your time on more productive tasks.1) Get to the point quickly.I could have started out my response to Joe like this:Hi Joe,Thanks for reaching out, this is a great question! I’m sorry for not clarifying this during our last conversation, but let me clear this up. We started removing the social sharing button several months ago, and here are some of the reasons we decided to do so.That’s a waste of three sentences for both me to write and Joe to read. Get. To. The. Point.2) Use bullet points to provide succinct answers.Dense paragraphs of text are harder to read than short bullet points. So use bullet points often to summarize ideas, data, or conclusions. If you find yourself writing a paragraph that’s more than three sentences long, you’re creating more work for yourself and your recipient than is necessary.3) Let the most knowledgeable person reply first.If you’re CCed on an email, and someone else CCed would be better suited to provide an answer, it’s okay to wait a day to let them reply first. It’s also okay to say something like, “I’ll let XYZ chime in before adding my own insight.” This can save you from needing to write out an email that needs further clarification anyway.4) Forward emails mistakenly sent to you.I used to run our email marketing at HubSpot, and sometimes people still ask me email marketing questions. I could reply each time explaining that I now own website conversions instead, and letting them know who the correct person is to send this question to. Instead, I reply and include the correct person on the thread, with a simple line: “Looping in XYZ who now runs our email marketing programs.” This saves the sender the time of needing to rewrite or copy/paste the email to the new recipient, and gets the message across quickly for future reference.5) Don’t speculate on intent.It’s hard to read emotions in emails. So don’t try. I could have assumed that Joe was blaming me for not including social share icons on our landing pages (he later confessed after he clicked send he was afraid that’s what I would think). But I didn’t — I immediately thought, “Joe doesn’t know the history here so I’ll fill him in.” Simple as that. Leave emotion out of email, both when interpreting and writing emails, as much as you can. Be logical and literal. You’ll save yourself and your colleagues from a lot of angst.6) Answer promptly.This isn’t to say that you should check your email every five minutes. Ideally, you should close or minimize your inbox so you can focus on your projects and only check your inbox a few times per day.Don’t leave emails sent specifically to you hanging for longer than 24-48 hours (excluding weekends — work/life balance is important, folks). Letting questions linger longer than that will create an awful backlog in your inbox, and it will also frustrate the sender. He or she will need to waste time tracking you down in person, over instant messenger, or with additional follow-up emails. Keep your company’s efficiency in mind, not just your own.If you can’t reply with the answer within two days, it’s polite to say, “Got this, will get back to you later this week.” Or you can set a “Slow to Respond” auto-responder so people will know they’ll need to wait longer than usual for a reply.Want to share this post? Here are some ready-made tweets:Click to tweet: How to Effectively Answer Email (Without Wasting Anyone’s Time) – http://hub.am/1lQwU2N by @DianaUrban at @HubSpotClick to tweet: Spending too much time answering emails? Here are some tips on how to efficiently reach #inboxzero – http://hub.am/1lQwU2NClick to tweet: The Right Way to Answer a Work Email – http://hub.am/1lQwU2N by @DianaUrban at @HubSpot 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

The 2-Minute Guide to Fixing HTTP Error 405 (Method Not Allowed)

first_img Topics: Don’t forget to share this post! Technical SEO Originally published Jan 18, 2019 7:00:00 AM, updated September 05 2019center_img Image Credit: Testing NookFortunately, there are three common and effective solutions for fixing most 405 Method Not Allowed Errors.How to Fix 405 Method Not Allowed Errors1. Comb through your website’s code to find bugs.If there’s a mistake in your website’s code, your web server might not be able to correctly answer requests from a content delivery network. Comb through your code to find bugs or copy your code into a development machine. It’ll perform a thorough debug process that will simulate the exact situation your 405 Method Not Allowed Error occurred in and allow you to see the exact moment where things went wrong.2. Sift through your server-side logs.There are two types of server-side logs — applications logs and server logs. Application logs recount your website’s entire history, like the web pages requested by visitors and which servers it connected to. Server logs provide information about the hardware running your server, revealing details about its health and status. Sift through both types of server-side logs to uncover any alarming information about your server or website.3. Check your server configuration files.The last way to find out what’s causing your 405 Method Not Allowed Error is by taking a look at your web server’s configuration files. You can usually find instructions for solving unintentional redirects there. In a world hooked on instant gratification, one of the worst things a brand can do is not give their audience what they want. If your website visitors see an error page when they’re looking for help or information to do their jobs better, they could get annoyed and lose trust in your brand, permanently damaging your reputation.Unfortunately, 405 Method Not Allowed Errors are rather mysterious. They indicate what happened to your website, but they don’t tell you why it happened, making it challenging for you to pinpoint its cause and correct the issue.To help you fix your 405 Method Not Allowed Error and avoid losing brand trust, we’ve fleshed out exactly what the issue is and its most common solutions.Download our free guide here to uncover 10 SEO mistakes to avoid in your next redesign.405 Method Not AllowedA 405 Method Not Allowed Error is an HTTP response status code that indicates a web browser has requested access to one of your web pages and your web server received and recognized its HTTP method. But, unfortunately, your server has decided to reject that specific HTTP method, so the web browser can’t access the requested web page. When this happens, your website will serve an error web page to your site’s visitors, like the photo below.last_img read more

On Engineers’ Day, here are 10 lesser known branches of engineering you should know about

first_imgStill the top pick of parents for their children’s career, engineering is one of the most popular career paths in India. Despite a spike in unemployed engineering graduates, millions each year line up to pursue engineering courses. While there are certain engineering branches that are seeing less hiring, there are others which are coming up as new-age career paths.Here are 10 lesser-known branches of engineering you should know about on Engineer’s Day:1. Agriculture Engineering Most of India’s youth, particularly the ones belonging to its urban spheres, have had greater proximity with the traditional popular divisions of engineering like Electrical, Electronics & Communication, and some others.They just happen to overlook the great potential lying with their rural counterpart, which is lesser explored, and really requires greater innovations.As an Agriculture Engineer, they can look forward to their respectable employment in the farming industry, the field of agriculture commodities, agriculture consultancy, processing units, among others.Businesses like AMUL, ITC, PROAGRO Seeds, Escorts etc, are ready to welcome such candidates.2. Military Engineering From building bridges in few hours, countering improvised explosive devices, taking measures to protect environment to developing and refining weapons and tools of intelligence, and lots more — as a military engineer, you avail the opportunity to serve the nation in a more direct manner.Pursuing a course in military engineering, you also pave a path for your post retirement employment, with a number of construction and firework companies, for example.3. Ceramic Engineering The multibillion-dollar industry of Ceramics is also a sphere upon which our youth throw lesser glances.advertisementFrom working as a Ceramic Engineer in the industries of Construction, Military, Sports, Transportation, Medicine and in Airplane, Optical Fibres, Electronics, you land upon the jobs that offer several promises.The job profiles for a Ceramic Engineer can be any one or more from being a Ceramic Designer, Ceramic Technologist, Production Worker, Construction Manager, Marketing Executive, Researcher, Professor, and a lot of others.4. Earthquake Engineering An Earthquake Engineer can also be explained as a Civil Engineer who specialises in combating the outcomes of earthquakes, via planning and constructing buildings and structures resistant to the tremors.An Earthquake Engineer requires a deep and scientific study of seismic activities. Some of the spheres of the world are more prone to earthquakes.Therefore, it does not need to mention that possibilities of growth of Earthquake Engineers are more in such regions.While the Earthquake Engineers largely work with the construction businesses, they can also find opportunities of employment in teaching, research, etc.5. Environmental Engineering As the crescendo for embracing drastic measures for saving our environment increases year by year, environmental engineers are in great demand.Stakeholders of environment expect Environmental Engineers to develop and introduce the techniques in and around the traditional (and new both) jobs of processing and production that lessen the harmful impacts upon the environment.In the timber industry, using sawmill by-products as a source for producing thermal energy, is one such example that of an Environmental Engineer’s effort.There are numerous companies that induct Environmental Engineers. Aquatic Systems, Earth Water Limited, Gujarat Enviro Protection and Infrastructure Limited, are a few of the many companies that candidates can look forward to work with.Read: 5 new-age B.Tech programmes for better engineering job opportunities6. Fashion Technology Engineering Fashion Technology Engineers are concerned with developing tools and processes for producing more profits for their companies/stakeholders. As a Fashion Engineer you work in the process of Garment Production.You acquire proficiency in producing and developing various technical equipment or may work in the Research and Development wings of the companies.Furthermore, you also look after Quality Assurance, Fitness of Garments, Human Resource Management, System Analysis, and even Merchandising.Fashion Technology Engineers have much better prospects in the future, as India is taking greater strides towards prosperity.7. Food Engineering Food Engineers are responsible for applying mathematics and scientific principles to generate economical solutions for food production.As a Food Engineer, you can explore the possibilities in the space of Food Technology, Nutritional Therapy Quality Management, Science and Laboratory Techniques, Toxicology, Research, and many others.Various companies in the Food and Beverages sector spread the red carpet for the interested candidates. Dabur India, ITC Limited, Cadbury India, Pepsico India Holdings, Britannica Industries Limited, are some of such companies.8. Marine Engineering It’s a share of engineering that deals with scheming, building, development and up keeping of different kinds of equipment of ships along with other containers of the sea.Aspirants of Marine engineering must inculcate a greater understanding of science and mathematics.advertisementAs a Marine Engineer you need to understand that you would be associated more or less with the Shipping industry, on and off the shore.You can also look forward to joining ship manufacturing companies. Furthermore, aspirants of Marine engineering can find opportunities in Power sector, Construction companies, Steel industry and Electronic industry.9. Nanotechnology Nanotechnology deals with building very small machines and materials that operate faster and in more efficient manners.Building up of microscopic cameras that can be given to patients through mouth, to reveal the hidden world inside humans’ alimentary canal and thus aid in diagnosis and treatment of associated diseases, can provide you an idea of the nature of work of nanotechnology.As a nanotechnologist, you can apply your skills in the spheres of Environmental Control, Food Science covering Packaging and Quality Control, Energy Storage, Forensics, Electronics, among others.Talking of the job profiles, with a degree in Nanotechnology, you can work as a Scientist, Professor, Researcher, Food Scientist, among others.10. Mining Engineering It is the discipline of engineering that uses various technological tools and science, to extract different minerals from the Earth.As a Marine engineer, you need to regulate any stage of mining operations- from exploring and discovering the mineral resources, carrying a feasibility study, planning and designing the mining job, carrying out relevant operations to even closing the mines.You have to begin as a Mine Engineer (Granite), consequently moving up to Assistant Mining Engineer, Mine Technician, Mine Planner, Research Engineer, and so on.Adani Mining Private Limited, Bharat Forge Limited, Coal India Limited, DRDO, Hindustan Zinc Limited, Uranium Corporation of India, are some of the prominent recruiters of mining engineers.- Article by Rohit Manglik, CEO, EduGorrilaRead: Only 7 per cent engineering graduates employable: What’s wrong with India’s engineers?Read: 80% engineers are unemployed: How can we prepare engineers for the jobs of tomorrow?Read: On National Youth Day, know how India can close its massive skill gap and deal with unemploymentRead: Over 80% Indian engineers are unemployable, lack new-age technology skills: ReportRead: Out of 1.5 million engineers in India, only 7 per cent can handle core engineering tasks: Unionlast_img read more

Andy Murray battles to first singles win on tour since January in Zhuhai

first_imgFormer world number one Andy Murray won his first ATP tour singles match in nearly nine months with a 6-3 6-7(6) 6-1 victory over American Tennys Sandgren in the opening round of the Zhuhai Championships on Tuesday.Murray, whose last win on the tour came in Brisbane prior to the Australian Open, did win twice at the Rafa Nadal Open a second-tier ATP Challenger Tour event last month before opting to return to the ATP tour for the Asian swing.”After the operation in January it’s been difficult and it was undecided at times about whether I wanted to keep going or not,” Murray told reporters after claiming his first win on the tour since a hip resurfacing procedure that threatened to end his career prematurely.”But I’m really glad that I can actually get the win today and hopefully I’ll be able to keep going.”Tonight I was hitting the ball well, movement was I think pretty good… I served well. Obviously there’s things that I feel I can do better, but it was definitely progress.”Now I’m tired and fatigued. (My) muscles are tired from playing the match, but in terms of how my hip feels, that feels really good.Murray made his return to the circuit during the grasscourt swing earlier this year but only played doubles before his singles comeback at the Cincinnati Masters and the Winston-Salem Open ended in first-round defeats.The 32-year-old fired 13 aces and did not face a single break point in the match that lasted two hours and 41 minutes in humid conditions.advertisementMurray had the opportunity to win in straight sets when he had a match point at 6-5 in the second-set tiebreak, but Sandgren won the next three points to take it into the deciding set.However, Sandgren struggled in the third set, dropping serve twice to give Murray a 4-0 lead and the American also needed a long medical timeout to have his foot strapped.Sandgren, currently ranked 344 places above Murray, managed to hold serve once but it did not prevent a visibly exhausted Murray from serving out the match to set up a last-16 clash with seventh seed Alex De Minaur.Also Read | Roger Federer, Alexander Zverev help Team Europe retain Laver Cup vs Team WorldAlso Read | Naomi Osaka becomes 1st Japanese to win Pan Pacific Open since Kimiko Date in 1995last_img read more

Who is Lichaj? Meet the American who stunned Arsenal

first_imgEric Lichaj Who is Eric Lichaj? Meet the American who stunned Arsenal in the FA Cup Ives Galarcep @soccerbyives Last updated 1 year ago 14:17 1/8/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(2) Eric Lichaj Nottingham Forest Arsenal GC 01072017 Shaun Botterill United States Nottingham Forest v Arsenal Nottingham Forest Arsenal FA Cup The 29-year-old fullback helped Nottingham Forest eliminate the Gunners from the FA Cup, while writing a new high point in his decade-long pro career For many fans in England, Eric Lichaj’s two-goal effort in Nottingham Forest’s stunning 4-2 FA Cup victory against Arsenal was the first they had really heard of the American, but it was just the latest turn in a career filled with memorable highs and painful lows.The U.S. national team defender scored a pair of first-half goals — including a stunning volley from 18 yards out — as the Championship side shocked the Gunners in the FA Cup third round Sunday, sending Arsene Wenger’s side out of the competition.It was the first two-goal game for Lichaj, who entered the match with just seven goals over 254 appearances in all competitions playing for Aston Villa, Lincoln City, Leyton Orient, Leeds United and Forest. Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player 1 – Eric Lichaj has scored two goals in a single game for the first time ever in English football. Stunned. #NFFCvAFC— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) January 7, 2018The historic triumph saw Arsenal lose its third-round matchup for the first time since falling to Sheffield United in January 1996, seven months before hiring Wenger as manager. And the fact that Lichaj played a major role in Forest’s win shocked just about everyone on both sides of the Atlantic.U.S. fans may remember Lichaj for his stints with the national team, while English fans may recognize his name due to the amount of clubs he’s played for from League Two to the Premier League. His journey has been one that is filled with ups and downs, but nothing tops what he was able to accomplish on the global stage against Arsenal.Where did THAT come from, Eric Lichaj?! https://t.co/uxEr55dJGU— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) January 7, 2018So how did it all begin? And what have we missed as Lichaj bounced around England looking to make his soccer dreams come true?Lichaj’s formative years as a pro prospect took place in the U.S. Under-17 national team residency program, where he spent three years playing alongside the likes of Michael Bradley, Jozy Altidore and Freddy Adu. A knee injury just before the 2005 World Cup cost him a chance to play in the tournament. The injury bug struck again a year later, when a broken foot forced Lichaj to miss his freshman year — and only season — at the University of North Carolina before signing with Aston Villa in the summer of 2007.After a year in Aston Villa’s youth setup, and two with the Villa reserves, Lichaj continued his climb in the English leagues with loans in League Two and League One, before finally impressing Aston Villa enough for a chance at first-team minutes.Another of Lichaj’s career high points came in December of 2010, when then-Aston Villa manager Gerard Houllier gave the defender a start against Tottenham and a matchup with the speedy Gareth Bale. Lichaj effectively neutralized Bale, even forcing the now-Real Madrid man to try his luck on the side opposite of Lichaj in an eventual 2-1 Tottenham victory.Lichaj has shown a penchant for memorable moments against London clubs, having also scored his first Premier League goal — and adding an assist — in a 4-2 Aston Villa loss to Chelsea in March of 2012.Lichaj’s run in the Premier League ended in the summer of 2013, when Aston Villa released him. He signed with Nottingham Forest that same summer, and has been a regular starter ever since, enjoying stints at right back and left back, though he is naturally right-footed.Eric Lichaj USAFrom an international standpoint, Lichaj showed enough during the 2010-11 season to merit a call from then-U.S. national team coach Bob Bradley for the 2011 Gold Cup, a tournament that saw Lichaj enjoy a breakout run as a steady left-back option. The high he enjoyed in that tournament quickly changed into another career low in the 2011 Gold Cup final, which the Americans lost to Mexico, 4-2, after El Tri scored four unanswered goals in the second half in what wound up being Bradley’s last match as U.S. coach.Bradley’s firing wound up coinciding with a two-year disappearance from the national team picture, with new U.S. coach Jurgen Klinsmann failing to call up Lichaj despite the fact he was one of the few American fullbacks seeing playing time in a top league. Klinsmann wound up taking a look at Lichaj on two different occasions during his five years in charge, but never gave Lichaj a meaningful opportunity, even though the U.S. could have used his services at both left back and right back during that stretch.Klinsmann’s firing paved the way for a national team return for Lichaj, who Bruce Arena identified as a player due for a national team look shortly after he replaced Klinsmann. Arena called in Lichaj to the 2017 U.S. Gold Cup squad, a full six years after his first Gold Cup appearance, and Lichaj endured some ups and downs in the tournament as well. It was his third-minute turnover that gifted El Salvador a golden scoring opportunity, only to have Tim Howard step up and spare Lichaj the shame of a goal-causing blunder. Lichaj responded in that same Gold Cup quarterfinal by scoring the first goal of his national team career, an excellent finish he followed up with the very same belly flop goal celebration he showed off following the first of his two goals against Arsenal.The U.S. went on to win the 2017 Gold Cup, and Lichaj earned another national team call for the U.S. team’s September World Cup qualifiers against Costa Rica and Honduras, but he was struggling for regular playing time for Nottingham Forest, which eventually left him out of the picture for the U.S. team’s fateful qualifying loss against Trinidad & Tobago in October. That ultimately cost Lichaj what was likely his last chance to play in a World Cup.The 29-year-old has rebounded once again, reestablishing himself as a Nottingham Forest regular, and even earning a start for the U.S. in November’s friendly draw against Portugal. Then came Sunday’s heroics against Arsenal, including the world-class finish on his second goal, which made him a worldwide trending topic and helped bring some welcome relief to a Nottingham Forest squad that hadn’t won a match since Dec. 9.Sunday’s performance is the latest —and arguably best — high point in a career that has been a roller-coaster ride in the decade since Lichaj left the U.S. to begin his professional career in England.last_img read more

Cowboys Drop In Rankings Following Baylor Loss

first_imgWhile you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up.AdChoices广告 The first official rankings released after OSU’s loss to Baylor Saturday still project the Cowboys to be a top 10 football team.The coaches poll moved the Cowboys to No. 10, while the AP poll moved the Pokes from 4 to 9. Here’s a look at the detailed standings:imagelast_img read more

Throwback Thursday: Oklahoma State Beats St. Mary’s, Wins National Championship

first_imgI’d say this is legit, the cryatal ball has arrived in Stillwater @Lauren_Rew pic.twitter.com/u6a4yLZ17d— Jr Colmenares (@OSUJr) October 13, 2016So let’s take a dive back into the archives to see Oklahoma State’s title-winning game against St. Mary’s in the 1946 Sugar Bowl. It was the last time OSU would play in the Sugar Bowl until 2016, and the entire thing was incredible. Just listen to this opening of the game recap from the Sugar Bowl’s website.Men against boys. Even though the boys were pretty good, so were the bigger, more worldly men.Oklahoma A&M was a team that started seven war veterans, including fullback Jim Reynolds who flew 52 missions over Germany, and tackle Bert Cole who had been shot down over Yugoslavia and spent months among the Chetniks while making his way back to allied lines. In contrast, St. Mary’s was a lot like Alabama in 1945 with seven 17-year-old starters on a team with an average age of 18-1/2.Also, A&M, the heaviest team to play in the first 12 Sugar Bowls at a 203-pound average, was man-for-man 15 pounds larger than the Sugar Bowl’s youngest team ever.Oklahoma State rolled to a 33-13 win that day that flummoxed St. Mary’s coach Jim Phelan. He literally locked the media out of his locker room after the game before finally letting them in to chat.“Too much power – too much speed. And, above all, too much Fenimore.”Fenimore ran for 125 yards that day and two TDs. He threw for another. The win for AP No. 5 OSU capped off a 9-0 season. OSU allowed just 76 points all year (can you imagine the Vines we would have gotten had Glenn Spencer been coordinator?) Here’s a look at the full schedule which included Denver and Tulsa.screen-shot-2016-10-13-at-3-33-17-pmI have no idea why the AFCA retroactively awarded OSU with this national championship, but apparently we are shipping in the trophies, the crystal and everything that goes along with a title. Here is the AFCA’s reasoning:The Oklahoma State squad of 1945 (then-referred to as Oklahoma A&M) had an average margin of victory of 23.2 points and still hold numerous school records, including fewest points allowed, lowest average points allowed, fewest first downs allowed, fewest rushing yards allowed and fewest yards allowed per game. The 1945 squad also ranks in the top 10 in several more offensive and defensive categories, all of which is remarkable considering that season was played 70 years ago.The AP No. 1 team that year was Army. Army’s schedule was soft! Louisville Field! Melville PT Boats! SMH! Sad!screen-shot-2016-10-13-at-3-36-28-pmAll of this unfolding on Thursday elicited maybe the greatest tweet I have ever seen. Such sweet words I never thought I would hear. But now they are true. Oklahoma State has a national championship in football! And we have the trophy to prove it.Look what showed up at #okstate ?? pic.twitter.com/Pq6KdHOUlg— Allison Gappa (@AllisonGappa) October 13, 2016 Also, I bet none of these men every thought someone would make a GIF of them 70 years later.#okstate scores to beat St. Mary’s and win a national title. What a day! pic.twitter.com/WooxVfBIxz— Pistols Firing (@pistolsguys) October 13, 2016 While you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up. @Jake_Trotter they also beat Germany on the road— James Burcham (@e4burch) October 13, 2016Here’s what it looks like to win a national title. What a day.last_img read more

The Reload: OSU Trying to Flip Baylor Pledge, New Hoops Offers and More Twins on the Horizon

first_imgWhile you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up. https://twitter.com/totaltroutmove/status/788546616500170752The Reload is your Oklahoma State recruiting recap filled with the latest recruiting news, with an ear to the ground for what’s to come.Oklahoma State Recruiting Twins AgainJordan Moore, a 2018 standout prospect from Yoakum, Texas, is getting a lot of attention from OSU among many schools in his recruitment. Moore, a running back and athlete is a twin brother of Joshua Moore, who is an elite wide receiver recruit. They both hold offers from the likes of OU, Texas, Florida State, Tennessee, OSU and a slew of others. Here’s the edit the OSU staff sent Jordan this week:S/O to Oklahoma State for the Dope edit!! #GoPokes? pic.twitter.com/EhfB5ylvHy— Jordan moore (@Jo_moore2) October 18, 2016I wouldn’t be surprised if the Moore brothers release a top list of schools soon, and OSU will likely be on that short list. As for Jordan, he’s expected to make his commitment on Dec. 24 this year — so keep an eye on him and any action surrounding him in the near future.Two new 2020 hoops offersBrad Underwood’s staff has been hitting the trail hard this week with two new offers: The first to point guard RJ Hampton, a big time athlete from Frisco, Texas:I would like to thank Coach Underwood and the Oklahoma State coaching staff for blessing me with an offer !! ?? #GoPokes pic.twitter.com/cPEQ1CWNJo— 14 (@RjHampton14) October 17, 2016Hampton already has offers from SMU, Texas A&M, OSU, and many more on their way soon. Underwood and crew jumping in early to get in the sweepstakes for Hampton, who will likely be a soon-to-be five-star recruit. He’s a long, rangy point guard with silky smooth moves and a pretty nice jumper to boot. At 6-foot-4, he has the frame to develop and grow into a very desirable prospect at the next level. The second offer went out to shooting guard/small forward Cade Cunningham:https://twitter.com/CadeCunningham_/status/788110898992783361Cunningham is a 6-5, 180 pound prospect with a high major projection and above average athleticism, a little ahead of his young body. According to future 150, he’s the No. 1 player in the country at his position and the No. 5 player in the great state of Texas from Arlington.Oklahoma State pursuing Noah Daniels, Baylor commitOklahoma State extended an offer to 2017 defensive back Noah Daniels earlier this week, and they’re staying on him and in his head this week.#GoPokes Love pic.twitter.com/xP4qJk53G0— Noah Daniels ™️ (@NoahDB21) October 18, 2016Daniels is one of only two verbal commits to Baylor for 2017, and based on his twitter account, I get the vibe that he’s feeling OSU and taking them very seriously. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him flip to the good guys.OSU offers 2018 DTOklahoma State made a big offer yesterday evening to 2018 defensive tackle Trevor Trout of St. Louis, Missouri. Trout is a 6-3, 300 pound four-star recruit with close to a dozen offers already.Honored to receive an offer from Oklahoma State University! pic.twitter.com/KOzAEmHhcl— trevor trout ® (@totaltroutmove) October 19, 2016Trout also holds offers from Missouri, Iowa LSU and a handful of others.last_img read more

Watch: Mike Gundy gets wallopped in the face by offensive lineman

first_imgAfter a powerful touchdown run by Chris Carson to put the Cowboys up 11 on the road in Fort Worth, things seemed to be going very well until he took a SHOT to the face from his own offensive lineman Shane Richards. (NSFW language)Great run, but Gundy takes a shot to the face. #okstate pic.twitter.com/xuaAzTLR7K— Dustin Ragusa (@DustRagu) November 19, 2016Richards is no slouch of a guy to take a hook from. He is the biggest offensive lineman on Oklahoma State’s roster at a meaty 6-foot-8, 330-pounds.Life comes at you fast, man! While you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up.last_img read more