Halep in line for No. 1 after Cincinnati semifinal win

first_img“I think she played very solid, not missing much and obviously serving well. Everything started, I think, in the first game of the first set.”Muguruza took charge early, breaking Pliskova in the first and last games of the first set.She gained a second-set edge with a backhand winner on break point for a 4-2 lead before closing it out in 1 hour, 19 minutes.Stephens, playing her fourth tournament since returning from January foot surgery, also was playing a third match in a span of 24 hours.“That’s never easy,” she said. “I’m going to go with that. I didn’t play that badly. She was a little fresher. It was just not a great day.”The 11th-ranked Dimitrov, who lost in the last year’s semifinal to eventual champion Marin Cilic, had just one double fault and finished with nine unforced errors to No. 19 Isner’s 28 in the 2-hour, 3-minute match. The Bulgarian will play the winner of the semifinal between Nick Kyrgios, who knocked out second-ranked Rafael Nadal in straight sets in a Friday quarterfinal, and David Ferrer.“Today was, I think, one of those matches that I really had to just be patient,” Dimitrov said. “I think that that was the key. I knew I’m not going to have that many rallies against John. I knew that he’s going to serve big, bold serves. I just had to be very composed and use every opportunity that I had. I think in the end of the match, it was just a few points that made the biggest difference for me. I’m just happy obviously with the win, but I’m just happy with the way I kept myself together throughout the whole match. Just remained calm in those tough moments. I mean, I know it’s nerve-wracking from outside, but it’s even tougher when you’re in there and have to receive a serve that comes 141 mph.”Dimitrov’s composure was the key, according to Isner.“The difference was he was a lot more decisive at the big moments,” Isner said. “He was a little calmer as well — a little more free-flowing in big moments. I thought he played a high-level match. He certainly is in good form. I played well enough to beat a lot of players today — just not him.”Kyrgios and Ferrer displayed remarkably efficient serving in their nightcap. They combined for six break points, converting none. The fourth-ranked Muguruza reached her first W&S final with a 6-3, 6-2 victory over defending champion Pliskova.The men’s final will feature two first-timers. Grigor Dimitrov outlasted John Isner 7-6 (4), 7-6 (10) in the first men’s semifinal. Nick Kyrgios beat David Ferrer 7-6 (3), 7-6 (4).FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutHalep, seeking her first No. 1 ranking, has yet to drop a set in the tournament and appears to be peaking at just the right time.“I think I played my best match on hardcourt so far,” said Halep, who can become the first Romanian woman to be ranked No. 1. “It felt great. I moved very well today. From the first point, I felt like I was going to play good tennis.” Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC SEA Games in Calabarzon safe, secure – Solcom chief The final Sunday will be the first on American soil for Muguruza, who lost to Pliskova in last year’s W&S semifinals after losing to Serena Williams in the 2015 finals. The Spaniard had lost six straight matches against Pliskova since winning their first in 2013.“I was very precise with my shots,” said Muguruza, who is 2-1 in her career against Halep, though the two haven’t played since 2015. “I wanted to be more aggressive and take my shots. I felt pretty good out there – under control. Everything went my way.”Muguruza won when Pliskova sailed a forehand long on the fifth match point. Pliskova, who played part of one match and all of another Friday after rain forced postponements Thursday, had 28 unforced errors to Muguruza’s 13.Muguruza was coming off playing the tournament’s longest match, a 2-hour, 45-minute three-set win over Svetlana Kuznetsova on Friday. That followed a 2-hour, 18-minute win over Madison Keys on Thursday, when she fought off three match points.“I don’t think I played my best tennis today,” Pliskova said. “I think the energy was pretty low from my side. Obviously, a tough schedule for me the last two days – three matches in about not even 24 hours.ADVERTISEMENT Favorites to win, PH triathletes reminded not to be complacent Chief Justice Peralta on upcoming UAAP game: UP has no match against UST PLAY LIST 01:00Chief Justice Peralta on upcoming UAAP game: UP has no match against UST00:50Trending Articles04:11Robredo accepts Duterte’s drug czar post appointment01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police 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 Games Read Next UPLB exempted from SEA Games class suspension LATEST STORIES SEA Games: PH’s Alisson Perticheto tops ice skating short program LIST: Class, gov’t work suspensions during 30th SEA Games MOST READ LOOK: Venues for 2019 SEA Games MASON, OH – AUGUST 19: Simona Halep of Romania returns a shot to Sloane Stephens during Day 8 of the Western and Southern Open at the Linder Family Tennis Center on August 19, 2017 in Mason, Ohio. Rob Carr/Getty Images/AFPMASON, Ohio — Simona Halep moved within a victory of the No. 1 ranking.The second-ranked Halep needed just 54 minutes to cruise past Sloane Stephens 6-2, 6-1 on Saturday in the Western & Southern Open semifinals, and can displace Karolina Pliskova as the top of the ranking with a victory over Garbine Muguruza on Sunday.ADVERTISEMENT WATCH: Streetboys show off slick dance moves in Vhong Navarro’s wedding Catriona Gray spends Thanksgiving by preparing meals for people with illnesses Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. View commentslast_img read more

PBA: Alaska staves off elimination, shackles Globalport

first_imgLOOK: Loisa Andalio, Ronnie Alonte unwind in Amanpulo for 3rd anniversary LATEST STORIES San Sebastian repulses EAC to even slate at 5-5 View comments Fire hits houses in Mandaluyong City Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Murphey Holloway had 25 points to lead the Batang Pier with 25 points and nine rebounds.Globalport point guard Stanley Pringle was absent from the game as he went back to the United States to mourn the passing of his father. Filipino athletes get grand send-off ahead of SEA Games PLAY LIST 01:27Filipino athletes get grand send-off ahead of SEA Games00:59Sports venues to be ready in time for SEA Games00:50Trending Articles01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police 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 Games Nonong Araneta re-elected as PFF president BSP sees higher prices in November, but expects stronger peso, low rice costs to put up fightcenter_img A strong fourth quarter push propelled Alaska over the Batang Pier with Calvin Abueva and Noy Baclao scoring all of their combined 20 points in the period as the Aces outscored Globalport, 34-21, in the final 12 minutes.“I’m happy to see these guys put together another win,” said Aces head coach Alex Compton in Filipino. “Because during our 14-game losing streak there were times when we were ahead then the other team will catch up and now instead of folding we bounced back and that’s the thing I’ve been waiting to see.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutAlaska was in the worst period of its storied history when it lost 14 straight games dating back to the Commissioner’s Cup before the Aces broke the curse in Pampanga beating San Miguel, 90-79.LeDontae Henton put up a massive double-double of 31 points and 21 rebounds to lead Alaska while Calvin Abueva finished with 12 points and five boards. E.T. returns to earth, reunites with grown-up Elliott in new ad  Read Next WATCH: Streetboys show off slick dance moves in Vhong Navarro’s wedding MOST READ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Photo by tristan tamayo/INQUIRERAlaska remained in the hunt for a playoff spot in the PBA Governors’ Cup after taking down Globalport, 101-88, Friday at Mall of Asia Arena.The Aces, who lost the first six games of the conference, won its second straight to improve to 2-6 and climbed to the 10th spot while the Batang Pier slipped to 3-5.ADVERTISEMENT Frontrow holds fun run to raise funds for young cancer patients last_img read more

Silly Rabbit, Tricks are for Black Hat SEOs

first_img that want If you think you should be using Black Hat SEO or you are missing out, I have only three words of advice: DON’T DO IT! There’s a dearth of people out there that even get fundamental SEO, understand how the various search engine algorithms work and how to do more than just guess at the weight of various factors impacting search results. The number of people that actually know enough to employ really advanced black hat techniques is vanishingly small. The number of these people that On with the article. those elite few people that actually do know enough to apply these highly advanced techniques and you could connect to them. How would you know one if you met her? This is a bit like the public stock market. The chances that some fund manager has figured out a consistent way to “beat the system” are pretty low. Your problem is, even if they’re out there, you wouldn’t know how to separate those that make the claims from those that can actually do it. Originally published Dec 3, 2007 9:46:00 AM, updated October 20 2016 First off, for those that are not familiar with the term “Black Hat SEO” it usually refers to highly controversial tactics used to manipulate the search rankings of a given web page and are generally in violation of search engine guidelines. Second off, if the title of this article seems strange to you, you’re probably too young to have been exposed to the “Silly Rabbit, Trix are for kids” TV commercials. No worries. Your enjoyment of this article will not be affected. you For those that are feeling unsatisfied with the brevity of this advice, and need more words, let me expand a bit more: BLACKHAT SEO IS NOT WORTH IT FOR MOST WEBSITES. Instead of spending a lot of time and money on black hat SEO, you’re probably to find. When you do this, you’re working Let me say that one more time, for emphasis: The best way to optimize your website and get more/better traffic via search engines is to make the content on your site something people actually are probably associated with is close to zero. Even if certain techniques do actually work today (and I’m sure there are some smart folks out there that have figured some out), the search engine algorithms are constantly evolving. Chances are, if somebody has found a “back door” to unduly influence the search results, this door will eventually be closed. worth risking having your site banned completely? 1. Real Black Hat SEOs Might Not Exist In Your World: Reasons You Don’t Want To Use Blackhat SEO So, here’s the build-up of arguments: You probably don’t know someone that really has the talent to do black hat SEO well. Even if you did, you wouldn’t know it. Even if you knew it, you couldn’t hire them or afford them. Even if you could hire them, it probably wouldn’t work for you. Even if it did work for you, it’s probably temporary. Even if wasn’t temporary, it’s just too risky. Any questions? 3. Even if you can pick them, you can’t hire them: 5. Even if it does work, it’s probably temporary: There are many, many factors that go into search engine algorithms. Some are more important than others, but it’s really, really hard to know whether a specific black hat technique will actually work for you. The more advanced the technique, the more likely that there are specific situations within which the technique works. Lets say for a moment that there Assuming you could find some small edge and that will last long enough for it to be worthwhile, you have to balance this benefit against the risks that you’re taking. Is a potential increase in traffic via organic search with much Technical SEO really 2. Even if they exist, you can’t pick them: Topics: 6. Even If It Lasts, It’s Really, Really Risky: Assuming you had some uncanny ability to really pick out the true uber-experts, chances are, you couldn’t hire them because you couldn’t afford them. If they’re good, they’re either working on some super-big project for some mega-company that can spend some real money — or working on their own private projects. 4. Even if you could hire them, their ideas may not work for you: better off simply doing things that makes your site and it’s associated content more rank-worthy. are the search engines — not against them. 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

Continuous Testing and Improvement: Always Be Testing Everything

first_img . How to Generate Leads for Small Business you should eternally be running multiple variations of everything that matters you have nothing to lose and everything to gain Continuous testing is the only way to ensure that your campaigns are always improving. This means that . Make two or more versions of your landing page and split traffic between the two, eventually you’ll see one variation is producing more leads. Turn off the lesser version and iterate on the winner. For both email and PPC campaigns, you should be sending visitors to specific landing pages. Running PPC ads? Each keyword you’re bidding on should have at least two different ad variations going at all times. You have 3 lines to vary (4 if you’re really creative) You should always be testing everything Learn how small businesses can level the playing field and generate leads efficiently by leveraging inbound Internet marketing strategies and tools. If you have a blog or other content pages on your site, you probably have graphic call-to-action elements on your pages (probably in a sidebar). By now you should get the point. Everything you do in your marketing campaigns can and should be tested, and not just once. No matter how well your ads, emails and landing pages are performing, they can always be doing better. That little bit of knowledge should eat away at any marketer or business owner worth her salt, and by not striving for constant improvement you’re leaving money on the table and letting your competition eat your lunch.center_img Download our Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Lead Generation for Small Business Webinar . Try different approaches in your ad title, or different amounts of keyword repetition in the body of the ad. I’ve seen some interesting anecdotal evidence that line length and line length patterns can affect CTR rates on PPC ads, for example if your title is short, line 2 long and then line 3 short again, the shape of the ad creates an arrow and can stand out on a high-competition SERP. Get creative and once you see that one of your variations is getting more clicks, turn off the other one and add a new one that varies on the better performing version. . These are perfect for continuous testing and improvement When you queue up an email to send to your whole list, instead split your list in half and send the same email with two different subject lines, or send emails with two different main offers or calls-to-action. After a few days look at the data and figure out which subject line or CTA produced the best results. In the next email, split your list again and try two different variations of the version that won the last time. Keep doing this every single time you send a message to your list, On a given page there are any number of things you can test, from the number and layout of form elements to the messaging of the copy to your lead funnel. Every email, every PPC ad, and every landing page should always have multiple versions running and you should be in a constant state of analysis and incremental re-factoring. , otherwise you’re not doing as well as you could be. Originally published May 8, 2009 10:54:00 AM, updated June 28 2019 . Run two or more versions of each CTA on your pages and see which produces the most clicks.last_img read more

The Power of Long Tail Keywords: an Interview with HubSpot’s Favorite 80’s Hair Metal Guitarist

first_img He had an interesting story to tell recently, and we thought our blog subscribers would like to learn more about a recent lead of his that turned into a sale. Andrew Quinn: mild mannered sales trainer by day, scary 80’s hair metal guitarist by night. , fine brewers of Jean Sam Adams Download our (full disclosure: we sit next to each other on the 5th floor of One Broadway, Cambridge) Andrew: Jeanne: SEO for Lead Generation Kit that made sense to my prospect, and in the geography that I was willing to travel and play in.  We are a niche band, and we want to stay in Eastern Massachusetts, getting the best gigs possible, here.  Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack that helped to find my band, Wildside, was “80’s cover band in Boston area”.  And, because I optimized my I looked for a market segment that there wasn’t much competition in, and since 80s music is tough to play, I thought there was an opportunity for my band.  It’s really worked out for us.  And, we were able to have fun with the site.  convert site visitors into leads Andrew: Wild Side band website Jeanne: Well, the Originally published Jan 1, 2010 1:00:00 PM, updated October 20 2016 I have form and a Keyword Optimization I thought about the Almost everyone that works at HubSpot has an avocation that absorbs them off-hours.  Most are avid ping-pong enthusiasts, sci-fi addicts, or foodies.  Not many – if any – are into heavy metal, particularly 80s “hair bands”.  Of course, we have one such individual.  He is our main man in the training area responsible for graduating successful inbound marketing specialists, consultants, customer success managers, engineers, and marketers. long-tail keyword for paying gigs.  I keep my show schedule up-to-date and I post YouTube videos from recent performances.  Andrew: on every page, so that I can Andrew: : for that key search term and 421 others by using Keyword Grader, my band was found by the words and phrases , Andrew, I overheard you talking to someone yesterday about a gig for your band.  Can you tell me where the lead came from?   If you could give one piece of advice to someone thinking of starting to work on their web presence, what would it be? ew: Topics: Learn moreabout how you can optimize your site to get found online in searchengines to generate more leads for your business. Jeanne: Any final thoughts? ne: . call to action Andr ale, lager, and beer.  They want us to play at their 25th anniversary party at Lansdowne Pub in Boston on January 20th. searchengine optimization for lead generation kit Doors open at 8 PM.  Tease your hair and bring a friend! Jeanne:  How do you come up with relevant content for your site? What did you do to make your site special? Boston Beer Companylast_img read more

Free eBook: How to Use Online Video for Marketing

first_img Download the 18-page eBook. Here are a handful of tips that are included inside the eBook: that walks you through the entire video creation process: Marketers can use video to generate traffic to their websites, build brand buzz, collect inbound links (which can help SEO), and build social media presence and reach.  Filming Technique: To show the perspective of a person listening to another person, use an Over Shoulder shot. To get this shot, put the corner of the camera directly behind the shoulder of the person listening. Lighting Technique: Avoid recording a scene with a window in the background. This will cause your subjects to be dark and difficult to see. full of suggested beginner and intermediate cameras, audio equipment, editing programs and measurement tools. eMarketer predicts step-by-step eBook Originally published May 11, 2010 9:00:00 AM, updated October 20 2016 that by the year 2013, 85% of Internet users (or 188 million people) will consume online video. The eBook also includes a Download the free eBook. Research company Promoting: Send traffic to your YouTube video immediately after publishing. YouTube rewards videos that receive a surge of traffic within the first 48-hours of being live by recommending the video to more viewers. To help you take advantage of video, we’ve created a Online Video Marketing Kit Video Equipment List . Topics: Want more? You can download additional resources on how to use video for business in our Video Editing: A video that begins suddenly (or loudly) can be jarring. Add video transitions like fade-ins and fade-outs between clips to add professional polish. This eBook is a great guide to learning how to create video from a business perspective. Use it to create great new video masterpieces that drive traffic, leads and business. How to Use Online Video for Marketing. Driving Business: Determine your video’s call-to-action when writing your video script. Video Marketing 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 Create a Google+ Event [Quick Tip]

first_imgGoogle+ has a slew of amazing features and hidden gems that may or may not come in handy in your marketing, but Google+ Events are definitely one feature that every business should consider taking advantage of. Whether your company is hosting a webinar, industry conference or event, employee BBQ, happy hour, hackathon, or something else… Google+ Events can help you get the word out and amplify the reach of your event.One of the biggest benefits of Google+ Events is the fact that anyone using Gmail or Google Calendar will easily be able to add the event right onto their calendars. With just the click of a button, all the information and details about that event will populate in their calendars. What a time saver! Furthermore, the event will automatically be added to the Google Calendars of anyone who is already in the Circles you invite.What’s more — these events are fully customizable, and you can invite entire Communities at the same time.So, what do you say? Are you ready to get started? Great! Let’s run through the steps for setting up an event on Google+.How to Create a Google+ EventStep 1: Click on the ‘Events’ TabNo matter which section of Google+ you’re looking at, if you’re logged in to your company account, you will see a sidebar on the left-hand side of the page. This sidebar includes options to select Home, Profile, Pages, Hangouts, Communities, Events, Photos, and More. In this scenario, you’ll want to click on the ‘Events’ tab, which is listed as the sixth icon from the top.Once you’ve clicked on the ‘Events’ tab, you’ll be directed to a page that will guide you through creating your event. The images you see are various options for event cover images, and above these you’ll see a bold, red button that says ‘Create Event.’ Step 2: Click ‘Create Event’Once you’ve clicked on the ‘Events’ tab, you’ll be directed to a page that will guide you through creating your event. The images you see are various options for event cover images, and above these you’ll see a bold, red button that says ‘Create Event.’Step 3: Fill in Your Event InformationOnce you’ve clicked on the red, ‘Create Event’ button, an event template will pop up where you can add your event information. Is this event a Google+ Hangout? Is it a webinar? A live talk for employees at your company? Be as specific and explicit as possible, and make sure you fill out every form as best you can. Tip: It’s best to include both a start and end time for your event so folks using Google Calendar can add the event to their calendar without any question about the event’s end date. Once you have sizing down pat, upload your image, and test it out. Keep in mind that you should leave some white space open in the bottom left corner, because on the final event page, this space will be taken up by your event’s title, as you can see in the image below: Voilà! You’ve successfully created an event for your business on Google+. Once the event is over, you still have the option to communicate with folks who attended through the Event page. This is a great place to upload photos of the event, give any updates about next year’s event, etc. Have you ever created a Google+ Event? What types of events will you try this with? Step 4: Customize Your Event’s Cover PhotoTo customize your event, click the transparent grey, ‘Change Theme’ button in the bottom left corner of the current cover image you see (see image above). Once you’ve clicked this button, you’ll be brought to a page that shows you a variety of options for your Google+ Event’s cover photo — all provided by Google. Email Inbox Tips Step 5: Add More Details Via the ‘Advanced’ TabBut wait … there’s more! To add even more information to your event, under ‘Event Options,’ click ‘Advanced.’ Remember those “advanced” fields I mentioned earlier? See how the URL showed up in the bold, ‘Official Website’ section of the event description?The Final Product:Your final Google+ Event page will look something like this:And when the event is shared in a Google+ Community or on a Company Page, it will look something like this: Here, you can add a URL and other details for your event: Here’s how you event might look in edit mode up until this point: center_img Of course, if you’re a DIY design whiz, you’ll probably want to upload your own cover photo. Creating a cover image that’s unique to your company and your specific event is a great way to differentiate it from any other created by the people you’re following. Consistency is key here. Don’t believe me? Check out these 15 businesses we admire for consistent, stellar branding. They’ve got it down to a science, and it really makes an impact.To upload your own cover photo, choose ‘Upload’ from the list of theme options: Step 6: Invite GuestsOnce you’re satisfied with your event, you can start inviting guests. Depending on who the target audience for your event is, you can add specific Circles, Communities, email addresses, or simply make the event public on your company page. Once you’ve added the names of the people you think would be most appropriate for this event, click the green ‘Invite’ button. Remember, the beauty of Google+ Events are that they automatically get added to the Google Calendars of the people in the Circles you invite. Once you’ve published your event, the description will look something like this: Originally published Apr 6, 2013 9:00:00 AM, updated October 01 2013 Some social networks will allow you to choose a photo of any size, and will resize it to fit the dimensions of the cover photo. But because the cover photo for Google+ is so long and narrow, you’re going to have a hard time using a pre-existing image without resizing it. Your best bet is to create a custom image that’s exactly 940 pixels wide by 280 pixels tall. By clicking ‘Advanced,’ you’ll be able to notify people that this is a Google Hangout, an on-air event, or provide a URL where people can learn more about the event. This is particularly important if your official event registration is located elsewhere, which will most likely be the case.To add a URL, click ‘Show Additional Fields.’ 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:last_img read more

How Use Storytelling to Cut Through the B2B Content Clutter [Infographic]

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 Apr 8, 2014 2:00:00 PM, updated February 01 2017 Storytelling Topics:center_img The internet is a busy, busy place. Every day people all over the world are publishing more and more content — and somehow you’ve got to make your content stand out from it the rest.Luckily, there are lots of ways you can try to get noticed online. Maybe you decide to game the system with Upworthy-style headlines. Or maybe you offer search-engine friendly content. Or maybe you develop a passionate, engaged community that shares all of your content like crazy. Or maybe, you tell great stories that make people come back again and again and again. If you decide to do that last option — tell great stories — and need some help getting started, check out the infographic below by LookBookHQ and Beutler Ink. Keep reading to discover some compelling stats about how people consume content online, and get some tips for using storytelling to make your content stand out.How Use Storytelling to Cut Through the B2B Content Clutter Save Save5 Tweetable Takeaways”79% of people scan the web instead of reading word by word.”  “Professionals spend 51% of their time managing information instead of acting on it.”  “Every 60 seconds, 700,000 Google searches are performed, 60 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube, and 168 million emails are sent.”  “Blog posts with videos are linked to 3X more than text-only posts.”   “90% of surveyed professionals admit to having thrown away information without reading it.”  How do you use storytelling in your marketing? Share your experience with us in the comments. last_img read more

12 Inspirational Writing Tips From History’s Greatest Authors [SlideShare]

first_img Writing Skills Originally published Apr 2, 2014 4:00:00 PM, updated February 01 2017 Topics: This post originally appeared on the Insiders section of Inbound Hub. To read more content like this, subscribe to Insiders.We’ve all been there — staring back and forth between an empty, glowing white screen and the clock as your deadline crawls ever closer. Would it help to know you’re not alone? Probably not.But even the world’s greatest authors have had trouble starting, finishing, and doing everything in between with their writing. So when it comes to writing tips, they certainly have their opinions. Here are twelve of them, written in a way that only they could.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 Great Quotes on Writing from History’s Greatest Authors from StratusInteractive1) William Allen White – Journalist/News Editor“Substitute damn every time you’re inclined to write very; your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be.”Though often mistakenly referenced as a quote by Mark Twain, White knows that adverbs can be dangerous if used overbearingly (see what I did there?). Very and similar words can bog a sentence down, and are often used where they shouldn’t be.Most experienced writers do their best to avoid them. Was that memo you just read very important, or important — either way, the message remains the same. As Stephen King has said, “the road to hell is paved with adverbs,” and most of us would be hard-pressed to disagree.2) Ernest Hemingway – Author, Nobel Prize Winner“The first draft of everything is shit.”Nothing is perfect, and with writing it’s no different. Things rarely work out the way you want on the first go, whether it’s writing, art, music — anything. It takes practice, and constant checks and balances to produce a well-rounded piece, as first drafts are meant to be experimented with.If you’re sticking with the first draft, you’re effectively saying Eh, good enough, so remember to be honest with yourself. In the end, you know your audience will voice their opinions, so make it harder for them to voice the negative ones.3) Stephen King – Author The Shining, The Dark Tower Series“If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time — or the tools — to write. Simple as that.”Reading and writing go hand in hand (I’m on fire right now). They belong together, and if you don’t actively read, you’re actively limiting your vocabulary and breadth of experience. As human beings, we never stop growing or learning, so if you’re a writer who doesn’t read … well that’s like being a cook who can’t taste. Do yourself a favor and pick up a book and read to learn new diction, or better yet, a new perspective on something. You can only experience so much in your life, but reading opens you to countless settings, experiences, and points of view.4) Maya Angelou – Author, Poet“What I try to do is write. I may write for two weeks ‘the cat sat on the mat, that is that, not a rat.’ And it might be just the most boring and awful stuff. But I try. When I’m writing, I write. And then it’s as if the muse is convinced that I’m serious and says, ‘Okay. Okay. I’ll come.’”Some of the greatest ideas come from accidents. I’m astonished by how many times I’ve accidentally hit gold as a result of throwing my thoughts on a blank piece of paper and free-writing to empty my mind. The trick is to spend 15-30 minutes a day just writing. It doesn’t matter who, what, when, where, or why — as Angelou says, just write. You’ll be surprised what you can get out of yourself.Worst-case scenario? You become a better writer.5) Harper Lee – Author To Kill A Mockingbird“I would advise anyone who aspires to a writing career that before developing his talent he would be wise to develop a thick hide.”This one’s pretty self-explanatory. Any writer knows that thick skin comes with the territory, but not only with your audience. When you’re collaborating with coworkers or clients on a piece of writing, it’s best to take the ‘no pride of ownership’ route. The goal, after all, is to produce the best writing possible and being able to handle a healthy dose of criticism — or welcome it for that matter — is imperative. Not being able to handle this has ruined many would-be writers’ careers before they got a chance to show what they’re made of.6) J.K. Rowling – Author Harry Potter Series“Sometimes the ideas just come to me. Other times I have to sweat and almost bleed to make ideas come. It’s a mysterious process, but I hope I never find out exactly how it works.”Good writing can’t always be forced. It’s like trying to remember something that you can’t — the more you try, the harder it is, and taking a break can give your mind the refresh it needs to get back on track. Like I said earlier, sometimes you accidentally happen down a path that you would never be at if you had tried to force it. Writer’s block happens to everyone, from sixth graders to best sellers, so stick with it.7) Mark Twain – Author The Adventures of Tom Sawyer“The difference between the almost right word and the right word is really a large matter — ’tis the difference between the lightning bug and the lightning.”Sometimes there’s only one way of saying something, and when you can find the perfect way of articulating it, the impact on the reader will be that much more powerful. As any writer can attest, finding the perfect way of illustrating a picture with words can take hours — even days or months. It may seem insignificant at the time but you only get one chance before your work is published, so make sure it’s the way you want it then, not later.8) Thomas Jefferson – Author Declaration of Independence, President“The most valuable of all talents is that of never using two words when one will do.”This one hits home, doesn’t it? It’s also pretty self-explanatory. Over-explaining is exhausting for everyone, so if you’re able to narrow your difficult thoughts or sentences into a concise one-liner, why take time to fluff it up? Cut the fluff.9) George R.R. Martin – Author A Song of Ice and Fire (Game of Thrones)“Writing is like sausage making in my view. You’ll all be happier in the end if you just eat the final product without knowing what’s gone into it.”George R.R. Martin wrote this on his blog, letting his readers know he’s not one of those writers who has to tell everyone what he’s been writing, and how much he completes each day. It doesn’t matter how you get to the end, all that matters is who’s reading it and if they’re enjoying it.This is important, because too many writers today worry about the process, but sometimes, there isn’t a strict process to adhere to. The more you write, the more you’ll find you have to say. It doesn’t matter how many times you’ve changed a line, or word — the only one your audience will remember is the one you chose to use last.10) F. Scott Fitzgerald – Author The Great Gatsby“Writers aren’t people exactly. Or, if they’re any good, they’re a whole lot of people trying so hard to be one person.”Writers need to be everyone. That’s the task they embody — the best writers know how to get inside the heads of their audience, and the voice they’re trying to portray. They’re able to cut away from the norm or common denominator to give their topic a well-rounded appeal. F. Scott Fitzgerald was able to do just that by getting in the head of Gatsby narrator Nick Caraway, without which, the novel would never work. Goes to show you that the little things matter, and connecting to your audience is paramount.11) Neil Gaiman – Author The Graveyard Book, Coraline“The main rule of writing is that if you do it with enough assurance and confidence, you’re allowed to do whatever you like. So write your story as it needs to be written. Write it honestly, and tell it as best you can. I’m not sure there are any other rules. Not ones that matter.”Writing is tricky. On the one hand, like Gaiman says, there are no rules. You can write anyway you want to. On the other hand, there are a lot of rules, so it generally helps to play it straight down the middle.The key word here is honestly. Writing honestly is one of the most powerful ways of affecting your audience, instilling trust in your words and more importantly, your ideas. All writers run into difficult comments or criticisms, but if you can look in the mirror after it all and be proud that you tackled the subject in an honest, confident way, you’ve done your job.12) William Faulkner – Author As I Lay Dying“Don’t be a writer; be writing.”This is one of the shortest, most powerful quotes there is on writing from the late, great, William Faulkner. Too often, writers focus on the person behind the story, but great writing doesn’t translate into how many published works you’ve created. As a writer, you need to be writing constantly in order to hone your craft.The simpler explanation: If you aren’t writing, you’re not a writer. It’s not about your title, but your actions.last_img read more

10 Tips for Getting Long-Term Traffic to Your Content

first_img Topics: Link Building Originally published Jun 1, 2015 6:00:00 AM, updated February 01 2017 Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Most of us publish blog posts the same way. We spend tons of time writing posts and optimizing them for search and social media. We then hit publish. We’ll excitedly watch as we see a burst of new traffic to our site … then get disappointed as we see the post’s popularity peter off. It stinks, right? Luckily, there are some things you can do to extend the shelf life of our content. In this post, we’re going to look at 10 essential techniques for making your content thrive beyond the initial publish-date promotion.10 Techniques for Keeping Your Content Alive Longer1) Brainstorm evergreen topics.Evergreen content is content that stands the test of time. It either covers a topic that will be just as applicable five years from now or one that can be easily updated to stay relevant. “The Essential Cheat Sheet of Cover Photo Sizes” is a great example of this. It’s a post that will stand the test of time because cover photos will be an essential part of social media profiles for years to come, and it is easy to update when a particular network’s cover photo size changes.So how can you determine what evergreen topics to create for your business? You can start by analyzing topics that you have published in the past to see how well they have continued to attract traffic.To do this, dive into your website’s analytics. When you look at your last thirty days worth of traffic, identify which pieces of content not published recently are driving significant traffic. These are evergreen posts. You can use them as inspiration for coming up with additional evergreen content ideas for your business.Here’s a snapshot of the analytics for the When I Work blog to show you what this can look like:(Before you go any further from here, you might want to visit these pieces of evergreen content to make sure they are fully up-to-date, accurate, and valuable to visitors — this post can show you how to do that. Also make sure that your calls to action are current in each of these pieces of content so you can turn visitors into conversions.)For those who do not have evergreen content just yet, there are some additional ways to get inspiration. The first is to use tools like Google Trends. Start by typing in a keyword or phrase that relates to your business. This tool will show you the trend in searches for that keyword or phrase.If you see the graph going upward, you can be confident that people are still interested in that topic, and therefore, it can be a good base for your evergreen content. Next, you can take that keyword or phrase and enter it in Google AdWords Keyword Planner to see related ideas that can be turned into content based on search volume. (HubSpot customers: You can use the Keyword App to brainstorm and track your keywords, too.)Why are keywords so important for your evergreen content? It’s simple. When you’re not actively promoting your content, your main source of traffic will likely be organic search. Therefore, you want to make sure your content is optimized for keywords and phrases that are and will be searched for often.2) Research promotable content.While organic search traffic will keep your evergreen piece of content alive, you still want to give it an initial and continued burst of traffic from promotion. There are several ways you can determine if your evergreen content ideas are going to promotion-worthy. For starters, you can take your primary keyword or phrase and enter it in BuzzSumo to see the social popularity of content based on that topic.You should be able to look through the top pieces of content to determine which ones would make for great evergreen content inspiration with the confidence that a similar topic would be popular.Next, you will want to look at the linkability of your proposed evergreen topic idea. Do this by searching for content that already ranks well in search results with your keyword or phrase. SEMrush allows you to search for a keyword or phrase and see the top pages ranking for it in organic search.You can click links to older pieces of content related to your keyword or phrase to see the backlinks for that piece of content. Pro members of SEMrush can export this list and potentially reach out to webmasters who have linked to an older article to let them know about their newer, comprehensive piece of content. Once you’ve taken social sharing and link earning opportunities into account, you will want to look for direct ways to promote your content. One way is through Q&A networks like Quora. You can search your keyword or phrase to find people who ask questions about the topic.In addition to further validating the importance of the topic you plan to create content around, it gives you further avenues to promote your content once it is published. You can simply create an account on Quora (if you don’t have one already), go to the questions you would like to answer once your content has been published, and save that question to answer for later.3) Enrich your content with mixed media, and optimize it for sharing.As you are developing your evergreen content, you will want to include elements that make people want to share it — and make it easy for them to do so. For starters, you can use tools like Canva to create images that people can use to share your post on social media.To further boost the value of your content, you can use Google Forms or HARO to collect quotes from industry experts or influencers about your topic. Then, you can implement tools like CoSchedule’s Click to Tweet to create beautiful tweet boxes that encourages readers to tweet those quotes.You can also enhance your entire piece of content for optimal sharing with tools like Ivy by Filament. This tool allows readers to highlight any piece of content on the page and share it via Twitter, Facebook, or email.4) Plan your outreach strategy.Beyond social media, search, and Q&A marketing, outreach is your best friend when it comes to making sure your content goes the distance. Best of all, you don’t have to blindly send out requests in hopes that someone will like your content. You can instead plan to reach out to the people you know will like your content.You can approach outreach in a couple of ways. First, you can use BuzzSumo as mentioned earlier to see the influencers who tweeted a related piece of content.The only downside to this approach is that you only get the user’s Twitter handle. This means that you will have to either research the person to find additional contact information or only have the ability to tweet them when you publish your content. Alternatively, you can use pay for services like ContentMarketer.io to find the best recipients for your outreach efforts. It allows you to enter a URL of a similar piece of content to see the Twitter handles and email addresses of influencers likely to share your content.You can also use this tool to find people who may be interested in contributing quotes for your content to enhance its value.By researching your top outreach recipients ahead of publishing your content, you will have everything lined up to make sure that your content promotion goes off without a hitch. 5) Write your promotional-phase content.At this stage, you are ready to craft your promotional content. First, you will want to write 25 additional headlines for your content. This is the strategy that Upworthy uses to create viral content headlines. The theory is that when you try to generate many headlines for your content, you will likely come up with a couple of valuable gems out of the rough. Those gems can be used to A/B test the content headlines for email and social media updates.If you struggle to come up with headlines in general, take inspiration from HubSpot’s Blog Topic Generator. It will suggest five headlines to start with based on your keyword or phrase. If you scroll down and sign up for more, it will give you a spreadsheet with hundreds of additional headlines. Just plug in your keyword or phrase and get inspired.Next, you will want to take your best headlines and craft some social media status updates around them. In addition to sharing your content with alternative headlines, you can change the format of those headlines to make them form questions instead of statements. So instead of tweeting “10 Great Ways to Use Inbound Marketing,” you would have “Can you list 10 ways to use inbound marketing?” You can schedule these to promote your content across your social networks over the course of months using your social media management tools.After your headlines and social media updates, you will be ready to write your outreach emails for all of the influencers you found in step #4. Your outreach emails should consist of three stages: the initial outreach, the follow up if you don’t hear from the influencer (which you can track with tools like Sidekick), and the thank you for when the influencer shares your content.6) Know when to publish and promote.Timing is everything when it comes to the initial promotional period. Though there are many studies out there that tell you when the best time of day is to publish and promote your content, you need to figure out what works best for your business.  First, you should look in your analytics to see the best day is to publish your blog content. If you’re a HubSpot customer, you can export data from your Sources Report to determine which day is best for traffic. If you use Google analytics, you can set up a custom report to figure this out, too.Your Facebook Page Insights can help you find the best time to share your post on Facebook based on when your fans are online.SocialBro allows you to see when your followers are online as well as when you can receive the most exposure for your tweets by day and by time.You can also export your email analytics and sort the columns to determine the best days and times to send emails to your subscribers for the highest open and clickthrough rates.Putting all of these analytics together should help you find the best days and times to publish and promote your content.7) Finalize your promotion plan.Now that you’ve done all of your research, you are ready to finalize your game plan for publishing and promoting your content. You can do this in a simple checklist format or using tools such as Trello to organize all of the steps you plan to take once your post goes live.It’s important to note specific times and deadlines for each stage of your promotion, along with the specific people involved in the promotion, such as your social media manager and email manager. That way, no step in the process is left out. 8) Plan to go “all in” on the day you publish.The biggest day of promotion is the day that your content goes live. This is the day that your first social media updates will go out, an email about your post is sent to your list, and your outreach emails are sent out. The first couple of days after your content is published will be the days you engage with your readers and influencers. Be prepared to thank people on social media who share your content, reply to comments on your blog and social networks, and reply to any email responses you receive from subscribers and influencers. Also be sure to follow up with any influencers that have not opened or replied to your outreach.If you’re not seeing the traffic you expect from the start, you may want to invest in some social advertising to promote your posts on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn to the right audiences so you can drum up more traffic and social shares. The more engagement people see on content, the more likely they are to engage as well. 9) Hit the Q&A networks, forums, and communities.Remember the questions you researched in #2? If you haven’t gone back to answer those, now is the time. Also look for questions that you can answer with your content on other Q&A networks, forums, and communities. Depending on your industry, these can include Quora, Slack, Inbound.org, Growth Hacker, BizSugar, Reddit, and other similar networks.You can also expand community promotion to related groups on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google+. Most groups have a search feature that allow you to find the right questions to answer — use those searches to tastefully promote your content.This allows you to promote your great piece of content without being considered a spammer. Just be sure to review the group rules first — some do not allow link sharing under any circumstance, even if your content is the perfect answer to a question.10) Repurpose, reshare, and reintroduce.Once the initial promotion has ended, it’s time to implement the 3 R’s: repurpose, reshare, and reintroduce. These three tactics will ensure that your content doesn’t just go live on your blog and die, but rather live on in multiple formats across the web.For example, you can turn key points from your content into slides and upload them to SlideShare. You can turn the slides into a slideshow and upload it as a video to YouTube. You can summarize key points and publish it to your LinkedIn profile through LinkedIn Publisher. You can talk through your content and upload it as a podcast. You can syndicate your content on relevant publications (such as Social Media Today for social media topics). The possibilities are endless.The 3 R’s will allow you to gain new exposure for your content on a variety of different networks. Best of all, you can link back to your original piece of content that inspired all of the repurposed pieces so people can see the full piece of content.If you follow the 10 techniques outlined in this post, you will be on the way to having content that drives traffic to your website, engagement to your social channels, and leads to your business long after you publish it.What steps do you take to make sure that your each piece of content you invest in stands the test of time? Share with us in the comments.last_img read more

5 Key Digital Marketing Hires Every Publisher Needs to Make

first_imgPublishers should be natural leaders in content marketing. Providing high quality, authoritative content is already your stock in trade. While quality content is a fundamental requirement of successful digital marketing, it’s not enough in and of itself.You also need to develop, promote, distribute, and monitor compelling digital content campaigns for you, and your advertisers. These needs have spawned new marketing roles. Ready to grow your team in the right direction?Here Are Five Hires Key to Your Publication’s Digital Marketing Success:Social Media SpecialistYou need a social media presence to distribute your content and grow your audience. Since social media is often the first line of interaction with your audience, it’s become too important (and potentially risky) to leave this role to the interns.Your content marketing team will provide the core fuel, your content. Yet there’s so much more to social media than just posting links to your publication’s content. Your social media specialist will often have to react in real time — whether it’s to report on fast-breaking industry news, respond to people who expect an immediate response, or share other authoritative content. Social media requires constant monitoring and interaction to be effective. Remember that accuracy, authenticity, and objectivity are the cornerstones upon which you’ll build your publication’s reputation for credibility and authority.Skills needed: Proficient writer, early adopter, quick learner, personable nature, good judgment, familiarity with each social media channel’s policies, conversant with intellectual property (copyrights, trademarks, etc.) and privacy laws as well as applicable FTC regulations, and a firm grasp on your company’s voice and communications policies.Marketing AnalystContent marketing is filled with metrics and data. Expert analysis of that data allows your marketing team to make good decisions. Having someone on-staff who can turn your data into knowledge with actionable insights is a huge advantage before, during, and after any campaign.Your marketing data specialist should help managers improve campaign performance with their analysis by identifying the strategies and tactics worth prioritizing, as well as those that need revision. Content marketing is a long haul process that requires continuous monitoring and testing of iterations to find the right formula for success. Data analysis informs those choices.Skills needed: Statistical analysis, comfortable with software tools, strong reporting and presentation skills. You may want a specialist already proficient in the marketing data platform you’re using. Communication skills are a must if you want to translate data into action. Managers can’t act on what they don’t understand.Marketing Automation SpecialistWith the right software in place, marketing automation, or workflows, enable you to mine the richness in your contact database and optimize it with your website and email. They help make your content creation and distribution repeatable, scalable, and cost efficient. With the proper automation specialist and software, you can:Deliver a customized experience to a visitor based on what they do on your website.Create dynamic static and smart lists used in various marketing automation campaigns that go beyond simple email blasts such as product alerts and newsletters, to tailored emails that reflect a lead’s behaviors and preferences, synced in time with where the lead is within their buying journey.Skills needed: Strong strategic background and ability to map out complex procceses, analysis, logic, superb attention to detail, project management, interpersonal skills, comprehensive understanding of audience segmentation and familiarity/light experience with web development. If your company uses marketing automation and content optimization systems, then your workflow specialist should be an expert in them as well.Content Marketing ManagerYour content marketing campaign strategist oversees content creation and the people developing it. His or her overarching responsibility is to recognize the content themes and channels that meet the needs of the campaign, uncover any content gaps, and fill them. This person should work closely with your Marketing Analyst to direct changes to the content made in the wake of reporting, and enforce the quality of the content produced. He or she should ensure that all published digital content is search-engine optimized.Skills needed: Project management, SEO, strong-writer/editor, strategic thinking, and interpersonal skills. You’ll recognize many of these skills as needed by any traditional campaign manager.But there is a new layer of skills needed in a digital content marketing campaign strategist:Detailed understanding of a complete persona, more than just an audience memberInstinct for identifying digital content mediums and topics compelling to that personaAbility to keep up with the evolving opportunities and challenges of the digital content marketing approachIntegrated Campaign Project ManagerA holistic content marketing campaign promotes and distributes content through multiple channels. Think of them as your human-API, communicating and tying the different pieces of your marketing together. These channels may cover both traditional and digital media. Your integrated campaign project manager coordinates all the aspects of a multi-channel approach, including:Customizing the content across the appropriate channels and the targeted personaOwning the campaign calendar setting out the where, when, and what of each campaign elementMonitoring the contact database to avoid list fatigueTracking the performance of specific channelsManaging the media budgetSkills needed: A Deep understanding of different media channels and their purpose, project and budget management, data analysis, and presentation skills. Your integrated campaign manager should also have expertise in any marketing automation tools being used. There’s no set formula for marketing success, but these roles are a great place to start when recruiting for your company. Even if you don’t have the budget to onboard five new hires, look for people with traits that mirror those mentioned in two-or three of the skill sets listed above. No matter where you net out when building your team, keeping these potential positions in mind will help you propel your digital publishing efforts forward. Marketing Jobs Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Originally published Jul 13, 2015 7:00:00 AM, updated February 01 2017 Topics:last_img read more

A Simple Guide to Mastering the Basics of Effective Social Media Advertising

first_imgHave you ever had any formal or informal paid advertising training or education? If you have, you’re one of the lucky few.Most marketers are presented with a chunk of their company’s marketing budget one day and told to “run some ads.” Don’t let the costs scare you, paid social advertising is incredibly measurable, and can produce real ROI. From managing your budget to choosing channels and measuring success, learn how to get started with paid advertising.1) How Do I Manage My Budget?One of the most daunting things about social media advertising is the fact that you are dropping cold hard cash on your campaigns. There are also a huge amount of channels and ad formats you can use — don’t get stuck in the details. Before launching your ad campaigns, align your marketing objectives with your advertising strategy.If your goal is to drive traffic and leads, top of the funnel content such as blog posts, free tools, or meatier content gated behind a lead generation form should be used. This type of promotion is more light touch and cheaper.If your objective is to convert leads further down the funnel to marketing qualified leads for your sales team or customers, middle and bottom of the funnel content like free trials or purchase offers should be promoted via retargeting. This type of promotion is higher commitment than reading a blog post, so it will be more expensive.Use this paid advertising budget template to map out your costs before your launch and update it throughout avoid end of the month panic!2) What Channels Should I Advertise On?The landscape of paid social advertising is constantly changing; new technologies, channels and formats are released weekly.There is no one size fits all answer to the channels you should leverage. Ultimately, testing different channels is the best way to determine what works to meet your objectives.There are many social networks you can advertise on, but here are four of the most common:FacebookWith over 1.4 billion users and over 900 million visits a day — Facebook has the largest audience available, which makes it a fit for businesses large and small. But volume is not everything in social ads. The real advantage of Facebook lies in the amount of granular data available to target users.Demographic Targeting:You can target based on education, employment, household, and lifestyle details. Categories include location, gender, age, language, education, ethnic affinity, generation, household composition, life events, politics, relationship status, parental status, and work. Zero in on whoever your audience may be: friends of couples who recently got engaged, new fathers, postgraduate students, women who work in engineering — the possibilities are endless.Interest Targeting: Allows advertisers to target people based on their interests, activities, pages liked, and closely related topics. Top level categories include business, entertainment, family & relationships, fitness & wellness, food & drink, shopping, fashion, sports, hobbies, and technology. The level of detail available means you can target very specific interests like bodybuilding, tattoos, or heavy metal music.Behavior Targeting: Target based on purchase behavior or intent, device usage and more. Categories include digital activities, expats, travel, mobile device users, and events. Behaviors like Chrome users, Facebook Page administrators, and business travelers can be used to segment your audience.Custom Audiences: Custom audiences allow you to layer Facebook data on top of your business data. Advertisers can upload lists of customer (or potential customer) email addresses, phone numbers, or user ids and target these specific lists of people. Pixel based targeting of website or webpage visits is also possible. Advertisers can create “lookalike” audiences from your custom audiences to target similar Facebook users who have a higher propensity to convert.InstagramInstagram is growing in popularity with advertisers every day and presents a huge new opportunity for anyone running social advertising campaigns. Now boasting 400 million users, as of April 2016, Instagram is a more popular channel than Twitter or Snapchat.Advertisers must use their Facebook ad account to create Instagram ad campaigns. In fact, the option to promote your ad on Instagram only appears at the advert set level in Facebook:Despite the fact that you can easily select the same ads to be shown on Facebook and Instagram at this level, you should keep your ads separate. The two platforms are very different and you should think about how the audience and experience differs.Instagram is a visually driven platform, so make sure your ads look authentic and fit in with the user-generated content that exists in your audience’s feed.Instagram is often seen as better fit for lifestyle and creative industries like fashion, food and fitness. Don’t let that assumption deter you from trying Instagram, B2B brands have seen success, too.TwitterTwitter’s ad platform is not as advanced as Facebook. Demographic and interest based targeting options are available, but they are more limited than other platforms.Demographic Targeting: Basic options only available here — age, language and location.Behavioral Targeting: Behavioral targeting exists for the U.S. only at the moment. Options include retail, lifestyle, finance, technology, travel, and more.Interest Targeting:Categories include health, beauty, business, careers, hobbies, society, sport, and more. One thing to keep in mind — if you were promoting a piece of content on SEO, the closest you could get is the Marketing topic as a whole. The options are not as granular as other platforms.Follower Targeting: Targeting specific Twitter accounts and followers means that you can build lists of industry or regional influencers to create niche audiences.Keyword Targeting:One of Twitter’s major advantages is the ability to target specific keywords and hashtags. Advertisers can target people who have tweeted using a specific hashtag with their ads. This allows very specific, targeted content to be delivered to people who are actively engaging with a topic on Twitter.LinkedInLinkedIn is an obvious choice for B2B companies due to its professional user base. If you segment your audience based on their professional information, like role, company, industry, etc., you can be very confident in relying on LinkedIn data to be up-to-date and relevant. If professional information is not an important part of your buyer persona, LinkedIn probably isn’t the best fit for you.While the ad platform is not as advanced as others in some respects (due to the lack of behavioral and interest targeting), the professional data is hugely valuable for certain industries.Targeting: Criteria available includes language, location, industry, company, job title/function, and membership for specific LinkedIn groups.Costs tend to be higher on LinkedIn than other networks, but conversions and quality can be higher than other networks and can provide valuable leads for some industries.For example, here at HubSpot, we promoted an industry-specific piece of content — The Little Book of Inbound for Finance Marketers — on both LinkedIn and Facebook. The cost per click (CPC) of the LinkedIn campaign was 4x the Facebook CPC. Clicks cost a lot on LinkedIn, but what about actual conversions? LinkedIn traffic converted 52% better than Facebook traffic and LinkedIn conversions were half the cost of Facebook conversions. LinkedIn was the clear winner in terms of targeting and channel “fit” in this case.3) How to Create Ads that ConvertMake It Relevant:Social advertising is different to Adwords search advertising. Your Adwords campaigns are centered around demand fulfillment — targeting specific keywords that people are searching for right now. Social advertising is about demand generation, fulfilling a need your audience has even though they are not actively searching for it.Let’s take this example — this ad appeared on my Facebook newsfeed:I am training for a marathon at the moment, so this is totally relevant to me! I was not actively searching for marathon training tips, but the advertisers have clearly targeted interests and demographics (it’s also a female centric ad) to present me with content that will stand out to me when scrolling through my newsfeed.Make It VisualThe image is often to most important element of a social ad — it’s responsible for capturing your audience’s attention when they are browsing a social network.Take a look at the two below Instagram ads:The first is from DaPulse and the second from Squarespace. While the DaPulse ad has a beautiful design, it’s clearly an ad, and doesn’t quite fit in with the visually focused Instagram feed. The Squarespace ad captures my attention. It looks like it belongs in my feed and I’m interested in what it is about before reading any copy. The image suits the visual theme that exists on Instagram and elicits and emotive reaction from the user.Create Copy That ConvertsAd copy is limited and you have to make every character count, when you are writing your ad copy make sure to:Be compellingCommunicate your value propositionBe ActionableTake this example from Inbound.org:  Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Be compelling : I’m going to enjoy life more? Sign me up!Communicate your value proposition: The community of intelligent marketers is what makes inbound.org an incredible resource.Be Actionable : Asking a direct question ”Will you?” challenges me to take action.Some days it’s tough to write compelling copy – when I get stuck, I follow this process for inspiration: Use Answerthepublic to map out questions people are asking about your topic.Use BuzzSumo to find content that people are sharing around your topic.Read Buzzfeed to draw inspiration from the amazingly clickable headlines. 4) How Do You Measure Success?Paid social advertising has a multitude of metrics you can (and should) monitor. Impressions, clickthrough rate (CTR), cost per click (CPC), likes, shares, frequency, relevance, and much more. Since this can be overwhelming when you’re new to social media advertising, it’s vital to make sure you are focusing in on the metrics that matter most to your campaigns.The three most important metrics to monitor that tell you how your campaigns are really performing are clickthrough rate, cost per conversion and conversion rate.Clickthrough Rate (CTR)This is a measure of the number of clicks your ad has to the number of impressions it received (clicks/Impressions). Your CTR indicates the relevance of your content to your audience and the quality of the traffic. If you have a low CTR, try narrowing your targeting or creating new ad designs.Cost Per Conversion (CPC)Every campaign should have one core conversion goal (signups, app install, downloads, visits to blog post). To calculate, divide the amount of money you have spent divided by the number of conversions resulted. This gives you views to whether your campaigns are profitable and allows you to project future spend.Conversion RateLooking at the conversion rate of the visits to your landing page from your ads gives a good idea of the quality of the clicks you are receiving and the performance of your landing page. You can also benchmark your social ad traffic against the conversion rate of traffic from other sources.The paid social advertising landscape is always evolving, to be a superstar paid marketer you need to be reactive to new channels, tactics and formats on an ongoing basis. This field is mastered through research, experience and testing – not through formal learning environments. Ready to start creating your own social advertising campaigns? Topics:center_img Originally published May 25, 2016 10:30:00 AM, updated August 09 2017 Social Media Advertisinglast_img read more

A Brief History of Snapchat

first_img Don’t forget to share this post! “Snapchat isn’t about capturing the traditional Kodak moment. It’s about communicating with the full range of human emotion — not just what appears to be pretty or perfect.”Snapchat CEO and co-founder Evan Spiegel wrote this in the first post on the Snap Inc. — then Snapchat — blog back in 2012, when users could only send photos, and only on iOS devices. Since Spiegel’s blog post, Snapchat has already had a huge impact on social media and content marketing.Ephemeral, or disappearing, messaging has skyrocketed in popularity since Snapchat was introduced. In fact, since Snapchat’s arrival to the social media scene, Facebook and Instagram have launched their own versions of some of Snapchat’s most popular features. We’ve predicted that competition will continue to grow between Snapchat and other popular social networking apps as all the landscape continues to innovate new products to distinguish from one another.Download our free Snapchat guide to learn how to use it for your business. In this post, we’ll dive into the full history of Snapchat’s journey from photo sharing app to major social player. What Is Snapchat?Snapchat is a one-to-one and group messaging app that lets users send photo, video, and text messages that disappear after several seconds. Roughly 150 million people use Snapchat every day, and they consume around 800 hours of video per second. That’s like watching every episode of “Game of Thrones” 13 times, per second. In addition to its messaging features, Snapchat features Stories (photo or video messages that can be replayed for 24 hours), Memories (saved photos for sharing later), and stickers to embellish messages. The app has been widely adopted, especially among teenagers and Millennials: 26% of people surveyed between the ages of 12 and 24 said they used Snapchat the most, second only to Facebook.Now that we’re all up to speed, let’s dive into some of Snapchat’s major developments and achievements over the last five years — and what we might expect from five more.The History of Snapchat2011: Snapchat, then Picaboo, launchesSpiegel and his co-founder, Bobby Murphy, told Forbes that they met at Stanford University and created Picaboo, the first version of Snapchat, in the spring of 2011. They wanted to create an app that would send photos that would eventually disappear, and the initial Picaboo app was launched in the iOS App Store in July — to little fanfare.This led them to integrate a workaround solution to the screenshot problem: Users could take screenshots on their iPhones, rendering the disappearing effect of Picaboo messages useless. Instead, they built a notification so users would be able to see if someone took a screenshot of their disappearing photo.In September, Spiegel and Murphy rebranded the app as Snapchat, added the ability to caption photos, and relaunched in the iOS App Store. They focused on the app’s technological innovations more than branding and marketing to make the experience more organic and cool than traditional advertising. In case you’ve forgotten, here’s what early snaps looked like back then:Source: Forbes2012: Video arrivesIn May 2012, Spiegel wrote Snapchat’s first blog post and set the tone for what users could expect from the app in the coming years. “We’re building a photo app that doesn’t conform to unrealistic notions of beauty or perfection but rather creates a space to be funny, honest or whatever else you might feel like at the moment you take and share a Snap,” he wrote.In October, Snapchat for Android launched in the Google Play store, which helped increase its user base and contributed to the next big milestone in October. After a full year in operation, Snapchat users were sending 20 millions snaps per day, or roughly 25 snaps per second.By December, Snapchat users were sending 50 million snaps per day, and the app rolled out an update that introduced the ability to record and send 10-second videos. The best part? Instead of having to toggle between two different photo and video recording modes, as with camera phones, users could simply hold down the photo capture button to record a video.2013-2014: Stories and ChatIn October 2013, Snapchat launched Stories — an ephemeral narrative of snaps that users could post for their friends to view for 24 hours. Brands and users started using Stories to share a fuller picture of what they were up to while still maintaining the hallmark disappearing factor.In 2014, Snapchat ramped up innovation and launched a slew of new features and updates. First, it introduced Chat in May, the messenger that still featured disappearing messages via text, in addition to the ability to see when your friend was “here” in the chat window so users could start a live video chat. Next, Our Story was rolled out in June, offering Snapchat users around the world to contribute photos and videos to a public feed of snaps from popular events.Snapchat rolled out Geofilters in July that let users customize their snaps with filters and embellishments according to what city they were snapping from.October marked the beginning of Snapchat advertising, and ads started appearing in users “Recent Updates” section alongside all of their friends’ stories. Users had the option to skip viewing the ads if desired, and like other Stories, they disappeared after 24 hours. Here’s what their first ad, for the movie “Ouija,” looked like:Source: AdweekIn November, Snapchat worked with Square to create Snapcash, which allowed users to easily send and receive money directly from Snapchat into their bank accounts. Snapchat took another step into the world of monetization with Community Geofilters in December 2014. Users could create their own Geofilters or purchase branded filters for their business or sponsored event.2015: Discover and LensesIn January 2015, Snapchat started offering many new ways for advertisers to earn money from its huge audience — then roughly 75 million users. Snapchat introduced Discover, a new page easily accessible from the Snapchat home screen that featured short-form ad content from a variety of different publishers and channels like Vox, BuzzFeed, CNN, and Food Network. Here’s what it looks like in action:Next, Tap to View was introduced. Where before, users had to hold their fingers on their phone screen to view snaps, now they only had to tap once to start watching. In June, Snapchat rolled out sponsored Geofilters to advertisers who wanted to pay for brand exposure in any given location. Here’s what McDonald’s first sponsored filter looked like:Source: Los Angeles TimesIn September, Snapchat launched the next big thing for avid selfie-takers: Lenses. When users turned their cameras to be self-facing, by holding a finger down on their face, users could choose from a wide variety of Lenses to change their look. From puppy ears to barfing rainbows, selfies got a lot more creative. Check it out below:Source: SnapchatFinally, by December 2015, the Financial Times reported that Snapchat users were watching 6 billion videos per day just three years after video recording was launched on the app.2016: Memories and rebrandingThe year 2016 marked a period of tremendous change and explosive growth for Snapchat. In February, Snapchat rolled out on-demand Geofilters for the entire Snapchat community, allowing users to create filters for parties, weddings, and private events. Next, Snapchat started auto-advancing Snapchat Story plays. If a user started watching one Story and it ended, the next one would automatically begin playing.In April, Snapchat hit a huge milestone when Bloomberg reported it was generating 10 billion video views per day — 2 billion more views per day than Facebook had reported in November 2015. And by June, Snapchat had amassed 150 million daily active users — surpassing Twitter. Snapchat also rolled out more video ads in June — ads that started appearing in between friends’ Stories when users starting watching them.Snapchat Memories were introduced in July, which let users save content on their devicefor later editing and sharing. This change made content less spontaneous and more curious, leaving some marketers wondering in what direction Snapchat was headed. They also introduced a collaboration with Bitstrips to create Bitmoji, a personalized avatar Snapchat users could create and incorporate into their snaps and Stories. Here’s my “hump day” Bitmoji as a Snapchat filter:By August 2016, Snapchat’s competitors for attention in the social media space had started laying down the gauntlet. Instagram unveiled its own version of Stories, and Facebook launched filters and stickers on its photo app.In September, Snapchat rebranded, and the company was now called Snap Inc., parent to Snapchat and Spectacles, a new sunglasses product that let wearers record Snaps in circular format for 360-degree viewing. In response to less-than-favorable reactions to Snapchat Stories auto-advancing, the Story Playlist feature was launched in October. Users could now choose a group of users whose Snaps they wanted to auto-play instead of it happening by default.To add to the fanfare, eMarketer predicted that Snap Inc. would earn $1 billion in advertising revenue in the year 2017, and the introduction of its application program interface (API) certainly supported that claim. With this algorithm, Snap Inc. could sell ad space to third parties automatically instead of relying on a sales team, meaning it could now make more ad dollars, and faster.In November, Snap Inc. filed for a $25 billion initial public offering (IPO), signaling to the world that the company was ready for rapid growth and expansion in the coming years. Additionally, Instagram launched its own version of ephemeral messaging to keep competing with the friendly yellow ghost.Snap Inc.’s final Snapchat innovation in 2016 was the introduction of group messaging in December. Where users previously had to individually select the group of users they wanted to send a particular Snap to, users could now save a group of people to send messages that disappear 24 hours later — just like Stories.What’s Next for Snapchat?We think that ephemeral messaging will continue to grow in popularity, and we’re anticipating continued competition between Instagram and Snapchat, too. Advertisers are already spending more money on social media advertising than on TV ads, and we predict that platforms like Snapchat will continue innovating new ways to serve ads that are useful — and not disruptive — for their audiences.P.S. Want a peek inside our own Snapchat strategy? Follow HubSpot using the handle hubspotinc.What’s your favorite Snapchat feature? Share with us in the comments below. History of Social Media Topics: Originally published Feb 10, 2017 8:00:00 AM, updated October 29 2019last_img read more

Ronaldo rested by Real for Copa del Rey

first_imgCristiano Ronaldo Ronaldo rested for Copa del Rey but Bale makes Real Madrid squad Iain Strachan 19:16 1/4/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Cristiano Ronaldo - cropped Getty Images Cristiano Ronaldo Real Madrid Zinédine Zidane Karim Benzema Marcelo Sergio Ramos Gareth Bale Numancia v Real Madrid Numancia Copa del Rey Zinedine Zidane will not be able to call on the Portuguese superstar for a trip face Numancia, with Sergio Ramos and Luka Modric also left out Cristiano Ronaldo is one of five key players rested by Real Madrid for the Copa del Rey tie against Numancia, while Karim Benzema is sidelined by injury.Ronaldo, Toni Kroos, Luka Modric, Marcelo and Sergio Ramos were excluded from the squad to face the second-tier team in the first leg of the round of 16 at Nuevo Estadio Los Pajaritos on Thursday.Benzema, who has struggled badly for form this season, suffered a hamstring strain in the 3-0 Clasico defeat at home to Barcelona in December and will not be involved. Article continues below 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 Gareth Bale has been picked though, as the Wales international seeks to regain full fitness after battling calf and hamstring issues in an interrupted first half of the 2017-18 campaign. Here’s our 19-man squad for our trip to Soria to face @cdnumancia ! #RMCopa | #HalaMadrid pic.twitter.com/hQ49Upha1I — Real Madrid C.F. (@realmadriden) January 4, 2018 Seeking to reduce Barcelona’s 14-point advantage over them in the table, holders Madrid return to LaLiga action on Sunday at Celta Vigo, who knocked Zinedine Zidane’s team out of last season’s Copa del Rey in the quarter-finals.last_img read more

The Reload: Oklahoma State Offers Texas A&M Pledge

first_imgThe Reload is PFB’s recruiting recap, catching you up to speed with the latest surrounding Oklahoma State recruiting with an ear to the ground for what’s to come.Larry Joubert makes it officialNortheastern Oklahoma A&M offensive lineman Larry Joubert, an addition to the 2017 recruiting class who was added after national signing day, made it official on Tuesday in signing his financial aid agreement with the school. Joubert, originally from Douglass High School, is a 6-foot-4, 265 pound prospect listed as an offensive guard.It’s official! ???? pic.twitter.com/NH1GozL99w— Larry Joubert Jr (@The_Joubert) March 21, 2017Joubert is a bit undersized from a weight perspective, and I have general concerns about whether he will make an immediate impact in his first year. He no doubt has the talent, as Mike Gundy himself made the call to add him after Greg Adkins was released. But couple the fact that he won’t be on campus until the summer with him being undersized, I think that means Rob Glass will have his work cut out for him.OSU offers junior college lineman Badara TraoreThis is the second time Oklahoma State has extended an offer to Traore, a stud junior college prospect who is now with ASA College. OSU offered him last year under Adkins when he was a class of 2017 recruit — but it seems he has re-classified to the 2018 class after having been with Nassau Junior College a season ago.This is where Josh Henson’s feel for the recruiting base and connections with recruits might pay off. Although Adkins is gone, Henson was no doubt part of the process in some capacity, although as an analyst he wasn’t able to make contact. The big man out of Brooklyn has more than 25 offers that includes Arkansas, Maryland, Oregon, etc….I love Traore’s size. At 6-foot-8 and 315 pounds, he has a good frame that has been filled out nicely. And his weight will allow him to translate his talent into an offensive tackle at the next level. Generally when you get a prospect that size, they also weigh 350+. So he has some obvious upside that schools are obviously buying into. His first recruitment process never took (after now learning he re-classified, that makes a lot of sense.) So I’m curious to see if Henson can prove his chops getting to the junior college level as well. He’s already shown he can do it with high school prospects.Oklahoma State offers Texas A&M commitThe Cowboys have had a recent trend of losing verbal pledges to the Aggies, but it seems they are trying to give them a taste of their own medicine in this recruiting class. The OSU staff has offered 2018 wide receiver Montel Parker, a Dickinson (Texas) prospect who commited to A&M at the end of February.Parker also holds offer from Oklahoma and Mississippi State. Just a three-star prospect, Parker is an outside receiver with solid size and potential that he’s likely just scratching the surface of.Texas pass-rusher picks up OSU offerOak Ridge (Texas) pass rusher Joseph Ossai’s big month continued on Tuesday, picking up an OSU offer to go with offers from LSU and Mississippi State this month. Listed as a defensive end with close to 30 Division I offers, Oklahoma State joins the likes of Alabama, Texas A&M, yada yada … you get it. He’s a wanted man. And he is currently not committed to a school, although his in-state Aggies are getting 100 percent of the crystal ball votes according to 247sports. 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

100 Days of Summer: Get to Know No. 18 Jelani Woods

first_imgAs we inch closer to the Cowboys’ season opener, let’s get acquainted with a player that Oklahoma State hopes won’t see the field in 2017.How he got to OSUMike Yurcich once again dipped into the SEC honeypot for a quarterback. With 6-foot-7 Jelani Woods, he got in early on a recruit that was all upside and others took notice. Yurcich had to fend off suitors like Michigan, Louisville and South Carolina but he landed his guy. Woods was drawing interest from several other blue-chip programs before he shut it down and signed with OSU.What he’s done in StillwaterWoods enrolled early so he was able to take part in spring practice and the spring game. He went 0 for 2 in the exhibition which quelled some hype surrounding he and redshirt freshman Keondre Wudtee (1 of 6). But two attempts from a true freshman, in a scrimmage, is not enough to even have an opinion about. The coaching staff was just getting his feet wet and they have big plans for Woods moving forward.AdChoices广告Role in 2017Those plans include everything except casting a shadow on the turf at Boone Pickens Stadium — or any other field. Obviously, Mason Rudolph is the quarterback and if everything goes well, Taylor Cornelius or Keondre Wudtee will just be playing in the second halves against Tulsa, South Alabama and Kansas.Woods could benefit from a year under Coach Glass and Co. to build up his giant frame and the time he’ll get with the coaching staff and Rudolph and Cornelius learning the playbook. If Woods plays in 2017 then something went very, very wrong.Noteworthy stats and highlightsWoods hasn’t made any highlights at OSU yet but here’s a look at some of his high school reel. 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

A Look at OSU’s Position Battles on Defense

first_img–Javarius Barksdale-BlairR-Fr.6-0175 NameClassHeightWeight –Lamarcus MortonFr.6-1165 Kick/Punt ReturnerWith all the playmakers on OSU’s roster, there is really no excuse for us not to see an exciting return or two this season. I have a feeling we’ll see more than that.Tyron Johnson is the first name that comes to mind. He already announced he would be involved in both kick and punt returns. Jalen McCleskey, it appears. will remain in the mix on punts. Expect someone like LD Brown to get a chance as well.If he doesn’t redshirt — I think he will — Chuba Hubbard could showcase his world-class speed in the return game. He’s gotten some burn at the position so far in fall camp. Throw in obvious stud Tylan Wallace or Dillon Stoner or Ja’Ron Wilson. Like I said, the Cowboys have no shortage of playmakers. 1Matt AmmendolaR-So.5-9195 4Madre HarperSo.6-1190 Place KickerThere is some good news on this front. It appears that long-range threat Matt Ammendola has made strides since the start of fall camp. Early in the spring, Mike Gundy said “Philly” was perfect on the long kicks but lacked consistency on the short, intermediate attempts. Reminds me of a certain Heisman candidate.Following OSU’s second fall scrimmage, Gundy talked about Ammendola’s progress.“Matt’s doing good,” said Gundy. “I like the timing of his kicks. Our protection’s been good. He looks comfortable in my opinion. I think he’s developed. It helped that he was kicking last year, even in a kickoff role. I think that kind of helped him through the adjustment of playing in what would be a pressure situation. Kickers are always in pressure situations so I like where he’s at at this time.”Behind the walk-on Ammendola is true freshman Jake McClure, an incoming scholarship kicker who was ranked as the No. 40 kicker in the 2017 class by ESPN and the No. 8 punter by 247 Sports.We know Ammendola has the leg. His one kick attempt last year was good from 53 yards and tied for fourth-best in OSU history. If he can handle the pressure and stay consistent it will go a long way in shoring up a crucial but overlooked need for the Cowboys.Predicted Depth Chart We’ve already looked at three position battles on offense that need to be sorted out this week. Now let’s turn our eyes to defense and special teams.CornerbackIt’s been the most-asked question for Oklahoma State since losing seniors Ashton Lampkin and Lenzy Pipkins last year. How good will Oklahoma State be at cornerback? The mystery increased with senior corners Ramon Richards and Darius Curry moving to safety.After practice on Wednesday, Mike Gundy talked about what he likes about his secondary and why it could be on the right track moving forward.“We’ve had to move guys around back there for a number of years and I think now we’ve finally settled on some young players that can stay there and have the bodies to play that position for a number of years,” said Gundy.AdChoices广告Those bodies are virtually all 6 foot-plus and rangy and athletic — traits needed to cover some of the outside threats Big 12 teams will throw at you.More exciting than their measureables is the actual skill that guys like A.J. Green and Rodarius Williams possess. Glenn Spencer even told PFB that moving Ramon Richards to safety was partially motivated by a desire to get some of these young corners on the field.“Ramon’s all about what’s best for us,” Spencer told PFB. “To get the best 11 on the field, that’s the best move.”Add in Adrian Baker, the most experienced of the bunch, who was slated to contribute on last year’s national championship defense before he got injured. And Madre Harper is aggressive and can make plays as well. Those would be my educated guess for the top four but expect some fluidity on the depth chart.While the coaching staff likes what they’ve seen from their young corners, to expect zero growing pains would be unrealistic and unreasonable. But what we’ve heard from the coaching staff and other players is promising for the corner position moving forward.Predicted Depth Chart 2Jake McClureFr.6-3195 3Matt HockettR-Jr.6-2215center_img –Bryce BalousR-So.5-11185 NameClassHeightWeight 2Rodarius WilliamsR-Fr.6-0180 4Kevin MahonR-Sr.6-0195 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. 1A.J. GreenSo.6-1180 –Malik KearseSr.6-0170 3Adrian BakerSr.5-11180last_img read more

Six-Shooter: Zach Crabtree on McGregor-Mayweather and More

first_imgIntroducing a new series, welcome to the Six-Shooter, a weekly segment with an Oklahoma State athlete where we ask six random, non-sports-related questions to get to know these gals and guys a bit better.Senior offensive tackle Zach Crabtree has been a staple in the Oklahoma State O-line since 2014 when he started eight games as a freshman, but he is far more complex than a nicely cut beard and a football mind.Here is how he faired in this week’s gauntlet of hard-hitting journalism:If you found $1 million in a bag on the side of the road, what would you do with it?“You definitely gotta check and see who the money belongs to. You got to find the source. That’s a lot of money. A million dollars, something’s going on there. I don’t know if I wanna be touching that money. Something went wrong. There could be some dirty stuff going on there.”AdChoices广告Money is not an issue, you have a full range of abilities, but you have a week to live. Where are you going? What are you doing? And who are you spending your last week on Earth with?“I’m going somewhere in the Caribbean. I’ve never been to the Caribbean. I’ve always wanted to. I’m renting a beach house or a hut or something somewhere, and I’m laying up for a week, enjoying the last week and just chillin’ in paradise with some close friends.“My boys (are with me), my family obviously, but definitely my boys just from here. There’s a group of about six of us that have got real close and so we’d probably all be together.“I’d have Mason (Rudolph) with me. I’d have Austin Hays. I’d have Blake Jarwin. We have some other friends that don’t play. I got a boy at Duke. I’d have a close-knit group of friends that I always hang out with.”What’s your favorite cereal?“I’m really a big Special K, Fruit and Yogurt guy. I don’t know if you’ve ever had their Fruit & Yogurt cereal, but it is fantastic. I’m telling ya’ it’s the way to go.“That or Cinnamon Toast Crunch. I can do Cinnamon Toast Crunch.”What is your favorite video game?“Madden. I haven’t played ’17 too much.“Back a couple years ago when I was living with J.W. (Walsh), we used to play Madden nonstop. We would always do three randoms, and you had to pick your random.“I like somebody that does a lot of stuff out of the gun because I like to be able to go up-tempo and pick it apart that way.”When did you know you were a man?“Athletically, probably the first time I ever did a pass set here. I was a true freshman. I got thrown into the fire, and I had to go up against Emmanuel Ogbah as a true freshman. That’ll wake you up in a hurry.“Off the field, probably the first time I got my books and I realized that my athletic ability paid for my opportunity and got me all those books and tuition, so that was probably off the field, that’s when I realized it.”Mayweather or McGregor?“I’m goin’ McGregor.“We had a big debate about this the other day. We had a huge debate about this. I think McGregor’s tougher than (Mayweather) is. The UFC is harder to fight in than boxing. There’s no question about it. You’re looking out for a lot more things, and so you take a leg kick out of it, and now McGregor’s just watching his hands.“And do let Conor McGregor fool you. He wants a knockout. He’s determined. I think he’s probably the best guy that maybe Floyd has fought, talent-wise. He’s strong. He’s tough, and it’s gonna be a little different taking a punch from Conor McGregor than it would (Marcos Maidana) or something. If he connects — that’s the problem is connecting, but if he connects, I think it’s gonna be over.”Bonus: Nickname is “60”After Rudolph wrapped up his media duties, he looked at Crabtree, who was still doing an interview, a few feet away and said, “All right, 60, you ready for lunch.”That’s an awesome nickname. Don’t know if you can beat that as an offensive lineman. 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

Sharks win fifth NTL Men’s Open title

first_imgDrumayne Dayberg-Muir has starred for the SQBD Sharks in their grand final win over the Sydney Scorpions in the Men’s Open final at the 2009 X-Blades National Touch League in Port Macquarie.Muir had a hand in almost all of the Sharks tries as he guided them to their 5th NTL title in this division, with the final score being 10 touchdowns to 8. He was deservedly named Player of the Final, while Sharks were also named the Champion Permit of this year’s NTL.The Sharks were on the scoreboard after just 3 minutes, through Damian Moar, after the Scorpions dropped the ball 5 metres out from the Sharks line.Jonothan Palau leveled the score for the Scorpions in the fifth minute and an Adam Fahim touchdown, off a great Troy Malcolm long ball, giving them the lead for the first time in the game. Aaron Swan hit back for the Sharks, from another Dayberg-Muir pass, to level the score. Two more quick tries to the Sharks at the midway mark of the first half, to Kristopher McMurdy and Troy Skinner, gave the Sharks a 4-2 lead.In the 12th minute, Palau scored his second try for the Scorpions, which included some great acrobatics in the touchdown scoring process, to bring the Scorpions to within one touchdown of the Sharks.In the 13th minute, James Harrington scored next for the Sharks out on the wing, and Ryan Pollock crossed soon after, after another great pass from Dayberg-Muir. The Scorpions had two disallowed tries in the last five minutes of the first half, which cost them dearly.  Ryan Shibashaki scored, through some great team work, to take the lead out four touchdowns.Nathan Wong and Troy Malcolm both scored for the Scorpions in the last three minutes of the first half, to bring the score to 7-5 at half time.The Sharks started the second half of the match with some good defence, and they soon turned this hard work in points, with McMurdy scoring his second touchdown off a scoot from dummy half from Dayberg-Muir .Scorpions’ Drew Davies got sent to the sin bin in the 6th minute, and Leon Skinner from the Sharks capitalised on this, scoring in the next set of six.Scorpions then scored three consecutive tries, to Sam Brisby, Harry Berryman and Davies, to get within one touchdown of the Sharks.Pollock made sure that the Sharks would take out the title with his second touchdown in the 17th minute, set up yet again by Dayberg-Muir, to take the final 10-8.last_img read more

8 Tips for a Mobile-Friendly Nonprofit Website

first_imgThe team here at Network for Good has been working on our new mobile-friendly donation services lately so I thought I’d pass on our tips for making your site more mobile friendly. Don’t worry – you can start with baby steps. You don’t need a special mobile version of your site or an custom-built app to improve how mobile visitors experience your site overall. With a few simple design tweaks, you can make your nonprofit website much more usable on a mobile device – and improve your visitors’ experience across all platforms.Try these best practices from my colleague Caryn Stein to help optimize your nonprofit website for mobile use and make your pages smartphone friendly:1. Make it snappy.Keep your website’s page load times under 5 seconds – under 3 seconds is even better for mobile delivery. Remove anything that makes your pages stall or fail to load.2. Minimize data entry.Whether it’s on a donation form or a newsletter sign-up box, try to minimize the amount of typing your visitors will have to do. It’s already a best practice on a desktop (they’ll be more likely to fill out your form or complete the action they’re trying to take), and it’s absolutely critical for mobile users, since typing in a lot of information can quickly become a drag on even the smartest of phones.3. Your copy must be short and sweet.Remember: online visitors don’t read, they skim. Reduce the amount of text you have on each page and break up longer blocks of text with headings. Use an easy-to-read font size and type. Choose shorter sentences and clear calls to action over long paragraphs.4. Focus on one high-quality image.Images can help quickly communicate a story or call to action, but make it your mission to focus on one high-quality photo rather than using multiple images on a page. More images will take longer to load and they won’t look good on a smaller screen.5. Remove the roadblocks.Website roadblocks can make your site virtually unusable on a mobile device. Reduce your dependence on Flash, JavaScript, popups or other animations for best results – most mobile devices can’t correctly display content in these formats. Swap them out in favor of static images and clear, compelling copy.6. Keep relevant content front and center.Don’t force mobile users to scroll across three columns and all four corners of your site to find what they’re looking for. Make it easy to access the key pages of your site by placing them prominently near the top and center of your page.7. Make links and buttons easy to use.Review your links and buttons: are they large enough to click on from small screens without zooming? Be sure to provide enough space between links or buttons to prevent a wayward thumb from clicking on something by accident.8. Keep it simple.A simple, clean design is a good idea for any site, whether it’s accessed on a desktop browser, tablet or smartphone. Embrace the use of white space, clear the clutter and narrow your visitor’s focus to one or two clear calls to action. This not only improves the usability of your website, but it will improve your conversion rates by removing unnecessary distractions.last_img read more