Social media is no longer an experiment.With more than 1.5 billion active users on Facebook and Twitter alone, social media has matured into a critical channel for retailers looking to get a big chunk of the estimated $650 billion that will be spent on holiday shopping this season.According to recently released research from digital marketing platform Offerpop, 67 percent of marketers plan to increase their social media budgets this holiday season.Brands also appear to be sticking to proven social media platforms, with 92 percent of marketers saying they will spend the majority of their budget on Facebook.However maturing social networks like Instagram are gaining interest from retailers: 73 percent of marketers say Instagram is the breakout social network of 2014.Read this infographic to learn what a survey of 120 marketers found about holiday shopping trends for this this upcoming season.
There’s a belief in the marketing and sales industry that customers want to know the features of your products and services.You might want to talk about the machine’s locking differential, its custom grip or even the safety braking mechanism.The reason being is they aren't shopping for a chainsaw, they're looking for a solution to their problem: They need to cut down a tree.Customers aren’t coming to you because of your feature sets, they’re coming to you because you help them solve a problem.So shouldn’t your marketing be focusing on their problem, rather than your product?The answer is a resounding YES.
When I am asked to explain the steps that someone should take to create a compelling and successful online personal brand, I advise people to optimize their social-media profiles and updates and content disseminated so they’re discoverable, sharable and therefore memorable.How you present yourself online and what you say or share has the power to leave an impression on anyone you come in contact with.For your personal brand to have an effect on your career, company or target audience, your social-media profiles and updates and online content must be easily found.This means taking steps so that when people are searching for your name (in advance of a sales meeting, say, or a job interview) or looking for someone like you with your experience and expertise, your name shows up in search results.Do this over time by signing up for relevant social-media networks that tend to rank highly in search-engine results.When possible, link to these social-media profiles and bios from other relevant websites you have a presence on and increase the visibility of your personal brand via search engine optimization.
A direct mail campaign can cost your company a lot of money, but only if you don’t do it correctly.Eaten at your favorite restaurant?When you look at how much a customer is worth, you need to focus on more than a single purchase.They spend thousands of dollars on direct mail to acquire new customers.One of the most common offers is a highly discounted first month, say, $1.Now the cost of acquiring that customer looks like a much better investment, doesn’t it!
As an advertiser, your core objective is to prioritize investment in relevant communication channels that deliver maximum returns for your business.With plenty of studies proving digital marketing ROI, it makes perfect sense to leverage digital channels for promoting your brand and its products and services.But with so many online advertising channels available, how do you go about picking the best channel for your business?You must do a fine balancing act between your advertising budget and the costs of using a particular channel.There are plenty of businesses that have driven traffic to their site, marketed their products/services and ultimately increased sales by leveraging Google AdWords.AdWords delivers measurable results and is worth the investment.
Comcast is beginning to roll out a streaming TV service across its entire US footprint, confirming reports from earlier in the year by Reuters and Variety.Previously known as Xfinity Stream (and described in detail here), the broadband-based TV offering is being rebranded Xfinity Instant TV for its expansion to all Comcast markets, which will be completed within the next couple weeks according to Variety.Aimed at cable TV holdouts, Instant TV gives you a so-called “skinny bundle” of live TV including roughly a dozen channels (including the big four broadcast networks plus PBS, C-SPAN, and others) for $18 per month on top of your monthly Comcast internet bill.No set-top box is required to use it, but you’ve got to be a Comcast broadband customer for eligibility.Comcast’s early tests of Instant TV included HBO as part of the basic package, but that’s no longer the case; now getting HBO will tack an extra $15 onto your bill.That’s unfortunate, as including HBO at no extra cost would’ve been fairly disruptive — but also probably bad for Comcast’s cable business.
The concept of following a particular career or lifestyle, predetermined at birth, is a controversial one, so I’ll just say this -- I began my entrepreneurial journey at a very young age, and I feel that I am meant to follow the path I’m on.I love everything that being an entrepreneur stands for.Related: How the Significant Objects Social Experiment Proved the Economic Value of StorytellingBy the age of 6, my brother Adam and I had several growth-hacking and business-funding experiences, including a leaf-raking and snow-shoveling business and a can collection business.We developed great negotiation and customer service skills as we ran tables at the local swap meet with our Grandpa Joe.Both Grandpa Joe and our beloved swap meet experiences were paramount to starting our first “official” business, Dipper-Do Stunt Airplanes, just before I turned the ripe old age of 8.
The Super Bowl has been universally called “the marketers’ holiday.” At $5 million a clip, there certainly is a lot of time, energy and investment put into showing up for the game.Even still, there is a lot to be learned across the board, regardless of the size of your brand.Every year during the big game, I host a Twitter Party at SuperBowlExp, where we gather to talk about all of the advertising during the commercial breaks.For us, the commercial breaks are the game -- and we skip through the game!People were longing to see the Budweiser Clydesdales.And the spots with classic music from David Bowie and Queen were insanely popular.
According to Paris-based branding consultant Bolanile Maté, heritage branding is no longer something just for luxury brands as it has been in the past.She says that it used to work only for those who had centuries of history, but now, it's really just you telling the customer the story of who you are and how your company came to be.In this video, Maté uses the example of French fashion house, Hermès.The company started in the 1800s making harnesses for horses, which of course is completely irrelevant to the brand today but still illustrates its long relationship with quality and luxury.Watch the video to find out how you can apply these same principals to your own brand, no matter how many centuries -- or months -- you've been around.Add Spot.IMAdd Spot.IM to your site
Reports are swirling that T-Mobile and Sprint have agreed a deal to merge in principle, with an announcement set to come in October.would be a formidable player in terms of subscribers, with about as many customers as Verizon or AT But there’s a much bigger question for existing customers: What would the network look like?Both Sprint and T-Mobile have a similar network presence: good in cities and urban areas, not as good as Verizon or AT in rural areas.Combining Sprint and T-Mobile’s networks wouldn’t instantly bring the network up to par with Verizon or AT, but it would create a brand-new and very dangerous player.Verizon’s long-term holdings in low-band spectrum have historically given the company an edge, especially combined with enough money to invest in infrastructure.Sprint and T-Mobile, on the other hand, have long been limited.
In the new It movie, Pennywise the Dancing Clown is a terrifying, sewer-dwelling killer who turns your worst fears against you.He is also, as his name suggests, capable of absolutely ripping up the dance floor no matter what song is playing, as a hilarious new Twitter account demonstrates.It’s called Pennywise Dancing and it is literally just tweet after tweet of that scene where the maniacal clown performs before a horrified Beverly—except with pop hits substituted in for the movie’s music.We’ve had a lot of Pennywise memes appear since It became a box-office sensation, but this just might be our favorite.Somehow, probably due to some kind of black magic, every song fits perfectly with his moves.And some of the songs make the scene even scarier.
Microsoft executives said Monday that the company is developing a quantum computer—from chips all the way through to the operating system—in a bid to control what could be a disruptive computer technology.Though Microsoft is following companies like IBM and D-Wave Systems—whose 2000Q quantum computer is already built and selling to customers like Los Alamos National Laboratory and Google, among others—Microsoft hopes to be able to develop chips around what it calls topological qubits, a more stable form of the quantum bit.Topological qubits would make them more resilient under everyday use, the company says.In the meantime, Microsoft is developing a language for programming quantum bits, using its topological qubit model.At its Ignite conference in Orlando, Florida, Microsoft chief executive Satya Nadella said that quantum computing enables different approaches than “classical” computing: while a typical PC might try and “brute force” a problem by trying all possible solutions sequentially, a quantum computer can try as many solutions as it can in parallel, all at once.What this means to you: Quantum computers are barely understood by the enterprise and big-data worlds, which means that even a server running on qubit processors still seems like science fiction.
Developer Accidental Queens is returning to its spin on modern voyeurism with a followup to mobile game A Normal Lost Phone.But though Another Lost Phone: Laura’s Story follows many of the same rules as its predecessor — the entire game is played on a smartphone that mirrors the one in your hand — many of its improvements are a direct reaction to backlash from the previous title.Inside, they’ll find a slew of texts, emails, and photos that act as breadcrumbs to the game’s greater mystery: what happened to Laura, and why she seems to have gone missing.“We think that a lot of this criticism was justified,” says co-founder Elizabeth Maler.It wasn't good for what we tried to say with the first game.”In Laura’s Story, players never have the chance to directly interfere without Laura’s consent.
You might not be impressed with the Apple TV 4K, but a big change to how iTunes movie rental periods are handled is likely to be much more warmly received.Apple has quietly switched up its policy on how long rented content can be watched after you’ve started playback, much to the benefit of iTunes users.Now, you’ll have 48 hours to finish watching your rental.The news was confirmed in an updated support document, spotted by MacRumors today.Previously, Apple allowed half of that time, with only 24 hours to watch content.As before, the deadline starts when you actually begin playback, and you can still keep access to a rented movie for up to thirty days as long as you avoid actually starting to watch it.
Apple’s 4K TV has launched to a wealth of positive reviews, but it turns out the 4K experience comes with some odd fine print.For example: You can’t actually download 4K movies from iTunes, only stream them.MacRumors spotted the quirk in an Apple Support document.Customers can download HD movies – and even some HDR movies in HD resolutions – but 4K is only available in streaming.I mean, streaming works most of the time, but the last thing you want is for your video to buffer during an intense scene because your roommate decided it was a great time to install a year’s-worth of updates.Other users might simply not have a fast enough internet connection – whether because they have a poor wireless setup or a sucky ISP – to stream 4K all the time.
19th September is International Talk Like a Pirate Day, so on Tuesday all across the globe people were talking like pirates.Turns out though, it's not just talking like the scurvy seadogs that people enjoy, oh no.They also enjoy "other" pirate activities.While you may not think pirate porn is actually a thing — or maybe you're a big fan; hey, I'm not judging — on Talk Like a Pirate Day, PornHub saw a 367% increase in pirate-related searches.The most popular search term was just the simple "pirates", with "Pirates of the Caribbean" coming second.(People hoping for a little Johnny Depp flavour, perhaps?)
För miljoner år sedan slog en fem kilometer bred meteorit ned i Kanada.Effekten av den skapade den hetaste temperaturen som någonsin uppmätts på Jordens yta.Inte direkt det land som vid en första tanke förknippas med värme.Men för runt 38 miljoner år sedan var platsen, där Kanada ligger i dag, platsen som uppmätt den varmaste temperaturen någonsin på Jorden.Ny forskning publicerad i Science Direct visar att en stor meteorit dundrade ned i marken i regionen Labrador vilket skapade ett jätteinferno.Effekten av händelsen gjorde att temperaturen toppade på 2370 grader.
In December 2016, Sarah Stewart Johnson flew from McMurdo Station, the US scientific outpost on the edge of Antarctica, to the shore of Lake Vanda in the middle of the Dry Valleys - the driest desert in the world.Johnson, assistant professor of planetary science at Georgetown University in Washington, DC, was looking for ancient microbes: simple creatures that had once lived and thrived in this remote region."Antarctica is the perfect place to investigate some of the fundamental questions about the persistence of life," says Johnson."For me, that was really the big draw - to go to one of the most marginal places on Earth and find out, when microbes are really pushed to their limit, how they survive."By answering that question, she hoped to unlock a new understanding of life, both on Earth and perhaps elsewhere.Winds, reaching a sprightly 320kph, are heated by friction from the ground as they pass over, melting, evaporating and blowing away most moisture.
Editor’s note: This originally appeared on Analyse Asia, a weekly podcast hosted by Bernard Leong, dedicated to dissecting the pulse of business, technology, and media in Asia.Marcus Tan, co-founder and president of Carousell, joined us in a conversation about his company which he co-founded and where it is heading after their series B round with leading investors such as Rakuten Ventures & Sequoia Capital.Marcus shared some of the interesting lessons which he learned from his investors and how they scale their company from Singapore into Asia.Here are the interesting show notes and links to the discussion (with time-stamps included):Marcus Tan, co-founder & president of Carousell (@CuriousMarcus, LinkedIn) [0:38]How did you start your career?
Smart home assistants are becoming more and more useful around the house helping to keep lists, set timers, and answer questions.They are connected to everything from lights to locks to televisions, and now they are connected to your contacts.Once you have set up your Google Home you can immediately start calling businesses without any further setup needed.Calling your personal contacts, however, requires a little more effort.Whether you have an Android or iOS device, the first step is to turn on your Personal Results in the Google Home app.Check to make sure your phone or tablet is connected to the same Wi-Fi network as your Google Home.