R8bn boost for rural internet access

first_imgThe two companies have signed an R8-billion (US$1.2-billion) deal that will see the roll-out of fast-paced broadband internet to communities in the Northern Cape, Limpopo and Mpumalanga provinces over the last quarter of 2012 and the first quarter of 2013. South African IT firm Mavoni Technologies is collaborating with international satellite company O3b Networks to make internet access possible for rural communities in the country. Chifiwa Makhwedzha from Nkowankowa in Limpopo said the initiative would be a great way to increase productivity in government departments. Mavoni CEO Tinyiko Valoyi said his company wants to focus on providing internet to underprivileged areas of South Africa to help develop them and improve the lives of people living there. Faster internet access Makhwedzha said he is also happy that schools will be getting internet as that should improve the quality of education. He said no contracts have yet been signed with any of the departments and municipalities, but they were looking to get them finalised towards the end of the year. 8 June 2011 First published by MediaClubSouthAfrica.com – get free high-resolution photos and professional feature articles from Brand South Africa’s media service. Valoyi said his firm is currently talking with various other provincial departments and municipalities which could also benefit from the initiative. “It’s really great news. Most communication is done via the internet these days and people in our areas, especially the young people, need to have good computer skills and a great knowledge of the internet in order to apply for work and be ready for the workplace.” Valoyi added that his company would focus on rolling out internet in schools and government institutions. The first province they would concentrate on would be the Northern Cape where they would provide internet access to an estimated 1 500 schools, which would benefit about 185 000 pupils. “I’m particularly glad about the schools being the first on the list to get connected. Teachers at schools will now be able to get educational material for the subjects they teach through the web. They can then use this material to educate themselves and also to teach the students.” Bandile Thusi, from Nonzwakazi township in the Northern Cape, said he was pleased to hear about plans to bring internet to schools in the province. Mavoni will also partner with the provincial government of Limpopo to bring internet connectivity to more than 500 schools there. These MEO satellites will provide faster internet access and clearer voice communications and video conferencing than standard communication satellites, as they will be four times closer to the earth. “This will help things work faster in some of the state departments here. At times, something that could have been done fairly quickly takes longer because of the communication channels. With internet, it will hopefully be quicker to get assistance at government departments.” “We are ready to advance,” said Nolwazi Zwane from Botleng township in Mpumalanga. “As a community, we are keen for ways to develop ourselves and see progress in our area. Having internet will help us stay connected with what is happening with the world around us, and help educate ourselves further.” According to the agreement, the companies will build a satellite-based global internet backbone with a constellation of eight medium-earth orbit (MEO) satellites. ‘Ready to advance’ “We decided to start with the Northern Cape as it is often a neglected area when it comes to connectivity. Limpopo and Mpumalanga are also high priorities. Traditionally, these have been areas where fibre networks have not been able to reach.”last_img read more

Joburg by taxi

first_imgGetting around Joburg on a minibus taxi can be daunting for newbies. But once you know your short right from your after robot, and your Diepsloot from your Orange Farm, it’s the fastest, most popular and often the cheapest way to get where you want to go. Minibus taxis are by far the most popular – and are often the cheapest – form of public transport in South Africa, used mainly by the urban and rural poor. (Image: Arrive Alive) • Sanlam Cape Town Marathon goes silver • South Africa’s tourism improves • Rugby’s full story: the Springbok Experience Rugby Museum • The artist at work: Mbongeni Buthelezi makes beauty out of waste • World falls in love with South African baby elephant Ray MaotaMinibus taxis are by far the most popular – and are often the cheapest – form of public transport in South Africa, used mainly by the urban and rural poor.In Johannesburg, using a taxi can be bewildering, and even frightening, if you are not from the city of gold. Here’s a quick guide to ease your way.To board a taxi in the city of Johannesburg, you must first get to the appropriate taxi rank. Here, hundreds of minibus taxis converge to ferry commuters to their various destinations in and out of Gauteng province, and even across the border to neighbouring countries.The Johannesburg CBD has four major taxi ranks: Noord Street Taxi Rank, Bree Street Taxi Rank, Wanderers Taxi Rank and Faraday Taxi Rank. At any of the four, you can get a taxi to anywhere in Gauteng, while some also cater for taxis beyond the province.Noord Street is by far the largest and busiest rank in the middle of the city. As you approach the rank, especially during peak hours, you are swarmed by hordes of hurrying commuters. You are also confronted by hawkers peddling a variety of goods, ranging from foodstuff to clothing and anything else in-between.The taxi ranks are the easiest part of your journey to navigate as there is signage and you stand in queues to board a taxi to your destination. It’s when you are not at a taxi rank that you have to be fluent in taxi sign language – there are no written signs; it’s all done by a complicated series of hand signals. And South African minibus taxis stop wherever they are needed along whatever road they are driving. They do not have designated stops; you simply have to flag one down – using the correct hand signal, of course.A language like no otherEvery day thousands of hands stretch out along commuter routes across Gauteng speaking a silent language of taxi hand signals. According to artist Susan Woolf, taxi hand signs are a shared language, learned by imitation and word of mouth.Woolf is a recognised expert in Gauteng taxi hand signs, or what is really the Gauteng dialect of what has been called South Africa’s 12th official language. She spent many years of research and artistic production focusing on the signals, documenting and deciphering them. Along the way, she has created a lexicon for blind people to comfortably use this mode of transport.“They are basic gestures tied to narrative threads that swirl through community life connecting today with history and folklore,” says Woolf.They are complex, she adds. They often have an indexical aspect in that they “point to” the place to which they refer and often use the gestural shape of a pointing finger, or a finger or hand in motion towards the place indicated. But some of the signs have iconic features of resemblance, such as the shape of the orange for T Junction, Orange Farm or KwaThema, all places in Gauteng; others have symbolic arbitrary, purely conventional qualities.Signs and destinationsAccording to Woolf, a taxi hand sign may refer to a place that has retained its indigenous name but it may just as easily refer to an event associated with it, or a physical attribute of the place, or even a shopping mall that is the main feature of a place.There are two basic signs that commuters in Johannesburg. One is the index figure pointing up, which means town; the other is the index figure pointing down, meaning local. This takes you anywhere within the suburb you are in.The KwaThema taxi hand sign is performed showing two flat hands, palms together, resting on the left side of the person’s face.The taxi hand sign to Kliptown is one hand waving left to right in front of their faces and the other hand waves up and down, to ask the taxi to slow down.The sign to Orange Farm is directly descriptive of its name. With a forward pointing hand, all four fingers and the thumb are bent upwards as if to hold an orange.The taxi sign to Diepsloot is acted out with one hand in a sequence of hand postures, dipping downwards and then upwards in a forward movement several times.If you want to get to Fourways, in Johannesburg, just hold up your hand with four fingers exposed and your thumb tucked in.Taxi lingoBut it’s not only the hand signals that are important. There are also phrases you’ll need to understand, such as “short right”, “short left”, “after robot” and “dankie”.They might sound confusing but they are literal meanings of where the passenger wants to alight.Short right means you want to get off at the next street to the right and vice-versa with short left.After robot means you want to get off after the next traffic light the taxi goes through.Here, or dankie, which actually means “thank you” in Afrikaans, has been the subject of many squabbles between driver and passenger. Many taxi drivers feel it’s too ambiguous. They prefer a passenger to be specific, for example “after robot”.last_img read more

Year-End VC Report Shows Strength of Internet & Early Stage Investment

first_imgInvestment in green tech and clean tech declined. And while deals in the healthcare space were up slightly year-over-year, funding was down almost 16%. Tags:#start#tips Early Stage VC GrowsSeed VC deals stayed about the same in the fourth quarter as in Q3 – about 11% of deals. But the share of Series A deals increased over the same period. And altogether, early stage deal activity was nearly 50% of total deals, the highest level in five quarters. Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Alas, Poor Washington…Over 50% of the deals in Washington were in early-stage companies, and almost 60% of the deals were to Internet firms. As the latter tend to be less capital-intensive than other industries, this drove Washington to a five quarter low in VC funding. A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Internet Hot, Hot, HotBoth deals and dollars were up – way up – for the Internet sector, hitting a five quarter high – even if you exclude the massive Groupon funding from the calculations. Related Posts Investment research firm CB Insights has released its end-of-year report for 2010, which finds both the fourth quarter and the year overall ending strong. The $6.5 billion in VC funding over 735 deals makes the fourth quarter an eight quarter high on deals and dollars. And overall, the year saw $23.7 billion in funding in 2792 deals – a 14% growth in funding and a 13% growth in deals over 2009.“For those of you looking for a data point that suggests VC is back and on the road to recovery after 2009’s tough sledding,” the report reads, “the eight quarter high on deals and dollars gives you something to hang your hat on. For those of you who think VC is overheated and we’re headed for a bubble, the eight quarter high on deals and dollars gives you something to hang your hat on. Yes – it’s all a matter of perspective.” And for those of you wanting to argue that New York is indeed a hotspot for investment, this report will help make that argument too.The report identifies a number of trends in both industries and regions.New York Takes the #2 Spot For Tech VC from MassachusettsOver the last five quarters, New York saw 208 tech deals. Massachusetts, 207. Funding to New York companies came in at $1.22 billion versus the $1.21 billion for Massachusetts. Sure, this isn’t a rousting of Massachusetts by New York. It’s a slim victory. What is interesting, however, are the trends of these states when mapped together. audrey watters Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… The fourth quarter was the highest in five quarters for New York in terms of investment and deal volume – up 90% and 29% respectively since the third quarter. And year-over-year, investment in New York was up 63%.Number of VC Deals Grows in California, But Funding Dollars DownCalifornia is still the leading state for venture capital. Relative to 2009, California saw a 3% growth in the number of deals, but the funding amount dropped by 2%. 60% of the funding in the state when to Internet and Healthcare companies. No surprise, mobile investment continued to grow. 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketlast_img read more

Why FairSearch Can’t Find Anyone To Listen To Its Anti-Google Tirades

first_imgRelated Posts brian proffitt A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hostingcenter_img Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Tags:#Antitrust#Google#privacy Google is sort of everywhere these days. Between its successful Android platform and the ubiquity of Google services for consumers and businesses, it’s getting hard to avoid the big G. Yet when its rivals form an organization like FairSearch.org and start calling out the search giant as monopolistic and anticompetitive, no one much seems to care. (See also: Microsoft’s Complaint Against Android In Europe Is All Kinds Of Stupid)It’s a huge contrast with the smacking around Microsoft took a decade ago, when Windows dominated the PC universe and both U.S. and European antitrust regulators branded the company a monopolist. Microsoft, in fact, is still getting its butt handed to it in Europe, where it recently faced huge fines for failing to comply with earlier penalties.These days, however, Google’s Teflon coating remains largely unscratched.Getting The Message OutIt’s not like FairSearch, a tech lobbying group with 17 members that each have a reason to want Google hamstrung in one way or another, isn’t trying. It has run advertisements. It has produced videos. It has held panel discussions. It has lobbied lawmakers and regulators.The general response? Apathy.For instance, two anti-Google videos FairSearch posted on YouTube have only 1,874 views. The group’s Twitter account has 939 followers. Clearly, it’s having trouble getting traction.FairSearch basically faces two big problems. One is something it won’t be able to fix very easily: the shoot-the-messenger problem. Read “FairSearch.org,” and it’s hard not to think “Microsoft” — Google’s sworn enemy.(See also: Microsoft Launching Another Pathetic Smear Attack On Google)True, Microsoft is only one of the group’s 17 members, and isn’t even a co-founder. But it’s still hard to take FairSearch’s complaints at face value, because everyone knows they’re self-serving and tailored to advance the interests of Microsoft and other members. Particularly when they follow Microsoft’s own high-profile assaults on Google.Too Big A Target?The other problem is broader, but no less of a concern: FairSearch’s message is too unfocused. Nor can it be tightened. It’s a real dilemma.When organizations or governments bust a company for antitrust violations, there’s a clear black-and-white line that the company has to cross: they are doing something to reduce consumer choice. As much as FairSearch would like to pin that accusation on Google, there’s little evidence that Google has done anything of the sort.Last week, for instance, FairSearch complained to the European Commission that Google’s Android operating system was an anticompetitive threat to the mobile market. My ReadWrite colleague Dan Rowinski did a pretty good job tearing that complaint apart. It’s pretty simple: No user is forced to stay with Google services on Android. Nor is any manufacturer. So whose choices are being constrained?That looks deliberate on Google’s part. It’s been very, very careful to be as big an influence on the market as possible without actually trying to establish direct control over anything. That makes it very hard for competitors to make the monopoly charge stick.Fire A Shotgun, See What SticksWhich may be why FairSearch is trying everything else under the sun. A quick look at its site reveals no fewer than nine lines of attack, include complaints about Google’s acquisitions, “content scraping,” “deceptive display,” mobile, “search manipulation” and alleged unfair treatment of advertisers and partners.This kind of unfocused effort suggests that FairSearch is taking a “see what sticks” approach, kicking up as much sand as possible in the hopes of clouding the view of government regulators.Curiously, the one area where Google rightly gets smacked about sometimes — privacy — doesn’t get much emphasis on the FairSearch site. Of course, its members probably want just as much user data as Google is collecting, so they don’t see much advantage to rocking that particular boat.Google’s enemies have a tough nut to crack, and FairSearch’s broad approach reflects that problem. The search giant has made a very good business out of mining user data and generating ad revenue without (as far as we know) crossing any serious lines yet. Until that changes, Google’s competitors may have to deal with their Google problem by, y’know, competing.Image courtesy of 1000 Words / Shutterstocklast_img read more

Andy Murray corrects reporter’s ‘sexist’ question

first_imgView comments Sir Andrew Murray is NOT amused with your casual sexism! #wimbledon pic.twitter.com/a6pTpHCFSr— Jamie (@_JamieMac_) July 12, 2017 “Male player,” says Murray.“Yes, first male player, that’s for sure,” the reporter responds, though Murray is far from amused.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSWin or don’t eat: the Philippines’ poverty-driven, world-beating pool stars Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ LATEST STORIES China furious as Trump signs bills in support of Hong Kong LeBron-invested pizza place becomes fastest growing chain in US Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim This is not Murray’s first time to interject a reporter for an oversight, and probably not his last either. In the 2016 Olympics, he corrected BBC reporter John Inverdale who congratulated him for being the first to win two gold medals in tennis.“Venus [Williams] and Serena [Williams] have won four each,” he said.My favorite genre is Murray doing this to reporters pic.twitter.com/CKs8HS0Fn7— Ashley (@ashcech) July 12, 2017While his chance of winning this year’s Wimbledon is gone, the Glasgow-born athlete is still ace in other aspects. Niña V. Guno/JBRELATED STORIES:Murray refuses to blame injury for Wimbledon heartbreakMurray at world number one — how Twitter reacted MOST READcenter_img Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ El Nido residents told to vacate beach homes Pagasa: Kammuri now a typhoon, may enter PAR by weekend Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Mom Judy Murray approves:That’s my boy. ❤️ https://t.co/ldZUQ2wbZj— judy murray (@JudyMurray) July 12, 2017Despite the lack of recognition of their achievements, American female tennis players outperform American men in world rankings. In general, women in professional sports still receive less media coverage than their male counterparts.ADVERTISEMENT Britain’s Andy Murray celebrates after winning a point against Argentina’s Juan Martin Del Potro during their tennis match at the Roland Garros 2017 French Open on June 3, 2017 in Paris. / AFP PHOTO / FRANCOIS XAVIER MARITWhen top-ranked Brit Andy Murray faced reporters after losing to American Sam Querrey in the Wimbledon quarterfinals, he still had his priorities straight.The reporter starts, “Sam is the first U.S. player to reach a major semi-final since 2009…”ADVERTISEMENT LOOK: Jane De Leon meets fellow ‘Darna’ Marian Rivera Another vape smoker nabbed in Lucenalast_img read more

CWG situation sad, want Games’ success as an Indian: Advani

first_imgNDA working chairman and senior BJP leader L K Advani on Sunday criticised the shortcomings in the Commonwealth Games preparations in the last few months but said as an Indian he wished that the event would be a success.”Even in the last session of Parliament I tried not to criticise the Commonwealth Games though some of my party colleagues spoke on it. As an Indian I would want that these Games are successful,” Advani said.”Although sadly today the situation is such that there are doubts about whether the Games will be held. If they are held then that itself will be considered a big achievement,” he added.Advani was speaking at a programme organised by the International Lions Club. Earlier, he had inaugurated a cartoon exhibition, named “Wealth Cartoons” by famous cartoonist Irfan. The senior BJP leader also referred to the pun in the name of the exhibition.Advani said “6-8 months” before any event of such magnitude reports in the media mostly refer to the positive points like the work completed and the how it would be an advantage to the sportspersons of the host country.”But here the only positive reports that one hears of are that some of the countries are finally coming (to participate). This is a very sad thing,” Advani said.BJP and NDA leaders had strongly criticised Organising Committee head and Congress MP Suresh Kalmadi, Sports Minister M S Gill and the Delhi Government for the shortcomings and corruption in the CWG 2010 projects.advertisementThe principal opposition even staged a walkout in the Lok Sabha when Gill said during his presentation on the CWG debate that any information needed can be sought through an RTI application.The recent collapse of a foot overbridge at Jawaharlal Nehru stadium and other negative reports about lack of cleanliness have also drawn criticism from the opposition.last_img read more

Foursquare’s $5.99 SXSW Booth

first_imgWalking by the Austin convention center, I saw a group of people huddled near one of the doors. As I got closer, I saw people were playing the game four square, then I got even closer and saw they were playing it with one of the founders of Foursquare, and check out our full SXSW content feed at . This game of four square had people lined up to play and everyone walking by was talking about it. This is the type of buzz companies invest a lot of money to achieve. The total investment for Foursquare? Around Topics: Originally published Mar 12, 2010 7:58:00 PM, updated October 20 2016 $5.99 for a box of sidewalk chalk At South By South West, some companies spend hundreds of thousands of dollars in marketing to reach attendees. , the hottest social network on the Web, spent $5.99.  Inbound Marketing Kit Being different wins in inbound marketing kit , whether it is online of off. People often ask how inbound marketing works offline; this is a perfect example. People walking by this game of four square who didn’t know about the application, are likely going to search for it on the Web. Dennis Crowley Inbound Marketing Takeaway Learn more about inbound marketing and how to combine blogging, SEO and social media for results. Inbound marketing isn’t about outspending the competition, it is about being more compelling than them. Getting executives and people who have authority interacting with potential customers can often create a winning combination.  HubSpot’s Virtual Booth Major brands like Pepsi, Microsoft and Chevy have lavish booths with chairs, flat screen TVs, and an army of staff members inside the Austin Convention Center. Foursquare has a CEO playing foursquare outside with potential users. inbound marketing Foursquare Download our Jeffrey L. Cohen . For more, check out this video of people playing four square outside of the convention center: Photo Credit: . . http://blog.hubspot.com/sxsw If you are attending SXSW, be sure to check-in to Foursquare 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

LinkedIn Launches “LinkedIn Today” – Tips Marketers Need to Know

first_img Originally published Mar 10, 2011 2:40:00 PM, updated October 20 2016 LinkedIn Today You should have LinkedIn share buttons on all your content.  Recently, LinkedIn launched a new sharing button that tracks the number of shares much like the buttons from Twitter and Facebook.  (There’s one on this article, give it a quick click!)  Very soon after this new button launched, we added it as an option to the blogs of all 4,000 HubSpot customers – no software to install, it just shows up.  ( Topics: What do you think about LinkedIn today?  What other tips would you have for marketers?  Leave a comment and let’s discuss. .  Other ways include making regular status updates, and answering questions posted on LinkedIn Answers. (Check out the news article featured in the video, look familiar?)  Now that your news and blog posts can spread more virally on LinkedIn, there is even more reason to be active in this business community.  If you have more friends and build better relationships with them on LinkedIn, then it is more likely your content will get more shares and be featured on LinkedIn today.  One way to be active is to join groups and post messages there, like our Today LinkedIn launched a new news aggregation and curation service called What does the launch of LinkedIn Today mean for marketers? Inbound Marketers LinkedIn Groupcenter_img You should be publishing not advertising. .  Here is a short video from the company explaining what it is.   You should be active on LinkedIn. Many other websites automatically curate news based on what your friends have liked, shared or voted such as Reddit, Digg, Facebook and tons more.  So the story here is not the technology, but the fact that this type of service is now available on LinkedIn, making it extremely relevant for B2B marketers. LinkedIn Marketing  LinkedIn today is yet another service that gives inbound marketers an advantage.  Rather than buying ads people ignore, you want to be the content that is showing up on the homepage and being promoted by LinkedIn members.  The best way to do this is to start a blog and be your own publisher.  In fact, I’m hoping that this article gets featured on LinkedIn today because all of you share it on LinkedIn. ).  If you are not using HubSpot for marketing, you’ll have to figure out how to add the new button to your blog, maybe contact a web developer, etc.  Either way, you need to do it!  Having these buttons on your content makes it much more likely your website visitors will share the content with their networks and your company will get more attention on LinkedIn. Note to customers: There is a checkbox in blog options to turn it on or off, very easy – if you have any trouble, just call support at 888-HubSpot LinkedIn is a huge social network, has a strong following and usage among b2b companies and is the largest business / career focused community in the world.  If you sell to other businesses, or even to individual business people, you need to know what you should do to get the most out of LinkedIn Today.  Here are some of the key tips for marketers: 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 Painlessly Transition Your Company to Inbound Marketing

first_img Topics: Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Switching to Inbound Marketing We talk to people all the time that are totally sold on the inbound marketing methodology, but there’s just one thing standing in their way from becoming a full-fledged inbound marketer … they can’t convince their boss they can switch to inbound marketing without experiencing a painful blow to their current marketing.It makes sense — change is hard, and honestly, nobody is going to let you waltz in and, with the snap of your fingers, totally change the way your business and marketing department functions. If someone came up to you and said that the proper way to cut paper is by grinding your teeth on it because it results in higher levels of efficiency than traditional scissors, would you make the swap? Of course not. Even if it was true. (Note: it’s not.)That means if you’re really interested in transitioning your company to inbound marketing, it’s time get a little sneaky. It’s time to integrate your inbound marketing campaigns with your company’s more traditional marketing campaigns. Over time, you can not only prove the value of inbound marketing as your campaigns start to generate staggering ROI — numbers tend to do the convincing for you — but you’ll already have that gradual transition towards more inbound-friendly methods underway! So let’s start that transition to inbound marketing together, right now, step-by-step … here’s what to do.Merge Inbound Tactics with Outbound CampaignsMany marketers have already started fusing online and offline marketing techniques. According to Marketing Charts, 90% of marketers believe using online data to optimize the offline experience is important. Furthermore, 73% of company marketers say they will be using a cross-channel marketing strategy over the next few years.Clearly a large population of marketers are comfortable with weaving online marketing tactics with their traditional campaigns. So let’s start there. Kindly request to make inbound tactics a part of the outbound promotion. Here’s a few examples.Connect Your Commercials with a Social Media CampaignIf you work for an organization that uses commercials to advertise their business, ask if you can get social media in on the action just a little bit. Perhaps something small, like a hashtag? Just look at this screenshot from an Audi commercial, for example.This inclusion enables you to unify your online messaging with your advertising campaign, and gives you the opportunity to go to town with social content revolving around the hashtag. Use it in quotes, to start Twitter chats, when citing stats … anything that can help unify the messaging from your commercial and the content you’re publishing to social media.Attach a Landing Page to Your Print Advertisements and Direct MailYour print advertisements may get you noticed, it’s the call-to-action part that’s difficult. In other words, is there any way to get someone to actually take action when they’re inspired by your print ads? Well, when your team sits down to put together their next print ad, ask them for a little space for some copy that points readers to an online destination. This could be through a QR code like Gucci did below, or by simply including a URL.This allows you to create a customized landing page just for this advertisement — you know, something a little more personalized to the reader and the ad you created than just your homepage.Simulataneously Run Inbound Campaigns Alongside More Traditional CampaignsNow that you’ve started to integrate digital and print campaigns, ask if you can run a few additional “inboundy” campaigns of your own. Make this easier by promising you’ll still complete your routine tasks — these additional campaigns will be tests you’re running in addition to those. While this will require more of your time for a bit, it won’t require more of your budget, making it easier to sell your boss and colleagues on the subject. Here are some quick campaigns you can run to include in your ultimate portfolio for convincing your team.Repurpose Existing Content to Create Some Lead Generation OffersIf you’ve been in business for a while — even just a year or two — you’ve likely accumulated a bunch of content and expertise without even knowing it. And if you want to do a test drive of an inbound marketing campaign, you’re going to need that content and expertise. Gather your current sales and marketing collateral — case studies, testimonials, brochures, whatever you got — and start reworking it to spin it into offer content that you can put behind a form, and/or share across social media channels.Set Up CTAs and Landing PagesSee if your boss would be alright with you making some website tweaks. You’re not going to redesign the skin or anything, but you could improve upon what’s already there … and make some key new additions.First, create a call-to-action that lives right on the homepage. It’s easy, you can even make them in PowerPoint! That CTA should lead to a new landing page that houses one of those awesome new lead generation offers you just created. Make sure you consider what type of offer visitors to your home page might be interested in — if the bulk of your traffic is coming in on branded keywords, for example, something a little further down your sales funnel, like a case study or product-focused whitepaper, might be most appropriate. When your sales team starts to see people “raising their hand” to talk about purchasing your product or service, you can bet they’ll want to try more of that inbound marketing stuff.Create Visual Social Media ContentPut on your creative hat and think of a cool new idea for increasing engagement on your social media channels. Can you create a series of memes around a common industry fad? Can you create a few visual representations of important stats and data in your field? You don’t need Photoshop to do this, either. Just head over to memegenerator.net or use PowerPoint to whip up some visuals that can be easily shared, helping you generate more fans and followers and increase your overall social reach.Create and Share Your Blog Content StrategicallyStart writing posts on your company blog — and if you don’t have one, set one up! But be strategic. You can’t just write a post and hope the world stumbles upon it. Instead, start sharing that post with advocates of your brand or others who would find it valuable. And yes, that includes your social media fans and followers. You also need to make sure search engines can find it by writing about topics germane to your company and industry. It would also help to start writing guest blog posts for other related sites so you can get some of those coveted inbound links that help your site rise in the search engine rankings!Collect and Compare MetricsNow that you’ve got some campaigns up and running, you can start collecting metrics that speak to their effectiveness. Collect every metric humanly possible. Generate reports that show you the number of times your hashtags were mentioned on Twitter. Look at your website analytics to see how many users were sent to your customized landing pages or landed on your website because of your blog posts. See which keywords drove the most traffic to your website. You know, see what didn’t work, what did work, and what really, really worked. These metrics will show impact you can tie directly to business goals like generating revenue and closing new business.Then it’s time to organize all your results into a clear, succinct, and educational presentation so you can prove the ROI of inbound marketing to your team. And when you use data based off of recent campaigns — data that you can tie directly to leads and customers generated — you don’t have that difficult of a case to make!What tactics have you used to convince your boss and colleagues to invest in inbound marketing?Image Credit: IT Tech News Originally published Oct 8, 2012 9:00:00 AM, updated July 28 2017last_img read more

10 Genius Ideas That Changed Marketing Forever

first_img Originally published Oct 9, 2012 9:00:00 AM, updated October 20 2016 Marketing Trends This is an excerpt from our new ebook, 100 Ideas That Changed Marketing. Download your free copy if you want to see the other 90 ideas that have changed our industry forever!At the beginning of this year, we set out to create an infographic that gave a rundown of the history of marketing. And as we looked back, we found that one idea from all the way back in the 1400s — the invention of the printing press that made mass media possible — totally and completely changed the entire trajectory of our industry. Heck, you could argue it made our industry possible!That made us think of all of the other advancements that have rocked the marketing world. Because we kind of have a thing for shaking things up 🙂 So, we compiled this ebook, 100 Ideas That Changed Marketing, and we wanted to share 10 of the highlights from it right here. Take a look, get inspired, and let us know if we should add a one-hundred and one’th (one’th? That’s not right, right?) idea!10 of the 100 Ideas That Changed Marketing Forever1) AgileIf you’re agile, you can easily and gracefully move at a rapid pace. In 2001, through the Agile Manifesto, the idea of agile was introduced to software development, and it defines aniterative approach that promotes flexibility and customer collaboration. “In many ways, marketing used to be a lot like software development,” wrote marketing technologist Scott Brinker. “Yearly plans of a few major initiatives would lumber forward with rigid hand-offs between the different stakeholders — researchers, strategists, creatives, media buyers, etc. The end-to-end process was time consuming and difficult to alter midstream.”By implementing an agile approach, marketers should be able to make iterations faster and respond to change rather than simply follow established processes. Today, with the proliferation of new technologies, the ability to adapt to the rapidly changing marketing landscape is becoming increasingly important and necessary for business success. As Michelle Accardi-Petersen wrote in her 2011 book Agile Marketing, “the old integrated marketing methods don’t work … that is, unless you have an agile process that allows you to move much faster and to adapt to these marketing pressures on the fly where necessary.”2) BloggingAs inbound marketers, I think we’re all familiar with this … but when’s the last time you took a step back and realized, “Wow, blogging is one of the strongest marketing tools in my kit.” The times they are a-changin’ eh?Short for web log, a blog is a term used to describe a series of online articles displayed in chronological order that generally encourage comments from digital readers. Blogs are usually maintained by an individual or group of people and will traditionally include regular entries of commentary, descriptions of events, or other material, such as photos and videos. A blog is a long-term marketing asset that brings traffic and leads to your business. It introduces you as a thought leader in your space and allows you to earn people’s trust.Nearly 40% of U.S. companies use blogs for marketing purposes. “This platform, if done properly, can generate tremendous traffic, leads and sales for your business that youotherwise would not have had,” wrote Marcus Sheridan, Partner at River Pools and Spas and Founder of The Sales Lion. First, business blogging helps you in respect to search engine optimization (SEO). The more blog posts you publish, the more indexed pages you create for search engines to display in their results. Second, your blog is an asset that introduces you as a thought leader — it will help you earn people’s trust and stay top of mind for many in yourcommunity. Finally, a blog gives you real estate to place calls-to-action in order to generate leads.The thing about blogging is that anybody can do it, but remarkably, not everybody does. This gap represents a huge opportunity for serious marketers to differentiate themselves — with their bosses, and their leads and customers.3) Citizen JournalismThe new media landscape has reshaped the ways in which audiences access information. A Pew Research Center report showed that some 46% of Americans visit from four to six media platforms on a typical day, and only 7% have a single favorite one. For their daily information, online readers consult various sources, including newspaper sites, email, and social media. Additionally, social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter have fostered recommendation systems that increasingly shift the power of information distribution in the hands of non-journalists. In these environments, one’s community can make editorial decisions by endorsing stories.Marketers need to recognize the participation of citizens in the process of newsgathering and always provide credible sources and references when sharing public information. Don’t underestimate the investigative spirit of today’s consumers and people’s ability to get to the truth through in-depth online research. Businesses need to be more alert than ever to theway they present information and facts because inaccuracies can easily be exposed.4) CopyrightCopyright is a legal concept that protects the work of an individual from being used withouttheir consent. It gives the creator of an original work exclusive rights, including the right to receive credit for their work and the right to choose who can use and remix their work.With the rapid development of technological advances, it has become easier for people to create digital mashups of existing works, which has led to copywright wars and lawsuits.American academic and political activist Lawrence Lessig argues that we now live in a Remix Culture which encourages people to engage in collaborative creation and stimulate their creativity in new ways. “It is time we stop wasting the resources of our federal courts, our police, and our universities to punish behavior that we need not punish,” he wrote in Remix: Making Art and Commerce Thrive in the Hybrid Economy.Now that the role of a marketer is so intertwined with the role of a publisher, it’s not difficult to imagine the different ways in which copyright affects the marketing professional. Not only is pirating content just poor internet etiquette, but it also results in duplicate content that hurts both websites on which the content is featured in the search engine results pages. In fact, one of Google’s 2012 algorithm updates will be using the number of valid copyright removal notices as a signal for which websites should be displayed in the SERPs. To stay away from such punishments as a marketer, you need to ensure you are not stealing people’s content. Make sure you aregiving your sources credit in all of your content, including blog posts, webinars, ebooks, and even social media.5) GamificationGamification describes the adoption of game design elements and game thinking by nongamecontexts. It’s applied to make less interactive situations more engaging to users. Some forms of gamification in marketing include awarding badges or providing incentives for participation in specific activities.For instance, at HubSpot we often give away prizes to random attendees of our marketing webinars or people who share our content with their networks. “Games and research into human psychology have taught us that people are happier when they earn something, rather than when it is given to them,” wrote Darren Steele, the strategic director of Mindspace, and co-author of the gamification book, I’ll Eat this Cricket for a Cricket Badge.6) Inbound MarketingInbound marketing is marketing that’s useful. It means acquiring customers by attracting and nurturing prospects with exceptional content, data and customer service — not interrupting them with annoying, useless messages. It means pulling prospects in with a magnet, not beating them over the head with a sledgehammer.“Consumers have learned how to ignore TV commercials with Tivo, radio commercials with Satellite radio, email marketing with filters, etc.” wrote in our LinkedIn discussion web presence strategist Linda Lovero-Waterhouse. “Now our goal is to give consumers the information they want *when* they want it. What a concept!”Inbound marketing tactics tend to be cheaper than traditional marketing tactics, too. Companies that focus on inbound tactics have a 62% lower cost-per-lead than companies that focus on outbound tactics.There are three key stages to inbound marketing: get found, convert, and analyze. Eventually, inbound marketing boils down to, as web marketing professional Jonathan Mallia noted, “knowing your customers’ needs and feeding them with the right content that ultimately links to the product you wish to market and finally sell. If this is cleverly executed in a strategic manner, you will realize that you have only spent a small fraction of your advertising budget to convert a good number of good quality, sales-ready leads. Why? Because Marketing = Educating.”7) Social NetworksWith the invention of the World Wide Web in 1990, the internet opened up multi-directional communication channels and embraced collaboration. Its digital format removed the physical limitations and expensive cost of producing and distributing information. Forums and chat rooms started to populate the digital landscape, often used to share news. Internet Relay Chat (IRC), for instance, was introduced to the general public in 1991, when the platform offered real-time coverage of the First Gulf War.In the early 2000s, people joined the new participatory media culture by creating and disseminating content through their personal computers, smart phones and digital cameras. Online users started blogging, video broadcasting, and using social media. Social networking site Facebook, which was founded in 2002, now has more than 900 million active users. Then of course there are the other popular social networks like Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Google+ and YouTube.“Social marketing changed marketing forever,” wrote Jose Antonio Sanchez, Communications Specialist at Uberflip, in our LinkedIn discussion. “Marketers have realized that they need to have valuable two-way conversations with their audience before getting it to ‘buy’ their product. Consumers can be convinced but not persuaded anymore.”8) Social ProofSocial proof, also referred to as “informational social influence,” is the concept that people willconform to the actions of others under the assumption that those actions are reflective of thecorrect behavior. In other words, it’s the mentality that, if other people are doing it, and I trustthose people, that’s validation that I should also be doing it. This third-party validation can be avery powerful motivator for your site visitors’ and prospects’ actions.One traditional example of social proof is when TV shows play canned laughter or recorded applause to elevate the perception of funny or applaudable situations. So while the concept of social proof may be nothing new, the rise of the internet and social media adoption have certainly made social proof a lot easier to leverage and exploit, especially in a marketing context. Building and providing better visibility for your business’ social proof can be a powerful addition to your marketing strategy.The forms of social proof in marketing can vary from social media praises and social advertising to case studies, testimonials and user reviews.9) ViralityViral marketing is word-of-mouth marketing that is carried out voluntarily by a company’s advocates. “Viral marketing,” wrote Seth Godin in 2008, “is an idea that spreads — and an idea that while it is spreading actually helps market your business or cause.”Godin goes on to describe two types of viral marketing: one in which the message that spreads is the product itself, and another in which the message isn’t related to the product. YouTube as a platform would be an example of the first one, and a video on YouTube would be an example of the second.Email has facilitated the spread of the second type of viral marketing. Tools such as “send this page, article or website to a friend” encourage people to refer or recommend your newsletter, company, product, service or specific offers to other people. In order to leverage viral marketing, you need to have a strong community that will start the process of spreading your message. You can build your community even before you have a product. Letting users into the process early helps provide a sense of ownership while it gives a company valuable feedback needed to make the product better.“Being viral isn’t the hard part,” observes Godin. “The hard part is making that viral elementactually produce something of value, not just entertainment for the client or your boss.”10) Web 2.0When the Web first became available to users, it was primarily about retrieving information. As it evolved in the 2000s, it became known as Web 2.0 — a platform associated not only with consumption of information, but also with collaboration and participation. It is characterized by applications like blogging, search engine optimization, and social media. The term is associated with Tim O’Reilly because of the O’Reilly Media Web 2.0 conference in 2004.O’Reilly explained that Web 2.0 is based on the principle that online databases improve as people use them. “It’s about how businesses work differently in the age of the network,” he said. Businesses have to figure out how to create more value for their customers than for themselves. Ultimately, customers and businesses are capable of building value together. Think about how you can build a platform online that enables the community to bring value to your business for you.What other brilliant ideas do you think changed the marketing landscape forever?Image credit: d4u.hu Topics: Don’t forget to share this post! 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