center column 2 Donors and Volunteers to be Honored at Hillsides Circle of Excellence Dinner Thursday, October 22 From STAFF REPORTS Published on Tuesday, October 20, 2015 | 6:55 pm Name (required) Mail (required) (not be published) Website Pasadena’s ‘626 Day’ Aims to Celebrate City, Boost Local Economy Home of the Week: Unique Pasadena Home Located on Madeline Drive, Pasadena Top of the News First Heatwave Expected Next Week 11 recommended0 commentsShareShareTweetSharePin it Get our daily Pasadena newspaper in your email box. Free.Get all the latest Pasadena news, more than 10 fresh stories daily, 7 days a week at 7 a.m. Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked * HerbeautyVictoria’s Secret Model’s Tips For Looking Ultra SexyHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyYou Can’t Go Past Our Healthy Quick RecipesHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyWho Was The Hollywood ‘It Girl’ The Year You Were Born?HerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty11 Ayurveda Heath Secrets From Ancient IndiaHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyIs It Bad To Give Your Boyfriend An Ultimatum?HerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty6 Lies You Should Stop Telling Yourself Right NowHerbeautyHerbeauty Pasadena Will Allow Vaccinated People to Go Without Masks in Most Settings Starting on Tuesday More Cool Stuff Community News EVENTS & ENTERTAINMENT | FOOD & DRINK | THE ARTS | REAL ESTATE | HOME & GARDEN | WELLNESS | SOCIAL SCENE | GETAWAYS | PARENTS & KIDS Business News Make a comment Four supporters of Hillsides, a nonprofit child welfare organization serving children in foster care and families in crisis, will be honored at the Hillsides Circle of Excellence Dinner at 6:00 p.m. on Thursday, October 22, 2015 at The Rococo Room in Pasadena. This annual event is a chance for Hillsides to thank donors and volunteers who have gone above and beyond in giving their talents, time, and resources to the agency.The following are receiving awards:• Sue Tutt, who is receiving the Hillsides Lifetime Achievement Award. Tutt has been volunteering at Hillsides since 2001. After retiring as a middle school home economics teacher, Tutt dedicated her time to helping the children who live at Hillsides residential treatment program to sew and cook. She has also been a long-time member of Hillsides Guild, a support group that fundraises for and plans activities for the children.• Friends of Foster Children, which is receiving the Hillsides Community Angel Award. Friends of Foster Children, which provides goods, volunteer services, and financial support to foster children and emancipated youth, supports the children of Hillsides year-round. The organization provides school supplies for the children, Halloween goodies, Christmas gifts, and Easter baskets, among other gifts.• John Gong, who is receiving the Hillsides Angel Award. Gong, the vice president of global events and show production at Disney Consumer Products and Interactive Media has been involved with Hillsides since 1997. He has served on Hillsides board of directors for six years, and is also a key member of the Hillsides Volunteer Network, a volunteer group that plans and participates in activities for the children.• Ed Patterson, who is receiving the Hillsides Special Recognition Award. Patterson served as the chair of the Hillsides Volunteer Network from 2009 – 2015 and is now serving as the treasurer. Under his leadership, the Hillsides Volunteer Network more than doubled in size. Patterson’s involvement at Hillsides has inspired him and his wife Lori to become foster parents with the intent of adopting.The Rococo Room is located at 260 E. Colorado Blvd, Pasadena.Hillsides, founded in 1913 and serving more than 6,200 children and families in Los Angeles County is a premier provider dedicated to improving the overall well-being and functioning of vulnerable children, youth, and families. For more information, please visit www.hillsides.org. faithfernandez More » ShareTweetShare on Google+Pin on PinterestSend with WhatsApp,Virtual Schools PasadenaHomes Solve Community/Gov/Pub SafetyPASADENA EVENTS & ACTIVITIES CALENDARClick here for Movie Showtimes Subscribe Community News
Individuals with albinism face discrimination in societies around the world. Reports of attacks and mutilation occur daily, with thousands of albinos living under threat or at risk. The Harvard Foundation will host a panel discussion and photo exhibition, “Prejudice and Violence against People with Albinism: An International Concern,” on Thu., Oct. 28, and Fri., Oct. 29, to bring attention to this worldwide issue. The panel discussion will be taped and made available to other colleges and organizations around the world.“The Harvard Foundation is pleased to conduct a program on prejudice and violence against albinos,” said S. Allen Counter, director of the Harvard Foundation. “It is one of the last unchallenged and unattended prejudices on earth, and we hope to enlightenment people about this bias and mistreatment, and bring about greater understanding and protection of persons with albinism. We are pleased that our students with albinism are taking an active part in this important program.”The panel discussion will take place on Thu., Oct. 28, at 5:30 p.m. in Fong Auditorium, Boylston Hall, in Harvard Yard. Rick Guidotti’s photos of persons with albinism from around the world will be on display in the Harvard University Science Center Arcade on Oct. 28 and 29. Both events are free and open to the public.
Hundreds of people get sick each year from inappropriate pesticide use, but those who don’t deal with pesticides daily may not think about it very often.Pesticides are used in homes, workplaces, apartments, farms and other places where humans need to control pests such as weeds, insects, fungi, rodents and even viruses. Of the 11 states participating in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) pesticide safety program, workers reported 853 serious injuries from pesticides in 2011, according to the CDC.During National Pesticide Safety Education Month this February, University of Georgia Cooperative Extension personnel urge homeowners, and all Georgians, to learn more about the safe use, storage and disposal of pesticides. Land-grant universities across the nation provide programs to educate both public and private sector groups about pesticide safety.“Pesticide safety education is key to helping pesticide applicators, both commercial and agricultural, safely and effectively use available pesticides to protect their crops and livelihoods,” said Mickey Taylor, UGA Extension Pesticide Safety Education Program (PSEP) coordinator. “At the same time, they want to protect themselves, their employees and colleagues from any potential ill effects of pesticide use in addition to protecting their families and neighbors. As good stewards of the land, (they want to) preserve our environment for the future.”This year, the Weed Science Society of America (WSSA), the American Phytopathological Society (APS) and the Entomological Society of America (ESA) have joined forces to highlight pesticide safety education programs and to teach pesticide safety to the public during the collaboration’s inaugural National Pesticide Safety Education Month.UGA Extension’s PSEP promotes the safe, responsible use of pesticides by individuals and commercial groups by providing training programs, materials and educational resources covering pest identification, personal safety, safe storage and disposal of pesticides, environmental protection, pesticide drift and runoff prevention, threatened and endangered species protection, water quality protection, and food safety.“Georgia’s PSEP offers online training modules covering core pesticide safety topics for agricultural producers seeking private applicator licenses, and core and some category study guides for commercial applicators of pesticides,” Taylor said. “In addition, recertification classes are offered in requesting counties around Georgia, as well as regional training classes that offer re-certification credit hours.”PSEP also offers an online training course, the Georgia Competent Applications of Pesticides Program, that teaches basic pesticide safety to homeowners, public service employees and public volunteers, like Master Gardener Extension Volunteers, according to Taylor.“This allows anyone in Georgia who might want to learn about the proper and safe use of pesticides to do so from the comfort of their own living room,” Taylor said.Taylor is the editor of UGA Extension’s “Georgia Pest Management Handbook,” which is revised and published annually. Copies of the handbook are provided to all UGA Extension Agriculture and Natural Resources agents and are sold to crop advisers, chemical distribution companies and to the general public throughout the Southeast.More information about UGA Extension’s pesticide safety resources can be found at www.extension.uga.edu/programs-services/pesticide-safety-education.
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Looking to read as much as he could, Cotton eventually grew bored of it and decided to put down the book to pick up a new hobby — … MESA, Ariz. — Jharel Cotton’s first bullpen session of the spring was a long time coming.The right-hander is approaching the year-mark since his Tommy John surgery, and Tuesday was his first time throwing off a mound the full distance to the plate. But before that, Cotton found himself looking for ways to keep himself busy back at his offseason home in Detroit.
Amidst the various smartphone launches, Lava seems to be buoyant with the launch of five new smartphones under its Iris series. The line-up includes Lava Iris 400s, Iris 250, Iris 404 Flair, Iris 410 and Iris 400 Colors.The entire line-up falls in the price bracket of INR 4000 to INR 6000. From the 5 smartohones Iris 404 Flair, Iris 410 and Iris 400 Colors run on Android 4.4 KitKat platform while the remaining two feature a little older Android 4.2 Jelly Bean operating system. Talking about the common features the all the five smartphones come with 4 inch 480X800p display.Being positioned in the entry level category, the smartphones feature 512 MB RAM and 4 GB inbuilt storage, which may be expanded to up to 32 GB.The new Iris phones are powered by a dual-core processor except Lava Iris 410 and Iris 404 Flair that have 1.3 GHz and 1 GHz chipsets and also support 3G connectivity which lacks in other devices. Both Iris 400s and Iris 404 Flair smartphones sport 5MP primary cameras and also house front facing VGA camera. Iris 410 comes with 3MP primary camera while Iris 400 Colors and Iris 250 sport a 2 MP and 3.2 MP main camera respectively. All the three devices also house a fornt facing VGA camera.Similar specifications of Lava’s latest Iris Android phones:1. 4-inch screens with 480 x 800p resolution2. Dual core processors of unnamed origin3. Google Android OS onboard4. 4GB of internal space5. Memory expandability support via microSD card slot
Google’s Matt Cutts posted a great article on his blog recently with simple and practical tips for small businesses. The video is included below. 6. Buying advertising on Google does not influence search results. 1. 7. SEO 2. . Try digg and StumbleUpon. . 3. Don’t worry that much about the Originally published Jul 10, 2008 10:41:00 AM, updated October 20 2016 Start a blog! The following are some of the simple tips made in the video. Great advice for small business marketers. The points in the video are simple, but it’s interesting because it’s straight, unfiltered advice from Google. 5. keywords meta tag Find conversations using social media Think about what people are going to type to find your site. 8. What do people search for? 4. Advertising on Google doesn’t influence rankings. Title tags matter. If something else caught you attention in the video that I haven’t mentioned, please leave a comment. The above are just some of the hilights It’s what the user first sees on Google results. Google to get traffic from Google. Google crawls your website for free. Just make sure it can find your website. Examples: What made you decide to start a small business? What were your weirdest customer experiences? You do not have to pay Use the meta description tag Participate in the conversation. Doesn’t have to be complex or fancy. Things that are interesting to you are probably interesting to your users/customers. 6 Simple SEO Tips For Small Business Topics: . It is often shown to web users when they search on Google. Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack
What do you think: (a) Is Madison Avenue going to grow over the next few years, (b) is it going to stay flat-ish, (c) is it going to shrink slightly, or (d) is it going to crater? Vote below in the comments section. The whole business model of their industry is still centered around the “30-second (TV) spot.” It sounds like they traditionally had made their money as a percentage of their clients spend on advertising, but that most of them had moved to a retainer type model that is closer to how law firms and consulting firms charge. while the Madison Avenue-ish firms were trying to hold onto the traditional marketing models. transformation of marketing If you are an ad agency, a PR firm or a marketing services firm and think that the “Times Are A Changin,'” I’d encourage you to check out the marketing services transformation webinar. Last night I had a fascinating dinner hosted by the Massachusetts Interactive Technology Exchange that featured Google’s VP of Platforms, a bunch of senior executives from Madison Avenue-ish firms, a senior marketing exec from a Fortune 500 company, a marketing analyst and myself. The conversation was really rich and enjoyable. I felt like it ended up being HubSpot and Google arguing for the complete They were all exceptionally charismatic and convincing — Don Draper in the flesh. I could see how these modern day Mad Men built huge businesses for themselves. Regardless of what happens to their industry, their ability to sell will serve them well. Originally published Feb 18, 2010 9:33:00 AM, updated July 11 2013 I said that I thought the bright spot for Madison Avenue is that despite what many people say, I think creativity is more important than ever. Back in 1970, if a 30-second spot came on the air, you basically had to watch it no matter how bad it was because you only had five crappy stations (a couple more with rabbit ear manipulation), no clicker, no cable, no DVR, no Hulu, etc. In 2010, the content you create needs to be fantastic in order to get watched, get linked to, get shared on social media sites, etc. I think the creativity bar today is an order of magnitude higher than it was 40 years ago. Madison Ave has the talent to create remarkable content that will break through the clutter and this will serve them well through what I think will be a very rough decade. – Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack I was a little overshadowed on the charisma meter, but I made a couple of points that I didn’t think were half bad: I don’t know a lot of Madison Avenue bigwigs, so I learned a bunch of things that I’ll share with you below. I’m hoping to create a dialog around what folks think the future of Madison Avenue looks like. Learn how HubSpot’s software, methodology and special programs for agencies and freelance marketing contractors can help you grow your business. There is a massive amount of consolidation going on in the industry by the big boys, but the valuations they pay are small multiples of EBITDA. It struck me as odd that the big boys haven’t been more aggressive in buying some recurring revenue companies like Eloqua, Reachlocal, QuinStreet, etc. One exception seems to be WPP, who has done some small investments in some really early (risky) startups — not sure why Sir Martin doesn’t swing a bit harder on getting recurring software revenue as it could give him a major competitive advantage. These recurring revenue streams would smooth out the revenue/people lumps and dramatically improve their valuations. on our Company News Blog about our new marketing services transformation programs or download the slides from our I sat next to a great woman from one of the more forward looking Madison Ave-ish firms and part of her job was to manage her firm’s relationship with a major Fortune 100 client. For this account alone, she had 80 people on her staff working on it. From this conversation, I now understand why it is such a big deal when they lose a big account! It would be hard as hell to backfill those 80 people on a new account as it is really unlikely they are going to bag an elephant of that size around the same time as losing one, and it’s also going to be hard to spread 80 billable people around to other accounts in the meantime. I suspect this type of situation must create major anxiety for managers and workers alike. @bhalligan Download the slides and audio from our webinar Download the audio and slides from our webinar where we relaunched the HubSpot partner program with significantly more benefits for marketing agencies. Webinar: Learn about the Benefits of Partnering with HubSpot I said that I thought Madison Avenue firms were going to have to dramatically change their business model. In order to do so, they are going to have to dramatically shrink and then grow again. My perspective is that they ought to do it willingly and proactively — rather than die by a thousand cuts like the newspaper executives are doing. Joey Parson For the most part, they all seemed to be in different states of denial about the demise of the 30-second spot. They used clever lines like the only way the car companies are going to “move steel tonnage in volume” is by mass TV ad purchases. Some convincing stats were spouted that sounded counter to everything I’d been reading, but they were relatively convincing. To me, the denial feels like the newspaper industry denial 3 or 4 years ago, but I may be dead wrong about that. announcement I made today Photo Credit:
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: Originally published Mar 30, 2012 2:09:00 PM, updated July 28 2017 Content Types In an online world where the quality of your blog content is only increasing in importance, the fabled ‘list’ post commonly gets a bad rap. It’s unfortunate, but definitely understandable. You can easily drown in a sea of particularly low-quality, low-value lists posts.But hey — not all list posts have to suck! While there are definitely some pretty awful ones out there, you can also find quite a few very valuable, high-quality list posts floating around the internet. So let’s not judge a list post by its title. I’m a firm believer that the list post does have a place in the world of high quality blog content. And to no surprise, this post about lists posts is largely a list post itself. You can be the judge of its quality, but I stand by my beliefs.First, let’s talk a little bit about common misconceptions about list posts. Then we’ll dive into the characteristics of high quality ones so you can start squashing the myth that all list posts are subpar … by writing awesome ones!Common Misconceptions About List PostsLast week, Daily Blog Tips published an article highlighting some common misconceptions about list posts and explaining why it’s silly to think about list posts in those ways. Let’s quickly review the points the article made:”List posts are just for lazy writers.” Pish posh! In fact, when done well (meaning it’s not just three, sentence-long points slapped together), a list post can take just as long — if not longer — than any other type of post for bloggers to write.”List posts aren’t right for my style/niche.” Huh? Why are list posts — a type of post — conceived as fitting only certain industries? A list post could work for any industry, as long as the subject matter and quality fit the audience. “List posts have to be really long.” Wrong, wrong, wrong. There’s no rule that your list post needs to be a laundry list of useless information or that it needs to include a minimum number of items. In fact, a super long, 100-point list runs the risk of sounding daunting to readers, deterring them from reading it and turning them away.The thing is, people love the classic list post! They tell the reader exactly what — and how much of it — they’re going to get out of the post, plus they’re very shareable. They’re also easy to scan, and with so much content available on the web these days, being able to scan a post and still grasp a helpful nugget or two of information is highly valuable. Here are a few examples of the types of list posts we’ve published recently on this very blog, all of which we believe are high quality posts that have performed well in terms of traffic, leads, and inbound links:”9 Ways to Increase Visibility for Your Best Blog Content””7 Keyword Research Mistakes That Stifle Your SEO Strategy””13 Brands Using LinkedIn Company Page Features the Right Way””5 Actionable Insights to Extract From Your Landing Page Analytics”Now for the meaty stuff. If you’re convinced that list posts can be a part of your blogging strategy, make sure the ones you publish include these top 10 qualities of high-quality list posts.1) Includes Items That Stay True to the List Subject/AngleSometimes a blogger will start writing a list about one thing, and then when he/she is done, it turns out to be a list that takes on a completely different angle because their research revealed more information about a slightly different subject. The problem is, this new angle is no longer relevant to their audience. Don’t let this happen to you. If, after your initial research, you find that the points you’ve brainstormed don’t fit with the subject you intended, scrap it and move on.Another common symptom of bad list posts are list items that don’t quite fit with the others. For example, if you notice in this very list post, all of the items on this list are qualities of awesome list post. If one of my points was, in itself, an example of a list post, that wouldn’t make sense, right? Be consistent and parallel. If you’re writing a list of examples, they should all be examples. If you’re writing a list of best practices, they should all be best practices. It’s easy to stray off-topic when you’re trying to compile a hearty list, but you need to avoid it. Otherwise your list — and your writing — loses its integrity.2) Dense With Valuable Takeaways (No Fluff!)The biggest indicator of a lousy list post is one that contains a ton of fluff and no real, valuable takeaways for the reader. Here’s an example of what we mean:3 Ways to Improve Your Social Media MarketingBe unique! Do something to stand out from your competitors.Take risks! Try out-of-the-box ideas.Measure results! Use your analytics to tell you what’s working.What a fantastic list post! I’ve learned — absolutely nothing. No wonder list posts have a terrible reputation. That took me 60 seconds to write. Sure, on the surface, each of these list points sound valuable. You absolutely should do all these things in your social media marketing. But it doesn’t tell you exactly how to do those things. Your list shouldn’t just give readers a list of things to do and expect them to figure out how to do those things themselves. It should also walk them through the steps required to actually do those things.A great list post nixes the fluff and concretely explains each item in detail. And while every point you make on your list might not be new to all your readers, if a reader walks away thinking, “Well, I already put numbers 3, 4, and 6, into practice, but I can’t believe I’ve been missing out on numbers 1, 2, and 5!” — then you’ve probably got yourself a high-quality list!3) Links to More In-Depth Information When NecessaryOne of the ways you can make sure you’re hitting on point #2 is to direct readers to other resources when necessary. Great list posts are comprehensive. It also means they can get pretty long and unwieldy, especially if you’re truly committed to point #2. That’s why sometimes it’s okay if you have to point your readers to another place for more in-depth information. For example, we recently wrote a list post entitled, “9 Ways to Make Your Marketing Analytics Actionable.” Number 8 on the list reads “Score & Prioritize Your Leads for Sales,” which could be a blog post in itself — and hey … it is! Giving our readers enough information for that section to be truly helpful would have involved copying and pasting the entirety of that post into our list post, and that wouldn’t exactly have been the most helpful choice. So what we did was explain the point in a moderate amount of detail, and then directed readers to the other post where they could find more in-depth information. Don’t be afraid to do this in your own list posts. And if you have to link to an external resource because you haven’t the written the post yourself — great! You’ve just passed off some link love, and you also now have another article idea for your blogging backlog! 4) Explains List Items Using Relatable ExamplesPiggybacking again on point #2, sometimes one of the best ways to adequately explain a point on your list is to use an example to support it. Real examples are ideal, but sometimes even a hypothetical works just as great. In fact, we’ve used each of these example types in the first 3 items on this list! The main thing to consider when selecting or concocting an example is to keep it as relatable to your readers as possible. If the audience of your blog is comprised of a variety of readers representing different industries or businesses (like ours), this can be tricky. The key here is to keep your examples general so that everyone can relate. Here comes a hypothetical example to explain what I mean about using hypothetical examples …In our list post, “7 Keyword Research Mistakes That Stifle Your SEO Strategy,” for example, we use the broad, hypothetical (even mythical!) example of unicorn farms/breeders to more easily explain points 4 and 5 on our list so that everyone could relate.5) Numbered Items This is an easy one. If you’re writing a list-style post — and especially when you use a number in the title of your list post — number your list items! This is particularly important when you have a longer list, because readers like to be able to gauge their progress as they’re reading through the list (i.e. “only halfway to go” or “I’m almost done!”). Readers may also like to reference certain points on a list later or share them with others, and being able to refer to a specific number rather than having to count themselves and say “it’s the 16th item on the list” is a much more user-friendly experience for your blog audience. Don’t make things difficult for your readers.6) Includes an Appropriate Number of List ItemsWhile we’re talking about numbers, let’s clear some misconceptions about them. Some list bloggers are of the camp that you should choose a number before you start writing your list and make sure you have enough points to fit that exact number. We are not. Sitting down and saying you’re going to write a list consisting of 14 items makes no sense. What if there really ends up being only 11 truly solid, valuable items that make up that list? Does that mean you should come up with 3 more forced or somewhat repetitive items just to achieve your goal of 14? We think not.The rule of thumb is: just be comprehensive. This very list post includes 10 items because that’s how many I thought were individually valuable and indicative of a high-quality list post for this particular subject. Originally I had brainstormed 11, but as I started writing, I cut one out because it wasn’t that different from another point, and they could easily be represented as one.As we mentioned before, list posts can easily become unwieldy. When you sit down to start drafting your list post, decide how granular you want to make your topic. This will help make your list more manageable. The title you craft can also help you stay focused. For example, if you’re a plumber writing a list post about the various ways you can unclog a drain, you might decide to stick to “The Top 4 Ways to Unclog a Drain,” rather than writing a lengthy list post covering “The 50 Different Ways to Unclog a Drain.”Furthermore, do some testing and research if you want to glean some best practices for your list posts. An internal study of our own blog, for example, revealed that posts for which the title indicated 6 items or fewer didn’t perform as well as when the title indicated the list contained 7 or more items. The lesson? While we sometimes still write lists posts containing 6 or fewer items, we don’t include the number in the title for those posts. For example, our post, “Why Every Marketer Needs Closed-Loop Reporting” is essentially a list post, but it’s not framed that way in the title since it only includes 6 points. Do your own analysis to determine best practices for your business blog.7) Uses Category Buckets (For Longer Lists)Now, if you had decided to write that list post of 50 different ways to unclog a drain, your list post would look pretty daunting, considering the sheer number of items it would include. In this case, a great practice is to use subheaders to break up your list into categories. This makes the list much more scanable (remember how people love to scan blogs?), and a lot less overwhelming at first glance.For example, when we published “25 Eye-Popping Internet Marketing Statistics for 2012,” we broke up the statistics into 5 sections: “The Internet in 2012,” “Mobile in 2012,” “Social Media in 2012,” “Video in 2012,” and “Ecommerce in 2012.” If some of our readers didn’t give a squat about ecommerce, they could easily scan the post and avoid that section. Perfect!8) Contains Logically Ordered List ItemsYour list, like any other post you’d write, should flow and tell a story. How you do this will definitely depend on the subject and contents of your list, but here are some great organizational structures to choose from: alphabetical (great for glossaries), chronological (great for step-by-step guides), by popularity/importance — most to least or least to most (great for top 10/20/50 lists). Another best practice is to emphasize your strongest points in the beginning, middle, and end of your list to keep readers engaged throughout.When I sat down and brainstormed this list, for example, it was just that — a brainstormed list. It was unorganized and all over the place. But once I’d identified all the points I wanted to include, I rearranged the furniture a bit. I realized how easily numbers 5 and 6 would flow into each other, and how number 5 would make sense after discussing points 2, 3 and 4. Number 1 was a great starting point, and number 10 made the most sense last, since that’s likely the last thing you’d tweak when writing a list post. Sometimes your list points will practically arrange themselves (e.g. “5 Steps to Do X”), and sometimes there won’t be as obvious a story (e.g. “20 Ways to Do Y”). Just put the time into figuring it out and ordering your items as logically as possible.9) Parallel FormattingI’m not as strict about this one as some list post purists, but in general, I agree that your list post should have a consistent and parallel look. Failing to do so only confuses readers, especially when they can’t tell that they’ve moved onto a new item on the list because the header style was inconsistent or under-emphasized. Here are some helpful guidelines to consider:Try to keep sections similar in length. Use the same header style to highlight your individual list items, and make sure it stands out.Make sure your list item headers are written in parallel fashion (i.e. if it’s a list of action items, each should be led with a verb)Use images and bullet points to break up text when appropriate.10) Clear and Catchy TitleAs we mentioned in the beginning of this post, one of the reasons people have always loved list posts is because they know exactly what — and how much — they’ll get out of them. There is no guesswork involved, and expectations you’ve set for your readers are very clear. Make sure your title epitomizes that. An effective list post title should accomplish two things in order to entice readers to actually read the post: 1) capture the readers’ attention and 2) clearly indicate the value or what the reader will learn, and 3) indicate how much they will learn with a number.For example, earlier this week, we published “The 7 Aspects of Inbound Marketing Most People Screw Up.” Do you have to wonder what this post will be about? No! You know that after reading this post, you’ll know which 7 parts of inbound marketing people tend to screw up so you can avoid screwing them up, too. And chances are, you probably don’t like to fail, right? So you’re probably kind of intrigued to learn if you’re one of “most people” and, if so, what you should stop screwing up.What’s your take on list posts? What else would you add to our list of high-quality list post qualities? ;-)Image Credit: MStewartPhotography
PPC Originally published Aug 19, 2013 2:00:00 PM, updated July 28 2017 Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Topics: In PPC, there are lots of metrics to track, so it can quickly get confusing and then overwhelming. Marketers often ask me, “What’s the one metric I should optimize for? I just want to know the top one or two levers I can pull to make a difference!”In my experience, looking at thousands of Google AdWords accounts and billions in combined spend, there are two metrics that correlate most strongly with success:Account Activity: You get out what you put in. This isn’t too shocking; advertisers who do more work on their accounts get better results.Quality Score: Higher Quality Scores generally lead to lower costs, so optimizing for Quality Score is essentially the same as optimizing for ROI.Why You Should Spend Time Optimizing for Quality Score Since Quality Score is really a measure of relevance, it’s a powerful predictor of your success. And it makes total sense — Google’s main goal is to keep users happy so they keep using Google, and keep clicking results. More relevant ads, campaigns, and landing pages get more clicks; that raises your Quality Scores and — since Quality Score determines both your ad ranking and what you pay per click — everybody wins.So once you’ve committed to spending more time in your account, what should you spend your time on? I recommend that you focus on optimizing your Quality Scores, which is the metric most likely to lead to higher rankings, more clicks and leads, and lower costs for those actions.How much lower? Let’s take a look.New Data Shows AdWords Quality Score Can Save You Up to 50% on PPCIn 2009, Craig Danuloff crunched some numbers to show that a Quality Score of 10 could save you 30% on cost per click, or CPC. (Sadly, I can’t link to the post because the Click Equations blog now redirects to Acquisio.) But that was over four years ago, and I was curious to see if the data had changed.To investigate, I did a manual analysis of several hundred new clients that WordStream signed up in the first two months of 2013. What I found is that average impression-weighted Quality Scores have fallen in the past four years. In 2009, a Quality Score of 7 (out of 10) was average. But today’s impression-weighted average Quality Score is just slightly over 5. The distribution looks like this: Therefore, accounts (or campaigns or ad groups) with average volume-weighted keyword Quality Scores better than 5 can be considered better than average, and are thereby benefiting relative to most advertisers. Accounts with average Quality Scores lower than 5 are below average, and those scores are detrimental to your account. I used this data to re-run the calculations and see how much a Quality Score higher than 5 saves you on CPC compared to the average advertiser. Here’s what I found: As you can see from the chart, the savings have increased. Some highlights: A Quality Score of 6 is 200% more valuable than it was four years ago! A Quality Score of 6 was previously below average, and increased your CPC by 16.7%. Now, a Quality Score of 6 decreases your CPC by 16.7%. A Quality Score of 9 is twice as valuable as it was in 2009, saving you 44.4% compared to 22.2%. A Quality Score of 10 now saves you a full 50% on CPC. That means if all your keywords had Quality Scores of 10, you’d only be paying half as much as the average advertiser. Pretty crazy, right? And if you’re thinking, “So what? I don’t care about cost per click, all I really care about is cost per acquisition” — fear not. Quality Score lowers your CPA, too. I did a similar analysis based on CPA and found that high Quality Scores also correlate with lower CPAs:With a Quality Score of 10, you’ll pay 80% less per conversion than an advertiser with an average Quality Score of 5. These savings are mostly driven by lower costs per click. This is why optimizing for Quality Score is such a good use of your time.Benchmarking AdWords Quality Score: What Should You Shoot For? As I mentioned above, average Quality Scores these days hover around a 5. So anything higher than 5 is going to benefit you, relative to the average AdWords advertiser. That means you should shoot for a bare minimum impression-weighted average Quality Score of 6. However, it’s important to note that higher scores save you more. If you want the full 50% savings, you need the gold standard Quality Score of 10.The fastest way to find out your impression-weighted average Quality Score in AdWords is to grade your account using the free AdWords Performance Grader. This tool will do an instant audit of your PPC account across 8 different key performance metrics, including impression-weighted Quality Score. Your report will calculate and display your average Quality Score and plot a distribution of the number of impressions happening at each visible Quality Score for the last 90 days, and compare that to a “Recommended Curve” for your business. Here’s an example of what the Quality Score section of the report looks like:If you don’t like what you see (the example account above is well below average), it’s time to start working on improving your scores. Here are three tactics to try: Use ad extensions. AdWords ad extensions, such as sitelinks, make your ads bigger with more places to click, so they increase CTR at no extra cost.Write better ad text. Test different messaging to find the ad text that speaks to your audience. And use your one allotted exclamation point! Bid on brand terms. Branded keywords tend to have really high clickthrough and conversion rates, so they bring up the average for your whole account. This is a guest post written by Larry Kim. Larry is the founder and CTO of WordStream, provider of the 20 Minute PPC Work Week and the AdWords Grader. You can follow him on Twitter and Google+.Image credit: Philip Taylor PT