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How Colors Influence People: The Psychology Of Color In Business Marketing [Infographic]

Colors, Colors, Colors…

infographic: How Colors Influence People: The Psychology Of Color In Business Marketing

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Too Late to Learn? [Infographic]

Late bloomers are people who achieved proficiency in some skill later than they are normally expected to. The key word is “expected.”

 too late to learn - late bloomers-people who succeeded infographic

School Is a Machine, Learning Is Not

Ever since the 19th century, when education was first standardized, learning in popular imagination is highly connected to age. The school system, back then and now, is modeled after a factory – people get education in batches, based on their date of manufacture. If you were manufactured seven years ago, that means it’s time to learn the multiplication table, for instance. And if you are ten and you still have not mastered the table, you are reshuffled to the un-smart batch. Perfect logic. Except the lives of many successful people proved it wrong. They mastered a skill at an older age. They are late bloomers. Let’s see who they are and how they did it.

Learning Languages Late: At 20 Still Spoke No English

When Joseph Conrad became one of the titans of English Literature at 39, few people knew that at 20 Joseph still spoke no English at all. He was fluent in Polish and French, growing up in the part of Poland that is now Ukraine. He learned English at sea. When he started writing, he himself and his agent hesitated about Joseph’s ability to communicate in English with readers who at the time were members of one of history’s most class-conscious societies. His foreignness proved to be an advantaged, and his English writing style became iconic.

The Reasons Why People Bloom Later

Parents

The life circumstances of late bloomers suggest that they could bloom earlier had circumstances been a bit different. Paul Cezanne’s father protested his son’s plan to study art, envisioning his son a banker like himself, possibly delaying Paul’s education as an artist. Of course, if you really set your mind to something, even parents can’t stop you.

Geography

Joseph Conrad was simply born in a non-English speaking country. Ultimately, though, it may have been to his advantage, because he may have never developed his original exotic style was he raised in England.

Finances

Sylvester Stallone originally wanted to be an actor, but being evicted from his apartment lead him to performing in soft pornographic movie roles at $200 for two days work, delaying his big break with Rocky.

Non-Dream Jobs

For some people the reason is more trivial – they were simply in the wrong, but good,  job for too long. Reid Hoffman enjoyed success at PayPal. Martha Stewart succeeded as a stoke broker. Julia Child had a stable job with the government. But as their lives later showed, they were capable of much more.

Simply Having No Clue

Fauja Singh knew what running was all his life, but it wasn’t until his son was beheaded by a flying sheet of metal, that Fauja took a different look at life. First he sank into depression. Then he moved on from India to England where he first learned what a ‘marathon’ was. He thought it was 26 kilometers when he showed up for training.  It turned out marathons are 26 miles long (41 kilometers). He still ran, even at age 100. Sometimes, ignorance is bliss.

Is It Ever Too Late to Learn?

Learning something late in life might sound like a bad deal if you compare yourself to all the young talented folk. Understandable. The catch is that doing something earlier does not necessarily make you better at it than if you did it later. Could you say that Stallone is a worse actor than actors who started in their teens? Was Julia Child a worse cook just because she started cooking at 30? With Fauja Singh it’s even easier –  just finishing the marathon at all he already wins.

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Job Interview – Tips [Infographic]

Job Interview tips

 
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Posted by on September 16, 2014 in 2014, Infographic, Lifestyle

 

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10 Steps to Help Improve Your Local SEO

There are several online marketing options available today that your local businesses can utilize to improve your website traffic, leads, and sales. In the past there was print advertising, TV, and radio. Now, with so many different online-based options available it has left many small business owners confused.

Local search engine optimization is always going to produce results, and with more consumers armed with smartphones these days it has become extremely important that a local business has a strong local search presence. I have put together a 10 local SEO tips to help improve your website ranking in local search results.

1. Build Your Local Listing Pages

There is nothing tricky about this step. You will want to claim your local listings on Google+, Yahoo Local, Bing Local, and other popular business listing directories. After completing your profile you will have to verify you are indeed the owner of the business listing, and each one has a different verification method. Some will just verify your email address and some will send you a pin code in the mail that you will then have to enter in order to complete the verification.

Aside from the “big 3” there are additional local listings that you should make sure to include, such as YP.com, Yelp, foursquare, and industry specific business directories. It is important that you fully complete each profile using accurate and consistent information across all of your local listings.

2. Get Started Blogging

Creating a blog on your website and updating it on a regular basis is a great way to increase your local search visibility. Your blog will allow you to create content that targets local keywords and search terms related to your business.

Blogging provides a great SEO benefit, but it also gives your website visitors information to read every time they visit your website. The longer you can keep them on your site, the better chance you have of converting them into a lead or sale. Make sure to share your blog content on your social media profiles, further expanding your reach. Blogging can really boost your local search reach, so make sure to include it in your marketing effort.

3. Make Sure Your Website is Optimized

Your on-page optimization is very important when it comes to being found in local search. Several businesses can rank on top if they just have solid on-page optimization, so it is very important that you take the time to properly optimize all of your on-page factors before you even begin to think about link building or citation building.

Rather than list all of the on-page factors here, you can read my company’s definitive on-page optimization guide. It includes detailed information on how to properly optimize your website, including an example that you can follow.

4. Ensure That Your Website is Mobile & Tablet Friendly

If your website is not responsive then you are already at a major disadvantage in terms of local search. With so many local searches being performed on mobile and tablet devices it is crucial that your website offers a pleasant experience to those that are visiting it from one of these devices.

When someone visits your website on a mobile device and they have a hard time navigating it what do you think they will do? They will simply leave and find a site that is optimized for their device.

The small investment required to transform your website into a responsive design is well worth it. Mobile traffic continues to increase and there is no sign of it slowing down.

5. Encourage Your Customers to Leave Reviews

Having positive reviews online build trust and credibility, something that future customers actively look for. It is important that you gather local business reviews the right way, and not offer incentives or force reviews. Rather than bribing customers, simply present them with a list of review websites and let them know that you would love to hear their feedback.

There is no need to over think this. You will find that most customers will be more than happy to provide their feedback if they are simply asked. You can create a page on your website that displays all of the review options or you can send out an email to your customers asking for feedback.

6. Keep NAP Information Consistent

When you are creating business listings it is important that you are maintaining consistency when it comes to your NAP (business name, address, and phone number). It should appear on all directory listings exactly as it appears on your website.

For example, if you spell out “Street” on your website then do not abbreviate it as “St” on any of your business citations. Maintaining this consistency will help you to improve your local SEO greatly. It is also a great idea to audit all of your business listings and fix any discrepancies. This is a great way to help clean up your NAP profile and ensure consistency across the board.

7. Pick Smart Social Media Platforms Based on Your Customers

Social media is a mandatory part of your local search marketing effort, but it is counter productive to attempt to be active on every social media platform. You want to identify the outlets that your target audience is active on.

For example, a craft store would want to be active on Pinterest, but a local accountant would not benefit by being active on that social media platform. Once you have identified the proper social media platforms to be active on you will need to create a publication schedule. You will want to share your blog posts on social media, but you will also want to engage with your audience a few times daily.

8. Use Visual Content

Consumers respond much better to visual content, so use videos, infographics, and images as much as possible in your website content. This helps your visitors stay on your website longer, increasing the chance of them turning into a lead or sale.

Compelling content that is packed with useful images or an infographic also helps your website attract inbound links from other websites that link to your content. High quality authority websites aren’t going to link to thin content that provides little to no value. Focus on improving the user experience and you will earn more links, helping your local SEO effort.

9. User Experience is Key

Fancy graphics, animation, and outrageous features are not going to help your website perform well in local search. You need to focus on user experience first, making sure that everyone who lands on your website can easily navigate and locate your content and calls-to-action. Top rankings and all of the traffic in the world won’t do your business any good if your visitors leave right away out of frustration.

A clean design and simple navigation is key. The goal of every website is to create an action. This could be a physical location visit, a phone call, a contact or form request being filled out, or a purchase being made directly on the website. Make it as simple as possible for your visitors to complete your desired actions.

10. Constantly Test & Optimize

The previous nine tips that we have just discussed need to be constantly addressed. To dominate your local market you need to always be one step ahead of the competition. There is always room for improvement, so don’t be afraid to test and make changes. You would be surprised at how the smallest change can often result in the biggest change.

 
 

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Workplace Stress – Causes & Treatment [Infographic]

It’s no surprise that our jobs can be stressful, but ignoring that stress and what it does to you is a one-way ticket to both physical and mental health problems. Thankfully, not all is lost, and there are plenty of ways to handle workplace stress that can take the edge off. Here’s what we mean.

 

Why Work Stresses Us Out (and What We Can Do About It)

 
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Posted by on September 15, 2014 in 2014, Infographic, Lifestyle

 

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Eating grapes may keep your eyes healthy

Grape consumption also protected retinal function in an oxidative stress model of macular degeneration.

              Grape consumption also protected retinal function in an oxidative stress model of
                                                                   macular degeneration.

Regular grape consumption may play a role in eye health by protecting the retina from deterioration, a new study has claimed.

US researchers found that a grape-enriched diet resulted in a protective effect on retinal structure and function.

The retina is the part of the eye that contains the cells that respond to light, known as photoreceptors. There are two types of photoreceptors: rods and cones.

Retinal degenerative diseases can cause blindness due to photoreceptor cell death.

The study was conducted by a research team at the University of Miami, Bascom Palmer Eye Institute and investigated whether a diet supplemented with grapes could protect the photoreceptors in mice with retinal degeneration.

Mice were either fed a grape-supplemented diet corresponding to 3 servings of grapes per day for humans or one of two control diets.

The results showed that retinal function was significantly protected in the mice consuming the grape-enriched diet.

The grape-consuming group had three-fold higher rod and cone photoreceptor responses compared with those on the control diets. They also exhibited thicker retinas.

Grape consumption also protected retinal function in an oxidative stress model of macular degeneration.

Further analysis revealed that the grape diet resulted in lower levels of inflammatory proteins and higher amounts of protective proteins in the retinas.

“The grape-enriched diet provided substantial protection of retinal function which is very exciting,” said Dr Abigail Hackam, lead investigator of the study.

“And it appears that grapes may work in multiple ways to promote eye health from signalling changes at the cellular level to directly countering oxidative stress,” Hackam said.

The study was presented at the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology conference in Orlando, Florida.

 
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Posted by on September 15, 2014 in 2014, Lifestyle

 

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The Key Ingredients to a Winning Mobile Content-Marketing Strategy

When you think about the different ways customers land on your company’s website, mobile is most likely a growing driver of traffic. According to the latest statistics from Pew Research, 56 percent of Americans own a smartphone and 34 percent own a tablet. Then consider that 63 percent of smartphone owners use their devices to go online.

Does your content-marketing strategy take these trends into account? Plugging new channels or technologies into your existing content strategy isn’t enough. As a business owner, you need to consider how your site and your marketing are being delivered over the devices people are using. If you’re not delivering your marketing messages in a way that’s tailored specifically to the experience of a smartphone or tablet user, chances are you’re turning customers away.

Here’s a closer look at some critical points to consider about your company’s mobile content-marketing strategy:

Mobile isn’t just about the device. Don’t just look at the mobile channel as a series of devices. It’s true that your content needs to be optimized and look great across different brands of tablets and smartphones. But mobile is also about the context and behaviors of your customers while they’re on those devices.

What are they doing on that smartphone? Are they accessing content relaxing at home, or glancing quickly during their commute? Your content strategy needs to represent a deeper understanding of your users’ mobile context and what that means for both your content and experience creation.

For example, I recently bought a new home theater system. As I was setting it up in the living room, I realized that I lacked a particular part to enable the wireless rear speakers. I needed to figure out how to buy that part while I was next to my speaker system so I could examine their part numbers and other information printed on the speakers. I pulled out my iPhone and began searching the web. Plenty of suppliers had the part available, but I made my purchase based on what I needed at that moment: Assurance that it was the right part, trustworthiness of the supplier and a reasonable price. I purchased from the supplier that was able to convey each of those things in the easiest, most efficient manner on my smartphone.

Base your strategy on how your audience really uses mobile. An effective mobile content strategy demands an understanding of your audience’s mobile usage. Marketers like to imagine they know their customers. But the reality of mobile usage may differ from your perception.

Part of your audience profile should focus on how mobile fits into your customers’ lives. What devices are they on? What kind of an experience are they looking for from you? Data from your existing website analytics program can give you mobile insights, as can targeted surveys, to form the foundation of your mobile content strategy.

Think before you shrink. The old model of content creation was to adapt content from other formats, usually the web, to a small screen. Text was chunked differently, visuals updated and overall layouts simplified and made more “tappable” for touchscreens.

Instead, look at all of your content through a mobile lens at the point of creation. Copywriting and visuals should be as short and minimalistic as possible, while effectively conveying your message. Then adapt your ideas from there to the bigger screen. Scale content creation up, rather than down.

Rethink your user experience through design. Every business needs a website that looks great and functions well on mobile devices. If information is hard to find or your site is impossible to navigate, you’ll lose customers. But mobile design goes beyond basic functionality. Ask yourself if you’re providing the right experience in terms of content, look, feel, functionality and tools to help your customers achieve their end goal.

Going back to my example about buying the part for the home theater system, during my search for suppliers I found several that had awful mobile design. One in particular wouldn’t even let me add my item to the cart. Needless to say, I didn’t make my purchase from that supplier.

Focus first on the experience, and then optimize the visuals.

Expand your understanding of conversions. In the mobile universe, conversions go way beyond the sale. Signing up for a newsletter, sharing your content or downloading a white paper may be valuable customer touch points. Think about the range of mobile conversions with value for your business and develop mobile content to support that funnel.

Take advantage of location. Geolocation technologies are giving businesses creative ways to engage customers, from sending market research surveys to customers nearby to offering discount codes to drive sales. Examples of these technologies include Apple’s Siri, Google Now and GPS-enabled apps for iOS and Android.

Mobile devices are the lever these campaigns hinge on. Consider how location-based technologies could increase immediate engagement with your customers.

Leverage the rise of micro-video. As visual content such as videos and infographics become the preferred form of content, specific opportunities are appearing for mobile. Short videos on Vine and Instagram have provided marketers another way to reach their audience. What part of your story can you tell in a micro-video? For some interesting takes on Vine campaigns check out Oreo’s campaign and Lowe’s six-second home improvement tips.

Make social engagement easy. Is your content easy to share and easy to engage with? Simple like and share buttons encourage social engagement. If you’re requesting information, avoid long essay questions and forms that are awkward to navigate.

With more opportunities to reach customers and prospects by mobile, companies can stay relevant by creating mobile-focused content marketing strategies. This can help you to concentrate on high-return mobile activities that drive website traffic, engagement, leads and sales.

 
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Posted by on September 15, 2014 in 2014, Business, Social Media

 

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