Giants’ front office preparing for critical test it can’t afford to fail

first_imgSAN FRANCISCO — When a major league team braces for a difficult summer, it’s natural for a fan base to turn its attention toward the farm system.Prospects represent a glimmer of hope and serve as a reminder that while the present is sometimes bleak, the future is often bright. Through the first two months of the 2019 season, it’s been challenging for Giants fans to see the light.The organization’s top two prospects, Joey Bart and Heliot Ramos, haven’t played since April due to injuries …last_img

Klay Thompson’s rallying cry for final game at Oracle Arena: Win ‘in the name of Kevin’

first_imgCLICK HERE if you are having a problem viewing the photos on a mobile deviceOAKLAND – The Warriors have made this trip so many times already. As the Warriors gathered for practice on Wednesday at Oracle Arena, though, this felt different.“It hit me a little bit today driving here,” Warriors guard Shaun Livingston admitted.The reason? The Warriors play the Toronto Raptors in Game 6 of the NBA Finals on Thursday in what will mark the team’s final game at Oracle Arena. The Warriors will move …last_img

H-DNL football: Players of the week

first_imgTrevor Bell, Antorious Bell — EurekaEureka picked up its fourth win in the last 25 years over Shasta on Friday by a 35-21 margin.Its two Bell-cows had a heavy hand in the win.Trevor Bell opened the game with a 60-yard touchdown pass to Josiah Graham and ended it with a 20-yard touchdown run. In-between, Antorious Bell rushed for two touchdowns to keep Eureka in front.Will Omey, Justin Hagler — St. Bernard’sThe lone undefeated team in the Humboldt-Del Norte League received another big …last_img

FirstRand secures foothold in Nigeria

first_img29 November 2012South African banking group FirstRand says it aims to become a major player in Nigeria after its subsidiary, Rand Merchant Bank, secured an investment banking licence from the Central Bank of Nigeria.FirstRand CEO Sizwe Nxasana said in a statement on Monday that FirstRand sought to build a presence in high-growth African markets with attractive long-term prospects.“This move is consistent with our strategy, as we often enter a new market through the appropriate operating franchise, in this case RMB, and the rest of the banking group may then follow,” Nxasana said in a statement.“Nigeria currently offers strong growth prospects, particularly with regards to corporate and investment banking,” he added.RMB has been operating from a representative office in Nigeria since January 2010, and chief executive Alan Pullinger said the licence – which required an initial capital investment of US$100-million from the company – would “allow us to significantly scale up our in‐country offering”.“Nigeria as a country and the west African region as a whole are experiencing significant growth,” Pullinger noted.This is FirstRand’s second recent foray into west Africa. The group is currently finalising the acquisition of Merchant Bank Ghana for almost R750-million, and according to Business Day would be keen to link up its planned retail and investment banking operations in both countries.For now, RMB Nigeria’s Lagos office “will provide corporate advisory services, equity capital markets, infrastructure and project finance, resource finance, structured trade and commodity finance, and fixed income, currency and commodity services to large local, regional and international corporates already operating in or entering Nigeria and the broader west African economies”.SAinfo reporterlast_img read more

Clay is a natural for cosmetics

first_imgAdolphina Setsena and Dr Heidi Grimmer work closely to take the ProYouth Naturals products to market.(Image: Lucille Davie) The ProYouth Naturals products use herbs and clay as their base.(Image: ProYouth Naturals)MEDIA CONTACTS• Adolphina SetsenaCosmetics Entrepreneur+27 72 707 4105• Dr Heidi GrimmerMD, ABBC+27 83 444 5027Lucille DavieClay is usually used to make bricks or mould beautiful ceramic creations. It’s not something most people think of putting into a jar and using as a cosmetic. But Adolphina Setsena, one of the winners of the South African Breweries Foundation Social Innovation Awards of 2013, finds it as natural as brushing your teeth every day.Setsena’s ProYouth Naturals offer women a portfolio of skin care, foundation and body wellness products, many with a mix of African herbs known for centuries to provide healing and wellness. And now she has developed a new product, SNE54 Complex, which uses clay as the basis of her cosmetics and healing products, says Setsena.She grew up with two traditional healers – her grandmother and her aunt – and learned from the best how to mix different clays and plants to create natural remedies for ailments like arthritis and skin conditions. “I use the ingredients and compound them into cosmetics – I learned what in nature to use for wellness,” she says. It gives women the ability to “look great without the facelift”.Based in Pretoria, Gauteng, Setsena is a graduate of the Kickstart programme of South African Breweries (SAB), and has obtained certificates from the Deutsche Gesellschaft für International Zusammenarbeit and Training for Technology for Food, Pharmaceuticals, Cosmetics and Industrial Applicator. She started her business in 2004, and all product developments are manufactured and tested with the support of the Thumisano Trust and Sasol Chemcity, an enterprise development vehicle.Beauty products include shampoo, shower gel, bubble bath, body and hand lotion, body scrub and lotion butter. After ingredients are extracted from the herbs for these products, the leftover material is combined into leaves and seed pods to make room fresheners.Setsena, dressed for the interview in a stylish white studded dress with matching large white bangles, and with a flawless skin, shared the third prize in this year’s competition, which took place on 31 October, with two other winners, taking home R300 000 to help her take her products a step closer to market.InnovatorsFirst prize went to the Vula Eye Health Mobile Phone App, which pocketed R1-million. Created by William Mapham and Professor Kovin Naidoo, the app aims to improve eye care in South Africa’s poorer communities by educating people about different eye conditions, providing access to eye sight tests and connecting people to eye care professionals.Second prize of R500 000 went to Nuno Pires, the developer of the Altis Osteogenic Bone Matrix, an injectable bone regeneration product that aims to replace traditional bone graft surgery.Setsena shares third place with SavvyLoo, a waterless toilet for rural communities; and Repurpose Schoolbag, a schoolbag made of 100% recycled plastic shopping bags.“The SAB Foundation Innovation Awards was established with the objective of rewarding and upscaling innovative sustainable solutions to the pressing daily challenges facing low-income people, specifically women, the youth, people with disabilities, and people living in rural areas in order to improve economic growth and prosperity and the quality of life of all South Africans,” reads the SAB website.The awards are “specifically focused on innovation solutions which have progressed past idea stage, and have reached at least proof of concept stage and now need a strong focus on commercialisation or scaling-up”.Seed grantsIn addition to the three top awards, several seed grants are awarded, particularly to women, youth, people in rural areas, and disabled people. The grant includes funding for the upscaling and commercialisation of the innovation, which is supported by the SAB Foundation over a period of two years or longer, as needed.Seed grants of R150 000 each were awarded to nine innovators, including Power in a Bottle, a mobile solar energy power pack housed in a 5L plastic container; Know Your Child, an IT platform which sends pupils’ homework requirements from teachers to parents via mobile text messages; Bulk Brick Layer, a brick-building template which eliminates the complexities of the skill; SMART Stand-by, a device that monitors electrical power usage; and Tour2.0, an online tour operator offering tour packages in local communities.“The grant [is] awarded for either products or processes that present an innovative solution to the pressing challenges facing women, the youth, persons with disabilities and persons in rural areas. Product innovation covers innovations in both goods and services, which can again be divided into new or improved products,” states SAB.Applications are judged by various criteria: the impact of the product or solution and whether it solves a long-standing problem experienced by the poor; the extent to which the innovation will potentially benefit this group; the scalability or to what degree the product can be produced in large numbers for a large number of people; the degree to which the product will encourage others to push their own innovations; and the commercial viability of the product in the long term.ProductsSetsena says her products are a blend of traditional herbs and barks for skin wellness. “We create a supply chain, we don’t cut down trees, we use the leaves.” She expects to be manufacturing her products for stores by March 2014, and plans to approach retail chains Pick n Pay and Clicks as a starting point.She has developed products particularly for “ethnic skins”, because conventional, and usually imported, foundation does not work for black and brown skin. And she has created a cream and foundation in one, which means it has a healing function as well as being a foundation, she explains. It consists of three or four tones of brown, and according to Setsena, it is a first local product especially created for South African women.Alongside working on her business, Setsena is completing a three-year herbalist course. “This is a calling; it is information from the ancestors about life, and it tells me who I am.”The clay used is volcanic ash, and other clays. And, from an early age she learned which herbs she could drink or not. “I am a curious person, fascinated with paranormals. I like to research and ask questions. I believe there is an answer to everything.”A fortuitous meetingHer dream was encouraged by a meeting two years ago with Dr Heidi Grimmer, the managing director of ABBC and herself an entrepreneur who specialises in providing innovative enterprise development solutions to the manufacturing industry. “Entrepreneurs receive mentoring to ensure that their businesses grow and become profitable,” states the ABBC website.“Our Enterprise Supplier Development model identifies, nurtures and enables high potential entrepreneurs, with a particular emphasis on the development of black women-owned businesses,” says Grimmer.She is a bio-chemist and started her career as a researcher at SAB 14 years ago, where she developed the ESR method that allows breweries to measure the shelf life of their beers in three hours, as opposed to the conventional three-month shelf life testing methods. This rapid feedback was very useful to the brewmasters, allowing them to make immediate process changes to increase the shelf life of the beer.Grimmer worked with brewmasters around the world, implementing this method, which has allowed SABMiller, SAB’s international operation, to improve the quality and shelf life of its beer processes. But she left SAB in 2010, feeling she wasn’t being stretched enough. With an MBA under her belt, she felt confident to start looking at a scientific approach to business, giving her the springboard to starting her own business. “I felt more confident to go out on my own,” Grimmer explains.Technical consulting with new ideas and products for entrepreneurs was the first step, before she expanded into entrepreneurial start-ups. “I helped people to develop concepts and ideas, then start their businesses.”Drawing on her years of experience at SAB and her previous position as a flavourist and technical sales support at Givaudan, she specialised in the food, beverages and cosmetics industries. Today, Grimmer works with Unisa to help develop technology based businesses. Universities around the country are looking to collaborate with business, in a win-win for both parties, she explains.“I want to create the platform. I believe in being proudly African,” says Grimmer with a smile. Talking about Setsena, whose family is “very proud” of her, she says she is very happy with the award. But the work has not finished for these two enterprising women. Now they have to link the product with potential customers.“I look for the passion – the people who persevere, the entrepreneur who’s got the dream. Nothing stands in their way,” says Grimmer.last_img read more

How to Cultivate a Content Culture at Your Company

first_img Just because other employees know they Reward your most prolific content creators. Originally published Jan 17, 2013 9:00:00 AM, updated October 20 2016 create guidelines they can follow contribute content, doesn’t mean they’ll feel comfortable doing so. This might stem from the misconception that they have to write like Shakespeare to get published on, say, your company blog. Let employees contribute to your blog in ways that best suit their talents. That could mean they create a video, an infographic, a SlideShare presentation, present data they’ve researched, or stick with the written blog post we all know and love. For instance, we work alongside a few extremely talented visual content creators, which is why fostered a content culture within their organizations. To create a company culture that celebrates content, it’s incumbent on leaders within your organization to communicate the benefits of being a published author. Explain to employees that having content published under their name will help establish themselves as thought leaders. That’s right, even hand I’ve found that the marketers who are most successful at sustaining a rapid pace of does Being a published thought leader helps them move upward within the company, and grow their careers. , this blog post is going to teach you how you can create a content culture within your company. If your employees can This blog post is written for those experiencing the latter. easily see for themselves how their content is directly contributing To make it easier for everyone to contribute, Creating content shouldn’t be reserved for just Marketing — or even just a couple people within Marketing. It’s natural to want Marketing to have a Encourage different content formats. to important company goals, like hitting Marketing’s leads goal, or Sales hitting their quota, you can bet people will be much more interested in creating content. I mean, how often does someone in, say, Support get to say they had a direct hand in generating new revenue? That’s a pretty good feeling. When I talk with inbound marketers about high quality content While fame is all well and good, sometimes a little friendly competition is all you need to get your company into the content creation spirit. For instance, let’s say you’re interested in getting more content about a particular subject matter on your blog to prepare for a product launch. Hold a contest to see who can write the blog post on that subject matter that gets, say, the most views, and reward the winner with a gift certificate. With a friendly competition like this, you’re winning on all fronts. You’ll get a higher volume of content, from a diverse set of people, on a subject matter that aligns with your goals; employees will get their name in flashing lights, some more thought leadership attached to their name, and maybe, a little moolah, too. In fact, we’ve seen this tactic work well in our favor to encourage contributions to this very blog! Poppycock. The content is a built-in online portfolio they can refer to years down the read. Reward these employees by highlighting their content and the specific results it achieved ( yesterday morning’s blog post was actually a SlideShare presentation Explain the benefit of being a published thought leader. ) in a public way. “Public” could mean your next marketing team meeting, your next company meeting, or even in an internal email or newsletter. Just be sure the content creator is present, and preferably some power players in your company, too 😉 you (Yes! You!) can be a thought leader! Here are a few benefits you can tell them to look forward to, the more they author and publish amazing content: Authoring content gets their name — and how wicked smart they are — visibility with important people, both inside and outside of your organization.center_img ! Because the writer, Ryan Brown, totally rocks at creating visually compelling SlideShare presentations, why force him to write out a 1,000-word blog post when we have beautiful visual content at our fingertips that allows him to contribute to content creation? If they’re in a Sales or customer-facing role, it helps establish credibility with leads and customers. Topics: Finally, remember that your company culture comes from the top down. If you want to foster a culture that encourages content creation, that needs to come from the top down, too. Employees Communicate (and celebrate!) the bottom-line results can While enabling and encouraging content creation will help get people started, it won’t keep people going in the long term. To keep your entire company enthusiastic about the importance of contributing to content creation efforts, use numbers to communicate the impact it has on your business. Think about how much more meaningful it is to share that a blog post generated 10,000 page views, 50 inbound links, 20 new leads — two of which are poised to close this week — than to say, “Rachel wrote a really cool blog post last month. Good job!” content creation content drives. model executives’ behavior. So if the CMO isn’t blogging, some people might still blog; but if the CMO Content Creation If you’re starting your own business, growing your marketing department, starting a job at a new company, or just trying to motivate a shift in your company’s attitudes toward How do you foster a culture of content creators in your company? numbers are your friends here, marketers The first way is an exchange of tactics we’ve both employed to make content creation possible in the long term. The second way is detailing how difficult, sometimes nearly impossible, it is to keep up with the content creation pace they want to live up to. Play into people’s competitive spirit. in the content that goes out, but that doesn’t mean the entire burden needs to fall on your team’s shoulders. Instead, enable anyone in your organization to contribute content, from Sales, to Services, to Development. This is great because you’re getting content that highlights different perspectives and different areas of expertise, both of which make your content arsenal more well-rounded. Lead by example. Their content might lead to future opportunities, like speaking engagements, or being quoted as an expert in other publications. will Image credit: Some content is going to stand out among the rest — maybe it generates an unprecedented number of leads, maybe it gets picked up by a major publication, maybe it even goes viral! Reward the content creator for their innovation and brilliant execution, so you encourage other employees to strive to create this type of content. Enable anyone to contribute. create content on a regular basis, can you imagine how deep any other employee would have to dig to come up with the excuse for not also contributing? Pretty darn deep, I imagine. creation are the ones who have — specifically, how companies can create a sustainable internal content creation model — our conversations usually go one of two ways. content creation Kazarelth to make it more likely their content fits your publishing standards. You can even have content specialists on your team who train those extremely interested in contributing content on the types of editorial guidelines the marketing team follows. These folks — your marketing team’s “editors,” if you will — can be the ones who brush up the content you receive so everything that’s published aligns with the tone, style, and other guidelines you’ve established for your brand. Don’t forget to share this post! 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Want to Get More Leads? Stop Making These 12 Landing Page Mistakes

first_img Topics: There are few feelings worse than knowing you’re missing out on something. Scientists have even given that feeling a name: FOMO (fear of missing out). Whether it’s missing out on an outing your coworkers are all going to or realizing you could have made that meeting if you only left five minutes earlier, we all get that same feeling of unrest in the pit of our stomachs when we miss out on something. Typically, FOMO has applied to events or actual things you could miss out on … but there are lots of other things that give us that same feeling, too. You know, like that time you realized if you had only done one more thing to your landing page, you’d get 30% more leads.That feeling sucks, so we want to help you steer clear of it, especially on your landing pages. Some of these could be two-minute fixes while others could be full-day projects, but each of these mistakes could be costing your business money.So save your company some moolah (and maybe get a pat on the back from your boss) and read the following about most egregious landing page errors. 1) It doesn’t pass the blink test. You have 50 milliseconds. Ready, set, go! Stop.The time it took you to read that last sentence is longer than you have to make a first impression on your landing page. A study by researchers at Carleton University found that people make judgments about a website within 50 milliseconds of viewing it. Yep, roughly the time it takes for you to blink once. Tough crowd, I know, but a crowd you’ve got to please if you want to improve your conversion rates.Make sure your landing pages are passing this blink test by following the guidelines here.2) It doesn’t have a clear value proposition. If someone has to do lots of thinking while they’re on your landing page, you’re doing it wrong. The value of downloading the piece of content you have hidden behind your form should be apparent from the get-go. That way, your landing page visitors aren’t spending time figuring out what the heck you’re offering — they’re actually filling out the form to get it. There are lots of ways to accomplish this — adding more descriptive copy or updating the landing page image to reflect what’s inside your offer could do the trick. Or maybe it’s as simple as clarifying what your offer is in your headline. If you’re having trouble figuring out if the value proposition is clear on your website, try sending it to someone within your buyer persona’s field (maybe a current customer of yours?) and give them zero context about what happens after someone would fill out the form. Then, ask them to tell you what they think they’ll get once they give over their contact information and if that exchange (content for their contact information) seems reasonable. If it’s not, you’ve got some tweaking to do!3) Your form is too long.One of the biggest mistakes people make on landing pages is to make a long form. It makes sense why you’d want to — you only have someone’s attention for a bit, so why not get all the information you can out of them … right? Not quite. A long form becomes a huge barrier to entry for your landing page visitors simply because it looks like it will take forever to fill out. Even though you know it’ll only take a minute or so, a minute seems like a long time to invest for your visitors — especially those on mobile.Those impatient visitors (aka, most of the people who’ll come to your site) want to get your offer and get out, so think about how you can make it easier for them to do that. Remove form fields that are “nice to haves” and also think about using progressive profiling to capture important, yet secondary information on the second time someone fills out a form on your site. 4) Your form is too short.On the flip-side, your form may be too short, which could very well mean you’re getting a bunch of unqualified leads flowing into your contacts database.If this is a big problem for you, consider adding a form field or two to the offers that keep sending you unqualified leads. You could also leave the initial form alone, but then use progressive profiling on future forms to collect more lead information — and the only rotate those leads to your sales team. 5) Your landing page isn’t ready for mobile.Like we said in number 3, landing pages with long forms aren’t really mobile-friendly — but that’s not the only thing that could deter mobile and tablet visitors. You might have a page that’s not responsive, making your mobile visitors swipe and swipe and swipe to scroll half an inch on the page. Or maybe your landing page image is huge, making it impossible for your visitors to access your form. Or maybe your CTA is below the fold, thus making it unclear how to submit the form. The point is you need to think about mobile traffic to your landing pages — engaging those visitors could mean the difference between hitting your monthly goal — and not. So, make sure you’re following the mobile marketing best practices outlined in this ebook.6) Your leads aren’t redirected anywhere after filling out a form. Someone wants to download your offer, so they fill out the form, hit submit, and then … nothing. They’re confused. Did their information get submitted? Will they get an email with the offer? What the heck just happened?!?!?You don’t want people to experience that confusion on your landing pages — it makes for a poor user experience that not many (if any) visitors want to go through again. Bonus: Having that type of experience on your landing pages means you’re missing out on more traffic, leads, and customers. The best way to fix this? A thank-you page. Basically, this is another page leads are redirected to after they’ve filled out the form on your landing page. There, leads can actually download or interact with the offer itself, share it with friends, and maybe even convert on another offer. It’s valuable real estate you shouldn’t miss out on. 7) Your “submit” button says “submit.”You know that phrase “you don’t know something until you know it”?  While it is “duh”-inducing, it’s actually a great reminder for your landing page designs.For example, if someone’s filling out a landing page form for the first time — in other words, the majority of people you hope to be filling out the form — they have no idea what’s going to happen when they hit “submit.” What tangible thing will they be getting for handing over their information? What is going to happen when they push that bright red button? That’s a lot of anxiety that comes with filling out a form on a website … but it’s uncertainly like this that could affect your conversion rates.To reduce that uncertainty, be extra clear on what will happen when you hit “submit.” Customize the button to say something like “Download your Ebook” or “Get Your Free Guide.” Custom buttons will help assuage some of the anxiety your landing page visitors may have and convert them more readily into leads.8) Your page has text on text on text. In short: You need images on your landing page. They help convey information faster than a hundred words of text, so you can convert visitors faster to leads on your landing pages. Sounds like a good idea, right? So go on, add a relevant image to your landing page to help communicate what your visitors will be downloading. Need help finding or creating visual content for your landing pages? Check out these 10 free design tools.9) The images you do include on your landing page aren’t helping anything.  Images can tell your story quickly and easily (they are worth 1,000 words after all) … but what if the ones you’re using on your landing pages are telling the wrong story? You can’t just throw up any old image on a landing page and expect people to convert just because there’s an image on it. You’ve got to be strategic: Check out this blog post on conversion-centered design to help you pick out the right images to use on landing pages.10) You still include a main navigation. When visitors get to your landing page, you want them there for one purpose and one purpose only: to convert to be a lead. Don’t distract them with anything — multiple CTAs, website footers, or even a top navigation. All of those elements seem like they’d be helpful, but they can actually reduce your conversion rates.So on pages where your main goal is converting people to become leads — you know, on landing pages — cut the main navigation. Then, feel free to bring the navigation back on the thank-you page and other supplementary web pages. 11) You’re asking for the same information over and over and over again.You know those people who ask for your name every single time you meet them, but you’ve met them several times before? And you know how annoying those people are? You just want them to recognize you!That’s exactly how people feel when they go to your landing pages and get asked the same questions on forms over and over and over again. So think about using smart forms and progressive profiling to reduce the number of fields people need to fill out — and thus make it easier for them to convert on your landing pages.Not only is it a delightful experience for your visitors, but it’s also it’s a way to increase your conversion rates. 12) You set your landing page and forget it. Like with any other part of your marketing, you can’t just set your landing page and forget it. Your conversion rates are never going to be perfect (and neither are ours), but you can always work toward more efficient and effective layouts and designs.Thus, it’s imperative you run A/B tests to see what works best for your visitors and your leads — what may be a tried and true best practice may not always work for your audience.So keep testing to find out what does! You never know what will work for your audience until you test it.These are just some of the landing page mistakes we see happen all the time. What other grisly landing page mistakes did we miss? Add your ideas to the comments below. Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Originally published Dec 12, 2013 8:00:00 AM, updated February 01 2017 Landing Page Optimizationlast_img read more

7 Times You’ll Kick Yourself for Not Learning HTML

first_img Originally published Jan 8, 2014 8:00:00 AM, updated July 28 2017 Website Development Topics: Why Learn HTML?HTML and CSS are the basic programming languages for web development and design. They are beneficial to learn for developers, marketers, and people in many other disciplines. Learning HTML can be used for situations like formatting a blog or email, working with a CMS, embedding external content on your site, and creating usable content.I don’t know about you, but when I travel, I’m terrified of leaving something at home. I obsess over making sure I have enough T-shirts, jeans, shoes, travel-sized shampoos, earrings, books, magazines — because what in the world would I do if I didn’t have them, but needed them? And even if I over-pack, I know I’m prepared for any situation vacation will throw at me — a random fancy dinner out, a day at the pool, or just an afternoon out shopping with the family.In the same vein, knowing HTML is like making sure you’re fully prepared for a vacation. You may not end up using it every single day, but the times you do end up using it, you are so grateful that you had the foresight to figure it out. Knowing HTML can save you hours of frustration, precious time with your design team, or even money dealing with an external contractor.HTML has always been nice-to-have knowledge, but it’s becoming more than nice-to-have for the marketer trying to save a buck. (And that sounds like every marketer I’ve met.)In fact, there are a bunch of situations I’ve caught myself in in which handy HTML knowledge saved the day … and thus, this post was born. If you’re not quite convinced that you’d benefit from knowing basic HTML, keep reading. Here are seven* scenarios you might find yourself in that can be fixed with just a bit of HTML know-how. 1) When Formatting in Your Blog Post/Email/Landing Page Goes AwrySometimes, I swear my content has a life of its own — and a mean streak. That blog post that I worked on all day will suddenly have images with funky spacing, no text wrapping, and outrageous sizing, and, of course, all looks okay in my WYSIWG editor. Luckily, with some HTML knowledge, I can dig into the post to remove and tweak code that is causing the problem.HTML Pro Tip: If you find a bunch of funky tags you want to remove, copy the raw code and paste it into a raw text editor. Then, choose the Find and Replace option — you can search for offending snippets of code and leave the “replace” box blank. Once you’re done, you can paste it back into your HTML editor, and poof! De-bugged formatting. 2) When You Paste a Blog Post Into Your CMS From Word or Google DocsLots of people don’t know that writing a blog post in a typical word processing program — like Word or Google Docs — and then copying it into your CMS will give you lots of HTML headaches. Sometimes, when you do that, your CMS will add extra snippets of code to your piece that will mess up formatting.With some HTML knowledge and the pro tip above, you can easily remove any offending snippets when transferring content from Word or Google Docs to your CMS.3) When You Need to Tweak an Email TemplateI’m going to take a wild guess that you don’t want every email you send to look exactly the same. While sending consistent emails is a great thing most of the time, there will be specific campaigns you’re going to want to customize emails for. This could be as simple as right-aligning your images instead of left-aligning them or changing up the color of your text to stand out in your subscribers’ inboxes.With HTML knowledge, though, you can make these changes yourself, instead of relying on an in-house designer or hired development shop. Seriously, it’s empowering to make the changes yourself and move on to more pressing marketing matters. 4) When You Need to Make Your Content Easy to ReadOne of your top concerns when creating content is to make it easy for people to consume. This means using formatting (bold, italics, headers, colors, etc.) to make your content scannable and digestible. And while most WYSIWG editors will let you easily apply those formatting options to your content without touching code, not all will. So take control of the way your content looks by souping it up with some and read more

What Is a Trust Seal, and Does Your Landing Page Need One? [FAQs]

first_img Landing Page Design Originally published May 19, 2014 2:30:00 PM, updated February 01 2017 So you’re reading up on creating your first landing page, and everything seems like a no-brainer. Great headline? Check. Form that’s the proper length? Check. Customized “submit” button? Check, check, check. Then you see “trust seals.” You stop. You’re not sure what that means or if you need to include them on your landing page.The other suggestions seem simple — this one’s out of left field. So what do you do? Here’s what you need to know about trust seals (sometimes referred to as trust “symbols”) before slapping one on your landing page.What’s a Trust Seal?Turns out you’ve seen lots and lots of trust seals before, but you never realized you could use them in your marketing. Remember the last time gave over your credit card information on a website? Somewhere near the form fields where you put in your credit card information will usually feature one of these images:These are trust seals. They are there to help reassure you that your sensitive information is secure with the company and/or website you’re giving it to. In theory, once you see these on any landing page, you should feel much more secure giving over your information and converting on the form.But that’s not always what happens. Sometimes it might be successful … and other times, it might not. So you’ve got to figure out whether you should use one on your site or not. When Should I Use One?The best answer to this question is you don’t know if it’ll work until you try it. You’ve got to run A/B tests on your own landing pages to figure it out because your business is different from every other one that’s run this before. (Don’t know how to run an A/B test? We’ve got some simple instructions here.) If you wanted to get an idea of what you could expect out of the test before you run it, think about what kind of information you’re asking people to give up in the form. Is it sensitive information like credit card numbers, home phone numbers, or social security numbers? I’d venture a guess that a trust seal could work wonders. Are you just asking for an email, and nothing else? Adding a trust symbol could be overkill — people might wonder what you would’ve done if there weren’t a trust seal. Moral of the story? Trust seals can be great on your landing pages — or they can flop. It’s up to you to figure it out from here. 😉 Image credits: Arrested Development Wiki, Baymard Institute Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Topics:last_img read more

Should I Gate This Content? [Flowchart]

first_imgWe marketers seem to like rules. (And when none exist, we’ll settle for guidelines.) Those of us who write about the marketing space appear to recognize this tendency, which is why you’ll find so many benchmarking reports, how-to articles, and definitive lists for marketers.Some challenges, however, are too nuanced for a binary best practice.Download 195+ visual marketing design templates to use for social media posts, infographics, and more. Take the “Should I gate my content?” question, for example. Bloggers have looked at the topic through various lenses — from SEO to lead generation to channel-specific implications — yet nobody appears to have written a simple “gate this, don’t gate that” prescription. This is likely because the decision always comes down to a single question — Is the viewer’s identity a fair price to pay for this content? — and that’s difficult to answer universally. Yet considering elements like content quality, objectivity, utility, and format can help marketers make a more informed decision and avoid awkward choices like asking someone to fill out a form to see their own name on a list (true story!).I suppose this is a long way of saying that we’re here to help. HubSpot created a flowchart to help guide marketers’ gating decisions. While it might not be a hard rule — there are plenty of content types, objectives, and considerations that the chart doesn’t take into account — it’s hopefully a useful guideline. And at the very least, the next time your boss asks why you didn’t gate that blog post, you can blame your decision on us.193Save (Click to enlarge the flowchart.)193Save Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Originally published Dec 12, 2014 8:00:00 AM, updated August 27 2017 Content Types Topics:last_img read more