Thomas targets big leap – Triple jumper sets sights on 15m, 4x400m

first_imgTake one look at Jamaican Olympic triple jump hopeful Shanieka Thomas and her potential is obvious. At six-foot tall and 145 pounds, she is built almost exactly like world record holder Inessa Kravets. Thomas, 11th at the 2015 World Championships, knows the similarity and hopes one day to match the Ukrainian’s fine achievements. Kravets set the record – 15.50 metres – at the 1995 Worlds and took gold as well at the 1996 Olympics. “The fact that the world record holder has the same build as me is encouragement to show I’m able to achieve the world record or even more,” she observed after a training session at the Mona campus of the University of the West Indies last week. “A lot of people don’t remember that the world record holder has a really slim build,” she pinpointed. Thomas, a three-time US collegiate champion at San Diego State University, left California to train at Mona last season. “Everyone was asking me, ‘Why come back to Jamaica and there’s not a lot of people doing well in the field events?’,” she recalled. “It’s hard to have a lot of people doing well in the field events if nobody actually comes home to show the talent the coaches have here,” she analysed. “So it’s a big jump, and it was risky at first, but I like the transition because it’s been going well.” With astute advice from her coach, Kerry-Lee Ricketts, the former Vere Technical High School student-athlete qualified for the Worlds at the last opportunity with a winning 14.23-metre jump at the NACAC Championships in Costa Rica. Now their goal is to make her faster and stronger. MORE SPEED “This year,” she revealed, “we’re focusing on getting more speed down the runway, as well as strengthening, making sure I’m more powerful.” Now almost 24, Thomas has great respect for retired 2005 World Champion Trecia Smith and her former Vere Technical teammate, Kimberly Williams, who in 2014 succeeded Smith as Commonwealth champion. Mention of Smith’s national record of 15.16 metres and Thomas glows. “That’s a really big performance, and I would love to jump at least 15.01,” she envisioned, “just to be over the mark.” During her San Diego years, the 2008 Carifta Games Under-17 champion ran relays on a regular basis. Now she dreams of running the 4×400 in black green and gold. “Every season, I contemplate doing the 400, but when I start thinking about the training for the 400,” she shudders, “I’m like, no. I’m going to stick with the triple jump.” She is encouraged by the relay running of World and Olympic triple jump men’s champion Christian Taylor at the 2014 World Relays. “If it’s not the Olympics or the World Championships,” she said, “if it’s even like the Pan-Am Games or something like that, I want to run a 4×4 … for Jamaica.” Runs over 350 and 400 metres are part of her background training for the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, and she says “you’ll maybe see me on the 4×4 for UWI for the preparation towards Rio”.last_img read more

49ers report card: Nick Mullens loses road debut, so what about his job?

first_imgClick HERE if you’re unable to view the gallery on your mobile device.TAMPA — Here is how the 49ers (2-9) graded in their 27-3 loss Sunday to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-7):PASS OFFENSE: DTAMPA, FLORIDA – NOVEMBER 25: Jameis Winston #3 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Nick Mullens #4 of the San Francisco 49ers shake hands after the Buccaneers won 27-9 at Raymond James Stadium on November 25, 2018 in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images)There wasn’t exactly a hostile crowd to …last_img

Never say die SA win Edinburgh Sevens

first_imgThe win was one of the most remarkable turnaround performances by any team in an HSBC Sevens World Series Cup final. Strong late season formIn some ways, the end of the World Series came too soon for South Africa. The team played in four of the last five World Series tournament finals and scooped three titles: in Las Vegas, London and Edinburgh. Down to only two fit reserves due to injuries, South Africa fought back from being 7-28 down to snatch victory at the very end of an epic Cup final at Murrayfield, the spiritual home of Sevens rugby. It followed on their victory in London last week. Hunt scored again in the corner before Sithole gathered the ball from a ruck, and with the sound of the siren in the background, powered his way through the defence wide on the right to score the match-winning try. Bernard Foley, with two, and Jonathon Lance scored for the Aussies, while Steven Hunt dotted down South Africa’s only try. Delport then injured himself when he rushed to stop an attack, injuring his head in the process. Second overallWith their third victory of the season, the team finished second overall on the HSBC Sevens World series standings with 140 points, 16 behind champions New Zealand. Branco du Preez (ankle) and Neil Powell (rib) were lost to injuries on Saturday, the first day of the tournament. On Sunday, South Africa had to play the final without their inspirational skipper Kyle Brown (ankle), while Paul Delport was carried off on a stretcher midway through the first half of the absorbing first half. He sustained a concussion and his condition was described as stable afterwards. “What can you say after a performance like that? They refused to give in and South Africa can be very proud of these young men,” he smiled. Source: SA Rugby The South African Sevens team produced a comeback for the ages to capture the Edinburgh Sevens on Sunday. With the win, they claimed back-to-back victories for the first time since 2008, when they won in Dubai and George. Top try scorer Cecil Afrika (SA) 40 Earlier resultsOn Saturday, South Africa finished unbeaten and top of their pool, while on Sunday they started brightly against a powerful Samoa outfit, scoring an impressive 28-5 win as Hunt, Afrika, Brown and Sithole all scored tries. Top point scorer Cecil Afrika (SA) 385 Henry Vanderglas scored from the restart to stretch the Aussie lead to 21 points at 28-7. Frankie Horne and Bernado Botha reduced the deficit to 28-19, but then scored what appeared to be the match winner for Australia. South Africa, however, had other ideas. 31 May 2011 In the dying seconds of the final, Sibusiso Sithole powered his way to a brilliant solo try to lift the Springbok Sevens to a magnificent and stunning 38-35 victory over Australia. HSBC Sevens World Series final standingsNew Zealand 166 pointsSouth Africa 140England 127Fiji 122Samoa 120 Wales offered greater resistance in the semi-finals and, much like last week, ran the Springbok Sevens very close to almost register their first win in 23 attempts against South Africa, who won 22-19 at the end of a gruelling encounter. Paul Treu, the SA Sevens coach, described the fight-back as unbelievable. “Australia made a good start and we had to give it everything we got. We were severely disrupted by the injuries and apart from the injured players, Frankie [Horne] also shouldered on bravely despite hurting his knee early on Saturday. FinalAustralia, who lost 19-5 against South Africa in the pool stages on Saturday, started in determined fashion and scored three tries to one to lead 21-7 at halftime. last_img read more

Yext Heats Up Battle Against Google For Local Ad Dollars

first_imgTags:#Analysis#biz 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Related Posts Remember when Google launched Tags, a local advertising up-sell aimed at local small businesses? Companies like Yelp and YellowPages certainly do, and they’ve joined a few other local directory sites in launching a competing product by the same name.Techcrunch reports that about a dozen sites, all feeling the heat from Google’s potentially disruptive move into local advertising, have teamed up with a startup called Yext to mount a defensive challenge against the search Titan with their own version of Tags. On Monday, [Yext] will launch a new feature called “Tags” which will let small businesses highlight their names with a little tag and customizable message across about a dozen local listings sites. Launch partners for this “Tag Alliance” (I like my name better) will include MapQuest, Citysearch, Yellowbook, Local.com, SuperPages, White Pages, MerchantCircle, and Topix, with more to come.In both incarnations, Tags is essentially a way for a business to mark their listings with a small, colored graphic so that it stands out in a larger directory or in search results. The tags can be appended with additional information, including promotions or mobile coupons.center_img Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… john paul titlowlast_img read more

How to Identify and Remedy Duplicate Content Issues on Your Website

first_img Topics: Technical SEO It’s easy to be fooled into thinking SEO is just about link building. There are so many posts covering the latest developments on what links are good or bad, that we sometimes forget about the huge gains we can make by simply fixing problems with our own site. One of the biggest culprits for lost traffic and rankings is duplicate content. Luckily, you have control over your own site, so you have the power to fix it.Access Now: 22 SEO Myths to Leave Behind This YearWhat Is Duplicate Content?Duplicate content exists when there is more than one version of a page indexed by the search engines. Where there are multiple versions of a page indexed, it’s difficult for search engines to decide what page to show for a relevant search query.Search engines aim to provide users with the best experience possible, which means they will rarely show duplicate pieces of content. Instead, they will be forced to choose what version they feel is the best fit for that query. Causes of Duplicate ContentThree of the biggest offenders for causing duplicate content are:1) URL ParametersURLs can often contain additional parameters because of how they are being tracked (marketing campaign IDs, analytics IDs), or the CMS a website is using adds its own custom parameters.For example, the following URLs could all lead to the same page:http://www.example.com/page1http://www.example.com/page1?source=organichttp://www.example.com/page1?campaignid=35322) Printer friendly pagesOften a web page will have an option to produce a printer friendly version of that page. This can often lead to duplicate content issues. For example, the following URLs would lead to the same page.http://www.example.com/page1http://www.example.com/printer/page13) Session IDsSites may often want to track a user’s session across their website. For example, sites can offer personalized features based upon who that user is and their past interactions with the site, or an ecommerce store may remember what that person added to their shopping cart on their last visit.Session ids get appended to the URL and this causes duplicate versions of a page to exist. For example, the following URLs would lead to the same page.http://www.example.com/page1http://www.example.com/page1?sessionid=12455Duplicate Content ProblemsThe biggest issues caused by duplicate content are:Search engines don’t know which version of the page they should indexSearch engines don’t know what page the link authority should be assigned to, or if it should be divided across multiple versions.Search engines don’t know what version of the page to rank for a relevant search query.This can result in web pages losing both rankings and organic traffic.Finding Duplicate ContentThere are two tools you can use to find duplicate content problems for your site: Google Webmaster Tools and Screaming Frog.1) Google Webmaster ToolsUsing Google Webmaster Tools you can easily find pages with both duplicate titles and meta descriptions. You simply click on “HTML Improvements” under “Search Appearance”.Clicking on one of these links will show you what pages have duplicate meta descriptions and page titles. 2) Screaming FrogYou can download the screaming frog web crawler and use it to crawl 500 pages for free. This application lets you do a lot of different things, including finding duplicate content problems.Page Titles/Meta Descriptions You can find duplicate page titles by simply clicking on the tab “Page Titles” or “Meta Description” and filtering for “Duplicate.”URLsYou can also find pages that have multiple URL versions by simply clicking on the “URL” tab and sorting by “Duplicate.”For a complete guide on all the different things you can do with Screaming Frog, check out this post from SeerInteractive.Fixing Duplicate ContentDuplicate content is a problem that can impact both your organic traffic and web rankings, but it’s something that you can easily fix. The three quickest ways to address duplicate content problems are:1) Canonical Tag Using the canonical tag you can tell search engines what version of a page you want to return for relevant search queries. The canonical tag is found in the header of a web page.The canonical tag is the best approach when you want to have multiple versions of a page available to users. If you’re using the HubSpot COS, this will be taken care of automatically, so no manual labor required.2) 301 RedirectA 301 redirect will redirect all legacy pages to a new URL. It tells Google to pass all the link authority from these pages to the new URL and to rank that URL for relevant search queries.The 301 redirect is the best option when you don’t have any need for multiple versions of a page to be available.3) Meta Tags You can use meta tags to tell search engines not to index a particular page.Meta tags work best when you want that page to be available to the user but not indexed, e.g. terms and conditions. Duplicate content is a real problem for sites, but one that can be easily solved using the advice above. If you want to learn more about duplicate content, watch this video series from the SEO experts at Dejan SEO on how you can fix it for your site. Originally published Mar 10, 2014 4:00:00 AM, updated August 27 2017 Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

19 Brands with a Cult Following (And What You Can Learn From Them)

first_imgEver wonder how Dollar Shave Club turned razor subscriptions into a billion dollar exit? Or how LaCroix’s fans strong-armed their beloved bubbly’s way to the top of the sparkling water food chain? The answer is simple. They inspire impressive devotion from their large fan bases.That’s especially true among Millennials — 62% of them tend to stick with one brand, compared to 54% of the population at-large. How does a brand garner that kind of advocacy? I found myself asking the same question, so I compiled a list of 19 brands with faithful followings, along with the marketing tactics that might contribute to their cult status.Download our essential guide to branding here for even more tips on branding your company. Note: It’s easy to look at the behemoth brands below and feel a little overwhelmed. From one marketer to another, stop, breathe deeply, and give yourself a break. The strategies these brands employ don’t require billions of dollars or global teams. They’re simple enough that even a lone marketer can incorporate them into their next campaign — that’s why we love them.Free Download: Slogan Writing Guide and Examples19 Brands with a Cult Following (and What You Can Learn From Them)1) Southwest AirlinesSource: Brand NewWhen I say Southwest, you probably think of cheap fares, funny flight attendants, and drink coupons. If you also think of great branding, there’s a reason for that. In September 2014, Southwest unveiled a branding refresh that earned positive media attention and made marketers swoon.Southwest rolled out a PR campaign for its rebrand, explaining the reasoning and research behind the airline’s new look. It included videos that maintained the company’s playful brand voice while touting the new message, “Without a heart, it’s just a machine.” Southwest proved that sharing its new identity was as much a part of the rebrand as the redesigned packages of peanuts.Branding Best Practice: Own Your RebrandYour rebrand may not be at the scale of a major airline, but it’s still a big undertaking, so don’t hide the results. And remember, it works in a number of sectors — at least half of nonprofits, for example, say that a rebrand has increased their revenue.Use your rebrand as a way to create buzz within your industry. Make it clear why you felt a rebrand was necessary, how you considered your audience, and what the positive results will be. Think of it as another way to reinforce your new image and foster adoption of your refreshed identity.2) LaCroixSource: LaCroixDo you know someone who’s obsessed with LaCroix? Hypothetically, you might be addicted to the fizzy water yourself (raises hand slowly). Sales for the bubbly drink have more than doubled over the past two years, but chances are, you won’t see a ton of LaCroix TV ads.Instead, LaCroix has executed some impressive social media campaigns, specifically with Instagram. In 2015, the brand grew its Instagram followers from 4,000 to 30,000 in just eight months. Today, it has almost 60,000 followers.But how? First, LaCroix engages with anyone who tags the brand, no matter their number of followers. If you’re lucky, you might even receive a free case of Pamplemousse for posting a photo. Second, LaCroix is quick to adopt relevant trending hashtags like #Whole30approved (to promote its partnership with Whole30 nutrition) and branded ones like #LiveLaCroix. Third, Instagram micro-influencers are smartly targeted with free products and other perks in exchange for featuring LaCroix in lifestyle images shared with their large following.Branding Best Practice: Discover Where Your Audience Hangs OutFind out who your target audience is and where they’re hanging out. LaCroix knew that 55% of online 18-29-year-olds are active on Instagram and doubled down on efforts there. By promoting user-generated photos and rewarding influencers, LaCroix went from sitting on dusty grocery store shelves to becoming a drink of choice for Millennials.3) In-N-OutSource: In-N-OutLet’s not even get started on the In-N-Out vs. Five Guys and Shake Shack debate. That’s a blog for a different day (and, probably, a different website). But if you’ve been to California, you might have made at least one stop for a Double-Double Animal Style — one of In-N-Out’s more notable menu items. And, the chain maintains its fervent following by knowing that meals like that are part of its brand, even being a bit protective of it.The brand is comprised of burgers, fries, and shakes, as it has been for 68 years, insulating it from fad-food missteps. And while it’s tough to find an In-N-Out beyond the west coast, the brand extends much further. In September 2016, a pop-up shop came to London, selling out of burgers in an hour. “These events also help to protect the In-N-Out Burger brand,” the company said in a statement, “in important regions like England and Southeast Asia.”Branding Best Practice: Protect Your BrandsIt’s been said that your brand is more important than the product or service you sell. Building a brand strategy, getting buy-in from your team, and sticking to the plan are important parts of ensuring that your marketing efforts reinforce your brand standards.4) Trader Joe’sSource: Trader Joe’sTrader Joe’s products draw levels of adoration that would make something like pumpkin spice jealous. (I mean, hello, cookie butter.)So what’s the secret sauce in the brand’s marketing efforts? Well, the funny thing is, it doesn’t really have any. Trader Joe’s doesn’t have an official Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram account, nor will you see television ads. What it does offer are great products that the brand is openly passionate about.But they have discovered one thing that works. The Trader Joe’s Fearless Flyer newsletter is one of the brand’s dedicated marketing channels — and people seem to love it. With a selection of featured items and an astonishing amount of copy, the Flyer waxes eloquent on Trader Joe’s hotdogs, apple cider, and more.Branding Best Practice: Be Strategic About the Channels You Engage InWhat the success of Trader Joe’s doesn’t mean: you should shut down all marketing channels and “let your product speak for itself.” Unless you start selling products like cookie butter by the gallon, that strategy probably isn’t right for you. But it does mean that stepping back and taking an unbiased look at which unconventional channels could work for you. What’s your brand’s “Fearless Flyer”? Figure out what makes your brand different, and capitalize on it with something unexpected.5) Saturday Night LiveSource: GiphySaturday Night Live (SNL) first aired in 1975. And while a 41-year run is prone to its share of tough seasons and dry spells, this sketch variety has remained strong and relevant.While a talented cast might be the backbone of the show, it’s the weekly guest hosts and musical talent that keep each episode topical and trending. That impressive lineup allows SNL to leverage current events (e.g., when Ronda Rousey hosted after her impressive six-win UFC streak). It also allows the show to test out different hosts and bring back fan favorites, like Justin Timberlake.Branding Best Practice: Incorporate Guest Contributions Into Your Content StrategyWhile having a strong, core content team is important, guest contributions are a great way to keep your brand relevant and credible. But remember — these guests have to be aligned with your brand. Think of it as a co-marketing agreement. These partnerships have to be strategic and both parties have to benefit from it. Check out our tips on how co-marketing works in branding here.6) IKEASource: Home DesigningIKEA has a simple vision: “to create a better everyday life for the many people.” And while some patrons might give credit to the in-store meatballs — the brand is rumored to sell three million each day — IKEA turns to research to learn what its consumers really want.But there’s no reliance on customer surveys and downloaded data. Instead, design experts are actually sent into people’s homes to learn what’s important to them and what their pain points are. That information is funneled into content that’s relevant to customers, ranging from the brand’s over 50-year-old catalogue, to the award-winning web series “Easy to Assemble,” which ran for four seasons.Branding Best Practice: Do More Than Audience SurveysUnderstanding your audience goes deeper than sending out a survey. That’s said to be especially true of Millennials, who are more interested in conversing with a brand (see LaCroix’s Instagram example above) than spending time on a questionnaire. Finding out what motivates and challenges your consumers is arguably the most important part of a marketer’s job, which also means you have to allocate your marketing time and resources accordingly. Focus on the conversation — engagement through social media and other conversation-centric platforms can help bring your user personas to life.7) Dollar Shave ClubSource: BrandfolderRazors are not exactly an exciting topic. In fact, they’re probably a topic that most of us avoid discussing — because, gross. But when Dollar Shave Club (DSC) burst onto the startup scene in 2012 with a launch video that people are still talking about, it made shaving worth talking about.The deep care for the brand is often evident, like in one interview with Brandfolder: “From our packaging to our digital presence, the DSC brand identity informs everything we do.” That devotion to the brand shines through every piece of marketing content produced. From witty emails, to carefully branded packaging that makes you stop and read your razor wrappers, DSC’s brand is carefully and craftily infused into everything they do.Branding Best Practice: Organize Your Brand AssetsHow do you incorporate your brand identity into each piece of marketing you own? With brand consistency. While your brand might have several moving parts, they have to be cohesive — in fact, 90% of consumers expect this kind of consistency across all channels, especially when shopping for a product or service. Not sure where your brand inconsistencies might be hiding? Check out this list.And once you have achieved that consistency, consider using digital asset management: the technology that makes any of your digital branding collateral — logos, images, and standards, to name a few — easily accessible to your team (and ready to implement).8) AppleSource: AppleYear after year, new Apple product announcements get people talking — whether it’s industry chatter or consumer debate. So how does the tech giant manage to generate buzz about yet another new iPhone, even now?For one thing, the launch messages tend to be simple and consumer-focused. For example, the iPhone 7 landing page reads that this version “dramatically improves the most important aspects of the iPhone experience.” See that? Experience. Before I even read the list of features that follows, I’m already thinking about which aspects of my iPhone are most important to me, and how much better they’ll be on this new device.Branding Best Practice: Keep it SimpleChoose the benefits that matter to your customer and build a marketing strategy around them. And don’t forget to keep that marketing message simple and unapologetic — focusing on too much at once can lead to brand confusion, which might be why 69% of consumers are more likely to recommend a brand based on its simplicity.Focusing on benefits in a no-frills way can also imply confidence. For example, Apple was noticeably unapologetic about removing the headphone jack from the iPhone 7. Instead, the official announcement proclaimed, “Oh yeah … and the headphone jack from over 100 years ago has been removed (shocker) for the more versatile Lightning port.”9) StarbucksSource: TechGenieMobile has seen some interesting developments as of late. 51% percent of digital media is consumed via mobile (versus 42% on desktop), and voice search is on the rise. It makes sense for marketers to be focused on mobile, and Starbucks is no exception.When Starbucks introduced the “Order & Pay” feature of its app in 2014, it saw adoption rates between 4-10% in stores. The brand capitalized and built on that, creating an in-app experience that remembers and recalls your favorite orders, suggests pairings, and guesses where you’d like to pick up your order.Branding Best Practice: Invest in Mobile MarketingIf you’re not investing time and resources into your mobile marketing strategy, you might want to get started, especially when it comes to building an app for your brand — 56% of digital time is spent using them.But if an app is out of reach or not relevant for to your brand (after all, just look at the Trader Joe’s example), how else can you elevate your mobile strategy? Start by making sure your site is mobile-friendly, and look into push notifications or other unique offerings that your organization can use to its advantage.10) ZapposSource: ReferralCandyZappos has built its brand around customer service — a brand that CEO Tony Hsieh has defended and protected over the years, even famously saying, “Zappos is a customer service company that just happens to sell shoes.” At any other company, it might be considered inefficient for a customer service rep to engage in an almost 11-hour phone call with a customer, but at Zappos, that kind of dedication is encouraged.But it doesn’t stop there. From sending flowers to a bereaving customer, to overnighting free shoes to a best man whose footwear hadn’t made the flight to the wedding, Zappos leads with a customer service story and keeps their fans coming back from more.Branding Best Practice: Delight Your CustomersIn a marketplace where consumers have hundreds and even thousands of choices at their mobile-savvy fingertips, you need to set yourself apart. And sometimes, all your consumer needs to make a decision between you and three other competitors is exceptional service — especially since U.S. businesses collectively lose about $41 billion dollars each year because of bad customer service. (I suppose sending flowers can’t hurt, either.)11) TED GoPro makes handheld video cameras that are high quality and easy to use. The return has been huge — in 2011, less than a decade after being founded, the brand saw a 112% increase in net income after spending only $50,515 on marketing. In 2013, marketing costs went up by $41,000 and income by $28 million.Maybe that has something to do with the company’s expertise in putting user-generated content to work for their brand. By simply encouraging its audience to use the #GoPro hashtag when posting images captured by its camera, GoPro succeeded in building strong brand loyalty and a powerful content machine. At least, that’s how I see a company with 6,000 user-branded videos uploaded to YouTube every day.Branding Best Practice: User-Generated Content is KingHow is your audience using your product or service? That information might already be out there and on social media — it just doesn’t have a branded hashtag yet. Once you get that information, ask users to tag your brand or submit content for you to post on your own networks. Some companies, like West Elm, are hopping on this trend by almost exclusively featuring user-generated content on their social media feeds — a smart strategy that can conserve your marketing budget.19) Philz CoffeeSource: MINTPhilz is a California coffee chain with a rabid following and well-cared for social media channels. In 2014, when content marketer and Philz devotee Caitlin Roberson tweeted her displeasure at the brand’s then-generic Twitter responses, Philz tweeted back their apologies. Today, you’ll find genuine and customized responses to followers on each of the coffee house’s social media channels — especially on Twitter.For a business that built its brand on delicious coffee and a small shop vibe, that’s an important part of the marketing strategy. Could the social media team get by just fine by continuing to post generic responses to their followers? Probably. But going the extra few steps leaves their fans with anything but a bitter taste — in fact, a personalized customer service experience on Twitter, for example, leaves people 83% more satisfied.Branding Best Practice: Talk to Your Customers Like They’re Real PeopleMake sure you’re interacting with your consumers in a genuine and rewarding way. Yes, it takes time to thoughtfully respond to customers through on social media and customer support channels, which are sometimes one in the same. But the benefit to both your brand and your consumers, however, will be well worth the extra brainpower — since Roberson’s noted interaction with Philz, the brand’s Twitter following has nearly doubled.If You Build It…Take time to really understand what motivates and moves your audience, and create a content and brand marketing plan accordingly. Stay confident and genuine in your message. Then, share it with your audience in a relatable way. You might just find yourself with advocates who believe in your brand as much as you do.How are you building your brand’s following? Let us know in the comments. Brand Awareness Topics: As marketers, we have our favorite TED talks. Maybe yours is Simon Sinek explaining the golden circle, or my personal favorite, Susan Cain speaking on the power of introverts. Regardless, TED talks have become a go-to resource for quick, insightful information across almost any topic.In a time when consumer attention spans are shorter than those of goldfish, TED does what might seem impossible to some marketers. The brand holds five million YouTube subscribers captive for talks that average 20 minutes in length. There’s no flashy light show or catchy theme song — just solid storytelling that’s largely spread by word of mouth.Branding Best Practice: Focus on Quality ContentPut time, effort, and money into creating quality content. While you might be able to grab someone’s attention for eight seconds with a catchy headline, valuable content is what will transform that one-time view into a regular reader, and hopefully, a customer. Plus, quality content is imperative to SEO — without it, your rankings can take a serious hit.12) LululemonSource: LululemonLululemon is one of the hottest fitness brands in the market today. Ask someone why she spent just short of $100 for a pair of yoga pants, and you might get a lecture on the superior quality of Lululemon’s products. That’s the kind of brand loyalty sought after by every marketer on the planet, and it starts with Lululemon ambassadors.While consumer word-of-mouth is one form of brand loyalty, Lululemon fosters a more formal type of ambassador in yoga teachers and fitness trainers who have been selected to represent the brand’s values and lifestyle. They lead classes at storefronts on weekends, share photos of themselves wearing the brand, and provide aspirational advertising.Branding Best Practice: Experiment with Influencer MarketingBrand ambassadors are a form of influencer marketing — which, according to Twitter, is responsible for 49% of user purchases. Look at who the movers and shakers are in your industry, and learn how you can partner with them through guest contributions, using, or writing about your product.13) SoulCycleSource: SoulCycleTelling a colleague that you’re headed to the gym can elicit a number of responses. You might hear, “good for you,” or receive a grimace face that says, “I feel your pain.”But SoulCycle, similarly to Lululemon, has found a way to rebrand your workout. One visit to its website or Instagram profile is all it takes to find mantras about pushing your body to its limits with your #SoulMates and #SoulSquad. By sending the message that exercise is a community-bound opportunity, SoulCycle makes it seem like less of a chore, and more like an exclusive club.Branding Best Practice: Market to Your Consumer’s Emotional SideHow can you make your product or service sexier? Consider how you can tap into your client’s emotions, and touch on the things that are important to them. In fact, a study that measured consumers’ brain activity in response to ads found that higher activity indicated a 23% increase in sales volume. And considering that 60% of consumers who feel a “high brand connection” are more likely to make a purchase — even at a higher price point — it quite literally pays to understand their potential feelings toward your brand.14) Life is GoodSource: Life is GoodLife is Good was founded in 1994. Within 11 years, the brand was boasting $50 million in sales — having never run a single ad — and $100 million by 2015.What was the strategy behind that rapid growth and success? Say sibling co-founders John and Bert Jacobs, it was simple — “rely on the good vibes and social power of their community to spread the word,” according to Inc.Instead of traditional marketing, Life is Good pours its advertising dollars into different events for its charity, Life is Good Playmakers. In addition to impressive sales, these efforts have resulted in an avid fan following and even partnerships with celebrity musicians.Branding Best Practice: Think Outside the Advertising BoxConsider new, less traditional forms of advertising — especially since 84% of Millennials, for example, don’t even like advertising. By sponsoring local events or supporting a charity that aligns with your company’s mission, you could generate more than just good PR. You could also gain fans who respect and appreciate your work. Plus, 80% of consumers believe that corporations can (and should) work to benefit their communities — a win-win for both brands and the people they serve.15) MoleskineSource: The Next WebMoleskine is not just a notebook. It’s “a free platform for creativity,” Maria Sebregondi, Moleskin’s head of brand equity once said. What’s more, it’s found a way to make paper cool and relevant in the digital age.The notebook brand expertly balances its heritage past — touting Hemingway and Picasso among its early brand advocates — with the digital present, launching a smart notebook and companion app. This balance of yesterday and today helps maintain the brand’s relevance — and appear to consumers who love the latest tech, but still have nostalgia for paper.Branding Best Practice: Allow Your Brand to EvolveEvery brand should evolve. Our shortened attention spans aren’t limited to the content we consume — they apply to the products we adopt, as well. It is possible to maintain your brand’s legacy while also letting your marketing evolve, but it requires being flexible and open to your product changing.16) ChacoSource: ChacoChaco is a lifestyle and outdoor footwear brand with an active following. Just look at its Instagram profile — it’s packed with user-generated photos of fans hiking, adventuring, and camping in these colorful sandals. And that’s key — such bold visuals increase people’s willingness to read a piece of content by 80%.The branding also travels well, hitting up music festivals and gear shops around the country in what Chaco refers to as “Z the World Tour.” The tour allows the brand to interact with consumers in-person, advocate for the product, and raise awareness directly.Branding Best Practice: Don’t be Afraid to Put a Face with Your BrandConsider taking your marketing on the road. Sales teams often suggest closing deals through in-person meetings and, sometimes, marketing can follow the same strategy. Want to recruit brand advocates? Let them experience your brand in a tangible way.17) CrossFitSource: CrossFitCrossFit, a workout regimen created by CEO Greg Glassman, is today a billion-dollar business with what some describe as a cult-like following. So what’s in the CrossFit Kool-Aid everyone’s drinking? Great marketing, of course.Similar to SoulCycle, CrossFit taps into the desire for community. CrossFit’s website wastes no time nodding to that idea with photos of and journal entries from its “elite” pool of members. The brand could have called them “testimonials,” but CrossFit’s careful use of language ensures that its messaging reads more like a movement, and less like a product. Another example of this strategic word choice: describing itself as a phenomenon that’s “harnessing [a] natural camaraderie.”Branding Best Practice: Inspire Ownership in Your BrandHow can you give your audience more ownership in your brand? Simple language tweaks like calling your audience a “community” instead of “members” can go a long way in building brand advocates. That goes back to the idea of shared values that we mentioned earlier — 64% of consumers cite that as the main reason for even having a relationship with a brand.18) GoPro Originally published Nov 7, 2016 6:00:00 AM, updated July 28 2017 Don’t forget to share this post!last_img read more

7 Best Mother’s Day Ads

first_img Don’t forget to share this post! 4) FlyBabies | JetBlue (2016)After watching this ad from Boston-based agency MullenLowe, maybe you’ll think twice before judging the mother with the screaming baby on your next flight.For Mother’s Day 2016, this JetBlue stunt offered passengers a 25% discount on their next round-trip flight every time a baby cried on the plan. With four babies on the plane, their odds of getting a completely free flight were pretty good. This ad ultimately achieves the unachievable: getting airline passengers to clap and cheer each time a baby cries. 7) Tattoo | American Greetings (2017)In this heartwarming spot for American Greetings, MullenLowe took inspiration from a friend of creative director Allison Rude. After her father died, the friend discovered a card from her father, and got a meaningful handwritten line tattooed on her wrist. In the ad, a daughter gets a similar inked tribute to her late mother.  Sometime in early May each year, search volume for “When is Mother’s Day” begins to reach a panicked spike.Consider this article your official reminder: Mother’s Day is this Sunday (May 14th), and we have a selection of hilarious and heartwarming ads about moms to get you in the spirit.From a lighthearted garden gathering with the royal family to a moving tribute to mothers of sick children, each of these campaigns celebrate those authentic moments that bond us with our moms.A word of caution to those of you currently in the office: you might want to get some tissues ready. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.7 Great Examples of Mother’s Day AdvertisingMoms Explain What Their Kids Do in Advertising | MRY (2015)British Roses for the Queen | The Body Shop (2016)SickKids vs. MomStrong | Sick Kids (2017)FlyBabies | JetBlue (2016)Swear Like a Mother | Kraft (2017)Texts From Mom | Samsung (2015)Tattoo | American Greetings (2017) 5) Swear Like a Mother | Kraft (2017)74% of moms admit they’ve accidentally sworn in front of their kids before. The other 26%? “Full of sh*t”, suggests Melissa Mohr, author of Holy Sh*t: A Brief History of Swearing.To champion Kraft’s message of giving yourself a much-deserved break once in a while, CP+B Boulder asked Mohr to share some of her tips for those not-so-perfect parenting situations. Because being a mom is tough, and it’s healthy to remind yourself you don’t have to be perfect. 3) SickKids vs. MomStrong | Sick Kids (2017)A somber follow-up to the SickKids vs. Undeniable ad released in 2016, this Mother’s Day spot from SickKids Hospital underscores the agony and strength of mothers with chronically ill children.If the anguish depicted seems real, that’s because it is — Cossette Toronto, the agency behind the ad, cast real mothers in the short video, gently revealing personal, often unseen moments of pain and resilience. 6) Texts From Mom | Samsung (2015)Long ago, your mom taught you how to do things like eat, roll over on your belly, and use the bathroom. Some things are just not as intuitive as think, so don’t be too hard on your mom for her lack of texting expertise.This R/GA-produced Mother’s Day spot takes a hilarious look at some of the texts you might get from your mom, and reminds you to give her a call this Sunday.center_img 1) Moms Explain What Their Kids Do in Advertising | MRY (2015)If you work in the digital marketing or advertising space, you’ve probably struggled at some point to concisely explain what your job entails to your family. To celebrate Mother’s Day 2015, the folks at digital agency MRY posed a seemingly simple question to their moms: What do you think I do for a living?The answers — delivered via web cam by the moms themselves — range from “Online Advertising Through the Computer for Any Kind of Internet Kind of Thing” to “Annoying Pop-Up Creator” — and more than one childhood art project is unearthed for some unsolicited praise.  Originally published May 8, 2017 5:00:00 AM, updated July 28 2017 Topics: Holiday Marketing 2) British Roses for the Queen | The Body Shop (2016)The Body Shop enlisted the help of London-based agency Mr. President to produce this candid, home video-style ad featuring a cast of (very convincing) royal family doppelgangers celebrating Mother’s Day in the royal garden.Allison Jackson, a BAFTA-award winning director best known for her lookalike photos of celebrities, was brought on to ensure the video looked authentic. last_img read more