Brown’s 63 ties for stroke play honours

first_img20 Feb 2017 Brown’s 63 ties for stroke play honours England’s Dan Brown fired a stunning nine-under 63 to tie for the stroke play honours at the South African Amateur Championship in Port Elizabeth. But he was pipped into second place for the matchplay draw after losing on the fourth hole of a sudden death play-off to South Africa’s Chris Woollam, who won the Proudfoot Trophy. The two players had tied on 15-under after the 36 holes of qualifying. Brown, the English amateur champion from Masham in Yorkshire, opened with six-under 66 and was tied fifth after the first round. Then he came out for the second round with all guns blazing. He had two eagles and two birdies in his first five holes and reached the turn in six-under 29. He had a solitary bogey on the short 14th  as he came home in three-under. But Brown had to wait to find out that his first round matchplay opponent was fellow England international Sean Towndrow – one of three companions on an England Golf tour of South Africa, alongside Josh Hilleard and James Walker. Towndrow (Southport & Ainsdale, Lancashire) came through an 18-man play-off for the last three places in the match play draw with a birdie on the first hole. Other English players who safely reached the match play – without the drama of a play-off – are Mitchell Waite (Filton, Gloucestershire), James Walker (The Oaks, Yorkshire), Joe Long (Lansdown, Gloucestershire) and Robin Williams (Peterborough Milton, Northamptonshire).  Brown has already taken third place in the South African stroke play.  Click here for matchplay scoreslast_img read more

Oceanport Looks To Move Forward On New Municipal Complex

first_imgBy John BurtonOCEANPORT – The mayor and Borough Council want the public to weigh in on what appears to be the preferred plan for a future borough hall and complete municipal complex at a former Fort Monmouth location.The governing body has scheduled a public hearing for Sept. 12 at 3 p.m. at the Blackberry Bay Pavilion, 440 Port Au Peck Ave. The purpose of the public hearing is to allow the public to offer opinions and ask questions about the proposal for Oceanport to purchase a former Fort Monmouth structure to eventually serve as the community/senior center.That plan calls for purchasing the 918 Murphy Dr. building, located in the Oceanport section of the fort property.The public hearing is a requirement under the Monmouth County Open Space Program, which could award the borough $250,000 toward the purchase of the building.The public meeting will be an initial opportunity for borough officials to lay out one of the long-discussed plans under consideration for a new municipal complex, Mayor John “Jay” Coffey told The Two River Times this week.“We’re very excited about the potential of relocating our entire facility there,” using former fort buildings, Coffey said.According to the mayor, he and the council do plan to conduct a couple of town hall-style forums in the near future to fully outline what Coffey said is the leading scenario for establishing the community’s permanent municipal complex.“I think we’re almost ready to start the public dialogue, the most important part of the process,” Coffey said.The plan would be for Oceanport to acquire a number of now vacant structures and approximately 13.25 acres located on the Oceanport property of the former fort, and renovate and upgrade them to accommodate borough police, Department of Public Works (which has been using a fort site), the community center, public library, municipal court and all other municipal departments and offices in about 40,000 square feet of building space.“They were government buildings before and they can be government buildings going forward,” Coffey said.The former fort property is under the control of the Fort Monmouth Economic Revitalization Authority, or FMERA, a state authority coming under the auspices of the state Economic Development Authority. The borough would have to acquire the property from that state entity and Coffey said officials would search out available grants to help should they move forward with this plan. Oceanport is also expecting approximately $5.3 million in financial support from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to replace the former borough hall damaged by Super Storm Sandy four years ago. Coffey said local officials are currently negotiating with state representatives over the price.While other proposals are still under consideration, such as rebuilding on the former borough hall property, the mayor is supportive of this plan, believing it is the most efficient and cost effective way to establish a new facility without the price tag of constructing a new one.“When you look at the structures,” he said, “building new as opposed to retrofitting or remodeling, from a financial standpoint, I don’t know how anybody could opt for the new building option.”To build a new all-encompassing municipal complex could be up to four times as much, according to Coffey. “It would be great to have a brand new place, with all the bells and whistles,” he noted, “but there’s a cost attached with all those bells and whistles.”An engineering study in February 2014 determined the former borough hall, 222 Monmouth Blvd., has sustained more substantial structural damage from Sandy in October 2012 than had been previously thought. So much damage that continued use of the 50-plus-year-old structure was deemed a safety risk.Officials had relocated government offices to the borough-owned Old Wharf House, 316 East Main St., a tight fit for the offices in the building that had been used as the senior center. Police had operated out of a trailer and municipal court has been using Shrewsbury Borough’s facility. The public library has been using the former community center on Iroquois Avenue.Since then an ad hoc committee convened by former mayor Michael Mahon and the council has been studying the options.The U.S. Department of Defense shuttered the approximately 90-year-old Fort Monmouth military and research and development facility in 2011. Since closing, federal, state, county and local officials have been working on redeveloping the 1,126 acres made up of property from Oceanport, Eatontown and Tinton Falls for the economic betterment of the area.last_img read more

Swift Current Broncos pick Nelson’s Curt Doyle in Bantam Draft

first_imgNelson’s Curt Doyle spent the past season tending goal for the Kamloops Jardine Blazers.The move appears to have paid instant dividends as the Heritage City product caught the eye of the Western Hockey League’s Swift Current Broncos, who drafted the 15-year-old goalie in the ninth round (188th overall) in last week’s Bantam Draft.“This is a real exciting time,” Doyle said from his parent’s home in Nelson. “I’m really excited . . . this is just a real good feeling but I’m also pretty surprised to be honest.”Like many other 15-year-old hockey products, Doyle was watching the draft play out when his name came up during the Broncos ninth round selection.About an hour later the chief scout for Swift Current called Doyle to welcome him to the WHL club via telephone. Doyle began playing the sport in Nelson Minor Hockey at the age of five, moving into the goal full time during his second year of Atom.He played two seasons each with the Peewee and Bantam Rep teams before moving this past year to Kamloops to play with the Jardine Blazers.The 5’11”, 155-pound, Doyle finished the season with a 24-4 record and six shutouts.The Jardine Blazers won the Okanagan League with a 12-0-1 record.Doyle plans to move back to Nelson to compete for a spot on the Kootenay Ice Major Midget Hockey Club this coming season with an eye on the Broncos in the future.”The BC Major Midget Hockey League is a very good program for developing players,” Doyle said.But first the Heritage City product is expecting a package from the WHL club to arrive soon that will hopefully include an invitation to rookie camp.“I’ve always had an interest in college and Tier I hockey, but I’m leaning toward the WHL which has always been a goal of mine to make it there,” Doyle said.last_img read more

Half-time: Tottenham 3 Chelsea 1

first_imgChelsea endured a disastrous end to the first half as they saw their lead at White Hart Lane disappear in dramatic fashion.Diego Costa had put the Blues ahead n the 19th minute, turning in Oscar’s shot, which came after Eden Hazard had hit the post.Harry Kane equalised on the half-hour mark as he cut in from the left-hand side, held off the challenge of Oscar and fired in a low shot beyond Thibaut Courtois.And Chelsea imploded by conceding twice in the dying minutes of the half.Christian Eriksen took advantage of some space in the final third to slip the ball through to Nacer Chadli, and after he rolled his effort against the post, Danny Rose followed up to power in the rebound.Then the in-form Kane drew a foul from Gary Cahill inside the box and Andros Townsend slammed home the penalty.Spurs had suffered a blow when Ryan Mason limped off, just before Costa’s goal, which had come with Chelsea’s first serious attack.But Tottenham responded with a vibrant 15 minutes that threatens to knock Chelsea off top spot of the Premier League.Manchester City beat Sunderland earlier in the afternoon an, as things stand, lead the table on goals scored. Tottenham: Lloris, Walker, Fazio, Vertonghen, Rose; Bentaleb, Mason; Chadli, Eriksen, Townsend; Kane.Subs: Vorm, Chiriches, Davies, Dembele, Paulinho, Stambouli, Soldado. Chelsea: Courtois; Ivanovic, Cahill, Terry, Azpilicueta; Matic, Fabregas; Willian, Oscar, Hazard; Costa.Subs: Cech, Zouma, Mikel, Ramires, Salah, Remy, Drogba.Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img read more

SA firms on Forbes Global 2000

first_img18 April 2006Nineteen South African companies have made it onto this year’s prestigious Forbes Global 2000, which ranks the size of firms listed on the world’s stock exchanges according to their market value, turnover, profit and assets.Companies in the financial services sector top the list, with the Standard Bank and First Rand banking groups ranked, respectively, as the world’s 285th and 361st largest public companies.Next comes synthetic fuels giant Sasol, at 390th place, followed by insurance company Sanlam (454th) and telecommunications parastatal Telkom (589th).Many companies founded and grown in South Africa but now based elsewhere in the world made it even higher on the list. Old Mutual, which moved its head office to London in 1999, came in 185th place. The Anglo American mining group was ranked 116th, and beer company SAB Miller 370th.Mining conglomerate BHP Billiton, which has significant interests in South Africa but is classified as UK/Australian, was ranked 101st.A balanced assessmentThe Forbes list is considered one of the most balanced assessments of the size of listed companies, as it uses four different factors: market value, turnover, profit and assets. This is in contrast to rankings that concentrate on single measures, such as market capitalisation, resulting in misleadingly skewed results.With 19 companies on the list, South Africa is far ahead of the rest of Africa in terms of global business. Egypt scored only three firms, and Liberia and Morocco one each.The country is also ahead of, among others, Mexico (with 17 global companies), Austria (10), Denmark (11), Finland (15), Greece (12), Ireland (8), Norway (9), Russia (14), Saudi Arabia (5) and Singapore (14). Brazil is in the same spot as SA, with 19 global companies, while mainland China has 28 and India 33.The US predictably tops the Forbes Global 2000, with 693 companies. Next is Japan with 320 companies, followed by the UK with 130.US financial services firm Citigroup clinched the number-one spot on the list, followed by General Electric, Bank of America, American International Group and HSBC Group.The full list of South African companies on the Forbes Global 2000 is as follows: 285 – Standard Bank Group (banking)361 – FirstRand (banking)390 – Sasol (oil and gas operations)454 – Sanlam (insurance)589 – Telkom (telecommunications services)815 – MTN Group (telecommunications services)976 – Remgro (conglomerates)1 114 – Bidvest Group (conglomerates)1 123 – Investec (diversified financials)1 145 – Impala Platinum Holdings (materials)1 155 – Imperial Holdings (transportation)1 280 – Barloworld (conglomerates)1 508 – Naspers (media)1 524 – Metropolitan Holdings (diversified financials)1 812 – Gold Fields (materials)1 841 – Sappi (materials)1 892 – Steinhoff International Holdings (consumer durables)1 894 – Alexander Forbes (diversified financials)1 989 – Tiger Brands (food, drink)Forbes Global 2000 companies with strong links to South Africa include: 101 – BHP Billiton (mining)116 – Anglo American (mining)185 – Old Mutual (financial services)370 – SAB Miller (food, drink)SouthAfrica.info reporter Want to use this article in your publication or on your website?See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

Champions Trophy: Virender Sehwag rips through opposition attacks

first_imgVirender Sehwag in actionAs the floodlights at the Premadasa Stadium were switched off one by one, Sourav Ganguly, captain of India, issued an order. “Everybody…” the Indian captain said over his shoulder to the assemblage of reporters, camera crew, ice officials, policemen and hangers-on, “everybody clap for Veeru.” Everybody clapped,Virender Sehwag in actionAs the floodlights at the Premadasa Stadium were switched off one by one, Sourav Ganguly, captain of India, issued an order. “Everybody…” the Indian captain said over his shoulder to the assemblage of reporters, camera crew, ice officials, policemen and hangers-on, “everybody clap for Veeru.”Everybody clapped but it seemed pitiful, inadequate. Maybe, a thunderclap would have been more fitting for Virender Sehwag, flayer of cricket balls and slayer of opposition hopes, small-town boy turned big-time bully.In the short game, the Indians today are not just a cricket team. With 10 wins in their past 13 matches they are a curious collective of artists and escape artists, builders and jailbreakers, locksmiths and lockpickers. Every time there’s a job to be done, there’s a man around who knows just how to do it. In Colombo it was Sehwag: a century and a 50 and a handy turn with the ball at the death that brought him two man-of-the-match awards and took his team into the final of the biggest tournament in cricket after the World Cup.Sehwag destroyed England in a matter of 90 minutes – this when chasing 270 to win. Then the Indians choked World No. 2 South Africa – or rather South Africa choked itself – in a semi-final that was all done until Herschelle Gibbs began to cramp and the Indians decided they hadn’t heard any fat lady sing. Not bad for a team Tony Greig described as playing “without a logo, sponsor or a fifth bowler”.What the team has instead is a core of young players who are getting used to the temperature of the international game. Sehwag, 23, is one of them, a player with talent that leaves his seniors goggle-eyed and a mindset that has survived and outlasted two breaks due to injury and even a diplomatic crisis (the Mike Denness affair).It is a mindset that began and ended with the catch-phrase band leaders use to open campus gigs: hit it. It’s one thing to crank out a few tunes in front of dopey teenagers, quite another to do so in an arena crammed with the paying public. The transition in this case has had to be made from being an attacking batsman bowlers believe will go after everything and give them a chance every ball, to a player who keeps bowlers nervy wondering when the latest round of punishment is due.SHOULDER TO SHOULDER: Sehwag has flowered under Ganguly (left)Sehwag’s gifts – balance and the eye to pick length early – allow him to play a high-risk, high-returns game, where boundary board and scoreboard keep clattering. His Ranji Trophy captain Vijay Dahiya of Delhi says, “He took the game he played at the domestic level to the international level, played the same strokes, dominates in the same way.”The ability to dominate and subdue can also give a young man an addiction to aggression. Sehwag’s buddies in the Indian team used to despair at how many one-day centuries he has let go as opener due to loose shots before scoring his second in Colombo. Now it has become a job of keeping that marvellous eye on the ball, the scoreboard-and the clock. “Earlier I had no responsibility. All I did was go out and hit shots. But now I need to stay at the wicket longer for India. The more I do, the better our chances of getting big scores.”None bigger in terms of occasion than his patient century as Test opener in Nottingham earlier in the summer; he was another in a long line of makeshift openers but has no time for the anxieties of the job: he would rather fuss over his batting, he says, not his batting position.Bishan Singh Bedi first saw Sehwag when he played for Jamia Millia Islamia, after enduring a daily 42-km round-trip bus commute starting at 4.30 a.m. To the burly old left-arm spinner, the chunky son of a flour-mill owner was ” an uncut diamond”.John Wright, the coach who speaks as softly as Sehwag does, recently had a quiet word that hit home. With a single half-century in his last 13 one-dayers, Sehwag was reminded that Sachin Tendulkar had sacrificed his opening slot in the one-day game for him –  a spot where he scored a century every three games. That if he could apply his mind for 40 overs, he would get a hundred and take his team past tall totals. That this was not any old batting spot. It was the seat of royalty itself in the Indian team, handed over by the king. Swapping places with Tendulkar was only the final act in their two-man drama. Sehwag’s nickname, Najafgarh ka Tendulkar, was bad enough but then the syndrome went potty, physical similarities highlighted by television gurus lining up slow-mo shots of the two side by side. But Sehwag is a sturdier sort, trying to return the respect given by his peers with big runs and treating the comparisons that follow like media manure. A deep-rooted common sense helps; asked for the nth time about the difference between Tendulkar and himself, Sehwag says, “Our bank balance.” advertisementadvertisementUnderneath that deadpan cheekiness is a nerveless competitor. Yuvraj Singh describes Sehwag as operating in two gears: “Either he’s bashing bowlers or he’s asleep. Fifth or neutral. Nothing else.” Away from the centre, Sehwag prefers neutral. He’s comfortable in his own skin and knows that a lack of English has cost him nothing more than a shoe contract. The marketing men told his agent that he wasn’t worthy of their shoes because “he can’t speak English and he is the kind of player who just hits or gets out”. Guess, who’s cringing now?The cautionary notices are already up: Viv Richards told INDIA TODAY, “He’s on fire. But it’s how he plays when the ball is in his ribs that will be the true test.” Sri Lankan captain Sanath Jayasuriya says, “You can bat like this for one series, maybe two or three, but continuously, it’s going to be very tough.”This, however, is the man who has won a match for India with a broken thumb, and says he didn’t panic even when Jacques Kallis hit him for a six in first ball of the final over of the match against South Africa because he knew that one dot ball in the next five would take his team into the semi-final. The Indian team and Virender Sehwag, a batsman of expansive talent and supreme confidence, are discovering that rewards lie in wait if they keep the balance between the big picture and the smallest detail.-with Vivek Lawlast_img read more

Facebook Needs to Graduate from College to the Real World to Beat LinkedIn

first_imgLike many marketing people in the business world I have been watching Facebook very closely since they recently opened up to people beyond college and high school students. (I actually “snuck” into Facebook a year ago using an alumni .edu email address.)There are a lot of reasons why Facebook is poised to be pretty successful in the business world, even against entrenched competitors like LinkedIn. The key reason is that Facebook is a platform – an open network that allows others to develop applications for it – and because of that there are thousands of ways you can use Facebook because thousands of people have developed applications for it. By contrast, LinkedIn is a relatively closed system.But, being a platform is not enough. Facebook has a number of big challenges before it can cross the chasm into mainstream business use the way LinkedIn has (about 5% of my contacts are on Facebook, but 50% of my contacts are on LinkedIn, and I tend to have pretty “early adopter” people in my contacts).1) Integration with Outlook. Business people live in Outlook. We use email the way college kids use SMS (text messaging) or IM (instant messaging). I have actually had a credible & intelligent venture capitalist tell me that he did text messaging, when he actually just sent emails on a Blackberry. LinkedIn does a great job of integrating with Outlook. I can just click a button to tell it to scan my Outlook contacts to find people, and there is even a LinkedIn toolbar that makes a lot of cool stuff from LinkedIn accessible from Outlook.For Facebook however, there is no integration. They have a place where you can upload a contacts file with some instructions, but to get it to work the process took me over half an hour. The default format that I exported from Outlook was not readable by Facebook, so I had to play a bunch of games in Excel to make it work. If I weren’t writing a blog article about this, I would never have actually spent the time to finish.2) Better company search functionality. We have a number of HubSpot employees on Facebook, and I was trying to connect with them. So I tried to search for people who work at “HubSpot”. I got no results and was puzzled. Apparently Facebook does not have an automatic database of companies that builds based on people entering new companies (like tagging). It seems like there is some manual process to add companies to the list of companies that you can search for. This was probably because Facebook started at a few colleges and then expanded from there, and it is not that difficult to manually update that list of organizations. I am sure they copied the methodology for companies from what they did for colleges. But there are over 25 million small businesses in the US, so I don’t think that method is scalable in the business world. So for now, when I search for HubSpot employees I get zero results on Facebook, when it should be a lot more than that. This limits their growth.3) Branding & Experience. Facebook is really meant for college students (and now high school kids too). There are a lot of parts of the application that are clearly built around a brand and image that is appealing to students. But I join social networks for business purposes. So, why is it that on Facebook I get the following screen when I accept someone as my friend?I am married and not looking online for people to “date” or “hook up”. LinkedIn uses a “worked with”, “managed”, “reported to”, “business partner” paradigm for defining the nature of relationships, clearly more relevant for business.Another problem with Facebook for business is that the design of the profile is based on what a college student would want, not a professional. Facebook lists your sex, your current relationship status, if you are interested in men, women or both, what you are looking for on Facebook (options include “a relationship”, “dating”, “random play”, “whatever I can get”). Not only is most of this not appropriate for a business social network, some of it is actually illegal to ask during a job interview.I think that this branding or user experience problem is Facebook’s biggest barrier to being successful in the business market. But, there is a cool opportunity here for Facebook to “skin” or provide a “theme” based on what type of user you are. For instance, a college student could get the current version, but I could get a version with a little different interface and data fields. This would also provide an interesting way to keep people on Facebook once they graduate, you could just allow them to change from a “student” to a “business” account so that their “looking for random play” setting would be hidden from their potential and actual employers.Have you tried using Facebook for business networking? Let me know about your experience, good or bad, by leaving a comment below. Originally published Sep 24, 2007 2:34:00 PM, updated July 11 2013 Topics: Facebook Marketing 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

6 Qualifications for an eCommerce Click and Mortar Business

first_img Originally published Jan 7, 2011 8:30:00 AM, updated August 09 2019 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: Ecommerce Marketing Transforming your brick and mortar store into a click and mortar business could be a very profitable and wise decision for your business in 2011.  The introduction of the internet and eCommerce has drastically affected the way our society shops, and thus the way businesses need to operate.  An online store can open up without ever having a physical location and pose a real threat to many traditional brick and mortar stores.  Should you turn your brick and mortar business into a click and mortar store to compete?A click and mortar is defined as “A type of business model that includes both online and offline operations, which typically include a website and a physical store.  A click-and-mortar company can offer customers the benefits of fast, online transactions or traditional, face-to-face service.”  Additional benefits of click and mortar stores are seen in increased distribution channels and a checkout clerk that never sleeps.  You can sell your products 24 hours a day and 7 days a week without ever paying a sales clerk to man the cash register.Download Now: Ecommerce Conversion Rate CalculatorYou should consider several qualifications before rushing into the online world of eCommerce: 1.  Have a Website / Willing to Pay Marketplace Fees   The most basic qualification of operating a click and mortar business is the presence of a website and a shopping cart.  If you do not have a website or a shopping cart, you should consider getting started selling online by selling through marketplaces such as eBay and Amazon.  The only problem with marketplaces like eBay and Amazon are the fees associated with product listings and after purchase sales.  These fees can reach astronomical levels, leaving your ROI slaughtered.  You can avoid these fees by operating your own online store by establishing a website and shopping cart.  Make your online store found via organic search engine traffic through keyword strategies for eCommerce search engine optimization . 2.  Inventory / Willing to Drop Ship at Higher Rates   A valid concern for many businesses interested in getting into the eCommerce business is available inventory.  Selling online creates a potential problem of having your products unavailable offline.   The simple answer to this concern is to set limits to the number of items you allow to be sold online.  Almost all eCommerce solutions allow you to control the inventory of your products.  An alternate solution to controlling your product distribution is to find a drop shipper that ships products related to the ones you sale in your store.  The downside to drop shipping is the increase in price you will pay for both their inventory and shipping systems. 3.  Shipping Department / Willing to Drive to Post Office  Logistics of shipping and managing product distribution will be the first hurdle you will face when becoming a legit eCommerce business.  It is easy to handle 2 -3 orders a day, but what will you do when you get to 75 – 200 orders a day?  Shipping and logistics comes much more of a concern.  Thankfully, the increase in revenue created from 75 – 200 new orders every day will leave you with some extra money to hire a shipping manager to help process, pack and ship online orders. Most business just getting started will be fine without a shipping department and can either drive to the Post Office to ship online orders or schedule a shipping company to come and pickup packages from your place of business. 4.  Technology Resource / Willing to Learn.  An often overlooked piece to a successful online business is an employee that is technologically efficient.  This employee doesn’t have to be an eCommerce guru, but should be knowledgeable enough tell you the difference between Google Web and Google Product Search and how to get your website to show up on each.  Your technological resource should preferably have some background with eCommerce, know how to setup and operate an online shopping cart and understand how to send data feeds to marketplaces.  If you either do not have the capitol or availability of a technology efficient employee, then you need to have an eagerness to learn.  There are abundant resources available online and shopping carts such as Shopify that make it extremely easy to get started. 5.  Marketing Resource / Willing to Engage.   Online marketing for your eCommerce store and products should be a high priority for establishing a successful click and mortar store.  Just like your brick and mortar store, your online store needs advertisement in order to survive.  Thankfully inbound marketing for eCommerce is a very good solution for increasing both your store and products visibility online.  You should consider hiring an employee or intern that qualifies for what HubSpot Founders Brian Halligan and Dharmesh Shah refer to as a “Digital Native”.   These types of employees can have dramatic effects on your business and can really propel your profit growth.  If you do not have the capital or availability of a marketing resource, then you need have a willingness to engage in online marketing.  HubSpot offers a wide breadth of knowledge and resources to help you market your online and offline stores very effectively. 6.  Tenacity / Willing to Set Long Term Vision of Business Growth vs. Store Growth.  Launching a new online business is similar to opening a new brick and mortar business.  You will not achieve overnight success with your new online store.  You will not sell 100 products the first day of your store being live.  You may not sell 100 products within the first month of opening your online store.  But you will be successful if you have the tenacity to see the online business grow and succeed.  Like starting a new business, it takes time and effort to grow an online store to prosperity.  However, the prosperity of selling 100 products online a day in addition to your brick and mortar sales can be very lucrative and worthwhile.  Set a long-term vision for your business growth, not your store growth.  Selling just 1 product online a day, week or even month is helping your business grow.  Don’t forget that.last_img read more

How to Attract the RIGHT Social Media Followers for Your Business

first_img Social Media Originally published Feb 8, 2012 9:00:00 AM, updated February 01 2017 The benefits of an extensive social reach are clear, but how do you attract the right followers for your company? As with most inbound marketing, relevancy can make or break the effectiveness of your strategy. So to ensure you have a social media following that helps you advance your marketing objectives, start by identifying a set  of core topics that reflect the interests of people who typically become your customers. If you’re a HubSpot customer, you can use the Keywords App  and the Social Media Prospects App to help with this. For example, we at HubSpot would choose the terms  inbound marketing , social media , marketing automation , and so on to help identify the most appropriate followers. Getting your keywords right from the onset will make it significantly easier to find the most productive connections across social media sites. From there, it’s just a matter of navigating your way through each social network . To make your job easier, let’s break down what to look for on the four major social networks: Facebook, Google+, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Finding the Right Connections on Google+ When you first sign up, Google+ automatically scans your existing connections to see if any of them are using Google+ and invites you to connect with them by placing them in one of your Google+ Circles. While this isn’t a bad way to make sure you’re staying engaged with your current audience, it doesn’t really expand your reach or introduce you to new people. To do that, you’ll need to submit your keywords for a more detailed Google+ search. Top Influencers: You can find and search a list of top influencers through SocialStatistics.com’s Google+ statistics . Narrow down the top influencers by location — a feature that is particularly useful for local businesses. For example, a local business in our neck of the woods could narrow down their search to the top Google+ users in Boston . Targeted Connections:  Following top influencers alone, however, may not extend your reach very much, since top users often get too many requests to reciprocate. To achieve a broader reach, use  Google+ search with the keywords you established to find other individuals who are interested in the things that matter to your company. HINT: When using Google+ search, you can get even more specific by enclosing terms in quotes — like “market research” — or excluding terms with a minus sign — like “market research” –stocks. Keyword-Driven Circles: When you find people discussing your keywords, selectively add them to your Circles. Think about naming Circles based on the shared interest area so your overlapping focus area is clear. To keep new connections engaged, just add a “+” or “@” in front of their name to tag them in a future post. Finding the Right Connections on LinkedIn Some people conduct a people search in LinkedIn for job titles, but this often casts too large a net for productive connections. Instead, try using the keywords you’ve identified to help you find connections through some of the subgroups and topic threads on LinkedIn. Groups and Answers : LinkedIn Groups and LinkedIn Answers both provide great opportunities to find the right connections for your business. You don’t need to start a group to get the full benefit of LinkedIn Groups; in fact, you should start out by searching for and joining groups that are relevant to your business, and then connecting with group contributors. You can use the same approach with LinkedIn Answers. Connect with people who are already talking about your core topics, and pose your own questions and connect with the respondents. The trick to making connections on LinkedIn is to avoid cold connections. Make sure you contribute to the group or comment on an Answers post before trying to connect with the individual who placed it. NEW! Connect via Skills & Expertise : In beta right now, LinkedIn has a new tool called Skills & Expertise that enables you to search for individuals and companies based on the skills and interests they list. Let’s say you want to connect with people who are interested in market research or have a background in it. You can search LinkedIn Skills & Expertise to find groups, companies, and individuals associated with that topic. Finding the Right Connections on Twitter Top Influencers: Much like Google+, it’s fairly easy to find top influencers for a given topic on Twitter. You can find them by taking a look at Twitter’s recommended lists of who to follow for the topics you’ve selected, or by searching Tweet Grader’s Twitter Elite or  Klout for top users. Again, remember to balance these “top tweeters” with more targeted tweeters who match your interests, despite their audience size. Targeted Connections: Once you get past the big influencers in your space, take a look at the lists of people who follow them. Or, search Twitter for mentions of your keywords and follow individuals who talk about those topics frequently. Sometimes connections with lower follower rates can actually be better influencers for your company, particularly if they display a meaningful connection to your company and will become enthusiastic brand advocates online.    Beware of Auto-Follows: There are a lot of third-party Twitter applications that promise to rapidly scale up your followers by auto-following. Not only does Twitter actively discourage and remove you from search results when you use these apps, but this type of automation is also not a productive practice for your company either. Don’t get mixed up with followers that use these applications. Finding the Right Connections on Facebook Making brand new connections on Facebook can be a little bit trickier because it doesn’t have the culture of business networking that LinkedIn does, nor does it have the non-reciprocal follow expectations as Twitter and Google+. S till, there are a couple of good tactics for making relevant connections to your Facebook business page. Leverage Your Existing Fans: Whether you start off with 12 fans or 200, it’s worth engaging your existing fans in the effort to grow your page’s reach. Give your fans content that is worth sharing; as each successive fan shares your content, your page’s exposure will grow. A referral from a friend can be far more effective and targeted than any other outreach you do on your own. Facebook Ads: If you’ve determined that Facebook is the right channel for your company and you have the budget to put toward paid promotion, you can use Facebook’s advertising center to zero in on the right audience and promote your page. If you’re promoting a page, target your ad to a very specific segment of viewers and ask them to Like your page right in the ad. For more on this, take a look at HubSpot’ free ebook on getting Facebook advertising right . Use the Right Incentives: Holding a sexy giveaway promotion may get you a lot of Likes, but it may not be the right types of people doing the Liking. Facebook page incentives can come in many forms; make sure you’re deploying one that reflects the interests of your core audience. For example, if your company builds custom closets, you may want to give away a tip sheet on getting organized to anyone who likes your page. HINT: HubSpot customers should check out the Facebook Welcome App , an add-on tool that helps you set up incentives like these on your page. Doing This All in a Scalable Way When you’re first getting started, growing your social media community can seem like a daunting task. The best way to tackle it is to dedicate ten minutes a day — no more, no less — to finding people online that would add value to your community and, in turn, get value from connecting with you.Set small goals. Aim to add ten new followers to your networks a day and keep them engaged by scheduling interesting posts throughout the week. HubSpot users should take a look at the new Social Media Publishing App  to streamline this even further.Finally, use analytics to keep track of how your efforts are affecting your reach, website traffic, and lead totals so you can adjust your efforts accordingly. In the end, social media outreach isn’t all that different than making connections in the real world; be friendly, persistent, and intentional. How do you choose who to follow on your company’s social media accounts? Photo by: Luc Legay Topics: Don’t forget to share this post! 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20 Clues Your Marketing Stinks, Straight From the Horse’s Mouth

first_img6) Spammy Auto-Follows: Speaking of social media automation, don’t be the company that incessantly follows and unfollows. It’s an indication of spammy behavior that will get you blacklisted from Twitter’s search results, and really annoy your followers. I’m not sure which is worse. 13) The Purchased List: It doesn’t matter how fantastic your email content is if it never lands in an inbox. To ensure you have excellent email deliverability, we developed a 5-question sniff test for you to take. Hint: if you buy your email lists, you’re not going to pass the test. 12) Nonsensical QR Codes: There’s a time and a place for everything. QR codes, for example, are excellent for connecting offline and online marketing. When someone visits your profile on Twitter, however, they are already online. If you’re going to use QR codes — or any marketing tactic, for that matter — use them where they can get the most leverage! 2) Mystery Links: Joy’s hashtag really captures it all with this indication of subpar marketing — if you’re sharing links in social media without any context, your engagement will plummet. A link does not engaging content make; put a little #effort into the content you’re sharing if you want people to follow you, RT you, and talk to you! @HubSpot “You may view the page/video you are seeking after we play you a short ad about something of which you have no interest in.”— Alex Brinsmead (@alexbrinsmead) May 14, 2012 @hubspot Huge pet peeve: signing up for a niche e-newsletter only to be bombarded by non-targeted print catalogs.. to my employer’s address— Autumn McReynolds (@AutumnMcRey) May 14, 2012 4) Twitter Customer Service Fail: Marketing and customer service should work together … or at the very least, they should get an office romance going. But when you’re implementing a social customer service program, make sure those running the accounts know the ins and outs of the social media network being used so you can actually help your customers! 18) Self-Proclaimed, Unwarranted ‘Experts’: If you’re hiring an agency or new employee to do your social media for you, beware of ninjas and gurus who claim to know these so called “secrets.” Like this tweet states, the “secrets” to social media are posting engaging content, having conversations, monitoring your accounts, and analyzing the ROI you get from each channel. 7) Gut Decision-Making: This is my own contribution. A marketer should never insist their marketing is effective or ineffective without backing it up with data! Be sure to always measure your marketing campaigns, and analyze the data so you can make improvements. @HubSpot Broadcast emails starting with “Re:”. Tricksy— John Mackenzie (@johnmac71) May 14, 2012 20) The Ungrateful Taker: Marketing is getting more and more social, which means maintaining good relationships with your network is critical. Thank those who write about you, share your content, and give you feedback. And to ensure we’re not guilty of this marketing faux pas Amber suggests, thank you all for reading, and for your submissions to this post! @HubSpot following, unfollowing, following, unfollowing— roberto rivera (@robertoerivera) May 14, 2012 @jeannehopkins Biggest pet peeve – bad mail merges!i.e. “Dear Mrs. Polmateer”.I’m a dude.Instant delete! cc:// @Hubspot— Garry Polmateer, CAE (@DarthGarry) May 14, 2012 @HubSpot 2 things: 1. Being shouted at. 2. Misleading info. Everything else can be chalked up to agency “creativity”.— Mike Beauchamp (@myz06vette) May 14, 2012 @HubSpot people who claim to know ‘secrets’ of success, such as in social media. There are no secrets, it’s just communication— Creative Huddle (@Creative_Huddle) May 14, 2012 Inbound Marketing 9) Tricksy Email Subject Lines: Your email subject line is the gatekeeper of your email. You’d think, then, that email marketers would be more conscious of the copy they choose for their subject lines. Oh right, people who use “Re:” in their subject lines aren’t email marketers. They’re spammers. Topics: @HubSpot Marketing Pet Peeve;when a link is tweeted with no description, esp. when the link is sent from an auto service!#effort— Joy(@JoyonCapeCod) May 14, 2012 @HubSpot Pet peeve: Ad agencies that set out to create a “viral” video. The term “viral” implies no control over the organic spread of video— Japheth Campbell (@yefeth) May 14, 2012 16) Customer Feedback Ignorance: If your marketing doesn’t have an end-to-end view, what we like to call closed-loop reporting, how do you know that your campaigns and messaging actually work? Use closed-loop analytics to get data on which campaigns and channels perform best, and combine that with feedback from leads and customers to improve your marketing. 19) Intrusive Tactics: I think we’re all familiar with the commercial that’s louder than the TV show, but this problem symbolizes a larger problem with marketing people view as bad — being intrusive. If you’re providing valuable content, people will invite you into their lives; you don’t have to shove your way in. 17) No Sense of Boundaries: Marketers must be respectful of a prospect’s preferred method of communication. If they sign up for an email newsletter, communicate via email, and don’t send them anything that’s NOT an email newsletter. If they follow you on Twitter, speak to them on Twitter. If you’d like to speak to them through another medium, get their permission to do so first! @HubSpot Using QR Code as Twitter profile icon. It just makes no sense.— ideavist (@ideavist) May 14, 2012 @HubSpot Pet Peeve: People who stereotype marketers as people who plan parties and send out press releases.— Lori Philo-Cook (@PhiloCook) May 14, 2012 Originally published May 16, 2012 9:00:00 AM, updated March 21 2013 14) Interruptive Advertising: There’s a place for advertising in inbound marketing, but the key to doing it successfully is relevancy. So while the age of interruptive marketing is over, it’s not interruptive if your audience finds it relevant! 3) Mucked Up Mail Merges: While we applaud attempts at email personalization, it only works if you can execute correctly. If you’re importing lists with bad lead information, you can’t expect to deliver relevant, personal email content. 15) Incomparable Comparisons: Sean is spot on to say that TV and internet advertising are two different beasts. Not only do they require different measurement mechanisms, but they work best when they are integrated. Don’t miss easy opportunities to incorporate, say, your social media marketing into an advertising spot. If there’s one thing that makes our toes tingle (other than inbound marketing, of course), it’s seeing examples of marketing done right. Great marketing makes us excited to be working in a trailblazing industry where other marketers are doing seriously innovative things to make marketing people actually like.But to get so excited about awesome marketing means there’s another end of the spectrum. A dark side where email spammers, poor segmenters, and keyword stuffers live trying to pass off their activities as marketing. Those guys give legitimate marketers a bad name, and the worst part of it is, sometimes they don’t even know what they’re doing is an indication of seriously stinky marketing. Enter this blog post.We know what in marketing annoys us, but we were curious what our audience — made up of business owners, marketers, content creators, and consumers — had to say about the matter. “What annoys you about marketing?” we tweeted, and the answers poured in, straight from the horses’ mouths (our target customers!). We sorted out the top 20 that really grind our gears, too, and have compiled them below for your reading pleasure. And while you’re reading, ask yourself whether you’re guilty of any of these warning signs of a cringeworthy marketing presence.20 Hints That Your Marketing Stinks1) The ‘Party Planner’ Stereotype: Real marketers know that marketing isn’t about planning parties and sending out press releases; they see event marketing and PR as two parts of a larger inbound marketing strategy. Without a comprehensive, integrated approach to your marketing, your business will never reach its full potential, so if you’re a marketer operating under the assumption that ‘marketing’ is just an excuse to plan parties, you’ve been sorely mislead, and your marketing results will suffer from it. Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack 10) Pushing, Not Pulling: What Mike points out in this tweet is the basis of inbound marketing. Stop shouting at people. Give them interesting content, and let them come to you. 11) Viral Goals: Virality is a product of amazing content, your reach, and how well you can optimize that video to spread organically. You know what it isn’t? Magic. @HubSpot Companies using purchased mail/email lists. #SPAM is spam whether electronic or printed. There should be an easy #OptOut for both.— Sarah J. Hough (@sjhough) May 14, 2012 @HubSpot If I “unsubscribe” do not email the very next morning! Makes my blood boil.— Jonna Robertson (@mktgoddess) May 14, 2012 @HubSpot When marketers say “this works” and “that doesn’t” based on feelings instead of data.— Corey Eridon (@Corey_bos) May 15, 2012 @HubSpot Auto DM replies. Especially ones directing me to a Facebook or product page. Like proposing on a first date.— Dan Moyle (@danmoyle) May 14, 2012 8) CAN-SPAM Non-Compliance: And while I didn’t contribute this particular tweet, it’s as if Jonna read my mind (and probably that of anyone who has been on the receiving end of email SPAM). Not only is it illegal not to include the option to unsubscribe in your emails, it’s illegal not to honor the request. If there’s one area of your marketing about which you are vigilant, please, let it be this. Your Sender Score will thank you. @hubspot Pet peeve: When companies tell you to DM them & have no clue they must follow you first. More cust serv than mkg but irksome.— Cari Sultanik (@CariSultanik) May 14, 2012 Marketing pet peeve: Not acknowledging/thanking someone who promotes you! @HubSpot— Amber Schiavi (@amsch03) May 14, 2012 @HubSpot A mega peeve: when marketing neglects to check in w prospects/current customers to validate effectiveness of programs, messaging.— Julie Rogier (@JRogier) May 15, 2012 @HubSpot when people compare TV to internet advertising.They should be used to complement not compete with each other to do the same job.— Sean Singleton (@paulpingles) May 14, 2012 5) Slimy Social Automation: Okay, I know many people who would dispute the effectiveness of the auto DM. Some say it’s impersonal, while others agree but still see increased follower rates. Whichever side you fall on, Dan is right that directing someone to a product page after following you on Twitter is akin to proposing on the first date. If you insist on using an auto DM, keep it congenial, not sales-oriented! @HubSpot another #marketing pet peeve. The noisier your TV ad is the less likely I am to watch it.— Samantha Brackley (@SamBrackley) May 14, 2012 What do you think is an indication that a brand’s marketing is no good? Share your pet peeves and warning signs in the comments!Image credit: Robert S. Donovanlast_img read more