Timing is everything, and maintaining a blog is no exception to the rule. Learning when your audience is tuning in, and therefore when to post, is mandatory for any successful blogger. In the third and final part of this series we’re going to explore how timing can affect your blog readership.
Data courtesy of Dan Zarrella (@danzarrella), searchengineland.com (@sengineland) and HubSpot. Content available as a webinar by Dan Zarrella here. Note: all of the data below is presented in Eastern Time (EST) unless otherwise noted. Seguir leyendo “The Science of Social Timing Part 3: Timing and Blogging”
One of my favorite parts of my job is interviewing a huge variety of people about their habits, needs, attitudes, and reactions to designs. I like the challenge of quickly getting strangers to talk freely and frankly about themselves, and to try figuring out new designs and products in front of me. User research shouldn’t be like the boring market surveys they read from clipboards in the mall. Great research interviews should be like listening to Terry Gross on Fresh Air — engaging and insightful. That’s what I aim for. Here are some tips and techniques that have helped me get the most out of user interviews.
1. Get into character >>> Seguir leyendo “Get better data from user studies: 16 interviewing tips”
Only 14% of senior marketers whose companies use social network marketing say they are tying their efforts to financial metrics such as market share, revenue, profits, or lifetime customer value, while only 17% of those whose companies are using mobile advertising say they are doing so,according to [download page] a survey released in March 2012 by Columbia University’s Center on Global Brand Leadership and the New York American Marketing Association (NYAMA). This compares to 41% whose companies measure the financial impact of their email marketing, and 47% whose companies do so for their traditional direct mail marketing.
This is despite adoption of new digital tools such as social network accounts (85%) and mobile ads (51%) having risen to a point where they rival the adoption rates of more established channels such as sponsorship and events (90%), print advertising (85%), direct mail (74%), and TV and radio ads (59%). Seguir leyendo “Senior Marketers Seen Lagging in ROI Analysis of New Digital Tools”
by Pamela Dominguez | http://sixrevisions.com/content-strategy/components-of-high-quality-blog-posts/
Nevertheless, we shouldn’t go around ranting uncontrollably about random stuff on the web. If we really want to share something interesting with the community of our choice, we should, at the minimum, project professionalism and trustworthiness and emphasize accuracy and quality of the writings we put on the internet.
Whether you’re maintaining a personal blog, starting up a design blog, or managing and updating your company’s official blog, the fundamental tips and strategies discussed in this article will ensure that all of your posts will be professional, high-quality, and awesome to read.
Why Should We Care About the Quality of Blog Posts? Seguir leyendo “Components of High-Quality Blog Posts”
By Kelly Goldsmith, Jing Xu and Ravi Dhar
Full article [PDF]
Every day consumers make purchase decisions by choosing among large sets of related products available for sale in the aisles of stores. What factors might systematically affect how consumers make decisions among an array of products? Our research explores one aspect of that question.
As most marketers realize, not all shoppers are created equal. Within the same store, one may be searching for a specific product to meet an immediate need, while others may simply be browsing. Just as they can have different goals when they enter a store, individual consumers may approach purchase decisions with different mindsets that can affect how they shop. In social psychology, a mindset is defined as a set of cognitive processes and judgmental criteria that, once activated, can carry over to unrelated tasks and decisions. In other words, if you get a consumer thinking a certain way, that way of thinking — that mindset — can influence his or her subsequent shopping behavior.
In particular, social psychologists have identified two distinct mindsets that are relevant to how consumers make decisions when choosing among large sets of related products: abstract and concrete. An abstract mindset encourages people to think in a more broad and general way. Consumers in an abstract mindset who face an array of related products will focus more on the shared product attributes associated with an overarching purpose — for example, the general category of hair care or car maintenance. Conversely, a concrete mindset draws attention to lower-level details and attributes associated with execution or usage; consumers in a concrete mindset will thus focus on factors that differentiate between products.
(…) Seguir leyendo “The Power of Customers’ Mindset”
Amy Corderoy | http://www.smh.com.au
Instead it found your choice of partner and life goals drastically affect your satisfaction with life – overturning the popular theory that happiness is largely decided by personality traits moulded early in life and genetic factors.
Up until now much research had seemed to show even extreme events such as becoming disabled or winning the lottery had little effect on people’s happiness, and studies of twins strongly linked happiness to genetics.
But in reality, over the course of their life about 40 per cent of people experienced large changes in their levels of happiness, said the study leader, Bruce Headey, an associate professor at the Melbourne Institute at Melbourne University.
The study, the first to track happiness over a long period, followed 60,000 Germans for up to 25 years. Seguir leyendo “Key to being happy may not be in genes but in your choices”
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The commercial use of the internet by American adults has grown since the mid-2000s, with 58% of Americans now reporting that they perform online research concerning the products and services that they are considering purchasing. That is an increase from 49% who said they conducted product or service research online in 2004.
Morever, the number of those who do research about products on any given day has jumped from 15% of adults in September 2007 to 21% in September 2010. From February 2004, the number of adults conducting research on any given day has more than doubled, up from 9%.
Additionally, 24% of American adults say they have posted comments or reviews online about the product or services they buy, indicating a willingness to share their opinions about products and the buying experience with others.“Many Americans begin their purchasing experience by doing online research to compare prices, quality, and the reviews of other shoppers,” said Jim Jansen, Senior Fellow at the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project and author of a new report about online product research. “Even if they end up making their purchase in a store, they start their fact-finding and decision-making on the internet.” Seguir leyendo “Online Product Research”
Men, according to conventional wisdom, are stubbornly unwilling to apologize. Countless pop psychology books have referenced this reluctance, explaining that our egos are too fragile to admit we’re wrong, or we’re oblivious to important nuances of social interaction.
Sorry to disrupt that lovely feeling of superiority, ladies, but newly published research suggests such smug explanations miss the mark. Writing in the journal Psychological Science, University of Waterloo psychologists Karina Schumann and Michael Ross report that men are, indeed, less likely to say “I’m sorry.” But they’re also less likely to take offense and expect an apology from someone else.
Their conclusion is that “men apologize less frequently than women because they have a higher threshold for what constitutes offensive behavior.” Whether on the giving or receiving end, males are less likely to feel an unpleasant incident is serious enough to warrant a statement of remorse. Seguir leyendo “Real Men Do Apologize”
By Brad Wittwer
Research repeatedly finds a correlation between happiness and more gregarious individuals, but it hadn’t determined what element of sociability — bubbling over with shallow, inconsequential conversation or exchanging content of personal significance — leads to contentment.
New research suggests that less small talk and more substantive conversation causes increased happiness. (Middle school girls around the globe, take note.) What is just as important as pure, outright outgoingness is the nature and content of social interactions, whether trivial or substantive
Matthias Mehl, Shannon Holleran and Shelby Clark of the University of Arizona and Simine Vazire of the Washington University in St. Louis evaluated well-being related to the superficiality of conversation, although they acknowledged from the start how difficult it might be to measure these squishy concepts. As they point out in their paper, “Eavesdropping on Happiness: Well-being Is Related to Having Less Small Talk and More Substantive Conversations,” that appeared in Psychological Science, “Although the macrolevel and long-term implications of happiness have been studied extensively, little is known about the daily social behavior of happy people, primarily because of the difficulty of objectively measuring everyday behavior.”
To address this hole in psychological research and the subjective methodological concerns, the team attached unobtrusive audio recorders to 79 participants that periodically turn on (30 seconds of recorded sound every 12.5 minutes) for four days. Looking at 300 30-second samples for each participant, the researchers first noted whether the person was alone or talking and then categorized each recording according to levels of small talk versus substantive conversation, with conversations of substance being defined as involved conversations consisting of meaningful or personally profound material. Seguir leyendo “Conversational Well-Being: Quality Over Quantity”
New research finds we trust experts who agree with our own opinions, suggesting that subjective feelings override scientific information.
A clear consensus of opinion emerges within the scientific community on an important issue, such as climate change. But the public, and its elected leaders, remains unconvinced and unreceptive to well-founded warnings.
With this phenomenon growing frustratingly familiar, researchers can be forgiven if they begin to feel like Rodney Dangerfields in lab coats. From their perspective, they don’t get no respect.
Newly published research suggests that’s not entirely true: Americans do believe and trust researchers. But we focus our attention on those experts whose ideas conform with our preconceived notions. The others tend to get discounted or ignored.
“Scientific opinion fails to quiet societal disputes on such issues (as climate change) not because members of the public are unwilling to defer to experts, but because culturally diverse persons tend to form opposing perceptions of what experts believe,” a team of scholars writes in the Journal of Risk Research. “Individuals systematically overestimate the degree of scientific support for positions they are culturally predisposed to accept.” Seguir leyendo “Four out of Five Experts Agree — With Me!”
I’ve been playing tennis for nearly five decades. I love the game and I hit the ball well, but I’m far from the player I wish I were.
I’ve been thinking about this a lot the past couple of weeks, because I’ve taken the opportunity, for the first time in many years, to play tennis nearly every day. My game has gotten progressively stronger. I’ve had a number of rapturous moments during which I’ve played like the player I long to be.
And almost certainly could be, even though I’m 58 years old. Until recently, I never believed that was possible. For most of my adult life, I’ve accepted the incredibly durable myth that some people are born with special talents and gifts, and that the potential to truly excel in any given pursuit is largely determined by our genetic inheritance.
During the past year, I’ve read no fewer than five books — and a raft of scientific research — which powerfully challenge that assumption (see below for a list). I’ve also written one, The Way We’re Working Isn’t Working, which lays out a guide, grounded in the science of high performance, to systematically building your capacity physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. Seguir leyendo “Six Keys to Being Excellent at Anything”
Far from mere reactions to jokes, hoots and hollers are serious business:
They’re innate — and important — social tools.
Whether overheard in a crowded restaurant, punctuating the enthusiastic chatter of friends, or as the noisy guffaws on a TV laugh track, laughter is a fundamental part of everyday life. It is so common that we forget how strange — and important — it is. Indeed, laughter is a “speaking in tongues” in which we’re moved not by religious fervor but by an unconscious response to social and linguistic cues. Stripped of its variation and nuance, laughter is a regular series of short vowel-like syllables usually transcribed as “ha-ha,” “ho-ho” or “hee-hee.” These syllables are part of the universal human vocabulary, produced and recognized by people of all cultures.
Given the universality of the sound, our ignorance about the purpose and meaning of laughter is remarkable. We somehow laugh at just the right times, without consciously knowing why we do it. Most people think of laughter as a simple response to comedy, or a cathartic mood-lifter. Instead, after 10 years of research on this little-studied topic, I concluded that laughter is primarily a social vocalization that binds people together. It is a hidden language that we all speak. It is not a learned group reaction but an instinctive behavior programmed by our genes. Laughter bonds us through humor and play.
By Michael S. Hopkins, Steve LaValle and Fred Balboni
How do you win with data? SMR surveyed global executives about turning the data deluge and analytics into competitive advantage. Here’s an early snapshot of how managers are answering the most important question organizations face.
Last May, at the MIT Sloan CIO Symposium main-stage discussion on “Emerging Stronger from the Downturn,” one panelist listened with a growing private smile as his fellow speakers described example after example of how technology-driven information and analytics applications were transforming their companies. The stories were of data and analysis being used to understand customers, parse trends, distribute decision making, manage risk; they foretold of organizations being reinvented and management practice being rethought. They told of change, basically. A lot of it. Driven by ever-emerging technology and the new things it could do.
That was the point at which the panelist, a multinational industrial COO, turned to the audience and unofficially summarized, “So, the lesson: If you don’t like change, you’re going to like irrelevance even less.”
He’s right. Change is here. Failure to adapt means irrelevance. Time and progress march on, but at a Moore’s law pace instead of a clock’s. Seguir leyendo “10 Insights: A First Look at The New Intelligent Enterprise Survey”
Thought leadership programs serve one master in most professional services and other B2B firms: Marketing. Marketing generates content (commissioning studies, writing white papers, and so on). Marketing packages and distributes that content (producing academic-looking publications, seminars and webinars, educational PR campaigns, email newsletters, etc.). Marketing then turns over the resulting client inquiries to account executives. Thought leadership is a Marketing activity.
But that robs thought leadership programs of their greater potential value – as sources of service innovation, not just marketing content. When companies use thought leadership to fuel new services or rejuvenate existing ones, they not only codify expertise on how to solve some business problem; they turn it into capability that many (not just a handful) of their professionals can use with clients. They do this by taking a powerful concept described in a white paper or research study and turn it into a rigorous methodology. They then develop effective curriculum around that methodology and put their professionals through training programs so they can master it.
When that happens, thought leadership content fuels new services or new approaches to existing services – not just creates client interest in them through marketing. We have seen a number of professional firms that created strong client interest in a concept after conducting and marketing some innovative research – only to find that just a few people in their firm could actually deliver the service implied by their compelling concept. (It’s a page from the “Let’s Throw Something Against the Wall and See What Sticks” book on marketing and service development. The idea is not to develop a robust service until a firm has numerous clients who are willing to pay for it.)
When you think about what would happen to other industries that followed this practice, you begin to see that it’s insane. Imagine a pharmaceutical company that conducted drug research for marketing purposes only, telling the market it’s come up with a breakthrough compound but deciding not to manufacture it. That’s just about the state of thought leadership programs in most of the B2B firms we know. What they publish is often not something that most of their professionals practice.
I’m not sure why this is the case. But I know it is the case. Perhaps it’s because service innovation in professional services is in its infancy. Few firms have created formal and highly productive processes for developing superior services. In most professional firms I know, services are hand-crafted by individual artisans – practicing consultants, lawyers or accountants who often in their spare time document some approach to solving a recurring client problem.
Seguir leyendo “Thought Leadership Success Factor No. 5: Fueling Service Innovation, Not Just Marketing”