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Five Killer Productivity Tools For Professionals On-The-Go

Thanks to evolving technologies and practical apps that fulfill many traditional responsibilities, professionals can pick and choose tools that greatly increase mobility without diminishing output. Five Minute Journal Journaling optimizes creative potential and generates clarity. Similar to meditation, gratitude journaling has been scientifically proven to motivate and help overcome daily challenges. With the Five-Minute Journal, you’ll begin your morning by listing three things you’re grateful for, three ways you can make the day great and three affirmations. Evernote Evernote, one of the most popular organization apps, organizes daily tasks and projects in one place so our brains have more room for the big picture. On the app, you can take notes, create project-based to-do lists, create reminders and save interesting tidbits you find online to the app itself. As an international company, we find ourselves using it daily to create and collab from a distance. Thanks to the growth of mobile devices and applications, it is possible to work on the go and remain productive. Once you’ve decided which tasks and aspects of your workflow are most important to streamline on the go, take advantage of apps like the ones listed above to communicate effortlessly, schedule less frantic days or simply take a moment to center your thoughts. Do you have any other tools that improve your productivity on the go?

Need a New Year’s resolution? Ask your sales team

Ah, the new year… there’s nothing like having a fresh start to inspire ambitious marketing plans, promises to run big campaigns and intentions of testing some of the fancy new technologies all the cool kids are using these days. But when I reflected on the challenges our team faced in 2017, the major missteps really weren’t marketing-related. In fact, I think our shortcoming was being too focused on our marketing programs and not stopping to get input from our second-most important “customer” — the sales team. Now, this isn’t a kumbaya session on “sales-marketing alignment” or a lecture on “breaking silos.” It’s a reality check for those of us marketers who have never asked sales what they could do better. Opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Marketing Land. Attend the largest search marketing conference on the West Coast: SMX West! You'll get useful, proven tactics in SEO, SEM, conversion optimization, social media, mobile and more. Register now! About The Author Joe Hyland is the CMO of the leading webinar platform company, ON24, where he is responsible for the company’s global marketing, communication and brand strategy. He has over a decade of experience creating and marketing innovative products in the enterprise and SaaS software markets.

Urban Institute calls out shortfalls in federal housing assistance

The Urban Institute recently published a new report saying federal housing assistance programs aim to ensure recipients have decent, safe and affordable housing, however it claims new policy changes have left these programs falling short of their goals. In the report, the Urban Institute suggests a need for a serious review of affordable housing policy with a focus on developing a stronger evidence base before attempting large-scale changes to federal housing assistance programs. The company created the chart below to demonstrate that as housing stability decreases, the need for other public benefits and systems increases. Click to Enlarge (Source: Joint Centers for Housing Studies of Harvard University, U.S. Census Bureau, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Urban Institute) But the Urban Institute claims that despite the strong need, there are still “shortfalls” in federal housing assistance. “Despite this array of options, housing assistance programs do not come close to meeting the actual need. The chart below shows that currently, only about 20% of those who need federal assistance receive it. Click to Enlarge What’s more, many of those on waiting lists for voucher programs will need to wait more than a year, and more than half of those needing voucher will be put on a waiting list. Click to Enlarge “In a time when only one in five eligible renter households actually receive federal assistance, any reduction to federal funding for public housing or vouchers threatens the well-being of millions of low-income households,” the report said. “The administration’s proposed budget cuts and many of the other proposed reforms to housing assistance—minimum rents, rent increases, time limits, work requirements, and others—are not new, but the evidence on how these changes have or will affect the availability of housing assistance and the livelihoods of those eligible for it remains scattered and thin.” “And there is little discussion of the fact that most of these proposals assume that recipients are able-bodied adults capable of work; increasingly, however, most are elderly and disabled,” the report continued. “What we do know is that housing assistance plays a critical role in stabilizing low-income households and promoting positive health and educational outcomes.”

Boost Your Facebook Post Engagement Using These 10 Tricks

The biggest question for a Facebook marketer is this: how do you get people engaged with your post? Thanks to an advertising method that Facebook calls Page Post Engagement adverts, you can keep up with all your followers and reach new ones at the same time. Ask Your Questions So you want to know more about your target audience? Enhance the Visual Appeal of Your Page A single relevant image can boost the engagement on your page more than a brilliant textual status update. B2C marketers place even greater importance on visual marketing when compared to B2B marketers. What are they doing differently to engage the Facebook audience? Ad links to important Facebook status updates in the updates you post on other social media. If you’re not getting them engaged enough, improve the quality before you start working on the quantity of posts. Try posting at a different time every day to see when you can get people engaged. But with a robust strategy and thoughtful audience analysis, it's possible to master your Facebook presence and keep the audience engaged.

Frito-Lay CMO says marketers need a listen-first mentality to be successful

She worked her way through the ranks, and in March of 2016, she was named CMO. It oversees all of our advertising and media across all of our businesses,” says Saenz. “Our innovation pipeline, consumer insights and category management. And then an in-house creative agency and programmatic media desk — so it’s pretty much soup-to-nuts marketing.” Saenz says her career trajectory within the company from intern to CMO was an exciting arc, and, because of it, she is able to tell her team that it often feels as though she has held every single role within the brand’s marketing organization. “What has been very interesting is how the media landscape and marketing approach has evolved over time,” says Saenz. “I think today we’re really a much more diverse group of individuals and a much more diverse group of experiences because of that massive change in the marketplace.” It’s a very large evolution in terms of the focus, as well as the skill set that the team needs to think about and that our agency teams need to develop.” [Read the full article on MarTech Today.] Attend the largest search marketing conference on the West Coast: SMX West! You'll get useful, proven tactics in SEO, SEM, conversion optimization, social media, mobile and more. Register now! Read more of Amy's articles.

5 Reasons Personal Branding is Non-Negotiable for 2018

In fact, when it comes to being a truly innovative entrepreneur or industry professional, having a personalized online footprint is essential to your business strategy. Kredible found that 52 percent of vendors it surveyed said they'd lost business because of information customers found, or didn’t find, online, about them. That’s because there is a good deal that professionals can glean from your visual brand online. As Claire Bahn, CEO of Online Profile Pros, a profile photo provider, shared with me about my own personal brand, “Experts estimate it takes less than one-tenth of a second for someone to make an impression of you from your photo. So much of the online world is outside of our control; so it’s important to flood the web with as much positive content as possible. That’s why having an active personal branding strategy is a crucial part of controlling your image online. The more content you put online, the more that effort will help your good content rise above any negative content that may be out there. Make yours a profile-centric world. As Bahn put it, “People used to have one or two online profiles, but these days the average is closer to nine, if you include dating profiles.There’s just a lot more for people to research about you these days.” With so many social profiles, it’s important to carefully select and manage which ones people will see. As such, every platform has been bombarded by "influencers" trying to subtly market products without making those efforts look like ads.

Value of U.S. housing market climbs to record $31.8 trillion

The total value of all homes in the U.S. increased in 2017 to a total $31.8 trillion, according to the latest report from Zillow. This is up from last year’s record high of $29.6 trillion, data from 2016 shows. This is so high, that total homes in Los Angeles and New York City metro areas are worth $2.7 trillion and $2.6 trillion, respectively, the size of the U.K. and French economies. This is an increase of $1.95 trillion over the past year, more than all of Canada’s GDP or two companies the size of Apple, Zillow’s report showed. And renters are also now spending more money than ever before on housing, spending a record $485.6 billion in 2017. This is an increase of $4.9 billion from 2016. Renting in San Francisco is especially expensive as renters collectively paid $616 million more than renters in Chicago, despite having 467,000 fewer renters in San Francisco. Of the 35 largest U.S. markets, most home value growth occurred in Columbus, Ohio, which saw an increase of 15.1% to $152.3 billion in 2017. But home prices continue to increase, fueling the housing market’s value growth. Home prices recently increased in October, and experts are beginning to fear 2018 could lock many potential buyers out of the housing market, forcing them to rent, according to the latest report released by S&P Dow Jones Indices and CoreLogic.

3 Ways to Get the Most Out of Every Listing

You know the value of searching for new leads, but effective methods can feel as elusive as truffle-hunting secrets. Don’t leverage the listing – exploit it! Let them know that every person who walked through is a potential buyer for their home. For example: “I have a great family with two school-aged children who would love to get into Maxey Elementary…” “A client of mine is looking to move into this subdivision so he can move his family closer to their in-laws.” “Longtime clients of mine are now empty nesters. We are just looking for the right house to come on the market.” Build your pipeline. There are two important numbers you need to know here: 12% of homeowners will move within the next year. That means, statistically, more than 1 out of every 10 homeowners you talk to will be moving in the next 12 months—some of them don’t even know it yet. If you connect with sellers before anyone else, you have the market cornered on that lead. When it comes down to it, the impression that you make when you call into neighborhoods is that you’re someone who will do whatever it takes to sell their house and get them the best price. That beats aimlessly walking a pig through the forest looking for a million-dollar truffle.

8 tips for getting social media ads right

A friend recently complained to me that the targeted ads that persistently stud her social media feeds are not only disruptive but also frequently irrelevant. Surprisingly, though almost two-thirds of social media users are irritated by the number of promotions that clutter their feeds, and 26 percent actively ignore marketing content, a whopping 62 percent follow at least one brand on social media. According to the GlobalWebIndex, 42 percent of social media users are there to “stay in touch” with their friends, while over a third are also interested in following current events, finding entertaining content or killing time. Though 27 percent of users find or research products on social media, most usage is skewed toward building relationships. While this data helps us understand why users may find ads abrasive, it also gives us a glimpse into why they are so open to following brands on social media. The good news for brands is that when they respond well, 45 percent of users will post about the interaction, and over a third will share the experience with their friends. Brands should note that 60 percent of callouts are in response to perceived dishonesty, which should lend some context to the fact that 30 percent will unfollow a brand that uses slang or jargon inconsistent with the brand’s image. Brands that share news of upcoming trends or offer content that stands on its own merit can add value to users’ social media experience while reaching out to a more receptive audience. Social media users, especially those in the 13-to-24 age bracket, will actively share and discuss content they find engaging. How connections respond to a user’s posts or shares can be more important than how much the user shares.

Bring Your Brand to Life With Always-Present Customer Engagement

The on-demand nature of conversation marketing via messaging requires that marketers be available and helpful, whenever and wherever their customers engage. Given its global reach, brands and marketers are wise to begin shifting their attention and resources to Facebook Messenger and other messaging platforms. Messenger empowers marketers to engage consumers directly through all phases of the customer lifecycle, creating meaningful relationships that lead to increased conversions, brand loyalty and lifetime value. Brands not prepared for this shift in thinking will miss out on the opportunity to get ahead of the competition. Deeper, relationship-building conversations that scale Enabled by messaging applications, intimate, convenient and emotionally connected conversations have the power to drive deeper, more meaningful relationships between brands and their customers throughout the entire customer lifecycle. It’s important for marketers to expand beyond the traditional digital marketing mindset and practices of one-to-many communication. Forrester predicts that messaging apps, further enhanced by artificial intelligence, will bring about new conversation interfaces that compete with single point devices like Alexa or Siri to enable even deeper, emotionally connected relationships between brand and consumers. One-to-one communication with consumers represents the new competitive landscape. Social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter have opened the door for conversation marketing to take root, with messaging apps acting as the catalyst for new and dynamic growth of customer relationships. To be sure, the near-term goal is not to replace one-to-many platforms like social media, but rather to build on their effectiveness to more deeply engage consumers in a way that is convenient, helpful and emotionally imbued.


Why Buyers Won’t Buy Your Home

There's no list of reasons — no top ten or even top three reasons — why buyers won't buy a specific listed property like your home. When buyers won't buy listed real estate, or even put in an offer close to asking price, there's just one reason why — it's the list price! List price must communicate value and opportunity to buyers for whom the listed real estate represents what they want and need. When list price does not accurately communicate value and opportunity — usually because it is unrealistically high for the current real estate market, location, ownership benefits, and property condition — buyers not only won't make an offer, they may not even want to view the property. The list which is vital for sellers to consider is the list of reasons why listing price can be a barrier to the successful sale of their real estate. Listing "Home" Not Real Estate: Sellers may start out intent on selling their home. List price should reflect value from buyers' perspectives — that's the real estate market value and the value evident after comparing competing listings — and seller's investment value based on the current market. Selling: Only Half The Winning Real Estate Strategy Sellers who expect their real estate win to come exclusively from the sale of their real estate, miss the point of real estate as an investment. Real estate professionals are trained to understand the economic and financial complexities of establishing market value and list price for the real estate held by their clients. Ideally, list price is established by the seller based on information, selling strategy, and market data provided by the listing professional and on seller goals.