The people of Buncrana are getting competitive this Christmas!Locals have launched a campaign to fundraise for lights to brighten up the town.And their goal is to have the greatest town display in Ireland by next year. A GoFundMe page was set up by Buncrana native Fiachra O’Flaherty and his group of organisers who want to keep it as sweet and as easy as possible for people to help them out.The target has been set at €2,000 and they are almost a quarter of the way there thanks to kind donations.“Our goal is to have one of the best Christmas lights displays in Ireland by 2020 and we are close to reaching that goal,” said Fiachra.“Every penny counts.” Click here to visit the fundraising page: https://www.gofundme.com/f/buncrana-christmas-lightsBuncrana residents crowdfund to have Ireland’s best Christmas lights was last modified: November 15th, 2019 by Rachel McLaughlinShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)
Theo Konqo (striped shirt) and Liyanda Kabani (white cap), learners from Zisukanya, in the sensory garden. (Images: Botanical Society of South Africa) Smell and touch will be the main senses the blind students at Zisukanya Early Childhood Development Centre in Cape Town will use to enjoy their new sensory garden.The Botanical Society of South Africa has launched the sensory garden at the Athlone School for the Blind for the young pupils from Zisukanya. It is a collaboration between MySchool, the Rotary Club of Kirstenbosch and the Redhatters Bridge Club, and will be a place where the children can engage with nature through touch and smell instead of sight.The MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet fundraising programme is one of South Africa’s biggest community support programmes. It raises essential funds for schools, charities and environmental organisations through a system that encourages cardholders to swipe their cards at retail partners. In turn, these donate a percentage of the purchase value to the beneficiary of the buyer’s choice.According to the Botanical Society, the sensory garden will promote educational opportunities and exposure to biodiversity not only for the Zisukanya pupils but for the children at Athlone School for the Blind and their families, as well as for staff.“It is the first step in what the Botanical Society hopes will become a multi-functional garden – a place where the children can play freely, enjoy the tranquillity of nature and have picnics with their friends, family and school staff.”AN ON-GOING EFFECTZaitoon Rabaney, the executive director of the Botanical Society, believes this initiative will have an ongoing effect.“As the garden grows and develops the school aims to involve the learners in maintaining the garden at each stage,” Rabaney said, “such as supplying the kids with watering cans and spades to maintain it, creating a sense of awareness and responsibility, so it becomes a space that they don’t just visit, but nurture and develop.”Zoë Mjoli (striped cap) and Likuwe Mgweba from Zisukanya experiencing some of the plants in the garden.This project speaks to one of the 16 targets set out in South Africa’s Strategy for Plant Conservation, according to the Botanical Society. The strategy emphasizes the importance of plant diversity and the need for conservation incorporated into communication, education and public awareness programmes.“It has been great to support this project and play a part in creating a space for special needs learners,” said Pieter Twine, MySchool’s general manager. “The garden allows for students to express their sensory and learning capabilities with a hands-on approach, while also promoting the education of healthy eating and an environmental awareness.“In addition to donating funds towards the garden, MySchool donated two benches made out of recycled material to be placed in the garden for teachers and learners to enjoy outdoor lessons and during break.”PLAY YOUR PARTAre you playing your part in transforming South Africa? If so, submit your story or video and let us know what you are doing to improve the country for all.
Nal’ibali Storytime has been published in four more official languages in a drive to promote the joy of reading and a love of books among South African childrenDriving into Franschhoek is always a very special trip. The mountains loom over the little town protectively, concealing its beauty secretively. But once you are on the main road through the long, wide valley, it opens up and spreads its treasures before you, willing you to come closer, sample its delights.And a trip to the French Corner just before the book opens on the main Franschhoek Literary Festival, is even more special, for this is the Book Week for Young Readers. The days are set aside for promoting reading and a love of books among children and teens. It is a vibrant time of hope and inspiration, and the perfect time to launch the Nal’ibali Storytime book in four new languages.The reader is published in a partnership between the Sunday Times and Praesa, the Project for the Study of Alternative Education in South Africa. This year, through a donation of funds from readers and the Little Hands Trust, Times Media, the publisher of Sunday Times, has translated Nal’ibali Storytime from English into Afrikaans, Sesotho, isiXhosa and isiZulu. This is in line with Nal’ibali’s support and promotion of reading development in English as well as African languages, say the publishers.The launch took place at Wes Eind Primary School, amid earthmovers and mud as the school undergoes a significant transformation. The media centre is brand-new and sparkling, with shelves still waiting to be filled. It is a sunny room, with a view across the school and to the mountains beyond. Read and the world out there is yours for the conquering, it seems to say.Grade 7 pupils filed in quietly to listen to a reading of the story Mnr Haas ontmoet Mnr Mandela (Mr Rabbit meets Mr Mandela), by Chris van Wyk. “Reading is a place you can go on your own for solace, to follow your dreams, to learn about the world,” said Patti McDonald, a consultant to Times Media Education and the driving force behind Nal’ibali, in welcoming the children.She quoted Nelson Mandela, saying: “It is important to read in your mother tongue. Reading in another tongue speaks to your head; reading in your mother tongue speaks to your heart.“We are thrilled that we have been able to bring the magic of Nal’ibali to reach even more children. We hope that giving them the opportunity to read in their mother tongue language will develop and grow their love for reading.”The books target the foundation and intermediate phases of school, and promote the idea of reading for enjoyment. Each Sunday, an excerpt is published in the Sunday Times for children and schools, libraries and others to collect. Together, they make up stories, written and illustrated by South Africans, for South African children. The storybook is the extension of this weekly publication.The launch took place at Wes Eind Primary School, amid earthmovers and mud as the school undergoes a significant transformation (Images: Lorraine Kearney)Quintus van der Merwe, from Vriende van Afrikaans, delighted the children with an anecdote of meeting Mandela himself, before getting down to reading the story. The room was rapt as he told of the travels of Mr Rabbit into the big city. Coming to the end, there was laughter and clapping, and Van der Merwe’s colleague, Ria Olivier, said: “I watched you enjoying the story, and seeing how important it is to be able to read.“Mr Rabbit was not so clever because he could not read. You must learn to read, and practise reading. Eventually you will be able to get a good job. Lees is lekker; lees kan ons ryk maak (reading is lovely; reading can make us rich),” she said.McDonald encouraged the children to become active citizens: “The more you read, the more active a citizen you can be.” Van der Merwe also had some advice, telling the children they should read the stories to their younger siblings and old grandparents.Storytime was introduced for the first time in English in 2013. The popular children’s book, aimed at children in primary school, consists of compelling short stories written by leading South African authors and comes complete with colour illustrations, say the publishers. It has also been changed from a single edition into two separate books: one for Foundation Phase, and one for Intermediate Phase readers. CTP printers have printed 18 000 copies for free.Staff and children at the school also received copies of the recently launch Nal’ibali Children’s Literacy Charter. The multilingual charter lists the different kinds of literacy experiences children should have to best enable them to learn to read and write, and is a guide for parents and educators to putting these conditions in place.Further copies of Storytime will be donated to Nal’ibali’s network of more than 100 reading clubs in the Western and Eastern Cape, Gauteng, the Free State, Limpopo and KwaZulu-Natal.
Related Posts Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Update:Just after we posted this, Fletcher says he’s lifted the password from the site and it’s live! SnapGroups makes it really easy to create a group discussion around a particular topic, invite people, set variable privacy controls and then participate in that conversation as part of a whole “newsfeed” style stream of updates from all your various groups in one place. Fresh comments, likes and dislikes get pushed to your browser live using a home-made bit of AJAX and the whole thing couldn’t be much simpler. It’s a lot of fun to use, in fact.Fletcher says this is only the beginning, that all kinds of features are still to come, but he’s focused on the basics for now. He started working on the site in October and says his favorite part of the project was “learning about the new technologies that have sprung up in the past couple years.” “The various databases that have come out recently are great,” he told us. “I’m using Mongo, but there are many interesting projects now.” The core of the site is written in C++.Fletcher says SnapGroups will go live tomorrow morning. You should try it out when it does. Invites to groups will no doubt be flying around Twitter and Facebook. It may very well become something you want to use regularly. Hopefully there will be a way to export your conversations easily. Fletcher is a pretty straightforward guy and will probably implement just about anything that enough people ask for and that isn’t too hard to do.Mark Fletcher has a habit of building relatively simple things, like the first major email list system and the first popular RSS reader, that end up being a defining player in the rise of a new era online. Simple, real-time group communication? Not at all hard to imagine that being a big new thing as well. 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Mark Fletcher builds software, that’s just what he does. He may have sold the system that became Yahoo Groups for $400 million, and then made millions selling Bloglines to Ask.com as well, but that doesn’t mean he’s going to stop making software. And it’s not just any software he makes, either. Those two projects changed millions of peoples’ lives.Tomorrow morning Fletcher will unveil his newest creation, a lightweight group communication tool called SnapGroups. We first wrote about it two weeks ago but hadn’t been able to take a look until tonight. We’re happy to report that you’re probably going to like it a lot: it’s easy, it’s clear, it’s got good social design and it’s real time. Check out the screenshots below. Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Tags:#Groupware#Product Reviews#web marshall kirkpatrick A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai…
Distracting Use Of Branding In Feed: I wrote about one example of this in anearlier article titled “ It almost seems like an after-thought. ”. Originally published Feb 8, 2007 6:46:00 PM, updated October 18 2015 I found a similar problemwith Red Herring’s website recently. the RSS feed icon (which by the way, they do support), I have to scroll to the very bottom of the page where there’s a tiny button and link. Although this is cool, it’s non-standard and is decidedly visitor to thewebsite that is an RSS and user and wants to subscribe is going to be morebeneficial than the average “random” visitor that wanders by and then leaves. The next best thing to an auto-discoverable feed is prominent placement of the standard RSS icon somewhere on the page where I can see it (and click on it). Here’s the deal: This indicates to methat the site has an RSS feed, and I’m a click away from subscribing. I compare this to the print world aswell. Very simple and my eye naturally goes to thaticon when I visit a page I like. As such, you would think that online mediaproperties like RedHerring.com would take some basic actions to make it morelikely that people will subscribe to their RSS feed. Belowis an snapshot of my Google toolbar when I visit SmallBusinessHub.com. You’ll see the RSS icon (the orange one) andthe word Subscribe. Ok, so once you click on the orange RSS icon, things should start getting better. It’s distracting to the eye and creates no value. Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack For example, I use FireFox and the Google Toolbar within Firefox has an RSS icon that changes to orange when I’m on a page that supports RSS. As such, I’d expect that a higher than averagenumber of Red Herring’s online readers use RSS. Here’s a snapshot of what this looks like(you’ll notice that the icon and the word Subscribe are gray). They’re using some service called (ironically) “SimpleFeed”. Always surprises me how even major online properties can make such simple mistakes. Have you come across any other examples of print publications having a hard time really making the transition to the web? What about your website? Are you making some silly mistakes? You can find some of them easily by trying our free (while it’s in beta) Website Gradertool. It catches some of the basics and gives your website a grade. Try it out and let us know what you think in the comments. Hidden visual RSS feed: If so, you’d think wrong. simple. Pretty cool. Newer browsers (like IE7) will actually detect this and give you an easy way to subscribe from within that page. Below is a screenshot of what the Red Herring feed looks like in my feed reader (OnFolio). Ifyou go to RedHerring.com you’ll discover that there is no RSS feed to discover. If you’re a regular RSS reader, you know what I mean. In fact, to actually Having a subscriber to a magazineis much more valuable (and monetizable) than people that are just reading amagazine at the doctor’s office or something. not No auto-discoverable feed: Even if this weren’t the case, one could makethe argument that To Subscribe: When I do this on 99% of the other websites I visit, what comes up is the content of the site in “feed format”. any Red Herring doesn’t do this in the standard way either. Still I shouldn’t be surprised, but I am, because it’sjust not that hard to get some of the basics right. One of the reasons people like RSS so much is that it makes content easy to scan by making everything look “standard”. So, my basic point is thatRSS subscribers are worth more than random website visitors (no matter whetheryou’re RedHerring or Sports Illustrated. So, if you go through all of this effort (which I did), and finally succeed in subscribing to the feed, what you end up getting is something that is very, very irritating. For many RSS users, we use tools and widgets that automatically “detect” when a given website has an RSS feed. I shouldn’t be thatsurprised when traditional media companies have a tough time transitioning tothe web and understanding the online world. LessonsFrom A Laggard: FastCompany.com Shows How Not To Do Online Content This service basically gives me a set of checkboxes so I can pick which areas of interest I have with the purpose of creating a “custom” feed. Asa hi-tech oriented magazine, I’d expect that Red Herring’s readers are likely abit more tech savvy than the average web surfer. find Here again, Red Herring fails to make it easy for me. No Simple Way How RedHerring Irritates RSS Users Each item in the feed shows a large RedHerring logo (and very little content).
Dude, Cold Calling Is for Losers The Power of Interruption Marketing HubSpot Films archive Enjoy, and Happy Thanksgiving! Topics: Junk Mail Doesn’t Work Stupid Office Pranks: Sales vs. Marketing After several all-nighters reviewing the vast I’ve settled on HubSpot’s four best viral vidoes and posted them below. Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Originally published Nov 27, 2008 9:15:00 AM, updated March 21 2013 Since it’s Thanksgiving Day and you’re probably not interested in reading about marketing, I pulled together something a little easier to digest.
Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Learn how to use social media for lead generation.Download the free video to leverage Twitter, Facebook and other social media sites to generate leads and customers. Social Media When you think about it, sharing on social media is a lot like bees carrying pollen. People who come across remarkable content spread it across the web, resulting in fertile discussion and the birth of new ideas — just like pollen gives birth to new fruit. But while this amazing phenomenon transpires in social media, businesses often fail to harvest the fruits of their labor. They fail to move their website visitors down their sales and marketing funnels by converting them to leads and sales. Of course, social media is first and foremost about people and dialog. But if it is being used as a business tool, you should get some business results from it! Here are some social media tips that you can apply at the top of the funnel that will help you move people lower down the funnel.1) Be relevant to your businessWe talk about being relevant in social media, especially when it comes to Twitter. However, if the content you’re sharing and the dialogs you’re having are not relevant to your business, where is the value to your bottom line? Share content that is fun but also share information that will attract relevant business visitors to your site. They are out there! 2) Be greedy for traffic Very simply, create your own content. While it is cool to share and retweet the content of thought leaders (I’m guilty); do your business a favor and write your opinions down as a blog post every once and while and share your response! You will build your brand and thought leadership and drive traffic to your own site! 3) Use calls-to-action to facilitate conversion I cannot stress this enough! You’ve done all the hard work for months building up followers, fans and friends. You’ve spent countless hours writing some remarkable content, engaging with them online and bringing them back to your site. How are you converting the relevant visitors to leads? A simple call-to-action at the bottom of your blog posts or on your website pages can help get you those leads your business needs! 4) Make it easy to share your contentPiggy backing on the previous point. Why not make it easy for your visitors to spread that around? A simple button like the one below can help gain you new followers and attract new potential customers. Lead Generation Originally published Sep 16, 2009 9:00:00 AM, updated March 21 2013 Topics: 5) Build the right bridgesWhen starting out in social media and networks it is common to follow friends, family and co-workers. More than a few people I know are obsessive about having a ton of followers. However, it is important to cultivate the right kind of follower and friends base. Quality is important. Once you reach a certain critical mass quantity might become a factor, but in the short term the right people is more important than lots of people. To sum it up for all you hard working bees, it’s great to fill the top of your funnel using social media, but if you’re in it for business reasons, make sure your pollination results in some fruit that can be harvested!How have you been using social media to help with generating leads for your business? Please share your thoughts in the comments section! Photo credit: Antonio Machado Video: How to Use Social Media for Lead Generation
When the World Wrestling Federation (WWE) noticed Ted DiBiase’s talent, the ” So how was the Million Dollar Man recognized by the public eye? After all, there are countless wrestlers in the industry. With competition to beat, something had to make him stand out. The idea for DiBiase’s differentiation from other wrestlers spawned from the idea that a rich guy can’t flaunt his wealth and be arrogant about it. Deemed an original idea that had never-been-done, an alias was created and personalized for DiBiase. In a nutshell, DiBiase was able to establish himself in a crowded industry, teaching marketers a thing or two about differentiation. Here are a few marketing takeaways from the Million Dollar Man’s success: The Rise to the Top interview with David Garland (above). If you’re the only one doing what you’re doing, there is no motivation to stay on your toes or worry about marketing. Inbound Marketing Although he was not yet a millionaire, the goal was to make the public believe he really was rich. He was always to be seen in public under elite circumstances: getting in and out of limos, hopping on and off of planes, staying in luxurious accommodations at Hyatt and Marriott hotels. It was also a priority for him to appear in front of the camera and be present for interviews as much as possible. Originally published Jun 8, 2011 8:00:00 PM, updated July 11 2013 Million Dollar Man Publicity, publicity, publicity! Figure out a way to stand out in the public eye. Working your tail off = producing the best you can = benefit. Now a minister, DiBiase travels on a weekly basis as a motivational speaker to youth; “macho men”; and couples struggling with their faith, keeping clean, and following dreams. In addition, he’s also considering starting his own wrestling school. For the complete scoop, check out Hitting towns for television gigs, his wealth was flaunted by tactics such as giving away cash prizes for things like dribbling basketballs. Pretty soon, the Million Dollar Man was everywhere. Topics: Strive to create something unique and original that has never before been done or created before. Competition is good for any business. If you have someone or something to compete against, you will work harder. (It’s a good thing!) ” was born, and DiBiase’s new persona took his pro wrestling career all over the world. 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: Marketing Metrics Originally published Jun 14, 2011 1:00:00 PM, updated August 29 2017 Here are five important stats that you should be tracking aside from the obvious key metrics of leads and customers. 1. Bounce Rate The bounce rate of a page is the percentage of people who left your website after viewing that page. A page with a high bounce rate is performing poorly. You should always be comparing your landing pages to look out for ones that are bouncing a high percentage of visitors. These pages are ineffective and are literally driving people away from your website. Comparing your high bounce pages to your low bounce pages is a great way to find out what’s working for your visitors and what isn’t. 2. Conversion Rate The conversion rate of a page is the percentage of people who completed a desired action on that page, such as filling out a form. Pages with a high conversion rate are performing well. This is another great statistic to compare between your website’s landing pages. A landing page is usually the first page that your visitors will see when they arrive on your site, so it is crucial that your landing pages are getting visitors to convert into leads. If they’re not, then all of the traffic you are getting isn’t really valuable for your marketing efforts. 3. Traffic Sources Your traffic sources will tell you where all of your site’s traffic is coming from when they first arrive. This is a great place to check your top of the funnel efforts and see where people heard about your site. If you’ve been working on your SEO efforts, then you should see your organic search volume increasing. If you’ve been doing good social media promotion, then you should see a lot of referral traffic from social media sites and blogs. Every business will have their own mix of organic, referral and direct traffic, so it’s important to watch over time so that you can track how your various marketing channels are driving traffic to your website. 4. Keywords Your site keywords will show you which terms people are searching for when they find your site in a search engine. This is a great way to find out what people were actually looking for when they stumbled on your site. Usually, the top three or four keywords will be variations of your company name, but the results below those will give you a lot of insight into what people are trying to find when they come to your site. Chances are, you’ve already been optimizing around these words as part of your keyword strategy , and this data offers a chance to see how well you’re doing. If you notice you’re getting traffic around a keyword you haven’t optimized for, you might have found a keyword that isn’t very competitive, but is still relevant to your business. You should build some content around that keyword to really leave your competitors in the dust. 5. Visitors The number of visitors is the number of unique individuals who have spent time on your website. This is the number that gives all of the other percentages their meaning. A word of caution though: do not focus on the number of visitors as your most important website metric. It is important to see how many people are ending up on your website, but this statistic is more of a reflection of your off-site marketing campaigns, and not of your website itself. Learn More If you want to learn more great tips about simplifying your analytics and drawing meaningful conclusions from your data, head over to our Facebook page . We’re giving away a book called Analytics 2. 0 by Avinash Kaushik, an analytics evangelist at Google – along with tons of other great books in our Marketing Library Giveaway! Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack
by giving readers an opportunity to raise their hand and potentially engage in business! Originally published Jun 27, 2011 3:15:00 PM, updated October 20 2016 10) Added calls-to-action on all blog content that led to conversion forms. business blogging using PPC For example, competitors never published information regarding pricing for others to see, but RPS broke the mold and published market prices of pool material on its blog. The post called ” 8) Answered questions publicly that its competitors were afraid to talk about. The company prioritized the questions it received most frequently and considered often-used keywords in prominent components of the blog article–like the headline! 10 Things River Pools and Spas Did Right While Blogging These factors combined helped River Pools and Spas. Have you had similar success? Get any new ideas that you might start implementing on your blog? These CTAs are what helped River Pools’ blog subscribers eventually River Pools knew it was best to target easier keywords when just getting started, and very specific words–or long-tail keywords–worked best. For example, ‘vinyl liner pools’ was a long-tail term the company targeted. filter down the sales funnel 1) Got rid of PPC and decided to focus on earned traffic through blogging. Topics: “, received 20,359 page views and 84 inbound links, the highest numbers for both categories in River Pools’ blogging history. 3) Blogged consistently, writing two posts per week. This consistency held subscribers’ interests and engaged new subscribers. By having an ongoing stream of published content, it also increased the probability the company would get found online. 9) Encouraged conversation by responding to all comments–even negative ones. 5) Optimized for long-tail keywords. successful business bloggers ? Blog Optimization and River Pools and Spas RPS understood that blogging is hard work. Team members compiled a list of topics or questions they could answer and rotated who would publish what article next. This company is a great example of an organization that uses organic search Fiberglass Pool Prices: How Much is My Pool Really Going to Cost? Subscribers noticed the frequency that RPS responded and felt welcome to share their ideas too, creating a collaborative environment. 2) Used its blog to educate many potential customers at once. publishes the most popular blog in the pool industry and is the number one pool company in the United States that specializes in fiberglass pools. The company started blogging in 2008, and to date, it has 760 blog subscribers. In the early days–when pool companies weren’t Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack 4) Used questions from prospects and customers as fodder for blog posts. to its benefit. But what were the decisions that RPS made that set themselves up as River Pools blogged on the domain that also hosted its company website so that all inbound links to blog articles also gave SEO credit to the primary domain. That way, non-blog website pages could rank well too. Before blogging, many people would call the company simply to ask for pool information. Without knowing if these people had any intention of buying, these one-on-one conversations were not leading to sales. By educating many potential customers at once through the blog, RPS could now funnel people through the sales cycle. 6) Made sure its blog was on the same domain as its website. 7) Shared blogging responsibility throughout a team. –the cost-effectiveness was relatively high. As more competitors utilized paid search, pool-related keywords became more and more expensive. For River Pools and Spas, this meant it was time to focus on organic content and traffic.