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    How to Use Psychological Biases to Sell Better and Faster

    By Emma Snider

    psychology

    This post originally appeared on the Sales section of Inbound Hub. To read more content like this, subscribe to Sales.

    For all the powerful processing work the human mind can do, it's still prone to making bizarre assumptions or jumping to an illogical conclusion every now and then. Problem is, we don't even recognize these patterns as strange. They're built into the fabric of our thought -- so to us, they just seem normal.

    But upon examination, they're revealed to be anything but normal. Why else would we buy Beanie Babies in bulk? ... Read More

    10 Excel Tricks Every Marketer Should Know

    By Justin Pavoni

    Excel is a useful tool for a number of marketing tasks.  The two most important uses that I have for Excel on a weekly basis is first, as a research tool while writing (e.g. to get original statistics for a blog), and perhaps more obvious and more common, for data analysis and reporting.  

    With that in mind, here are ten tricks to help you get more proficient at Excel.

    1) How to Summarize Data with a Pivot Table

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    10 Delicious Recipes You Can Make in Your Office Kitchen

    By Lindsay Kolowich

    It's not the food in the office kitchen; it's what you do with the food in the office kitchen.

    When your stomach starts to grumble at work, you know it's time for a quick snack break. But what are you in the mood for? Hmmm ...

    As you make your way down the hall, you start to wonder: Could there be more to your workday snack than the contents of the vending machine?

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    20 Examples of Fabulous Explainer Videos

    By Lisa Isbell

    Feel intimidated by the notion of creating an explainer video? There’s no need to be -- they just represent another excellent way to get your content out to your target audience. Besides the really big brands that we are all familiar with, a lot of lesser-known companies and even small startups are using them.

    Even if you believe your product isn’t “cool” enough to become a cute, cuddly explainer video, someone out there who has a problem that can be solved by what you have to offer would likely see it in a much different light.

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    14 PowerPoint Presentation Tips to Make Your PPT Designs More Effective [+Templates]

    By Jamie Cartwright

    I like to think of Microsoft PowerPoint as a test of basic marketing skills. To create a passing presentation, I need to demonstrate design skills, technical literacy, and a sense of personal style.

    If the presentation has a problem (like an unintended font, a broken link, or unreadable text), then I’ve probably failed the test. Even if my spoken presentation is well rehearsed, a bad visual experience can ruin it for the audience.

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    13 Bright Ideas for Running Smarter Retargeting Campaigns

    By Siobhán McGinty

    According to retargeting platform AdRoll, only 2% of shoppers typically convert on their first visit to an online store. That's a lot of people slipping through the cracks. What's a marketer to do?

    Enter retargeting. Retargeting allows you to zero in on those 98% of visitors, giving them a second (and in some cases third, fourth, and fifth) chance to convert. Here's how retargeting works: It allows you to show targeted ads to potential customers via search, social media, and other websites. They see them, click back to your website, and then (hopefully) convert.

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    How to Create a Benchmark to Measure Content Marketing ROI

    By Eric Murphy

    According to the Content Marketing Institute’s 2015 B2B and B2C benchmark reports, less than a quarter of marketers are able to prove content marketing ROI. Measurement is a key area of difficulty: 49% of B2B and 51% of B2C marketers were challenged with measuring content effectiveness in 2014.

    While definitions of effectiveness may vary by team, it should at least be simple to figure out if you’re successful once you define what “success” means. Here are two simple steps to establish a baseline for content effectiveness and prove if it’s failing (or not).

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    How to Write a Marketing Resume Hiring Managers Will Notice [Free Templates + Samples]

    By Lindsay Kolowich

    It's ironic, but despite knowing how to sell products and services, so many marketers have a hard time selling themselves. It can often be difficult to turn the spotlight inward, but creating a standout resume is a skill all marketers need to perfect if they want to grow their career. 

    If you're a marketer whose resume could use a little polish, don't worry. With just a few resources and some actionable tips from hiring managers themselves, we'll help you create a truly impressive marketing resume that's sure to stand out to recruiters.

    Read More
    The Best Super Bowl Ads to Watch Before the Big Game

    By Lindsay Kolowich

    Super Bowl XLIX is on the horizon. And as we get closer to the Big Game, Americans aren't just looking forward to the football -- they're also looking forward to seeing what the nation's big-budget advertisers will come up with for this year's ads.

    So far, the lineup looks to be a combination of newcomers, like Skittles, and veterans, like Budweiser and Dove.

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    What the Next Generation of Marketers Is Learning in School

    By C.C. Chapman

    Twenty years ago, I graduated from Bentley University with a degree in Computer Information Systems. I had always thought about going for a marketing degree, but was advised that it would be too hard to find a job after college. I decided to focus my energy elsewhere.

    Little did I know that I’d have a very successful career in marketing, starting my own agency and working on campaigns for clients as diverse as HBO, American Eagle Outfitters. and The Coca-Cola Company.

    Read More
    How to Move, Copy & Delete Pinterest Pins in Bulk [Quick Tip]

    By Ginny Soskey

    When you first start out on Pinterest, many of us imagine it'll be the best way to organize all the things that inspire you. Instead of haphazardly storing bookmarks in your browser or keeping a long Evernote file of things to remember, you set up a few tailored boards, and start pinning away.

    But pretty soon after you start, you'll realize that it can actually be hard to stay organized on Pinterest.

    For example, you probably come across content every day that doesn't quite fit the board descriptions you've already made, but wouldn't warrant creating an entirely new board.

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    How to #DoubleLeadFlow in 30 Days [Free Email Course]

    By Rachael O'Higgins

    According to the 2014 State of Inbound Marketing, marketers are obsessed with generating more leads: Nearly a quarter of surveyed marketers rank lead generation as their number one priority.

    But just because lead generation is a priority doesn't mean it's easy to find great information about it. There's plenty of content online about how to generate leads, but it can sometimes be difficult to sift through it all and find out what really works.

    Read More
    5 Attributes of an Effective Lead Management Process

    By Doug Davidoff

    Inbound marketing is a powerful strategy. When we implement it for a company here at Imagine Business Development, we will typically see a 2 to 7 times increase in lead generation in the first year and a 5 to 10 times increase in future years.

    A 2013 study identified generating high quality leads as the number one challenge for B2B marketers. It’s no surprise that Inbound Marketing, with it’s proven track record, is exploding in use. While Inbound Marketing will certainly increase the generation of quality leads, it will also generate more low-quality leads. 

    In our experience, of the leads created by an effective Inbound Marketing approach between 50% and 90% of leads will never become qualified in any fashion.  This rate is highly dependent upon the industry you’re in, how clearly you’ve segmented your market and how effective your process and strategy is.

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    6 Basic Reports Every Marketer Should Know How to Run

    By Rachel Sprung

    Truthfully, there are tons of metrics that you can report on. You've got reports on the number of Twitter followers, the number of Facebook Likes, the number of visits to your website, the number of conversions, the number of leads from different campaigns or channels -- just to name a few. The world is your oyster.

    But that's exactly what makes it so hard to get started -- there are so many reports you can run that it's not easy to identify the ones that are actually helpful, run them, and then act on them.

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    Call-to-Action: Defined in a Single GIF

    By Ginny Soskey

    Calls-to-action. You know that they're a crucial component of inbound marketing. You know you need 'em on your website if you want to attract more visitors, generate more leads, and convert more customers. 

    ... And that's about all you know. 

    Read More
    13 Stereotypes of Salespeople: Debunked [SlideShare]

    By Emma Snider

    This post originally appeared on the Sales section of Inbound Hub. To read more content like this, subscribe to Sales.

    If you presented the average person with the prompt "Salespeople are ..." and asked them to fill in the blank, what do you think they would say?

    Daniel Pink conducted this very experiment as part of his research for the book To Sell is Human. When asked to identify the first word that came to mind to describe "sales" or "selling," the most prevalent answers included “pushy,” “sleazy,” “ugh,” “yuck,” “dishonest,” and “manipulative.”

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    17 Demand Generation Stats Every CMO Needs to See

    By Laurie Aquilante

    This post originally appeared on Agency Post. To read more content like this, subscribe to Agency Post.

    Determining the success of your marketing programs and analyzing key performance indicators (KPIs) can be challenging if you don’t have access to industry data.

    But how can you improve your KPIs if you don't understand which ones really matter?

    To find out how companies are generating demands for their brands and how successful they've been in these efforts, HubSpot and Qualtrics conducted a survey of 900 management-level marketers in North America and Europe.

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    9 Examples of Native Ads People Actually Enjoyed Reading

    By Jami Oetting

    This post originally appeared on Agency Post. To read more content like this, subscribe to Agency Post.

    Native advertising grew up in 2014. 

    Advertisers went beyond asking, "Is this a fad?" and tried to understand how to measure the success of sponsored posts and native ads. Publications considered who should write sponsored content, and even Last Week Tonight host John Oliver weighed in on the discussion.

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    Do You Really Need That Exclamation Point? [Flowchart]

    By Beth Dunn

    Writing for the web isn't easy. Sure, you want to get your point across. That's a given.

    But what you really want is to spark people's interest, engage their emotions, maybe even generate some real excitement about the stuff you're writing about. Heck, you're excited about it. Is it so much to ask that others might get excited, too?

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    Increase College Admissions with Inbound Marketing

    By Alexandra Ritter

    Did you know that there are over 9,000 colleges and universities in the United States today? With that kind of competition, it can be difficult to continually increase admissions numbers. Institutes of higher education need to diversify their organizations to attract a higher volume of students. This can be achieved through inbound marketing.

    Read More
    17 Stats You Should Know About Visual Content Marketing in 2015

    By Jesse Mawhinney

    Each year in mid-January, when all of last year’s research has been published, we like to read through some of the major reports on inbound marketing, content marketing, social media and online behavior.

    At the risk of sounding like a broken record, honestly, it’s amazing how fast things can change in twelve short months and 2014 was certainly no exception.

    Read More
    8 Ads With Subliminal Messages You've Probably Missed

    By Aly Schweigert

    Advertising is supposed to be impactful and clever without overpowering. David Ogilvy, the modern Father of Advertising, once shared this great quote: “A good advertisement is one which sells the product without drawing attention to itself.”

    In short, be subtle.

    And advertisements have a long history of being subtle. Whether hiding a double-meaning in a logo or working some Photoshop magic, subliminal ads definitely meet the criteria of clever — and the more clever the ad, the better we feel about “getting” it — and the better we feel about the product. Win-win for advertisers!

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    Free Advertising on Google

    By Mike Volpe

    It may surprise some, but many small businesses new to inbound marketing are unaware that you can get some free advertising on Google through Google My Business (formerly known as Google Places) instead of paying for pay-per-click (PPC) ads on Google.

    And because Google is always looking to increase the value of its local search results -- as well as its Google Maps application -- the search engine giant has a simple way for you to provide them with that valuable information about your business, which it infuses straight into its search engine results.

    Read More
    10 Incredibly Weird Mobile Apps You Can Actually Download

    By Corey Eridon

    From RunKeeper to Lyft to FlightTonight, there are plenty of mobile apps that are practical, functional, and just plain good ideas.

    There are also addictive games that, while not my cup of tea, keep millions of people transfixed on otherwise dreary commutes in and out of work.

    And then there's a bunch of weird apps that make you go "hmmm." Whether they seem hilariously niche, totally useless, or you're just shocked there's a market for them, the apps in this post might make you curious enough to download. 

    Read More
    How Office Temperature Affects Productivity [Infographic]

    By Lindsay Kolowich

    It happens at every office: One person's shivering in an overcoat while a nearby coworker is totally comfortable.

    But these office temperature wars aren't just an inconvenience -- almost a third of employees lose productivity because they aren't comfortable with the temperatures in their offices. The fact is, temperature affects people very differently thanks to a number of factors, including gender, clothing, and metabolic rate.

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    15 Examples of Brilliant Website Homepage Design

    By Jessica Meher

    You never get a second chance to make a first impression -- that’s why your homepage is undoubtedly one of the most important web pages on your website.

    For any given company, the homepage is its virtual front door. If a new visitor doesn't like what they see, their knee-jerk reaction is to hit the "back" button.

    That's right -- unfortunately, a lot of people still judge a book by its cover.

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    How to Create a Logo: Designers Give a Look Inside Their Process

    By Lindsay Kolowich

    Even though they're often just small images, logos carry a whole lot of meaning -- and designing one comes with a whole lot of responsibility, too. Logos are usually the most recognizable representation of a company or organization. And with more information available to the average consumer today, logos also have to quickly and effectively communicate on behalf of their brand.

    Read More
    How to Write a Great Value Proposition [Infographic]

    By Lindsay Kolowich

    Your value proposition is the core of your competitive advantage. It clearly articulates why someone would want to buy from your company instead of a competitor. 

    It's also one of the most important conversion factors. A great value proposition could be the difference between losing a sale -- and closing it. 

    Read More
    8 Big Tests You Should Run in Your Email Marketing Program

    By Dan Stasiewski

    What’s the last major thing you tested in your email marketing program? Small tests, like subject line or sender personalization are quick and easy, something most great email marketing softwares can do out of the box.

    However, these small tests, which can provide some data, can’t compare to larger, more comprehensive email tests.

    Read More
    15 Hilarious Office Pranks to Pull on Your Work Buddies

    By Lindsay Kolowich

    Thanks to The Office, we all know the classic stapler in Jell-O trick. But what other, less conventional pranks are out there to add some color to an otherwise average day at the office?

    Every company has a story or two about that funny office prank of yore. Here at HubSpot, it's the "wheat bread leads" story.

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    SEO for Home Builders: How to Optimize Your New Home Communities

    By Spencer Powell

    Search engine optimization for any business can be tricky to implement correctly, let alone home builders. Most home builders I talk to have either hired an SEO company or are currently working with one because they don't have the knowledge in-house.

    However, there are some very critical elements that, if learned, can be implemented in house and will make a huge difference in your ability to get found by home buyers in your area.

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    How to Run a Blog Lead Generation Analysis

    By Rachel Sprung

    It's the timeless question for corporate bloggers: How many leads did your blog post generate? It's much easier to see top-line metrics like how many visits each blog post gets, but measuring the impact further down the funnel is essential to growing your blog -- and your business.

    But even more important than knowing the number of blog leads you have generated is being able to analyze those results and create an actionable plan for the future. 

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    9 Ways to Recycle Your Blog Posts Into Other Content Formats

    By Will Blunt

    Today, marketers are feeling the pressure to pump out more and more content to get noticed -- plus it's got to be readable, engaging, and shareable. But maintaining a steady stream of quality blog posts can be time-consuming. 

    The answer to this challenge isn’t to write more frequent, lower quality blog posts. Quite the opposite. You need to dedicate more time to researching and write the best and most engaging content you can.

    Read More
    The Science of Persuasion [Infographic]

    By Emma Snider

    This post originally appeared on the Sales section of Inbound Hub. To read more content like this, subscribe to Sales.

    To sell something, you have to convince a buyer that they not only want your offering, they need it. To be clear, I'm not talking about fooling them into buying a piece of junk. Oftentimes, prospects stand to benefit considerably from purchasing a new product or service. But that doesn't mean they're any more eager to fork over their money -- and this is where the fine art of persuasion comes in.

    Read More
    Optimizing Your Workspace for Employee Productivity [Infographic]

    By Kathryn Wheeler

    A hot topic lately has been about increasing employee productivity in the workplace while also increasing satisfaction. There are a lot of factors that go into the ability to get things done amidst distractions galore. Whether it’s a conversation between two colleagues at their desks, your phone buzzing with text messages and social media alerts, or an uncomfortable desk chair, distractions are everywhere.

    Luckily, there are things you can do to help!

    Read More

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