No Junk Mail – Inbound Marketing

Everyone would agree that marketing to your target audience is an integral part of building your business. Sounds simple enough, but when it comes to online marketing, the avenues are endless. New web applications and concepts are constantly being developed, and with the Internet ever evolving, some can get a little muddled in their advertising efforts and go about their marketing the wrong way.

Firstly, there are two major types of marketing – inbound and outbound. These are most easily defined by inbound being 'permission' and outbound being 'interruption'. If you think about these two words, one has an obviously more generally positive connotation than the other, and in this lies the secret to successful online marketing – inbound marketing, that is, marketing that is done with some level of permission and is usually specific , Is what works when you're trying to reach out to that massive online audience at your fingertips.

Outbound is on the way out

Outbound marketing is that traditional form of advertising that we all grow up with and that still surrounds us today. In fact, this type of marketing to the masses is everywhere. We all know that we can not walk down the street, open a magazine or switch on the television without seeing it, but advertisements accost us on escalator hand rails, inside golf holes, in public toilet cubicles, even on grocery registers. Every space deemed seeable to the public is strewn with advertising – and so it is no wonder that we have learnt to turn a blind eye to much of it; Which here lies the problem with outbound marketing. Not only do people grow annoyed by interruptive advertising, you are also less likely to find that one fish that wants what you've got if you throw a line out into the ocean.

Get found by the people that are looking

So what exactly does inbound marketing entail? In a nutshell, it is getting yourself or your business 'found' by people that are already out there searching for what you're offering. Through the Internet, you have access to millions of people worldwide, so of course (with the right strategy) you'll be able to find the group that is hunting for you. Inbound marketing also involves giving those potential customers what they want, in order to attract them to your business and brand.

Using digital media online is the surest way of successful inbound marketing. Social networking sites are great, as you not only establish your brand and place within the community, but attract those that are interested in what you have to sell or offer. And once those people are a part of your network, they are most likely there to stay, as long as you keep on giving them what they wanted in the first place. Take Facebook, for example. As people like what they see and join your Facebook group, or become your 'friend', you have a ready-made relationship with consumers that want exactly what you have. Pizza Hut, for example, has more than one million fans on Facebook – not only a testament to others of their popularity, but that is one million consumers that have a very high chance of consuming (pardon the pun) whatever new things Pizza Hut offers . That's effective inbound marketing.

Two-way = double the results

It is generally accepted that people do not like one-way communication on the Internet. With collaborative communication one of its greatest attractions, the World Wide Web has boundless opportunities for businesses to connect directly and personally with their customers, or would-be customers. Inbound marketing makes use of this in its two-way communication. Involving the consumer means the consumer feels good, and that's what you want. That way, your customers stick with you. Nobody likes feeling as if they're just a number. Say you're walking along and see huge billboard. You may like what you see, but then you walk away and may very well forget what you saw. Compare this to an online medium such as a forum, where you see others talking about a particular product, see good reviews, read the company's notes – you're definitely more more likely to get involved and become a customer, right?

Love the one you're with

So the idea of ​​inbound marketing is that you are reaching those that want to be reached. You have a better chance of building up a solid and long lasting relationship with the customer, so that when it comes to marketing, they do not mind you 'interrupting' them every now and again with special offers and new products. You've been quite willing to accept a call in the middle of a night from your mum or brother, because you'd assume it was important and necessary. Not so much if you did not recognize the number, though. The same works for marketing – being familiar with a consumer through two-way, online communication mediums means that your 'call' will be answered.

Perhaps you need to take a look at your current marketing strategy and see if there is enough inbound marketing. Remember, inbound marketing not only invites the customer 'in', building that relationship, but you become a larger part of that person's online life, and extremely lead to more a higher conversion rate.

What Does ("PID") Mean in The Real Estate Industry?

A Public Improvement District ("PID") is a financing tool created by the Public Improvement District Assessment Act as found in Chapter 372 of the Texas Local Government Code. The PID enables any city to levy and collect special assessments on property that is within the city or within the city's Extraterritorial Jurisdiction ("ETJ"). A county may also form a PID, but must obtain approval from a city if the proposed PID is within the city's ETJ. The PID establishes a mechanism to finance improvement projects through the issuance of bonds secured by special valuations levied on all benefited properties. Because PID bonds can be used to reimburse the developer for eligible infrastructure early in the development process, often before the closing of the first home.

Public Improvements Eligible for PID Financing are; Acquisition of Right of Ways, Art, Creation of pedestrian halls, Erection of foundations, Landscaping and other esthetics, Library, Mass transit, Parks & Recreational or Cultural Facilities, Parking, Street and sidewalk. Supplemental safety services for the improvement of the district, including public safety and security services. Supplemental business-related services for the improvement of the district. Water, wastewater, health and sanitation or drain.

Benefits of a PID

A PID may be established early in the development process allowing the developer to be a reimbursed upon completion of the public infrastructure. Furthermore, unlike a Municipal Utility District ("MUD"), Water Control and Improvement District ("WCID"), or Fresh Water District ("FWSD"), PIDs do not require TCEQ approval, and are governed by the governing body of the City or county, thereby alleviating concerns regarding board turnover and the integrity of the board. If the city chooses to annex property that is within the boundaries of a PID, the city is not forced to pay off the assessments, and the assessments do not affect the city's debt capacity or rating.

How the Internet Affects Traditional Media

Traditional Publishing, REST IN PEACE

This is the headline that greets you when you land on a web page identified as a memorial to commemorate the decline of Traditional Media. A photograph of a man who seems to be in distress and who's possibly just lost his job companies this headline. If this does not paint a bleak picture, go on to read the 548 headlines that all sing to the same tune as the following:

  • Bad Times: NYT Says Revenue Fell 13.9% Last Month – Forbes.com
  • Men's monthly magazine Arena to cease printing after 22 years – Guardian.co.uk
  • Cosmopolitan UK publisher to cut 100 jobs – Guardian.co.uk

There's even a website entitled Newspaper Death Watch that chronicles all the publishing and newspaper houses that close down. All rather morbid would not you say?

The Deadly Spell

Let's take a quick look at Traditional Media and how the Internet cast it's deadly spell.

Back in the old days, we're talking 500 years ago; Gutenberg revolutionized the printing industry by inventing the printing press. This meant bibles could be produced at a fraction the time it used to. This also mean more copies in a shorter time and the Word of God got further reach in a shorter time. Newspaper houses and Magazine publishers still use a printing press today (well thank you captain obvious) .

Much later, shortly after the advent of electricity, the world was blessed with another few media breakthroughs, rarely radio then a few years later, television. Marketers and Advertising agencies had it all figured out as they devised Integrated Marketing Campaigns with astronomical budgets. Ah, the good old days. Well, much to the dismay of many of these agencies, this media landscape started to change.

Behold! Enter The WWW

At first a website was seen as a cute way to put your company brochure online and on top of that the disastrous dot bomb era created skepticism that labeled the Internet as a bad media and business channel.

Fortunately, since then the Internet has matured. Now, in countries where broadband has achieved high levels of household penetration, the web has become the consumer medium of choice.

Why? Because people can do research, shop online, watch videos and connect with friends all in the comfort of their own homes. People can choose what media they want to consume, where and when they choose too, especially with mobile connectivity. Marketers can no longer dictate what advertising messages people get subjected too.

Social Media, The New Black

Then there is the phenomenon of Social Media. It changed the media landscape forever. Social Media websites have allowed consumers to connect with friends, family, colleges and peers in ways that were never imaginable a few decades ago.

Technology has empowered the consumer to become the prosumer. Prosumers are consumers who produce content like videos, photos and blogs that can be instantly distributed and shared among millions of people via social media platforms. This is also known as user-generated content or UCG.

Here is an interesting bit of trivia about the reach of Traditional Media vs. The Internet and Social Media.

Years it took to reach a market audience of 50 Million:

  • Radio – 38 Years
  • TV – 13 Years
  • The Internet – 4 Years
  • The iPod – 3 Years
  • Facebook – 2 Years

So How Does The Internet Affect Traditional Media?

The Internet has reduced the need for traditional media because it enabled consumers to join social communities within their neighbors, across their countries and internationally. It has empowered them to converse at their leisure, 24/7, with friends.

Considering all that's been said, the demise of Traditional Media can seriously be attributed to the following factors:

  1. Decline in readership: The distribution of free news and information on the web has led to the decline in readership for traditional publications.
  2. Decline in revenues: The decline in readership advertisers advertisers will spend their money elsewhere and this leads to a decline in ad revenue.
  3. Real-time updates: Traditional Media can not compete with immediately updated user-generated content that's immediately available for the world to see.
  4. The rise of UGC websites: People have the freedom of unlimited real time commentary on content while Traditional Media is static and is a one-way communication tool.
  5. Online Audio / Video channels: People can choose what they want to watch and listen, when they want to and where without advertising interrupting their experience.

Simply put. The Internet has revolutionized the way things get done today. It has revolutionized the way we do business, the way we communicate and has broken down the walls of Traditional Media.

A recent example is the decision by Unilever UK to fire Lowe , their Ad agency of 15 years, in favor of crowdsourcing – which means it has thrown the brand creative pitch open to agencies and basically any person who can think of an idea, worldwide. This is done on the Internet of course.

Traditional Media will still be around for a while, but the Internet is getting more and more integrated into our daily lives.

Think about this. You could do without the Mail & Guardian or the MensHealth Mag for quite some time, sometimes live quite happily without it? But you just dare cut that ADSL connection …

Oxford- A City Guide

Oxford is a city and local government district in Oxfordshire, England,
With a population of 134,248 (2001 census). It is home to the
University of Oxford, the oldest university in the English-speaking
World. It is known as the "city of dreaming spires", a term coined by
Matthew Arnold in reference to the harmonious architecture of the
University buildings. The Oxford suburb of Cowley has a long history of
Carmaking, and still produces BMW MINIs.

History

Oxford was first employed in Saxon times, and was initially known as
"Oxenaforda". It began with the foundations of St Frideswide's nunnery
In the 8th century. The University of Oxford is first mentioned in 12th
Century records. Oxford's earliest colleges were University College
(1249), Balliol (1263) and Merton (1264).

During the English Civil War, Oxford housed the court of Charles I in
1642, after the king was expelled from London, although there was
Strong support in the town for the Parliamentaryarian cause. In the 19th
Century the controversial surrounding the Oxford Movement in the Anglican
Church drew attention to the city as a focus of theological thought.
Oxford's Town Hall was built by Henry T. Hare, the foundation stone was
Laid on 6 July 1893 and opened by the future King Edward VII on 12 May
1897. By the early 20th century Oxford was experiencing rapid
Industrial and population growth, with the printing and publishing
Industries becoming well established by the 1920s.

Places of interest

Oxford has numerous major tourist attractions, many belonging to the
University and colleges. As well as several famous institutions, the
Town center is home to Carfax Tower and a historical themed ride, The
Oxford Story. In the summer, punting on the Thames (sometimes called
The Isis as it flows through Oxford) and the Cherwell is popular.
Other notable attractions include:

  • Christ Church Cathedral
  • The Church of St Mary the Virgin (the University Church)
  • Martyrs' Memorial
  • Ashmolean Museum
  • Pitt Rivers Museum
  • Museum of Natural History
  • Museum of the History of Science
  • Science Oxford
  • University buildings
  • The University Parks
  • The University Botanic Garden
  • Cornmarket Street, Oxford
  • Turl Street, Oxford
  • Little Clarendon Street
  • Oxford Covered Market
  • Westgate Shopping Center
  • Museums and Art Galleries

    Oxford has a large number of museums and galleries open for public.
    Following are the world famous and a major tourist spot in Oxford:

  • Ashmolean Museum, Britain's old museum
  • Pitt Rivers Museum
  • Museum of Natural History, home of (the remains of) the Oxford Dodo
  • Museum of the History of Science, in Britain's oldest purpose-built
    Museum building
  • Museum of Oxford
  • Museum of Modern Art
  • Science Oxford
  • Shopping

    Golden Cross, an arcade of first-class shops and boutiques, lies
    Between Cornmarket Street and the Covered Market. Parts of the colorful
    Gallery date from the 12th century. Many buildings remain from the
    Medieval era, along with some 15th- and 17th-century structures. The
    Market also has a reputation as the Covent Garden of Oxford, with live
    Entertainment on Saturday mornings in summer. In its way, Alice's Shop,
    Played an important role in English literature, it functioned as a
    General store (selling brooms, hardware, and the like) during the
    Period that Lewis Carroll, at the time a professor of mathematics at
    Christ Church College, was composing Alice in Wonderland.

    It is
    Believed to have been the model for important settings within the book.
    Today, the place is a favorite stopover of Lewis Carroll fans from as
    Far away as Japan, who gobble up commemorative pencils, chess sets,
    Party favors, bookmarks, and in rare cases, original editions of some
    Of Carroll's works. The Bodleian Library Shop, specializes in Oxford
    Souvenirs, from books and paperweights to Oxford banners and coffee
    Mugs. Castell & Son (The Varsity Shop), is the best outlet in
    Oxford for clothing emblazoned with the Oxford logo or heraldic symbol.

    Food and Drink

    Oxford offers European and Middle-East and Asian cuisine. Some of the
    Restaurants are:

  • Cherwell Boathouse Restaurant
  • Gee's Restaurant
  • Le Manoir aux Quat 'Saisons
  • Rosamund the Fair
  • Al-Salam
  • Browns.
  • Exceed these restaurants Oxford hosts some traditional and historic pubs

  • The Eagle and Child
  • The Turf Tavern
  • The Lamb and Flag
  • The Bear
  • Education

    The University of Oxford, located in the city of Oxford, England, is
    The oldest university in the English-speaking world.
    Events and organizations and institutions officially associated with the
    University include:

  • Worcester College, Backs of medieval cottages
  • The Oxford Union Society
  • The Oxford University Press, the world's oldest and largest
    University press
  • The Bodleian Library
  • Major Research Libraries (including the Sackler Library)
  • Oxford University Department for Continuing Education
  • The Taylor Institution
  • The Oxford University Student Union
  • Oxford University Newman Society – Catholic speaker society
  • The OICCU, the undergraduate Christian union
  • The Oxford University Museum of Natural History (sometimes called
    The Oxford University Museum)
  • The Pitt Rivers Museum
  • The Ashmolean Museum
  • The Bate Collection
  • Oxford Botanic Garden and Harcourt Arboretum
  • Oxford University Sports Federation
  • Oxford University Boat Club
  • The O'Reilly Theater
  • Moser Theater
  • Rothermere American Institute
  • Said Business School
  • The Ruskin School of Drawing and Fine Art
  • Computing Laboratory
  • Isis Innovation
  • Sports

    Oxford City FC and Milton United FC among others are two famous
    Football club and play regular club and league matches. Oxford
    Cavaliers Rugby League Club is the rugby club playing for Oxford city.
    Drayton Leisure Golf Driving Range is the golf course with 9 HOLE (PAR
    3) COURSE and 6 HOLES FLOODLIT. As a city in UK it has a number of
    Cricket teams and hosts tournaments like Bernard Tollett Oxfordshire
    Cup, National Cricket Club Championship, The Cricketer National Village
    Championship etc

    Tours and Sightseeing

    There are a number of tour operators in Oxford. The tourist information
    Center is also very helpful to find out a way to enjoy the visit
    Of Oxford.

    Hotels and Accommodations

    Accommodations in Oxford are limited, although recently, motels have
    Sprouted on theirts – good for those who want modern amenities.
    In addition, if you have a car, you may want to consider country houses
    Or small B & Bs on the outskirts of town
    Some of the notable hotels are:

  • Victoria House
    Hotel
  • Cotswold Lodge
    Classic Hotel
  • Westwood Country
    Hotel Ltd
  • Holiday Inn Oxford
  • The Oxford Hotel
  • Oxford Thames
    Four Pillars Hotel
  • Express by
    Holiday Inn Oxford Kassam Stadium
  • The Bat &
    Ball Inn
  • The Upper Reaches
  • Abingdon Four
    Pillars Hotel
  • Oxfordshire Inn
  • Days Inn Hotel Oxford
  • The Plow at Clifton Hampden
  • Marlborough Arms Hotel
  • The FEATHERS
  • Macdonald Bear Hotel
  • White Hart Hotel
  • Transport

    Oxford is located some 50 miles (80 km) north west of London; The
    Cities are linked by the M40 motorway, which also links northwards to
    Birmingham.

    Rail connections include services to London (Paddington), Bournemouth,
    Worcester (via the Cotswold Line), and Bicester. The city also has
    Regular train services northwards to Birmingham, Coventry and the
    North. The railway service connecting Oxford and Cambridge, known as
    The Varsity Line, was discontinued in 1968.
    The Oxford Canal connects to the River Thames at Oxford.

    Oxford Airport at Kidlington offers business and general aviation
    Services.
    Local bus services are large provided by the Oxford Bus Company and
    Stagecoach South Midlands.