ADDING VIDEO TO YOUR WEBSITE

 

BY    •   WORDPRESS TIPS

A lot of people ask us how they can add or upload videos to their WordPress site. It’s simpler than you think.

While WordPress does allow for the option to upload videos and other media, this can get messy and tricky as you deal with different browsers, operating systems and devices. Instead, we recommend that you embed videos from a different source — something like YouTube or Vimeo.

YouTube will allow you to reach a larger audience, while Vimeo will allow for more customization, and “white-labeling” if you upgrade to its Pro subscription.

Each service will allow you to Share or Embed, and will give you a URL or iFrame code to put directly into your editing window in WordPress. If you’re using an iFrame code, make sure you are on the Text/HTML tab of the editing window, not the Visual editor.

If you have Jetpack installed as a plugin, the process is even easier. You can simply add a shortcode in the Visual editor with the video URL. For example:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1234567-A]

view rawShortcode Youtube Embed hosted with  by GitHub

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1234567-A&w=640&h=385]

view rawWith Width and Height hosted with  by GitHub

 

You can also customize the width and height using this method, by adding the query parameter for “w” ( width ) and “h” (height) &w= and &h= to the shortcode.

You can do the same with Vimeo and several other services. Want to see what’s supported?Click here to view the Jetpack Shortcode Embeds page.

Chris Corey

CMO Markethive Inc.

 

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video imageNew Markets merge into record shattering success for seasoned entrepreneur

When the advent of a real Market Network (Markethive) and a real emerging Customer Centric network marketing giant (Valentus) even I was surprised with the ease of building a new empire in this industry. Let me explain.

I have been an advocate for ending the business practices of buying and selling leads. And an end to spam email, spam faxes, telemarketing, ending popup ads, bill board ads, you know, the practice called outbound marketing. It was heavily relied upon in the days before the Internet a long time ago and has suffered a long painful death since the Internet was released to the public in 1991, I know, I was there and have continued to ride this journey called the Internet.

10 years before the Internet I ran an Ad agency in the Silicon Valley and was very aware of tech and the emerging Internet, which is why I was on the Internet almost the moment it was available to the public in 1991.

Within years of immersing myself into the Internet, I became aware of Network Marketing. I found it fascinating that anyone with some skill and determination could reasonably build a living income. This idea supported my empathetic support of struggling prodigies, up and coming entrepreneurs and anyone who had greater dreams than the typical job afforded them.

Although I was aware of buying mailing lists for my ad agency in the 80s I was not aware of the pushing of buying names and phone numbers for MLMers to call on people supposedly interested in a business opportunity. As I become more aware of the MLM industry, I also found that most leaders who had working spheres of influence, would tell those they recruited into these pyramid schemes (the majority of these people did not have large spheres of influence) to buy these leads and cold call them.

My instincts told me this was a bad idea and a serious mistake. But these “leaders” promoted this technique because they had no real option on helping these people that just enrolled into one of these pyramid schemes “that really was just another “Hopes and Dreams” pitch, and that is another story.

This became painfully clear when I was witness to such a salesman, who had a talk show, had published many books, had a strong following, had joined a newly launched MLM deal, was conducting a teleconference call with all the people he had recently recruited into this new opportunity MLM. On that call, he told all the 1000s of listeners to go to his friend and buy the leads they had allegedly pre interviewed at about $100 per 10 leads.

This was mid-1990s. I bought 100 of them at $1000 and called them all (another article) and the results were 80% insults, 15% hang ups and the rest no answers. Not one was aware of any interview and the rejection level was as high as it gets. This was a process that would eliminate anyone new to the MLM process from continuing on in any business. Rejection is a process only boiler room telemarketers and well-seasoned sales people can withstand. It is death to the average Mom and Pop trying their hand at MLM.

Emerging Markets, Paradigm Shifts, Trends and all the other annoying clichés.

There are two firmly entrenched trends that have been born in the Internet, because of the technology, the reach of technology and the emersion of the masses into the technology, primarily due to the Social Networks, that Customer Centricity and Inbound Marketing emerged. Think of them as brother and sister.

Customer Centricity (Think Amazon):

I have been advocating Customer Centricity for the Network Marketing industry for over 10 years now. Less than 1% of said industry understands it, the rest uninterested, and continue to promote the failed process of selling “Hopes and Dreams” of thinly veiled pyramid schemes with over priced products that rarely accomplish what they claim they do.

However there have been a few that moved towards the “customer centric”, but not fully with one in particular, abandoning the entire concept, only to find that decision is destroying the company as we speak, with commissions being cut consistently for the past 3 years, causing a drastic end to growth and a company in disarray. The other company built a customer option with infomercials, as a reward for their peak performers to acquire said such infomercial leads, which has dwindled due to current trends away from traditional Cable TV and Dish TV. Those 2 companies are Trivita and Beach Body.

Here is the summary of my Customer Centric proposal for this industry.

  1. First and foremost the company’s focus must be to “Serve the Needs of the Customer” not the distributors!
  2. Products that cost the distributors less than they sell them for on the open markets (like Ebay auctions)
  3. A virtual warehouse that supports the distributor allowing purchasing in bulk, at lower wholesale prices, keeping the inventory at the company, allowing for drop shipping.
  4. Offering co-op Advertising partnerships, to the distributors, allowing distributors to receive smaller shares of that traffic, that being customers and distributors from the results of mass marketing on the Internet. This has been done by a few other companies to great success. In other words, it works.
  5. Other mass marketing technology that now comes to full force are, 800 number platforms, self-replicated Amazon, Ebay, etc. accounts, shopping cart widgets for 3rd level distributors domains, and Social Marketing aps allowing purchase within Social Markets.

Summary;

With the accelerated market place awash in innovation and technology, technology that puts the human element right into the center of the equation, you can understand why you see the MLM industry sluggish and many companies dying on the vine and others falling flat on their faces with their much heralded launches. Entrepreneurs (distributors) that once upon a time, a flashy video, a charming pitch man, and a compelling comp plan, worked to explode the next greatest MLM launch. Not anymore!

Not today.

It is only a matter of time a young bold, innovative entrepreneur launches the first true customer centric MLM similar to the framework I have discussed here. And when they do, the world will quake, the swamps will empty and the first multi trillion MLM enterprise will rise to stand head to toe with the great innovations today like Facebook, Google, PayPal etc.

Inbound Marketing:

Inbound Marketing is the most effective marketing method for doing business online. Inbound marketing focuses on creating quality content that pulls people toward your company and product, where they naturally want to be. By aligning the content you publish with your customer’s interests, you naturally attract inbound traffic that you can then convert, close, and delight quickly.

This is exactly what Markethive is but more. Markethive is the first newly discovered Market Network

What Is A Market Network?

“Marketplaces” provide transactions among multiple buyers and multiple sellers — like eBay, Etsy, Uber and LendingClub.

“Networks” provide profiles that project a person’s identity, then lets them communicate in a 360-degree pattern with other people in the network. Think Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

What’s unique about market networks is that they:

  1. Combine the main elements of both networks and marketplaces
  2. Use SaaS workflow software to focus action around longer-term projects, not just a quick transaction
  3. Promote the service provider as a differentiated individual, helping to build long-term relationships

The amazing timing of this entire process is the emerging of the first Market Network; “Markethive” and my friend “David Jordan’s” company Valentus the first real Customer Centric company.

Valentus is experiencing record growth and record time and by all indications is about to enter into “Momentum”. I credit all of this to the fact that Valentus has the foundational product that the markets support the retail price organically where distributors buy the product well below the market retail.

I know this all seems so complex, but in reality it is quite simple. Valentus’ explosive growth is because it is a real business based on Economics 101. “Buy low sell High”!

With the fusion of these two huge trends found in Markethive and Valentus, I give credit to this phenomena as to my ease in exploding the growth of my little “distributorship” in Valentus, breaking records in the first month and the meteoric growth of this organization because Inbound Marketing (Markethive) has found Customer Centricity (Valentus) and the rest will be historic.

If this article finds you the least bit excited, curious or at least amused, I invite you to find out yourself more about these two incredible trends and how they complement each other. Your curiosity will cost you nothing. Sign up for these two companies at the below addresses:

Markethive:
http://markethive.com/marketing

Valentus:
http://www.ValentusTour.com/contact

Entering a phone number will assure that I will call you to introduce myself and enjoy a 5-10 minute chat with you. I look forward to that, BTW.

 

Thomas Prendergast
CEO Markethive, Inc.

 

 

 

 

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5 Marketing Statistics that You Should Not Ignore in 2016

Have you been keeping up with the latest digital marketing trends for this year? If you are like most, it can be tough to find the time to stay abreast of the best practices and techniques to keep in mind. This can place you at a very real disadvantage and you could soon find that your organization is suffering as a result. To save time and energy, let's take a look at the top five trends which experts believe will dominate the remainder of this year.

 

Marketing Automation

According to the latest sources, marketing automation will have a 20% greater impact within the digital world when compared to 2015 (1). There are two reasons behind this observation. First, specialists are increasingly realizing that they require a greater amount of flexibility in terms of time to connect with their audiences. Automated software can help to bridge this gap. Secondly, the software itself is becoming more advanced and intuitive. For example, the free Inbound Marketing System called Markethive, is a Market-Network that has all the marketing tools you could ever need, it's a content marketer's "dream come true"!

 

Content Marketing

This trend has actually carried over from last year, and for good reason. We have always said that content is king, and these days, its reign is supreme. Generic texts and other “fluff” simply won't do the trick in 2016. Content needs to be centered around the needs of the user as opposed to the search engine. Organic content will rank higher and generate more interest; both important to increasing conversion rates.

 

Mobile-Friendly Campaigns

This is another metric that cannot be overstated. Once again, mobile-friendly architecture should really come as no great surprise. Recent figures have pointed out that there are no less than 7.19 BILLION active mobile phones in the world (2). This is higher than the population of the earth! Smart marketers are now understanding that the future of any digital campaign relies upon tapping into this massive infrastructure. Be ready to see most pages optimized for mobile phones as well as the humble app take its place within the forefront of advertising.

 

Wearable Technology

While this hardware has been around for the past five years or so, it is only recently that it has become affordable for the average consumer. From smart watches to Oculus Rift and other unique devices, it seems as if the dreams of science fiction writers are soon to become a reality. Where does wearable technology fit into the world of digital marketing? Many companies are now developing unique applications to enhance the products that they are offering. In doing so, they hope to tap into a tech-savvy demographic that represents the younger generation. 2016 is likely to be the first year in which such an approach hits the mainstream market.

 

Big Data

Better CRM and CMS systems have given rise to the prevalence of big data within the marketing world. It is now easier to interpret and implement observations such as buying habits, user demographics and location. This should all enables businesses to better target their existing audience while also expanding this audience to include a wider consumer base. However, the downside to this is that competition is likely to be quite fierce. This is the main reason why by data needs to be combined with small data in order to address the very human side of any sales campaign.

We can see that some trends are a continuation of the previous year while others could very well define the ways in which marketing campaigns are constructed into the future. Recognizing these tendencies is the first step towards developing an effective strategy while placing all of your efforts in the right direction.

Richard Tipsword
Markethive Developer

Sources:

1. http://www.smartinsights.com/lead-generation/marketing-automation/

2. http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/gadgets-and-tech/news/there-are-officially-more-mobile-devices-than-people-in-the-world-9780518.html

3. http://www.smartinsights.com/internet-marketing-statistics/2015-vs-2016-the-digital-marketing-trends/

Advantages and Disadvantages of Social Networking

In today’s techno technology-obsessed, social media and networking have become an intricate part of daily life. Social networks are websites and phone apps that allow people to create a personal profile, upload pictures of their life, update their status, and share information. These are very powerful mediums that have the ability to cause some great things, as well as some very bad things, to happen. Let’s look at all of the pros and cons surrounding social networks.

The Advantages of Social Networking

1. Staying In Touch
As we grow older, friends, family, and people that we knew, move away and it is very easy to lose touch with them. With social networks, this problem is essentially solved. It is extremely simply to find people on social sites, and once you do you can add them to your friend’s list and always be able to instantly communicate with them, as well as keep up with what is going on in their life.

2. New Connections
Meeting people can be difficult when the internet came around the dating world changed completely to try to fix this problem. Social networking is possibly the number one way that people met new friends or romantic partners in today’s society. Profiles and interests allow you to “pre-screen” a person beforehand to see if there are any deal breakers.

3. Aids In Criminal Cases
Whether people are aware of it or not, what they post on social media can very easily be used against them if they were to get in trouble with the law. Someone who is selling drugs, and may be posting about it on their social networks, can be caught in this way. This also applies for someone who gets caught drunk driving and was posting pictures of them at the bar moments before.

4. Gives Shy People An Outlet
Communication doesn’t come naturally to many people. If someone is very reserved or shy in their normal day to day life, social networking can be an outlet for them to share their ideas and thoughts with other people in a comfortable environment.

5. Connecting Kindred Spirits
Finding someone who is interested in all of the same things that you are can be tough, especially if you are interested in something unique. Social networking allows you to connect with entire groups of people who are interested in the same things as you, helping to grow friendships and enrich lives.

The Disadvantages of Social Networking

1. Cyber Bullying
Bullying has been a problem among young people, and even adults, for as long as we can remember. However, when social media came around, this bullying was taken to an entirely different level. Cyber bullying is when a person is continuously bullied through online accounts. Cyber-bullying is such a problem because it can be 24/7 harassment, and it can also be done anonymously.

2. Misinformation Spreads Like Wildfire
Social media has become the number one source of news and information for the majority of people. I know this may sound scary, but I assure you, it’s true. People will read something and immediately take it as truth, and spread this information on to their friends, and so on and so forth. This can cause major falsities to taken as real life headlines.

3. Easy Prey
People are always “checking in” with their exact locations on social medias, advertising where they work, and providing much more sensitive information. Predators, such as rapists, can also obtain this information and easily identify where they can find you at any given time. This is a large danger. The danger is also spread on to the children, who may not have much of a clue of who is okay to speak with and who is not.

4. Less Real Life Interaction
Twenty years ago, if it was someone’s birthday you went and saw them in person, or sent them a birthday card. Today, however, we simply write a quick little message on their Facebook wall and leave it at that. All of the interactions that we have with people have become incredibly in personal.

Important Facts About Social Networking

  • 28 percent of all news is obtained through social media websites.
  • The average person spends nearly 4 hours a day on social networking websites! That’s a whole lot of time.
  • There are currently 1.19 billion users registered on Facebook.com.
  • 80 percent of all the “Pins” on Pinterest are actually just repins.

Chris Corey CMO@markethive.com

 

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Barack Obama may have finally destroyed America’s #1 advantage

In July 1944, just weeks after the successful Allied invasion of Normandy, hundreds of delegates from around the world gathered in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire to determine the future of the global financial system.

The vision was simple: America would be the center of the universe, and every other nation would revolve around the US.

This arrangement ultimately led to the US dollar being the world’s dominant reserve currency which still remains today.

Whenever a Brazilian merchant pays a Korean supplier, that deal is negotiated and settled in US dollars.

Oil. Coffee. Steel. Aircraft. Countless commodities and products across the planet change hands in US dollars, so nearly every major commercial bank, central bank, multi-national corporation, and sovereign government must hold and be able to transact in US dollars.

This system provides a huge incentive for the rest of the world to hold trillions of dollars worth of US assets– typically deposits in the US banking system, or US government bonds.

It’s what makes US government debt the most popular “investment” in the world, why US government bonds are considered extremely liquid “cash equivalents”.

As long as this system continues, the US government can continue to go deeper into debt without suffering serious consequences.

Just imagine being totally broke… yet every time you want to borrow money there’s a crowd of delighted lenders eager to replenish your wallet with fresh funds.

This may be the US government’s #1 advantage right now.

You’d think that they would be eternally grateful and take care to never abuse this incredible privilege.

But no… not these guys.

In fact, they’ve done the exact opposite. Over the last eight years the US government has gone out of its way to eliminate as much of this benefit and alienate as many allies as possible.

They’ve abused the trust and confidence that the rest of the world placed in them by racking up record amounts of debt, waging indiscriminate wars in foreign lands, and dropping bombs on children’s hospitals by remote control.

They’ve created absurd amounts of regulations and had the audacity to expect foreign banks to comply.

Plus they’ve levied billions of dollars worth of fines against foreign banks who haven’t complied with their ridiculous regulations.

(Last week, for example, New York state financial regulators fined a Taiwanese bank $180 million for not complying with NY state law.)

And they’ve threatened to banish any foreign banks from the US financial system who don’t pay their steep fines.

Abuse. Deceit. Extortion. Not exactly great ways to win friends and influence people.

It’s as if Barack Obama pulled together the smartest guys he could find to make a list of all the ways the US government would have to screw up in order to lose its enormous financial privilege… and then he went out and did ALL of them.

The US government is practically begging the rest of the world to find an alternative to the US dollar and US banking system.

Even the government of France, a key US ally, called into question continued US dominance of the global financial system after the US government slammed French bank BNP Paribas with a $9 billion fine.

There have already been some attempts to displace the United States in the financial system.

China has been aggressively setting up its own competing financial infrastructure, something called the China International Payment System.

It’s been a slow start for the Chinese, but they’re building momentum. Though I’m not sure China is the answer in the long run.

While banks around the world may not care for the long and strong arm of the US government, the Chinese government doesn’t exactly inspire trust either.

But now there really is an alternative. Technology.

Ripple, a blockchain-style protocol that’s funded by Google Ventures (among others), is now being utilized by international banks to send and receive transactions directly.

The way international bank transfers work now relies exclusively on the US financial system.

Large foreign banks have what’s called a “correspondent account”, typically at a major US bank like JP Morgan, Citibank, etc.

A correspondent account is essentially a bank account for other banks. Our company holds funds at a bank in Singapore, for example, whose US dollar correspondent account is at Bank of New York Mellon.

Foreign banks’ US dollar correspondent accounts are typically at major Wall Street banks because that’s the epicenter of US dollar transactions.

So when a bank in Australia sends US dollars to a bank in South Africa, that payment actually flows from the Australian bank’s correspondent account in the US to the South African bank’s correspondent account in the US.

The entire transaction effectively takes place using the US banking system.

Again, this gives the US government enormous power over foreign banks. Any foreign bank that doesn’t do what Uncle Sam commands can be excommunicated from the US banking system.

And without access to the US banking system, a foreign bank will be unable to transact in US dollars, and hence unable to conduct any global business.

This is a death sentence for a bank. The US government knows this and has been blackmailing global banks for years.

But now technology is providing another option.

Banks don’t have to use the US banking system anymore; they can send real-time payments internationally using the Ripple protocol.

Two months ago a Canadian financial services company sent the first-ever institutional cross-border payment to a German bank.

This isn’t some wild theory or conjecture. It’s actually happening.

Just this morning a group of 15 banks in Japan signed up to start using Ripple, and dozens of banks plan to use the protocol within the next six months.

The technology is cheaper. Faster. Superior. And it doesn’t come with any US government strings attached.

So it seems Uncle Sam may have finally shot himself in the foot for the last time.

 

Original Article appeared here:
https://www.sovereignman.com
BY: Simon Black
August 23, 2016
Santiago, Chile

25 Aug / 2016

What is Cryptocurrency?

A cryptocurrency is a medium of exchange like normal currencies such as USD, but designed for the purpose of exchanging digital information through a process made possible by certain principles of cryptography. Cryptography is used to secure the transactions and to control the creation of new coins. The first cryptocurrency to be created wasBitcoin back in 2009. Today there are hundreds of other cryptocurrencies, often referred to as Altcoins.

Put another way, cryptocurrency is electricity converted into lines of code with monetary value. In the simplest of forms, cryptocurrency is digital currency.

Unlike centralized banking, like the Federal Reserve System, where governments control the value of a currency like USD through the process of printing fiat money, government has no control over cryptocurrencies as they are fully decentralized.

Most cryptocurrencies are designed to decrease in production over time like Bitcoin, which creates a market cap on them. That’s different from fiat currencies where financial institutions can always create more, hence inflation. Bitcoin will never have more than 21 million coins in circulation. The technical system on which all cryptocurrencies are based on was created by Satoshi Nakamoto.

While hundreds of different cryptocurrency specifications exist, most are derived from one of two protocols; Proof-of-work or Proof-of-stake. All cryptocurrencies are maintained by a community of cryptocurrency miners who are members of the general public that have set up their computers or ASIC machines to participate in the validation and processing of transactions.

History of Cryptocurrency

bitcoin stack

The first cryptocurrency was Bitcoin. Bitcoin was created in 2009 by a pseudonymous developer named Satoshi Nakamoto. Bitcoin uses SHA-256, which is a set of cryptographic hash functions designed by the U.S National Security Agency. Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency that is based on the proof-of-work system.

In April 2011, Namecoin, the first altcoin, was created to form a decentralized DNS to make internet censorship more difficult. In October 2011, Litecoin was released and became the first successful cryptocurrency to use scrypt as its hash function rather than SHA-256. This gave the general public the ability to mine for litecoins without the purchase of specific hardware such as the ASIC machines used to mine Bitcoin.

Litecoin began receiving media attention in late 2013 – reaching a market cap of $1 billion.Ripplecoin, created in 2011, was built on the same protocol as Bitcoin but services as  a payment system – think of it like a Paypal for cryptocurrencies that supports any fiat currency, cryptocurrency, commodity or even frequent flier miles.

Cryptocurrencies & Market Capitalization

Bitcoin is the largest cryptocurrency in both market capitalization, volume, acceptance and notoriety, but it’s not the most valuable coin. NEMstake, while only having a market cap of $1,116,720, trades at $1,117 a coin. Looking at the market cap, Litecoin takes second place after Bitcoin with Ripple close behind.

One coin that you are more than likely familiar with is Dogecoin. Dogecoin ranks, on average, thirds in trading volume, but has a relatively low market cap – ranking number six in the largest cryptocurrency.

hashWhat is a Cryptocurrency Hash?

Cryptocurrency mining power is rated on a scale of hashes per seconds. A rig with a computing power of 1kH/s is mining at a rate of 1,000 hashes a second, 1MH/s is a million hashes per second and a GH/s is one billion hashes per second. Every time a miner successfully solves a block, a new hash is created. A hash algorithm turns this large amount of data into a fixed-length hash. Like a code if you know the algorithm you can solve a hash and get the original data out, but to the ordinary eye it’s just a bunch of numbers crammed together and remains practically impossible to get the original data out of.

SHA vs. Scrypt

While Bitcoin and a several other coins are mined using SHA-256, Litecoin and many other coins, use Scrypt. This are the two major hashing functions, but several different kinds exists and are used by other cryptpcurrencies such as scrypt-N and x11. The different hashing functions were adopted to answer concerns with the SHA-256. Before, individuals were able to mine Bitcoin with their GPU’s, which require a large amount of energy. But as Bitcoin grew in popularity, ASIC SHA-256 machine were built which  made GPU mining obsolete.

To give you an idea of just how powerful these machines are, a mining rig running 4 GPU’s would get a hash rate of around 3.4 MH/s and consume 3600kW/h while an ASIC machine can mine 6 TH/s and consume 2200kW/h. This effectively killed GPU mining and left many individuals worried about the security of the network. With less individuals being able to profitably mine from their home computer, the network become less decentralized. Scrypt mining was implemented with the promise of being ASIC resistant due to the memory problem it introduced.

Scrypt hashes require lots of memory, which GPU’s are already designed to handle and ASIC machines were not. However, Scrypt mining require a lot of energy and eventually scrypt-ASIC machines were designed to address this problem. At this point Litecoin consideredchanging their proof-of-work function to avoid ASIC mining. Scrypt also taut that their proof-of-work is much more energy efficient than SHA-256. Bitcoin blocks are solved at a rate of 1 per 10 minutes while Litecoin blocks are solver at a rate of 1 per 2.5 minutes.

securityCryptocurrency Security

The security of cryptocurrencies is two part. The first part comes from the difficulty in finding hash set intersections, a task done by miners. The second and more likely of the two cases is a “51%” attack“. In this scenario, a miner who has the mining power of more than 51% of the network, can take control of the global blockchain ledger and generate an alternative block-chain. Even at this point the attacker is limited to what he can do. The attacker could reverse his own transactions or block other transactions.

Cryptocurrencies are also less susceptible to seizure by law enforcement or having transaction holds placed on them from acquirers such as Paypal. All cryptocurrencies are pseudo-anonymous, and some coins have added features to create true anonymity.

 

Cryptocurrency Legality & Taxes

Taxation

Bitcoin Taxation

While cryptocurrencies are legal in most countries, Iceland and Vietnam being an exception – Iceland mainly due to their freeze on foreign exchange, they are not free from regulations and restrictions. China has banned financial institutions from handling bitcoins and Russia, while saying cryptocurrency is legal, has made it illegal to purchase goods with any currency other than Russian rubles.

In the U.S., the IRS has ruled that Bitcoin is to be treated as property for tax purposes, making Bitcoin subject to capital gains tax. The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) has issued guidelines for cryptocurrencies. The issued guidelines contain an important caveat for Bitcoin miners: it warns that anyone creating bitcoins and exchanging them for fiat currency are not necessarily beyond the reach of the law. It states:

“A person that creates units of convertible virtual currency and sells those units to another person for real currency or its equivalent is engaged in transmission to another location and is a money transmitter.”

Miners seem to fall into this category, which could theoretically make them liable for MTB classification. This is a bone of contention for bitcoin miners, who have asked for clarification. This issue has not been publicly addressed in a court of law to date.

Cryptocurrency Services

There are a host of services offering information and monitoring of cryptocurrencies.CoinMarketcap is an excellent way check on the market cap, price, available supply and volume of crypto currencies. Reddit is a great way to stay in touch with the community and follow trends and CryptoCoinCharts is full of information ranging from a list of crytocoins, exchanges, information on arbitrage opportunities and more. Our very own site offers a list of crypto currencies and their change in value in the last 24hrs, week or month.

Liteshack allows visitors to view the network hash rate of many different coins across six different hashing algorithms. They even provided a graph of the networks hash rate so you can detect trends or signs that the general public is either gaining or losing interest in a particular coin.

A hand website for miner is CoinWarz. This site can help miners determine which coin is most profitable to mine given their hash rate, power consumption, and the going rate of the coins when sold for bitcoins. You can even view each coins current and past difficulty.

Chris Corey

CMO Markethive

Images from Shutterstock

 

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21 Aug / 2016

The Valentus Connection

I have known Dave Jordan for several years now. He is a brilliant and empathetic man. We have much in common. He is the founder and CEO of Valentus. I was once a distributor when they launched. I terminated that distributorship for several reasons.

  1. I was poorly matched to my sponsor. He was simply unprofessional and I exercised the 6 month rule and terminated my position with plans to return after 6 months to seek a better sponsor.
  2. The CEO of the company and I see eye to eye regarding customer centricity and what a customer centric MLM company should look like. See my most recent article in this regard @ http://hive.pe/it a Markethive Blog.

    With that said it was clear it would take time for Valentus to shift into a more concentric model and even more so, to actually become a customer centric system so this also affirmed my terminating from the company, until such time I felt they actually deserved my recognition for pushing forward into “customer centricity”.

You will notice the following milestones of Valentus that separates this company from “ALL” of the rest of the companies. The following illustrates this:

  1. A product that has demand and 80% reorder rate. But even more telling, is this product sells at auction on Ebay (backed up by historical search) a selling point about 25% above the cost point. This is un heard of in MLM.This is a product that the demand is growing and the selling point increase backs up.
  2. Valentus delivers a portfolio of pages. Some are only for retail, another is a lead taproot system. Others are for recruiting distributors. So, there are Leads pages, Customer acquisition pages (retail sale), and distributor acquisition pages. Further noted, all pages are responsive too.
  3. There is the ability to drop ship samples to prospects automatically from the back office dashboard. This one feature alone, saves the distributor time, frustration and money.

Also knowing Dave Jordan as I have done, I know he has plans and I am part of those plans to build a truly customer centric business. I am confident and have been assured this being the case we can expect Valentus to eventually deliver the following promise:

  1. Virtual inventory (much sooner than you think too), therefore allowing the distributor to keep inventory ready for drop shipping at the company warehouse, to accommodate online selling, on our own pages, Ebay, Amazon, Alibaba. Olx, Kajijij, etc.
  2. Self-replicated Amazon stores, were we as distributors, have the option to automatically have an Amazon store, were, Valentus collects the money, sets the price threshold and ships the product. But they are our stores, were we manage them, promote them and add other inventory as we wish.
  3. 800 telemarketing service platform: Today’s technologies not only make this proposed service affordable, but extremely effective. Typically, new distributors are assigned an ID# number. The number resides within the servers database to track sales, commissions, etc. of the distributor. Thus the hardest part is already done for an 800 sales number. [A little explanation of current tech] 800 number technology software interfaces display the originating number, or forwarded number. IE: If the distributor develops a radio commercial with a phone number (toll free or not) then forwards that number to the company 800 number, all he or she needs to do is register that number (via the back office) or calling it in. This way the telemarking operators receiving the incoming calls, or the technology, know who originated the call and the orders are taken and assigned appropriately to the distributor.

    It can be as simple as the distributor takes a call from an ad, the prospects decides to buy the product. The distributor can easily 3 way into the 800 platform and assist the sale. It can be as easy as an ad running offering a product with the company main toll free number offering free shipping and handling with the special pin number. It can be very easy to build.

Imagine the projected results with the distributors taking the initiative, no more need for mentors, no more need for charming leadership, no more need for motivational events, because the motivation is found in the system and the results. Imagine!

  1. Customer and Lead co-op acquisition: This is where the company marketing people run ads, driving vertically targeted prospects to an 800 number or website, acquiring quality pre enrolled prospects or customers who have purchased or best have enrolled into auto ship. The distributor’s contribution enhances the company’s budget and the “partnership” enhances the customer’s retention. The company also makes available to the distributor mailing lists to their “enrolled leads and customers” to assist in the continued purchases etc. It is a win win situation and is a proven technique as proven by Trivita.
  2. API (Application Programming Interface): Distributor selling on Amazon, Ebay, Alibaba, etc.

    Basically, the MLM company has an API developed that interfaces with Amazon, Ebay, etc for the distributor. This allows the distributor to develop an online store on Ebay, Amazon, Alibaba, etc, drive and support the prospects and customers, but the sale interfaces through the company. Thereby the company controls the pricing, collects the money (connected to the distributor) and ships the product. All the collecting, shipping, tracking and commissions paid out is done by the company.

    API: In computer programming, an application programming interface (API) is a set of routines, protocols, and tools for building software applications. An API expresses a software component in terms of its operations, inputs, outputs, and underlying types.

    Basically allows the company to remotely control pricing, merchant collection, shipping and communication via the distributors Ebay, Amazon, etc. account

  3. Social Marketing Aps and systems: Marketers, merchants, etc. need a portfolio of tools, to get the message out, to build awareness, to build a sphere of influence and to build a customer and distributor centered loyalty program. Very few people, even entrepreneurs have all the skill sets to achieve this. However, automated marketing, email auto responders, social broadcasters, coop advertising, blogging platforms, materials and videos are necessary tools for the entrepreneur. When you do not supply these types of tools in a controlled environment, the message being broadcasted may not meet the criteria of the company nor abide by regulations.

There are solutions and Markethive is one of the best options. Markethive supplies all of these tools and more, integrated and easily configured and controlled within the communities vertical structures built for DSA companies like yours. It is called the company Directories and within a company portal in Markethive, your distributors will find all they need; Broadcasting platforms, self-replicating personalized PDF documents, Coop advertising systems, blogging platforms, email auto responders, everything needed for marketing, in one place.

Momentum

What does that mean?

Momentum is a mystery to most Network Marketers but it’s also the most talked-about and influential subject in MLM. It is also maddening.

I mean both in a fantastic and exciting way.

Embracing the possibility of ‘getting in before momentum’ is a miraculous thing if you want to build a huge business in the shortest period of time. When momentum is happening, recruitment and sales accelerate in ways that make you scratch your head. Fast Pace becomes SILLY Fast Pace. So many people join your team that you can’t keep up with training everyone.

In the middle of it, as things get fun, each time you check your genealogy report and expect to see it up a few hundred people, it multiplied to thousands and suddenly your heart beat gets faster and faster. People look at you and you seem to walk on clouds.

If you believe in the power of momentum, you will sound like a ‘loon’ in discussions about your company’s growth so keep it to yourself.

The goal of this blog post, is to bring the most maddening and sometimes mysterious concept of momentum to the forefront. Companies going into momentum are not ‘sure things’ going forward, but as I have long believed, momentum moments can be captured by a few lucky network marketers.

I can’t be there to tell you when that happens, because no one told me. But it is a lifestyle altering scenario that can make sense for some.

Why Are We In Search Of Momentum

When there is no momentum, we are extremely vulnerable to distraction and defeat. Our inner critic awakens, and we start second-guessing ourselves, doubting the possibility of success. Other people’s demands creep in, asking for our attention and focus. We start to look at new projects or ideas that seem even more worthy of execution, tempting us to move onto the next big thing without ever finishing.

Many years ago I studied NuSkin

And what you see on the graph below is the growth cycle of Nu Skin starting in 1984.

As you can see in 1989, this company went from $40 Million in 1989 to $5oo Million in 1991, all the way to $1 Billion in 1993.

500 Millionaires were created in this company during that time. Some people kept pace with that company during that explosive growth and saw their income skyrocket within a very short period of time.

Richard Poe in his Wave III book shares the following explanation:

Typical Growth Patterns of Successful Network Marketing Companies

According to Richard Poe, author of Wave 3: The New Era in Network Marketing, there are four distinct growth phases that typically occur in successful network marketing companies.  Knowing these phases and knowing what phase your prospect company is in is key to potential big money.

  1. Formulation: This is the first two years when start-up is happening.Ninety percent of network marketing companies fail during this period.
  2. Concentration: At this stage the company enjoys $3-$50 million in annual sales.This is the “growing pains” stage, when the company has to adapt to rapid growth and change in order to service its swelling customer base and sales force.
  3. Momentum: This is when the company’s annual sales explode as geometric growth kicks in.Typically, sales jump from about $50 million to $500 million annually in about five years.At this stage, the product becomes a household word, sales people rush to join the company and make very good money.Those who were fully established in the company at the onset of the momentum can make fortunes overnight.
  4. Stability: Now the company continues to grow, though less spectacularly.The product line is often diversified to try to create a new wave of momentum.
  5. Other Criteria: It is also important to determine if you have a growing high quality product line (especially consumables) and you may have winner.Finally look at the Founders and other backers and determine if they have a good success record and they can bring wide exposure to the business.

As of this writing, Valentus is breaking all sales records throughout the industry. Unlike like most MLM companies, Valentus has taken 2 years to reach $40 million in sales.

But what’s important is that $40 million needs to be produced in one market to enter into momentum. Valentus is headed to do over $40 million worldwide in the second year of business. This is where critical mass will push us into momentum and people will hear about Valentus from everywhere.

How many millionaires will be created when Valentus enters into momentum?

I personally don’t think it’s a question of how many it’s going to be, but WHO are they going to be? Because it’s going to happen and we’re poised for this right now.

In this early stage of creating momentum it is extremely important to overcome any barriers that come your way. As momentum increases, this will become easier but in the early stages it may take a focused effort if problems come your way. A train moving at full speed will smash right through a brick wall and keep moving; however a single rock placed properly can prevent a stopped train from getting started. So in the early stages of creating momentum, if problems or obstacles occur, do whatever it takes to get past them and move forward. That same problem will become easier as you see more and more success.

Thomas Prendergast
CEO
Markethive, Inc.

Ever walk into a bar and know, very quickly, you shouldn’t order anything there?

I’m from a small town in Massachusetts. For a summer living outside of Atlanta, that simply made me a “northerner” or “yankee boy” to the locals so I had to pick my watering holes carefully in the evenings.

It was one of those nights the heat from the pavement was still radiating off the road well past sunset. Enough to make me sweat just walking from my car into a bar I’d just discovered. From the outside, I could see some TVs and a glowing sign for “Wings”. Sounds good, right?

Something was off as soon as I walked in the door. I was greeted by a large gruff looking dude wearing a confederate flag. The TVs were blaring NASCAR.  Above the bar were five $20 confederate bills with a sign that said “Keep your confederate money. South gon’ rise again!”  I’m fairly certain the bartender shot me a look and made proper use of the spittoon that was surrounded by peanut shells on the floor. This was probably not a good time to have been wearing my Boston Red Sox hat.

I took a deep breath and walked out. I’m sure the bar had a type… but it clearly wasn’t me. When I think back on it, there were all kinds of reasons I bounced… but what if I missed out on a great experience?  Did I judge too quickly? What if I’d missed this?

Every day people have this same experience on your web site.  The question is: If you wanted more of them to stay and spend money… what could you do?

Your “bounce rate” is when people do this to your website. It’s the percentage of visitors who come to your landing page and leave without engaging with any content, filing out your opt in form, or clicking through to another page. It’s people who just saw the page they landed on and said “nope… that’s not for me.” You want this to be as low as possible. You want to keep people around, get them to engage, and take the next step down your sales funnel.

Ok. Great. So you know what the bounce rate is… but do you know what causes it? Here are the 14 most common causes of a high bounce rate.

1. SLOW PAGE LOAD TIMES. PEOPLE GIVE UP AFTER 4 SECONDS.

“I love slow web pages.” – said no one ever

Want to slow down your landing pages?

  1. Use the cheapest hosting you can find. You pay for what you get.
  2. Add a few of oversized images that can’t be downloaded quickly.
  3. Use too many images that distract from the copy on your page and cause too many requests on each page load.
  4. Use custom fonts that must be downloaded before anyone can even read the page.
  5. Add a lot of fancy sliders and javascript effects that must also be downloaded to work.

All of these factors can lead to slow page loads. The golden rule is that people are going to leave if you make them wait more than 4 seconds for a page to download. Two seconds or less is really the ideal.

How do you know if you’ve gone above 2 seconds? Use one of these two tools to see how quickly the average visitor might see your landing page.

If you are over 2 seconds, you should consider looking for low hanging fruit of images, fonts, scripts, or content you could be cutting to lower the page load time. Sometimes less is more… unless you want people to bounce before you even had a chance.

2. BOMBARDING VISITORS WITH ALTERNATIVE OFFERS AND INTRUSIVE ADVERTISEMENTS

I love going to a page that might solve my problem only to be asked to watch a 30 second video that started auto-playing at the highest possible volume first. I stick around to the end of that experience just to see what happens. 🙂

Certain types of banner ads are also distracting, and they can reduce the amount of trust your visitors feel when on your site. Without trust, they are unlikely to provide you with email addresses, contact information, or payment info. Be careful of the kinds of ads you use: If your site is ad supported make sure that the ads are relevant to the visitor and related to the material on the page.

Intrusive advertisements will reduce the reputation of your landing pages and diminish the value of your content in the eyes of your visitor. If worthless pop-up ads appear within the first five seconds, the visitor is going to bounce higher than Chuck Norris on a trampoline.

Understand that the goal of each individual page is and make sure your ads and secondary calls to action aren’t getting in the way of that.

3. VISITORS SEEING SOMETHING UNEXPECTED AND UNRELATED TO WHAT THEY CAME FOR.

Not everyone likes surprises.

Let’s say you create an ad for “Amazing Dietary Supplements”, but your visitors land on a page that primarily promotes “Faster Weight Loss”.  Now… the faster weight loss may indeed be a benefit to the supplements… but it was the supplements that people came for.

If the ad headline is not front and center on the landing page you created, you will have lost the trust necessary to facilitate a conversion and the visitor is going to bounce higher than the empire state building.

4. MAKING VISITORS DIG FOR WHAT THEY CAME FOR WITH CONTENT THAT’S NOT SKIMMABLE.

Headlines and subheadings help visitors scan blocks of text quickly. The content they expect to find should be located in the appropriate section. If they cannot spot the content by scanning the headlines or subheadings, they will not take the time to search your site.

People do not read online text in the same way they read a book. Your landing page is not Game of Thrones. Most people aren’t going to read it cover to cover. Imagine you are writing for Cliff Notes instead.

Visitors quickly scan blocks of text looking for useful and engaging content, but they will not spend a lot of time trying to locate it. Before publishing your text to the site, have a friend scan the content to see if they catch the most important points. You can also use sites like http://fivesecondtest.com and http://usertesting.com to get 3rd party opinions on whether or not people can quickly understand your pitch.

5. SENDING THE WRONG PEOPLE TO YOUR LANDING PAGES

This is right up there with giving visitors something they did not expect. If your landing page sells a product that’s targeted at private music teachers, but you advertise all over communities of public school teachers… you are close… but you’ve missed the mark.

Anyone with a budget can drive a ton of traffic to a landing page… the question is whether or not you can drive the RIGHT traffic to your landing page. The RIGHT traffic means visitors that are primed to convert because they:

  1. Are clearly within your target audience.
  2. Have been primed by your pitch before they came to the landing page.
  3. Ideally have been referred by a friend… because your landing pages make it easy for someone to share after the conversion. Did I mention that’s a specialty of ours at KickoffLabs?

The right traffic will almost be able to predict what your landing page says because they’ll be expecting it. You’ll earn their trust and their conversions.

6. FILLING YOUR LANDING WITH POOR GRAMMAR AND TERRIBLE SPELLING MISTAKES.

I can’t spell. I’ve also got really bad grammar skills. We joke that we should just make that a thing with KickoffLabs. Every page should contain at least one spelling and one grammar mistake. Done properly it may eventually be endearing… Or it could just cause more people to bounce without even trying our service.

Visitors are looking for any reason not to buy what you are selling and give you their personal information or credit card. Don’t give them ones that are easy to avoid. If you are like me, you should probably employ someone that can actually speak proper English (or language of your choice) to review every written word you produce. There are also a lot of great proofreading services out there including:

7. PRODUCING A LOT OF LOW QUALITY CONTENT THAT’S HARD TO UNDERSTAND.

The quality of copy on your landing page goes well beyond the grammar and spelling. The copy needs to quickly communicate to the visitor that:

  1. You understand their problem.
  2. You have a solution that could be used to solve it.
  3. They need to just take the following next step.

If a visitor fails out at any of these checkpoints, they are going to bounce before they go any further.

8. MAKING YOUR LANDING PAGES HARD TO READ.

Any distracting elements can reduce the credibility of your site, which causes visitors to search for the nearest exit. Most common problems involve issues of legibility. For example, red cursive text on a black background will not read well, and certain kinds of fonts are also difficult to read. People scan content quickly online, so they will not want to work just to read lines of text.

9. MAKING YOUR LANDING PAGES UGLY.

A poor or unpolished visual design can distract visitors to your site, but it can also reduce the amount of time the person is willing to look at the page for purely aesthetic reasons.

We like to look at attractive things, and Web pages are no different from any other object. Attractive items will tend to keep viewers’ attention, and this is exactly what you want. Conversely, pages with bad design, few graphical elements and poor layout tend to provoke high bounce rates.

Now, this is not to say that good design will guarantee a great conversion rate. It doesn’t work that way. But I can say that poor designs will lower your conversion rate from your potential.

10. MAKING THE VISITOR FEEL LIKE THEY ARE BEING SCAMMED.

Ever traveled abroad and been approached by people on the street who introduce themselves with the phrase “My friend… my friend… ” followed by their pitch. Did it occur to you that they may have jumped the gun on the use of the word “Friend”? These are probably people you want to avoid when you are traveling in unfamiliar regions. The same is true for visitors to your landing page.

Within the first few seconds of arriving at a website, visitors will automatically scan for content and design elements that communicate:

• Credibility
• Safety

Many people focus on the overall content of the site to establish the reliability of the second item in the list above. The perceived safety of the site is related to the quality of the content and the appearance of the pages. If they communicate safety, the visitor will be encouraged to stay, explore and may even make a purchase.

If the visitor is not convinced that the site is credible, reliable and safe for any reason, they will bounce from the page within the first few seconds after arriving. The design of the landing page is critical to prevent this bounce rate from affecting your page rankings and future sales.

11. USING LOTS OF ATTENTION GRABBING IMAGES THAT STEAL THE SHOW FROM YOUR CALL TO ACTION.

This falls under the concept of a poorly designed page, but I see it often enough that I need to call it out. People spend so much time curating stock art, background images, rotating sliders, thumbnails, and other images that steal attention.

When a landing page is filled with distracting images, it lowers the readability and therefore increases the bounce rate. Images are great, but should be combined with equally great copy that they reenforce with a visual.

12. NOT HAVING A CLEAR NEXT STEP.

Let’s say you’ve avoided all of the advice so far… you still have a chance to increase your bounce rate by making your primary call to action hard to find. Having a clear call to action means the visitor knows quickly what their next step should be and where it is on the page.

You can’t miss the call to action in the landing page of the competition ran by this awesome UK Price Comparison site, and KickoffLabs customer 🙂

13. ASKING FOR WAY TOO MUCH INFORMATION.

It’s just rude on a first date to ask for someone’s mother’s maiden name, social security number, bank account, whether they prefer ice cream or frozen yogurt, which side of the bed they want to sleep on, etc.

Your landing page is no different. As a general rule, you should not be asking for information that you are NOT going to actually use to help the potential customer on the next step of their journey.

You don’t need five different ways to contact everyone, but if you are selling desserts… you may want to know their ice cream preference… as long as you are going to start using it to provide them with more personalized offers.

Now – that may not seem like much information… but when you consider the payoff… would you answer all those questions for 50 cents?

14. PRETENDING MOBILE DEVICES DON’T EXIST AND EVERYONE IS ALWAYS AT THEIR DESKTOP.

You’ve heard the phrase “mobile first” right? If you want to scare people away, just ignore that. Make your landing pages unresponsive so that people have to scroll, pinch, and zoom around to fill out your opt in forms. I’m sure that strategy will keep working for another five years.

Did you know that 45% of our landing page traffic comes from mobile devices? Yeah… neither did I until I looked at our customer numbers. That means that to keep people engaged you have to prepare for that.

IN REVIEW – PROPER LANDING PAGE ETIQUETTE

That’s a lot to take in. Here is a checklist of things to review on your landing pages…

  1. Landing pages load under 2 seconds.
  2. You don’t bombard people with intrusive ads that distract from your primary call to action.
  3. Your headlines match the advertisement that promoted the landing page.
  4. Visitors can quickly find what they are looking for.
  5. You sent the right people to your landing pages.
  6. Spelling and grammar have been checked out.
  7. The content provided is high quality.
  8. The text is clearly readable across devices.
  9. The page isn’t so ugly it erodes trust. Ideally it’s well designed.
  10. The images don’t distract from the call to action.
  11. You avoid creating that icky “I’m being scammed” feeling.
  12. You have a clear next step for the visitor that doesn’t make them choose.
  13. You avoid asking for too much information that you aren’t going to use right away.
  14. Make sure you are ready for the “mobile first” world.

Think of each landing page as a social contact. You want to avoid certain behaviors all of the time, but this is especially important when constructing a landing page because this is where you create a first impression that will encourage the visitor to get to know you better.

One of the biggest problem I see on landing pages today is that the person publishing them looks for ways to cram more “stuff” on the page that isn’t helping with the conversion. Long form landing pages are great… but the focus of those pages is on the text copy and NOT:

  • Fancy sliders with lots of images
  • A huge navigation menu that links everything to your main site
  • Pop-up polls
  • SEO keyword stuffing
  • Advertisements and secondary promotions
  • Chat windows
  • Click to call buttons (that aren’t primary calls to action)
  • Fancy pants animations
  • Social buttons and demands to “like us” before they even know what you are all about.

Simple page layouts can communicate a lot of information in a short period of time. Part of the process of simplification should involve removing all of the crap I mentioned above. This reduces the clutter, and it will make your text blocks easy to read.

Focus on what you really want the visitor to do on your landing page. Make sure all the copy, images, and call to action buttons are gently nudging people in that direction. Visitors will scan your landing page quickly to see if you have what they came to your site to find.

You need to make sure that they can find whatever they need quickly. By doing this, you may also be able to convince them to opt-in, pay up, or click through to the next page in your sales funnel.

Chris Corey CMO MarketHive

 

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Market networks bring businesses into the “enabling economy”

At SXSW I became aware of a new marketing trend called “market networks.” This new business model of an “enabling economy” seems to coming of age and I thought I would explore the idea.

Market networks represent a different way to do business compared to sites like Air BNB or Uber that simply aggregate demand. In that model, neither the seller nor the customer matter. An Uber driver doesn’t know the customer and the customer doesn’t know the driver. They may never connect again.

But what if the service provider and client DO matter? What if you want to do business with a very specific person?

Jonothan Yoffe, the founder of AnyRoad described how he got the idea for his travel-related market network. He paid $2,000 for a guided trip to hike up Mount Kilimanjaro. The guide he used was experienced and hard-working but only received $5 out of the $2,000 he paid for the trip.

Where did all the rest of that money go?

Marketing, service, insurance … sure. But the fact is, somebody other than the guide was profiting from the trek. It occurred to him that if you could aggregate all the fragmented professional services needed to run a business like this you could simplify the transaction and put more power (and profit) in the hands of small service providers.

Opportunities for these market networks exist wherever there are groups of service professionals supporting an industry vertical. Organizing this way could have a significant impact on how millions of people work and live, and how hundreds of millions buy services.

The key attributes of these companies:

  • Combine the main elements of both networks and marketplaces
  • Use SaaS workflow software to focus action around longer-term projects and relationships, not just a quick transaction (like Uber)
  • Promote the service provider as a differentiated individual, helping to build long-term business benefits
  • A market network elevates the person, their reputation, their value.
  • Transaction fees are usually lowered and legal contracts are simplified
  • Market networks have stronger retention and engagement than marketplaces

The AngelList (start-ups), Houzz (decorating), LiquidSpace (office space), andStyleSeat (salon services) are pioneering examples of successful market networks. Here are a few stories I heard at SXSW about how these market networks are operating.

StyleSeat

StyleSeat is a beauty start-up in Silicon Valley. In the salon business, much of the profit will drain away from a hair stylist to pay fees, rent on a shared space, marketing, advertising, etc. By aggregating these services to help individual stylists, StyleSeat can direct more customers and profits their way.

Already 400,000 stylists have signed up and 10 million clients use the service every month. The start-up has succeeded entirely by word-of-mouth success.

AnyRoad

As I mentioned, AnyRoad aggregates services for small businesses in the tourism industry. So many small business owners lose out because they don’t know how to efficiently do marketing, SEO, customer service, etc. Creating a market network to aggregate these services greatly simplifies their workflow, and they can run their business from a smartphone app provided by AnyRoad.

AnyRoad is experiencing tremendous growth because they found that the “nodes” in their network started expanding the network as the tour guides connected to the concierges and agencies that generate their business.

On average, their customers are growing their business by 30 percent in the first month through access to new customers and markets.

Liquidspace

Liquidspace is a market network for working space. The founder, Mark Gilbreath, discovered that leasing office space was generally an inflexible and complicated business.

The traditional real estate model does not work for most new businesses – a start-up might need space for days, then a month, and eventually a year or more to adjust to the dynamics in their business.

LiquidSpace rapidly signed up 50,000 companies in 800 cities and 5,000 venues as a marketplace for office space. One particular creative solution is to connect to hotels to lease unused rooms and meeting areas for temporary business space.

The company also offers a service to alert businesses when property in a certain area becomes available to most effectively connect supply and demand. You can also rent space in a very efficient way by implementing pre-negotiated, standard legal contracts.

Who loses

With any disruptive idea, not every company will benefit from this trend. Here are the types of companies that could lose:

  • Those who collect fees as an intermediary
  • Capitalists investing in brick and mortar services
  • Marketplaces that are not providing value to the vendors, who are simply aggregating demand.

These market network business have the potential to disrupt traditional markets by doing something in an entirely new way.  They are unburdened by the traditional confines of an industry and provide a value that is different from, and maybe even better than, the standard way.  This new way might not be cheaper, but it is more flexible and immediate – for the user and the providers.

What are your thoughts?

This post was originally written as part of the Dell Insight Partners program, which provides news and analysis about the evolving world of tech. For more on these topics, visit Dell’s thought leadership site dell.com/futurereadyDell sponsored this article, but the opinions are my own and don’t necessarily represent Dell’s positions or strategies

Chris Corey CMO MarketHive

Illustration courtesy Flickr CC and Simon Cockell

Written by: Mark W Schaefer

 

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Markethive the Social Network for Entrepreneurs Marketing AutomationUnderstanding the Markethive blog and cloud

Markethive Backlinking and Social Networking using Automated Marketing

Markethive did not invent the blog, but we certainly have made it exponentially more powerful.  We certainly have added fun, understanding, reach, groups, daily workshops, understanding and power to the process.

Markethive has successfully combined all the technical and tactical aspects and requirements into one system, but have also overcome the obstacles to make blogging a group process, combined with motivated mentors to help the newbie easily immerse and embrace the process.

We did not invent Word Press, but we have significantly taken Word Press serious and made it exponentially better. This blog’s focus is to help you understand the paradigm dynamic shift Markethive has brought to marketing, blogging and the individual within the hive.

The following video attempts to reveal and illustrate how the whole social blogging platform in Markethive changes the entire Internet field of engagement.

 

 

Understanding SEO

You can approach the challenge alone, hire a firm and/or a virtual assistance and take the Internet on. This ego centered approach works for many who have the grit and stamina and educated skills of journalism and polished writing (a note here: As the Internet has evolved, the polished blogger vs the blogger that lacks the polish but has the passion, wins in today’s culture).

Approaching the blogosphere as a crew, a group, a gang or a family wins today.  Because fresh, new, consistent and current content win and win you combine a social network into a blogging platform, the results are impressive.

Understanding  SEO isn’t easy, and Google doesn’t help things much by changing the algorithms and policies on a regular basis. Seems like every time we get a handle on things, the rules change, and we’re all left wondering what we’re doing wrong and what we might still possibly be doing right.

The whole SEO quotient changes when the social network variable is integrated. This is why SEO at Markethive changes the playing field.

So a social network integrated blogging solution is at hand, and, there’s one thing you may have been doing correctly already from the start: That being blogging. You probably have a million reasons to blog, not the least of which include building trust among your buyers, positioning yourself as an expert, and simply sharing news with your company’s followers. Then, of course, there are those activities that help to boost your SEO rankings. These can only help you if you know how to use them, so make note of these 9 reasons blogging can boost your SEO.

Enter the Markethive Social Network Engine combined with the Inbound Marketing Engine. Kind of reminds of the Hot Rods of the 60s like Eddie Hill’s double dragon (see image):

Except with Markethive, the combining the two huge engines of the Internet, Social Networking and Inbound Marketing has an exponential nature to it, not just a geometrical quotient.

This innovative integration of these two power houses has a powerful effect on all that ios Internet Marketing as I illustrate, please read on.

 

Backlinking

The following is the conventional wisdom perspective to today’s linking approach.

Some of the techniques used for SEO when blogging raise eyebrows, and back linking is no exception. Many will tell you link schemes will get you a slap on the wrist from Google, and they’d be right. Does that mean you can’t build relationships with other companies and blogs by including links and asking for some in return? Not at all.

You can still benefit greatly from being linked and linking to others, but there are some things to keep in mind. First, if you’ve paid for your link, be sure they use the nofollow designation. Otherwise, you’ll be penalized. Next, work with reputable, quality sites that fit your blog’s niche. When links to your blog appear on sites that have nothing to do with your company, you’ll get another ding from Google. Finally, use the same basic rules for any blogs you link to on your site.

Good quality links from popular, well-respected sites can definitely help your SEO rankings, but only if you do it right.

Now, with that said, the amazing change that occurs to your campaign to build organic, condust and create relationships in the blogging power of the Inbound Marketing Social Network of Markethive, delivers a plethora of SEO (Search Engine Optimization), SNM (Social Network Marketing) and the advantages therein if developing unlimited streams of unique content, automated into literally millions of sites, social networks, social bookmarks, blogging platforms from the stream of content that flows out of the Markethive Social Network you are part of or built.

So what does all that mean? As the natural order of our recent tech releases of the Blog Casting (Social Broadcaster) and Blog Swiping (where your friends and other members can easily copy and edit your blog) then publish it and with the advent of this opening the possibility with these new tools produce a cacophony of your content, links, back links, side links, social reaches into the millions. All built upon chaos theory and technology.

The natural organic process to build a huge amazing white hat mass of blog and site links and social reach, thereby, the vision of the Blog Cloud has come to be reality, thank you Markethive, the social networked Inbound Marketing juggernaut.

Simply put, not just combining but fully integrating two platforms, the Entrepreneurial Social Network and a fully appointed Inbound Marketing platform, has opened up doorways not otherwise capable or even aware of or identified in the exponential character of the Markethive Hybrid. Sort of like Twin Towers built on the same foundation.

Actually more like a million communities of twin towers all inter connected and pulsing and thriving with the constant flow of content and videos and communications (comments and messaging) even further empowered with a constant thriving community of live conference room activity.

 

Guest Blogging

 

Again Markethive takes the awkward and difficult process of guest blogging and turns it into a graceful social dance. I will explain after I share again the Internet’s explanation of what has been defined as guest blogging.

The  latest hoopla suggests guest blogging is dead, but that’s not necessarily true. As with the backlinking, guest blogs can be tremendously beneficial to the SEO of your website. If you work with reputable writers who are indeed experts in their industry, their popularity can only help you.

For this tactic to work, you must be vigilant when screening potential bloggers. Interview them, research their backgrounds, and compare their submission to everything they’ve written before to make sure you get truly unique content. If you follow Google’s quality guidelines, your guest blog from a well-known source will bring you tremendous traffic and boost your search engine rankings.

Markethive has turned this difficult proposition into one of grace and ease. Because the core of your blogging can now be centered within Markethive, which supports and publishes to just about every blogging platform out there.  As a social network, you can build a sphere of influence easily with others who are open to and or capable of assisting in your blogging efforts.

Groups also serve as additional blogging platforms, for the individual who keeps track of different campaigns separated by the groups. Groups also parlay into teams of content creators, allow a team captain to manage and lead the agenda and monitor and choose the array of articles by the group to which blog(s) that article automatically gets sent.

The options that the Markethive tools has created for diverse and distributed content is unlimited and better managed than any other option available in the blogosphere.

Group Blogging not only replaces the old guard of guest blogging, it enhances it, makes it easier to, manage and distribute. It changes the entire playing field.

You can integrate single Markethive members, and/or integrate entire groups into as many blog systems you wish. By simply organizing, selecting and developing different cock tails groups for your blogs, you can literally create unlimited selections and unlimited content for unlimited blogs, your blogs, their blogs, unlimited groups of competent writers and marketers. Get into the mix, join some groups, and get into some Workshops and put the system to work for you.

We can even say that you can produce dynamic content on your blog without as much effort as the conventional way.

 

Fresh Content

Search engines love fresh, unique content. How often do the pages on your website change? Probably not very often at all. That’s why you must keep a steady blog filled with new information every week. Those search engines customers used to find companies just like yours will pull the freshest and most relevant content whenever a search is performed. If your site hasn’t been updated with new information in over a year, you can bet someone else’s will rank higher than yours in the results.

By blogging, you build relationships with your readers, position yourself as an expert in the field, and perhaps most importantly, provide new content for Google to index.

By joining Markethive you build relationships with thousands of others who are actively building business, blogging, researching, etc. basically being “entrepreneurs” and advancing their businesses and agendas. Often you can join with these people as friends, group members and subscribers of theirs via Blog Casting, Blog Sharing and Blog Swiping.

When you are an active member in a good group (active and current), using meetings and live webinars, discussions breed inspirations which support developing new content. Here is a tip I use to help with fresh content. I want to write about the “current trends for the entrepreneur market”. So I go to Google and I search the tail words SEO entrepreneur trends but I designate a small tool many are not aware of.

It is found in “Search tools” in the Google search as the illustration below demonstrates. Choose last week or within 24 hours to get very fresh current content to use in building your blog article. This way, you are assured to be utilizing current references building current articles, sharing with your groups and creating a dynamic culture. Checking new content with Google daily in relations to your agenda is something that should also be shared (the search link) within your groups for discussion.

Keywords

Keywords go hand in hand with fresh content. It also pays to see what current or newest results are shown for current sites utilizing the same technique for current content for your research and agenda.

Even though keywords really don’t hold the same weight they once did, it still needs your attention.  In fact, this is another aspect of SEO you can do really wrong and end up punished for. The age of cramming keywords into a blog over and over, regardless of what they add to the content, is over. Now those keywords have to serve a purpose. You really want to make sure you choose unique keywords that will lead searchers to your site but not so unique that no one thinks to use them. If you choose words that are used too often, you won’t get much benefit out of them.

Your best bet with keywords and search terms is to use long-tail keywords and phrases that people may use when searching. Instead of focusing too much on keyword placement and making sure you include the words a certain number of times, concentrate on simply answering questions. Provide knowledge for those who reach your site. They don’t need a million keywords; they need answers.

For instance, the long-tail keyword “Inbound Marketing” had barely begun trending in 2009 with a slow crawl upward until just recently, with the advent of Markethive’s soft launch and discussions of the definition of “Inbound Marketing” and the increase of Social Network chatter in that regards we are now seeing the current trend start to grow.

My first company invented what we called “Automated Marketing” but today fits the new definition “Inbound Marketing” As you can see the term “Automated Marketing” is trending down from a long crown of being a top searched keyword.

See the trend towards “Marketing Automation” beginning? Why is Marketing Automation trending up and Automated Marketing trending down? Does it deserve research?

In my opinion no, but, what does need to be looked at in my regards is our new pre launched/soft launched company (as of May7, 2016) is the Trademark “Markethive”.

Because if we read these trends right, we want to make sure we mention Markethive often in connection to “Inbound Marketing” and “Marketing Automation”. This will place squarely in front of the trend curve binding the “long tail” keywords together.

Markethive’s SEO keyword system leads us to these research outcomes, but until the Google API is fully integrated to Markethive’s Keyword platform I go to the Google Trend panel here as well.

https://www.google.com/trends/

Popularity

When your blogs are shared and consequently clicked on, they move up in the search rankings. If you’re providing quality content, your readers will want others to know. Of course, the only way to make sure your blogs contribute to your website’s popularity is to create unique content, provide answers for visitors, and then share your blogs wherever you can.

That key point “Share your blogs wherever you can” is another way of saying “Broadcast” them. And Markethive has taken Broadcasting to new heights with Blog Casting and SNAP.  Blog Casting is a Markethive subscribe feature that other Markethive members use to subscribe to your Markethive blog. When they subscribe (and the potential is 1000s of them), your blog posts are automatically posted to their Facebook Newsfeeds, LinkedIn activity feeds and your Twitter tweets feed.

When you understand that this down stream of subscribers, fellow entrepreneurs at MarketHive, are exposing their connections to your message, they are lifting you up, increasing your popularity and building greater branding for you.

Then there is the Blog Sharing feature that also allows your fellow Markethive entrepreneurs to import your blog posts to their WordPress blogs using the SNAP plugin increasing your message (your posts) to another 25 of their social networks, Facebook Pages, LinkedIn company pages, SumbleUpon, Tumbler, Livejournal, Blogspot, ets, exponentially increasing your exposure and adding to your back links.

When you discover the responsibility this represents that you show respect, produce quality content to your loyal downstream, you now have the opportunity to build a huge popular following. Markethive, The Rise of the Entrepreneur. We have put a great future in your hands. Now it is up to you.

 

Images

Image search Automated Marketing Inbound Marketing from Markethive

Including images in your blog gives you one more way search engines can find you. Make sure you name them according to the search terms or keywords, and then do the same for the alt-text. The alt-text is meant to describe what’s in the image for those who don’t or aren’t able to see images on their computer screens. For this reason, your alt-text must be carefully crafted to serve two purposes: SEO and information.

I search a lot in images and so do others. They may be looking for an image to fill a need, the reasons vary, but a lot of traffic does come from image searching, so do not ignore this small duty. Alt tags serve an important batch of duties.

When installing images in the Markethive HTML control panel, the following Image control panel, second tab, is where to enter your keywords and descriptions.

Alt tags Google search Markethive

When looking at the HTML code, this is exactly what ALT tags look like and search engines Index.

Alt tags html code

 

Video

Google indexing video

As with photos, video simply gives you more dynamic content that you can share with your readers. Remember they’re looking for excellent, unique content, so be sure you include only videos that serve a purpose. Proprietary videos are always the best bet, since syndicated content will show up on several different sites during a search result.

If you have never made a video, get some screen capturing software. I use Camtasia (cost about $300)

https://www.techsmith.com/camtasia.html

Camtasia the video capture software used by Markethive

A viable alternative (I cannot recommend as I have not used it) is called MOVAVI

http://www.movavi.com/

Markethive has not evaluated Movavi

I also down load others videos to use them in my final productions. I build titles and other content with Photoshop Software, but there are other cheaper alternatives. Many of my friends recommend GIMP for image editing. https://www.gimp.org/

A video download app for Chrome I use is free. http://keepvid.com/

I recommend you make as many of your videos you can, but do not produce bad or funky videos. Today, you need quality and you are welcome to download and use all Markethive videos I produce for yourself.

Be sure you tag your videos with appropriate search terms before you post. Let readers know exactly what’s going on in the video so they can find your content in a search.

Youtube and Markethive

I know video editing and production can be daunting to many at first. However, we have plenty od excellent talent that offer video workshops in Markethive. Just check the calendar or enquire within the membership (Social Network).

Remember we are all Entrepreneurs and most of us are also philanthropic and want to help you succeed. I know I do.

Check the calendar

 

Social Media

Markethive Marketing Automation and Social Network Integration

Believe it or not, Google also returns social media search results. If you connect your blog to your Facebook, Twitter, and other social media accounts, you give search engines one more thing to find when people look for your company. As long as you use search terms in your titles and meta descriptions, you’ll boost your SEO through social media listings, too.

A popular set of current wisdom pulled from the Internet void (5 Things to Think About When Considering The Impact of Social on SEO) :

1. Social Links May or May Not Boost Your Search Rank

Okay, social signals pertaining to a profile’s authority are out, but does Google consider links published on social accounts to be credible backlinks? When a blog post goes viral on Twitter, do those new links boost the post’s search ranking?

Many marketers believe that links to your website via social media accounts do have a major impact on your rankings. Says Marketing Consultant Brian Honigman:

 

Today, links are mainly achieved through developing original content that is in turn, shared across social media. Links to your content on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, YouTube and other social networks help the search engines understand what websites are credible and should be ranked for what keyword phrases.

 

 

In Danny Sullivan’s 2010 interview with Google and Bing for Search Engine Watch, Google first says that it doesn’t incorporate the number of times a link has been tweeted into their search rank algorithm, and then it goes on to say that it does (doh). Bing says that it definitely looks at this data:

 

We take into consideration how often a link has been tweeted or retweeted, as well as the authority of the Twitter users that shared the link.

 

While Cutts’ 2014 video is crystal-clear about the absence of social signals from the search algorithm, he does say that Google crawls social websites for data in the same way that it would any other site:

Facebook and Twitter pages are treated like any other pages in our web index, and so if something occurs on Twitter or occurs on Facebook and we’re able to crawl it then we can return that in our search results.

This leads me to think that while the authority of a social account doesn’t impact search rank, links published on social media could be marked as credible back-links and thus influence a page’s rank.

Takeaways: When Cutts made his statement about Google not factoring in social signals I understood him to mean clues about a particular company’s authority on social media, which, for me, is distinct from the number of times a page has been linked to on social media. Further research didn’t help me get much clarity on this point.

If there are any SEO experts reading this, I’d love for you to chime in below in the comments.

 

2. Social Media Profiles Rank in Search Engines

While social shares may or may not affect a webpage’s position in search listings, your social profiles definitely influence the content of your search results. In fact, social media profiles are often amongst the top results in search listings for brand names. When I searched “General Electric” in Google, the company’s Instagram and Pinterest profiles appeared as the 5th and 6th listings, respectively, and Twitter was the 8th result.

Google Search Markethive

Moreover, Google displayed the company’s Google+ profile information in the right-hand sidebar at the very top of the search results page.

Google Markethive Profile

While social shares may or may not affect a webpage’s position in search listings, your social profiles definitely influence the content of your search results. In fact, social media profiles are often amongst the top results in search listings for brand names. When I searched “General Electric” in Google, the company’s Instagram and Pinterest profiles appeared as the 5th and 6th listings, respectively, and Twitter was the 8th result.

Social channels can feel more personal than webpages, and they’re a great way to get a sense of a company’s personality off the bat. When I’m researching a company I don’t know much about I typically go straight to their Twitter or Facebook page. So if a social account shows up at the top of the search results, I’m just as likely to click on it as I would be to click on their website.

Takeaway: There’s no doubt that your social profiles matter to Google and especially to people who are looking for you online. A few active social channels can make the experience of getting to know your brand online more fun, engaging and personal. Also, while some may consider Google+ a non-essential social channel, marketers shouldn’t discount the fact that a company’s Google+ profile is one of the first things a searcher will see (and potentially click on). As such, it pays to have a profile with up-to-date info and engaging content.

 

3. Social Media Channels Are Search Engines, Too

Nowadays, people don’t just go to Google and Bing to look stuff up; they also use social media channels to find what they’re looking for. Patel makes this point in his article on why social is the new SEO: “We need to understand that search engine optimization includes the search that happens on social media search engines.”

This works in a couple of ways: First, if you’re active on Twitter, it’s entirely possible that people will discover your company’s new content distribution app after searching for content marketing-related tweets with Twitter’s search engine. Likewise, brands that lend themselves to beautiful visual content can benefit from making their content visible in Pinterest and Instagram by using hashtags and properly categorizing their pins.

Moreover, as mentioned in point #1, if someone wants to check out your company, they’re likely to open Twitter and Facebook and do a quick search to see what kind of presence you have on each channel. YouTube, and, of course, Google+ are also search engines.

Markethive Instagram

Here are some impressive stats that illuminate just how much people are using social media to search:

As of 2010, Twitter handled 19 billion search queries a month (that’s more than 5x the queries handled by Bing!).

In 2012 Facebook said it got around one billion search queries per day.

As of March 2010, YouTube got roughly 3.7 billion search queries a month. Also, 100 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute, making it one of the largest content repositories on the web.

 

Takeaways: Companies should expand their concept of SEO to include not just the traditional search engines––Google and Bing––but also social search engines.

When searching for a brand on Facebook or Twitter it’s not uncommon to see several different profiles pop up, and it’s not always clear which one is the real deal. Marketers need to ensure that it’s super easy for users to identify their official social profiles.

This may mean deleting duplicate accounts and/or clearly labeling each social account so that users understand what purpose they serve (for example, accounts for HR or press versus general brand pages).

 

4. Not Now Doesn’t Mean Not Ever

Just because Google says that social signals don’t currently impact search rank doesn’t mean they never will. Social media shows no sign of becoming a less important part of a brand or person’s online presence anytime soon; moreover, given that link-building strategies like guest blogging have become a less reliable way to indicate the quality of a webpage, it makes sense that search engines would begin to look for other signals of authority and value.

Takeaways: There’s no reason why social signals won’t begin to affect search rankings in the future, so smart brands will continue to build their authority in key social channels and think about social when designing their SEO strategy.

 

5. Don’t Forget Bing

Google may have back-tracked and changed their stance on social signals, but I haven’t found any evidence that what Bing told Sullivan for his Search Engine Watch interview doesn’t hold true today.

Remember, Bing said:

 

We do look at the social authority of a user. We look at how many people you follow, how many follow you, and this can add a little weight to a listing in regular search results.

 

Takeaways: Bing, which is the second most-used search engine, has been crystal clear about how their algorithm incorporates social signals into their search results, and, unlike Google, they haven’t flip-flopped on the issue. With its market share steadily growing, companies would be wise to include Bing in their SEO strategies.

 

Wrapping Up

Cutts’ claim that Google’s search algorithm ignores social signals should not be seen as an invitation for marketers to dismiss social’s impact on SEO. Instead, marketers should broaden their concept of search and SEO to take into account the myriad ways that people find content on the web. They also need to think about the positive effects that increased traffic from social can potentially have on their search rankings as well as the prominence of social profiles on first-page search results.

Ultimately, the web is all about building relationships, fostering audiences, expressing identity and sharing ideas––it’s inherently social, and there’s no reason that SEO best practices would go against the grain, especially since the rules that govern SEO are ultimately meant to make the web a more enjoyable and useful place.

 

Indexed Pages

Google Markethive Indexed pages

Perhaps the most important reason of all to blog is the fact that each post counts as a new page on your website. Google really does like fresh content and will reward those who share frequently. Those who do include a business blog on their site will see up to 55% more traffic than companies who don’t. The reason for this is the indexed pages. For Google to index those pages, you need to include at least 300 quality words. That means reblogging, short blogs, and duplicating content won’t help you. There is a time and place for the previously mentioned blog types, but not when you’re hoping to boost your SEO.

Now that you understand why blogging is essential to improving your SEO results, you probably want to get started right away. Don’t get bogged down or feel overwhelmed. A systematic approach is what you need, starting with a content calendar. Simply start by answering those burning questions your potential customers have. Plan blogs that will touch on their pain points. You’ll see results sooner than you ever thought possible.

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Thomas Prendergast
CMO Markethive, Inc.