20 Things Every Graduating Marketing Student Needs to Know

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It’s college graduation season! Graduation caps are flying through the air, names are being mispronounced, and awkward questions about future careers are being asked. What’s missing? A crash course when it comes to what marketing students actually need to know to enter the real world of marketing.

Unfortunately, featuring your fancy new diploma with the words “B.S. in Marketing” does more for fantastic graduation photos than it does for fantastic post-grad jobs. The sad truth is that most marketing students aren’t adequately prepared for the real world.

To all you current and future marketing students, here’s a list of 20 things, under the umbrella of five key categories, of what you actually need to know before entering theprofessional marketing world. The list is a collection of advice from current members of the HubSpot marketing team — including full-time marketing professionals who have graduated in years past as well as marketing interns who are graduating this year or in the future.


1. Don’t be afraid of numbers.

I can’t tell you how many students I’ve come across who tell me they avoid taking any classes that involve quantitative analysis or statistics. News flash: marketers need statistics. You need to be prepared to analyze everything you do. Don’t use the excuse that you plan on being a “social media marketer.” I’m on the HubSpot social media team, and I spend every single day looking at and interpreting charts and graphs. You need to be able to look at a spreadsheet of numbers, make the proper calculations, and analyze what they mean. Otherwise, you’re wasting a whole lot of time making decisions without proof that they work and/or benefit your business in some way. So pay attention in stats.


4Ps of Marketing hubspot resized 600

2. It’s not all about the Four P’s and C’s of Marketing.

Whether your marketing classes preach the P’s or C’s of Marketing, it doesn’t matter. While they can help introduce you to the core concepts of marketing, the chances of you dealing with a real-world marketing situation by brainstorming how you meet price, product, place, and promotion is unrealistic. You need to be thinking about much more, which will come in later parts of this list.

3. Your classroom doesn’t teach you to think on your feet.

Simulate “real-life” scenarios as much as you want, but you won’t actually learn to make important decisions in tight time frames until you’re managing real dollars, working to uphold a real company’s reputation, and investing your energy in real projects. You can’t practice it either. You have to be there and do it a few times, and then you’ll learn. Use internships as an opportunity to do this, which takes us to our next section.


4. Having an internship on your resume isn’t “impressive.”

You had a summer internship at a marketing agency last summer? Great! So did everybody else. The fact that you had an internship is not impressive, it’s what you did while you were there that is (or isn’t). Students have accepted this false notion that even if you’re just answering phones, the fact that you had some big company’s name on your resume will get you a job. It might get you in the door for an interview, but if you can’t share the benefit you provided to the company, you won’t be seen as a valuable resource.

5. Prove your value and capability. 

On the topic of using internships to think on your feet, don’t be afraid to take initiative either at your first job or internship. Don’t just let your boss tell you what to do. I once had a professor ask my class, “How many of you would dare say something against your boss?” I was the only student to raise my hand. If you think your boss is wrong, there’s nothing wrong with speaking up — so long as you do so respectfully and with sound reasoning to back yourself up. You’re never going to learn if you just take what people tell you for granted. The same goes for professors. I once started a “marketing war” with one my professors by debating his suggestions. Which one of us was right, no one can say, but the value we both got from discussing our opinions was much greater than knowing who was right. 


A 3-Minute Investment That'll Make You a Better Content Creator

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gervaid-adviceFast Company started a brilliant series recently called “Creation Stories,” a series to help educate people about the creative process. Istumbled upon a video they created with Ricky Gervais for the series — and being a content creator as well as a Gervais fan, I figured I’d give it a whirl.

After watching it, I recommend you do, too, especially if you’re interested in learning about how to become a better content creator. And I’ll recommend it even more highly if you’re interested in becoming a better content creator, but only have three-ish minutes to spare.

(The video is technically 3:39, but you can skip ahead to the 32-second mark, which is where his concrete advice begins. And if you’re not a fan of cursing, skipping ahead will also prevent you from hearing that. But you’ll also miss Gervais’s trademark funny self-deprecation and amazing giggle-cackle. So, you know, your choice.)

The question Fast Company asked him was, “What’s the greatest influence on your creative process?” Here’s what he had to say.


Uber Entertainment has used the Steam Controller and likes it

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Valve has been sending around its Steam Controller prototype to various game developers since its announcement last week. The latest crew to lay hands on it is Uber Entertainment, creator of Planetary Annihilation and Super Monday Night Combat. So far, the developer likes it.

“Moving the mouse around in X-Com using the Steam controller and having it go exactly where I wanted felt good. Like a trackball with feedback,” Art Director and Executive Producer Chandana Ekanayake wrote. “I think based on what we played with today, Planetary Annihilation in the living room with a Steam controller is possible.”

Co-founder Jon Mavor referred to the Steam controller as “officially awesome,” and software engineer Forrest Smith said it “fits my hands perfectly. Better than PS3, PS4, or 360 even.”

In addition to Planetary Annihilation, the Uber team tried out Portal 2, Dark Souls, and XCOM, noting that the controls were configurable to each game. When asked on Twitter if games like StarCraft would be playable, Ekanayake responded, “I think you could but it depends on your skill level. It’s not quite there yet and they’re still tweaking the controller.”

8 Essential Steps to Get Your Nonprofit Ready for Giving Tuesday

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On December 3, the 2nd annual Giving Tuesday, a national day of giving driven through social media channels by nonprofits, for-profits, and individuals, will take place.

Last year, more than $10 million was raised on Giving Tuesday, which marked a 53% increase in giving from the same day in 2011. Over 2,700 partners drove conversation of the charitable day, which trended on Twitter (with the hashtag #GivingTuesday) nationally and led to engagement from Bill Gates, Chase, and even The White House.

The History of Giving Tuesday

Launched in September 2012, Giving Tuesday became a sizable movement within just three months, and on November 27 of that year, the special day kicked off the giving season with a bang. 

Started by the 92nd Street Y’s interim CEO Henry Timms, Giving Tuesday marks the opening day for the end-of-year-giving season, much like Black Friday and Cyber Monday marks the beginning of the holiday shopping season. After two days of getting, Timms wanted to encourage the country to give back.

In a webinar with Nonprofit Times and Salsa Labs earlier this year, Timms mentioned that the biggest surprise of Giving Tuesday’s success was the creativity of nonprofits, for-profits, families, volunteers, and individuals who were partners of Giving Tuesday and started their own campaigns.

“It’s not just about the 92nd Street Y as one organization, but really about a community of organizations all over the country coming together to really crowdsource and brainstorm whether we could create a movement called Giving Tuesday,” said Timms.


Microsoft officially pulls the plug on MSN TV

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dnp  Microsoft officially pulls the plug on MSN TV

The time has come: As announced earlier this summer, Microsoft is shuttering MSN TV, a service it’s operated since 1997. Originally known as WebTV, the box (naturally) brought the internet to many a living-room set — it was something of a pioneer back in the day, really. Nostalgic types can still turn to the Xbox 360 and the PS3 for their browser-on-the-big-screen needs, of course, and MSN TV holdouts will want to switch their email addresses to Outlook and copy saved content to SkyDrive, stat. For more details, hit up the ultra-comprehensive FAQ page via the link below.

NYC plans free public WiFi expansion in all five boroughs by December 2013

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Changing NYC

A handful of neighborhoods in Manhattan, Brooklyn, Staten Island, Queens and the Bronx will have high-speed WiFi access available for businesses and residents by the end of this year. NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced an expansion today that’ll roll out over the next few months, lighting up parts of downtown Brooklyn, lower Manhattan, Harlem and other areas by December 2013. Companies have invested $3.4 million in the new infrastructure, and the city has contributed $900,000 to get the job done. We’re still a long way from having a city blanketed in completely free high-speed wireless internet, but with widespread availability in key areas, thousands of residents and smaller businesses should be able to drop their current internet providers before the ball drops to welcome 2014.

Sharp's Aquos Phone Xx is almost all screen, gives 80.5 percent good face

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Sharp's Aquos Phone Xx is almost all screen, gives 805 percent good face

“Too much bezel” — how often have you seen that complaint in the comment section of new phone announces? Well, you can throw this Sharp Aquos Phone Xx (and its mini companion) in the face of that haterade brigade because 80.5 percent of its 5.2-inch front is all screen. At 70 x 132 x 9.9mm, the Xx is more compact than Sony’s rival 5-inch phablet, the Xperia Z1, but its collection of top shelf specs gives it a fatter profile. The Android device, which joins Softbank’s 4G LTE lineup this December, crams a 1080p display, 2.2GHz Snapdragon 800 running Jelly Bean 4.2, 2,600mAh battery and a 16.3-megapixel rear camera (with an f/1.9 lens) into that squat, water-resistant frame...

3Doodler 3D printing pen starts shipping to Kickstarter backers, retail models arriving in early 2014

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It’s not news every time a Kickstarter product starts shipping to backers, but in the case of 3Doodler, it’s worth a mention. At last count, the startup had raised $2.3 million to fund its 3D printing pen, and with a cost of $99 per device, well, you do the math: that’s a lot of people waiting for their new toy to arrive. And we mean it when we say “toy” — while you won’t be creating anything useful like a gun or a Van Gogh knockoff, there’s really nothing more addictive than “drawing” in the air with melted plastic, and watching it solidify. For those of you who ordered early, you already know what you’re in for. As for the rest of you, your next chance to get one will be in early 2014, though you can place a pre-order today if you like...

Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag PC release date announced

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After months and months of uncomfortable silence and nebulous date ranges, Ubisoft has finally announced that the PC version of Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag will sail into view around the same time as its next-gen console versions on Nov. 19.

Of course, with new information comes a new trailer, though this one shows off the game’s crew of buccaneers more than Caribbean foliage or the proper way to harpoon a shark (it’s all in the wrist). I imagine Ubisoft’s afraid to show off another 15 minute video as we’d probably deduce the ending through the sheer amount of footage that’s been released thus far.

Personally, I don’t care that the PC verison isn’t hitting the original October 29 release date if it means we get a more optimized PC game from Ubisoft than we have in years (or months) past. Ubisoft PC ports have traditionally been, well, less than spectacular, but that doesn’t mean things can’t change. A new team’s building this game, and with that comes new expectations.

VorpX turns BioShock Infinite, Mirror's Edge (and more) into Oculus Rift-ready games

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VorpX turns BioShock Infinite, Mirror's Edge and more into Oculus Riftready games

Irrational Games’ blockbuster BioShock Infinite and EA DICE’s Mirror’s Edge weren’t built with the Oculus Rift in mind, but both are part of a huge list of games supported by a new piece of software available today: VorpX. The still-in-beta, $40 application promises to convert a variety of games from monitor-exclusive experiences to Oculus Rift-ready VR games, including the aforementioned two and a lengthy list of others.

As none of the supported games are meant to work with the Rift, a variety of workarounds are implemented by VorpX. Clicking in and holding down your mouse wheel, for instance, allows you to “edge peek,” which allows users to look freely at the edges of their field-of-view instead of it moving with the headset’s movement. Additionally, since rendering two distinct views of high-def, modern games is taxing, VorpX uses a workaround called “Z-buffer,” which is apparently “the highest performing” of the two available options, but not as pretty. You can also choose “Geometry 3D,” which does render two distinct feeds and, well, we’re jealous of whatever system you’ve got that’s running that smoothly. Not every game supports both modes, but a fair number do (there’s a listright here comparing both). Head below for a handful of video demonstrations of VorpX in action, as well as the full list of supported games.

Moto X could have price slashed to $100 by Christmas, $50 for wooden covers

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Motorola's Moto X could cost $100 by end of the year, $50 for wooden covers

When Motorola announced it’s first flagship since becoming part of Google’s empire, it was to mixed response. But, if evleaks is right, as is often the case, then a forthcoming $100 price-drop could suddenly change all that. Currently, the customisable phone that listens to your every word will set you back $199 on your network of choice, so a drop to $99 on contract — just in time for Christmas — could see this rise up the ranks. Oh, and those wooden covers? Our leaker claims will come with a $50 price tag, for those that want the natural look.

Nikkei: KDDI plans 220 Mbps cellular network upgrade for summer 2014

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Nikkei KDDI prepping smartphone with 220Mbps LTEAdvanced data

Think 150Mbps LTE-Advanced data is quick? KDDI could offer far more bandwidth next year. Nikkei claims that the Japanese carrier plans to upgrade its cellular network to 220 Mbps data as soon as summer 2014. Service would reportedly launch with an Android smartphone, and rely on new wireless technology; it’s not clear whether this entails a faster LTE-A variant or something new. KDDI hasn’t confirmed the rumor, so we wouldn’t considermoving to Japan just yet. If there’s any truth to the claims, however, even NTT DoCoMo’s upgraded LTE could soon feel downright pokey.

Alcatel quietly reveals One Touch Idol S, Idol Mini and Evo 8 HD tablet

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DNP Alcatel One Touch Mini, S, Evo 8 HD

Unlike babies that wail when they’re born, the three new members of Alcatel’s One Touch family have silently slipped into the company’s website. The two handsets, the Idol S and the Idol Mini, follow the original trio revealed at CES this year, sharing similar elements despite the difference in size. Both run Android 4.2, can read microSD cards up to 32GB in capacity and support quad-band GSM, as well as some UMTS (3G) bands, depending on the model.

Idol S, the larger of the two weighs 110 grams, has a 4.7-inch 1,280 x 720-pixel screen and DC-HSPA data connectivity. It’s powered by a 1.2GHz dual-core processor, has 4GB of internal storage, 1GB of RAM and an 8-megapixel rear / 1.3-megapixel front-facing camera. On the other hand, the Idol Mini has a smaller 4...

ASUS teases new Transformer Pad coming September 4th, confirms it definitely has bezel

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ASUS teases new Transformer Pad coming September 4th, confirms it definitely has bezel

As IFA starts to slowly edge its way over the horizon, the product teasers start to rain. We’ve already seen hints from Sony, an outright admission from Samsung, and speculation from HTC. The latest tidbit, comes via ASUS’s Facebook, which suggests it plans to show a new tablet at the event. What can we say about it? Well, odds on it’s another Transformer Pad, running Android, and if you’re into numerology (and consistency), Tegra 4 inside. Coincidentally, an unknown ASUS tablet (pictured after the break) with model number K00C popped up at the FCC last week, revealing little more than the usual WiFi and Bluetooth radios, and a display somewhere around 10-inches...

Alt-week 08.31.13: We're all Martians, Mega Drive music and reinventing the ruler

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Alt-week 08.31.13: We're all Martians, Mega Drive music and reinventing the ruler

Alt-week takes a look at the best science and alternative tech stories from the last seven days.

Some things become obsolete, some things rise to live again. Two of our stories over the fold demonstrate new tricks from old dogs. The third? Just, y’know, suggests that we’re all actually from Mars. No biggie. This is alt-week.

PSA: Windows Phones to lose Google Sync activation on August 1st

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PSA Windows Phones without GDR2 lose sync for new Google accounts tomorrow

Windows Phone users who want to use Google Sync for contact and calendar integration had better act quickly: today is the last day that they can link their handsets to the service before Google pulls the plug. From August 1st onwards, Google Sync will only work on a given Windows Phone if it’s already configured. The GDR 2 upgradekeeps syncing alive through CalDAV and CardDAV support, although many users could go without that support for some time — to date, Americans can only see the OS refresh on the HTC 8XT, Lumia 520, Lumia 925 and Lumia 1020. If you’re not in that group and miss the Google Sync deadline, you’ll just have to sit tight while Microsoft finishes rolling out the GDR 2 update this summer.

Trakdot luggage tracker now shipping

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Remember that luggage tracking device we did a hands-on with back at CES? Well, now you can finally get your own hands around it. Trakdot Luggage has just started shipping. The little box auto-transmits its location via quad-band GSM chip and triangulation, letting you know where your toiletries are at all times (except when you’re actually in the air, naturally). Trakdot will run you $50, a price that includes a luggage tag and batteries (which should give you around two weeks of use). You’ll also need to drop $9 for the activation and $13 for the annual service fee, if you want more than just a suitcase paperweight. And as for actually tracking the package, you’ll have to rely on your parcel carrier for that information.

This is the Modem World: The sinister side of the '80s BBS

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This is the Modem World The sinister side of the '80s BBS

Each week Joshua Fruhlinger contributes This is the Modem World, a column dedicated to exploring the culture of consumer technology.

Some of the following, for legal reasons, may or may not be fictional.

My first modem was a 300-baud Apple-Cat II. It was an expansion card for the Apple II and simply plugged into a phone line. It was, simply put, a bad-ass piece of technology that turned me into a total digital delinquent. While my parents thought I was innocently learning to code BBSes (bulletin board systems) I was actually learning how to get things for free and paving the way for software pirates, phone phreaks and straight-up frauds of the future.

The Apple-Cat II could connect to other Apple-Cat IIs at 1200 baud, which made file transfers pretty quick for the time...

UPS to offer 3D printing service in select San Diego stores (video)

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DNP UPS to offer 3D printing in select San Diego stores video

Today, UPS announced its plan to bring 3D printing services to the masses. The shipping company will soon roll out Stratasys Uprint SE Plus printers to 60 locations in San Diego to test out the new service; it’ll be aimed at small businesses, start-ups and retail customers in need of a professional grade model to produce things like prototypes and artistic renderings. At $20,900 a pop, Stratasys printers aren’t exactly the kind of gadget you’d purchase for home use, so their availability at UPS stores is a pretty major step towards making high quality 3D printing an accessible option for the common man. Though the company is starting small, it hopes to expand the service nationwide, provided that the San Diego experiment proves successful...

BSkyB wins trademark case against Microsoft over SkyDrive name

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BSkyB wins European trademark case against Microsoft over SkyDrive name

While many can tell the difference between Sky TV services and Microsoft’s SkyDrive cloud storage, that’s not necessarily true for everyone. A British court certainly thinks there’s room for confusion: it has ruled that SkyDrive infringes BSkyB’s trademarks on the Sky name in both the UK and the European Union. The presiding judge didn’t believe that Microsoft’s use of the “sky” prefix was absolutely necessary, and she showed evidence that at least some of the general public didn’t understand which company made what. Microsoft says it plans to appeal the verdict, although there’s no guarantee that it will have to relabel SkyDrive if the appeal falls through...

The After Math: Microsoft fits new Windows, Sony pushes the limits of a smartphone screen

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Welcome to The After Math, where we attempt to summarize this week’s tech news through numbers, decimal places and percentages.

The After Math Microsoft fits new Windows, Sony pushes the limits of a smartphone screen

In recent weeks, we’ve covered BlackBerry, Google, Nokia, Apple, Sony and (at least gaming-wise) Microsoft, but this week, the Redmond company returned to dominate tech news, showcasing a new version of Windows 8 (and RT) at its annual Build conference. It’s tried to fix some of the operating system’s early criticisms and make it all a bit more accessible. They even threw in a Start button — of sorts. Meanwhile, Sony set jacket pockets quivering, announcing its new 6.4-inch smartphone (that’s not a tablet), replete with arguably the most powerful mobile processor out there. For a numerical breakdown of the week’s news, follow us after the break.

FCC approves Google's white space wireless database

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FCC approves Google's white space wireless database

Google may have been on pins and needles while the FCC scrutinized its white space wireless database over the spring, but it can relax this summer — the FCC has given the database the all-clear. The approval lets Google serve as one of ten go-to sources for white space devices needing safe frequencies in the US. It also lets those with interference-prone devices, such as wireless microphone users, register the airwaves they consider off-limits to white space technology. The clearance won’t have much immediate effect when very few Americans are using the spectrum, but it’s a step forward for rural broadband rollouts and other situations where long-range, unlicensed wireless comes in handy.

Bloomberg: Nokia will buy Siemens' share of joint venture for less than $2.6b

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Not all partnerships pan out, and Nokia seems ready to call it quits: according to Bloomberg, the company might announce a buy out of the German half of Nokia Siemens Networks later this week. Sources familiar with the matter say that the the Finnish firm is planning to use a bridge loan to finance the $2.6 billion purchase (less than 2 billion euros), taking the entire operation under its own wing. It’s not a completely unexpected move on Nokia’s part — the company previously avoided selling off stake in the network back in 2011, opting to lean on its ownshareholders instead. Bloomberg reports that Siemens has declined to comment on the issue, but we’ll let you know if we hear anything solid.

Rdio intros new social features and redesigned player

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Social media streamer Rdio rolled out a major redesign a little over a year ago and has done a bit of tweaking since then. Now, following a recent update to its mobile apps, the service is making even more changes. At the top of the list are methods for getting social on the site, with friends from Twitter and Facebook hitting its front page, alongside their listening habits and influencers selected by the service. You can also check out a curated list of potential friends, if the front page just isn’t doing it for you. Autoplay, meanwhile, creates personalized stations and keeps the music going after you’re out of ideas, or you can proactively create stations by clicking on album artwork...

DirecTV reportedly bidding $1 billion for Hulu

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DirecTV reportedly bidding $1 billion for Hulu

And then there were three. Bloomberg is reporting that a trio of companies are hoping to fork out over one billion dollars for the privilege of taking online video service Hulu under their wing, and DirecTV is one of them. While we’re not quite sure which other companies are involved in the process, we’ve been told that Yahoo, Time Warner Cable and a few others have at least thrown out offers, with no confirmation on how much they were willing to spend. We’re quietly hoping that this potential bidding war will be resolved through an arm wrestling match, though DirecTV’s legal team likely wouldn’t approve.

OneNote update for Windows 8 and RT relives our childhood with finger drawing

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OneNote update for Windows 8 and RT relives our childhood with finger drawing

Although Microsoft’s OneNote is virtually tailor-made for pen input, we doubt most Windows fans would splurge on the likes of a Surface Pro just for the sake of a quick doodle or two. With the latest update to OneNote for Windows 8 and RT, they won’t have to. The app refresh lets touchscreen PC users draw with their fingers using the same color and thickness options as their stylus-toting counterparts. The new input method won’t be as precise as a pen, but it should do the job for simple diagrams or dusting off those kindergarten-era fingerpaintingskills. Whether or not you’re on a nostalgia kick, you can swing by the Windows Store today for the upgrade.

Microsoft's next revision of Facebook for Windows Phone 8 hits beta

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Microsoft's next revision of Facebook for Windows Phone 8 hits beta

Last year’s revision to Facebook for Windows Phone may have gotten fans closer to the Facebook grail, but it was still lagging behind its iOS and Android siblings. Microsoft is finally catching up though, with the latest beta of the app. This build supports the new Facebook Timeline, higher-quality photos and post sharing. It’s currently listed as being compatible with Windows Phone 8 — which might leave some 7.5 and 7.8 users feeling a bit salty. You’ll have to download it straight from the link below if you’re up for giving it a whirl, since it can’t be directly from your device.

Google helps you get acquainted with Glass UI in how-to video

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Google helps you get acquainted with Glass UI in howto video

Explorers have the device in hand, early reviews have begun to flow in, and heck, you might have even seenGlass in person by now. Unless you’ve had a chance to slide the product on your head, however, a comprehensive tour of the near-final user interface has likely remained out of reach. Until now. The team at Project Glass has uploaded a brief (60-second) how-to video, giving you an opportunity to step behind the tiny display for a point-of-view preview. If you have a minute to spare, you can view the clip just after the break. Then, set aside some time for our comprehensive Explorer Edition review, complete with sample pictures, videos and plenty of first-hand impressions.

President Obama to nominate Tom Wheeler as FCC Chairman tomorrow

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As Julius Genachowski winds down his five-year term as Chairman of the FCC, rumors of his successor are in full swing. Now, Engadget has confirmed with a White House official that President Obama will nominate industry veteran, Tom Wheeler, for the position, in an announcement that will come tomorrow. According to Wheeler’s profile on his personal blog, he currently identifies himself as a venture capitalist and sits on the boards of Roundbox, UpdateLogic, Twisted Pair Solutions, EarthLink and TNS. Wheeler’s history in the cable and wireless industry spans decades. He served as president of the National Cable Television Association (NCTA) from 1979 to 1984, and later took the helm of the CTIA as its president and CEO from 1992 until 2003. According to Politico, Wheeler shares close ties w...

How to Crop Images in Photoshop to Specific Sizes [Quick Tip]

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photoshop_cropping_tipHave you ever done the crop dance in Photoshop? You know what I’m talking about. You need to crop and reposition a photo in Photoshop, so you click and drag a square to get to 536 pixels wide … but your cursor keeps landing at 532 pixels or 546 pixels, not the 536 you need.

Blame chubby fingers, small screens, or just poor coordination, but trying to get the exact dimensions by dragging and dropping is just frustrating. 

Wouldn’t it be nice to just crop the image to the dimensions you need on the first try? Well, you’re in luck — it’s super easy to do. We’ll walk you through the six steps below and you’ll be on your way to cropping all the images in no time. 


Pinterest Lead Generation 101: Best Practices and Hacks That'll Make You a Pro

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In marketing, there’s still a huge misconception about Pinterest. Some marketers think that it’s useless — just another fad network that people are getting in a tizzy about. But that’s not quite accurate any longer.

While Pinterest may not be perfect for every  marketer in every industry, it does offer a huge opportunity for most.It has more than 70 million users and a growing international population. Plus, Pinterest users spend the most money of users on popular social networks — nearly double the amount of money spent from Facebook users and triple the amount from Twitter users. This means that there’s lots of potential leads and customers just waiting to be engaged and converted who will probably spend a decent amount with you. 

Sounds like a pretty sweet deal to me, but thinking about generating leads … and actually generating leads on Pinterest are two very different things.

The good news? Pinterest is actually a fairly simple social media network as far as lead generation goes, because there’s really only two ways to generate leads right now. So we’ll walk you through both types of lead generationand how you can optimize pins to make the most of those lead generation opportunities. 

Types of Leads You Can Generate on Pinterest

On Pinterest, there are two types of leads you can generate: direct and indirect. It all boils down to where Pinterest is on the conversion path. Here’s the difference between the two:

  • Direct Leads: Direct leads are generated through content on Pinterest that links directly back to a landing page on your website. On that landing page, visitors can share their personal information (a name, email address, phone number, etc) in exchange for an offer — whether that be an ebook, coupon, infographic, or any other piece of content.

  • Indirect Leads: Indirect leads are generated by using Pinterest on the path to conversion — but it’s not the final destination before someone gets to a landing page. For example, if you shared a blog post that had a call-to-action to a landing page at the bottom of the post, your initial pin is helping direct visitors to that landing page.

Make sense? Pretty simple stuff. 


How to Choose a Solid Topic for Your Next Blog Post

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dog-image“I don’t know what to write about,” said every blogger ever.

It’s easy to dismiss as procrastination or writer’s block, but being critical of what you write about is actually really smart because aimless blogging is almost as bad (sometimesas bad) as not blogging at all...

51 Ridiculous Keywords Google Won't Let Me Track Anymore

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zoe-dog-1This post originally appeared on Inbound Ecommerce, the ecommerce section of HubSpot’s Inbound Marketing blog.

It’s been a busy month for Google, the 50 billion pound gorilla of the search world. Even my dog, Zoe, got in on the analysis. She wrote an article for her blog(that’s right, she has a blog … and a  Twitter account …) summarizing her opinions on the changes from Google.

If you’re not sure what changes I’m talking about, earlier this month, Google decided to encrypt all keyword data – except for keyword data from ads, of course.

We’ve been trying to provide you with content on how to deal with the changes if keyword traffic analysis was part of your strategy. Personally, I’ve historically looked at keywords for which I get very little traffic to give me ideas for long-tail keyword phrases. Sometimes I’ll find keyword phrases that are basically blog articles writing themselves! For example, one of our recent articles was inspired in part by discovering someone had hit our website searching for “how do I sell to people in the awareness phase of the buying cycle”.