As I’ve said before, windows are a silent but very high-tech part of our buildings. The advances in glazing in the last 30 years have been phenomenal. Will windows keep getting better and better with no end in sight?In recent years, an increasing number of window manufacturers have been combining and refining the features that have given us today’s high-performance windows: multiple layers of glazing, multiple low-emissivity (low-e) coatings, and very-low-conductivity gases such as krypton. They’ve been creating super-high-performance windows, or “superwindows,” a term coined by Dariush Arasteh, a staff scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. In the early 1990s, Arasteh predicted that advances in technology could make all windows, even north-facing windows in northern climates, net-energy-gainers. Whether or not that day has arrived is a matter of debate, but there’s no doubt that the advances since the 1990s, when window buyers were dreaming of U-0.05 (R-20) windows (and window makers were making tantalizing demonstrations in that direction), have been astounding.The superwindow race cools off…Today, that race has cooled off to some extent in favor of climate-specific solutions. As Stephen Thwaites of Thermotech Fiberglass in Canada told me, “A window doesn’t have to be R-20 to be as energy-efficient as the wall around it,” due to the ability of a window to gain solar heat and provide ventilation. “A home with no windows will use more energy than a properly designed home with R-5 windows,” Thwaites said.That’s a change from the mid-1990s when the prototype quintuple-glazed window shown above was built by Thermotech as a demonstration of what was possible, with a goal of R-20. Today, ambitions have become more climate-specific.… But it’s still exciting to look for what’s nextToday, R-5 windows are aspirational for many, but not really that special in the windows market. But instead of pushing past that, we are seeing more emphasis on proper design by orientation, shading, and window-to-wall ratios, and on buying the best windows for each application according to the budget.It’s still exciting to dream of what we’ll see in the next 30 years. For example, vacuum glazing, in which most of the air is evacuated from the space between panes, reduces thermal conduction and convection to nearly zero (leaving radiation as the primary means of heat transfer), and can currently offer U-0.08 (R-12) with double-glazing and one advanced low-e coating. Vacuum glazing is still largely in research and development, however. The seal is tough to get right, since the vacuum puts a lot of pressure on it.The biggest limit on energy performance is and may continue to be not what technology can do, but what the buyer can afford. Windows imported from Germany meeting the Passivhaus standard, for example, offer U-factors under 0.14 — at a cost of over $90 per square foot of window area. Triple-glazed Canadian windows typically cost $40–$50 per square foot, in contrast with a price range for more conventional double-glazed windows of $30–$35.The problem with getting great windows is how they’re soldOn the subject of price, I’m going to quote a few paragraphs here from a comment I received by email after last week’s post about reading NRFC labels. This comment with some follow-up discussion is posted on last week’s column.“Your recent columns on windows have struck a raw nerve, and it’s worth sharing why. Construction has just begun on a small sunroom addition to my home. The problem with getting great windows is not product availability, but the awkward way they are sold.“Building supply dealers seldom post prices of anything. Items which are ordered, like windows that have lots of options and sizes, are much worse — requiring the entry of data into a computer to get a quote. The quote of course is for the whole window, making it really tedious to test out individual options. The retail staff, though both knowledgeable and helpful, cannot possibly keep prices for all those options in their heads, and nothing good can come from a customer mistaking a ballpark guess for a quote.“Net result: it is ridiculously difficult to get a cost comparison of option A vs. option B, on anything. In my case of a south-facing sunroom where I knew I’d be starting a lot of veggie seedlings in spring, I depended on my own reading and research in preferring clear glass (full-spectrum, high solar gain), and triple pane (reduced heat loss). It took several days to get a price.“Going through that process for the dozens of decisions in a given project is simply not going to happen. Even a highly motivated customer has little choice but to just give up and trust the contractor to do something reasonable. And still miss here and there. You recently noted that using argon gas was a no-brainer; that column came too late, and I didn’t expend the effort to price argon vs. air.”It may not help to say this, but if you’ve faced this window-pricing issue, you’re not the only one. Martin Holladay had some great comments on this two weeks ago which I’ll paraphrase here. There is little transparency on pricing in the window industry, and someone who wants to really shop around and price out different options easily faces dozens of hours of research on a new home. Hopefully they can get good cooperation from dealers, but that’s not always a given. It would be great to see just one window manufacturer post accurate and complete prices online. I suspect it would make their business stronger, not weaker.Tristan Roberts is Editorial Director at BuildingGreen, Inc., in Brattleboro, Vermont.
After a month long legal battle, the cash-strapped Deccan Chargers on Saturday lost its status as an IPL team after the Bombay High Court stayed the order of Arbitrator for maintaining status quo on the matter till further hearing.The beleaguered owners of Deccan Chargers had on Friday failed to produce a Rs 100-crore bank guarantee before the Bombay High Court, a condition that had been set for the struggling team’s survival in the league. They later approached the Court-appointed Arbitrator who had passed the order of status quo.BCCI chief N Srinivasan”BCCI moved an appeal against the Order of Arbitrator and the same was heard today morning. The Honourable High Court was pleased to stay the Order of Arbitrator after hearing both the parties”, the BCCI said in a statement.”Thus, the termination of Deccan Chargers franchise stands”, the BCCI said, ending the uncertainty on the fate of the team which has run into huge financial problems.Deccan Chronicle Holdings Limited’s failure to furnish the guarantee money before the 5pm deadline yesterday effectively meant that the BCCI’s termination of the team stood and the Board was free to float the tender for a new franchise. But the Arbitrator’s order prvented BCCI from going ahead with its termination process.DC logo”The termination of Deccan Chargers franchise was challenged in the Hon’ble Bombay High Court by the DCHL pending the arbitration. A Conditional Order of stay was granted by the Hon’ble High Court pending arbitration on 1st October 2012″.”The condition to give BCCI a Bank Guarantee of a Nationalized Bank for Rs 100 Crores by 5.00 p.m. on 12.10.2012 to cover expenses of IPL 6, was breached by DCHL”, the BCCI statement said.advertisement
Scientifically proven best practices for getting people to talk about your business online ) Creating content to attract more customers to your business Download it now ) that not only can social media be apowerful part of your marketing mix, but that more and more marketers andsmall business owners are devoting time to it, and figuring out how tomake it useful to their businesses. Download it now. A CEO’s Guide to Internet Marketing (2) How to leverage a social media community to share and promote your content How to Use Social Media to Manage Your Company Brand Online ( ( (4) social media Download HubSpot’s Inbound Marketing University online training program . Lessons from social psychology, memetics, and statistics to understand what motivates people to share information ) Download it now Topics covered: How a CEO should use social media sites like Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn IMU includes @rickburnes Fellow inbound marketing geeks, fasten your seat belts. We have some fresh data for you: Topics covered: further evidence How to incorporate social media into your overall marketing strategy ) How to hire a marketing team in this changing world How to convert social media visitors into leads and customers Social Media for Lead Generation Ways to attract more website visitors and leads from social media ) How to Use Social Media to Attract More Customers @rickburnes @danzarrella . Topics Covered: The history of word of mouth marketing, from pre-web to online For us, this is ( How to measure and evaluate the ROI of your social media marketing efforts Topics covered: So, without further fanfare, here’s the list: How to track and monitor your brand in social media (3) The changing nature of marketing and how to transform your business How to use social media to connect with customers online How to incorporate social media into your overall marketing strategy top HubSpot inbound marketing webinars of the year. Tools to help you manage and measure your social media efforts How a CEO should communicate to the company and board about what is going on in marketing Download it now ( Of the dozens of webinars we did at HubSpot this year, four of the top five covered Topics covered: (@ bhalligan The Free Inbound Marketing University Online Training Program . The program drills into each component of inbound marketing and prepares you for the Inbound Marketing certification exam. Download it now (1) (5) How to measure and understand which of your marketing efforts are working 13 free webinar classes and notesheets How to attract more website visitors from social media sites . . The Science of Social Media @BrentLeary Originally published Dec 22, 2009 8:30:00 AM, updated March 21 2013 Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack
? Do you feel like your brain is empty and out of ideas for blog posts? This is a common feeling. (I know I, personally, have often felt this way.) The reality is that the web is full of too many great ideas and — Take a look at your different types of content 2. Aggregate Industry Information– Everyone has good ideas. As a blogger, a great way to put together a powerful blog postis to compile popular industry statistics, images, videos, etc. into one articlethat makes it easily accessible for your readers. This saves them time spent researching and eliminates the need to visit dozens of sights. When aggregating content, be sure to give credit and link to the original source of information. Topics: from Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack 6. Make Charts– People love data. Most businesses have data about their industry and use it to make important business decisions. While some data may need to be kept confidential, other data can be made into chartsthat can become a blog post, providing readers with valuable industry insight. , that you should never run out of things to blog about, regardless of your industry. When it comes to blogging well and often, it usually comes down to how you see ideas and how well you explain them in a way that matters to your audience. It doesn’t matter if you are blogging about manufacturing or swimming pools or any other industry for that matter, the basic process for coming up with great — Take a stance. OpEd writers argue one side of an issue. No industry is without controversial topics. Pick a couple of hot-button topics and write an opinion article about the issue. 10 Ways to Keep Your Blog Full of Content 4. Seek Out Guest Authors– Let other people think of ideas for you. Think about other experts and leaders in your industry and approach them about contributing a guest article to your blog. You’ll find that many people are willing to this for free in order to gain exposure to a new audience and generate a link or two back to their own blogs or websites. By securing a few good guest authors, you can outsource blog ideas and save some time in your schedule for other types of content. View more qisur website analytics — Think like a reporter. Has an announcement recently happened that has an impact on your industry? Take a few minutes to summarize the news announcement and then explain what it means for your industry. Beyond helping your readers, breaking news regularly will help to improve organic search traffic, because search engines place value on the first sites to discuss a particular subject. 9. Review Industry Books presentations Polarizing blog posts Business Blogging Analytics What tips do you have for keeping blog post ideas flowing? Which of these strategies do you use? Are you sick of . Website analytics provide a lot of information about your readers. For example, you can see where they are geographically, what type of computer or smartphone they use, as well as other valuable data. If you notice that you have a large portion of visitors from an unexpected location, it might make sense to write a few blog posts related to industry issues in that geographic area. business blogging 8. Look at can be applied to any business. 100 Marketing Charts and Graphs Photo Credit: . 1. Answer Customer Questions– After spending years in an industry, it is easy to use jargon and lose sight of how customers see the industry. A good way to solve this problem to create valuable blog content is by looking through your email or checking with your sales and support teams to generate a list of common customer questions. Take each question and write blog posts that clearly answer them without using industry jargon. like this often attract more traffic and comments than traditional posts. HubSpot Internet Marketing Originally published Jun 1, 2010 11:00:00 AM, updated October 20 2016 7. Think Like an OpEd Writer 3. Think Beyond Text– Text is great, but it doesn’t have to be the only type of blog content you offer. Think about other types of content. For example, you could publish video or audio interviews of industry experts. You could create a blog post with pictures taken at an industry trade show. For a day, remove text as a possible form of blog post content and think about other content types that can be valuable to your readers. — Provide your own twist on what others have to say about your industry. Read some recent industry books and then write or produce video reviews that point out the good and bad in each of those books as well as indicate which segments of your audience may enjoy reading them. 5. Make Lists– Coming up with new blog posts is often a function of framing ideas in the correct way. Think of common industry issues and situations in the form of lists. Lists can be how-to, best-of, etc., but often serve as a catalyst for coming up with a fresh angle for an common topic. Example: 10. Break News blog content
Ecommerce Marketing Originally published Aug 16, 2011 8:00:00 PM, updated August 09 2019 Topics: This is a guest post from Scot Wingo, the CEO of ChannelAdvisor . ChannelAdvisor offers Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) solutions for managing ecommerce channels. This year ChannelAdvisor will process over $3b in transactions across search, CSEs, and marketplaces for over 3,000 online retailers. One common pitfall that many online retailers make is the ‘field of dreams’ problem. They put their entire budget and efforts into building a great site but then have little-to-no plan for how to drive traffic to that site. Many retailers put too much focus on one source of traffic like search engine optimization (SEO). While this source of traffic is great because it’s high quality and free, there are other channels that ecommerce websites should take advantage of for effective multi-channel ecommerce.Download Now: Ecommerce Marketing Plan Template Different Ecommerce Channels 1. Direct Traffic – Direct traffic channels include email marketing , affiliate marketing, and direct URL navigation/bookmarking. 2. Paid Search – Paid search means buying traffic from search engines (e.g. Google and Bing) on a pay-per-click (PPC) basis. Search engines can drive traffic to your site for further conversion, and paid search requires you to master the creation and management of keywords, keyword-level building, conversion rates, etc. 3. Comparison Shopping Engines (CSEs) – There are over 100 comparison shopping engines with a variety of different business models from free (Google Product Search and TheFind.com) to pay-per-click (Shopping.com, Shopzilla, Nextag, etc.). CSEs can also drive traffic to your site (usually item pages) for further conversion. 4. Marketplaces – Marketplaces are sites that allow you to offer your items for sale. The consumer purchases them from the marketplace, not your site. eBay is the largest marketplace, followed by Amazon. Amazon’s success in marketplaces has led to an explosion of new marketplaces like Sears, Walmart, Newegg, and Buy.com . 5. Mobile – The use of smartphones with sophisticated web browsers and barcode-scanning applications has increased their usage in online shopping. While still small, it’s an area retailers need to be tracking carefully, and we strongly recommend building capabilities in this area. 6. Social – With over 750 million active users on Facebook and 200 million Twitter users, online consumers are spending a bulk of their online activities engaged in social media . As Facebook and Twitter mature, they are also looking at social commerce. Some online retailers are already seeing significant primary and secondary sales from these channels, and we recommend retailers start experimenting there now.This chart shows how consumer behavior has changed over the last ten years and the last 2-3 years:As you can see from the chart, consumers have changed their shopping behavior from a majority being direct (75% in 2001) to the majority driven by ecommerce channels (direct is only 9% in 2010) such as search, marketplaces, CSE, etc.This chart represents ecommerce businesses overall. Every retailer will have a different mix and number of channels. For example, maybe your ecommerce business is made up of 100% direct. However, if that is the case, you are currently missing out on 91% of the other ecommerce activity happening through other channels, and there are several risky implications for that. 4 Lessons to Learn from Multichannel Ecommerce The ecommerce channel chart above will hopefully serve as a wake-up call to those businesses not taking advantage of multiple channels. Here are some of the top lessons retailers have learned from this. 1. There’s no such thing as a free ride. If you rely on free/direct sources of traffic, you are fighting share losses. Direct has gone from 75% to 9% over the last ten years, while ecommerce has been growing 15-25%. Don’t put all your focus just on SEO strategies when other channels are proving important as well. 2. Diversify . Furthermore, many other small online retailers we talk to put too much concentration on one channel, whether it’d eBay, Amazon, Google paid-search, SEO, etc. Even though they all offer strong ecommerce channels that can work, a concentration in any one channel adds risk to your business and means you are missing out on other important pieces of the overall ecommerce pie. 3. Build a portfolio of ecommerce channels. Most successful larger online businesses use portfolio theory (just like you have in the world of investing) to minimize risk to their business and maximize sales. When you use this approach, you have some ecommerce channels that are high margin, some that are lower margin, some that drive customer acquisition, and others that are more about retention. Finally, some channels are best for one set of products and other channels may favor others. Advanced retailers source against the channel product bias to help them continue to grow. 4. Put your products everywhere. Ecommerce is a zero sum game. This means each consumer is only going to buy from one retailer out of thousands, and that one retailer will win that specific consumer’s order. If you don’t have the widest possible distribution of your products, you’ll lose opportunities and another online retailer will gain opportunities. Here’s an example. Sally tends to start her shopping via Google, Joe uses Shopping.com, Bill uses eBay, and Lucy prefers Amazon. If you are not utilizing all of those channels, you will not be able to sell to Sally, Joe, Bill, or Lucy.The timing and order that online businesses leverage these ecommerce channels is a common theme we have seen over the years. Many businesses ‘bootstrap’ using marketplaces like eBay and Amazon. They use the experience from those channels to expand to a site, and then utilize search and CSE. What is the goal for your online business? What are some of the channel and infrastructure investments you should make today to achieve your goals in the future? Photo Credit: Dru Bloomfield Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack
Originally published Sep 26, 2011 3:00:00 PM, updated October 20 2016 Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Topics: Running out of ideas for your blog? Think about incorporating data in new ways. When leveraged well, data can breathe life and new significance into your posts. This doesn’t mean threading spreadsheets directly into your posts. Rather, you should think about how to responsibly frame the data in a way that will advance your narrative. U.S. Statistician and Sculptor Edward Tufte once called this “escaping the flatland.”By putting data into context and using it to strengthen your point, you can give readers a post that will stay with them long after they’ve left the page. Here are a few narrative techniques to think about when using data in your posts.1. Demonstrate ChangeThere is no more powerful narrative technique than using data to demonstrate change over time. In the example below, Latoya Egwuekwe uses data and maps to demonstrate the changing “Geography of a Recession” over time. The darker colors in the geographic representation indicate higher unemployment rates. As you watch the video, you can see the map growing darker over time.Lesson: Showing a striking trend of change (whether it be deterioration or dramatic improvement) not only brings weight to the discussion, but it can also evoke an emotional response from your blog readers/viewers. 2. Show DiscrepancyIsolated on its own, data can fall flat. But put a set of data into context to highlight discrepancies, and you have a strong narrative. In the example below, The New York Times highlights the discrepancy between the national budget forecasts since 1982, and the reality.The Washington Post has another great example, placing the number of jobs available next to the number of new hires and highlighting a growing skills gap in America. By showing discrepancies between perception and reality or between two sets of data, you can highlight gaps that lead to clear calls-to-action. Our own Dan Zarrella has adopted this technique in his own research by showing the difference between the perception of when emails should be sent during the week vs. the reality of when effective sends take place. 3. Show Connection or CorrelationIn this map, the Community Farm Alliance used data to demonstrate that neighborhoods without easy access to grocery stores in Louisville are also those with higher densities of fast food. The implied connection suggests that these communities have disproportionately limited access to healthy foods. Note: When showing the correlation between two things, be careful that you don’t imply causation. Be clear that you’re only showing that two things are connected in some way; not that one is directly leading to the other. 4. Give ScaleFinally, think about using data to demonstrate scale. In this chart, The Economist uses a visual representation of data to demonstrate the scale of each of the top ten employers globally.Again, scale can help you add context to your posts. What data do you have that can lend itself to this type of visualization? Did you serve more customers last year than the average number of attendees at a Red Sox game? How can you show the scope of your impact?Hopefully these four techniques help you to think about data in a new way. What ways have you used data to underscore a point in a blog post? Are there any effective examples you can share? Data Visualization
Email Deliverability Originally published Nov 10, 2011 11:30:00 AM, updated July 28 2017 Topics: Would you believe it? Email spammers have taught us honest email marketers a thing or two over the years. Mostly, it’s what to avoid if you don’t want to end up in handcuffs. But in their own twisted way, spammers have helped us figure out some email marketing best practices to keep in mind as your email marketing, lead nurturing, and marketing automation campaigns get underway.Here are 4 great email marketing tips from email spammers that you can apply to your (totally legit) email marketing campaigns.1. Remind people they can trust you.Online security company Bit Defender revealed that in 2011, Jay Leno topped the list of the most frequently used celebrity names by email spammers. Spammers knew that, by pure virtue of having a recognizable name, enough people trusted Leno to open the email.You don’t need a celebrity endorsement for higher email open rates, but you can gain trust by ensuring your recipients remember how they know you. You got your list legitimately (you did get your list legitimately, didn’t you?), so you can identify how you met each of your subscribers. Is this email part of a demo follow-up campaign? That recipient probably knows one of your employees, so that employee should be listed as the sender. Did they subscribe to receive blog updates from your site? Then they’re familiar with your company, and you should identify your company as the sender. People scan their inboxes quickly; if recipients don’t identify you as a recognizable, trustworthy name, you’ll end up right in their trash bin.2. Write with a specific goal in mind.Email spammers know exactly what they’re trying to get the reader to do. It’s not an esoteric goal, like giving the reader a better understanding of product offerings. How the hell can you measure success with that goal? Spammers want an email open so they can infect you with malware. Or they want a click to collect your banking information.Approach your email marketing goals with the same precision. Identify the goal of the email, and draft your call-to-action accordingly — to achieve that goal. If your goal is to get someone to download an ebook, you can measure how successful you are by tracking click-through rate, conversion rate, and leads.3. Stay trendy.Spammers get high email open rates and click-through rates by riding the pop culture wave. This plays into people’s desire to stay in the know, and it’s something you can do regardless of your industry.Use language in your subject lines and email copy to connote thought leadership, and recipients will be chomping at the bit to be the first to share this new information with their networks. When appropriate, leverage current events and news topics to add a sense of urgency and timeliness to your marketing messages. If your recipients think they’ll get juicy data and insights on the latest industry trends, they’ll not only open your email, but they’ll also share it with their networks, thereby expanding your reach and attracting more subscribers.4. Leverage email list intelligence.One way email spammers collect your information is through fake unsubscribe buttons at the bottom of emails. When you unsubscribe from their emails, it tells them a real person is using the account and gives them the opportunity to collect more information about you in the process.So stop and think. When was the last time you scrubbed your email list? Do you know if there’s actually someone on the other end of your email sends, or are they getting sent to an AOL email address from 1999? Have you considered why more recent subscribers aren’t reading your emails and what you can do to better communicate with these people? Just like a spammer, continue to refine your email list and learn more about what makes readers open, click, and share.What other tips can you steal from those annoying email spammers?Image Credit: comedy_nose Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack