Kapil’s Guide To Inbound Marketing

This week I realized to my horror that I was enjoying watching a TV show which was basically a platform for new Hindi movies to be promoted. I don’t watch Hindi movies, why would I watch a show geared specifically towards pitching the week’s release? Because it was funny. Not just funny, outright outrageous. The motley crew of characters on the show includes an alcoholic grandmother, an ageing spinster prepared to marry someone at the drop of a hat, and even a cardboard cutout goat. You can’t go wrong with that mix. This brand of slapstick humour was used deftly to veil the primary purpose of the show- marketing the movie of the week. The show in question is Comedy Nights with Kapil.

The term inbound marketing is better understood in the context of a term closely related to it – permission marketing. It is the approach to selling, specifically in the online context, where potential customers give you their consent to market to them. Marketing guru Seth Godin coined the term. Inbound Marketing is a term that has become synonymous with the work of internet-marketing software makers Hubspot. It was around 2008 that the team at the company began a movement towards a selling approach that looked more kindly upon what consumers actually wanted.  And if you really want to understand the power of inbound marketing, wear your marketer’s hat and watch Comedy Nights with Kapil.

Inbound marketing is based on a few tenets which the team at Hubspot elucidates through a number of their blog posts. The converse to inbound is outbound marketing. This includes techniques such as cold-calling and email spamming. So the next time you get a message from someone you’ve never heard of before asking you to vote for a particularly party, you’ll know exactly what kind of marketing to classify it as. Wondering how your business or blog can get started off with inbound marketing? Here’s a look at some of the basics and how Comedy Nights With Kapil fits in the picture.

Attract: This is the first action you need to carry out in order to be within the boundaries of the inbound marketing method. At the very first stage, people are strangers to your brand. So to get them to notice you don’t get in their face and ask them to give you their attention. You attract them to you using engaging content as a lead.

For example, Comedy Nights uses comedy as a medium to get people to notice what they’re selling. The show does the sky-high TRPs and the huge sponsorship deals because it is able to attract the attention of a wide audience.

Convert, Close: These are two separate steps in the process but I’ve clubbed them because they are closely linked. With a website, you would use forms and landing pages to convert an attracted customer into someone a lead that can be used to gain a profit from. The next step is to simply close the deal and finally reach a stage where you have a customer.

Comedy Nights With Kapil does the conversion quite ingenuously. A QnA is organized with the case where details regarding the film are thrown into the answers. You never watch a trailer of the movie, probably because that doesn’t feel organic to the flow of the program. Closing the deal happens when someone that watched the show goes and watches the movie. Not sure they’re able to calculate exactly how many conversion they’ve made, though.

Delight: It isn’t just enough to make a sale and forget about the customer after that point. Inbound marketing entails continuous engagement even after the point of conversion and closing a deal. This may include interesting content on a blog, videos, or giving away some pro features of your software on a free trial. It is also why Comedy Nights With Kapil comes back every week, and puts a smile on your face while giving you a damn good model of how to do inbound.

Build A Strong Professional Relationship Through LinkedIn

When it comes to business building Strong Professional Relationship through LinkedIn is much better than forming professional bond through facebook , twitter or G +. You may already know about the perks of having an updated profile but that is not enough. You have to interact with others and share good content to make the most of this platform. LinkedIn is packed with features that will help you connect with those who will become leads. Here are some of LinkedIn’s best features:

  • Stay connected with your contacts– Who doesn’t like being congratulated on their success, wishes on their birthdays etc. For that you need not go through their Facebook profiles anymore, you will get all the information about your contacts significant events in the Contacts page under Network. The top of the page shows alerts about your contacts and suggestion of people you might want to connect to. In this way you can make a more personal connection to the users.

Below that is the list of contact that can be filtered according to the connections, you can tag users according to your convenience, send direct messages even remove the person from the list .This feature makes it easy for you to manage your connections.

  • Add media and keep a note of your connections– When it comes to profile it is always good to share media like images, videos slides etc because they add more value to your profile and it is the best way to display your work too.

Just under your connections profile picture there are two tabs, one is contact info that shows their e mail id and a link to their profile. Then there is the relationship tab which is useful for you because you can add a private note to remember information about that person and set a reminder to follow up. You need not worry about the privacy as you will be the only one to see the changes made in this section.

  • Groups– Groups are a great way to gain exposure and give voice to subjects that matters to you. It’s best to join groups that are related to your field. Groups are not just about commenting on others post you can share your work on these groups too. Look for the top contributors and connect with them as they might come as great help.

The top portion of the group has manager’s choice that displays the post recommended by the manager of the group. There is a section in the right side that displays the top contributors under that you will see a section named your group contribution level. You should try to bring it to a maximum by contributing relevant content.

  • Create a company page– If you own a company or responsible for its social media activity then it’s important to create a business page, as you do not want to make your personal profile look like an advertisement.  You can put up an attractive banner image, set featured groups and make the most of showcase page.

Showcase page is somewhat similar to your Facebook timeline where you get to post content and your audience will be able to see all the latest updates by your company. As a company it is a good way to keep your connections updated about your company and as a follower you get to see all the latest updates.

There is a sponsored update feature too that lets you pay to promote the content to a target audience, the best part is that it increase visibility of the posts. You can also target your sponsored content based on location, company name, job title, etc. Do include catchy headline and call to action to get good response. You should also track the value and engagement of the page.

  • LinkedIn publishing platform– This platform was only open to the influencers but now it is open to all. You can contribute to your community by creating content that people in your network would like. You can follow other publishers and get followers too. The posts appear on your connections update section, so to get maximum benefit you should publish content that is valuable to your audience.

It goes without saying that the content has to be crisp with catchy titles and backed by images and videos. Do Share your post on other social networks like Twitter, Facebook, and G+ too. Your post will be visible to people beyond your current connections, which means more exposure to your content hence more people will be connected to you. However you must not take it as a replacement of your regular blog.

Other than that there is Who’s Viewed Your Updates section that shows where you stand and how much you need to improve. It shows the views and interactions of your first, second and third degree connections. LinkedIn pulse is a great way to find useful content, you can also access LinkedIn pulse via homepage feed or pulse app for mobiles. Like most social networks LinkedIn also has a mobile app that lets you do a onetime scan of your phone contact and lets you see the people you are not connected to. Apart from that it is one of the best ways to access your contacts and calendars on the go.

Magento: How To Set Up And Manage Multiple Stores With Multiple Domains

If you work with Magento, sooner or later you will end up needing multiple websites that can be managed by one single admin. Recently we came across a project which had the requirement of having twelve different domains but with a single admin. We were required to manage multiple stores with a number of domains by one admin.

The advantage of having this type multistore-multiwebsite concept is that we can create and show variations in the CMS pages, categories, products according to our need and the requirement of store/website. Here is an example of how to manage multiple stores with a single admin:

Also Read: How To Handle JSON Text Through MySQL Queries

First create a Website >>

Name: Website 1

Code: Website_1

Sort Order: 1

Manage Multiple Stores 1

Then create a Store >>

Website: Select from the dropdown the name you have just entered in the “create a Website” section(Ex: Website 1).

Name: Website 1 store

Root Category: Choose any category that you want to use in this website

Manage Multiple Stores 2

Then create a Store View >>

Store: Select from the dropdown the name you have just entered in “create a Store View” section (Ex: Website 1 store).

Name: Website 1 store view

Code: Website_1

Status: Enabled

Sort Order: 1

Manage Multiple Stores 3

NB: Please keep in mind the website code that you have written. We will be using that code in future.

Now go to System->Configuration and select Current Configuration Scope: Website 1. Then change the baselink-url(unsecure) & baselink-url(secure) : place {{unsecure_base_url}}website_1/ and {{secure_base_url}}website_1/ respectively.

We have already created a folder named as “website_1″ in the root folder of Magento. Here we have placed two files >>

1. php

2. htacess

We have copied two files from Magento’s root folder.

For index.php, just place the below code at the end.

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$mageRunCode = 'website_1'; ////

here we have used the website code

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$mageRunType = 'website';
Mage::run($mageRunCode, $mageRunType);

The complete index.php would look like this:

Magento: How To Set Up And Manage Multiple Stores With Multiple Domains

If you work with Magento, sooner or later you will end up needing multiple websites that can be managed by one single admin. Recently we came across a project which had the requirement of having twelve different domains but with a single admin. We were required to manage multiple stores with a number of domains by one admin.

The advantage of having this type multistore-multiwebsite concept is that we can create and show variations in the CMS pages, categories, products according to our need and the requirement of store/website. Here is an example of how to manage multiple stores with a single admin:
Also Read: How To Handle JSON Text Through MySQL Queries
First create a Website >>
Name: Website 1
Code: Website_1
Sort Order: 1
Manage Multiple Stores 1
Then create a Store >>
Website: Select from the dropdown the name you have just entered in the “create a Website” section(Ex: Website 1).
Name: Website 1 store
Root Category: Choose any category that you want to use in this website
Manage Multiple Stores 2
Then create a Store View >>
Store: Select from the dropdown the name you have just entered in “create a Store View” section (Ex: Website 1 store).
Name: Website 1 store view
Code: Website_1
Status: Enabled
Sort Order: 1
Manage Multiple Stores 3
NB: Please keep in mind the website code that you have written. We will be using that code in future.
Now go to System->Configuration and select Current Configuration Scope: Website 1. Then change the baselink-url(unsecure) & baselink-url(secure) : place {{unsecure_base_url}}website_1/ and {{secure_base_url}}website_1/ respectively.
We have already created a folder named as “website_1″ in the root folder of Magento. Here we have placed two files >>
1. php
2. htacess
We have copied two files from Magento’s root folder.
For index.php, just place the below code at the end.
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$mageRunCode = ‘website_1’; ////
here we have used the website code
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$mageRunType = ‘website’;

Mage::run($mageRunCode, $mageRunType);
The complete index.php would look like this:
=================================================================
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<?php /**

* Magento

*

* NOTICE OF LICENSE

*

* This source file is subject to the Open Software License (OSL 3.0)

* that is bundled with this package in the file LICENSE.txt.

* It is also available through the world-wide-web at this URL:

* http://opensource.org/licenses/osl-3.0.php

* If you did not receive a copy of the license and are unable to

* obtain it through the world-wide-web, please send an email

* to license@magentocommerce.com so we can send you a copy immediately.

*

* DISCLAIMER

*

* Do not edit or add to this file if you wish to upgrade Magento to newer

* versions in the future. If you wish to customize Magento for your

* needs please refer to http://www.magentocommerce.com for more information.

*

* @category Mage

* @package Mage

* @copyright Copyright (c) 2008 Irubin Consulting Inc. DBA Varien (http://www.varien.com)

* @license http://opensource.org/licenses/osl-3.0.php Open Software License (OSL 3.0)

*/

if (version_compare(phpversion(), '5.3.0', '<')===true) {

echo '

Whoops, it looks like you have an invalid PHP version.

Magento supports PHP 5.3.0 or newer.

Find out how to install

Magento using PHP-CGI as a work-around.

’;

exit;

}

/**

* Error reporting

*/

error_reporting(E_ALL | E_STRICT);

/**

* Compilation includes configuration file

*/

define(‘MAGENTO_ROOT’, getcwd());

$compilerConfig = ’../includes/config.php’;

if (file_exists($compilerConfig)) {

include $compilerConfig;

}

$mageFilename = ’../app/Mage.php’;

$maintenanceFile = ‘maintenance.flag’;

if (!file_exists($mageFilename)) {

if (is_dir(‘downloader’)) {

header(“Location: downloader”);

} else {

echo $mageFilename.“ was not found”;

}

exit;

}

if (file_exists($maintenanceFile)) {

include_once dirname(__FILE__) . ’/errors/503.php’;

exit;

}

require_once $mageFilename;

#Varien_Profiler::enable();

if (isset($_SERVER[‘MAGE_IS_DEVELOPER_MODE’])) {

Mage::setIsDeveloperMode(true);

}

#ini_set(‘display_errors’, 1);

umask(0);

/* Store or website code */

$mageRunCode = isset($_SERVER[‘MAGE_RUN_CODE’]) ? $_SERVER[‘MAGE_RUN_CODE’] : “;

/* Run store or run website */

$mageRunType = isset($_SERVER[‘MAGE_RUN_TYPE’]) ? $_SERVER[‘MAGE_RUN_TYPE’] : ‘store’;

$mageRunCode = ‘banners_and_more’;

$mageRunType = ‘website’;

Mage::run($mageRunCode, $mageRunType);

?>
=================================================================
For .htacess, just place the below code at the end:
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SetEnvIf Host .*base.* MAGE_RUN_CODE="base”;

SetEnvIf Host .*magento_site_2.* MAGE_RUN_TYPE=“website_1”; //// here we have used the website code
The complete .htaccess would look like this:
=================================================================
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############################################

## uncomment these lines for CGI mode

## make sure to specify the correct cgi php binary file name

## it might be /cgi-bin/php-cgi

# Action php5-cgi /cgi-bin/php5-cgi

# AddHandler php5-cgi .php

############################################

## GoDaddy specific options

# Options -MultiViews

## you might also need to add this line to php.ini

## cgi.fix_pathinfo = 1

## if it still doesn’t work, rename php.ini to php5.ini

############################################

## this line is specific for 1and1 hosting

#AddType x-mapp-php5 .php

#AddHandler x-mapp-php5 .php

############################################

## default index file

DirectoryIndex index.php

############################################

## adjust memory limit

# php_value memory_limit 64M

php_value memory_limit 256M

php_value max_execution_time 18000

############################################

## disable magic quotes for php request vars

php_flag magic_quotes_gpc off

############################################

## disable automatic session start

## before autoload was initialized

php_flag session.auto_start off

############################################

## enable resulting html compression

#php_flag zlib.output_compression on

###########################################

# disable user agent verification to not break multiple image upload

php_flag suhosin.session.cryptua off

###########################################

# turn off compatibility with PHP4 when dealing with objects

php_flag zend.ze1_compatibility_mode Off

###########################################

# disable POST processing to not break multiple image upload

SecFilterEngine Off

SecFilterScanPOST Off

############################################

## enable apache served files compression

## http://developer.yahoo.com/performance/rules.html#gzip

# Insert filter on all content

###SetOutputFilter DEFLATE

# Insert filter on selected content types only

#AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE text/html text/plain text/xml text/css text/javascript

# Netscape 4.x has some problems…

#BrowserMatch ^Mozilla/4 gzip-only-text/html

# Netscape 4.06-4.08 have some more problems

#BrowserMatch ^Mozilla/4.0[678] no-gzip

# MSIE masquerades as Netscape, but it is fine

#BrowserMatch bMSIE !no-gzip !gzip-only-text/html

# Don’t compress images

#SetEnvIfNoCase Request_URI .(?:gif|jpe?g|png)$ no-gzip dont-vary

# Make sure proxies don’t deliver the wrong content

#Header append Vary User-Agent env=!dont-vary

############################################

## make HTTPS env vars available for CGI mode

SSLOptions StdEnvVars

############################################

## enable rewrites

Options +FollowSymLinks

RewriteEngine on

############################################

## you can put here your magento root folder

## path relative to web root

#RewriteBase /magento/

############################################

## uncomment next line to enable light API calls processing

# RewriteRule ^api/([a-z][0-9a-z_]+)/?$ api.php?type=$1 [QSA,L]

############################################

## rewrite API2 calls to api.php (by now it is REST only)

RewriteRule ^api/rest api.php?type=rest [QSA,L]

############################################

## workaround for HTTP authorization

## in CGI environment

RewriteRule .* – [E=HTTP_AUTHORIZATION:%{HTTP:Authorization}]

############################################

## TRACE and TRACK HTTP methods disabled to prevent XSS attacks

RewriteCond %{REQUEST_METHOD} ^TRAC[EK]

RewriteRule .* – [L,R=405]

############################################

## redirect for mobile user agents

#RewriteCond %{REQUEST_URI} !^/mobiledirectoryhere/.*$

#RewriteCond %{HTTP_USER_AGENT} “android|blackberry|ipad|iphone|ipod|iemobile|opera mobile|palmos|webos|googlebot-mobile” [NC]

#RewriteRule ^(.*)$ /mobiledirectoryhere/ [L,R=302]

############################################

## always send 404 on missing files in these folders

RewriteCond %{REQUEST_URI} !^/(media|skin|js)/

############################################

## never rewrite for existing files, directories and links

RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f

RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-d

RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-l

############################################

## rewrite everything else to index.php

RewriteRule .* index.php [L]

############################################

## Prevent character encoding issues from server overrides

## If you still have problems, use the second line instead

AddDefaultCharset Off

#AddDefaultCharset UTF-8

############################################

## Add default Expires header

## http://developer.yahoo.com/performance/rules.html#expires

ExpiresDefault “access plus 1 year”

############################################

## By default allow all access

Order allow,deny

Allow from all

###########################################

## Deny access to release notes to prevent disclosure of the installed Magento version

order allow,deny

deny from all

############################################

## If running in cluster environment, uncomment this

## http://developer.yahoo.com/performance/rules.html#etags

#FileETag none

SetEnvIf Host .*base.* MAGE_RUN_CODE=“base”;

SetEnvIf Host .*magento_site_2.* MAGE_RUN_TYPE=“banners_and_more”;
=================================================================
Then we check for the URL: http://www.yourdomain.com/website_1
Magento: How To Set Up And Manage Multiple Stores With Multiple Domains

Visual Content To Boost Up Your Marketing Campaign

Visual content creates a greater and stronger impact on your audience than words when it comes to your marketing presentation. When you are initiating a business, your prime motive while marketing your product or services would consist in capturing the attention of your audience. Making use of effective visuals can help you power your communication up and make it livelier. It will offer a boost to your presentation while also sparking up social media. Mentioned below are few reasons why you need to incorporate visual content in your marketing strategy:

Visuals enhance the impact of your ad
The point of marketing is to attract and lure your audience to your products and services. And no word can be as effective as visuals. In fact, science tells that the impact of visuals is more on human brain than words and texts. When your ad contains visual content, your target audience would be easily drawn towards your advertisement.
Also Read: Content Strategy – Think Like A Journalist!
Text is often considered indigestible for audience. Information in text format very easily gets ignored or overlooked and forgotten. When you integrate visuals into your content you will find your audience retaining it more and for a longer period. Visuals are processed faster by human brain. Moreover, our brain does not just retain but also delivers information faster when it comes across a visual content.
Images reinforce your content
You must have come across advertisements on the web. There are both kinds- one that is text dominated, and the other with illustrations and images with content. Which, do you think, appeals more to you? The one with proper visual content, right? The reason most evidently has to do with the impact that visuals leave on your mind. Quite naturally, the impact of the advertisement that has appealed to your senses will last for a longer period.

Videos on landing page increase conversion rates
When you add videos to your landing page, it impacts your SEO. Including videos on your landing page increases the conversion rate for your page to a great extent. Videos often times work better than texts and images. When you provide an image, you need content in words as well. Videos need no written explanation and they suffice all in themselves in most cases.
Images are social media friendly
When you are on social media platforms you are more drawn toward ads that have pictorial or graphic representation rather than those with textual content. Similarly, when you are planning a business or marketing strategy you need to take care of these. When you choose social media platforms as a marketing strategy, including images and other visual content can help it more. The Hummingbird update to Google’s algorithm has already made social engagement an important criterion for a business’s SEO.
Images get more attention and more number of clicks on social media as compared to texts and links.
Visual content brings countless inbound links
The tools generally used for online marketing or advertisement include the likes of infographics, posters, memes, etc. These have the potential to make your ad or promotions go viral once they draw the attention of your target audience. Your visual content should be in a form that can be clicked so that it can bring in inbound links. Your rankings get a boost when your ad brings in relevant and high quality inbound links.
Conscious marketers depend on visuals more than on text when they are devising a marketing strategy and want it to be successful. Visuals draw in greater attention from your consumers and help to add both viewer and customer base.

Visual Content To Boost Up Your Marketing Campaign

Six Design Techniques With Highest Usability

Complex design techniques are often time-consuming. Some of these advanced effects can add value to designs, but when used in the wrong place, they do little more than distract viewers from the project’s intended focus. These effects may be precisely what a design needs to have the impact it requires, but even in these cases, they should be complemented by simpler effects.

Simple effects and techniques are the building blocks of today’s designs. For example, what good is a stellar lighting technique if you can’t decide which colors to use? With a “less is more” mentality, these are 6 very simple and impressive design techniques that are brought into use most often:

Also Read: All You Need To Know About Image Optimization

1. Vivid use of colors

Bright colors in website designs can add a lot of visual interest. Using colors vividly is one of the design techniques you need to follow. They’re best for sites that want to appeal to younger demographics or for more casual sites. Using colors either in similar hues or saturation makes for a more cohesive appearance and keeps things from looking too busy.

Make sure if you try using vivid color schemes that you allow sufficient contrast between elements without using too much (such as red text on a green background). This is especially important with text, as improper contrast can make things very difficult, if not impossible, to read.

Design Slurp and Tracy Apps Design make well use of this characteristic.

2. Gradients and lighting effects

Gradients and lighting effects can be used for dramatic or subtle effects, or anything in between. Mixed or used separately, they can add a bit of extra polish to designs. A subtle tone-on-tone gradient can make a great background, while gradients mixed with lighting effects are often used to create awesome header images.

If you’re mixing gradients with lighting effects (particularly multiple effects), be careful that your design doesn’t end up too busy. Limit either the colors used, or the intensity of the lighting effects, or the overall number of effects for best results.

3. Blur

Best Design Techniques

If you’ve ever been stumped with the predicament of how to make something stand out more, or stand out less, or make it nearly disappear, take a look at using blurs in different ways. By blurring objects in the foreground, background or by blurring the entire design, you can dramatically increase the impact of your project.

The Ios V2 wallpaper collection uses simple blurs to create a calm, organic view. There are only a few sharp lines to give the image focus, and the blurred background is crucial to the look of the wallpaper as a whole.

4. Anti-aliasing

Anti-aliasing can be summarized as the smoothing out of edges, and it applies to all design techniques and all aspects of design too. In the world of web design, anti-aliasing is partially determined by whether the text will be in HTML or shown as an image. Complicating things a little more, some web browsers and operating systems automatically smoothen out HTML text a bit.

Stockxpert makes a conscious choice on its very simple landing page to anti-alias some lines of text and not others. Most of the text has a very smooth edge and does not appear choppy at all. But that’s not the case for the small text at the top and bottom of the page.

Mess things up! Things that look perfect often look fake or uninteresting. Leaves on trees are not exactly symmetrical or lighting of any kind provides uneven shadows and highlights. Some design techniques are such that they will just look great with clean and artificial-looking effects. But others need something messier.

5. Alignment

Altering the alignment of design elements can make them more memorable, more talked about in design techniques and, consequently, much more effective. This technique applies not just to the text.

Some designers fall back on templates or personal work habits when conceptualizing a design. This can greatly increase the speed with which concepts are turned over to clients. But all too often, it also restricts creativity — especially with regard to alignment.

Icon Designer sets itself apart by rotating a few design components. The page would otherwise be fairly monotonous, but the simple rotations keep things interesting.

6. Muted colors

Using muted colors is one of the design techniques to create a subtle, inviting site. Mixing in muted colors with one or two brighter or darker accent colors can be put to good use to make certain elements of your site stand out. Muted colors don’t need to be limited to grays or browns. You can use any hue in the spectrum, just toned down or with a grayish-tinge.

CSS Addict, Cuisine Saine, I-Avion, Ian James Cox are among the few who make use of this technique.