How Data Can Be Your Friend in Winning New Customers

Every business knows they need to have enough customers to earn a profit. Retaining customers has its place, but earning new business is also essential. When it comes to winning over new customers, there are a lot of tools at your disposal. Data is one of the most valuable tools you can use in those efforts.

Gain Insights Into Your Audience

To effectively earn the business of new customers, it’s important to understand who they are. Your business and its products aren’t going to appeal to everyone, so if you know who they will appeal to you can focus on getting the attention of those groups. Start by gathering and analyzing data that focuses on your current customer base. Once you figure out who is already buying your products, you can start figuring out how to attract more of them.

Use Social Media Effectively

When used properly, social media can be a great tool for businesses. You know you can use it to reach out to and connect with consumers, and you know you can use it to post content. You probably even know that you can use it as an advertising platform. Do you know how to do it effectively though? If you aren’t using data to increase your effectiveness, you should be. Data can help generate ads that convert leads. You can use it to identify who you should be targeting with your ads and what types of ads are most effective at attracting new customers.

Identifying Effective Marketing Strategies

Data doesn’t just help you create effective social media ads. You can use it on a broader level to identify the most effective marketing strategies for your business on any platform. Most businesses have a pretty limited marketing budget that is generally based on their annual growth. To give your business its best chance at growth and customer acquisition, you should be focusing your marketing dollars on those strategies that give you the greatest returns. Use the data you collect on your marketing efforts to identify those strategies and pursue them.

Data is arguably one of the best tools you can use to earn new business efficiently. It can give you insights into your audience, helps you use social media more effectively, and gives you the capacity to identify which marketing strategies are most effective for your business. Make sure your business is collecting the right data so you can put it to good use.

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How to Build a Profitable Website from Scratch

When you are a stay-at-home parent, you have a lot on your plate. For some, learning how to contribute financially is a major part of daily life. With a profitable website, you can contribute financially and have the time and energy to focus on being a mom and making sure your kids have everything they need.

Find a Niche

You may think that targeting a general audience will give you a better chance for success but finding a niche will do more to help you get what you need. With a niche site, you are better able to find the people who are interested in your content, and that will help you to be more successful in the long run. To find your niche, look for the unique things about your brand or knowledge base and find ways to focus on those things. The more you can narrow down your niche, the easier it will be to make a name for your website and start making a profit.

Create Content

Making great content is essential to having a profitable website. Learning how to connect with your readers through interesting and applicable content will help you to stand out in the industry. Entrepreneurs can benefit from content creation training to improve their content strategy. It doesn’t matter what kind of website you are running, having high-quality content will satisfy your readers and help them to return to your website again and again. Creating a base of loyal followers comes from regular content that they love to read.

Integrate SEO

Most people find websites and businesses through basic searches online. That means that the higher your site ranks on search engines, the better your business will be. SEO is the way to improve your ranking on sites and make sure that your website is getting the attention it deserves. Spend time making sure that your content applies to customers and maybe even getting business listings for your websites. Steps like this will help you to be more productive online and will make sure that the right people can see and use your website.

Making extra money can be essential when you are a stay-at-home parent, and an effective website can be a great way to contribute monetarily. Once you’ve found your niche and are making great content, you are on your way towards having a profitable website.

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Technology That Can Save You Time and Money

Saving money is always a difficult prospect. It can be complicated when there are so many things pressing upon both your time and your finances. If you’re able to automate various obligations, it can make it possible to shave some of the expenses off the top. However, finding which apps could help your circumstances can be time consuming. Consider these suggestions to save money effortlessly.

FinTech Apps

Finance Tech apps can add a little fun to your savings, and begin as large or as small as you like. Some apps, like Cleo or Acorn are designed to throw a predetermined amount into savings for each small purchase you make. Others, like Oval, can have added instructions— they can, for instance, add a nickel or so to your savings from your checking account for every time you post on a social media site. It’s a tiny bit, but it adds up quickly, especially if you love Facebook during the pandemic!

Smart Home Tech

Some apps need devices in order to work properly, but a small investment in smart home devices can help you lower your bills as well. A programmable thermostat can reduce electric use when you aren’t at home. Being able to lower your electric bill by turning off lights from a distance is a definite plus! Other tech which could be stopped from using “vampire energy” are things like printers, DVD players, or other things which traditionally stay plugged in for convenience but which do not need to stay on all the time.

Shopping Apps

It goes without saying that you will still need groceries during a pandemic, but you don’t want to do a lot of physical shopping around. Online apps which offer savings are available for many services. Some, like Southern Savers, allow you to make lists of which coupons are available, and offer you deals you might not know about. Others, like Honey, allow you to find hidden coupons and retail codes to get your prices just a little lower. Still others, like Dollar General’s shopping app, allow curbside pickup.

Small amount of saving can add up quickly to larger savings. If you feel you’re behind, remind yourself that you’re years ahead of where you will be years from now if you don’t start! The most critical thing is to begin now and keep going. It can become a tidy sum even by the end of the pandemic!

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How Your Company Can Use Technology to Improve Customer Service

Providing excellent customer service is one of the best ways to retain customers and gain a positive reputation as a company. Thanks to technology, the burden doesn’t fall entirely on employees anymore. There are some ways your company can use technology that can help improve your customer service.

Use Chatbots

Thanks to chatbots, consumers can now interact with a business at all hours of the day. This can be wonderfully convenient for customers. This is especially useful since there is an increased expectation for instant gratification when it comes to using internet resources. Chatbots have varying levels of sophistication, each with their pros and cons. Which one works best for a given business will depend on what that business wants to accomplish with the chatbot.

Partner With Other Companies

Not every business can support having a personal IT department, but at some point every business will need to have some IT assistance. Technology failures are a sure way to ruffle customer feathers, so it’s imperative that you have access to quality support. This may mean that you need to partner with an IT company to help you make the most out of your technology. You shouldn’t necessarily partner up with the first company you stumble across though. You should ask a few questions to make sure the provider can give you the right service you need. Once you’re satisfied with the terms of service, then you can partner up.

Personalizing Marketing Emails

If you’ve ever gotten marketing emails that were irrelevant to you, you know how little attention those types of emails get. If that happens too often, they end up getting marked as spam and your customers won’t even see them. Effectively personalizing emails means that your customers are more likely to read them and act on them. This requires proper customer segmentation. Thanks to powerful analytics programs, it’s easier now to segment customers by different categories, such as gender, how much they tend to spend, what they usually purchase, and when they’re most likely to make a purchase. All of these factors can influence what marketing offers will be most effective and should be used to make the best offers possible.

Businesses should be taking advantage of technology to improve their customer service. With tools like chatbots, the option to partner with other IT companies, and the ability to personalize marketing emails, delivering excellent customer service is easier than ever. If you aren’t taking advantage of these tools, you’re missing out.

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Car Technology Improvements That Keep You Safe

Technology has come a long way, especially when it comes to cars. The days when the only options were manual transmissions, windows, and locks are long gone. In fact, it seems today it’s nearly the opposite, with cars becoming more automated and more reliant on computer systems. Many advancements have been made in the name of safety—and to great effect. Some safety features are naturally included as a part of the car, while others are options you’ll need to have added, and it can all depend on what car you’re looking at on top of that. So what are some car technology improvements that help keep you safe?

Self-Sealing Tires

Getting a flat tire is pretty much never a good thing and always seems to happen at the worst possible time. If you’re really unlucky and you get stuck trying to handle a blown tire on the freeway you can be in for a pretty scary situation, and getting it changed is both inconvenient and dangerous. It’s hard to believe something as small as a nail can cause such a problem, but all too often that’s exactly what happens. Fortunately, self-sealing tires can help with that.

Self-sealing tires are pretty much what they sound like. They’re tires with a layer of sealant inside that help close up holes if something punctures the tire tread. This can be a real lifesaver, possibly even literally, if you happen to pick up a nail as you’re driving. These tires can be great since they’re essentially just conventional tires with sealant inside, so they don’t need special equipment to put them on and you can mix and match them with existing tires, unlike run-flat tires. The downside to self-sealing tires is that the sealant is only on the part of the tire with tread. If you puncture the wall of the tire, or if the hole in the tread is too big, you’ll still end up with a flat tire. Still, they’re a safer option than a regular, conventional tire.

Anti-Collision Warning Systems

Everyone’s probably been in a situation where traffic suddenly stops without warning. Maybe you’re just a second, or even less, away from rear ending the car in front of you when you come to a stop, leaving you hoping and praying that the cars behind you react at least as well, if not better so they don’t bump you from behind. Whether the reason is that someone cut in front of you or you were distracted, anti-collision warning systems have been a boon when it comes to helping drivers avoid accidents.

Anti-collision warning systems work by sensing obstacles, usually cars, out ahead and monitoring the speed of the vehicle they’re installed in, that of those in front of them, and the distance between. When those metrics reach levels that are likely to result in a collision, the system alerts the driver to take action. Some vehicles automatically respond by breaking or steering independently of the driver. These systems have been shown to be effective in reducing the rate of head-on crashes.

Limp Mode

Limp mode is what your car does when it detects a serious problem in normal functions. To anthropomorphize a vehicle, it’s an attempt at self-preservation. Upon detecting a critical malfunction such as damaged wiring, a sensor malfunction, low fluids, or a failed transmission, the vehicle turns off all extra unnecessary features such as radio and air conditioning to preserve power for essential functions. If your check engine light is on, the car enters limp mode until repaired. You’ll have to slow down, as you’ll likely be limited in how fast you are able to go, which can spell trouble for driving on the freeway. On the other hand, it might help the car last long enough to limp to a mechanic where you can fix the problem. Fixing the problem is the best way to get your car out of limp mode. Like all car problems, whatever has triggered your car to go into limp mode won’t go away if you ignore it. You have to fix the problem that caused it in the first place.

Lane Keeping Assist

Lane keeping assist systems are another proven safety feature. They have been shown to reduce injury accidents by 21 percent when it comes to sideswipe accidents. Lane keeping assist systems work by sensing lane lines in relation to the position of the vehicle. If the system registers the vehicle moving outside of the lane, it sends a signal to the driver. This can come by way of an audible alert, a vibration through the steering wheel, or both.

If the driver fails to respond, the system may gently guide the vehicle to stay within the lane lines. While this sounds like it allows the driver to take a back seat, so to speak, that isn’t the case. This system requires clearly visible lane lines to function, so if the lines are faint, covered, or non-existent, it’s all on you as the driver.

Smart Airbags

Airbags were first thought of in 1952 and have been a regular installment in cars since the 1970’s. They’re in large part the reason why relatively few car accidents result in the death of occupants, though to be fair, they’ve caused their own share of injuries and even death. Fortunately, advancements in airbags and deployment systems have reduced that as well. Airbag systems can now detect whether or not there is a passenger in a seat where an airbag might deploy. They can also detect the weight, seating position, and whether or not a seat belt is being used. Using this information, the system is able to exert a degree of control over the deployment of the airbag, including how much force is used and whether or not it even deploys at all.

Smart Headlights

Ever been blinded by someone’s brights while driving at night? It’s pretty dangerous and can be a little scary. Enter smart headlights. These headlights are able to control where light is projected in front of the car using shutters that are a part of the light system. This prevents lights from high beams from shining in the eyes of oncoming drivers. It’s even supposed to be able to reduce the impact precipitation has on visibility. Sounds great, right? Well, unfortunately it isn’t legal in the US yet.

Concerns over glare have had the NHTSA dragging its feet over the necessary amendments to the FMVSS. In the meantime, the US does allow auto-dimmer features that enable vehicles to sense other vehicles and automatically switch between high-beam and low-beam headlights. This is a useful feature as well, since it doesn’t require the driver to adjust the lights, but it may not react in time to avoid accidentally flashing another driver.

Driving a car is safer than ever, thanks to new technology. With innovation in materials and automation features, cars are starting to make up the difference when it comes to human error. While this doesn’t allow drivers the luxury of not paying attention to the road and their surroundings, it can help reduce the risk of getting into an accident. Keep in mind that not all cars come with all features. Carefully consider which features you value most and allow that to guide your decision when it comes to upgrading your vehicle.

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Why You Should Use Smart Tech in the Workplace

You’ve heard a lot about smart tech options for businesses but may have wondered if it’s worth the hassle to switch. Even though it can seem overwhelming to shift certain business functions to a new format, it is worth the effort. This article will detail three key benefits of using smart tech in the workplace.

Better Communication

In order for your team to work effectively, they need to be able to communicate instantly. Email can be an efficient method of communication when teammates need to transfer large files or long messages. But in order to enable your team to communicate with each other in real-time, other platforms are often better options. Using different smart tech options that are best positioned for video chats or instant messages can give your teams multiple options for communication that can help each team-member be able to communicate in a way that best suits his or her needs.

Efficiency

Upgrading to smart tech can initially seem like a large upfront cost for a growing business. But the facts show that more than half of electricity is wasted by businesses. By utilizing smart tech in the workplace, you will be able to minimize electricity waste and drastically reduce the utilities cost per month. There are a variety of different smart tech options that manage everything from parking and building space to individual room temperature. Additionally, as your business grows, you will inevitably have a growing number of devices. All of these devices need to be effectively connected to the network and need to use relative amounts of electricity. Smart tech solutions help manage this growth in order to ensure that your utility bills stay low.

Cloud Technologies

Cloud technology allows businesses to forgo the hassle of managing on site software and services and instead shift that role to an outside provider. Team-members can access important materials and other online applications through the cloud in order to do their work. In addition to reducing upfront cost, cloud technology can provide a multitude of other benefits. It takes your company’s data, the different projects that various team-members are working on, and other important materials and puts them all in the same place online. Doing this can greatly improve the productivity of your employees by eliminating the necessity to jump through hoops to access needed information. At the same time, cloud technology boosts cooperation between team-members.

Moving your business to a smart tech workplace can seem intimidating at first. Transferring paper files to an online format, training team-members in a new process, and paying for the upfront cost of new tech can seem daunting. But, in the end, making the switch is worth it.

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How to Communicate with People Using Encrypted Channels

Privacy is a big issue with the digital age. There are so many services available that advertise instant or near instant communication, but how well is your data protected? Encrypted channels are a better option as they are secure and maintain confidentiality. But it can be difficult to know what channels to use that do encrypt your information. Here are three channels that can be encrypted and how to use them.

Email

One of the most important channels that should be encrypted is email. It can be easy for someone to read your email, which can be big trouble for your company. There are email services, like ProtonMail that let you encrypt your emails. You can also use encryption services on most email accounts. Encrypted emails protect your information and make sure that only the intended recipient can read the information in the email. Without encryption, anyone could read the email and confidentiality can be breached. When sending out confidential information, it’s important to make sure the email is encrypted.

Messaging Apps

Messaging apps are another channel that should be encrypted. Text messages are one of the most widely used forms of communication. More than 90 percent of text messages are read within 3 minutes as people check their phones frequently. Messaging apps offer a quick and easy way to stay in communication with your employees and many of them come encrypted. Messaging apps simply require the phone numbers of those you want to message and then you create an individual group with just those numbers. The service provides encryption to keep your information safe and secure so that only your group can read the information that you send.

Video Calls

Video calls are another channel that should be secure when meeting with people. Some video services come with some sort of encryption and can be further protected by passwords, which give secure access to the meeting. However, there are platforms that are better at protecting your privacy than others. Some provide end-to-end encryption and are very secure, while others record information in a cloud that can be accessible to others beside yourself. There are many options for secure and encrypted channels, but ultimately is up to you what kind of protection you’ll get.

There are many options available that encrypt your data and provide privacy protection. It’s important to know what is available so that your information can stay protected.

Here’s another article you might like: How to Know if a Website Is Secure

How to Protect Your Private Medical Data Online

With technology becoming a key tool in many practices, patient data is being stored digitally more and more. It’s important to keep your medical information safe, which can be increasingly difficult to do in the digital age we live in. Here are three ways you can help keep your online medical data protected online.

Be Proactive

Since most of your medical information will be stored and handled by your doctors, it’s very possible your data might be in danger and you wouldn’t even know it. While not always intentional, medical fraud through the mishandling of patient data isn’t as uncommon as most people would expect. Do your research when switching to a new doctor, check to see if there were any recent data breaches that made headlines or any medical fraud cases. Doctors should protect your confidential information, and if they fail to maintain a proper doctor-patient relationship, it is probably time for a new doctor.

Be Wary of Apps

Medical apps can seem to be very helpful at a glance in keeping track of your medical information, but with the large number of apps to choose from it can be difficult to know what’s safe to use. There’s a surprising lack of regulation regarding what apps are allowed to do in terms of data collection, especially when it comes to the Android platform. Always read through the terms and conditions, and see what exactly the app requests permission to access. Many free apps purely exist to leech your information for marketing and sales purposes, and not just your medical information either. Apps offering medical advice can also be an issue, as many straight-up take advantage of the user and provide some serious misinformation.

Protect Your Internet

With appointment scheduling, record requests, and many other services transitioning to online availability, ensuring your internet and computer remain spyware-free is another way you can protect your medical records. At a minimum, you’ll want both a strong antivirus software as well as malware protection software on your computer, since these will generally prevent attacks on your computer and your data. You’ll also want to make sure that your web browser is always kept up to date, and use a browser known for its security. Newer versions of web browsers have fixes for security loopholes that malicious software can take advantage of.

By keeping these things in mind, you can help keep your private medical data safe, as well as other personal data. While these tips are specifically geared towards protecting your medical data, they can be applied to your personal data in general as well.

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How to Effectively Use Technology to Manage Remote Employees

Today more than ever, people are choosing to work remotely. Having a remote workforce is a positive thing because it allows for flexibility, both in working hours and lifestyle. But sometimes, remote employees can be difficult to engage and manage because you’re not in contact with them as frequently as in-office employees. Thankfully there are many technological tools available these days that can help. Here are a few ways you can use technology to make the process a little bit easier.

Take Advantage of Online Communication Platforms

There are countless platforms available for different sorts of digital and online communication. Video chats, instant messaging, project management tools and much more are abundant. Using online messaging platforms enables remote employees to stay connected with you and each other easily. The benefit of this modern technological age is that you can connect with remote employees all the time, regardless of anyone’s physical location. Take advantage of the ability to chat with other coworkers even if they’re halfway across the world, and you can shrink the bubble of your company even though you are physically separated.

Schedule Video Meetings

A great way to get consistent feedback and check in with your employees is to schedule occasional video meetings. This is something you don’t want to overuse because the benefit of being a remote worker is that you can work at any time, regardless of the time zone. So, offer your workers flexibility while maintaining the freedom to work how and when they want. Once again, communication tools like Skype, Zoom, and Microsoft Teams allow you to do this instantly, as well as sharing your screen and any important information.

Maintain Shared Work Logs

Another way to ensure consistent progress is to share work logs between the team. While you don’t want to constantly get on someone’s case about a deadline, having a written record of where they’re at and what they’re working on is an important accountability measure and ensures that they are on task and proceeding in the right direction. With a shared work log, you can get feedback without having to pester your employees, and you can still direct them appropriately. If they are lagging in a certain area, these logs let you know how to direct them and what help they may need.

If you manage a remote workforce, consider finding a project management platform to strike up chats and keep up to date on the projects your employees are handling. Necessary digital technology will keep you in better contact and help direct and guide your remote staff whenever necessary.

Here’s another article you might like: 5 Technologies that Could Solve Your Company’s IT Problems

4 Ways You Can Use Technology to Protect Yourself From Hackers

One of the most prevalent threats in the cyber-world are hackers. They can cost you dearly in downtime and can put you and your business at risk of theft. To keep yourself and your business data safe, there are technologies you can put in place to shield your information and to keep your client data protected.

Virtual Private Network

A virtual private network, also known as a VPN, is a way to share encrypted information between computers as though you were functioning on a private network. Passwords are required to make sure that anyone logging into the VPN is authentic. A quality VPN service will verify each computer to access the network. Additionally, you can subscribe to a VPN service with a kill-switch. Any suspicious activity shuts down the network to avoid data loss.

Personal and Business VPNs

A quality VPN service will not be able to view your data or any information specific to your client. It provides an envelope in which your business can function safely by connecting with other verified computers. A VPN can be set up on your personal computer and is a good choice if you work remotely, especially if you choose to connect to public Wi-Fi services.

Two-Factor Authorization

Two-factor authorization is initiated when your client sets up an account. The client will need to create a password. In addition to the password, the client will likely need to enter a code that is sent by your VPN service to another device, such as a cell phone. Once your new client is able to verify who he or she is on both devices, the account is activated. Without such verification, the account setup can’t be completed. It’s generally advised that you should learn to protect yourself from cyber extortion. In addition to including this verification step during the initial setup, your clients will need to undergo this same process if they change their passwords.

Stay Vigilant

Hackers are always looking for new ways to tap into data. While two-factor authorization is a great start, the data you store online is vulnerable. The theft of a customer list can put you and your business at great legal risk. If you’re feeling suspicious of something, you’re probably correct in your thinking. It doesn’t hurt to look into something just to make sure it’s not the sign of a data breach.

Whether you’re an independent contractor or a business owner, shielding information is key to your job. Your clients deserve and should expect your discretion. If you travel, consider setting up a personal VPN. Be prepared to collect the data needed to set up a two-factor verification system.

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