Let’s put this to bed.
I’ve spent the last couple of weeks trying to find a decent replacement for iTunes.
The reasons why I want to abandon the world’s most popular music download service are many and varied.
iTunes is a deeply flawed experience. It's impersonal and slow, with lack of support for different file formats. It has a stubbornly rigid pricing model and no browser access whatsoever.
In fact I rarely use the platform to download. Instead I use a collection of different digital download sites to purchase MP3s online.
Yet I still use iTunes almost exclusively to organise and access my songs on both desktop and smartphone.
Surely there’s an easier way. Well I’m going to try and find one. For the good of you, me and the music loving public of the world.
It’s the round-up of weekly entertainments from around the internet that doesn’t really have a consistent name.
You have a collective name though, dear readers. You belong to an exclusive group known only in my head as Rounders.
Yes Rounders, a loyal group of obedient troopers, grateful for this fleeting few minutes of joy every week.
It is to you Rounders that I dedicate this week’s, and indeed every week’s round-up.
Apart from last week. Last week’s round-up was dedicated to William G. Morgan the inventor of volleyball, for reasons I shall keep to myself.
Pinterest is used by more than 21% of all American adults. This is up from 15% on the previous year.
This figure comes from the last study by Pew Research, which also states the even more incredible fact that one-third of all women in the USA use Pinterest.
Pinterest drove an unprecedented amount of traffic to retail sites in Q4 2013 achieving a 50% quarter-over-quarter increase in revenue-per-visit (RPV). In fact, Pinterest has overtaken Facebook for UK referral revenue and is expected to do the same in the USA this year.
Also, with the amount of Pinterest Pin it buttons overtaking the amount of Facebook Likes on product pages, retailers are realising that Pinterest is a key way to drive sales.
Let’s take a look at how the top 10 US retailers (in terms of 2013 sales) use Pinterest.
UK consumers are far ahead of Europe in terms of using smartphones for online shopping.
Out of 18 European countries surveyed, the UK has the highest percentage of people who make a monthly purchase on their smartphones, with 32%. This is compared to just 8% in France, 15% in Germany and 19% in Sweden.
These findings come from the latest TNS research commissioned by Google, which explores the growing importance of online platforms in the consumer journey, from research to purchase.
The research also looks more broadly at internet usage across devices. Here is the online state of the UK in 2014, compared to last year:
Although founded in 1939 as Timely Comics, the modern version of Marvel Comics that all fanboys know and love today was launched in 1961. With Fantastic Four, Spider-man, Avengers and X-Men all first appearing on comic book pages in the first half of the 60s.
With the arrival of the digital age, the expectation was that this 75 year-old company, whose very business is completely ingrained in traditional print media, would just be left to wrinkle and brown like the early-90's Ghost Rider comics I have boxed away in my attic.
However this has been far from the fate of mighty Marvel! (I can get away with exclamation marks here because I’m writing about comic books).
Marvel has played a huge part in the push to build a bridge between print and digital content since mid 2012 by revolutionising the way comic books are consumed, through innovative app design and comprehensive online and offline access to its brand new and vintage comics.
Marvel has also shown incredible skill in rebuilding its own brand through expert content marketing and becoming a peerless heavyweight in the summer blockbuster market.
How does Marvel market its huge amount of content online? Through its many and varied social media channels each offering unique content, tailored to the respective platform.
Let’s take a look at how Marvel uses Google+, Pinterest, Instagram and Twitter to ‘make everyone’s Marvel’.
WaterAid has increased its Instagram presence by 12,000 followers in just one week after entering a single Instagram video to Instagram’s ‘Weekend Hashtag Project’.
WaterAid’s team entered the 15 second Instagram video #WHPfromwhereiwalk featuring a woman in the remote fishing community of Brubeng, Ghana walking to collect unsafe water in Lake Volta.
The unique film offers point-of-view footage that highlights what it’s like for the millions of women around the world who walk miles to collect water each day.
As of writing, since the video was uploaded on Instagram two weeks ago, WaterAid has achieved more than 22,000 followers, gaining roughly a thousand users per day. Before this WaterAid had only 3,800.
Here's the footage...
As a relative newcomer to the digital marketing world, I've decided to write a series of 'beginner's guides' to uncover what is meant by certain terms, trends and technological advances in digital; being both a travel guide and a personal investigation.
Here I’ll be answering the following questions: What are iBeacons? What are their practical applications? Are iBeacons better than similar existing technology?
All this in a tone of voice that has been described as both 'helpful' and 'not too rambling'.
Just a cursory glance around the internet and indeed our own blog, throws up a lot of phrases and acronyms surrounding the term iBeacons (NFC, BLE… iBeacons).
Let’s have a little wade through the jargon. Bear with me, I’ll try and do this as logically as possible.
As of July 2013, the Google Play store officially reached over 1m apps published and over 50bn downloads.
As of the same date, iTunes achieved 575m registered users and it’s adding 500,000 new accounts every day.
There is no denying the power and ubiquity of Apple’s digital music service, after all it has transformed the way that everyone on the planet consumes music.
iTunes is a deeply flawed experience though. It's impersonal and slow, with lack of support for different file formats, a stubbornly rigid price model and no browser access.
In an ongoing series I’ve been checking out the competition to see if I can find a digital music platform that can finally trump iTunes.
So far, 7digital and Amazon MP3 have both shown many surprising wins over the Goliath of iTunes. I saved Google Play till later as I expected this to be where the true battle lies.
I was wrong.
This is the sixth in a series of posts discussing how to set up and run a WordPress blog from a relatively experienced expert, which will feature many helpful and hopefully relevant tangents.
This week, I'll help your new blog become more visible to search engines, by investigating the world of search engine optimisation (SEO) and offering some best practice tips.
How hard can writing an email subject line be? Does it even matter what gets written?
Surely the question of whether it gets opened or binned is down to who the sender is, or what the email contains?
That’s fine when you’re emailing people you know. In fact let me just skip over to my personal email account to see what I’ve written in the subject line to my friends and family in the past week.
“Hi” (as 80% of the email subject lines in my inbox read).
“It’s me! I’m The Yellow King!” (Obscure True Detective reference. Nevermind).
“(no subject)” (...).
Glittering copy I’m sure you’ll agree. Now let’s take a look at the emails I’ve received from marketers...