Problems and Solutions

Now, here’s a recap on some useful marketing, business promotion, new technology and other interesting stories from the past week. If you have a problem and a solution, what are you waiting for? 

“I believe that if you show people the problems and you show them the solutions, they will be moved to act.” – Bill Gates

Social Media Marketing & PR: New Guide: Social Media Cheat Sheets

Almost every day, a new blog post appears with best practices for Facebook, Twitter, Instagram – and the list goes on. It’s overwhelming even for the savviest PR pros & marketers. Our guide is here to help. The publishers have done the research and chosen the practices most essential to your social media marketing and PR success.

Get these FREE cheat sheets from VOCUS from and see how to:

  • ​Stand out with visuals
  • Increase reach and brand awareness
  • Choose the right network for your message
  • Reach your target audience 

Marketing ideas from Marketing Profs

Lots more marketing ideas and tips have been published by Marketing Profs:


GLOBAL: Apple unveils watch and new iPhones

Leo Kelion, Technology desk editor, BBC News reported on the Apple new product launch on 9 September: Apple has unveiled a smartwatch – the Apple Watch – its first new product line since the first iPad and the death of Steve Jobs. The device runs apps, acts as a health and fitness tracker and communicates with the iPhone.

Although many companies already sell competing products, experts note that Apple has a history of entering sectors relatively late and then changing their direction with influential devices of its own.

Apple also unveiled two new handsets that are larger than previous models. The iPhone 6’s screen measures 4.7in (11.9cm) and iPhone Plus 5.5in (14.0cm) – a change that analysts said should help it prevent users migrating to Android.

The firm also announced a new service called Apple Pay, which chief executive Tim Cook said he wanted to “replace the wallet” in shops.

Paypal to start accepting bitcoin payments

From Asia-First – In a move seen as a major boost to virtual currencies, eBay Inc said PayPal will start accepting bitcoins as payment for online transactions. Over the coming months, PayPal will allow its online merchants to accept bitcoins, potentially allowing its 152 million registered accounts to transact using the virtual currency.

PayPal is the most significant business to-date to embrace bitcoin even as issues on whether or not bitcoin should be considered as a currency continue to hound the virtual currency. EBay’s Braintree unit chief Bill Ready said PayPal and Braintree will work with bitcoin payment-service provider Coinbase Inc to enable payments in the virtual currency. Coinbase investors include Andreessen Horowitz, which in turn is part-owned by Marc Andressen who sits on the board of ebay.

Forrester Report: Mobile Trends for Marketers

Amazingly, there are more than 2 billion smartphones on the planet — and they’re transforming business as we know it. Download the FREE Forrester 2014 Mobile Trends Report to learn about the mobile innovations that will shape 2014, and the overhyped fads that are likely to fizzle.

You’ll see why analytics are the backbone of every successful mobile strategy — and you’ll learn how mobile will change every aspect of your business.
Download now from:’s/2014/Predictions_2014_Mobile_T.pdf

The Practice of the Future

From in the US: What does the financial advisor practice of the future look like? What changes do the next few years have in store? While we might wish for the ability to see into the future, parallel annual research projects on affluent investors and financial advisors tell us that for financial services, the future is now.

Research over the past five years has shown that, year after year, elite teams are distancing themselves from the competition. They’re exceeding affluent investor expectations and marketing their services at the highest levels. The future is embodied in the profile of today’s small cadre of elite practices.

Get your FREE copy of The Practice of the Future: How to Stay Ahead of the Curve and Build a Future-Proof Business from here.

7 Keys to Cold Emails that Guarantee You a Response

It’s time to stop hitting send and crossing your fingers, says Arsham Memarzadeh. You’d imagine that with all the new marketing platforms and email-optimising technology, we’d have figured out the secret to cold emails by now. Yet here we are — still hitting send and blindly holding out hope this will be the one that gets a response. Entrepreneurs are still struggling to convince VCs that their pitch email is worth opening; job seekers are still failing to persuade employers they’re that one-of-a-kind candidate; and sales people still haven’t found the perfect balance between being irritating and accessible.

The author is currently working on a report around new metrics for mobile-first B2B SaaS companies, and in forming his hypothesis, he’s engaged with experts in the space with whom he’d never previously interacted (including entrepreneurs, investors, independent advisors, etc.). He’s pretty happy with the response rate, even when reaching out to people far more experienced and more difficult to access than himself. That’s because he has focused on making the simple yet elusive act of responding as compelling and easy as possible.

This article, here, provides seven simple tips to boost your response rates by drafting cold emails that convert.

Team Building – Developing Your Leadership Skills”

Offered FREE by Free Management Ebooks, this free eBook explains the core principles of team building that will help you get the best out of any team that you find yourself managing.

Successful team building in the workplace has more to do with making a success of the team you have been given, rather than building an ideal team from scratch. You will learn how to apply these principles to:

  • A project team where even though you are not an expert in all of the technical aspects of the project you are still expected to coordinate the team’s efforts.
  • A support team where there are problems with motivation and high staff turnover.
  • A high-level strategic team where you do not have any direct authority over the other participants.

Download from:

Opportunity for Professionals: Standard Life makes loans to advisers

In New Model Adviser, Michelle Abrego says that Standard Life has made loans to a number of financial advice firms in an effort to support their growth plans, including the acquisition of other IFAs. [Could this apply to Accountants and Lawyers too?]

Standard Life confirmed that it has already provided loans to a small number of firms and New Model Adviser® understands that the provider is in talks with further firms over offering finance.

Standard Life said the details regarding the number of firms it had lent money to, as well as the size of the loans, was confidential, and that the initiative was not restricted to advisers that used its wrap.

It said that the purpose of the funding was not to influence future business or asset flows to Standard Life products.
Read more:

Accountants for business: Innovations in access to finance for SMEs

From AccountancyAGE Insights – In the years since the 2007-8 financial crisis, the issue of access to finance for small and medium-sized enterprises has taken on a new prominence. This FREE paper from ACCA reviews a broad range of innovations in business financing and highlights examples of good practice in developed and emerging economies.
Download from:

Campaign Management maturity assessment

Highlights from the 2014 Adobe Benchmark Survey: A successful campaign management strategy is vital to the overall success of your firm. In this FREE white paper, Adobe shares the result of a survey of over 270 management-level or higher marketing professionals who rated their organisation’s campaign management competency in seven categories.

Read this white paper to learn industry benchmarks and to see survey results such as:

  • 69% of marketers struggle to combine inbound and outbound channels in an orchestrated, consistent fashion
  • Although 70% have business rules in place to serve customers personalised content, only 23% have “fatigue” rules that prevent them from wearing out the customer with too many messages and offers.

Get this FREE download from:,7cc2cbc,7cc2cc1&p1=003a0000028U0i4AAC


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Martin Pollins
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