Posts tagged with "it"

statistics illustration via Maria Soloman for use by 360 Magazine

Seven tips that will ensure your website’s calls-to-action get results 

Offering high-quality products or services is great, but it’s not always enough to make a sale. You also need to ensure you have strong calls-to-actions (CTAs) on your website. 

These are words or phrases, often presented on a button, that tell your customers what to do next. Sometimes, people just need a little bit of a push! 

In this article, we’re going to show you how to optimize your website’s CTAs so you can make more sales. 

Make sure your calls-to-action are bright and bold 

The design of your CTAs is just as important as the wording! You don’t want them to blend in, or readers might not spot them. So, you need to put some thought into how you can make them stand out. 

Typically, CTAs are presented on a clickable button. When choosing the color of yours, try to pick a hue that fits in with your branding, but that will still stand out against the background it’s on. Make sure the button is big enough, too — it should be one of the first page elements people are drawn to when they land on your website. 

Let’s take a look at a few examples for inspiration.

Paramount Plus, a new TV and movie streaming service, has a bright and bold CTA right on their homepage. 

There are two things in particular that stand out: first, the copy says TRY IT FREE. Because Paramount Plus is so new, it’s important that they reel in customers this way — after all, there are a lot of streaming services out there, so people will want to try before they buy. Additionally, the color of the button is a bright and clear blue. Not only does this color work with the company’s branding, but the blue also contrasts well against Spongebob’s yellow, making it even more eye-catching. 

KiwiCo, a kid’s craft subscription service, has a stand-out CTA right on their homepage as well. 

They’ve used a bright and bold green color to ensure their CTA button stands out against the grey background, and they’ve also added a fun light bulb icon that draws the eye. Not only does this help the call-to-action to stand out, but it could also spark a website visitor’s imagination and convince them to click through to “get a crate”. 

Think about how you could ensure your CTAs stand out on your website. What colors would work well, and are there any fun icons you could add for some extra interest? 

Stir up a sense of urgency 

If you create a sense of urgency with your CTAs, you can make your consumers feel like they’ll miss out if they don’t act now. This can lead to more people taking the action you’re looking for right away.

You can help create a sense of urgency with timers that outline when a particular promotion will end, or how much stock you have left, for instance. Let’s take a look at an example of a business that uses this tactic well.

For instance, Amazon likes to let people know when stock of a particular product is running low. They’ll then tell you to “order soon” to avoid missing out on the items you need.

This is a powerful technique that could provide a sense of uncertainty that will be just enough to push people into making a purchase. They even have two different buttons customers can press — one of which says “buy now”, which increases the feeling of urgency. Amazon is the biggest online retailer in the world, so this is clearly a tactic that has served them well. 

Play on your website visitors’ FOMO 

Similarly, fear of missing out, or FOMO, can be a very effective motivator. So, it’s worth playing on this with your calls-to-action. Make your readers feel like people just like them have taken your desired action and are better off because of it!

To provide you with some inspiration for your own CTAs, let’s take a look at a company that does a great job of stirring up a sense of FOMO with theirs. 

Venngage, a company that specializes in helping people to create infographics, makes sure to instil the fear of missing out in their audience in their guide to what infographics are.

Within their article, they promote a webinar they’ll be hosting on the topic, and urge people to “SAVE MY SPOT”. This creates a sense of scarcity, and encourages people to act fast to avoid missing out. Plus, the CTA is presented on a bright green button, which really helps it to stand out. 

If you’re hosting an event or promoting a limited edition product, make sure you make it clear to people that they could miss out if they don’t buy their ticket or item right now. It could just be enough to boost your conversions. 

Provide different calls-to-action for different people

Different people who visit your site might be at different stages of the buying journey. This means it can often be helpful to have different CTAs that correspond to these different stages. For example, you might want to encourage one person to make a purchase, but direct someone else towards giving you a call to get more information about what you do. 

Let’s take a look at some businesses that use this tactic well. 

For instance, you’ll find several different CTAs on Loganix’s link building services page. At the very top of the page, you’ll see a button that urges people to “get started” — this is great for people who have already decided that they would like some help with their link building and that Loganix is their company of choice.

However, people who scroll down the page to find more information will also find a range of other CTAs, such as “learn more” and “read more testimonials”. These target people who aren’t quite sure about this service or want to know more about the company in general. 

This approach is particularly effective for a service-based organization like Loganix. They’re providing something slightly more abstract than a physical product, so people looking to spend money with the business might need more convincing. These different CTAs are sure to point them in the right direction. 

Similarly, Best Value Schools have multiple CTAs on their homepage. The website helps prospective students to choose the next step in their education and career, which is always going to be a huge decision. So, they have different calls-to-action to attract people at different stages in their journey. 

They have options to “find your school”, “view all resources”, “view all rankings”, and more. Think about all of the different types of people who could be browsing this website. “Find your school” targets people who already know what kind of path they want to pursue, while the CTAs that urge people to find more information are more suited to people who are earlier in their journey, and who might not even be sure that higher education is for them. There’s a CTA for everyone. 

Consider who’s likely to land on your website, and what they might need in their current stage of the buyer journey. Do they want to make a purchase straight off the bat, or will they need more information? You should add CTAs that cater to everyone. 

Make it very obvious if you’re offering a freebie

If you’re creating a CTA to promote something that won’t require your website visitors to spend any money, be sure to make that very clear. This can work well for free templates, free trials, free consultations, and the like. 

Keep in mind that offering something for free is also a great marketing strategy in general. It shows people what you do, and is likely to lead to them spending money with you in the future.

To provide you with some inspiration, let’s take a look at companies that incorporate freebies into their marketing and CTAs well.

For instance, Bay Property Management Group, a real estate management company with multiple locations across the east coast, promotes their free property management analysis on their Philadelphia location page. 

You can clearly see where you need to click to get a free property management analysis, as the bright blue CTA button really stands out! Just above their freebie call-to-action, they also outline the benefits of clicking through — doing so will help prospective to find their ideal tenants without breaking the bank.

The company is offering a very valuable service for free, and they’ve made that very clear with their CTA. This is sure to lead to a lot of click-throughs and could drive a lot of future business for the company. 

SocialPilot does something similar partway through their guide to Facebook analytics tools.

They provide their own social media platform so, along with outlining the pros and cons of all the different tools out there, they’ve mentioned and promoted their own. Not only that, but they’ve also encouraged people to try it for free.

The bright blue banner really makes this CTA stand out, and they’ve made it very clear that trying out their tool won’t cost the user anything. They’ve mentioned “free” twice and even clarified that they won’t take your credit card details, so you won’t be stung if you forget to cancel at the end of your free trial. This is sure to convince a lot of people to give it a go and could lead to a lot more sales for the company. 

Could you offer something valuable to your prospective customers for free? If so, make it very clear that engaging won’t cost them anything, and it could actually boost your bottom line in the long run. 

Lead with a strong verb 

The whole point of a call-to-action is to convince someone to do something — that means you should always lead with a strong verb. Words and phrases like “sign up” and “submit” might do the job, but they aren’t very powerful, so you’ll want to go with something stronger for the best results. 

Here are some examples of CTAs with strong verbs that you could use: 

  • Download now
  • Get started
  • Create your account
  • Explore now
  • Discover more
  • Schedule an appointment

All of these CTAs are clear, convincing, and make it very obvious what you prospective customers should do next. 

Inject some personality into your calls-to-action 

You want your prospective customers to engage with your CTAs, and injecting them with your personality can really help. To start, you should identify your brand voice, if you haven’t already.

Consider how you want to address your customers, first and foremost. Are you professional? Funny? Playful? Inspirational? Think about who your audience is and how you want to relate to and communicate with them.

Let’s take a look at a few examples of businesses that do a great job of incorporating their brand voice into their CTAs for the best results. 

For example, Express, a clothing retailer, does this well on their homepage. 

When you first visit their site, you’re presented with a banner that urges you to “join the TikTok challenge”. They’re trying to get their customers to post about their lives post-pandemic, and want them to share their outfits (which are hopefully from Express). This CTA wouldn’t work for every business, but it’s effective for Express, which is a young and savvy clothing brand with an audience that is immersed in the online world. This shows the company is engaging, boundary-pushing, and adventurous, which increases the chance of their ideal customers clicking through and jumping on board with their challenge. 

There’s also plenty of personality in the CTAs that the luxury vodka brand Grey Goose uses on its homepage.

One of their most interesting examples is “uncork the truth”. This phrase suggests a few different things about Grey Goose’s personality. First, using a word like “uncork” is fun and relevant, as they are an alcohol distiller. Second, the phrasing shows that they want to be transparent in how they make their products and what ingredients they use. Consider if you can use a similar play on words in your own CTAs to show off your brand personality.

Summary

Your CTAs are some of the most important aspects of your website! To get people to do what you want them to do, you have to give them an extra push. In this article, we outlined seven different ways to enhance your CTAs, including using your brand personality, improving your design, using strong verbs, and more. There’s work to be done — get to it!

Author bio & headshot

Adam Steele is COO and co-founder of Loganix, which is an SEO fulfillment partner for digital marketing agencies and professionals. The company provides the SEO services that businesses need to grow and achieve their goals. If you enjoyed this article, you can find more SEO guides and templates on the Loganix blog. 

Adam Steele is COO and co-founder of Loganix image for use by 360 magazine
Computer illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

Becoming a Programmer: Possibilities & the First Steps to Take

Contemporary tendencies, as well as the crisis, are forcing many specialists and even students to change jobs or even completely alter their professions. You have to learn new skills and gain new knowledge. In this case, the profession of a programmer can be an excellent choice. It’s profitable and highly demanded nowadays. In this article, we will try to focus on how to begin a career as a programmer from scratch.

You should start your path to a career as a programmer by answering the questions, “Do I need programming at all? Will I be able to withstand all the difficulties of the profession?” These questions do not apply to those who study or studied in a specialty close to programming. If you were better at math than in the humanities at school, if you like spending a lot of time in front of your PC, if you want to learn something new, then programming is the field suitable for you.

Where to Start

There are several options for the development of events, as a result of which a person is destined to become a programmer:

  • The first one is the parents-programmers who taught their children. These kids don’t even need to go to university. 
  • The second option is the fashionable profession of a programmer that attracts a school graduate. After school, a young person chooses a major related to the programming field. 
  • The next option is a hobby that has grown into work.

If none of the above is about you, then you have a choice of four options:

  1. Self-education. This option can be used both independently and in conjunction with other methods. The Internet is full of sites, books, and applications that help you learn various programming languages and technologies. Even though it is the hardest path for beginners, it is not worth giving up at the very beginning. If you are a student, even in a programming field, and hesitate if you can find enough time for self-education, make use of the professional programminggeeks services that will help with too complicated tasks. Meanwhile, you will be able to concentrate on the relevant topics and aspects.
  2. Higher education. If you graduate from high school and want to be a programmer, then go to college and choose a major related to the field. But don’t forget about the necessity and importance of self-education as well. The choice of a college should be approached with high responsibility. Study the programs carefully and choose a college that meets your expectations for the future profession.
  3. Mentor. It is beneficial if you manage to find someone who will agree to help you and direct you. This person will suggest suitable books and resources, review your code, and provide helpful advice. You can look for a mentor among familiar programmers, at IT parties and conferences, on online forums, and so on. The most crucial is not to be too shy. Ask an IT specialist you are fond of, and quite probably, you will get a positive response.
  4. Specialized practical courses. Try looking for courses near your place of residence where you will be taught a programming language or technology. Select courses attentively. The best option is to find a course that provides a possibility of employment after graduation.

Final Say

As you can see, almost everyone who would like to become a programmer has got plenty of opportunities. If it is your dream, select one of the above options and start implementing your dream into reality.

VMware’s SaaS and Subscription Revenue Spikes in Oct. 2020

VMware’s SaaS and Subscription Revenue Spikes by 44% to $676 Million in October 2020

SaaS and subscription revenue of its VMware surpassed its on-premises license revenue for the first time in its Q3 fiscal year 2021 which ended in October 2020.

According to the research data analyzed and published by Comprar Acciones, VMware’s SaaS and subscription revenue for Q3 FY21 totaled $676 million. That marked an increase of 44% year-over-year (YoY) and accounted for 24% of the company’s total revenue. It is $37 million higher than the $639 million revenue of its on-premises license segment.

Global IT Spending to Shed $300 Billion in 2020 as Cloud Spending Surges 6.3%

Global spending on data center systems is expected to drop 10% to $188 billion in 2020 according to Gartner. At the same time, cloud system infrastructure services are estimated to grow from $41 billion in 2019 to $63 billion in 2020.

Gartner also projects that SaaS solutions will generate $104.7 billion in 2020. The figure was $102.1 billion in 2019 and is set to grow to $121.0 billion in 2021, and further to $140.6 billion in 2022.

According to a study by IDC, In Q1 2020, on-premises IT spending sank by 16.3% YoY, while cloud spending grew by 2.2%. Similarly, in Q2 2020, traditional IT spending fell by 8.7% YoY while cloud spending soared by 34.4% YoY.

Q3 2020 saw a 33% YoY upsurge in global cloud spending to reach $36.5 billion according to a forecast by Canalys. That was $2 billion higher than Q2 2020 and $9 billion higher than Q3 2019.

Moreover, Gartner projects that global IT spending will decline by 8% YoY in 2020 to $3.5 trillion, down from $3.8 trillion in 2019, which means that the drop will be a massive $300 billion. However, cloud spending will grow by 6.3% during the same period.

The full story, statistics and information can be found here.

Numskull Reincarnates Horror Classics in New Merch


HALLOWEEN 2020… SCREAM IF YOU WANNA PADDLE FASTER!

Remember hiding behind the sofa watching this lot, The Exorcist, IT, Beetlejuice and The Lost Boys? Prepare for some quackifying horrors this Halloween as Numskull Designs brings some iconic, horror movie characters back to life, in the form of TUBBZ cosplaying ducks.

The haunting doesn’t stop there, Numskull has called the Ghostbusters and there’s a range of Ghostbusters merchandise for this Halloween, so tool up!

TUBBZ – tub of horrors

The TUBBZ Bloodbath range is quackingly creepy, Regan, Beetlejuice, Pennywise and David & Michael were terrifying the first time around, but now they’ve been reincarnated and they have come back as… ducks, aaargh!

Regan, The Exorcist – the duck devil is a devil with bells on, what has he done to Regan?  Her head has spun around and the devil is clearly in her eyes, The Exorcist clearly has his work cut out.

Beetlejuice – his dress sense hasn’t improved over time.  His duckpower, means he can exorcise people, don’t make his Halloween a success, swim away as fast as you can. 

David, The Lost Boys – there’s no mistaking David’s 80’s hair and as for those fangs, no duck stands a chance.

Michael, The Lost Boys  he is in pre vampire state, but don’t be fooled he has been turned, just wait until the sun goes down. Garlic at the ready!

Pennywise, IT – there is nothing remotely funny about this clown.  Scaring us all witless since the late 80’s, you do not want to encounter this bad boy on Halloween. Too bad he’s coming anyway.

All TUBBZ come in their own tub featuring the movie logo and can easily stack on top of other TUBBZ making it easy to display collections.  RRP: £12.99 (UK) / €14.99 (Euro) / $12.99 (US) / $19.95 (AUD) / $24.95 (NZ) / $16.99 (CAD) each.

Ghostbusters – ghoulish merchandise

For something strange in your movie merchandise, check out these ghoulish goodies.

Ghostbusters Pin Kings: Celebrate all things Ghostbusters with this set of 6 hard enamel pins. There are 2 per pack, each pack uniquely numbered. Prices per pack are £7.99 (UK) / €9.99 (Euro) / $9.99 (US) / $14.95 (AUD) / $16.95 (NZ) / $12.99 (CAD).

1.1  Zuul The Gatekeeper & Stay Puft Marshmallow Man

1.2  Public Library & Hot Dogs&Slime

1.3  The Ectomobile & the 4 Ghostbusters: Peter Venkman, Egon Spengler, Ray Stantz, Winston Zeddemore

If you want to sleep with the light on this Halloween, turn on this 3D moulded lampfeaturing the Ghostbusters logo, keep all the other spooks away.  RRP: £24.99 (UK) / €29.99 (Euro) / $34.99 (US) / $44.95 (AUD) / $49.95 (NZ) / $39.99 (CAD) each.

Ghostbusters LED Charing Cable & Thumb Grips – spookily cool essentials. A light flows through the cable when charging and the thumb grips are a bit of gaming fun for the Xbox and PS4. RRP: £12.99 (UK) / €14.99 (Euro) / $14.99 (US) / $24.95 (AUD) / $29.95 (NZ) / $19.99 (CAD) each.

No one can pinch your much-loved Nintendo Switch if the Ghostbusters are protecting it.  This Ghostbusters Switch Case features the iconic logo and is perfect for when you are out and about with your Switch.   It will neatly hold 10 Nintendo Switch cartridges and has a pocket for other bits and bobs. RRP: £12.99 (UK) / €14.99 (Euro) / $14.99 (US) / $24.95 (AUD) / $29.95 (NZ) / $19.99 (CAD) each.

More Petrifying Pins 

Face your demons, and stand proud this Halloween and show you’re not scared of this lot! These hard enamel pins are highly collectible and whilst uber creepy, a bit of fun too!  RRP £7.99 (UK) / €9.99 (Euro) / $9.99 (US) / $19.95 (AUD) / $16.95 (NZ) / $12.99 (CAD).

Beetlejuice: Set of 2, 1 pack.  It’s showtime!

1.1 Lydia: Strange and Unusual, 

1.2 Beetlejuice & Lydia Dance

IT, Chapter 2: 1 terrifying set with 2 pins –Home at Last and Time to Float Balloon.

Finally, if you want to get out of this Halloween nightmare and head straight to Christmas, kit yourself out in a Ghostbusters or The Gremlins Christmas Jumper.  Leave the spooky spirits behind and embrace the Christmas spirit instead!  RRP: £39.99 (UK) / €49.99 (Euro) / $49.99 (US) / $69.95 (AUD) / $79.95 (NZ) / $64.99 (CAD) each.

Check out the full Numskull Designs Halloween range http://bit.ly/NumskullHalloween2020

Download assets: http://bit.ly/NumskullHalloweenAssets2020

Watch our Video Trailer : http://bit.ly/NumskullHalloweenVideo2020

About Numskull Designs:

Numskull Designs is the go-to for innovative, unique, and official merchandise and clothing products, having carved a niche working with the world’s most iconic video game, movie, TV show, and comic book properties. Partnering with the biggest and best names in home entertainment including global brands such as Bungie, Marvel, Star Wars, PlayStation, Xbox, SEGA, Nintendo Switch, Capcom, Bandai Namco, DC, Warner Bros, and many more, Numskull brings an eclectic range of branded merchandise and clothing collections to brand fans worldwide.

Visit www.numskull.com for more information.

Numskull Collectible Pin Collection

Pin King fans everywhere, Numskull has launched the must-have collection featuring the best and most-wanted pop culture brands around. Get your jackets, bags, snapbacks and shelves at the ready and embrace yourself for the best collection to date.

This collection is the ultimate feast of favorite brands including: Fortnite, Destiny, Resident Evil, Friends, Back to the Future, Harry Potter, Star Wars, Wonder Woman, Hatsune Miku, Ghostbusters, Beetlejuice, and IT Chapter 2!

Such brands deserve the highest quality and these hard enamel pins deliver to ensure they grab attention. To emphasize the collectability, each brand has its own uniquely numbered volume.

The pins do vary in shapes and sizes and come fixed to a stylish backing card, perfect for displaying.

And this is just the start- there are many more amazing brands to come later this year, plus a Christmas collection is coming to town – be good and all will be revealed soon!

Watch the trailer for the collection here and shop it here.

IAITAM Opportunities

IAITAM: ORGANIZATIONS FLOODED WITH NEW TECH PURCHASED FOR WORK-FROM-HOME EMPLOYEES FACE UNIQUE “ASSET REFRESH” OPPORTUNITY.

IT Asset Management (ITAM) Strategies Can Turn Excess Hardware Hurriedly Snapped Up During the Pandemic By Companies, Agencies Into Cost-Saving Resources.

As COVID-19 spread and Americans were forced to shelter-in-place, the month of March saw U.S. sales of computers increased by 40 percent, notebook sales by over 50 percent and keyboard sales by 64 percent. 

With many workers now returning to the office, companies and government agencies are going to be forced to deal with a mountain of new equipment purchased for the work-from-home period. The International Association of IT Asset Managers (IAITAM) is encouraging organizations to look at this situation as an opportunity, rather than as a headache.

In recent weeks, IAITAM has issued numerous warnings to businesses and government agencies on the “nightmare data risks”, tech headaches and challenges associated with transitioning to work-from-home arrangements, especially with an influx of new technology purchased for employees working remotely.

Now, as many workers begin returning to the office, IAITAM is outlining a strategy for companies and government agencies to turn their rushed and often costly technology purchases into a return on investment (ROI) through a technique called “asset refresh.”

An industry survey from the Evaluator Group notes that many organizational technology managers were caught in react mode by the pandemic, unprepared for the scale of workforce displacement.

While some companies might look to dispose of unnecessary assets or donate excess hardware to charities, there is another path forward in considering whether to move up the technology “asset refresh” cycle. IAITAM sees a huge opportunity for organizations to strategically replace outdated and otherwise inferior equipment in the pre-coronavirus office setting with new hardware that was purchased so that employees could work from home.

Dr. Barbara Rembiesa, president and CEO of IAITAM, said: “The coronavirus pandemic has provided an unprecedented occasion for businesses to update their technology inventory with a strategy called ‘asset refresh.’ Many businesses made purchases that they were not preparing for, in haste, to accommodate a remote workforce. Coming out of the pandemic, with a tight budget, there are questions you can ask to address the financial bottom line of IT investments. Do you have a plan in place for turning these new technology assets into a return on investment? If not, this is the time to stop reacting and start planning.”

When unnecessary assets are added to the organization, time and money is wasted. Under normal circumstances, a carefully researched acquisition plan is created before any hardware/software purchases are made by an organization following proper ITAM procedures.

It is the role of IT Asset Managers to evaluate “asset refresh cycles” and the lifecycle of an IT inventory. The goal for Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) within ITAM is to calculate or estimate the costs associated with an asset throughout its whole lifecycle (encompassing acquisition, use and disposal).

Sometimes it is more costly to maintain old machines and software than it is to upgrade. In other cases, it is more cost-effective to update old IT assets instead of replacing with new ones, due to hidden costs. Rembiesa said:

“In returning to business as usual companies and government agencies will need to closely evaluate their technology inventory and decide where to cut costs or avoid hidden fees associated with new purchases. It is likely that a newfound emphasis will remain on asset mobility, remote workforces, cloud services and data protection. Therefore, having an IT asset professional in your pocket, a strong ITAM program, a plan for IT asset acquisition/disposal, and strategies for generating ROI with IT assets will be vital for business owners to help recoup revenue lost during the pandemic.”

IAITAM President and CEO Dr. Barbara Rembiesa recently discussed how IT asset management factors into return on investment and simple ways that companies can save millions.

ABOUT IAITAM

The International Association of Information Technology Asset Managers, Inc., is the professional association for individuals and organizations involved in any aspect of IT Asset Management, Software Asset Management (SAM), Hardware Asset Management, Mobile Asset Management, IT Asset Disposition and the lifecycle processes supporting IT Asset Management in organizations and industry across the globe. IAITAM certifications are the only IT Asset Management certifications that are recognized worldwide. For more information visit here.

Hackers Covet Your Identity; 5 Ways To Thwart Their Efforts

Each day people take a virtual trip through the internet to do their banking, make hotel reservations, shop for a new car, or engage in a myriad of other activities important to them.

It’s so routine that it’s easy to forget that you need to be just as careful about protecting yourself on those virtual journeys as you would on an actual one. “Hackers are creative about dreaming up new ideas for stealing your identity, so it’s important that you stay vigilant even if you already have taken action to guard yourself and your data,” says Chris Hoose, an IT consultant who works with small businesses.

Hoose says a few steps you can take to protect your identity include:

Use a password manager. One problem with passwords is that people often use simple ones that are easy to remember, but also easy to hack. A password manager  provides an encrypted database where you can store unique, long, complex passwords for each of your online accounts, and access them when you need them. “With a password manager, you can have better passwords that are harder to hack, and you don’t have to memorize them,” Hoose says.

Do your online activities with a VPN. Worried that your online browsing will lead identity thieves right back to you? One solution, Hoose says, is a virtual private network (VPN), which lends you a temporary IP address and hides your true IP address from every website or email you connect with. “It also prevents the sites you visit from learning your physical location,” he says. “You just need to remember to connect to it when you want to use it.” A VPN usually costs about $40 to $50 a year, he says.

Be wary on social media. Most people check in on social media routinely to catch up on family news, connect with college buddies, or perhaps to share photos of a new puppy. Unfortunately, cyber thieves lurk in the background. “They know that social media platforms are an excellent source for personal information and information about your contacts, which makes identity theft that much easier for them,” Hoose says. To stay safe on social media, he suggests you check to see if you have already been compromised; avoid password reuse; update your security settings regularly; and limit your connections because the more you have, the more potential for a fraudulent or compromised account to send you a malicious link.

Keep tabs on your credit report. One way to make sure no one has taken on debt in your name, and damaged your credit in the process, is to request a full credit report from any of the three major agencies: Equifax, TransUnion and Experian. You can get a free copy from any of them through the site. Also, it might be time to get off the mailing list for all those credit offers you receive that say you are pre-approved. “Those offers are a gold mine for identity thieves,” Hoose says. You can opt out of pre-approved credit offers by visiting.

Be sure to install anti-virus/malware software. Your first and best line of defense against identity theft on your computer remains anti-virus software and anti-malware software, Hoose says. When choosing one, he suggests making use of the trial period most companies offer. “That way you can try them out and decide which one works best for you,” he says.

“The more people try to foil identity thieves, the more sophisticated those thieves seem to get in their methods,” Hoose says. “But by being watchful and attentive, you can stay safe and enjoy your time online.”

About Chris Hoose

Chris Hoose  s the president of Choose Networks, an IT consulting firm for small businesses. Hoose started the company in 2001 to give large-scale solutions and support to businesses that can’t afford their own in-house IT department. He earned a Master of Information Systems Management from Friends University.

US Businesses Allowing Remote Working

The rise of cloud computing and teleconferencing represent both the biggest opportunity for growth as well as the most significant organizational challenge to companies around the world, according to new research from Condeco’s new research paper, The Modern Workplace 2019: People, places & technology, involving 750 corporate leaders. The full report can be downloaded here. Among the countries in the survey, remote working is particularly prevalent in Australia (45 per cent) with the US tied for being the country with the second most amount of companies allowing remote work (43 percent) and least widespread is Germany (35 per cent). However, US businesses were least likely to offer flextime (49 percent), while those in Singapore were most likely (66 percent). In addition, 43 percent of US business forecast that they will allow more remote working in the next year while only 9 percent have indicated that they will offer less remote working, a clear indicator that remote working is a major trend in America. 54 percent of US companies have said that they offer remote working to increase employee retention, which showcases employees increasing demands to work from home.

While recognizing digital transformation as crucial to their future success, 60 percent of those who participated express concern over the speed with which new technologies are reshaping their businesses. They are increasingly preoccupied with issues related to cloud computing, the internet of things, and big data.These technology challenges are contributing significantly to the changing nature of the corporate environment, the report finds. Cloud computing in particular has made it possible for increasing numbers of employees to work remotely and flexibly meaning that the central company workspace is rapidly becoming an administrative hub, rather than a traditional central focus where everyone gathers during set hours. The demands of regulation and compliance are also adding to the burden felt by businesses as they face the future. Condeco’s report is based on an in-depth survey of business leaders in six countries, including the United States, backed by qualitative interviews. Respondents overall say the biggest challenges facing their organizations in the next 12 months are digital transformation (37 percent) and the adoption of new technology (35 percent).

Across all countries surveyed, access to talent supply (26 per cent) and regulation and compliance (24 per cent) are considered greater organizational challenges than business uncertainty (22 per cent). Welcome to the flexible working revolution. Almost half of global businesses surveyed (41 percent) say they already offer some degree of remote working, while three-fifths (60 percent) provide flextime opportunities, allowing employees to choose when to start and end their workday. “The research clearly shows that businesses are in the process of transforming their workplaces digitally, which enables them to transform the way that they are used physically,” said Paul Statham, CEO of Condeco.”Today’s technology allows for space to be used more flexibly and for employees to work remotely. This benefits businesses by maximizing office space, reducing costs and by keeping employees engaged and productive.”

The end of meeting-room culture? When employees do go into the office, it is most often for meetings with colleagues and customers. Yet the researchers discovered that finding, booking and using meeting rooms is a consistent point of organizational tension, even as more people are working remotely. Fewer than a quarter of those surveyed (23 percent) say that their employees have access to meeting rooms whenever they need them; however, the US leads the world with 31 percent, compared to just 9 percent in Singapore. Only a third of respondents (31 percent) currently use specialist meeting-room scheduling software to help make efficient use of their available space. Some of those surveyed believed that there was an opportunity to use artificial intelligence to book and use meeting rooms more effectively.

“AI can release individuals from routine, repetitive tasks at work and free them up for more value-adding and enriching activities. That’s why it is likely to play an important role in meeting room booking software,” said Peter Otto, Chief Product Officer at Condeco. Businesses are only just beginning to realize the extent to which the need for co-workers to meet in person is a thing of the past, as new conferencing systems enable teams to maintain real-time collaboration and conversation across vast distances and multiple time zones.“Ultimately new technology will enable businesses to allocate their resources and time more effectively,” said Otto.“There is also a role it can play in gathering data, but companies need to be aware of the ethical and privacy aspects of using it in this way and be prepared to be fully transparent in communicating what they are doing to their employees.”

US leaders prepare for the future While a fifth of business leaders worldwide (22 per cent) said that uncertainty was a concern for them, less than one fifth of American business leaders (16 percent) echoed this. The most-common concern for US respondents is technology adoption (45 percent) and talent supply (30 percent), suggesting that businesses are expecting these to be major issues over the next year. Only 11 percent of US business cited access to capital as their top organizational concern.

Seiko USA, Lorem Ipsum, stevie award, 360 MAGAZINE

Lorem Ipsum Receives Gold Stevie® Award for Seiko USA Campaign

Multi-disciplinary experiential design firm, Lorem Ipsum is pleased to announce that its work for Seiko USA has received a Gold Stevie® Award from the American Business Awards® in the Website category under “Consumer Products-Non-Durables.”

The award was presented on Tuesday, June 11 during the 17th Annual American Business Awards banquet in New York City. The American Business Awards feature a wide selection of categories to recognize the achievements of creative professionals working in web development, corporate communications, video production, app development, investor relations and live events.

Lorem Ipsum took on the challenge of taking Japanese manufacturer of watches, Seiko USA’s website which was absent of sales or software integration capabilities, and built a sales-drivensite using Shopify’s platform. As storytellers in a digital world, Lorem Ipsum’s goal in both the user experience and overall design was to ensure the product remained the ultimate focus while keeping with the brand’s aesthetic and transforming Seiko enthusiasts into paying customers. Their approach not only provided significant technical enhancements but also told the brand story with new and improved user experiences across all devices. Lorem Ipsum’s team of programmers created the Seiko Sync app, expanding the native Shopify features to create aunique consumer experience. For example, customizable filters allow users the option to searchfor products by technology, dial color, size and various other important consumer factors.

Their developers also created custom software, such as Shop Social, that enables enhanced capabilities beyond Shopify’s existing offerings, including a unique Instagram plug-in that integrated directly with the brand’s channel allowing for a continuous and curated feed of imagery.

By moving away from traditional marketing approaches and instead, utilizing social media and strategic retargeting tactics, Lorem Ipsum was able to drive traffic to Seiko’s U.S. page and increase sell-through. The customer management process was also customized while working closely with Seiko’s IT and fulfillment teams to create a cohesive system of applications and notifications to give Seikobetter sales and product functionality insights; ultimately, allowing Seiko to better understand end-users’ likes and dislikes in order to create content accordingly to engage users and improvethe overall purchase process.

“It is an honor to be recognized for our contribution,” says Abigail Honor, Partner at Lorem Ipsum. “Working with Seiko to launch their first U.S. e-commerce storefront was a big responsibility and our multi-disciplinary team rose to the challenge. Our focus was to create a straightforward user experience in which we created branded content, worked with influencerson unique campaigns and implemented strategic advertising to make the Seiko websitecompetitive. We are proud not only of the seamless launch but of the constant evolution of thesite throughout the year.”

Lorem Ipsum provided the creative assets fromvideo to lifestyle photography for all of Seiko’s campaigns throughout the year, most notably for their national campaigns-Prospex StreetSeries and Coutura Car, and designed customized landing pages, e-mail campaigns, and third-party banners that provided a visual narrative of product and lifestyle images.The team’s creative and marketing strategies led to the fastest sellout of a single Seiko product in company history with the launch of the cult classic Alpinist timepiece. “The nominations submitted to the 2019 American Business Awards were outstanding,” said Michael Gallagher, president and founder of the Stevie Awards. “They illustrate the continued vibrancy of innovation and high level of achievement across the American economic landscape.” More than 3,800 nominations from organizations of all sizes and industries were submitted for consideration in a wide range of categories. More than 250 professionals worldwide participated in the judging process to select this year’s Stevie Award winners.

ABOUT LOREM IPSUM

Lorem Ipsum is a multi-disciplinary firm specializing in the planning, design and production of experiences. Our work includes museums, exhibits, immersive shows, visitor attractions as well as all types of filmed and interactive media.

Founded in 2000, the company is headquartered in New York, with offices in London and Moscow. Our global team of over forty professionals includes writers, filmmakers, designers, architects, technologists and researchers.

At Lorem Ipsum, they think of themselves as storytellers. They believe in the power of dramatic narratives. They use words, pictures, music, artifacts, physical props, live performance, lighting, sound design, video, animation, games, social media, virtual and augmented reality to tell engaging stories and create emotional experiences.

For more information on the award or Lorem Ipsum’s work, please visit http://www.loremipsumcorp.com

ABOUT THE STEVIE AWARDS

Stevie Awards are conferred in seven programs: the Asia-Pacific Stevie Awards, the German Stevie Awards, The American Business Awards®, The International Business Awards®, the Stevie Awards for Women in Business, the Stevie Awards for Great Employers, and the Stevie Awards for Sales & Customer Service. Stevie Awards competitions receive more than 12,000 entries each year from organizations in more than 70 nations. Honoring organizations of all types and sizes and the people behind them, the Stevies recognize outstanding performancesin the workplace worldwide.

Learn more about the Stevie Awards at http://www.StevieAwards.com.