December 15

Small Business Owners Renew Pay-For-Play Allegations Against Yelp

first_imgRelated Posts Lim, and a dozen other small business owners interviewed by ReadWriteWeb, are all crying foul over the situaton, saying the good reviews were filtered only after they refused to buy or canceled advertising on Yelp.“We chose not to advertise with Yelp and since then, all our good reviews get filtered,” Lim said. “It’s predatory at its best and I am sure our business suffers for it.”Pay-For-Play Or Overzealous Algorithm?It’s not the first time Yelp has faced pay-for-play charges, and, as it has for other media inquiries on the issue, the company denied the allegations, saying the automated review filter keeps “content as useful and trustworthy as possible.” Darnell Holloway, Yelp’s manager of local business outreach, denied that Yelp’s filtering algorithm gives preferential treatment to advertisers or punishes non-advertisers.“Let me be perfectly clear: the review filter applies the same set of rules to everybody, and we do not have a pay-for-play system,” Holloway said. “We take a very serious stance when it comes to review quality on site.”Holloway said a small business owner will begin paying attention to their Yelp page after they are contacted by one of the company’s sales reps. Some may start soliciting reveiws from family and friends, which the filter weeds out, and that may be fueling the appearance that Yelp is punishing advertisers.“If those solicited reviews get picked up by the filter, the business owner may develop a correlation between the sales person’s call and the filtered reviews,” he said.Yelp claims it is trying to curtail the paid review sites that promises small businesses good reviews for a fee. It also says its filter protects small businesses from reviews left by competitors or disgruntled employees. Todd William, founder of Reputation Rhino, an online reputation management company, said he has one client with 19 published reviews and 365 additional reviews caught in the filter. Still, William takes Yelp’s claims at face value and thinks the problem is with the algorithm that filters messages.“While I am sure a ‘hard sell’ by certain Yelp representatives may suggest otherwise, the problem for Yelp is an inadequate and ineffective filter system,” William said. “The Yelp filter system favors active Yelp members comments and reviews. New Yelp members are almost always relegated to the filter to prevent fraud, but this unfortunately penalizes well-meaning customers who merely want to show their appreciation for a positive experience with a company and do not have the time or inclination to complete a profile, comment actively on others’ businesses, socialize with other Yelp members or otherwise engage the Yelp community.”Advertisers Get Some Preferential TreatmentBut the same small businesses Yelp says it is trying to protect from phony reviews aren’t so sure the company is being forthright in its explanations.Jon Katz, CEO of Katz Moving, said he has been hit by negative Yelp reviews since first refusing an offer to advertise on Yelp in 2008.“I was getting about three to four phone calls a day about advertising with them,” Katz said. “After about 45 days they started to ‘filter’ our reviews… And then all of a sudden we went from having eight 5-star and one 4-star reviews to having three, then two reviews stay on our page.”Katz said he has spent the past several years trying to work around negative reviews. During that time he has paid close attention to competitors that do pay to advertise on Yelp and has noticed that once a company advertises:Yelp filters more negative reviewsYelp mixes in older good reviews while pushing newer, low-rating reviews lower on the page.Yelp allows advertisers to choose whether they want their ad displayed on a non-advertising competitor’s Yelp page.Holloway denied Kat’s first two allegations, but did concede advertisers can purchase packages that remove competitors ads from their Yelp results as well as search placement ads that would allow their ad to be displayed on a competitor’s Website.The whole truth about exactly what’s happening here may never be entirely clear. But it’s a safe bet that concerns about these issues won’t go away as long as Yelp reviews have an effect on retailers’ bottom line.   8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Tags:#advertising#biz#Google Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Yelp, the leading website for online reviews of restaurants, hotels and other service-based businesses, has long denied ongoing allegations of pay-for-play. But small business owners continue to insist their good reviews are being held hostage until they agree to buy advertising.Go to the Yelp page for TraxNYC, a Manhattan jeweler, and you see the dreaded one star, based on just one review. An employee of the jeweler responded to the review and even said the company would consider issuing a refund.Still, that one-star review stings, and it means TraxNYC sinks to the bottom of search results when people search Yelp (or even Google, which gives added heft to Yelp pages) for jeweler recommendationsThe problem, according to Jen Lim of TraxNYC, is that single review is not the jeweler’s only review on Yelp. If you click on the barely noticeable “filtered reviews” button and then go through a reCAPTCHA protocol to prove “you’re not a robot,” you’ll see 10 additional reviews, nine of which rate the company five stars. A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… dave copelandlast_img read more

December 15

iOS 6.1 System Update Released By Apple, Adds LTE For More Carriers

first_imgRole of Mobile App Analytics In-App Engagement The Rise and Rise of Mobile Payment Technology Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaces Apple Monday released iOS 6.1, now available as on over-the-air update from Settings > General. The system update should be available in iTunes shortly.The update adds fast, 4G LTE connection support for more carriers worldwide (see the complete list here for iPhone and iPad).It also allows U.S. users to purchase movie tickets through Fandango directly with Siri. iTunes Match subscribers can now download individual songs from iCloud. And there’s a new button to reset the Advertising Identifier, the new tracking number Apple has assigned to iOS users instead of a permanent Unique Device Identifier (UDID). What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech …center_img Tags:#Apple jon mitchell Related Posts last_img read more

December 15

Google Blocks Adblock Plus, Puts Revenue Before Users

first_imgRole of Mobile App Analytics In-App Engagement brian s hall The Rise and Rise of Mobile Payment Technology Tags:#Android#app developers#Google#Mobile Ads#mobile advertising Adblock Plus, the popular free ad blocking tool for PCs and smartphones, was removed by Google from its Google Play store for Android apps. Though the app will no longer be available through Google Play, Adblock Plus has made a downloadable version of the app available directly from its website. Of course, it’s still available for PC and Mac computer users, while it has never been an option for iPhone and iPad users.“Google Crossed The Line”Still, according to Till Faida, co-founder of Adblock Plus, “Google has crossed a red line by removing the app” and “is placing business interests ahead of user interests.”“Isn’t Android an open system?” he asked. “We are not interfering with any other apps. We are providing choice. The user should be in charge of what services may access their device – not Google.”According to the Google email notice sent to Adblock Plus, Google cited a “violation” of the Developer Distribution Agreement:This is a notification that your application, Adblock Plus, with package ID org.adblockplus.android, has been removed from the Google Play Store.After a regular review we have determined that your app interferes with or accesses another service or product in an unauthorized manner. This violates the provision of your agreement with Google referred to above.The developer agreement section cited by Google precludes an app from interfering with the operation of another app or service, for example. Faida, however, stated that Adblock Plus in no way interferes with any app or service. Rather, it requires access to browser services and proxy settings to ensure it is blocking Web advertisements, per the user’s designated preferences. Faida charged that by removing the app, “Google is ultimately limiting user control over what they wish to see or access.”Adblock Plus Is Huge On Computer BrowsersAdblock Plus is widely used on computer browsers, but that didn’t deter Google from removing the app version from Google Play. Per a Adblock press release, removing Adblock Plus from Google Play is one in a series of steps that Google has recently undertaken to limit user’s ability to block ads from Android devices:Google’s rationale behind removing Adblock Plus is that it violates Section 4.4 of their Developer Distribution Agreement. But today’s action is the third in a string of actions that Google has taken against Adblock Plus: in late February Google began forcing Android users to manually configure a proxy server in order to run Adblock Plus; in December 2012 Google re-categorized Adblock Plus in the Chrome Web store and stopped showing it in search results when users specifically looked for the extension; and when Adblock Plus re-listed as an app on December 12th, Google took it down again 12 hours later. “I realize that advertising revenue is important to Google, but understand that Adblock Plus does not automatically block all ads; we simply allow users the choice whether to block ads or whitelist them.”  No Response From GoogleAccording to Faida, Google has not responded to Adblock Plus’ requests for additional information or a valid workaround beyond the original email notice.  Adblock Plus is not available on Apple’s App Store. Adblock Plus requires the ability to configure the proxy settings on the phone, which Apple does not allow. Though the service could work on a jailbroken iPhone, Faida said, “We have not invested in developing anything for iOS because we don’t want to encourage jailbreaking. We want to encourage people to use open systems instead.”Google responded to ReadWrite’s request for comment by stating, “We remove apps from Google Play that violate our policies.”Lead image courtesy of Adblock Pluscenter_img Related Posts Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaces What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech …last_img read more

December 15

Google Search Gets Even More Personal

first_imgA Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Tags:#Google#Google Now#search Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Google Now fans have been hoping for a desktop version of the intelligent mobile personal assistant, and now … well, it still isn’t quite here. But something similar is coming to desktops, smartphones and tablets in the U.S. this week. See also: Google Now Opens Up To iPhones, iPadsThe company is rolling out a new update to its search engine that gives users “quick answers” to personal queries—for instance, when their next flight leaves, or when a package is due to arrive—made in the search bar. And if the info is in your Gmail, Google Calendar or Google+ accounts, the relevant answers pop up at the top of the search results.The typed or spoken queries use natural language and cover common scenarios such as:Flight tracking: Type or say “Is my flight on time?” or “What’s my gate number?” to see current or upcoming flights, their status and other details.Reservations: Input “my reservations” and it pulls up upcoming hotel or restaurant reservations and addresses. It also provides driving or transit directions to the destination with one tap. Purchases: Query “my purchases” and shopping orders spring up, so you can view available order and shipping information.Plans: Ask “What are my plans for tomorrow?” and any appointments or relevant combination of the above may appear.Photos: The feature can also search and display your Google+ images upon command. Just ask something like, “Show me my photos from Thailand” or “my photos of sunsets.” Related Posts center_img Google Now anticipates the information users need, while the new feature relies on users proactively searching for specific info. Another distinction: The search-based service works in desktop browsers, as well as on tablets and smartphones. It works in any browser via text input, and via speech wherever Google search by voice is available—i.e., desktop Chrome, Google search mobile apps and the native Google search on Android.(See also: Google Wants To Kill Off The Mobile Web—And Good Riddance)The personal data Google serves up is secured via encrypted connections, the company says. Google conducted a limited field trial of the feature last year. Now it’s ready for the public, so it’s rolling out in the U.S. over next few days in U.S. English. No word yet on when it might come to other countries or languages.If you’re interested, you’ll be able to take it for a spin soon and see if you find it handy. If not, don’t fret—there’s a handy kill switch. You can turn it off temporarily by clicking on the globe icon at the top of the search results page, or shut it off completely in the “Private results” section in the settings.For more information, along with examples of things you can ask, visit the Official Google Blog or the company’s Inside Search site.  In truth, all that information is already available to you, so the new service isn’t providing access to anything you don’t already have. But it does aim to make the Google search bar a convenient way for you to call up your own information in addition to the remaining entirety of online human knowledge.According to Google, “We’ve been offering this kind of info—flights, reservations, appointments and more—for more than a year in Google Now. We’ve gotten great feedback on how convenient it is, especially when you’re on the go.” Although there are similarities in the types of practical data this and Google Now provide (which, in both cases, is for one user account at a time—there’s no multiple account support), the services are not quite the same.  adriana lee 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketlast_img read more

December 15

Google Nearing End Of EU Antitrust Fight

first_imgTags:#Antitrust#Google#now IT + Project Management: A Love Affair readwrite Cognitive Automation is the Immediate Future of… Google may be close to settling its antitrust disputes in the European Union, good news for the search engine giant, which has been under the cloud of a potential $5 billion fine and business-limiting rules in the EU.Google has been under fire from claims that it has abused its market position in advertising and search services by giving precedence to its own services within search results.E.U. competition commissioner Joaquín Almunia announced today that he would be accepting Google’s latest settlement offer, which would involve Google making changes to the way it displays search results and probably some sort of monetary exchange.This is not a done deal yet—Almunia indicated that Google’s competitors should have the opportunity to review the terms of the settlement. This will mean the final settlement won’t be done for months, if at all—Google’s competitors are not exactly known for being forgiving.This will be a hit on Google in the E.U. to be sure, but it’s probably a lot better than the alternative.center_img Massive Non-Desk Workforce is an Opportunity fo… 3 Areas of Your Business that Need Tech Now Related Posts last_img read more

December 15

Lenovo Moto has no plans for wearable market in 2017

first_imgLenovo Moto has confirmed it will not launch a wearable device in time for the scheduled Android Wear 2 launch and has no current smartwatch plans.Google is expected to launch Android Wear 2 early next year, but Lenovo doesn’t see the update as major enough to warrant a new smartwatch.See Also: You can bend phones, so why not wearables?Speaking to The Verge, Shakil Barkat, head of global product development at Moto, said he doesn’t see major interest in smartwatches at this time, but left the possibility of future smartwatch launches should the technology and software improve.“Wearables do not have broad enough appeal for us to continue to build on it year after year,” said Barkat. “We believe the wrist still has value and there will be a point where they provide value to consumers more than they do today.A blow for Android WearIt is a blow for Android Wear, which is already seeing a downturn in interest, as Apple starts to consolidate its position as leader of the smartwatch market. Moto was one of the first manufacturers to build an Android Wear smartwatch, the Moto 360, but sales haven’t been as high as Google, Lenovo, or Moto expected.Lenovo, the owner of Moto, has been quietly restructuring the company in the past year, trimming some of the fat and updating the brand. The decision to back away from the smartwatch market may be a direct order from Moto’s Chinese owners.Without Moto, Google is going to struggle to find innovative manufacturers that can make breakthroughs in the market. It has already lost Samsung, who decided to start using Tizen OS for most of its smartwatches instead of Android Wear. Related Posts Follow the Puck Internet of Things Makes it Easier to Steal You… Tags:#Internet of Things#IoT#Lenovo#Moto 360#Motorola#smartwatch#wearable center_img David Curry Small Business Cybersecurity Threats and How to… Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaceslast_img read more

December 15

3DSignals decipher machine maintenance with sound analytics

first_img5 Industries Destined for Technological Disruption Electronic Design is Utilizing AI-Enabled Solu… One of the most compelling aspects of industrial IoT is the ability of sensor technology to solve problems that have plagued traditional industries for years if not decades. One such problem is machine maintenance and repairs. Up until recently, such maintenance was typically time-consuming, costly and limited by the challenge of finding appropriately skilled workers.A start-up that is successfully responding to these challenges through a combination of  IoT and machine learning is Israeli company, 3DSignals.I spoke to Amnon Shenfeld, co-founder, and CEO to learn more. I’m always curious to learn how people get the idea for their start-up. For Shenfeld, it started with a simple train journey:“I was riding a train in England between Cambridge and London, when suddenly the train made this terrible noise. I was trying to figure out if this was the end… but then a few seconds later if it was gone and everything was back to normal. My first thought was, I wonder if the train engineer was sitting here in this carriage, would he be able to say if the noise was normal or not and if it was a problem with the bearings, a problem with the suspension, maybe something on the tracks that the train hit, or if this is just one of the dynamic sounds that the train makes? These trains are pretty long, so I guess it’s very difficult to analyze all the different noises they make in the repair/maintenance garage. So I wondered if they let train engineers drive the trains in the garage to monitor how they sound, as this is a very clear way to understand what is going on.”Shenfeld has a background in deep learning and he explained, “I was pretty sure I could train a neural network to recognize these sounds in order to report them automatically and classify them, then (and with some verifications by experts), build a system based on sounds that would add a lot of significant information regarding the condition of machines.”With an idea that just wouldn’t quit, Shenfeld initiated a field trip, with a bunch of friends from various disciplines: machine learning, mathematics, electrical engineering, to a local steel plant.“We asked the staff, what fails here often? One of the answers was saw blades, they were cutting through steel profiles and beams, and as a result, they would frequently have breakdowns. They told us something pretty amazing: ‘we have 50% efficiency and we’re very proud of it because in the steel industry it is considered a lot,’” he said.He added that now “we’re software people, and we were shocked because if you invest all this money in electricity, manpower, equipment, physical space, you would probably want to get more than 50% uptime. They said before they took over the business they were doing 20%, and one of their main pain points was blade failures that they couldn’t predict; they would spend at least 20 minutes on each blade replacement and they would have on average 3 per day per production line.“So we’re talking about more than an hour a day per machine spent replacing saw blades, not to mention any residual impacts on the machines if the blades shatters. They tried existing monitoring technologies (e.g. current, temperature) to no avail,” he said.Shenfeld thought he and his friends could help and the impetus to create 3DSignals was raring to go.Disrupting the preventive maintenance cycleMachine maintenance is traditionally a laborious process that requires sending a physical person around each factory/plant/workplace to inspect individual machines, typically on a set schedule. It traditionally relies on an engineer to identify anomalies, and respond accordingly.As Shenfeld explained, “People used to rely on acoustics a lot, for example in their cars, (to see if it sounded) normal or was sounding a bit strange. In the same way, a technician that can hear a pump can tell you which one is working well or not.”Indeed, 3DSignals is the first IoT company to utilize sensor tech to monitor machines through sound. Their system can extend to a range of machines “based on the knowledge of how similar machines are supposed to sound and also learning the very specific sound acoustics of specific machines.This is very similar to the human process, if you were to talk to a maintenance engineer that monitors a group of machines, he knows what is normal or not for each machine and this system emulates this behavior with a neural network, in other words, deep learning.”This all leads to increased efficiency in maintenance and the ability to predict problems so that an engineer can respond as needed rather than only within a pre-existing preventive maintenance time frame.3DSignals system is accompanied by an easy to use platform and cloud which means that “The sound samples can even be sent to the manufacturer of the motor, pump, valve, giving them back this very natural knowledge.” It has a natural affinity with the energy industry, he said, where “they’re having so many turbines spinning with no people next to them…They come for their routine maintenance to fix a pump, then notice an entirely different piece of equipment is failing due to how it sounds. They didn’t have any other method before us.”Sound tech has largely been researched in academia for voice recognition, particularly in deep learning and algorithms. As Shenfeld notes, “We’re on the cutting edge of developing software and algorithms and developing automated hearing. It’s very exciting.”Even Elon Musk relied on a mystery sound to try and solve the Space X Falcon 9 explosion:Shenfeld explains that in presenting his idea to companies he asked rooms full of suited staff “Would you know how your machine is working by the sound? I never get a no.” With a technology that has a natural affinity with a range of sectors from mining to agriculture to automated cars, this won’t be the first time you hear about 3DSignals. Tags:#Agriculture#autonomous cars#Deep Learning#energy automation#Industrial IoT#IoT#Machine Learning#manufacturing#solar energy#sound#sound tech#wind energy Related Posts center_img Cate Lawrence How IoT Will Transform Cold Chain Logistics For… The Ultimate Checklist on Ways to Prevent IoT D…last_img read more

December 12

9 Tips for Stabilizing Handheld Footage

first_imgSometimes you just can’t shoot on a tripod.Heading to the set or into the field without a tripod? Getting beautiful handheld shots can be a difficult challenge – the recent influx of camera stabilizers and Steadicam equipment is a testament to that. Thinking out your approach to handheld shooting and taking several of the approaches listed below can significantly minimize camera shake.1. Use Two HandsOne of the easiest ways to minimize shaky footage is to use two hands instead of one. Even if your camera is too small to be held by two hands, find a way to use both. This can be holding your wrist or simply holding one hand around another. Adding the extra hand will essential take your camera from being on a monopod to a bipod.2. Keep the Camera CloseHolding the camera away from your body will severely increase camera shake. Most people make the mistake of holding the camera like they would if they were taking pictures, near their eyes. But for shooting video you want to hold the camera near your chin and close to your body. By resting your elbows on your chest and holding your arms parallel with your body you can create a “cocoon” that will make your footage more steady. This technique is certainly dependent on where your display screen is relative to your face, but for most DSLRs this should work perfectly.3. Use a WallIf you can, leaning on a wall is a great way to keep your footage steady. By simply putting your weight on a wall you can create a sort of tripod between your two legs and the wall.4. Bend your Knees and FloatWhen moving with your camera the best way to minimize vertical shift due to walking is to think of your camera as a cup instead of a camera. If you apply the same physics of a full cup to your hand held camera you will quickly find the camera shakes much less. Remember to relax!5. Keep Movements SimpleWhile handheld footage does give you the freedom to preform elaborate camera moves, these moves can make your footage incredibly shaky. It is much more advisable to keep your camera moves simple. Unless the shot calls for it, you may get a better result by keeping your camera stationary.6. Move Your AxisArcs make for smoother movement than pivots.When panning and titling try pretending that your camera is rotating around an axis in front of the camera. This will help you avoid the foot shuffling that occurs when you simply rotate in place. In moving your axis you will quickly find more natural and fluid movements. Think of your movements as being arcs rather than pivots.7. Use a Wider LensIt might seem like common sense, but when you are shooting handheld try using a wider lens. While telephoto lenses might offer a shallow depth of field they are incredibly difficult to keep steady, even with an image stabilizer. If you must have a telephoto shot I recommend standing completely still and not moving at all.8. Minimize FocusingAdjusting focus is one of the biggest culprits of shaky footage. Because you have to bring your hand to the front of the camera, focusing completely negates any effort you’re making to stabilize your footage. Try keeping your focusing to a minimum. In most cases I’ve even found that moving my body is much more steady than moving my focus.9. Fix it in PostIt is always better to shoot the footage right on-location instead of fixing it in post, but if you simply can’t get it right on-location there are a few things you can do to fix it in post. Namely, the warp stabilizer built into After Effects and Premiere Pro make it extremely easy to stabilize shaky footage. We’ve traditionally had a lot of success with the Warp Stabilizer, but mileage may vary depending on the shot. Shoot it great on-location, make it perfect in post.Have any other tips for stabilizing handheld footage? Share in the comments below.last_img read more

December 9

If You Believe You Already Know Everything

first_imgSome people believe they know everything they need to know.By believing they know everything, they also believe there is nothing they need to learn. And because there is nothing they need to learn, it’s impossible for them to improve their results—at least until they are willing to give up believing they know everything and are willing to learn something new.It’s starts with your beliefs.You Won’t Change Your BeliefsIf you believe you already know everything you need to know, you won’t easily change your beliefs. And if you aren’t willing to change your beliefs, you aren’t going to change your results. Here is the uncomfortable truth: your results right now are the outcome of what you believe.Your sales results are the outcome of what you believe about prospecting, what you believe about who are the right targets, what you believe about the value you create, and what you believe about your buyers.Your income is the product of your beliefs about money. Your health is the outcome of what you believe about diet, exercise, and stress. Your relationships are the consequence of what you believe about relationships and about people.Your beliefs drive your actions.You Won’t Change Your ActionsYou’ve heard this statement before, “If you keep on doing what you’ve always done, you’ll keep on getting what you’ve always gotten.” That’s a true statement, but it leaves out the fact that if you “keep on believing” what you’ve always believed, you aren’t going to change what you are doing.If you won’t change your beliefs about something because you already “know” everything you need to know, then you won’t take new and different actions. And if you won’t take new actions, you won’t produce new and better results.Breakthrough results—innovations—don’t come from doing the same thing you did before. Breakthroughs come from revolutionary beliefs and revolutionary actions.What Do You KnowIt’s okay to have strong convictions, especially when they are based on big principles. But as soon as you cut yourself off from the possibility that you may be wrong, that something else may be true, you eliminate your ability to improve.Your ability to learn the new ideas and take the new actions that will give you breakthrough results begin with your ability to forget what you believe you know long enough to explore new beliefs and new ideas.If you know that cold calling doesn’t work, then you aren’t going to be open to trying new actions and new approaches that might result in business. I know this. I am old enough to believe cold calling works, and flexible enough in that belief to have just booked an appointment using LinkedIn. Maybe you like to believe social selling is the only way to prospect, but are you flexible enough to believe something else—like maybe it isn’t the only thing that works?If you know your clients buy on price alone, you aren’t going to be open to trying on a belief that says that clients want to buy on the value created, the difference between price and cost. Believing price is the only factors your dream client will use to judge you will cause you to sell as if that’s true. But are you flexible enough to believe that if you created more value and sold that value that you could command a higher price?If you can’t try on a new belief, you can’t achieve a better result. If you already know everything you need to know, then you cut yourself off from learning, and cutting yourself off from learning is the fastest way to lock your results in right where they are now.How long have things been how they are right now? What beliefs locked in these results?QuestionsAre your strongest held beliefs about big principles? Or are they beliefs that protect you from having take actions that make you uncomfortable?When was the last time you abandoned a long-held belief?When was the last time a new belief changed your actions enough to produce a better result?Look at what you believe? How have your beliefs locked in the behaviors that have locked in your results? Essential Reading! Get my 3rd book: Eat Their Lunch “The first ever playbook for B2B salespeople on how to win clients and customers who are already being serviced by your competition.” Buy Nowlast_img read more

December 9

Everything Is An Education

first_imgEverything is an education. But only if you are willing to learn.You might make mistakes when you sell.You might skip over stages of your sales process and lose at the boardroom table. Because you didn’t discover what your prospective client wants, your solution doesn’t sound like the right answer. The fact that you blew past the consensus building means you don’t have the support you need. And the fact that you don’t have all the people on the buying committee in the room means you can’t get a “yes.”Or maybe you hate the phone and spend your time searching for information to confirm your bias. You are emailing like crazy, but you aren’t getting appointments. You’re also using LinkedIn and Twitter to “connect” with prospects, but nothing’s doing. You’re waiting for marketing and inbound to do their jobs, but in the meantime, you are starving.You don’t like asking people for things because it makes you feel “salesy.” You want to be consultative. You desperately want your dream clients to believe that you are their trusted advisor. So, you never espouse a strong point of view around your solution, and you wait for your dream client to ask you to take the next step. But they aren’t asking. And neither are you.You might make mistakes when it comes to your mindset.You spend your time with the cool kids being cynical, negative, and slack off during work hours. You and your little group of fellow travelers find dozens of things to complain about while you explain to each other how stupid your leadership team is. You absolve yourself of your responsibility for producing the results that you need by pointing the bony finger of indignation at anyone and everyone.You can continue to repeat these sales mistakes as long as you want to. Your prospects and clients won’t tell you that your process is going to fail you (and them). Those who sell you the idea that you don’t need the phone aren’t going to suggest you pick up the phone. And your prospect is going to ask you if it’s okay to proactively make the commitment you are afraid to ask for.You can continue to make the mindset mistakes that will make you average—or something less than that—for years. Maybe even decades. Your peers are never going to admit that they are infected with negativity and scarcity. They’re never going to admit they are mediocre on their very best day.You only learn when you accept that you are the one who is making these mistakes and that you are the only one who can change.In what areas of your life are your results less than you want them to be?What lessons are you not learning?last_img read more

December 9

How to Be a Yes Woman (or Man)

first_imgThere are some people who have wired themselves to say “no.” There is no risk that is worth taking. There is no new initiative that is worth pursuing. There are no changes worth making. If they get to weigh in on a decision, their answer is universally “no.” These “No men” and “No women” are worse than the Devil’s Advocate. They don’t point out an idea’s weakness; they actively work to make sure it is never brought to life.In a world of accelerating disruptive change, ideas are the currency of growth—and, if we are being honest, survival. Even though there are plenty of bad ideas, there is a good reason to say “yes” to new ideas, to try things, and to iterate.Find the GoodInstead of reflexively saying “no” to a new idea, look for what’s right about the idea. What makes the idea interesting? How does it change things that might allow you to do better work in the future? What would your clients value in this idea—even an idea that would, at first anyway, make them uncomfortable?By looking to see what’s good, you give yourself and your team permission to explore is further.Ask HowGood ideas are a dime a dozen. Bad ideas can be had for even less. Without the ability to execute, no idea is a good idea. But the most unlikely, unreasonable, and difficult ideas sometimes turn out to be solid gold. More still, the idea that you resist and refuse might be the very idea your competitor figures out how to use to leapfrog you.Instead of “no,” ask “how?” Instead of finding reasons you can’t do something, explore how you could do what is being proposed. Even if it means you have to collaborate and make changes. Even if it means you have to do it in stages or phases. Even if it means you have to play politics.Say YesYour job is to find ideas that will improve your results and bring them to life. Saying “no” means you cut yourself off from the very things that will propel you into the future. Instead of trying to say “no,” find a way to say “yes.” Essential Reading! Get my 3rd book: Eat Their Lunch “The first ever playbook for B2B salespeople on how to win clients and customers who are already being serviced by your competition.” Buy Nowlast_img read more

December 9

You Need Enough Matches to Create Enough Fire

first_img Essential Reading! Get my first book: The Only Sale Guide You’ll Ever Need “The USA Today bestseller by the star sales speaker and author of The Sales Blog that reveals how all salespeople can attain huge sales success through strategies backed by extensive research and experience.” Buy Now Let’s say you are a scout, a Girl Scout or a Boy Scout. You are going on a camping trip that will last for four nights. You are going to need a campfire each morning, and you are going to need a campfire each evening. In total, that is eight campfires. Let’s assume you don’t want to start a fire with flint, you need eight matches to start these fires.What if one match gets wet while you are doing scout stuff, like canoeing or hiking?What if a second match is a dud? It just doesn’t produce the flame it is expected to produce.What if one of of your fires requires more than a couple matches to get started?You would never bring eight matches in order to start eight fires. You would bring far more matches than you need, because you are a scout, right? You would be prepared, and you would have a contingency plan that ensures you have heat and the ability to prepare food.Why then would you expect to yield the exact number you need to make your sales goal out of the exact number of deals that would produce that exact amount of revenue?Why would you not expect that one of your deals is going to fall out of your pipeline due to some factor that is beyond your control?Why would you not expect that some deal is going to take longer than it should, and that the people inside the companies you are working with aren’t going to have competing priorities and emergencies that require their attention?In all cases, you should work exceedingly hard to control the process. You win the deal faster, and your client gets better results, faster. Even when you are perfect in the execution of your process, gaining all the commitments you need, you are going to have deals fall out of the process.Look at this way, you would not try to yield 10M in deals out of 10M in opportunities, would you? You would have more coverage than that, more insurance. If you can’t afford to have any deals slip, commitment gaining may be part of your problem, but the bigger part of your problem may be not gaining the early commitments that result in new opportunities.last_img read more

December 3

Vyapam scam: Congress leader urges PM to remove MP CM Shivraj

first_imgLeader of the Opposition in Madhya Pradesh Assembly, Ajay Singh, on Monday urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to remove Shivraj Singh Chouhan as Chief Minister in the wake of the CAG observations about the Vyapam scam.A report of the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG), released recently, rapped the State government over the Vyapam scam.The scam pertains to alleged irregularities in job recruitments and admissions by the state professional Examination Board, known by its Hindi name Vyapam.“I have written a letter to PM and urging him that Shivraj Singh Chouhan be removed from the post of chief minister as Vyapam scam took shape during his tenure. The CAG too has rapped the state government over it,” the Congress leader told reporters here.The CAG has passed strictures against the Madhya Pradesh government for “systematic subversion of rules” in appointment of director and controller of the scam-tainted professional examination board.Singh alleged that 53 persons died and 55 FIRs were registered in connection with the scam. Nearly 2,500 persons were facing investigation by various agencies including the CBI.Besides, 2,100 persons were arrested in connection with this massive admission and recruitment racket, he said.“All this happened during the tenure of Chouhan as CM. He was incharge of the State’s medical education department when this occurred. The CM himself has admitted to the irregularities in 1,378 appointments made through Vyapam,” he said.Leader of Opposition said, “Surprisingly, none of the investigating agency has summoned the Chief Minister to get details about the scam.“When former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh could be summoned on ground of being incharge of coal ministry, why a Chief Minister can’t be examined?”, he sought to know.Earlier two chief ministers of Madhya Pradesh — Uma Bharti and Babulal Gaur —were removed by the top BJP leadership when issues against them were not even related to corruption, he said. “Why BJP’s top leadership is going soft on Chouhan?” he wanted to know.last_img read more

December 3

Azam Khan returns cow gifted by Sankaracharya

first_imgSenior Samajwadi Party leader Azam Khan on Sunday returned a cow which had been gifted to him by the Sankaracharya of the Govardhan Peeth, Swami Adhokshjanand Maharaj, fearing that a vigilante could kill the animal to “defame” him.The former Uttar Pradesh Minister in a letter to the seer said: “Muslims are living in an atmosphere of insecurity … Any cow vigilante might harm or even kill the beautiful and beneficial animal to defame me and the Muslim community.” The Sankaracharya had in October 2015 gifted a black cow to Mr. Khan after the latter had expressed his desire to have one in his dairy.In his letter, Mr. Khan alleged that a “vicious propaganda has been launched against Muslims in the country and their condition was even worse than that of slaves.” He accused the State government of practising double standards, saying: “The VVIPs are allowed to consume meat but common people are being troubled unnecessarily and even eliminated.” The Samajwadi Party leader’s letter said he had accorded “best treatment” to the cow.last_img read more

December 3

Haryana bans release of ‘Padmavat’

first_imgThe Haryana government on Tuesday decided to ban the screening of Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s controversial film Padmavat in the State.Finance Minister Captain Abhimanya said a decision to this effect was taken at a meeting of the State Cabinet that was chaired by Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar. Mr. Khattar had earlier gone on record saying, “Nobody would be allowed to hurt the sentiments of people belonging to a particular community.”Health ServicesMr. Abhimanyu said to improve health services in the State, the Cabinet has decided to promulgate an ordinance for Adoption of Clinical Establishments (Registration and Regulation) Act, 2010, enacted by the Central Government.He said that a decision to this effect was necessitated as there was no legislation in the State to regulate and register the clinical establishments in order to ensure minimum standards of facilities and services for providing quality health care.“The Ordinance will cover the clinical establishments having more than 50 beds. The effective implementation of the Act will ensure that clinical establishments in the State adopt ethical medical practices in treatment and patient care. Effective action can be taken against clinical establishments indulging in fraudulent or unethical practices under the Clinical Establishments (Registration and Regulation) Act, 2010.” he said. The cabinet also approved the Haryana State Administrative Tribunal (Procedure) Rules, 2017 to pave the way for the setting up of State Administrative Tribunal (SAT).“The establishment of SAT will prove advantageous and essential in view of the increasing number of court cases, particularly relating to service matters and disputes of employees,” an official statement said.last_img read more

December 3

Maharashtra woman fights off leopard with a stick

first_imgA 21-year-old woman from Bhandara district of Maharashtra was attacked by a leopard, and has survived to tell the tale.Though the incident took place on March 24, it was reported only earlier this week.Rupali Meshram, a commerce graduate living in Usgaon village of Bhandara district, is recuperating after receiving treatment for injuries to head, legs and waist.“I heard our goats bleating around midnight, and went out into the shed where we keep them to see what was the matter,” Ms. Meshram told PTI.She saw three goats lying dead in a pool of blood.Before she realised what had happened, the leopard which had killed them pounced on her.Ms. Meshram, who maintained it was a ‘tiger’, said she managed to pick up a stick and hit the animal with it. She also called out to her mother.Her mother ran to her help, and the animal attacked her too.However, she managed to drag Ms. Meshram inside the house and close the door.They called Ms. Meshram’s uncle, who lives in Sonegaon, and he alerted the forest department and rushed to the family’s house.Forest officials shifted her to a hospital in Bhandara and later to the Government Medical College and Hospital in Nagpur.She complained that other than reimbursement of expenses of treatment at Bhandara, she didn’t get any financial help from the forest department. Her mother sold off some jewellery to raise money for the treatment, she said.Vivek Hoshind, Deputy Conservator of Forests, Bhandara, refuted Ms. Meshram’s claim that it was a tiger which attacked her.“Pug marks of a leopard were found in the vicinity. Besides, there was no tiger movement recorded in that area,” he told PTI.Mr. Hoshind also said that the department paid ₹12,000 to Ms. Meshram, and further compensation would be awarded once all formalities such as obtaining doctor’s certificate are completed.last_img read more

December 3

Youth rapes 12-yr-old girl in Amritsar

first_imgA 12-year-old girl was allegedly raped for the past several days by a youth, who used to live as a tenant in her grandmother’s house here, the police said on Tuesday. The incident in Hussainpura area of the city in Punjab came to light when the victim told her friend, who in turn shared it with her mother. Then, the friend’s mother informed the victim’s grandmother, a police official said. The accused, who is absconding, had been allegedly raping the girl for the past several days and had threatened the minor of dire consequences if she informed anyone, the official said. The victim had been living at her grandmother’s home after the demise of her parents. The accused had stayed as a tenant some time ago at the house, he said. A case has been registered in this regard, he added.last_img read more

December 3

Punjab Governor cites tech in Ramayana

first_imgCiting how the application of technology was evident when Lord Ram built a bridge across the sea and Lord Hanuman brought the “sanjeevni booti (herb)”, Punjab Governor V.P. Singh Badnore on Friday asked young scientists to enhance innovation and knowledge sharing. Mr. Badnore also noted that “many advanced weapons were used at that time.” Mr. Badnore was speaking at the National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research (NIPER) in Mohali, while commemorating the anniversary of the Pokhran Nuclear Test held on May 11, 1998. “Take the lead to make India achieve the top position in the world,” he urged faculty and students.last_img read more

December 3

BJP government has failed beef eaters: Goa Deputy Speaker

first_imgDeputy Speaker of Goa Legislative Assembly and BJP MLA Michael Lobo said on Wednesday that the BJP-led coalition government had failed beef eaters by not making it available in the state and not keeping cow vigilantes in check.“Some so-called cow protectors are standing at the border and blocking the beef that is being brought into Goa. They say that some Gau Rakshaks have thrown phenyl on the beef. The Goa Meat Complex (State abattoir) has been shut. Some people may not like the way I am talking but if we do not want beef to come from Karnataka and Maharashtra, then certified cattle in Goa should be slaughtered at the government meat complex,” Mr. Lobo, MLA from Calangute constituency told the Goa legislative assembly. While respecting the sentiments of the “Gau Rakshaks”, Mr. Lobo said, “There are people in Goa in large numbers, the Christian and Muslim community and others who eat beef. There are tourists who come here to eat beef. You cannot stop that. But now there is a shortage of beef for our feasts,” Mr. Lobo said.Goa on an average consumes around 20-25 tons of beef every day, and in the absence of operations by State’s only mechanised abttoir in Usgao in South Goa, demand is met by importing from neighbouring states by members of local meat traders’ association.Earlier this year, beef traders in the State went on strike alleging harassment by cow vigilante groups. The strike was called off after intervention by the Chief Minister who directed the police to crack down on cow vigilantes.last_img read more

December 3

‘Launched new party to protect my honour’

first_imgAt his first public event in Lucknow after forming the Samajwadi Secular Morcha, Shivpal Yadav said on Tuesday that he launched a new front to protect his “honour” and not to seek any post in the Samajwadi Party.He did not name his estranged nephew and SP president Akhilesh Yadav during his address at the programme but said, “Now a days people only eye posts”.Mr. Shivpal Yadav quit the SP and launched his Samajwadi Secular Morcha on August 29.“I never wanted to part ways [with the Samajwadi Party]. I only wanted honour, which I didn’t get after change of leadership in the party. I never wanted posts. I took this step [of forming the Morcha] out of compulsion to protect honour,” Mr. Shivpal Yadav said.Citing the Bhagavad Gita and the Ramayana, Mr. Shivpal Yadav said: “Whenever anyone did not follow the path of ‘dharma’, he witnesses the same the fate as ‘Kans’ and ‘Ravana’. Dharma says everyone should get justice. Those who follow the path of truth win at last.”“I used to run cycle through the days but now running them for a few hours is considered a big achievement,” he said referring to the SP’s election symbol.He said he got government jobs in an inter-college and as a field officer in a bank but he joined politics on the directions of his elder brother Mulayam Singh Yadav.“I had also washed clothes of ‘Netaji’ (Mulayam). I always helped everyone but was cheated many times. I can tolerate ‘chori’ (theft) but not “dakaiti’ (robbery),” he said.He said he would fight for “social justice” through the Morcha. There is no point “re-considering” the decision to quit the SP, he added.“In the Assembly elections too, attempts were made to ensure my defeat but I won with a margin of over 50,000 votes. In Mahabharata, the Pandavs had asked for five villages, but I never asked for anything,” he said.Mr. Shivpal Yadav had launched the Morcha, saying he would seek support of “neglected” party workers for it. He later announced his Morcha would contest on all 80 Lok Sabha seats in U.P.last_img read more