#AskIt – Does Walt Disney World Need More Value Resorts?

first_imgShare This!Howdy folks. This week I was looking over TouringPlans coverage of current and upcoming resorts and it really sunk in that nearly all the expansion in recent memory has been in the Deluxe and Disney Vacation Club category. Sure, there’s Art of Animation, which is sort of a Value Plus. But then there’s expansion at Coronado Springs (for more luxe rooms for convention and business guests), the Tower expansion at Caribbean Beach and the Riviera (a DVC property that will most likely be at Caribbean Beach), Copper Creek Cabins and Villas at Wilderness Lodge…and don’t forget the Star Wars resort. These are all great. Really. But sometimes, you want a cheaper room with the amenities of staying onsite.Pop Century’s rooms have gotten a nice makeover. And the rumor is that some of the All Stars will be next. But you really don’t have the number options in the value resort level that you do moderate, deluxe, and deluxe villa levels.Of course, no one is forcing you to stay onsite. And you offsite fans are a vocal if not plentiful part of our readership (no, really – we have the survey numbers to back it up – the vast majority of our readers are happily staying onsite at Walt Disney World). So if that’s your thing, you do you. But our question this week is:Does Walt Disney World Need More Value Resorts? Yes (76%, 547 Votes) No (24%, 171 Votes) Total Voters: 718  Loading …We’ll have your results next week. In the meantime, if you’d like to see a new value resort, what theme should it have? Let us know in the comments.last_img read more

Mickey’s PhilharMagic to Debut at Disney California Adventure

first_imgShare This!The ever-enchanting, Mickey’s PhilharMagic will soon be wowing audiences at Disney California Adventure. The 3D show will be found in the Sunset Showcase Theater in HollywoodLand beginning sometime in April.For those on the west coast who haven’t seen Mickey’s PhilharMagic, which can currently be found in Fantasyland at the Magic Kingdom, the show features fan favorite characters, Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck, as well as some of other classic Disney characters. According to Disney, while rumors have swirled for years about an update to the fil, it appears as though the attraction will not be changed in any way for its addition to the Disneyland Resort.The show opens with Donald preparing the orchestra for maestro Mickey, when Donald comes across the conductor’s baton and that ever important Sorcerer’s Hat. Once he puts the hat on, he’s taken away into the fantastic stories of Beauty and the Beast, The Little Mermaid, Fantasia, The Lion King, Peter Pan, and Aladdin.We’ll be sure to share with you more details of this upcoming new-to-California attraction soon.last_img read more

11 Killer Social Media Presentations Worth Watching

first_img presentations Fortunately, the web has helped solve this problem by making it easier to share and watch social media marketing presentations Have you seen other presentations that should be on this list? Please share links to them in the comments of this post! presentations from Social Media Strategy from 8 Digital Trends That Will Change Everything by Christina “CK”Kerley Branding Personality View more Do’s and dont’s of Social Media by from 4. The 25 Basic Styles of Blogging … And When To Use Each One View more . Olivier Blanchard Basics Of Social Media Roi 7 Ways to Use Social Media to Build Stunning Business and Personal Brands by B2B Social Media Marketing by presentations 8. Olivier Blanchard View more . Presentations are a great way to consume information and learn about new topics. Unfortunately, we don’t all have the time and money to spend traveling to conferences to see them in person. View more has become a powerful resource for discovering new ideas. Today, we selected some of the best View more presentations from 11. Adam Singer 2.Basics Of Social Media Roi by Employees are Social Media Marketers, Too! (they just don’t know it yet) by Jay Baer 7. Rohit Bhargava that are worth watching and could inspire slides for your own presentations. . . presentations ducttape presentations presentations Topics: ducttape presentations Josh Martin B2B Social Media Marketing: Building the B2B Business Case for Social Media presentations Conversation by Design Christina “CK” Kerley Rohit Bhargava presentations Slidesharecenter_img David Armano 6. . Originally published Apr 27, 2010 8:00:00 AM, updated October 20 2016 What the F**K is Social Media: One Year Later by View more 7 Ways to Use Social Media to Build Stunning Business and Personal Brands . . Joffreys Coffee & Tea Company Social Media Marketing Case Study by JayBaer from View more DavidArmano . MartaKagan . Employees are Social Media Marketers, Too! (they just don’t know it yet) from View more from 9. Gia Lyons Social Media Marketing Presentations Do’s and dont ‘s of Social Media 3. Conversation by Design by Branding Personality from presentations 10. View more Adam Singer 1.The 25 Basic Styles of Blogging … And When To Use Each One by from from . 5. Marta Kagan from Olivier Blanchard presentations Joffreys Coffee & Tea Company Social Media Marketing Case Study 8 Digital Trends That Will Change Everything – March 2010 Social Media Strategy by Social Media Marketing What the F**K is Social Media: One Year Later . . Josh Martin View more View more Gia Lyons Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

4 Reasons Your Store Needs an eCommerce Website to Grow

first_img E-Commerce Websites Originally published Jan 12, 2011 1:30:00 PM, updated August 09 2019 For a business to grow it must consistently reach new customers and communicate effectively with existing ones. If you have a physical storefront you’ve probably realized these two requirements for growth are not easily achieved.  Creating an eCommerce website allows a retail store to break-through the limitations a physical location presents, while increasing sales of its products.Download Now: Ecommerce Marketing Plan Template4 Reasons an eCommerce Website is Necessary to Grow Your Store: 1. Collect lead and customer data for email marketing.We know it’s tough to collect email addresses and other useful information during checkout in your store. Shoppers at the finish line of making a purchase will normally decide not to extend the process by providing info for the clerk to plug-in regardless of the offer. Gathering information online is much more effective as website visitors can do this on their own time.Take into consideration the fact that you only have the opportunity to speak to someone making a purchase, leaving out all prospective customers who leave without a bag in their hand – collecting leads online is a more effective method.Email marketing gives you the ability to increase new and repeat business by strategically and continuously re-engaging prospective customers. This opportunity doesn’t exist for businesses strictly running a physical storefront. You’ll also need to develop ways to capture email addresses with various offers your website can provide.2. Reach new prospective customers through search engines.A large factor in a physical store’s success derives from location. If you’re not in a good one the visibility of the store is lessened. Having an eCommerce website levels the playing field between prime locations and less trafficked areas. Instead of your physical address determining your business’s location, your ability to rank in searches engines determines how visible you are. Potential customers who haven’t driven past your stores or heard about your from someone else, have the ability to find you online. Everyday someone is searching for something relevant to your stores products and eCommerce site gives you the ability to get found by and sell your products to them directly through the web.3. Increase visibility of store promotions.Every store has certain promotions and are always looking for ways to spread the word about their newest deals.  Your eCommerce store is another avenue to market your special promotions. These promotions are also a great way to execute on the first point of this post, collecting email addresses.  Visitors to either one of your stores (online and offline) should be exposed to these promotions so they can take advantage of them. Promotions help the business grow shor- term with increased sales and long-term since promotions typically include a sign-up step – giving you the ability to reach out to these people later for repeat business.4. Allow prospective customers to shop where, how, and when they want.If you only have one way people can shop for your products you’re missing out on the percentage of shoppers who prefer to (and sometimes are only willing to) shop the alternate way.Many people like to shop online to avoid traveling time and traffic while enjoying the comfort of their own home. Shopping online also gives them the ability to shop when they want; including times that your store is closed. Remember, your eCommerce store is ALWAYS open. Regardless of an individual’s reasons, more and more people are turning online to get shopping done.Others prefer to drive to the physical store so they can touch and examine the products. Even if they found your store online and researched your products in more detail, they may decide to make the commute to the store in order to make the purchase.The advantages of one store will counter the disadvantages of the other which allows store owners to cover all of their bases and eliminate the possibility of these disadvantages affecting their sales numbers.To learn more about the benefits of have both an online and offline location, also known as “click and mortar”, and how the two can work together please register for our “click and mortar” webinar .Photo credit: aota.org Topics: Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

Instagram Photography Tips for Beginners

first_img Topics: Instagram Marketing Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlack Are you new to Instagram and perhaps a little intimidated by where and how to start sharing your photos? You probably started on Instagram by looking around at some of the big brands that are really active (Nike, GoPro, Starbucks), and developed a little case of “social media analysis paralysis”. “SMAP” is what happens when you want to post something that is noteworthy, sharable and will possibly “go viral”. You spend so much time analyzing and trying to get “just the right shot”, that you end up doing nothing at all. It’s not rocket science. Besides, Instagram makes it even easier by giving you some great tools right at your fingertips to make you look like a pro.  Here are a few basic tips to keep in mind when you’re framing your shot for sharing on Instagram.For demonstration purposes, I’m using a photo of Helo, who happens to be one of my favorite subjects. The example below is the unedited photo directly from my photo library uploaded into Instagram. Though it’s centered within the grid, it’s pretty uninteresting.Basic CompositionRemember the “rule of thirds”. Think of your photo as a grid with nine squares (See photo below). If you’re shooting your photo directly in Instagram, it takes care of this for you so you don’t have to imagine it. Position your subject matter along these lines and you’ll get a much more dramatic shot. If you’re loading a photo into Instagram (as I did) that wasn’t taken within the app itself, never fear. When you select the photo you want to use, the grid is overlaid automatically.Use the grid to position, scale and crop your subject along the lines and create the drama that way. For example, when I enlarged and repositioned Helo’s face I used the upper, right two thirds of the grid.LightingPay attention to where the light source is in your image. If you’re shooting outdoors, having the sun behind you is great unless your subjects are people. They may be squinting to keep the sun out of their eyes if they are facing you directly.By the same token, you don’t want the sun behind them either. Shooting directly into the sun makes it difficult to properly light the faces of your subjects.  Early morning and late afternoon sun can create interesting impact with a lot of contrast.If you’re shooting indoors, you may or may not want to use your flash. You have the option to play around with it if you’re using the camera app on your phone instead of using Instagram. In other words, to select and post only your best photos on your IG profile, try taking the same shot with and without a flash with just your phone’s camera.   Using the same example, the lighting was good and I loved the angle. It just needed a little tweaking.Fun with FiltersPossibly the coolest thing about Instagram is the filter feature. Here is where you will want to experiment and find your favorites – there are over 20 to choose from.When you’re using this feature, once you have selected the filter you want to apply, tap it twice and you can change the degree to which the filter is applied if you want something a little more subtle. This is also the area to select a frame for your image by clicking on the box.Here are a few of my personal favorites that you may want to try (left to right):Lo-Fi – Creates a really dramatic image without any other adjustments.Earlybird – Great for a TBT (Throw Back Thursday) image; looks like an old Polaroid.Inkwell – Nothing quite like a classic black and white image.  You may want to play with the contrast a bit to get just the right look.Nashville – If you use this one, definitely apply the frame. It will give your image the look of an old piece of film. center_img Originally published Feb 6, 2015 11:30:00 AM, updated February 01 2017 Try the ToolsIf you prefer to “do it yourself” when creating images for your followers, then skip the filters and try out the tools. IG has quite an array of editing tools. For example, if you have items in the background that you can’t remove by cropping, use the “tilt shift” tool to blur everything except what you want to be in focus. For this tool, choose either “radial” or “linear” and use your fingers to change the area that you want in focus. You can also use “vignette” in the same manner; to direct focus to the part of the image that you want to be noticed.Mind your SettingsOne rather important thing to remember about Instagram: if you are taking photos within the app itself (not just uploading them there), filtered photos are only saved to your camera roll or gallery AFTER you have shared them. To make certain that the original photo is saved, go to Options under your Instagram profile and turn on “Save Original Photos”. Leverage your ContentWhen you’re ready to post your posts, you have the option to cross post in other social channels such as Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Flickr, and Foursquare. If you have a larger audience on any of these, it’s a great way to let them know to find you on Instagram.Important note: In order to post Instagram photos to Twitter and have them show up in your feed, you’ll need to use a tool called “If This Then That” (IFTTT.com). This handy little tool will bypass Instagram turning off Twitter cards when you post a photo. (Without this tool, your Instagram photos will simply show up in your tweet as a link to the Instagram site.)Scheduling your PostsIf you’re using Instagram to build engagement as you are with other social media channels, there may be times when you need to schedule a few posts ahead of time. Here are a few schedulers out there specifically for Instagram that you may want to check out:ScheduGramLatergrammeInstapultTakeOffNow you have all the basics. Grab your phone and get started. I can’t wait to see what you come up with. If you want to see more pictures of my crew, you can follow me on Instagram.last_img read more

Inside Airbnb: The Philosophy Behind Their Crazy Growth

first_imgIt’s better to have 100 people love you than 1,000 people like you.- Jason Bosinoff, Engineering Manager, Airbnb [Click To Tweet]When it comes to today’s fastest growing brands, few companies are in the same caliber as Airbnb.There’s been no looking back since Brian Chesky and team launched the company in 2008. Airbnb has already overtaken many of the major hotel companies in terms of valuation, and the company’s current growth trajectory could have them on-pace to book more guests than hotels over the next few years.What’s the philosophy behind their crazy growth? Airbnb’s head of growth Jason Bosinoff joined HubSpot CMO Mike Volpe on this week’s episode of The Growth Show podcast.In this episode, Jason talks about:How Airbnb scaled so quickly — and so successfully.The three principles that guide all of the decisions they make.The importance of authenticity in everything they do.Why they believe it’s better to have 100 people that love you than 1,000 people like you.Click here to download this podcast on iTunes. Originally published Apr 9, 2015 6:00:00 AM, updated February 01 2017 Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

Which Live Streaming App Should You Use? Inside the Best Features of Periscope, Meerkat & More

first_img Topics: Live streaming has come a long way in the last decade. Back in 2008, I covered the U.S. Presidential Primary in New Hampshire with a Nokia N95, and streamed in 3G, using Qik. Other options at the time were Flixwagon and Kyte … ever use one of those?Luckily, today, we have mobile devices that can record in HD and stream over 4G and/or wifi. The user experience is a lot better for both live streamers and viewers — which is why live streaming on mobile apps is becoming more and more popular.Want to live stream videos from your smartphone or tablet? You’ll find there are a couple apps to choose from that’ll let you share live video easily with your network. The trick is knowing which one best fits your needs.To help you choose, let’s take a look at the best features of four of the most popular new live streaming apps available today.The Best Features of 4 Live Streaming Apps1) Periscope (for iOS and Android)Best feature: The video from your broadcast is available to viewers for 24 hours after it ends.Ever seen someone tweet a link to their live broadcast, only to click it and find out the broadcast is over and there’s nothing there to watch? While that can happen on Meerkat, it won’t on Periscope. Why? Because Periscope will save your videos to the app if you choose, and they’ll be available for viewing by your followers for 24 hours.  You also have the option of saving your videos to your phone’s camera roll.There’s also a list on the Periscope app of the most recent 15 streams. From that list, you can click on the ones that are archived, watch the video, and see all the chat messages appear as they were made in real time. It’s almost like you’re watching it live.Here’s a screenshot of The Tonight Show’s Jimmy Fallon using Periscope to live stream his monologue rehearsal:Want to learn more about using Periscope? Read this blog post for more tips and tricks.2) Meerkat (for iOS)Best feature: Your viewers can text chat with you during your live broadcast.Chat is a fun way to connect with your followers, and Meerkat takes full advantage. When you live stream on Meerkat, a chat stream appears and scrolls upward from the bottom of your mobile device. This is fun for viewers to interact with one another and with the broadcaster, if he or she is watching the chat. The video experience is powerful already, but the added chat feature can lead to developing stronger relationships with your followers.Want to see what it looks like? Check out the screenshot below, and find my chat message to Brian Stelter of CNN near the bottom:The user interface is really nice: New messages coming in stay at the bottom of the screen so they don’t cover too much of the video. You can also scroll backward to read any messages you missed. Finally, if the viewer chooses, then his or her chat messages are posted to Twitter as @reply messages Very powerful connecting stuff here!Another great feature: Katch Kats for Meerkat lets broadcasters record and post their live streams to YouTube.Whereas Periscope automatically records your live stream and gives broadcasters the option of saving it to their camera rolls, Meerkat doesn’t automatically record it. However, if you use the #katch hashtag in your broadcast title or comment with #katch during your stream, then your video will automatically save to YouTube.Viewers might request you to do this by using #katch in the comments, but the broadcaster him or herself must approve with #katch in order for the video to be saved. When the broadcaster uses the hashtag, Katch Kats automatically creates a YouTube video and notifies followers by posting a link in the comments.3) Hang w/ (for iOS and Android)Best feature: You can host your live stream on a web page and send followers there.Using Hang w/’s simple web widget, you can point people to your own web page to drive traffic to your website. In addition, Hang w/ lets you own your own user page where followers can watch your live streams. The app will point viewers to this page and they can watch it there. This makes it easy to promote a live stream ahead of time.Check out the example below of Jared Leto’s page:4) Stringwire (for iOS and Android)Best feature: You can set up your own channel, invite others to stream live to it, and manage which live stream is broadcast.You can also hook up your Stringwire account to YouTube and live stream there. These are pretty advanced features that’ll be fun to experiment with.What’s a great use case here? Stringwire is a good platform to use if you want to get your video seen on broadcast or cable news, as it allows you to direct a multiple-camera broadcast and stream live to your Stringwire account or to YouTube. As a long time video producer, I felt comfortable shooting in landscape mode with Stringwire.Just look at the types of videos Stringwire features:NBC and other news outlets will be looking at Stringwire for videos to share on air, so in this case, shooting videos in the landscape orientation is the best choice. And keep in mind that when you share on Stringwire, other people could potentially make money off your videos. Click here to see a brief discussion about this on Facebook.Which One is Best?All of these apps are viable options depending on your needs. The best way to figure out which of these apps is right for you is by figuring out where your audience is by trying them yourself and gauging their performance. Currently, I’ve got them all. They’re being updated regularly, so you’ll see bug fixes and new features added. Sometimes an app might have trouble connecting, so you can move on to the next one.The ability to stream video and chat with viewers in real time is powerful. Go out there, try it, and have some fun. (Then, share your experiences with us in the comments!) Originally published Apr 29, 2015 6:00:00 AM, updated February 01 2017 Live Streaming Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more