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Wearable Technology: How Far Will It Go?

Written by Aaron Charlie – Fri 11 Dec 2015

When did remote-controlled helicopters and pedometers become drones and wearable tech?

Since now. Today. The future, and you're living it.

But how far will it take us? Where will we end up?

The best way to predict the future is to look at what has already been achieved, and quite a lot has been going on! I'll go through just a few before looking at the predictions being made by experts.

A piece of well-known wearable tech that made a splash was Google Glass. Simply put, it is worn on the head like ordinary eyeglasses but displays information like a smartphone. It's mostly handsfree and controlled by voice commands, though there is a tiny touchpad built into the side allowing you to swipe through a timeline-like interface right before your eyes. If the wearer simply says ‘ok glass’ they have access to Google Search, Gmail, video chats, voice only chats, virtual reminders, voice translations and a whole load of other features. My personal favourite is its ability to take photos and record 720p HD video of whatever you are seeing.

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Our Top 10 Christmas & New Year Plugins for Your Wordpress Website

Written by Aaron Charlie – Wed 02 Dec 2015

It’s Merry Christmas & a Happy New Year time once again, and most businesses in town have filled their window displays with festive cheer. You don’t have to miss out just because your business is online. With these 10 Christmas and New Year WordPress plugins, you can make sure your blog looks the part this Holiday season. 

 Learn how to use WordPress to set up and maintain your website or blog on our 2-day WordPress training course in Brighton. WordPress training is taught in small groups and is very hands on, so over the two days you'll learn to use WordPress by actually building a site. You can make a start by downloading our free Setting up a WordPress Site eBook.

#1 Christmas Countdown Plugin

The kids will love this Santa Claus Christmas Coundown widget! Simply add the countdown widget to your site and Santa’s beard will countdown the days until Christmas. You can use a widget or a shortcode to display the countdown anywhere on your site including your sidebar.

Now we’ve got you in the holiday mood we thought we’d mention Google’s Santa Tracker. Use Google Santa Tracker to follow Santa Claus on Google Maps as he makes his journey around the world.

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5 Content Marketing Websites You Should Probably Know About

Written by Aaron Charlie – Thu 19 Nov 2015

Planning a content marketing strategy for 2016?

Looking for useful content marketing guides that hit the marketing spot?

There have been countless blog posts and guides written on the subject, and the list grows daily.  But the problem isn’t a lack of knowledge or how-to information. The problem is finding a content marketing guide that meets your needs at your level of expertise.  And dare I say who’s got the time to trawl through numerous guides. Isn’t it better to just get on with it?

While it’s tempting to get stuck in, one of the key things about content marketing is having a solid plan and editorial calendar. By investing the time to align your content marketing efforts to your business objectives you will reap the rewards - Google absolutely loves quality fresh content. There are loads of comprehensive guides but some are overwhelming for content marketing newbies. With this in mind we’ve produced a round up of the top 5 content marketing guides on the interwebs to save you time in planning your 2016 content marketing plan.  

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Shiny and Chrome: 10 Essential Apps and Extensions

Written by Aaron Charlie – Thu 11 Jun 2015

In wake of recent controversy surrounding Hola, an incredibly popular Google Chrome VPN extension, facing allegations of functioning as a botnet client – many are looking to better safer, alternatives for their browser addons.

Security is a topic we deliberate heavily on our Social Media and SEO training courses, how can you be sure that what you're signing up for delivers what it promises?

Be sure, these 10 essential apps and extensions have your best intentions in mind. Oh and they also deliver a range of incredible features.

PushBullet

PushBullet connects each of your devices together seamlessly.

Download the phone app, add the chrome extension and never miss a notification again. Transfer files from your phone to your desktop without Dropbox. Even send text messages via your phone from your computer. Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp and Hangouts are all supported. You pretty much don’t ever have to leave your chair again.

PushBullet

Features aside, I absolutely love the design aesthetic of PushBullet. Hats off to Laurel Deel.

PushBullet supports Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Opera,  iOS, Android, Windows and MAC.

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Canva: The Best Tool You've Never Heard Of

Written by Aaron Charlie – Mon 01 Jun 2015

Canva is a free, browser based design tool. Canva's rapid expansion from 500,000 total designs in 2014 to 3.2 million a month gives you some sort of hint at it's serious potential. With the recent addition of ‘infographics’, Canva now does absolutely everything I need it to. There's even an iPad compatible app.

Canva is simple, intuitive and easily the best free design software available today. If the tutorial isn’t enough to get you acquainted then be sure to head over to the Design School

I’ve been using Canva for a good few months now, in fact, it was recommended to me by our very own Social Media course trainer. Shameless plug aside, lets's move onto what makes Canva so good.

Signing up requires an email address and password - nothing revolutionary.

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6 Photoshop Tricks Every Marketer Should Know

Written by Aaron Charlie – Thu 28 May 2015

If you aren’t having sleepless nights over the absurdities of the Polygonal Lasso tool then you’re missing out on modern marketing’s favourite tool.

Photoshop is like skydiving. At first it’s terrifying. Many spend their wholes lives without having done it. Most are too timid to commit to the climb. But minutes in, as you reach the peak of your ascent you feel like you’re flying…

Wait a minute. You are flying? It feels unnatural, you’re in uncharted territory. One glance over the edge and your world as you know it comes crashing down. Chaos, anarchy…elation? The void of uncertainty is overwhelming, there's so much you never knew...

Touchdown. You’ve just had the most incredible marketing revelation of your life; you’re dying to try it again. Soon you’ll be so obsessed with swatches and layers that you’ll find yourself convincing your first born to stop eating play-doh and start designing his graphics in-house. Why can’t everyone else see that smart objects are the best thing since sliced bread?

Have I ever been skydiving? Perhaps not.

Is Photoshop really the best thing since sliced bread? Undeniably.

Is there a company that can provide a quality two-day Photoshop Training course, preferably in the centre of Brighton?

Keep reading and find the six Photoshop techniques every marketer needs to know.

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The Best Responsive WordPress Themes for SEO

Written by Aaron Charlie – Thu 12 Mar 2015

Best Responsive Themes For SEO

What's that?

You've been advised to "keep it simple" on visuals and now you're even thinking about outsourcing your SEO efforts?

There's no need to skimp on form to enhance the function of your website.

I've picked out five of the best responsive SEO friendly themes for your WordPress site that look great, but look even better in search.

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7 Simple Steps to Planning Your Next Social Media Campaign

Written by Aaron Charlie – Wed 25 Feb 2015

Planning A Social Media Campaign

Are you thinking of using social media campaigns to engage with your customers? 

Looking for advice on how to create a successful social media campaign?

Social media campaigns have evolved from simple Facebook contests and Twitter competitions into fully integrated promotional campaigns spanning several social networks. Think Chipotle’s Scarecrow campaign or Dove’s hugely shared viral video campaigns. Of course much of these campaigns have come from big brands with resources that a small business would be hard pressed to match. Some campaigns like the ice bucket challenge evolve virally, but with a little planning there is no reason why your social media campaign can’t reach audiences beyond your demographic.

Creating your Social Media Campaign Plan

So you've been tasked to develop a social media campaign.

You use Facebook to connect with your friends but not much more than that. You follow celebrities on Twitter but you don’t have a clue about promoted tweets or the best hashtags to use.  Your boss says “we need to get on Ello, Instagram is hot and we just have to be on Bubblydon’t we?” Would you know how to get started?

A planned campaign is a successful campaign. A plan keeps you focused on the number of steps you’ll need to take along the way.

So how do you actually plan an engaging social media campaign with very little resources and not much time? Good question - one that we can help you answer in 7 simple steps to planning a social media campaign.

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Cinemagraphs are Coming to Facebook

Written by Aaron Charlie – Thu 19 Feb 2015

By now you probably will have heard the news that 'cinemagraphs' are coming to Facebook ads. If you haven't heard of a cinemagraph before then take a moment to appreciate the almost-hypnotic power of a Yellowstone waterfall from footage captured in a video 'Echoes in the Canyon' by David Hollandsworth.

Credit: Reddit user 'BigMurph26'

What is a 'Cinemagraph'?

A cinemagraph is usually video that, through image editing software has been converted into a sequential, looping gif. The creator has edited the video so that large portions of the image are stabilised and selected sections are kept mobilised. We expect marketers will take advantage of Facebook's autoplay function for videos. I personally believe that cinemagraphs will become the greatest aesthetic marketing tool to hit Facebook in recent years.

Cinemagraphs have been around since 2011 when Jamie Beck and Kevin Burg created the method to advertise their fashion photography. It doesn't take a trained eye to see why cinemagraphs are so effective. I imagine the Twitter and Tumblr users amongst us will be no strangers to the occasional 'living image'. Animated .gif's have long been an art form on Tumblr - almost exclusively (until now).

Twitter technically supports animated gifs. In reality, they have been converted into MP4 video and must be clicked on to be viewed. No surprises that they often don't take off.

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21 SEO Tips from 21 SEO Experts at BrightonSEO September 2014

Written by Aaron Charlie – Tue 16 Sep 2014

BrightonSEO usually ends with a 'Lightning Talks' session but this year Kelvin switched up the format and introduced a 'Greatest Tips Session'.

The idea: every speaker from the day shares their top actionable SEO tip that attendees can start using when back in the office on Monday morning. We particularly liked the idea because it meant a chance to catch tips from speakers which we'd missed on the day.

We came away with 21 fantastic tips which we couldn't help but share with those who couldn't make it on Friday.

You can watch the full video, skim through the quick tips, or read the full transcript with our thoughts below.

 If you are interested in developing your SEO skills then take a look at our Beginners SEO and Advanced SEO Strategy courses. Both courses are developed to quickly improve your practical skills and increase your search knowledge.

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