What is an Early Adopter? A 3-Minute Rundown

In 2011, there were 150 marketing technology companies scrambling to convince the business world that digital was the future of marketing. Today, that number has exploded to nearly 7,000 companies. And they’re all battling each other to win a spot in the technology stack of almost every business in the world. By now, digital marketing doesn’t need to be categorized. It’s just marketing. But what happened in the last seven years that took digital from fun, little side projects to most companies’ main form of marketing? Obviously, the rising popularity of the internet, social media, and smartphones played a huge role in taking digital marketing mainstream. But there was also a pivotal group of companies who drove its momentum: the early adopters of marketing technology. What is an early adopter? Early adopters are the first customers to adopt a new product or technology before the majority of the population does. They’re often called “lighthouse customers” because they serve as a beacon of light for the rest of the population to follow, which will take the technology or product mainstream. Acquiring early adopters is a crucial step in the development and potential of an early-stage product or technology. Early adopters can provide a lot of helpful feedback about a product’s or technology’s pros and cons. They also inject these companies with revenue that funds the research and development needed to enhance the product or technology enough to gain widespread adoption. Early adopters’ experience with and pending endorsement of a new product or technology is vital for determining whether or not the majority of the population will accept the new product or...

A Simple Explanation of Exempt vs. Non-Exempt Employees

There are two types of employees — “exempt” and “non-exempt”. You might’ve seen these terms on job postings, or heard them in conversation. If you aren’t sure what they mean, don’t worry — here, we’re going to break them down. Exempt vs. Non-Exempt Employees One of the biggest differences between exempt and non-exempt employees is overtime pay. An exempt employee is not entitled overtime pay by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Instead, exempt employees are given a salary, and they are expected to finish the tasks required of them, whether it takes 30 hours or 50. Exempt employees are also excluded from other FLSA protections afforded non-exempt employees. To be exempt, an employee must earn a minimum of $455 per week, or $23,660 per year, in the form of a salary, instead of on an hourly basis. The most common roles considered exempt include professional, executive, outside sales, and administrative. On the flip side, non-exempt employees must be paid overtime — one-and-a-half times their hourly rate, for any hours worked beyond 40 each week. As the name implies, they are not exempt from FLSA regulations. Most non-exempt employees must be paid federal minimum wage ($7.25 in 2018). Non-exempt employees can be paid either a salary or an hourly wage. Let’s consider this example to demonstrate the difference between exempt and non-exempt: Sarah, who is an exempt employee, is stressed because she hasn’t finished her proposal due Monday. She spends most of Friday night tweaking it and finishing it up, staying at the office until late. On Monday, she gets her paycheck — the same amount of money she...

29 of the Best Office Pranks & Practical Jokes to Use at Work

If you’ve watched the TV show “The Office” as religiously as I have, the classic “stapler in Jell-O” trick surely sounds familiar. It’s pretty much what the name describes: Simply make a batch of Jell-O, but make sure your colleague’s stapler is hidden inside the mold. It’s a classic prank. But what other, less conventional pranks are out there to add some kicks to an otherwise average day at the office? We asked our friends and combed the internet for more examples of some of the funniest office pranks, and pulled together this list to serve as inspiration for your own work pranks. Every company has a story about that funny office prank of yore. Whether you’re doing some early April Fool’s Day research, or just feeling a little tricksy, it’s time to get a prank of your own in the books. Here are some ideas. Funny Office Pranks to Pull on Your Coworkers 1. Caramel Onions When Halloween is around the corner, these caramel onions are no match for other tricks (or treats). Dip each onion in caramel — maybe some red food coloring first, if you need to further disguise them — and stick popsicle sticks down the center. Your colleagues won’t know the difference, but they will wonder why these caramel apples are making them cry so much … Source: Rant Lifestyle 2. Nicolas Cage Toilet Seat Speaking of Halloween, here’s what nightmares are truly made of. Nicolas Cage is easy to come by in the meme community these days. Print a picture of him at his most, well, enthusiastic — and allow him to greet...

What Will It Take Us to Finally Leave Facebook?

Oh, Facebook. What are we going to do with you? In the past two years alone, we’ve learned that the network was weaponized by foreign actors to spread misinformation in an effort to influence the 2016 U.S. presidential election. We’ve learned that personal user information was improperly harvested by an voter profiling firm. And, last month, we learned that hackers used a site vulnerability to scrape the personal details of 30 million users. That doesn’t even cover everything. It’s true: These events, on the surface, most directly impact consumers, marketers and small-to-midsize businesses (SMBs) are also feeling their overall impact. And yet, many Facebook users, marketers, and SMBs have found it so very, very hard to leave the site. This phenomenon has been measured before in some of our research, which month-over-month has reflected a general sentiment among users to stick with Facebook, despite its many issues. But we wanted to take a closer look — at the impact on marketers and SMBs, at a zoomed-in perspective of user sentiment, at the “why” behind the overall reluctance to quit Facebook altogether, and what it might take for people to finally leave. To get to the bottom of these different pieces of one big, social puzzle, we ran some more surveys, and discussed the results with Likeable Media CEO Carrie Kerpen. Here’s what we found. The Impact on Marketers and SMBs Facebook has made a number changes in response to the aforementioned issues its experienced over the past two years. To help curtail the spread of misinformation, for example, it began this spring requiring labels for all political ads and...

The Ultimate Guide to Publishing

It’s an incredibly exciting time to be an author. People are open to new ideas, readers are consuming content through a variety of media, and traditional publishers no longer stand in the way of releasing a new title. Raise your hand if you’ve ever considered publishing a book. (Mine is raised right now, too.) Now, keep your hand up if you know how to publish a book. * … slowly lowers hand* Publishing a book has always been one of those mysterious, cryptic processes reserved for the uber-famous or uber-rich. Books just seem to appear on the bookstore shelves … but they’ve got to come from somewhere, right? Right. Nowadays, they come from multiple sources, which is good news for those of us who aren’t uber-famous or uber-rich. Regardless of your status, income, hometown, or connections, you (yes, you!) can publish a book. All you need is a great idea, an even better sense of perseverance and patience, and this guide. Keep reading to learn more about publishing or use the chapter links below to skip ahead. The publishing industry hasn’t always been so diverse and accessible, though. From the very early days of cave walls, clay tablets and papyrus to the modern era of eBooks, the publishing industry has undergone many major changes. Here are some highlights. 1456: The Gutenberg Press publishes the first book ever: the Bible. 1776: Common Sense is written and self-published by Thomas Paine. He sold over 100,000 copies within three months. 1800s: The Penny Press arrives in the U.S., making newspapers and news accessible for a penny. Since more people can consume news for less (versus just the rich),...

What is Website Architecture? A 3-Minute Rundown

Getting lost sucks. It doesn’t matter if you’re in a city or a corn maze, the ambiguity of not knowing where you are and what could happen next can make you break out in a cold sweat. This stress intensifies even more when you’re lost and you actually have to be somewhere, which is similar to how website visitors feel when they land on a jumbled website. In a society that’s addicted to instant gratification, people don’t like searching for things for a long time. We’re irrationally impatient, making us feel like we’re in a perpetual rush. That’s why over 55% of visitors only spend 15 seconds engaging with websites. As a marketer, structuring your website in an intuitive and easy-to-navigate way is crucial for retaining your audience’s attention. If you don’t, they’ll bounce in seconds. And if people leave your website because your user experience is messy, search engines won’t think highly of you, either. If you need help structuring a website that will engage an audience and rank on Google, we’ve got you covered. We’ll teach you what website architecture is, why it’s important for UX and SEO, and how you can develop a sound architecture for your own website. What is website architecture? Website architecture is the way your website is structured or, more specifically, how your website’s structure can help users easily and quickly find information and drive conversions. Why is website architecture important? A sound website architecture strengthens your website’s user experience — when you structure your website in an intuitive way, users can seamlessly find the information they’re looking for. Plus, when your...