Reasons to hire a Social Media Manager –

You may be a small business or you may be a small non-profit, either way you want to grow your organization, usually in the form of sales. You may or may not have a marketing plan, you most likely don’t have a marketing and communications person on staff. The reason you most likely don’t have a marketing and communications person is because you can’t afford one. Full time staff is expensive. Yet at the same time, the job of marketing is to sales to increase you revenues. So what do you do? I’ve been the small business owner wearing many different hats, trying to do the best you can at each task you do. But over time, you get tired and feel like you’re burning out, all the while you business is plateauing. Ok, so maybe that’s what happened to me. But if you could just outsource some of the insane amount of work you do on a daily basis, you would be happier, have more time for what you love to do, and have your business or non-profit make more money.

Can you manage all this social media?
Can you manage all this social media?

I’m going to tell you that if you can afford a Marketing and Communications expert full time, DO! It will revolutionize your business. But if you can’t afford a couple extra thousand dollars a month, consider contracting a social media manager to handle your online marketing systems. You will not be sorry, here’s reasons why a social media manager is your best investment:

  1. The successful use of social media requires a significant amount of time.

To be successful on the internet, organizations need to have multiple networks consisting of unique content that can be shared on the Social Web. This content includes personally written blog posts, photos, videos, and responding to comments on each network. (You can’t just repost others stuff if you want to grow YOUR organization). If you want a recognizable brand and see an increase in website traffic, newsletter subscribers, and ultimate sales/donors, you need someone who has the time to do it. As a leader in your organization, you don’t have time for these things, you have an organization to run! Plus, if you let others do what they are good at, like social media, it saves everyone time, energy and money.

2.   A good social media manager has experience with online sales processes, communications and fundraising.

Gotta love the volunteers and interns, but unless they have experience or education in writing web content, publishing e-newsletters, and launching and operating online fundraisers and sales campagins, they are not going to understand the bigger picture of the strategy behind utilizing social media. A good social media manager understands the strategies, but also has the advanced communication skills to engage your audience. If blogs or posts are boring, a photo is poorly edited, or there’s no passion for social media, then your ROI will be minimal.

  1. Social media is not free.

The world of social media is constantly changing and challenging. It’s a major MYTH that to manage multiple social media networks, create visually appealing photos and video campaigns and blog regularly, it is worthy of a volunteer because it’s only 3-5 hours per week. Social media managers are trained in the ever-emerging trends that will keep your networks optimized for sales and fundraising. They have spent a lot of money on marketing degrees, weekend courses on writing, design, and optimization. If you want free, expect lower quality work and minimum ROI (or wait, there was no investment J ). But if you want someone with a specific skill set like getting you some extra youtube views that will be very good at the job, they deserve to be compensated.

  1. Do what you’re good at and let others do what they’re good at.

Hiring a social media manager will free up time behind a computer, so you as the leader of your organization can focus on what you love. It comes back down to time. Would you rather be sitting at a computer reading countless blogs on the latest social media trends and writing Google friendly blogs or designing all the auto-responders for your online sales and fundraisers; or would you rather be working with your clients, meeting them face to face or engaging with your staff?

  1. Those who wing it, won’t survive.

Social media management is only 1 part of your marketing plan. In order to reach as many people as you can for your organization, you can’t put all your bags into one basket and hope that someone will find your website and give you money. You can’t just repost randomly on Facebook and hope your bills will get paid. Social Media is part of a greater online marketing strategy that also involves e-newsletters, email, website on top of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pintrest, and YouTube. Social media managers will strategize with you and design calendars to plan out your actions in order to reach the most people for your organization.

Just that last sentence may cause some hearts to palpitate. So for the sake of your physical health and mental health, hire a social media manager like Next Step Social Media to manage your social media and grow your organization to it’s potential.

How To Transfer Web Hosting Without Wasting Time

If you are let down with the quality associated with web hosting providers offered by your present provider and you also strongly think that things is not going to change soon as well, its about time for you to swap out your provider. This is simply not just because bad web hosting offers negative effects around the performance of the site, but additionally because ongoing with bad providers might eventually imply loss of company and possibilities. Changing website name registration might not be so easy, yet changing Internet hosts is simple and satisfying if you are going to access greatest web hosting options in the near future.

Nevertheless , changing website hosting providers might prove to be able to be a trial if you are not conscious of certain stuff. One of the first items that you should perform is to learn a reliable, respected, and productive web hosting firm that can look after all your requirements without placing a burden on the budget. Second of all, the supplier should be truthful and all statements made by it must be supported simply by facts. After you have satisfied your self, you can make your decision to change Internet hosts. Nevertheless , you should prevent changing plus pointing the particular domain name machine to the machine of the hosting company unless almost all formalities happen to be completed.

It is crucial for you to 1st go for immigration of all documents and information to the brand new hosting solutions and ensure that will everything will be running based on your requirements plus expectations. Furthermore, you should prevent informing your current hostgator 1 cent hosting service provider at this stage you are planning for a hosting company change that may lead to accounts termination plus website outages. Moreover, you need to sign up with all the new website hosting company a minimum of three to four days before your own existing agreement with the existing web host is definitely coming to an end.

As a result, you can easily avoid next payment cycle account activation and associated formalities. In case you are running a good e-Commerce web site, it is best to request the to-be web host about how exactly everything could be best performed. The new hosting company will help you along with everything for example SSL protected, cheap website hosting and items to ensure that your web site does not have to encounter huge down time while altering the web hosting companies. In short, move of website hosting services could be made easier plus rewarding simply by observing several tips plus precautions.

5 Benefits of VPS Hosting That You Should Know

VIRTUAL PRIVATE SERVER stands for “Virtual Private Server” which retail outlets data by means of a digital machine as well as where web hosting is done through segregating primary physical machines into lots of virtual machines. Confused? OKAY, let me clarify all this within a jargon totally free language. In simple words, it is a type of hosting that works as a link between discussed and devoted web hosting providing you with the benefit of the price just like a shared machine and complete control just like a dedicated machine. Take a good example of a condo in which you own your own space but nevertheless have to discuss some communal assets, exact same goes with the actual VPS web hosting where you are the landlord of your own room or space but still have fun with the amenities on the shared host community.

Now, more and more global businesses are choosing VIRTUAL PRIVATE SERVER hosting with regards to hosting wants, what are the many reasons with its raising popularity, allow us have a look at range its top rated advantages.

100 % User Deal with:

Unlike hosting that is shared, VPS having offers a many more control above the space you use and over most of the server means as well. It is about with a actual access as well as ability to apply scripts that is not allowed for anybody who is on a propagated server. One can find absolutely no constraints and you can maintain your storage space the way you desire like putting in your preferred control panel and other programs whereas any shared hosting program doesn’t supply this much handle and specialist.

Flexibility and also Scalability:

These are generally two additional advantages of VPS hosting which usually trigger consumers to go to get a virtual storage space. Whatever your individual needs are usually, you buy and also pay for simply what you really need as each of the VPS strategies can be custom-made according to individual needs. By scalability, it means you can take a start up at the minimum price through few options and when you are that you are running low on resources, inquire from to add the very virtual options like vCPUs and GOOD OLD RAM and its relatively simply just as a reboot. At the same time, you can repeatedly add even more disk space or room on the fly.

Good Performance:

This particular hosting has an advantage of improved work output. Unlike a good shared equipment, all the taught sites are actually powered by just adequate COMPUTER resources, mind and bandwidth so buyers rarely point any recovery time. Besides, since discussed before, a VPS user provides more handle and main access, thus he can utilize this particular value of VPS hosting to boost the efficiency of it is server furthermore.

Enhanced Safety:

VPS internet hosting is considered any safer alternative because it is able to install custom made and rigid firewalls. Shared hosting, on the other hand is risky because of the neighboring websites, when any of these sites obtain a security risk, all the other internet sites on the same storage space are likely to obtain threads. Furthermore, you will be using a unique IP address, so you can find absolutely no odds of being punished which usually happens at a shared hosting schedule where buyers sharing the only real mail company are often punished even when they could be recycled guilty.

Cost you Effectiveness:

Different from a dedicated hosting package, VPS goes along with the advantage of a low-cost price that make it an affordable possibility for many site owners. The resources more or less match with a devoted server together with price which includes a shared device, so it is some best choice meant for medium measurements enterprises that more methods but are looking at some economical constraints.

Technical Specifications and Tips: Media Technology

Environment Issues

  • Make sure you have no open applications, if you are connected to the internet disconnect. The only thing you should have open when you are creating your CD ROM master is the writing application itself.
  • Dirt and debris on the surface of the disc can cause problems, and will result in permanent defects to the disc. Dust can mask the CD Recording laser resulting in a loss of light intensity and poor quality. Shadows of contaminants will mask readout surface and will result in permanent defects in the dye layer during recording, and will cause additional errors when the disc is read. Clean discs and a clean environment are essential to good CD-R quality.

The three variables that determine the quality of a CD master

  • CD creator program and the environment that the program is used in.
  • The CD writer itself.
  • The media used. CD-ROM Mastering with Adaptec Easy CD Creator 3-3.5b.

Using CD Creator Software

Ideal Situation: Move all necessary files to a single location (directory) on a single hard drive. This is essential if you are writing your CD ROM on the fly. If you are having trouble writing your CD or you are getting errors during the writing process, a disc image can be created first.

This prevents possible buffer under-runs and gives the CD writer a continuous flow of information helping to create the best possible CD-R. Not writing on the fly: On the Data CD layout screen drag over the necessary files, edit the volume label, by either right clicking on the CD icon then going to the rename option, or by highlighting the icon and pressing the F2 key. Then select create disc image from the file menu. Once the disc image has been created you can then write the CD from the disc image.

To do this go to the file menu and select “Create CD from Disc Image option.”

Open Adaptec Easy CD Creator, close the CD creation wizard > Click on Data CD Layout Tab > Drop files in the CD Layout window > Edit volume label.

Using CD Creator Software

Note: User default is CD ROM Mode 2/XA. To change this setting right click the volume label go down to properties option and select. Click on the Data Settings tab. Make sure the file system is Joliet to preserve long filenames. Click on the properties dialogue box for Joliet file system.

At the bottom of the window there are two options Mode 1 and Mode 2, change it from the default Mode 2 to Mode 1: CDROM.

  • CD ROM Mode 1 Data format was defined in 1984 the “Yellow Book” by Phillips and Sony.
  • CD ROM XA format was defined in 1991. CD ROM XA is an extension to the yellow book standard. To obtain maximum compatibility CD ROM Mode 1 should be the format of choice; because many older drives do not support CD ROM XA. CD ROM XA should only be used for multimedia applications.


Enter Publisher’s Name and Company. Make sure you click on Save as Defaults or you will have to enter this information, and change the CD format every time you enter Adaptec Easy CD. After you are happy with the layout of the CD use Create CD…in the file menu or click on the circle button on the button bar.

For masters we recommend writing CDs at 2x speed even if you have a faster CD writer.

Select Write Speed: 2x 300KB/s If you are familiar with your CD writer select Create CD option. If not select test write option. This won’t write any information to the CD-R but will test disc access time and will do a full simulation write. Click on Advanced Tab in the CD Creation Setup window. Select the Disc at Once Option. See below:

  • Disc at Once CD is written in one continuous uninterupted flow
    TOC Lead In Data Lead Out
  • Track at Once CD lazer is turned off during each phase
    Lead In Data Lead Out TOC
      = CD write start position

    Close Session and leave Disc Open should only be used if you are creating Multi Session CDs. Once done Click on OK to write your CD-ROM.

CDR Disc Quality

Why does this disc work fine on some players and not others? There are no standards for players, and each CD player is slightly different. Playability and portability is determined be several factors, and rules that are followed when a user creates a CD-R master.

The easiest way to test disc quality is to measure a disks error rate. Its an effective method because any serious problems on the disc affect error rate. Error rates are not necessarily physical flaws on the disc, but a measure on how well a disc works with a player.

Disk error descriptions

Prior to CD Replication or CDR duplication we put your master through a standard Quality Assurance test process. We are looking for errors that could reduce the readablility of production CDs in the field. Here is a summary of the common errors that are tested:

  • BLER (The basic error rate.) BLER stands for block error rate. A block consists of 32 symbols 24 of these symbols are data and 8 are used for error correction. There are 7350 blocks of data per second when a disc is played at 1x. Block error rate is the number of blocks out of 7350 that contain any erroneous bytes at the first decoder.
  • E11 E11 is the number of blocks out of 7350 per second of data that contain one erroneous byte at the first decoder.
  • E21 E21 is the number of blocks out of 7350 per second of data that contain two erroneous bytes at the first decoder.
  • E31 E31 is the number of blocks out of 7350 per second that contain three or more erroneous bytes at the first decoder.
  • E12 E12 is the number of blocks out of 7350 per second that contain one erroneous byte at the second decoder.
  • E22 E22 is the number of blocks out of 7350 per second that contain 2 erroneous bytes at the second decoder.
  • E32 E32 is the number of blocks out of 7350 per second that contain three or more erroneous bytes at the second decoder.
  • BURST BURST is the number of blocks in a row with two or more bad symbols at the first decoder.
  • UNCR Uncorrectables are erroneous bytes that cannot be corrected by the first or second decoder.

New discs that pass BLER and BURST requirements but have E22/E32 errors may initially be readable. These discs will soon become unusable when packing, shipping, storage and handling result in scratches, fingerprints and other contamination of the readout surface. New discs that meet specs will have a much longer life under such conditions.

The replication process involves many more parameters and errors.

Amazon is working on Augmented Reality Glasses


Virtual reality is booming with many products that come out in the coming months. However, in the field of augmented reality is a little calm since Google is working a bit more secretly on the final version of its Google Glass. There are certainly many products, but which are very disappointing most of the time. Well Amazon joined the dance of augmented reality as evidenced by the patent the company filed to the USPTO last week and was spotted by the website Digital Trends.

Unlike Google Glass, Amazon Augmented Reality Glasses will be fully glazed. The glass could, however, become opaque or become totally transparent depending on usage. The glass could thus be opaque when the user views content or transparent when the user needs to see things before him. In fact, the Amazon glasses are more  designed as a portable screen as a personal assistant. Indeed, Amazon states in its patent, it needs a tablet (or probably a smartphone) connected to the glasses, for example, watch a movie on the goggles screen. Amazon adds that the content can also be displayed as an overlay of the real world, like conventional augmented reality glasses, but always through a device connected to the glasses.


We have a little trouble understanding the benefits of such a product. Watching movies on glasses is rarely comfortable and augmented reality options do not seem to have been dug by Amazon. One can only hope that these augmented reality glasses do not take the same path as the fire phone, if one day announced.

Energy and World Change (Past, Present and Future)


Brief Overview and Summary

We started off this lessoEnergy and World Change (Past, Present and Future)n with a scaring fact: What happens if we exhaust all the petroleum extraction around the world? Another astonishing fact was that if everyone around the world consumes as much energy as the average Singaporean Resident, we will deplete this resource in 9 years.

Interesting Observation and Ideas

In Session 9, I have realised that we have gone through the historical timeline of human development, drivers of world change and change management.

The drivers of global energy change are the rising energy consumption and the need for economic development, especially in less developed countries which are developing rapidly and hence consume more energy. As such, is it possible for every country around the world to develop and progress? This brings us to the idea of sustainability.

Key Takeaways

One of the main key take away from this lesson is that the world is moving towards solar energy. Solar energy is regarded as a friendlier and safer choice of generating energy as compared to other more dangerous methods like nuclear energy. We were shown videos of energy consumption and one of the more interesting ones have shown that Germany’s government decided to shift energy consumption to renewable energy like solar.

In addition, energy from biomass has also shown great potential. For example, plasmic gastification can generate energy from waste and create synthetic gas.

The idea that technology is easy, people are hard was also reinforced during this lesson as mentioned by prof. Most technologies to generate energy has already been introduced and proven effective for quite a long period of time. However, governments and society may be resistant to such an introduction as they might find it cumbersome and less profitable due to the high start-up cost. Yet, we know that these technologies have to be explored as energy consumption increases over the years.

Presentations/Videos Shown In Class:

I am fascinated with the second video, 300 histories of renewable resources. In this video, it clearly shows how humans have depleted natural resources at a very alarming rate. However, at the same time, this video shows how humans have managed to harness resources and used technology to aid them in their development. In the first video, it shows that wood was primary the main source of resource up till 1700 when coal was used as an alternative. People then began developing the steam engine so as to pump water out of the coal mines.

Yet, due to resources getting depleted rapidly and underdeveloped countries developing at quick rate, we now have to look into renewable sources of energy such as wind and solar.

Issues for further discussion

It will be interesting to look into the futuristic alternative energy resources which humans can use. We now understand the importance of nuclear energy and Singapore has also raised the probability of developing nuclear energy. However, there are still dangers when developing such technologies as a leakage/ breakout will result in widespread disaster. Taking this matter into consideration, it will be interesting to know what are the emerging technologies available in the future or are currently being developed for humans to harness energy using different methods.


I will rate this lesson 8/10. The topic is quite dry but the lesson was informative. The lesson will be much more interesting if future technologies were discussed in greater detail.

What I Want From The Next Google Nexus Phone

Now that it’s been over two months using the Galaxy Nexus as my primary phone, I have to say that I am quite happy with it. Now, there have been rumours about a new Nexus phone (the bling-bling backed LG model). It is said to have a quad-core processor and 2GB RAM, which is deserving since a “benchmark” phone should have great horsepower. The next “big” news is the higher-than-before 1280 x 768 pixel IPS panel. And knowing that LG’s LCD screens that power the iPhone and the iPad are fantastic to look at, we should not expect any less from the new Nexus (4, apparently, Nexus 4). The camera getting bumped up to 8 mega-pixels (from the previous 5 MP) is also good to know, I just hope the low-light photo-taking experience is better (otherwise, my phone takes good shots in ample lighting). These changes sound great, but there’s one thing that can stop this phone from selling the way the Galaxy Nexus is selling now.

I personally didn’t know anybody who bought a Galaxy Nexus when it started selling last year in the US for a launch price of $750. Now that it’s $350 (~ Rs. 21,000 in Indian grey markets), everybody around me has one. And I think that’s what has worked for this phone. Just like it has for the Nexus 7 tablet. Can you imagine it being a runaway success if it wasn’t sold for $199? Would you have bought it for $399? In the Rs. 20,000 price bracket, the Galaxy Nexus has become the undisputed champion phone to recommend. It’s a shame you can’t buy it officially here in India.

I only have one gripe about my phone  – and that is the battery life. I may be generalizing here but the demographic of people buying a Nexus phone would tilt highly towards the power users (a.k.a geeks). And power users want to use their phones to the hilt! They want to track their jogs using a GPS-based sports tracker (at least fat ones like me who need to lose weight should). They want to use awesome turn-by-turn navigation that Google has just enabled for their country. They want to be free from having to switch between 2G to 3G every now and then to save precious battery juice. They want to watch videos while commuting; without the worry of their phone dying before they get back home.

I even remedied this issue by buying an extended battery with almost double the capacity. But then it makes the phone look like this guy from the 300 movie. So, in the end, faster internals and a better camera may be obvious and welcome additions to the new Nexus, but what I really want a champion caliber battery inside it to make me use it care-free. In fact my dream phone would be if Motorola does a “Nexus” MAXX HD at a reasonable price-point.

So, two things I’m going to watch out for in the LG Nexus 4, the price point and how many milli-amp-hours of non-removable battery is in that case?

Why The iPad 4 Won’t be Announced Alongside The iPad Mini Tonight?

Now that we’re a few hours away from the scheduled Apple event (10.30PM IST), we mostly know what to expect. But along with the cheaper iPad Mini, there are also talks of a Retina Macbook Pro 13-inch as well as refreshed iMacs and Mac Minis. If that wasn’t enough, rumours are also floating of Apple updating their new iPad too (I mean the one that was launched earlier this year, the 10-inch one, I mean the iPad 3, *sigh*):

  • The front camera will be bumped to FaceTime HD (i.e. 1.2 megapixels) from the current VGA (0.3 megapixels) resolution
  • Will support more 4G LTE bands for wider coverage worldwide (like the iPhone 5)
  • Faster processor, like the Apple A6 that was just used in the iPhone 5
  • Lightning connector instead of the standard 30-pin, which Apple would be dying to bring to its entire portable product line.
  • Something about an optically bonded screen that will reduce the glare and improve the picture quality.

Put all this in a much needed thinner-and-lighter design, and you might just as well have an iPad 4 in your hands. Now, why will Apple want to announce this new product right now, such that it steals the limelight from the intended start of the show — the iPad Mini? And if they do, what do they have left to show during the yearly iPad refresh cycle coming up in March 2013?

This brings me to my last and most interesting question — what happens after the iPad 4? What can be done to improve the iPad further assuming all the mentioned tweaks are added to the next 10-inch slate? If you’re thinking of SD card slots or USB ports, then clearly you haven’t understood Apple yet. I am having a hard time imagining a single hardware feature that Apple can put in the iPad after the iPad 4.

Great screen? The eyes can’t process any better. Great Cameras? Don’t need any better on a tablet anyway. Fast Processor and graphics chip? Check. High speed internet? Check. Widest variety of apps for the customers to choose from? Check.

What could it be?

Do We Have The Perfect Computer-Tablet Hybrid Yet?

I was watching this clip from Verge’s tech-show — On The Verge, where the editors were discussing radically designed Windows 8 devices. The reason why they are designed such, is because they want to compliment Windows 8′s touchscreen friendliness. This is not the first time somebody has tried to do touchscreen computers though. For years, we’ve had those All-in-one PCs from HP dubbed “TouchSmart” and even Dell’s Inspiron Duo Tablet PC, the design ingenuity of which is carry-forwarded to the recently announced XPS 12 Convertible. So, what’s the real difference between these two generations of touch-computers?

The only one that I can think of is that before Windows 8, all these touch-computers came with additional software that was designed to be finger-friendly; since Windows 7 didn’t have a full-screen, touchy-swipy experience that Windows 8 now does. And that’s exactly why those add-on software like the “HP TouchSmart Suite” or “Dell Stage” have been practically rendered useless today. But not all of them are “Old Wine, New Packaging”; the video above depicts some new non-typical designs — for instance laptops that slide out like a Nokia E7 while another that tilts its screen a full circle for the user to hold it like a tablet. Right there — I’ve got you where I want you.

Microsoft wants to let you know that with Windows 8, your laptop can be your tablet — the ultimate convergence device nobody has been able to crack till now. Before getting carried away, do remember that some of the shape-shifters seen in the video above are full-sized PCs. The Lenovo Ideapad Yoga for instance is a 13-inch laptop that weighs 1.5 kilos, the XPS 12 Convertible from Dell also weighs the same. These computers are at least a kilogram off the typical weight of a tablet. If you ask me, the iPad with Retina Display, weighing a “comparatively light” 650 grams, starts feeling heavy after holding it for more than a few minutes. These touch computers may be pretty thin and light when compared to other laptops, but they’re definitely larger, fatter and heavier than a tablet.

Personally, I use the tablet to read while being eased up on the sofa or bed. These monstrosities aren’t exactly “handheld” and will need to be “lapped” if you want to use it in tablet-mode. Also, for those into motion-sensing games, good luck trying to do that with that 13-inch convertible touchscreen computer. What about battery life? With Core i5 and i7′s powering these hybrids, I can’t expect it to have as stellar battery life as the ARM chip based tablets.

Oh yeah and while on the topic of full-sized touchscreen computers…

Bottom line — ultrabook/tablet hybrids are not the ultimate convergence device between the two categories; such that they will eliminate the existence of a stand-alone tablet.

So, are smaller tablet+keyboard-attachment devices like the ASUS VivoTab RT or Microsoft’s own Surface series the most practical “hybrids”? Being smaller, they ought to be more convenient to use as tablets. Plus, since the keyboard module is detachabe, it shaves off the excess baggage when you don’t want to use it like a computer. But then, these 10-inch models can be too small for some people, with an experience that is reminiscent of using a Netbook.

So, what options are consumers left with? Well, three, if you ask me:

  • You can buy a full-sized touchscreen computer which won’t be as convenient to use as a tablet.
  • You can buy a small-sized tablet with a keyboard attachment which may work well as a tablet, but could be too small to use comfortably as a computer.
  • You can buy a computer AND a tablet and use them as per your need.

The final conclusion — there probably isn’t going to be, a perfect computer/tablet hybrid. But there’s one seemingly probable future — every laptop eventually may end up having a touchscreen, whether you like it or not.