Beauty: Garlic for Acne

Garlic for Beauty

Garlic is a common herb which is generally used to flavor food, however it can also be used as a medicine. You can use garlic to treat acne that is caused by bacteria or oily skin.

Does Garlic Help To Cure Acne?

  • Garlic has anti – bacterial, anti-fungal, anti – viral and anti – septic properties that help to prevent clogged pores and thus, reduces the acne. However make sure it is diluted.
  • It’s anti – oxidant property helps to fight against free radicals which can damage the body or skin cells.
  • Allicin is a compound in garlic which gives pungent taste and smell. It will decompose into the antioxidant called sulfenic acid, which will react very quickly with radicals, limited only by the time in which the two molecules will take to come into contact with each other.
  • Regular intake of garlic will help to strengthen the immune system.
  • It has anti – inflammatory properties which help to reduce the pain, irritation and the discomfort caused by acne.
  • It helps to improve the blood circulation that allows the skin tissues to properly receive all the vitamins and minerals which are essential for healthy skin.
  • It has sulfur compounds called thiacremonon, which acts as a drying agent and also removes acne scars on the skin.
  • Using garlic regularly also prevents the formation of pimples.
  • It has an excellent source of various acne combating nutrients like vitamins (C and B6), minerals, selenium, copper, allicin, zinc (used to control sebum) and other phyto-nutrients.
  • It fights the insulin resistance which is linked to acne. The use of garlic oil helps to improve the insulin sensitivity.

How To Use Garlic For Acne:

Garlic can be used in many different ways to treat acne effectively. However, garlic is a strong compound and can cause a burning sensation when applied on the skin.

1. Garlic

Be sure while following this process, you are applying this garlic directly on the skin. Only use if you do not have sensitive skin.

  • Finely crush garlic cloves.
  • Apply to the affected areas of the skin.
  • This will destroy the bacteria causing acne.
  • Leave for a few minutes and then remove the crushed garlic.
  • Remove if the garlic starts to sting.
  • Wash it off with cold water and pat dry.
  • Apply moisturizer and repeat regularly.
  • Or include garlic in diet but avoid eating too much raw garlic as it can overheat the body.

2. Garlic Cloves in Water

Process 1:

  • Crush 3 garlic cloves to extract its juice.
  • Add to 1 cup of water and stir well, leave for 10-12 minutes.
  • Soak a cotton ball in the water for a few minutes.
  • Apply on the acne affected areas of skin.
  • Leave on for few minutes until it dries completely.
  • Rinse it off with water.
  • Continue this process regularly.
  • Note: You can also use warm water.

Process 2:

  • Crush 3 raw garlic cloves which will trigger the allicin production.
  • Mix with 1 tablespoon of water (more water for those with sensitive skin).
  • Rub the mixture over the acne.
  • Allow it to sit for about 10 – 15 minutes (if using garlic for the first time) or leave overnight.
  • Wash off with water and pat the skin dry.
  • Repeat this process regularly.

3. Garlic Cloves in Aloe Vera

  • Mix equal quantities of garlic juice and add aloe vera gel.
  • Gently rub it for a minute or two.
  • Let it sit for few minutes.
  • Rinse it off with water and pat dry.
  • Repeat regularly.

4. Garlic with Yogurt

  • Wash the face and pat dry.
  • Blend 4 garlic cloves to make a fine paste and add 1 tablespoon of yogurt.
  • Stir well and apply all over the affected area.
  • Let it sit for few minutes to dry.
  • Rinse the area with clean water and pat dry.
  • Repeat this process regularly.

5. Garlic with Vinegar

  • Finely crush garlic cloves and squeeze to extract the juice.
  • Add an equal amount of vinegar and stir well.
  • Dip a cotton ball in the solution.
  • Apply on the acne affected areas of the skin.
  • Let it sit for about 5 – 10 minutes.
  • Rinse with lukewarm water.
  • Repeat daily.

6. Homemade Garlic Chemical Peel

Using this garlic mask as a chemical peel for the face is a good option to get rid of acne, as it helps to correct sun damage, removes pimples and blackheads, reduces excessive skin oils, aging, etc.

  • Peel the garlic cloves and then grate them.
  • Press the flat end of the spoon on the garlic pieces and smear it onto the bowl to form a fine garlic paste.
  • Apply a thin layer of garlic paste on all the acne affected areas.
  • Do not get into the eyes, mouth and nose.
  • Leave on for about 15 – 20 minutes.
  • Put the lid on the bowl and place in the fridge.
  • After it dries completely, wash the face with warm water.
  • Dry your face with clean towel and moisturize.
  • Regularize this process to get relief from the acne within few days. But discontinue if there is any burning sensation

7. Garlic with Olive Oil

The mixture of garlic and olive oil helps to clear up the acne from inside out.

  • Peel and blend 4 garlic cloves and 4 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil.
  • Transfer into an air tight container, you can store in the fridge for 48 hours.
  • Eat a tablespoon of this, with water, twice a day.
  • For more effective results, drink 8 oz glasses of water every day with this process.

8. Garlic Oil

  • Pour natural garlic oil into a bowl.
  • Use a cotton ball to apply to the acne affected areas of the skin.
  • Massage it gently for few minutes.
  • Leave on for few minutes to overnight.
  • Wash with warm water and a mild cleanser.
  • Continue doing this process regularly.

9. Garlic with Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar helps to regulate the pH levels of the skin.

  • Smash a few garlic pods with a mallet.
  • Add 1 teaspoon of raw and unpasteurized apple cider vinegar.
  • Stir it well and apply this mixture on the acne affected skin areas.
  • Massage it for few minutes and then allow it to dry naturally.
  • Wash it off with water and pat the skin dry.
  • Follow this process once a day.

10. Garlic with any Carrier Oil

  • Peel a few garlic cloves and allow to air dry for a few minutes.
  • Pour carrier oil into a pan and heat for a few minute.
  • Add these garlic cloves in it.
  • Allow it to heat for 15 – 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Stir until the cloves change to brown and then to blackish.
  • Strain the oil and discard the cloves.
  • Let the oil cool before applying to the affected areas of skin.
  • Leave it for few minutes to overnight.
  • Store the remaining oil in an airtight container for further usage.
  • Wash off with lukewarm water and mild cleanser.
  • Continue this same process daily.

11. Garlic with Honey and Fresh Comfrey Leaves

Honey moisturizes and soothes the skin and cures the irritation. Comfrey is good for treating acne.

  • Peel and mash 3 garlic cloves
  • Pound handful of fresh comfrey leaves and add sufficient amount of warm honey and mashed garlic.
  • Warm a cloth and dip it in the mixture.
  • Apply as a mask on the face and leave overnight.
  • Wash it off with cool to lukewarm water.
  • Or you can use this mixture particularly on the acne breakouts.
  • Do this process regularly.

12. Garlic with Honey and Yogurt

This process is especially useful for those people who are unable to bear the stinging sensation of garlic when applied on the skin.

  • Crush garlic pods.
  • Add ½ teaspoon of honey and 2 tablespoons of yoghurt and stir well.
  • Apply this as a mask all over the face.
  • Wait for about 20 – 30 minutes or till it dries completely.
  • Wash it off with water.
  • Or you can also use garlic oil (2 – 4 drops) or garlic powder (1/2 teaspoon).
  • Repeat regularly.

13. Garlic with Turmeric and Manuka Honey Face Mask

Turmeric has an anti – inflammatory which helps to soothe the inflammation and the discomfort caused by acne. Manuka honey helps to heal the blemished skin and thus prevents the acne breakouts.

  • Crush 6 garlic cloves.
  • Add 3 teaspoons of manuka honey and ¼ teasponn of turmeric powder and stir well.
  • Apply this paste on the acne prone areas of the skin.
  • Let it sit for few minutes to dry completely.
  • Wash it off with water and pat the skin dry.
  • Regularize this process.

14. Garlic Oil with Salicylic Acid

These ingredients are high in antiseptic and anti-bacterial properties which help to get rid of the bacteria causing acne.

  • Mix 2 drops each of garlic oil and salicylic oil.
  • Pour on a cotton ball.
  • Apply on the acne affected area.
  • Leave it for few minutes and then rinse off completely.
  • Repeat the same process regularly.

Eating Garlic for Acne:

Eating or drinking garlic will work as an effective remedy for curing acne from the inside out. It fights internally the root cause of acne to prevent it completely. This will help to strengthen the immune system and thus improves the overall health and beauty. It is advisable to take three cloves of garlic once daily for a month to clear this problem.

Process 1:

  • Crush 2 garlic cloves to extract its juice.
  • Add this juice to either water or V8 juice etc.
  • Drink this slowly.
  • Brush your teeth to get rid of the smell.
  • Drink once before going to bed..

Process 2:

  • Cut garlic cloves into small pieces.
  • Eat these pieces throughout the day.
  • Or you can add these to soups, salads, curries, gravies, etc.

Process 3:

  • Mince garlic cloves and add sufficient amount of applesauce.
  • Stir it well to make a fine paste.
  • Consume this paste daily.
  • You can use cottage cheese or yogurt in the place of apple sauce.
  • Garlic can be in the form of minced, crushed or chopped.

Process 4:

  • Peel a few garlic cloves and crush into small pieces.
  • Place in a pan and sauté to get a mild, roasted flavor.
  • Add olive oil, parmesan cheese and black pepper.
  • Stir it well and use as a dip regularly.

Is Garlic Good for Acne Scars?

Acne can sometimes cause permanent scarring. These scars will appear as pockmarks or sunken areas of the skin. Garlic cloves will gives long lasting results and minimal side effects.

  • It has anti-oxidants which help to prevent free radicals that leave scars on the skin.
  • It has sulphur, zinc, calcium, vitamin E which helps for proper skin tissue formation by clearing the old and dead skin cells.
  • It enhances for the proper circulation of blood throughout the body that also helps for the scars removal and regenerating new skin cells for proper pH balance of the skin.

Here are the processes that help you to remove the scars from the skin.

1. Garlic with Olive Oil and Honey

  • Wash the face with mild cleanser and warm water and pat dry.
  • Grate 2 garlic clove and mix with water.
  • Apply this on the acne affected areas of the skin.
  • Massage it gently for few minutes before rinsing with warm water.
  • The garlic exfoliates the dead skin cells and removes the top layer of the scarred tissues.
  • It also removes any bacteria or oil in the skin.
  • Do not to leave the garlic on the skin for longer than 5 – 7 minutes.
  • Wash with warm water.
  • Crush 2 more garlic cloves and add 2 teaspoons of olive oil and 1 tablespoon of honey.
  • Mix well and apply on the acne affected skin areas.
  • Let it sit for about 20 – 25 minutes before washing off with warm water.
  • Be sure to wash it immediately if you get a stinging sensation.
  • Apply aloe vera to help not to aggravate the acne while moisturizing and to get some hydration back.
  • Regularize this process.

2. Boiled Garlic

This process helps you to get rid of all the acne scaring and blemishes. Here the boiled garlic is not as strong as raw to avoid any burning.

  • Hit 4 – 5 cloves of peeled raw garlic with a mallet.
  • Pour 250 ml of water into a pan and place on the heat.
  • Bring it to boil and add the garlic.
  • Boil for about 30 – 35 minutes.
  • Turn off the heat and allow it to cool for a few minutes.
  • Mash into a paste and apply on the entire face.
  • Let it sit for few minutes to dry.
  • Wash it off with water and pat dry.
  • Apply some moisturizer and repeat the process regularly.

Garlic Pills or Capsules for Acne:

Make sure to check the allicin level in the garlic capsules as the higher allicin in the capsule the more powerful the capsule will be.

One suppliment is called Allimax, one of the most powerful and safest garlic supplements for treating acne. It is rich in allicin in stabilized form which helps to get rid of the bacteria in the body. So take allimax pills everyday or use Allimax cream.

A second supplement is Garlicin, which is also a very effective garlic supplement but with a special property which leave your body smelling neutral. It is specially coated with organic film that helps to preserve the garlic powder.

You can get them from a herbalist or pharmacy for taking garlic tablets. You will still get the benefits from taking them, but they are not as effective as the fresh form.

Tips and Precautions:

Here are few simple tips and precautions to follow while using these remedies.

  • Make sure to dilute the garlic or its juice with other substance like rose water or water to prevent the burning or stinging sensation on the applied skin.
  • Never leave garlic on the skin for a long time as it can cause blisters.
  • Possible side effects are nausea, bad breath, skin irritation, vomiting, burning sensation in mouth, etc. so do a trial run first.
  • Pregnant women should not try these garlic remedies before consulting the dermatologist and gynecologist. Also do not use on children.
  • Add these garlic cloves in your favorite dinner recipes to get a delicious taste and to prevent these acne breakouts. Try garlic bread.
  • Its always better to use fresh garlic rather than stored garlic as it contains more anti – oxidants.
  • Those suffering from acne rosacea might experience some rosacea symptoms after eating this garlic as it is a trigger.
  • It has blood thinning properties which may cause bleeding problems. Pregnant women and people who have had surgery should avoid or limit this garlic usage. Also people who are on certain medications are strictly advised not to eat garlic in large amounts.
  • Avoid applying pure garlic to the skin or leaving it for long periods.
  • To clear the garlic smell, use with honey or lemon, or soak the cloves in milk for at least an hour before consumption.
  • Make sure to consult your doctor before using all these garlic remedies.
  • Remember to brush your teeth after the intake of garlic cloves to get rid of the bad breath.

All these garlic remedies for acne are natural and effective. It won’t give results overnight, you have to continue applying garlic on acne regularly.

Beauty: Signs of Dehydration

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1. Your mouth and lips are dry.

When you’re dehydrated, saliva production decreases, leaving your mouth and lips feeling dry. Dry mouth can also make your breath stinky, because bacteria has the chance to linger longer when it’s not being washed away on the reg.

2. Your pee is dark.

The color of your pee can tell you a lot about your health. Healthy, hydrated pee should be light yellow or clear, a sign that it’s properly diluted. If yours is medium yellow, dark yellow, or orange, it’s likely because your body isn’t getting enough water so your urine is more concentrated, Robert Korn, M.D., medical director of GoHealth Urgent Care in the New York area, tells SELF. Less water intake also means you’ll have to go less often, too.

3. Your energy levels are low.

“The defense mechanism of the body in the face of dehydration is to shut down blood supply to ‘non-vital’ organs,” Korn explains. This means the rest of your body, and your muscles specifically, may start to operate at a slower pace, making you feel sluggish and sleepy.

4. You have a headache.

The exact way dehydration causes a headache isn’t known. But experts believe that when hydration levels drop, so does blood volume, which leads to lower blood flow to the brain. This reduces the brain’s oxygen supply and causes the blood vessels to dilate, leading to headaches and even lightheadedness. 

5. You don’t have enough tears.

Similarly to saliva, the amount of tears you have can actually decrease if your body is using every last drop of water to support its basic functions. If your eyes are dry, or just not producing much liquid when you’re crying, it could mean you’re dehydrated.

6. Your skin is dry.

Water is essential for plump, hydrated skin. When your body’s tank is low, and using all the water available for basic functions, your skin gets the short end of the stick. Over time, it can lead to dryness. 

7. You get muscle spasms or “Charley horses.”

You know those super painful muscle spasms that wake you up in the middle of the night after your whole calf seizes up? They typically occur when a muscle is overused, and exercising when your fluid levels are low can spark one. 

8. Your body is cramping.

There are lots of things that can cause cramping, and muscle fatigue is the most likely culprit. But another type of cramping has been connected to dehydration and a sodium deficit in the body. “Exertional heat cramping, or full body cramping, may be related to sodium depletion and fluid loss especially in individuals who are ‘salty sweaters,'” Pritchett says. In this case, sipping on an electrolyte sports drink can be helpful to restore the natural mineral balance in the body.

9. You feel hungry even after you just ate.

Thirst and hunger cues come from the same part of the brain, so it’s easy to confuse the two. If you feel hungry even when you know you’ve eaten enough, there’s a good chance your body’s actually telling you it needs water, not food.

Important note: The following symptoms could be a sign of severe dehydration: rapid heartbeat or breathing, sunken eyes, fever, confusion, or delirium. If you experience any of these, go to the hospital.

Marketing: Why you Can't Afford to Ignore Content Marketing

You’ve heard about it and probably seen it, but have you done anything about it? While content marketing is still a relatively new marketing term, it has become the focal point of best marketing practises for B2C and B2B brands alike. It’s even considered a good strategy for people starting their own business. Yet there are still businesses and marketing professionals who choose to ignore the importance of content in their marketing strategy, not understanding why this can sink their marketing efforts.

Coined by Joe Pulluzzi, the term “content marketing” refers to finding the sweet spot, or intersection between your knowledge and your passion (or customer pain point), whichever is more appropriate.

What does this mean for us in marketing? It means our goal is now to try to educate and delight our prospective clients before attempting the sell and, if you do try to sell, it should be when they are ready to buy. Contrary to outbound marketing techniques such as paid advertising, telesales or sales emails, this inbound marketing strategy demands a big time investment. So ask yourself this: does the majority of your content on your social media or blog sound like an extension of your sales pitch? Or does it actually add value to the lives of your customers? (Note: the aim is to add value, not extend the sales pitch!)

Although it does take time and is not a quick fix, a good content strategy will:

  • Support sales and improve the leads funnel
  • Increase brand awareness and build trust
  • Create brand advocates who add credibility to your business

In Hubspot’s Status of Inbound 2015 report, 45% of marketers were planning to invest more in their content marketing this year as it has brought success previously.

So, to avoid a sinking ship and without further ado, here are the 5 things you need to do to kick-start your content marketing strategy and start reaping the rewards.

Make sure your content solves a problem

With the growing amount of content created and shared every day, it’s simply impossible to keep track of everything on a daily basis. Turn the table around and put yourself in your customer’s shoes. Generalisations, random takeaway tips and thrown-together advice is at best frowned upon, at worst not even read.

Ask yourself, what problems do your readers have? What challenges do they face? Then create content in a way that helps resolve these issues for them.

Do a content audit

(you never know what content gems you may have hidden away)

This might be one of the most important things you do. It’s crucial to look at what has worked or what hasn’t in the past (or if you’re starting from scratch, look at what content pieces you can re-package). Make sure to include your main business objectives in this audit to help with the evaluation. If you’re in the process of changing what you want to achieve as a business, it’s the perfect time to implement a new and comprehensive content strategy.

This is also a great way to source content ideas – maybe there were some subjects covered in the past that could now be refreshed and improved on? Start by listing what you have, then what you think you need (or what’s missing), and then understanding how you can bridge the gap given the resources you have at the moment.

Remember the various content types and channels

It is important to remember that while blogs are central to content marketing, there are over 100 types of content, but not all need to be included in your content strategy. If you are just starting with content, this is a great opportunity to find out where your audience is and what type of content they respond to best.

Remember not to spread yourself too thin though – there are many platforms to publish your content to and different things you can create, but it’s best to focus on one platform before you move on to others. Best of all, content can be reused, repackaged and reformatted to fit different types and channels.

Create a content plan and calendar

Seems simple enough, right? But this is the reason most content marketing strategies fail. If you are just starting out, then keep it simple – maybe use a management tool that has as a calendar built into it. We use Trello to manage our content projects and use the calendar view it offers to get an overview of our scheduling, and, of course, our own social media scheduling tool Sendible for social media management.

If you have a number of departments or contributors, you may want to keep all of your content accessible to key team members. Share ideas and drafts via Cloud-based software, then decide when to publish them or keep them for later.

Publish, monitor, review and optimise – it never stops!

Once your content is created and shared, remember to monitor how it is performing. Ask yourself what is popular and what works best. With time, you will be able to create more helpful content geared towards what your audience loves. There are analytics and reporting tools that can help you with this. We use Sendible of course, but there are many options for you to choose to suit your needs.

In-between this ongoing process, make sure to take extra time to engage with the industry, talk with influencers and curate (collect and share) other authors great content.

Conclusion

Recent changes in search engine algorithms and the way Google indexes your content means that original, high-quality content is preferred. Pages that get ranked the highest are usually the most trustworthy and valuable source for consumers. This is the time when small businesses or personas can grow bigger, boring B2B companies get a personality and most importantly, customers get the best kind of advice without having to look too hard for it.

So, what do you think? Have you already started investing in content marketing or are you not sure whether it would pay off in the end? Would love to hear your thoughts!

 

 

Beauty: Oud Meets West

 

Being originally from East Africa and having been raised in the Middle East (Abu Dhabi), I've always been familiar with the Oud (Agarwood) scent. Whether it was sampling oud oils in the souk with my mother or burning oud wood chips at home in the evening; so, to find countless brands carrying the note in luxury department stores has not only brought on nostalgia, it got me wondering what other Islamic and MENA (Middle East and North African) beauty and wellness trends that may cross-over into the western world! 

My encounter was not only a coincidence, recently listed in Spafinder's detailed annual top 10 spa and wellness trends report it seems as though we can all expect to continue to see more from MENA throughout 2015 and beyond! 

Oud is said to be the most expensive wood in the world; oud oil’s value is estimated to be 1.5 times the value of gold, and it is sometimes referred to as ‘liquid gold’. Rich and powerful, oud’s sweet, woody scent is instantly recognisable. From Acqua di Parma’s Colonia Intensa d’Oud to Tom Ford’s Oud Fleur, our favourite oud perfumes can be found in this gallery – the definitive guide to the best oud fragrances to shop for.

Below are some of the most popular brands on the market using the notorious luxury wood.

Wellness: Citrus Fruits

Girl's Guide to Wellness: Citrus Fruits

When we talk about “superfoods“, we typically mention unusual-sounding items like chia seeds, matcha powder, and green algae. But some of the most beneficial foods you can eat–and use in your beauty routine—are not quite as glamorous: We’re talking about good old citrus fruits.

From grapefuit to lemons, clementines to oranges, citrus does your body and face good. Here are seven ways you can use these pulpy fruits to your benefit, according to the experts.

1. To fight infection.

Grapefruit seed extract can be used to fight infections and can rid the body of unhealthy bacteria, according to holistic nutritionist Sally Pansing Kravich (who’s worked with Kerry Washington).

Grapefruit—and citrus in general—can also promote kidney health, adds dermatologist Michael Lin, who’s based in California. “Citrus fruits are packed with folic acid, a type of vitamin B that can aid in preventing kidney disease and birth defects among pregnant women,” he explains. “Good kidney health helps the body filter blood, remove waste and regulate the balance of electrolytes. Maintaining balanced levels of electrolytes helps prevent dehydration and dry, dull skin.”

2. To get rid of cellulite.

Yep, that’s what the experts say! Certified aromatherapist Gina Kamburowski, founder of GoodLivingIsGlam.com, says that grapefruit especially, which has a super high concentration of vitamin C, stimulates collagen production and helps skin retain elasticity.

Kravich and Kim Laudati, of Kim Laudati Skin Care & Laser in Manhattan, agree that grapefruit also helps smooth those annoying cellulite bumps as well. Laudati suggests cutting off the ends of a grapefruit (so a round “end” is exposed) and rubbing it in tight circular motions using pressure over your cellulite pre-shower—this will drive in natural vitamin C and help to improve the appearance of your skin. “If you sleep in pajamas, you can rub a grapefruit in tight circular motions across cellulite post-shower, too,” she says. “Wipe the area(s) with a damp cloth in the morning and apply a natural vitamin C body cream.” (ProDerma Light has a great skin brightening cream with 25% vitamin C.)

3. To improve your immune system and digestion.

Skincare expert Adrienne Shostak recommends starting your day with hot lemon water rather than coffee or tea. “Lemons are rich in vitamin C and potassium,” she says. “Vitamin C is an excellent fighter against colds and potassium stimulates brain and nerve functions, while regulating the blood pressure. Lemons also aid in digestion and clean toxins from the blood, which keeps the skin clean.” She suggests drinking the juice of half a lemon with hot water, adding a bit of honey or turmeric (another potent antioxidant) first thing when you wake up. Then, wait 30 minutes before eating (if you can!) to maximize the benefits. (You’ll want to drink the concoction fairly quickly though, says wellness expert Cassie Sobelton, as lemon water can be harmful to your teeth’s enamel if it sits there for too long.)

Clementines are another great digestion aid, Kamburowski says. “Although they’re tart and acidic, they also contain essential alkaline minerals that are key to helping balance the body after digestion,” she explains. “Add them to your daily juice or smoothie, or simply eating them piece-by-piece as an energy-boosting afternoon snack.

4. To jumpstart your metabolism.

It might sound crazy but citrus fruits can actually raise your metabolic rate while resting, says Jolie Martin, Laser Medical Esthetician and skincare expert at NYC’s SKINNEY Medspa. “The phytonutrient load found in citrus fruits can burn additional calories making them an ideal addition to your fitness…or resting plan,” she explains.

According to Beth Shaw, author of YogaLean, grapefruit is especially great for metabolism boosting: it’s high in enzymes, which burn fat, and has a high water content as well, keeping you hydrated.

5. To brighten your skin.

“If you are looking to achieve clear, glowing and blemish-free skin, make sure citrus fruits such as lemons, limes or grapefruits are part of your daily diet and beauty routine,” says Dr. Roshini Raj, gastroenterologist and founder of TULA skincare. “Citrus fruits are a rich natural source of vitamin C, which helps destroy free radicals in your body while providing a radiant glow to your skin and rejuvenating skin from the inside.”

If you have sun spots or uneven skin tone, citrus can help with those, too. “The retinol antioxidant in grapefruit helps treat this condition, renewing damaged skin,” says Kamburowski. “The potassium in grapefruit helps to smooth wrinkles and age spots and provides a protective shield against UV rays, while amino acids makes the skin firm and soft.” (Check out Grown Alchemist Polishing Facial Exfoliant: Pink Grapefruit & Glucomannan Extract to reap the benefits of this superfood on your skin.)

6. To purify.

Citrus essential oils provide exceptional cleansing benefits to the skin as well as some anti-inflammatory ones, which make them extremely beneficial for healing blemishes or even razor cuts, says Julia Teren of Thesis Beauty.

These oils not only clean, though, they can also deodorize. “Oils like lime and lemon enjoy popularity in deodorants as they also help inhibit odor-producing bacteria,” she explains. “They do a great job deodorizing armpits, feet and hands and controlling sebum production on an over-reactive scalp.” (Kind of gross…but also pretty awesome.)

7. To lift your spirits.

Try citrus as mood-boosting aromatherapy, Teren suggests. “Citrus oils such as bergamot, petitgrain, mandarin and grapefruit are incredibly aromatic and uplifting when used in mists, diffusers, and natural candles,” she says. “They help relieve signs of stress and fatigue, promote relaxation and elevated mood.” For a spa-like unwinding experience, soak in your bathtub with Thesis Beauty’s Dead Sea Bath Salt Citrus Grove, which will benefit your senses and your skin.

Travel: Unbound by Hyatt

 Image Credit -  Courtesy The Driskill

Image Credit - Courtesy The Driskill

Hyatt’s newest brand is seeking Instagram-pretty and Snapchat-worthy hotels.

Instagramming, Snapchatting, and Facebooking a hotel stay is practically a must-do for today’s social media–savvy travelers, whether it's because of a killer view or just the unspoken desire to brag about being on #vacation. So it was only a matter of time before a major hotel brand began to think about construction with social media at front of mind. The Unbound Collection from Hyatt Hotels, which launched this week, is a carefully curated group of independent hotels—each with its own identity, history, and design, all of which can easily be shown off on social media...or so Hyatt hopes.

"Your travel is a shareable nugget," Maryam Banikarim, chief marketing officer of Hyatt Hotels, told Condé Nast Traveler. "And we want our properties to have something you want to share, not just pictures of the room, but the experiences you have there too.”

Currently, Unbound has four hotels in its collection—The Driskill in Austin; the Hotel du Louvre in Paris; the Carmelo Resort & Spa in Montevideo, Uruguay; and the Coco Palms Resort in Kauai, Hawaii (which is undergoing a renovation and will reopen in 2018). All Unbound hotels will be upper-upscale and luxury properties, meaning four- to five-star hotels with full service (like late-night room service). The hotel will also be a mix of historic gems, cool contemporary spots, and new builds.

While Unbound is indeed looking for hotels with "rich social currency," Banikarim reports that Hyatt won’t be obsessively tracking a hotel’s number of followers or likes during the inclusion process, especially since Unbound’s future pipeline includes hotels that haven’t been built yet. "What we’re really looking for are hotels that are story-worthy," she said, and that goes beyond the amenities in the guest room. A shareable story about The Driskill, Banikarim said, could involve the ghost that's been known to roam the property turning on and off the lights. At the Hotel Du Louvre, its story will be centered around its history as one of the oldest hotels in Paris, while the Carmelo Resort is in the middle of an eucalyptus forest, putting guests up close to nature.

Because the Unbound Collection is what’s referred to in the hotel industry as a "soft" brand, the hotels will keep their own names and identities, and Hyatt branding is kept to a minimum. Guests may only learn an Unbound property is a Hyatt at check-in, when they see that their stay can earn full points for the Hyatt Gold Passport loyalty program. There is some concern that Hyatt’s presence in an highly individualistic hotel like The Driskill may forever change the appeal of the hotel, but Banikarim insists that hotels will have the freedom to do things the way they’ve always done them, with Hyatt helping out behind the scenes.

Unlike other hotel collections out there—Tribute Portfolio from Starwood Hotels and Resorts, the Curio Collection from Hilton Worldwide, and the Autograph Collection from Marriott International—Unbound plans to include travel experiences outside of hotels, possibly river cruises and other types of adventures. "More and more people value experiences, rather than possessions," Banikarim said. "And people want different kinds of experiences." So get ready to share your experiences on social media.

Wellness: Affordable Spring-Break Retreats

blue-lagoon-price.jpg

Blue Lagoon — Grindavik, Iceland

Although Iceland may not be the first place that comes to mind when you think of spring break, the country's abundance of all natural geothermal spas does make it a top candidate for anyone in need of a little rest and relaxation. Lauded as one of National Geographic's "25 Wonders of the World," the Blue Lagoon's mineral-rich geothermal seawater has developed an international reputation for its healing effects on the skin, and for good reason — the combination of naturally occurring minerals, silica, and algae are known to stimulate collagen synthesis, the process that gives skin its smooth, youthful appearance. The standard rate of €40 ($44) is a rather small price to pay for four hours in a 100-degree, nine million-liter fountain of youth.

Pura Vida Retreat & Spa — Alajuela, Costa Rica

Spanning more than seven acres 4,900 feet above sea level, Pura Vida Retreat and Spa is where you go to find peace in the clouds. The resort's customized three, five, and seven-night mind-body-spirit packages include everything from room accommodations and meals to yoga sessions, massages, eco-adventures, and guided coffee plantation hikes. They even throw in round trip airport transfers to boot. Package rates start as low as $655 per person and nightly rates start at $115.

Tassajara — Carmel Valley, California

Situated in a mountain valley just inland from the iconic Big Sur coast, Tassajara is one of the three practice communities that comprise the San Francisco Zen Center. If you're looking for a later break, beginning in April, Tassajara offers Engaging Earth Retreats with a special focus on nature, wildflowers, and the culinary arts. Whether you sign up for "Cooking and Gardening in the Heart of Tassajara" or the "Zen of Baking," you will have the opportunity to practice bringing the art of Zen more fully into your daily life as you grow more intimate with Tassajara's gardens and kitchen. Retreat rates start at $225.

Marketing: Content Marketing Strategy

Dallas Content Marketing Strategy

Do I really need to create a content marketing strategy?

Yes! As we’ve learned through our annual research, not only do you need a strategy, you also need to document it.

Those with a documented content marketing strategy:

  • Are far more likely to consider themselves effective at content marketing
  • Feel significantly less challenged with every aspect of content marketing
  • Generally consider themselves more effective in their use of all content marketing tactics and social media channels
  • Were able to justify spending a higher percentage of their marketing budget on content marketing

What should my content marketing strategy include? 

Think of a content marketing strategy as an outline of your key business and customer needs and a detailed plan for how you will use content to address them.

While there are no definitive “templates” for building a content marketing strategy — each one will be unique to the business that creates it — there are five components that they commonly include:

  • Your business case for innovating with content marketing: By communicating your reasons for creating content, the risks involved, and your vision of what success will look like, you are much more likely to gain executive support for your strategy — and to get permission to make a mistake here and there as you figure out what works best for your business.
  • Your business plan for content marketing: This covers the goals you have for your content program, the unique value you are looking to provide through your content, and details of your business model. It also should outline the obstacles and opportunities you may encounter as you execute your plan.
  • Your audience personas and content mapsThis is where you describe the specific audiences for whom you will create content, what their needs are, and what their content engagement cycle might look like. You may also want to map out content you can deliver throughout their buyer’s journey in order to move them closer to their goals.
  • Your channel plan: This should include the platforms you will use to tell your story; what your criteria, processes, and objectives are for each one; and how you will connect them so that they create a cohesive brand conversation.

How often should I update my content marketing strategy?

Some parts of your strategy should stay consistent even as your content marketing program grows and evolves — namely, your mission and business goals. In fact, these two things are so key that you may want to put them on a Post-it note so you can keep them in view whenever you are working on your content. 

However, other aspects of your content marketing strategy will likely benefit from being reviewed and updated periodically. To ensure that your content marketing program remains on target, consider revisiting your channel strategy, core topics, and team processes on an annual basis — or more often if you are just getting started.

Source

Beauty: LUNA™

Foreo Luna

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Every LUNA™ comes with a 2-Year Limited Warranty and 10-Year Quality Guarantee.

Marketing: Damn, Daniel!

If you haven’t heard someone say, ‘Damn, Daniel,’ in the last 24 hours then you’ve been living under a rock because Daniel Lara and his white Vans have pretty much taken over the internet. 

Want to know why everyone’s talking about Daniel Lara? Well, Daniel made his debut in a 30-second video, which has now gone viral, posted on Twitter Feb. 15 by his friend Joshua Holz. In it, Josh films Daniel walking around, looking cool, and showing off his many outfits. Each time Daniel debuts a new outfit, Josh exclaims, “Damn, Daniel!” Josh also pays special attention to a certain accessory: “back at it again with the white Vans!”

Now that the video has gone viral — watch it above — online users can’t stop using the two phrases to compliment their friends, whether they’re purposely trying to be annoying or not. 

iral video is every marketer’s dream. It’s the surest way to cut through the noise of the internet. And studies show that social viewers—people who watch shared content rather than videos they’ve found by browsing—are far more likely to buy a product and recommend it to others.

Why do some videos catch fire and others just fizzle out?

The two most powerful drivers of viral success: psychological response (how the content makes you feel) and social motivation (why you want to share it).

Want more marketing tips? Be sure to subscribe!

Marketing: How Marketing is Changing for Small BIZ

The frequent changes in technology have introduced new and revolutionary changes in marketing, especially for small business setups. Let us compare the old ways of marketing with the new ways and evaluate the impacts thereupon:

Today, the customer service has turned into the client engagement in a sense that earlier, the small businesses had to plan how much time they can give to the queries of customers in a day. At present, they are available 24 hours a day on the social media and generally can handle all the clients anytime. Their response has a direct impact on the mind of customers and it is very useful in making a good reputation. This is because everyone is in a hurry and wants an immediate response.

This is a great change that monologue messages have converted to dialogue nowadays. In older times, businesses would put advertisements on television, print media and billboards. Today, even small setups can have a dialogue with the customers directly and the credit goes to the social media sites. It does not seem that the company is marketing its business, but facilitating the customers and fixing their problems. This way, they learn a lot and follow the marketing strategy accordingly.

Today, the paper marketing has taken a turn of digital marketing. In the presence of SEO email marketing, eBook, content marketing and rest of digital ways, businesses do not require newspaper ads, pamphlets or magazine advertisements. Earlier, giving ad on television or radio was only affordable for big businesses, but now small business entities can also avail themselves of cost effective marketing campaigns.

Today, there is no need to create clever ads to hit the minds of the audience and generate high sales; rather it is more fruitful to provide the accurate relevant information to the customers. If they find what they were searching for, they remain in touch with the website. The main thing is to target their keyword search and then in view of that, provide the solution to their problem.

Source

Business: City of Denton Partners with DEC

DEC Denton

The city of Denton is partnering with the Dallas Entrepreneur Center to launch a collaborative space for area entrepreneurs.

Stoke, located at 608 E. Hickory St., is a product of Connected Denton, a community-based initiative fostering entrepreneurship and innovation in the city of Denton. The 9,216 square-foot space will be located just east of Denton’s Downtown Square. It is expected to open in the summer.

A rendering shows what Stoke will look like once the space is renovated in summer.

“There’s been kind of a grassroots discussion for a couple of years for creating a coworking space and supporting entrepreneurship and high-tech companies,” said Aimee Bissett, Denton’s director of development services, adding that Stoke is the culmination of all those efforts.

“It will be that hub or centerpiece for people to come and collaborate.”

Stoke will be financed by the $220,000 that the city approved in September 2014. The funding was allocated to launch an economic development initiative that would help Denton become a hub for technology. The center aims to serve as the anchor for Denton’s Innovation District.

The city also allocated $75,000 annually to help support the new center. The funds come from the tax increment financing district monies and will cover the lease and staff. The center will also receive a percentage of membership fees collected by the DEC to help support the operating costs.

The DEC will run the programming associated with the center, and the joint venture will function like the Addison Treehouse, a partnership that formed between the town of Addison and the DEC in 2014. However, Stoke will have a Denton twist.

“We’re creating the right programming, the right collaboration community, but this is very much a Denton vibe,” said Trey Bowles, CEO of the DEC. “We are very much trying to figuring out what that community needs for entrepreneurial support so that we are really able to create a way for the city to build Denton’s entrepreneurial brand.”

As in Addison, the DEC will provide entrepreneurs access to training, education, mentorship, promotion and capital to grow their businesses. Stoke will include features such as gigabit fiber Internet, conference room rentals and office resources for members and visitors.

For more on this exciting partnership click HERE.

Wellness: 2016 Trends

Kelp is the new kale

Kelp, a tasty and nutritious variety of seaweed, is poised to become the new "it" green in your diet. "It's really high in protein. It has a lot of great B vitamins that are really hard to get," Brue said. Not convinced? She noted that it took a while for kale to catch on, too, but creative chefs helped make it hugely popular.

Matcha's moment

This Japanese green tea powder has been on trend-watchers' radar for several years, and is finally going mainstream. "A lot of coffee bars have it. A lot of baked goods have it, too," Gelula said. "Matcha is a green tea that comes in a powder form, you can really add it to a lot of things."

Sippable skincare

Dozens of companies are now making beverages loaded with antioxidants and other nutrients to help promote a healthy glow from within. "This is something you could have at your desk in powder form and just add to water. It's filled with lots of things you might have in your multivitamin, things like antioxidants," Gelula said. "This is a big thing we're going to see in 2016."

"These are also targeted for specific issues people might have, like anti-aging ... or anti-acne," Brue added.

Super herbs

Doctors call them "adaptogens," a category that includes herbs such as ginseng and the less-familiar moringa, maca and ashwaganda. "They're herbs that help the body adapt to stress," Gelula said. The therapeutic use of such plants dates back thousands of years.

Holistic health beats dieting

Rather than obsessing about calories or carbs, dieters are increasingly looking at the big picture of what it takes to live a healthy life. Brue noted that even Weight Watchers has a new program "focusing less on points and pounds and more on what it means to be healthy. That's more motivating for women."

Group meditation

No longer just a solo activity, meditation is becoming something to share. "A lot of millennials are getting together in groups to do this as part of their social life," Gelula said. "You might go to a large-scale event. In New York, we recently had one for more than 800 people in an auditorium. And it's young people, which is really heartening; they have stress-management tools early on. But they're also seeing it as a cool part of their lifestyle."

Wellness: Crystal Healing

  Clockwise from top left: manganoan calcite; cubic pyrite; prehnite; fairy stone; hematite. CreditPlace 8 Healing

Clockwise from top left: manganoan calcite; cubic pyrite; prehnite; fairy stone; hematite. CreditPlace 8 Healing

“You are drawn to the one you need,” says the crystal healer Azalea Lee at the end of another summer in Los Angeles. Everything is in retrograde, and the variety of soothsayers is exceeded only by the number of patients coming to them, but Lee is reluctant to recommend a crystal to cure a malady — preferring to let her clients find their own. “We have spent our whole lives trusting other people’s authority,” explains Lee about using crystals for healing. “It’s the same with intuition: I want to help people see that they know more.”

 

Lee’s quiet, airy Place 8 Healing sits nine floors above downtown Los Angeles’s fashion district and reflects her spare, serene sensibility. On custom marble furniture and in glass vitrines are careful arrangements of mineral specimens — from the palest purple labradorites to torso-size clusters of clear spikes — that Lee, who has worked with Tilda Swinton and Roman Coppola, is “fostering” until the right person shows up. “Everything in this world is a vibration, including you,” says Lee, a former wardrobe stylist, who wears a small chip on her earlobe of benitoite, the state gem of California. (On a trip, Lee sifted the stone out of a pile of dirt and “figured out what I was supposed to be doing.”) What we consider the individual self is “one collective harmonic” with notes that can be “bumped out of groove,” she explains of crystal energy healing, adding that while none of this is scientifically validated, she thinks often about metrics in her chosen profession, and the challenge of measuring experiences we can barely describe, like love.

In this framework, crystals, with their “distinct and simplified vibration,” act as a “tuning fork,” and Lee says that the way certain rocks “glow a little bit more or dance a little bit more or radiate” around people can also help her “backwards figure out what a stone is about.” Each year, pockets of minerals surface and are never found again, she explains, their inconsistency making them difficult for larger companies to market. But “they are coming out at the precise moment that the world needs this thing,” Lee says, describing crystals that change color in response to where they are in the world. This month, Lee launched a modern take on metaphysical jewelry, As Above So Below, which includes one-of-a-kind pieces like a “piezoelectric” tourmaline that she says will keep you connected to the earth even when walking on “concrete streets or driving on endless freeways,” and a blue sapphire ring with the slightest ombré, coming to a clear point, for “taking the esotericism and organizing it into words and concepts that make sense.”

 

For a recent crystal healing session, Lee arranged dozens of rocks on my torso. I fidgeted; they fell off. “Go to a place where you feel safe,” Lee intoned, but I could not think of one. She raced around trying new stone combinations and eventually, with her prodding, I had a vision — and I said out loud, with embarrassing confidence, that I had found a lake of ideas, full and deep, that I’d forgotten was inside me. Afterward, Lee laid out the crystals that elicited the most “significant reactions”: some brilliantly colored, connected to self-esteem and letting go, and an unremarkable-looking brown-banded agate. I reached first for the agate and Lee, delighted, had me hold it up to the window. This rock, too, has a secret pocket of water — trapped inside when the stone hardened around it — a tiny wave visible only against a light. “Your fears are not my fears,” Lee says, of the “shamanic” process of choosing a crystal. “I don’t know anyone who doesn’t have to deal with negative stuff, even if it’s just from themselves.” (She confides that energy healers are known to gain weight as they get deeper into their practice, the added “density” balancing their intense spiritual focus on others.)

For T, Lee offers five crystal types that she finds especially relevant to modern ailments, like jet lag and pending deadlines.

MANGANOAN CALCITE

One of the stones Lee most often uses in private crystal healing sessions, this “triangularly stacked manganoan calcite from China helps people learn how to receive love.” Lee says. “From those who have difficulty accepting compliments to singles who feel romantically marginalized, manganoan calcite works to dispel the false belief that others are more important and deserve more love than oneself.” She adds that the stone is especially suited for mothers who give attention but who may feel guilty letting themselves be taken care of.

PREHNITE

“A wonderful stone for those dealing with low self-esteem and self-worth,” prehinite “gently encourages self-confidence in one’s being,” says Lee, who applies it to work and relationships. “Prehinite works with understanding how these negative feelings are preventing one from creating what one wants most in their life. It also helps those who are in recovery from addictions gain encouragement in believing in themselves.”

CUBIC PYRITE

“For helping manifest projects from conception into full physical reality,” Lee recommends trying pyrite, which comes in many different crystal forms including this natural cubic version only found in Spain. “As the cube is the most stable form in the physical universe, this form of pyrite is ideal for those who are working to manifest complete discrete projects with a definite beginning and end,” Lee says. “It is an ideal crystal to keep at the computer at your desk to help one follow through and complete those work projects on deadline.”

FAIRY STONE

Composed of petrified mud, these stones from Quebec were used by the native Algonquin Indians as talismans of protection for their homes, Lee says. “The stones do exude a feeling of safety, relaxation and comfort, which is exactly what you want a home to feel like. Because these stones give such beautiful emanations of safety and coziness, they can also be specifically used as baby soul homing devices for those seeking to have a child.”

HEMATITE

“If I could choose the number one stone everybody could use, this would be it,” Lee says, noting that city dwellers with “modern technological lives” can often use extra “grounding” energy from the iron-rich mineral. “If you think of your own blood, a major component is iron,” and it’s also the earth’s core, its “root chakra,” Lee says. Hematite can be used to reorient “sleep patterns that are disrupted by jet lag. It is also is amazing for helping maintain strong energetic boundaries from others’ thoughts and feelings,” and for “getting one’s head out of the clouds into the moment right now so that one may apply real, practical solutions to life.”

Beauty: Moroccanoil Skincare

MoroccanOil Skincare

Beauty brand Moroccanoil made its debut at last month’s TFWA World Exhibition in Cannes with the mission of convincing people that it is more than just a haircare brand. 

The company revealed that it will be adding two new scents to its Body Collection, which are due to launch in travel retail in spring/summer 2016. Fleur d’Oranger and Fleur de Rose ranges both comprise five products: Cleansing Bar, Body Souffle, Body Buff, Body Butter and Hand Cream. 

Fleur d’Oranger is a collection inspired by the orange blossom flowers and botanicals of the Mediterranean while Fleur de Rose, described as “modern and sensual”, takes inspiration from the scent of fresh roses. 

MoroccanOil Skincare - Amin and Co.

The brand also highlighted in Cannes its Sun Collection, which will make its travel retail debut in spring/summer 2016. The range includes two Sun Lotions (SPF 30 and 50) and a Sun Oil (SPF 15), all three feature vitamin E and argan oil to hydrate and nourish skin. Rounding-off the collection is After-Sun Milk which also includes argan oil and vitamin E as well as coconut and passion fruit oils and aloe to soothe skin. 

Moroccanoil Vice President Retail and Travel Retail Sales John Gates said that the brand’s Sun Collection, which was introduced to the domestic USA and Caribbean market in spring/summer this year, has recorded “fabulous” results so far, with both the Sun Lotion SPF 30 and After-Sun Milk selling out. 

“The unique point of difference with our Sun Collection compared to others out there is that ours contains argan oil which is a rich anti-oxidant. What better ingredient do you need when taking the sun than an anti-oxidant that protects against UVA/UVB rays,” noted Gates. 

Gates added that Moroccanoil’s challenge now is to convince customers that the brand offers much more than just haircare products. “The thing for us to do now is to get consumers to know that although we began in the professional haircare channel, we are now a lifestyle head-to-toe beauty brand. That’s our challenge and our opportunity for 2016 and 2017.” 

The brand also revealed that it will be introducing a skincare range in 2017 which will focus on a sensorial journey of transporting consumers to the Mediterranean through scent. 

Moroccanoil’s launch strategy for travel retail is to focus on opening conventional points of sale within airports in Europe and the Americas now through the first half of 2016. In Q2 of 2016, the brand will target premium airport and inflight opportunities in the Asia Pacific and Latin American regions, and will end 2016 by reviewing opportunities in the emerging markets in Africa. 

Moroccanoil supplies products to over 300 spa destinations globally, primarily in the USA and the Caribbean, and has recently been listed in John Lewis on Oxford Street in London, eight locations in Switzerland as well as Hyundai Department Store in South Korea. 

Marketing: Why Content Marketing Is the 'Only Marketing Left'

Dallas Content Marketing Expert

The great Seth Godin once said that "content marketing is the only marketing left.” What Seth meant, however, is that marketers should be creating content that their audience cares about -- not just re-purposed advertisements. 

For business owners though, they still may not understand the value that quality content could bring to the table. In fact, content marketing is an essential part of today’s marketing strategies for each and every business. And that beings by regularly updating your business’s blog or websites.

If you haven’t given blogging a chance yet, there are several reasons why you need to implement this process as soon as possible.

1. Benefits of blogging

  • Adds fresh content: If you want people to keep coming back to your site, then you have to give them a reason. If you haven’t added any fresh content in months, then why would a potential customer come back and visit your site?
  • Helps your site gain visibility: If done correctly, and depending on how competitive your industry is, content could help improve your site’s search ranking and bring in some inbound traffic. Content also gives your brand a voice of its own so that you can differentiate yourself from the competition.
  • Establishes authority: Content that can help your audience is one of the best ways to showcase your knowledge and skill set. When this is accomplished, you can become an authority figure in your industry.
  • Helps communication with your audience: Blog content can be shared on your social media channels which then can be used to have discussions with your target audience.

2. Benefits of blogging often

There’s no denying that blogging frequently can be a major assist for your business. But, how often should you update your blog? Some would daily. Others would argue that blogging daily is foolish. According to HubSpot, “Companies that published 16-plus blog posts per month got almost 3.5 times more traffic than companies that published between zero and four monthly posts.”

HubSpot also found that size of a company also plays a factor. For smaller companies with one to 10 employees, traffic was higher if they published more than 11 blog posts per month. When compared to companies that published under one post per month, they saw three times the amount of traffic. Small companies also had “the highest return on leads when they blogged more than 10 times per month.” Even more interesting, companies that published more than 11 monthly posts had twice the amount of leads than companies who published six to 10 monthly posts.

Clearly, small businesses can benefit from updating their blog or website frequently. While blogging daily does have it’s perks, it’s probably not the option since it could result in burnout for both you and your audience. Instead, you may be better off posting one, two or three posts per week.

As noted by Ali Luke on ProBlogger, there is “no ‘one size fits all’ approach to blogging. What’s important is that you find a routine that you can stick to over the long term -- not one that leaves you burnt out after a few weeks.” When determining your routine, consider what works best for you and your audience. Maybe you only have the time or energy to post weekly. Perhaps your audience is only looking for two posts every week. It may take some trial and error, but ultimately you will settle on a schedule that best suits you, your brand -- and your customers.

3. Curated content

Even after you’ve determined your ideal blogging routine, you’re bound to have those days when you encounter the dreaded writer’s block. If that’s the case, then try one of these methods to develop some killer content ideas.

  •  Revisit your archives: If you’ve been blogging for sometime, you probably have a nice little archive. Go back and revisit one of your most popular articles that is still relevant and update it. Well-known bloggers like Darren Rowse do this activity and have found that it can increase search rankings and attract new readers.
  • Topic generators: There are several tools that you can use to come up with blog topics. For example, there’s Content Ideator. With this simple tool, you just type in your keyword, and the tool will generate hundreds of topics ideas. Let’s say that you’re a dentist. Content Ideator suggests topics like “When is the worst time to visit a dentist” and “How to find a dentist you can trust.”

Other useful topic generator tools would be HubSpot’s Blog Topic Generator, Portent’s Content Idea Generator, and Blog Title Idea Generator. You can also discover content through content engines like Scoop.it and Storify, RSS feeds like Feedly, news aggratotors like Flipboard or even the social media accounts from other well-known personalities in your industry.

If you go this route, make sure that you take the topic that you like and make it your own by adding your thoughts and voice.

  • Google Alerts: Select a relevant keyword or phrase and set up a Google Alert. Google will then search for articles related to the keyword or phrase and send you an email notification. Another helpful Google tool is Trends. This simply shows you the most popular stories that people are searching for.
  • Ask influencers or your audience: Reaching out and connecting with leading figures in your industry is a big part of Content Marketing 101, since they can introduce you to their audience -- which could very well be larger than what you currently possess. If you have a solid rapport with an influencer, you could ask them to write a guest blog or even ask a number of them to be a part of an advice post.

Besides influencers, you could ask your audience for topic ideas, check if there are any ideas in the comment section or even ask them to create content for you -- like posting images of your customers enjoying your product.

Source

Travel: Privé Jets

Prive Jets - Amin & Co. - Luxury Brand Marketing

The holidays are a time for family to come together, but when a loved one falls ill air travel is a precarious decision to make. Commercial airlines do not have the facilities or personal to take care of a patient that needs special attention.

Privé Jets sets the standard for private jet service with their On-Demand Jet Charter services. Their dedicated team of highly trained, multilingual travel consultants and affiliates around the world are available 24/7 to ensure a personalized, enhanced experience for patients who have to travel. With access to over 6,000 private jets worldwide, Privé Jets are the leading provider of global private aviation and jet charter travel for leisure, medical and corporate itineraries.

If a flight requires special care, Privé Jets can arrange an air ambulance that will have the medical equipment necessary to ensure a safe flight. Over the years, Privé Jets has helped patients that have been unable to travel commercially due to an emergency or delicate health condition. Privé Jets air ambulance has transported Cancer patients, facilitated Hospital transfers and Repatriations. If a patient’s health condition is delicate, but does not require an air ambulance, Privé Jets can also arrange a private jet charter with a nurse or doctor on board.

As an award-winning private jet charter company, and proud INC 5000 company, Privé Jets strives to provide the highest level of personal service while offering meaningful experiences for all of their private jet charter customers worldwide. Don’t make the mistake of settling for sub-par service to book your next vacation. Fly superior with Privé Jets. Visit www.privejets.com to learn more about the company.

Branding: Personal Branding Mistakes

Personal Branding Mistakes - Luxury Brand Marketing Expert

Entrepreneurs are supposed to be the face of their respective companies, but these seven costly mistakes can interfere with that role.

Every company has a brand -- an image, a reputation, and a persona that defines that company's character and reputation. What most people don't realize is that you can also establish and build a personal brand -- an image, a reputation, and a persona that defines your own professional character and reputation.

When working together, a strong corporate brand and a strong entrepreneurial personal brand can work wonders for attracting new business, but too many mistakes can compromise the entire operation. Be sure to avoid these seven personal branding mistakes as you build a reputation for yourself:

1. Neglecting to use personal branding altogether. The first mistake is by far the most egregious and damaging, but hopefully if you're reading this, you've already avoided it. A personal brand is almost necessary for an entrepreneur in today's world.

2. Not establishing a consistent persona. Just like a corporate brand, a personal brand has to be consistent to be effective. Know who you are, what you're good at, and what your goals are.

3. Being fake. Even though you can craft and customize different attributes of yourself in a public context, it's a good idea to remain sincere and true to yourself. People want to deal with other people--not with fictional characters.

4. Never guest blogging. Guest blogging is your greatest tool to success. Start out small by writing for other local establishments and niche blogs in your industry, then scale up to more authoritative and visible publishers.

5. Not getting social. Social media is how most personal brands build their empires. Get involved on as many platforms as possible, and don't neglect local networking events!

6. Skipping out on local opportunities. There are tons of opportunities to build a reputation for yourself in your own city. Get involved at conferences and speaking events.

7. Forgetting about your followers. Respond and commune with your followers regularly; build actual relationships with them.

If you can avoid these personal branding mistakes, you'll have a far greater chance at making a lasting impression with your personal brand. Work together with your corporate brand for the best possible results.