Strategies Developed by Top Firms on the Proper Use of Machine Learning

One of the problems with machine learning is determining a proper use case. Despite this, there are numerous major companies that use machine learning to boost themselves. And given the current recent expected growth of machine learning to become a multi billion-dollar industry, implementing machine learning into your company’s strategy is becoming increasingly important. Here are some strategies used by major companies.

Predicting the future by learning from the present

The retail company Target has been notoriously using machine learning to predict customers who may be pregnant. This has been so successful that they are able to determine which trimester the pregnant woman might be in based on what she has purchased. This is based on the fact that people who through their own motions when purchasing items and services. Recommending pregnancy related to products to a pregnant woman will more likely result in a purchase. In a similar manner, selling car insurance to a person who has just purchased a car is far more effective than showing that person new car advertisements. And this is where machine learning excels. It can be used to determine and recommend items to customers based on their current situation and needs, making it one of the best marketing strategies of the future.

Presenting a perfect preview

Twitter has perfected their thumbnails with the help of neural networks. Their problem was presenting users with thumbnails that took away from the actual object of interest of the image. And they have solved this, by using machine learning to crop and adjust images posted by its users and transforming them into interesting and attractive low-resolution preview images which include the object of interest. You can use Twitter to help you decide what aspect of images related to your brand will produce maximum engagement with your audience.

Customizing customer journeys

Another retail giant Alibaba has been using machine learning to deliver each customer a different experience when shopping on their site. Their recommendations for products, down to what they search and the results they get is unique for each customer based on their shopping history. The platform is designed to engage with the user and learn in order to make accurate predictions and understand what the shopper wants and needs.

Embracing a collective experience

Apple has recently patented a technique which uses machine learning to adapt their ecosystem in such a way, that the different devices can now offer an almost seamless experience. This approach uses machine learning across multiple devices to learn about a single user and cater to that user’s needs accordingly. Adopting such a technique can help users feel like they are using a single system spread across multiple devices instead of adapting to each device or app differently.

Machine learning for the future

Machine learning is paving the way for a smarter and more consumer-friendly future which allows business to adapt to the needs of specific users, however, we still have a long way to go.

For more info, please visit: Charles K. Carillo

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Risky Real Estate and Wholesaling

One of the many reasons for new investors to hesitate investing in the real estate industry is the fact that real estate markets fluctuate.

This means the overall real estate investing industry is subjected to a few factors that can manipulate the state of the market and influence its changes. Seems scary and risky, right?

This is the reason new investors hesitate to make their first move.

 

The Secret of Real Estate Industry

Well, the fact that the real estate industry is risky and the value fluctuates – is not a secret. However, what most people don’t realize is the fluctuation cannot affect you if you are an all-knowing investor.

I know that “all-knowing’ only works for supernatural, human can’t know everything but they can know enough to learn to draw a change.

 

Research, Monitor and Analyze

If you constantly monitor the market up close, I don’t think the fluctuation will cause you a lot of problems.

Even the assessment of the market can be your fortune teller and warn you about a downfall before it happens. So researching, monitoring and analyzing the data is the key to avoiding any unpleasant situations.

 

Getting involved with Real Estate

Now that you understand how the fluctuation of value is not that big of a deal,as people imply, you must be prepared to invest in Real Estate. Let me tell you how.

To be honest, there are a lot of ways one can start investing in Real Estate. I’ll talk about all of them someday. But today, I’m only going to talk about Wholesaling.

 

What is wholesaling?

The basic concept is what you see in the grocery store and wholesaling shops.First, you buy something, and then you sell it at a higher price. Seems like a retailer, right?

The difference between a wholesaler and a retailer is about the quantity they buy or sell. For example, a retailer buys 10 units of a product and sells them in a day for 2 units of profit each. On the other hand, a wholesaler buys 200 units and sells them in a day for 1 unit of profit.

Here, the retailer made a profit of 20 units on a day where the wholesaler made 200 units of profits each day, even though they profited less from each product sold.

 

Wholesaling in Real Estate

Wholesaling in real estate is somewhat similar.

You buy a few properties at a low price and then sell the properties separately for a higher rate. This is how it works and if I’m being honest, this is the best way to get involved in real estate if you don’t have the slightest idea about real estate.

Wholesaling might just be the best and less-risky way for real estate investment. The only obstacle I see is the fact that you need more capital than you would need for an individual buy. The other way is just selling the sales contracts, but if you are unable to sell the contracts, you will need to buy the property. So, I think Wholesaling is a great idea for newcomers who want to join the real estate.

 

For more info, please visit: Charles K. Carillo

 

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How to Avoid Mistakes in Real Estate Investing?

People make an awful lot of mistakes while investing in Real Estate. This is understandable because if it was easy, everyone would be doing this.

People often forget that real estate is only profitable when your investment strategy is solid. Without a good strategy, investing in Real Estate is like lending to a con artist. You know he should return but he won’t because you choose the wrong person to lend your money to.

Similarly, you’ll expect a good return from your property but eventually, you’ll understand that it wasn’t your best decision.

Here’s how to avoid such mistakes so that you don’t repeat the same mistake again and again.

Know what you are investing in

Avoid making mistakes like investing in the wrong property. Taking a wrong action with a property can ruin your career in Real Estate. That’s why you need to be extremely cautious about the property before making any move.

First of all, check the condition of the property. Decide whether you want to resell it, rent it or renovate it. Then look at the location of the property to determine a good market price for the property.

 

Planning &Budgeting

Planning and budgeting before you start. This is very important for newcomers in Real Estate because they often forget how a budget can influence your decision.

At first, plan your position and future actions. Where are you and where do you want to see yourself in next 5-10 years.

Are you here as a part-timer? What kind of property are you looking for to invest?

After you get the answers to the questions, now, it’s time to make a reasonable budget for your plans.

Depending on your plan, you’ll need to make a budget and the budget will then help you to target the properties and choose between them.

 

Know the Laws & Regulations

Most people are unaware that there are plenty of local laws and rules regarding real estate investment in particular areas. This means you’ll need all kinds of knowledge regarding real estate and how the market works.

If you could make up sometime for research or study on the local laws and regulation of real estate in your area, it’ll be a great help to you. However, if you don’t have time to study or research you can hire someone who already knows about this.

A lawyer will be a great addition to your team.

 

Think about the Future

Things don’t go your way all the time. Sometimes, you are just on your own.

Say, you bought a property with the intention of reselling or renting so that your cash flow is continuous. But that doesn’t mean you’ll get one for sure.

Some might not agree with your rate and some might not even like the property at all. In such situations, you’ll need to have a strategy like leasing or whatever. These plans are a must for you because you don’t know what can happen to the market. That’s why it’s better to have a plan B up your sleeve.

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Focus on Your Invisible Return on Investment to Evaluate Your Marketing Success

Numbers are very important for business.

Your total number of visitors, conversion rate, unique visitors, webinar attendees, Facebook likes, etc. are just number and yet they represent your marketing success to an extent.

Apart from these numbers, there are other invisible things that are important to your business.

Many people like to call them “Invisible Return on investment” or “Invisible ROI” for short.

This Invisible ROI needs your focus and by focusing on them, you can actually evaluate your marketing success.

The Relationships between you & your clients or visitors

One mistake that entrepreneurs often make is meeting with a bunch of people with an endgame in mind.

The endgame is him helping you with the publicity in his network or introducing you to other investors of a potential group of clients, etc.

Whatever the endgame is, this is not the best approach.

You shouldn’t have an endgame in your mind when you think of building a relationship with your clients. The reason why I’m telling you to not think about the endgame is when it comes to success, it centers on the mutual trust.

So, commit your money, time and resources to meet the right people, not for the right endgame. And when you do, you’ll see some good long lasting relationships which will reflect your overall marketing success.

The fans

Another mistake most entrepreneurs do is thinking of their customers like commodities.

No, they are definitely not. Stop thinking of them as your commodities and start thinking of them as your fans.

What happens when Elon Musk goes to an event? Does he treat the audience as their commodities or customers? No. The audience is his fans and this is what makes Elon Musk so successful. He is able to make a fan base, which has converted into success. But the fanbase is only possible when your visitors, audience or customers have a similar way of thinking.

If you have a big fanbase, this means you have that number of people around your business who share the same ides like you, they think like you, perhaps they’d even act like you in some incidents. This proves how successful your marketing has been so far.

Your awareness will tell you

Thanks to recent advances in communication technolog;brands and companies now can be omnipresent, which was nearly impossible for an emerging or even a hit brand.

But things have changed. You can now become the “expert-to-go” for a specific issue, which is a clear indication that your marketing strategy is a hit.

This is similar to the fanbase but this time, instead of the fanbase, your consciousness will reflect the success. You’ll know if your words or campaign is making any difference or not.

Conclusion: Don’t be hopeless if your relationships with your clients aren’t going too well. Don’t feel insignificant if you don’t have a strong fanbase yet. Don’t feel like a failure if your words can’t make a big difference yet.

Invest your money, time and resources well and you’ll soon be at the top of the chain. All you need is constant monitoring of the feats you achieved and the numbers. So buckle up to meet new people, make a new fanbase, push your words to the community and success will be just around the corner.

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Best 5 Free Marketing Tools For Entrepreneurs

Entrepreneurs understand the worth of every penny. That’s why they don’t like to overspend their money on something that can be done with less or no cost at all. While paid marketing tools are extremely common, there are some free ones that might do your work and save you a big chunk of money.

So, here are 5 free marketing tools that every entrepreneur should know about.

Due

If you are worried about spending too much time on a single marketing project while your other affairs remain unattended, Due is here for you.

It is a time tracking app that reminds you how much time you spend on a marketing project. Apart from keeping your work hours sorted, Due can also manage your invoice, payment platforms.

Buffer

It’s no secret that social media is one of the most powerful and important places for marketing. In this day and age of virtual socialization and online connection, if a business thinks of avoiding the social platforms, most likely it will be their worst decision till time.

But many people simply chose to ignore social platform because it’s tough to maintain all the accounts. That is where Buffer comes in.

Buffer is one of a kind social media account managing tools that can control your Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, among other social accounts. You can schedule your post; create drip campaigns and other things with this free tool. However, the paid version comes with more exclusive features.

Hatchful

If you are just starting new, then a logo is a must for your new business. While there are many freelance logo designers and software who will charge you a lot for a single logo, some free tools are available to help you make your logo on your own. Hatchful is one of them.

With a plain and simple interface and easy to edit options, you’ll make your design in no time. Their library is filled with thousands of icons, layouts and fonts. Even if you don’t have any experience with creative activities, you’ll end up with a sleek, smooth and brand able logo from Hatchful.

Evernote

When you are just starting your business, ideas might come at any time of the day. However, you simply can’t carry a note and pencil all the time, which is why Evernote is already this popular.

Evernote is a very popular organizer and note-taking tool for entrepreneurs. Its Personal-use fanbase is also massive and that makes it one of the best tools that is free for eternity. So, next time when an idea pops up in your head, bring out Evernote.

Canva

Like Evernote, Canva is also a very popular free tool that people use for their personal as well as corporal use. However, this is not a note-taking tool like Evernote. Canva is a free tool that allows you to design marketing materials with ease.

Its easy-to-use interface and simple instructions will help you create an infographic, poster, pamphlet, etc., very easily. To make the platform even easier to use, Canva built their library with thousands of basic designing material like fonts, shapes, icons, etc. So next time, when you are thinking of designing your brochure, go to Canva and make a killer brochure.

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Taxes for Self-Employed Individuals or Startup Entrepreneurs

For the startup entrepreneurs and self-employed individuals, it is easier to forget about the taxes. Unlike the W2 employees, their taxes aren’t deducted from their paycheck because they are giving those checks to themselves. Besides, for the self-employed taxpayers, the amount is higher.

So it’s no wonder why taxes are a matter of frustration to them. However, their frustration doesn’t free them from the obligation to pay their taxes. I can’t help with that. But what I can do is help you by introducing the basics of taxes for a self-employed person or startup entrepreneurs.

Tax Obligations for Self-employment

Freelancer or Self-employed entrepreneurs must consider their taxes when setting their rates, consider their tax burden by arranging their accounts for the year (e.g., sparing cash versus re-investing on the business strategy, and track their business-related expense to deduct them towards the end of a year.

As per the rules and classification by the Internal Revenue System (IRS), Self-employed and entrepreneurs are considered as:

  • Carrying on the business or trade as the sole-proprietor or a self-employed contractor.
  • Being the individual from an association that carries on a business or trade.
  • Being in the business for yourself (Which includes part-time businesses).

As indicated by Pew Research, about 15 million Americans are independently employed. When you are independently employed, you need to pay the SE tax or Self-Employment Tax and also the income tax. This SE tax is a Social Security & Medicare tax,which is generally for people who work for themselves.

Before you decide the tax obligations, you should make sense of your net loss or net profit from your business or company. You can compute this by subtracting the costs of your business from your business profit. In the event that your costs are not as much as your pay, the distinction is the net benefit and turns out to be a piece of your income. Be that as it may, if your costs are more than your profit or income, the distinction is the net loss.

Filling the Taxes

Quarterly Payments:On the off chance that you hope to make quarterly estimated tax installments, utilize Form 1040-ES, the Estimated Tax for all Individuals working for themselves, which contains a worksheet that is like Form 1040. Make certain to monitor your return starting with 1 year, then onto the next, as you will require your earlier year’s yearly tax returns to round out Form 1040-ES.

The IRS enables you to round out Form 1040 – ES that contains clear vouchers for you to utilize when you mail your approximate tax payments, or you just make your payments by using the EFTPS or Electronic Federal Tax Payment System.However, if this is the very first year of self-employment, you should assume the amount of profit or income that you hope to acquire for the year.

Annual Return

To record your yearly tax return, you should report your loss or profit/income from a business you worked or a calling the shots as a sole proprietor. To file your Social Security & Medicare taxes, you should record Schedule Self-Employment Tax (Form 1040).

Now use the loss or income ascertained on Schedule C or Schedule C-EZ to compute the amount of total Social Security & Medicare taxes you need to pay during the year.

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Real Estate Basics: 5 Factors to Consider for Setting Up A Reasonable Price

Convincing someone to buy what you’re selling – is not easy. If it was, the door-to-door salesmen wouldn’t have to leave your doorstep disappointed.

Same happens in the real estate market. Most of the deals go uncertain because the broker is trying so hard to sell the property that he forgot to show the client how good the property is. That’s why, even after setting a good price for the property, your client thinks of it as being “too much.”

But if you can explain your price to the client, he might get interested in the deal. But how do you explain the price?

Simple, explain why you have picked this price and why is it a reasonable price for you. The best way to do itis by highlighting the facts that affected your estimate.

Here are the factors that should affect your number:

  1. The reason for selling the property

The reason behind selling a property affects the price greatly. You must understand the reason for selling it and convince the client too. If you are selling to get rid of the property because it costs much for maintenance and it’s not making any profit for you, set your bar low. However, if you have an eye on another great property and you are selling this one for the cash, let your client know. Otherwise, he’ll think you’re selling it because you are trying to get rid of it.

I know that many people will say it’s not a good idea to put the reason infront of the client, but I say “why not?”

  1. Location is important

Location is another major factor for a real estate deal. It affects the price and the deal directly. But you can’t do anything about it. The best you can do is finish your research on the neighborhood and come up with a reasonable rate for the property.

  1. The condition of the property

Look at it. What do you think? Can you sell it without renovating? If yes, then good. But if it needs renovation, bear the cost in mind while putting up the price.

Sometimes your property might just be an old brick-on-brick structure. In such cases, don’t push too hard for a high price because your property won’t be worth the price to your clients.

  1. Accessibility

Like the location, you can’t help with it either. You can’t change if there is no shopping mall or school in the neighborhood. However, if there is everything from gym, school, mall, and restaurant plus the public transportation is good, feel free to increase the number because all those things matter to the people who are buying it.

  1. The total cost of selling

At first, it will be difficult to estimate the amount that was spent on the property for selling it. However, once you know what to include in the cost, things will get easier. Besides, this cost of selling helps you determine a price for the property.

This cost should include:

  1. Commission for the agent
  2. Remodeling costs
  3. Taxes
  4. Advertising cost
  5. Property inspection reports and others

Now, set a good price for the deal

Once you put a reasonable price on your property, clients will come running for the deal. However, you should also keep room for negotiation. But remember, don’t oversell it. The people who are talking to you about buying the property would have done their research on their way. So, don’t expect them to take your deal at an unfair price. Also, don’t undersell it. You got to make some profits, right?

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Mobile Checkout Screen Designs for Your Business

If you were not living under a rock for the last few years, you know how much impact the mobile users can have on your sales. To be honest, most online sales come from mobile users these days. That’s why optimizing your site for mobile users is as much important as your web version, if not more.

Almost all the online stores have their web version or PC version sorted. But only a few really care about how their UI looks and feels for the mobile users. These are the ones who try everything to get their customer a better deal than others, but still fail to rise above thousands of others.

So, if you don’t want to be on the list of losers, you should pay attention to the designs I suggest for your payment check-out page, optimized for mobile users.

 

Using a Step-By-Step Check-out Flow

Bought anything from Amazon and eBay? I bet you did. I also bet you find their checkout pages to be simple and helpful, almost like Amazon is guiding you through the checkout person like a person would help you cross the road. The process feels so co-operative.

You must become just that, co-operative. If your customers feel like they are being given a test instead of being guided throughout the process, what makes you think they’ll keep going? No one likes tests.

So, what you can do is create a guide-like process for the entire check-out system. If the customers find the process to be helpful, they will realize how dedicated you are to your clients. This way, you not only get more sales, but also increase your reputation.

 

Easy Editing Options

Your customer will not buy everything they put in their cart. Sometimes they would like to change some of their options. For example, they might want to get the XL shirt instead of XXL or just want 2 pairs of socks instead of one. That’s why you need to ensure the check-out page on mobile devices is easily accessible and changeable.

 

Linking Payment Methods

Accessing the payment methods with a laptop or desktop is easier. But often the mobile optimized payment system is not streamlined to ease-out payment processors for the billing, which is why customers are forced to opt-out from the site. So, make sure the payment processor is easier to link for the checkouts.

 

Final Overview Page Before Purchase

So, your customer has chosen his favorite shoes, picked the color, adjusted the size, added a payment method,etc.Now it’s time for him to check-out. But there will be some people who would like to see everything in one place before making the payment. You cannot blame them for wanting everything in one place.

Accidents happen. He might have selected the wrong size or the wrong color, or even it could be nothing. But if he could see what he just ordered and how much it’s going to cost him, he might be less worried about the order placement than without seeing the details at all.

You can spare him from this and all you must do is give all the details regarding the order on the last page. That way, your clients are happy and so are you.

 

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7 Steps To Create The Ultimate Digital Experience

Building the ultimate digital experience is an art, combined with science and psychology. It’s complicated. That’s why most people suffer to realize what the ultimate digital experience should feel like. Plus, there’s no guarantee that UI designer team is from the majority. However, by following these 7 steps, it’s easy to create the ultimate digital experience for your audience. You and your team just need to follow these steps and act accordingly to develop the UI that will keep your audience engaged and your conversions high.

 

Step 1: Work for the user types

You don’t need to know everything about a customer or audience to design the interface. You just need to know the different categories of user preferences for a specific part. Select a target audience and figure out how they like to shop or browse online. Keeping that in mind, design the basic layout.

 

Step 2:Keep things simple

Design the interface in a way that your audience is engaged from the very moment your page loads on their computer. Don’t distract them with too many things on the screen. Keep the pages clean and fresh.

If your page is filled with unnecessary and fluffy contents, your visitor won’t find what they are looking for and most probably will leave your site forever.

 

Step 3: Make things visible

When you are done removing the unnecessary contents and elements from the site, it’s time to make the things visible that are left in the layout.

There should be only a few things and you need to fill the pages with them. Highlight them with clear, bold and big fonts and vibrant colors. But keep enough space between them so that they can hover their mouse for a while and think about your products.

 

Step 4: Keep all types of devices in mind

When you are designing with your desktop, it’s hard to guess how it will look from a mobile or tablet. But that shouldn’t stop you from trialing and testing for other devices. Remember, mobile and tablet users are the majority these days. You simply can’t ignore or care “less”about them.

 

Step 5: What you think is good – is not good all the time

Don’t rely on your feelings only. Just because you like it doesn’t mean other people will like it. That’s why you put your interface into trial and test environments. Ask for other’s opinions, especially your team. They care for the website the most. So, they will give the most honest opinion on your work.

 

Step 6: Integrate Social

People like to interact. That’s why social media these days is so popular. So, if you can make the platform interactive and social, people will find it engaging. Besides, people will be more into your platform after they see other fellow users’ contents and contributions.

 

Step 7: Allow customization

This is a part that most choose to ignore. That’s because it’s not easy to build a platform that is customized for each user. However, once you make such a platform, you’ll instantly realize how people want to see things in their own way. You’ll know that people love to make things on their own. Besides, if you allow customization,  if anything is bothering your customer, he will be able change it at any time. Your audience is happy, you are happy and so is your bank account.

 

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4 Strategies for Successful Affiliate Marketing

If you have an affiliate site then you know it’s not that difficult to build one or create an affiliate account for your affiliates. But one thing you’ll all agree to is affiliate marketing is not effective or successful all the time. Literally,hundreds of affiliate sites are being developed every week, but not all of them are succeeding in drawing people’s attention. Most of them fail to even get their first sale. But that doesn’t mean it’s impossible. It’s actually easy once you pay attention to these 4strategies for affiliate marketing.

 

  1. Choose Differently

Niche selecting is an important part of your affiliation career. That’s why you need to double-check before locking down the decision. My suggestion is to choose a niche that has less competition and one not that common in your region.

These types of unique niches are very good for starting without a big competition that you need to surpass. Ask yourself, what do you know about besides the common things like shoes, phones, and kitchen wares. Find that niche and lock it down.

 

  1. Do extensive research

Once you have selected a niche, it’s time for you to dig and learn.

Yes, I know that I said to pick a niche that is unique and which you know a lot about. But that knowledge only isn’t enough. You need to collect solid information on that niche and understand the abstract concepts related to it.

Don’t rush. Go slowly, but thoroughly over the niche research. Know what makes it different than other common niches and how you can use it for highlighting your site. When you have a clear idea about the niche, you’ll know what kind of contents you want on your site.

 

  1. Content is King

Content is king. I bet you’ve heard it so many times that you’re just annoyed with this phrase. But it’s a fact. Content is indeed the king. No matter what you are selling or how you are reviewing, if your content can reach your audience in a good way, your sales are bound to go high.

By content, I’m not talking about written articles or reviews.

Yes, words are best to describe your products, but some graphic elements should also be put on your page to highlight some of the best parts of the service or product you are promoting.

 

  1. SEO, SEO, and SEO

You got some killer articles up on your site, but is it enough? Definitely not. You need to make sure your contents are reaching the audience. And what better way is there to draw the audience who are being pulled from the searches?

Yes, most of the audience of a site comes from the searches they do. But being in the top slot of a search is not easy. That’s why you need to do SEO for your contents. Both on page SEO and off-page SEO are helpful in bringing your content into the top slot of the search.

For on page SEO, you can tell your writer to work on that while he writes the killer contents and for the off-page SEO, it’s better for you to spend some time with a partner or assistant who will help you with that.

 

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