3 Ways to Use Pinterest Trends for Digital Marketing Research

SEO and General Business tutorials and tips.

This post was sourced from by HurDat.

If you’re struggling to find topics for a content marketing strategy, understand what your social media audiences are interested in at different points of the year, or determine when the best time to launch a new product is, Pinterest Trends could just provide you with the ideas and answers you need.

Pinterest Trends is a free tool that provides data on what Pinterest’s more than 320 million users are searching for on the social media platform throughout the year. This can provide marketers with unique insights into emerging online trends across categories like food, home, travel, health, and more.

So how can you use Pinterest Trends when researching ideas for your digital marketing strategies and campaigns? Here are three simple tips.

Review Trending Topics

When you first open Pinterest Trends, you can see the trending topics of the day, as well as trending topics by category. Each will include graphs so that you can view the level of interest in the topic over a period of time.

These graphs allow you to see topics on a daily, monthly, and yearly interest level, which can be helpful for your marketing efforts, regardless of whether you’re simply filling in a gap in your social media content schedule today or planning ahead for a product launch several months down the road.

You can also check out the platform’s annual Pinterest 100, which comes out at the beginning of the year and forecasts emerging trends for the year ahead. For example, the top Pinterest trends for 2020 were things like eco-friendly habits, outer space, and ’90s throwback.

Incorporate Trends into Keyword Research

Keyword research is one of the most important parts of a digital marketing strategy or campaign. It gives you direct insights into what consumers are searching for online, and it gives your brand the ability to cater directly to searchers and what they’re looking for right now.

Pinterest Trends can be a great tool for keyword research, especially if you’re planning a strategy or campaign a few months in advance. The typical user searches for seasonal trends on Pinterest long before they take action or turn to other platforms. Use this to your advantage to get ahead of online conversations. Take a look at the list of trending topics that Pinterest publishes each month to get an early glimpse into what people are searching for before those trends appear in other common marketing insight tools.

For example, “tie dye” was one of the top trending searches in March, and the fashion trend itself started to pick up in April. “Tie dye” is a pretty broad keyword, but you can use Pinterest Trends’ auto-fill option to find other popular tie dye keyword ideas, such as tie dye shirts, tie dye parties, tie dye ideas, and tie-dye outfits.

Incorporating Pinterest keyword research into your process will help you identify consumer interest and find opportunities for capitalizing on that interest with site posts, social media posts, videos, and more.

Use Timeline Data to Plan Ahead

Like Google Trends, Pinterest Trends can show you when interest peaks in a topic and when it falls. This can be useful when looking at dates for an annual content calendar, social media campaign, or product launch, as you can discover when consumer interest is at its highest for a given topic.

Let’s say you run a recipe site, and you want to look at when searches for appetizers are most popular. Using Pinterest Trends, you can see “appetizer ideas” starts to increase in October and peaks in December—which tells you that appetizer searches are popular around holidays like Thanksgiving and Christmas. With this in mind, you’d want to create and share appetizer recipe content in October and potentially through November and early December to capitalize on consumer interest.

This same tactic can be replicated for any of your digital marketing strategies and campaigns. Going back through timeline graphs on Pinterest Trends can help you determine when the best time to run promotional events will be, when you should consider launching new products or services, when an email drip campaign should start, and more.

It takes time and effort to come up with original content and unique marketing campaigns, but tools like Pinterest Trends can take some of the guesswork out of understanding what your audience wants to see.

Need to adjust your current content marketing or social media strategy? Hurrdat can help you create quality content and social media posts that engage your audience. Learn more about our content marketing and social media marketing services!

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← Google Posts: What Are They & How Can You Use Them?

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4 time-saving Gmail settings you didn’t know you needed

SEO and General Business tutorials and tips.

This post was sourced from by MOZ.

There was once a time when responding to emails didn’t occupy its own double block on your schedule. But endless email is the reality now. Since you can’t control the number of emails you receive, your best bet is to make it as easy as possible on yourself to respond. (And yes, you need to respond.)

Here are four quick tweaks you can make to your Gmail settings to shave off a few clicks here and there. Because when you multiply here and there by the number of emails you get a day, it makes a dent.

1. Send and archive with one click

Whenever you click Send on a reply, the message you just sent stares you in the face. You inevitably read it over and over, waiting for your subconscious to tell you that, yes, that was a very good email. Plus, you need an extra click to archive the message (which you do because obviously your inbox is perfectly pruned).

The solution: choose the Send & Archive option under General in your settings.

Under the General tab, select Show Send and Archive button in reply

After you save the changes, the default option will be to send the email and immediately archive it, saving you both a click and some unnecessary time spent worrying that you spelled “its” wrong.

The save and archive button in Gmail

And for those of you who undo almost every email you send at least once (hi), don’t worry—you can still do that if you realize you got a little too click-happy.

2. Default to reply all

Before I go any further, I want to acknowledge that reply all is one of the great menaces to society. Having said that, especially in professional contexts, it’s often the way to go.

How many times have you accidentally replied to just the sender, only to realize the other folks cc’d on the email should have been included? Then you have to write another email adding the cc’d folks back in (and probably forgetting again, only to have to do it a third time).

Instead, select Reply all as your Default reply behavior under General in your settings.

Selecting Reply to all in Settings

Once you save the settings, on any email with more than one recipient, your default reply option at the top of the email will be reply all. It’ll even swap the order of the reply options at the bottom of the email.

The reply all buttons on Gmail

Use the power wisely.

3. Enable the reading pane

Part of Gmail’s appeal is that it’s visually sleek, but that sleekness can come at the expense of extra clicks. So if you wake up to an inbox full of emails and want to be able to scan them without clicking into each one, enable the reading pane under Inbox in your settings.

Decide where you want to the preview to appear (I prefer Right of inbox), and then save your changes. The reading pane makes Gmail look a bit more like Outlook, allowing you to see the content of each email as you use your keyboard arrows to navigate through your inbox.

You can also choose how long an email needs to be in the preview before it’s marked as read. I find three seconds to be the sweet spot, but if you tend to linger a bit longer on messages, you can change it up. You’ll find that option under the General tab in your settings.

Select how long you want to hover on an email before it's marked as read

You can even control the reading pane from within your inbox. Click the reading pane icon in the top right to turn it on and off, or click the dropdown arrow next to it to change where the preview appears.

Toggling the preview pane location or turning it off

4. Use templates to create auto-replies

I’m a big fan of Gmail templates. They’re great on their own, but you can take them a step further by using them as auto-replies. Instead of selecting the template you want to insert for any given reply, create a filter that will do it automatically based on rules you set in advance.

Here’s the thing: this only works if you’re really sure that any email matching your filter will require the selected response. I use it, for example, to tell people who request edit access on my Google Sheets to-do list template that they can click File > Make a copy to use it for themselves. I can be pretty sure that any email I get with the subject Google Sheets To-Do List Template - Request for access needs that response.

Under Filters and Blocked Addresses in your settings, click Create a new filter. Then you can set the rules for almost anything: the sender, the size of the email, the subject line, words from the body of the email. Then click Create filter.

Selecting the parameters for your filter

Next, you’ll be able to choose the action; in this case, it’s Send template. Select the template you want to send as a reply, and click Create filter again.

Gmail will automatically send that template to anyone whose email matches the parameters you set for your filter.

If you need a more customized auto-reply, you can use Zapier to automatically reply to emails with customized messages (including things like the name of the sender). Here are some example Zaps—our term for automated workflows—that you can set up to forward or reply to emails based on the contents of messages you receive.

Save even more time by setting up filters for the most common types of messages you receive. Here’s how to organize your inbox with Gmail filters.

Now that you’ve saved a few seconds on every email you reply to, think about what you’ll do with your newfind time. The world is your oyster—don’t waste it clicking around your inbox.

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How an Oklahoma entrepreneur showcases small business successes

SEO and General Business tutorials and tips.

This post was sourced from by MOZ.

Lee Easton’s company, AeroVision, has been fortunate—they haven’t taken much of a hit during the economic downturn caused by the COVID-19 crisis. But Lee is a small business owner, and he felt strongly for all the other small business owners that have had to lay people off or even close doors over the past few months.

He started seeking out motivational news, and as he did his morning reads, he came across inspirational stories from business owners that had started pivoting to save their business. He heard about an escape room business that started offering monthly “escape room in a box” subscriptions. He read about real estate agents switching to Zoom for all virtual tours of properties. And he read about companies that changed their business model from brick-and-mortar sales to eCommerce—and grew their revenue because of it.

That’s when, with the help of his amazing web development team, he launched PivotsFromCOVID.com, a webblog where business owners could share their stories—and, hopefully, inspire others whose businesses were struggling. “This blog is not intended to make me any money, but to provide a resource of knowledge and even inspiration during these tough times,” he told us.

Lee used Zapier to connect his submission form to his database: whenever someone clicks Submit, the story submission is automatically created in his CMS. He then gets a notification whenever the Zap runs, and he can review the story before publishing.

Lee hopes that the businesses featured on PivotsFromCOVID.com can help other business owners see a light at the end of the tunnel. “So far we have had some nice submissions,” he says. “I hope to see more awesome stories come through as our economy recovers from the crazy times we are in.”

Lots of Zapier customers have themselves had to pivot because of social distancing measures. Here are a few examples of businesses that have made it work with an assist from automation.

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Google Posts: What Are They & How Can You Use Them?

SEO and General Business tutorials and tips.

This article was shared by HurDat.

Looking for new ways to reach local customers online? Google now offers a better way to stay connected with your customers directly in search engine results through its Google Posts offering!

What Are Google Posts?

In January 2016, Google launched Google Posts to give presidential candidates in the 2016 U.S. election a place to share their viewpoints directly in search engine results pages (SERPs). They were called “candidate cards.” Then, in 2017, Google Posts were introduced to any business with a Google My Business account, which gave brands more control of what’s shown on their business profile.

Google Posts are an easy way to share information and quick bits of content with existing and potential customers directly on your business profile. Posts appear on Google Maps and on the business’ knowledge panel in Google search. You can share company announcements, special offers, event details, new products, main site articles, and more! When used correctly, Google Posts can be another valuable way to engage with your audience and drive more business.

Google Post by Hurrdat

How to Create a Google Post

Creating a Google Post is easier than it seems. As long as you have access to or have signed up for Google My Business, you can make a new article in just a few minutes. Once you’re in your account, here’s what you do:

  • Log into your Google My Business account.
  • If you manage multiple locations, select the one you would like to make a article for.
  • On the menu, click Posts.

Where to Find the Posts for Google My Business

  • Choose the type of article you would like to create.
  • Create your article by adding a photo, copy, call to action, and any other relevant information
  • Before articleing, click Preview.
  • If you’re satisfied with your article, click Publish.

Once you hit publish, it may not be an instant update to your knowledge card, but don’t fret. As with anything on Google, there’s typically a delay. So sit tight and wait for changes to take effect!

Types of Google Posts

Depending on what the goal of your article is, you can choose from four Google Post format types. Each format has its own unique fields and the ability to add a call to action button to your article.

What’s New

Do you want to increase brand awareness or share company news? The What’s New article type (also called Update) allows you to upload up to ten photos and videos, copy, and an optional CTA button, such as a “Learn More” or “Call Now” button.

What's New Post type from Google My Business


Have an event coming up? Promote it on your Google business profile! The requirements for the event article type are an event title and a start/end date. You can also add a start and end time, up to ten photos and videos, event details, and CTA button, such as “Sign Up.”

Event Type Post from Google My Business


Do you have a sale going on or want to share a 20% off coupon code? Create a article to share the offer details. You’re required to add an offer title and a start/end date. You can also add a start and end time, up to ten photos and videos, offer details, coupon code, link to redeem offer, and terms and conditions.

Offer Post Type from Google My Business


Do you have a new product in stock? Showcase it by creating a Google Post with a photo of the product, the product name, and category. You also have the option to add a product description, price, and call to action button.

Product Post Type from Google My Business


List of article types from Google My Business

As the world has changed with the spread of COVID-19, Google has changed as well and has created a COVID-19 article option for Google My Business users to apply to their knowledge card. You can use the space to inform customers about current operations during this time. For restaurants, it’s a perfect opportunity to say if you’re offering curbside, takeout, or delivery options!

Additional Google Posts Tips

While making a article is as easy as logging into your Google My Business account, writing, and hitting publish, there are a few extra things to remember about Google Posts. As you get ready to launch a new article, keep in mind that:

Posts Are Free

All you need is a Google My Business account and a verified listing. With that, you have the ability to add articles whenever you need.

Posts Are Found Differently on Mobile & Desktop

On mobile, articles appear on the “Updates” and “Overview” tabs on the business listing, while on desktop they appear on the “From the Owner” section on the business listing.

Only a Snippet of Your Post Will Show

Google will not display the full copy of your article until it’s clicked on; therefore, it’s better to limit the number of characters used. If your article is long, share the most important part of your message first.

Posts Expire After a Week

After a article goes live, you can expect it will be there for up to seven days with the exception of offer and event articles. Both of these options allow you to set a date range. You also have access to expired articles in your Google My Business dashboard and customers can access them by clicking “View previous updates on Google” on your business profile in Google search.

Post Views Can Be Tracked

Track engagement of your article campaigns by adding a UTM code to the URL used on your call-to-action button. You can determine if your campaigns are successful or if you need to try something new.

Need help setting up or managing your Google My Business profile? Hurrdat can help you manage and optimize your local search presence and stay in touch with your customers. Learn more about our search engine optimization (SEO) services!

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Lacking motivation? Create a personal best challenge bot.

SEO and General Business tutorials and tips.

This article was shared by MOZ.

Like a lot of folks stuck inside right now, my partner and I have been playing a lot more Mario Kart than usual.

On its face, the game seems like the perfect pastime for two people who are stuck inside for an indefinite amount of time: it has bright colors, cheery music, and you zoom around cute little tracks while throwing turtle shells at each other. A great way to pass the time and absolutely no one will get mad at anyone.

Provided both people have a chance to win.

This is not a article about how good I am at Mario Kart. Suffice it to say that for the sake of our relationship, my partner’s controller is currently on the shelf, gathering dust.

Luckily, this led me to my new competitive obsession: time trials. Races where there are no other competitors except for the “ghost” of your previous best time. The mode’s entire purpose, I’m convinced, is so you can watch yourself get lapped by a spectral reminder that on Thursday of last week, you remembered how to drift properly. One day, I tell myself, I’m gonna wipe that smug grin off of Luigi’s face. I just have to remember how to get around that corner…

Between practice laps, the experience has also prompted me to evaluate how I stay motivated at work. I find myself repeatedly asking things like, “What day is it?” or, “What am I supposed to be doing now?” and seriously considering tattooing my to-do list on myself, Memento style.

Normally, my daily motivation would come from opening up our ticketing software, Help Scout, and navigating to the Reports section, which gives me a nice big overview of where the team’s at in all of our usual metrics. I could see where I was in comparison to my peers, and set some goals for how much I had to get done each day. Lately, though, that strategy’s done more harm than good. When I open up the giant chart, review its many colorful graphs and find my name in the list, all I can think is, “I’m never going to get this much work done. And even if I could get that much work done… what difference would it make? Look at all these people who are doing their jobs better than me.”

What I think when I look at the Help Scout chart

The sheer amount of data has become overwhelming, and now my previous method for getting motivated at the start of the day is achieving the opposite: It makes me want to go back to bed, and maybe never write another email ever again.

To keep myself productive, I need to apply the same approach that I’ve adopted in Mario Kart: Competing against myself.

This article describes how to set up several multi-step Zaps—our name for the automated workflows you create with Zapier. You’ll need a Zapier account if you don’t already have one—it’s free to sign up. Want to see how it works? Check out our demo.

How to turn your past self into a Zap

Start with Schedule by Zapier as the trigger, setting the regularity you prefer. For myself, I chose Daily, so that I could track the number of support tickets I reply to each day:

Use Schedule by Zapier to trigger the Zap at the start of each workday

Then, we’re going to perform a search that gets yesterday’s numbers. Help Scout has a pretty robust Get Custom Report action for this. With other apps, you may need to create a custom search to get something similar:

Get my custom report from Help Scout

Finally, we’re going to use a Slack action to send that number directly to me, so that I can see exactly what I’m competing against at the start of each day, using only the stats that I select:

Send myself a Slack message

Now instead of starting my day with this:

Information overload!

I log in to this:

You're doing great!

Other uses

By changing up the “Search” action in Step 2, we can apply this to lots of different apps and use cases, such as:

  • Tracking how many subscribers clicked on your Mailchimp campaign with “Find Campaign”
  • Seeing how many rows in a Google Sheet have my name on them with “Get Many Spreadsheet Rows”
  • Check the details of a deal with HubSpot’s “Find Deal” search action

Use Storage by Zapier to keep track of your personal bests

Once you get in the habit of competing against your previous performance, let’s say you want to kick it up a notch, and compete against the best version of yourself.

Using Storage by Zapier, we can keep track of your personal best performance, and keep it as the benchmark that we’re competing against.

To store our best numbers, take the Zap we just created, and add the Storage by Zapier “Get Value” action here:

Add the action between the trigger and first action.

Add the action between the trigger and first action.

We can call the value anything you want, but for now let’s name it “PersonalBest”, and have the action create that value if it doesn’t exist yet. For now, let’s give it a value of 0:

Set the key field to PersonalBest and the value field to 0.

Set the key field to PersonalBest and the value field to 0.

After we’ve sent the Slack message to ourselves with today’s goals, we can use some math to check and see if we did better yesterday than the day before, with the Formatter “Perform Math Operation” action.

To do this, select Formatter > Numbers > Perform Math Operation > Subtract, then select the PersonalBest value, followed by the value from your search action.

How to set your Zap up to perform a math operation.

By subtracting our most recent performance (find using the “Search” action) from the “PersonalBest” value, we can see if we’ve beaten our personal best yet. If we have, the output of this action will be a negative number.

We can then set a Filter to check if that’s the case. We’ll want to check to see if the output from “Perform Math Operation” is less than 0, meaning that our most previous performance was better than our best.

Using Zapier to check if our previous performance was better than our best.

After the Filter, we can use Storage by Zapier’s “Set Value” action to update “PersonalBest” with our new top score!

Update our personal best value

While we’re at it, let’s also send ourselves a congratulatory Slack message:

Great job!

How to track metrics without a “Search” action

If your preferred app doesn’t have a “Search” action that fits your needs, you can keep track of any metric you like with a separate Zap.

First, find a trigger for the thing you’d like to track. For example, let’s say that I want to see how many times people are tagging @zapier on Twitter, so I start a new Zap with the “Search Mention” trigger.

Twitter's Search Mention trigger

Then, using our old friend Storage, we can use the “Increment Value” action to add 1 to a number, let’s call it “Mentions”, each time that trigger runs:

Increment Value

That way, the “Mentions” number reflects the number of new mentions we’ve received each day. In our “Personal Best Tracker” Zap, replace the “Search” action with “Get Value” to grab that value, so that you can see the previous day’s number.

Remember to add a “Set Value” action to the end of the Zap to set “Mentions” back to 0 each day, so that you can compare performance daily!

Want to try it out? Here are two Zaps I’ve made to help track your own Twitter mentions each day:

Photo by Tim Gouw on Unsplash.

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Streamline your Google Meet calls with these automation tips

SEO and General Business tutorials and tips.

This post was shared by MOZ.

It’s a minute before your next video call, but you don’t remember where the link is. Is it in your calendar? Your email? You could either frantically click through your tabs, digging to find that meeting link, and risk being late—or you could try Google Meet.

Meet integrates seamlessly with Google Calendar and Gmail, so anyone with a Google account can easily organize video calls with the click of a button. This certainly simplifies the process of organizing impromptu video calls within your company or among friends. But if you use other apps to book remote meetings with clients, manage projects, or follow up with leads, you may find yourself switching between various tools more than you’d like.

Automated workflows send information from one app to another, so you don’t have to worry about copying and pasting and can instead focus on the stuff that requires brainpower. See how you can use automation to streamline your Google Meet calls.

Our automated workflows are called Zaps. To get started with a Zap template—what we call our pre-made workflows—just click on it, and we’ll guide you through customizing it. It only takes a few minutes. New to Zapier? Learn how it works.

Automatically send Google Meet links

It can be a hassle to schedule meetings. You have to find a time when everyone is available, which can mean a lot of back-and-forth emails or Slack messages. If you’re running a video call, you also have to copy and paste the conferencing link and ensure the right people have access.

Instead, set up a workflow where you can automatically send Google Meet call information when someone fills out a Google Form or schedules time with you through Calendly.

Related:Google Meet vs. Hangouts: What’s the difference?

Share Google Meet recordings

A video conferencing app worth its salt allows you to record calls. This is handy if you’re hosting a webinar or even recording a meeting for an absent teammate.

Recordings will automatically upload to your Meet Recordings folder in Google Drive at the end of the call. To save yourself time, you can set up a Zap to share a new file uploaded to that folder automatically in an email or messaging app of your choice.

This is incredibly helpful if you have a habit of forgetting to send those links, or you find yourself spending too much time drafting emails after hosting a webinar.

When customizing the second step of your Zap, select the Google Drive File field if you want to share the actual video file. To share the link instead, select Embed Link.

A screenshot of the Zap Editor customizing the Gmail step of a Zap. The Google Drive Embed Link field is selected as the email attachment which will send a Drive link to recipients.

Follow up with leads

If you work with external clients or are responsible for generating leads, you spend a lot of time building relationships. Though you’d like to give each new contact you make one-on-one attention, this requires a lot of time and frankly, a lot of emails. It’s also easy for a new lead to slip through the cracks when you’re juggling other priorities.

If you want to amp up your interactions with new contacts, try out a Zap to automatically schedule a Google Meet call every time you add a new contact in your customer relationship manager (CRM).

You can customize the meeting description to make it more personalized by pulling in Name and Company fields from your CRM and suggesting that your schedule is flexible, for example.

A screenshot of the Zap Editor showing the Google Calendar step of a Zap. Pipedrive CRM fields are used to personalize the event description. It will show up as a message to the recipient who receives the calendar invite.

Schedule project reviews

Some industries call them “post-mortems,” others call them “retros,” but any project manager knows how important it is at the end of a project to meet with their team to discuss what went well, what didn’t, and what can be changed for next time.

Streamline the process by setting up a workflow to schedule a Google Meet call when your project reaches a specific stage in your project management app.

You can also use this Zap to keep your project moving forward at any point that requires an outside call—think client reviews or meetings with project stakeholders.

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How a digital studio’s side project turned into a remote work phenomenon

SEO and General Business tutorials and tips.

This post was sourced from by MOZ.

In mid-2017, Josh Gross decided he wanted to throw a pizza party for his team. The catch: his company, digital product agency Planetary, is a completely distributed team. So he needed to figure out how to get pizzas to Romania, India, and around the corner in Brooklyn.

He wasn’t sure if it was possible, but he gave it a try. After half a day of research, he figured out how to place orders in six different countries. And the next day, he and his team had a virtual pizza party. “It was such a collectively entertaining activity because of the novelty of it,” he told us. “Sharing that experience even though we were so spread out was a nice change of pace.”

They did it a couple more times, and eventually, Josh decided to see if other teams might want to join the fun. In July 2019, Planetary launched Pizzatime, a service that would organize virtual pizza parties for distributed teams. They had a few bites, with companies like Animalz, Product Hunt, and Customer.io getting in on the action. But after a handful of orders—one a week at best—they called it quits. They shuttered Pizzatime on December 31 due to low demand.

“Turns out that existing remote teams already have well-developed cultures, experiences, and a ‘way of working’ that they were happy with,” Josh wrote on Twitter. “Most existing remote teams didn’t need help with culture-building and more teams weren’t going remote as quickly as we expected.”

So Planetary chalked it up to a fun experiment and moved on.

And then COVID-19 hit the U.S.

Building a product with no code

Let’s back up a bit. Pizzatime wasn’t the first product that Planetary had launched. In 2018, they created Spacetime, a Slack app that helps distributed teams schedule meetings across time zones without having to do time zone math.

“We do these projects from time to time because it gives our team the opportunity to test out new approaches and interesting ways of experimenting with tools,” Josh told us. “It ends up helping us with client projects because we take what we learned and bring it back to our core work.”

But while these products serve as light marketing and skill-building for Planetary, they’re still side projects. And that means they need to be low-effort. Josh started by drawing out a flowchart of how Pizzatime would work. The three main parts to the flow: customers would fill out a form with their order, orders would be stored in a database, and his team would be notified whenever an order was placed. There wasn’t one tool that could do all the things he wanted, so he turned to Zapier, an automation tool that can connect apps to create workflows like the one he was hoping to accomplish. “I wanted it to be as non-technical as possible,” says Josh. “Zapier allowed us to accomplish the workflow without writing any code.”

They built the Pizzatime blog in webblog builder Webflow, which links to a Typeform form—that’s how they accept the pizza orders. When someone submits a typeform, Zapier then automatically sends the information over to Airtable, the database where Josh and his team keep the orders. Zapier also pushes a channel message to Slack.

A Slack message notifying them of an order

The team’s pizza assistants see the order come in and can start figuring out how to order pizzas to a variety of remote locations.

Here are the automated workflows—called Zaps—that Josh set up with Zapier. Click Use this Zap to customize them. Zapier connects to thousands of apps, so you can set up similar workflows for whatever apps you use.

The Pizzatime comeback

“So what does a manager do when their whole team is suddenly remote? They turn to experiences they know.”

In March of 2020, Josh’s team started getting emails asking where Pizzatime went. They put the service back up, assuming they’d do a couple more parties. But a couple quickly turned into multiple parties a day.

“Suddenly, teams that have never been remote were completely remote. And they were panicking,” says Josh. “How do you build team culture remotely? They had no game plan. No experience to rely on.” They got orders from all kinds of organizations: law firms, universities, and even large companies like Amazon and GE.

The Proof team on Zoom with their pizza

“Hundreds of thousands of companies have been thrown into the deep end with no swimmies,” he says. “So what does a manager do when their whole team is suddenly remote? They turn to experiences they know.” Employers couldn’t do regular office catering, so they turned to Google and found Pizzatime. Since March, every order that’s been placed has been from a previously co-located team. They’ve been averaging close to 20 parties a week.

A graph showing a huge spike in orders starting in March

This graph shows the number of Pizzatime orders since launch. The weeks of no orders in January through March were when it was closed.

Let’s be clear: Pizzatime isn’t a lucrative undertaking. Josh and his team never intended to make a ton of money off it. “For a while, we were straight-up losing money,” he says. “I was basically paying for people’s pizza out of pocket.” It was part-marketing, part-remote camaraderie. But Josh plans to keep it going for as long as people continue ordering.

Pizzatime is a good example of how the market is changing: services that weren’t on many people’s radar are now a core need. But it’s also a reminder that, as Josh puts it, “People, whether they’re together or apart, still have the same core desires: camaraderie, good food, good people.”

Planetary is a digital product studio that works with clients worldwide to develop creative mobile and web solutions to key business problems.

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The Bay Area exodus

SEO and General Business tutorials and tips.

This post was shared by MOZ.

A global pandemic forced Bay Area employers into remote work. Now many employees will keep working from home, even when others return to the office.

Several local tech giants, including Facebook, Square, and Twitter, announced that employees can opt to work from home after the stay-at-home orders end. Will people who can live anywhere decide to stay in the area? We wanted to find out, so we surveyed over 1,100 Bay Area residents.

About Zapier: Zapier helps businesses grow using the power of automation to connect 2,000+ apps. Founded in 2011, Zapier has always operated as an entirely remote company, and today has 300+ employees working in 30 countries around the world.

Key findings
  • The majority of Bay Area residents are now working from home at least part-time (64 percent).
  • 34 percent of residents say they’re likely to move out of San Francisco in the next two years. If given the option to work remotely, this increases to 46 percent.
  • The top reasons cited for wanting to leave are the cost of living (76 percent), housing costs (60 percent), and high population density (32 percent).

Half of residents plan to leave if they can work remotely

Will remote work lead to an exodus
  • 34 percent say they’re currently likely to move from San Francisco in the next two years.
  • 46 percent say they’re likely to move from San Francisco in the next two years if they’re able to work remotely.
  • 55 percent say they’re likely to move from San Francisco in the next five years if they’re able to work remotely.

People would consider leaving the Bay Area for the following:

What would prompt residents to leave
  • A salary increase of 30 percent or more (53 percent)
  • If the cost of living continues to increase (50 percent)
  • A guaranteed job for my spouse/partner (33 percent)
  • A lump sum of money for moving expenses (32 percent)
  • I would consider leaving as I get older (31 percent)
  • If the majority of my friends and family moved away (25 percent)

Cost tops the list of reasons why people currently want to leave

Why do people want to leave the Bay Area? Here are the most common responses:

  • Cost of living (76 percent)
  • Housing costs (60 percent)
  • Too crowded/population density (32 percent)
  • Traffic (31 percent)

The pandemic isn’t driving people away

Most residents are happy with the local pandemic response
  • The majority (58 percent) are happy with the local government’s response to the pandemic.
  • Only 13 percent say they want to leave because the pandemic has made living in a city less desirable.

Where do people want to go? LA, Seattle, Portland top list of destinations

Most people want to live in a suburb near an urban area
  • Half (50 percent) would prefer to move to a suburb near an urban area.
  • 27 percent want to relocate to another urban area.
  • 17 percent say they’d prefer a small town.
  • Only 6 percent would choose to move to a rural area.
  • LA (14 percent), Seattle (10 percent), and Portland (9 percent) top the list of cities where Bay Area residents would like to move.

Methodology: Zapier conducted the study for this report in collaboration with Centiment.co. More than 1,100 Bay Area residents were surveyed online in May of 2020. The study’s margin of error is +/- 4 percent at 95 percent confidence.

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How Long Should Social Media Video Content Be?

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This article was provided by HurDat.

Video is the top-performing digital content on social media, driving more engagement than any other social articleing option. In fact, tweets with video can see up to 10x more engagement. But incorporating video content into your social media marketing strategy isn’t as simple as uploading a video. There are a lot of decisions to make. What story are you going to tell and in what style? What platforms will the video get articleed on? Who’s your target audience? What’s your overall goal?

All of these questions are important, but we’re still missing an important one: How long should videos on social media be? You need to consider the length of the videos you share, as it will maximize viewer rates. If you want to get your brand’s message out there and keep the attention of your audience, then you need to understand how long social videos need to be.

How Long Should Social Videos Be?

Currently, the ideal length of a video is two minutes. This is according to multiple marketing studies, surveys, and tests—though another study conducted by HubSpot found that audience engagement actually decreased after about one minute. So, for the moment, around 1-2 minutes is a good range.

Unfortunately, video length recommendations change all the time. For years, it was the shorter, the better. Then, suddenly, it was all about long-form video. Then, it swung back to shorter video again. It’s hard to provide a definitive answer because video marketing best practices often depend on the audience, the platform, and the content being provided.

What Video Length Is Best for Each Platform?

Even though we can set guidelines for video length, those guidelines aren’t a one-size-fits all solution for every social media platform. Just as you have different social media strategies for each platform, your video strategy will need to vary, too. Here’s a quick look at each platform’s best video lengths…

Facebook: 1 Minute

Over the past few years, Facebook has been gaining some traction with users watching more long-form videos, but shorter video is still dominating both organic and paid articles. Typically, the articles with the most engagement are about one minute in length. The reason for this is that Facebook users like to scroll. To ensure you get your message across, make sure you start your video out with a good hook to get more eyes on your article quickly.

Instagram: 30 Seconds

Unlike its aforementioned parent company, Instagram has always catered toward a shorter attention span. This is primarily because when the app first released the ability to share video, you could only record for up to one minute. Even now with the ability to go live for longer periods of time, Instagram’s ideal video length is still just about 30 seconds—or more specifically, 26 second videos. Users tend to scroll quickly on Instagram since it’s primarily a visual platform, so it’s best to keep videos short.

Twitter: 45 Seconds

If you’re trying to add long videos to Twitter, you’re out of luck, as the platform is more restrictive in its video rules. Videos can be no more than two minutes and 20 seconds long. As for ideal lengths, videos on Twitter that are between 20-45 seconds see the most engagement. Users are accustomed to short, snappy, and easy-to-digest content on Twitter, so long videos don’t particularly make sense.

Pinterest: 3 Minutes

Pinterest operates a little differently than other social platforms, so video length best practices are skewed based on the type of content you’re sharing. For promoted videos, Pinterest has shown that videos between 6-15 seconds work best. For how-to or demo videos, which can hold the audience’s attention longer, between 1-3 minutes is the sweet spot. The key to creating engaging Pinterest video is to ensure that users can take some sort of action by the end.

YouTube: Under 3 Minutes OR Over 10 Minutes

Finally, YouTube. The video-sharing platform is a bit of a mystery when it comes to the “perfect” video length. Unlike other social media platforms, YouTube was designed for nothing but video. There’s no written content to break up what you’re viewing, so video lengths can differ wildly depending on the topic. For some videos, two minutes is going to be your best bet. But for others, if what you’re making is worth your audience’s time, watch times of upwards of 30 minutes can be a valuable choice. This is a platform where you’ll definitely need to test and adjust video lengths as you create more content.

Can You Post the Same Video Everywhere?

Even as each social media platform has its own video best practices, one thing does remain true: quick videos work everywhere. That means in the event that you don’t have the budget to produce five different videos for every platform, creating one short video that can be provided widely is okay. But remember that each platform does have different output guidelines, so you’ll need to work with your team to create something that will look good across various platforms.

At the end of the day, regardless of how long each video is and what platform you choose to article it on, the only thing that matters is catching the eye of your customers and getting them to engage with your content. If you can accomplish that, then your social strategy will see the boost you’re hoping for!

Need help creating social video? Hurrdat can create and deploy a full social media strategy that’s designed to capture your audience’s attention. Learn more about our social media marketing!

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Use this tech trick to help you say no

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This post was sourced from by MOZ.

It’s tempting to say yes to every work request that comes your way—and that instinct makes sense. You might feel empathy for a coworker who needs your help. You might want to please the people paying your salary. Or you might just come across a project that sounds way more fun than what you’re currently working on.

But by defaulting to yes, you’ll end up deprioritizing important work and focusing on low-impact tasks instead. Or if you end up doing your priority work and the new tasks, you’ll just plain burn out. So before agreeing to do something, you need to consider your own priorities and the opportunity cost of saying yes.

Easier said than done, of course. That’s why we have a trick at Zapier that helps us lean toward no.

Say no with snippets

Here’s how it works:

  1. Pick a text expander app. (At Zapier, we use Alfred—we even have provided team snippets.)
  2. Decide what text shortcut you’ll type when you want to say no (e.g., nopenope).
  3. Write a snippet: a sentence or two telling someone no.
  4. That’s it.

Every time you type the trigger word, your computer will magically turn it into the snippet, no matter what kind of app you’re currently using—email, team chat, text message, you name it. And if you write a bunch of snippets, you’ll have a few varieties of no up your sleeve depending on the context.

Here are some example snippets we use at Zapier. Each one is suited for a different situation, so we’ve grouped them by context.

Say no to coworkers who need help

  • nopebooked > I’d be happy to help with this, but I’m completely booked up until X day. I could carve out time for this on Y day if it’s still helpful, but I don’t want to slow you down. If you need help right away, I’d check with person A/resource B.

  • nopehighpri > I’m working on a high priority project right now, so I unfortunately can’t make time to help. Thanks for understanding!

  • nopedeadline > Thanks for checking in! I’m working on X project, which has a deadline of Y, so I won’t be able to help. If you still need help after that, please ask again and I’ll let you know how my priorities look.

Say no to your manager

  • nopedepri > I’d love to help! As you know, my current priorities are X and Y. We’d need to deprioritize one of those to open up time for this project—which would you feel most comfortable with?

  • nopegoals > Thanks for asking. Honestly, I’m not sure that would help our team meet our Q1 KRs. What would you say to putting a pin in it and coming back to it later in the year?

  • nopebandwidth > That’s an interesting idea, but I’m worried it will stretch me thin to pursue it. I’d like to stay focused on X and Y project so I can make sure they’re as successful as possible.

Say no to a last-minute request

  • nopeworkaround > I’m happy to look at this more in-depth for version 2.0, but with the deadline you’ve given, I think we should find a workable solution that looks ok, like [potential workaround].

  • nopetime > I wish I could help—sounds like an important project—but I don’t have time before the deadline because of some other priorities. You might ask person A, but if they can’t help, I think you’ll have to proceed without [whatever they asked for].

Say no to a meeting

  • nomeeting > Thanks for the invite, but I won’t be able to join—I need to use that time to focus on my priority work. Let me know if anything comes out of the meeting that I could help contribute to.

  • notimetochat > I’d love to chat at some point, but I can’t make time to meet any time in the next X days/weeks without overloading my calendar. Can you reach back out after that?

You should absolutely personalize these snippets to fit your needs. And even when you use pre-written responses, it doesn’t mean you can’t adjust them on a case-by-case basis. These just give you a solid place to start, which means less resistance on the path to saying no.

Hero image by Thomas Lefebvre on Unsplash.

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