Month: September 2020

This Was the Debate From Hell

Trump and Biden both sought a clear win and didn’t get one, but Trump needed it more.

Best Video Conferencing Software

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Video conferencing software has exploded in popularity over the last year. With people working from home and remote work becoming the new normal, businesses rely on video conferencing services to communicate. 

But not all video conferencing software is the same.

The tools you use to video chat with your friends and family across the across aren’t necessarily the best business communication options.

Which video conferencing software is the best for you? I’ll break down my top picks in greater detail below. 

The Top 6 Options For Video Conferencing Software

  1. BlueJeans
  2. Cisco Webex
  3. Lifesize
  4. Whereby
  5. RingCentral
  6. GlobalMeet by PGI

How to Choose the Best Video Conferencing For You

As you’re shopping around and evaluating different options, there are certain criteria that must be taken into consideration. Keep these factors in mind to ease the buying process and narrow down the best video conferencing software for your business. 

Call Size

The first thing you need to consider is the call restriction limitations. How many people can be part of the video conference?

Entry-level plans might restrict you to 25 or 50 callers while the highest tiers can be 10,000+. 

If you’re running a small business or just need to occasionally meet with a small team, you probably won’t run into problems with restrictions. But for those of you who plan to give presentations to your entire enterprise-size organization, a large call size capability will be a top priority. 

Simultaneous Video Streams

Even if you get a plan with a large call size, it doesn’t mean that everyone on the call will be able to stream their webcam simultaneously. 

Let’s say you have 500 people attending a video conference; there won’t be 500 videos on the screen. You might be limited to just 10 or 20 streamers. The rest will be view-only. 

Video Quality

There’s nothing worse than being on a video conference with a poor stream. It can really distract from the purpose of the conference. Everyone is worried about disconnecting and then reconnecting, hoping that fixes the issue, which wastes valuable time.

Each participant’s individual Internet connection will obviously impact the quality as well. However, some software is definitely better than others in this category.

The best way to determine the video quality of the software is by experimenting with free trials and reading reviews from current customers. 

Team Collaboration Features

If you’re using video conferencing software for work, it’s useful to have an all-in-one collaboration solution. 

I tend to look for features like file sharing, cloud storage, screen sharing, presentation mode, and integrated live chat. You should also look for features that integrate with tools you’re already using for CRM, site analytics, or whatever else your team is working on. 

Now everyone can collaborate from a single platform, instead of bouncing back and forth between different software while on a video conference call.

Industry and Specific Use Cases

What exactly do you need video conferencing software for?

There are plenty of general-purpose solutions out there. But in some instances, certain software is geared towards purposes like remote work or international calls. There are even industry-specific tools for healthcare or education. 

So if you fall into one of those categories, make sure you choose a software that accommodates your unique needs. 

The Different Types of Video Conferencing Software

As previously mentioned, not all video conferencing software is the same. I’ll quickly name and explain the most popular options, so you have a better understanding of what to expect as you’re shopping around. 

Cloud Video Conferencing Software

Cloud software or browser-based video conferencing software is extremely flexible. Participants can join a call from anywhere, simply by logging in through a web browser. 

This software is supported by open WebRTC (real-time communications) standards. 

If you’re going to have conference calls with participants outside of your organization, then you’ll definitely want a cloud solution. Then you can invite people to join with a URL link, and they won’t have to download any software. 

For example, let’s say you have a sales team that uses video conferencing to communicate with prospects. Forcing those potential customers to download software would add friction and confusion to the sales process. 

Desktop Applications

Desktop apps are commonly used for in-house video conferencing. The best video conferencing software will support all major operating systems. 

Call quality and features are usually enhanced with a desktop app. For example, you might not be able to share your screen on a cloud version of a software, but you’d access that feature by downloading the desktop app. 

Mobile Video Conferencing

Mobile video conferencing is crucial for people who need to join calls on the go. Busy professionals can’t always be tied to a desktop or laptop computer. But this type of software allows people to participate from smartphones and tablets.

If you’re using cloud software, you can usually join from a web browser on your mobile device. However, the experience is definitely enhanced by downloading the mobile application from your video conferencing provider. 

Nearly all of the best video conferencing software on the market today will have some mobile conferencing features. 

Meeting Room Systems

Some businesses require a complete meeting room system for video conferences. These solutions require additional hardware, like external cameras, microphones, speakers, and more. 

A meeting room system is typically designed for physical conference rooms. If you’re having a video conference call in an executive board room with a dozen people present, a laptop at the end of the table isn’t going to cut it. 

These really aren’t necessary for home offices or remote work. They’re designed for large spaces and large groups in a single location. 

#1 – BlueJeans — Best For Remote Work

BlueJeans has a wide range of video conferencing options for businesses of all sizes. It’s trusted by global brands like ADP, Facebook, Zillow, Intuit, and National Geographic. 

For small and large businesses alike, BlueJeans can help your organization and employees communicate by providing them with the right tools for remote work.

Depending on your needs, there are actually four different BlueJeans video conferencing products for you to choose from. Here’s a quick explanation of each one:

  • BlueJeans Meetings — Video, audio, and web conferences from any device
  • BlueJeans Rooms — Single-touch audio and video conference rooms
  • BlueJeans Events — Host and stream interactive events for large audiences
  • BlueJeans Gateway — Access Microsoft Teams calls from any meeting room system

BlueJeans was recently acquired by Verizon, so the video call quality is exceptional. You’ll also benefit from features like enterprise-grade security, meeting transcriptions, automated alerts, meeting management tools, analytics, and more. 

Pricing starts at $9.99 per host per month.

The entry-level plan comes with unlimited 1:1 meetings, unlimited group meetings, unlimited meeting lengths, and five hours of recording. You can host video conferences with up to 50 participants on this plan as well. 

Try it free for 7 days.

#2 – Cisco Webex Review — Best For Healthcare

Cisco has been an industry leader in the telecommunications space for 35+ years. So it should come as no surprise to see Cisco Webex rank so high this list. 

In addition to basic video conferencing, Cisco has tools for contact centers, online meetings, cloud calling, online training, team collaboration, and more. But what really stands out is the industry-specific solutions offered from Webex, including video conferencing for healthcare.

As more and more medical practices make the transition to telehealth, Cisco Webex has been growing in popularity. It’s a top solution for practices that need to meet with patients online, make administrative calls, collaborate with care teams, and healthcare IT teams. 

From virtual consultations to training and security, Webex has everything healthcare organizations need for video conferencing. 

Here are some of the highlights of using Cisco Webex:

  • End-to-end security with strong encryption
  • High-quality video and audio calling
  • Virtual training capabilities with recording and on-demand viewing
  • Share your entire screen or just share a single app or document
  • AI powered web assistant
  • Integrations with tools like Slack, G Suite, Salesforce, and more
  • Compatible on web, desktop, mobile, and video systems

For anyone that prioritizes quality and security, Cisco Webex will be a top choice for you to consider. 

Plans start at $13.50 per host per month. Sign up for free to try it out; no credit card required.

#3 – Lifesize Review — The Best Zoom Alternative

Zoom has quickly become a household name over the past year or so. But it’s not for everyone, and lots of businesses are looking elsewhere for a video conferencing solution. 

If you’re searching for a similar setup and feature list, Lifesize will be your best option. 

Lifesize is a cloud video conferencing solution and team collaboration platform that’s compatible with any device. You can use the software to meet with co-workers, clients, employees, and anyone else, from anywhere.

Let’s take a closer look at some of the benefits and highlights of Lifesize:

  • Ultra-high definition and 4k screen sharing
  • Unlimited guest invitations to meetings
  • Large meetings with up to 500 participants
  • Broadcast live events with up to 10,000 viewers
  • Manage users and room settings from a web-based admin console
  • High encryption standards for robust security
  • Interoperability with Slack, Microsoft Teams, Skype, and more

For those of you who need a complete meeting room system, Lifesize has all-in-one conferencing solutions with hardware as well. 

Lifesize is free for up to 10 participants with unlimited meetings. The entry-level plan starts at $12.50 per host per month. This plan comes with SSO support and allows you to host meetings with up to 100 participants. 

#4 – Whereby Review — The Best Simple Video Conferencing Software

Whereby is arguably the simplest video conferencing solution on the market today. There’s no app installation required. Just choose a personalized meeting URL, and participants can access the same link every time.

The software was actually built in Norway, and it’s a popular choice for Europeans. So it’s GDPR compliant and follows some of the strictest data protection and privacy laws globally.

Here’s a quick overview of the features and benefits you’ll get by using Whereby for video conferencing:

  • Live chat and reactions during video calls without interrupting the speaker
  • Rooms are locked by default, so admins can choose who to let in
  • Fit up to 50 participants in a room at the same time
  • Host has control to mute members and end the meeting for everyone
  • Participants can open other tabs and explore websites during a meeting
  • Add company branding and logos to your meeting rooms
  • Integrations with Google Calendar and Outlook Calendar
  • Record meetings that you can download and share
  • YouTube integration for watching videos during a meeting
  • Screen sharing, Google Docs integration, and mobile support

Again, even with all of these great features, Whereby is as simple as it gets. It’s easy for anyone to use and figure out, regardless of their technical skill level.

There’s a free forever plan for personal use that can host small meetings with up to four participants. Paid plans start at just $9.99 per month. 

#5 – RingCentral Review — Best All-in-One Communication Suite

If your business needs more than just video conferencing, look no further than RingCentral. Unlike other software options that accommodate personal use, RingCentral is built specifically for businesses.

They offer an all-in-one communication suite for integrated video meetings, phone calls, team messaging, file sharing, and task management.

The software is trusted by 400,000+ organizations across the globe, making it one of the most popular video conferencing solutions on the market today. 

Let’s take a closer look at some of the features, benefits, and highlights of RingCentral:

  • Enterprise-grade security and a 99.999% uptime SLA
  • Easy to set up, deploy, add new users, and manage teams
  • Works from any device
  • Solutions for small businesses, enterprises, and everything in between
  • Tools for remote work and remote customer service
  • Cloud phone systems and contact centers
  • Solutions for managed service providers

RingCentral even has industry-specific solutions in categories like education, healthcare, retail, financial services, high tech, contact tracing, and more. 

Plans start at $19.99 per user per month. You can try RingCentral for free with a 15-day trial. 

#6 – GlobalMeet by PGI Review — Best For International Video Conferencing

GlobalMeet is another popular business communications platform. As the name implies, the software is built to accommodate international calls. 

They have 160+ points of presence in over 60 different countries. This allows for exceptional call quality, even with participants streaming video calls from different continents. 

Here are some other top reasons why I like and recommend GlobalMeet:

  • They offer hardware solutions for complete video room integrations
  • Join calls on the go through the mobile app
  • Record your meetings and play them any time with cloud recording capability
  • Single-click to join video calls from an intuitive user interface
  • High definition video with simultaneous screen sharing functionality
  • 24/7 customer support via live chat, phone, and email in 12 languages

For organizations with an international presence, whether it be internally or with clients, GlobalMeet by PGI is the clear winner.

There’s a free plan for basic use, and paid plans start at $12 per user per month. 

Summary

What’s the best video conferencing software?

With so many options to consider, naming just one as my top pick isn’t very practical. It all depends on what you’re looking for. 

Regardless of your business size, industry, or video conferencing needs, you can find what you’re looking for using my methodology and recommendations listed in this guide. 

The post Best Video Conferencing Software appeared first on Neil Patel.

How to Choose The Right Facebook Ad Agency

Facebook isn’t going anywhere, anytime soon.

With more than 2.6 billion users worldwide – or nearly 28.5% of the total global population – the platform has seen unprecedented success.

This also translates to several other advantages that you may not be familiar with:

  • Approximately 1.65 billion users see Facebook ads, out of which 1.21 billion are between the ages of 13 and 34.
  • An average Facebook user clicks on 12 ads per month.
  • Facebook users watch around 100 million hours of video a day.

Plus, nearly 70 million businesses have a Facebook page, which sheds ample light on its importance in today’s world.

In short, Facebook is still a force to be reckoned with – at least where ads are concerned.

With such excellent stats, converting visitors into customers should be easy, right?

Wrong.

You see, there can be various reasons why your Facebook ads don’t convert.

One of the more prominent reasons is the lack of expert guidance – something that hiring the best Facebook ad agency can help overcome.

This brings us to our next question: How do you choose the right Facebook agency for your needs?

Our team at Neil Patel Digital has created this guide to walk you through the whole hiring process that can help you generate more leads and score higher conversions.

Know Your Goals and Desired Outcomes

Remember the saying that knowing your destination is half the journey?

Well, the same logic applies when you‘re looking to hire a Facebook ad company.

Every ad agency has different specialties, along with budget and project sizes. This is precisely why you should know your business goals and the objectives you want to achieve by working with a specific agency.

Once you get the right lens to evaluate different agencies, you’ll be able to determine your perfect match easily.

The following are a few examples where you can break down the whole process by using a deliverable-goal-end result approach. In other words, you understand your deliverables, then determine the goals of these deliverables, followed by the outcomes you hope to achieve.

Example #1: Getting More Leads Despite Tight Budget

You want to hire an agency to develop an efficient Facebook advertising strategy for your company. The catch here is that you only have $500 per month to spare, but you want more leads.

So, in this case:

  • Deliverable: Using unique, eye-catching ads to get high-quality leads.
  • Goal: An agency that has the expertise and is open to accepting clients who have a tight budget.
  • End Result: Generating more leads without overstepping the $500 threshold.

Example #2: Expanding Reach Through Visually Appealing Videos

You want to create engaging video ads that you can use on Facebook. The problem here is that you don’t know where to start.

So, in this case:

  • Deliverable: A series of on-brand ad videos that increase brand awareness and click-through rates.
  • Goal: An agency that has the expertise to create engaging videos, which talk about your new offers and encourage the viewer to click on the link.
  • End Result: A finished set of effective video ads.

If you see both examples, you’ll find there are different limitations and requirements.

While the budget is super strict in the first case, it’s more flexible in the second. Similarly, there aren’t any specifications with regard to the ad type in the first example, but the second one explicitly states video advertisements.

Essentially, when you know what you want, finding the right agency for your businesses will become very easy. Plus, it’s much better to avoid the disappointment of hiring someone only to realize that they can’t give you what you want.

Another way to vet Facebook ad agencies is by looking for specific characteristics that are relevant to the business and can understand your goals and desired outcomes.

4 Characteristics That Make a Great Facebook Ad Company

There are all sorts of ad agencies operating on the market today, with everyone claiming to be the best.

That said, you should know the characteristics that make up a good Facebook ad agency to find one that can provide tailor-made solutions as per your requirements.

Team Members With Relevant Experience

Everybody claims to be the best, but only a few have the experience to back its claims. 

You must hire a Facebook ad agency that is well-equipped with the brain and muscle to help you achieve your goals.

For instance, if you want to carry out paid social media campaigns with minimal to no effort from your side, you need a team that has the experience and knowledge to carry out these campaigns.

Additionally, they should also take care of customer targeting, keep in touch with your customers and prospects, as well as recommend creative, and copy best practices.

You can find out more about a company‘s team by going through their ‘About‘ page or LinkedIn ‘People’ page.

While this may not show you every contractor or freelancer that the agency might work with, it‘s still an excellent place to start. You can always ask follow-up questions during your consultation if you want more clarity.

Their Arsenal Should Include Latest Technologies and Best Practices

Ad agencies need to be familiar with the latest software. For Facebook, in particular, Facebook Pixel, Facebook Ad Manager, and so on are useful tools that can assure faster results through in-depth insights.

Having ad software expertise, along with familiarity with third-party data sources and creative testing tools, is also helpful. Ultimately, this will help your brand gain more popularity through better ads – both in terms of creativity and effectiveness.

Skills to Create Engaging Ads that Fulfil Your Objectives

Why do you want to hire a Facebook ad company? Results.

The only way that you can get results is if you enlist an agency that knows the art of producing engaging and objective-specific ads.

The company should have the skills to help you fulfill your goals – whether it’s getting more quality leads, boosting engagement, increasing store visits, or getting more click-throughs.

The idea here is to hire an ad company that can help you meet your goals, and the best way to ensure this is to look for a diverse portfolio.

Plus, the portfolio is the best way for the agency to show off their best work. This will help you get an idea of the type of work they do and the type of clients they choose.

Since it‘s FB advertisements that we’re talking about, give brownie points to agencies that have Facebook on their client list.

Solid Social Proof in the Form of Client Testimonials

Having social proof, such as testimonials and previous client reviews, can be an excellent way to gain insights into an agency’s work ethic.

Considering that 93% of customers go through testimonials and customer reviews before purchasing something, it can also be beneficial from the agency’s point of view. 

In fact, displaying social proof is an effective tactic to convert visitors into buyers. So if you don’t find any testimonials on websites, it means the following:

  • One, the company may not have previous clients
  • Two, they aren’t the experts that they claim to be

Good testimonials are indicative of a similar experience for future customers. Also, getting testimonials shouldn’t be difficult for agencies who have satisfied clients.

How to Work With a Facebook Ad Agency 

When you narrow down your options – or even make a final choice – you should be aware of the working etiquette to follow.

The following are a few steps that can ensure you enjoy a fruitful partnership for the well-being of your business.

Filling Out the Inquiry Form

No Facebook ad agency will send you a contract without understanding your pain points – if they do, run (not walk) as far as you can.

Reputable agencies will want you to fill an inquiry form to understand your objectives and requirements. After filling the form, the team will get in touch with you to hear your vision and then think of ways to achieve it.

You have to communicate properly here, being as explicit as possible. Remember, the agency wants to meet your expectations and goals.

Hearing Out the Best Practices for Effective Results

After understanding your pain points, the external team should use their expertise and experience to create a campaign framework. This, of course, should be done after carrying out in-depth research to figure out the best practices for better results.

The idea behind creating this draft is to make sure your target audience, niche, and business are all on the same page. You should expect multiple meetings focused on making strategic recommendations.

Receiving Project Deliverables

In the world of business, everything needs to be in writing – even the contract. Since every campaign spans over a couple of weeks or months, a well-drafted contract needs to be in place.

So if both you and the agency are comfortable with each other, you can expect to receive a contract, along with project deliverables from the agency, before kicking off the campaign.

Final Onboarding

After signing the contract, you’ll have to introduce the external team to your in-house staff. Agencies will also ask you for access to your website, social media platforms, relevant software, analytics tools, etc.

Once this is done, the Facebook ad company will chalk out timelines and task lists to organize and manage the whole project.

Aligning Your In-House Team With the Agency

Your chosen Facebook ad agency doesn’t have to replace your in-house team.

Instead, you can have both the teams working in sync to maximize results. For this purpose, you can do the following:

  • Holding frequent meetings.
  • Elaborating the scope of the agency’s as well as the in-house team‘s work, and clearly communicating the importance of both.
  • Appointing additional employees, if required, to work with the external agency.

In the end, the agency will be fully aligned with your company‘s values and culture, making it an extension of your in-house team.

How to Find The Right Facebook Ad Agency For You

With so many available options, choosing the right Facebook ad agency can be a bit difficult. 

Nevertheless, you should always prioritize a good reputation with a specialized approach. In addition to this, we would recommend the following:

  • Work on determining your business goals and desired outcomes.
  • Look for agencies that satisfy our above-listed characteristics – each one of them is essential.
  • Make sure the agency is in sync with you and your in-house team.

To make it easier for you, we reviewed hundreds of agencies to bring the five best Facebook ad companies. No matter who you choose, you’re assured of excellent service and unmatched expertise.

The 5 Top Facebook Ad Agencies

#1: Neil Patel Digital – The Best Overall Facebook Ad Company

You need access to top-level expertise and experience if you want advertisements that convert – something that Neil Patel Digital specializes in.

Our team of top-level and in-house marketing managers, led by our co-founder, Neil Patel, know the ins and outs of Facebook. 

We can deliver ad campaigns that suit your marketing objectives without overstepping your budget. Plus, we take care of everything: brainstorming attention-grabbing headlines, choosing the right graphics and CTAs, and carrying out A/B testing.

We also have a dream clientele, which includes Facebook, who are more than happy with what we’ve done for them. We’re also fully transparent with what we can deliver and how we work our magic.

#2: Hibu – The Best Facebook Ad Company for an All-in-One Solution

Hibu can be an excellent option if you’re looking for a comprehensive Facebook advertising solution, which includes campaign set-up, management, optimization, and reporting.

It also has a very flexible pricing strategy, offering services that start at $250 per month. The company has a dedicated team that works hard to create highly targeted ads that are capable of converting visitors.

#3: Voy Media – The Best Facebook Ad Company for À La Carte Services

Voy Media comes highly recommended. More so, if à la carte services and maximizing returns are your top priority.

The team uses proprietary AI software that can help you optimize and scale your Facebook campaigns in addition to crafting carefully thought-out strategies. You can join the likes of Lacoste, Big Life Journal, and Paw.com too – provided you have a minimum $5000/month budget for advertising.

#4: MuteSix – The Best Facebook Ad Company for Innovation Graphic Design 

MuteSix really needs no introduction when it comes to churning out creative ads that can drive conversions. It’s a full-funnel ad agency that has an in-house video studio and graphic design team to widen their clients’ reach.

Over the years, the company has added many renowned companies to its portfolio, and has received quite a few accolades as well! However, MuteSix is better suited for larger companies, preferably ones with budgets over $20,000 in ad spend.

#5: Lyfe Marketing – The Best Facebook Ad Company for Small Companies

This is an excellent option for small companies with limited budgets. Having a talented team of fewer than 50 members, Lyfe Marketing can be a driving force to help you enhance your marketing efforts.

It can provide you with quality, cost-effective advertising solutions, along with excellent communication and complete transparency to establish a healthy and professional working relationship. The agency has driven over 2,137,349 leads from the time of its inception.

Wrapping Up

Advertising can be a very challenging task. If you don’t have the expertise or know-how at your disposal, all your efforts will go to vain and you may also incur losses.

It’s much wiser to get a reputable Facebook ad company that can help you achieve your goals.

“Reputable” being the operative word here since you need an efficient team that can create unique and exciting ads to convert your visitors into customers.

Hence, it’s best to work with an agency with demonstrated expertise when it comes to keeping up with a dynamic platform like Facebook.

The post How to Choose The Right Facebook Ad Agency appeared first on Neil Patel.

Top 20 Spiderman Podcasts You Must Follow in 2020

Top 20 Spiderman Podcasts Contents [show] ⋅About this list & ranking Spiderman Podcasts Amazing Spider-Talk Spider-Man Crawlspace Podcast Spider-Man the Animated Series Podcast Web Tales a Spider-man Podcast Livin’ On The Edge TOTALLY SUPER The Ultimate Spider-Man Review Show That ’90s Spider-Man Show Swinging Through Spider-Man | A Spider-Man History Podcast Amazing Spider Web Cast Spider-Man and […]

The post Top 20 Spiderman Podcasts You Must Follow in 2020 appeared first on Feedspot Blog.

3 Ways to Fix Business Credit in a Recession

Learn How to Fix Business Credit

Do you need to repair your business credit? Is your business credit score nothing to write home about? Was it good once but now, not so much? Here are three easy and effective ways to fix business credit and get back on track.

Recession Period Funding

The number of American financial institutions as well as thrifts has been decreasing progressively for 25 years. This is coming from consolidation in the marketplace in addition to deregulation in the 1990s, decreasing obstacles to interstate banking. See: https://www.fundera.com/blog/happened-americas-small-businesses-financial-crisis-six-years-start-crisis-look-back-10-charts

Assets concentrated in ever‐larger financial institutions is problematic for small business proprietors. Big financial institutions are much less likely to make small loans. Economic recessions mean financial institutions come to be a lot more mindful with financing. Thankfully, business credit does not rely on financial institutions.

Fix Business Credit: 1 – Make Sure Your Credit Scores Are Accurate

Perhaps the easiest way to repair business credit is to assure that all of the reporting on it is correct and complete. This can help you locate feasible issues and stay informed on your business credit profile. So the first thing you want to do is, request your reports.

Business Credit Reporting Agencies

FICO SBSS

FICO’s SBSS (Small Business Scoring Service) Score will be generated when you apply for a loan. The lender will send your company’s documents and information to FICO. Then FICO will collect more data from the credit reporting agencies (Equifax, Dun & Bradstreet, and Experian).

Dun & Bradstreet’s PAYDEX

A PAYDEX Score works as Dun & Bradstreet’s dollar-weighted numerical rating of how your company has paid the bills during the last 12 months. Get your PAYDEX report here and you can contact their Customer Service department here.

Equifax

Order your business’s Equifax report here.

Experian

Order your company’s Experian report here.

Monitor Your Business Credit

Know what is happening with your credit. Make certain it is being reported and attend to any errors as soon as possible. Get in the habit of checking credit reports and digging into the details, and not just the scores.

We can help you monitor business credit at Experian and D&B for 90% less.

At Equifax, you can monitor your account at: www.equifax.com/business/business-credit-monitor-small-business.

Update Your Information

Update the data if there are inaccuracies or the info is incomplete. At D&B, you can do this at: https://iupdate.dnb.com/iUpdate/viewiUpdateHome.htm. For Experian, go here: www.experian.com/small-business/business-credit-information.jsp. So for Equifax, go here: www.equifax.com/business/small-business.

Fix Business Credit

So, what’s all this monitoring for? It’s to dispute any mistakes in your records. Errors in your credit report(s) can be taken care of. But the CRAs normally want you to dispute in a particular way.

Get your small business’s PAYDEX report at: www.dnb.com/about-us/our-data.html. Get your company’s Experian report at: www.businesscreditfacts.com/pdp.aspx?pg=SearchForm. And get your Equifax business credit report at: www.equifax.com/business/credit-information.

Disputes

Disputing credit report errors generally means you send a paper letter with copies of any proofs of payment with it. These are documents like receipts and cancelled checks. Never mail the originals. Always mail copies and retain the originals.

Fixing credit report mistakes also means you specifically spell out any charges you challenge. Make your dispute letter as crystal clear as possible. Be specific about the problems with your report. Use certified mail so that you will have proof that you mailed in your dispute.

Dispute your or your small business’s Equifax report by following the instructions here: www.equifax.com/small-business-faqs/#Dispute-FAQs.

You can dispute errors on your or your company’s Experian report by following the instructions here: www.experian.com/small-business/business-credit-information.jsp.

And D&B’s PAYDEX Customer Service phone number is here: www.dandb.com/glossary/paydex.

Disputing Charges with Your Creditors

Much like you disputed the charges to the reporting agency, you may also need to dispute them to the creditor itself. Again, you will need to make your case in writing and enclose copies of any proof of payment. Be specific about what you are disputing.

Fix Business Credit: 2- Understand Your Scores

Understanding your scores is a great way to start to fix business credit. This way, you spend your time on activities which are most likely to help you. That is, you can get the best bang for your buck. Even in a recession, fixing business credit scores is easier if you understand your scores in the first place.

Dun & Bradstreet’s PAYDEX Business Credit Score

A PAYDEX Score from Dun & Bradstreet ranges from 0 to 100. This score has a basis in payment information which is on report to the agency. Or it is on report to data-gathering firms partnering with the CRA. https://creditreports.dnb.com/m/business-glossary/paydex-score.html

D & B uses this data, along with a credit score and Financial Stress Score, so as to advise just how much credit a lending institution should extend to your company.

Getting a PAYDEX Score

To get a PAYDEX score, you must file for a D-U-N-S number by using Dun & Bradstreet’s site. The number is at no cost. Plus the CRA will need to have reports of your payments with four or more merchants.

Your firm’s PAYDEX score reveals if your payments are usually made promptly or in advance of schedule. As you might expect, a higher number is better.

PAYDEX Score Details

The scores break down as follows:

  • 80 – 100: A low risk of late payments
  • 50 – 79: A medium risk of late payments
  • 0 – 49: A high risk of late payments

D&B Business Credit Scores

Your company’s credit score ranges from 1 to 5. 1 is the best score. This matches your firm with other companies with similar payment histories. The score demonstrates just how usually those business often tend to pay immediately.

This information can actually assist loan providers to acknowledge your business’s standing. But it does not really reflect all of the payment documents from your business.

Financial Stress Score

The Financial Stress Score also runs from 1 to 5. It matches your company with various other business sharing comparable financial and business characteristics.

These resemblances are in areas such as size or amount of time in business. This score shows how often those businesses have a tendency to pay on schedule. As before, 1 is the very best score. This score is a more thorough examination of the business landscape, versus an evaluation of your company’s actual payment history.

An awesome PAYDEX score for your business is 80 – 100.

Experian Credit Scores

Experian’s scoring system is called Intelliscore Plus. http://www.experian.com/business-information/credit-risk-management.html

What is the Intelliscore Plus Credit Score?

The Intelliscore Plus credit score is a statistically based credit-risk analysis. The key function of Intelliscore Plus is to aid companies, investors, and possible future loan providers make wise judgments about who they should or should not do business with.

Like an auto dealer uses a consumer’s FICO score to quickly figure out just how much of a credit risk a potential customer might be, the Intelliscore Plus credit score can provide understanding on just how much of a credit risk a company or business owner may be.

Intelliscore Plus Credit Score Range

The Intelliscore ratings vary from 1 to 100. So the higher your rating, the lower your risk class. The chart below details each Intelliscore Plus credit score range as well as its associated meaning.

Score Range/Risk Class

  • 76 – 100 Low
  • 51 – 752 Low – Medium
  • 26 – 503 Medium
  • 11 – 254 High – Medium
  • 1 – 105 High

Computing an Intelliscore Plus Credit Score

In the credit world, Intelliscore Plus is considered one of the most trusted tools in successfully forecasting risk. Among the ways Intelliscore Plus maintains this claim to fame is by acknowledging the major variables that reveal if a firm is likely to pay their debts.

Though there are over 800 industrial and owner variables constituting an Intelliscore Plus credit score, the variables can be broken down into these essential factors:

Payment History

The bureaus call this recency yet in the real world, it’s nothing more than your current payment status. This includes the number of times your accounts become delinquent, the number of accounts that are currently overdue, and your overall trade balance.

Frequency

Just like payment history, frequency accounts for the quantity of times your accounts have been sent out to collections, the amount of liens as well as judgments you may have, and any bankruptcies connecting with your business or personal accounts.

Frequency can likewise consist of information associating with your payment patterns. Were you regularly slow or late with payment? Did you start paying expenses late, yet over time, quit doing so? These elements will certainly all be considered.

Monetary

This particular aspect focuses on exactly how you use credit. As an example, just how much of your readily available credit is presently in operation? Do you have a high ratio of overdue balance in contrast with your credit limits?

If you will start a company or are fairly new to this game, the listing above may seem a bit overwhelming. If you haven’t begun or do not have a lengthy history of business-based deals, exactly how will Intelliscore Plus rate you?

Intelliscore Plus handles these scenarios by using a blended model to develop your score. This suggests that they consider your personal credit score when determining your business’s credit score.

Fix Business Credit in a Recession Credit Suite

Find out why so many companies are using our proven methods to improve their business credit scores, even during a recession.

Equifax Business Credit Scores

The Equifax Credit Risk Score comes from a model which they use to place specific risks. Equifax uses these information in its computations, consisting of the depth of the credit information Experian can get the length of your small business’s credit history, as well as your business’s payment delinquency history. http://www.equifax.com/business/equifax-risk-score

http://www.equifax.com/assets/USCIS/efx-00178_efx_risk_score.pdf

http://www.equifax.com/assets/USCIS/efx-00164-9-13_efx_bni.pdf

Equifax then segments some 5 different scorecards with each other, by using statistical analysis. In order to improve their accuracy, Equifax recommends combining their Credit Risk Score with their proprietary Equifax Bankruptcy Navigator Index.

The Bankruptcy Navigator Index helps forecast the likelihood of your company going bankrupt in the next 24 months. Equifax bases its predictive model on over 270 million separate accounts.

Equifax shows three separate business determinations on its commercial credit reports. These are the Equifax Payment Index, your company’s Credit Risk Score, and its Business Failure Score.

Equifax Payment Index

Comparable to the PAYDEX rating, Equifax’s Payment Index, which has its measurement on a range of 100, demonstrates how many of your company’s payments were made punctually. These consist of both data from credit companies and vendors.

However it’s not implied to anticipate future behavior. That is what the other two ratings are for.

Equifax Credit Risk Score

Equifax’s Credit Risk Score assesses how likely it is your business will come to be drastically delinquent on payments. Scores range from 101 to 992, and they review:

  • Available credit limit on revolving credit accounts, e. g. credit cards
  • Your business’s size
  • Evidence of any type of non-financial transactions (e. g. vendor billings) which are delinquent or were on charge off for two or more billing cycles
  • Length of time since the opening of the earliest financial account

Fix Business Credit in a Recession Credit Suite

Find out why so many companies are using our proven methods to improve their business credit scores, even during a recession.

Equifax Business Failure Score

Finally, Equifax’s Business Failure Score takes a look at the risk of your small business closing. It ranges from 1,000 to 1,600, reviewing these aspects:

  • Total balance to total current credit limit average utilization in the previous three months
  • How much time since the opening of the oldest financial account
  • Your company’s worst payment status on all trades in the previous 24 months
  • Documentation of any non-financial transactions (e. g. vendor billings) which are overdue or have gotten on cost off for two or more billing cycles.

Equifax Scoring Analysis

For the credit risk as well as business failure scores, a rating of 0 means bankruptcy.

An outstanding Equifax score for your firm is as follows:

  • Payment Index 0 – 10
  • Credit Score 892 – 992
  • Business Failure Score 1400 – 1600

FICO Business Credit Scores

FICO uses its SBSS (Small Business Scoring Service) Score to incorporate consumer bureau, monetary, application, and business bureau information. FICO then validates their SBSS models for purchases such as Credit line transactions, Term Loans, and Commercial Card obligations which go up to $1 million. Their idea is to evaluate how your business repays all kinds of loans. http://www.fico.com/en/node/8140?file=6045

Business credit providers make use of the FICO SBSS score as a device to make a decision whether they should authorize a loan to your small business at all.

The SBA employs this score as well, to authorize or approve company loans. It has a basis in your company and consumer credit history and not simply your company’s financial health.

The score factors in the examination of the risks inherent in your company’s credit applications. With SBSS, lending institutions make their determinations in a matter of hours, as opposed to days. Lenders are more confident in their lending judgments, and your business gets swifter decisions on your loan applications.

The SBA’s Participation

The FICO Small Business Score or SBSS score is the main figure that the SBA considers while establishing to approve a loan, especially when it involves the SBA’s 7(a) loans.

Computing a FICO SBSS Score

The FICO SBSS Score reveals the likelihood or possibility of you, the candidate, covering your month-to-month bills promptly. The score runs from 0 to 300. A higher score means reduced risks and typically creates more favorable credit terms. The score comes from your company and personal history of credit use along with your business’s financial data. Variables also involve your company’s age, as well as its years or complete time in business.

As of 2014, all SBA 7(a) loans must go through a business credit score pre-screen, as well as for SBA loans, you might perhaps not get an approval if you had a score less than 140. However the cutoff was generally set to 160, and frequently, a score under 160 meant a rejection. A lot of lending institutions will only approve scores above 160 or 180, to lend as much as $1 million. However a score lower than 160 or 180 can still qualify you for a smaller sized loan.

The formula for the FICO SBSS Score is as follows:

  • The last year of PAYDEX scores from Dun & Bradstreet
  • Amounts and types of any judgements against your firm
  • The amounts and kinds of any liens against your business’s real or personal property.
  • Your company’s available resources
  • Your company’s profit
  • And other, less distinct monetary information

If you have no record of company credit and had a small or quick time in your business, then the possible highest FICO SBSS score you can perhaps expect is 140.

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Find out why so many companies are using our proven methods to improve their business credit scores, even during a recession.

Usage and Sorts of SBSS Model Lenders

A FICO SBSS rating includes the choice to opt for particular models which are market-specific for enhanced and much better decision making. For instance, one model is an agricultural leasing and lending model. Another model was made especially for Canada. Additionally, the insights of the SBSS score provide support for the SBRI (Small Business Risk Insight, from Dun & Bradstreet) and the SBFE (Small Business Financial Exchange) data databases.

Confirming the SBSS models is necessary for credit lines, commercial cards, as well as term loans of as much as one million dollars. If you are requesting one million dollars or less from bank financing, then there are chances that your SBSS score will be under review.

The Kind of Information in the Score

The SBSS offers the credit issuers of businesses various information blends to guarantee that they can evaluate your company’s credit risks. For instance, a particular issuer of credit can choose only to examine a principle proprietor’s application information, or the credit provider can select to include one or multiple business bureaus’ data.

Or the credit issuer can only decide to prioritize one aspect over another. This intelligent score originates from various business bureaus on an automated basis, in any type of order or whatever priority the issuer of the credit likes. For that reason, if the loan provider selects the score of Dun & Bradstreet’s PAYDEX as its default, the SBSS will pull that set of information.

SBSS Credit Offer Index: Exactly How It Works and Why It Is Important

The Credit Index is an element of the FICO SBSS Credit Score for your business, made to help credit issuers understand your capacity. It works as the standards against all the businesses with similar profiles.

The SBSS Credit Offer Index includes economic application info, business credit bureau documents, and credit bureau information for consumer. It gives a percentile ranking of the present versus other smaller sized businesses with identical or comparable attributes and total requested money from all those companies.

The Updated SBSS

Reporting agencies like D&B power the newer FICO SBSS Score model. The SBFE information may be used to anticipate charge-offs, bankruptcy, or three plus cycles overdue or delinquency over a duration of two years.

SBA Credit Scoring

The SBA’s tool has a basis in FICO. Their idea is to accelerate their credit choices for loan approvals. The tool uses several data sources and over one hundred combinations of business and consumer analytical models. They use a designated cutoff. https://www.sba.gov/offices/district/mo/st-louis/resources/small-business-loan-credit-scoring

Their total stats on their over $60 billion profile show that companies with scores at, or over the assigned cut-off will have very good payment history. So when you fix business credit, you might just want to fix your personal credit as well.

Fix Business Credit: 3 – Improve Your Payment History

Fixing credit issues means you need to fix bad habits and not repeat them. Mostly importantly, this means paying your bills on time and as completely as possible. A bonus to paying on time and in full means you pay considerably less interest on your debts.

Your payment patterns and history are a driving force in your overall credit score. Over time, paying your invoices on schedule will help establish your company as one that pays their financial obligations. This will inevitably help push your score up as well as show other firms you are a low risk.

Fix Business Credit: Bonus – Keep Your Debt-to-Income Ratio in Check

The more debt you have on your plate, the more invoices you have, and the less disposable income you have. If your total debt approaches or surpasses your income level, then you’re probably to be seen as high-risk.

Keep your financial obligations in check and consistently pay them off to keep a healthy balance between what you make and what you owe.

Fix Business Credit: Bonus – Use Your Credit

Keeping your financial obligations low remains sound recommendations. Still, opening and sensibly capitalizing on business credit accounts can help you increase your available credit and fix business credit.

Bonus – Improve Your Personal Credit Score, Too

Why is your personal credit score important to your business credit score? Your personal credit is fair game when it pertains to your Intelliscore Plus score.

Running a company is difficult work, but don’t let your individual finances suffer. Stay on top of your personal monthly bills. Also, stay clear of unnecessary credit inquiries. And avoid compromising your personal credit for company demands.

Fix Business Credit: Takeaways

Check your business credit scores and stay on top of your bills. Dispute errors and monitor your profiles so you’re never caught unawares.

The post 3 Ways to Fix Business Credit in a Recession appeared first on Credit Suite.

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Make America Trust Elections Again

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The 8 Best Social Media Marketing Companies of 2020

Social media marketing is essential for any business. There are now 3.8 billion social media users worldwide and, for most of us, social media is part of our everyday lives.

What this means is, if you want to reach your target audience, social media is the place to do so. 

Plus, social media is a highly effective marketing channel. In fact, around nine in ten consumers say they will buy from a brand that they follow on social media.

To get the most out of social media, it’s a good idea to let the experts do their thing. After all, there’s a big difference between checking what your pals are up to on Facebook and using it to achieve your business objectives.

So, here’s a breakdown of the best social media marketing agencies and companies that can help you smash your goals:

The 8 Top Social Media Companies in the World

#1 Neil Patel Digital — Best For Paid Social

At Neil Patel Digital, we know what we do best – our co-founders and top-class marketing managers have mastered their skillsets. And we know what works thanks to our decades of experience in the marketing trenches.

That’s why we specialize in creating epic paid social campaigns. We use data-driven analysis, in-depth customer research and your unique business objectives to create campaigns that will have an impact.

We’ve worked with huge global brands on their audience targeting, messaging and creative across multiple social channels. Here are some of our favorite clients:

Not too shabby, eh?

Of course, we’re going to brush our shoulders off and say we’re amazing. But we’re not the only ones who think so. The folks at Talk Business say,

“Neil Patel Digital takes a discriminating, high-level view of your marketing efforts to make effective suggestions for advanced marketing strategy.

You’ll also witness astonishing passion and dedication to digital marketing, as the company truly lives up to its values. This exemplary team loves the process as much as it enjoys seeing the results.”

Learn how you can get results from your paid social campaigns at Neil Patel Digital.

#2 Viral Nation — Best For Influencer Marketing

Viral Nation is the world’s number one specialist influencer marketing agency. They create ROI-driven, viral campaigns across a number of categories, such as gaming and e-commerce, and all social platforms including Instagram, Twitch and TikTok.

Viral Nation also has its own talent agency, meaning they’re able to source all manner of influencers from brand ambassadors and nano-influencers all the way up to celebrities.

They’ve worked with major brands, such as Victoria’s Secret, Aston Martin, Baidu and Match.com. And Match describes their work together as “creatively inspiring and effective.”

But, it’s not just the big brands that think they’re great. Viral Nation has an average 4.8-star rating.

Influencer marketing is still enormous these days. If you want to get in on the action, check out Viral Nation.

#3 Pan Up Productions — Best For Social Video

Pan Up is a super cool creative production company. In the commercial space, they create a range of social video campaigns.

They work with various brands from e-commerce stores to events venues. But, what’s really impressive is the big names they’ve produced videos for, such as Netflix, Tinder, Square, Southwest and even Apple and Amazon.

To give you an example of the kind of creative stuff they do: For one of Netflix’s social campaigns they co-created and filmed an Umbrella Academy-themed wedding pop-up event in New York City:

You can’t deny the quality of Pan Up’s work and if you have the budget for a professional production, you should absolutely go for it.

#4 Joseph Studios — Best For Organic Social

Joseph Studios specializes in social media services that encourage organic growth. As well as posting content on your social media pages, the company strives to engage customers and participate in relevant communities to grow a loyal following.

The company has achieved impressive results for their tech, B2B and B2C clients. Here’s an example from one of their case studies in which they were able to drive up impressions, engagement and profile actions tremendously:

They have an average rating of 4.6 stars. Here’s what one client had to say,

“The vendor is flexible and responsive to the ongoing results of the engagement. Engagement metrics have increased each month. They are a transparent, reliable team with a prompt communication style.”

So, if you’re looking to take the organic route then Joseph Studios is an excellent choice.

#5 Social Media 55 — Best For Niche-Specific Marketing

What makes Social Media 55 stand out is their specialized expertise in a number of niches, ranging from real estate to skin products to plumbing. With this know-how, they’re able to make focused moves that are specific to each industry. 

Here’s an example from their real estate section:

On top of their niche-specific services, Social Media 55, offers a broad spectrum of social media services, including social media management, paid ads and influencer marketing.

They generally work with small to medium-sized businesses and clearly to much success as they have remarkably positive ratings from customers (4.8 stars based on 236 ratings).

If you’re looking for a social strategy that’s geared towards your industry specifically, then choose Social Media 55.

#6 Sculpt — Best For B2B

The folks at Sculpt are experts in social media marketing for B2B clients. As such, they zero in on social media strategy and aim to help their clients acquire more leads and customers from social.

The company works with brands both large and small across a number of B2B industries, such as SaaS, Finance, Healthcare and Legal. If their case studies are anything to go by, Sculpt is able to achieve remarkable results for their clients.

Work with Sculpt if you’re in the B2B space and your main objective is lead acquisition.

#7 Sociallyin — Best For Community Management

Sociallyin is a renowned social media agency that offers a range of services, including social media strategy, production and influencer marketing. 

But, where they really shine is community management. Under this umbrella, they offer customer support, social media monitoring, engagement and data-driven analysis. 

What makes Sociallyin different from other agencies is that they also offer multilingual social media management:

They work with brands in both the B2B and B2C spaces. Notable clients include Toyota, Dick’s Sporting Goods and TGI Fridays.

Sociallyin is a great choice if you’re looking to nurture and grow a community on social media.

#8 Brafton — Best For Package Add-Ons

With Brafton, you know exactly what to expect thanks to their straightforward social media marketing packages. You also have the option to customize your package with add-ons.

These consist of unique offerings that you don’t see from a lot of agencies, such as live Tweeting and custom Snapchat geofilters: 

This shows that Brafton is on the ball when it comes to social media trends.

As a large agency, they are able to work with brands of varying sizes across a number of industries. One client in the education management space said,

“I liked the quality and communication so much that I tripled the amount of volume we were doing with them.”

All in all, Brafton is the right choice if you want unique services that are on-trend and that you can’t find elsewhere.

3 Characteristics that Make a Great Social Media Marketing Company

The sheer number of ad agencies and marketing companies out there these days is astounding. Clutch, for example, lists 9,481 firms in the US alone:

So, it’s no surprise you want to know how to find a great company in this sea of digital agencies. Here are a few things to look out for:

1. They Offer a Personalized Experience

Some agencies simply rinse and repeat for every client they work with. But, honestly, that sucks. A particular social media strategy may work for one company but not for another. Work with an agency that delivers a custom strategy based on your target audience and goals.

2. They’re Specialists

Because there are so many social media marketing companies out there, things can get a bit samey-samey. If everybody offers the exact same broad range of services then they’re not focused on their specialism. Choose a hyper-focused company that excels at what they do.

3. They Get Results

This is ultimately what you want, right? To get results from your social media campaigns. Hence, you need to choose a social media marketing company that you can trust to help you achieve success. At Neil Patel Digital, for example, all of our staff are trained in the proven marketing strategies that have helped NeilPatel.com become a global thought leader.

Overall, you need a credible group of experts that are able to meet your needs.

What to Expect from a Great Social Media Marketing Company

The proof is in the pudding as they say. When choosing a social media marketing company you also need a good understanding of how they’ll work with you to achieve the outcomes they promise.

Here are some of the essential processes and outcomes you should expect:

1. Thorough Audience Research

One goal of social media marketing and advertising is to expand your reach to new followers. However, this doesn’t include everybody. #sorrynotsorry

It’s important to target the most relevant users that are likely to be interested in your niche, who will eventually become customers and even become brand evangelists.

A great social media marketing company will define and gain a deep understanding of your target audience. This will inform strategic decisions and make your campaigns more effective.

2. Quality Content

There’s a lot of noise on social media. It’s estimated that over 90% of US companies use social media for marketing. So, the question is, how on earth are you going to stand out?

It all boils down to the content and campaigns that you create. The most successful social media companies produce compelling content that target audiences will find impossible to ignore.

3. Utilizes Multiple Channels

Different demographics use different social media channels. For instance, millennials and Gen Z dig Instagram, while Facebook is used by a variety of age groups.

Furthermore, users will interact with your brand in different ways on different platforms. For instance, they might seek customer support or air their grievances on Twitter but will use Instagram for shopping inspiration.

The social media marketing company you work with must have expertise across all of the major social media channels so that they can help you reach your specific target audience where they hang out and engage them accordingly.

To sum up, what you should expect from a great social media marketing company is comprehensive, high-quality work.

Conclusion

Social media should be an essential part of your marketing mix. If you don’t have the time, resources or skills to do it yourself then, naturally, you’re going to want to hire a social media marketing company.

There are tons of companies that offer these kinds of services out there. But, there are ways to separate the wheat from the chaff.

When researching social media marketing companies, look for credible pros that offer services catered to your needs. And expect nothing but the best in terms of planning, creation and execution.

The post The 8 Best Social Media Marketing Companies of 2020 appeared first on Neil Patel.

Top 10 Christian Marriage Podcasts You Must Follow in 2020

Top 10 Christian Marriage Podcasts Contents [show] ⋅About this list & ranking Christian Marriage Podcasts Nagging Thoughts From A Proverbs 27:16 Woman To Love Honor and Vacuum The Naked Marriage with Dave & Ashley Willis Legacy Dads with Lance and Dante Real Men Connect with Dr. Joe Martin | Marriage | Parenting | Leadership | Ministry Focus […]

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