Thursday, April 28, 2016

Birthday Reminder Box (…with FREE printable calendars!)

Today’s contributor is Tiffany from Making the World Cuter. All posts written by Tiffany for Make It and Love It, can be found here.

. . . . .

Hi everyone, it’s Tiffany again from Making the World Cuter!

A little something that my friends and family know about me…I LOVE giving gifts. I love planning for them, shopping for them, wrapping them and most of all, giving them. I also LOVE sending birthday cards in the mail to family that is far away. The problem? I don’t remember anyone’s birthday until Facebook sends me a reminder the day of, ha!

Birthday Reminder Box (...with FREE printable calendars!) | via Make It and Love It


I made this cute and easy DIY Birthday reminder box to help me remember in advance and keep everything together. I also added some fun “favorite things” cards to keep track of gift ideas for those important people in my life that I purchase gifts for on a regular basis.

Birthday Reminder Box (...with FREE printable calendars!) | via Make It and Love It


The box is big enough to hold cards too! So I counted out how many cards I would need for each month and put them behind the month cards.

Birthday Reminder Box (...with FREE printable calendars!) | via Make It and Love It


Then, each month I can pull out the month card and all the cards behind it and write them out right then. I can address them all and they’ll be ready to put out in the mail in time for their birthdays!

Birthday Reminder Box (...with FREE printable calendars!) | via Make It and Love It


I think this would make a great mother’s day gift, a fun birthday gift, or if you’re like me…a gift for yourself to get you more organized!

Birthday Reminder Box (...with FREE printable calendars!) | via Make It and Love It


Let’s make it!

DIY Birthday Reminder Box


First things first we need to make the box. Cut the 1×4 into your 4 pieces. 2 need to be 6 inches, the other 2 need to be 4 1/4 inches.

favorite things birthday box (6)


Then measure and cut your scrap piece of plywood to a square that is 5 3/4 x 5 3/4.

favorite things birthday box (7)


Sand edges of all pieces of wood to get off the rough edges.

favorite things birthday box (8)


Using the wood glue, glue edges together, putting the shorter pieces inside the longer pieces. Then use the glue around the bottom and attach the plywood piece.

favorite things birthday box (9)


Now, use the nail gun (or hammer and nails) to attach the bottom in each corner.

favorite things birthday box (10)


Then attach the sides with the nail gun, and you have a box!

favorite things birthday box (11)


After the box is put together, it’s time to paint! I went with white…because that’s what I do, I paint everything white.

favorite things birthday box (12)


Let it dry and move onto making the cute things for the inside!

First, print the free printable calendars.

favorite things birthday box (1)


Then cut each month 4 inches wide.

favorite things birthday box (2)


And then cut them 6 inches long.

favorite things birthday box (3)


Then you’ll have a cute little stack of calendars ready to add birthdays to!

favorite things birthday box (4)


I just write the first name of each person (unless there are multiple people with the same name obviously), and if there are two or more birthdays on the same day, I just put a good space between them.

favorite things birthday box (14)


To separate the months, I used washi tape to make tabs, I put about a 2 inch piece on the corner of each month.

favorite things birthday box (15)


Then I folded it over to make a tab.

favorite things birthday box (16)


I did this on opposite sides for every other month in coordinating tapes. You could make this in your favorite color, or make it totally rainbow if you wanted.

favorite things birthday box (17)


Now for the favorite things cards. I LOVE having these! I cut all of them to 4×6 as well and I didn’t add any washi, but you totally could. I just put these behind the month card that their birthday belongs in. Lots of gift ideas can come from knowing their favorite things, and there is lots of room at the bottom to add notes.

favorite things birthday box (5)


You can either send out an email and ask your favorite friends and family members these questions, or have them fill them out themselves at the the next gathering. It would be a great idea to do at a favorite things party!

To finish decorating the box, I cut out the word birthdays on my Cameo in a silver vinyl.

favorite things birthday box (13)


Then I used a little washi that I used on the cards to decorate the box a bit.

favorite things birthday box (18)


Then to make sure I’m always prepared with a card, I purchased a box of fun blank cards at Michaels in cute colors.

favorite things birthday box (19)


It looks super cute sitting near my gift wrapping station.

Who do you know that needs a birthday reminder box?

Birthday Reminder Box (...with FREE printable calendars!) | via Make It and Love It



blog contributor Tiffany


. . . . .

Now that you have your birthday reminder box – add a few of these fabulous DIY gift ideas to your list and you’ll be ready for each and every birthday of the people you love:

60 Handmade GIFT IDEAS…you’ll be PROUD to give!

60 Handmade GIFT'll be PROUD to give! | via Make It and Love It

20+ Handmade Baby Gift Ideas

handmade baby gift ideas

50+ Great Homemade Kid Gift Ideas


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The Local SEO Agency’s Complete Guide to Client Discovery and Onboarding

Posted by MiriamEllis

Why proper onboarding matters

Imagine getting three months in on a Local SEO contract before realizing that your client’s storefront is really his cousin’s garage. From which he runs two other “legit” businesses he never mentioned. Or that he neglected to mention the reviews he bought last year. Worse yet, he doesn’t even know that buying reviews is a bad thing.

The story is equally bad if you’re diligently working to build quality unique content around a Chicago client’s business in Wicker Park but then realize their address (and customer base) is actually in neighboring Avondale.

What you don’t know will hurt you. And your clients.

A hallmark of the professional Local SEO department or agency is its dedication to getting off on the right foot with a new client by getting their data beautifully documented for the whole team from the start. At various times throughout the life of the contract, your teammates and staff from complementary departments will be needing to access different aspects of a client’s core NAP, known challenges, company history, and goals.

Having this information clearly recorded in shareable media is the key to both organization and collaboration, as well as being the best preventative measure against costly data-oriented mistakes. Clear and consistent data play vital roles in Local SEO. Information must not only be gathered, but carefully verified with the client.

This article will offer you a working Client Discovery Questionnaire, an Initial Discovery Phone Call Script, and a useful Location Data Spreadsheet that will be easy for any customer to fill out and for you to then use to get those listings up to date. You’re about to take your client discovery process to awesome new heights!

Why agencies don’t always get onboarding right

Lack of a clearly delineated, step-by-step onboarding process increases the potential for human error. Your agency’s Local SEO manager may be having allergies on Monday and simply forget to ask your new client if they have more than one website, if they’ve ever purchased reviews, or if they have direct access to their Google My Business listings. Or they could have that information and forget to share it when they jump to a new agency.

The outcomes of disorganized onboarding can range from minor hassles to disastrous mistakes.

Minor hassles would include having to make a number of follow-up phone calls to fill in holes in a spreadsheet that could have been taken care of in a single outreach. It’s inconvenient for all teammates when they have to scramble for missing data that should have been available at the outset of the project.

Disastrous mistakes can stem from a failure to fully gauge the details and scope of a client’s holdings. Suddenly, a medium-sized project can take on gigantic proportions when the agency learns that the client actually has 10 mini-sites with duplicate content on them, or 10 duplicate GMB listings, or a series of call tracking numbers around the web.

It’s extremely disheartening to discover a mountain of work you didn’t realize would need to be undertaken, and the agency can end up having to put in extra uncompensated time or return to the client to renegotiate the contract. It also leads to client dissatisfaction.

Setting correct client expectations is completely dependent on being able to properly gauge the scope of a project, so that you can provide an appropriate timeline, quote, and projected benchmarks. In Local, that comes down to documenting core business information, identifying past and present problems, and understanding which client goals are achievable. With the right tools and effective communication, your agency will be making a very successful start to what you want to be a very successful project.

Professional client discovery made simple

There’s a lot you want to learn about a new client up front, but asking (and answering) all those questions right away can be grueling. Not to mention information fatigue, which can make your client give shorter and shorter answers when they feel like they’ve spent enough time already. Meanwhile your brain reaches max capacity and you can’t use all that valuable information because you can’t remember it.

To prevent such a disaster, we recommend dividing your Local SEO discovery process into a questionnaire to nail down the basics, a follow-up phone call to help you feel out some trickier issues, and a CSV to gather the location data. And we’ve created templates to get you started...

Client Discovery Questionnaire

Use our Local SEO Client Discovery Questionnaire to understand your client’s history, current organization, and what other consultants they might also be working with. We’ve annotated each question in the Google Doc template to help you understand what you can learn and potential pitfalls to look out for.

If you want to make collecting and preserving your clients’ answers extra easy, use Google Forms to turn that questionnaire into a form like this:

You can even personalize the graphic, questions, and workflow to suit your brand.

Client Discovery Phone Script

Once you’ve received your client’s completed questionnaire and have had time to process the responses and do any necessary due diligence (like using our Check Listings tool to check how aggregators currently display their information), it’s time to follow up on the phone. Use our annotated Local SEO Client Discovery Phone Script to get you started.

local seo client discovery phone script

No form necessary this time, because you’ll be asking the client verbally. Be sure to pay attention to the client’s tone of voice as they answer and refer to the notes under each question to see what you might be in for.

Location Data CSV

Sometimes the hardest part of Local SEO is getting all the location info letter-perfect. Make that easier by having the client input all those details into your copy of the Location Data Spreadsheet.

local seo location data csv

Then use the File menu to download that document as a CSV.

You’ll want to proof this before uploading it to any data aggregators. If you’re working with Moz Local, the next step is an easy upload of your CSV. If you’re working with other services, you can always customize your data collection spreadsheet to meet their standards.

Keep up to date on any business moves or changes in hours by designing a data update form like this one from SEER and periodically reminding your client contact to use it.

Why mutual signals of commitment really matter

There are two sides to every successful client project: one half belongs to the agency and the other to the company it serves. The attention to detail your agency displays via clean, user-friendly forms and good phone sessions will signal your professionalism and commitment to doing quality work. At the same time, the willingness of the client to take the necessary time to fill out these documents and have these conversations signals their commitment to receiving value from their investment.

It’s not unusual for a new client to express some initial surprise when they realize how many questions you're asking them to answer. Past experience may even have led them to expect half-hearted, sloppy work from other SEO agencies. But, what you want to see is a willingness on their part to share everything they can about their company with you so that you can do your best work.

Anecdotally, I’ve fully refunded the down payments of a few incoming clients who claimed they couldn’t take the time to fill out my forms, because I detected in their unwillingness a lack of genuine commitment to success. These companies have, fortunately, been the exception rather than the rule for me, and likely will be for your agency, too.

It’s my hope that, with the right forms and a commitment to having important conversations with incoming clients at the outset, the work you undertake will make your Local team top agency and client heroes!

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Wednesday, April 27, 2016


See on - Diving with Gopro CamerasThis is the most important things that people want know a...

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Astronomers take a closer look at 'megastructures' orbiting star near the Milky Way

A large cluster of objects in space look like something you would "expect an alien civilization to build", astronomers have said.
Jason Wright, an astronomer from Penn State University, is set to publish a report on the “bizarre” star system - suggesting the objects could be a “swarm of megastructures”.
He told The Independent: "I can’t figure this thing out and that’s why it’s so interesting, so cool – it just doesn’t seem to make sense."
Speaking to The Atlantic, Mr Wright said: "Aliens should always be the very last hypothesis you consider, but this looked like something you would expect an alien civilisation to build. I was fascinated by how crazy it looked."
The snappily named KIC 8462852 star lies just above the Milky Way, between the constellations Cygnus and Lyra. It first attracted the attention of astronomers in 2009, when the Kepler Space Telescope identified it as a candidate for having orbiting Earth-like planets.
But KIC 8462852 was emitting a stranger light pattern than any of the other stars in Kepler’s search for habitable planets.
Kepler works by analysing light from distant places in the universe — looking for changes that take place when planets move in front of their stars. But the dip in starlight from KIC 8462852 does not seem to be the normal pattern for a planet.
Tabetha Boyajian, a postdoc at Yale, told The Atlantic: “We’d never seen anything like this star. It was really weird. We thought it might be bad data or movement on the spacecraft, but everything checked out.”