American Churches and The Digital Divide 

The company also found that one-third of faith-based organizations reported an increase in donations during the 2020 pandemic—specifically, ones with more of a digital presence. Churches with YouTube channels, Instagram pages, and prominent websites saw 533 percent more donations than those without. Technology like this can help churches of all kinds, but it has been a lifeline for some smaller and more rural churches, which have been more vulnerable in the pandemic. Source: The Digital …

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American Allegory and The Middle

If that’s what you took from it, you’re reading too much into it.” Then the chief cupbearer said to Pharaoh, ‘I remember my faults today. Once Pharaoh was angry with his servants, and put me and the chief baker in custody in the house of the captain of the guard. We dreamed on the same night, he and I, each having a dream with its own meaning. A young Hebrew was there with us, a …

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We Need Local Newspapers Again

But Nextdoor has gradually evolved into something bigger and more consequential than just a digital bulletin board: In many communities, the platform has begun to step into roles once filled by America’s local newspapers. “Anecdotally, Nextdoor has gone from being kind of sub-Facebook to actually being the main platform you hear people discussing as a vector for local news and events and discussions,” says Emily Bell, director of the Tow Center for Digital Journalism at …

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Biden on Running for President in 2015

Eventually, Colbert got around to asking about the campaign, recalling that Biden had said recently that he wasn’t sure if he is “emotionally prepared” to run for President. Biden looked up at the klieg lights and gave a jut of the chin. “Look, I don’t think any man or woman should run for President unless, No. 1, they know exactly why they would want to be President. And, No. 2, they can look at folks …

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Biden Administration’s Whitehouse.gov WordPress Setup

Fascinating breakdown here… With the change of administrations comes a new website, and this morning the all-new Whitehouse.gov debuted. Like its predecessor, the site is powered by WordPress – but this version carries […] Source: Whitehouse.gov Chooses WordPress, Again – Pagely®

“Wait, you’re playing Pac-Man?”

We finished up with our science lesson this morning and sat down at the kitchen table for a snack. This is usually when the five-year-old has “tablet time” (we’re not the type of parents that abides by the “Screen Time!” mantra or severely restricts device usage…). As I was putting snacks out, I noticed he was playing Pac-Man. PAC-MAN. “Wait, you’re playing Pac-Man?” I asked in that sort of parental stunned manner that even a …

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Tech companies freezing political spending and why tech still matters

This is the death knell of PACs for tech companies with activist employees,” one source told Axios. “This is the final straw.” — via Axios This is a really fascinating development. First Microsoft and now Facebook are suspending PAC (Political Action Committee) spending in Washington. They’re joining financiers Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, and Citigroup, along with Marriott, Blue Cross Blue Shield (caveat — our insurance co), Boston Scientific, and Commerce Bank. Bank of America (caveat …

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“Surely some revelation is at hand”

As the world responded to the epidemic of 1918-1920 and recovered from World War I, Yeats penned this… seems fitting for us to consider a century later. Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold; Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world, The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere The ceremony of innocence is drowned; The best lack all conviction, while the worst Are full of passionate intensity. Source: The Second Coming by William Butler Yeats …

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Client Website Updates Late At Night

Every Friday and Saturday night, we run client website updates focused on speed, security, and just general maintenance. It’s become a ritual of sorts for me over the years to check-in on how things are progressing. It’s completely nuts to say, but I look forward to these late-night updates as a time to watch the percentages tick upwards as each of our client sites get updated (we’re well over 100 at this point) and dip …

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Don Jr’s Site is on Shopify

Donald Trump Jr is tweeting about how “big tech” is cracking down on “free speech” after his father was booted from Twitter, FB, IG, YouTube etc over the last few days as a result of the Jan 6 terrorist attack on our nation’s Capitol. What’s interesting here is that Trump Jr is using Shopify to sell books and bulk up his newsletter subscriptions after Shopify moved to also ban Trump-related sites this week: Shopify does …

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“A lot of things get caught at the end and we’re not paying enough attention.”

This was a fantastic conversation with Dave Maxfield last week on the Thinking podcast. I’m not a huge fan of “business” podcasts, so I intentionally try not to make them. But the last few conversation episodes, especially this one with Dave, have been applicable to all of life regardless of age, stage, or chosen profession. Go have a listen:

Technology as a marketing vehicle for community

This is an inspirational and aspirational piece from Douglas Adams in 1999 that I return to from time-to-time. Partly out of appreciation for Adams’ prescience and partly out of my own selfish need to remind me that this internet we’re building (21 years later) is still a thing of beauty and promise. What Adams points to here has seen realization on social media platforms that originate with younger populations and then spread out to the …

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“Persistent beliefs which are not just demonstrably false…”

Must read here. I won’t summarize the article as you need to read the entire piece for yourself, but the implications for things I care about very deeply (such as marketing, politics, technology, religion, and education) are serious. Take some time and read: Sloman and Fernbach see this effect, which they call the “illusion of explanatory depth,” just about everywhere. People believe that they know way more than they actually do. What allows us to …

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WordPress 2020 Stats

Interesting… didn’t realize the bit about the WordPress 5.6 release team. That’s admirable and something that we need more of in the open-source world (and the tech world in general): One thing I’ll call out WordPress 5.6 had an all women and non-binary release squad of over 50 people, a first for WordPress and probably any large open source project. Also the market share of WordPress grew more in 2020 than it has in any …

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Marketing Joy

Hearing from Spectrum never brings joy. We have been Time Warner Cable (which became Sprctrum) customers of their high speed internet offerings since moving to our new home in 2013. We regularly receive mailers and calls from them asking us to consider their phone plans or cable tv packages. Remarketing is a powerful tactic, but has to be deployed wisely. There’s also been the occasional past due notification (comes in a pink envelope and all) …

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Don’t Look Over Instagram Reels for Your Marketing in 2021

I remember the first few times I saw a friend post a Reel on Instagram and thought “well, that’s a weird knock-off of Snapchat and Tik-Tok” and wondered how or if my clients should even know about (or bother) with it. Then in November, we also got word from Instagram that major changes were coming to how they promoted content in a much search-friendlier way (without having to use hashtags!). Those two combined together means …

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Thinking with Sam Harrelson Episode 167: Thomas Whitley

I was thrilled to be joined again by my long time co-podcaster Thomas Whitley on the most recent Thinking Podcast. We discussed what he’s doing in his capacity as Chief of Staff for the Mayor of Tallahassee, FL to work with (and help) businesses in their city navigate the ongoing Covid crisis and its rippling effects… Thomas Whitley is the Chief of Staff for Mayor John Dailey’s office in Tallahassee, Florida. In this episode, we …

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Marketing to Your Own Beliefs

I get these sorts of questions frequently from new clients: “Why aren’t my Facebook Page posts getting more likes?” “Why isn’t my website getting more views?” “How can I let more people know I’ve written / made / created / offer the best service / product in my area?” “When will people start responding to the emails I’m sending them about our product / church service / nonprofit fundraising?” “What is the best way to …

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Workplace Gender Equity and Covid

I’ve been a work-from-home type for years, but as a man it’s been hard to share the experiences of being on an important client call while changing a diaper or cleaning up my son’s lunch with my male friends (or society in general). I’m definitely not patting myself on the back here (at all… I suck at parenting but everyone’s winging it… “Here’s another marshmallow, Junior… don’t tell Mommy”), however, I am glad that more …

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Google Shopping Gift Guide and Importance of Trending vs Popularity

Google’s annual Shopping Gift Guide is out for 2020. While it’s a handy tool for personal shopping, it also has some incredibly helpful stats for marketing and messaging. The trick is to focus on trending items using data. The same is true for Instagram… the hashtags that you should be incorporating into your posts for more exposure and likes (and follows) are the ones that are trending but not necessarily popular. So, if you’re looking …

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