Thursday, June 29, 2017

Want To Lose Weight? Try This Diet Now

            Why is weight loss such a popular issue? Let me put it a different way. Popular diets have always been the craze but none of them ever work. Why even bother looking at this one? But like with most things, there are often two sides to a story. In this case, it’s the stigma around popular diets.
            If you’ve briefly checked out that link, you’re probably a bit cynical (even I am) given how cliché losing weight through diets and failing has become as a New Year’s Resolution. The fact that one link has thirty different diets also brings into question if any of them work. I get it.
            Before I get into why you should try this diet, I think the more important point is to establish my credibility, if only a little, right now. From my perspective, it’s not the popular diets that don’t work. It’s the people doing the popular diets that don’t work. 
            No, I’m not saying they’re dysfunctional when I say they don’t work. I mean they pick up the diet, throw it away, and pick up a new one faster than you can do with gum. That’s really the problem here. Nobody’s following through with the plan. How can you tell whether the plan isn’t working if not enough people perform it correctly?
Let’s modify our approach a bit. I’ll get to the actual part about the diet soon, but there’s something even more important to losing weight. According to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (a part of the NIH), the most important part of losing the weight might not actually be the diet you choose, but how you cultivate and maintain good habits. 
Check out this list of some of the things that this NIH sponsored institute suggests towards getting to a healthy weight.
       This one’s a bit repetitive, but realize the role of changing your behaviors on weight loss
       Set goals that are attainable. The must be specific, attainable, and forgiving.
       Break down a bigger, long-term goal into a set of progressive and smaller short-term goals.
       Set up a reward system for your success (not with food obviously)
       Keep track of your caloric intake and expenditure
       Avoiding doing things that tempt you into eating or having similar thoughts
       Eat slowly. The signal that you’re full takes at least 15 minutes to travel to your brain, so you might be over-eating a little without realizing it.
Hopefully after seeing so many examples you’ve now developed a general sense of why it’s not just about the diet. Your behaviors like your sleep cycle or the intensity and duration of your exercise play an equal role towards your goal of weight loss as the food you eat. 
The Actual Diet
            This diet’s named the Three Day Military Diet. In any case it’s a pretty ironic name because the diet has nothing to do with the military or three days. The first claim is pretty self-explanatory, the military doesn’t use it. The second one is about sticking to things.
            You see, the three day part actually doesn’t just last three days. It’s a two part process. First, you begin by fasting. Your caloric intake will drop to 1000 to 1300 calories per day for three days. The next four days you will (or attempt to) eat normally. You keep on doing this over a few weeks or months until you see results. 
            To be quite honest, the diet itself is harder than the part about forming good habits, since you’re basically forming a bad habit. You’re modifying the metabolic rate of your body by sending it confusing signals about the availability of food on certain days.
            That confusion for your body probably isn’t exactly the healthiest thing in the world. But if you really want to lose weight fast in a way that isn’t complete starvation, the three day military diet might hold some merit.
You might also want to consider the mental consequences. Personally, it’d be very hard for me to eat about fifty percent less than the recommended 2000 calories per day (that’s everywhere on labels) for three days and then eat “normally” for the rest of the week. 
In any situation, if you take away anything from this piece. It’s that weight loss is a gradual process that happens over time due to your own sustained efforts. Only sustained, consistent efforts at the diet outlined above along with good habits will eliminate weight reliably.

Friday, June 09, 2017

ROI Marketer: 10 Qualities To Look For In Your Next Marketing Hire

There are two important dimensions to the process of evaluating a marketing hire in this context. The general skill set they possess as a marketer and the understanding and grasp they have over the idea of return on investment (ROI). An important theme here to understand also is that marketing and ROI have a slight degree of overlap with each other.

To be more specific, marketing refers to a broader set of skills which may notably include            a number of soft skills like business sense, navigating efficiently and clearly through interpersonal relationships, and being able to interface with different aspects of company culture. The overlap between ROI and marketing is present in the set of hard skills a marketer is expected to own, such as tech-savviness or an intuition for numbers and mathematical projections. After all, creating high ROI depends on understanding the relationship between an investment’s cost and benefits.
            Let’s break down ten of the most important qualities when it comes to selecting and hiring for an ROI oriented marketer.

1.      Social Acuity
            Above all else, a marketer should possess a sharp social sense. While hard skills are also important, there will be no marketing to be done if an individual cannot accurately conceptualize the influence and impact of interpersonal relationships around them as well as the social fabric between the company and its clients. Unquestionable competency in written and verbal skills are essential to the marketing position.
2.      Cultural Fit and Adaptability
            Your marketing hire should have a clear-cut vision of what your company does, fit in with their coworkers, and be able to enhance the overall culture of the company while adapting to changes when required. For example, a marketer should be able to design and locate campaigns that resemble the previous case studies of a company like Adventure Bucket List here in order to attract similar clients and retain customers.
3.      Familiarity with Numbers
            At a fundamental level, your marketing hire should be extremely comfortable with the idea of numbers and statistics. They should be especially keen on the relationship between metrics and improving performance. There is no improvement without measurement. So, a marketing hire that does not implement solutions based on statistical expectations is unfit to deal with a position demanding ROI calculations. Nowadays, even the simplest platforms such as a used sports gear marketplace require some sort of algorithmic work and numerical considerations to remain relevant.
4.      Ability to Formulate Predictive Models
            It’s a given that any marketer who isn’t comfortable with math really is crippled when it comes to improving a company’s marketing efforts, since these improvement strategies are often steeped in data. However, a marketing hire should not only satisfy a basic standard of comfort with mathematics: they should also be able to engage with those numbers to form useful, predictive models.
            Some might find this skill to be slightly intimidating or perhaps overbearing to require of a new marketing hire. In spite of this concern, there is a strong case for the ability of organizations to dramatically improve their competitive advantage and bottom line through predictive analytics, especially when it comes to optimizing marketing campaigns.
5.      Match Models to Current Objectives
            A business will have a number of marketing objectives at any given point, and how exactly investments relate to those objectives is bound to be an important consideration. Being able to match a marketing objective to a key performance indicator (KPI) and then, subsequently, devise methods to improve that metric should be another part of a marketing hire’s skill set.
Figure 1: The intersection between metrics and real-life objectives, showing the necessity of both hard and soft marketing skills. Source
1.      Tech Savvy
            This shouldn’t be much of a problem for new marketing hires, but your hire must be able to deal with technological platforms, their updates, and be willing to learn the methods and protocols of new platforms as the company grows and modifies its back-end processes.
2.      Confident Decision-Making
            Being able to swiftly make decisions and believe in the direction of those decisions should go hand-in-hand with having grounded mathematical and interpersonal senses. Performing cost-benefit analyses routinely as part of that process is also necessary towards the growth and success of a company.
3.      Goal-oriented
            When asked to justify why they are doing something or how a project fits into the grand scheme of things, a marketing hire should be able to respond fluently and quickly. Since marketers will play a big role in the social theme and direction of a company, they should be well-oriented themselves.
4.      Leadership
            The importance of leadership is often overlooked and misunderstood, but it is another key facet of a successful marketer’s identity. Whether it relates to invoking dedication within a group of people to achieve one, specific goal, or coaxing customers and clients, leadership forms the basis for actionable marketing efforts.
5.      Detail-Oriented
            Meticulousness is the final ingredient to marketing as well as being able to characterize ROI. When it comes to the process of calculating a return on investment, the comprehensiveness of one’s perspective will be critical towards identifying the host of factors that contribute variably to the retur