Just what is Influencer Marketing and How it can Impact Your Business?

What is Influencer Marketing?

Influencer marketing is one of those terms where the name means what it says. It implies that businesses work with people of influence to help them with their online marketing.
This type of marketing aims to identify the main people who act as influencers in your niche so you can approach them to work with you to promote your brand.

So, what is an influencer?

An influencer is somebody who has the power to affect purchase decisions of others. He can do this because he has authority, knowledge, position and/or a special relationship with his audience. He is usually someone who has a significant following in a particular niche, and he actively engages with them.


The size of an influencer’s following will depend on the size of the niche he or she chooses to operate in.
As the internet has matured, certain individuals have established reputations as digital superstars. These are the people we consider to be influencers.


These influencers have built reputations for being experts in particular niches.

They might have established a successful blog on the subject. Perhaps they’ve made videos and uploaded them to a relevant YouTube channel.

Or more often, they have operated active and popular social media accounts, where they give opinions, ideas, tips, and advice relating to their specialist topic.
Influencers spend considerable time building their brand and cultivating their audience.
If the influencers understand how your product could benefit their followers, then they may be happy to work with you. They will be prepared to lend their name, expertise, and authority towards promoting your product to their followers.


There is one caveat to this, though. Influencer marketing will only work if you sell a quality product.

If your product is shoddy, sub-standard or worse than your competitors, then no amount of bribing influencers will make you repeat sales.

Indeed, no real influencer will want to work with you.


Influencer Marketing vs. Content Marketing vs. Brand Ambassadors


Content Marketing occurs when firms create and distribute relevant, valuable content. The content is produced to attract and engage an audience. Its ultimate aim, of course, is to lead the reader into taking some profitable action, perhaps buying a particular product. This type of marketing covers the entire process of creating, distributing and using content to meet your business goals.


As we have established, influencer marketing involves working with a prominent person in a firm’s market segment to distribute content. Again, this material has the ultimate aim of encouraging an online consumer to take a particular course of action.

Influencer marketing focuses on the distribution of content, rather than the creation of it.


Content marketing uses a variety of methods to share content and raise its visibility. One of the most effective ways is to use influencer marketing as part of the distribution process.


Online consumers often take the following sequence:


1. A consumer sees a recommendation about some product or service in a social media post or status. This is usually made by some influencer who the consumer admires and follows. It piques his attention.


2. He decides to learn more, so he goes to his favorite blog, YouTube channel, social media network, or podcast to search for more information about the product.Then he engages with content.


3. He seeks clarification about features, pricing, availability and shipping details. This stage is often completed at a brand or retailer’s site.


4. If he likes what she sees, he purchases the product or service, either online or by going into a physical store.
This entire process involves the consumer interconnecting with a mix of content and influencer marketing.
A variation on the formal influencer marketing process is where your business cultivates brand ambassadors.

A brand ambassador is someone who represents and talks about your brand with passion.

These could be your brand’s fans and customer advocates.
Brand ambassadors provide a form of crowd-sourced marketing that amplifies your brand awareness. And they do this because they love your products and services.


You want to cultivate and encourage your brand’s ambassadors; to help them have conversations with their contacts, both online and offline.


Often brand ambassadors can perform your influencer marketing for you, with little if any effort on your part.
You have to accept in this social age that you have little control over brand ambassadors.

They are the modern form of word-of-mouth. They use predominantly their own content, often a mix of photos, videos and customized tweets.


Of course, you can assist your brand ambassadors and provide them with content they can use. You can also create branded hashtags they can share and build up further support.

Why do You Need Influencer Marketing?

When did you last look at a banner ad on the internet? Most people don’t notice them now. Many of those who take note of them find them so annoying they install AdBlockers to remove them.

With a worldwide average click-through rate of 0.19%, you can hardly consider display advertising successful.

According to a poll from Infolinks, half of Internet users never click on online ads and 35% click on less than five ads per month.

Perhaps you have tried social media marketing. This has some potential. People spend a considerable time nowadays browsing through their various social media threads.

But there is a problem. Who is going to see your social media statuses?

Unless you have built massive audiences, you are unlikely to have much reach.

The social media networks have made things more difficult for you. They want your advertising dollars, so they make it hard for you to reach people with organic posts.

Recent changes to Facebook have compounded this further. They have adjusted news feeds to favor status updates from friends and family and reduced the visibility of business pages.

Most people on social media have a network of a few hundred “friends.” These people will have a wide range of interests and tastes. Often, their only common factor is that they are friends with the same person. They may be a family member of that person, a friend, a work colleague. Or they may just be somebody who plays the same game, or who has a single interest in common.

It can be difficult to market on social media to Joe Average.

But influencers are different. They have cultivated audiences of like-minded people. In some cases, these support bases are gigantic – colossal even.
Imagine how many are relevant people you could target with a quality influencer, than if you try a marketing method with more random targeting?

The scattershot approach to marketing yields erratic results.
Some firms succeed in building successful online identities, to the point they become influencers themselves.

Red Bull has managed to scale the pinnacle of social media success. But to most firms that it an elusive dream.

It is usually much easier to find influencers and work with them and their audiences to spread your message than it is to build a substantial engaged audience yourself.

Influencer marketing is different to traditional advertising. One significant difference is the type of relationship you need to establish with your influencers.

Many businesses, notably large corporate organizations, have traditionally kept tight control over their brand and marketing. That approach is not overly useful in influencer marketing.

Influencers established their prestige before you ever came on the scene. Even if you operate a well-known brand, you cannot expect to leverage much control over your influencers.

You may pay them well, but you do not employ them. Their followers want to hear what the influencers wish to say – not your message. They are not searching for your “opportunity.”

This is one of the core differences between traditional outbound marketing and the new breed of inbound marketing. With inbound marketing (and that includes influencer marketing) the customer comes to you. You can’t dictate the terms as you could before.

It is the organizations who try to keep tight control on their influencers who generally face the most disappointing results.

The essence of successful influencer marketing is trust. And you can’t get away from the core fact – consumers trust influencers more than they do brands.

Successful influencer marketing creates a win/win/win situation. You (the brand) wins. The influencer wins. The followers of the influencer win. If you can achieve this triple strike, then your influencer marketing campaign will have been a success.

How Can Influencers Help Your Business

The level of help you can expect from an influencer depends on the type of working relationship you can establish with him or her.

If you use influencer outreach and an organic approach, you will probably receive less help from an influencer than if you pay them for a distinct influencer marketing campaign.

Of course, the cost will be very different too. Influencer outreach may result in an influencer helping you out for free (or at most the price of some free product).

A formal paid influencer marketing campaign could cost you a great deal, depending on the influencer’s star power – but you will receive more in return.

Typical ways that an influencer with whom you have built an organic relationship could help you include:
1. Creating an article/blog post, or video about your product or service.

2. Sharing information promoting you on their social media accounts. For instance, they might share a post publicising an article you have written for your own blog.

3. Giving you access to their site so you can write a guest post.

Paid influencers will be more proactive in promoting your brand. They might write or film promotional items. Perhaps they may  post pictures on Instagram or videos on YouTube showing them using your product. In this situation, they are not merely helping you out because they built a relationship. They are earning the money you pay them.

Of course, you can’t expect influencers to provide you with unequivocal praise. They are only influencers because of their authentic relationship with their audience. Any real influencer is unlikely to want to deal with you at all if they don’t like your product.

The future of influencer marketing

In 2018 the future of influencer marketing looks rosy. It solves many of the issues faced by traditional marketing, for instance, audience fragmentation on conventional media, and banner blindness with online marketing.

In many ways, influencer marketing is still rising – it is still new enough to be considered innovative. It is in the rising phase of the product life cycle and is not yet at its peak.

A decade ago influencer marketing didn’t exist. You had a few celebrities promoting products, mainly offline, and that was the nearest we had to what we think of as influencer marketing today.

People with popular websites had no idea of the real worth of their sites. Active Facebookers (the other social networks were not really widespread then) did not realize the power they had over an audience. Brands certainly didn’t know about these people.

People we now consider as influencers had no idea of the value of their online asset, and their audience.

In those days you still had people worrying that having your phone near your ear for too long would give you radiation poison. Parents discouraged their offspring from going near social media and didn’t consider using it themselves.

But all that has changed over the last few years. We have social media influencers with millions of followers. There are websites related to every niche imaginable, including parenting, and even some that focus on creating an online social environment for the elderly.

Even farmers spend time online now, comparing agricultural data, weather and researching the best products they could use.

The top social media influencers are looked upon in awe by their followers – in much the same way as elite musicians, actors, and sportspeople.

This is not going to change anytime soon. Look at how your kids spend their time. Take note of who their heroes are.

Generation Z is more interested in YouTubers than they are in Hollywood superstars. Television viewing is now the lowest it has been for years. Nielson reports that Americans aged 18-24 watch less than 2 hours per day of traditional TV. 12-17 year-olds watch even less (and their viewing dropped 45.5% between 2012 and 2017). Think back to how much TV you watched in your youth.

This change is unlikely to be fleeting. It is not just the latest fad. Thanks to the nature of social networking and the spread of the digital age, ordinary people have the opportunity to have one-on-one interactions with online influencers. That is not possible with old media.

Although influencer marketing is still in its early days, it has reached critical mass.

As more firms engage in influencer marketing, there is sufficient incentive for businesses to create influencer marketing infrastructure. For instance, the growth in platforms has been phenomenal in the past few years.

There are also more educational sites now, like the Influencer Marketing Hub, which provide the knowledge for firms to feel encouraged to give influencer marketing a chance.

How to get started

There is no point engaging in influencer marketing just because you read somewhere that it was trendy. You have to have a purpose for your campaign.

This is probably no different from any other facet of business. Ask any successful business person for the secret to their success, and most will admit that it was down to goal-setting.

For influencer marketing to be successful, you must have quality content.

A 500-word blog post, written to meet SEO criteria will struggle to attract an influencer’s attention.

For people to notice your content, it needs to be
 Accessible
 Actionable
 Visually appealing
You need to provide real value to the reader.
David Schneider discusses some of the ideal content you could create in How to Create Content that is Worth Promoting to Influencers.

His suggestions include:
 Expert roundups
 Interviews
 Listicles
 Ask your favorite influencers for a quote and use those in an infographic or create a SlideShare.
 Ask for experts’ tip and put them all in one blog post.
You need to determine where potential influencers relevant to your clientele have built their audience.

The most common places for influencers to make their name are:

1. Blogs – blogging influencers have spent time (often years) building a successful, popular blog covering a niche that interests your target audience. While many of the best-known fashion influencers have gained influence over a wide range of platforms in recent year, many of them won their initial fame due to the quality of their blogs. You could choose to work with quality bloggers in a range of ways:
1. Guest posting on their blog
2. Trying to get them to mention your brand in a post
3. Aiming for a product review
4. Sponsoring a paid blog post
2. Social media – quite a few influencers (even those who run quality blogs) have huge followings and engagement on their social media accounts. Your aims here could include:
1. Receiving positive mentions in social posts
2. Retweets or shares of your social media posts
3. Posts showing the influencer using your product (for instance an “unboxing video” on an influencer’s YouTube channel
4. Creative social posts promoting your products

A major decision you need to make before you start is which path you should follow to find your influencers. There are three options:
1. Organic – you search for and build relationships with influencers in-house. This is the cheapest, but most time-consuming method.

2. Platforms – you pay to use one of the specialist online platforms to find your influencers. Many of the platforms provide systems, which make it simpler to manage your influencer campaigns.

3. Agencies – you pay a specialist influencer marketing agency to help you with influencer selection and management.

 

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How to get your website on First Page of a Google Search-SERP

How to Get Your Website on the First Page

What Does SERP Mean?

Google SERP stands for “Google search engine result page,” which are the results pages that search engines like Google display based on users’ queries. These include both organic results and pay-per-click results from Google AdWords, which will be displayed at the very top of the page.

Whenever you do a Google search for any commodity is it any wonder why the big name brands just keep showing up on the first page? For example, if you do a search for mens’ jewelery, big brand names like Fossil, Zales , Tiffany’s and Macy’s are all up there I the first page.

Is there any hope for the smaller, newer brands to ever make it to the top of page one of a Google search?

Google’s algorithms will process a user’s search and almost instantly show them their results. The order of the search results is based entirely on relevance—if Google believes your content can fulfill a users’ search most effectively, you’ll be at the very top of the Google SERP.

Without a doubt, getting your site and content showing up towards the top of the Google SERP is a goal for most (if not all) businesses. Organic search alone, after all, is still responsible for 51% of online traffic.

The Factors that Contribute to SERPs

There are several different factors that contribute to what content is prioritized and listed first on the Google SERP. The factors that weigh most heavily are:

  • Keyword relevance.The more the keywords on your page align with a users’ search, the more likely it will be that your content will appear higher in a search’s results page.
  • Domain authority.This is why some of those enormous companies always seem to rank first. Sites with higher domain authority will be given priority in the algorithms because search engines know they can trust these sites. Factors like links to and from the site and the length of time a site has been around can all affect this score.
  • The user’s physical location.Users who are searching for a shoe store in Canada don’t want to see results for a shoe store in Ireland, so Google will automatically take location into consideration. This goes for nonphysical products, too. If I search for marriage license qualifications in the U.S., it won’t do me much good to see the requirements they have in Greece.
  • The user’s browsing history.What a user searches for will impact what search results they see, even if the result differences for the same query between separate users are subtle.

Clearly, we aren’t in full control of our Google SERP rankings in the same way that we could be with other aspects of our business, but there are several that we can affect. Specifically, choosing the right keywords and utilizing SEO best practices to optimize your site for search and build domain authority are both good options.

How Do Different Types of Searches Affect the SERP?

If you want to put your business on the first page of the Google SERP, some types of searches will be easier to rank well for than others.

There are three main types of searches that users conduct. These are:

Informational searches,where users are seeking out information about a given subject. Examples of these searches might be “how to install a new garage door” or “when was John F. Kennedy born.”

These searches present an excellent opportunity to rank well even as a small business because there’s such a wide variety of keywords and topics you can cover.

These searches also aren’t nearly as likely to have PPC campaigns placing frequently because there’s low intent to purchase from them.Navigational searches,in which users are trying to find a specific site or brand.

Maybe they can’t remember the exact URL, or perhaps trying to find a brand whose name they forgot.

Every now and then PPC campaigns will be shown if businesses are targeting their competitor’s traffic, but unless you’re the site users are looking for, it can be difficult to rank well for this one.

Transactional searches, where users are looking for something to purchase. Examples of this type of search may be “Orlando shoe cobbler” or “discount on accounting software.” These signal high intent to purchase (and soon). PPC ads are most likely to pop up for these searches, and unsurprisingly, these SERPs have some of the fiercest competition.

How to Improve Your Google SERP Position

Improving your AdWords ad ranking can boost your position on the Google SERP relatively quickly as discussed  in a recent post . Improving your organic standing in the SERPs takes a little more time. That being said, with consistency and the right strategies, it’s something that you can accomplish.

If you aren’t currently ranking well on your target Google SERP, or if you just want to improve your standing, here are a few things you can do right now that can directly impact your ranking:

Improve your on-site SEO.

Improving your site’s overall SEO will naturally improve your SERP rankings. Boost your SEO with strategies like improving your site’s loading speed and using page metadata. You can learn more about this here.

Tackle link-building

Link building will help the SEO and domain authority of your site, but it will also help you pop up in searches because Google likes content with lots of shares and links.

Write guest posts for other publications, and link to only high valuable content from sites with great authority. Both of these strategies will help.

Do more keyword research.

Keyword research is something you can do that will start having an effect immediately. Find a balance of high search volume and low competition and base content creation around that.

Use tools like Yoast SEO to help you select and optimize for the keywords you’re trying to rank for.

Focus on creating content for informational searches

This is partially where the keyword research will come in handy. Informational searches are often easier to rank for than the other two types of queries, but they still provide a valuable touchpoint that can help you connect with your target audience. Create content that you believe users are searching for and you’ll have an easier time making it to the top of the Google SERP.

Run PPC campaigns for transactional searches

If you’ve made the above changes and you’re still struggling to get on the first page of SERPs for transactional searches organically, it’s time to try PPC.

In many cases, you can’t afford not to appear at the top of those searches because if you don’t, your competitors will. In the example above, the only results that even appear above the fold are PPC ads. Invest in AdWords campaigns or Bing Ads for your most high-value transactional keywords.

Conclusion

The Google SERP is extraordinarily competitive. With 2 million blog posts being written every single day, that’s a trend you can count on continuing.

Understanding what factors affect search results can help you optimize your site and your content. With the above strategies, you can land your site on the first page of the SERP with both organic and PPC content, getting more relevant traffic to you in larger numbers than ever before.

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A Guide To Vape, Cannabis And Cryptocurrency Coins

A Guide To Vape, Cannabis And Cryptocurrency Coins

Vape, cannabis and cryptocurrency coins go hand in hand.

Cryptocurrency and vaping do go together, but you might not have realized that you could combine two great things in one.

If you are trying to learn how these two industries intersect, you will learn a lot by reading below.

No one would suggest that you will get the exact results you want the first time around, but you can start researching these things because they could all mesh to give you an experience that is exciting.

 

 

  1. Coins That Are Focused On Cannabis

Cryptocurrency coins focusing on cannabis and vaping are much more common than you think.

However, you do not learn very much just by searching for cryptocurrency coins focusing on cannabis and vaping.

You must have an idea of how much that coin is growing, how that coin relates to the industry, and how much it is growing in total value.

There are a lot of these coins that you need to look into first, and you should remember that you can go through all of them to do a full body of research.

Anyone who has problems with their research should avoid coins that they do not understand.

  1. Why Would You Invest In These Coins?

You could invest in these coins in any way that you want.

Some people will download the app for the coin because they want to have a way of controlling that coin very easily.

These same people will be very interested in the fact that they can watch these coins change.

You can see how much better it will get, and you will be amazed by the fact that you can come up with a plan for your investments that is based on the fact that you have this information you can read at any time.

Plus, you need to be sure that you have considered what you would do when you are hoping to make the most money from these coins.

The investments that you make should be designed to make your life easier.

This means that you are investing in something that benefits you.

This is especially true if you invest in coins that support companies you patronize.

  1. Why Cannabis?

Cannabis itself is a very big deal because it can completely change how you relate to the medical field.

Medical investments have always seemed like they would be a good thing for you to use because people always need medical care.

However, this is not always the case.

There are plenty of medical brands that are not performing well, but cannabis is something that people will want to invest in because they can easily come up with a plan for their cannabis investment that is based around either production or growing.

Cannabis is going to take the marketshare from the prescription medication industry because more and more people can go to the cannabis world to get the care that they need.

You will see values rise in this field because there are more companies out there that are driving growth, and there are many people who will be very interested in trying to make sure that they can invest in the cannabis company that will take the biggest marketshare.

  1. Which Companies Are Most Interesting?

There are some great coins in this field that include HempCoin and PotCoin.

You can look rough all these different coins, and you need to be sure that you have come up with a plan that you think actually makes sense for you.

Someone who has never done this before needs to be sure that they have looked over every one of these coins and so many more.

One of these coins will be right for you because it speaks to you in a personal way.

  • Paragon
  • Tokes
  • PotCoin
  • HempCoin
  • DopeCoin
  • CannabisCoin
  • GreenMed
  • Budbo
  • BlazerCoin
  • Cannation

These are some of the coins on the market that should interest you because they have the highest values overall.

However, you need to be sure that you have looked at the company you like the most.

You might want to come up with a plan that you think will mix your investments so that you are invested in certain things that will be best for you.

You also need to be sure that you know what each company does with their investments.

Some coins are very invested in the growth of cannabis because they are fueling the industry, but other companies are investing in dispensaries that are making amazing products.

Still other companies actually invest in special companies that make things like lotions and soaps.

It all depends on what you want to invest in because each company is a little bit different.

Plus, you might want to see if you can find a coin that has a nice mixture of investments behind it.

  1. How Do You Make Money?

You are waiting for these coins to grow in value.

You want to know for a fact that you will have a profit at the end of the year from your coin, and this is why you must choose a coin that is trending up.

When the coin is trending up, you will get a much better result.

Also, you need to be sure that you have read exactly how high the coin is supposed to go in the future.

Reading articles that are written by people in the industry could give you an idea of how much money you can make.

If the coin is supposed to rise very high, you will make a lot more money.

If you are getting into a coin that is new, you need to watch it until you know that it is going to provide you with the best possible options for the future.

  1. How Long Should You Invest?

Invest for as long as you want, but you need to have a plan for each coin.

You need to read industry information that tells you what you might do to save money.

You need to know when to get out of a coin because it will not be very profitable.

Move on to a new coin when the customer service is poor, and you can get out of a coin when you realize that that coin is not going to survive.

Some coins will plateau because they are not very popular, or they might have programming issues that are just too hard to deal with.

  1. Conclusion

The  cryptocurrency coins that you invest in should be related to something that you are interested in.

The majority of people who are trying to make good choices when buying their coins will discover that buying these coins is always easier because they are buying something that truly makes sense to them.

You know a lot about the cannabis industry, and it only makes sense that you would get cryptocurrency that will help you become a part of the cannabis world.

When you are not investing in something that you understand, you will lose money because you are not all that involved in the investments.

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Can Blockchain Technology solve the problems of The Cannabis Industry?  

Can Blockchain Technology Really Solve The Problems Faced By The Cannabis Industry?

 

For sure, anything related to technology, especially blockchain technology  may seem too complex for the ordinary person.

Despite having a somewhat complex name, blockchain technology is quite easy to understand.

I’m just an ordinary person like you , yet I was able to perform research on blockchain technology, and let me tell you, it’s quite impressive.

Definition of blockchain

If you have been following cryptocurrency over the last few years, you may have already come across the term “blockchain.” If you’re not a tech expert like me, then you would have relied on Google for the definition of blockchain.

Moreover, Google may have given you an answer like this: “Blockchain is a decentralized, distributed, public ledger.”

It sounds a lot harder to understand according to this definition.

Basically, blockchain is the technology typically used by Bitcoin, which is a type of digital currency, in keeping track of its records.

It’s quite understandable why a few industries have misunderstood blockchain technology.

After all,  it is a fairly new niche in a speculative market with a somewhat foggy set of laws. On another note, cannabis also exists in a speculative market with an unclear set of regulations.

Nevertheless, both industries are receiving an influx of talented programmers and entrepreneurs looking to present a solution that will resolve their respective industry’s biggest worries.

With that in mind, I wanted to come here and present to you ways on how the blockchain technology can actually assist in transforming the cannabis industry.

The Cannabis Industry is Booming

Truly, the times are changing as 30 states have legalized the use of marijuana.

Nine of the 30 states legalized the use of recreational marijuana, while the other 21 states have legalized medical marijuana.

It is without a doubt that the cannabis industry is booming as a total sales $6.7 billion was reported by 2017.

This number is expected to rise with a projected sales of $20.2 billion by the year 2021, which is quite an amazing figure.

In fact, experts are saying that the growth rate of the cannabis industry outpaces that of which was set by the tech firms during the dot-com bubble.

I find that unlike the other industries, the cannabis industry tends to be subjected to careful examination from the public.

It receives more scrutiny as compared to others. As a result, this heightens the level of uncertainty in the cannabis marketplace.

While cannabis enthusiasts are indifferent toward the idea of additional safety measures and regulations surrounding product provenance, this is an industry that would need all the help it can get.

Regulators, businesses, and entrepreneurs should consider how blockchain technology could be the answer to the challenges faced by the cannabis industry.

Blockchain Technology as the “New Internet”

Before I start discussing the reasons as to why numerous cannabis firms are utilizing their own blockchain technology, it is only right that I talk a little more about what blockchain technology is and what it can do.

A lot of people have been commenting on how blockchain is an “ingenious invention.”

In fact, publicly traded companies, such as IBM, are now utilizing blockchain technology as a means to solve numerous issues.

As its name suggests, blockchain is a chain of blocks. Blocks refer to digital information, which is then stored in a chain, also known as a public database.

With that in mind, these blocks, which are digital pieces of data, have three parts:

  • It stores the details concerning a transaction, which would involve the time, date, and dollar amount of the most recent purchase.
  • It also stores the information concerning those participating in the transaction. However, instead of using a name, blockchain technology reads data through unique digital signatures.
  • Lastly, blocks store data that makes each block unique. A code, which is referred to by many as a “hash,” is assigned to a block which will represent a particular transaction.The code of your previous purchase may look identical to your recent purchase; however, the blocks can easily tell each transaction apart by using the codes.

When a block stores new information, that information is added to the blockchain. However, before a blockchain is formed, there are four things that must first happen:

  • A transaction must first occur
  • The transaction must be verified
  • The transaction details must be stored in a block
  • The block must be provided with a hash

Why Cannabis Companies Are Embracing Blockchain Technology

Similar to most supply chains, the cannabis industry can greatly benefit from the blockchain technology.

The enhanced provenance that blockchains can provide brings about the peace of mind in both suppliers and customers.

By utilizing blockchain technology, it would be easy to identify how marijuana was grown and by whom, who were the parties involved in every cannabis transaction, and that no link along the cannabis supply chain was involved in any illegal elements.

Without further ado, here are some of the reasons why cannabis companies are embracing blockchain technology.

Processing of Payments

The processing of payments is probably one of the struggles of the cannabis industry.

Despite having the majority of the states in the US legalized either recreational or medical marijuana, the federal law still poses a number of restrictions as to how payment is accepted and stored by cannabis-based firms.

Moreover, 300 out of 11,000 banks, in the United States of America allow cannabis business owners to open an account.

Since cryptocurrencies and other digital currencies are unregulated and decentralized, this provides cannabis business owners the ability to accept secure and fast payments that are cashless.

Since cannabis-based businesses are cash-only businesses, blockchain technology can greatly aid in the accounting processes of the business.

With blockchain technology, owners of cannabis companies no longer have to sift through an infinite amount of financial statements.

Blockchain technology will not only change how payments are accepted by the cannabis industry but also the entire operation of global commerce.

Quality Assurance

The production process of cannabis may touch on numerous businesses – from the farmers and growers to the authorized dispensaries, and from cannabis retailers to consumers.

Nevertheless, the utilization of blockchain technology in the supply chain of cannabis businesses provides a complete picture of its end-to-end process; thus, ensuring quality assurance.

Maintenance

Stemming from the previous point, blockchain technology also allows the consumers, regulators, and business owners of cannabis products to pinpoint the inefficiencies in the cannabis end-to-end process.

Remember, a supply chain that is supported by the blockchain’s flawless math has the potential to produce an improved overall customer experience.

Standard of Transparency

Paragon CEO Jessica Versteeg shares with Rolling Stone on how her cannabis startup is utilizing its very own cryptocurrency based on blockchain technology.

For VerSteeg, it’s all about transparency in the cannabis space, considering the fact that this industry is facing unclear regulations across borders.

The ledger used by the blockchain technology can either reduce or eliminate any trace of human-based complication because it is unchanging.

Financial institutions and government agencies that are performing audits on cannabis-related transactions can utilize blockchain technology as a means to keep track of its legality.

Limiting Over-Consumption

There are still unclear parameters governing the use, sale, and purchase of cannabis in states that have legalized its production and consumption.

While there isn’t much difference between the legality of marijuana among the various states, the laws governing cannabis production and consumption are still too difficult to enforce.

This difficulty can actually lead to potential criminal networks.

What’s worse is that tracing and identifying who is abiding by the regulations and who is going against it has become much more challenging.

Needless to say, heavy-handed tactics are prohibited in the context of the legalization of cannabis.

A simple introduction of blockchain technology to monitor and track personal sales would represent a fair middle ground between the current lack of command and more unhandy strategies.

There are two companies that use blockchain technology to solve this kind of issue. 

With IBM’s proposed solutions, there is an increased transparency on the legality of cannabis sales.

In addition, BlockMedx is working on various ways in which blockchain can assist in combatting opioid abuse.

Facilitating Taxation

No matter where you buy it or how much you paid for it, you are always going to face a heavy tax when purchasing marijuana products.

This was a huge part of the legalization pitch, after all. In fact, California reported over $2.7 billion worth of cannabis derived tax.

If one is to utilize blockchain ledger technology and that this would be mandated for dispensaries, there is a high chance that sales figures would become certain and stable.

By extension, it would lead to accurate taxation and simpler audits for all of the parties involved.

The best part is that the revenues from cannabis-related transactions are given back in larger amounts to the citizens of the states who have chosen to legalize marijuana.

Again, IBM as one of the companies who proposed to the Canadian Government a particular blockchain solution for ensuring the effective and accurate tracking of cannabis so much so that it would lead to easier taxation.

Nevertheless, the act of utilizing blockchain technology can also present a number of disadvantages and risks for the cannabis industry.

In fact, a company by the name of Deloitte mentioned how blockchain risks are classified into three categories, which are as follows:

Standard Risks

Blockchain technology will open cannabis-based companies to various risks that are associated and are actually quite similar to that of the current business processes.

This can be considered as a nuance for those who need to account for their transactions.

Value Transfer Risks

Blockchain technology allows the peer-to-peer transfer of value without any need for a primary intermediary.

The value involved in this particular transfer could either be a piece of information, identity, or even assets.

With that in mind, this new technological business model exposes the transactions and any interaction made between two parties.

As a result, it opens them to new risks that central intermediaries used to manage.

Smart Contract Risks

When it comes to smart contract risks, these have the potential to encode complex financial, legal, and business arrangements on the blockchain system.

Furthermore, it could also result in a higher level of risk associated with the act of mapping these transactions from the physical to the digital structure.

Summarizing CBD and Cryptocurrency intersection

It is without a doubt that blockchain technology has the ability to transform any business process.

It can do so by disintermediating the business’ processes and central entities, improving any of its efficiencies, and allowing the creation of an immutable audit on transactions.

We have already discussed what is blockchain technology, and what has been shared regarding the current state of the cannabis industry in the United States of America.

It is clear that this industry can benefit from using this developing technology as a means to track and monitor its end-to-end process without ever neglecting marijuana laws.

Final Thoughts

With that in mind, here are my final thoughts on the utilization of blockchain technology by businesses in the cannabis industry:

One thing is for sure, blockchain technology brings about an impact in various industries only because companies are choosing to embrace its system.

Basically, blockchain technology can assist in the seed-to-sale monitoring and tracking of the cannabis industry.

The states that have legalized the use of either recreational or medical marijuana make use of scanning and tracking procedures so that they can monitor the journey of every cannabis product until it reaches the end-user.

Nevertheless, the full farm-to-table life cycle is quite difficult to track.

This is where the blockchain technology comes in.

It can easily fix this particular issue that the cannabis industry is facing.

With the use of codes and labels that blockchains bring to the table, all of the information concerning cannabis-related transactions can easily be traced, stored, archived, and searched.

More and more companies are now turning to blockchain technology for a more decentralized, secured, and transparent data ledger.

With that in mind, it is very advisable to have at least a blockchain developer to be part of your team.

By welcoming blockchain into your business, much like what cannabis companies are doing now, you are allowing easy verification without having the need to be dependent on third-parties.

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How to toss your stressful job and be your own boss

How to toss your stressful job and be your own boss

 

Introduction:

To be your own boss in today’s competitive world is not as easy as you might imagine as there are stumbling blocks to overcome. You are making a decision to be in the driver’s seat and to learn and master new skills.

Once you are offering a product or service that is in demand, your greatest challenge will be to sell successfully online.

One of the biggest advantages created by the internet is the ability to access and market to large audiences.Marketing and advertising online is faster,more cost effective, engaging and requires less staff to manage and track campaigns.

The key to online success is to master the art of targeted advertising. Targeted advertising is a way of placing ads based on demographics, on the consumers’ previous buying history or on behavior.

If you are dissatisfied with your boss’s demands which may be baseless and futile, you may be inclined to quit your job straight away and start making money online.

You should not tolerate your boss’s mood swings especially when you are doing exactly what you are being paid to do. You have the potential and career opportunities to earn online. With determination and the right attitude, the possibility to be your own boss may be sooner realized that you might have imagined.

Most 9-5 jobs are a headache with multiple issues that arise with either colleagues or boss. So, if you want to live a cool and comfortable life, you can choose to earn money online. Here is how you can be your own boss:

  1. Find out What You Would Like to Do.

First of all, while you are doing your uninteresting and repetitive work, you must start finding what work gives you happiness and satisfaction.It may be offering a product or service for sale.

 

  1. Research the Rates of the Work You Like

Research the rates of the work you like to do. You must find the rate of the work, make comparisons between your job and online work and then decide. You must remember initially you will be paid low. With passage of time, rates will increase.

  1. Go for Pros and Cons List Between Your Current and Online Job.

You should not just quit your job. You must continue your job as well as work on small projects online. Then, you must make a Pros and Cons List between your offline and online job. This will give you a fair idea of what you should prefer.

  1. Make a Switch or Keep Researching and Learning.

If Pros and Cons List is in favor of Online Job, you must switch. Otherwise, you must start learning for your dream online job and keep going.

  1. Make Sure to Have Enough Savings for First Six Months.

Before you switch, you should have sufficient money to survive and grow for six months.

  1. Examining Your Inner Self and Choices

Between all this, you must examine what your inner self likes. Also, check impacts and results of your choices on you and your career.

 Determine Your Career

 After you have gone through every stage, you must determine which career you may want to continue to do. You must test both careers, and then make your decision carefully and diligently. To be your own boss is achievable but is not for everyone.

Conclusion

 You should be controlling your days, evenings and nights, not any corporation or company. You should put yourself in charge, and truly discover your new abilities, potential and skills.

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Constructive Ideas for earning passive income that are achievable

Constructive Ideas for earning passive income that are achievable

Ideas for earning passive income are outlined below.

Imagine if you could earn money simply by sitting back and doing nothing. Believe it or not, it’s something countless folks do every day. It’s a concept known as passive income investing.

Passive income is income resulting from cash flow received on a regular basis, requiring minimal to no effort by the recipient to maintain it.

Introduction:

Passive income is the most easy method to make money while you sleep, eat and drink. Passive income ways must be constructed, then you will be able to earn without working hard day and night.

Most millionaires and billionaires have sources of passive income, which adds to their total wealth regularly.

It must be clarified at this point that initially you will be putting great efforts and then only you will be able to earn income enjoying at beaches or celebrating your birthday in New York or Miami, as you may wish.

The following are some ideas for earning passive income:

  • Affiliate Marketing

You invest your time and effort by generating this kind of passive income. Affiliate marketing means promotion of a company or brand, and then earn a commission when a sale goes through.

  • Creation and Sale of an Online Course

Online study has gotten famous nowadays. You can create and sell an online course on a topic that you have mastered. Udemy and Teachable are such famous platforms. Every time a student enrolls, you are paid your dues.

 Starting a YouTube Channel

Whether a celebrated famous person or a common citizen, everybody is starting YouTube channel, showing some spicy content, Vlogging and other tricks that get them viewers and subscribers. This is one of most common methods of earning passive income nowadays.

  • Making E-Commerce Site

E-Commerce Site is a hard task in the initial stages. But once it gets set up, you can earn through selling your own product, selling someone else’s product or just earning through drop shipping (customer orders, and manufacturer delivers).  These passive income techniques have taken internet by storm.

 Writing E-Books Or Other Journals

E-Books and e-journals are very short pieces and easy to complete than normal books and journals. You can write about fascinating How-To topics or other non-fiction topics, and earn through sale or reading of your e-books or journals.

 Selling Photos Online

You can sell photos online on different websites. Every time a user downloads your photo, you get funded by website. Photographer is paid low for downloads that are done by subscribed user. If a customer pays for your photo, you are paid highly.

Conclusion

There are many other ideas for earning passive income. Some of the ideas need hard work in the beginning, but then you will be earning much regularly and comfortably.

As we all know, the years fly by very quickly and before we realize it, retirement is just around the corner. Do not depend on Social Security as your main source of retirement income because the rate of inflation is just going to get worse and erode its purchasing power.

It’s prudent to start working on ideas for earning passive now while we have the time to devote to planting the seeds to achieve it in the near future. 

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It’s not how much you earn but do you spend your money wisely?

Spend your money wisely and reap the benefits of savings in the future.

Spend your money wisely even though you may have to literally sweat to earn a living. Most people are flat broke after they have blown their hard earned money on frivolous purchases.

Frank A Clark, american politician and lawyer, once said that “Many folks think they aren’t good at earning money when what they don’t know is how to use it.” —Frank A. Clark

Earning vs Spending

The quote mentioned above is the crux of most of our lives. It is very important to realize that it is very difficult to earn money and extremely easy not to spend it wisely. Having an amount in our accounts makes us want to spend on everything that comes to our mind. We blame our impulse for picking up those extra snacks or clothes while we are out shopping for the essentials.

Saving is an art:

It has been rightly said that saving is an art. Art takes great focus and determination to bring out a masterpiece. Similarly, planning and making the right choices to cut down your excessive expenditures. requires the same. Saving doesn’t seem important to us when we have our favorite item in our hands, but we realize its importance when we need money in stressful situations and if we encounter uncalled events.

Be it passive income or any other income that enables you to meet the necessities and enjoy the luxuries of life, both should have a chunk that you should keep in your piggy bank. There are certain tips that you can follow to save your money and make your life easy.

KEEP FOCUS:

Well, this doesn’t seem to be very relatable when we talk about saving money, but it is one of the most important facts. While you are out on your shopping spree and picking up random things keep it in your mind that you are not here to spend extra money. Stay focused and determined. You should not give in to your impulses.

INVEST Wisely:

While this sounds obvious, it is important to not invest in something that isn’t useful in the long run. Invest wisely in your products and business. Sometimes we think that certain things have potential in them, whereas the reality is in contrast to it. Therefore, we should weigh the possibilities of profit and loss, and then let your money into it.

SET YOUR PRIORITIES:

You must have heard this very frequently, but you are still not sure how to apply it to your life. Setting priorities bounds you and makes you spend on the very essentials, and confines you from expending unnecessarily. If you are an entrepreneur, make sure you save every penny to invest in your venture. If you are an owner of a small business save to expand your business. Do not invest in other things when you already have something worth spending on your plate.

PICK THE RIGHT INSTRUMENTS:

If you think that you can save by keeping money in your cupboard then you are wrong. It is almost impossible to prevent yourself from spending the money that is within your reach easily. Choose options like Savings account, Certificate of deposit (CD) such authentic options will help you to save your money in a more appropriate and scheduled manner.

FEEL SATISFIED:

Once your saving account starts flourishing with your savings you will feel satisfied. You will have money to invest, start a passive business, travel, grab a business opportunity, and many such profitable choices will be in your basket.

 

Be your boss, who is strict with his rules and does not compromise on the performance of his employee.

An excellent passive income opportunity:

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What Is Insider Trading And How to comply with the law

 

What Is Insider Trading And How to comply with the law

For all of you traders out there, you may want to beware of insider trading.

In case you weren’t aware, there are unscrupulous traders out there who buy or sell stocks, securities and currencies based on non-public information they have access to.

These traders are for example, owners, CEOs, directors, or other upper-level management employees of large companies along with anyone who knows them such as family or friends.

Insider trading is an unlawful and unfair form of trading.

It takes place by individuals who make trades based on utilizing private or stolen company information they can use to their advantage.

Because they have access to such facts, their likelihood of making a profit is a most likely a sure one.

Why is this bad?

Because they are depriving public traders the chance of doing the same and are hindering the overall performance of the market.

How Insider Trading Works

You can think of insider trading much like cheating on a test, especially a job-skills test where those who score the highest are most likely to get hired.

The insider trader would be analogous to the person(s) that somehow gets secret access to the answers before the test is to be taken.

Hence, they have an unfair advantage over all the other applicants.

How is valuable data passed along in insider trading?

Let’s take the following first scenario:

Let’s say the Director of ABC Inc has the results announcement due to be released by, say Wednesday to the London Stock Exchange.

Assume that the announcement is going to hurt the ABC’s shares price since this company isn’t doing as well as the public believes it is.

Monday, in a phone conversation with a hedge funds manager, the director accidentally let the info slip.

While at lunch, that manager has a few drinks with his lawyer and thus mistakenly tells him.

Monday night, the lawyer then informs his wife over supper that ABC’s announcements are not too good.

 So on Tuesday, she sells all her ABC shares to avoid taking a loss on them.

She then can be nailed for insider trading.

So, what makes insider trading just that? It consists of the following:

– The insider:

This could be any employee of a company, especially upper management or perhaps anyone they interact with on a daily basis.

Anyone that a company member passes confidential info to is considered an insider including friends, relatives, or spouses.

– Price sensitive information:

Such info is any type of fact(s) or advice that encourages one to buy or sell stock based on good news or bad.

If this info leaks out early, it will directly affect the share value of the company involved.

Simply put, this is tomorrow’s information shared today.

– Deal:

A deal is simply the act of knowingly passing on info that is confidential and illegal at that.

Anybody with access to inside info who passes it on to others is part of the deal.

Passing inside info to any outsider (or non-employee of your company) is illegal whether it is witnessed or not.

That also goes for professionals that accompany you in your trading activities such as hedge funds managers or lawyers.

Proving Insider Trading Activity

Then comes the aspect of insider trading: proving that it has happened.

Distributing inside info or accepting it is a crime and carries criminal penalties, large fines, and prison sentences.

In the case of court action, a jury needs to be persuaded beyond a reasonable doubt, that a suspect has committed a crime.

This plays as a standard test.

Because such crimes carry big penalties including imprisonment, the bar is set quite high and it’s the jury that decides whether or not insider trading activity has taken place.

Insider trading is even more difficult to prove.

In an insider’s dealing case with multiple networks of information, phone conversations, emails, tricky deals, etc, it can all be quite complicated to actually prove it has occurred.

As for the defendants, they’ll deny that it happened and such communication was done only as part of their job.

Because it isn’t easy to prove, many who commit to insider trading who should be prosecuted are not.

– The SEC Versus the Supreme Court

Currently, we have two inconsistent laws of insider trading simultaneously at war with one another in the United States.

One is a law promulgated by the Security & Exchange Commission (SEC) in its enforcement program.

The second set of laws is the law of insider trading that has been articulated by the US Supreme Court in a series of views that the SEC dislikes or rejects.

What are these views and how do they differ?

The SEC feels that insider trading should be illegal since it is unfair.

This is because when one person trades with another with an inappropriate informational advantage, such an act is unfair to public traders.

However, the Supreme Court takes a completely different view.

Rather than focusing on the counter party, the Supreme Court addresses the source of the information.

They determine whether the person engaged in this trading activity has stolen the info from its rightful owner.

Hence, we can call the SEC’s viewpoint to insider trading as the fairness approach and coin the Supreme Court’s viewpoint as the business property approach.

Both views can be analyzed as to who is harmed under these distinct theories.

A second scenario demonstrates how differently the SEC and the Supreme Court view insider trading:

Say, a hedge managers gets inside info on how the ABC firm’s bid for the XYZ firm.

Hence ABC is the acquiring entity and XYZ is the company to be purchased or taken over.

ABC plans to pay a large premium for XYZ’s stock.

Anybody who gains inside knowledge of this unannounced bid could use it to their advantage:

By making a lot of money through purchasing shares of XYZ and then reselling them after the bid has become public.

How do these legal entities view this?

The SEC sees it as being unfair to XYZ (the seller of the stock) as they are not yet aware of ABC’s intention of acquiring their firm.

Thus, those who buy XYZ’s stock based on these facts are at fault.

On the other hand, the Supreme Court says the person doing this trading has no preexisting obligation to trade duty to this counter-party (XYZ).

What we care about is that whoever is making a trade has in essence stolen this information from the bidder (ABC).

Hence, the Supreme Court feels that the persons spreading the inside info are at fault, not the buyers of XYZ’s stock.

However, the SEC has what they call an Insider Traders Enforcement Program.

They will find insider traders is by investigating those who have made a great amount of money on a recent buying or selling activity.

They will especially scrutinize those who have traded on a repetitive basis.

Hence, they look at hedge funds and private equity firms and look at the returns these firms make when investing in company stocks.

If alleged inside traders lose money, the SEC pays no attention to them.

However, if specific traders make money consistently, the SEC suspects these people have engaged in insider trading.

The SEC finds traders who have repeatedly outperformed the market based on its theory.

They will then investigate them, create a lawsuit against them, and once evident, throw them in jail.

Conclusion

Imagine that you trade stocks or securities.

What if someone lets you in on a secret as to what stocks to buy or sell?

Would you be elated with their advice or would you question it?

What if it were a friend, relative, or family member?

Should you follow their advice?

Absolutely not!

Your best bet would be to question them and find the source of this information.

More than likely, they may be engaging in insider trading.

Hence, if you gladly take their advice and do what they ask you to do, you are guilty just the same.

That’s if you get caught.

Remember, insider trading is a crime whether you inform others of non-public trading information or act on it yourself.

If caught, you may face big fines, imprisonment, or both.

If you are suspicious that one is committing such an act, refuse to cooperate and if you can remain anonymous, report them.

No amount of money is worth the risk.

An excellent passive income opportunity:

Click here to learn more about our top recommended fully automated system which is free to join and there are no monthly fees. 

Furthermore, all sales campaigns and sales follow up are done for you. 

Therefore, you do not have to be an internet marketing professional to succeed at this program.

You can have a normal job and have this business growing at the side until it is mature enough to replace your income and it just keeps on growing.

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Misconceptions About Cannabis Products

We are now going to discuss cannabis products more in detail so as to clarify misconceptions that you may have and of course to educate you about the cannabis revolution that is now rapidly taking place around us.

In our previous post, we read about 2018 United States farm bill that became law on December 20, 2018.

Continue reading Misconceptions About Cannabis Products

My Daily Verses, Now Yours

 

My Daily Verses, Now Yours

The following are hand picked biblical  daily verses that have helped me immensely in my pilgrimage through life thus far.

My hope and prayer is that they will inspire and motivate you just as they did to me:

Continue reading My Daily Verses, Now Yours