Tag: 嘉定龙凤

Kurtenbach: Five reasons why the Niners will miss the playoffs this year

first_imgThere are reasons to be optimistic about the 49ers this season. They have their quarterback back and arguably the best offensive coordinator in football, there are weapons at their disposal, and on the defensive side, they might have one of the best front-sixes (that’s all you get these days) in the NFL.There are plenty of people out there that will tell you that the 2019 Niners are going to the playoffs for the first time since 2013. I’ve even seen the suggestion that they might win the NFC …last_img

Feeding Farmers Week 3 — Winegardner Farms, Allen County

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest The third week of 2016 Fall Feeding Farmers in the Field took the Ohio Ag Net crew to the eastern edge of Allen County to Winegardner Farms. The family operation, ran by brothers Kent and Lyle, as well as Kent’s son Kendell deals with corn and soybeans in addition to side businesses, including Winegardner Petroleum. Watch the video below as Dale Minyo speaks with Kent and Kendell on the family, their farm, and this year’s harvest.Ohio Ag Net’s Joel Penhorwood jumped in the combine with Lyle Winegardner to see up close and personal just how harvest is going. The soybean field they were in was looking to average around 70 bushels per acre, exceptional for this year’s growing season. More in the Cab Cam below.Special thanks to sponsors of Feeding Farmers in the Field, fall edition: T102, AgroLiquid, A.G. Boogher, Farm Credit — Delphos, Fennig Equipment, Fertilizer Dealer Supply, RRR Tire, Stine Seed, and VanTilburg Farms. Kent Winegardner Kendell Winegardner Lyle Winegardner in the family’s unique “mancave”last_img read more

Pizza Hut Comes to the iPhone: Will Other Restaurants Follow?

first_imgRelated Posts Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaces Tags:#Apple#mobile#Trends#web What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech … The Rise and Rise of Mobile Payment Technology sarah perez A couple of months ago, Papa John’s marketing manager Jim McDonnell was quoted as saying that their “iPhone application” simply wasn’t delivering as well as their mobile display advertising was. The implication behind his statement was that iPhone apps weren’t all they were cracked up to be when it came to bringing in new sources of revenue for businesses. Of course, we took a bit of offense to that seeing as how Papa John’s didn’t even have an iPhone app to speak of – they had a mobile web site. And as of today, they have a little more competition. Pizza Hut, a company that apparently understands the difference between an app and a web page, has just released a brand-new iPhone application that puts Papa John’s lackluster attempt to shame. We wonder: will this be the start of a new trend in company-branded applications? We thought it was humorous (and a little sad) to hear McDonnell discuss the company’s disappointment with their iPhone application. In fact, McDonnell said the numbers were so low that Papa John’s had decided not to branch out to other mobile platforms. But a quick search through the iTunes App Store quickly revealed that McDonnell, and clearly Papa John’s as a whole, thought that a mobile web site was the equivalent to an actual application. There was no Papa John’s iPhone app in the iTunes Store; it simply didn’t exist. The Pizza Hut AppToday, however, a user searching for the keyword “pizza” in iTunes will come across a number of restaurant locator apps and one new one that will jump out at them: Pizza Hut (iTunes URL). That’s right, Pizza Hut has released a new application designed specifically for the iPhone. The app will complement their already robust lineup of alternative ordering methods that currently include ordering by text message, web site ordering, mobile web site ordering, and even a Facebook ordering system. The Pizza Hut iPhone app offers a simple interface that includes a menu and a checkout function, as expected. However, the company has also smartly included a “virtual fridge” where you’ll find coupons to add to your order and a free game called “Hut Racer” which you can play while you kill time waiting for your pizza to arrive. Altogether, the app seems to be well-thought out, well-designed, and simple enough for anyone to use. Role of Mobile App Analytics In-App Engagement Will Pizza Hut Encourage Other Restaurants (and Companies) to Follow?However, the most revolutionary thing about the app may be the fact that it exists at all. No other pizza delivery company has launched an iPhone application yet. For that matter, no restaurants have done so either, not even Apple partner Starbucks. (Correct us if we’re wrong about that, we searched for numerous popular chains and found none…but we’re sure you’ll let us know if there are some out there. At any rate, there are very few if any.)We once wondered why so few companies, not just restaurants, but also retail stores, travel sites, and other big businesses had eschewed the App Store entirely, opting instead for mobile web sites (or, sometimes no mobile sites at all). Why shouldn’t companies build iPhone applications to complement their other online offerings? The cost of development isn’t prohibitively high and the iPhone represents a huge chunk of mobile web traffic both here in the U.S. and on the worldwide stage.Some commenters on that original post argued that an iTunes store filled with branded apps from companies would clutter things up, but as the App Store now offers some 65,000 applications (give or take), is clutter really that much of an issue anymore? Others worried instead about cluttering up their phones’ screens and becoming overwhelmed by the number of applications. That issue, too, has now been somewhat addressed thanks to OS 3.0’s extended springboard and Spotlight search feature. You can now fill your phones with apps and find them exceedingly fast via search. Of course, we don’t think that users would download and install every single application for every single business they’ve ever patronized – just those they use on a regular basis, probably only a handful at most. Because really, how many businesses, restaurants or otherwise, do you visit or use multiple times per month that would make a dedicated app worth your while? Finally, multiplecommenters noted that designing a mobile web site made the most sense since it could be used on any platform. Of course we agree that companies should have a mobile site – that should be par for the course these days just as having a web presence is – but why ignore the 59% web traffic marketshare delivered by the iPhone here in the U.S. or the 43% of web traffic worldwide? Why not build for this dominating platform? It will be important to watch Pizza Hut’s success in this space, as they’re leading where so few others have so far failed to go. If they see increased revenue driven by their mobile application, other restaurants – especially those that offer delivery and carry-out options – may end up doing the same. We hope this will bring about a new trend of company-branded applications, but it’s far too soon to tell. We’ll just have to wait and see…I guess we’ll play a little “Hut Racer” in the meantime.  Image credit: Adagelast_img read more

Researchers Raise Questions About Rigid Foam Flame Retardant

first_imgA flame retardant introduced in 2011 as an environmentally safer alternative for polystyrene insulation can break down in the presence of sunlight and heat into chemicals that are potentially harmful to the environment, a group of German researchers said in a published report. In an article in the journal Environmental Science & Technology, the researchers said they had tested a flame retardant called Polymeric FR. The compound was designed to replace hexabromocyclodecane (HBCD) in extruded and expanded polystyrene (XPS and EPS) foam insulation. Both are commonly used in residential construction. Polymeric FR, developed by Dow Chemical, has a higher molecular weight than HBCD, making it less likely to travel in the environment and was therefore considered safer. But a team led by Christoph Koch of the University of Duisburg-Essen said Dow hadn’t considered that the new compound might degrade into other chemicals whose long-term behavior in the environment wasn’t clear.RELATED ARTICLESChoosing Rigid FoamRigid Foam InsulationCalifornia Law Addresses Fire Retardants in HomesMaking Healthier, Greener Foam Insulation Koch and his colleagues subjected the chemical to UV radiation and temperatures of 140°F, conditions which they said could be replicated over the course of the insulation’s lifetime. “To the best of our knowledge, all government risk evaluations until now focused on the polymer itself without considering possible degradation products,” the report notes. Exposure to heat and sunlight, it adds, “could result in smaller molecules with a different mobility and toxic potential.” Results of the study were first reported in Environmental Health News. The study is attacked as unfair and inaccurate Dow came out swinging. In a letter to Koch and in a statement posted at a Dow Dupont website, the company called results of the study technically flawed and accused Koch of being less than forthright about his employment with a competing insulation maker. Dow also criticized Environmental Health News for the way it reported the story, claiming the website failed to recognize the “serious flaws” in Koch’s work. “EHN further compounded the study authors’ glaring omission by reporting uncritically on their conclusions without doing even the most basic due diligence,” Dow’s statement said. “The result, whether by error or intention, is highly slanted reporting that is indistinguishable from outright advocacy.” Dow’s letter to Koch cited “serious ethical concerns” about the study. The title page of the study notes Koch’s connection with Dow competitor Deutsche Rockwool GmbH & Co., the German subsidiary of Rockwool International. But, Dow says, Koch said in a footnote to the article that he had no competing financial interest that would affect his work. Rockwool is a competing product to the EPS and XPS insulation used in construction. Dow also wrote to Environmental Science & Technology, denouncing Koch’s “ulterior motives” and citing what it said were technical inaccuracies. Dow said it wanted an “expression of regret” for Koch’s lack of disclosure and space in the magazine to “set the record straight.” Asked about his ties with Rockwool, Koch said in an email that he started the research before taking a part-time job with the company as he pursued his PhD. “During the whole project, there was no funding received from this company or any other source,” Koch wrote. “All the work that I have contributed for this publication has been done outside of my paid labour time for Deutsche Rockwool GmbH & Co. KG — thus in my private time. No facilities of this company have been used and no information regarding this publication has been exchanged.” Koch also said he had shared the results of his work with Dow prior to publication. “Yes, we had contact with Dow,” his email said. “We informed them about our work before submitting the manuscript to the journal Environmental Science and Technology. There were no major disagreements about our findings.” Brian Bienkowski, senior editor at Environmental Health News and the author of the January 9 story, said in an email that EHN contacted Dow as soon as the Koch study was published. “Rather than make a scientist or representative available to speak, they immediately made these posts disparaging the study and the story,” Bienkowski wrote. “While we updated the story with their statements and concerns about the study, they still have not made a scientist — or anyone — available for us to talk to. I offered to talk on the phone or even meet in person. “We stand by the accuracy of our reporting on the study and find it regretful that Dow will not engage with journalists but, rather, chooses to attack them,” he said. A “next generation” flame retardant Polymeric FR was developed because of the environmental and health risks of HBCD. Dow Global Technologies announced in 2011 that its Dow Chemical Company subsidiary had invented Polymeric FR and said that it expected the compound to become the “next generation industry standard” flame retardant for both XPS and EPS. It was commercialized as Bluedge Polymeric Flame Retardant Technology. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said in a 2014 assessment that Polymeric FR was the best of the few available options to replace HBCD in polystyrene building insulation. North American producers of XPS and EPS have since switched to Polymeric FR, their respective trade associations said. Roughly 52 million pounds of Polymeric FR are produced each year. In an email, Koch said conditions causing the flame retardant to break down occur in hot attics or after the foam has been landfilled. But the research is far from conclusive. “We have not studied the toxicity of these smaller molecules,” Koch added, “and there is almost no scientific information available about them. Previous studies suggest that flame retardants — which are used in building insulation (this is different for flame retardants which are for instance used in textiles) generally do not immediately affect building occupants, but can end up in the environment and enter the food chain.” Koch also said their research focused on the flame retardant itself, without the “surrounding polystyrene matrix” of the insulation — a point Dow also makes. In other words, researchers tested the chemical, not polystyrene treated with the chemical. That, he said, might affect its degradation process. The only known use for Polymeric FR is in EPS and XPS, Koch said. It’s not used as a fire retardant in textiles, electronics, or furniture upholstery. Asked whether Polymeric FR is a better option than HBCD, Koch said it wasn’t possible to say based on the limited knowledge that’s currently available. “As the U.S. EPA and others stated, the long-term behaviour of ‘Polymeric FR’ is largely unknown,” Koch said. “It seems however indeed possible, that the development of ‘Polymeric FR’ is a step in the right direction. But certainly more research is know to give a solid reply to this question. “To underline this: Hundreds of peer-reviewed studies have been published for HBCD (and we still have open questions),” he added, “but there are not even ten studies for ‘Polymeric FR.’ ” Publication responds Environmental Science & Technology is a publication of the American Chemical Society, a Washington, D.C.-based organization with more than 150,000 members worldwide. GBA asked the publication for comment on Dow’s demands and received a written statement from Glenn S. Ruskin, ACS vice president for external affairs and communications. “Be assured that ACS takes all expressions of concern very seriously,” the statement reads. “When such concerns are raised, ACS editorial staff will look into them, but will not comment while the review is ongoing. Regarding the scientific content of the manuscript in this particular case, ACS editorial staff contacted the authors, who have confirmed that the paper accurately discloses potential conflict of interests.”last_img read more

The Truth About Stopping Your Dream Client from Going Dark

first_imgHave you ever said, “The prospect has gone dark?” Or have you ever complained that your dream client “ghosted you,” engaging with you through some part of the sales conversation only to cut off all communication? Maybe the call didn’t go as well as you believed, or maybe your dream client had a new priority take over their time and attention.But perhaps there is another cause of their disengagement that you may have caused or that you could have prevented. Maybe you didn’t sell the prospect the value of going through the process. If you want to stop your dream client from going dark, you have to sell the process.What Do You Sell on the First MeetingSadly, there are still salespeople who believe they need to sell themselves and their company during a first meeting, pitching their company and their solutions to create an opportunity. They think they are selling their prospective client on buying from them based on factors like their company’s history, their big important clients, and their full range of products, services, and solutions (yawn).Others believe a successful first meeting is a discovery meeting, something I would broaden to Explore, as one of the best outcomes is helping the prospect discover something about themselves, and not answering the question, “What’s keeping you up at night?” While a good and productive conversation that includes exploring change is evidence of progress, it isn’t the only—nor it is the most important—outcome.The most important outcome is selling the process, gaining the commitment to what comes next (something that’s easier to accomplish if you create real value for the prospect in your first meeting) and the one that follows.How You Lose Control of the Process“But wait,” you say. “Iannarino, I did create value, and I did ask for the next meeting, and the client told me to call them next week. Now they are ghosting me.”When the client asks you to call them next week, they may or may not actually intend for you to call them, even though I am skeptical that right now there are thousands of heartbroken prospects sitting next to their phone and mumbling to themselves, “I wonder why Johnny didn’t call me this week. I thought we agreed he would call. Where is he?” Whether or not your dream client really wanted you to call, one thing is certain: the prospect did not commit to any next step, even if the salesperson believes they committed to a phone call.This is how you lose control of the process. You cede control to the prospective client, and you end up calling, leaving voicemails (some of which sound desperate), and relentlessly emailing them in attempt to get them to reengage.How to Control the ProcessThere isn’t much disagreement about how to open a sales call. You say thank you, you establish an agenda, you share what next steps might be, and you ask the client to share anything they want to add to the agenda. Some things are so fundamental that they don’t change much over time. What you might have missed is the part where you “establish what next steps might be,” should this meeting be valuable.Saying the words “next steps” is an indication that there is a process, that there are other items you need to discuss and things you will need to do together to help your dream client move from their current state to the better future state you can help them create.You can use words like, “Can I share with you what tends to work best for the clients and companies we work with?” Or you can say something like, “What we have found to be most helpful for making the change we have been exploring is to schedule a meeting with the people who are doing this work to get a better understanding of how we might help them.” Whether it makes sense to share the whole process or the next step, the way you help your client is by helping them commit to the process.From Commitment to CommitmentThe sales process and buying process are often drawn on PowerPoint decks as a linear process, starting on the left side of a slide and ending on the right. There is nothing wrong with an orienting generalization that helps one locate themselves in space. However, just like a map isn’t the terrain, the process shows you some things while deleting others; too much detail can be as harmful as too little.In the Lost Art of Closing: Winning the 10 Commitments That Drive Sales, I outlined the ten commitments most prospects seem to make in a B2B sale (even though this framework is visible in B2C sales, even if it takes fewer meetings and fewer stakeholders).No more pushy sales tactics. The Lost Art of Closing shows you how to proactively lead your customer and close your sales. Here is what these commitments look like:You gain the Commitment for Time so you can gain the Commitment to Explore Change.You gain the Commitment to Explore Change so you can build the case for the Commitment to Change.You gain the Commitment to Change so you can obtain the Commitment to Collaborate on the right solution and the Commitment to Build Consensus around that solution.You gain the Commitments to Collaborate and Build Consensus so you can justify the Commitment to Invest, even though you may need to do this earlier in the process, as all of this is non-linear. You can gain any of these commitments and need to go back over ground you have already covered.When you have gained the Commitment to Invest, you next gain the Commitment to Review your solution to make sure it is perfect, and then the Commitment to Resolve Concerns, the commitment you need to prevent your client from going dark when you hand over your proposal only to hear, “We are going to talk this over as a team, and we’ll get back to you in a couple of weeks.”The ninth commitment, if you are keeping count, is the Commitment to Decide, meaning you ask your dream client to buy the solution, having done all the work to have earned the right to ask and the right to a solid “yes.” This is the commitment necessary to the Commitment to Execute.Always Be ClosingThe directive to always be closing is still valid, but instead of closing for the sale, you are closing on the process, the next step your dream client needs to take to be able to move closer to the better results they need.If you want to be a consultative salesperson, it is your responsibility to know what—and why—the client needs to do what comes next, successfully selling them on the process. Without having the necessary conversations, your client isn’t likely to find their better future. This is why they need your help.If you can’t sell the next steps, you won’t have any next steps. Essential Reading! Get my 2nd book: The Lost Art of Closing “In The Lost Art of Closing, Anthony proves that the final commitment can actually be one of the easiest parts of the sales process—if you’ve set it up properly with other commitments that have to happen long before the close. The key is to lead customers through a series of necessary steps designed to prevent a purchase stall.” Buy Nowlast_img read more