Data Tools for Creating Great Content

data2

data2

Data analysis and visualization tools are everywhere. Derek Willis, an interactive developer for The New York Times, uses plenty of them and the surprising thing is that—despite the fact he has the resources of a large, global newsroom—his favorite tools are all free. His message to freelance journalists and content creators: you don’t have to break the bank to make the most of data storytelling opportunities.

In fact, Willis says most tools used by colleagues at The Times are free.  “Especially programs that store and manipulate data…most of the programs we use are free and open source, and that’s part of why we use them,” he says.

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Why Freelancers Should Check Out Google Media Tools

tools

tools

Launched in mid-October to coincide with the Online News Association conference in Atlanta, Google Media Tools is a collection of, well, media tools. Although they’ve all been around in some form or another, the site was created to centralize existing Google products that could be used to create great content.

“We looked at what can these products do to enable and empower journalists who try to do their job more efficiently and effectively,” says Google’s head of media outreach Daniel Sieberg.

In a workshop dubbed “Google 101 for Journalists” held in Minneapolis, Minn. recently, Google media outreach lead Nicholas Whitaker continued Google’s PR push for Google+, emphasizing its value as a way to link content (including YouTube videos and written stories) across Google. Google+ Communities and Hangouts on Air were also heavily hyped, although free and low-cost alternatives do have advantages.

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The 4 Essential WordPress Plugins for Business Blogs

wordpress plugins

wordpress plugins

If you run your own business blog, keeping up with the constant workload of payroll, scheduling, and comment management can be nothing short of dizzying. One of the best things about WordPress is the ease with which you can install a veritable galaxy of free plugins. For anyone running a professional blog, plugins are indispensible tools that allow a single admin to consolidate loads of managerial, quality control, and payment tasks, saving you countless hours of time and effort.

In recent years, developers have specifically created a multitude of WordPress plugins for business that can drastically streamline your administrative efforts and make your blog the efficient, content-generating beast it was destined to be. We’re going to go over four in particular that will make your blogging life infinitely easier.

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Ebyline Payments for WordPress Makes Freelancer Payments Easy for Publishers

ebyline payments

ebyline payments

This is the age of the blog. Thousands of writers scribe millions of articles about myriad topics through platforms such as WordPress, which powers up to one fifth of sites on the web. The advent of the blog has been a godsend to any freelance writer, who may be making a modest living as a ghost writer or guest blogger. WordPress effectively helped to break down the communications barrier, allowing writers with specialized knowledge to write, and if necessary upload, quality blogs directly into a publisher’s CMS. Unfortunately the spinning wheels of 21st century technology suddenly slowed when it came to processing payments, often internationally, to authors.

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Freelance Writer Rates – Get the Stats You Need to Create Fair Pricing Plans for 2014

pay freelancer banner1

pay freelancer banner1

The online landscape has shifted tremendously for marketers over the past few years. Content marketing was once the refuge of brands that couldn’t afford high-priced marketing campaigns, and had to invent creative solutions to boost traffic and generate awareness. But these days the rise of social marketing and the content boom online has convinced even the most traditional of outbound marketing specialists that there’s big money in inbound, content-oriented marketing.

This change has had enormous consequences for the ways that brands produce and curate their content. Customers now expect to receive great content for free, simply in exchange for their attention, and the market has become increasingly flooded with high-quality content. Standing out from the pack requires creativity, attention to detail, and dedication to producing regular content aimed at your brand’s precise target market. This can put an incredible strain on marketing departments and brands in general, as they may not have either the budget or the manpower to satisfy their customers’ voracious appetite for content through internal means alone.

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