French Civil Code on Github

Neat stuff, with new laws passed in diff format instead of the usual legalese.


10 Counterintuitive Lessons We’ve Learned About Email Marketing

Jimmy Daly, sharing insights Vero gained on email marketing:

  1. Email isn’t about selling.
  2. Email isn’t that great at driving traffic.
  3. Promotional email isn’t a priority.
  4. Replies are a huge win.
  5. You don’t need to spend a fortune.
  6. Subject lines don’t drive opens.
  7. Design is less important than you think.
  8. Don’t send emails on holidays or weekends.
  9. The bigger the list, the worse the emails.
  10. You can email people every day…

If you cherry pick through the post, the key bits are in 1, 3, 4, 6, and 7.


Science of Persuasion

A good primer in the event you’ve never run into Cialdini’s work:

If you can read French, other interesting authors include Beauvois & Joule (easy to read) and Guéguen (harder to read, as in university textbook).


What If 3D Printing Was 100x Faster?

Impressive demonstration of Carbon3D’s CLIP technology by Joseph DeSimone:


Safari Users Win Right to Sue Google Over Privacy

BBC News:

The case revolves around a so-called Safari workaround, which allegedly allowed Google to avoid the Safari web browser’s default privacy setting to place cookies, that gathered data such as surfing habits, social class, race, ethnicity, without users’ knowledge.

In its judgement, the Court of Appeal said: “These claims raise serious issues which merit a trial.

“They concern what is alleged to have been the secret and blanket tracking and collation of information, often of an extremely private nature… about and associated with the claimants’ internet use, and the subsequent use of that information for about nine months. The case relates to the anxiety and distress this intrusion upon autonomy has caused.”

Is anyone else smelling blood?


The Joyless World of Data-Driven Startups

Dan Zambonini:

As counter-intuitive as it sounds, I hypothesize that an early startup guided primarily by gut decisions from a strong strategic vision will be more cohesive and deliver a stronger offering than a startup created from a random walk of data-driven decisions. Though I don’t have the data to back up my claim.

Nor do I, but I feel the same. Don’t waste time with A/B testing until a) it actually matters and b) you have the requisite sample size. Until then, stick to your (data-driven, as in qualitative) guts.


Let Your Customers Write Your Marketing Copy

Sujan Patel:

As a seasoned marketer and former CEO of a multi-million dollar marketing agency, I’m a little embarrassed to say that I never really fully recognized the true value of personally talking with customers until just a few months ago. Its not that I didn’t understand the importance of customer engagement and support – I did.

But I never made it an ongoing part of my own day-to-day responsibilities as the former CEO of digital marketing agency Single Grain or as the VP of Marketing for When I Work, the SaaS startup that I work for now.

But that all changed at the end of 2014 after I was able to boost conversions by over 30 percent as a result of spending two weeks working as a customer support agent for When I Work.

This echoes Steve Blank’s thoughts (and my own): everyone in a marketing department should be talking to customers every. single. week.


Google Will Rank Your Site Higher If It’s Mobile Friendly

Owen Williams for The Next Web:

Big changes to Google’s search algorithms are coming: beginning April 21, the company will increase the ranking of sites that are mobile-friendly.

It’s really time to start waking up to mobile trends if you’ve missed them so far.


7 Questions You Can Ask While Doing Phone Support

A good list on Aircall’s blog:

  1. Solve your customer’s issue or question (obviously)
    How can I help you?
  2. Dig a little bit deeper
    May I help you with anything else?
  3. Understand the usage of your product
    Which particular case are you using X for?
  4. Ask for features feedback
    Which features are your craving for?
  5. Ask if they would refer you (and if not, why)
    How would you feel about inviting your friends and colleagues to try it out?
  6. Build a community
    Would you be interested in subscribing to our newsletter / following us on twitter or facebook?
  7. Rate your customer overall satisfaction
    How satisfied are you with your call? With our company?

The second, third, and fourth ones are where you’ll get the most interesting insights in my experience.


What Genetic Data Tools Reveal on the Evolution of Pop Music

The history of pop music is rich in details, anecdotes, folk lore. And controversy. There is no shortage of debate over questions about the origin and influence of particular bands and musical styles.

But despite the keen interest in the evolution of pop music, there is little to back up most claims in the form of hard analytical evidence.

Today that changes thanks to the work of Matthias Mauch at Queen Mary University of London and a few pals who have used the number crunching techniques developed to understand genomic data to study the evolution of American pop music. These guys say they have found an objective way to categorise musical styles and to measure the way these styles change in popularity over time.

Fun work — and findings.

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