Thursday, March 31, 2016

Using Pinterest to Market your Business

If you’re not using Pinterest as a marketing channel for your business, you are missing out on a huge opportunity. Pinterest has more than 100 million active monthly users and ranks high in Google search results. This is a really effective way for startups to generate traffic without spending big marketing dollars. However, creating a profile and uploading a few pins won’t be enough to generate traffic to your site. Using these three simple tricks will.

Stay focused on your target audience.
Your pins should only contain relevant content that enhances the user experience. Social media is a crowded, distracting place and you have a small window of opportunity to get the user's attention. Think about what your audience is looking for and find new and exciting ways to deliver that content. If you can do this, they will repin it, share it with friends and keep coming back for more. Look for trending topics on sites like Twitter and Instagram and see if you can tie those into the value of your product or service with your next pin. Ideally, this will become an ongoing process and will take some time to perfect. Read comments and feedback and see what people are saying, to get a better idea of what’s driving the interest in your pins and your competitors.

Create Infographics.
People love infographics. The visual appeal of these images makes it easy and fun to understand a process, product, service or study. If you don’t have a good graphic designer, you can use sites like to contract out the work for a reasonable price. Image and video marketing have become increasingly popular forms of SEO in recent years and the image dimensions that Pinterest allows for has continued to increase. Make sure to include a “Pin It” button so viewers can like and share the image. This will help your relevance in Google’s eye and give you a boost in the search engines.

Use Hashtags
Hashtags are a filing system that allow users on social media platforms to search for images by specific keywords. Hashtags are highly effective and as people become more familiar with using this system to search, it will allow you to expand your reach and drive more traffic to your board. Be specific and make sure to use them in moderation. Too many hashtags can be ineffective and look spammy.

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Skateboarding in Venice Beach

Here's some footage from the Venice Skatepark in Venice Beach shot on Saturday 3/19. You can always catch some really talented skaters here, many of them pros. Here's a look from inside the skatepark.

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Easy Knife Sharpening Trick

Dull knifes are the worst. This simply DIY trick will keep your knifes sharp at all times. This same method can also be applied to sharpening your scissors, which can be helpful to tailors and seamstresses. Check out how easy it was to turn this butter knife into a sharp blade.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Kirk Cousins: NFL Quarterback and Dog Foster

If you weren’t already a Kirk Cousins fan, you probably will be now. Some of you may know Kirk as the breakout quarterback for the Washington Redskins. Others in the DC area know him as Kirk, dog foster. Kirk’s wife Julie, who has been fostering dogs since her college days at the University of Georgia, made it clear when they started dating that this would be an expectation. Now the couple fosters dogs, one at a time, until they find them a good home.

In the past 18 months, the Cousins have fostered 7 dogs, mostly non-shedding breeds, with at least three during Kirk’s record setting season with Redskins. They are currently working with no-kill shelters Friends of Homeless Animals and Doodle Rescue, to foster and network abandoned and abused dogs and cats.

Kirk and his wife, like many others, choose fostering because it gives animal lovers like them the freedom of the long-term commitment, while helping to find these dogs and cats the right home. For the shelters, having a famous foster like Kirk is a tremendous benefit, as he can use his celebrity reach to spread awareness of how easy it is to foster an animal, while encouraging others to get involved.

Fostering helps animals that can’t help themselves and when the shelter is at capacity, fostering provides loving homes to animals in need. If you’re considering a pet, fostering is a great way to learn whether or not a particular breed is the right fit for you. If you are an animal lover who can’t have a pet due to your current living situation, there are other ways to get involved. Many shelters need volunteers to walk dogs and help out around the shelter on the weekends. You can learn more about animal fostering and volunteering by visiting or contacting your local animal shelter for more details.

You can see some of the dogs the Cousins have fostered on Kirk’s twitter page @KirrkCousins8.

You can see some of the dogs the Cousins have fostered on Kirk’s twitter page @KirkCousins8.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

The Wilshire Grand, Los Angeles' New Tallest Building

The post Recession recovery has brought about a construction boom in downtown Los Angeles. Prior to 2010, much of downtown’s landscape consisted of empty parking lots. For the second largest city in America, this always seemed strange to me. Fast forward to 2016 and the skyline is filled with cranes building up from the sites the parking lots once occupied. While most of the construction is low and mid-rise residential condos and apartment buildings, one project that sticks out from the rest and will certainly reshape the skyline is the Wilshire Grand project.

Until now, the US Bank building was the tallest and most recognizable building in LA. When the Wilshire Grand, a 73 story tower with office space and a hotel owned by Korean Air and operated by the InterContinental Hotels Group, is completed it will be the largest building West of the Mississippi.

Here are some interesting facts to know about Los Angeles soon to be new tallest building:

  • Workers set a record by pouring more than 21,000 cubic feet of concrete in one continuous, 18 hour pour
  • The Wilshire Grand will stand 82 feet taller than the US Bank building
  • The hotel will feature more than 900 four-star rooms
  • The 70th floor will have a public observation deck and rooftop pool
  • The project will create 11,500 construction jobs
  • Materials include 640,000,000 pounds of concrete and 20,000 tons of steel

Construction of the Wilshire Grand is set to be complete in 2017 and will definitely be something to check out.

8 Easy Ways To Relieve Stress

Aside from the feeling of being edge, anxiety and stress can lead to a lack of concentration, loss of sleep and appetite and sweats among other things. Prolonged stress can have serious long-term health effects that include high blood pressure, diabetes, hair loss and heart disease.

In addition to eating healthy, working out and getting good sleep, here are some stress relievers that can improve the way you feel at work and home.

  1. Animals. Research shows that pets can greatly reduce your stress and blood pressure. If dogs and cats aren’t for you or you’re unable to have them in your house, consider a fish. Aquariums and fish are another tranquil way to help reduce stress.
  2. Comedy. Laughing is a great way to relieve stress. Content providers like Netflix have tons of funny sitcoms and stand-up specials that will help you let loose.
  3. Comfort Foods. Eating healthy goes without saying but you can also help your stress levels by going for comfort foods. Research shows that foods like avocados, pistachios, oysters and oatmeal can all help reduce stress.
  4. Plan a Trip. Whether it’s a vacation or a day trip, having something to look forward to is a great way to reduce stress.
  5. Plan Ahead: Being prepared and thinking ahead helps provide clarity at work and home and will prevent you from feeling “scattered brained” or rushed.
  6. Be Creative. Think about your interests and try something making something. You can learn how to do just about anything by watching YouTube videos and you might find something new you’re really good at.
  7. Keep It Positive. Stay away from people that always complain. Constant negativity can be draining. Hang around people that make you laugh and have a positive outlook.
  8. Let It Go. We’ve all heard the saying “don’t sweat the small stuff”. Take a look at the things that stress you out and consider letting go of the ones that cause you the most stress. Keep it simple.

Can Anxiety Actually Make Us Smarter?

It looks like all that stress might not be such a bad thing...

Those of us with moderate to high anxiety know how exhausting it can be to worry about every little thing. But scientists say there is a silver lining to being a natural worrier.

According to this video from New York Magazine, all that worrying may be signal of higher intelligence. Watch the video to find out.

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Snowboarding in Big Bear

Footage from Snow Summit in Big Bear on Saturday1-10-16. The conditions this weekend were perfect for skiing and snowboarding after Big Bear was dumped with more than 30 inches of snow last week. El Nino should make it a great year for winter sports.

Friday, January 8, 2016

Hollywood Hills After the Rain

This was taken on Mulholland Drive looking East at the Hollywood sign right after it rained. It was really clear and you can see the snow capped mountains of the Angeles National Forest in the background.