Thank You, Dr. King

Image of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Each of us would do well in our lifetimes to inspire one other person.

I mean truly inspire: to provide real hope where none previously existed and help turn that hope into positive action, maybe even positive change, that may otherwise never happen.

It’s so much harder than it sounds.

What, then, do we say about a man who inspired not just one person, but an entire generation of people?

And generations beyond that?

And who will inspire generations beyond this?

On this day, we say thank you … to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., whose dreams, words, and actions remain as inspiring today as they were five decades ago.

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A Sobering Reminder That Authority Can Change the Course of History

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Editor’s note: This essay is one of three Second Prize winners of the Copyblogger Media Essay contest, for which writers had 250 words to discuss why it’s essential to be an online authority.

Wayne Wheeler knows a thing or two about authority.

Essentially erased from the public conscious, Wheeler led the Anti-Saloon League, an advocacy group that made possible the 18th Amendment to the Constitution.

Though he never cast a single vote for the amendment or its ratification, Wayne Wheeler used his authority to enact Prohibition.

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Why You Can’t Resist Persuasive Techniques (Even When You Spot Them)

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I am such a sucker.

Every year around the same time, the catalog comes in the mail. And every year, I think “maybe I’ll skip ordering this year. Maybe I’ll take a break.”

And then, I make the fatal mistake. I decide to take a peek inside.

And before I know it, I’m placing an order for the most expensive oranges I’ll eat all year. I cannot resist.

Even though I understand full well all the persuasion techniques they employ to make their product irresistible, I cave.

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Save $100 on SMX West in San Jose this March

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Search Marketing Expo — affectionately known as SMX — returns to San Jose this March 11-13.

Our own Brian Clark will be speaking and Google’s search chief Amit Singhal is keynoting — just two highlights of three days of sessions, keynotes, and clinics on paid search, SEO, social media marketing, mobile search and more.

Check out the full agenda here, with thirty new sessions plus brand new social media boot camp and digital marketing summit tracks.

Sign up today to snag the early bird rates, and while you’re at it, save yourself $100 with our discount code smx100copy.

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How to Build an Audience with Story (From America’s Greatest Living Playwright)

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There’s been a fevered interest in the art of storytelling among the business crowd the last few years.

The masters and the hacks alike are thumping from every available pulpit that storytelling is the most powerful device on earth in regard to human influence.

We are told that story — applied to salesmanship, preaching, advertising, conversation, marketing, songwriting, and blogging — contains the power to deliver the world to the deft storyteller’s door.

This is correct. The writer runs this show.

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Here’s How Jon Morrow Writes

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Pat was alarmed when her son wasn’t crawling by age one. So, like any good mother, she took him to see the doctor.

After a long examination, the doctor diagnosed baby Jon with spinal muscular atrophy (SMA). That meant instead of getting stronger as he aged, Jon would get weaker. Eventually he would get pneumonia and die.

The doctor, who said he was being generous, gave him until two years old to live.

Pat, however, would have none of that.

She — and a cadre of medical staff, family, and friends — fought to keep him alive.

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Surviving “Content Shock” and the Impending Content Marketing Collapse

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I’ll admit it. I was tempted to call this one “Is Content Marketing Dead?”

But you’re too smart to fall for that and would have (justifiably) mocked me for it. Which would be embarrassing.

Within the content marketing echo chamber community, you might have seen some concern about the idea of “Content Shock” — the notion that as content marketing becomes more and more popular, we’ll eventually face a kind of “Content Cliff.” A period where content collapses in on itself as audiences max out on their ability to consume it.

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Finally … Site Analytics for Plain Folks

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Analytics.

It’s a strange, four-syllable word that causes some people strange fits.

You can’t really turn around without running into it in some form (metrics, reports, data, dashboards) or someone telling you how insanely important it is.

There’s no shortage of site analytics tools — starting with the most popular, Google Analytics (GA). These tools can measure the routine (traffic, clickthroughs, page views) to the complex (visitor flow, channel acquisition, reverse goal path conversion).

And if you are like me, this stuff overwhelms you.

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The Simple Difference Between Being Heard and Being Ignored Online

Image of The Copyblogger Essay Contest Winners Poster

Editor’s note: This essay is one of three Second Prize winners of the Copyblogger Media Essay contest, for which writers had 250 words to discuss why it’s essential to be an online authority.

“Nick, your shoes are untied.”

We are taking a break at 12,000 feet on the Incan trail to Machu Picchu. It’s day two of a four day hike, rainy, and there’s a woman in my group who points out the obvious at every possible turn.

“Thanks Sharon. My shoes are untied because I’m resting.”

“Don’t forget to retie them! Also, your pants are soaked!”

Did I mention it was raining?

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Copyblogger is Eight Today (Time for a Facelift)!

Time flies when you’re having fun, but it’s true … Copyblogger is 8 years old today.

And as we all know, that’s pushing 60 in Internet years. So, we do what any aging icon does.

That’s right — a facelift. Nothing says “Happy Birthday” like anaesthesia, scalpel incisions, and bruised facial swelling (metaphorically speaking, of course).

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