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Posted by matt_gillespie

There’s an oft-cited statistic in the world of technology professionals, from marketers to startup founders to data scientists: 90% of the world’s data has been created in the last two years.

This instantly-Tweetable snippet was referenced in Forbes in 2018, mentioned by MediaPost in 2016, and covered on Science Daily in 2013. A casual observer could be forgiven for asking: How could that be true in three different years?

At Fractl, the data makes perfect sense to us: The global amount of digital information is growing exponentially over time.

From Seagate

This means that the “90 percent of all data…” statistic was true in 2013, 2016, and 2018, and it will continue to be true for the foreseeable future. As our culture continues to become more internet-integrated and mobile, we continue to produce massive amounts of data year over year while also becoming more comfortable with understanding large quantities of information.

This is hugely important to anyone who creates content on the web: Stats about how much data we create are great, but the stories buried in that data are what really matter. In the opening manifesto for FiveThirtyEight, one of the first sites on the web specifically devoted to data journalism, Editor-in-Chief Nate Silver wrote:

“Almost everything from our sporting events to o... Read More


SEO goes far and beyond keyword research and building backlinks. There is also a technical side of SEO that will largely impact your search ranking.

This is an area where your robots.txt file will become a factor.

In my experience, most people aren’t too familiar with robots.txt files and don’t know where to begin. That’s what inspired me to create this guide.

Let’s start with the basics. What exactly is a robots.txt file?

When a search engine bot is crawling a website, it uses the robots.txt file to determine what parts of the site need to be indexed.

Sitemaps are hosted in your root folder and in the robots.txt file. You create a sitemap to make it easier for search engines to index your content.

Think of your robots.txt file like a guide or instruction manual for bots. It’s a guide that has rules that they need to follow. These rules will tell crawlers what they’re allowed to view (like the pages on your sitemap) and what parts of your site are restricted.

If your robots.txt file isn’t optimized properly, it can cause major SEO problems for your website.

That’s why it’s important for you to understand exactly how this works and what you need to do to ensure that this technical component of your website is helping you, as opposed to hurting you.

Find your robots.txt file

Before you do anything, the first step is verifying that you have a robots.txt file to begin with. Some of you pro... Read More


There are so many different elements of SEO.

For the most part, all of these various aspects can be broken down into two main categories; on-page SEO, and off-page SEO.

The biggest factor of off-page SEO is backlinks. While on-page SEO is comprised of elements like content copy, title tags, meta descriptions, internal linking, and site architecture.

It’s nearly impossible (unless you get extremely lucky) to have a successful on-site SEO strategy without conducting keyword research.

There are tons of tools on the web to help you with finding keywords related to your business, but Google Keyword Planner is arguably the most powerful.

The best part about this tool is that it’s completely free for anyone to use. All you need is a Google Ads account.

It’s also worth noting that the primary purpose of the Keyword Planner is for PPC advertising.

But with that said, you don’t need to spend any money on ads to do your keyword research with this tool. The only thing you won’t be able to access is the exact monthly search volumes for specific keywords. As you’ll learn shortly, you’ll still be able to see an average range, but Google will only show exact volumes when you run an ad campaign.

I’m assuming that most of you already have a Google Ads account. If not, it’s very easy to set up. So go ahead and do that as soon as you’re ready to proceed.

Then just follow along this guide to learn how yo... Read More


You’ve launched an amazing product or service. Now what? Now, you need to get the word out.

But you’re on a budget and can’t afford the $10K a month to hire a fancy agency and put out press releases. That’s fine. You’re better off executing you’re on strategy or hiring a really awesome consultant.

When done well, good PR can be much more effective and less expensive than advertising. For cost-conscious businesses, ROI is crucial. Every penny spent on marketing should generate revenue. PR is no different. Here are the steps you should take to form a successful strategy for your business:

1. Let go of the agency allure

The sad truth about PR is that existing process are broken. They’re outdated, costly, and inefficient.

Many agencies are still buying very expensive ‘media lists’ and blasting our press releases and pitches to hundreds of journalists at a time. It’s hard for the PR industry to track and measure the value of what they do. Press release blasts entirely miss the mark on target audiences.

To succeed with PR, you need to focus less on the appeal of an agency and focus more heavily to focus on results. Prioritize what you want to achieve, not outdated ‘best practices.’ If you want to get in front of journalists, for instance, you are likely better off forming 1:1 relationships than bombarding them with irrelevant pitches.

2. Know When to Use a Press Release

A press release is worthwhile if your ann... Read More

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