Monday, September 28, 2009

Daily Worth Provides Financial Advice for Women

DailyWorth wants to change the way women view money. Their goal is to "deliver practical tips, empowering ideas and the occasional kick in the pants" via their daily email, community, and blog.

Founder Amanda Steinberg created DailyWorth because "No one is going to fix financial inequity for women. We have to recognize our own self-worth, ask for higher salaries, invest more aggressively, and build our own wealth." According to some facts on their site:

  • In 2009 in the U.S., Women still make only $0.70 for every dollar earned by men. See the report.

  • Nearly two-thirds of working women earn less than $30,000 per year.

  • Women retire with on average 1/3 less in savings than men, yet live longer.

The site covers topics from Capital Gains Tax to responsible shopping. Additionally, DailyWorth provides positive affirmations, networking advice, and tips for negotiating wages.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

45.4 Million US Women on Facebook

Remember the days when social networking was a male dominated activity, particularly for older demographics? According to Inside Facebook's latest figures, those days are long gone. The August 2009 breakdown of US Facebook users revealed women outnumbered men by at least 1.2 million in every age demographic.

While those results were obvious for the 13-17, 18-25, and 26-34 year old categories, they came as a pleasant surprise for the 35-44, 45-54, and 55-65 year olds. They are a combined presence of 45.4 million women, making up over 52% of the 87 million Americans on Facebook.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Burberry to Launch Social Networking Site

According to the Financial Times, luxury brand Burberry is planning to launch a social networking website next month. The site,, will primarily feature users who send in pictures of themselves wearing or using Burberry.

Angela Ahrendts, Burberry's chief executive, said about the site: “These might not even be customers yet. Or they may be a customer for a bottle of fragrance or for eyewear. But these are the customers who need the brand experience, who need to feel the brand. That word-of-mouth spreads through their social networks and continues to be a positive conversation [about Burberry] . . . that is so powerful.”

Artofthetrench is just one of the social media initiatives Burberry is planning. Their Facebook page has over 670,000 fans, and provides frequently updated photo and video footage. Burberry also has Twitter and YouTube pages, and will be live streaming their Spring/Summer 2010 Prorsum womenswear show tomorrow, September 22nd, at 6:30 PM London time. Check out a video below interviewing Harry Potter star and Burberry model Emma Watson.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

McKinsey Report Shows Business Impact of Social Media

McKinsey & Company released the results of a global survey in the McKinsey Quarterly. The survey polled companies about the effectiveness of "Web 2.0" tools and their impact, both within the company and externally. The study revealed that many technologies were not only useful in relationship building with clients and external partners, but also with employees.

Internally, video sharing was the most effective, with 48% of respondents seeing benefits. However, blogs were the most useful tool for external relationships, with 51% claiming to have benefited for customer-related purposes as well as for working with external partners and suppliers. Social networking also ranked high, with 48% seeing customer-related benefits and 49% reporting benefits related to external partners and suppliers. RSS, wikis, and podcasts ranked above 35% in all categories.

52% of respondents said Web 2.0 tools increased marketing effectiveness, 43% reported higher customer satisfaction and 38% said Web 2.0 reduced their marketing costs. The high-tech/telecom industry (unsurprisinly) reported customer-related benefits most frequently (65%). However, business/legal/professional services firms were not far behind, at 60%, revealing that the benefits of social media can and do extend beyond the tech industry.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Q&A with Jessie Weiss from Fashion Blog Les Mads

As part of my blogger interview series, I connected with Jessie Weiss, one of the founders of the Germany-based fashion blog Les Mads. Les Mads is published in both English and German, and is highly regarded as one of Europe's top fashion blogs.
What is unique about fashion in Germany? Is there a difference German and other European style bloggers?
Well actually Germany is a bit slower when it comes to trends, it's a bit conservative. You need your time to get accepted ;) Syle bloggers are still a bit shy to push their own individuality but I think we do in a good way.

What upcoming trend do you think will be hot in a year?
Trend in one year - well, let me wait and see the upcoming shows this september ;) Fashion is so fast, trends get adopted in a second... nevertheless I'd say the 90's will celebrate a big comeback because the 80's phase is almost over and we need something new.
Is there a unique German style? Can style be unique by one country or has it become more or less all the same all around the world?
Well I think we dont have a particular style here like all the Swedish style bloggers. Berlin is the only city in Germany where people look like they're from all around the world, which of course comes from street style blogs.

Do you have a fashion icon?
I think Chloe Sevigny's style is great. I have no idea what it is, but she can throw on everything and it looks good!

What is the future of blogging?
More influence, more opportunities to become part of the fashion scene which was more less private a few years back.

*Special thanks to Anne Koophamel

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Plan Your Dream Wedding on a Budget

As a follow-up to my Mashable post on How To: Plan a Wedding on the Web, I've posted some additional wedding planning information.

Wedding planning can be overwhelming, especially when considering the price tag. With so many details to take care of and options to choose from, it’s no wonder that there are professional wedding planners to coordinate their dream wedding. But for couples on a budget (or those who just want a more active role planning their wedding) this may not be an option. Fortunately, there are many online resources available to offer advice, ideas, and even some deals. Your big day can be everything you had hoped for- without breaking your bank account.

Go Beyond the Big Sites for Inspiration
The Knot and Martha Stewart Weddings are incredibly rich with resources (more on that below). However, they’re not the only wedding websites out there. Many smaller sites and blogs provide inspiration with gorgeous photos, in depth information, and suggestions from real weddings. Best of all, they feature emerging brands (who generally have friendlier price tags) and thrifty ideas. Some of my favorites include:

Green Wedding Shoes
Kiss The Groom
Polka Dot Bride
Something Old, Something New
Sugar Love Weddings
Vintage Glam Weddings

Find Affordable Attire
National retailers like J. Crew have added Wedding sections with reasonably-priced options for the entire wedding party. Ann Taylor sells mix-and-match bridesmaids’ dresses, and hosts a user-uploaded photo collection of their dresses in real weddings. David’s Bridal is another affordable retailer that further streamlines the process with its Dress Your Wedding tool. The web app is a “virtual dress rehearsal” that enables couples to try out styles and color combinations on virtual models. If you’re dying for a designer dress, check online for sample sales and trunk shows. Even Kleinfeld has a sale coming up.

Dazzle With DIY Details
Printable invitations have come a long way. Invite Site and Paper Source offer high quality designs that could easily be confused for custom work. For finishing touches, print with a custom font, add ribbon, or even create a stamp with your picture on it. Glö, which launches next month, will offer customizable paperless invitations that combine with wedding websites and guest list management. Crafty individuals can find ideas for favors and decor on My DIY Wedding Day and I-Do-It-Yourself.

Create a Registry for the Things You Want
Don’t be afraid to ask for what you want. If you prefer something other than a blender or gravy boat, consider some alternative registry options. Have your sights set on an amazing honeymoon? Websites like Traveler’s Joy and Honey Luna enable guests to contribute to individual experiences (candlelit dinner, gondola ride) or the trip as a whole. Even Starwood Hotels, home of Sheraton and W Hotels, have caught on to the honeymoon registry trend.

Want to use your big day as an opportunity to give back? has a database of nearly 1.5 million charities and the aptly named I Do Foundation has partnered with non-profits in a variety of fields, from healthcare and education to the environment and social justice. Additionally, Heifer International, an established organization committed to. creating sustainable sources of food and income, offers its own registry.

Love wine? Check out Morrell’s. Passionate about art? Art-Exchange has its own registry. Want a little bit of everything? My Registry, Zank You, and Wish Pot enable couples to add individual items from any store.

Use Local Forums to Find Deals
As previously mentioned, the large wedding sites have their advantages, one of them being their broad reach. The Knot has local boards based on region, with at least one dedicated board per state. Brides has a local vendors section, complete with photos from real weddings. On the Wedding Channel’s community, user profiles include location, making it easy to reach out to other brides in the area.

Don’t Forget to Have Fun!
Wedding planning can have its stressful moments, but don’t forget to have fun! After all, the wedding is a celebration of your love and commitment to one another, gifts more valuable than anything money can buy.

Dating Site Recommends Different Strategies for Men and Women

OkTrends, the official blog for online dating site OkCupid, recently posted some interesting data about response rates. Their post "How To Get People To Reply To Your Messages In Online Dating, Part I" suggests that techniques should vary for men and women.

They posted a graph comparing the percentage of replies and conversations men received when contacting women, based on message length. On the graph, red is the ratio of messages that get any reply, while green is the ratio of messages that get a reply that in turn gets replied to by the original sender.
According to the graph, it appears that longer messages would help men. However, when OkTrends factored in the amount of time it takes to type a message, they suggested that, in terms of time put in vs. conversations generated, shorter is actually better and recommended an ideal message length of 200 words, about one minute worth of typing.

For women, however, they recommended an even more concise approach to messaging. The blog recommended that the optimal first outreach be approximately 50 words long.

Of course, the data only corresponds to one dating site, and does not include men reaching out to men, or women reaching out to women. It does, however, highlight the varying communication styles that men and women seem to prefer, albeit subconsciously.