(Kobe University) Researchers at Kobe University's Research Center for Membrane and Film Technology have successfully developed a new desalination membrane by laminating a two-dimensional carbon material on to the surface of a porous polymer membrane. This membrane has the potential to perform highly efficient desalination because it is possible to control the gaps between its nanosheets and the charge on the nanosheets' surfaces. It is hoped that this research will contribute towards the implementation of futuristic desalination membranes.
(University of Innsbruck) For the first time, physicists from the University of Innsbruck have entangled two quantum bits distributed over several quantum objects and successfully transmitted their quantum properties. This marks an important milestone in the development of fault-tolerant quantum computers. The researchers published their report in Nature.
(DOE/Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory) Before DESI, the Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument, can begin its 5-year mission from an Arizona mountaintop to produce the largest 3D sky map yet, researchers first needed an even bigger 2D map of the universe.
(Rice University) A unique two-dimensional material shows distinct properties on each side, depending on polarization by an external electric field. The pairing of antimony and indium selenide could have applications in solar energy and quantum computing.
(Rice University) Rice University scientists extend their technique to produce graphene in a flash to tailor the properties of 2D dichalcogenides, quickly turning them into metastable metallics for electronic and optical applications.
Wouldn’t it be great to be able to transform any boring, flat image into a three-dimensional hologram for your viewing pleasure? A startup promises just that.
It’s been almost 40 years since Pitfall!, the classic side-scrolling platformer for the original Atari, was first released. David Crane’s creation went on to become one of the first console video game hits, selling more than 4 million copies, and is now remembered as an influential breakthrough for the medium.
Why did Pitfall! gain such rampant popularity? Because it was realistic and relatable!
I’m not talking about the pixelated 2D graphics or exotic jungle setting. I’m talking about the basic premise of problem-solving. The game is full of traps, hazards, and challenges, but there’s always a way around them. “Oh hey, a giant pit full of alligators. How will I get to the other side? Perhaps by grabbing hold of that swinging vine…”
Today’s B2B content marketers may feel like they’re navigating a landscape filled with pitfalls — dangers or difficulties that are easily encountered but not immediately obvious. To help you on your journey, we’ve identified five of the most pervasive pitfalls so you can spot them and avoid them.
5 Pitfalls in B2B Content Marketing & How to Steer Clear
From messaging to strategy to execution, these are five of the most counterproductive missteps that are commonly made by modern content marketing practitioners.
1 — Speaking to the Many Instead of the Few
If you’re talking to everybody, you’re talking to nobody. This is a critical guiding philosophy, which may run counter to the way many marketers and writers were trained. (Especially those with backgrounds in journalism or media.)
There’s a natural compulsion to make B2B content as accessible and broadly applicable possible, in order to maximize the potential reach. But with so much information and so many resources at the fingertips of today’s decision makers, marketers need to get more specific and direct. Joel Goobich of Vestorly called out “vague, generalized content” at the top of his recent list of B2B content marketing mistakes shared at Forbes.
“Why would your B2B audience want to consume content that doesn’t speak directly to them and their interests?” he wonders. “Often B2B content is overly generalized and lacks a target audience and specific industry focus.”
What To Do: Narrow your scope. Get a clear handle on the audience(s) you want to reach, and the unique qualities, characteristics, or challenges that differentiate them from other segments. Don’t be afraid to turn away those readers or viewers who won’t find the content useful. Then, make sure your measurement strategy aligns with this selective approach. In other words, de-prioritize vanity metrics like impressions in favor of those measuring business impact.
2 — Strategizing SEO Around Keywords Instead of Intent
Keywords have been the driving force in search engine optimization for many years, serving as a cornerstone in the strategic framework for many content strategies. And keywords still have a valuable purpose. But more and more, achieving success with SEO initiatives is about understanding search intent and aligning with the motivations of searchers. There are several reasons for this:
Unless you operate in a novel industry or vertical, it’s likely that the most valuable keywords you’re targeting are highly competitive. Focusing on search intent lends itself to longer-tail keywords and semantic searches, opening up more topical areas to pursue with your content.
Accounting for intent rather than solely looking at keywords makes the content better. Traditionally, businesses have had a tendency to say, “This keyword has high volume and is relevant to our industry, let’s write blog posts that tie it to our product.” But if it’s not a keyword with transactional or commercial intent, then such an angle will likely miss the mark with searchers.
For this reason, intent-based SEO content is more successful. It moves creators away from outdated tricks like keyword-stacking, and toward methods that actually help content rank today. A recent post from Backlinko notes that “satisfying Search Intent is ultimately Google’s #1 goal,” while pointing out that Google’s latest Quality Rater Guidelines (released in October of 2020) are “OBSESSED with Search Intent.”
What To Do: Make search intent the foundation of your SEO strategy, giving keywords and search phrases the context they need to be meaningful. The informative post from Backlinko above, as well as Google’s report on how intent is redefining the marketing funnel, are enlightening reads on the subject.
[bctt tweet="“Make search intent the foundation of your SEO strategy, giving keywords and search phrases the context they need to be meaningful.” — Nick Nelson @NickNelsonMN" username="toprank"]
3 — Failing to Connect with Relevance
One reason Pitfall! was such a hit back in the early 1980s is that it struck a resonant chord with audiences, who were transfixed by its treasure-hunting adventure theme following the 1981 theatrical release of Raiders of the Lost Ark. This same dynamic was at play with early arcade breakthroughs like Space Invaders and Asteroids, which channeled the sci-fi enthusiasm fueled by movies like Star Wars and Close Encounters of the Third Kind.
What do the people in your audience care about? Don’t limit your thinking to their professional interests. One of my favorite case studies from our clients at LinkedIn highlighted a company called SolarWinds, which recognized that its IT customer base tended to share a special affinity for sci-fi and Star Wars especially. So they did a promotion on LinkedIn that involved giving away a multitool in the shape of the Millenium Falcon.
SolarWinds’ manager of demand and marketing later said the campaign’s engagement was “probably the highest I’ve ever seen for any campaign that I’ve run across any platform.”
What To Do: Scrutinize your content hooks — the introductory sentences of articles or the early seconds of a video — to confirm you’re drawing an immediate thread of relevance with your audience. Never put yourself or your solutions first. And, in accordance with item No. 1 on this list, aim to be narrow instead of broad.
4 — Speaking to the Mind and Not the Heart
Business decisions are made on the basis of rational and logical drivers, out of necessity. But they are not made solely through those lenses. Humans are complex and emotional beings, not robots. In our recent round-up of B2B content marketing predictions for 2021, Ty Heath suggested that 2020’s pandemic “will accelerate the shift to a ‘right-brain’ movement,” with greater emphasis on humor, storytelling, and emotion.
Engaging your audience at a deeper level will help you build genuine trust, which is the single most essential ingredient for long-term business success.
What To Do: Challenge yourself and your team to create content that goes beyond dry informational details, specs, features, and product benefits. Cultivate a brand voice that is professional but not overly formal and stuffy. Build trust through storytelling.
5— Failing to Learn from Failure
Although Pitfall! was a bit before my time, I learned much about trial-and-error from my early experiences with 8-bit video games. Back then, it was all about learning from your mistakes — “Oops, I just fell into the lava and died … I’ll remember that was there next time through.”
Content marketing isn’t quite the same, because we’re not just playing through the same level over and over again, but there are always constructive lessons to be taken away from a dead end or disappointing outcome. Learning and growing often requires a willingness to fail. The alternative is constantly playing it safe, which in the end isn’t really all that safe.
In her own prediction for 2021, Carla Johnson cautions against this urge, which may be heightened in a precarious economic environment. She argues that responding to the demands of 2020 left marketers with “no room for trial and error,” and that in the coming year, “B2B content marketing will be about taking smart risks that lead to more innovative work.”
What To Do: Experiment! Make small bets and take measured risks as you seek out fresh ways to engage and connect with your audience. Ironically, one of the biggest mistakes we can make as B2B content marketers is being too afraid to make mistakes.
[bctt tweet="“Ironically, one of the biggest mistakes we can make as B2B content marketers is being too afraid to make mistakes.” — Nick Nelson @NickNelsonMN" username="toprank"]
Here’s to Smooth Sailing in 2021
Every marketer is bound to hit their share of snags and setbacks this year. But if we stay vigilant in avoiding the pitfalls we can anticipate —like the five cited above — and embrace the unpredictable hardships as opportunities to learn and adapt, we’ll make it through and come out stronger on the other end.
For more guidance and inspiration to carry you through the new year, check out our top 10 content marketing posts from 2020.
The post Pitfall! Steering Clear of 5 Common B2B Content Marketing Missteps appeared first on B2B Marketing Blog - TopRank®.
(University of Pittsburgh) Researchers at the University of Pittsburgh Swanson School of Engineering have utilized a catalytic reaction that causes a two-dimensional, chemically-coated sheet to spontaneously "morph" into a three-dimensional gear that performs sustained work.
(DOE/Ames Laboratory) Scientists at Ames Laboratory have discovered and confirmed a method which could serve as an easy but reliable way to test the quality of graphene and other 2D materials.
(Penn State) New possibilities for future developments in electronic and optical devices have been unlocked by recent advancements in two-dimensional (2D) materials, according to Penn State researchers.
With the potential to further shrink transistors and improve performance, these ultra-thin semiconducting materials could also make flexible electronics a practical reality
A group of engineers at The University of Texas at Austin may have found a new material for manufacturing even smaller computer chips that could replace silicon and help overcome one of the biggest challenges facing the tech industry in decades: the inevitable end of Moore's Law.In 1965, Gordon Moore, founder of Intel, predicted the number of transistors that could fit on a computer chip would double every two years, while the cost of computers would be cut in half.Almost a quarter century later and Moore's Law continues to be surprisingly accurate.Silicon has been used in most electronic devices because of its wide availability and ideal semiconductor properties.There simply isn't enough room on existing chips to keep doubling the number of transistors.Researchers in the Cockrell School of Engineering are searching for other materials with semiconducting properties that could form the basis for an alternative chip.
SAN ANTONIO -- Sept. 30, 2019 -- A Southwest Research Institute science and engineering team designed a two-dimensional radar retroreflector that remotely monitors subtle shifts in the Earth's crust.The patent-pending Van Atta retroreflector works in conjunction with satellites to precisely measure ground movement caused by earthquakes, oil production, mining and other processes.Movement can pose a risk to critical infrastructure such as nuclear facilities, airports and bridges."By monitoring shifts in the Earth's crust, emergency managers, city leaders or anyone with an interest in community safety can detect and anticipate instabilities in a particular area," said SwRI Senior Research Scientist Dr. Marius Necsoiu who created the Van Atta retroreflector concept with support from SwRI engineers Emilio Martinez and B. David Moore."This allows proactive planning and solutions to address unstable ground."His unique array design sends energy back in the direction of arrival over a wide range of angles.
Silicon semiconductor technology has done marvels for the advancement of our society, who has benefited tremendously from its versatile use and amazing capabilities.The development of electronics, automation, computers, digital cameras and recent smartphones based on this material and its underpinning technology has reached skyrocket limits, downscaling the physical size of devices and wires to the nanometre regime.Although this technology has been developing since the late 1960s, the miniaturization of circuits seems to have reached a possible halt, since transistors can only be shrunk down to a certain size and not further beyond.Thus, there is a pressing need to complement Si CMOS technology with new materials, and fulfil the future computing requirements as well as the needs for diversification of applications.Now, graphene and related two-dimensional (2D) materials offer prospects of unprecedented advances in device performance at the atomic limit.Their amazing potential has proven to be a possible solution to overcome the limitations of silicon technology, where the combination of 2D materials with silicon chips promises to surpass the current technological limitations.
30 years after the console wars raged between Nintendo and Sega, "Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020" is reigniting the battle.The game features classic 2D Super Mario, from the original "Super Mario Bros.," facing off against Sonic the Hedgehog in his original 16-bit form.Though the game is in 3D, a "Classic 2D" mode is where you'll find the two longtime enemies facing off."Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020" is scheduled to arrive only on the Nintendo Switch on November 5 — check out the classic 2D mode in action below!Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.
The Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games franchise is now more than a decade old.And if you’re like me, you’ve never really cared about these mini-game collections.But Sega, which develops the games, has finally come up with something that has me excited for Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020: nostalgia.For Mario & Sonic 2020, you can of course compete in events like the triple jump and equestrian jumping with modern versions of Mario and Sonic characters.But Sega is spicing up this version of the game with classic 2D events that feature retro graphics and sprites from the original Sonic and Super Mario Bros. games.When Mario & Sonic 2020 hits Nintendo Switch on November 8, players can compete in retro-style versions of the high dive, rowing, sprinting, and more.
Starsoft has released a trailer for its upcoming 2D parkour-based and open-world action game Savior, which is coming out for PC at an unspecified date.Savior is an indie project, but its developers have a notable pedigree.Dan Adelman, who headed Nintendo’s indie operations for nine years, is working on the business end of things for the game.Savior’s staff also includes veterans of notable gaming companies like LucasArts and Sierra.“Savior’s fluid parkour movement makes the simple act of traversing the interconnected world a joy in and of itself,” Adelman noted in a press release sent to GamesBeat.“But the skill-based melee combat and character-driven storytelling are the real meat of the game.
“Hardware acceleration” is an option you may have spotted tucked away in the options menu of various applications across many of your devices, including your Android smartphone.Use cases for hardware acceleration range from more efficient video and sound rendering, through smoothing out text, and speeding up 2D graphics and UI animations.In a nutshell, if you have the option, it’s best to use hardware acceleration, unless it causes some fault or bug.However, commonly used types of acceleration are often exposed through the operating system to app developers, rather than relying on a dedicated platform SDK to access the various computing components.With acceleration disabled, CPUs are still able to run the required function in software, albeit slower than on dedicated hardware.Hardware acceleration invokes a specialized processor to speed up common, complex tasks.
Terraria is now out on Nintendo Switch.You can download the title digitally today, and a physical release is coming to stores this summer.The 2D sandbox game first came out for PC in 2011.It has since released for many consoles, including the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, and mobile.Terraria has sold over 27 million copies.Terraria has been out for a long time, but developer Re-Logic still makes updates for its successful game.
The wild and wacky world of physics just keeps getting stranger.Philosophers and scientists have long dealt with a lack of information about our universe by viewing it through the prism of us, the observers.This is called the Anthropic Principle.The argument is that the basic framework of our universe – the existence of three dimensions of space and one dimension of time (called a 3+1 dimension) – is necessary for the existence of complex lifeforms.James Scargill, the aforementioned UC Davis physicist, has a slightly different theory.While he doesn’t appear to dispute the idea that life can’t exist in a universe with more dimensions than ours, he theorizes that it could possibly exist in one with fewer.