Judge blocks Trump from building sections of border wall

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A federal judge on Friday blocked President Donald Trump from building key sections of his border wall with money secured under his declaration of a national emergency, delivering what may prove a temporary setback on one of his highest priorities.

U.S. District Judge Haywood Gilliam Jr.'s order prevents work from beginning on two of the highest-priority, Pentagon-funded wall projects — one spanning 46 miles (74 kilometers) in New Mexico and another covering 5 miles (8 kilometers) in Yuma, Arizona.

While the order applied only to those first-in-line projects, the judge made clear that he felt the challengers were likely to prevail at trial on their argument that the president was wrongly ignoring Congress' wishes by diverting Defense Department money.

"Congress's 'absolute' control over federal expenditures_even when that control may frustrate the desires of the Executive Branch regarding initiatives it views as important_is not a bug in our constitutional system.Read more on NewsOK.com

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Trump’s orders to AG on Russia probe worry critics

WASHINGTON (AP) — Intelligence professionals warned Friday that President Donald Trump's decision to give his loyal attorney general carte blanche to disclose still-secret material from the Russia investigation will let William Barr cherry-pick intelligence to paint a misleading picture about what started the probe.

The president claims his campaign was spied upon, though Trump administration officials have said they have no specific evidence that anything illegal was done when the campaign came under FBI surveillance that was approved by a court.

On Thursday, Trump gave Barr full authority to publicly disclose information about the origins of the investigation the president has repeatedly dismissed as a "hoax.Read more on NewsOK.com

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It’s a Conversation: Engaging With B2B Prospects on the Marketing Site

If you talked only about yourself with every person you met at a party, you’d quickly find that people start moving away from you in search of better, more engaging conversations. The same can be said about your interactions with your customers. They can’t be one-sided and self-serving.
Building a relationship requires conversations. From a person’s initial entry point into your funnel and throughout his journey to becoming a loyal customer, it’s important to remember that building a successful relationship requires a mutual exchange. You can’t just push your own agenda (e.g., use this feature, buy more product, etc.) and expect a happy customer.
In the B2B world, the conversation doesn’t usually start when a salesperson has an initial meeting. It starts well before that in the digital world with a website visit. And the website offers an ideal venue for delivering a personalized experience based on listening to visitors’ needs and reacting with relevant and helpful digital interactions.
In this blog post, we’ll cover some of the ways you can move away from a one-sided delivery of information and start building true, mutually beneficial relationships.
Start the Conversation
To begin, think about why each visitor comes to your site in the first place. You’re missing out on a huge opportunity if you’re not reacting to what the visitor tells you the second she arrives at your site.
Visitors can come through a myriad of sources such as digital ads, organic search, referring sites or direct. If you present the same hero image, headline, and offer for all these individuals, you essentially asked what they wanted to see and then ignored the answer.
For example, let’s say a visitor clicked on a digital ad for your security monitoring solution for automotive manufacturers and arrived at your site. Why talk about your breadth of products and services for companies across a variety of industries rather than address the needs she already demonstrated? This is the perfect time to start the conversation off on the right foot and present information about your security monitoring solution for automotive manufacturers! Continue the conversation from the ad to the site so the visitor feels like you genuinely understand her needs.
Continuing the Conversation
In grade school, I was taught that listening was extremely important for building friendships. The same can be said for your website. You can “listen” as visitors consume content and browse product pages, blog posts and resources. Their journey tells a story of their pain points, interests, and what they are looking for, so you can learn from that and react accordingly.
Below are some tactics you can use to personalize an individual’s journey on your site by continuing the conversation:

You can respond to a visitor reading a blog post by recommending another article that is not only relevant to the contents of the current blog post, but also to her product interests, industry, use case or company size. And, most importantly, you can avoid recommending any article she has already read before.

If a customer comes back to your homepage after engaging with a solution page, you can provide a hero image relevant to that solution and recommend a related resource for her to learn more about how to address her pain point.

If a visitor has already watched your demo, seen your intro video, or downloaded your introductory white paper, you can stop asking her to take the action again. Use the space to prompt the next best action for her such as contacting a sales rep or starting a free trial.

We all have been on sites that ask you to fill out the same 10 questions each time you download a piece of content or sign up for a webinar. Rather than make your site like a loan application with endless places to enter your information, you can ask the questions you need and then remove those form fields from future forms. You should remember who a person is and avoid asking her who she is each time.

You can recognize when a visitor’s company is in a specific industry or of a particular size and respond with content targeted specifically to those segments.

Longtime Friendship
Like any good friend, it’s important that you make the proper introductions between the prospect and the sales team at the right moment.
You can do this by passing over the details of the visitor’s journey so she doesn’t need to start over cold with your company. Informing the sales team of her product/solution interest, actions she has taken, and any firmographic information that’s been gathered can ease the friction in the hand-off between marketing and sales. You can give your sales team a leg up when reaching out to that prospect and allow them to tailor their conversations based on the already established needs of that prospect, reducing the time to conversion for that customer.
Final Thoughts
With the technology that exists today, it no longer makes sense to speak to prospects on your site in a one-sided manner. There are many tactics that you can leverage to build meaningful, mutually beneficial relationships based on responding to each person’s needs with relevant information. And by better supporting each visitor’s buying journey this way, you’ll better meet your conversion goals.
It’s important to remember that at the end of the day, even in the digital world, a visitor is a person. The way to build a meaningful relationship is to have a conversation with that person.

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Turnpike Troubadours cancel more shows, ask for prayers, thank fans for memories

By Brandy McDonnellIn an emotionally raw social media post that seemingly called into question the future of the band, Oklahoma red dirt rockers the Turnpike Troubadours canceled shows scheduled for this weekend, asked fans for prayers and thanked their loyal followers for the memories:This weekend’s shows are unfortunately not going to happen for Turnpike Troubadours.Read more on NewsOK.com

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Facebook Advertising Mistakes That Will Cost You

If you’ve spent any time on Facebook or Instagram ads, you’ve made mistakes—we all have. The strategy of testing different ad types, audiences, and more is designed for you to make mistakes and then learn from approaches that are poor performers so that you can focus on what works.
What’s better than learning from your mistakes to set up and create better advertising campaigns? Answer: Learning from the mistakes of others. I’ve set up and launched countless accounts and campaigns, and below I share what I’ve learned along the way by pointing out common mistakes I’ve seen advertisers make.
Mistake #1: Setting Up Business Manager Incorrectly
Your Facebook Business Manager is the hub where all of your pages, ad accounts, and users live. It’s very important that Business Manager is set up correctly because this is where admins can manage user permissions. Business Manager acts as a separate entity from your personal account. This allows for more security versus having an ad account that can only be accessed from one employee’s personal Facebook account. It is also the best way to share assets such as videos, images, and product catalogs across the different accounts and users.
I’ve seen a lot of shady Business Manager setups in my day. Here are a few of the more common mistakes:

An owner or employee creating the company’s ad account under their personal Business Manager account rather than the company’s.
Not adding all the pages/ad accounts under the organization’s Business Manager. (Don’t forget that you can add Instagram accounts and you definitely should if you are planning on running ads on Instagram.)
Having only one admin on assets. It’s best to have at least two admins on a Facebook page, for example. That way, if one admin gets accidentally removed or has their permissions changed and the page is removed from Business Manager, there will be at least one user who can transfer or manage the page.

Tip: If you’re giving an agency access to your Business Manager, nine times out of 10 it’s best to give them admin access. That way, they won’t have to ask you multiple times for different access or to update things that they aren’t able to.
Mistake #2: Not Using Facebook Pixel
The Facebook pixel installed on your website allows Facebook to serve your ads to users who are most likely to convert. It also allows you to build retargeting audiences based on your website visitors. Not having a Facebook pixel installed could be handicapping your results.
In addition to not using the Facebook pixel at all, some make the mistake of incorrectly setting it up. Follow the instructions, and pull in a developer to help if needed. There are a variety of custom events you can set up once you have the pixel installed correctly that can help you track conversions more accurately.
Tip: To check if a webpage has the pixel installed, use the Pixel Helper Google Chrome add-on.
Mistake #3: Optimizing for the Wrong Objective
If your end goal is purchases, optimize for purchase conversions. It sounds simple, but after auditing many ad accounts, I’ve found this to be a common mistake. Some will advise not to optimize for a conversion unless you’re getting at least 50 of that type of conversion per week because Facebook will have a harder time learning whose best to serve your ads to for that conversion. If you’re not getting any conversions, this may be true, but your campaign objective should always match your goal. You can also test running a campaign with a purchase conversion objective, and then with an add-to-cart objective, and see what drives the most purchases.
Mistake #4: Testing Too Many Things at the Same Time
It’s tempting to want to test everything at once. Learning fast is important, but you don’t want to be running so many different variables at the same time that you can’t properly determine what is actually working. Pick one variable to start with — I like to start with audiences, followed by the ad image or video — and test.
Mistake #5: Running the Same Creative Across All Platforms and Placements
The Facebook Ads Guide exists for a reason. Ad creative displays differently across Facebook’s family of apps. An ad that looks great when previewed on the Facebook feed might look strange in Instagram Story. In addition to the image or video itself, think through the copy as well. I’ve seen many ads that include a short tracking link in their body copy. This can work really well on Facebook, where the link is clickable. On Instagram, however, links in the text are not clickable.
How many of these mistakes have you made in your Facebook or Instagram advertising campaigns? Next time you set up a new ad account or launch a new campaign, keep these mistakes top of mind.

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The Latest: Tornado touches down near Iowa City

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — The Latest on tornadoes and flooding in the Midwest (all times local):

10 p.m.

A tornado has touched down just south of Iowa City, Iowa, causing some damage but no injuries.

The Iowa City Press-Citizen says the tornado affected two lightly-populated unincorporated towns of Frytown and Sharon Center.

Sgt. Read more on NewsOK.com

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You Are Not Your Target Audience

You might be surprised to learn just how many businesses don’t have a solid grasp on who their target audience is. As this piece of information is key to fully understanding their interests and motivations, many businesses are missing out on the opportunity to gain deeper insights into precisely what their audience want to see and how they want to consume content.
Misunderstanding who your audience are and what they like can cause your video content and strategy to miss the mark, sometimes seriously. From poorly judged creative decisions, to ill defined brand style and personality, through to misjudged promotional and seeding strategies, making assumptions about your target audience can be costly. At worst it can help to foster a brand identity that will never resonate with your potential customers and clients.
In this article I want to explore how successful brands and businesses seek to understand their audiences and use this information to create content that is loved and shared. But first, let’s turn our attention to the fate of so much content online.

Avoiding the Fate of Orphan Content
Content may still be king, but all kings need a kingdom. Your content may be absolutely incredible, which may get it some initial recognition and lift, but branded content will never get the attention it deserves without a considered and comprehensive activation strategy behind it.
Orphan content is a term we here at Aspect have coined to describe content that has failed to garner enough attention to justify its creation and has therefore been consigned to the sparsely populated and unloved corners of the internet (a sad fate, I know).
Although it is tricky to determine with accuracy just how much orphan content is currently sitting out there online, it is probably a lot more than you initially imagine. To provide some context for this statement, research conducted by Moz and Bussumo in 2015 found that more than 50% of the randomly selected posts that were analysed had 2 or fewer Facebook interactions. Whilst a lot of that content may well have been rubbish, it’s likely that a lot of it wasn’t and deserved a lot more love.

The Causes of Orphan Content
Creating content that is engaging, memorable and powerful is no easy feat but that task is further complicated if you don’t have a fundamental understanding of who you want to engage.
– A Lack of Quality
No amount of promotion will help content that simply doesn’t offer anything of value to its audience. And remember, it is impossible to deliver value to an audience that hasn’t been comprehensively defined.
– An Unsuccessful Activation Strategy
An activation strategy is the process of delivering your content to your intended target audience through a range of media and marketing channels. Getting this wrong means that regardless as to how good your content is, it simply won’t get enough attention to justify its creation.
– An Ineffective Approach to Content Repurposing
Longevity is a core component of successful content. Keeping your content in the spotlight is reliant on your understanding of what your audience wants to see, when they want to see it, and how they want it to be presented to them.
Note that a lack of audience understanding is a common thread running through each of these primary causes of orphan content. With that in mind, let’s now turn our attentions to market research and understanding your target audience.
How to Research your Target Audience
The process of conducting comprehensive target audience research should be taken as your opportunity to turn your attention towards the actual needs of your audience and away from what you think or assume those needs are.
These assumptions are often the result of business leaders assuming their audiences share their values and even interests. This is understandable, especially in the early stages of a startup, when the founders may have genuine affinity and similarities to their target market and their problems (a fact that has allowed them to identify these problems and offer a popular solution). As these companies grow into brands though, this connection becomes more remote and the result is growing dissonance that can result in flat or even irrelevant content strategies.
You, naturally, want to ensure that your messaging is as effective as it can possibly be then, but to do this you need to get to know your audience better. This is where well conducted market research is worth its weight in gold. Successful marketers are more than 200% more likely to conduct audience research on a quarterly basis and more than 50% of leading marketers conduct audience research every month.
Let’s delve a bit deeper into what successful audience research looks like then.

Never Assume you know your Audience
Effectively defining your audience relies in part on your ability not to make assumptions. Although you might have already painted a detailed image of your target market in your mind, it is important not to take any of the anecdotal information you have amassed over the years on customers and clients as a blanket rule on your audience. Actively challenging your thought processes and gathering hard evidence to substantiate your thoughts will help you to ensure that you are in the best possible position to begin creating the kind of content that will resonate with and deliver value to your audience.
As you won’t want to find yourself swimming in a sea of information, understanding what you want to learn from your audience research is critical to identifying the insights you should be focusing on. Whether you want to know where your audience spends time online or what type of content they want to engage with, referring to these questions regularly will ensure that your research remains on track and that you aren’t getting distracted by superfluous information.

Audience Research and Social Media
Social media is an excellent tool to leverage when conducting audience research. Sometimes people aren’t necessarily fully aware of their habits and sometimes they simply won’t be willing to share particular details in interviews that an analysis of social media can also reveal.
Remember, you can use social media to:

See what your customers are saying about your business online
Understand the types of content your audience are sharing
The other individuals, brands and businesses your audience are choosing to follow

Using Audience Research
As soon as you have gathered together your information, you can begin to use it to identify patterns and themes that will inform your digital and marketing strategies. This process is best split into two distinct activities.
– Customer Personas
Creating a set of core customer personas will help you to form a clearer image of your audience. While these won’t be actual customers, they will be fictional characters who will embody the traits of an “average” person within your target audience. They can then be used as a guide and useful anchor during the creative process. If an idea doesn’t seem to resonate with your customer persona, then it probably won’t resonate with your actual customers.
– Idea Generation
As you are analysing your research you will likely begin to form some initial content ideas. Although these might not be fully formed concepts, it is always a good idea to write things down when inspiration strikes. Remember, avoiding assumptions is critical and you should determine that enough of your audience will be interested in every piece of content you ultimately decide to produce.

The Dangers of Failing to Understand your Audience
There are many examples of unsuccessful advertising campaigns. One great example is last year’s disastrous Pepsi advert featuring Kendall Jenner that was both released and pulled shortly thereafter.
The ad was a hugely misjudged attempt by a multinational to jump on the global movement of resistance and street protest. In doing so the company was attempting to piggyback on a cultural bandwagon that in many ways it could be seen as the antithesis of. Pepsi, unfortunately, neglected to recognise this and the audience it most wanted to impress was aghast (as were many in the professional marketing industry). The use of a priviliged model like Kendall Jenner, only compounded this utter failure to understand it’s audience.
While the data Pepsi used did probably did identify that younger generations are politically engaged, the company drastically misinterpreted how this demographic sees the world and how they would respond to this engagement being co-opted in this way for advertising purposes.
In pushing out this misguided campaign, Pepsi illustrated that failing to understand audiences can so easily mean that delivering the levels of authenticity that consumers are looking for, particularly in the young Millennial and Gen Z demographics, is essentially impossible.
Just because someone buys Pepsi (or your product to take another example) that does not mean you can make assumptions about them. It certainly doesn’t mean you can quickly pigeonhole them. Consumers are becoming increasingly savvy and creating strong branded content that appeals to them means taking the time to understand more about them.
Ultimately, embracing the notion that you are not your audience will help you to ensure that your marketing efforts are always tailored to meeting the needs and expectations of your actual target audience, not the fictional audience you think you are targeting.

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Adam Levine leaving ‘The Voice’ after 16 seasons, to be replaced by Gwen Stefani

By Brandy McDonnellAdam Levine is leaving "The Voice" after 16 seasons, and Gwen Stefani is stepping in to take his seat in the Emmy-winning show's big red swivel chair. The Maroon 5 frontman is of the original coaches who launched “The Voice,” along with Oklahoma country music star Blake Shelton.Read more on NewsOK.com

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