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Get Started With Pinterest Ads!

12 Jan

Last weekend I was in Vegas to lead a Type-A Vegas Mastermind Bootcamp roundtable on Pinterest ads. I always loving participating in Type-A events because they really draw amazing bloggers. And of course I love speaking, about anything really, but especially about Pinterest ads.

You see, Pinterest ads have become a bit of a passion point of mine. I feel like I’m always extolling their virtues and value. Seriously, they are the best value and deliver better ROI than any other social ads.

Why are they so effective? Because when you choose to optimize for clicks to your website, you only pay for clicks to your website. That means that if people repin your content, you don’t pay! Repinned content lives on Pinterest forever and is discoverable in search, by the person who repinned, and all of their followers. Your pin will continue to be discovered – and clicked – long after your paid ad campaign ends.

For the first campaign that I did, I promoted one pin and optimized for traffic to my site. In a one week period I spent $3.96, got 17,384 impressions, 18 repins, and 51 clicks to my site. From those clicks I earned $19.21 in Amazon affiliate sales. That’s a 385% ROI!!!

But instead of listening to me, you can see for yourself.

Pinterest Ads 1-2-3

A lot of people told me that they didn’t know Pinterest had ads, or that they didn’t know where to start. So here’s where you start. I put together two printable worksheets for you. In Pinterest Ads 1-2-3 you’ll get a step by step guide to setting up Pinterest ads, complete with screenshots. It will help you decide which post you should promote, craft the right pin and description, and of course, walk you through the process of setting up an ad campaign.

I also created the Pinterest Ads Checklist, a free download that’s exactly what it sounds like, a checklist to help you from ideation to final tracking to make sure that you get the most out of your Pinterest ads campaign.

No Downloads found

My hope with both of these documents is that they inspire you to try Pinterest ads. Throw $5 at a test campaign to see what happens! I really think that once you try them, they’ll become an integral part of your marketing mix.

And just for the record, I make $0 from the fine folks at Pinterest for saying this. They don’t even have an affiliate program that I could use to sign you up for ads. I just really really love them.

And a note: I’m using a new plugin to offer these downloads and I don’t know if I’ve got all the kinks worked out. If you have any trouble, please shoot me an email at Thank you!

Golden Globes 2016 – Best and Worst Dressed

10 Jan

Alright, I want to preface this by saying that I’m not feeling well and I’m cranky. I’m also just not really into the Globes this year, for whatever reason. But I did absolutely love hearing Jamie Foxx talk about his daughter, who was Miss Golden Globe this year. He’s so proud of her, and it was so sweet.

Before we dive into the dresses, a quick note. You’ll notice I didn’t include any of the gold dresses that everyone on Twitter was going nuts for. Because guys, I’m over them. They’re boring. We see the same freaking dress every year – this year we saw it twice on one red carpet! It’s a vaguely modified sheath dress! In metallics! WITH SPARKLES!! Guys, it’s been done. It’s been so done that even I’ve worn one of these dresses. See?

Badgley Mischka, 2014. THIS IS NOT NEW. So I’m not putting any of them on my Best Dressed list. (And do you like how I managed to work in not one but THREE photos of me? Because hi, narcissism.)

Best Dressed

Eva Longoria

I don’t know why it was so hard to find a good picture of Eva, but I adored her dress. Yes, it’s more spring/summer than winter, but who cares? It’s LA, we don’t do seasons. The fit is perfect, it’s got just the right amount of detailing, and I love that it’s ladylike and sexy.

Melissa Benoist

This is another summery dress that I’m loving. I like the delicate pattern that isn’t overwhelming, and I enjoyed the structured draping that’s happening here.

Jane Fonda

Listen, I love this so much. Look at the ruffled cape! How old do I have to be before I can wear this? Seriously asking, as I would like to rock this next week. I adore Jane because she’s so funny, and also so elegant.

Lady Gaga

It’s custom Versace, but it’s got a vintage look and feel that I’m loving. I love it when Gaga channels Old Hollywood, because no one does it better than her.

Jennifer Lawrence

Hi, have we met? I will always go JLaw. I love this look on her, and the hair/makeup/jewelry is all working, but can we talk about her abs? Excuse me while I put down this sandwich and go do a few million crunches.

Worst Dressed

I know, I know, this is the fun part. 😉

Cate Blanchett

It’s a shame that Cate and her stylist forgot about the Globes until 2pm this afternoon when her stylist had to rush out to Joann’s and buy a bunch of trim and whatever else she could find to haphazardly sew together in time for the show.

Amanda Peet

I have no idea what’s going on here, and I don’t want to know.

Melissa McCarthy

This is from Melissa’s new “Trash Bag Couture” line.

Kate Hudson

Kate, honey, the time machine did not work, and it’s not 1998.

Rooney Mara

You know what, I have to give her props for fighting a bobcat and still making it to the show on time. That’s what we call professionalism.

Sweet Pete’s and The Candy Apple Cafe

6 Jan

While I was in Jacksonville for the holidays we went to have lunch at the new Sweet Pete’s / The Candy Apple Cafe downtown. The only thing I knew about this place before getting there was that it was a restaurant inside of a candy store. So naturally, my brother and I expected plates made of pancakes, spaghetti with gum balls, and maple syrup dispensers on all the tables.

Needless to say, we were disappointed when we were faced with a menu full of normal, non-candy foods. I wasn’t willing to give up so easily, and I did order candied bacon with my French toast. It was amazing, and I never want to eat non-candied bacon ever again. Other than that the food was okay, but nothing notable or above average.

After being so bent out of shape about the lack of edible plates at lunch, I had to begrudgingly admit that the rest of Sweet Pete’s is delightfully charming. Seriously, go for the candy store, eat lunch somewhere else.

There are two (or maybe three, now I can’t remember because I’m terrible at things) floors of candy goodness. Downstairs you’ll find their house made specialties and some of the fancier chocolate and caramel offerings.

Then make your way upstairs where you’ll find an ice cream and cupcake bar, a viewing deck to the candy factory below, and dispensers filled with every kind of candy you could imagine.

I don’t know what this place looks like for the rest of the year, but at Christmas it’s like something out of a fairy tale. So be careful not to steal any gum or nibble on any houses.

You can visit Sweet Pete’s and The Candy Apple Cafe in Jacksonville at 400 North Hogan St (no relation).

You can also buy the Sweet Pete’s Sea Salt Caramels online, which I highly recommend, because they are out of this world amazing.

A Tale of Two iPhones

23 Dec

Sit right down and let me tell you a happy holiday story of setting up my new iPhone. You see, I have Virgin Mobile, which I really love. I have unlimited talk, text, and data with no contract for $45/month and a $5 autopay discount, so my total bill every month is $40. You really can’t beat that.

The only catch is that you have to buy your phone through them. It’s not a big deal because I’m not obsessed with having the latest phone. I just buy a new one when mine starts crapping out, which is usually every two years. Around October my current iPhone 5 started to go, so I waited a few weeks and ordered a gold iPhone 6s. And then it sat in the box on my dining room table for a few more weeks before I got around to setting it up.

I’ve done this before, set up a new iPhone on my Virgin Mobile plan. It’s VERY EASY. All you have to do is log in to your account, enter a few ID numbers from the box, and then follow the instructions on your phone to get it all set up.

Here’s what I did instead.

First I hooked up my current phone to iTunes to do a backup. But I didn’t scroll down enough to see that I had checked the box to encrypt the backup and I have absolutely no clue what the password to that encryption might be.

Then I started to set up the new phone, and since I couldn’t access my backup, I chose to set it up as a new phone and connected it to my Apple ID.

Then I went to Virgin Mobile and entered the ID numbers. And it said they were already in use. Because I had connected it to my Apple ID.

So I logged into iCloud and removed the device.

Only I removed the wrong iPhone, so I ended up totally wiping my current phone.

But it was still showing as being in use.

So I logged into my Apple ID to manage devices. But to do that it asked for a bunch of security questions that I don’t remember setting. And to recover them I had to call a number. But I couldn’t do that because I had wiped my current phone.

Instead of accepting that, I got my Irish up and tried a bunch of different random answers.

And then Apple locked me out of my Apple ID, leaving me with no choice but to wait until morning when I could bring everything to the office and use my phone there to try to fix this.

I mean, I had messed this up in a truly impressive fashion.

Once I got to the office, I spent five minutes on the phone with Clint from Apple Support, who wham bam voila got me back into my account.

Then I was able to remove the new iPhone.

I went back to Virgin Mobile and put in the ID number, which it said was in use.

I was ready to throw everything out the window and become Amish when I remembered that my hair care routine counts that out.

So I contacted Virgin Mobile support, and they said the iPhone 6s was already activated on my account. Huh? Sure enough, when I went back it showed my current device as an iPhone 6s.

All I had to do was follow the prompts on the screen and I was back in business!

Except, since I had wiped the old phone and locked myself out of the backup, I had to download all my apps again. I’m still trying to remember how I had all of my settings and notifications set up.

At least I remember one of the autocorrect rules I had set up. 😉

And that, my dear friends, is how NOT to set up a new iPhone on Virgin Mobile.

Heartwarming Holidays

21 Dec

It’s Christmas week! And you know what that means, a glut of feel good stories that will make you bawl your eyes out. Why? Why do the news outlets do this to us? It’s supposed to be a happy time, and yeah, they’re happy tears, but maybe give us a break.

At any rate, I’d hate to miss out on this time honored tradition, so here are a few holiday news stories to make you cry. You’re welcome.

LeBron James

At a Celtics game the team honored a Special Olympics athlete. LeBron made sure to go over and congratulation the young man, and give him the shoes LeBron wore during the game. I think that sounds gross, but I guess it’s a nice thing for a fan. Read the full story.

The Scientist

NBC News followed The Scientist, of Humans of New York fame, to his new home in Michigan. Please listen to his words and read his story. He’s suffered so much loss, is currently fighting cancer, and still only wants to help others. Read the full story.

Taylor Swift

A photo posted by Taylor Swift (@taylorswift) on

Taylor Swift made a detour on her way home for Christmas to spend some time with a young cancer patient, because that’s just the kind of person Tswift is. P.S. You don’t have to be famous to volunteer your time and talents to helping sick kids – check with your local children’s hospital to see what you can do. Read the full story.


Okay, this one isn’t a story, but it still makes me weepy every time I see it. Then I have to go find Teddy and wake him up to hug him and he’s all confused. But it’s so sweet! The dog is buying gifts for the family! I don’t know why, but it gets me every time.