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Top Marketing Tips – Adjust Your Marketing Plan

Three months ago I needed to buy a present for my niece’s birthday and knowing that she’s into fitness I decided to buy her a skipping rope. I popped into a sports shop on the way home and picked up a great skipping rope that had a counter in one of the handles which I thought, was a great invention. As I was paying for the skipping rope I got into a conversation with the owner of the shop who told me that his business was doing really badly and that if things didn’t pick up for him soon that he would be forced to close. I felt really sorry for him especially as he told me he’d been running the business for the past 12 years.

Adjust Your Marketing Plan

Well, as you can imagine, I told him I was a marketing consultant and asked him if he would like to have a chat about his marketing over a coffee. I told him I wasn’t going to charge him – so he agreed. We met up a week later in a coffee shop and he explained to me all the things that he’d been doing to try and get customers through the door. He explained how he had delivered 10,000 flyers to local houses, put colourful posters in his window promoting products on special offer (I had noticed these), and, spent a small fortune on adverts in local newspapers. Yet despite all of this there hadn’t been an increase in sales. The poor guy was working so hard and not getting anywhere.

I asked him if he was using any social media to market his business and immediately knew the answer to this question by the look of bewilderment that he gave me. I told him a little bit a the potential increase in sales that he could expect if he were to create a Facebook business page and Twitter account and start building a community of people interested in sport and fitness. It didn’t take him long before he got what I was talking about.

He now has a Facebook page, a Twitter account, a YouTube channel, and has plans to start blogging too. And, the last time I chatted with him he told me how he had taken on board my suggestions about adding his Facebook and Twitter addresses to all of his stationary, emails, and to his website. He’s also started to collect email addresses from everyone that walks through his door by asking them if they would like to enter a FREE Prize Draw where the winner gets a gift voucher to spend in his shop.

What I really liked about this business man is that he was willing to adjust his marketing plan, get with the times, and was prepared to do whatever it would take to turn his business around. He knows that it’s going to take a bit of time to build up his social media presence to the point where it starts making a big difference in terms of sales but his taking all of the right steps. I think he realised very quickly during our first meeting that he really needed to adjustments his marketing plan – and as you can see, he’s not just adjusted it, he’s completely overhauled it!

My final thoughts

If you’re not getting the results you think you should be getting then have a close look at your marketing plan and be prepared to adjust what you’re doing until you get the results you’re after.

Please share your thoughts with us by leaving a comment below…

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Avatar – give your comments a professional edge

What’s an Avatar?

Well as far as I can work out there are two types of Avatars.

One type is a nine foot four inch tall blue monkey tailed being living on some outer galactic planet trillions of light years away from earth.

The other type is a small image that sits next to any comments or posts that you’ve left on forums or blogs.

It’s the second type of avatar that I want to talk about here – I’ll leave James Cameron to fill you in on the first type if you haven’t seen the film already.

Ok, so let me get started.

Once upon a time, when you wrote a comment in a forum or on a blog post you had to go around the back into your profile settings and upload an image that you wanted to represent you – i.e. an avatar – usually a photo of you but some people prefer to use a funky image. This was quite time consuming and often a bit fiddly to do. And, on many forums or blogs you weren’t given an option to do this, so you would have to settle for a boring silhouette type image that the forum or blog automatically dished out to you.

I remember spending hours on one forum trying to find out how to get my avatar on there and in the end gave up – I felt so frustrated!

I felt really unhappy as I could see other people had their avatars next to their comments – so why the hell couldn’t I get mine on there too!

I bet there are loads of people like me who get frustrated over this.

Then the next time I came across this issue, and after having spent nearly 45 minutes searching for a way to upload my picture next to my comment, I decided to give up and ask for help. I deleted the comment that I intended to leave and instead asked ‘How do I get my avatar to upload on this forum?”

After a while some kind person responded with ‘Use Gravatar!’

Great I thought – What the hell is Gravatar? – So, I started to search – and very quickly found the answer to my avatar issueGravatar.com. And, I must say now, that within seconds of registering my frustrations started to melt away. In fact, I started to fall in love all over again (even though I’m a happily married woman).

So why did I fall in love with Gravator?

Well, that’s simple, because it’s free, simple and solved my headache! (unlike my husband who is complex, costs me loads, and always making my head spin!)

All you have to do is, Upload your picture once and then connect it to whichever email address you want to use – and that’s it!

You can sign up for a free account in the seconds. You just need to sign up using email address, respond to the activation email that they send you, and then add an image straight from your computer.

Once you’ve added an image – you can crop it to the correct size and then rate it (basically you decide what sites you want our avatar to be seen on – this is explained within the video).

One of the cool things is that you can upload as many pictures as you want and you can swap them whenever you like or assign them to different email addresses.

Gravatar is supported by loads of forums and blogs and it gives you a bit of a professional look and credibility when you leave a comment somewhere – and, it also helps a bit with your marketing efforts because you’re more likely to get people clicking on your avatar or link to visit your website.

REMEMBER: Gravatar is free and can make your online life easier – so why not get one today!

You can see my Gravatar ‘avatar’ below this post.

Please let me know if I’ve missed something out and/or post a comment, along with your avatar, bellow this post.

Have you forgotten this simple SEO tip?

Here is a quick SEO tip that should hopefully increase the amount of traffic you get through to your website.

Here’s the short version of the tip:

Add a clickable link to your website underneath each of your YouTube videos!

Here’s the long version of the tip:

Make sure that all of your YouTube videos – the one’s you have done for you business that is – have a clickable link underneath them so that viewers can easily visit your website after watching your video.

It always surprises me just how many people forget to add a clickable link underneath their videos, opting instead to display their website address at the end of the video or by writing their website address somewhere in the text below their video.

These methods are ok providing that the viewer watches all of the video and has a pen handy, the time to write down your website address, and then have the inclination to type this into their address bar. I can tell you now that most viewers don’t want this hassle.

Or, if you have written your website address in the text below your YouTube video, well at least this is better than nothing but again you’re making it difficult for the interested view to visit you website as they have to copy and paste your url into their address bar.

What to do!

So the best thing to do is create a clickable link within your text (blurb about the video), preferably at the beginning somewhere, by simply starting your website address with http:// – for example http://endgoalmarketing.com You’ll notice I haven’t added ‘www’ as there’s no need to.

What not to do!

Here’s an example of a Youtube video promoting a musical band that has had thousands of views but where they have forgotten to add a clickable link. You can’t afford to lose such a huge amount traffic!

My final thoughts about this tip

This is only a very small thing that you can do to increase the amount of traffic that you get to your website but as they say every little bit helps.

ACT NOW!!!

Don’t wait until you next add a video to Youtube to start adding clickable links – instead go to your Youtube account right now and add clickable links to all of your existing video is they haven’t already done so!

Can you add to this tip?

Share your views on this with me by leaving a comment in the box below.

All the best,

Goga Farruggia-Bochnak
Founder of End Goal Marketing

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Messy Marketing – CashBackCard.com – got it right!

As a marketing consultant I’m always looking for new marketing ideas to stimulate my thinking. I spend time scouring newspapers, scrutinising every billboard I past, and accepting every flyer that’s thrust upon me.

I’ve made it a habit never to dismiss anything on first impressions and firmly believe that there is always something to be learnt from other peoples marketing material, no matter how good or bad it is.

Cash Back Card

Messy Marketing?

This approach has severed me well over the years I’ve picked up some great ideas and adapted them for some of my own marketing campaigns.

Several weeks ago I picked up a postcard size flyer advertising a company called CashBackCard.com – basically a pay-as-you-go debit card company that give you cash back on all of your spending.

The flyer I picked up was bright red on one side and white on the other. The white side was so cram-packed with information that it was almost impossible for me to work out what it was promoting. (I later counted around 140 words on this side – which is way too much for a postcard size flyer). It’s only saving grace was that it had the companies name ‘CashBackCard.com’ boldly printed across the top which instantly clued me in to its content.

It was so messy that I didn’t bother to try and read it and just flipped the flyer over to its red side.

I was pleasantly surprised to see that they had actually left lots of ‘white space’ around a very clear call to action – basically stating three steps that people needed to take to sign up for a free online account and instore card.

The clarity of this call to action, the ‘white space’ around it, and, the contrast between this and the other side of the flyer made me wonder if they had deliberately overloaded the white side with information to make the call to action stand out.

voucher code 9H3W-LPJM-6Z4W tracking ID 2065

I wondered if this was a new marketing ploy – ‘Messy Marketing’ perhaps?

Needless to say I was impressed enough – visited their website, signed up for a free account, enter voucher code and got £3.99 as a welcome bonus, and then a few days later signed up for an instore cash back card which has now replaced my debit card.

It seems like CashBackCard.com got their messy marketing to work on me – which I must say I’m glad of as I’ve had over £120 cash back on my spending so far.

£120 cashback

5% cashback

3% cashback

£4 cashback

£80 cashback

8% cashback

8% cashback

£70 cashback

8% cashback

9% cashback

3.5% cashback

5% cashback

My final thoughts

All though I haven’t had a chance to ask the company if the messy side of their flyer was a deliberate attempt to get their call to action to stand out, it has made me think quite a lot lately about ‘messy marketing’.

I’m wondering if I should design a flyer for End Goal Marketing and on one side overload it with small text that explains how important white space is, and on the other side have one simple but very strong call to action like:

“Visit EndGoalMarketing.com and browse our Video Based Directory to find a marketing company that knows the value of white space!”

What do you think?

I’m curious to find out if you has ever come across this type of marketing – is there a ‘messy marketing’ concept out there that I just haven’t heard about?

Please post a comment below and let us know what you think.

Goga Farruggia-Bochnak
Founder of End Goal Marketing

What is Alexa? – A new user’s perspective on Alexa ranking

I’m just getting into Alexa and am still learning about it so please forgive me – all of you Alexa experts out there – if I’ve got a few things mixed up (please post a comment below if I have).

Well, here goes… my understanding of Alexa so far:

In a nutshell, Alexa is a web information service, founded in 1996 and owned by Amazon.com. It provides its users with an intelligent toolbar, which is free to download, that makes suggestions about which websites users should visited.

The toolbar, which is powered by Google, suggest websites that have been visited the most by the Alexa community – basically everyone who has downloaded the Alexa toolbar.

It’s quite a useful toolbar to have running alongside your browser as it provides information on the websites that have been suggested. For example, it gives you a bit of blurb about the websites, how many pages they have, and when they were last updated. This is really handy as it gives you the ability to check out lots of website very quickly so that you can find the ones that might be of use to you.

The rank Alexa gives to websites is updated on a daily basis – which I was so pleased to hear about – as it stopped me checking my own ranking every five minutes!

What’s clever is that when Alexa calculate the rank of each website they take into account the previous rank value of the website in order to avoid massive jumps in rank status taking place. So for example, if all of a sudden lots of new information is posted on a website and loads of people from the Alexa community pop over to have a look, then this website wouldn’t overnight receive a higher ranking than website that have had a steady flow of traffic to them… Well, that’s how I’ve interpreted this.

I must admit then I was quite disheartened when I first installed the toolbar last week (beginning of November 2010) as my ranking was around 8.5 million! That meant that there were 8,500,000 websites that were more likely to be visited by the Alexa community before mine – I couldn’t believe it!

But then after only a few days it dropped to around 5 million and now on writing this article it’s down to just over 3 million. Naturally I want to get this figure down as low as possible as quickly as I can.

Remember: The lower your Alexa ranking number is, the more your website is being visited or likely to be visited.

A tip on how to quickly improve you Alexa ranking

As your ranking is based on the numbers of visits your website gets from Alexa users, why not promote Alexa amongst your current viewers or to your list if you have one. You could add a ‘download Alexa’ button on your website like I have. The more of your visitors that download it the better your ranking will soon become.

Remember: All of your current visitors that aren’t using the Alexa toolbar aren’t going towards your ranking.

My final thoughts

It’s difficult for me to say at the moment if getting a good Alexa ranking is going to make a massive difference to my SEO, but the way I look at it is, that I cant afford not to give it a try just incase it does!

What are your thoughts about Alexa?

Please share your views, thoughts, tips and ideas with me.

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Win a Facebook Business Page Worth £200!

Great News!

We are running a FREE to enter prize draw from now until the officially launch of End Goal Marketing – 18th January 2011 – where you can WIN a custom built Facebook Business Page Worth £200 for your Company.

(This prize has been kindly donated to us by TV News Videos)

Here’s what you have to do to enter:*

1. Visit the End Goal Marketing Facebook Business Page,
2. Click the like button,
3. Leave a comment on our wall explaining a bit about what your company offers.

And that’s all you have to do!

Then, on the 18th January 2011 we will ask a trustworthy soul (we haven’t decided who yet) to randomly pick the winner.*

Please enter even if you already have a Facebook Business Page – if you win you can give it away to one of your clients or to a local charity.

* Then winner will be contacted on Monday 24th January 2011 and then we will announce who they are on our Facebook Business Page and on this website too.

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10 Top Tips on Free Link Building – Video SEO Tutorial

If you’re trying to get your website ranked on the treasured first page of Google then here’s a great video tutorial explaining 10 basic link building techniques that you can use to improve your  SEO (Search Engine Optimization).

10 Top Link Building Techniques by Creare Group

In video below the Creare Team explain 10 Top Tips on link building:

1. Give something back to the community
2. Create a list of resources
3. Social network – target a correct audience
4. PPC to generate related traffic
5. Don’t get bogged down – don’t get stuck with one technique, use a wide range of link building techniques
6. Submit your website to directories – list your company in directory related to your theme
7. Social media marketing – use Facebook and Twitter account to promote your blogging activity
8. Be Topical and Relevant – give you readers something with value what they can share for you
9. Focus on your website design. Be unique easy to navigate – people more likely will bookmark your page
10. Give away something cool – create something that is positive, unique and that people want to see or use

And remember: When link building You must consider two main factors. First, make sure that your backlinks or outgoing links are on websites related to your theme.  Second, make sure that your banklinks are on websites with a good page rank, and Alexa rank.

Please feel free to add anything that’s missing from this list in the comments section below.


Creare are one of the leading web design and SEO companies in the UK, also specialising in online marketing, video production and graphic design.

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Chaplins Time Traveller – 4 million views in 2 weeks

This video is about a piece of footage that George Clarke discovered whilst watching a Charlie Chaplin film from 1928 called ‘The Circus’. In one of the scenes you can see an old woman talking on a mobile phone – how can this be possible?

Carlie Chaplin

This is a great example of a video that’s gone viral virtually overnight!

What are your views on why this video went viral?

Did it all start with a few comments and re-links by friends and family who then did the same – etc, etc, etc, until it starts being viewed by thousands of people each day, then hundreds of thousands, and then millions?

What made this video such an instant viral success story? Was it the catch title, the smart tagging, the high level of intrigue, or our natural instinct to pass something good on to others?

Please leave a comment below and share you views on this with us…

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Top Marketing Tips – If it Moves, Measure it!

6) Measure your results

Measure the Results of Your Marketing Efforts

How important is it to measure results?

Well, I would say that for entrepreneurs, measuring the results of their marketing efforts is one of the most important things they can do as it creates opportunity to make ongoing adjustments to their marketing plan – which ultimately lead to an increase in sales. Yet despite this, I have worked with so many entrepreneurs who have tended not to bother measuring the results of their specific marketing campaigns opting only to measure the overall results from their making plan.

My advice to you, if you are one of these ‘big picture’ entrepreneurs, is to take time to measure the results from all of your marketing efforts no matter how small or unimportant you think they may be. If you put an ad in the local paper then take time to write down how many enquires it generates and whether they came in via telephone calls or emails. If you keep a WordPress blog then make sure you install the ‘StatPress’ plugin so that you can measure the effectiveness of your blogging efforts. If you hand out loads of flyers then make sure you find ways to measure the response rate you get from doing this – for example, you could create a new email address specifically for the flyers, or put a discount code on them so that you can differentiate the enquires that come in from flyers to those coming in from other campaigns. In a nutshell, if it moves, find ways to measure it!

The trick is to measure everything so that you know which activities to do more of and which ones you might be better off ditching! And, by measuring everything you also create the opportunity to ‘fail small’, a trick that I picked up from one of the articles I read on Chris Cardell’s website several years ago. Basically, if you measure the results you get from a small scale marketing campaign you are able to use these measurements to forecast the success you are likely to get from a large scale one. Naturally, if a small scale campaign fails then it’s not worth doing it on a larger scale as it will probably fail too!

Share your ideas and/or tips on this subject with us by leaving a comment – thanks in advance.

All the best,

Goga Farruggia-Bochnak
Founder of End Goal Marketing

NB. The above tip is the sixth in a series of seven that I have written – here is a list of the others that I will be posting shortly:
7) Adjust your marketing plan

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Are the Yellow Pages still a good way to advertise?

It seems to be affordable, but who is using it?

Are the Yellow Pages still a good way to advertise?

It seems to be affordable, but who is using it?

It would be great to hear your comments on this.

Link Sponsored by TV News Videos

9 ‘Must Read’ Articles for Budding Entrepreneurs

I was doing a bit of surfing this morning and came across a very interesting blog called ‘The Emotion Machine: The Space Between Mind and World’. Written by Steven Handel. Click here to visit his blog.

I was struck by nine short articles that Steven has written about entrepreneurship so thought I’d give them a bit of a plug on the End Goal Marketing website along with a reason or two re why I found them interesting. The post are:

1) ‘5 Demands of the New Economy’

This is a stimulating post with some of Steven’s thinking in the following areas: Digital, Empathy, Creativity, Abundance, and Story-telling – I found out an interesting fact about Amazon!

2) ‘Interview: Peter Shallard, The Shrink for Entrepreneurs’

This post covers Steven’s second interview with business psychology expert Peter Shallard – You can get a PDF download of a free E-book called ‘Seek and Destroy: How to Identify Entrepreneurial Obstacles and How to Overcome Them’. Peter Shallard pays some nice complements to entrepreneurs, which were nice to read as its always good to have our egos massaged from time to time!

3) ‘Make Plans to Change Plans’

I really like how Steven highlights how planning takes place during action and that it is continually evolving moment-by-moment.

4) ‘Coming up with a business idea’

Some interesting tips here as well as seven useful questions to ask yourself whilst in the process of thrashing around your thinking in search of a good business idea.

5) ‘The Business of Spreading Your Wings’

In this post Steven shares how he has used emails, social media, newsletters, blogs, Youtube, and Skype to reach out to the world and get noticed. There are some good pointers in this post.

6) ‘Mindful Risk-Taking: In Life and in Business’

I found this post to be very interesting as it highlights the necessity of taking risks to get noticed – I enjoyed reading this post and came away from it feeling a sense of admiration for Steven for his openness about himself.

7) ‘How to Combat Work Overload’

Some good tips here about lessening the strains of a heavy workload – I particularly like two of them, ‘taking a siesta or two’ and ‘taking a day off!’

8) ‘Business-Minded Spirituality’

An interesting read if you grapple with balancing the business and spiritual sides of your mind.

And last but not least,

9) ‘It’s Not Everything, But It’s OK to Want Wealth’

Some great justifications for becoming stinking rich! And why not!

All the best and hope you enjoy reading these posts as much as I did,

Goga Farruggia-Bochnak
Founder of End Goal Marketing

Have you something to add? It would be great to hear what you think of these posts – leave your comments here and/or on Steven’s blog

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Top Marketing Tips – Create a marketing strategy

5) Create a marketing strategy

Create a marketing strategy

Whenever I’ve mention the words ‘marketing strategy’ to entrepreneurs in the past I’ve tended to get two quite different responses. Some have run off with a look of fear on their faces – I’m not sure why as I’ve never seen any of these people again; I think they’ve been purposefully avoiding me. Whilst some have managed to stay put and even looked quite interested in what I was about to share with them. Mind you thinking about, these people didn’t have much chance of running off as they’d seen me lock the door and put the key in my pocket before I brought the subject up.

So, why is it that many entrepreneurs find writing a marketing strategy something that they would rather put off or even not bother ever doing? Perhaps it’s something to do with how overcomplicated some people think marketing strategies need to be along with a worry that it will take an inordinate amount of time to write one. Yet, having a clearly defined marketing strategy will, providing that it’s followed, bring in the money a lot quicker, in larger amounts, and for a longer period of time, than would happen by just playing things by ear, so to speak.

The trick is to keep your marketing strategy as uncomplicated as you can so that you will actually be able to put it into practice through a well thought through marketing plan, which I will touch on shortly. All that a simple marketing strategy needs is a brief outline of the products or services that you aim to sell, a description of the people you are going to sell them to, and a bit about why your products or services are going to be more appealing to your potential clients than are those provided by your competition. It makes sense to add a few other things too, such as the cost of your products or services, a bit about the way you are going to brand them, how much you are planning to spend on marketing, and also, a description of the goals you aim to fulfil. Your marketing plan, in a nutshell, is basically your ‘action plan’ that describes HOW you are going to achieve all of your goals outlined within your marketing strategy. If you keep an eye on your marketing strategy it will keep you on track by making sure that all of the actions are aimed at achieving your goals!

Good luck with creating a marketing strategy and if you get stuck you can always visit or forum and pick the brains of one of our marketing experts.

All the best,

Goga Farruggia-Bochnak
Founder of End Goal Marketing

NB. The above tip is the fifth in a series of seven that I have written – here is a list of the others that I will be posting shortly:
6) Measure your results
7) Adjust your marketing plan

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6 Ways to Increase Your Website Conversions by Jerry Holliday

Increase Your Website Conversions

Your website is a marketing tool that should be feeding your business leads, sales or whatever the end goal of your website is. This action is called a conversion and finding ways to increase this is fundamental to the success of your website.

Take an example of 100 visitors a day hitting your website and you get one sale. This gives you a 1% conversion rate. If you want to double your conversions you could either work to double the number of visitors to 200 a day or you could increase the conversion rate to 2% by making changes to your website.

Increasing conversion might involve making some changes listed below and could be a lot simpler than trying to double your traffic to get that target conversion.

1. Great design

Like it or not, when a visitor arrives at your website they make a judgment on your website within mili-seconds. By offering functional professional design with well presented basic design elements you will instantly be more credible to your audience.

2. Show the Website is legitimate

By listing your physical business address, phone number and email address you are showing that you are a real company in the real world. You can further enhance your website’s credibility by showing biogs of any other employees and business partners, with photos if possible.

3. Make Navigation and Usability a Top Priority

When users hit your website they’ll want to find what they are looking for as quickly as possible. If barriers are put up in the form of too many clicks to get where they want to go then they’ll soon leave.

Initial site scoping, site mapping and wire framing helps you build a blueprint of your website as well as defining how your content will be positioned without distracting design features.

A wireframe is basically an outline of your site to show the most important elements of your site such as call to action buttons, navigation menus, and the placement of text and imagery.

This is an effective way of understanding the layout and structure of your site especially with larger sites where it is important to consider the user journey and navigation so they don’t get lost or frustrated.

4. Use testimonials and references

Testimonials are a great way give you credibility. A third party endorsement of how they found great benefit from your service or product is so much more convincing than you selling yourself.

Even better would be to capture video testimonials of your customers which carries a much more convincing message.

5. Use Video

Video is becoming the biggest growth area on the internet and engaging video is the closest you’ll get to face to face marketing.

According to Chris Crafton , chief marketing officer for eCorpTV.com 21% of retail web video viewers make a purchase online and brands using online video have seen increases of 20% to 40% in terms of incremental buying, with conversions that are twice the rate of other media.

6. Add a sales phone number

Make it easy for your customers

Make it easy for your customers. Some people just prefer to pick up the phone and talk, so don’t make them jump through hoops if they want to contact you.

These are just a few of many different methods that can help increase your website conversions. Why not take a look at your website with fresh eyes, enlist help of colleagues or friends to do the same and see what you can do make your website a much better converting marketing tool that it deserves to be.

Jerry Holliday is Marketing Director of Code 9, a design and digital agency based in Bristol UK.

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