Presentation: Turn specs into high quality apps

A while ago, I shared the Dutch version of my presentation called “Turn specs into high quality apps”. Last November, I was invited to do this presentation over at the DevDayBE-conference in English. Today, I want to share the recording of that presentation. I’ve written already several articles here about ATDD/BDD with Specflow and Xamarin.

During the presentation we’ll discuss the Three Amigo’s, how specifications are written using Gherkin and being automated with Specflow and Xamarin.UITest. We even managed to introduce a new buzzword: Acceptance Driven Presentation (ADP).

The sample code can be found on Github. Enjoy!


I hope you liked the presentation and managed to get inspired. Look around on this blog to learn more about testing or Xamarin. Tell me what you think through Twitter or leave a comment below!

The post Presentation: Turn specs into high quality apps appeared first on Marcofolio.net.


How To Expand Your Facebook Engagement, Improve Content Quality and More: The Social Scoop 11/18/2016


This week’s exciting updates from Facebook include the NEW Engagement Custom Audiences — allowing you to (re)target people who have engaged with your Page or posts or messaged you.

Take a look at my post with marked up screenshot. It’s a popular feature; this post has well over 500 shares so far, and all organic. Love that!

In other news, Facebook and Instagram just unveiled a unified inbox – coming soon. Wow, this will be another welcome feature for businesses, allowing you to better manage communications across both platforms.

Also, Facebook just announced a, uhm, bug in some metrics… organic daily page reach. See the full update here on Facebook’s blog. And this article on Recode.com: Facebook says it miscalculated more metrics, but it’s telling advertisers not to worry. Hm.

Next, let’s look at this week’s top 3 articles we’ve selected for you:

1. 12 Effective Ways To Expand Your Facebook Engagement via CoSchedule.com

If you consider the number of people on Facebook, it’s easy to decide that it needs to be part of your marketing plan. But declining reach (and with it engagement) can be discouraging. (No to mention bugs in metrics!!) In this post you will find detailed suggestions to expand your engagement that go beyond the usual “use visuals” advice. Enjoy!

2. Surviving Content Shock: Why it’s Quality Not Quantity that Counts via MySocialAgency.com

What is content shock? Mark Schaefer wrote about this back in 2014 and it refers to that point when there is so much content being created that it goes beyond our ability to consume it. The solution to this is not creating or sharing more, but rather more creative, interactive, and high quality content. YES! Amen.

3. 9 Facebook Marketing Features You Need To Know In 2017 via TheSocialMs.com

As the end of the year approaches, and we begin to plan for next year, it’s important to take note of all of the new and improved features that Facebook has added. By knowing about these and how they can benefit your business, 2017 can be even more amazing!

Social Media marketing world banner

Meet me in San Diego?

Discover social media insights from over 180 subject-matter experts at the largest in-person social media marketing conference. Meet me and my team in glorious sunny San Diego, California on March 22nd to 24th, 2017 and learn about the best ways to build your business using Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, LinkedIn, and much more! Click here for details.

That’s all for this week’s issue of The Social Scoop. Have an awesome weekend and week ahead.


Mari Smith signature

The post How To Expand Your Facebook Engagement, Improve Content Quality and More: The Social Scoop 11/18/2016 appeared first on MariSmith.com.

Mari Smith – Social Media Marketing Success

[Dutch] Presentation: Turn specs into high quality apps

As an introduction, I’ve written already several articles here about ATDD/BDD with Specflow and Xamarin. All of this led up to a presentation that was given at Microsoft TechDays in the Netherlands. Here, I’ll show how InfoSupport works together with the Dutch Railways how we Turn specifications into high quality apps.

Presentation: Turn specs into high quality apps

During the presentation we’ll discuss the Three Amigo’s, how specifications are written using Gherkin and being automated with Specflow and Xamarin.UITest. We even managed to introduce a new buzzword: Acceptance Driven Presentation (ADP).

The sample code can be found on Github. Take note the presentation itself is in Dutch, the slides are English. Enjoy!

Read more…

Marcofolio.net ()

Progressive Profiling: A Cure for Poor Lead Quality and Form Friction

You wouldn’t propose to a complete stranger, would you? So why ask prospects for a commitment without first getting to know them a little?

If your landing pages and web forms don’t bring in usable prospect data, how can you follow up with prospects and nurture them into qualified leads? How can you pass them to sales for further development?

The struggle is real. As much as 40 percent of B2B leads suffer from poor data quality, and bounce rates for lead generation pages average between 30 and 50 percent. The problem here is two-fold:

  • Prospects don’t take the time to complete web forms accurately
  • Prospects don’t complete web forms at all

In many cases, marketers either ask for all of their lead data up front or build a custom form for each content asset based on what buying stage they think will match prospects’ intent.

Neither approach is ideal.

On the one hand, you could scare prospects away by demanding too much information:

Yikes. Image source.

On the other hand, it’ll take a lot of extra work to a build custom form for each of your content assets.

How can this be avoided?

Progressive profiling is a lead acquisition technique that involves requesting one or two pieces of information at a time, starting with basic firmographics (e.g. company size, job title, industry) and leading into deeper, more targeted questions later in the relationship.

Done correctly, it can help you increase conversion rates and lead accuracy by lowering the psychological barrier to form submission — all while keeping forms simple for a better overall user experience.

Progressive profiling case study

Countless B2B organizations are already using progressive profiling to improve their conversion rates and the quality of their data profiles. The Eaton Corporation, a power management company based in Dublin, Ireland, used progressive profiling to improve engagement with a recent campaign aimed at IT professionals.

With the help of Oracle’s Marketing Cloud, they combined dynamic form fields with a personalized offer and brought in more than 5,000 new prospects… with 48 pieces of information for each. This surpassed their original goal by 276 percent.

So how exactly does progressive profiling work?

Instead of trying to build a complete lead intelligence profile from a single interaction or build a dozen different forms, you use marketing automation and dynamic web forms to request only the information you lack.

Here’s an example of how the process could work:

  1. A prospect visits your website and downloads a whitepaper.
    They submit their name, email address and company name through your web form.
  1. After receiving a few drip emails, the same person clicks a CTA to register for a webinar.

    A dynamic web form for now asks for their industry, company size and a custom question about their software needs. Dynamic web forms present unique fields to each prospect based on the information you already have (or don’t have) in your database.

  1. Not long after the webinar, the lead requests a video demo of your product.
    You now ask them to specify a budget range and implementation time frame.

You’ll need to set up rules for progressive profiling in your marketing automation platform. Most systems from leading vendors (Pardot, Eloqua, Marketo, HubSpot, Act-On) provide some kind of dynamic web form feature, although it’s not always labeled as such.

Here’s an example from Act-On — pay special attention to the “Visitor Form Rules” field:


As you can see, Act-On uses “if + then” rules to make sure no lead capture forms appear redundant to the prospect; you only want to ask for the pieces of information you don’t have.

When should you use progressive profiling?

It may seem like a cure-all solution from the outset, but progressive profiling isn’t always the best choice.

Not every prospect or lead will interact with your content frequently enough to move through a multi-stage lead capture process. According to a study by Demand Gen Report, only 38 percent of buyers view more than four pieces of content from the vendor they ultimately choose.

Worst case scenario: a lead only completes one web form, and you only get their name and email address — hardly enough to constitute an MQL (marketing qualified lead). In light of this reality, marketers should consider when and why they should employ progressive profiling:

  • If the goal is to gradually convert casual site visitors into sales-ready leads with a series of escalating offers, it’s probably a safe bet.
  • But what about visitors who are already in the decision stage of their buying process? If they click a bottom-funnel CTA, do you want to squander the opportunity by only capturing basic info, such as that you might capture for a newsletter subscriber?

    Of course not. Even if your initial conversion rate rises, your final conversion rate (after a couple nurture emails, another offer, another form) will be the same, or even lower.

Here’s the short version: you shouldn’t apply progressive profiling to all of your content campaigns just because it seems intuitive.

Instead, take a hybrid approach:

  • Build more extensive web forms for bottom-of-the-funnel assets and offers, and use progressive profiling to make sure you don’t request the same information twice.
  • For your first-time visitors and blog subscribers, the barrier to entry should still be low, but if there’s an opportunity to capture a qualified lead from a single touch point, take it.

The challenge

The challenge of lead acquisition is similar to the challenge of the sale: you must convince people that your offer (product/service/content) is worth some kind of investment (money/time/information).

While progressive profiling doesn’t necessarily improve your value proposition, it does lower the psychological barrier to entry. By minimizing your “asks” and spacing them out over time, you can build incremental trust with prospects and leads, which adds up to higher conversion rates and more new customers.

Just remember to keep one thing in mind: while progressive profiling is a great technique, it won’t carry your inbound lead generation efforts on its own. As with any campaign, there are many moving parts and they all must work in concert. To get the most out of progressive profiling, make sure you invest at least as much energy into optimizing your awesome content and the landing pages that go with them.

Interested in learning more about landing page optimization?

Download this ebook and become an expert at designing landing pages that convert like crazy.
By entering your email you’ll receive weekly Unbounce Blog updates and other resources to help you become a marketing genius.


Sites with High Quality Photos You Can Use for Free

I’ve been keeping a list like this around for a while, and the CSS-Tricks Staff just added a bunch of new links to it, so I figured HEY that sounds like fun little weekend post. There are so many of these it’s really no excuse to have crappy photos in the work you do, be it websites, presentations, print work, whatever.

New Old Stock

Vintage photos from the public archives. Free of known copyright restrictions.


Free (do whatever you want) high-resolution photos. 10 new photos every 10 days.

Also, I think re:splashed is the same photos with a different interface? Not sure.

Flickr Commons

The key goal of The Commons is to share hidden treasures from the world’s public photography archives.


A photographer’s treat by Jonas Nilsson Lee. Free (do what ever you want) photos.

Jay Mantri

Free pics. Do anything (CC0). Make magic. 7 new photos every Thursday.


Hand-picked free photos for your inspiration.


Free for commercial use stock photos by Jeffrey Betts. CC0 license. New photos every week.


JÉSHOOTS I founded because they like to take pictures and it’s a shame some photos withhold the entire world for free, all designers, all working with photos, for those who need a thematic photo free.

ISO Republic

High-quality, free photos for creatives


Free Life Hi-Fi Photos. You can use on your personal and commercial projects. New photo every day.

Realistic Shots

Free stock photos (high resolution) for personal and commercial use. 7 new photos every week. Just make something creative!

Free Nature Stock

Royalty-free Nature Stock Photos. Use them however you want. Updated daily.


Free (do as you please), high-resolution photos and textures.

Bara Art

Free high resolution photos for your personal and even commercial projects!


Royalty free high resolution images for your personal and commercial projects.

Freely Photos

Totally free high quality Christian stock photography All photos are published under the amazing ‘CC0 license’. Do what you want with them!

Barn Images

Barn Images offers you a collection of free high-resolution stock photography.


I’ve had a lot of pictures that I never used for a long time, but hopefully, you will find them useful. Feel free to browse and download any photo for personal or commercial use. You don’t have to notify or credit me if you use one of my pics, but I’ll be happy if you do.

Little Visuals

The author of this site, Nic, suddenly died. The archive of free photos is still online, though, and the site has more information and a way to donate.

Death to the Stock Photo

About a year ago we noticed an less-than-awesome industry pattern: too many extraordinary brands, bloggers, and creatives struggled to find images that fit their vibe + tribe. Turns out, the solution lay on our laptops. We had files upon files of our own photos gathering dust. We figured: why not spread ’em around?

Superfamous Images

The Superfamous Images are available under the conditions of a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 license. This means that you can use the work for your own purposes as long as credit is provided.

The Pattern Library


Free high-resolution pictures you can use on your personal and commercial projects.

Foodies Feed


Free hi-resolution photos. Use them however you like.


Free handpicked stock photos for your commercial and personal works.


  • A lot of stock photo sites have a “free photo of the day” – so look for that. Doesn’t hurt to have a Dropbox folder full of design resources!
  • Google Images has a way to filter search results by license:

  • IM Free: A curated collection of free resources, all for commercial use.
  • Stock Up

If you know of some more good ones, drop them in the comments.

Sites with High Quality Photos You Can Use for Free is a post from CSS-Tricks


Google Analytics Diagnostics: Actionable Data Quality

A Guide to Google Analytics Diagnostics

A few weeks ago I logged in to my Google Analytics account and saw the little yellow number 1 besides the bell icon in the top-right corner of my screen. As usual, I clicked on it to check what it was about, I like to keep my “inbox zero” when it comes to my implementation!

I was surprised with what I saw, as it was a pretty major issue with the website that happened as a result of a recent upgrade: the redirection from www.online-behavior.com to online-behavior.com stopped working, meaning that every single page on the website had a duplicate page. That’s bad in many ways.

Immediately after seeing the notification (which you can see below) I sent an email to my developer asking for his intervention. One day later the problem was solved. This was definitely an actionable and timely implementation insight.

Google Analytics notification

The Power of Google Analytics Diagnostics

As shown through the example above, Diagnostics is a very powerful way to find out about issues with your configurations or settings, right in your face!

We all know about the importance of data quality, but how important is it, really? The answer to this question seems to be approximately US$ 296,477,289 only in the UK! At least that’s the estimation made by the Experian Data Quality team in a 2014 research:

86% of companies admitted that their data might be inaccurate in some way. 44% of businesses said that missing or incomplete data is the most common problem with outdated contact information (41%) being the second most problematic.

Our research also concluded that 75% of businesses are wasting 14% of revenue due to poor data quality. This equates to a staggering £197.788m wasted revenue across UK businesses.

With that in mind, it is easy to make your calculations to understand what would be the ROI of spending 30 seconds checking your Diagnostics every time you log into Google Analytics. And I write “every time” because Diagnostics is a real-time tool, it monitors your data & configuration settings on an ongoing basis; my example above shows just that. Diagnostics don’t just tell you what’s wrong today, but continually. For example, if a webmaster forgets to tag 50 new pages that launch 3 months from today, Google will keep an eye out for this.

Make no mistake, your data-driven decisions are as good as your data source, and your data source is as good as your implementation; therefore, your decisions will be as good as your data implementation – simple logic 🙂

Below I will discuss what you should be looking for and how to navigate the Google Analytics Diagnostics feature to get the most out of it.

It All Starts With The Bell (Mr. Jingles)

Analytics notification bellBasically, Diagnostics monitors two types of implementation issues: data quality and configuration settings. Each of these has a large number of criteria being checked, some more critical than others. That’s why when you log into Google Analytics you may see three types of notifications (in order of importance below):

  1. Red notification: high-priority issues including untagged pages, bad filters, abundance of self referrals, (not set) in AdWords Reports, double-tagging, and others.
  2. Yellow notification: unresolved issues including AdWords clicks vs. sessions discrepancies, duplicate campaign parameters, auto-tagging disabled, oversized “Other” channel, and others.
  3. Blue notification: feature recommendations such as creating a goal, excluding internal IPs, linking to Webmaster Tools, using remarketing, using segmentation, using annotations, and others..

Note that the number on the bell will show you only the highest priority notification when you log in, i.e. if you have 6 red, 2 yellow and 2 blue notifications, you will see only a red 6 on the bell notification, but when you click on the bell you will see all of them.

The Anatomy of a Diagnostic

Once you click on the bell you will see an interface with all your notifications similar to the image below. You will note that there are two major sections in the Diagnostics list: Active notifications and Archived notifications. You might look at the active section as your “inbox”, or “to-do list”; the archive is the “done” or “worry later” list – so the objective here is to keep inbox zero! We will talk about each of them below.

But before that, I would like to give a honor mention to a small icon in the top-right of the screenshot below, also known as the “copy to clipboard” button. It so happens that often the person viewing the message is not the one who can act on it. If that’s the case with you, this button will make it easy for you to email notification(s) to your webmaster. Or paste into a spreadsheet to assign various owners and track its course. Or to put into a notes doc, or maybe just to copy the notifications to for the pure pleasure of doing it!

Analytics Diagnostics

Active Notifications

This section, prominent by the white background, lists all the unresolved notifications. It also shows the priority of the notification (using the colors explained above) a short explanation of what is the issue and a list of links to help you take action. Since notifications have different natures, the types of action differ between them. Below is a list of the most common actions you can take.

  • Ignore: If you are aware of the issue being reported and it is not important enough for you implement it, you can choose to ignore the notification for 1 week, 1 month, 3 months, 6 months or All time. If you do that, the notification will be archived and visible on the section below, but you will be able to restore it later.
  • Check again: If you fixed the issue you can ask Google to check again in order to confirm that you’ve done it properly. This option will be available until you resolve the issue.
  • Details: Clicking on details will lead you to another screen where you can read more about the notification and how to solve it. Usually in the new screen you will also have an additional link to Learn More that will often direct you to relevant resources on the Google Analytics Help Center or Developer Documents.
  • Action links: Those links are present in diagnostics where there’s a setting that can be adjusted to fix the problem. For example, if you have a bad filter, you will see an “adjust filter” leading you directly to the filter, if you have a bad view setting, you will see an “adjust view setting” leading you directly to the view settings.

Archived Notifications

When it comes to archived notifications, you will have three types: Resolved, Ignored and Pending verification.

There isn’t much you can do with Resolved notifications, they have been resolved. You can only see the details about them.

Pending verification will be shown in those notifications where you can clicked on check again, explained above. Those issues are in the queue to be verified by Google, and when they are checked again they are either resolved (stay in the archive) or are going back to the active section.

As for Ignored notifications, you will have the option to Restore them into an Active notification or just check more details about them. This option has two major use cases that might be very handy:

  • A teammate ignores something thinking it’s not important, but you realize it is.
  • You archive something because it’s not important at that point in time. But your business strategy shifts and it becomes important in the future.
  • You ignore something believing it has been implemented, but you notice later it was not (for these cases, it is always better to click on “Check again” instead of “Ignore”).

Lesson: it is always better to resolve an issue rather than ignore it!

Concluding Thoughts

In summary, Diagnostics are great, they can save you a lot of headaches and money; it will constantly monitor your data health for you and let you know if anything strange comes up. In addition, if you are not a savvy Google Analytics user, this feature will have a huge value as it will help you prioritize your development, focusing on tasks that are more important first. And another helpful touch is that it will send you directly to whatever setting you need to change, time saver!

Data quality is an issue that affects all companies, independently of their savviness, size or industry. Even if you are a data jedi, make sure to take a few seconds to check this feature, it may turn you into a hero.

Big shout-out to Matt Matyas, Google Analytics Product Manager responsible for this feature, for his comments and insights on this post.

Google Analytics notification
Online Behavior
Analytics Diagnostics

Online Behavior – Marketing Measurement & Optimization