Banks May Be Cheating You With “Alternative Redress” on PPI Claims

The regulatory provision “alternative redress” or “comparative redress” allows a bank, in specific situations, to replace a consumer’s single-premium PPI for a regular-premium PPI. The difference in prices is staggering, and consumers who claim back PPI refunds today should know when to identify alternative redress.

On average, a regular-premium PPI costs around £2780, but you may be owed £3500-5000 because of your single premiums. Imagine how much Barclays, Lloyds and RBS saved from using the regulatory provision.

According to UK investigation estimates, Barclays had used the regulatory provision from October 2012 to October 2013. Lloyds had used the provision from February 2013. The length of time guarantees that the banks had saved millions from refunding consumers. Surely, the present total of £28 billion for recompensing the United Kingdom is not enough.

PPI is a policy designed to repay loans and mortgages. However, many bank representatives sold the insurance to those who did not need it. You are ineligible for a PPI if you already have a medical condition, are retired, unemployed or self-employed upon purchasing.

Despite being vilified by the UK media and authorities, reputable claims management companies, such as can help you get back all the refunds you deserve.

Understanding the Value of Personal Authority in Blogs

An official company blog will still sound like a generic advertisement if written without a figurehead. However, you cannot just choose any person to write a personal blog for your company. You need someone related to the field of expertise to write the blog based on what topic you have.

Personal authority allows audiences to trust the person in your company based on their expertise and profession in the company. If a security manager can point out possible risks in internet security for the company and he or she advises readers about what they can do for their own systems, and those who followed his or her advice found it useful and effective, then they can earn more credential, and citation.

However, personal authority comes with proper expertise. People will look for credentials of your professional, so it is best that you identify them in the website with a short profile about their profession and their past achievements. While people may still want to read your employee blogs given their usefulness, hiring professionals with good credentials shows a great image for the company.

The fun part with such blogs is that they do not sound like generic company blogs. They have personality and are written in the manner your employee speaks, including their humour and biased opinions. This compels readers to come back for more information in your company blog.

Resolving the Smallest Problems in Audio Production

Almost anybody could record their songs at home and develop their song writing skills. Making songs is an enjoyable process even when you’re alone, but sometimes, enjoyment overlooks your attention detail, which is highly important in producing good, quality recordings. Even if you may consider these the smallest issues your home studio might have, these are highly important.

1. Noisy Cables
Cables you use to connect your microphones to mixers play a great role in the quality of audio you can get. A noisy cable might be something you could overlook. Here are a few ways you could get rid of noisy cables. These will show up especially when you’re compressing audio tracks.

2. Scratchy Monitors
If your monitors are scratchy, but they deliver the mix fine, you might be missing a few hertz of frequencies, which can make all the difference in your final mix. Be sure to always clean the insides of your monitors and be sure to determine its problem. Sometimes, malfunctioning equipment can cost you the time you used in producing and recording your songs.

3. Compression Speed
Compression speed might seem irrelevant especially if you’re compressing at very loud levels, but sometimes, it could induce unnecessary pumping in some areas of your mix. Master compression may also suddenly lower the volume due to the speed of the gate. Try different volume levels to help you find a “sweet spot.”

Content, Images and All the Trends Possible in 2014

In 2013, many web marketers found that high quality content and accessibility because highly important in endorsing products, services and websites. This 2014, they expect the trends to go in full swing. Small and big businesses should take heed of the following for their internet marketing endeavours for 2014.

1. Content
High quality content in terms of composition and quality helped many websites gain audience favour. In 2014, high quality content stretches to the aesthetic. High-definition videos for advertisements or infotainment will become a demand with consumers. This might mean bigger storages or new web streaming deals for businesses. Experts expect these content databases to increase more than twofold this year.

2. Image Centricity
Infographics made it fun and simple for many people to digest facts without having a spinning head or tired eyes bombarded by text. Images inserted in timely rhythms in articles gave readers time to digest the idea or become distracted by the image. Indeed, investing in in-house graphic designers and developers will be crucial for business marketing.

3. Social Media
Social media, with part of it similar to RSS feeds for audiences, had helped many businesses flourish in terms of marketing. However, new social networks continue to gain popularity and each one has a different format and feature than the other. Posting a business profile on each one could help you gain more audiences as well. Diversity in social media is a must to stay on top for 2014.

The EQ Can Be Your Friend or Foe

Every Digital Audio Workstation never fails to have its own equalizer. The most basic tool in the bunch of your audio plugins is the most powerful simply because it sculpts your sound to get rid of unwanted frequencies and deliver warmth or further bite to instrument sounds. It is fairly easy to use an equalizer, but it is greatly hard to master it.

Ear Training

If you notice, moving the “cones” in the equalizer highlights some frequencies that may sound awkward to your ears and as you move the frequency range, the sound changes its character. Making “cones” and “slopes” as well as “cuts” is easy with the functionality of most equalizers, but you will depend heavily on your ears.

Your ears must learn how to perceive music as frequencies. Identifying the different frequency ranges where instruments enter and have full character is important. It is equally important to understand where does a frequency boost begin to make your instrument sound unnatural.


You can’t fix anything after you’ve recorded an instrument once you start using the equalizer. The EQ is only designed to enhance the sound and ensure that it sits properly in your mix. Shaping your tone to sound something that it is not during the recording phase is next to impossible and can only destroy your track.

Increasing The Perceived Loudness in Your Audio Mixes

If you have a home studio, you might be wondering how audio engineers increase the volume of their mixes. If you think your digital audio workstation couldn’t accomplish this, it actually can. Increasing the loudness of your mixes is achievable by using the built in plugins in your DAW or even free plugins.

1. Parallel Compression
A great many music today, from rock to electronic music, makes use of a well-defined kick drum to maintain the rhythm of a song. Increasing the loudness of the kick drum, however, does not give the similar results. You will need to make use of parallel compression. This means using the original sample and using extreme compression settings on a similar file, which can help beef up some of its other frequencies. For a kick drum, notably its bass and sub frequencies are improved by parallel compression.

2. Multiband Compression
In your final mix, you want everything properly balanced out and everything in the proper level they should be. If you have any problems hearing certain instruments, such as problems in hearing the bass or drums in your mix, you have a problem in the recording process or fixing the phase issues. Multiband compression can help only to improve the sound of your entire mix, but not fix phase issues. It also improves your volume a notch higher, but not as loud as needed.

3. Limiter
A master limiter will increase the gain of your mix, but if it still sounds unbalanced, certain frequencies may clip as they hit the brickwall limiter’s end. Make sure that everything is balanced before placing the master limiter.

Social Media as a Marketing Tool

Social media is an effective marketing instrument for your business because it could guarantee high traffic for your website. Social media allows users to have a personalized feed that gives them the ability to choose the updates they see. Here are a few things to remember to use it effectively.

1. Keep it Interesting
Users could only appreciate your page if it is related to their interests. For example, if you are a dress-designing company, you could post videos about how fun it is to make cloth designs in a unique way. Keeping it interesting helps audiences relate to your industry and trust your work.

2. Keep Updates Short
Make updates short and concise, or else viewers will need a long time to digest what they read, which they could forget if they do not ponder on it consistently. If ever you need to update on a lengthy subject, it is best you reserve such for your web blog, which you could link to your updates.

3. Frequency
Never update your feed continuously or else the social network will consider your activity as spamming. People may also stop following your updates because it is not only you who they have feeds from. Timing is essential; if you’re targeting professionals, you must only make updates before they go to work, during their breaks and during their after work hours.

How to Promote Your Music Online

If you are a self-managed musician or band, the internet is the best way you could promote your music without having to shell out so much money. Marketing is easy when you have a connection, computers or mobile devices at any time. Here are a few things you should know.

1. Music Publishing
In this article, music publishing was discussed thoroughly. It is important that everyone knows you have the rights to all your work and those songs belong to you or your band.

2. Social Media
Facebook, Twitter and other social media websites help you not just network with audiences, but it is an easy way to update your friend and fan listing about your recent songs. Your content is unquestionable, given that it is music, but social media gives it the public exposure it needs.

3. Stores
Online, you could have some websites sell your music for you. While you would be paying them a certain amount from your profit for services, they handle the marketing and convenience of allowing users to download your entire album or choice songs from your music. You definitely earn your keep.

4. Video Streaming
People want to see you play live, but since you could only reside in one venue or location, allowing people to view your performances through video streaming could actually help. Website such as Youtube and Dailymotion could help have your video up and running for all the world to see.

Internet Marketing: Branding is Key, Quality is Core

In the last few years, Internet marketing had changed greatly simply because of some new algorithm updates that Google does with its search engines (which is the benchmark of most search engines in the world today). In 2013, the arena is never the same in one quarter to the next. Listed here are a few tips to ensure that you make it a point to improve your branding and quality for your blog’s increasing rep in the Internet.

1. Social Media
If one person finds your article attractive, he or she could share it to two or three other persons who could find it attractive. The more people find your article better in social media, the more natural links and pluses your article gets, which boosts its credibility with search engines. You also get increased website traffic.

2. Article Submission Websites
In 2010, these websites were amazing. Today, like spun article gibberish, they are useless with Google’s new updates. It would be best to write a good high quality article and focus on putting them on your website instead of having them on these websites. Hey, you do not even get the link power you expect them to give back to you.

3. Gradual Link Building
Big and established businesses find no trouble finding customers or visitors to their websites even if they have no direct links to their website. You know why? This is because they slowly build their links from authority websites. Google may penalize your website if you build your link campaigns at a fast rate. Take it slow and easy. The more natural and similar your progress patterns are with big companies, the better.

4. Authority
Google+ provides you a good avenue to start building authority. Also, any author with a Google+ account has his or her name portrayed next to the article they wrote. Here are other perks that Google+ could do for authority development.

Why You Should be Aware of Zero-Hours Contracts

UK Secretary of State For Business, Innovation and Skills Vince Cable warned the United Kingdom of zero-hours contracts as it makes up around 4% of the UK employment force. Common in most fast food and retail stores, zero hours contracts raised employment, but the casual form of employment might cause trouble in the future.

Many critics have already pointed out that zero-hours contracts exploit their employees because they take advantage of employees looking to make a quick buck by accepting any kind of role. People’s working experience and dignity as the balance shifts from the hands of an employee to the employer.

In a typical zero-hour shift, there is no required minimum work hours per day. However, employees must always be available when their employer or supervisor calls them. Some zero hours contracts allow employees to set flexible hours of schedules. The contract is actually helpful for those who have other commitments, such as working students or those with family commitments.

For employers, zero-hours contracts help them increase the workforce when needed, then reduce the number of employees when there is a lack of activity, reducing the needed pay for employee salaries and benefits.

The variable income rate makes it difficult to create a suitable budget plan for many families. Employers might also have problems when they cannot find a suitable professional with the right skills for a task at hand. Quality of service for consumers might also suffer as casual workers, feeling less value than full-time workers not on zero hours contracts, might not value their jobs.