Safer Cars Does Not Mean Safer Roads

These days, it is pretty standard for cars to include top of the line safety features. These range from rear-view cameras, lane departure warnings, traction control and even blind spot detection.

Driving a safe vehicle can also mean more money in your pocket as drivers can save on car insurance cost. A car insurance company is generally able to provide more affordable car insurance if your vehicle has safety features. However, safer cars do not necessarily mean safer roads across the country.

From January to June, approximately 18,720 people have died on U.S. roads. As a result of a growing economy, people are driving more miles compared to recession level data. Less unemployment means more cars are on the road getting people to and from work and more money for leisure activities. In 2017, Americans traveled 3.22 trillion miles according to the Federal Highway Administration.

Factor in more miles driven along with speeding, drug and alcohol impaired driving and distracted driving and the fatality rate is at an all-time high.

South Carolina leads the nation in traffic fatality rates per miles traveled. In 2017, the state had 1.88 deaths per 100 million miles traveled, which is almost two times the national average. Illinois reported 1,090 traffic deaths.

This trend prompted Governor Rauner to declare August 17 as Traffic Fatality Awareness Day at the Illinois State Fair through a partnership with the Illinois Department of Transportation, the Illinois State Police, Illinois Department of Health, Illinois Secretary of State and Mothers Against Drunk Driving.

States across the country have launched similar awareness efforts like Vision Zero. Vision Zero’s goal is to strategically eliminate traffic fatalities and injuries while increasing safe, healthy and equitable mobility for everyone.

Reducing speed is perhaps the most effective way to reduce the fatalities. Speed increases the distance it takes a car to come to a complete stop. The speed of impact is also directly correlated to the risk of death. The higher the speed of impact, the higher the probability of a passenger dying becomes.

Even with lower speeds, it is hard for police officers to enforce these lower limits. Automated cameras are already unpopular and adding more would also be costly.

Every year, an estimated 40,000 Americans die on the road. With effective legislation and commitment, we can all work together to reduce that statistic.

According to research by the Overseas Development Institute and the WRI Ross Center for Sustainable Cities, one way to make progress is to treat traffic fatalities and road safety as a public health issue. The public has to stop blaming drivers for collisions and look to policymakers for ways to help prevent them.

The Good, the Bad, and the Not So Ugly Casino Bets

When walking through a casino, you may scratch your head and contemplate, “which game should I play? Maybe the slot machines?” There’s thousands of them enticing you take little spin. “Perhaps a little blackjack?” This game is not your Father’s blackjack any more. It has since evolved into many variants. Considering craps? Those tempting props bets can deplete your bankroll quickly.

Here are some of the best, worst, and not so ugly bets of casino games:

Machines

· The Good – Video Poker.

Learn basic strategy on the Jacks or Better, Bonus and Double Bonus games offering a 5 coin maximum bet. Always check the machine pay tables for one that pays at least 9/1 for a full house, and 6/1 for a flush. These games have over a 98% return and your money may last longer. Do not play those with pay tables less than 9/6.

· The Bad – Penny Slots

Very popular with exciting themes, colorful graphics, and attractive bonus features. However, the return is in the 80% range. Casinos have to hold more because they make less money on them. The hit frequency is about one in three spins but many so called win returns are less than your original wager.

· The Not So Ugly – Traditional 3 Reel Slots

If you positively must play the slots, try the non-progressive 25 cents, 50 cents, or 1 dollar machines that accept a two or three coin maximum wager. (While they’re still around). Returns average about 95%, and when you score a hit, your smallest win will be at least the amount of your original wager.

Tables

· The Good – Traditional Blackjack

Stay with the tables that pay 3/2 for a blackjack, deal from shoes and offer liberal rules such as allowing re-splits, soft doubling, double after split and late surrender. Learn basic strategy first. Avoid the optional side bets.

· The Bad – 6/5 Blackjack

Many casinos have reduced their BJ payout from 3/2 to 6/5. A player can expect three to four BJ’s per hour. Receiving $12 instead of $15 at a $10 table will deplete your bankroll quicker. Another bad bet is playing at a table with a continuous shuffle machine. The hands played per hour jump from about 60 to 80.

· The Not So Ugly – Blackjack Switch

This game is catching on fast. You play two hands at once and are allowed the option of switching the top cards to create better hands. Blackjack only pays even money but the game has some advantages for the player. After the switch is made, basic Blackjack rules apply. You can split, double, etc.

· The Good – Craps: pass line with odds.

There is a reason why this bet is the most popular at the table. When you make an odds wager behind the pass line after a shooter’s point number is established, you will be paid in true odds if the point is made before a seven is rolled. For example, the true odds on numbers four and ten are 2/1. A $10 odds bet would pay $20.

· The Bad – Craps: one roll proposition bets

You have one chance to wager that a certain number will emerge on the next roll. For example, a bet on the two or twelve will pay 30/1 if it hits. Truth is you only have a 1 in 36 chance of winning.

· The Not So Ugly – Craps: wrong betting

A wrong or don’t bettor is a player that bets against the shooter. When a wager is made on the don’t pass bar, the player is hoping that the shooter will roll a seven before the point number. This is called a seven out; all bets lose to the house except the wrong bettor(s). Don’t bettors also have an odds bet option, but they have to lay odds instead of taking them. For example, an odds bet against a point four or ten would cost $20 to win $10.

Components of a B2B or B2C MarTech Stack

If you’re building a basic B2B or B2C MarTechstack then here’s a look at some of the components of a marketing stack.

Marketing automation

There are a plethora of marketing automation tools out there, and we at BlueOshan recommend HubSpot. HubSpot comes with a variety of different pricing packages based on the scale of your business and the kind of solution you’re looking for. HubSpot also integrates with a variety of widgets and other software in the market, making it a good contender for a marketing automation pick for your B2B or B2C martech stack.

Social media automation

Created in 2008, Hootsuite is a personal favourite social media automation tool of mine. Hootsuite also has a freemium model which is actually quite nice. Sprout Social is a huge fan favourite over at r/socialmedia. To be honest there are plenty of social media automation tools out there for you to add to your B2B or B2C martech stack. Whatever you do finally pick, make sure it plays well with your marketing automation tool.

Content management system

From WordPress to Drupal to Joomla, there are plenty of CMS to pick off the shelf. Your website is extremely important to your martech stack, so you need to be able to add or delete pages with ease. Having an easy to use content delivery system is vital for you to keep your content fresh. It will even benefit your inbound marketing efforts so choose wisely!

Advertising Technology

Google AdWords is a popular advertising service. In fact a lot of contenders of the Stackies 2018 had Google AdWords in their martech stacks. The right advertising campaign or goals will promote your business and so using the right advertising technology is important for your martech stack.

Customer relationship management

CRM plays a very important role in your martech stack. CRM will help you nurture leads that are on the top of the funnel, and also help you track behaviour and give you useful insights into your customer’s behavior. Since we have already recommended HubSpot for the marketing automation tool, you can add HubSpot CRM to your stack as well. HubSpot CRM is completely free to use, and will work well with your martech stack.

Email Marketing

Sending personalized emails to your leads and customers works wonders. Freemium email marketing software like MailChimp and Constant Contact are great for small businesses. Some marketing automation tools like HubSpot come with an email marketing suite that can do exactly what we are suggesting. Nurturing your leads and customers via email has proven to be quite successful and can be pivotal for your marketing efforts.

Data analytics tools

Although I have put this under a separate sub heading, most of the tools that we have mentioned above come with a dashboard experience that allow you to track various analytics. One of the most popularly used analytics tools by companies in their martech stacks is Google Analytics. You could even experiment with building a custom dashboard, with analytics widgets from all your tools in your martech stack.