News stories for Adfero

The following articles are a selection of news stories written with an SEO focus for four different clients of mine at Adfero

1. For a client offering financial advice

keywords mortgage advice, long-term investments

Growing market presence offers hope to first-time buyers

A major bank has attributed strong mortgage sales to an increase in first-time buyers, providing encouragement to those who are seeking mortgage advice.

HSBC saw its mortgage sales increase two-fold in the opening five weeks of 2011 when compared with the same period of the previous year.

Head of mortgages at the bank Stuart Beattie said there had been "strong demand from first-time buyers" in January.

"We have broadened our range of offers to help customers with smaller deposits to step on to the housing ladder for the first time," he added.

A two-year mortgage at 85 per cent loans-to-value and interest rates starting at 3.49 per cent is one new product included in the range.

Mr Beattie expected homeowners to be relieved that the base interest rate was frozen by the Monetary Policy Committee yesterday (February 10th).

Recently, Ducalian sales and marketing manager Timothy Lambert urged the mortgage industry to do more to help first-time buyers onto the property ladder.

"Strong client demand" for ethical funds

Ethical funds have risen in demand among people making short and long-term investments, recent figures have revealed.

Statistics from the Investment Management Association show that net retail sales of ethical funds reached £280 million in 2010, an increase of 80 per cent on 2009 and the highest total since 2007.

UK Social Investment Forum chief executive Penny Shepherd described what she saw as "strong client demand" for ethical funds, but added that the data "significantly understates the size of the UK's retail green and ethical market".

The number of ethical funds tracked in 2010 was 47, ten per cent fewer than the 52 tracked in the previous year's statistics.

Ethical funds under management amassed £6.6 billion in value, representing a growth of 16 per cent on 2009.

The publication of the figures follows news that officials at some of the UK's leading investment institutions expressed their delight with the establishment of a UK Green Investment Bank by writing a letter to the prime minister.

2. For a client selling music t-shirts

keyword t-shirt

Grab a Coldplay t-shirt to support the band at Glastonbury

Coldplay will headline this year's Glastonbury Festival, organiser Michael Eavis confirmed yesterday (February 15th).

T-shirts bearing the band's name and album designs will be sported by fans attending the event, with the appearance taking place on the Saturday evening.

Mr Eavis hailed the "triumphant return of a band that everyone here feels part of".

"They're one of the greatest phenomena to grow from these fields," he added.

Coldplay's debut at Glastonbury came in 1999 when they played in the New Bands Tent just weeks after the group had penned a record deal.

In 2002, they returned to headline the Pyramid Stage.

The Sun unofficially reported two weeks ago that the British rockers had landed the top spot on the bill after the Rolling Stones had turned down the offer to play in front of the festival's 200,000-capacity crowd.

Coldplay join another 2011 headliner Beyonce, whose record company confirmed the R&B singer will top the bill on the Sunday.

Honour Grammy winners with music t-shirts

A host of artists bagged major accolades at the Grammy Awards last night (February 13th).

British acts Iron Maiden, La Roux and Muse all picked up honours at the Los Angeles bash which saw Nashville country act Lady Antebellum steal the show with five awards.

Jay-Z also emerged as one of the night's big winners, taking home three Grammys for rap performance by a duo or group, sung collaboration and rap song.

Countryman and hip hop artist Eminem scooped the rap album and rap solo performance awards but failed to win in seven other categories.

The big upset of the night was caused by Esperanza Spalding, a jazz singer who came out top in the new artist category, beating British acts Florence and the Machine and Mumford and Sons as well as teen pop sensation Justin Bieber.

"I take this honour to heart so sincerely," said Spalding, who hails from Portland, Oregon.

There are plenty of t-shirts available at 8ball.co.uk to celebrate the many and varied victors at the 53rd annual awards ceremony.

3. For a client selling fuel cards

keywords haulage, petrol

Motorway services costs "unforgivable"

Haulage drivers who spend time at motorway services are paying up to 91 per cent more than high street consumers for some items, according to What Car? research.

The figure corresponds to a bottle of water, which cost £1.91 at a retailer's motorway services outlet but £1.00 at the same company's high street store.

What Car? editor-in-chief Steve Fowler said the extent that certain retailers exploit motorists is "unforgivable".

His publication also revealed that the prices of many other drinks and snacks are bumped up substantially at motorway services.

"We suggest that all motorway users plan their journeys carefully and try to avoid using such greedy retailers as much as possible," Mr Fowler added.

Fuel also climbs to higher prices at motorway services.

The average price of diesel was 5.2 per cent more than the national average, the study found.

Last year, travelsupermarket.com hailed the return of the car picnic after researchers discovered that certain sandwiches, crisps and drinks were on average 128 per cent more expensive at service stations than they were in supermarkets.

Vital fuel duty stabiliser "easily introduced"

A fuel duty stabiliser to control rising petrol prices is crucial and would not be difficult to implement, a small businesses representative has claimed.

Hitting out at "critics" commenting on its complexity, the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) national chairman John Walker said a fuel duty stabiliser "can be easily introduced and must be put in place".

He added that such a measure would give "five million small businesses the certainty and stability they need to factor in fuel costs to their business plans".

The FSB explained that the fuel duty level could be adjusted based on cyclical fluctuations in oil prices.

It has published a report which seeks to further debunk myths that a fuel price stabiliser would be complicated and provides further details of the proposal.

The report follows the Mr Walker's comments yesterday (February 9th) which suggested that a fuel price stabiliser could be used as a measure to tackle inflation.

Chancellor George Osborne recently hinted that he may cancel April's plans to raise fuel duty by 1p.

4. For a client selling fishing products

keywords fishing rod(s), fishing lures

Year's biggest carp caught

One angler used his fishing lures to perfection as he caught the biggest carp of the year so far.

Solihull's Anthony Bahnik bagged the 45lb fish with his fishing rod on the half-frozen Nene Valley pit.

Speaking to the Angling Times, Mr Bahnik said that making the scoop was far from easy, describing how "the fight started with a savage run of 30yds, then the fish rose in the water and started shaking its head violently".

After gaining control, the "spirited" fish then went off in another direction before he eventually made the catch, he added.

In bettering his 43lb haul of last summer, the carp turned out to be a new personal best for Anthony, which is no mean feat at a lake containing just 27 of the breed.

Elsewhere, Tom Maker landed a 38lb 2oz carp on his very first session of the year. The angler was trying to sleep when his fishing lures enticed the fish at a southern stillwater, the Angling Times reported.

Anglers urged to fight lake closure

One publication is calling on British anglers to briefly put down their fishing rods and join a new campaign.

The Savay Lake in Buckinghamshire is due to close to make way for the proposed Birmingham-London high-speed rail link and the Angling Times is supporting a petition urging the government to reconsider.

Tackle company owner Martin Locke told the publication that the lake "is quite simply the most stunning place I've ever fished", stating "it must be saved" and joining calls for anglers to add their names the petition, which has acquired over 30,000 signatures.

According to the document, such plans were originally announced by the previous government and would have cost £11 billion to implement.

The rail link will now amount to £25.5 billion, based on current estimations.
Last week, the Angling Times threw its weight behind an awareness campaign to highlight the threats of hydropower, cormorants and poaching to the industry.

Music preview: Roy Ayers & Pete Rock @ o2 ABC, Glasgow

Published by THE METRO

It’s going to be difficult to compartmentalise a musician who is described as the ‘King of Neo-Soul’, the ‘Master of Funk’ and the ‘Godfather of Acid Jazz’. Any recording artist who merits titles of such grandeur clearly enjoys a powerful influence across a wide spectrum of sound. Yes, with almost 100 records to his name and a hefty stash of unreleased material to boot, the task of describing the music of Roy Ayers with concision or precision is a tricky one. It becomes nigh on impossible once you’ve got your introduction out of the way.

Indeed, anyone who reflects on Ayers’s vast and varied body of work will be aware that he is musical legend, yet one who refuses to lean embarrassingly on the past glories of nearly half a century on the jazz circuit. Just like all of the genre’s greats, Ayers remains as inventive as ever and, along with his celebrated vibraphone, he’ll be bringing old decibels with a new twist as part of an intriguing collaboration when he arrives in Glasgow on Saturday.

Ayers’s hits Everybody Loves The Sunshine, We Live In Brooklyn, as well as many other head-nodding, foot-tapping numbers drawn from his forays into R&B, funk and disco music, will be married live on the O2 ABC stage with the beats and rhymes of Bronx-born rapper, producer and DJ Pete Rock.

Rock was a pioneer in fusing the jazz and hip-hop genres, and went on to produce groundbreaking material by the likes of Run DMC, Public Enemy and The Notorious B.I.G., rising to prominence during the so-called ‘golden age of hip-hop’ in the early 1990s. His records have consistently won critical acclaim over the last two decades, during which time he has acquired a solid reputation in the industry among musical peers like Roy Ayers. Theirs is a union that will combine jazz, soul and funk with contemporary urban music in an ambitious meeting of minds that will already be whetting the appetites of music fans young and old.

At a festival in London’s Hyde Park a few years ago, a friend of mine happened to catch one of Ayers’s live performances. In his words, the ‘most beautiful girl I’d ever seen’ wandered over to him and attempted to start a conversation during the gig, but being so enchanted and mesmerised by Ayers’s music, he just wasn’t interested in such trivial pursuits. Now, either that story is a savage indictment on my friend, or Roy Ayers is simply that good to watch live.