Tag: marketing

17
Dec

Marketing Wars: The Brand Awakens

So, we may be just a little excited for the new Star Wars to come out this week, and although this our fun way of showing our fan status for the new franchise, we are also going to cover key marketing tips that will help you take on the dark side and showcase your brand’s jedi skills.

Becoming a Marketing Jedi

The task will be strenuous, it will take time and patience to become a marketing jedi… but it will be worth it. You don’t have to have a marketing budget the size of the galaxy to get the results you are looking for. All can be accomplished with a few standard rules.

#1 Keep your brand consistent. Sometimes we can go a little wild with marketing materials so it is important to understand that consistent branding will allow your customers to recognize you regardless of what print element or digital campaign you’ve launched.

#2 Be bold. Staying in the shadows is not your game, you want to come out strong in the marketing department. If you can’t give it your all to multiple campaigns throughout the year, then pick a couple. A few strong marketing campaigns compared to an abundance of mediocre ones is better. Focus on one at a time and the force will be strong with you.

#3 Stay relevant. Although it is easy to reuse the same marketing materials year after year, your loyal followers will want to see something new. Keep your campaigns whether print or digital relevant so that you keep the attention of past and potential customers.

Avoid Stormtrooper Status

Following the crowd is easy, but it doesn’t mean it is the chosen path your marketing plan should take. Although you can take note from other successful brands in your industry it is key to be original and creative, because no one likes an exact copy. So, how do you avoid stormtrooper status?

#1 Stand out. Following industry trends is one thing, but when it comes to your marketing strategy you will need to implement those elements as well as introduce new ones. If you blend in with other brands like yours, why would customers choose you? You want to give them a reason to choose your brand, and to do that you need to stay ahead of the crowd.

#2 Use your social card. A great way to set yourself apart from your competitors is by taking to social. There you can let your brand’s personality lead. Platforms like Facebook and Twitter allow you to create real dialogue with customers and showcase the type of customer service you provide and create with content the type of atmosphere your business offers on a daily basis

#3 Take risks. Not every marketing campaign is going to be a hit, but the great thing about that is you can learn from it. Not all risks pay off, but it allows you to see what works and what doesn’t. If you play it safe all year round you could potentially fall into line with the rest of your competition and could lead you back to square one. So take a marketing risk and analyze its’ results for a better strategy going forward.

Lastly, the most important lesson of all… be one with the force your marketing strategy.

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31
Oct

Scare Away the Competition

The chances of owning a business that has zero competition is pretty scarce. When you are part of an industry that is oversaturated, sticking out can be a challenge, but a challenge we are up to!

Don’t Become A Zombie

Doing nothing for your website, social media, and marketing will leave your business stagnant. All three elements need to be nourished consistently. When a website has no new content or blogs being added, Google has nothing new to index and overtime your organic search engine rankings will decline. Your website will simply sit on the world wide web never progressing or giving varied results. The solution? Add blogs weekly or bi-weekly to your website, so that there is always new text using keywords to enhance your SEO.

Social Media is one of the best tools you can use to reach your target audience, the only issue is many businesses overlook the positive affects of social media and instead let their Facebook and Twitter pages die out. We recommend posts daily, however a few times a week is better than once a year. By consistently posting, your business pages will rise from the dead and give your customers content to read and create opportunities for them to interact with your business online.

Marketing is another facet that companies often leave at the gravesite. Sending out generic print materials or dull campaign ads could kill your business. Your customers like to see an engaging pamphlet or ad that entices and solidifies their value in your company. Boring graphics and standard typefaces are great for your print items… if you want them to be thrown away, bold branding, cohesive typefaces and graphics to die for, can help you set the bar for your competitors.

Off With Their Heads

As we have discussed in previous posts, handling customer issues calmly will do wonders for your reputation. Although we all have that one customer that we would like to scream “off with their head” at, we simply don’t. Why? Because generating great customer service will push your businesses name to the top of your industry. Say there are two businesses in the same industry, same town, offering the same deal. One of the businesses has inconsistent/poor customer service while the other is known for quality service with quick and positive solutions. Which business would you be more likely to visit? Great customer service goes a long way, and a positive reputation will keep customers coming back for more.

Think Outside of the Coffin

It is easy to blend in with your competitors, but will it do anything for you? It is fine to get inspiration from others in your industry but the key to a successful business is thinking creatively. You can’t stand out if you look like everyone else, so take a different approach. When it comes to your website utilize the areas that are necessary but look at ways to stand out. Check out the trends and see if any fit your business. A common but effective trend is large imagery. Nearly 50% of individuals make decisions based on the design and visuals of a website. Although content is important, the design and photographs used on your website are equally significant. Enticing visuals could make or break a decision of a customer, which is why taking a creative approach regardless of the trade will give you the edge you need to show your competitors you are in the game.

Standing out is a good thing when it comes to your business. Competition can be high and although change may be a hard pill to swallow, it may be necessary in order to stay ahead of your rivals. By implementing a few of these tips you can scare away the competition in no time, making you the new Pumpkin King… okay, we are getting a little carried away with the spirit of Halloween.

07
Jul

An Education from Mad Men

The world of advertising and marketing is clearly very different today then it was 40 or 50 years ago. In the “Mad Men” era the tactics were simple, you know your consumer, you pitch an item to that consumer and you sell. Now as much as we might think the dated tactics of the 1960’s don’t apply to today’s marketing strategies, the business models of that time hold some sound rules and ideas that come into play in our modern marketing routines.

Knowing Your Consumer

In the age of 1960’s advertising, knowing you consumer was known as the “buyer’s persona”. The idea is to know who your buyer is before marketing a product. What do they do? What do they like? Or what will their buying process be? These elements help to define what your particular consumer would want to see within am advertising or marketing campaign in order to make their decision. This “buyer’s persona” not only applies to today’s marketing strategies, it is an essential component. The first step into creating a brand is to do the research and target a demographic. Narrowing down who it is we are selling to and what they require in order to be sold is the key component when deciding how to sell them. In breaking the system down into the five “w’s” that we learnt in school (Who? What? Where? When? Why?) We are able to define the buyer and strategically market an advertisement or social media post that will speak to the specific buyer and grab their interest.

An Image Is Still Worth A Thousand Words

Marketing campaigns often revolve around imagery. Today we have our graphic designers and the 60’s ad firms had their art directors and production artists. Although what we use to create those images are of different artistic mediums today, the concept is the same. A picture sells. Can you think of that last item you bought without seeing an image, packaging or ad for it? The answer is you probably didn’t. In today’s marketing world consumers are left very little to the imagination. As a consumer we are impatient and want to see exactly what we are getting while in the 1960’s you had to sell an idea, however, that idea was always supported by an image. As a graphic design firm in 2014 a well-designed image can make or break your business or product and that hasn’t changed. To sell you have to connect and communicate with your target demographic and whether the image is computer based or hand drawn the idea that a picture can determine an emotional connection is still the goal and is why an image is just as important as the words used to describe it.

Long Live the Copywriters

If you’ve ever indulged in an episode of Mad Men you know that copywriters go hand and hand with advertising. They are there to put words onto ads that seal the deal with a consumer. Sadly with the amount of content being put on the Internet daily the once key profession is slowly diminishing, however, it is not lost. When you see a catchy commercial, what sticks? Words. That tagline telling you to “Just Do It” stays with you and those words didn’t come out of thin air, they were crafted in order to determine a connection with the consumer and encourage them while selling them a product. Good copy is as important as a good image. They compliment one another while providing a similar result, a sale. The Mad Men era had it figured out and although copywriters are not the most prevalent field they still exist. The age of a simple tag is gone but the challenge of creating captivating content will always stand. With SEO, social media and blogging a copywriter’s job has increased dramatically. Creating a tagline has turned into keyword rich material and #hashtags, but the balance of incorporating a branding element and strong enticing language remains and is the source of all well-written copy.

It is amazing how many similarities the marketing and advertising industry has over time. The basics are the basics for a reason and are still prevalent in an industry that is now relying on good web design and social media tactics. Knowing your consumer and marketing to them is an element that will withstand time and is why we can learn a lot from the era of suits, cigars and dirty martinis.