Archive for November 2012

Dream Killer

November 28, 2012

Doubt kills more dreams than failure ever will.

Fear and self-doubt are two of the biggest dream killers in most of us. Success often comes down to what we’re willing to do about it.

Will you take some risks and do something different than what you’ve always done?

Many of us are so afraid of failing that sadly we’ll never take the leap of faith required to do anything worthwhile in this life.

Whether the dream is about starting a business, getting an advancement at work, or simply finishing a major project, something seems to hold us back.

It’s tempting to use the excuse that something external has forced us to procrastinate, but most of the time that something is really inner self-sabotage.

That inner voice does its best to derail and destroy our dreams. So we fail before we even start. And that pattern repeats itself, over and over again, like a bad nightmare.

To stop and crush that sequence we have to do one thing: take action without regard to possible failure in the ultimate outcome.

Yes, we should be prudent in researching, reflecting, and consulting beforehand. But if all signs point to moving forward, we shouldn’t hesitate. Instead, we need to put one foot in front of the other and take action.

Success comes from taking imperfect action. Why? Because the day everything’s perfect enough will never come.

So take imperfect action starting today. Your dreams will thank you.

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Please Give It Some Air

November 24, 2012

Humans can’t live long without breathing.

A plant will wither and die without sun, water, and air.

A car can’t get very far without fuel.

So what makes us think that a business can keep going without doing effective marketing?

It can’t.

Leads are the life-blood of any business, regardless of size or industry. Leads turn into profitable customers and revenue.

Having a business without a marketing strategy and marketing plan is like having a garden that’s left to its own devices. Without constant pruning, watering, and the sun, the beautiful garden will be choked with weeds and soon turn into an eyesore.

Your business needs a continual flow of quality traffic. This traffic won’t come to you on its own. People won’t seek out your products and services unless you give them a reason to.

A marketing plan can be very simple.

* Figure out who your best customers are.
* Come up with messages to attract more prospects who are just like your best customers.
* Use various media (like direct mail) to let that market segment know what you’re all about.
* Create a marketing calendar to help you remember to market on a consistent basis, so your prospect pipeline never runs dry again.

Your business is a living, breathing entity. Prospects, leads, and traffic are like the air it needs to breathe.

Marketing your business with a strategic plan is the best way to ensure your business will never run out of the air it needs to survive and grow.

Your Print Marketing 3-Step Rule

November 14, 2012

Every print marketing piece should have an end goal in mind. Depending on the type of marketing piece, these goals can range from simply building name recognition to creating curiosity and ultimately generating sales. The next time you find yourself struggling to create print marketing that will get noticed, remember these three steps to maximize your effectiveness:

Step 1: Grab attention.
Start by getting your reader’s attention. Remember this must happen from the initial glance at your promotional piece. Try using a bold headline, graphic, photo, or marketing claim. Choose something that encourages viewers to take a moment to read your marketing message.

Step 2: Create interest.
Provide teaser information that will engage prospects and entice them to learn more. Teaser information could include an announcement about exciting new products or features, a current or upcoming promotion, or anything else that will persuade customers to learn more.

Step 3: Engage the reader.
Provide a call to action for readers who have taken time to read your marketing message. This could vary from prospects who simply want more information to those who are ready to make a purchase. Provide a website address, phone number, directions, or other contact information that makes it easy for prospects to get in contact with you about your product or service. Consider creating a website landing page that is specific for the highlighted product or service. A landing page can not only make it easy to track interest generated from your promotional piece, but it can also make it easier for the reader to learn more without losing interest wading through an information-packed website.

Our creative team specializes in creating marketing pieces that will get noticed and remembered. Give us a call today if you need help or ideas for creating the perfect marketing piece that will increase awareness and boost sales.

Marketing Tips from Animals Pics

November 12, 2012

When it comes to marketing, we can learn a lot from photos of adorable animals. Here are a few key tips to take away the next time you catch yourself oohing and aahing over an adorable fuzzy kitten or roly-poly puppy:

* Have you ever noticed how adorable animal photos have a knack for engaging a wide variety of people with various interests? While marketing is most effective when aimed at a targeted audience, you should strive to appeal to a variety of personalities within your audience.
* Photos grab attention and have the power to invoke emotion. The sight of a baby animal can easily warm the heart of most people. Think about the photos or imagery you use in your next marketing campaign, and focus on the emotions your selected images will create for your audience.
* Consider using humor whenever appropriate. Have you ever seen a hilarious photo of a cat and felt the need to show others so they can laugh with you? The same is true of humorous marketing. By sharing something funny, WE also become funny by association.
* Just as people love to share adorable photos with others, be sure to create your marketing materials so they are easy to share. For example, create a durable mailer that includes a coupon for the recipient and one to share with a friend. Add a link to your web-based promotions to recommend friends, and consider a reward for those who pass the word. Include a “share” option to make your message easily available for friends or family who may be interested. By making your message easy to share, you can empower your audience to do the selling for you.

If you need more ideas for creating marketing materials your audience will look forward to receiving, give us a call today!

Repurpose Marketing Content

November 8, 2012

Repurposing content is often one of the most cost-effective and efficient ways to create an abundance of creative content, while at the same time extending the shelf life of your current marketing investment. Here are a few tips to help you creatively repurpose marketing content:

* Combine related blog posts on specific topics into an e-book. Add content as needed to make it flow smoothly from one post to another.
* Convert PowerPoint presentations into videos by adding animations, background music, or a voice-over. Maximize exposure by posting your videos on YouTube and sharing links via social media, your website, email, direct mail, and other marketing tools.
* Turn publications or articles into podcasts by simply reading them aloud or having a narrative conversation about a topic of interest.
* Create a company history timeline highlighting the stages and evolution of your business. Include news releases, company posts, social media announcements, and articles about your company.
* Review unconventional content as well, such as an employee handbook that may include an introduction from the president outlining the company’s vision or a well-written summary of your target audience meant to educate new employees.
* Archive your news releases in a “news” section on your company website to increase ongoing exposure.
* Reuse parts of press releases, case studies, white papers, and other publications. Pull key quotes, stats, facts, and highlights, then use those materials in brochures, newsletters, blog posts, website pages, and email campaigns.
* Create a landing page or microsite using in-depth product pages or articles that you’ve already written.

No matter how you repurpose your content, just remember that the more content you create, the easier it is to generate interest, educate and inform prospects and customers, and increase sales.