It’s October, the summer is over but it’s a little early for festive cheer, so what better way to fill the gap in your marketing plan than with a Halloween themed campaign? It sounds good, but for many small business owners it can seem a bit uncomfortable – how on earth could they link their business with Halloween? And why should they bother?
Simply because you can. Marketing for small businesses can get stale quickly with repetitive, predictable campaigns. By keeping your marketing flexible, and reacting to the season you can keep things fresh, and keep your customers engaged all year round. With that in mind, here are our top tips for a scarily good Halloween marketing campaign.
If you are a small business, focusing on B2B clients, don’t spend time trying to work out how to make all of your service offerings sound spooky! As you would with any campaign, keep the plan focused. For instance, if you are an accountant, you could just plan around ‘making tax less scary’; or if you build websites you could offer one ‘horribly good’ deal for the week.
The same goes for B2C like hospitality and retail businesses. If you are a restaurant owner, you could have a spooky-themed menu for one week, or some Halloween themed cocktails; or in a retail store you could choose one small group of products to promote using your Halloween theme…which brings us nicely to…
No, Halloween is not a theme – it’s too broad! If you choose a more specific theme, like scary movies, or Frankenstein’s monster, or even pumpkins – it will help all of the planning go a lot quicker and help you create a more coherent campaign. Step one is what you are promoting, step two is how you’ll promote it.
Don’t limit the Halloween theme to your campaign-related graphics and print work or it will feel completely out of step with your brand. If you have a physical location that customers come to, like a shop or restaurant, then get to work on the Halloween décor. If you are online only, you can get creative with your social media graphics, website banners, or even a temporary themed logo or profile picture. By spreading the theme subtly across all of your marketing, you will make it feel less jarring and more part of the bigger plan.
The next step is to plan out your campaign and include all of your marketing channels (e.g. social, email, video, website, direct mail, POS etc.) then plan the frequency of contact on each. Don’t go overboard with lots of extra posts or emails as you’ll frighten more people away than you’ll attract.
Just because Halloween isn’t an event that you automatically associate with your business, doesn’t mean you can’t have some fun with it! Halloween is a fun time of year when you can get away with things being a little messy, so embrace it and test out some fun new ways to market your products.
If you’d like to speak to one of our team about how we could help you create a spooktacular Halloween marketing campaign, you can get in touch here. Alternatively, pick up the phone and call us on 01600 891525 – we’d love to hear from you!
With students graduating this summer, we’ve been giving careful thought to the essential skills Marketing Companies look for when recruiting graduates. And we all agreed that it comes down to a combination of academic ability, soft skills and sheer determination!
It’s not just about getting a First or 2:1 – employers are going to be looking for evidence of your ability to problem solve, understand complex information, work as part of a team, multitask and work to deadlines. Phew, that’s a long list and you thought it was just about writing essays. Make sure you show how you’ve developed these skills whilst studying or gaining work experience.
Working in Marketing is often all ‘hands on deck’ so having good IT skills is also important. Knowledge of packages such as Photoshop will enable you to create an image for a post quickly. Equally, understanding basic HTML / CSS so that you can make a quick amend on a website will also help your cause.
This is an industry all about communication so great skills in this area are a must. Marketing involves a lot of writing; blog posts, press releases and pitches, so good writing, spelling and grammar skills (please, no mistakes on your CV!) are critical. Interpersonal skills are also key. You’ll be working with a team so evidence of work experience, or involvement in events or committees all help to show you have a good grounding in this area.
You will also need to show that you can think creatively. You don’t need to be an artist, just show you can ‘think outside the box’. For a start, don’t just send in yet another standard CV – be creative to stand out. Different paper textures, infographics, layouts – be distinctive. Can you show how you took a different approach to solve a problem?
It goes without saying that an interest in people and an awareness of the world around you is vital, Marketing, after all, is all about understanding people’s aspirations and challenges to foster relationships. Be aware of what’s going on in the news and read widely.
As a new Graduate, nobody is expecting you to have loads of specific company experience but you can demonstrate your skills by marketing yourself.
You’ve got yourself an interview? Congratulations! Make sure you’re prepared. Do your research on the company and the marketplace they work in. Read trade publications, press releases and immerse yourself in Google Search! What about marketing campaigns that have caught you eye, why was that? What’s memorable and what was a real stinker – again why? This shows prospective employers that not only do you have a commercial awareness but also are happy to create your own opinions.
Another option is to keep studying! A professional Marketing qualification or a postgraduate course will certainly add to your academic portfolio. Ideally though, it is worth getting some experience with the different aspects of marketing before taking the plunge. Many in the marketing industry will take these courses whilst working to further their promotion prospects.
The Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) offers an Introductory Certificate in Marketing. This can be followed at a later stage by other qualifications leading to chartered status.
The Institute of Data and Marketing (IDM) also offers a variety of qualifications for both graduates and industry professionals ranging from masters and postgraduate degrees to professional diplomas.
All we can say is good luck! It’s a great industry to work in!
Design is probably not a priority for your business, but it should be. In fact, graphic design should be vital. It is what can make your business stand out from all the others. Without design there would be no logo for your company; your website would look boring; the packaging for your product will be overlooked. All in all, design is rather important.
For small businesses, design can present some challenges that may not be a problem for larger companies – for instance, budget size. Steve Jobs reportedly spent $100,000 for the Apple logo; this is a luxury that not every business has. However smaller bank balances do not mean that you cannot compete with the big boys.
Here are a few tips that you can take away to make sure that you get the most out of your graphic designs:
Do not go into any design project without knowing exactly what you want to achieve. A clear objective is key to a successful design. What is it you are aiming for: raising brand awareness? Increase website traffic? Increase profits? Who is your target audience? If you know what you are trying to achieve, you will be able to assess if the finished product has met your goals.
Now that you have your objectives, you can work on the design. Here are some tips for ensuring it is a success.
Design trends – look at current trends and watch how this can change to keep your brand up to date. For example, popular trends this year include muted colours and clever typography.
Colours – try to keep the number of different ones used to a minimum; and if you have brand colours, make sure that you use them.
Colours can have meanings, e.g., green tends to be associated with health, growth and nature, so depending on your message, you could find a colour to match the theme of your design.
Fonts – like colours, do not use too many different fonts. By sticking with a couple, making sure they are the same as your brand usually uses, and ensuring that they are easy to read, your design is more likely to be successful.
Keep it simple – this does not mean plain. As the saying goes: less is more. Stick with clean lines and try not to add any unnecessary words or images; remember that every element must have a purpose in great design.
White space – do not think of this as empty space, use it to your advantage. Pick an image for the background; a colour or pattern; or even incorporate white space into your logo. By ensuring there is plenty of space around your message, you will make it easier to read.
Looking at the designs of larger businesses can be beneficial. Companies like Apple, Nike, McDonalds, have millions to spend on their design work and keeping up with the latest trends, so take a look at what they are doing and see if it inspires your work.
Hiring a Graphic Designer would be ideal, however, some budgets may not be able to stretch to that, so take a look at the online tools that are available to help you do it yourself. From photos to software, there are plenty of resources that can help small businesses produce high-quality designs and graphics.
Alternatively, if you’re looking for something bespoke and original, get in touch with our team and discuss your requirements. Contact us here or pick up the phone and talk to us on 01600 891525.
Can you remember a time when you were drawn into a shop by a clever window display? Or perhaps put off from entering somewhere new by a confusing store front? This power of first impressions applies to the online world as much as it does to the high street, and it doesn’t just concern ecommerce stores. Service businesses should be equally aware of the impression that their website gives to potential clients, in particular your home page which is where the majority of visitors will likely enter your site.
You wouldn’t expect customers to visit a dated shop, and you wouldn’t invite clients into an unkempt office. So if you present your potential customers with a tired, difficult to navigate website, don’t be surprised if they don’t stick around.
Anyone who is undecided about your business can be drawn in or put off by your website, gleaning all that they feel they should know from a simple glance. So does your website communicate your brand values, current offers, or popular services? If you are unsure, let’s dive into how to create the ‘shop window’ experience for your website.
Firstly, before you get carried away with any big changes, make sure your website appeals to your target market. Just as the window display of a baby clothing store is made to make new parents go ‘aww!’ so your website should draw in your target audience. Think of it as your business values meeting the values of the customers you want to attract.
For ecommerce stores, ensure that your home page reflects the current events and seasons, whether it’s a Valentine’s Day banner, or a badge supporting an awareness month. Just as you would change a physical shop window display to keep up with the seasons, make sure your website stays relevant.
While you may not have a Valentine’s Day special for your service based businesses, keep up with the changing times, and make sure the first image your visitors see isn’t a dated award nomination!
That doesn’t mean that you have to wait for a special occasion like Christmas to change things on your website. Instead you should make sure to refresh your offers, banners, products and news articles regularly.
As well as enticing new customers to explore further, repeat customers will learn that visiting your website frequently will be of value. If the home page looks the same every time they stop by, there is little chance of them becoming regular visitors.
Updating your imagery and text regularly will not only encourage visitors to come back again, it will also assist your SEO efforts as search engines prioritise fresh content.
Finally, don’t look like everyone else. Imagine your website as a store front on a packed high street – how will you make it stand out from the shops around you?
It may seem like a lot of effort, but the more work you put into your website ‘shop window’ on a regular basis, the greater rewards you will reap.
Are you feeling inspired and thinking of injecting some fresh thinking into your website? Get in touch with our team and find out how we can help. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on 01600 891525.
Consistency is vital to the success of marketing, and there are few better examples than the world’s number one soft drink brand. So what is it about a consistent approach to marketing that delivers so much value for your business?
Whatever size your business is, your brand is one of your most important assets because it is the personification of your business. It gives your organisation a look, a feel and a tone of voice that, in turn, create an impression in the mind of your target market. By using the same design and imagery wherever a customer is likely to come across your business, you ensure that they recognise your company every time they see you.
By seeing the same look over and over again, the visual elements of your marketing become ingrained in the minds of consumers, and they are more likely to remember your brand and recognise it when they come across it on different channels.
This recognition through the use of consistent marketing helps to make you more visible to your customers and can help to create customer loyalty. It also helps to build credibility and a trustworthy reputation. If customers have the same experience every time they come in contact with your brand, they are more likely to trust your business and invest in it.
Maintaining a uniform visual aesthetic is not the only important aspect of marketing consistency, voice and tone are just as valuable in creating trust and generating sales.
“Many factors contribute to a brand’s success, but perhaps one of the most valuable is content consistency. From social media and blogging to responding to customer reviews and replying to emails, your content needs to maintain a consistent voice, tone and style.” Forbes
To continue with the example we used at the start of this article, you never open a bottle of Coca-Cola and wonder what it will taste like this time – brand consistency ensures that it is always the same, no matter what country you are in.
Or if you were told that a restaurant had ‘wholesome values’ and then were snapped at by a waitress wearing something more appropriate for a nightclub than a family restaurant, the entire illusion of the brand would crumble for you. If instead someone dressed appropriately, approached you with politeness and courtesy, your confidence in the brand would grow. Marketing consistency has to continue through every aspect of a business to be effective.
It takes effort, but it’s worth it.
All aspects of your marketing will start working together so that your business becomes visible and recognisable, driving customers to respond positively to your brand.
Learn more about How LimeGreen Marketing can help you to be clear and consistent in your marketing here and if you’re interested in talking to our team contact us here or give us a call on 01600 891525.
Your brand is more than your logo or your name; it should be the whole experience that your customers and potential customers receive when they come in contact with your business. Your brand strategy is the definition of what your organisation stands for – its values, the promises you make to your customers, and the personality that you deliver your work with. Yes, it includes your colours, fonts and logo, but it also has something more than these aesthetic elements, it has your tone of voice, attitude and identity.
A successful brand strategy is the key to you being able to communicate more effectively with your customers and potential customers. It should direct all of your interactions with them, and shape how you are perceived in the marketplace. You should carry out a brand strategy as the very first stage in setting up your business – before you even come up with a company name as it can inform all of the decisions you make from day one. So what are the core elements of a successful brand strategy?
It is the crux of all marketing and sales techniques – it’s easier to hit a target if you know where it is! In order to build a brand strategy, you need to know who it is supposed to appeal to. You should know what your customer needs, and how you solve that problem.
There are many ways of defining your target customer. Some businesses like to focus on an area of interest, or a geographic location, whereas others define one or more very detailed customer avatars. If you are already trading, look back at your customers to date and use what you know about them to help inform your strategy going forward.
Who are your customers considering alongside you? Who are you being measured against? Once you know this you can look at how your competitors are positioning themselves in the marketplace and make decisions on where you measure against them. Will you stand out or blend in? What sets you apart? Remember, you don’t need to focus only on your local market, look at your national competitors to see how they are positioning themselves.
The final element is the biggest of all – who are you? In order to create a successful brand strategy, you need some self-awareness regarding your business and its products or services. This should include the absolute basic information about what your business does and how it does it, as well as more ‘intangible’ information, for instance, the emotional benefits that your business provides.
Brand Strategies tend to include your brand story, and positioning statements that will inform how your staff speak to your customers and how you interact with people on social media and other public forums. All of these things are developed through a combination of knowing and understanding your target customer, your competition, and your business. So start with the basics and it will grow from there.
If you’re interested in talking to our team about how we could help you create a winning brand strategy we’d love to hear from you. Contact us at email@example.com or give us a call on 01600 891525.
When lockdown lifts it will not be as simple as throwing open the doors and buying in fresh biscuits! Things won’t go back to normal on day one, and you are bound to have a lot on your plate, so why not use this time at the end of lockdown to give your business a ‘Spring Clean’?
If you Spring Clean your home you clear out the clutter, freshen things up and get ready for a brighter and warmer time to come, so why not apply the same principles to your business? Here are our top tips for getting your business organised, and making some easy improvements before things get busy again.
With everything else going on in your business it’s easy to let emails pile up. If you are flagging more than you are actioning, now is the time to clear the decks, get everything filed away and tidy your ‘to do’ list before the phones start ringing again. We understand that filing emails is not a pleasant prospect, and it is far from a fun task, but it will feel like a weight has lifted when you get it finished. While you are at it you might try tidying your folders and computer files so you can start back knowing where everything is, and having up to date back-ups of everything important.
If your business plan, marketing strategy or 5 year plan has been hiding on the top shelf over the last 12 months now is the time to look it out. Revisit your goals, actions and overall direction and see what still applies and what needs to change. Now is a great time to refresh that vision and start to get excited about the year to come.
Even the most well-organised of businesses can end up with a box of receipts lying on a desk gathering dust. If you are making plans and budgets, you need the most up to date information to hand, so now is a great time to review your accounts, sort your expenses and save yourself from any nightmares in the coming months.
If you haven’t looked at your website in a while, you are not alone. As your business grows, or pivots or changes, your website should move with it. Don’t let an out of date website damage your brand. If you aren’t able to do the changes yourself, you can at least make a to do list to pass to your developer and marketing team.
There are probably plenty more areas you will be able to think of to freshen up your business that you’ve been avoiding during lockdown. Spring cleaning and decluttering can make you feel lighter, more organised and less stressed, so why not give it a go?
And remember there’s support available to help you if needed. If you’re interested in talking to our team about how we could help you spring clean your brand image or revive the digital side of your business we’d love to hear from you. Contact us here for more information or give us a call on 01600 891525.
The world of marketing has changed dramatically over the last 20 years. With the advances of digital technology, gone are the days of the simple mail shot and the cold caller. With an effective online strategy, we can now reach our audiences 24/7 through the screens of the portable devices that they hold in their hands.
With such an opportunity can you really afford not to make the most of it? Surely you know your business best? So, why outsource your digital marketing to an agency?
One – An Objective Opinion
While it’s great to be at the heart of your business – no one knows your product/service better than you – sometimes it’s great to have a new set of eyes and some fresh thinking from someone who is one step back from it. Your marketing manager is in a position to be able to be objective about what you do well and what you need to do better and has the best industry knowledge to advise you from a neutral stance.
Two – Marketing Trends
Just like fashion and food, digital marketing is not exempt from trends. In 2017 we saw a huge surge in video content and so far, 2018 has seen the rise of influencer marketing and automation. So, ask yourself this? Do you have the time to keep up to date with the latest digital marketing trends as well as running your business? We think the answer is ‘probably not’. Find yourselves someone who has their finger on the pulse when it comes to the what’s hot and what’s not of marketing.
Three – Your Time is Precious
Running a business is no easy feat. Perhaps you’re just starting out as a one-man-band and juggling spinning plates? You might have a team around you but they too will take time to manage. Why not give yourself one less thing to worry about and put your digital marketing in the hands of a professional with industry knowledge who will get you the best results.
We work with organisations of all sizes and we understand that not every business has the budget for an all-singing, all-dancing, digital marketing campaign. That’s why we’ve also put together three ways for you to save time if you’re running things in house.
One – Utilise Seasonal Support
If you’re in an industry that experiences busier and quieter periods, paying someone else to take charge of your marketing all year round, while you’re sat twiddling your thumbs for half of it might just seem a little silly. This is where seasonal support comes in. Often setting up social media and branding your channels can be a time-consuming process too. So, let someone else save you time and get you going, or have them take the reins for the months that you’re flat out. This will be much more efficient and in the long run more cost effective for your business.
Two – Plan Ahead
We understand that making time each and every day to post to all your social media channels can be a little daunting. Especially if you’ve not quite got to grips with all the different platforms. Be smart and spend a morning a month scheduling your social media content for the month. Tools like Hootsuite are here to help you and allow you to post to multiple social networks from one platform. A content calendar will help you plan ahead and steer your digital marketing in the right direction.
Three – Be Clever with Your Content
Organise your content library and categorise images and information. This might seem time consuming but get into the habit of doing this as you go and it will be easy to find content quickly. Dropbox works particularly well if you need to share this as folders across a team. Don’t forget that resources like Canva can also help you design and edit your own branded content to use time and time again.
If you’re interested in talking to our team about your own digital marketing requirements we’d love to hear from you. We offer monthly management packages as well as bespoke one-to-one support. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information or give us a call on 01600 891525.
We’ll be settling down in front of the TV tonight to watch Secret Agent Selection WW2 on BBC2 . Not because we’ve a strong desire to be the next James Bond or Emma Peel (although that would admittedly be quite cool!) but because the series is filmed on Alvie Estate in the stunning Cairngorms National Park.
It’s not hard to see why the BBC chose Alvie Estate as the location for their series. Set in the heart of the Scottish Highlands, in the Cairngorms National Park, Alvie House, is an Edwardian shooting lodge with traditional charm and a spectacular setting of the surrounding mountains. The Estate, family owned, is a traditional working estate with native pinewoods and heather moors. It’s not the first time is been the setting for films and TV. Rumour has it that it was also considered for James Bond’s family home in Skyfall.
We’ve been helping Alvie Estate to co-ordinate their online presence. They wanted to give their holiday cottages better online visibility and improve occupancy. In addition to the cottages, Alvie Estate offers a range of field sports and outdoor activities as well as running events in the house. And, neighbouring Alvie Estate is Dalraddy Holiday Park, a campsite for tents and tourers as well as statics and chalets for rent or purchase .
Previously Alvie had just one website featuring all the different offerings which made it difficult for visitors to the site to find the information they wanted. So, given the different messages, we decided that the best option was to create three separate but linked websites for the cottages, the holiday park and an overarching website for the Estate itself .
Working with their incumbent web developer we designed and developed the three sites each featuring the same design and colour palette. We wrote the copy for each website to ensure a consistency of tone and voice across the sites whilst promoting the different businesses. And we also refreshed the Alvie and Dalraddy Estates logo.
Alvie Estate – view website
Alvie Holiday Cottages – HighlandsSelfCatering.co.uk
Dalraddy Holiday Park – CampinginAviemore.co.uk
Since the launch of the websites this year Alvie Estate Office has noticed a signifiant increase in enquiries. So, if you feel you could make the grade as a secret agent why not book a stay on Alvie and test your spy skills!
You can catch a sneak preview of Secret Agent Selection WW2 on the BBC
Brand voice is the language and writing style used to communicate the personality of your brand, its values, identity and place within the market.
While brand voice is just one part of your brand, it’s equally as important as your visuals, social media, marketing materials and product packaging – essentially, it’s the literary equivalent of your visual identity – and all should work together in harmony to communicate your product or service effectively to your audience.
There are lots of different styles of brand voice that have been adopted by different organisations and these have become even more diverse and varied over time. Some organisations like to take a more corporate or professional approach while others prefer an informal conversational style to reach their audience. The important thing is recognising what’s right for your business.
For example, if you’re in the healthcare, finance or defence industries, taking a more light-hearted approach isn’t really going to be appropriate when you need to gain the trust and confidence of those counting on you. We take a look at some examples below of brands who got it right.
While Coca-Cola may have updated their visual identity several times throughout a century (and more) of trading, their brand voice hasn’t really changed. That’s because they have stayed true to their mission and values. By being consistent in their brand voice and talking to their customers in a way which evokes happiness, this is just what they spread when people are sharing and enjoy their product.
Established in 1864, the first John Lewis department store opened on London’s Oxford Street. This longstanding brand has proved itself as a company shoppers can trust for quality and its success continues today. With the royal seal of approval from HRH Queen Elizabeth II in 2008, John Lewis will always be recognised as a British brand whose values have remained at the forefront since it was founded. The company mantra “Never knowingly undersold.”, further instils this ideology, as does their brand voice. Combined with their simple but recognisable graphic logo, John Lewis use simple language to create a confident, informative and trustworthy brand voice accessible to their diverse customer demographic.
Taking a more personal approach to their brand voice are smoothie makers, Innocent. Their conversational way of communicating with their customers is simple, factual, fun and full of stacks of personality. This is the story of a company who have not forgotten their roots and whose humble beginnings remain evident in their simple style of marketing.
If you’re a start-up looking to develop an effective brand voice get in touch with our team today. Perhaps you’re already up and running and just need a bit of fresh thinking? You can call us on 01600 891525 or email email@example.com.
The prospect of a new website can seem both exciting and incredibly daunting at the same time. Every company will have different requirements and limitations according to the size of their organisation, resources available, budget, professional know-how and much more.
At LimeGreen, we understand that sometimes it’s useful to have a helping hand and a few pointers to help you make the first step in the right direction. That’s why we’ve put together these seven steps to take the worry out of your new website!
This might seem like a stupid question but it really is the first thing to consider. Is the new website a design-led decision in line with a company rebrand or are your requirements more practical? Often businesses can outgrow their original website but before dreaming up a new one, it’s important to ensure that this time it can grow with your business. This could save money in the future.
In order for any website to work, you’ll need a domain and hosting. Think of your website domain as the address for your website. This is what people will type into their web browser to reach it, e.g. www.limegreenmarketing.co.uk.
Hosting is where on the internet your website physically is or, the plot of land where it lives if you will! It’s important that you choose the right domain and hosting to suit your requirements. For more information, take a look at our article ‘What is Hosting?’.
An all singing, all dancing website sounds like it could be pretty impressive. If you have a concept that you want to use that reflects your brands ethos digitally then go for it! Online branding should always be consistent with offline branding. However, your design should never compromise your product or service or your ability to communicate clearly what it does.
Think about who uses your website and why? Are they looking for information? Are they looking to purchase a product or service? Is your website user-friendly? There is no point in having a website where people can’t find what they’re looking for.
Be sure to think long and hard about menus and site navigation. Equally a straightforward search feature and cataloguing or tag system for organising products could make life much easier for you and your customers. Remember, if someone can’t use your website, they’re more likely to go to a competitor.
So, you’ve got your new website up and running with a domain, hosting and functional, on-brand design. That’s it right? Wrong! It’s important to make sure that your website is Search Engine Optimised. Doing this makes it easier for popular search engines to read your site and determine its content and where it should appear in individual search results. There are lots of handy plugins that you or your web developer can use to help with the process. We work with WordPress sites a lot and recommend Yoast (read more here).
In addition to SEO optimisation tools, updating your websites content regularly can help improve its rankings with popular search engines. Including a blog and regularly posting new articles is one way to do this. Including social media streams from Twitter and Facebook on your website can also help.
Equally it’s important not to neglect your analytics. These will tell you who is viewing your website, how long they are spending on your website and where this traffic is coming from. Valuable information that shouldn’t be wasted!
There’s a lot more to your website than meets the eye. You’ll need a functional program taking care of the backend – a Content Management System – CMS. This is what organises your content and makes sure everything is where it should be. Your website visitor can’t see it but, trust us, they’d soon know about it if it wasn’t doing its job!
Call to Actions – CTAs – also play an integral part in your website. These are prompts on pages strategically placed to encourage the website visitor to complete an action, e.g. call us, book online, get in touch, buy now. These are designed to entice the website user to behave in a way that will benefit your business. Don’t forget to consider them in your design.
It’s a great feeling once you’ve got your brand spanking new website up and running but what happens going forward? It’s likely that you’ll need to make changes to pages over time or update products, company information and events, and it’s important that you can do this quickly and easily so that your clients or customers have the most up to date and relevant information. While some larger organisations may have the luxury of a dedicated in-house web team to do this, smaller organisations may need to outsource this work. So, it’s worth factoring this into your budget.
If you’d like to speak to one of our team about your own website, you can get in touch by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Alternatively, pick up the phone and call us on 01600 891525 – we’d love to hear from you!
Pantone have recently announced their ‘Colour of The Year 2017’ and we couldn’t be happier with their selection.
At a glance we could see that ‘Greenery’ closely resembled our own brand colours, but as we delved a little deeper into it’s colour story, we found some more similarities.
To quote Pantone…
This concept isn’t so far away from our own ‘fresh thinking’ ethos, as we help our clients revive their brands and reach out to their audience in new and inventive ways.
When it comes to brand consultancy, we encourage our clients to take a step back and evaluate their current digital presence before helping them identify how best to inject some new life into their organisation. Likewise, Pantone claim that…
It would seem great minds think alike!
You can read the full ‘Colour of The Year 2017’ announcement and find more information on the Pantone website, including colour charts and ‘Greenery’ merchandise – we’ve already got our eyes on those mugs!
The image for this post was taken from the Pantone website.
Symptoms of fatigue and sluggishness warn us when our bodies are out of balance. But are you savvy to key business signs that show your brand could be suffering a similar malaise? Brands, like bodies, deteriorate with unhealthy choices and too little nourishment. How can you tell when your brand needs detoxing?
To get to grips with this, you need to understand the basic physiology of a brand. Brands reside in consumers’ minds. Your brand is built out of all the beliefs and associations that consumers hold about your products and your business. This bundle of perceptions is built up over time, and it will determine how likely consumers are to buy your brand.
Brand perception is fed, for good or ill, by all your marketing communications including: packaging, advertising, website, social media, direct interaction with staff, press coverage, emails, promotions, and printed materials such as brochures etc. Brands living in consumers’ minds will be nourished by clear, relevant and motivating communication or toxified by conflicting or ill-judged messages.
Here are 5 key signs that your brand is ready for a detox.
How easily can you paint a clear mental picture of your typical consumer? To develop an engaging brand, you need to have a good understanding of the people who use your product. You need to understand both the big stuff (what their needs are, what’s important to them) and the little stuff (such as what makes them laugh, what magazines they read). Strong brands are relevant to their audiences; they speak the right language and deliver meaningful benefits. Without consumer insight you are blindfolded. Understanding your consumers better will make your marketing activity fitter, leaner, and more effective.
2. Your consumers aren’t engaged
Be very wary of a one-way relationship with your customer base. If you receive little feedback to social media, have below-par email open and click-through rates, struggle to generate interest in promotions, or rarely receive any spontaneous feedback, these could all be important warning signs and a lead indicator of sales trouble ahead. Potential causes of consumer apathy include: overloading them with irrelevant messages, failing to reach the right people at the right time, or simply poor execution; marketing activity that fails to cut through the noise.
In contrast, an active core of brand loyalists is a good sign of a healthy brand. Engaged consumers with strong emotional ties to your brand, will act as advocates, recommending your products to others. Rejuvenate your marketing plan with a focus on engaging and mobilising your consumer base.
3. You haven’t nailed your brand’s most important benefit
Perhaps your brand has an impressively long list of features and benefits. It is not easy however, to embed many different benefits into busy consumer’s minds with a scattergun approach. For much better results, take aim with your brand’s most powerful, top-level benefit. For example a mobile phone will have 100’s of features and benefits that might include: a faster loading camera, battery that won’t let you down, hands-free use with voice control etc. But focusing the marketing on a single benefit that emerges from all of these – such as ‘living in the moment’ – will be far more successful.
4. Your staff can’t articulate what your brand stands for.
This is a great litmus test for brand health. Your staff are exposed to all your brand marketing. If staff can’t give a coherent answer to ‘what is your brand about?’, consumers will definitely struggle! One of the main pillars of good brand management is clarity. If your brand has become confused through poor communications, then it is time to get back to basics and detox your marketing approach.
5. Your branding is not consistent.
Lay out all your visual representations of your brand i.e. packaging, brochures, website, flyer, brochures, website, everything. Is the branding consistent and harmonious, or viewed altogether does it give you a headache? Over time, it can be easy to get cast adrift with minor logo variations creeping in, colourways and fonts wandering off in various directions. What about the tone of voice? Are all the materials written in the same style or is a bit of split personality showing through? If you want consumers to really believe in your brand, you need to present a reliable face. Detox your branding by capturing some simple brand style rules and then sticking to them fanatically.
In business, as in life, we all need to take stock and invest a little time and effort in regaining good health every so often. Use these 5 warning signs to recognise when a brand detox would be beneficial. Remember that brand perceptions live in consumers’ minds; a diet of good marketing communications will sustain your brand to keep it pure, fit and healthy!