August 28, 2017

January 11, 2017

How to make the most out of working with a graphic designer

Filed under: Marketing & Promotion — Tags: , , , , , , , , — lidia @ 10:00 am

8 ways to get the most out of your graphic designer

Having a graphic designer partner can make a huge difference for an organization. Since your branding is probably the first thing a potential client or partner notices about you, investing in a well-designed logo and other marketing materials is one of the keys to success.

I recently shared my top 8 tips for working with a graphic designer on the Keyword Marketing Blog:

  1. Let us know what your goals are for the project (aka the “who, what and why”): This includes WHO you are trying to reach, WHAT you are trying to accomplish, and WHY you chose this type of marketing piece. The more we know about your project and your goals, the better the end result will be.
  2. Send us copy that is complete and well-organized: This will cut down on the number of potential edits (saving you time and money). Let us know if you need referrals for a copywriter or editor. Or ask us for help editing your content to fit your message.
  3. Provide graphics that are high-resolution and in usable file formats: Please, no graphics pulled from the web! Also let us know of any potential copyright issues—if you are unsure about using an image, we can help you investigate or find appropriate images.
  4. Inform us of deadlines and crucial project milestones: It helps us create a working production schedule—and we are happy to keep you on track if necessary!
  5. Let us know how and where your project will be used: If you need print materials, a website, online advertising, social media profiles or graphics, promotional or staff apparel, etc., we want to know about it.
  6. Provide samples: If you have existing marketing materials or branding, please provide samples at the start of the project so we can keep everything consistent.
  7. Bring up any concerns as they arise: Please let us know as soon as possible of any concerns you have during the design process. Frequent and honest communication is appreciated and will help both of us stay on the same page.

  8. Bonus points – if you have Brand Guidelines, please send them: This helps us keep our designs on-brand (And if you don’t have brand guidelines, we are happy to create them for you)

Above all, know that we are here to help. If you have any questions as we go along, please ask. Remember, our job is to make your business look good so the more we communicate, the better your business branding—and our relationship—will be.

Do you need a graphic design partner? I would love to chat with you!

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November 4, 2016

10-Minute Marketing: Create an email signature

Filed under: 10-Minute Marketing — Tags: , , , , , — lidia @ 10:00 am
10-Minute Marketing: Create an email signature
With so many emails hitting inboxes, having a signature that includes all of your contact information is crucial. How do you know what to include? Think about how someone who doesn’t know you (or your organization) would connect with you: Would it by phone or in-person? Would they need to see samples of your work? Where are you most active (online, social media)?
Here are a few things to consider including in your email signature:
  • Your full name
  • Organization name
  • Phone number
  • Address (or just city/state)
  • Tagline (or short blurb about what you do)
  • Website
  • Social media links
  • Call to action (link to portfolio, newsletter, blog post)
Most email programs allow you to easily create an email signature. I like HubSpot’s email generator which does all the hard work for you.

This week’s 10-Minute Marketing task:

Create an email signature.

10-Minute Marketing is a weekly series featuring short, easy-to-accomplish marketing tasks. Follow along with past posts here.

August 11, 2016

5 resources that make managing social media easier

Filed under: Social Media — Tags: , , — lidia @ 10:00 am

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I manage my business’ social media marketing myself so I know it’s no easy task for a smaller organization or nonprofit who doesn’t have a dedicated social media manager. These 5 resources can make the process much easier for you (#1 is my fave).

This post originally appeared on the Imagine PR ImagineBlog

As a PR and marketing company, and a small business owner, staying up-to-date with the most recent social media news is a necessity. It can be difficult identifying market trends, and knowing how to capitalize on them, but having great news resources really makes the process so much easier.  Unfortunately there is no one-stop-shop site. However,  we’ve put together a list of our top 5 favorite websites for finding social media news. Whether you want to hear about emerging start-up companies, or if you need to collect content to share on social media, we have you covered.

Check out our list below and if you use a site that you don’t see on this list, share it with us in the comment section below. We are always looking for great news resources!

sme_logo_whiteSocial Media Examiner

Social Media Examiner is great for small business who really want to learn the ins and outs of all the social media platforms. With tons of “How to” articles and lists of tips and best practices, you will find all you need to know about starting a social media campaign, and plenty of content to share with your network.

 

smw2015-featSocial Media Week

Social Media Week is a great source for everything social media. They mostly cover social media breaking news and insightful articles and lists, focusing on trends in the market and what they mean for small businesses. Additionally, Social Media Week hosts unique conferences “that explores the intersection of social technology and creativity with a week of panels, presentations, demos, workshops, talks, conversations, and interactive events.” Social Media Week will be hosting their CHICAGO conference November 14 – 18, providing attendees with great educational experiences, and networking opportunities with some of the biggest influencers, from almost every industry. Secure your tickets now.

forbesForbes

Forbes social media section is more business and investor oriented than sites like Social Media week. While Forbes will rarely have lists like “5 ways social media is changing this year”, Forbes highlights top performers, and emerging companies. If monitored properly, Forbes has the potential to help you stay one step ahead of your competitors when it comes to adopting, and utilizing the latest technologies to make your business more efficient.

 

SocialTimes_640x480Social Times

Social Times is like a hybrid of Forbes and Social Media Week. They have a good stream of industry news and highlights of how innovative companies are using social media platforms to grow their businesses. Another awesome feature of Social Times is that they place the topic of the article above the title. For example, if an article is about which casinos are most popular on Instagram, Instagram will appear above the title. This saves you the time of scanning articles to see if they’re what you need.

squarelogo_9Social Media Today

Social Media Today is catered for the more serious and experienced marketers. That’s not to say “newbies” shouldn’t read it, because they should, the content is simply more useful if you already have a very good understanding of what works for you and what doesn’t. They have some great “How to” articles, but half of the content is mostly useful for key decision makers – those who are no longer executing day-to-day marketing campaigns, but are now in charge of finding the best systems for analytics and trends.

August 3, 2016

7 tips for getting email marketing right

Filed under: Marketing & Promotion — Tags: , , , , , , — lidia @ 10:00 am

7 ways to do email marketing the right way

I’m amazed by the amount of spam I receive, specifically email lists I’m added to without my permission by someone who I don’t know. (I use a different email address on my website contact form so I can easily identity when this happens. I know, sneaky…) Today, I got another one of these emails and said to myself: something must be done!

Email marketing is a great way to reach qualified prospects—the key here being the word qualified. Adding people indiscriminately to your mailing list in the hopes of making your list bigger can backfire: your messages will get marked as spam, eventually leading to your account getting closed down.

So, what’s the right way to approach email marketing? Focusing on quality, not quantity is my approach. My list is small but very targeted, so every email newsletter I send results in a reconnection, conversation or new project.

7 tips for getting email marketing right

  1. Keep a clean list: Every now and then, go through and delete contacts on your list who are no longer prospects or have outdated email addresses
  2. Be very careful when adding names: Only add people who have specifically given permission to be added to your list (see #4 & 5 below) or with whom you have worked in the past.
  3. Write for your audience: Make sure your email content is tailored to your list or they may unsubscribe
  4. Have an opt-in freebie on your website: Create a freebie (report, eBook, tipsheet, etc.) for prospects to download in exchange for their email address
  5. Send a cold email: If there is someone you really want to connect with, send them a friendly introductory email with a request to join your list (make sure they will find it useful, see #3)
  6. Give them an out: Make sure your messages always include an easy way to opt-out or unsubscribe
  7. Focus on quality, not quantity: Yes, a huge mailing list sounds tempting, but it only takes one successful connection to generate results, so focus on adding good, qualified prospects rather than increasing your numbers

Are you breaking any of the “rules?” By focusing on quality not quantity, you will quickly see the benefit of having a well-managed email list.

Need help developing your next email marketing campaign? I can help with design and strategy, as well as managing your campaign. Let’s chat!

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August 28, 2015

10-Minute Marketing: create a daily marketing schedule

 10-Minute Marketing: create a daily marketing schedule

As a creative person, I often find myself jumping from task to task throughout the day as inspiration strikes. Though creatively-freeing, it’s not always the most productive way to work.

Which is why I bought myself a whiteboard and started planning out my daily marketing activities.

My weekly marketing calendar

  • Monday: Social media: posting, scheduling
  • Tuesday: Blog: writing, commenting, outreach
  • Wednesday: Prospecting: research, outreach, follow-up
  • Thursday: Portfolio: updating, photography
  • Friday: Invoicing/accounting

Now granted, I don’t always follow this schedule. But, having the structure—especially in a visual form—makes it easier to stay on track.

This week’s 10-Minute Marketing task:

Create your daily marketing schedule. Post it prominently in your workspace.

10-Minute Marketing is a weekly series featuring short, easy-to-accomplish marketing tasks. Follow along with past posts here.

August 14, 2015

10-Minute Marketing: follow up with 5 clients

Filed under: 10-Minute Marketing — Tags: , , , , — lidia @ 10:00 am

10-Minute Marketing: follow up with 5 clients

As they say, it’s easier to make a sale to an existing customer than to find a new one. Are you regularly reaching out to your current clients or organization members/supporters? They probably want to hear from you.

I keep in touch with my design clients on a regular basis through my email newsletter, however I also email them in-between projects to let them know Im thinking about them and most importantly—that I’m available to work on their next project. (I find sometimes that when people don’t hear from you, they assume you are too busy)

TIP: having trouble remembering to follow up? Put reminders on your calendar or use a spreadsheet to keep track.

This week’s 10-Minute Marketing task:

Follow up with 5 clients

10-Minute Marketing is a weekly series featuring short, easy-to-accomplish marketing tasks. Follow along with past posts here.

July 31, 2015

10-Minute Marketing: write a LinkedIn recommendation

10-minute marketing: write a linkedin recommendationMarketing is a give and take, you always want to balance your “taking” (i.e. selling or promoting your organization) with some “giving.”

A great way to give is to leave recommendations on LinkedIn.

I like to leave LinkedIn recommendations for colleagues and vendors that I’ve worked with—and especially for clients who I love working with.

An unsolicited LinkedIn recommendation will most certainly make the person’s day—and you never know, it might just prompt them to reach out to you with a new project or collaboration.

This week’s 10-Minute Marketing task:

Write a LinkedIn recommendation for a colleague (or two, depending on how fast you are)

Are you on LinkedIn? Connect with me here.

10-Minute Marketing is a weekly series featuring short, easy-to-accomplish marketing tasks. Follow along with past posts here.

July 22, 2015

6 tips for an engaging organization newsletter

Filed under: Marketing & Promotion — Tags: , , , , — lidia @ 10:00 am

6 tips for an engaging organization newsletter

One of my favorite ways to keep in touch is through my newsletter. Every time I send one, I inevitably hear back from a client or prospect that has been “reminded” of me.

Would you like to have this same effect with your organization’s newsletter? Read on for my tips for a more engaging newsletter.

  1. Write for your target audience: The first thing to consider when writing a newsletter is: what do your members or supporters want to hear about? What are their questions, pain points or interests?
  2. Keep it short: The days of long newsletters are gone. There’s more inbox clutter nowadays, so you have to keep your message short and to the point.
  3. Create a simple and flexible email template: I highly recommend using one of the online email newsletter services (I personally use and love MailChimp). This allows you to create a template that can be easily adapted for each issue.
  4. Develop a basic editorial calendar: Having a schedule for your newsletter not only helps you stay on-track, but your readers will begin to expect to hear from you (out of sight really does become out of mind!) It can be a simple as an Excel file with monthly send dates and newsletter topics. Hint: make things ever easier and plan topics a few months in advance. See an example editorial calendar.
  5. Keep a file of topic ideas: One of the biggest blogging complaints I hear is: I have nothing to write about. Once you’ve considered your target audience (see #1), the ideas should start to come easier. Now, create a file where you can store all these great ideas (I use the app Evernote).
  6. Send it consistently: Readers tend to engage more with a newsletter that is familiar to them rather than one that is infrequent. I send mine monthly, however depending on your organization (say, if you host weekly events) you may need a more frequent schedule.

So there you have it… you’re on your way to a more engaging newsletter.

Have you put any of these tips in practice? Let me know, I would love to know how it works out for you!

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June 19, 2015

10-Minute Marketing: write an email newsletter

Filed under: 10-Minute Marketing — Tags: , , — lidia @ 10:30 am

10-Minute marketing: werite an email newsletterI often hear people tell me they dread writing and sending a email newsletter. I, on the other hand, love them. Why? It’s an easy way to stay in touch with clients (I always hear from someone or receive a new project after sending a newsletter).

Also, I have the process down to a system: short lead-in article that links to a blog post, a few callouts about recent newsworthy items.

It wasn’t always this easy for me. I used to spend hours preparing (or agonizing over) a newsletter. Now I can knock one of these out in a half-hour!

Having a clear strategy for what I was trying to accomplish, paired with a simple editorial calendar made all the difference. With that in mind, before you start writing your next newsletter, review your marketing strategy (who are you trying to reach and why) and you’ll find writing so much easier.

This week’s 10-Minute Marketing task:

Write an email newsletter.

Need help creating an editorial calendar? Download my simple template here (Excel file).

 

10-Minute Marketing is a weekly series featuring short, easy-to-accomplish marketing tasks. Follow along with past posts here.

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