Branding – Mid-West Digital Marketing https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com Thu, 26 Jul 2018 14:20:21 +0000 en-US hourly 1 75379469 Social Media and Radio Branding https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/2015/06/social-media-radio-branding/ https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/2015/06/social-media-radio-branding/#respond Fri, 12 Jun 2015 14:33:25 +0000 https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/?p=3119 I don’t believe in “new” media. There’s no such thing in my world. In my world, there’s broadcasting, print, digital. We use these media to help clients brand and sell. For me, the more important aspect is branding and social media is one of the best branding tools out there next to radio. Your Social... Read more »

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I don’t believe in “new” media. There’s no such thing in my world. In my world, there’s broadcasting, print, digital. We use thesesocial-media-marketing-roi media to help clients brand and sell. For me, the more important aspect is branding and social media is one of the best branding tools out there next to radio.

Your Social Brand

When I am talking with potential clients and current clients I am always quick to point out my view on social media as a branding tool. Yes, you can sell on social if you actually want to pay for it. But, you can brand for “free” if you use social correctly (“free” is in quotes because we actually do charge to run your social media branding). By branding, I am talking about selling who YOU are, not your products. I spend my free time on social media trying to be social, having discussions with people (or lively debates) and sharingideas. When it comes to a business, large or small, this should be the same view: stop trying to sell product, learn to sell your brand.

Radio Branding

When clients buy radio from us, we talk about weekly, monthly schedules and frequency. How many times will the ad be heard and how many times will they hear your name or website or phone number. Frequency is key to branding. Even if you are trying to sell a specific product, many people might not need it at that exact moment. Even if it’s a great sale, many people might not be able to come and get your product or want to at that time. But, they hear your name, hear who you are and, subconsciously, remember who you are over a period of time. Then, in a few weeks or months, they might need you and hear another commercial on the radio and regardless of the sale or event, go to you because a) they know who you are b) they need your product or service at that time c) they trust the radio station they are listening to and now trust you.

Social Branding Works the Same Way

Frequency is key to your social media strategy as well. How frequently do people see your posts and what are you posting? Who are you online and what persona are you selling? Your business needs to be top of mind when people need something from you. You may have thousands of likes but not all those people are coming in all the time. Focused content and frequent posting via your social channels is how your name gets BRANDED and then remembered and leads to sales.

Are you ready for a complete social branding strategy?

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Timeless Design https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/2015/04/timeless-design/ https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/2015/04/timeless-design/#respond Thu, 09 Apr 2015 20:22:20 +0000 https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/?p=3061 In every graphic design blog and forum I read, the phrase “timeless design” pops up in discussion – usually referring to a classic logo so good that it never needed to be changed, and how if you could distill the qualities from it, you could design your own timeless logo. Whenever I see posts like... Read more »

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In every graphic design blog and forum I read, the phrase “timeless design” pops up in discussion – usually referring to a classic logo so good that it never needed to be changed, and how if you could distill the qualities from it, you could design your own timeless logo. Whenever I see posts like this, I have to keep myself from shouting, because there is one big issue with timeless design:

It doesn’t exist.

“Nothing gold can stay”

Even the most iconic logos of all time have gone through refinement over the years. Coca-Cola’s logo, arguably one of the most well known and appreciated in the history of trademarks, is as good of an example as any. While the logo on their labels from the early 1900’s is certainly recognizable as the same company, it has been continually tweaked and revamped every few years.

Coca-Cola-Logo

It’s also important to consider how often your product changes and is reinvented. Coca-Cola, except for the New Coke/Coca-Cola Classic fiasco, hasn’t changed much as a product for as long as anyone can remember.

Having a classic look is great if your brand relies heavily on nostalgia or a sense of tradition, but more than likely not fitting for a company in a cutting edge industry that needs to convey a sense of innovation. If you were able to achieve a “timeless” logo, would it even be beneficial to the brand?

A logo is only as strong as the brand behind it

Here’s something to think about: would the logos for Apple, or Nike, of Coca-Cola be as highly lauded if their respective companies weren’t groundbreakers in their industries?

Would they be as instantly recognizable if they didn’t have billions and billions of dollars promoting them to the point of pop culture icons?

Make no mistake, they are good designs, but their “timelessness” has less to do with their actual construction and more to do with their product and overall marketing strategy. There are plenty of examples where average, and even poorly designed logos succeed (I’m looking at you, Pirelli), and vice versa, because of the quality of the company they represent. “Timelessness” and longevity is the product of a well-developed brand as a whole, and not just a clever logo.

Alright, so maybe it won’t last for eons and eons, but what can you do to get the best logo design possible for your company?

Keep it simple

If you want to get the longest lifetime possible out of a logo, one of the best things you can do is stick to something simple. “Simple” is a vague concept, but there are definitely a few tangible things to keep in mind: stick to a limited palette of one or two colors. Make sure it looks good in black and white. Limit the number of fonts used to no more than 2. Avoid relying on effects – drop shadows, gradients, strokes, textures etc. While these effects can certainly be used well in the context of a campaign, they’re they’re among the first things to look as time goes on and shouldn’t be a primary element.

Simplicity begets versatility, and versatility means you can adjust to change over time. If your logo looks good regardless of the colors around it, or the images it goes on top; if your logo works just as well on the side of a truck as it does in a magazine ad; if your logo can stand alone as just a mark without your name; if it can be shrunk down to a favicon or blown up to the size of a billboard and still be effective, then you’re on to something. The elements around your logo may change frequently, so if you can find a design that works in a number of different contexts, it’s going to be able to stick around longer.

Don’t blindly follow trends

Fonts, styles, even color schemes (Teal and purple is forever associated with the 90’s for me) can be huge for years, but eventually fall out of favor. Today, flat design, handmade aesthetic, and hipster badges are the cat’s pajamas – but they’re already oversaturated trends. A few of those logos might last down the line, but most of them look indistinguishable from the next.

Rather than riding a wave of what’s cool now, you need something that truly represents your company, and will strike a chord with your customers on a number of levels. Is a brush pen script logo the best thing for your company? It might be, but coming to that conclusion should be based on research, planning, and an extensive ideation process – not just because it looks pretty cool right now. Which leads me to my next point:

Hire a designer at a professional marketing company

Anyone with enough free time can learn to use Adobe Illustrator, and even make things that look pretty neat. But there is large valley between being able to make something that gets a lot of likes on Instagram, and making something that works for your business and gets results. There’s also just as wide of a gap between designing a logo and building a brand identity. One can be done in a day by a single person; the other takes a team of people with the knowledge, skill, and experience needed to do the hours of research, strategy, and execution. But the difference in end result is day and night.

If you’re looking for that team, then look no further. With decades of combined experience in design and marketing we can help your business with more than just a logo – we’ll help you build a brand that lasts.

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Up Periscope! The Live Streaming Battle https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/2015/03/periscope-meerkat-twitter-live-streaming-video/ https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/2015/03/periscope-meerkat-twitter-live-streaming-video/#respond Fri, 27 Mar 2015 16:58:48 +0000 https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/?p=3037 It didn’t take long for folks to see the value of live streaming video on Twitter using Meerkat. Certainly, Twitter recognized what was happening and went out and bought Meerkat competitor, Periscope, and immediately shut Meerkat out of using Twitter’s social graph. What Does Live Streaming on Twitter Offer? This is a really good question... Read more »

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It didn’t take long for folks to see the value of live streaming vidLive-Streaming-twitter-meerkat-periscopeeo on Twitter using Meerkat. Certainly, Twitter recognized what was happening and went out and bought Meerkat competitor, Periscope, and immediately shut Meerkat out of using Twitter’s social graph.

What Does Live Streaming on Twitter Offer?

This is a really good question and here’s the easy answer: We are all “broadcast” journalists now. As a former broadcast journalist for nearly 20 years, this make me cringe. Anyone calling themselves a “journalist” is somewhat scary for me considering most have no ethics training, storytelling training or story gathering capabilities. But, “citizen journalism” is good for democracy…so, here we are. Now that anyone can “broadcast” or start up a live streaming event using a social network, it changes the dynamic of everyday life.

*Get pulled over, grab your phone and start live streaming the interaction with the police officer (I’m sure that will go over well).

*Have an event that you want people to come to, grab your phone and start live streaming the set-up, or portions of it and invite people to show up.

*Witness “breaking news”, grab your phone and become the next Wolf Blitzer!

How Will live streaming Work for Branding, Content Marketing?

Right now, there are plenty of news organizations, media companies, reporters, politicians using Periscope and Meerkat to get their own versions of stories out there first. It’s always about being first. But, for content marketers who are branding clients, the goals have to be known; come up with a strategy and stick to it.

*Are you building a new product? Show us!

*Are you selling new things at your store? Show us!

*Are you building yourself up as an expert? Show us!

*Are you offering behind-the-scenes, never-before-seen images where fans will feel “close” to you? Show us!

I am going to start using Periscope occasionally. It won’t always be pretty. It won’t always be interesting. But, I promise it will be fun! Follow me on Twitter @rongiordan and let’s see how this will all work!

(side note…I use “broadcast” with quotes because, technically, this isn’t broadcasting.)

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What Jingles Can Teach Content Creators https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/2015/03/content-creators-marketing-jingles/ https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/2015/03/content-creators-marketing-jingles/#respond Mon, 23 Mar 2015 16:43:09 +0000 https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/?p=3026 In our world of overstimulation, it’s hard to get a brain’s attention and even harder to hold it. How can your writing cut through the cacophony and get “heard?” And how can it create brand loyalty or even generate sales? The human brain continually seeks patterns, likeness, and relationships. And it does its best memory... Read more »

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In our world of overstimulation, it’s hard to get a brain’s attention and even harder to hold it. How can your writing cut through the cacophony and get “heard?” And how can it create brand loyalty or even generate sales?

The human brain continually seeks patterns, likeness, and relationships. And it does its best memory work where it finds them. That’s one reason most of us still remembers exactly how each of these jingles ends:

  • Good to the last drop…
  • Like a good neighbor…
  • I am stuck on Band-Aid…
  • Rice-a-Roni…
  • Plop, plop, fizz, fizz…

(Admit it: You sang some of those as you read them.)

Jingles-Branding

Courtesy Paul Townsend

Jingles slowly worm their way deep into the brain, but it’s not only because they appeal to its love of patterns and relationships.

It’s also because repetition carves ever-deepening pathways into the brain. Hear something dozens of times, and it starts to form a groove. With jingles, the grooves are even deeper (no pun intended!). That’s because so much more of the brain is involved where music is concerned—the motor centers keeping the beat as you bob your head, the language centers engaging with the lyrics, the visual centers picturing the musical notes or memories you associate with the song, and the emotional centers stimulated by all you associate with the music.

People who write jingles prey on this nature of the brain.

Content creators would do well to investigate any kind of psychology behind messages that stick. You can’t tap into the brain in all the same ways jingle-writers can, not without adding audio to your blogs or websites. (Personally, I’d rather take a punch to the head than be startled by music on autoplay on a website.) However, you can look for similar ways to form deep grooves in the brain. Here are some of those ways:

Metaphors and similes. Like a good neighbor, State Farm is there. A few carefully placed metaphors or similes can go a long way toward making your words memorable. If I tell you, “Writing a book feels like climbing backward up a wall with bowling balls chained to my ankles,” you’re more likely to tune in and remember it than if I say, “Writing a book is hard.” Just don’t use clichés.

Repetition. I want my baby back, baby back, baby back. For one of our clients that sells jewelry, I periodically blog a story about a real-life wedding proposal. After I wrote four or five of these, they became a theme within the blog. The repetition was familiar enough that readers could see “Real Romance” in the headline and know what they were about to get.

Rhythm and Poetry. Plop, plop! Fizz, fizz! Oh, what a relief it is! Through rhymes and repetition, lilts and cadence, words are often easier to remember and easier to connect to other subjects when they have a poetic quality. Try some word play. Try some alliteration. The occasional line that reads like poetry can really get inside your reader’s head.

Use imagery. Rice-a-Roni, the San Francisco Treat! (If you grew up with this one, try reading it without picturing a person hanging off the back of a trolley car singing it.) Paint a picture with your words, and you’ll engage the visual centers of the brain along with those centers that have to show up for reading and comprehension to take place. The more of the mind’s real estate you can engage, the better chance you have for sticking.

Above all else, remember that, in marketing, it’s pointless to worm your words into a reader’s memory unless you associate your words with your client’s brand or product, too. To this day, when someone sings, “You deserve a break today…” I have an impulse to steer toward a McDonald’s. You want your words to leave a mark that the brain associates with your client. It can build a subconscious sort of brand loyalty. And when the words later come to mind, the reader just might go shopping with your client.

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They “Like” You for You…Stay With Your Brand! https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/2015/03/brand-business/ https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/2015/03/brand-business/#respond Wed, 04 Mar 2015 17:23:26 +0000 https://midwestdigitalmarketing.com/?p=3009 A good friend once gave me a classic bit of dating advice before I was about to head out and put my awkwardness on full display with a lady I really liked. My goal was to capture her attention just enough that she’d agree to a second date filled with equal amounts of awkwardness. So,... Read more »

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A good friend once gave me a classic bit of dating advice before I was about to head out and put my awkwardness on full display with a lady I really liked. My goal was to capture her attention just enough that she’d agree to a second date filled with equal amounts of awkwardness. So, what was his nugget of tried and true advice? “Umm, I don’t know man, just be you and smile, or something.”

Being myself on a first date is like playing roulette and betting it all on green.

 

Branding-Roulette

You’ve probably never heard of the green number zero slot on a roulette table. That’s because no one ever bets on it… ever. Sure it might work, chances are it won’t and suddenly you’ll owe five times your net worth to some unsavory people whom you’ve never heard of. While being myself on a first date can be a gamble, if everything goes well and she actually likes me for me, then the rest of the date and dates to follow are going to be that much easier for me to handle since I won’t have to pretend to be something I’m not.

The same can be said with your brand’s image on social media platforms.

Stay true to what your brand is about and what it stands for and be sure to listen to your clients! My friend could have included that part about “listening” in his wise-beyond-his-years advice. Another important note is that a brand should never try to portray the same image that one of your competitors displays. How would that set you apart? Consumers love brand transparency more than ever and want to be genuinely heard. Yes, you may seem boring at first, but you may be surprised that people do still like you. Why is it that they still like you even though you’re boring? Because you are showing them who you really are, a boring company who wants to connect with their clients so they can better cater to their needs with their products. Once you’ve clearly established who you are, your fans will be more receptive to some cheesy jokes that you might make about your brand or industry.

Remember, letting your clients get to know the real you, whether they like it or not, is half the battle. After that, the rest of it is a cake walk. Though you should probably still pick up the check.

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