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Zodiac Marketer: Cancer

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Our next zodiac sign is Cancer: birthdays between June 21 – July 22.

Cancer is a water sign with the following strengths: loyalty, tenacity, and persuasiveness. Perfect traits for a strong marketer to possess. Cancer’s weaknesses can put a wrench in any marketing or business project. Being moody, pessimistic, and insecure are surefire ways to halt progress. In the following paragraphs we discuss how Cancer’s strengths and weaknesses apply to marketing.

Loyalty in Marketing

When we think of loyalty, we often think of clients’ loyalty to our brand. But, think about it; if you want someone to be loyal to you, shouldn’t you also be loyal to them? Loyalty to your clients can appear in many different ways. One of the most crucial is to always ask yourself if the product or service you provide is the best for your clients’ businesses. For example, we always look at our work with our clients not as isolated projects, but from the larger perspective. Is this one marketing project going to have the greatest impact on your goals, or is there another approach that will use your budget more effectively? We treat our clients’ businesses as if they were our own, which helps us make recommendations and decisions that are best for their business, not just ours.

Tenacity in Marketing

Tenacity is a useful trait to possess in creative endeavors, particularly marketing. Tenacity can mean that you back your design assertively, standing up and defending your work and its effectiveness. Tenacity can mean working long hours to meet a creative deadline or a website launch. Tenacity is constant learning in your field so that you can give your clients the best product or service possible. Tenacity is experimenting with new techniques to stay on the cutting edge of your field.

Persuasiveness in Marketing

This is a no brainer! Persuasiveness is the core of advertising and marketing. Put simply, when you market a product or service, you are persuading your audience that you are the best fit for their needs. Everything else follows from that.

Avoid Moodiness in Marketing

Moodiness should be left at home, no matter what. Let’s say we have a proposal presentation to the top three executives of a large prospect. One of us didn’t get much sleep and the other didn’t have her morning coffee. Yet another member of our team had a disagreement with her husband the night before. There are a lot of life issues that could put you in a bad mood, and they probably happen to most people on a daily basis. The point here is to leave all of that at the door, whatever it takes. Think of a funny story that lightens your mood, tell a joke, or repeat your personal mantra. If you don’t already have a bad mood eraser, consider adopting one. Don’t let a bad mood lose you prospects and even clients! No one wants to work with a person whose moods are unpredictable, right? I sure don’t. It halts productivity and can be passed on to other people. Pass on positivity instead.

Avoid Insecurity in Marketing

One thing we can’t be is insecure when we’re presenting a logo design or a website design to a client. In order for them to feel good about approving a design, they need to sense our confidence. And if we’re not confident about our design, we shouldn’t be presenting it. Having confidence starts with having a good product. If you feel even a little bit of doubt in your product or customer experience, consider an audit of your products and services to make sure you are offering the best possible experience. Offering the best possible product can eliminate your insecurity and will launch your marketing campaign to a whole new level. When you have confidence in your product, marketing becomes easy.

Have you ever experienced any of the above positive and/or negative traits in your marketing campaigns? We’d love to hear your story!

Digital Marketing – What’s Your Strategy?

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Marketing has changed a lot over the years and I’ve been fortunate enough to see how it has taken shape. In the past, we used broadcast and print marketing to reach out to consumers and businesses. Back then, we didn’t call it traditional marketing. We just called it marketing.

Today, the digital universe has not only changed the way we reach out to people but it’s also changed what we say. Brand messaging is the biggest change that I’ve seen. It matters to your clients and customers. It also matters to the general public. Don’t believe me? Take a look at the recent public relations nightmares. So, having a strategic plan to deliver your message throughout the digital-verse is just as important as it was in the past.

Digital Resembles Traditional

Digital marketing has some basic concepts in common with traditional marketing. The goal of a traditional marketing campaign was to cover as many bases possible—to capture as much attention while staying within budget. A well-rounded campaign focused on primary and secondary activities.

Primary activities delivered the entire message. These had more space or time for content that gave all the necessary details. Typically, primary activities were print-based and some broadcast media, such as infomercials and infotainment.

Secondary activities were used to keep brand names front-of-mind for consumers. This is a broad category that includes things like billboards and vinyl-wrapped busses. The goal of secondary activities was to complement marketing campaigns through increasing brand recognition.

Digital Marketing: A Comprehensive Mix

Everyone, regardless of age, is now online. The digital world is part our every day lives. Television is on smartphones. Radio stations stream through wireless speakers. Voice-controlled personal assistants sit in our living room and robots roam our houses. Marketers can capitalize on these changes by investigating how new and unique platforms within the digital-verse can deliver their message.

It’s time to be more strategic about your digital presence. You really need to have all things digital in play. Just like traditional methods, we need to have a good mix of primary and secondary sources for people to find your business.

More Than Just a Website – Primary

Websites are no longer digital brochures. Your home page has become your storefront—your front lobby. It’s where potential and repeat customers enter your business. And it has to do so much more than ever before.

Your website has to be a primary source of information. Every visitor should have all of their questions answered before leaving it. If not, they should be able to ask and get a quick response.

Added to this is the fact that your website depends upon two major criteria: search engine optimization (SEO) and mobile responsive design. Without these, your website won’t be as easily found by Google. SEO requires strategic organic search optimization through original content, such as videos, articles and blogs. These need to capture viewers’ attention, be informative, and need to be updated frequently or else Google will send you to the end of the list.

Social Media – Primary

The world of social media is always changing, always in flux, but one thing is for certain, it’s not going away. Your social media presence has to be a primary source of information. It also has to create an emotional connection with your viewers. This is just as true for B2B as it is for B2C marketing.

The bio pages on any social media site can inform your visitors about what you do and where you’re located. Frequent posts with pictures and videos show your business in action. Informative articles, white papers, and video content about your business’ expertise should also be shared frequently on social media. Remain positive in this space. Business social media pages are not a political platform and you will see your audience diminish drastically if you use them in this way. All of these guidelines will also help your efforts with public relations.

Google My Business – Primary

When Google knows more about your business, your visibility will increase. This means more traffic to your site and social channels. That’s what Google My Business does. It puts you on the map, allows online reviews, and provides primary sources of information. Here are some handy statistics about Google My Business:

Pay-Per-Click (PPC) – Secondary

In some ways, paid search has taken the place of broadcast media’s quick ad spots. But it’s so much different than blasting your message to everyone listening. As a secondary source, it resides in the middle of your sales funnel and provides measurable and trackable data. This leads to increased targeting and more appealing messages.

Paid search is a great way to target new audiences with relevant content. It drives more people to where you want them to go. We regard PPC as an important activity for any digital marketing campaign.

Content – Secondary

Your digital marketing campaign needs flawless content. This ranges from videos to podcasts to blog posts and each one has to differentiate you from everyone else. The best advice we can offer about content is to be authentic and be genuine. Show off your best and people will notice.

Content puts your expertise on display. It shows how your company is unique, and what your company culture is like. Plus, frequent updates of content keep your website active and relevant for search engines.

Link Building – Secondary

Your website really can’t rank well if it doesn’t have link building. This goes even further than someone linking to one of your blog posts. It’s about building partnerships, getting mentions in the press, appearing in videos and on podcasts, and building influencer relationships. Link building should also be part of your public relations strategy.

We Help with the Specifics

A solid digital marketing strategy can improve your visibility, which is a pretty big deal these days. But it also tells the story about your company. Knowing these general concepts is the first step in a bold digital presence. There is so much more to learn about messaging in the digital space, as well as which platforms work best.

Pinstripe has helped local and nationally-based businesses with every aspect of their digital marketing. We specialize in discovering our clients’ personal traits—their corporate character—and putting them on display. Our creative team consists of listeners and discoverers that have an innate ability to help you achieve your vision. Contact us to tell us more about your company and your marketing goals.

Want Happy Clients? Get to Know Them

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Your clients are the people that fund your bankroll. You have to know who they are and how they think if you want to tailor your business to them. Not only can this give you insight on where to spend your advertising dollars, but knowing your clients will also help you be more accessible to them, and in an age when time is in short supply, convenience is key. Here, we’ll look at a few ways you can better understand the people who make your business a success.

Meet the competition first

Before you compile a client profile, do some recon on the competition. Choose two or three businesses that offer the same products or services. Your competitive analysis can include marketing, products, pricing, and personnel. SquareUp also suggests looking at secondary and tertiary competitors. Your findings can give you insight into areas where you may need to increase attention, such as online interactions, or ideas on supplemental services your clients want.

Client profiling

Defining your client base means paying close attention to their personal interests, habits, and priorities.

First, determine where they are. You’ll want to know specifics so that you can understand their daily, weekly, and monthly patterns. For example, knowing your clients spend time reading news blogs and drinking coffee isn’t enough — refine this information to include the particular news blogs they read and what coffee shops they frequent.

Another important aspect of your clients that you should know is how they get information about your offerings. Do they use Google? Come in off the street? Follow their favorite businesses on social media? You should meet them where they seek you out. Evaluate your website to ensure you’re visible, add eye-catching banners or displays to your front entrance, or create targeted social media and Google ads. Wordstream notes that “snappy, memorable taglines” are great ways to grab attention online.

One of the most crucial pieces of the profile will be your clients’ challenges. Provide services that solve their problems and they’ll come back again and again. Like everyone else, your patrons are short on time and anything that gives it back and takes away frustrations is valuable. Duct Tape Marketing asserts that one place to look when trying to determine common problems is your reviews. You might notice a theme, such as “this company did the work quickly…” or “Their designs were super creative and their team was very responsive…” You can use this data to ascertain what it is they want and why.

Finally, determine their budget. People who shop at Walmart and buy store-brand water are likely more money-conscious than those who buy their necessities at the mall and drink Perrier. Likewise, larger companies will have a larger budget for building renovations or legal council, while smaller companies will look for more affordable alternatives. This insight can help you compile a listing of products and services that appeal to each potential client, which will keep them from scouring the competition.

The bottom line: do your research, and do it well. Failure to be thorough can lead to a marketing disaster and hordes of dissatisfied customers (remember New Coke?). Your clients know what they want, and it’s up to you to give it to them. The only way to do this is to understand them and then cater to and anticipate their needs.

Article by Marissa Perez of BusinessPOP.

Devereux Promoted to Director of Account Management

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Pinstripe Marketing is pleased to announce that Nikki Devereux has been promoted to director of account management. Her responsibilities include overseeing her creative team, client relations and account management, online marketing and media relations. She joined Pinstripe as project manager in February 2015.

Devereux also serves on the Planning Committee for Leadership St. Pete, as an advisor on the board of Society for Marketing Professional Services (SMPS), and as communications co-chair for the SMPS Southeastern Regional Conference. She also volunteers her time as a Big Sister in the Big Brothers Big Sisters program and is an accomplished fine artist with work featuring her photography and mixed media.

ABOUT PINSTRIPE MARKETING

Pinstripe Marketing, Inc. is a full-service agency specializing in promoting professional services firms including law, finance, healthcare, engineering, technology and more.  Services include marketing plan development and implementation, advertising, collateral design, event planning, media buying, web design and public relations. For details about Pinstripe, please visit www.pinstripemarketing.com.

Zodiac Marketer: Gemini

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Our next zodiac sign is Gemini: birthdays between May 21 – June 20.

Gemini is an air sign with the following strengths: gentle, affectionate, curious, adaptable, quick learner, loves to exchange ideas. Some of these are traits that creatives, especially in the marketing world, possess in plenty. On the other hand, Gemini’s weaknesses of being nervous, inconsistent, and indecisive—things many of us face occasionally. We’ll tell you how and why to avoid these in your professional and maybe even personal life.

Curiosity in Marketing

Curiosity is a natural part of creativity. Some might say that it is the very foundation of creative endeavors. Artists and designers explore their medium, their world, and their own minds in order to create their work. Experimentation is curiosity. Artists use experimentation to create new techniques, new colors, and new themes every day. This curiosity that drives innovation in both process and outcome are essential to marketing. Without curiosity, marketing and advertising campaigns would be limp and lifeless, and designs would fail to attract, define and guide.

Adaptability in Marketing

Adaptability is a powerful trait in every aspect of life. In fact, it’s what helps species survive. Animals and plants adapt over time to environmental conditions, and humans have created such a technical world that we have to adapt to new technologies seemingly on a daily basis. One signature of adaptability is

Free Flow/Exchange of Ideas in Marketing

How many marketing campaigns have started with a brain storming session? SO MANY. This is part of what makes marketing enjoyable, creative, and innovative. A brainstorming session may have one goal, like renaming a company, but sometimes these sessions, if everyone feels comfortable with letting their ideas flow freely, can yield answers to so many other questions, or ideas for other projects! Free flow of ideas is a cornerstone of marketing and advertising.

Avoid Inconsistency in Marketing

Inconsistency may be one of the most fatal acts for any brand. In fact, part of the definition of the word brand from a marketing perspective is CONSISTENCY. This is what we strive for when we create brand style guides, some of them so extensive and specific that they read more like design books than guides. Designers put countless hours into creating these guides to avoid inconsistency as if it were the devil! And we all should, in all areas of marketing. In fact, a well-rounded marketing strategy will carry a consistent message across all channels and activities, from PR to sales calls to social media posting. We are always telling the brand’s complete story.

Avoid Indecision in Marketing

Indecision can kill any project, particularly creative projects. This happens when you can’t choose between one logo design and the other. Or you are so torn that you make tweaks, trying to combine designs, again and again. You simply continue to suffer the inability to decide what you want. If this happens, you will end up extending your timeline and paying way more than you originally bargained.

If you need a logo, make sure that you give examples of what you want and lots of detail about your company, your mission, and a whole slew of other information about your company that a design firm should be using to sketch a series of initial designs. A good agency will take this time up front to get a solid sense of your company, rather than spend the time on the backend trying to tweak a design that did not hit the mark.

At Pinstripe Marketing, we sit down with our clients and complete a creative brief, plus we listen to your stories and review samples to start building your design story.

We love you Gemini! You have so many special traits that make our marketing lives interesting.