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Should You Should Advertise on Facebook?

facebook logo-01It use to be easy to answer the question, “Should I advertise my business on Facebook?” When Business/Organization Pages started in 2007, promoting your business or organization was free and easy. Anything you posted had a good chance in showing up on the news feeds of your fans and followers. Today, the likelihood that your post will show up in a Fan’s feed (your organic, or unpaid, “reach”) is pretty small, unless you advertise.

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Bring Out the Best: Descriptors vs. Taglines

Hellmann’s Mayonnaise has used the same tagline – ‘BRING OUT THE BEST’™ for decades. The “blue ribbon” treatment in the logo reinforces their message.

One of the most powerful ways to market your business or organization is to create a short phrase to help it stand out. Whether you’re using a descriptor or a tagline, a few well-chosen words can help shape how people think or feel about you.

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A Creative Brief Helps You Create Better Communications

This color filter image of a snowboarder is part of the #PowerUpVT campaign to increase participation in school meals
Graphic designer Katie Rutherford created a series of posters and social media images to persuade Vermont high schoolers that eating a school lunch can help fuel their busy days.

Planning to hire someone to produce a creative piece for you? Whether the end result is a logo, ad, video, or an entire campaign, putting together a “creative brief” in advance can save time, money and aggravation.

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How to Use Marketing Stunts to Stand Out

Marketing Stunt by Rob Greenfield
Rob Greenfield gets himself into some cold water. (Photo by Brent Martin.)

My nephew, Rob Greenfield, is a born marketer and a prodigy when it comes to marketing stunts. His degree is in aquatic science, chemistry, and biology, but at the age of 29, he owns his own marketing company (The Greenfield Group), has a large social media following, and has been featured in dozens of media outlets.

Rob’s primary goal is to inspire social change, not to sell toothpaste or even solar panels, but he’s also developed an impressive ability to promote himself as a brand. The key to Rob’s marketing success is his use of storytelling and stunts to grab our attention. While most of us are unlikely to take up dumpster diving, we can learn a lot from his techniques.

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How to Instagram Like a Pro

Instagram logoInstagram is one of the fastest growing social media channels, especially among young people. Since Instagram is primarily a visual medium for posting photos and videos, many businesses and organizations haven’t figured out how to use it to promote their brand or increase web traffic. Yet, with care, you can pair great visuals with Instagram tools–such as your profile, captions, and hashtags–to grow your business.

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How to Plan a Creative Campaign

FROM THE TOP EGG

Valley Food and Farm LogoCampaigns aren’t just for politicians or community activists: they’re useful any time you’re trying to motivate a group of people to think, feel, or act a specific way.

I define a “campaign” as an effort to achieve a specific goal during a measurable time period: get someone elected, sell 100 tickets to an event, or get people to choose a designated driver. A campaign can serve as your entire marketing strategy or as one piece of a larger plan. It usually includes a strong creative component that appeals to inner feelings and motivations.

Good Egg Marketing and Sirius Design recently partnered up to help the Valley Food & Farm program of Vital Communities in White River Junction, Vermont develop a new campaign.

Here’s an overview of our key steps and how the campaign evolved.

—Myrna Greenfield

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How to Make the Most of Free Online Tools

Photo of sculpture of a giant FREE rubber stamp
Photo by Alan Levine, Creative Commons

The Internet is awash with free websites, applications, and tools to help you save time, increase productivity, spy on your customers, and generally do business better. Plus there are countless webinars, eNewsletters, and blogs serving up neat molecules of free advice. Practically the only thing that isn’t free is your time. Here are my tips for getting the best free advice.

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How to Become a Trend Spotter

What will be the new faux beef jerky product? The next “Stella de Oro” lily? The first truly successful wearable technology? How can you spot the latest trends?

Whether you’re launching a new product, seeking social media attention, or trying to sell your new “Tarzan the Vampire” screenplay, knowing which trends are played out (cupcakes, anyone?) and which ones are still ascendant (the newly hip donut shop) is key.

Here are our tips on how to keep up with the latest trends. Although most of these examples are food-related, the principles apply to most subjects.

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How to Create a DIY Website

The letters URL spelled out in blocksMore than 25 percent of small businesses don’t have a website. And that doesn’t even include the millions of businesses with old sites that look dated, aren’t “optimized” to read easily on a cell phone, and rank poorly in Google searches. If you don’t have an up-to-date site, you’re basically encouraging potential customers to go to another business that does.

While I urge you to hire an experienced web designer if you can, there are so many easy and inexpensive–even free—tools for doing it yourself that there are no more excuses for not having a current site. Yup, you can create a good-looking website without having any technical skills or knowing a lick of code. In fact, there are so many resources out there that the hardest thing about creating your own site may be choosing which tool to use.

Ready to get started?  Here’s our guide for DIY Websites.

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5 Tips for Creating Better Images

Photo of woman on computer
Photo by colorblindpicaso, Creative Commons

Sure, people have been saying, “A picture is worth a thousand words,” for at least a century, but images have never been more integral to effective marketing and communications.  Facebook posts, Tweets, etc. get much more traction when they contain images. Instagram and Pinterest are two of the fastest growing social networks. Giant background images dominate website design.

What’s driving this emphasis on visuals? Millennials, for one thing. Millennials, who will make up 75 percent of the global workforce by 2025, are digital natives who think in images. And the ubiquity of smart phones, free photo editing apps, and live streaming video apps like Periscope and Meerkat.

Are you ready for your close-up? If not, use our 5 tips for creating better images.

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