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Bloomin’ marvellous!

June 05, 2017  |   Advertising,Marketing tips   |     |   0 Comment
Bloomin’ marvellous!

An innovative and carefully thought through solution to avoid common problems with fresh flower deliveries.

If you order flowers for somebody, it’s often done as a nice surprise which is kind of spoiled when you have to check if they’ll be in to receive them. Alternatively, you risk causing inconvenience for the recipient of having to track down an undelivered bouquet. This company have cottoned onto the problem and have devised a clever solution.

Their package is designed to fit through letterbox. What? Fresh flowers in a package? Yes indeed! 

The importance of the ‘preview’ line on email bulletins

April 26, 2017  |   Email marketing,Marketing tips   |     |   0 Comment
The importance of the ‘preview’ line on email bulletins

When an email arrives in your inbox, how do you decide whether to open it or delete it?

Apart from the headline, the next thing you often see is the preview line … the small line of text at the top of the email that gives a further hint to the content that follows.

This is often the way people make a decision whether or not to open your email so it’s pretty important.

View it as a sub-heading that supports your main subject heading. Will somebody be more likely to read your email as a result? Can you draw them in with a few extra words? 

Every company needs a boiler plate. But do you know what it is?

Every company needs a boiler plate. But do you know what it is?

It’s essentially the written equivalent of your ‘elevator pitch’ – the one minute summary of your business that helps people understand what you do.

It lives on your website and the bottom of your press releases to provide an ‘at a glance’ explanation of what you do, who you do it for and how you do it.

Although it may seem obvious to you, anyone arriving at your website can easily see whether the service you provide is relevant to them or not.

For instance, imagine you run a website selling chocolate. It’s pretty obvious right?

A smart start

A smart start

Breakfast cereals go in and out of fashion don’t they? There are the old favourites like cornflakes and Weetabix, and I distinctly remember muesli becoming very fashionable for a while. Then it kind of turned into granola (basically toasted muesli).

But what about all the other variations on wheat, oats, corn, rice, honey, sugar, chocolate, dried fruit. At the end of the day, breakfast cereals are essentially created out of the same basic ingredients. But it’s the packaging and the way that they are presented that dictates who they appeal to.

Staying in a business hotel for the weekend?

March 27, 2017  |   Branding and Personality   |     |   0 Comment
Staying in a business hotel for the weekend?

No, we didn’t think so. Not many would specifically choose a business hotel for a weekend away. But why not? Well, let’s see. They conjure up images of being functional, sparse, clinical, businesslike. They certainly don’t make us think of luxury, indulgence, fun or quirkiness.

Until now!

My husband recently went on a business trip to Derby and was booked into a hotel near the industrial estate where he was due to have his meeting (is your heart already sinking, just thinking about this?)

Simple but consistent styling ensures widespread recognition

Simple but consistent styling ensures widespread recognition

There is a cleaning company near where I live that appears to be everywhere. It seems that every time I go out, I see one of their cars buzzing around, or parked outside a house where they are cleaning.

The cars are all red, with the company logo on the back and sides – very simple, not too obtrusive, in white only. They are also always clean and shiny.

It’s a consistent, instantly recognisable look, and as a result, whenever I ask anybody if they have seen or heard of this company, the response is always positive. They apparently don’t do any other advertising, but have built their business based on word of mouth. I am not connected to this company in any way, but admire their effective approach.

They chose a very straightforward name ‘Husband and wife cleaning services’ which conjures up a friendly, reliable team, and it seems from their website that this is an authentic and professional business.

Each target market wants something different – so don’t try and please everyone

February 27, 2017  |   Advertising,Marketing tips,Target Market   |     |   0 Comment
Each target market wants something different – so don’t try and please everyone

Searching for a hotel for a short break with my teenage daughter I realised that my needs as a mother and daughter are entirely different to my previous experiences as a family, a couple a group of girlfriends or a business traveller.

I skipped straight past all the ‘grand’, ‘luxurious’ ‘impressive’ as I didn’t want somewhere we would feel overwhelmed or out of place in. Dark, lavish interiors were out. So were large, sprawling restaurants and conference facilities. Simple, modern décor with a bright and airy feel to appeal to teenage tastes were key. We wanted slightly different things – I wanted things to look at and see, daughter wanted to ‘chill’. We both wanted sunshine, and prefer a pool to the beach, so a city location with a rooftop pool was ideal. A chic café would be nice. Somewhere we can both hang out and feel at home.

If it was a romantic break, or even a grown up girls weekend, we may want somewhere more opulent but not this time.

I eventually found it – simple, stylish, and in a good location for a young, hip visitor … my daughter obviously! The website highlighted (with fabulous enticing images) how near it was to the key features of the city that would appeal. The funky architecture, trendy cafes, cool beach area with the appropriate use of language and imagery helped me make my decision.

If your audience is bored they’ll move on!

If your audience is bored they’ll move on!

While videos can be a great tool for communicating a message, they can also be a disaster.

I recently watched one (when I say ‘watched’ I mean ‘skipped through’) that was 4 and a half minutes long, giving safety tips on driving in winter. It was a single camera shot of a gentleman talking very calmly to camera with the following advice:

What can we learn about marketing from the daleks?

January 25, 2017  |   Social media,Video Marketing   |     |   0 Comment
What can we learn about marketing from the daleks?

When I was a child, like many others, I used to watch Dr Who from behind the sofa, terrified … but not wanting to miss out.

The sound of the daleks filled me with dread and I could hardly bear to watch. A couple of years ago, I bought my Dr Who fan husband a box set of old Dr Who shows from the 70s, thinking they would be good fun. Wrong! They were unbearable! Watching one for 5 minutes was quite funny, as we wondered how on earth we could ever have been scared by such primitive props, but the novelty soon wore off and we just couldn’t watch a whole episode. And so it is with todays’ videos and presentations. If you’re going to do it, do it right. What worked even 5 years ago will look dated now.

Do some research, and have a look at what others are doing – look outside of your own industry for inspiration. All of the social media sites are full of great, short and entertaining clips and infographics.

Videos and presentations can be used on your website, your social media channels, within email bulletins etc so you can make good use of them … if they’re good. And by good I mean eye-catching, interesting, relevant to your audience.

And hopefully not so out of date that your audience switches off!

Who cares?

November 18, 2016  |   Communications,Email marketing,Marketing tips   |     |   0 Comment
Who cares?

I regularly work on customers’ newsletters and the brief is often: “we need to tell our customers about our new website” or “we need to let people know about our new service”.

The problem with that approach is that your customer’s aren’t necessarily that interested. They might even say “so what?”

So how do you tell them about what you’re up to without simply shouting at them and hoping they’ll listen?

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