• Developing the right voice and tone for your company’s brand

    On: October 9, 2020
    In: Branding, Marketing
    Views: 78

    I found this interesting blog from Devin Delfino on how to set the right tone and voice for your brand. It’s not easy. If you want to build a strong brand, tone matters since it dictates how the audience will feel about your message both in intent and character. Here is a reference guide:

    How to develop tone of voice for your brand
    Gather your company’s goals and values and audit previous content. To develop the right tone for your brand, you will need to know a few key details:

    • What the company is trying to accomplish — both overall and through a given piece of communication
    • The tone that the brand has used previously
    • The company’s core values

    Reviewing previously published communications and ask for impressions from your audience can also help you gauge where you stand. Combined, this information will give you a good idea about the kind of goals you want to accomplish, which will help shape the tone.

    Understand your target audience
    Tone can easily be mistreated if you do not have a firm grasp of who your audience is, to combat this problem consider conducting research on your company’s ideal audience, and what appeals to them.
    You should know your target demographics, age range, where they live, common interests and how they like to communicate. Keep in mind things may change depending on the platform you are using to communicate, whether it is social media, a blog, an e-newsletter, etc.

    Think about the four dimensions of tone of voice

    1. Funny vs. serious
    2. Formal vs. casual
    3. Respectful vs. irreverent
    4. Enthusiastic vs. matter of fact

    These are useful tools for understanding where your brand’s current tone falls, as well as for getting a visual representation of what tone you want to use going forward.

    Create tone-of-voice guidelines
    Once you gathered the above information, it is time to put that idea into practice, typically as part of a brand style guide.

    The “tone” section should include basic guidance like what a good tone sounds like versus what the company is trying to avoid, and providing examples for the reader in several contexts, like content marketing posts or social media. The more information you can provide, the easier it will be for people to stick to the desired tone.

    Keep your tone of voice up to date
    As with brand voice, tone is something that may not be static throughout the life of a business. It is vital to make sure that as the company changes, so too does the tone. That way, everyone who may have a hand in creating communications from the company is on the same page about what the brand voice and tone should sound like without deviating or slipping back into an outdated or otherwise undesirable place.

    Common tone-of-voice mistakes
    There are many opportunities to get “tone” wrong, especially if you do not take a balanced approach:

    • Mistake 1: Being inconsistent
      Tonal inconsistencies can create questions and even mistrust within your audience. It is vital to create a tone guide for your brand.
    • Mistake 2: Offending the intended audience
      Companies that go for the irreverent and funny sides, for example, can take things too far if they do not define how far is too far.
    • Mistake 3: Creating a forgettable tone
      Just like you can go too far at the opposite ends of the scales, choosing “neutral” positions could also backfire. Tone is meant to provoke an emotional response in the reader and failing to do so means being forgettable and irrelevant.
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  • How to set an advertising budget

    On: September 12, 2020
    In: News
    Views: 201

    One of the most difficult questions to answer is how much money to invest in advertising. However, there are ways to determine how much money you should be spending on your ad budget. Keep in mind that as your advertising becomes more effective and more revenue is produced, you may need to revisit your budget to continue to foster growth for your company.

    Objective Based
    Using an objective based method requires you to set an objective such as increasing your online sales by 10% and figuring out how much revenue it will bring in and the costs necessary to find and market to these consumers. This method is typically utilized by companies that are just starting up or companies who do not have enough revenue to support a large advertising budget.

    Dollar Based
    This method works by setting a maximum amount that you feel comfortable investing. This method works best for companies that have a solid cash flow or reserves from which to draw. In this situation, decide on a total investment amount and then portion it out accordingly, such as “X” amount for collateral, “X” amount for digital, etc.

    Competitor Based
    If you want to remain competitive within your industry, quite often your competitors will determine how much you invest on your advertising budget. Find out where and how your competitors are advertising. See if they are using print, radio, digital, etc. and then you need to gauge how much money they are spending.

    Testing New Methods
    To help determine how much money to spend on an ad campaign, test and explore new avenues to determine effectiveness. Examples include a pay-per-click and results-based marketing for this technique. You can set a small initial budget, track it, and then increase it as needed.

    Note that we use the word “invest” instead for spend on advertising.  A strategic advertising plan will make the most your advertising dollars and provide a return on your investment.  We can help your business determine the best way to arrive at a budget and plan to drive success.  Call us today at 520-745-8221.

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  • Why SEO is important for your business

    On: July 14, 2020
    In: Branding, Marketing, News
    Views: 256

    What is SEO and how can it help your business?  SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization and basically makes your website more visible to consumers searching for your service on the internet which translates to receiving more traffic and more opportunities to turn prospects into customers.

    Here is what you need to know and why it is vital for your business.

    • Keywords are words and/or phases that prospects use to find online content when conducting research. When researching keywords for your website look for ones that have high search rates and include short and long-tail keywords and local keywords.  Use keywords to optimize your titles and URLs
    • Content – this is the component that reaches and engages audiences. Content can come in a variety of ways such as videos, logs, infographics, podcasts, white papers, and social media posts.
    • Off Page SEO- external optimization that occurs away from your website with backlink building. Backlinks from external site help build authority.  They can be linked to guest bloggers, shared infographics, and influencers,
    • Local SEO- make sure you claim local directory listings so prospects can find you easily on their mobile phones. Main sites include Google My Business and Yahoo business, but there are many more that you should create pages for.

    The main goal of SEO is to increase traffic to your website. This happens when you increase your visibility and page rankings.  Most people only look at the first ranking page.  SEO can help your business build better relationships with the internet audience – improve customer experience with great content, responsive rates, increase your authority ranking, drive traffic to your site and give you the upper hand on your competition.  In short, you need SEO to convert prospects into customers!

    Frey Creative Marketing can help your business incorporate a SEO plan for your website. Call us at 520-745-8221.

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  • Using Video in your Marketing Plan

    On: June 5, 2020
    In: Marketing, Photography, Social Media
    Views: 322

    According to research, videos receive an over whelming 80% of views compared to their counterparts and are quickly becoming the highest form of all internet traffic.  More marketers are starting to take advantage of this engaging medium.

    Here are types of videos for consideration to promote your product or service:

    • The live video- live streaming is popular with companies that host webinars, especially this year. It is a great opportunity to teach and/or show your service to others.
    • Social media video- posting a video as part of your social media campaign has proven to give you better results than with a static ad. This video form is also a great way to promote your event while you are there.
    • Training videos – viewers enjoy this type of video because they can re-watch it as many times as they need to understand how to accomplish the task at hand. If you have a product that is complex, these videos will help teach the consumer how it works.
    • Brand videos – these can include testimonials from customers touting your product or service; showcasing your company and values; employee training videos
    • Video stories – used by over 77% of marketers on social media they are short and candid videos of stories related to your business

    There are plenty of options to choose from as well as tools and information to create high quality video content for your business for a reasonable cost.  What are you waiting for?

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  • How to handle the 4 emotional stages of a crisis with your brand

    On: May 7, 2020
    In: Branding
    Views: 286

    The latest AANA forum provided great insight on how consumers are responding to the Covid-19 environment.  They are fear, transition, tentative emergence and finally rebuilding.  Currently we are in the re-opening or third phase that brings hesitation and cautious optimism from consumers.

    You need to be mindful of what people want and consider their feelings and needs before triggering a campaign.  You need to adopt to these new behaviors and adapt accordingly.  I think consumers expect your company to adhere to Covid-19 safety measures and care about your health.  This message is now being over emphasized and people are becoming immune to it.  Think how many times you have heard the message of uncertainty, dark times, we are in this together…. ugh!

    The most important thing you should be doing as a brand is being of service to your customer.  Focus on what is important.  Be authentic and not insensitive.  The best thing you can do is be helpful and not talk about it.

    The worst thing you can do right now is to stop talking to consumers about your brand and how you are serving.  Use the current environment as a time to instigate conversations with partners you want to align your brand with for the future ~ retail partners, brand ambassadors, etc.

    The goal is to connect and create something so you will be better prepared and successful in the rebuilding phase that will come eventually!


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  • Marketing During a Crisis

    On: April 9, 2020
    In: News
    Views: 319

    We are in the middle of a pandemic and all our businesses have been affected.  So how does your marketing adapt during this time?  The first thing you want to consider is how you want your business to be perceived not only now but when we go back to being “normal”.  You don’t want people to think your company was unemphatic or taking advantage of consumers during this time.

    The reality is that your advertising plans that were logical last month are probably not today.  If you arranged for automated messaging with emails, make sure these messages are still appropriate and if not, make sure they are pulled altogether.  I was getting emails from airlines telling me to book my dream European vacation today…really?

    Another realty is the economic impact of Covid- 19 to your business.  You may need to have to prioritize your budgets with fulfillment capabilities and your employees’ welfare.  If you have e-commerce sites, you want to let the public know you are open.  Your marketing strategy would be best served with a digital campaign instead of a drive-to-store campaign.

    The messaging is important more than ever right now.  It needs to display a sense that you are in tune with your customer and can instill trust and value to them.  Think less about advertising and more about being a helpful and useful service.  A lot of car dealerships are offering no payments for 6 months and low APR to encourage sales.

    Remember that the advertising you to do today, will help you to build trust and brand loyalty over the next year.  We can get through this!

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  • Social Media Trends in 2020

    On: December 2, 2019
    In: News
    Views: 435

    Social media is always changing.  As 2020 approaches I’ve gathered some trends to be on the outlook for:

    TikTokTikTok is an iOS and Android social media video app that is used for creating and sharing short videos with music, filters, and some other features.  The app was launched in 2017 and gaining in popularity among young adults. 40% of its users are between 16-24. TikTok is predicted to take over Facebook in terms of time spent.    Currently the average user spends approximately 45 minutes on TikTok compared to 35 minutes on Facebook.  We will most likely see more ad budgets being taken away from Facebook and added to TikTok.

    Instagram – The platform has been testing more ad volume in their Stories through putting back to back Stories from various brands.  Users have complained that the ads have been distracting and don’t like them.  We’ll see if they continue.   Overall, Instagram is seeing a decline in their organic reach as new social media outlets are starting to replace them.

    Twitter – Twitter is still the most cost-effective way to reach people.   A well written and timed tweet can result in viral success.

    Facebook – Facebook is working on changing the user experience to put their Facebook Groups at the center of their platform which will offer an opportunity for businesses to nurture their own Group communities.  Facebook will also continue to invest in long-form news shows which will lead to more mid-roll programmatic advertising opportunities for brands.

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  • What is OTT Advertising and How Does It Work?

    On: November 1, 2019
    In: News
    Views: 511

    What Is It?

    The way we consume television has changed drastically.  Instead of waiting for our favorite show to air, we are becoming more in control of what we want to watch and when we want to watch it.  OTT which stands for Over the Top is referring to any device or service that is used to stream digital content to a television.  If you own a Roku, Smart TV, Amazon Fire stick, etc.  then you are already part of this new wave of television viewing.   Pew Research Center showed over 61% of Americans are viewing content through a streaming device and that number is expected to grow annually.

    OTT advertising is a means to deliver television commercials through streaming media on an OTT platform.  It has the advantage of TV advertising showcasing a product through sight, sound and motion with the digital advantage of being highly targeted.

    People who are watching media via OTT devices can’t skip the ads or jump to another browser which means the video completion rates are over 90%.   Think of OTT as an awareness medium since viewers are unable to click on your ad.

    How Does it Work?

    An audience is created on the platform’s subscription data such as Video Ad Serving Template or Video Player Ad Interface Definition.  These platforms match the audience demographics and psychographics to the specific TV’s subscriber lists as well as other devices in the household that show browsing and online shopping data. This data is used to determine where the best place is for the ad to be shown.  The OTT operator then can generate reports for the advertiser to show how many times their full ad has aired and where.

    The advantage to the advertiser is the ability to target their ideal customer with little waste.  Viewers of OTT benefit because the ads they see will better match their personal interests.

    OTT capabilities will continue to develop resulting in an increasing share in the advertising world. It is poised to become one of the most lucrative opportunities for advertisers.

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  • A Little Info About Pantone Colors

    On: August 5, 2019
    In: News
    Views: 595

    One of the biggest challenges for designers and clients is colors. Monitors may be calibrated differently, and color ranges are different on screen compared to on paper. And even on paper, there may be a difference in how a color will appear from one printer to another. In printed media, that is solved by the use of a standardized system of colors called Pantone® colors.

    Pantone® colors or Pantone Matching System (PMS) colors are specially mixed colors that are designed to print consistently no matter which print house you use. There are over a thousand specially mixed colors to choose from and even include metallic and fluorescent colors. A designer or agency will usually have access to a swatch book in order to select the right colors in designing your logo, or your company may already have specific Pantone colors used for their branding.

    You can request a sample of a Pantone swatch that is being used in your project so that you can see in person what the color looks like. The benefit to the Pantone color system is what you see in the swatch book will be what you see in the final printing.

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  • How to have a successful video campaign

    On: July 1, 2019
    In: News
    Views: 616

    If you haven’t already, you should consider adding a video component to your marketing campaign.  The video can have multiple uses ~ website, social media, digital advertising and presentations. Marketers who used video last year saw an 81% increase in sales and a 54% boost in brand awareness!  According to a recent study from e-Marketer, brands are projected to spend over $53 billion on video ads by 2023. But before you incorporate video into your marketing mix, you need to keep the following in mind to ensure your video campaign is set up for success.

    The fifteen second video
    We know that today’s consumers have short attention spans and it continues to get worse.   Facebook users spend approximately 1.7 seconds looking at mobile content and 2.5 seconds looking at content on their desktop.  People are constantly switching back and forth online. This is the reason you need to keep your videos short. Real short!  Facebook studies have shown that videos under 15 seconds have a higher conversion rate.  Focus on one thing at a time and make them fun and informative to watch.  It is better to have several mini videos than one long one.

    Test and test again
    If you are unsure about adding a video to your mix, it may be a good idea to test video against other ad types you are currently doing to determine what resonates best with your audience. There’s only one way to know whether video is working and that’s by testing it out on your digital campaigns.

    Determine what you are measuring
    Before starting your video campaign, you need to have a clear set of goals in mind to easily measure the impact of your efforts.  Your goals may include brand awareness, engagement, or response.  For example, if your goal is to improve brand awareness, you should be viewing number of clicks, impressions, view-through rates and average engagement. It is important that you do your due diligence and think about the results you want before launching your video ad campaigns.


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