Tag Archive | "marketing"

Branding 101: A Must-Read Guide – Part 3


Thanks to our previous two posts in our branding series, you’re no doubt starting to get a good idea of what goes into branding and strategies that will work for your company. In this article, we’re going to wrap up our three-part series with some last factors and pieces of advice to keep in mind when creating and developing your business’s brand.

Explore Mediums. These are many ways to get your brand out there and interact with your audience. Some college students prefer reading, some like videos, some like pictures, and other like multiple mediums. Don’t feel like you need to stick to one type of content in order to stay “on-brand.” Your brand can consist of different forms of content and still be furthering your mission of brand recognition. Exploring mediums also goes for different websites, types of advertising, etc. Try different things to see which are the best fits for your company so you don’t waste time or resources on a medium that isn’t resonating with your consumer base.

Integrate Your Efforts. Branding goes beyond marketing; it’s intrinsic to your company culture. That means integrating your brand is key to its success. The more you can integrate your branding strategies and efforts into social media, communications, etc., the more on-target your brand will be. This also ties in to earlier points mentioned about being consistent and relevant.

Don’t Be Random. Again, consistency is key! Plan ahead so your marketing doesn’t appear random and instead well thought out and strategized. This will allow your marketing effort to be more brand-worthy and further your brand the right way. Additionally, when it comes to your marketing efforts, don’t cheat or veer from your brand guidelines as this will appear random to your consumers. Part of building your brand means carefully creating a guide to your brand and implements them across the board. You don’t want to then stray from those guidelines a few months later because you suddenly want to use a color that’s not part of your brand’s palette or post something that’s not in your brand’s voice. Doing this will weaken your brand recognition and dilute your brand overall, especially if you do it multiple times, so it’s better to not be random but instead stay “on-brand.”

Get Feedback. A great way to help develop your brand or make sure it’s successful down the road is to get feedback. Ask clients, employees, friends, etc., what they think of your brand and to choose a few words to describe it. If what they think of your brand is way off from what your brand is trying to convey and stand for, you may need to spend time doing some further development and tweaking to make sure your business’s brand is doing what you want and need it to do.

Thanks for sticking with us and reading this three-part series — hopefully, you’ve learned some key factors of branding and gained some insight into how to better brand your business to appeal to college students! Brand away!

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Branding 101: A Must-Read Guide – Part 2


We’re back this month with a continuation of our series on branding. As we said in last month’s post, we know branding can be a difficult concept to grasp and tricky to really implement. That’s why we’re continuing our three-part series with this second installment, where we’ll cover some more facts you need to know about creating your brand and maximizing its potential.

Develop Your Brand. You may think after you’ve brainstormed what your brand is that you’re done and it’s time to just create your brand. However, the actual creation of your brand will take some time and is something that really needs to be developed and cultivated. The more questions you can come up with about your business and the more potential questions you can think up that your client base may want to know, the better you’ll be able to develop your brand as you attempt to answer all those questions and have them inform your brand’s evolution. Part of the development of your brand will be creating your brand’s persona and voice, something we’ll discuss more in the next two points.

Be Consistent. Brand recognition doesn’t happen after just one instance of interaction with a consumer or potential client. Multiple impressions are needed to really cement your brand in someone’s conscience. With that in mind, consistency is integral to you being memorable. This is done partially with your logo, colors, fonts, titles, descriptions, etc., but goes beyond that, too. You’ll want to create a voice for your company that reflects your brand and can be implemented across all your marketing efforts. Is your brand more friendly and informal? Adopt a more conversational tone to your messaging. If your brand is more high-class or business-oriented, you’ll want to be a bit more formal in your company’s tone. Once you’ve established what your organization’s voice is, you’ll be able to be consistent with that, along with your other branding tools.

Connect with Your Consumers. An important part of building your brand is connecting and engaging with consumers and getting into their mindset. What do you want them to think and feel when they see or interact with your brand? Once you’ve compiled a list of the emotions and thoughts you want to invoke, narrow them down to five or less. Those few words or phrases should then be the basis for defining your brand and how it looks and comes across to your audience.

Relevancy Is Key. If your content or products aren’t relevant, your whole branding process will be for naught. You want your content to invite conversation and interaction with your target demographic which means they need to find it relevant and interesting. Think about what they like and want and let that inform your content and products.

Don’t miss next month’s blog post where we’ll conclude this series on branding and give you some final pieces of advice and factors to consider when you’re creating your brand. In the meantime, start putting these tips into action!

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Branding 101: A Must-Read Guide – Part 1


When people talk about marketing, the words “brand,” “branding,” and “brand recognition” are tossed around a lot. But what do those words mean and how can you put them into action, especially when it comes to catering to a college student consumer base? We’re covering what you need to know about branding in a three-part series to help you inform your marketing strategy and better publicize your business.

Know Your Audience. What does your audience want and need? What do they like and care about? What inspires and motivates them? And most importantly, how will your business help them achieve the answers to these questions and reach their goals? You need to really understand your audience in order to properly market your company to them — and that means diving into their psyche and exploring who they are and what they stand for. Once you do that, you can move on to actually building your brand, but fail at this first step and your branding efforts won’t yield the best results.

Understand Your Value. Now that you know your audience, you need to position your business as a unique company, offering something different than your competitors. Relay to your audience why your business has value — something that can only happen once you fully understand what your organization’s value is. What’s your mission? What do you stand for? Why should college students buy or interact with your brand — or care about your brand at all? The answers to these questions will help you better brand your business and steer it in the right direction.

Branding = More Than Just A Logo. While a logo is an important part of the branding process, your brand goes beyond the logo — your logo is just a physical representation of your brand. So what colors are you choosing? Why? What does your logo mean and could it be construed as something else? Is it similar to an already existing logo that may confuse consumers? And does your logo adequately reflect your brand? Before you start creating and analyzing logos, make sure you’ve really thought out what your brand is and what your business stands for. Perhaps there’s a phrase or slogan that will be part of your brand and also part of your logo or branding process. Once you’ve made these considerations, then and only then, can you begin playing around with logos.

Embody Your Brand. Every person that works for your company is a representation and ambassador of your company and brand. That means everyone needs to know the brand, share it, and try to be it. Knowing what your brand’s attributes are, what it stands for, its value, etc., is something each employee should be responsible for. You never know who will end up making an impression on someone else when it comes to your brand so you want all your bases covered and every employee to be a potential influencer for your brand, maximizing your brand recognition.

Stay tuned for next month’s blog post where this series will continue and we’ll continue to share advice on branding your business! Until then, start implementing these tips to improve your company’s brand.

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How To Connect With Millennials, Not Just Market To Them


Marketing to millennials, as we well know by now, is difficult — so a new and different approach to your marketing strategy may be necessary. Rather than approaching and thinking about your efforts as “marketing” to them, consider thinking about it instead as “connecting” and “communicating” with them. Below are some tips on how to do so!

Don’t Sell Yourself. Being blatant about trying to sell a product or service to millennials and Gen Z is not going to help you. These demographics don’t want to be pitched anything — so you’ll have better luck opening the lines of communication with them and focusing on real interactions and connections and making sure what your company does and stands for is obvious on all channels.

Relax & Go Informal. Younger generations respond more to humor and authenticity. Show your company’s human side and don’t be all “corporate” when connecting to your target demographic. Consider ditching some of the more traditional forms of marketing and branching out into newer, more intimate ways of communicating.

Don’t Go Overboard. While you want to connect with millennials the way they want to be communicated with, you don’t want to take this idea too far. Excessive use of emojis, slang vocabulary, etc., can make it seem like you’re trying too hard and doesn’t actually reflect well on your company. You need to figure out the perfect balance of being on their level while maintaining your professional vibe — to do this, consider inviting feedback from your consumer base!

Give, Give, Give. This tip is two-fold. Firstly, millennials want to be inspired and feel like they are doing good and supporting good causes. If your company gives to charity or otherwise contributes to society, communicate that as it will go a long way! Secondly, millennials love to feel they are getting a good deal. Offering discounts, coupons, promo codes, or other rewards will definitely entice millennials to your brand.

Watch and Learn. There are other companies out there who are doing a phenomenal job appealing to younger generations and connecting with them. Target, Amazon, and Apple are just some of the top companies that millennials love, interact with, and buy. Look at how they are communicating with younger consumers and strive to emulate their strategies.

These are just some methods you can adopt in your marketing strategies to better reach a millennial audience — just focus on authentic connections and you should see your efforts increase in success!

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5 Facebook Marketing Tips to Know


While other social media sites are popular today, Facebook is still a key site to utilize when it comes to marketing to millennials. So how can you be sure you are maximizing the reach your Facebook marketing has? Read these tips and implement them into your Facebook marketing strategy!

Post with Purpose. Don’t just post for the sake of keeping your feed or page updated with fresh content. Every post you make is a reflection of your business and brand and should be made with that in mind. Be aware of how you are communicating with your target demographic and consider boosting posts if needed to expand your reach. Facebook Insights can help you figure out when and what you should be posting to make the most of your marketing efforts on the site.

Create a Calendar. Part of posting with purpose means planning ahead — and an easy way to stay on top of that is by creating a content calendar to track your posts and marketing campaigns. Websites like Buffer or Hootsuite can be wonderful tools if you are trying to schedule posts on multiple social media sites and allow you to conveniently track all your marketing in one place. However, you’ll still need to monitor your posts and make sure you are engaging with your audience, something not always as easily done when you’re not on Facebook itself.

Update Your Facebook Story. With the recent introduction of Stories to Facebook, a new method of interacting with your audience and keeping them up to date on your business has emerged. Facebook Stories has made posting more casual, as what is posted there doesn’t necessarily have to be as on-brand or company-specific as regular posts. Instead, interesting links, funny memes, cool photos, etc., can be posted to your Story and keep your target demographic engaged, possibly leading to more clicks and views of your company’s profile or page.

Boost Some Posts. Boosted posts allow you to expand the audience of your posts and target a specific demographic at a small cost. All you have to do to boost a post is set your target audience and your budget — and you’ll see a good number more clicks and overall increase your business and brand’s visibility on Facebook. For larger campaigns, you’ll want to go through Facebook Ads Manager and put a bit more thought into your campaign and strategy.

Optimize Your Page. Make sure your Facebook business page is well organized, updated, and easy to navigate and find information. You want millennials to have an effortless and enjoyable experience on your page, which will encourage them to come back and utilize your Facebook profile to interact with your company. For inspiration, look at other business pages on Facebook and see how they organize their pages — then pick and choose your favorite features to roll out on your own organization’s page.

Facebook marketing can be a great way to reach and interact with your millennial audience — so follow these tips for success in your marketing efforts on Facebook!

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How to Improve Your Marketing Efforts to College Students – Part 3


By now you know that college students, while possibly more difficult to market to, are not impossible to win over. In this article, we’re going to wrap up our three-part series with a few last pieces of advice to keep in mind when marketing to college students and getting them to commit to your company.

1. Be Engaging. Along with being authentic, funny, concise, etc., your marketing methods should aim to engage your college student audience. This can be done in many ways, whether it’s adding a question to your marketing campaign to invite comments, feedback, and tagging or directing viewers to your website where they can further explore what your company has to offer.

Additionally, to be engaging means to be engaged. Respond to comments, like posts that mention your company or align with your business’s values, and otherwise interact with users and potential users alike.

2. Mobile Matters. We’re living in the smartphone era; so if your content is not completely mobile-friendly and digestible, you’re going to miss out and drive away potential users and customers. Whatever you’re posting, promoting, and otherwise sharing should be able to be read on any and all devices. Think tablets, phones, and laptops. Make sure your content is optimized for mobile — and being on social media accounts and keeping your text short will only help users on phones and tablets take in your marketing campaigns.

3. Organization Is Key. This goes for your website, business model, marketing efforts, and everything in between. If you’re not organized, it will show in your campaigns and online presence. Track your marketing efforts so you don’t use similar strategies or pictures as other companies and so you don’t accidentally use similar campaigns back-to-back. College students will remember — as will the Internet — so make sure your marketing team is organized, cohesive, and communicates with each other before communicating with the world.

That’s all for this three-part series — hopefully, you’ve now gained some new insight into how to market to college students and are developing different strategies that keep these key components in mind!

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How to Improve Your Marketing Efforts to College Students – Part 2


As we said in last month’s post, we know college students can be tricky to market to. That’s why we’re continuing our three-part series with this second installment, where we’ll cover some more methods you can and should be using when marketing to college students.

1. Add Some Humor. We know we’re telling you a lot of things your marketing should be (and will undoubtedly tell you more), but you can be creative, funny, and on-brand in a short marketing campaign, all at the same time without being “extra.” Even if students may only spend a little while looking at your company’s marketing efforts, there’s still room for creativity and humor in simple copy.

Your campaigns can be witty, sarcastic, funny, or put a spin on slang or a current event, all of which will land with college students and make them more interested in your company and brand. Inject a little humor into your marketing — it’ll go a long way.

2. Be Authentic. College students are good at distinguishing between fake and real — and they can definitely tell when you’re trying too hard or not hard enough to appeal to them and grab their attention. Rather than going over the top in your attempts to win them over, stay true to what your company stands for, what they offer and who they are. You can still be humorous and engage with college students on their level while being authentic and ultimately, that’ll be what makes your company stand out and succeed in the long run.

You can do this by sharing insight into your company and its purpose, stories of how your company gives back to the community, or other personable and real details with your users and followers, mixed in with other marketing messaging or in combination with them.

3. Make Them Feel. There’s a reason people love to watch tear-jerker dramas and listening to Adele as well as enjoy videos of animals doing silly tricks and compilations of funny tweets. Emotion is a key factor to consider when coming up with your marketing strategy. Can you make your college student audience laugh, cry, smile, or otherwise react to your content? If you can, you’re already a step ahead the rest. Think about how your marketing efforts will be received and brainstorm ways you can up the ante and show college students you are “woke,” so to speak.

Stay tuned for next month’s blog where we’ll conclude this series and give you some more facts and advice to consider using in your marketing to college students. Until then, don’t wait to start implementing the above-mentioned methods!

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How to Improve Your Marketing Efforts to College Students – Part 1


College students can be hard to market to successfully. That’s why you need to really tailor your marketing approach to that specific demographic when you want to appeal to them as a potential customer base. In this article, the first of a three-part series, we’re going to take a look at some of the best methods at your disposal for appealing to college students and getting them to engage with your company and products.

1. Get Social. This cannot be stressed enough. If your business does not have social media accounts on at least Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram, you should stop reading this article and go make company profiles on those sites right now. College students are increasingly connected via online platforms and you need to maximize your presence on the sites to engage and influence the demographic. Other sites that can be useful tools as well include Google+, YouTube, Tumblr, Pinterest, Snapchat, and Reddit.

Once you’ve got accounts on these sites, keep them updated with fresh content. Promote your business but don’t limit yourself to just self-promo. Share interesting articles, videos, links, etc., with those who like or follow you, even if they’re not publicizing your business or products. Engage with your followers and be active. Let them know you care about them, their passions, and that you’re responsive and plugged in.

2. Keep It Short. College students are a lot like babies or puppies; their attention span isn’t all that long. Whenever you’re posting, emailing, or otherwise engaging in marketing efforts, keep your content short and snappy. You don’t need a lot of text to pack a punch; sometimes a meme with a one-liner or just a few sentences can really do the trick. You’ll find that less is more when it comes to drawing in college students’ interest and compelling them to learn more about your business and its offerings.

Consider eye-catching photos, inspirational quotes, or funny quips to set your posts apart and appeal to college students who will enjoy the fact that you’re interacting with them on their level and attempting to speak their language.

3. Mobile Matters. We’re living in the smartphone era; so if your content is not completely mobile-friendly and digestible, you’re going to miss out and drive away potential users and customers. Whatever you’re posting, promoting, and otherwise sharing should be able to be read on any and all devices. Think tablets, phones, and laptops. Make sure your content is optimized for mobile — and being on social media accounts and keeping your text short will only help users on phones and tablets take in your marketing campaigns.

Stay tuned for next month’s blog where this series will continue and we’ll impart more advice for marketing to college students, and in the meantime, start putting these tips into action!

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4 Resources to Use When Dealing with a Millennial Demographic


To be effective in communicating with a millennial consumer base, you need to be utilizing specific resources that will allow you to more readily be in contact with that demographic and appeal to them. Here are four resources you should be using when targeting millennials in your digital marketing strategies.

1. Blogging. Having a blog section on your website and keeping it fresh with new content is a great way to get your name and brand out there. Even just publishing a new blog post once a month can bring in new customers and draw traffic and attention to your company’s website. Additionally, if you implement some SEO practices, your content may end up ranked highly in a web search that leads users to your products and business. Aim to have more evergreen content on your blog so the bulk of your content doesn’t become dated — but a blog is a great place to post your press releases and news, too.

2. Press Releases. Press releases are some of the easiest and most cost-effective ways to quickly relay news to a large audience. Utilizing the idea of press releases can help you get news out in a timely manner and offer another means of getting your company’s name into the public’s minds. Further, your press release may be picked up by other websites or media and written about more expansively, which will only help you more broadly appeal to a millennial demographic and push your brand.

3. Social Media. When used correctly and productively, social media channels are great outlets to publicize your company and interact with existing and potential customers. Don’t just post your own content or push your products on your social media; share other interesting news, develop a voice, and be publicly present and available. That being said, you can post new blog articles on your social media to direct traffic to your blog and website at large. No matter your business, your company should have Facebook and LinkedIn pages and Twitter and Instagram accounts that you post on at least once a week to keep it active.

4. Email Marketing. Though no one, and especially not millennials, wants to be bombarded with emails or seemingly spammed by a company, email marketing can be useful when attempting to communicate with a millennial audience. Make sure you are sending an appropriate number of emails a week and that they have catchy headlines and interesting information within them to optimize your open and click rates and truly engage your recipients.

Of course, when utilizing these different resources, it’s important to keep in mind that many millennials will be reading your blog, interacting with your company on social media, and opening your emails on their phones. All your digital marketing strategies should be mobile-friendly so it’s easy for millennials to read and engage with your business from any piece of technology they may use. Keep these four resources in mind when considering how to communicate with a millennial demographic and you’ll be set!

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Marketing to Millennials: 3 Facts You Can’t Ignore


When marketing to millennials, it’s important to get into that “millennial state of mind.” Doing so will improve your success rate and increase your engagement with that demographic. Here are some facts you can’t ignore when planning your marketing strategies to a millennial audience.

1. Don’t just treat them like a consumer.

Millennials are not just consumers but creators. With the rise of Pinterest and Etsy and influencers on Instagram and elsewhere, millennials are proving they are a force to be reckoned with and enjoy creating and engaging with the brands and businesses they use and like. Rather than just marketing your company to millennials, consider partnering with them to better market your products and services.

2. Personalize and customize.

While many tend to lump the millennial generation into one category and make assumptions for the demographic as a whole, you may be overlooking an important marketing strategy by doing so. Millennials are increasingly favoring products and services that can be personalized, customized, and that really show their individuality. Offering customizable options and considering how your business is different than other similar ones and further making it stand out will make your business more successful in the millennial market.

3. It’s all about connection.

We’re living in a digital age and most millennials have never experienced an era besides that. With a plethora of social media options out there to take advantage of, millennials are more connected and plugged in than ever — which means social media marketing is key to your success with this demographic. Engage with your millennial consumers online, gauge their interest in your products, ask for feedback on your services, and otherwise establish real connections and relationships with this crucial demographic.

Knowing this information about millennial customers and allowing these facts to influence your marketing strategies will only help you reach and engage the millennial consumer!

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