Tag Archives: Branding

4 Simple Website writing tips, tricks and tactics.

 

 

 

 

Action! Telling a story about the value of your product or service engages people’s emotions – and creating a sense of urgency can be a great way to motivate a customer to action. 

Read this blog before it’s removed in 12 hours! Here are typical call-to-action infomercials: “Limited-time offer!” Or “Call in the next 15 minutes to get this one-time offer!” Or  “One seat left at this price!” Emphasize the urgency of your product or service by solving a customer’s problem. You want your story to encourage your customers to act — not just when they’re ready, but NOW!

•  Here are 4 simple writing  tactics for creating a sense of urgency:

Social media deadline1. Most important – set a deadline. As procrastinator knows, nothing focuses the mind like a looming deadline. Set a goal and tie it to a date and even a time — and think about how you can add this to your call to action. People are far more likely to take action the closer the deadline gets.

marketing urgency2. Create scarcity. When people sense an opportunity is running out, they are more inclined to take action. For example: “Get your tickets now — only 10 products left at this price!” Yes, you have read that approach over and over before – because it still works! Tell a story that creates a sense of urgency with a customer’s problem, or them missing out on potential success.

3. Broadcast a sense of urgency on social media – it provides instant feedback. Screen Shot 2014-05-08 at 11.12.40 PMSocial media provides real-time interaction. Gather insight into what resonates with your site visitors by offering a variety of urgencies, approaches, and formats. Try sharing stories that amaze or inspire others to act. Take advantage of the fact that social tools are built to allow people to interact and share. Let your site visitors and followers help you spread the word and attract new supporters. Use your website or blog’s analytics to see what works best – experiment! 

Marketing action

4. Action! Keep your call-to-action message simple and specific. It’s easy to say no or think, “I’ll get to it later” – to an offer that sounds complicated, but harder to say no to an offer that is easy to understand. Make sure your website writing tactics create a call-to-action that is clear, quick, and easy, and people will be more likely to act NOW.

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Branding – best way to start creating your brand new brand.

Best way to create a brandFirst, start with what value you want to communicate as the foundation for your brand. Your brand is not just a logo, but a collection of customer experiences and the culture associated with your business that you need to communicate. Your website’s design, social media impressions, what your representatives to the customer experience wear, your customer meeting room’s decor, your voicemail greeting, customer service, and the impact of all of those elements contribute to your brand. Your logo is the symbol that represents the perceptions of who you are as a company. Building a brand

Provide a summary of the above to your branding expert. That will help them be spot-on with the logo and brand to represent your company as well as reduce the costs of rework.  It’s best for all to be engaged and on the same page with a guide to communicating the vision for your brand.

Are you a political news addict? Here’s how “the addiction” engages the audience.

CNN news I am a political news addict, and I’m trying to kick the habit. There I admitted it. News addiction? I did some research – and here’s the most powerful drug ever: the visceral gut feelings of outrage relieved by the most powerful emotions of all . . . the thrill of your tribe’s victory over its enemy and the ultimate triumph of good over evil. Movies and TV shows use that psychological formula to engage the audience – so why the news?
Because it’s done for ratings: The outcomes of news debates are carefully fixed by the producers – whether you watch CNBC, CNN or Fox news – it’s fixed so the home team has the best chance to win. That keeps viewers coming back again and again, which means more advertising dollars. How to apply that addiction to social media marketing? Stay tuned, it’s a little later in this blog.
Neuroscience has known for years that “news junkies” or “political junkies” were in fact addicts… junkies …who got their addictive dopamine hit from the emotional roller coaster of unbridled outrage followed by the dopamine releasing experience derived from the thrill of watching the victory over your ideological enemy tribe.
Does your product appeal to everyone? Does your product have an enemy you can identify? Can you target a specific demographic that can emotionally side with your product versus your competitions product or service? Can you develop a tribe-like addiction to your services or products?
Are you or your client are willing to play an aggressive role, like a politician or news channel, and possibly at the expense of “your brand?”  If so, then just maybe you can create addicts to your services or products. I’m not condoning the approach, just engaging news addicts …

How technology lowers our productivity and provides “short-burst” branding opportunities in social media.

Social media marketing

Have you noticed in the past few years how much shorter the lines are now at the grocery store, traffic light, doctor’s office, and restaurants?  Or, do the lines just seem shorter because you are now secretly enjoy waiting so you can browse Facebook, messages, emails or Twitter, with the thought, “What will I get?” When we unlock our smartphones, we subconsciously crave for variable rewards or something to occupy our minds. This yearning for variable rewards makes us refresh social media feeds and email inboxes – repeatedly.

social mediaHere’s an effect you may not have been aware of: According to neurological scientists, 10 minutes on social media can raise oxytocin levels by up to 13 percent, (a generosity-trust chemical in our brains). That’s a hormonal spike equal to what some people experience on their wedding day! People of all ages are addicted to the euphoria effect of their smartphones.

social media marketingPeople use their smartphones everywhere. In elevators, for instance,  I’ve seen people miss getting off their intended floors because of checking Facebook postings.  It’s the norm to use smartphones as we wait at banks, gas stations and even Starbucks.

Does social media technology decrease productivity or are we simply filling what was empty non-productive spaces in our lives?

social media marketing smart phonesIn a world where we brag about 24/7 connectivity, our phones keep buzzing. But we rarely receive calls. Social media notifications, useless emails, and instant messages have made us ‘multitaskers’.

But multitasking reduces our productivity by up to 40 percent. Each time we are interrupted, it takes us several minutes to refocus. Before those refocus minutes are up, we get distracted again. Is it not surprising that these are the least productive times in the history of mankind?

trump tweets

This social media phenomena  also provides opportunities for short-burst marketing and re-branding. The most famous re-branding person of our time? Donald Trump. He uses Twitter to “re-brand” his adversaries. It use to be, “Don’t judge people by what they say about themselves, but by what they say about others.” That still may be true for some, but unfortunately social media has made many believers in stories people want to hear or hope to believe.  Social media can now quickly cast false and deceptive re-branding of people and companies.

As a marketer, please consider taking the truth-road.  Check Snopes, PolitiFact or other “fact checking” websites before passing along juicy tidbits that could falsely re-brand companies, products or people that worked so hard to create value in their brands.

My New Year Message …

NewYear2016-Gary

The New Year marks a time for reflecting on the past year and contemplating what we learned from the last 365 days to make the coming year even better. Yes, it’s a time to celebrate past success, but it’s also a time for bold moves and fresh starts. It’s a time for dreams and friendships both old and new. It’s an opportune time to raise a toast to those who share your business success and those who cherish your personal happiness and hopes for the future.

The New Year marks a new beginning. New people to meet, new adventures to enjoy, and new memories to create. Here’s wishing you the gift of peace and prosperity throughout 2016, and wishing you a Happy New Year!

5 Social Media Marketing Trends for 2015

social media analytics

 Use advanced analytics for your website and social media platforms

My social media marketing predictions for 2015 should be your resolutions …

1. Digging Deeper into Data. Using advanced analytics for your website and social media platforms is key in knowing what to write about as well as knowing your visitor’s likes, shares, engagements, demographics, etc. Making the most of your metrics will help you identify the right prospects and pinpoint the right offers at the right time.

2. Eliminate Advertising-based Content. Over and over again I see companies writing blogs that are just product descriptions and – essentially just a landing-place to copy and paste content from data sheets. Write to your customer’s needs, not just what you are selling. Content Marketing is all about providing content that has value to consumers. It can offer practical information, tell a touching story, or be outrageously hilarious. It should forge emotional connections that nudge people toward the business that rolls out the content. Make your content stand out in 2015 by performing thorough keyword research, present new information, offer something innovative, and distribute it to your customer base effectively.

3. Being Candid and Honest. Zig Ziglar once said, “Honesty and integrity are by far the most important assets of an entrepreneur.” TTransparencyhe same principle rings true for current marketing trends. The best brands will give an accurate and real-time picture of what they are doing in the interest of the consumer, at any given time.

4. Social Media Connections. Your target customers have some traits in common, but that doesn’t mean that they all are the same entity. People want to feel they are part of a group, crave connection, and participate with others of like-mind. Consumers buy from friends – companies can be perceived as a friend by sounding more personal in their writing styles. When you are writing, talk to your customers and future clients like each one really matters, because they do.  
Personal Social media marketing 5. Personalization. One way to send personal messages is via triggered emails. When a customer joins your rewards program or signs up for your newsletter, send a warm welcome. You can even include a special freebie or stellar discount. On your customers’ special dates, such as birthdays – send a friendly greeting. These automated messages can make recipients feel that you care about them.


No one can say for certain what the future holds, but the current direction of marketing shows that the above trends will impact marketing in 2015. Expect marketing to move strongly in a digital direction and focus on transparency, technology, personalization, and quality.

What is Your “About” Really About?

Marketing bestOne of the most important pages on a website  is a company’s “About” page, yet most companies spend the least amount of time putting good content on it. They plop their official PR paragraphs from their press release, throw in a photo of the building and the boss, and – whoo-la, done! That said, if you look at the analytics of your site or your client’s sites, you will discover that the “About” page many times is the most viewed or searched page in the website.

When consumers go to websites they want to buy not just a product, but connect with the company and it’s brand. They want to know who is on the other side of the screen when visiting a site. Marketing and networking - the face behind the blogIt’s not just about price, but also about the company. Some of the most popular products and companies also have the highest priced products and services. People are willing to pay extra for great value – Apple Computers, Lexus and Louis Vuitton come to mind. Too often the company’s info in their “About” section is sterile and shows little personality or brand. Businesses of all sizes need to spend time and resources putting up pictures that reflect their team and culture, and writing the “why” behind the company and its products –  so customers perceive their products are the best value.

5 Reasons to Use Numbers Instead of Writing Them

The best marketing and writing tipsNumerals have been tested to be an advantage in advertising and social media writing, and when used correctly, they may actually attract 10 – 20% more readers than an article that uses only letters. Whether writing for print or social media, it definitely helps to know how to use numbers to your advantage.

Numbers writing in business and marketingOk, ok, all the old rule books say spell out numbers under 10. Use nine instead of 9. But there’s an ah ha! The exception in most writing rule books says use figures (even when the numbers are less than 10), for numbers of technical significance: percentages, pages, sizes, money, measurements, clock time, coordinates, etc.
For example:
See page 6 for the explanation.
Since 2004, turnover has been approximately 9 percent.
Tickets for the 2 p.m. webcast are almost sold out.

5 best reasons to use numbers

Now for My Best 5 Best Reasons to Use Numbers …

1. Numbers attract readers
Psychologically, people are naturally drawn to numerals more than words. They’re visually different from most text, so readers are Marketing writingmuch more likely to take notice of them. This works to your advantage when you want to draw attention to a particular element of your writing, such as a benefit customers will receive (“Buy 2, get 1 free!”). Numbers also represent facts, so they naturally attract people who are searching for concrete information.

2. Facts and statistics create authority: so use numbers
numbers-McDonalds
Cold, hard facts are almost always more effective than generalizations. McDonald’s doesn’t just say “We’ve served lots of people!” They spell it out for you: “Over 10 billion served.” If you can assign a specific number to your claims, your writing will come across as much more authoritative.

3. Shocking info: Numbers read faster
It takes a lot less time to read “525″ than “five-hundred and twenty-five.” Fewer characters means that your writing will take up less space and be quicker to read, which ultimately means that your audience is more likely to read what you have to say. This is especially important for headlines, which are designed to get your reader interested with an extremely limited amount of writing.

4. Let readers know what to expect by numbering your points
writing for business and marketing
When you write a headline using numerals (such as “10 Reasons to Choose Product X”), the audience knows exactly what to expect. Taking away the mystery of your content makes it easier to get the audience interested because they know they’re not going to be stuck reading a 20-page article.

5. Numbered lists are easier to read and write
Not only are numbered bullet points a great way to make it easier for readers to skim your content, they also make it easier to keep track of which bullet point was just read. Also, a numbered list format allows you to split up a large topic into several digestible bites; simply create a basic numbered outline of the various elements you plan to write about and fill in the appropriate fields.

If you have discovered 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5 reasons for liking and/or sharing this blog, please do so, thanks!