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We’re Hiring!

The AWG Sales Services team has two openings, a Sr. Creative Specialist and a Digital Marketing Specialist. If you are looking to join a fast-paced team full of opportunity, we’re your place. To apply for either of these jobs, click here and enter the job title in the search bar to navigate directly to the respective opening. Sr. Creative Specialist The Creative Specialist is one of the hubs of marketing/advertising for all AWG retailers. This position will be heavy on design work that will come in large full-store branding projects to small-scale projects like single signs, shelf signage, and quick turn-around social posts. Will work closely with advertising supervisor to develop branding for retailers — sometimes from scratch, other times to build upon what already exists. Internal work will also be an essential part of the Creative Specialist position with several large and ongoing projects and on-needed basis. Those projects include the annual report, quarterly retailer-focused magazine and trade ads. Design of advertising/marketing promotional material for the department will also be asked. The Creative Specialist is also charged with working…

You've Got Mail

Communicating Professionally with Email

AWG held a lunch and learn this week titled “Communicating Professionally”. Those of us who attended received many good takeaways from the session. We even had a chance to partner up and practice listening techniques and demonstrate what NOT to do. I would like to share some tips we were given on using email as a form of communication in business. Be concise and to the point. Your reader should not have to scroll down the page to read a single email. This of course is acceptable if they are reading an entire email string in conversation view. When responding to someone’s email, answer all questions. Have you ever been excited to get a response you have eagerly been waiting for only to find out all your questions were not answered? If you don’t know the answer to all of them, refer to someone who can help. Pre-empt relevant questions if you are able to. This will provide efficiency for your reader. Use proper spelling, grammar and punctuation. I don’t think I need to expand on this, but I will. Improper…

Digital Not-So-Underground

So, you’ve taken the plunge and installed some digital signage players in your stores. Awesome, you’re like, my favorite. If you’ve gotten your monitors hoisted up over the deli counter, gotten someone to hang them with (at least) a good amount of duct tape and you’re ready to start using them – I’ve got some tips for you. Your first task should be setting a few goals. I know setting a goal to set goals sounds like something your high school counselor came up with on their lunch break, but it’s important! You’re setting those monitors up for a reason, so make sure that reason is something you keep an eye on to make sure you’re close to fulfilling it. Next, make sure your monitors are a good distance from your customers. Basically, if everyone is leaning forward and squinting like they just caught a lemon juice blast to the eye, you’re doing it wrong. Make sure the screens are high enough that they aren’t in the way, but low enough that they can be read easily. Content. You have…

AMA - The Power to Imagine Better

The Power to Imagine Better

As you define your brand, are you pushing beyond the status quo to discover its full potential? What is your level of effort to connect with your customers? At Kansas City’s latest American Marketing Association luncheon Phil Bressler challenged us to answer these questions and then provided some thoughts and examples from other companies. Phil is a marketing/branding consultant and the founder and president of Latch – An Idea Company. Studies prove companies with creative marketing do better than those who consider marketing a low priority. I am a creative person. I have worked in graphic design in one way or another since my career began. However, I, among others run into barriers that get in the way of being creative. I find I have too much administrative work to do or too many deadlines that take priority. Other barriers people shared at the presentation include ideas becoming bottle necked somewhere else within the organization, no one to bounce ideas off of, lack of meaningful customer insight, lack of leadership support, and unproductive brainstorming sessions. One thing we do with…

Book cover by Daniel Miyares

Creative Mornings Recap

The Power of Clear Intentions – Daniel Miyares Miyares works for Hallmark Cards during the day but he is also an award winning picture book author and illustrator. As Miyares accepted guidance from experts during the writing and illustrating of his first book, he realized a lot of decisions were made for him. He did not want to replicate that the next time. After his first book, he saw a lack of intention in his process and in his career goals. In his children’s books, he had to write them for the child; not for the consumer who may be the parent or grandparent or family friend. He asked himself the question, “What is going to relate to a child?” Not all his book reviews were favorable, but that did not stop him from creating for the young person the books are intended for. He knew he needed to have a clear intention about why he was doing what he was doing. In the grocery industry we can ask, “How can we relate to our customers? What do our customers…

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Inblog

The Future of Social Media Marketing & AWG Social Media Program

As the AWG social media program coordinator, I definitely have a specific theme to my blog posts. That theme has narrowed down even more in the past few years as social media continues to evolve. With that evolution, I regularly remind the audience reading our blog that dynamic, engaging and even targeted social content is essential. It’s always been important but as social media channels become more and more saturated with brand content, and as Facebook continues to update its algorithm, it’s becoming more vital for brands and businesses to be as strategic as possible with their social media marketing. With that idea in mind, AWG Marketing recently rolled out a new service structure for our members who are on our social media program, specifically those who use our services for their store’s Facebook page(s). We used to offer three separate tiers with various levels of involvement and posting frequency for three separate prices. But after a year or so of this structure, we realized it’s not to the benefit of our members to be on the two lower tiers.…

What should I send to my web designer for a new website?

You weighed your options and decided to sign up for AWG Sales Services to make a website for your store. Now what? Use this form to help you send us what we need to get started. You don’t need to fill out every blank spot, this form is more of a guide/checklist so big sections of content don’t get forgotten. This is meant to be a tool to help jog your mind and point out what your customers might be looking for once they get to your site. The first four spaces are the only required spaces so we can contact you if we have questions.

emfluence And Then Some 2018 Recap

I attended the And Then Some conference hosted by emfluence on August 24. It was a day full of ways to improve your email marketing. After the conference they sent a list of “10 things to do post-conference.” Not only is this a great example of email marketing, but it makes my job recapping the conference easier, so I really appreciated it.   #1 GDPR – The GDPR deadline came and went a couple months ago. The biggest thing that has come from it so far is that no one was truly prepared for the requirements. No more checking permission boxes automatically. Tell people exactly what information you will be collecting from them. Don’t collect more information than you need. If you can make these changes right away that will help a lot. These regulations are coming to the US, so it would be smart to get ahead of it. #2 Post-Sale Series – If you make a sale, add a new subscriber, or anything similar add that address to a workflow to send them a series of emails explaining…

Tale of the Tape

In the excitement of dreaming up and launching campaigns, sometimes determining how to measure it gets lost in the mix. Yet, as Tara Saylor expressed to the room full of marketers at the Kansas City International Business Communicators lunch, the only way to pop the champagne and enjoy the successes is to know where you’re going at the beginning. This means asking questions, using data, deciding what to measure, making a plan, and telling everyone about what you did. Good solutions start with good questions. Question 1. Who are you trying to reach? Are they loyal customers, new ones, or potential ones? What do you want them to do with the information provided? Question 2. What’s your timeline? Working backwards from the final date sometimes helps build out the steps. Once you have those steps, put them on a calendar. Question 3. How are you going to measure success? It’s best to document the answers to the questions so you can think through the way they contribute to success, otherwise you might end up having to use HIPPO (highest paid…

Photo of purple gold fish jumping out of small crowded fishbowl into a big empty fish bowl.

Little Things Can Make a Big Difference

Last Monday I attended an event put together by the Kansas City –  American Marketing Association featuring a couple of speakers from PurpleGoldfish.com. Each speaker presented some snippets from the Purple Goldfish Business Strategy Book Series. What caught my attention the most, as a website designer, was a section on how, “Differentiation is Key”. Most designers challenge themselves to make everything they touch stand out. Yes, sometimes we are asked to add on to something already started, but starting with a blank page is why I show up in the mornings. Getting our retailers to share with us how their business is different from their competition, can be a challenge for writing content. Instead, we normally get requests from retailers to duplicate something their competitor just rolled out. I imagine this happens because a customer threatened to take their business elsewhere because they have “__________”. Ouch. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could be a fly on the wall of your competitor’s business and hear customers tell them what you do that they like? Maybe instead of copying your competitor,…

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