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Social Media

The Ever-Changing Landscape of Social Media (IABC Summit Breakout Session Recap)

Social media used to be about grabbing your space on a platform, posting content and maintaining your presence on the platform. Some of you might be reading this and thinking “use to be?” I hate to break it to you, but the days of creating an account for your business and not thinking much about it are gone. If you are going to take the time to create a social media account and dedicate even the smallest amount of time, money and resources to it, you have to have a plan. And that plan needs to adapt as the social media landscape changes. I recently attended the KC IABC Business Communicators Summit and one of the breakout sessions focused on the ever-changing landscape of social media. Angela Crawford (communications consultant, Lockton Benefit Group) and Matt Staub (owner, Proxima LLC) discussed the ways social media is changing and how brands who want to succeed on these platforms need to change with it. Crawford started by outlining the three categories brands tend to fall into on social media: Brands that inform (news,…

QR code

The Evolution of QR Codes

Someone in our company asked me the other day if we could print a QR code on posters which would be displayed throughout a trade show. When people scan the code, they would be directed to an online version of a PowerPoint presentation. I thought, “Why not? We can do that.” We’ve used QR codes in the past to link to websites and YouTube videos, but it hasn’t been something people get very excited about. Or perhaps, not many people knew about them. A QR (Quick Response) code is similar to a barcode, but can hold at least 100 times the amount of information than what a typical barcode can hold. They have been around since 1994, developed by a Japanese company to help track vehicles during manufacturing. They were introduced in the U.S. sometime around 2010 when the first QR code scanner app was released for smartphones. As the technology evolved, the code began to contain more and more information. Although the use of QR codes has been popular in Asia, they have had a difficult time defending their…

Curious Co-branding

Ever see a product’s advertising that infuses another brand and think, “that makes so much sense”? Things like Taco Bell and Doritos, BMW & Louis Vuitton, Apple Pay & Master Card, Boulevard Beer & Tech N9ne, wait…what?? Craft beer and hip-hop? Oh…that’s right, I forgot to mention co-branding doesn’t have to make total sense on the surface. Sure it doesn’t hurt to mesh Yum brands with bold delicious snacks or high end luxury with glam products, but if you eat Taco Bell you probably already eat Doritos and if you can afford a BMW likewise you know about or purchase Louis Vuitton luggage. However, it’s the outside the box brand collaborations that gain exposure to markets that previously might not have been available. For the content purpose of this blog I’m going to use the combo mentioned previously, Boulevard Beer & Tech N9ne (mostly true accounts from a speaking event hosted by KCDMA featuring Pat Mullin of Boulevard). Now I understand that some people reading this will not know one, if not either of these brands, so I’ll provide a…

GKC-PRSA SEO word cloud

GKC-PRSA Recap: Content Marketing & SEO

Do you go online to research a product and compare prices before going to a store to make a purchase? A great deal of buyers do. If you own a business, this stresses the importance for customers to be able to find you online. However, without great content marketing and SEO, that is very difficult to do. Jessica Crozier and Matt Kortum from Inquest Marketing presented at the latest Greater KC chapter of Public Relations Society of America (GKC- PRSA). Their focus was on content marketing and SEO. When people think of content marketing, these things come to mind: Blogging Social Media Videos Email Marketing Podcasts Editorial Content Newsletters The truth is content marketing encompasses all of these. If you are using only 1 thing on this list, you really are not using marketing to its full capacity. Jessica defines content marketing as “a style of marketing that presents your brand as an expert in a particular field or product in order to accomplish organizational goals.” When building your content marketing strategy, first find your niche in the market. What can…

Controlling Your Online Presence: Why Your Business Needs a Website

Before I begin, let me answer the question I know some of you already have. No, having a Facebook page for your business is not the same thing as having a website. This is the mistake some of our members make when deciding on a digital marketing strategy. They assume a Facebook page will work just the same as a website and, even better, Facebook is free! I’m here to tell you, it’s not the same. While some might argue that they can’t afford to pay for a website, my response to that is you can’t afford to NOT have a business website in 2018. And yes, you may recognize me from previous blog posts highlighting the importance of social media, especially Facebook. So you know that I’m by no means against Facebook business pages. However, I think it should be one of many instruments in your digital toolbox. I worked with our web design team and reviewed customer feedback on Facebook from some of our stores’ pages to develop a case study comparing websites versus Facebook business pages. I…

shopper, produce, digital monitor

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…

Social Media Icons
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.…

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…

AWG Brands Digital Promotions: August 2018 Edition

August is the sweet spot of wrapping up summer activities and preparing for back-to-school. Although AWG Brands is not hosting a major digital promotion this month (we’re preparing for Family Meals Month in September!), there are plenty of new recipes, digital coupons and other content for our member retailers to share on their websites, social media pages, email clubs and more. Best Choice Recipe of the Month The August Recipe of the Month from the Best Choice Calendar is this Green Onion Feta Stuffed Chicken Breast: https://bestchoicebrand.com/news/green-onion-feta-stuffed-chicken-breast The recipe can be shared from the Best Choice website using the link above or from the Best Choice social media sites, like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Pinterest. The native files can be found here. Best Choice Recipe Video The August recipe video is for Tuscan Shrimp Linguine. Starting August 1, you can share this short video from the Best Choice website, YouTube, or using the native files found here. Digital Coupons New digital coupons for the following products are available through September 30, 2018. Consumers can access these coupons through a store’s…