Creating Awareness With Targeted Messaging

Awareness eBike

 Creating Awareness With Targeted Messaging

Almost four years ago, I bought my first electric bike. Last month I bought my second. As the years and seasons have rolled past, I find myself blazing around the streets of Doylestown with greater speeds, and heavier loads than I ever thought possible. I can easily carry $100 worth of groceries without strain. I’ve become an unapologetic convert.

 

The electric bike combines the distance advantages of a car with the city friendly capability of a bike – you can bypass all traffic jams and jump freely between roads, bike paths, and unpaved areas to find the most direct route, and park for free.

 

Riding my eBike makes me feel empowered. Creating no pollution or noise, I am eating gigantic hills for breakfast and flying by spandex clad riders while wearing business attire.

 

On nice days, I allow additional commute time to show courtesy in answering the flood of constant questions I get about my bike. Over the past four years, these questions have not waned, only increased. “Hey, does that bike have a motor?” “How fast does it go?” “How far does it go on a charge?” “Where did you get it?” “How long does the battery charge last?” “How much does one of those go for?”  The questions go on and on, and I’m happy to answer them.

 

Lately, I’ve been noticing a lot more unapologetic eBikers flying around Doylestown.

 

This fascination in my mode of transportation has gotten “my wheels turning” if you will about Malcolm Gladwell’s book, “The Tipping Point.”

 

Gladwell theorizes that “hits” or “fads” happen in the context of an epidemic   – when a few highly infected fans become viral infectors for a product or idea by adopting it themselves and spreading the word.

 

With that in mind, DeeterUSA helps our clients:

  • Gain exposure: Knowledge comes from exposure. Having a message that reaches their target market in a relevant and timely way establishes credibility and offers value to the recipient.
  • Understand the importance of social proof: We’re more likely to buy if we see people we know — particularly if we admire and respect them — buying too. This principle is what makes User Generated Content (UGC) such an effective form of content marketing. We help our clients develop editorial strategies for social media to assist organic search (SEO) and page engagements to increase brand awareness, website traffic, and, social media community following.
  • Realize buyers look for confirmation: Once buyers have committed to making a purchase, whether out of necessity or trend, they look to the internet, social media, family members and friends for confirmation that this is a good purchase. The true value of publicity is found in the endorsement – direct or implied – of third parties.

 

While I don’t know if eBikes will become a “hit”, it’s important for us at DeeterUSA to help our customers tailor and develop messaging to move their target audiences from unawareness to awareness, to interest, to conviction, and ultimately to sale/purchase.

 

Happy Trails,

 

-Jill

Marketing to Millennials

Millennials

Marketing To Millennials

 

What is a millennial?

 

A millennial is defined as anyone born between 1981 and 1997. Time magazine described millennials as “technology-addled narcissists.” Yet the truth of the matter is that millennials are taking over and are soon expected to surpass baby boomers in buying power. Their buying power is massive with more than $1.3 trillion in annual spend. That number continues to grow. So as marketers we need to adapt to how we message the tech-savvy generation.

 

Below are a few tips to keep in mind when messaging to millennials.

 

  1. Mobile, mobile mobile. According to entrepreneur.com, 85% of U.S. millennials own a smartphone. It is extremely important to hit these users when they are engaged and to make all marketing messages mobile-friendly.
  2. Personalization is key. Millennials want to feel like your content was created with their interest (not their wallet) in mind. Create content that educates instead of advertises, this makes them feel like they are making smart purchases.
  3. Advertise where they are most. Social advertisements are the new way to engage millennial social media users. Traditional online banner ads are mostly ignored by social media users and are only clicked on 0.2 percent of the time they are seen. Social ads are smaller and more suited for smartphones than traditional banner ads and are more preferred by Generation Y (birth years ranging from the early 1980s to the early 2000s).
  4. Build your brand on social media. On a day-to-day basis, millennials rely on social media for their news and updates. Social media outlets are by far the dominant way millennials learn about things online. Search engines are ranked near the top but fall below Facebook and Twitter for brand discovery.

 

Hopefully these tips will help you generate new ideas and strategies which your brand can initiate to engage with the millennial generation.

 

─ Jacky

Bruce Springsteen

 

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As I was driving to work this morning, I was listening to Mojo Nixon guest DJ on E Street Radio, the Bruce Springsteen channel on Sirius/XM. As Nixon was describing his motivation for including the songs he was playing in his mix, he explained how Springsteen’s first few albums (“Greetings from Asbury Park, N.J.,” “The Wild, the Innocent, & the E Street Shuffle,” and “Born to Run”) did an amazing job of speaking to the people of New Jersey and New York. The songs were mini-stories about characters from that specific region and/or gave the listener a clear understanding of what it was like growing up in that area at that time. I would expand Nixon’s geography to also include people in Eastern Pennsylvania, as many of us who grew up here spent many summer days and nights “down the shore” and can easily identify with Springsteen’s lyrics from these early albums. Listening to “Spirits in the Night,” “4th of July, Asbury Park,” “Thunder Road,” or “Jungleland” definitely makes me feel like Springsteen was talking to me.

 

Interestingly, while Nixon (a North Carolinian) appreciated those early records, it was Springsteen’s fourth record, “Darkness on the Edge of Town,” that made him feel a strong connection to the Boss’ lyrics. His rationale was that on “Darkness,” Bruce was no longer singing stories about where he grew up. The songs now were broader in scope and told tales of characters Springsteen met or conjured up after touring and having the opportunity to see the world outside of Asbury Park, New York, and Philly.

 

I would venture to suggest that Springsteen’s next two albums, “The River” and “Nebraska,” each expanded Springsteen’s ring of fans and popularity so that by the time “Born in the USA” was released in 1984, there were literally millions of people poised and ready to receive that album and help make it the incredible commercial success that it was. Without question, the quality of the songs on “Born in the USA” played a large part in its success, as did Springsteen’s legendary live shows and relentless touring schedule. Yet I submit that the foundation that was established by Springsteen’s earlier work was equally important to how well “Born in the USA” did on the charts and commercially.

 

Now, what hit me right between the eyes as I listened to Nixon this morning was that we “preach” the same concepts day-in and day-out at DeeterUSA as we work with our clients to develop strategic marketing and communications plans:

 

  • First and foremost, build a strong foundation with your communications activities. It may not be the most exciting and/or glamorous tactical items that you will do, yet these items are the things that will set-up your successes moving forward

 

  • Identify all of your target audiences, prioritize them, and then work “core out” to convert them to be advocates of your brand or company. Start with those closest to your company and work to influence them one at a time. More often than not, what you will find is that when you get to the outer rings of influence, the people in the inner rings will serve as cheerleaders for you – making it easier to “win over” the people in the outer rings

 

For Springsteen, his earlier albums set a strong foundation that paved the way for his critically acclaimed album “Born to Run” and his commercially huge “Born in the USA.” Further, the songs and stories shared on each of his albums became more geographically expansive with each release. In essence, he worked “core-out” lyrically, speaking first to the people in New Jersey, New York, and Eastern Pennsylvania, and then building out from there until he became the global icon that he is today.

 

DeeterUSA cannot promise your brand or company the same success that Bruce Springsteen has realized, yet our experience with core out marketing has repeatedly resulted in outcomes that exceeded both ours and our client’s expectations!

 

─ Drew

The Latest Crop of “Designers”

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I am on the board of trustees for an area university. While in conversation with the dean of academic affairs and a fellow trustee over lunch at a trustee retreat last week one of them mentioned starting a new course at the school in advertising design or something similar and it was the perfect entre for me to confide in them that I have been less than impressed with the young design graduates I have interviewed and had to work with over the past few years. The sad fact is that none of them could draw a picture freehand. I’m talking about scratching out simple “thumbnail” sketches to demonstrate they understood what I and others were talking about. What I have seen is so bad, in fact, that if you took these “art directors/designers” Mac away every one of these people would be completely helpless. What does that say about those schools who have awarded those “fine arts” degrees? Maybe they should be “find arts” because the kids I have interviewed wouldn’t know good art if it hit them. When I shared my frustration with the dean, she appeared to being shocked, yet upon reflection said that she could see where I was coming from. What makes this all so terribly sad is that this new breed of art directors/designers is completely lost without their computers and sadder still is the fact that they are limited by what their computers can do. They have long since forfeited their own creativity and ingenuity. I wonder what Da Vinci and Michelangelo would think of this. Forget about carving David out of marble “I don’t want to get any blisters and as for The Sistine Chapel, I think an off white ceiling would be just fine.”  Who wants to get a kink in their neck … painting on their back. You’ve got to be kidding me!

– Bill

It is your responsibility

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I was just writing a note to our team about a client decision to rebrand a product in the middle of that product’s national roll out. While I fully support the client’s right to make the decision to make the change (they pay the bills) and I do believe it will be in the best interest of the company involved to create a global brand, I also believe it does open up an interesting question about responsibility or accountability and authority.

 

It is my humble belief that if I expect to hold someone on staff responsible or accountable for achieving expected, required, or anticipated results, I must then arm them with the authority they need to be successful. Implied in that authority is the fact that I have enough confidence in my staff member to know that they will not abuse the authority I give them and they will use all of their professional talents to meet the goals or objectives I and/or others on my team have set and they, as the project/program manager, have agreed to.

 

All of this is pretty clear-cut for me. I believe that if I do not empower the person I have assigned the task with the authority they need to do the job at hand, I have no right to hold them responsible or accountable for the results. It amazes me to sometimes see very bright people miss this point. I do not want to be held accountable for someone else’s decisions. It is just that simple. It goes back to an earlier blog I posted about hiring artists to paint pictures and then micromanaging them to the point that the finished product is a reflection of the micromanager and not the person assigned to the task.

 

If you want a happy and heathly work force, give them the freedom to put their background and skills to best use. If they succeed, then by all means praise and thank them. If they fail, try to educate them and set them straight realizing that failure is a part of learning and growing. If they fail repeatedly on the things you have already corrected, then you need to have the courage to cut your losses and move on.  My experience has been good people can do great work with the proper encouragement and just the right amount of direction. It really is just that simple.

 

–       Bill

The Making of a Masterful Media List

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When pitching a story for a client you don’t want to throw it out into the unknown, you want to make sure it gets into the right hands at the right time. A well-thought-out media list is something that every client/company should have. Targeted lists have the greatest impact and get the maximum reach. Below are some tips to hone in on your ideal media list:

 

1. Research, research, research. Once you have narrowed down the target audience for your list, research all publications nationally or within a specific region and find the best fits. Within each of these publications there are multiple writers on staff – from these staff members find the individual reporter/writer that covers the topic you’re researching, whether it is healthcare, lifestyle, regional news, sports, or something else.

 

2. Remember to add additional outlets that you wouldn’t normally think of. Think outside the box when it comes to certain publications. You should already have TV, print, and radio on your list, but after those look into blogs that cover the topic you’re creating the list for. Also remember to look into certain social media outlets that correlate with your client/company. Some Twitter and Facebook pages garner multiple views per day. Having a Facebook or Twitter account share or like your story helps it to reach a much larger audience.

 

3. Quality over quantity. This phrase has been used before, yet it is vital when creating a media list. You need to be careful of who you’re adding onto your lists. The last thing you want to do is send a reporter/writer a story that is irrelevant to what they standardly cover. These publications receive hundreds of new press releases each day and don’t have time to read one that is not the right fit for them. It’s not to say they won’t pass your story along to the right person, yet they shouldn’t have to because you should already be sending it to the correct people. Having a targeted list may be smaller in appearance, yet will make a bigger impact in the long run.

 

4. Once created, make sure to keep the list current. Reporters/writers come and go quickly. They may have switched to another paper or changed topics they cover. Whatever the case, you need to be aware of these changes and apply them to your media lists. Certain services update these staffers automatically when they change positions, yet it doesn’t hurt to call and check to be sure you are sending your news to the right person. Every couple of months you should look at your media lists and see if changes need to be made.

 

5. You should have multiple media lists and one master list. Sometimes you will send a release for a very targeted audience, while other times you will be sending it to a much broader target audience. This is why having different lists separating areas/topics is helpful. You do not want to have to look into your master list each time to pull out specific publications. You know your clients/company and should know what micro-lists they could benefit from. You could have a “Philadelphia” media list highlighting publications only in that specific region or a “food and wine” media list that only covers those topics.

 

6. Don’t be afraid to use an online service. Creating a perfect media list can be daunting, yet there are services out there that make it easy. Companies like Meltwater, Cision, and PRnewswire enable users to search through large databases to find the best contacts. These services also incorporate press release distribution, extensive release reports for clients, and social media tracking. While they can seem pricey, they can be very efficient and can help you make your media list the best it can be.

 

At the end of the day, you want to make sure you get the most coverage for your client. Having a very fine-tuned media list will help you do just that. DeeterUSA is in the business of reporting and sometimes making news coverage happen. We try to spread the word to exactly who needs to hear it. Over time you will build relationships with reporters and editors. This will increase your visibility with the media. Be smart and take your time when creating a media list. Hopefully you will get the pickup your release – and your client – deserves.

 

– Rachel

The Customer Isn’t Always Right

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We in business have all heard the comment  ”The customer is always right.” I’m here to tell you that is not really true. The better way to think about it is that the customer paying for your product or service has the last word … right or wrong!

 

For nearly 20 years I was the “customer” or “client” and I prided myself on being open-minded, acknowledging, when and where appropriate, that I did not have the answer to every question and/or problem. I even admitted that I made mistakes. It was sometimes painful yet always necessary. My goal on making mistakes has always been to bat better than 500. When I do that, I am a winner.

 

As I have gotten a little older, I also have come to realize there are very few things in life that are completely “black or white.” When you are living your life to the fullest, business or professional, you learn very quickly that many shades of gray replace pure “black and white.”  What I have also found is that the better quality managers and business leaders have the self-confidence and maturity to readily admit that life is full of gray areas and they don’t have all the answers. And the true industry icons I know are never shy about admitting that they make mistakes.

 

What makes these people so unique in my mind is that not only are they willing to admit to their mistakes, they are equally quick to compliment those who correct them. These icons want what is best for their company and it stops right there. Being right is nice, but having a successful business is much more rewarding.

 

─ Bill

The Power of the Hashtag

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When Isis Wenger was chosen for an employee recruitment campaign for OneLogin, she had no idea that she would spark a social movement, or rather a social media movement.

 

When Wenger, a platform engineer at OneLogin, posed for the ad she received an overwhelming response of negative feedback. Many people questioned whether the ad accurately portrayed what female engineers look like, some even claimed that she was “too pretty” to be an engineer.

 

Wenger took to social media and encouraged others to share their stories about diversity issues in technology. She shared a photo of herself holding a piece of paper that said “I help build enterprise software, #ILookLikeAnEngineer.” Not long after, the hashtag #ILookLikeAnEngineer caught fire. Over the next week, the hashtag was tweeted over 50,000 times by other women in engineering.[i]

 

Gender disparity and sexism are prevalent issues in tech, engineering, science, and math industries and have recently come into the spotlight thanks to Ellen Pao. When the junior investing partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufiled & Byers, and former CEO of Reddit Inc., sued the venture capital firm for gender discrimination she made headlines.

 

Today, younger generations are taking their concerns to the web; protesting via social media. Just in the past year we’ve seen social movements concerning same-sex marriage, racial profiling, and transgender discrimination take over the web.

 

According to the Computing Research Association, the gender gap in tech-fields often begins in college. In 2011 only 12 percent of computer science and computer engineering degrees were awarded to women.[ii] Part of the solution is companies making their workplaces more inclusive and recruiting diverse candidates. Another part of the solution comes from women in the field encouraging aspiring engineers on the web, much like Wenger.

 

What do women in math and science really look like? Who are they? How many are there? While gender disparity has often been at the forefront of people’s concerns, this movement sparked by Wenger forces us all to take a deeper look. The #ILookLikeAnEngineer movement also reminds us all of the power of social media and the power in sharing one’s story.

 

-Lydia

 

[i] http://www.nytimes.com/2015/08/06/technology/hashtag-aims-to-break-gender-stereotypes-in-engineering.html?ref=technology

[ii] http://archive2.cra.org/uploads/documents/resources/taulbee/CS_Degree_and_Enrollment_Trends_2010-11.pdf

Chemistry is Key to Client/Agency Success

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When selecting an agency to partner with, I always counsel those doing the search to begin with “chemistry.” The two most important factors in client/agency relationships, in my opinion, are trust and respect. These two factors dictate how well the people involved get along – what their chemistry is likely to be. While creativity, price, and service always factor into the equation, what was always most important to me when I was a “client” was being comfortable that my agency contact was able and willing to tell me what I needed to hear, even if it wasn’t always what I wanted to hear.

 

In my estimation, every creative agency offers “arms and legs.” What sets the best agencies apart from the rest is the strength of conviction that allows them to speak up and share their point of view or perspective on important topics time after time after time. This is really what smart clients are paying for.

 

No one has all the answers. Therefore, smart clients look forward to hearing a variety of opinions and viewpoints. This is critical to making the most informed decisions.

 

Surprisingly, from time to time I run into corporate marketers and managers who don’t welcome objectivity. These are people who don’t value their agency’s background or base of experience. They know what they want to do and be damned with what anyone else may think or say. More often than not, these are the people who fail. They fail as leaders, administrators, and team members. They are not good marketers. They are not good team leaders.

 

Agencies also fail, in my estimation, when they don’t have the strength of commitment to stand up for what they know is right. They have no guts. They are more concerned about making money than providing the one key service their clients need most … an honest point of view.

 

Honesty isn’t always an easy pill to deliver – especially by agencies that live hand to mouth; nor is it easy for the client whose business may be tanking to accept. That said, it is the only thing that really matters for both. I continue to be amazed by the people in business today who just don’t get it! They are often the same people who don’t think chemistry matters.

 

─ Bill

Content is King

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Content is king! But what does that mean? Let’s start by defining content marketing. According to Forbes, content marketing is a marketing technique of creating and distributing valuable, relevant and consistent content to attract and acquire a clearly defined audience – with the objective of driving profitable customer action. While this sounds like a technical thing, all it really means is that brands need to focus on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content. The idea is to attract and retain your audience. Ultimately, your goal is to drive a profitable customer action. This action is usually to make the “cash registers ring.”

Why is content marketing important?

 

We live in a digital age. Information is so easily accessible via technology that people often use the Internet to find answers and solutions to their problems. This is one of the main reasons why businesses market online and why Search Engine Optimization (SEO) has become such a huge buzz-phrase in business. It’s important for your business to be the source of recent, relevant, and credible information, so that you are viewed as credible.

 

So to make a long answer short, content marketing is important because it helps people find you online.

 

How do I get started?

 

Getting started takes a bit of planning. You can’t just jump right into things.

 

  1. Determine your target audience. Deciding who you want to reach will inevitably help you decide how to reach them.
  2. Figure out the platform you want to use to push out your content. Is it your website, your blog, or even Facebook? Each platform is different and content needs to be tailored to each. Master one platform before employing the next. Quality over quantity is important.
  3. Decide on your end goal. Is it to increase traffic, drive sales, or help your SEO? It’s important to know your goals before coming up with content.
  4. Create a content calendar. Develop a working editorial calendar in which you can plan and track your content, and after it’s published, record results. This will help you tell a story with your content and also see what is working and what isn’t working.
  5. Optimize and learn. Make sure to report back on results of past content. Engagement is an important metric with content marketing, so try to optimize the plan towards that goal.

 

Hope this helps you have a better idea of content marketing and are ready to put your knowledge to good use!

 

─ Jacky

What About Hiring Artists?

Early in my career, one of my corporate mentors took me aside and told me, “If you hire an artist to paint your picture, don’t tell them how to paint it.” That piece of advice has hung with me for more than 40 years now, and from time to time I use it with co-workers and clients.

 

For the most part, the feedback I get is very positive. People will tell me it is sage advice and that it makes a lot of sense. Some will qualify their reaction by adding to the statement things like, “But do hold them accountable” or “Be sure you are very clear about your objectives.” And believe it or not, I understand and appreciate all of that and probably agree with 95 percent of the add-on suggestions.

 

What is very interesting, though, is that from time to time I will hear from some people who surprise me with how they are “offended” by such a statement or admit they “just don’t get it.”

 

In nearly every case, as time rolls along, those same people are the ones who I find changing game rules, repurposing objectives, and micromanaging the work at hand. They do this almost instinctively, with little concern for what has been accomplished or the outcome to be realized. Maybe they just can’t help themselves and don’t want to be reminded of what poor managers and leaders they really are. When a leader has confidence in himself/herself and the team members chosen, it’s best to let them “play the game” to the best of their ability. Have confidence. Have faith. Offer encouragement and don’t throw up barriers.

 

I stand by the statement. To be successful, surround yourself with good people, understand their strengths, assign appropriate tasks, and then get the hell out of the way and let them make you proud of what you collectively accomplish … with reasonable direction.

 

─ Bill

Adopting Sales into Your Job

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While not everyone may consider themselves to be, each one of us is, on some level, a salesperson. Think about it – when you apply for a job, you are selling your skills, interests, and capabilities to a potential employer; when you write a proposal, you are selling an idea to a client. Salespeople may sometimes get a bad rap, yet we have to remember that they are the people driving revenue. You may have the greatest idea in recorded history, and you need to sell it to someone to meet with success. Whether you’re a newbie to sales or have years under your belt, it never hurts to revisit the basics.

 

  1. Know your product/service inside and out. This may seem obvious, yet you’d be surprised by those who don’t. Pull your team together and brainstorm a laundry list of questions customers could ask. Then answer them. Do you know your product as well as you think you do? Good. Then trust yourself and others will believe in you, too.

 

  1. Have a plan before you begin selling. Lay out the full structure for a script, whether you’re in person or on the phone. Leave some room for improvisation, as this script will evolve as you interact with and learn from customers.

 

  1. Set measurable, identifiable, obtainable, and specific goals. Know where you are starting and where you are going. The people paying you don’t want vague explanations or promises. They want results.

 

  1. Work harder AND smarter. This is two-fold. Once you do the hard leg-work, let your customer relationship management system work for you. You have to make the calls and build the relationships, and when you include all relevant notes in the system, you’ll be setting yourself up to look good. For example, when you take note that Karen’s a serious dog lover, she’ll appreciate when you ask about Clifford on your next call.

 

  1. Learn from your audience. Listen hard to what your current and potential customers have to say, then learn from it. After all, they’re the ones that already use or would be using your product/service and they can offer a fresh perspective. In the words of Epictetus, “We have two ears and one mouth so that we can listen twice as much as we speak.” Don’t assume you know everything.

 

  1. Always be genuine. Don’t try to sell binoculars to a blind man. Sell the right products to the right people – that way, everyone will win. You can sell what you believe in.

 

  1. Attitude is everything. Not everyone will respond well to your pitch. Maybe you caught them on a bad day. Could be that they aren’t really in your target audience. Keep everything in perspective, because, whatever happens, one interaction won’t make or break you. Keep your chin up and move on to the next prospect. You’ll feel great when you make the sale.

 

What would you add to this list? Let us know in the comments!

 

–          Danielle

“Very Pinteresting”

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Image-centric and search-friendly, Pinterest has bewitched the women of the world. Pinterest is an image sharing cite where users can upload, save, and manage images, also referred to as “pins.” It is essentially a discovery tool that allows users to save ideas or projects that interest them. You can plan your entire wedding, get lost in DIY projects, and obsess over drool-worthy food pictures for hours on end, pinning away until your fingers ache. Pinterest makes its users feel productive, organized, and energized simply from repeatedly sharing images of home décor, fun summertime crafts, puppies, or makeup tutorials.

 

Pinterest is not just the perfect place for women; it’s also the perfect place for business. According to Jennifer Gilhool, founder and CEO of Pink Streak Inc., women control $20 trillion in annual consumer spending.[i]  Given the facts that 80 percent of Pinterest users are women and women also make about 85 percent of purchasing decisions, Pinterest is the perfect place for any business generally geared toward that audience to grab a hold of consumers.[ii]

 

A brand’s success on Pinterest goes beyond a company sharing their own products with their followers. It’s a space where brands can also promote their personalities and values by repinning images posted by other users that add to their character. For example, the Greek yogurt gurus at Chobani have mastered the art of pinning. With more than 118,000 followers, Chobani’s Pinterest content ranges from Mother Teresa quotes to healthy, portable breakfast ideas to best at-home abs exercises, allowing the company to connect with their followers by painting a larger picture of their brand.

 

Unlike Instagram or Twitter, Pinterest users share content rather than like or comment on posts. Users search for images they can relate to or be inspired by, and then save products that they would love to own. Pinterest is a space for visual stimulation. Growth Devil, an agency dedicated to helping start-up companies succeed, suggests on their blog that Pinterest has a 50 percent higher conversation rate than any site that connects consumers with products, making it an ideal place for businesses to advertise.

 

In just a few steps, any company can set up a business account with Pinterest. This tool is designed to help companies using Pinterest for business purposes by providing them with information about their followers’ interests. It also gives companies the ability to measure their social media traffic on other platforms, like Twitter and Facebook. It’s all about seeing and being seen.

 

Four tips for businesses using Pinterest:

 

  1. Make sure your profile information is complete
  2. Keep your pins inspiring
  3. Engage with commentators
  4.  Include links back to your business’s website

─ Lydia

 

References

[1] http://www.forbes.com/sites/85broads/2013/08/26/the-power-of-just-one-woman/. Accessed on May 23, 2015

[1] http://www.prdaily.com/Main/Articles/17668.aspx.  Accessed on May 27, 2015

 

 

Feeling Clueless About Event Planning?

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“Well it’s like when I had this garden party for my father’s birthday, right? I put R.S.V.P. ’cause it was a sit-down dinner. But some people came that like did not R.S.V.P. I was like totally buggin’. I had to haul ass to the kitchen, redistribute the food, and squish in extra place settings. But by the end of the day it was, like, the more the merrier.” – Cher Horowitz, Clueless

 

Event planning and staging can be tricky. Things won’t always go your way, yet being as organized as possible is a great help!

 

For clients’ events we rely on a detailed plan of how we anticipate the day going and what it will take to succeed. The plan breaks down all tactics needed to implement, along with cost. We are completely clear about the budget and manage accordingly.

 

Successful events are not based on just the event itself. What is done pre- and-post-event can make or break the impact of each happening. Make sure events are heavily publicized beforehand with calendar listings, press releases, and media alerts. Draw as much attention to the event as possible to ensure a great turnout. Be sure to take pictures starting with set-up and ending with tear-down. Once the event is wrapped up, merchandise the success of the event while it’s still fresh in your mind. Be sure to release a photo caption to the media within a couple of days while the “news value” is at its highest. The photo caption enables all those who were unable to attend to see just how great it went. It also recaps the event’s success for your client!

 

There is only so much planning that can be done before any event. When the day comes, remember to remain calm and go with the flow. Anticipate and prepare to meet every challenge that may arise and hopefully, by the end of the day, you’ll be saying the more the merrier!

 

– Rachel

The Cost of Author Alterations

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A few days ago, I shared my thoughts on why I believe companies would be wise to treat their suppliers as business partners and not enemies. As I was wrapping up that blog, another one popped into my head that carries the question of the company/supplier relationship to the next level. From time to time, we find ourselves at DeeterUSA caught between clients and suppliers on the issue of author alterations. This issue is not one we struggle with on a personal level since we are selling our time for creative services and have some flexibility about what we do and don’t charge for. With out-of-pockets, however,  it is a different story and we often find ourselves as mediators settling disputes over how many edits, adjustments, or changes in a project are whose responsibility and ultimately, who needs to pay.

My rule of thumb is that every creative project is going to require one or two rounds of edits and those edits need to be factored into the supplier’s cost estimate. That said, I believe that any client who has more than the agreed-to rounds of edits needs to step up and pay for what I would consider their lack of organization and production savvy.

I am not taking sides on this issue except to say that we all share the responsibility of author alterations and that to avoid hard feelings, it is best to get who is responsible for what ironed out in the project proposal stage and not when the final bill comes in for payment.  I have found that is the best way to manage the client who is “just too busy” to pay attention and that supplier who is always the lowest bidder because he or she is constantly adding on to their bill those things their competition has planned for and included in their estimate from the beginning. Is that bait and switch? Not really! Just poor estimating and even poorer project management.

−        Bill

We’re All in This Together

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I don’t understand it when people in companies treat their suppliers like second-class citizens. Why do they think they need to do that? Don’t these people realize that those suppliers are providing needed goods and services and how those suppliers are treated may very well determine how they treat the company people (clients) in return?

 

I have always felt that those people who are providing goods and services to my company and me are really my business partners, maybe even my friends, and, as such, need to be treated with the respect they deserve. That is the same respect I would want and expect from any or all of them.

 

Come on folks, you don’t have to be a brain surgeon to understand this. God created us as equals and if you think you are something special, there is a very good chance you are the only one who feels that way. There is also a good chance that if you are stuck on yourself, there are some people, even suppliers, who are going to delight in letting you know that you are no more special than they are. And I have to tell you that they, not you, are absolutely right.

 

Pick people more talented than you as your suppliers, treat them like you would treat a good friend, and enjoy the success that follows. It is really pretty simple.

 

− Bill

Blogging

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The social media guru on our staff insists that everyone write blogs. She says that will get our website viewers up and boost our company’s recognition. At first I thought I was too busy doing “real” work. Then another staff member said what I write would be helpful to others and I should do it. So I’ve made a pledge to be a better team player and give it a whirl for three months.

 

In thinking about it, I feel the blogs should have meaning. Not surface fluff that people don’t have time for today. We’re all way too busy and over-taxed just trying to get what we need to do accomplished and keeping our priorities in line. Time matters and we choose what is important to us. I can think of many people who blog, and, to be honest, I don’t read them. Mostly because I don’t really feel they have much to say that would be of interest to me.

 

That’s just like who I friend and who I don’t friend on Facebook. Who really cares what you had for dinner? Why does it matter if you burned 30,000 calories on the treadmill in just 24 hours? That said, I do love to see and hear what my friends’ children are doing, about ways we can all work together and offer help to others, be informed of situations and opportunities we are eager to know more about, and travel around the world just like Flat Stanley when my friends go on amazing expeditions! That’s on of the nice things about social media … we have lots of choices.

 

My blogs are going to follow topics and areas of concern to me. I’ll try to stay in my area of expertise, however I know that at times I’ll write about current events that I feel we should speak up about. People who know me know I’m about working together and putting the good of the whole above individual interests. Most likely that stance will creep into some of my writing too. Will any one read my blogs? We’ll see. Perhaps writing will be a good catharsis and a way for me to slow down a bit. Watch for my blogs every week.

 

−  Linda

A PR Miss for Brian Williams

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By now we have all heard how NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams has been suspended for six months after he apologized for “misremembering” a military incident while reporting overseas several years ago. The reason it upsets viewers so much is that we expect news anchors to be credible and provide the facts, not stretch the truth. We don’t know if Williams’ career will bounce back from this blunder, yet we do know that there were several PR misses that could have helped him reestablish his credibility.

 

Timing is really important and why it took Williams and NBC so long to comment on this story is a question mark and mistake. After “the incident” the Internet went crazy and no one could escape the story, yet it still took Williams more than four days to publicly respond on air. While Williams has a Twitter account, he has not used it to make mention of the “the incident” once. He could have used the power of social media to apologize to his fans in a timely, humanized, and personalized way. Instead he chose to go on air, which for many came off cold and forced.

 

Marvin Williams states that ‎”There is no better test of a man’s integrity than his behavior when he is wrong.”  Brian Williams did not own his mistakes and made excuses of “misremembering” the events in Iraq. No one is perfect and there is a charm in knowing celebrities have flaws. Williams missed out on a great opportunity to admit his mistake and imperfections and now the Internet will not let him forget. #BrianWilliamsMisremembers is trending all over social media and Internet, as viewers are getting a big laugh at his expense and questioning his personal “news” coverage.

 

In the end many celebs bounce back from WAY worse scandals, yet the lesson is to try look as down to earth as possible while going down. Brian Williams failed this time around.

 

Jacky

Jerry Maguire or Bill Deeter?

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I was flipping channels the other day and I stumbled across a favorite movie of mine, “Jerry Maguire.” I was lucky and landed on the channel right at the start of the movie as Tom Cruise’s portrayal of the title character was narrating the set-up of the whole storyline. Cruise says: “I couldn’t escape one simple thought: I hated myself. No, no, no, here’s what it was: I hated my place in the world. I had so much to say and no one to listen. And then it happened.

 

It was the oddest, most unexpected thing. I began writing what they call a mission statement. Not a memo, a mission statement. You know, a suggestion for the future of our company.”

 

Cruise’s character, a hot shot sports agent for a big agency was feeling troubled after realizing that he was fixated on huge dollar contracts for his clients, his company, and ultimately himself. Through this, he had lost touch with “the simple pleasures of (his) job.” He no longer appreciated “the way a stadium sounds when one of (his) players performs well on the field.”

 

Through this catharsis, he understood that “with so many clients, (he and his colleagues) had forgotten what was important.”

 

That’s when Maguire stays up through the night to write the mission statement. In the film, Cruise continues the narration:

 

“I wrote and wrote and wrote and wrote and I’m not even a writer. I was remembering even the words of the original sports agent, my mentor, the late great Dickie Fox who said: ‘The key to this business is personal relationships.’

 

Suddenly, it was all pretty clear. The answer was fewer clients. Less money. More attention. Caring for them, caring for ourselves and the games, too. Just starting our lives, really.”

 

As I watched this opening scene, which I’ve seen literally a dozen times, I had my own break through. There is a Jerry Maguire-like character walking the floors at DeeterUSA … my father, Bill Deeter.

 

2015 marks our firm’s 30th year, and during the 15 years I’ve been on the team I’ve heard my dad on numerous occasions talk with prospective clients, existing clients, suppliers, new hires, and just about anyone else who will listen about why and how he started the firm. Some of the founding principles of DeeterUSA?

 

  • No more than 10 active accounts at any one time (Jerry Maguire’s “fewer clients”)
  • Everybody works on every account (Maguire’s “more attention”)
  • We work hard at DeeterUSA, yet try to keep our time in the office reasonable (Maguire’s “Caring for ourselves”)

 

All in all, these may seem like a simple ideas, yet when you package it up and tie a nice bow around these and several other principles my dad embraced to start DeeterUSA, there is a unique philosophy at our firm that has proven successful for our team and our clients for three full decades.

 

-Drew

Is All Press Good Press?

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You may be familiar with an old marketing expression “there is no such thing as bad press.” This is especially true if no one has ever heard of you, right? Alan Sorensen, an economics professor at Stanford, looked at book reviews featured in The New York Times and determined that even when reviews were negative, previously unknown authors saw a one-third bump in sales. While big brands can be impacted negatively by bad press, smaller unknowns tend to get a nice little boost.

 

Take the show Shark Tank. It doesn’t take getting a deal on the show to make it big. Shark Tank experts say that, in many cases, the value of getting airtime on the show outweighs the benefits of taking a deal with one of the Sharks.  This is true even if the Sharks don’t like the product.

 

While a short-lived boost in sales may seem like a good repercussion to bad press, we live in the digital world, where things live on forever. Years after a company has corrected the situation, the bad news  can still pops up on the search engines and continue to tarnish a company’s reputation.

 

Although Brendan Behan said, “There is no such thing as bad publicity except your own obituary,” the best strategy is to get good press for doing good things and for having a unique story to tell.

 

−Jacky

Integrating Instagram into your PR Strategy

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Instagram is an online mobile service that enables its users to take pictures and videos, and share them on a variety of social networking platforms.  According to research published by the GlobalWebIndex, Instagram is the fastest growing social media site worldwide.

 

Although some brand managers wonder how the photo-sharing app can help build their brands, many businesses across industries are finding marketing success on Instagram. Brands can use Instagram to build brand awareness, reinforce customer relationships, and create associations.

 

Before jumping straight into the platform, here are a few tips to up your Instragram game.

 

  1. Create unique content that other users will want to engage.
  2. Keep your text short and let the photo do most of the talking.
  3. Post daily to keep your brand top of mind and relevant.
  4. Use hashtags to reach new people who may be searching a hashtag related to your brand.
  5. Leverage your fans’ content. The ability to source high quality user generated content (UGC) from the Instagram community is one of the major benefits.
  6. Lastly, connect with other Instagrammers to network your brand.

 

−Jacky

 

#DeeterUSA

Internal and External Communications

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We at DeeterUSA have always subscribed to a “core out” management philosophy. It is like dropping a pebble in a pond. When you do that, you create rings. We see each of those rings as an important “target audience” we need to reach. The closer to the center, the smaller the ring, and as you move outward, the rings get bigger and bigger.

 

So for us, our employees are the closest to our center. They need to be communicated with first and most frequently if we hope that they both receive and understand our messages – whether they are rules and regulations or theories and philosophies. For us at DeeterUSA we see employees as family members and ambassadors. They can only do their best if we provide good direction and counsel.

 

And so it goes. From employees we move to suppliers and business partners. From those two groups, we move to other groups with customers and potential customers, as well as the general public somewhere on our continuum.

 

Interestingly, the way we counsel our clients on marketing their goods and services mirrors our pebble in the pond model. The challenge is to prioritize each target audience and enlist them as ambassadors who can help you reach and impact the next target on the list.

 

The bottom line is that both internal and external communications are keys to success in any marketplace today. That said, we have found that working from your core is the fastest, most economical way to meet and/or exceed your business objectives. The best cheerleaders your company has are standing all around you.

 

−Bill

#DeeterUSA

How PR has Changed

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As an industry, public relations is constantly evolving. Since the birth of social media, traditional media outlets such as television, radio, newspapers have seen a decline in readership. It’s important to be able to reach your audience in their daily activity, which means incorporating digital PR into your strategy. Digital PR brings brands online and creates a valuable relationship with your target by integrating traditional PR with content marketing, social media, and search.

 

What does Digital PR exactly add to traditional PR?

 

  1. Massive reach. Digital PR opens the PR industry up to a much wider audience, as there are more than 254 million Internet users in the U.S. alone.
  2. Social media allows brands to broadcast information in real time. Get your message out as quickly as you can hit send.
  3. Enjoy a dialogue, not a monologue. Social media is about engaging users to provide feedback.
  4. Become an online newsroom. Journalists and bloggers have embraced digital PR with open arms. Your information essentially becomes an online repository that needs to be searchable and easy to navigate.

 

Digital PR should be used to complement traditional PR and should not be used alone. Each channel should have its own purpose and strategy. Be creative in how you tell your story and embrace the change!

 

−Jacky