#MOVEahead

Insights from a group of Ann Arbor Marketers that will help you and your business #MOVEahead.

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You are constantly communicating your brand to your audience. How people feel about your company may arise from your traditional branding efforts, but it's likely they will be influenced by more than your intentional branding efforts. Your customers' views of your company will be affected by their interactions with your employees, the actions of your leaders and how you're portrayed in the press. If you're not managing the messages you're sending, all of the branding in the world won't make a difference. In addition, if you're sending positive messages at every level, it will reflect positively on your brand. 

#weeklyword

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As if flying drones weren’t enough, Amazon has officially cemented itself as the Jetson-esque company of the future with the introduction of Amazon Dash, a programmable device that delivers the products you need with the push of a button. If you’re as confused as we were listening to our co-worker at the watercooler this morning, go ahead and watch the video.

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Data drives your insights, your assumptions and ultimately, your strategy. With the rise of digital media, data is easier than ever to track and analyze. Programs like Hootsuite, Sprout Social and others aggregate and analyze your data directly from your various social media platforms. It's practically impossible to ignore the streams of data coming in with the tracking of likes, shares, favorites and impressions. But your data is useful only if you put it to use. Often, we don't take our data seriously, but failing to use it is as serious as driving with your eyes closed -- you won't be able to see where you're going and you're likely to crash. 

#weeklyword

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If you’re in business, you likely have come to understand the importance of having a social media presence. Companies fall into a wide spectrum of social media proficiency; some brands are dominating the social sphere with their innovative and creative strategies while other businesses are just trying to break into the terrifying, buzzword-filled world that is social media. As a boutique agency, we generally work with clients who know they need to be posting, but don’t know what that looks like, and more importantly, the extent to what it entails.

For many companies, especially those who don’t have entire departments dedicated to managing their social media presence, the thought begins with, “I know I need to be on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, but where do I begin?” While searching for answers, many companies fall victim to classic social media myths, and, as my father says, “The greatest lessons you learn come from seeing what NOT to do.” Here are the greatest myths, and the ways to “bust” them to take you from a social media amateur to a powerhouse.

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We all know that "a picture is worth a thousand words." However, as social media marketing continues to gain traction, a picture is worth more than words. A picture is worth likes, engagement, and ultimately, dollars. Audiences engage with posts that include images 44% of the time, which is much higher than average engagement rates. This engagement can mean likes, click-throughs, brand awareness and advocacy as well as product sales. So be sure to include images wherever it's appropriate to boost engagement and drive success. You can read more about how to use images here: 10 Free Image Sites (for all of your social media needs)

And as always, #MOVEahead

#weeklyword

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From time to time, as we’re “hunting and pecking” on the internet, we want to shine a light on things we’ve bumped into that will keep you up to date on current trends.

Ever see a recommended Facebook story that looks good but you’re not quite sure of its source? Have you seen promoted tweets on Twitter? How about an article posted on a news website’s feed that seems like editorial…but then again, maybe not? These items all feel organic but are really sponsored ads. It’s called Native Advertising.

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Without content, your social media has nothing to share. Without social media, your content has nowhere to go. Create good, engaging content and then share it in the right places, with the right people.

#weeklyword #MOVEahead

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Most senior health care organizations have some bold aspirations.  They’re looking for:

·       outcomes that validate how good their organization really is

·       congruence between who they say they are and the customer experience

·       reduced turnover in staff and customers

·       strong financials that equip them to fully live out their mission

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Last night, Scott Hauman of NewFoundry gave a spectacular presentation on branding. He explained that many brands are trying to put themselves in their customers' shoes in order to better understand and connect with them. While this is a noble idea, the truth is, your customers don't want you to be in their shoes. They want you to solve the problems they're having and give them an idea of where they want to be. Then all you have to do is point them there and they will follow. 

If you are interested in hearing more related insights, consider attending the Michigan Marketing Minds events at Ann Arbor SPARK. 

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Brands are increasingly trying to tie themselves to socially conscious movements in order to do good and do good for their brand. Socially conscious brands like Toms (a brand that donates one item for every item bought) have forged ahead and helped define a space where the success of a business isn’t solely determined on how large a profit they turn. Instead, companies are realizing that their personal values and their company values are not mutually exclusive. By aligning themselves with social movements or other socially conscious brands, they attract consumers, increase loyalty and drive demand. In fact, according to the Cone Communications Social Impact Study, 89% of consumers say they are likely to switch brands to one associated with a caub2ap3_thumbnail_halo_logonewbluesmall.jpgse if given the opportunity. Cause marketing arises when companies align themselves with a particular cause and create a campaign that publicizes their involvement in order to do the most good. 

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We are looking for a results-oriented self-starter to join our team. This position will be responsible for supporting the expansion of existing sales efforts, as well as assisting the team in the strategic creation of new campaigns. We specialize in establishing attention-seeking brands that attract clients and increase profit. It all starts with someone making the first move. You ready?

Responsibilities include:
Participate in weekly sales and brainstorm meetings to develop new leads, networking, and assisting in developing campaign ideas, brand strategies, and provide ongoing status updates on various projects.

Desired Skills & Experience
-2-4 years of experience in digital marketing/advertising preferred but not required
-You are memorable and dynamic
-You excel at finding and closing business
-You possess good listening and questioning skills
-Prior knowledge of Sandler Training helpful but not required
-Experience in direct response lead generation highly preferred
-All interested applicants should send a resume and cover letter (explaining why you’re a good fit for the position).
-Must be comfortable with straight commission, prior annual earnings of at least $55,000 and desire to earn over six figures annually.
-Not a current employee of one of our current clients
-Strong computer literacy in MS Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Outlook, LinkedIn, Twitter and a CRM application such as Salesforce.com
-Respond if you're interested (or know someone who is) to lweatherly@movecommunications.com    

Let's help each other #MOVEahead. 

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Social media was created to facilitate social connections. As brands and companies try to immerse themselves into the social media scene, they're faced with the challenge of creating authentic connections with their audiences. Many are arming themselves with strategies and content calendars and forgetting the most important aspect of the platforms, the social aspect. As you are using social media for your own business, make sure you are remembering the people you're trying to connect with and be sure to address them as people. 

#weeklyword #MOVEahead

 

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If you’re in marketing, especially if you’re navigating the ever-evolving world of social media, it’s likely that you’ve discovered the importance of a good image. Including images in your posts increases engagement and share rates far better than any other post type. According to eMarketer, including images in your Facebook posts gets them shared 87% of the time, compared to 4% when you include a link. In addition, including a photo in your tweet boosts re-tweets by 35%.

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Successful branding isn't what your customers tell you they think about your company or your product, it's what they tell their friends. Give your audience an excuse to say good things about you when you're not around. 

#weeklyword #MOVEahead

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Since its launch in 2010, Instagram has quickly grown to be one of the most relevant social media platforms. Differing from other social networks, Instagram allows for quickly digestible content that makes engagement accessible and provides repeated touch points for consumer brands to connect with their customers.

With more than 300 million active monthly users, it’s obvious why many brands are attempting to capitalize on the reach of this social network. Instagram also boasts higher rates of engagement than all of its social media competitors. According to a Forrester study, six of the seven social media platforms they studied had engagement rates of less than .1%. Instagram, on the other hand, generated an engagement rate of 4.21%, completely blowing the other networks out of the water. According to a study by research firm L2, Instagram also converts browsers to shoppers more effectively than any other networks. Consequently, if you’re a brand looking to capitalize on Instagram’s high rates of engagement, how do you craft your posts to drive engagement and ultimately sell your product?

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This week, we encourage you to push your boundaries and try something new. Finding the next best marketing strategy isn't going to happen if you're playing it safe. Failure isn't something to be afraid of, but instead, it's a learning experience that will push you to get better and be better. 

#weeklyword #MOVEahead

How are you pushing the boundaries? Tell us @movecomm

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When you think about standout marketing, likely the first thing that pops into your mind this time of year are the Super Bowl ads. Many are still getting major playtime, but the ads wouldn’t have reached so many people if there weren’t an event that first drew in the audience.  So what are some of the hot event and experiential marketing strategies that help draw people in and win long-term brand loyalty? Here’s what’s trending.

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In marketing, the best strategies are those that are more than a collection of graphics and engaging copy; the best strategies are those that capture the hearts and minds of the audience by telling a story. Blake Mycoskie of Tom's Shoes has built his entire brand around a story about children who need a pair of shoes. You might not have a heartwarming story about helping children, but every brand has a story that can connect to others. You just have to find it. 

What's your story? Tell us below or @movecomm.

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This weekend I had the chance to watch the documentary, I’ll Be Me, for the second time. I’ll Be Me is the story of Glen Campbell’s final tour following the announcement that he was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease.  The first time I saw the documentary, I was at the world premier in Nashville at the national Leading Age conference.  This weekend, it was shown at the Michigan Theatre in Ann Arbor.  It didn't lose its poignancy; it's a moving example of marketing for the social good.

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Entrepreneurs filled the room with their heads buzzing with pitches for the next new thing, excitement and anxiety melded together to create a nervous energy that was palpable in the room—that was the vibe this last week and for the last fourteen years at the annual A.C.E. (Annual Collaboration for Entrepreneurship) conference in Metro-Detroit.  Everywhere you turned, you found energized entrepreneurs walking the halls ready to pitch their elevator speech at a moments notice.

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