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Amy Xiong

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Five Fabulous Ads to Inspire Creative For Your Print Media

Posted by Amy Xiong on Tue, Jul 24, 2012 @ 12:00 PM

Ever heard someone say “keep it simple stupid?” People often try to jam too much into something that should be more minimalist and simple. This mindset can be applied to advertising, especially in print media. The most important thing is to not confuse your consumers. Your goal is to get them to react to your act either by picking up the phone, visiting your website or store location or purchasing your product. It’s way easier said than done though. Those who are able to accomplish this are often times the ones who keep it simple.

Here are some examples of advertisers who created the perfect ads:

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This is a great ad, because it catches your attention and you can easily see how the image relates to the message they are pushing.

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In this ad, you can clearly see FedEx’s logo, and its easy association with fast delivery of your mailed items. You can easily see the benefits of using FedEx Express.

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You can easily tell what this product is and how it would help in situations where you would really want a product like this to work. There is no guessing or confusion from this ad at all.

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Show the capabilities of your product in ads. People may know about your company and your products, but they might not know how your product is different from your competitors. Can you find all the faces hiding in the woods?

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It’s important to make sure your logo and company name is easily seen and recognizable. Don’t make people waste time trying to figure out what company your product is for.

Are there any other fabulous ads that you’ve seen? Share with us below in the comment section.

Topics: creative print ads

Five Impactful Advertising Techniques

Posted by Amy Xiong on Tue, Jul 17, 2012 @ 12:00 PM

Everyone wants to have the best advertising campaigns and are always looking to improve their advertising techniques. Some of them you already know, but it’s nice to get a reminder about what some of those techniques are so you can be sure you’re incorporating them regularly.

  1. Develop a good SEO strategy: You’ve probably heard this plenty of times, but it still remains true to focus on your website’s   SEO. It’s the best way to rank in organic search and is one of the most powerful free advertising tools you can use.  Searchers are more likely to click on a text link than banner ads or sponsored ad, because they provide more information than the paid advertisement.

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  1. Use compelling writing: Make sure that your writing focuses on your audience. Use  words like “you” or “your” versus to “I,” “me,” or “we.”  Present tense also receives a better response rate than past tense. Another great way to draw  readers in is by asking questions with “you” in it. However, be sure to make those questions more thoughtful than those that can be answered with a “no” and “I don’t care” response.

  2. Don’t forget about Public Relations: Public Relations is six times more powerful, because people actually pay attention to PR more than typical advertising. There are some things to keep in mind in regards to PR. Make sure you have a well developed story that people will want to read. A great headline is also important in drawing in an audience. You need to have a great database of reporters and journalists. They are constantly looking for new stories, and you never know who might see what press releases you develop.

  3. Create powerful offers: When you develop ads for your print advertising, make sure that it gives your consumer a next step. You should direct them to a website or landing page that was developed for that ad. You could also provide a coupon to get the person to make a purchase, share your coupon, or visit your business. This helps you measure how well your ad is performing. To grab the attention of the readers, make sure your images are powerful can capture the attention of the reader. Remember that white space is also your friend and will help draw the eyes of the reader to your ad.

  4.  Great customer service and products generates word-of-mouth: Word-of-mouth still remains one of the most effective advertising techniques. Social media has allowed for people to share their thoughts and opinions more easily with others. You can use social media to spread information about yourself and your services. It also helps if your company has great customer service and products to make your company worth mentioning. Be sure to deliver a positively memorable experience every time you interact with your customers, and you’ll not only create life-long revenue streams, but you’ll create true fans of your business who want to share those experiences with their friends. Remember, negative word-of-mouth spreads faster than good word-of-mouth. However, if you do receive bad feedback make sure you pay attention to the criticism you receive and learn from those mistakes to improve.

Are we missing any key advertising technique you’ve found effective? Let us know in the comment section below.

Download  The Smart Marketer's Guide to Local Digital Advertising

Topics: advertising techniques

Frequency of newspaper ads rules the day for Mitsubishi i-MiEV

Posted by Amy Xiong on Wed, Jul 11, 2012 @ 08:41 AM

Mitsubishi was able to successfully launch their new electric car to their Canadian consumers through smart advertising in newspapers with frequency in their ads. The readers who saw their ads more than three times indicated, in research conducted by Totum Research, that they would choose to buy the electric car, the Mitsubishi i-MiEV. Also, consumers who saw the newspaper advertisements more than three times believed that the Mitsubishi i-MiEV helped them overcome their fears about electric cars. Those who saw the ads three times or more also thought more positively of electric cars than those who were not exposed to the ad or were only exposed a couple times. Do you see a pattern here?

How did Mitsubishi run such a successful newspaper advertising campaign? First, Mitsubishi’s biggest challenge was to overcome the growing concern of electric vehicles: being electrocuted. Luckily they combined forces with their ad agency, John Street, and newspapers to overcome this challenge.

Then instead of going after the expected demographic of the environmentally conscious consumer, they decided to go after a larger target audience. The focus of the ads was on the car’s design as well as its electric power. With a different demographic, the ads needed to highlight different benefits. It wasn’t just about conservation, now it was about safety and style. With such a broad demographic to reach, newspapers would be the best medium to advertise through. Newspapers could provide Mitsubishi the chance to draw in consumers through visual appeal, and there was also an opportunity to reach consumers with the copy message.

Mitsubishi wanted innovative creative to go along with the innovative car they had created. They approached the fear directly, but took a more humorous approach. The ad copy said things like: “Afraid the electric car will turn you into a hemp-weaving, tofu-eating, drum-circling hippie?” Along with this they had a compelling call to action. A URL was inserted which directed readers to the website: electriphobia.com. The website addresses and pokes fun of the fear of electrocution, silence, range anxiety, tailpipe separation anxiety, gas withdrawal anxiety and fear of becoming a hippie through interactive videos and activities. One in particular, range anxiety, allows visitors to insert starting points and destinations to see just how far the i-MiEV can take them. This is cured through the i-MiEV’s ‘Commutalculator.’

Mitsubishi took a risk by targeting a new audience and found creative and interactive methods for reaching them. So far the research shows the risk was worth it.

Check out the full case study released by the Canadian Newspaper Association, “Proving newspapers work: Demonstrating the power of frequency.” Then take a minute and visit the electrophobia website and see just how Mitsubishi’s helping consumers overcome their fears.

Topics: frequency of newspapers ads

Is there such a thing as a stress-free vacation?

Posted by Amy Xiong on Tue, Jul 03, 2012 @ 12:00 PM

medium 807561379The hot balmy summer is here, and I bet you’ve been daydreaming about beaches and fruity drinks; the open lake, fishing and drinking beer; or just not being at work. Vacations are a lot of a fun and a must for all you go-getters who are constantly running, but what’s the point of going on  vacation if it doesn’t help you de-stress and reduce your chances of burning out?

When you decide to go on vacation, make sure the dates work for you, and your boss. Plan for a time where there are not a lot of big projects and when there is someone to cover for you while you are out. This will keep you from stressing out about projects that are happening and allow you to focus on RELAXING.

It’s best that your vacation is planned far in advance so you and your team are prepared. Everyone should know their responsibilities while you are away. This ensures none of the projects will be on hold waiting for you to get back. You should also have someone who can make important decisions while you are gone and can take notes at important meetings to review on your return. Also, let your coworkers know you will be on vacation and when you are returning. This allows them to get your feedback before you leave. This may mean a little extra work for you before your big trip, but it’s better to be done ahead of time than to come back to a big pile of work.

It’s also good to remind your boss and others of your upcoming trip so they aren’t caught off guard when you leave. Everyone has a lot going on and doesn’t have your vacation days memorized. A friendly email reminder beforehand will help them keep the dates in mind. This way everything can be wrapped up before you head out, and you aren’t scrambling as you’re trying to get out the door.

Try to unplug and disconnect while you are on vacation. However, if there are a few extra minutes in the morning or at night, go through your email so you aren’t spending your first day back at work strictly cleaning out your inbox. But remember, a vacation is about enjoying your time with your traveling companions away from the office and the computer screen, so get rid of the ‘just one more email’ mindset.

It’s also a good idea to clean up your desk and make sure everything is organized and ready to go when you come back. I just got back from a week in London, and although it was an amazing experience; not everything went according to plan. We took a trip to the emergency room and missed our flight back. It was definitely nice coming back to a clean desk and no overwhelming inbox.

Another must is giving yourself at least ONE DAY to recuperate after your vacation. One thing everyone feels is the need for a vacation after their vacation. This is because they are exhausted or jetlagged or had one of those vacations running around sightseeing without actually relaxing. You need one day of sleeping in your own bed and eating a home cooked meal before returning to work. It was one of the best things for me when I got back.

Here are a few take-aways for planning your vacation:

Preparation:

  • Plan Your Vacation
  • Get Approval
  • Set up a back up

On Your Vacation:

  • Relax
  • Skim emails to stay ahead
  • RELAX

Day Before Going Back To Work:

  • Journal a summary of your vacation
  • Respond to emails
  • Get ready to re-engage

What stress free plans do you have for the summer? Let us know tips you have for planning a stress free vacation.

Looking for a reason to head out of town? Check out our list of the top conferences to attend this summer and see if you can parlay a work trip with a destination on your bucket list. Now that’s a win-win.

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Topics: stress-free vacation

Mediaspace Solutions Launches New Software System to Sustain Steady Growth

Posted by Amy Xiong on Fri, Jun 29, 2012 @ 08:36 AM

In an effort to continue to exceed client expectations, Mediaspace Solutions developed and recently launched its new proprietary planning, buying and execution system, Rover. “As technology changes, so do client expectations,” said Isaac Ferreira, Director of Operations and Technology at Mediaspace Solutions. “Rover enables us to build more efficiencies into our processes and provide an even quicker turnaround of ad placements for our clients. Our current systems meet the needs of today’s client, and probably tomorrow’s client as well. The point of Rover is to meet their needs six months, a year or even two years from now.”

Dubbed Rover for its ability to dig up, fetch data and obediently follow commands with champion-caliber speed, the new system is another example of Mediaspace Solutions’ mantra of not settling when you could be shattering the status quo

“Our client roster has very specific needs,” said Scott Jagodzinski, CEO of Mediaspace Solutions, “and the goal of everything at Mediaspace is to do it better, faster and cheaper. While some might find those two goals diametrically opposed our track record gave us the confidence that we could achieve both goals and simultaneously take a client’s expectations up at least one notch. With Rover, I’d argue we’re taking them up at least two notches and built a platform to raise the bar pretty quickly.”

Mediaspace partners with leading advertising agencies, media providers and directly with clients that share our vision of local media that is better, faster and cheaper. Rover is another example of Mediaspace creating, and not waiting, for a better solution and creating efficiencies in the digital and print space.

Topics: mediaspace solutions

Four Reasons Live Tradeshows and Conferences Still have Value

Posted by Amy Xiong on Tue, Jun 26, 2012 @ 09:35 AM

Do you feel like you’ve attended one too many webinars in your life time? I know I feel that way. Webinars are great, because they are cheaper and you can view them at your own convenience, but there is a definite plus to actually attending a conference in person. It’s a completely different experience than you would get in person compared to attending a webinar.

  1. Attending a conference in person gives you a chance to meet and interact with people in your industry. These connections can provide future partnerships and allow you to bounce ideas off other people with similar goals. Webinars are mostly one-way communication where you can ask questions but interactivity is limited. Recent webinars from MarketingProfs and HubSpot try to create a more engaged environment through trending Twitter topics, however there’s still a screen between participants.

  2. The people you meet are good for more than just bouncing ideas off;  they can also be future clients of yours or connect you with prospects you’ve been trying to break into. If you can find a complimentary offer you can provide to help the new contact and the prospect, that’s where the real gold is. The more people you know the larger your network becomes. And we all know the power of networking. If you don’t or don’t believe it, you need to read Never Eat Alone by Keith Ferrazzi.  Check out this excerpt from the book on how to be a ‘Conference Commando.’ Ferrazzi’ the master at outlining how you can use conferences to find people you can help in order to potentially help you reach your goals both professionally and personally. Remember that it all starts with generosity.

  3. In additional to meeting new people, this is a great way for you to learn of new ideas to implement at your company. You’ll get a chance to hear what the industry leaders are doing and get to ask them questions directly. If you don’t attend conferences and stay up-to-date with the latest trends, you will fall behind your competitors. Continuous education and innovation is what could give your company the competitive edge.

  4. Also when you attend conferences, it’s like attending multiple webinars as you can pick the different sessions you would like to attend throughout the entire conference period.  There is also more interaction, because you are not just sitting in front of a computer screen all day. You might think it’s hard to take that much time away in large chunks, but think instead about the benefits you could get through focused learning versus an hour at a time here and there.

    When you go to the conferences, remember to have enough business cards and find a way to stay connected to all the new people you meet. We’ve found that a phone app called CardMunch is a fast way to store business cards and easily connects you to your new contacts on LinkedIn right away. And remember that follow-up is key. In the first 24- to 48-hours send your new contacts a note telling them what a pleasure it was to meet them and recall an aspect of the conversation to help identify yourself [that’s another tip from Ferrazzi].

    We compiled some of this summer’s best conferences to attend. Download the checklist and see what’s in your neck of the woods. Good luck.  

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    Business Tips from Business Leaders who believe in ‘Shattering the Status Quo’

    Posted by Amy Xiong on Tue, Jun 19, 2012 @ 12:30 PM

    An article recently featured in Forbes was “Business Tips from College Dropouts: Zuckerberg, Jobs, Gates, Dell, Ellison, Branson and Disney.” It starts with how Peter Thiel, co-founder of Paypal, has created a scholarship of $100,000 to be received by 24 individuals under 21 with additional scholarships for future years. There is one “catch,” the scholarship recipients have to drop out of college for two years to “pursue entrepreneurial ventures, research and self-education.”

    Apparently, 16% of the 400 most affluent Americans do not have a college degree. To me whether or not someone has a college degree and is successful is not related. I believe it’s the ability of these leaders to take the ‘risk’ in their business venture and having the confidence to pursue their goals by going against the grain. It’s easy to do the typical thing of going to college after high school and getting a college degree like everyone expects you to, but it’s even harder to start on that path and realize it’s not for you and take a path  you  blaze for  yourself.

    At Mediaspace Solutions, we believe in shattering the status quo. This means you go against the grain and constantly push limits in everything you do. We have created an interview series with business leaders who believe in this type of mindset. Below are a few tips they have on ‘shattering the status quo’ and risk-taking.

    “I take a position where I might not have all the skills or the background to do it, but I put myself in a position where I’ve got to learn. It develops the ability to rely on other people and not just feel like I can get it done by myself. Those are times when I’ve had the most success.” – Terry Clark, CMO of UnitedHealth Group

    A good leader has great ideas, and an even better leader realizes he needs help to make those ideas a reality. It’s tough to take a step back and realize you aren’t the best at performing certain responsibilities, but you need to focus on the main objective and see the value of hiring skilled individuals to be a part of your team.

    “Today with all the different media or outlets that are out there and all the different ways marketers and customers are touching different platforms if you are going to do the same old thing, you are going to be relegated to the junk pile. It is absolutely essential if you as a marketer/professional want to be perceived as leading edge, the cutting edge or unique that you have to do something out of the box.” – Al DiGuido, Interactive Media & Marketing Leader at Interactive Media & Marketing Consultancy.

    “No matter how well something is working or is performing, around every corner there is something that is going to knock it off its pedestal. Being creative, inventive and regenerating new enterprises, products or situations is the number one important element in business. If you are unwilling or unable to do that, somebody else is going to eat your lunch. Taking old formulas and reworking them is one way to do it.” – Greg Heinemann, Senior Vice President of OLSON

    “I like the mindset of going into a project with a vision of what somebody else would do. I started thinking ‘What would Steve Jobs do with this project?’ It helps me broaden my thinking about what could be little improvements that make a big difference.” – GL Hoffman, Chairman of JobDig

    “I try to instill that there should be no one here who is not making themselves a little uncomfortable. We always want to be thinking about the next level for a new way of doing things.” – Greg Kurowski, President and CEO of Persicope, Inc.

    Companies and individuals need to be able to adapt to the ever changing world with new technological advances otherwise they will fall behind. Take a look at the brands and companies you know and look up to, are they the ones following the crowd or thinking of new ways to stand apart?

    “It starts with having confidence and having industry experience. When the market gets competitive, you better be able to roll your sleeves up and get your hands dirty. You can’t be afraid of it.” – Peter Taunton, President and CEO at Snap Fitness

    “The riskiest thing is not doing anything. If we do that I know what is going to happen and it’s not going to be good.” – John Wernz, CMO at Wealth Enhancement Group

    Just because something is going well doesn’t mean it couldn’t be going better. You should never be satisfied with where you are at, because there is going to be a competitor who is trying to out-smart you and take away your customers.

    “When you peel back the onion enough times, there are really not that many things that are life or death in business. I am a big believer in try a lot of stuff and keep what works. You need to keep pushing the edge.” – Jeff Prouty, Chairman and Founder at The Prouty Project

    Learn what else Jeff Prouty has to say about risk-taking, shattering the status quo and other business insights by downloading his interview:

    Click me

    Topics: Shatter the Status Quo

    Why you need to focus on more than just advertising rates

    Posted by Amy Xiong on Tue, Jun 12, 2012 @ 08:25 AM

    Sure, if you are an advertiser finding the best media rates might seem like the most important thing in the beginning.  But where does that really get you in the long run? Is it really worth it to focus on rates first?

    No matter what type of business you’re in, it’s always best to focus on meeting client needs and balance their goals with your company’s . You might think reducing your advertising expenses will help you reduce expenses for your customers, and it might for a while. However, you are pretty much remaining stagnant, because you are not increasing your client base. If you get more clients, that means you make more money which means you can save your customer’s money and  focus on creating new solutions to solve their needs.

    How do you build your customer base? By advertising of course. And by making sure you reach the right target markets through the best advertising media. Are you working with an agency that will help you reach specific geographic areas? What is more important to you, being able to target potential customers that are located within 10 miles of your businesses or getting low advertising rates to reach customers who live within 100 miles of your business that might consider making that drive?

    To reach the right audience, you may need to increase the frequency of your advertisements. Consumers might see your ad once, but once might not be enough for them to actually buy your product or make your business top of mind. Think about all the places you shop or purchase services or goods from. How often do you see their ads? Do you think you know McDonald’s slogans and jingles by just hearing and seeing it once?

    You also need to make sure that your ads will elicit the correct action from your potential consumers. Do you have a call to action for your consumer? Did you provide a website or contact information for your business? You should be willing to work with a company that will help you place your ads and provide you feedback on how to make the most of your ads. A yes man might be easier to work with, but it won’t help you grow or develop your ads to reach the right target audience.

    At Mediaspace Solutions, we work with clients who are willing to challenge their assumptions and the status quo. Just because you’ve always done something a certain way in the past doesn’t mean it’s the correct thing to do. You need to think of new innovative ideas to take clients away from your competitors and that means thinking more about your consumers and how to reach them and less about dollars and cents.

    Check out our guide on hiring a media provider to get started.

    Download our guide to hiring a media provider

    Topics: advertising rates

    Samsung Leverages Canadian Tablet Market for new Galaxy Note™

    Posted by Amy Xiong on Wed, Jun 06, 2012 @ 04:00 AM

    Samsung recently launched its new tablet device, the Samsung Galaxy Note™. To generate awareness and build steam around the recent launch, Samsung worked with Starcom Canada and Mediaspace Solutions to place advertisements in three Canadian markets. The results are in and the Samsung Galaxy Note™ campaign blew averages out of the water.

    “Average click through rates for online campaigns generally reach about 0.09%,” said Catherine Dettloff, Digital Director at Mediaspace Solutions. “During the first week of this campaign the Samsung Galaxy Note™ ads saw click through rates over 2.0%. This is a huge credit to Samsung for bringing an innovative device to market and Starcom for developing engaging creative.”

    Samsung ran a number of different sizes and placements in the Toronto, Vancouver and Calgary markets. The ads targeted tablet users on the Android platform through the AdTaxi network.

    “When Samsung wanted to launch the Note in Canada, we were interested in exploring the Mediaspace solution,” said Dane Gyoker, Supervisor, Digital Solutions at Starcom Canada. “The success of the campaign is a testament to the power of Samsung’s fantastic product, a great team at Starcom and Mediaspace’s capabilities in the mobile advertising space.”

    Tablet advertising is still in the early stages which can cause the landscape to be difficult to navigate for advertisers. Successful campaigns such as the one run for Samsung demonstrates the value experienced partners like Starcom Canada and Mediaspace can provide.

    As a method to give advertisers greater access to the tablet space, Mediaspace Solutions created the Mediaspace Tablet Network™ in November 2011. The network now includes more than 500 newspaper and television tablet applications for advertisers to reach their targets.

    ABOUT SAMSUNG ELECTRONICS CO., LTD.

    Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. is a global leader in semiconductor, telecommunication, digital media and digital convergence technologies with 2011 consolidated sales of US$143.1 billion. Employing approximately 206,000 people in 197 offices across 72 countries, the company operates two separate organizations to coordinate its nine independent business units: Digital Media & Communications, comprising Visual Display, Mobile Communications, Telecommunication Systems, Digital Appliances, IT Solutions, and Digital Imaging; and Device Solutions, consisting of Memory, System LSI and LED. Recognized for its industry-leading performance across a range of economic, environmental and social criteria, Samsung Electronics was named the world’s most sustainable technology company in the 2011 Dow Jones Sustainability Index. For more information, please visit www.samsung.com.

    ABOUT STARCOM CANADA

    Starcom (www.starcomworldwide.com) is a world-renowned media agency that simplifies human understanding to deliver meaningful brand experiences. Starcom does this by creating the Space for Ideas, in peoples' minds and in the world, via a unique approach that gives the agency an unparalleled advantage. Starcom is part of Publicis Groupe (Euronext Paris: FR0000130577) the world’s third-largest communications group, the world’s second-largest media counsel and buying group, and a global leader in digital and health care communications. With around-the-world activities spanning more than 104 countries on five continents, the Groupe employs as many as 44,000 professionals. With sister agencies MediaVest, ZenithOptimedia, Denuo, Digitas and Razorfish, Starcom is a member of Publicis Groupe's VivaKi, a global digital knowledge and resource center that leverages the combined scale of the autonomous operations of its members to develop new services, new tools and new partnerships.

    Topics: tablets, press release

    Seven Ways to Make Mobile Websites Better, Faster and Efficient

    Posted by Amy Xiong on Tue, Jun 05, 2012 @ 08:34 AM

    Raise your hand if you thought mobile websites were just for those marketing directly to consumers? Come on, it’s OK, you’re the not the only one. However, mobile advertising is not just for B2C marketers; those in the B2B space need to take advantage of mobile as well. All VITOs (very important top officers) need to be connected to industry news and often times do this through their phone.

    Here are SEVEN ways to make mobile advertising better, faster and more efficient:

    1. Send SMS alerts to your business clients. This allows them to be aware of the things that will affect them immediately. Just be sure to do this only when it is truly important. It could easily annoy your client and turn them off to your services.

    2. Keep information on your mobile sites updated. In between breaks or waiting at airports are the perfect time for check-up on information and deals. Be sure all of this information can be accessed quickly and easily.

    3. Avoid big files and images. Your business prospects are on a busy schedule. You need to have things download fast. They want information immediately. Even as smartphones become smarter, with better processors and faster Internet connections, keep your mobile marketing basic. People whose time is very valuable will not spend it waiting on a loading bar.

    4. Focus on format. Keep in mind mobile screens are small. It should be easy to scroll to continue reading compared to loading a new screen. This is especially important for online newspaper and magazine publishers, who are in the mode of intentionally creating jumps to keep readers engaged.

    5. Keep copy at a minimum. It’s easier to read a few words that get to the point compared to reading a lot of small text on such a tiny screen. Treat each story or article like the journalist you are. Deliver the most important information first, and then fill in the details.

    6. Make sure the call to action is the first thing business executives see. They should not have to scroll or click to a new page. You should make it as easy as possible to become a lead.

    7. Consistent and regular testing. Be sure to always test your sites and advertisements. If you don’t make sure things are responding correctly, it could mean losing a big client to a competitor.

    Be sure to check out more about mobile for B2B at B2Bmobilerevolution.com.

     

    Topics: mobile advertising, mobile