The Power of Newsletters
I had no idea how incorporating a newsletter for your business could be so beneficial. It makes sense that customers who show an interest want to stay in contact with a brand. By maintaining contact through e-mail newsletters it can help to develop and strengthen brand loyalty by staying in contact with past and future customers. The numbers prove that past customers have a higher chance of becoming repeat customers. In the future of my business I plan to incorporate newsletters to remind customers I am thinking of them. Newsletters are also a great way to share the latest deals, sales and just share any information.
Knowing Your Audience
Knowing the your target market may seem obvious to some extent. General descriptions such as male/female, age and yearly income can all be a good place to start. What I thought was really helpful in this process was to narrow your customer down to an actual person. By creating target market personas you can find creative ways to appeal to that person. What do they need? What do they like? How do they spend their time? This process is fun and can give you a greater perspective as to who and how to attract them. Identifying an actual person makes marketing to them feel personal. In my marketing efforts I think this is a great way to better connect with your audience.
Where Are They?
Now that we are able to know who our audience is….how do we find them? Where are they? This is where when creating a marketing plan it is important to reach people through multiple channels. Video and Potcasts are just another way to attract loyal customers and build relationships with those customers. It is more personal and by sharing with them information they find useful or sharing about yourself, people dig it. You become special in their eyes because chances are you share similar thoughts and ideas with your target audience. I’m shy. I am going to try to utilize this concept in the future because of the business relationship benefits. I plan to do videos or classes of some sort through YouTube.
Most important is taking all the information and creating a focused and cohesive way to market a brand that attracts like-minded individuals.
Postcard/MailerThis was so much fun! Creating an imaginary event, taking place three months from now. The photo above is a postcard that would potentially be a marketing piece that local businesses would pass out and be stuffed in bags. The information it contains is the name of the event, when and where it will be held and a little teaser of what the event is about. And of course where to find more information about the event.
NewsletterThe second piece (shown above) would serve as a e-mailed newsletter to current subscribers. The newsletter offers a bit more information than the postcard version. The newsletter serves as a personal invite from Elliot Orange to attend the event. It also gives information as to how bring 3 canned food items can save customers 10% off a purchase including the charity website, Elliot Orange website and the event website. It also includes a little note from Elliot Orange to come join in on the fun! It dawned on me later that this version does not state that it is free…Because the first one I created and finished, did say free and mysteriously disappeared when my computer decided to freeze. Even so, I love the ease of making these kinds of marketing pieces!
Lastly I created a short video ad to serve as a commercial and a teaser to grab attention and gain interest in something a little different. All music and photos are copyright free and for use to anyone.
Bring Them Together
By incorporating both physical and tangible postcard, sending out an e-mailed newsletter, and creating a commercial ad,I believe I will have a good chance of reaching a broad market. Creating a multitude of media marketing pieces you can spread information through more than just one specific channel.
Reciprocity is a word I didn’t know I knew. The definition of reciprocity according to Google: is the practice of exchanging things with others for mutual benefit, especially privileges granted by one country or organization to another. So it seems to be a concept that we are all familiar with to some degree. I’ll scratch your back if you scratch mine sort of outlook. Which interestingly enough is one of the basic social psychological laws. The reciprocity principle as stated in an article by Nielsen Norman Group “It says that in many social situations we pay back what we received from others.”
Think of all the ways that this principle is used in marketing efforts. The first thing that comes to mind for me, is when companies hand out free samples or offer a membership for a trial period. The idea is that you can enjoy something for nothing but you are more likely as a consumer, to remember that experience and that particular product and feel loyal or even obligated to purchase those products later. This is an effective way to gain new customers and maintain customer loyalty~Incentive.
If you have an online business how could you apply the reciprocity principle to your business? Ask yourself what the customers want from you? What can you provide to them to guarantee they will be back? You would want to choose something that aligns with your business and brand. An example might be, if you sell food products, maybe post recipes and other food related information or kitchen tips. The goal is to offer something that is valuable to the customer in order for them to return to you, building trust and loyalty.
Whatcha Gonna Do Elliot Orange?
Elliot Orange specializes in Halloween and holiday inspired whimsical ornaments and home decor. Elliot Orange could post festive decorating ideas for upcoming holidays and events. She could host a free online class on glass cutting, or share her own favorite paper mache recipe for others to try.
I can pull a rabbit out of a hat!
Actually, no. No, I really can’t. But….I can make something from nothing! No magic tricks here, no sleight of hand, instead a little secret. My secret to editing photos and making flyers, newsletters and postcards is free editing software.
There are dozens of free editing programs out there but, I always fall back on PicMonkey. I find it really easy to use and it offers a lot of fun photo effects. And…did I mention that it’s free!? PicMonkey also offers a Royalty package that you can purchase which then unlocks additional features and editing options. Even this option is affordable.
I love creating something from nothing. I like the freedom of not being locked into software I have to pay a fortune to use and dedicate a ton of time to learning. For example Photoshop is amazing but, I don’t have the time or the money to invest in it right now. This is why PicMonkey is so convenient and user friendly. Across the site they offer templates, tutorials and suggestions to help in your editing process.
PicMonkey does a lot for nothing, and I have found that it has been perfectly acceptable for practically all of my editing needs. What’s better than that?
I don’t need magic to pull a rabbit out of hat but I do need a secret monkey!
Disclaimer: Oddmall is a real event but Elliot Orange will not be attending. I urge you to check it out.
Come out and play with me! I’ve created a newsletter as an invite to come to show that Elliot Orange will be participating in. Subscribers to the newsletter have shown interest in being notified through e-mail for up-coming events and promotions. I wanted the newsletter heading to grab the reader by saying Come Out and Play With Me, that the e-mail newsletter was going to offer something fun for the subscriber to do and see.
Getting to the Point
Everything Elliot is Halloween so the background image represents that style, staying consistent within the branding theme. I immediately state in the newsletter the title of the event, in which people may already be familiar with and have an interest in attending. The following information is the time and dates and all the fun stuff the event is offering. I also wrote a little personal note from Elliot that she is excited to see you there. I incorporated the Oddmall website with a side note redirecting subscribers to their site for even more information and details. What is cool about this event and newsletter, is that Elliot Orange is not the main focus. Instead its kind of like an invitation to come hang out, making Elliot Orange a little more human and personable. There will be lots of things to see and do. The Elliot Orange newsletter is not about pushing products or selling, its about getting people out to enjoy themselves and have fun.
Who is this Elliot Orange? She has kept herself concealed from the cameras remaining only a shadow in the art she presents. We know she has a passion for all things Halloween. Tirelessly creating whimsical and often creepy figures from her mind for our enjoyment. Handmade from paper mache, grinning faced jack-o-lanterns and shelf sitting crows among dozens of Autumn inspired ornaments and holiday decor.
Ok. Ok. I am Elliot… or she is me.
The fact of the matter is that I…we….She, doesn’t like to be the focus.
That being said there are several things that Elliot Orange could do to position herself and build her brand through multiple social media channels.
Video is an effective way to build trust and credibility. When viewers can actually see you, you become a real person to them. This can be a determining factor as to how they will perceive your brand. Its also a positive way to develop a relationship with your audience. The impression that you leave on your audience will follow through to your brand and products. Videos can be fun, and informational. You can teach or share something that your audience will find useful. Either way you become the face of your business.
Podcasts are also a great way to not only extend your audience and market through an additional channel, but offers the ability to position yourself as a thought leader. Similar to that of video, you have an opportunity to relate to your audience. Voices can convey emotion in which the audience is perceptive to. Again, making you and your brand more human, not unlike your human audience.
When we were asked to create an event poster for class, I got giddy! I immediately knew that I wanted to make a poster for only the best band in the whole wide world the PIXIES. I really loved this project because I was able to be creative in a fun way. Here is my disclaimer: The Poster shown is NOT, I repeat is NOT an Actual Event. Now, the poster itself may not be “knock your socks off” amazing…but I am really happy with it!
I decided black and white would be a bold statement in itself, hard to miss right? One of my favorite Pixies songs is Monkey Gone to Heaven, so I found a royalty free monkey skeleton and edited it on PicMonkey (hey another monkey!) then I created and crowned him with a yellow gold halo. I placed him in the center as the focus point. I think that this alone is symbolic of the Pixies and grabs the attention of the viewer. I used a large bold font (Stampede) for Pixies across the top left and also again along the right side used on a smaller scale to group, and deliver the what, where, and how of the imaginary event. Smaller sans serif letters are placed both on the top and bottom. One reads Head Carrier their latest album release title and again on the bottom as a disclaimer that the show is “21 and Over.” I decided that this show would be great at the Roseland Theater in Portland, Oregon. It was my intention when arranging the content to be minimalistic. I wanted the most important information to stick out first. I wanted the viewer to be left with a sense of insecure balance and harmony to fit the style of the band.