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relevance Archives - d.trio marketing group

Fresh month, fresh theme.

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As you may have gathered by now, we choose a new word for each month to focus our content around. Our monthly newsletter features, blog post, and other social media chatter relate back to that word in some way and we change out assorted graphics in our websphere to compliment (email header, web page banner, Facebook profile image). This monthly switch presents an interesting design opportunity for me and to start our new month, I thought I’d walk you through the thought process.

So, this month’s word is FRESH. We chose these words a few months ago when we came up with the idea of using a particular word to focus content. Had I been able to I would have designed the year’s worth of assets already and had them ready to deploy. However, I have actual client work to do so I usually end up putting these together as we go. Of course, the first thing that came to mind when faced with the word Fresh was something green and botanical in nature. Our brand guidelines require that the images we use to represent ourselves be striking, colorful and somewhat unexpected and I just couldn’t find a sprouting plant image that spoke to me on those levels. I turned to water next, playing with the idea of fresh, clean, sparkling, sometimes overwhelming, all encompassing. The image I settled on has movement, great color and visual interest, fits well with our color palette and accommodates having large text set over it, which is another feature of our brand images. It will also lend itself to use in multiple configurations.

We have an extensive color palette, primarily made up of what I call ‘candy’ colors, bright, vibrant, often somewhat loud. The yellow-green is one of my favorites and I decided to use it because it compliments the blue of the water and doesn’t get lost in it. Our bright cyan blue would have been another reasonable choice, but I used it last month on the Attention graphics and didn’t want to repeat it so soon.

Those are the variables that generally go into creating a graphic: visual association with the content, framing, color, flexibility, and brand ideals. Then there is client (in this case boss) buy in. Hint: it’s easier to get sign-off if they are going on vacation the next day. 🙂

See you next month!

Marketing to Affluents: Savings Appeal

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by Maureen Dyvig

In volatile economic times, most consumers tighten their belts and make better-informed shopping choices, especially when it comes to luxury items. An interesting side effect of the recent economic recovery has been affluent consumers’ new focus on value. Deal-seeking is now a trendy activity among all socio-economic segments. Affluent individuals are seeking a balance between luxury and price savings. Below are a few sources to support this new value orientation:

 

1. Mediapost – January 2012: “2011 Ended On a Positive Note for Affluents”

At the end of 2011, a survey among affluent individuals showed a renewed sense of economic optimism. Though shoppers’ confidence has been boosted, cutting back on spending is important.

“Affluents are looking forward to 2012 with a renewed sense of hope and with full agendas. Eight in ten made resolutions or set specific goals for themselves, with most focused on spending more time with family, saving money, and/or living healthier lifestyles.”

Source: Steve Kraus, Bob Shullman, MediaPost Blogs http://www.mediapost.com/publications/article/165935/2011-ended-on-a-positive-note-for-affluents.html#ixzz1qLVsnnY1

 

2. Trendwatching- November 2011: “Dealer-Chic”

Trendwatching dedicated a whole month to consumers’ changing attitude on deals. Businesses are beginning to recognize that even those individuals with money are looking for ways to build social value through deals, savings, and savvy coupon usage. Below are the article’s main support points behind this trend:

  1. “MORE FOR LESS: While many people in developed economies may have less money to spend right now, consumers everywhere will forever look to experience more.” 
  1. “THE MEDIUM IS THE MOTIVATION: Consumers are now being alerted to, using, reusing and sharing offers and deals via new (and therefore infinitely more exciting and attractive) technologies.”
  1. “BEST OF THE BEST: With instant mobile or online access to not only deals but reviews as well, consumers can now be confident they’re getting the best price for the best product or service.”

Source: www.trendwatching.com. One of the world’s leading trend firms, trendwatching.com sends out its free, monthly Trend Briefings to more than 160,000 subscribers worldwide.

 

3. AdAge Blogs – January 2012: “Affluency: Three Trends to Watch for 2012”

According to a study released by Ipsos Mendelsohn and reported by AdAge, affluent consumers have changed their attitudes towards value and shopping in general. For example, affluent consumers will continue to indulge in luxury goods but are less turned off by sales and embrace the idea of price-based shopping:

“89% [of those surveyed] agree, “When I decide to purchase a luxury item, I go out of my way to find the best price possible.” Conversely, only 22% of affluents agree, “If a luxury product goes on sale, it lessens the perception of luxury.”

Another interesting finding is that affluent individuals are putting more emphasis on strategic shopping; they’re spending more time comparing products based on perceived value. Instead of buying based on immediate needs and wants, more time is put in researching products:

“64% [of those surveyed] agree, “I regularly read online reviews of products before making an online purchase.” 47% agree, “I regularly read online reviews of products before making a purchase in a retail store.” 68% agree, “When I go shopping online, I usually know exactly what I want to buy.” 63% agree, “When I go shopping in a retail store, I usually know exactly what I want to buy.”

Source: Steve Kraus, Bob Shullman, AdAge Blogs http://adage.com/article/adagestat/affluency-trends-watch-2012/231886/

 

As shopping attitudes change, businesses need to identify how to utilize sales promotions to add greater value to affluent consumers. The days of coupon-cutting may be long gone for this segment, but the importance of sales and deals is just starting to warm up.

The 12 days of marketing

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The end of the year is a time of reflection and review, so the next time you find yourself humming along with the 12 days of Christmas, make it productive. Here’s a perfect opportunity to review and renew your marketing for next year.

In the spirit of the season, here are my 12 days of marketing action.

  1. On Day 1, you look back at 2010 and take stock of the good, the bad and the ugly. What can you do differently in 2011? Did you stop or cut back on marketing to save money – it’s time to start again to gain visibility. You’re behind.
  2. Day 2. Now look forward. Make a plan based on what you achieved with your marketing in 2010 and need to accomplish next year. Did you try a new media? Did you measure the results? Yes? Then you have a benchmark for 2011.
  3. Day 3. Review your customer list and contact your customers to thank them in some way.  It doesn’t have to be big, just heartfelt. Maybe you’ll get a testimonial.
  4. Day 4. Examine your failures. Don’t just blame loss of clients or revenues on the bad economy. Make sure you understand what didn’t work and why. Make a plan to fix the issue(s). You don’t want to lose next year’s marketing budget because you don’t understand what happened this year.
  5. Day 5. Thank your employees, vendors, freelancers, and others who helped your business run smoothly in 2010. They matter in the success of any business and can make the difference between being good and great.
  6. Day 6. Think about what didn’t get done that you wish had and why. Make a wish list and prioritize what you want to get done.
  7. Day 7. Find more visibility – there are many ways to help people find you – from running ads, to email, mail and PR campaigns, to redoing your website for better search results, to kicking up attention to your social media platforms.  Embrace the new marketing scene and aim for multiple touches.
  8. Day 8. Read, learn, and find out what your competition did and is doing in terms of marketing and innovation. What did they accomplish in 2010? Are you ahead or lagging them?
  9. Day 9. Take some time to look up and out of the minutia. The big picture never presents itself to someone staring at details all day long. We all need to take a break, go to a seminar or take an improv class. Do something to kick up the creative juices so you can hone your vision. Your marketing will be more successful if it’s built on vision.
  10. Day 10. Once you’ve created your marketing calendar, publish it so there is buy-in and input from your organization. Create excitement!
  11. Day 11. Ok relax. You’ve earned it. And enjoy your holiday season! Volunteer your time and get refreshed to take on your 2011 marketing plan.
  12. Day 12. We’d love to hear from you! Tell us what you learned from 2010 here or at http://www.facebook.com/dtrio

Get your messages chosen.

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There’s too much stuff in my head today. It’s as cluttered as my desk and email inbox. I’m not alone, but that’s little consolation to a marketer whose job it is to cut through the clutter. Yet, I got an email from a blogger I follow, Joe Grant, http://jjgrant.wordpress.com/ and it made me sit up and take notice. Why? Because there’s always something in his blog for me.

As marketers we have to accept and address a general lack of focus and propensity to distraction or we should just give up and go golfing. And, by the way, how and why are people able to concentrate on a golf game for more than 4 hours and yet can’t get to the 1-minute (or less) task of reading our marketing messages?

Interest and relevance.

It all boils down to that, interest and relevance. Put yourself in your customer’s shoes and ask yourself (or better yet ask them):

  • What do customers want and need to know that you can provide them?
  • What are the different ways that they access information and what is their preference in receiving it?

We all have to live with the distractions of day and moment, but if your messages and content are more compelling and more relevant than the next guy’s, your customers will take notice and choose to open yours over your competition.

This isn’t about shouting, it’s about whispering – getting customers to lean in to hear more. It’s about presenting thoughtful interesting information, in an easy to read format and making it look good. Leave them wanting more, looking forward to your next communiqué. And give them options (email, snail mail, blog, social, mobile etc.) that they can choose between to receive your communications. It’s about giving your customers choices while meeting their needs. Sounds simple doesn’t it?

Put yourself in your customer’s shoes and go for a stroll. Take some time to think about what you can provide that is relevant, interesting and/or fun. Then next time your customers will sit up and take notice of what you have to say.

We’d love to hear what your experience has been with your cutting through the clutter, here or at http://www.facebook.com/dtrio – tell us what you think.

10 Reasons to Embrace Change:

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Change is good. It has to be because business is always in flux. So we’re better off embracing it, not fighting it.

We exist, here at d.trio, in the agency world where everything changes and time is accelerated like dog years – so we’re happy to look back on 10 successful years. We’ve learned a lot. And, no year has been the same as the last one.

So what is the point? The point is I’ve been thinking a lot about business and how change has affected our choices. As a result, I’ve come up with the top 10 reasons change is good:

1. Change keeps your ideas fresh – and we’re only as good as our ideas in business.

2. Change makes you keep learning – short term this keeps our strategies relevant and leading edge; long term we fight Alzheimer’s!

3. Change makes every day different – it fights boredom and give us a reason to look forward to tomorrow.

4. Change keeps you on your toes and thinking sharply.

5. Change is the enemy of hubris, which is the enemy of long-term success.

6. You learn more from change, such as failing at something, than you do from unfettered success.

7. A change of view can help keep the important things in perspective.

8. Change is responsible for inspiration (and inspiration can also create change).

9. Without change, there wouldn’t be game changing technologies like the personal computer, the iPhone and maybe the iPad http://www.garysky.net/ipad-review-by-cnet.html (time will tell) – things that make people think differently.

10. Change is required to take a leap of faith – as we did 10 years ago to start d.trio!

So go embrace change today. Share with us how change has affected your life – we’d love to hear what your experience has been here or at our Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/dtrio