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Identifying Your Target Market

Identifying Your Target Market

Posted on Mar 30, 2017 by Emily Ballard

Identifying your target market isn’t easy, and it takes time. Once you’ve identified your target market, you need to get in front of them, grab their attention and give them a relatable reason for why they should choose your product or service. This is where it gets tricky–it is up to you to also give your customer something in return for their attention. In other words, you had better know your audience.

Who are you?
Okay, let’s take a step back. Ask yourself, as a company: what is your position in your industry, what are your values and why do you do what you do. Meet with co-workers in other departments, and ask them what the brand means to them. Discuss your company’s culture, and dig into building a complete understanding so that you can incorporate those values into your marketing strategy. Your goal here is to become well versed enough to tell your story, and genuinely exhibit who you are as a company.

Once you have a solid foundation and understanding of your company, identify what exactly sets you apart from your competitors. At this point, you should perform a SWOT analysis to identify your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. Strengths and weaknesses should be internal, while opportunities and threats should be external. Being as specific as possible when addressing each element of the SWOT analysis will greatly enhance how you understand your position in the industry.

If you’ve yet to set goals and objectives, do that here. Begin with a specific long-term goal, and then narrow it down. Identify quarterly, monthly and weekly objectives for your efforts, as well as how you define success for each. This requires results to be quantifiable, in a way that they can be closely monitored.

Identifying your target market:
Now that you’re prepared, you can begin identifying your segments. You should create segments so that you understand the often subtle differences in marketing to each specific segment. If you have data or other insights–use them. Otherwise, ask yourself who will benefit from your product or service. Explore every demographic and be as narrow as possible. Once you have a list of segments, create personas for each segment.

When you create personas you should be as specific as possible. Identify their demographics, passions, interests, worries, and goals. What are their lifestyles? What are their needs? Once you have a persona, map out your customer’s journey. The Content Marketing Institute explains that their journey is one of the most important steps in understanding your target market and how to reach them. You are tracking down their daily tasks and what they might search online. Once you understand their journey, you should have enough of an idea to identify what channels they use, and what sort of message is most effective in reaching them.

Tracking Data:
Once you begin engaging with your target market, you need to track the effectiveness of your efforts. This provides insight into what is working and what isn’t. It is extremely important to make sure you are reaching the right people in the right way. For this reason, most marketers perform A/B split tests, by delivering different messages to smaller subsets of the same segment, to determine which is more effective. When you pinpoint what is working, it should then become easier to make adjustments where necessary so that your brand remains engaged with your target market.

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SXSW 2017: Key Takeaways on Digital Marketing

SXSW 2017: Key Takeaways on Digital Marketing

Posted on Mar 13, 2017 by Emily Ballard

The world of marketing is ever-evolving, and though there is no universal marketing strategy that will “just work” for every type of company, some marketing professionals make it seem like they possess the secret formula. Now that digital marketing has taken over, there are many new aspects of marketing that we must take into consideration when creating our marketing strategies. I went to multiple masterclasses on digital marketing that were held during weekend one of SXSW, and I’m here to share my key takeaways on where to focus your efforts when creating your digital marketing strategy.

Digital Marketing:

Lawrence O’Connor spoke on the fundamentals of marketing and shared in-depth, valuable information on how to understand your target market. While I found the entire masterclass extremely valuable, these are the key points I took away when focusing on digital marketing:

  1. Know your business. Ask yourself these questions: Why does my business exist? Why should anyone care? What am I not willing to compromise? What are my goals and how will I get there?
  2. Don’t skip testing and keep track of your data. Try both qualitative and quantitative testing. For qualitative you can focus on surveys and interviews and for quantitative focus on user engagement. When focusing on engagement, always pay attention to your analytics. If you are constantly recording your analytics, you will see what is working for you and what’s not.
  3. Recognize which platform your target market uses most. From your data, you will see trends emerge for where the most engagement is occurring. You can then increase your engagement with your core-users, through strategic interactions in social media.

Creating Your Social Media Strategy:

Vin Clancy, social media expert and owner of Traffic and Copy, shared his insight on how to grow your business using only social media. Through his in-depth presentation covering social media strategies, the main focal points that stuck out for me were:

  1. Add value. Bring your expertise to the table and offer your knowledge. Nothing beats staying genuine and true to who you are.
  2. Show up every day. Posting every single day on social media keeps you relevant, and people will create a connection with you. Keep your content fresh and relevant, and focused when engaging with your followers.
  3. Use content scheduling. There are multiple websites such as Buffer, Hootsuite and Spredfast that you can schedule content up to months in advance on multiple platforms at a time. These are great tools to use when you are trying to reach your audience through multiple platforms, on a daily basis.

Both of these masterclasses dug way deeper into these marketing strategies and covered topics of which I could only scratch the surface with this post. These key takeaways will help in understanding the basics of digital marketing, and are essential to the early development of your marketing strategies.

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Our Top 4 Brand & Marketing Panels at SXSW

Our Top 4 Brand & Marketing Panels at SXSW

Posted on Mar 09, 2017 by Emily Ballard

Keeping up with target audiences can be a challenge in today’s world since social media was brought into the mix. This year, South by Southwest is hosting some of the most intelligent brand and marketing specialists. Technology is booming and more fast-paced than ever before, so the demand for insight and guidance has never been greater. At these four panels you will hear directly from industry leaders on how to build your brand, grab your target audience and keep their attention. These events range from beginner to intermediate, and are perfect if you want to delve deep into the newest marketing trends.

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The Importance of a Consistent Brand

The Importance of a Consistent Brand

Posted on Apr 13, 2015 by Ryan Gardner

When people think of a brand often the first image that comes to mind is the logo. Companies like Nike, Apple, and Starbucks can be identified if you only see the logo – the name is not even necessary. In today’s digital world, branding is way more than just a logo. A consistent identity must go very deep within company collateral. It needs to communicate not only the values of the company, but also the careful precision and attention to detail.

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A New Brand Identity for Hamilton Asset Management Group

A New Brand Identity for Hamilton Asset Management Group

Posted on Feb 18, 2015 by Callie Musick

Other than building slick new websites, did you know HMG Creative has a pro team of brand developers and designers? It’s true. Check out our most recent  project below to find out how our team helped Hamilton Asset Management Group create their new brand identity.
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