How to Define Your Brand - Checklist

What does your brand say about you?

We've packed off lots of clients on their summer holidays this month, and feel very lucky to be trusted with their brands whilst they are away. 

Which made us think - what does your brand say about you? How clear is it? How can you be sure that it portrays you and your business accurately? 

Take a look at the check-list below. Are you and your team clear on these elements?

  1. Who you are - Who are you and what can you offer?
  2. Brand Statement -What is your mission?
  3. Tagline - Summarise the above!
  4. Logo + reverse logos - suitable for all media
  5. Colour Pallette - Which colours represent you?
  6. Typeography - And fonts?
  7. Elements & Icons - Any flourishes, graphics or icons that sit alongside your logo
  8. Voice, diction & tone - How do you sound?
  9. Digital Media Content & Hashtags - Does this pull through to your digital marketing?
  10. Imagery - What pictures and content are representative of your business?
  11. Patterns & Textures - Backgrounds and aesthetics
  12. Props & Styling - Is there a style you'd like to adhere to?
  13. Media Templates and Layouts - Graphics for social media, website and print

Keen to chat about September? Book a call here. 


Laura CutressComment
Where to Start with Social Media Analytics

When are you going to stop playing at social media and start taking it seriously?


Whilst everyone starts winding down a little for a summer break, we've been trialing a couple of new packages on the down low and have had such an overwhelming response from from our guinea pig clients!

So... we've decided to just jump straight in and offer something new to you all this summer! 

This is for those of you that just flipping LOVE social media. 

Wait. What are you talking about Laura? I thought you wanted us to give you our social?

Ha of course I do! But I also get how interesting it is for you to do it yourself... if that's your thing! It's great to engage with your community, see real-time responses and ultimately get 1-2-1 with your fans. 

So what should you be looking for when it comes to social analytics?

1. Basic Trends

Have your account numbers moved up or down? Followers, engagement and reach. 

2. Your Audience

Where are they, what age are they and when are they most engaged?

3. Your Content

What is your content distribution like? Are you producing varied, media rich posts than can be easily shared and engaged with?

4. Conversion Rate

How many times are visitors clicking through to your site or your CTA button? This ROI is an easy one to track! 

5. Your top (and worst) posts

What can you learn from these? What should you keep, and stop, doing?


The report on my social media allowed me to see the insights of what was and wasn’t working and the demographics of who looks at and interacts with my posts. This has given me great food for thought as to the type of post I should make and who my targets on different social channels are - more effective marketing will come as a result

When it comes to business, is it all play and no work? Is it GO GO GO? Do you have time to stop and think?

Our analytics packages are for real growth. It's for you if you want to see a real impact on social, but need someone to get down and dirty with the stats. 

You are: 

  •  Running a real time business. You need content to be live and online immediately
  •  Feeling stagnant, your account growth has slowed down and your engagement has stalled
  •  Happy to manage your accounts yourself - you love the engagement and process
  •  Busy! It's post and go in your world
  •  Not sure if your posts are being seen by the right people
  •  Ready to get serious about your social marketing and create a fan base

Your work is on the pulse and you need to stay present with your community at all times. 

By using your social stats and analytics to inform your marketing, you will identify your strengths and weaknesses and be armed with the knowledge to continue improving. 

YOU WILL BECOME:

  •  Clear on your wins, and where needs work
  •  Confident that your brand is being portrayed creatively and your mission accurately, attracting your ideal client. 
  •  Organised, supported and prepared to manage your marketing campaigns. 

I used to hate stats too. How boring is it to be presented with an Excel sheet full of numbers and be expected to decipher the results! But then I worked out how to make them pretty, and fun, and tell me EXACTLY what I needed to know. And all of a sudden. 

BOOM. 
Growth. 

Do you want to smash the stats? 
When are you going to stop playing at social media and start taking it seriously?


Chat to us today and let's get you upgraded. You got this. 
 

>>FIND OUT MORE<<

Laura Cutress
5 Free Ways to KickStart Your Campaigns

So. We're round the corner from Q3 - YES REALLY. July - September is where prep goes down for the holidays, whether you want to get friendly with the C word or not*.  
Now is the time to really address your goals. What was your target for 2017? Are you halfway there or has the year run away with you? 

We know that there is no one-size fits all, you and your business are unique. Which is why we offer a range of packages from start up to corporate.  But we also know, that sometimes cash-flow can be difficult. If you're wondering what you can be doing before needing to spend your marketing budget, be sure to tick these off first:

*(that's Christmas, FYI)

1. Run a Giveaway with a popular blogger

Do you have a cute product that fits well with a blogger's brand? Team up to run an awesome giveaway. 
 

2. Pin your brand's infographics and checklists on Pinterest

Make sure the descriptions and links are accurate so people can pin and find you! 
 

3. Guest post on a popular blog

Got something interesting to say? Share on a platform that will widen your audience.
 

4. Only post 25-30% promotional content on social media.

People are more likely to trust you when you're not constantly trying to ram something down their throat. Just sayin'. 
 

5. Build a brand that focuses on customer retention and engage with clients on social media

Encourage your clients to come back time and time again and celebrate their wins with them. Cross promotion, collaboration and participation. 


So. Are you doing those things? 

Leave us a comment and let us know! 

Laura CutressComment
What can you expect from Digital Marketing Management?

Our mission is to support. Empower. Enable. Activate. We want our clients everywhere to be buzzing about what's to come, full of ideas and excited about the next step
What will it take to ignite that thing within that gets you focussed and ready?


It's only when our clients have a spring in their step and are so excited to tell us their news, that we've done a good job. And we won't stop until we do


People don't often realise just what they will get from us. It's not just a few hours of us on Facebook every month. Oh no. It's piece of mind, a 2 hour lunch break, dinner with your children or time to go to the gym. It's no blue screen at 11.30pm at night, and it's someone there to take the stress of your hands. It's not trying to take a photo for instagram after the best light has gone, or trying to work out what to post on Facebook. 

There's just some of the things. And here's what most of our clients get as standard:


DAILY

  • Research the social media industry
  • Load your editorial calendar
  • Create content that is on brand
  • Schedule posts for the next day
  • Monitor the competition
  • Engage with brand advocates, and potential customers
  • Proof copy for blog posts or press releases

WEEKLY

  • Discuss tactics and goals with you and your team
  • Run social media analytics
  • Maintain website SEO
  • Review paid advertising campaigns
  • Research new content ideas
  • Cross promote with other influencers, clients or contacts

MONTHLY

  • Audit your strategy
  • Attend local events or meetings
  • Collaborate with other brands or influencers

QUARTERLY

  • Gauge your capacity and requirements
  • Adjust quarterly goals
  • Review scheduling tools and processes

You can:
- Be confident your business and brand is well represented across social media and on your website

- Be focused on your work and supporting your clients

- Let go of the overwhelm and stress and make time for you
 

''Just need to say you're marvellous!! I can now get up, get on and not worry about my social media and know that beautiful, on brand images and words that sounds like me are being posted ... you are worth every penny!! Interaction has jumped so much'
 

  • Constant support from us to discuss content, campaigns and goals (online, telephone or in person*)

  • A bespoke social media strategy implemented and executed to support your business where required

  • The production of personalised content to promote your brand and share your story

  • Full social media management so you don't have to worry about tweets, hashtags, handles or tagging (Facebook / Twitter / Instagram / LinkedIn / Pinterest)

  • Copy for blog posts with suitable images so that your expertise can be shared with your ideal clients 

  • PPC and Google Adword management to support your campaigns

  • Social Media Analytics



Want to chat about how we can help and what you need. Jump on a call or send us a message, we can't wait to hear all about your business! 

Gracie MartinComment
The Best Sites For Free Stock Photos

Stock photos are PANTS. Full on, 100%, triple A, rubbish. Who wants the cheesy grin of a 'businessman' (read: model in blue shirt) on their website? What about the woman laughing as she eats a salad, or completely misses whilst drinking water?

You'll know that once a month we send out some of our favourite images for you to use, completely royalty free, but sometimes, we go with stock.

We've sorted through the hideousness to bring you the best 10 free photo resources we use, every single day:

free stock photos

1. Unsplash
2. Pexels
3. Fancy Crave
4. Pixabay
5. Stocksnap.io
6. Burst
7. Gratisography
8. Negative Space
9. Picography
10. FoodiesFeed

Our passion is helping small businesses grow, we want to help you create an online presence that supports your business and gives you the confidence to flourish.


Are you a small business owner who dreads going on holiday?
Are you terrified that your social accounts will dry up, you won't be able to switch off and sales will slow down?

It doesn't have to be that way! Let us look after your accounts this summer whilst you have the break you deserve.

We'll take your brand and run with it, maintain engagement and run your campaigns. You'll arrive back home to fans eager to engage, an inbox bursting and you'll be ready to hit the ground running!

From just £99 p/m, it might be the best summer holiday you've ever had. 
We have limited space this year, so get in touch today and see how we can help!

BOOK YOUR FREE CONSULTATION TODAY

Laura Cutress
Top 5 FREE Digital Marketing Apps

Where is the time going?! It's that time of year (well it is in our office) where you are ready to power on, charged up with longer daylight hours and increased productivity. 

But really we all just want a holiday. Amirite? Whilst we're sitting here dreaming of landing that client that wants us on location in Hawaii, you guys should be getting to grips on the stuff out there available to make your life FEEL like a holiday. 

Are you feeling overwhelmed, frustrated or confused when it comes to scheduling, planning and posting??

You are a creative and professional small business owner, wanting to be seen as an expert in their field and feel well represented online. You want to feel organised and supported when it comes to social media, and be confident that your brand is working for you. 

That means confident your business is running whilst you're on the beach... or beer garden. Get away from the computer this summer! 

Today we want to share our most-used FREE apps available to you, which can help you get in control of your social media and free up some time in your day. 

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1. Hootsuite

Now is the time to get your campaigns planned and scheduled so that you can relax in the run up to Christmas. Check out Hootsuite (see also: Buffer) to get organised and schedule your social media posts waaaaay in advance. It's handy to see them as an overview, and for the small business, the free options are more than a useful start! 



2. Canva

A  good introduction to basic graphic design (and we mean basic) but if you want to develop your pre-existing branding, create a new FB ad, or ensure your team stick to a set insta-template, here's a good place to start. TIP - the stock images aren't fantastic. Stay tuned for our top sources of free images and of course, remember that we send out monthly stock images completely free to use every month with this newsletter. Other options:Wordswag



3. Mailchimp

Do you want to email all your clients at once? Mailchimp is a free online email marketing solution to manage subscribers, send emails, and track results. In fact, you're receiving this email c/o Mailchimp right now! It offers integrations with other programs such as websites and facebook which is super handy! Also, you will have seen the news about the new automations! Got current clients you need to update, people booked on a workshop that need reminder emails, or just a group of people that you want to send an offer to? It's now available, and FREE! 



4. IFTTT

Short for "if this then that", the classic computing algorithm, IFTTT links your social platforms, emails and storage together to act as an automated PA. Create recipes to post Instagram pictures to Twitter as native images, or trigger automations for dropbox storage. The world is your oyster here and can be a real time saver depending on the amount of tech in your life! 



5. Headspace

Social media is noisy, busy, and a million miles an hour. The expectation to be “on” at all times can lead to burnout, stress, and an unhealthy work-life balance. The Headspace app works to quiet the mind and sharpen your focus with guided mindfulness meditation.


Our passion is helping small businesses grow, we want to help you create an online presence that supports your business and gives you the confidence to flourish.

What are you waiting for? Have a holiday, and leave us to babysit Twitter. 

Book in for a chat HERE

(We'll bring the mojitos.)

Laura Cutress
How to Continue your Marketing Campaigns Whilst On Vacation

By the end of May, we'll have had 4 Bank Holidays here in the UK over the space of 8 weeks. Sure, that's good where the weekends are concerned, but that's 4 working days lost in a short amount of time! For many businesses and self employed solo-preneurs, that's 4 days of client contact and billable hours lost. 

However, we want our clients and the wider A&D family (that includes YOU!) to never feel out of touch with their audience, so with the next bank holiday round the corner, here's our recommendations:

1. Scheduling - use your Blog and Social Media Scheduling tools to keep your accounts active during your down time

2. Set your out of office - let your community know you're taking a break! Let them know you're away for a few days and they will appreciate your holiday responder reminding them when you are back.

3. Re-purpose - 4 day weeks got you so crazy busy there's been no sign of new content? Find a piece from the archives that's still relevant, re-package and re-share! Just because you've published it once, don't let your well curated content sit gathering dust! 
 

"But, I don't even have time to do any of those things!"

You need to check out Smooth Sailing. Our retainer package that allows you to be confident your business and brand is well represented across social media and on your website, get focused on your work and supporting your clients instead of what's happening online and ultimately let go of the overwhelm and stress and make time for you!

We have ONE more spot open for intake in May, so if you've been pondering it for a while, get in touch and let's get started today! 

Laura Cutress
The Best Times to Post on Social Media

THE WHERE, WHEN, AND WHY... 


We are having a FABULOUS week so far, fully unpacked in the new office (you can see more on our Instagram Stories) and have some very exciting meetings in the pipeline! 

The sun is still hiding away, but next week is a Bank Holiday so there's hope yet! 

Today we have a really short, sharp helpful post for you all. We understand that it's not always possible to post daily, and until you can get help to stay present all the time, you have to be picky about what, and when, you share online. Consistency is key...! 

It isn't enough to post content whenever you feel like it... but there's no on-size fits all of when to post either. Annoying. 

The best timing depends on: the platform, your audience location, your goals and your community. So, here's the best times to get the best out of your bare minumum:

FACEBOOK

Wednesday, Thursday & Friday - 12pm - 4pm
Weekends - Midday

People use Facebook at work, home and out and about. The closer the weekend is, the more people check out, and check into, Facebook

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TWITTER

Monday - Friday - 12:00-6:00pm

Twitter is most popular during short breaks, like down time at work an don the commute. Click-through rates are higher during weekdays and work hours.

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INSTAGRAM

Anytime! 

Built for mobile devices, users are online everywhere, all the time! One for spontaneity! 

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PINTEREST

5 - 11pm weekdays & Saturday mornings

Pinterest users are predominately female, and are most active in the evening so post when people have more time to sit back, relax & pin.
 


If you want to talk to us about managing your social media effectively, check out our Smooth Sailing Packages

From just £99 p/m we'll take your brand and run with it, increasing your following, engaging your community and making time for you to do your job! 

This is the fairy godmother of online marketing. It's for you if you feel overwhelmed keeping on top of your social offerings, lost in a sea of hashtags or simply out of time to spend managing your accounts. You are ready to feel confident that your brand is well represented online and reaching your ideal client, to free up some time to focus on what you do best and feel supported in all your campaigns.

BOOK YOUR FREE CONSULTATION TODAY

Laura Cutress
How to Beat the Instagram Shadowban

Have you heard about the reported Shadowban that's allegedly doing the rounds on Instagram? 
No?

Well thanks to a new, aggressive, algorithm aimed to tackle spam-bots, accounts all over the world, both business and personal, are being HIDDEN from external users when searched for. That means unless a user directly follows you, they won't see your posts. 


What does that mean? 

  • Less Reach
  • Less Impressions
  • Less Engagement
  • Less Visibility! 


For businesses and communities online who reply on their instagram feeds to connect with their community, that could be devastating!

Last week, the A&D account was hit HARD. We went from a 150+ engagement rate to just 10 overnight. It's like we were invisible, and the panic set in. Our business is ON social media!  What had gone wrong? Would we lose all of our clients?

Fortunately due to the way we manage these accounts... we know exactly why our account was affected, and our clients' weren't. We have the stats, the strategies and the systems to keep our clients from losing touch with their following and we picked things back up again right where we left off. 

If you're freaking out about this affecting you and how detrimental it could be, calm down and make sure you're doing these 5 simple things:

  1. Stop copying and pasting your hashtags. Do your research, be specific and find your target audience. 
  2. Mix it up a bit. Post organically - try different times of the day and don't look too robotic! 
  3. Take it easy on the automation. As above, make sure your scheduling tool isn't breaking Instagram's terms of service and don't even think about automating likes/comments! 
  4. Don't abuse Instagram's hourly and daily limits. Try not to exceed 150 likes, 60 comments and 60 follows/unfollows per hour.
  5. Take a break! 48 hours of down time can give your account time to settle. Switch off, and have some time off-screen.


So.. if you want to talk to us about how you can be sure to stay on top of those fickle Instagram algorithms and keep growing your accounts withengaged followers, grab a Social Activator Session with us today. 

Simply pick a time to suit you and we will spend 2 hours, 1-2-1, giving you the low down on how you can kick ass on social media.

We will get to grips with your social media woes, fast-track your marketing and accelerate your campaigns. Ask us all your questions, and we'll set you on the right path to see results immmediately.
 

SNAG YOUR SPOT TODAY

Laura Cutress
7 Simple Content Ideas

Content Creation... 


We all do it, even if we don't think we do! Maybe you flit aimlessly through instagram, or post sporadically on Facebook. Maybe you have a strategy but don't know how to implement it, or are simply stumped at what to say. 

You KNOW you are supposed to balance your content, take original images and share unique ideas... but where to start? 

Our newsletter today has 7 REALLY SIMPLE ideas that you can use to get you through the content week! Hoorah! 

So, here's 7 simple cues you can use to structure your content planner! 

1. Big Ideas - Share expect opinion (yours or someone elses), an idea or quote

2. Humour - Delve into the world of meme or gif for one that tickles you. 

3. Interaction - Ask a question, share a photo contest or quiz, or post a fill-in-the-black sentence.

4. Current News - Share POSITIVE news about your industry, business or community

5. Giving Back - Feature customers, share a giveaway or make a coupon/discount available

6. Day in the Life - Share a candid photo of your business or feature an employee

7. Education - Tell people about your product/service, what it can do or how they can use it better. 


Got these down already and still feel lost? You need a Social Activator session! Trust us, 2 hours can change how you view digital marketing forever*


(* until they update Facebook, again) 

Laura Cutress