Branding Your Business – Logos and Image

In order to establish a strong business brand, you also need to create a strong business image. This will be used by potential customers or consumers to assess their own expectations about the company. There is a crucial moment in every marketing strategy that is aimed at attracting the customers’ attention to your product and you achieve this through your company image and brand, which is also why it is of extreme importance.

More than any type of impression, you want to create a positive image for your customers. This will help ensure that you are at the top of their list when considering buying a product similar to yours. This is just the initial phase and eventually your customers’ confidence in your brand will soon come into play.

Creating a Professional Logo

In the world of business, the logo represents who you are as a business. Hence, it should be able to capture and reflect the nature of your business at its most basic level. Identity and reputation should follow.

As a reflection of your company, your objective is to design a logo with a professional touch because it is what creates the initial impression in the mind of the consumer. These first impressions are almost always impossible to undo, so you cannot risk coming up with a mediocre design. If you are unsure how to execute a design, it is always best to hire a professional to do it for you. This will help you attain a more consistent design for your logo that reinforces the message that your company is trying to convey. In fact, most businesses (big or small) allot an investment for this and you should as well.

As simple as it may sound, designing a logo is an intricate process, which is why you need a professional to help realize your vision and visualize your business concepts. Among the elements that must be considered and combined effectively are colors, shapes, light, space, and so much more. Make sure to include this in your brand planning process.

Business Input Into The Design

Although you leave the designing job to the hands of a professional logo designer, this does not mean that you (the business owner) are eliminated from the formula. This is your business and it is your vision, therefore it is the most essential element in the logo creation process.

The logo design process involves gathering information and producing creative ideas that will be utilized by the designer in coming up with the design. Careful planning, competitive analysis and brainstorming of ideas is an essential step to take before jumping into the actual design process. You and the designer must work in a symbiotic manner – you can share your business input with the designer for them to translate a graphic representation of your ideas, while they can propose designing elements that will jive with your business identity.

Where To Get Creative Ideas?

When dealing with the technical aspect of marketing strategy, often the challenge is to produce creative ideas for your design. The key here is to stimulate your brain to arouse creative thoughts that will make your brand stand out and still maintain that professional image.

Here are great tips you can try to squeeze out those creative juices:

1.) Spend time reading to be able to get inspiration from various reading materials.

2.) Search the web and observe various sites you visit. Look at how the designs are produced and what kind of reaction it elicits from you.

3.) Ask your employees or other staff members for ideas. You can take a small idea and develop it into a valid design concept.

Image is such a vital element in the business brand, which is why it is your main objective to create a professional design that is going to last.

 

Social Media – Facebook in 15 Minutes a Day

With over 500 million active users who spend more than 700 billion minutes per month
online, Facebook is a natural first stop for marketers looking to reach an online audience.

The biggest benefits of Facebook include:

• Reach (Nearly everyone is there!)
• Ease of use (If my dad can figure it out, anyone can)
• Ability to add numerous media, including audio, images, and video to your page
• Ability to email entire groups of fans at a time

If you decide to go the Facebook route, your first step is to create a “Like” page for
your business. This is basically a profile for your business. Until recently, these pages
used to be called “Fan” pages. Personal profiles limit the number of people you can be
friends with, while “Like” pages do not. Also, “Like” pages enable you to create an RSS
feed and build custom applications. There are a number of tutorials online with stepby-
step instructions for creating a “Like” page.

However, if that’s overwhelming, I recommend you outsource this. You should be able
to find someone affordable who can set this up for you. Be careful though, there are
lots of people jumping on the Facebook bandwagon who want to make a name for
themselves as social media experts.

Once you have created your Facebook “Like” page, your daily 15-minute to-do list
includes the following:

1. Update your status. Be sure to make it relevant to your audience. Skip the
“breakfast” posts unless you’re a chef! (1 minute)

2. Add new blog posts, videos, photos, etc. to your wall. Many other social media
sites like Twitter as well as your blog can be set up to add these updates
automatically to your wall. (2 minutes)

3. Review comments on your wall and respond to them. (4 minutes)

4. Review your news feed and spend a few minutes commenting on posts and
updates from your contacts. (4 minutes)

5. Respond to invitations and messages in your inbox. (2 minutes)

6. Locate new people to invite to your “Like” page by checking out the friends of
current page fans (2 minutes)

This timeframe may seem ambitious, and it is! You may also need a very fast internet
connection to pull it off. Depending on how many messages and posts you actually
get, and how quickly you want to add new friends, you might choose to be a bit more
flexible.

Still, the idea is to focus on the most important activities and stop when you’re done.
Sure, you could easily spend the whole day puttering around on Facebook, but your
goal is to set a time limit and use it to the max. If you have extra time, you can go back
and play Farmville or challenge a friend to a game of Text Twist. Or you could decide
to add more friends or get more involved in a conversation. In the meantime, though,
get in, get out, and get customers!

Fast Solutions To Drive Traffic to Your Website

SEO and Website Traffic

Website traffic is for many business models, the key to profits. The more traffic you have, the bigger your bottom line. Whether you’re launching a new product or just want a quick influx of cash, sometimes you need tons of traffic quickly. Here are 5 fast solutions to drive traffic to your website.

#1 Social media.

Social media works quickly and if you have a large following on any of the social media sites, you can generate a ton of traffic to your website quickly. The key is to create attention grabbing posts that arouse curiosity, make people laugh or stir up a controversy. You want to generate click throughs to your website.

Make the most of your social networking tactics and use technology to get the job done. For example, one StumbleUpon post can be integrated with both Facebook and Twitter profiles so you’re making waves on all three social sites at once.

#2 Article marketing.

Article marketing works well when you concentrate your efforts on quality article marketing sites with large audiences. One well written and informative article, rewritten a few times, and submitted to a handful of directories can generate the traffic you’re looking for. Be sure to include a bio box that includes a call to action and a link to your website to motivate click-throughs.

#3 Blogging.

Post on your own blog or be a guest blogger on a blog with a large number of subscribers. Like social networking, if you offer an informative, controversial or entertaining post, you’ll have people clicking through to your website like mad. Of course, if you also promote this wonderful blog post(s) via social media, you can double your traffic results.

#4 Video content.

It’s amazing how quickly a video can go viral. Like print content, videos that entertain, stir up a bit of controversy or offer tremendous value cause a buzz. They’re forwarded to friends and downloaded on laptops and mobile devices around the globe. A good video can generate all the traffic you need. Again, integrate a bit of social media to promote your video, blog about it too, and you can multiply your traffic results.

#5 Partnerships.

Partnering with a relevant or compatible business can work quite well to generate traffic fast. The key is to come up with a mutually beneficial agreement. Find people in your industry that are willing to work with you and help each other drive traffic. A partnership may include guest blogging on each other’s sites, swapping advertisements or even promoting one another in your ezine.

It’s possible to drive a ton of traffic to your website fast. The trick is to have a plan in place, know your audience and your goals, and take action. To your success!

Link Your Facebook Employer to Your Fan Page

After launching Design Lab 10, and having an appreciation for the value of social media networking and marketing, I quickly created a Fan Page on Facebook. I then went back to my personal profile and input my company as my employer (partially because I am a stickler for detail, but mostly to take advantage of one extra place to promote the company). What I found was that in doing so, I actually created an additional page (a Community Page) for Design Lab 10 and it wasn’t linking to my Fan Page as I had hoped.

A Community Page is usually not properly maintained (you can go in and claim it, but don’t be fooled, that doesn’t do you justice or make it link to the Fan Page that companies put time and money in to maintaining). Some of your “fans” “like” activities are being wasted on the Community Page. Additionally, those fans don’t receive the updates that they would if they “liked” your Fan Page.

I looked at others’ pages and they seemed to be experiencing the same shortcoming. I even checked with people I consider to be experts in this type of glitch and no one seemed to have the answer. Until recently!

After numerous hours of research and combining lots of other people’s knowledge with mine, I am writing this post to share how to link your Facebook profile employer link to your company’s Fan Page.

Since Facebook has recently launched a new profile page, please take note as to which profile version the directions below refer. These first few steps are the same regardless of which profile version you are using.

In order to complete the directions below, you will need either Firefox or Google Chrome installed on your computer. Most of us have one of those (or both) but if you don’t you can click on the link below. You don’t need to be technically gifted to use either of the developer add-ons, don’t worry.

To get and use Firefox follow these two steps:

1. Install Firefox and run the setup.

2. Install add-on: Firefox Web Developer

To get and use Google Chrome follow these two steps:

1. Install Google Chrome and run the setup.

2. Install add-on: Web Developer extension

Now, you will need your Facebook Fan Page unique URL ID number. To get it:

1. Go to your Fan Page.

2. Look in the web browser bar and after the last forward slash (“/”) you should see a number* – copy and paste that number to a blank document so you can have it available.

*If you don’t have a number in the browser bar because you have renamed your Fan Page, don’t worry. Click on the Photos tab and then click on any photo or album. The number is now displayed in the browser bar at the end of the URL. Copy and paste all of the numbers after the last equal sign (“=”) – that is your ID number.

This is where which profile you have comes in to play.

Follow these steps if you have the old profile:

(Make sure to use either Firefox or Chrome when doing these steps.)

1. Go to Profile -> Info tab -> Edit

2. Select Education and Work -> look for Employer field box (with Add Another Job below it) and put your cursor in the box so you can find it easily.

3. Open the Web Developer add-on that you installed.

- In Firefox, go to Tools (on the top bar of browser window) -> Web Developer -> Forms -> Display Form Details

- In Chrome, look to the right of the browser bar and you’ll see a little picture that looks like this: Click it and then Forms -> Display Form Details

(You’ll see a whole bunch of coding “gibberish” at this point, don’t worry, that means you’re doing it right!)

4. In the box where you left your cursor* paste your unique URL ID of your Fan Page that you copied before.

*It should be next to code highlighted in yellow that looks like this:

- the last number of the code could be a 0 or a 1, depending on how many jobs you already have listed.

5. Turn off the Web Developer add-on and continue filling in the form as you would normally%u2026TA-DA!

Follow these steps if you have the new profile:

(Make sure to use either Firefox or Chrome when doing these steps.)

1. Go to Edit Profile -> Education and Work -> Edit

2. Write in the name of your company in the field to add a new employer and hit enter.

3. Open the Web Developer add-on that you installed. (

- In Firefox, go to Tools (on the top bar of browser window) -> Web Developer -> Forms -> Display Form Details

- In Chrome, look to the right of the browser bar and you’ll see a little picture that looks like this: Click it and then Forms -> Display Form Details

(You’ll see a whole bunch of coding “gibberish” at this point, don’t worry, that means you’re doing it right!)

4. You will see a red outlined box around the name of the employer that you just entered and the other fields that will get filled in regarding this job. In the 7th grey box within the red outlined area, paste your unique URL ID of your Fan Page that you copied before.

*It should be next to code highlighted in yellow that looks like this:

- the last number of the code could be a 0 or a 1, depending on how many jobs you already have listed.

5. Turn off the Web Developer add-on and continue filling in the form as you would normally -TA-DA!

What a relief and congratulations on a job well done! If you think this was daunting, or need help, feel free to hire a qualified person to do it for you (hint, hint). If you enjoyed the information, please leave a comment, or go “like” me.