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Whether you were surprised to learn the recent news of Google+’s impending demise in April 2019 or you saw it coming for some time, chances are that – if Google+ is part of your social media repertoire – you may be seeking some refreshing alternatives. Premier Atlanta marketing agency Woodall Creative Group is pleased to present you with three substitutions that could convert Google+’s loss to your gain…

Place a Renewed Focus on Your Google My Business Page

If you don’t already own and manage your company’s Google My Business Page, claim your business listing ASAP and make sure all the information on your page is accurate. Your business address, phone number(s), web address, hours and other information that may prove relevant to clients and/or customers is also significant to Google – and more importantly your company’s Google ranking. Your company name, address and phone number (aka NAP) on file on your Google My Business Page serves as your digital landscape calling card. Post them everywhere you can – in blogs, in directories, in press release, etc. – and this can serve as a nice little SEO boost, as well. Best of all, Google now offers a user-friendly mobile app – making it even easier to update your page and engage with customers.

Explore Previously Unchartered Social Media Sites

All the content and energy you used to devote to your Google+ page can now be rechanneled to new social media networking sites. In addition to the major players like Facebook, YouTube and Twitter, if you’re not already on Instagram – with its 1 billion + users, NOW is a great time to jump onboard. Depending on your target audience and product/service mix, you may also want to consider LinkedIn, Snapchat, and Pinterest, among others.

Increase Your Reach on All of Your Current Social Media Sites

Of course, you could also take the energy you once reserved for Google+ and use it to grow your fanbase on all your current social media sites. Since social media is an ever-changing animal and social media users are moving targets, it’s wise to become a student of the best days/times to post on the channels where your company currently has a presence. Also look at your content mix to ensure that you are happy with your messaging. If it’s not engaging the audience, switch it up to find what will. Not all posts should be a novella – some of the best performing posts on Facebook are just 80 characters or less. Find unique ways to get your message across, use a blend of videos when able and avoid the temptation to make every post self-promotional. Of course, if you really want to grow your fanbase – consider putting your money where your mouth is and running a series of social media ads. Facebook, in particular, has an easy to use platform for creating and launching ads.

If you’re mourning the imminent loss of Google+ and want some help to breathe new life into your social media marketing, the talented team at Woodall Creative Group stands at the ready. From eye-catching graphics and engaging content to strategically-planned social media calendars, we can help you take your social media presence to the next level. To get started, simply call us today at (706) 658-0244, email us at info@woodallcreative.com or fill out our convenient online contact form and one of our team members will be in touch with you shortly!

Believe it or not, but the holidays will be upon us before we know it! There will be plenty of shopping, entertaining, decorating, wrapping, cooking, cleaning and merry-making to go around in the weeks leading up to the Holidays.

But – rather than adding the heavy responsibility of creating, printing, stuffing, sealing, labeling and posting a teetering tower of holiday cards to your to do list – why not take a cue from technology and make plans to send customized DIGITAL HOLIDAY CARD to your associates, vendors, and clients this year?

All you need to get started is a list of recipients and a strong creative partner to craft and send a professionally designed holiday e-card of which you can be proud. It’s like setting the table for a holiday feast and letting someone else take care of the cooking, serving and cleaning – all you have to do is sit back, relax and ENJOY!

Need a little more convincing? Here are a few more benefits to making the switch from tangible holiday cards to e-cards:

  1. E-Cards are Planet-Friendly: According to RecycleWorks.org, an estimated 2.6 billion holiday cards are sold each year in the United States. That’s enough to fill a football field 10 stories high! If we all sent one less card this year, we could save 50,000 cubic yards of paper (that’s THOUSANDS of TREES!) Electronic holiday greeting cards serve as a waste-free alternative.
  2. E-Cards are Cost-Effective: What good business leader ISN’T concerned with saving his or her company money? While e-cards are not cost-free – due to design costs and e-card platform subscription – you won’t have to pay for printing and posting, OR lost hours devoted to stuffing, labeling and sealing your paper cards.
  3. E-Cards Boast a Fast Turn-Around Time: Consider the time that goes into designing and printing a paper card, not to mention the flurry of activity that follows just to get that card to its intended destination. While an e-card does require design time, once approved – with your list of recipients uploaded to the e-card platform of choice – a click of the mouse is all it takes to send it to dozens, hundreds and thousands of inboxes.
  4. E-Cards are Trackable: When you post and mail a holiday card in the traditional way, you take it on faith that it will make it to its intended destination. Unless you receive a response thanking you for said card, you may never know for sure. E-cards – on the other hand – are trackable. You can see who opened your card, how many times they opened it and when.
  5. E-Cards are Excellent Marketing Tools: You may elect to send one paper card to a client in hopes that it will be displayed somewhere for everyone to see. A professionally designed e-card can be sent to any number of employees at one company to increase your reach and solidify your brand company-wide.
  6. E-Cards can be Animated: Why mail a flat printed card when you COULD send an e-card that virtually jumps off the computer screen. An animated e-card is far more engaging and more likely to be shared and talked about!
  7. E-Cards can be Shared on Social Media (and MORE!): It’s not uncommon to miss a person or two (or TWENTY) on your holiday card list. By sharing your e-card on all of your social media platforms, you increase your reach by leaps and bounds. Depending on the platform used to create it, you may even be able to share your e-card on your website – a terrific way to send Happy Holiday wishes to everyone who visits your website. If you feature a TV screen in your office lobby, you could even show your holiday card on a loop to share with everyone who walks through your front door.

Atlanta marketing agency, Woodall Creative Group is currently taking orders for Holiday E-cards! Get a jump on the holiday season by checking this very important item off your to do list!  Our talented team of graphic design elves is eager to get started on crafting an eye-catching e-card that promotes your company brand. Getting started is easy! Simply contact us at design@woodallcreative.com, call us at 706-658-0244 or fill out our convenient online contact form.

Looking for some design inspiration?
Here are just a few samples of e-cards we’ve designed for some of our awesome clients…

The key to success in social media marketing is CONSISTENCY – particularly for any company that puts a lot of stock in its social media presence!  Strive for consistency in your company’s brand image, consistency in your messaging (which should always sound as though it is coming from the same centralized figure/being/collective group), consistency of response times and – most importantly – consistency in the number of posts you share with your audience each week. While the statistics may vary with regard to timing and frequency, once your company has found its sweet spot (which often varies by industry and region) – STICK TO IT! In other words, YOU may take a vacation, but your social media presence should NOT. You’ve fought long and hard to build up a following on social media, it would be a shame to lose touch with your core audience – even for a week – only to potentially face weeks of fighting to get in front of them again. That valuable time lost when your competition might have gotten the upper hand! Fortunately for all of us who yearn to put our toes in the sand or ski the slopes from time to time, there are some really great options that mean your social media presence will never have to skip a beat. To save you some time and research, Woodall Creative Group has compiled a number of those options for you here:

  1. Look to Your Creative Partner:  If you already collaborate with an agency on the design of your social media graphics and/or messaging, you may want to look to them to “housesit” your social media accounts while you’re away. You might be pleasantly surprised by the results and may even want to consider making that a permanent gig for them – allowing you the freedom to focus on other more pressing aspects of your job. If they’re really good at what they do (like the award-winning creative team at Woodall Creative Group), they’ll be able to study your posts from the past, discover what resonates most with your core audience, channel the brand image you’ve worked so hard to build and maybe even try a few new tricks to grow and engage your audience. Having a strong social media partner that can get results is worth its weight in gold.
  2. Tap a Social Media Savvy Member of Your Team:  Not that we’re ever ones to stereotype, but millennials are typically social media savvy and may prove a great resource for when you’re going to be out of the office on vacation. However, you don’t want to run the risk of a potential “house party” while you’re away – possibly alienating your core audience with some inconsistent messaging and/or graphics that doesn’t quite jive your brand image. Assign your most reliable team member who ALSO knows their way around your social media channels to pull together 5 to 7 days of messaging and accompanying images PRIOR to your departure for your approval. Once approved, they can stick to the agreed upon plan and post every day that you’re away, giving you the peace of mind you deserve to enjoy your vacation. If they do a good job, you know you can rely on them again during your NEXT vacation.
  3. Build a Social Media Calendar and Automate:  In the event that you manage more than one social media channel and you have yet to discover the joys of automation, be prepared to have your mind blown! In #2 of this list, we suggested you have your social media savvy team member pull together 5 to 7 days of messaging. In the event that you DON’T have a social media savvy and reliable team member to whom you can turn (or you just prefer to do things yourself), YOU can be the one to plan ahead, pull together a social media calendar of 5 to 7 days of messaging (or however long you plan to be gone) and upload/schedule those messages through an automation tool such as HootSuite, Sprout Social or Loomly. Not only will they allow you the freedom to pre-schedule your posts, but they will also allow you to post content to multiple social media platforms. While this may mean more work for you in the days leading up to your vacation, at least it assures you a stress-free, well-deserved break from the office once that glorious time arrives. Best of all, many of these automation tools offer free trial periods. You can try several to see which proves the best fit for you and your needs. You may find one that you love SO MUCH that you continue to use it after your vacation – cutting your posting time dramatically and providing you with valuable insights.

Now that you know the reasons WHY you can’t let your social media presence lapse – even for a week – AND three potential ways to cover your social media responsibilities while you’re away, Woodall Creative Group wishes you a peaceful and relaxing vacation! Bon Voyage!!!

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To learn more about Woodall Creative Group and the many ways we can help your company promote its unique brand – both in print and in the digital space – we invite you to visit us online at www.woodallcreative.com.

The Importance of Consistency and Multiple Touchpoints in Marketing

Rolling out an effective marketing plan is not unlike planting season on a farm. If executed properly, you’ll get to reap the rewards later for all of the preparation and promoting you do today. Just like at a farm, you till the soil, sow your seeds, keep watch to ensure growth and prepare for the harvest.

Dr. Jeffrey Lant – professor, author of more than 60 books and internationally renowned expert on the subjects of marketing, business development, copywriting and more – put forth the “Rule of Seven” marketing principle decades ago. The principle dictates that it takes an average of seven touchpoints before a customer remembers your brand message and feels compelled to act.  That’s a lot of marketing seeds to plant. While the advent of the internet and social media has served to speed up the process considerably from the original 18-month period for the Rule of Seven to take root, there are a number of things to take into consideration when planting those seeds…

Tilling the Soil: When planning your marketing campaign, make an effort to really stir things up. Do your research to see if there’s an audience segment you may have missed with prior campaigns who might be the next great thing for your brand. Also, dig DEEP to come up with a marketing campaign that will really grab your intended audience’s attention. Phone it in, and that will not only come through in your less-than-stellar messaging – but also in customer’s response.

“In a crowded marketplace, you want your message to stand out,” said Tracy Woodall, founder of Metro Atlanta-based Woodall Creative Group. “Be sure to outline all of the differentiators that set your company apart from the competition – everything that makes you ‘special.’ Stay true to the look and feel of previous campaigns for brand consistency, unless it’s time for a complete company rebrand – which is an excellent way to really shake things up and attract members from a new, previously underserved market.

Sowing the Seeds: Once you have a fairly clear plan in place, it’s time to start sowing the seeds through the design of your campaign and identification of the various modes of delivery you will use to reach your audience. Rather than planting just ONE kind of seed, use a variety of means to get your message out there. Think of the rows in your garden as streams of communication: website, digital marketing, e-mail marketing, social media, direct mail, print ads, TV commercials, radio ads, billboards, promotional items, experiential marketing and MORE. Because today’s marketplace is so crowded and noisy, multiple touchpoints are the key to success. Don’t merely select one avenue at one time – it will be the marketing equivalent of shouting into the wind. After you’ve identified the best modes of delivery, start creating designs to fit.

“If design is not your strength, consider outsourcing to an agency,” shared Woodall. “You may be highly skilled at identifying your audience, brainstorming ideas and media buying, but if you’re lacking in the design department – your entire campaign will suffer. To compound matters, you may even be compromising your company’s brand image. Professionally designed digital and print pieces can have a completely opposite effect, propelling your brand in a positive direction in the eyes of your audience.”

Keep Watch to Ensure Growth: Once you launch your campaign, don’t take your eye off the ball. Track results and make adjustments when necessary. If you notice that your digital efforts are really taking off, whereas your print campaign might be falling short – you may want to reallocate any remaining budget to the digital side for continued traction.

“Many companies miss this step,” said Woodall. “They send their campaign out into the world, then watch their sales results to measure its success. There are a variety of ways to track results and measure success – not merely by watching one’s bottom line. “

Prepare for the Harvest: Another often overlooked step many companies miss is to communicate the upcoming campaign to its employees. It’s SO IMPORTANT to share your marketing direction with the folks in the trenches.

“An internal campaign rollout is a great way to get team members excited and to encourage them to reinforce that same messaging to customers,” suggests Woodall. “Try to practice patience. The results won’t always be immediate. However, if your marketing campaign is truly successful, your employees will be better prepared for a bountiful harvest of happy customers. Not to mention the fact that your product or service had better live up to the hype, or that new customer you just worked so hard to earn might not return in the future.”

Begin Planning for Next Year’s Planting Season:  Once your campaign has hit the market and you’ve begun to reap the rewards of your hard work, it’s not time to rest on your laurels. It’s time to start projecting and laying the groundwork for NEXT YEAR’S marketing campaign.

“Take a look at your tracking to assess what worked and what didn’t,” said Woodall. “If everything worked, pat yourself on the back and determine what had the strongest impact on your campaign’s success: mode of delivery, audience identification, the message itself or a combination of all of the above. If some elements were stronger than others, start considering ways to make the weaker elements stronger the next go-around for even BETTER results next year.”

Woodall Creative Group is a trusted resource for marketing managers and company leaders throughout the Southeast seeking a creative partner to share their company’s unique brand story with the world. If you need help planning for a harvest of your own, contact the team at Woodall Creative Group at 706-658-0244, info@woodallcreative.com or via our convenient online contact form. To learn more about what we do and sneak a peek inside our extensive portfolio, visit www.woodallcreative.com.

Atlanta Agency Honored for Kids ‘R’ Kids Learning Academies® Marketing Campaign

Atlanta, January 9, 2018 – The Winners of the 12th Annual W3 Awards have been announced by the Academy of Interactive and Visual Arts and Atlanta-based marketing agency, Woodall Creative Group, is honored to be among them. Receiving over 5,000 entries, the W3 Awards honors outstanding Websites, Web Marketing, Web Video, Mobile Sites/Apps & Social content created by some of the best interactive agencies, designers, and creators worldwide.

“The creativity and quality of this season’s entries raised the bar once again. As our connected world continues to expand in new and exciting ways, our winners are a true testament to the power of Web creativity across the world.” said Derek Howard, the director of the AIVA. “On behalf of the over 750 members of The Academy of Interactive and Visual Arts, we applaud the talents and dedication our winners showcased and commend all of this year’s entrants for their commitment to furthering the quality of the content we view online.”

Woodall Creative Group’s award-winning entry – which was recognized with a Silver W3 Award – was a comprehensive marketing campaign created on behalf of Kids ‘R’ Kids Learning Academies® to promote school enrollment. Established in 1985 and headquartered in Duluth, Kids ‘R’ Kids Learning Academies is a national early education and childcare franchise that boasts over 160 locations all across the United States. Each academy provides a secure, nurturing, and educational environment for children between the ages of 6 weeks and 12 years.

“Collaborating with the corporate team at Kids ‘R’ Kids is always a joy,” explained Tracy Woodall, President of Woodall Creative Group. “They understand the early education industry like no other and are passionate about what they do. Their marketing department places an emphasis on not only growing the brand nationwide, but also ensuring that enrollment remains high at the local level. Having worked with them for nearly 25 years, our agency has a deep understanding of not only their core strengths and differentiators, but also of their target audience. The award-winning campaign was titled “We ‘R’ Ready” and included a video, social media graphics, banner ads, postcards, flyers, print ads, incentive coupons and more – all of which could be customized for each school. The messaging on a whole spoke directly to the parent – communicating the fact that they might not always be ready to see their kids grow up and head off to school, but their children and the staff at Kids ‘R’ Kids Learning Academies are always ready for a fun, highly educational experience.”

Click here to view Campaign

Woodall Creative Group serves a wide variety of clients from a broad array of industries. Organizations and companies seeking a creative partner to aid them with brand development, strategic design and digital innovation are encouraged to contact Woodall Creative Group by calling 706.658.0244 or e-mailing support@woodallcreative.com.  To learn more about Woodall Creative Group, interested parties are invited to visit www.woodallcreative.com.

View Video below:

 

Jeffrey Love (Creative Director) and Tracy Woodall (President)

About Woodall Creative Group: With twenty-seven years and several International Davey Awards to its credit, Woodall Creative Group excels at combining artistry with strategy, regularly implementing imaginative corporate branding campaigns and designing top-quality collateral materials such logos, brochures, marketing materials, social media branding, and packaging – among others. The Atlanta-based agency has served a wide variety of clients from a broad array of industries. Included among them are Kids ‘R’ Kids Learning Academies, Naturally Fresh, My Friend’s Place, Tri-State Tire and Carino’s Italian Grill, just to name a few. Additional services available at Woodall Creative Group include website development and design, advertising, marketing, social media management, public relations, promotional products and more. To learn more, please visit www.woodallcreative.com.

About The W3 Awards: The W³ Awards honors creative excellence on the Web, and recognizes the creative and marketing professionals behind award winning Websites, Web Video and Online Marketing programs. Simply put, the W³ is the first major Web competition to be accessible to the biggest agencies, the smallest firms, and everyone in between. Small firms are as likely to win as Fortune 500 companies and international agencies. The W3 Awards is sanctioned and judged by the Academy of Interactive and Visual Arts, an invitation only body consisting of top-tier professionals from a “Who’s Who” of acclaimed media, advertising, and marketing firms. For more information about the W³ Awards, please visit www.w3award.com.