Keep Up The Good Werk — A Free Desktop Download

Can you believe it’s already the end of February? You’ve already put in 43 werk days for 2012 and Spring fever is just around the corner.

Our team at Werkshop wanted to help you celebrate hitting the 16 and 2/3 mark in the year by encouraging you with this Free Desktop Download.

We know how tough it is to juggle all of the responsibilites of work and life, so we just wanted to say Keep Up The Good Werk.


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7 Instant Improvements to Your Brand’s Website

One of the most powerful tools your brand can use to generate business is a website. However, many brands are using their website like a set of old carpentry tools. Ultimately, they might be able to get the job done, but there are new tools that help get the job done quicker and better.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

With that said, here are 7 instant improvements you can take to upgrade your website to the most powerful tool in your toolbox:

Usability is Key – When most brands are wire-framing their website, they forget about who the site is being built for… the customer. A recent study showed that 76% of consumers say the most important factor in a website’s design is “the website makes it easy for me to find what I want.” Do you know why consumers are visiting your website? If so, are you making it easy for them to find the information they want?

Use call-to-actions that stand out – A call-to-action is one of the critical elements most brands leave off their homepage. Directing people to take action on your website above the fold is something many webpages lack. One reason your website may not be driving sales is because you’re not giving it the chance to do so.

Make sure its Mobile Optimized – According to recent Nielson’s numbers, 43% of all mobile phones are smartphones. This means brands simply can’t afford to ignore mobile phones and mobile phone users. The first, and most important thing, you can do to mobile-optimize your site is to create a mobile friendly version. This allows people who are visiting your website on a mobile device to easily view it on a screen that is typically 2 inches wide by 3 inches long

Produce More Content – Websites that create lots of content, build active social media profiles, and blog regularly are much more successful online than their peers. Don’t view your website as a nametag that introduces people to your product and services, instead view it as the initial conversation that engages with people and tells a story. The key element in this is to create content that not only sells, but also educates consumers.

Integrate Social – If your website doesn’t allow visitors to share content, products or services with their social networks, you’re missing out on an easy lead-generation tool. What can you do to help move this process along? While you can’t directly influence whether someone decides to share your content, you can indirectly encourage and make it simple for them by adding social sharing buttons and providing high quality content.

Provide Customer Success/Testimonies – In our Social Media Revolution DIG, we shared a statistic that speaks directly to this element. 90% of consumers trust peer reviews, while only 14% trust advertisements. Providing customer success stories and testimonials will allow people who view your website to hear about your products or services from their peers.

Establish On-Page Optimization – Everyone wants to be at the top of search engine results for keywords in their industry. While on-page SEO only accounts for approximately 25% of your ranking, there are small things you can do to improve your overall SEO results. Optimizing your page title, page URL, header tags, image text, and metadata all help in creating a solid page for optimizing search terms.

While there are numerous improvements you can make to your website, these are 7 easy ways to start generating instant results tomorrow.

If you’re interested in learning more about how your brand can improve its website, we’d love to walk you through it. You can contact us here.

 

NEXT Bowling Green DIG: Tuesday, April 24th “A DIG for the Ages”

WERKSHOP INSTITUTE
PRESENTS THE
APRIL BOWLING GREEN DIG:

A DIG for the Ages – How to Effectively Create, Organize and Promote an Event for your Brand 

Speakers: 
Samantha Owens Pyle, VP Communications Strategy
Jeremy Chandler, Social Media & Media Relations Specialist

Tuesday, April 24th
8:30 a.m. to 10 a.m.

Light breakfast will be served compliments of Citizens First.

Register here: http://2012bgaprildig.eventbrite.com/

What We’ll Cover:
Flash mobs are so 2009. So how can your brand create an event that will captivate your potential or existing customers? That’s the question we’re going to answer in April’s DIG, A DIG for the Ages.

Whether you’re planning a grand opening event, celebrating the launch of a new product or hosting a private gathering for your top customers, event marketing can be quite the challenge. You have to take care of ordering the invitations or materials, ensuring your vendors are available and confirming last minute details. There is plenty of work…. and that doesn’t even include getting people to show up.

During A Dig for the Ages, we’ll walk through the fundamental steps of creating, organizing and promoting a successful event for your brand. From the initial stages of creating the event to following up with media outlets, we’ll share the comprehensive strategy we use when organizing events for our clients.

Sponsored by
Citizens First

NEW LOCATION!!
Our Bowling Green DIGs will be held in the Southern Kentucky Performing Arts Center’s Studio Theater for the remainder of 2012.

SKyPAC
601 College Street
Bowling Green, KY 42101

 

NEXT Nashville DIG: Wednesday, April 25th “A DIG for the Ages”

WERKSHOP INSTITUTE
PRESENTS THE
APRIL NASHVILLE DIG:

A DIG for the Ages – How to Effectively Create, Organize and Promote an Event for your Brand

Speakers: 
Samantha Owens Pyle, VP Communications Strategy
Jeremy Chandler, Social Media & Media Relations Specialist

Wednesday, April 25th
8:30 a.m. to 10 a.m.

Breakfast will be served starting at 8 a.m. and is sponsored by

 

 

 

 

Register here: http://nashaprildig.eventbrite.com/

What We’ll Cover:
Flash mobs are so 2009. So how can your brand create an event that will captivate your potential or existing customers? That’s the question we’re going to answer in April’s DIG, A DIG for the Ages.

Whether you’re planning a grand opening event, celebrating the launch of a new product or hosting a private gathering for your top customers, event marketing can be quite the challenge. You have to take care of ordering the invitations or materials, ensuring your vendors are available and confirming last minute details. There is plenty of work…. and that doesn’t even include getting people to show up.

During A Dig for the Ages, we’ll walk through the fundamental steps of creating, organizing and promoting a successful event for your brand. From the initial stages of creating the event to following up with media outlets, we’ll share the comprehensive strategy we use when organizing events for our clients.

NEW LOCATION REMINDER:
Nashville School of Law
4013 Armory Oaks Drive
Nashville, TN 37204

 

In the Shop — Our Interest in Pinterest

Last week, we had the privilege of hosting a Pinterest roundtable discussion in our Nashville office. After our “Social Media Revolution” DIG, a discussion sparked on how brands are using the hottest social network on the web right now. We had the privilege of talking with some of the most brilliant social marketing minds in Nashville on how Pinterest could benefit our clients.

Every good roundtable discussion needs 3 things: Macbooks, White Boards & Krispy Kreme.

Here were a few of the takeaways:

  • With its exponential growth and market saturation, Pinterest is something that can’t be ignored and doesn’t seem to be going away anytime soon.
  • The majority of Pinterest users are women, some studies show 80%. Before you jump into the tool, make sure your target market is using it.
  • When pinning images, strategically determine how you’re going to leverage them for your brand through linking, watermarking, etc.
  • As with every other social network, the key for brands using Pinterest is to “help, not sell”. Make sure you’re adding value to the lives of those who follow your boards and repin your images.

 

HUGE thanks to Bill Seaver, John Cade and Ashley Segroves for taking time to join us and provide valuable insights into leveraging the new tool. Having roundtable discussions like these is just one of the many reasons we love working in Nashville!

What brands have you seen using Pinterest well?

If you’ve got a marketing topic you’d like to discuss, let us know.

 

HOW TO: Take your information from boring to scoring with Inforgraphs

Whether you’re projecting global internet traffic usage for 2015 or explaining the danger of sitting all day, infographs have proven themselves to be a powerful tool for information sharing. Most of you are probably familiar with infographs and might have even referenced or shared them with your friends, but have you considered how you can leverage them for you brand?

There are endless possibilities. You can use them to highlight statistical information about your products or services, share information regarding the benefits of your industry or break down your annual report for shareholders. However you slice it, infographs have become the premier way for changing “boring statistics” into “powerful insights”.

Here’s a recent infograph we found which shares financial information for one of our favorite brands, Apple:

The one thing that stood out to us in this infograph was the fact that Apple brought 4 times more revenue than the previous year’s giant, Walmart while spending 3 times less on operations. And that’s the brilliant thing about infographs, what stands out to us might be completely different than what stands out to you.

So, as you’re looking for creative ways to share your annual report this year or highlight your products and/or services, consider how you can use inforgraphs to grab the attention of your audience like never before.

If you have any questions or are interested in creating an infograph for your business, feel free to contact us here.

What NOT to do with Social Media

As our first DIG of 2012, “The Social Media Revolution” was wrapping up in Nashville, someone in the audience brought up an interesting point….. The DIG focused on how social media can completely change the way you market a brand, however this particular person was interested in what NOT to do when implementing social media into your marketing plan.

After we thought about it, here are 3 things your brand shouldn’t do in regards to social media….


Do NOT try to Use Social Media Without A Plan

Before you do anything online, you MUST have a plan of action. You cannot simply assume “If I build it, they will come.” Just because you have an account on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or anything else does not mean that more people will respond to your brand. Set goals for how you want to manage your brand online and what you want to achieve, because if you do nothing, then your brand will quickly be forgotten. It is hard to measure success without clearly defined goals.

Do NOT Post Sporadically and Don’t Get Boring

Maintain a good schedule of monitoring your accounts. Whether you make a post once a month, week, or day, make sure your customers know when they should expect something from you. If you fail to post on a regular basis, people will not see the point in engaging with you. Focus on quality content that is relevant and keeps engagement up. Understand that Social Media is a marathon, not a sprint. One post might have a high response rate, but that by no means guarantees people will respond the same way in the future. Also make sure you post a wide mix of content from videos to pictures to graphics to keep your networks interested.

Do NOT Spread Your Brand All Over the Web

Success is not measured by the number of likes or followers you may or may not have. If you focus directly on your initial target market and consistently engage and answer questions, then your networks will grow on their own. If you attempt to attract as many followers as possible by posting something meaningless every chance you get, your customers won’t feel valued. You do not have to answer every single post or tweet that comes along, but as long as you can show your networks that you care more about them than the actual numbers, success will be there in the long run.

We hope this gives a clearer picture about some of the mistakes brands make when using social media.

As always, if you have more in-depth questions about social media, we'd love to chat. Feel free to contact us any time.

3 Reasons Why Social Media Has Earned a Seat at the Marketing Table

We just wrapped up our first DIG of the year, The Social Media Revolution. We explained why we’re encouraging brands to not view social media as just one of their “resolutions” for 2012, but explore how they can use it to totally “revolutionize” the way they market their brand.

The reason we’re talking about Social Media “REVOLUTIONIZING” your brand in 2012 instead of it being another “RESOLUTION” is because we believe it’s finally earned a seat at the table.

In 2010, Social media would have been at the kids table at Thanksgiving at the Marketing house with QR Codes, SEO, and other strategies, but in 2012, it’s finally earned a seat at the Adult Table.

For a few reasons….

Social media gives brands a new opportunity to gain influence.

The reason that many brands are hesitant to start using social media is because they are afraid that they’ll loose total control over their brand’s perception. And to some point, that’s justifiable. But, we explained that brands can either view that as a threat, or as an opportunity.

Social media allows brands to influence consumer’s perception in a new way, by listening to the conversation and reacting.

It’s a Pull, not a Push

Social Media is different than any other way we market our brand. For the past 40 years, it’s always been about who can yell their message the loudest and clearest. We were trying to push our message to as many people as possible. Hopefully if we yell loud and clear enough, people will choose us.

Now with social media, it’s changed. We’re trying to pull people into our product.

Social media is a lot like dating. You don’t go on a first date and boast about how awesome you are (well… some of you might, but that’s why you’re not getting date #2). No, you go in and talk about the other person. Ask them questions to see what their interested in… Be entertaining, be fun, be engaging. Create a brand people fall in love with.

Social media has changed consumer’s expectations

The third reason Social Media has earned a seat at the adult table is because it’s changed customer expectations of brands. Consumers EXPECT brands to interact with them in social media.

If you want an example of a brand doing a horrible job at this, just check Netflix’s Facebook page. The only use Facebook as a one-way communication tool. Could they have possibly avoided some of the loss of 800,000 subscribers when the increased their prices if they would have portrayed a little more sympathy through their social media…. Probably.

Combine these reasons with the exponential growth of social media since the beginning of 2011 and we think you’ll see the potential for it to revolutionize your marketing efforts in 2012.

Here is our complete presentation: The Social Media Revolution

What are we covering at our next DIG? Check out our complete 2012 DIG schedule.

Have Questions? Feel free to contact us any time if you’re interested in discussing how to use social media for your business.

Why PR has Never Been More Beneficial for Your Brand

We recently came across an article from Inc. Magazine and wanted to share it with our readers. In the article, small business entrepreneur Caroline Limpert explains the reason she’s not giving up on Public Relations. In fact, if she had to put all of her eggs in one basket, Public Relations would be her only marketing expense.

At Werkshop, we stress from the very beginning of our  strategic planning process that businesses should consider all marketing tactics and be mindful of which brand building tools they choose to utilize to promote their product or service,.  One tool that is continuously used, is Public Relations. No matter your product or service, effective public relations is key to telling your story. If you are managing your own marketing planning, it is key is to recognize that PR has evolved to include much more than media and community relations.

The New Way to Manage Public Relations

Just 10 years ago, PR was very linear. A brand or agency would pitch an editor or reporter with a story that would interest the audience. It was the same process and message almost every time.

Now, with the evolution of technology and addition of other media outlets, the PR process has become molecular. The way brands and agencies pitch has adapted as well. You would not pitch a reporter the same way you would a blogger and you would not pitch a blogger the same way you might pitch a thought leader in a particular industry . There are so many new “rules” to PR because there are so many new players. Another notable difference in today’s PR is that with the addition of many new media outlets, your audiences are receiving their news from multiple sources, which is great news for all brands!  i

Essentially, the change that we are witnessing in the public relations process gives the term grass roots a whole new meaning. Content is still king, but context has become god. You must still share interesting information in order to grab attention, but the context in which you share that information is more important than ever.

It’s the reason we refer to it as “strategic communications” instead of simply public relations. 

Remember, as you continue to determine the best tools to use to build your brand, PR isn’t dead. In fact, it’s more alive than ever.

If you’re interested in learning how to utilize strategic communications for your brand in 2012, feel free to send us an email or call 615.579.1502.

NEXT Bowling Green DIG: January 24th “The Social Media Revolution”

WERKSHOP INSTITUTE
PRESENTS THE
JANUARY BOWLING GREEN DIG:

The Social Media Revolution 

Speakers: 
Samantha Owens Pyle, VP Communications Strategy
Jeremy Chandler, Social Media & Media Relations Specialist

Tuesday, January 24th
8:30 a.m. to 10 a.m.

Register here: 
http://2012bgjandig.eventbrite.com/

What We’ll Cover:
In 2011, you probably had a New Year’s Resolution to start using social media for your brand. In 2012, that’s no longer good enough. With the exponential growth of social media platforms, the increase in jobs created specifically for social media, and the strategic developments made over the past year, social media has changed from simply a resolution, to revolutionize the way we view marketing in 2012.

It’s been almost a year since we’ve talked about Social Media at our DIG and we couldn’t think of a better way to start 2012. This month, we’ll be discussing the impact social media made for businesses in 2011, addressing predictions for the coming year, and sharing how your brand can set itself up for social media success in 2012.

We hope you’ll make plans to join us.

Sponsored by
Citizens First

Where?
Bowling Green Area Chamber of Commerce
710 College Street

Light breakfast will be served compliments of Citizens First.

 


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