Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Back-to-School: Marketing to Millennials 101

College towns look a little different when the end of August hits. Campus is suddenly more crowded than shopping malls or swimming pools. Now that it’s back-to-school season, college kids line up for used books and school-age children stock up on crisp uniform shirts and the latest gadgets. As they prep for the school year, your company can (and should be) tailoring its marketing strategy to suit them.

The back-to-school season means it’s time to get back to marketing basics, like knowing your audience. Today’s lesson will teach you the fundamentals of marketing to millennials. But first, a word of caution: don’t underestimate the spending power of millennials. Businesses with older marketing managers make the mistake of ignoring them because it’s easy to speak the language of their own generation. Communicating with an age group very unlike themselves doesn’t come naturally, but it can be learned (even by you!) 

Study Group

If you were to make up flashcards to remind you of millennials’ shopping and spending preferences, they’d surely include the following hallmarks of the 18 to 28 year old demographic.

To begin with, millennials expect to interact with their brands. The more you invite their input the more likely they’ll consider you one of their brands. Post questions on your social media outlets, for example, and show them how you’ll implement changes based on their positive or negative feedback. Millennials are also immersed in digital culture—print and online marketing that doesn’t mesh will hurt your credibility. Always try to find a creative way to mix print and digital marketing, aiming for niche crowds will usually help you focus creative energy to make a bigger impact.

Double Major

Yes, marketing was simpler when there were fewer marketing channels. But it was a lot less interesting—and millennials agree with us.

Grip your millennial audience by diversifying your marketing plan. For example, print QR codes on marketing materials and direct individually minded millennials to a personalized landing page. This set grew up wired—to them technology is as natural as green grass or fresh eggs. So remember that from a millennial’s perspective you can’t have print marketing without technology to back it up (and vice versa). Unless it's a wedding invite (even those are getting high tech these days), there needs to be some way for your client to interact with a digital medium from a printed piece.

Smartest Kids in Class

Millennials are more informed as customers than any generation before them. Before they do business with you, they know you. Make sure that your online reputation precedes you. For example, downplay any negative online reviews by inviting happy customers to review you online (and highlight your good report). Sometimes all it takes is an invitation to make quiet customers more outspoken.

Knowing your audience is a classic marketing tip, and marketing to millennials is increasingly important. Don’t let the youngest and largest buying demographic pass you by—revise your marketing plan now to make it more millennial-friendly tomorrow.

You can read more print, marketing, and design blogs on our website : Minuteman Press News Archive

Minuteman Press
4185 Sunbeam Road, Suite 100 • Jacksonville, Florida 32257
Phone: 904-733-5578 • Fax: 904-733-6568

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

The Significance of Social Media and Customer Feedback (Good or Bad)

It’s probably safe to say you’ve already heard what we’re about to tell you. But it’s important enough that a reminder won’t hurt.

Happy customers are valuable ones, and loyal happy customers are even more so. Unhappy customers, on the contrary, are worse than worthless. Disgruntled clients can precipitate a major dip in your balance sheet.

Especially now that most consumers are connected to social media on at least one channel, it’s important that you respond strategically to their feedback.

Why You Need to Socialize

Don’t think of your business as at-risk upon joining the social media fact, openness to customer feedback on Facebook, Twitter or wherever you make your mark will ultimately help you. Here’s why: Customers want to interact with you on social media—or at least, they want the option to interact. In fact, they even expect it. Nowadays businesses without social media accounts look suspicious.

Think Twice Before Deleting

Some businesses, especially small ones, are ravenous for social media content. Any attention is good attention. And there’s some truth to that. Even negative comments are of value when you respond to them appropriately.

When customers complain about your products or customer service on Facebook or Twitter, let them have their say. You may be pleasantly surprised to find loyal customers defending you. That’s all the more reason to let whiny, obnoxious or unfair feedback stay on your page.

Sales Side Effects

Happy customers that respond to unhappy ones will always be ideal. But until you’ve built up a band of happy–go-lucky social media followers always at the ready to go to battle for you, responding to negative feedback yourself will have to suffice.

The rules of responding to complaints on social media are the same as they are in person:
-Hear out whoever is so upset with you. Read their comments with an open mind to understand where they’re coming from.

-After reviewing the complaint—and quickly looking into the situation as necessary—respond right away. While not having a social media presence will look suspicious, taking ages to update that presence will look inauthentic. Calm unhappy customers, stat.

-Handle negative feedback on social media well and it could turn into a positive. Clients and prospects may be impressed by your understanding response, which of course could make your sales outlook even brighter.

-Keep an eye on your business’s social media properties so that you can turn every bad customer experience into a sales opportunity.

You can read more print, marketing, and design blogs on our website : Minuteman Press News Archive

Minuteman Press
4185 Sunbeam Road, Suite 100 • Jacksonville, Florida 32257
Phone: 904-733-5578 • Fax: 904-733-6568

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Tangible You Can Handle

It can be easy to get caught up in the next big digital marketing tool. But how much of this digital marketing do your customers respond to? Although it is indisputable that digital marketing has changed the way businesses market and advertise, studies have shown that consumers still crave the tangible items that you can provide for them. So go ahead and give your customers a message that they’ll hold on to, literally. Here are some reasons you shouldn’t forget about print marketing:

The Old Timer

There must be a reason that physical marketing pieces have worked for so long. As it turns out, there are internal reasons that we love tangible marketing materials, such as direct mail or newsletters. A recent study by Millward Brown ( showed that these physical materials use up emotional processing. When it comes to memory and brand associations, more emotional processing is essential.

Physical marketing pieces also generate a great brain response connected to internal feelings. More activity occurs in the parts of your brain that generate vivid memories when you are presented with physical materials. That means your customers should connect on a greater level with your physical marketing tools and also remember your materials better than digital marketing.

Let’s Get Real

When you’re at home, you wouldn’t print out a document until you were finished preparing it. And then, when the information is printed on paper it suddenly becomes much more real. Just like this, a tangible item gives your customers a sense of reality that digital marketing can’t give them.

Consumers can often skip over or quickly delete items that they are emailed or that pop up on the side of their computer screens. But when the item is placed in front of them, chances are they will take a closer look before deciding whether or not they want to hold on to the information. And if you have designed your materials creatively and effectively, it will be even more difficult for consumers to discard the information.

Time is Money

Companies that take the time to send tangible marketing pieces show consumers a level of caring that they might not get in the digital world. Isn’t it nice these days when you receive a hand written card in the mail, as opposed to an email? Knowing that somebody took the time to actually prepare something for you shows a much greater sense of intimacy than an email that you could have sent in a few seconds without hassle. If you took the time to send customers tangible marketing materials, they’ll know that you’re really there to help them with what they need. They’ll feel cared for and you’ll see that your extra time and money pays off in the long run.

You can read more print, marketing, and design blogs on our website : Minuteman Press News Archive

Minuteman Press
4185 Sunbeam Road, Suite 100 • Jacksonville, Florida 32257
Phone: 904-733-5578 • Fax: 904-733-6568

Thursday, July 26, 2012

How to Create a Marketing Plan Inspired by the Olympics

National pride swells at the Olympics. Amateur athletes find new heroes, and Americans take their passion for sports and athletic competition to a whole new level. This Friday marks the start of the London 2012 Olympic Games and we’re beside ourselves with excitement. But our enthusiasm is more about your business than it is about the games.

As professional marketers we’re passionate about spreading the word. That’s why the Summer Olympics have us dreaming up new ways for you to promote your products and services.
Trademark and sponsorship issues make any mention of the official Olympics a no-no for your marketing plan. But don’t swear off the games just yet. Use them as inspiration to liven up your marketing strategy. Keep reading to learn how to infuse your marketing plan with the spirit of the Olympics.

For the Love of the Game

The Olympics demand national attention every four years because there’s an event for everyone. From basketball to badminton, synchronized swimming to weightlifting, the Olympic games are so diverse that they appeal to every kind of audience member.

Think of your business’s suite of services as the event list at the Olympics. One offering will fit the needs of one customer, but not another. Your goal is to match up the right product with the right client.

Game, Set, Match

Direct mail works because it forges connections between your business and its prospects or customers. It’s the best way to help your leads find their perfect match. A personalized direct mail campaign initiates a relationship between your business and your prospects. It’s a way to introduce your company and subtly show leads that your products will solve their challenges.

You’ve got to do your homework before inventing the perfect direct mail piece for your dream prospect. Get the most out of personalized direct mail by referring to solid data first. With data to backup your piece, your marketing campaign will be worthy of a gold medal.

The Winning Combination

Champion swimmer Michael Phelps has already won sixteen gold medals, and he’ll surely earn more at the London Olympics. There’s a lesson in Phelps’ training schedule for the games too: he doesn’t just workout in the pool. Phelps also logs long hours in the weight room.

Model your business’s marketing campaign after Phelps’ hybrid training regimen. Your direct mail piece can start the conversation with prospects, but coordinated signage and other promotional pieces may close the deal.

When you get hooked on watching the Olympics in the coming weeks, keep an eye out for competitive wisdom to shake up your marketing plan.

You can read more print, marketing, and design blogs on our website : Minuteman Press News Archive

Minuteman Press
4185 Sunbeam Road, Suite 100 • Jacksonville, Florida 32257
Phone: 904-733-5578 • Fax: 904-733-6568

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Let the Customers Do the Work With User Generated Content

Recently Google shared that 70% of brand content is created by consumers. And that’s a good thing if you have loyal customers, because Google tells us that 90% of consumers trust recommendations from people they know. So maybe it’s time to show the people who trust your company just how much you trust them. Put some of the marketing responsibilities in their hands. That may seem like you’re giving up control, but through the use of User Generated Content (UGC), you can involve your customers to have them help do some marketing work for you. Here are some ways that you can use UGC to boost your credibility and business:

Get Their Feedback

One of the easiest ways to use UGC is to simply ask customers how you’re doing. You can set up a place for feedback on your website or you can even ask customers to fill out a short response card in person. Either way, you’re gathering UGC that will help you better understand what they want. Surveys are another great way to check up on your customers. Make sure to specifically target what you’re trying to find out before you send out the survey. By asking concise and direct questions, you’re sure to get helpful answers. Then, you can use the information you gather to show prospects what other customers thought of your company.

Be the Buzz

In order to market yourself using UGC, you need your customers to talk about your company. Social media is a great way to utilize this aspect of UGC. If you’re not already using social media, maybe it’s time to add it to your marketing plan. Social media puts you where your customers are playing. Once you have your social media in place, pose questions where your followers can reply. Make sure the questions spark discussion for the best responses. On certain sites, followers will be able to tag you in a post where all of their friends will see that your customers are talking about your company. Another great way to get them talking is to post articles in a blog that you can share on your website and in social media. Leave a section for comments so customers can react to your posts.

Monitor the Conversation

Once you provide opportunities for UGC, you need to remain involved in the conversation. If you’re asking questions, conducting surveys or allowing for comments on your blog posts, you need to monitor and reply back to your customers. If you’re not involved in the conversation, they will stop leaving comments because they feel that it is not worth their time.

And don’t forget, even if you’re not actively involved in a UGC plan for your business, customers are still talking about you online. An easy way to check out what’s being said is to set up Google Alerts. With this service, you’ll receive an email when the keywords you’ve selected, such as your name our your company’s name, are mentioned on the web.

You can read more print, marketing, and design blogs on our website : Minuteman Press News Archive

Minuteman Press
4185 Sunbeam Road, Suite 100 • Jacksonville, Florida 32257
Phone: 904-733-5578 • Fax: 904-733-6568

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Must-Have Mobile Apps for Marketing Professionals

Boost your mobile marketing with some supercharged business Apps.

By now, we all know there’s an app for that. Mobile apps let you play games, track your workout or keep up with the news. While mobile apps continue to generate fun for everyone and make life a little easier, they shouldn’t be overlooked for business use as a marketer. What once took hours to acquire or produce can now be found at your fingertips in a matter of seconds. So what are you waiting for? Here are the top must-have mobile apps for marketers. Don’t miss out on your chance to better reach clients and to get easy access to information on your latest marketing endeavor.

Social Media All In One App

With all the social media sites popping up, it’s hard to keep track of the posts you’ve made and which site you made them on. But with social media aggregation apps like HootSuite or Alternion, you can manage all the sites in one place. These apps gives you access to popular social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare and LinkedIn, among others. Most even allow you to check and send emails directly from the app. Take control of the social media dashboard and jumpstart your social media marketing campaign. Start with the free mobile app to maximize your social media presence today.

Optimize Your Search Rankings Apps

With an SEO app, you can easily monitor your websites’ search engine ranking. Try the app called SEO Ranking by Leon Huang. The app costs $2.99, but you’ll be able to insert unlimited websites and unlimited keywords for your rankings. And with a five star rating and the title of a top 50 iPad business app, it’s proved its value. There's also SEO Automatic by JAH Media, LLC. As a free app, you'll be able to check your SEO rankings on major Engines but only the paid version allows emailing of the reports to any address. With these great apps you’ll love the SEO data available right on your phone or tablet.

Apps for Analytics

Every marketer knows that one of the most important concepts to figure out is how your clients respond to marketing materials in hard numbers. After all, if you get a great response then you’re doing something right with your marketing. With a mobile app called Analytics App by Inblosam LLC, you can have access to more reports and data from Google Analytics. The app costs $5.99, and it gives you access to 55 reports. If you don’t want to spend money on an analytics app, try the app Analytics by Applidium. This app takes your current Google Analytics account and gives you live info direct from Google on your smartphone.

You can read more print, marketing, and design blogs on our website : Minuteman Press News Archive

Minuteman Press
4185 Sunbeam Road, Suite 100 • Jacksonville, Florida 32257
Phone: 904-733-5578 • Fax: 904-733-6568

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Turn Your Marketing Materials Green

Marketing can be green, as long as you can be smart about it.

Even Kermit the Frog knows that it’s not easy being green. But when you’re marketing, who says it can’t be easy? Besides being friendly to the environment, using green approaches in your marketing could help you gain recognition and support from audiences you haven’t reached before. And besides that, your company can feel great knowing that you’re helping preserve the environment. Maybe you’re just not sure how to go about changing your ways, or you don’t know if the risk of changing tactics is worth the reward. Here are some simple strategies to help your company start utilizing sustainable marketing. Because by starting small, you could later turn your green campaign into something big.

The Three R’s

We’ve been hearing this statement for some time now. “Reduce. Reuse. Recycle.” Maybe you utilize the slogan at home, but at work you think it’s too difficult to make the change. However, you could attract a variety of customers by advertising the green approaches you’re using.


If it’s habit to print something for each round of edits, see if employees are willing to change their ways. Although it is important to see how the product will actually print on paper, many times employees will print out unnecessary documents. Encourage employees to cut back on clicking print and reduce paper usage.


Maybe you have leftover flyers or other materials that aren’t time sensitive. Before tossing them in the trash, think of ways to repurpose them. Your printer may have an idea to make modifications to incorporate them into another marketing campaign. You could turn this venture into a fun exercise for employees by rewarding the person who comes up with the most creative idea to reuse the materials.


This one’s simple, and you might already be doing it. Set up recycle bins around the office for all of those papers that you printed with a spelling error, and would have just thrown in the trash. You can also recycle leftover advertising materials in the office. While you’re implementing a paper recycling program, consider other recyclable materials such as aluminum, plastic and glass.


It’s probably not a good plan to convert to an online only marketing approach. Much business can be gained through printed materials. But you can still use a sustainable marketing approach. For starters, use paper that has been recycled and is labeled “processed chlorine free.” Not only is this paper recycled, but chlorine in paper has been found to have a negative impact on the environment.

All Aboard

Take advantage of what the company as a whole is doing to go green as a unique selling point in your marketing endeavors. If your products are somehow considered “green” customers will want to know. Also, get the entire office on board with possible energy saving or other green practices. Many customers appreciate hearing about what you’re doing to help the environment.

Be Authentic

Once you’ve implemented sustainable marketing strategies by going green, let your customers know about it. Come up with a simple logo to put on all of the materials that lets them know the materials they are receiving are good for the environment. Be sure that you are completely honest about the practices that you have established. This may seem like a no-brainer, but it can be easy to want to embellish the practices you’re implementing to make your company look better. This could damage all the other good you’re doing for your marketing efforts, not to mention the Earth.

You can read more print, marketing, and design blogs on our website : Minuteman Press News Archive

Minuteman Press
4185 Sunbeam Road, Suite 100 • Jacksonville, Florida 32257
Phone: 904-733-5578 • Fax: 904-733-6568