Tag Archive: marketing

  1. How Formulaic Thinking Can Revolutionize Your Marketing Strategy

    Marketing Strategy


    The magical silver bullet. Like unicorns and fairy dust, though it may be a pleasant concept to dream of, the legendary silver bullet that can solve all of your marketing strategy woes is just that–a thing of legend. So often, I come across business owners and marketing managers who understand this fact well enough, yet continue their search for this mythical one-stop fix to whatever ails their brand. Why? Well, it is certainly much easier to assume that if your branding only had X, it could finally break through to that elusive target audience or market.

    The hard truth is that the best brands do multiple things well in order to find success and become more than just a peddler of goods to their audiences. A marketing strategy is much more akin to a formula of different elements, combined to create an explosive mixture that sends your brand to the stratosphere. Thriving businesses understand that their brand values, beliefs and ideals are powerful tools for mastering marketing strategy. By asking yourself some pointed questions about your brand, you can come closer to identifying those elements and concocting the formula of success for your business.

    What Questions Should I Ask to Identify the Needs of My Marketing Strategy?


    • How did you get here? Why was this business created in the first place? What decisions were made and why? What was the initial inspiration or passion that launched this endeavor and is it still what drives the company to this day? Thriving businesses are driven by well-considered decisions.
    • What does your company value? Values are important. They often dictate everything from price to the product. Defining values can help you ensure that your marketing and brand as a whole is focused on facilitating and fulfilling that value and avoids muddying the water and losing its way. Successful businesses keep their eye on the ball.
    • What is your brand’s story? Since the time of cavemen, people have huddled around a fire to listen to and tell stories. Why? Storytelling is an inherently human form of expression that works on an emotional level. If you don’t want your marketing to get lost in the advertising white noise, you have to leverage the power of storytelling in your marketing strategy. Saying your washing machine is the fastest on the market is not enough. You have to show how it helps a single dad tackle laundry faster than ever, so he has time to surprise his kids with his special homemade pizza after school.

      On a higher level, your brand’s story can help build interest and connect with customers in a far more intimate way than sticking to the facts alone. In fact, researchers have discovered that storytelling empirically improves message recall and fosters a feeling similar to kindness. That is truly powerful stuff.
    • Who is your brand selling to? As most writers will tell you, knowing your audience is not only important–it is mandatory. Knowing your audience, who you serve, is the first step in any successful marketing strategy. From there, a marketer can shape tactics and tone to meet those people where they live and breathe with content they’re hungry to consume. If you’re not selling to a specific audience, you’re probably selling to no one.


    I explore more questions to consider in my latest book, Formulaic: How Thriving Companies Market From the Core, but this is a good primer for any brand looking for a way to think more formulaically about their marketing strategy. Dig deep, look internally and ask the difficult questions. Remember, silver-bullet solutions are fantasy–it’s introspective, well-strategized marketing and branding that wins the day


  2. Findsome & Winmore Announces Plans to Occupy and Remodel 8,000 Square-Foot Building in Winter Park

    Orlando digital marketing firm enlists help of local clients to relocate headquarters ahead of anticipated agency growth


    Findsome & Winmore, the classic digital marketing agency that helps clients find and win new customers, announces today plans to relocate its headquarters to an 8,000 square-foot, full building located at 1550 South Lakemont Avenue in Winter Park. This announcement comes as the company prepares for continued strategic growth in 2018 and beyond.

    In searching for and finalizing the purchase of its new space, Findsome & Winmore enlisted the help of clients Foundry Commercial, Fountainhead Commercial Capital, and Sloane & Johnson. Additionally, Baker Barrios Architects, another Findsome & Winmore client, will oversee the remodeling of the building.

    “We have always considered ourselves to be an extension of our clients’ teams, so involving them in the process of finding our new home was very special for us, ” said Matt Certo, CEO and principal at Findsome & Winmore. “With their assistance, we have found a space that will not only allow us to grow our agency significantly over the next 18 months, but will also provide our team members with a creative, interactive environment they can thrive in. We thank Foundry Commercial, Fountainhead Commercial Capital and Baker Barrios Architects for their continued, invaluable insight as we embark on this journey.”

    Findsome & Winmore’s decision to relocate its headquarters comes just two years after the company expanded its current office space, increasing office capacity from approximately 15 people to 25 people. Now, the company is moving to a building that will sustain its steady growth trajectory while permitting extra room for a kitchen, coffee bar, multiple meeting spaces and more.

    In 2017 alone, Findsome & Winmore’s growth involved the onboarding of multiple new clients, including Virgin Produced, Tijuana Flats, Children’s Home Society, onePULSE Foundation, Park Square Homes, and more.

    Following a five-month construction period, the Findsome & Winmore team will relocate to its new office in May 2018.

  3. Findsome & Winmore Continues Momentum In Third Quarter of 2017

    Findsome & Winmore, the classic digital marketing agency that helps clients “find and win” new customers, completed a successful third quarter with the addition of new employees and new projects for clients. The company, which is currently in its fourth quarter, announced today the addition of a new client within the real estate industry and the completion of two client rebrands.

    Park Square Homes, a residential real estate company, enlisted Findsome & Winmore for various services including public relations, website maintenance, and digital marketing. Additionally, the agency completed rebrands for Bourne Financial Group, a real estate private equity company, Spectrum Global, a telecommunications firm, and Tews, an employment agency. Both Tews and Bourne Financial Group also hired Findsome & Winmore to create their respective company websites.

    “We are pleased to know that our clients continue to put their trust in Findsome & Winmore in their digital marketing endeavors,” said Matt Certo, chief executive officer of Findsome & Winmore. “We had a very solid third quarter and are looking forward to ending 2017 on a high note, with additional clients and new projects. As we move through our fourth quarter, we anticipate helping even more clients find and win new customers.”

    Findsome & Winmore also added three new employees to its growing team with backgrounds in creativity, marketing and public relations. Moreover, the company continued to expand its content presence through its email marketing series, entitled “Marketing Tip Monday,” providing subscribers with tips on an array of business growth topics, http://www.marketingtipmonday.com

  4. The Roll Out of Twitter’s Increased Character Limit


    Soon, we could all be saying goodbye to the days of reading and re-reading our would-be tweet to find out what words are actually necessary to convey our important thought. In a surprise update, Twitter has announced it will begin to roll out a 280 character limit to some users, doubling the original 140 character limit.

    The micro-blogging platform provided some pretty sound reasoning for the update, namely, equality across languages. Users who tweet in Japanese, Korean and Chinese are able to convey more information using fewer characters. In other words, they can say twice as much while using half the characters as users who tweet in most other languages. According to Twitter, Japanese users hit the character limit only about .4% of the time while 9% of tweets in English use all 140 characters.

    How does this change the way we use the platform?

    Twitter will always be about brevity, but the 140-character limit was conceived at a time when flip phones and SMS messaging reigned. As society has moved on to smartphones and data plans, the platform has been hesitant to adapt, slowing user growth, and scaring away some investors.

    This shift to an increased character limit will hopefully invigorate user growth on the platform, leading to more meaningful and engaging conversations between users.

    The formula is simple:

    This increase is especially helpful for brands that routinely feel the pain of links depleting their already scarce character count within tweets. While links will still count toward the character limit, an increase from 140 to 280 characters leaves more room for brands to tweet without skimping on their message or leaving out an important link.

    So this sample tweet about our client:

    We are loving all of our new apparel options. Are you? Shop the collection and show the world that #WeWillNotLetHateWin http://bit.ly/2r9qft0

    No longer has to be this:

    We are ❤️ all of our new 👕👚 options. Are you? Shop the collection & show the 🌎  that #WeWillNotLetHateWin http://bit.ly/2r9qft0

    Social media is a constantly updating medium, so, only time will tell if this change becomes the official standard, and for how long. For my money, the promise of major benefits and ease of use for countless users around the world just might make Twitter’s increased character limit a big winner by allowing people and brands more “real estate” to get their messages across. In the meantime, we’ll be keeping a close eye on whether this change is worth a “like.”

  5. What is a Media Kit and Why Does It Matter?

    media kit

    The most important thing you need to know about effective public relations is that its purpose is to build a mutually beneficial relationship between an organization and their publics. Textbook definitions aside, it always helps when the public is accurately informed. While there are multiple ways to do this, one surefire method to help control your own message is with a media kit.

    A media kit, or press kit, can be a company’s best friend when it comes to conveying precise information to an influencer, blogger, reporter, or member of the media. It is essentially a pre-packaged set of promotional materials that provides any information about a cause, company, organization or person that can be distributed for promotional use. Most of the time, reporters are the ones who receive these kits, and boy, do they find them helpful. You see, a media kit is different from a marketing brochure or website because it has such targeted information. Some company websites tend to have information about everything pertaining to the company as opposed to a singular focus, as they are trying to appeal to such a broad audience; the same can be said about marketing brochures. Media kits typically convey the information that is most pertinent – the exact information that companies want to see printed in a news story or feature.

    The media kit varies depending on the company. For example, at Findsome & Winmore, one of our clients is Orlando’s popular entertainment district, Old Town. The media kit we designed for this particular client is filled with colorful images of the property, along with a map of the district, and an overview of its shops and restaurants.

    media kit

    Another of our clients is Fountainhead Commercial Capital, a non-bank commercial lender. To contrast, their media kit gives an overview of the company’s founder, Chris Hurn, along with his headshot, company statistics, frequently asked questions and previous media placements.

    media kit

    When deciding what to include in a media kit, it would be wise to ask yourself what you want reporters to know about your company and/or products. Speaking from experience, reporters are very busy people. Anything you can do to make their jobs a little easier will be appreciated and potentially rewarded with some attention. A media kit is one way to do just that, giving reporters a valuable source of information that helps them build their stories. But what are the specific benefits to media kits? Let me count the ways.

    A media kits help with:

    • Making a first impression: Think of a media kit like an eye-catching resume. It helps grab media and investor attention and wraps everything into one neat package for a particular target audience. It is a collection of product information and articles assembled to address questions and provide everything needed to engage with your firm.
    • Hyper-targeting your company’s messaging: A media kit should be focused and share the precise messaging that you want to communicate. In short, it should effectively and efficiently tell people what to think.
    • Keeping things affordable: Printing can be costly for companies, so it’s OK to make your media kits available online. Companies often share their media kits on their websites. It is also common practice to make media kits password protected for media members. Either way, this can be much less expensive than reprinting media kits every time there is a change in your product information.
    • Providing assets for influencers: Speaking of downloads, having a media kit available online can also give you a place to share additional assets that media may need. For example, you can make your company logo available for download in the kit, along with approved high-resolution photos of your company, products and employees.

    So, can you get by without having a media kit? The answer is yes, but why make it harder for yourself to score more media coverage and/or investor interest? If getting more attention and responses from members of the press interests you, then creating an effective media kit is public relations 101.

    Be sure to remember that reporters and bloggers do not necessarily have to adhere to the material in your media kit and, sometimes, may not use everything that you give them. However, you can be sure that they have your company’s accurate, endorsed and approved information on hand and ready to use.

  6. Corporate Culture: Marketing Your Company from the Inside Out

    “If your company is an engine, think of culture as the lubrication that makes all the parts work together.”
    Matt Certo, Formulaic

    You’ve probably heard it before but it’s a lesson worth repeating: establishing a strong corporate culture is vital to its success. The hours spent strategizing and planning corporate culture, incorporating defined values into everyday company practices, and evaluating its success at creating an environment in which employees want to show up and be productive all help to set the stage for a company’s overall success. Used as tool to market a company from the inside out, corporate culture helps define how a company operates. It’s an asset that showcases how you operate differently and links the experience of the customer to the product by bridging a company’s values to the end product that it produces. Defining and sticking to these values is what builds the culture around you and sets expectations for how professional interactions will take place.

    Take, for example, our culture here at Findsome & Winmore. The agency was founded in 1995 when our agency’s CEO and principal, as well as author of Formulaic: How Thriving Companies Market from the Core (the inspiration for this very blog), began building websites out of his Rollins College dorm room. From the very start, Findsome & Winmore set out to exist as a passion-driven creative agency that is constantly on the lookout for new innovations to help our clients succeed in their marketing futures. It’s written right into our history: We share their (our clients’) passion for reaching people with good ideas, using the latest and greatest of technologies, and dreaming about the future.

    Founded as a creative space, we continue to hold that value important today, and work every day to incorporate creativity and inspiration into corporate culture. Our office here in Baldwin Park may have originally been designed to house a network of accountants, but we’ve transformed the space to fit our needs, which run parallel to our culture. With heavy emphasis placed on teamwork, fun, innovation and creativity, our office environment contains elements to breathe these cultural touchstones into our team and the services we provide through vibrantly colored walls for bright ideas; creative open spaces for collaborative thinking; whimsical wall decor designed to inspire; and fun “Third Thursday” activities planned regularly for free-flowing bonding time.

    That being said, corporate culture is never defined the same way for every company. It’s created and tailored based on how you’d like to be perceived both internally and in the public eye, and what you place value on as a company. In Formulaic, Matt references celebrity chef, Anthony Bourdain, as a prime example of how different companies showcase different cultures, one approach no less valid or effective than another. Bourdain has created a corporate culture within his kitchen according to structure, strict reinforcement and boundary setting. By vowing to fire employees on their second offense of being tardy, he instills the dire importance of punctuality within his corporate culture–albeit with an iron fist. This specific implementation will not work in many work environments, but in the high-stress, team-dependent and deeply disciplined world of high-end culinary art, it was a must to enforce Bourdain’s need for all hands to be on deck and on time.

    Defining Your Corporate Culture

    To start, your culture requires a plan. Establish how you’d like to define this and make it known by your team. By concentrating on these aspects of corporate culture, you’ll set your company up for a consistent presence and a successful marketing approach. 

    Are your employees the right fit?

    Choosing the right employees is fundamental to a company’s success. These are the individuals who represent your brand and the attitude you wish it to exemplify. You’re only as good as your team, and it’s important to ensure each member of it is reflective of the culture.

    This seems like it would go without saying, but it does take thought to ensure your team is reflective of your company and the products and/or services it offers. Our team places a high value on members who can work on a team, think innovatively and deliver our services by always going the extra mile. It isn’t just about what you can do on paper, but what you can deliver in person. This often requires a real, face-to-face interview to get a sense of whether the candidate is just talking the talk or if they seem confident in their abilities.

    Additionally, a large reason for asking interviewees for an in-depth interview is to determine if they’re a fit for the team. Will this person get along with the others? Do they share our outlook on delivering quality service for our clients? These are important aspects to consider within our culture, but by no means is this a hard rule for every company’s culture. Define who you want to represent your company and hire with your values in mind.

    What is important?

    Define what values are important for your corporate culture to represent, and how these elements will be reflected in the customer experience. Is it important that employees constantly assist each other as part of a team or is individuality a valued trait? Is your company driven on keeping uniform nine-to-five schedules or more of an on-call, never offline approach?

    Outlining those important elements of your company values is what will serve as a plan for building your corporate culture. When taking a look at Google’s corporate culture, you’ll see they push for creative thinking spaces in order to fuel the minds of their software engineers. Building this through the ability to design your own desks (yes, treadmill included) to the healthy snacks made readily available, the company is nonverbally enforcing outward, innovative thinking and encouraging a healthier lifestyle.

    Define the things that make your company what it is and constantly explore new ways to keep these active within the office environment.

    How will you keep your corporate culture present?

    Once internal values are defined and incorporated into the culture, regular maintenance is needed to keep them present and active on a day-to-day basis. A few ways to accomplish this are through:

    • Rituals: Simple activities you repeat from time to time to reinforce behaviors
    • Rewards: Identifying culture-friendly behaviors being exhibited and providing praise for them
    • Lexicon: Using language that fits your company’s culture both internally and externally to reinforce what you represent
    • Role Modeling: Having leaders exhibit and model what the corporate culture defines

    If your company completes its day-to-day services without its mission in mind, perhaps print this out and frame it for everyone on the team to take a look at every day, as we have at Findsome & Winmore.

    However your company chooses to reinforce the corporate culture, it’s important to keep it consistent and present within the workplace. Don’t make giving praise for good work a one-time thing. If showing appreciation to your employees for the great work they do is something the company holds important, this should be a regular practice that should be acted upon on a regular basis.  

    Keep the values you define as part of your corporate culture alive and well in the workplace. Values lose meaning or are lost completely once they start to fade in importance, and the loss is typically quite noticeable. Constant effort is key to keeping corporate values going.

    As stated above, no one culture is right for every company. It’s all about deciding what type of culture works for your company and keeping said culture not only present but thriving within the workplace. Defining the environment in which employees work, corporate culture constantly works to market from within first, then sharing the benefits of a well-oiled, highly defined culture with the customer.

    Looking for more marketing insights like the ones above? Check out Formulaic: How Thriving Companies Market from the Core, written by our CEO and principal, Matt Certo, and stay tuned to the Findsome & Winmore blog for more tips on how to unlock the formula behind effective marketing for your brand.

  7. Findsome & Winmore Maintains Growth During First Half of 2017

    Findsome & Winmore, the classic digital marketing agency that helps clients “find and win” new customers, had a successful first half of 2017, adding eight new clients across numerous industries during the first two quarters of the year.

    Clients enlisting the services of Findsome & Winmore during the first two quarters of 2017 include Orlando Health, a network of community and specialty hospitals, Tijuana Flats, a national Tex-Mex restaurant chain, onePULSE Foundation, an organization dedicated to honoring those that lost their lives in the Pulse Nightclub tragedy, Westgate Resorts, one of the largest privately-owned timeshare resorts in the world, Kore Alliance, an investment group, National Christian Foundation, a Christian-based non-profit organization, Centurion Business Finance, a financial lender, and D+H, a global payments and lending technology provider. D+H was later acquired by Finastra, the third largest Fintech company in the world.

    In addition to the successful onboarding of each of its new clients, Findsome & Winmore also launched two websites, including Children’s Home Society and Lake Nona. Findsome & Winmore also added four new employees with backgrounds in event planning, social media, and website maintenance to its growing team.

    “We definitely got off to a great start in 2017 and are excited to have new clients from such diverse backgrounds,” said Matt Certo, CEO of Findsome & Winmore. “Having such prominent businesses turn to us for assistance in accomplishing their goals gives us a great feeling. As the year progresses, we look forward to continued growth and expansion of our portfolio.”

    In addition to Findsome & Winmore having a successful first half of 2017, Certo also published a book, Formulaic: How Thriving Companies Market From The Core, in January. Formulaic reveals the ordinary things that even one-person firms can implement to achieve the extraordinary over time and brings to light several key elements that drive brand marketing momentum.

  8. Spinning a Yarn: The Science of Storytelling

    science of storytelling

    From cave paintings to the latest Star Wars movie, storytelling is something intrinsically human. There’s something about it–the structure of beginning, middle and end–that has entranced and satisfied our minds since before even the development of the written word. In my new book, Formulaic, I’ve shared how incorporating this powerful tool into our own marketing techniques has been vital for our agency (and countless other companies) to make deeper, more personal connections with our clients’ customers and our own audience.

    Like me, you probably grew up with the stories of a grandparent, parent or teacher, and have since sought out the narratives shared from Netflix to NBC, podcasts to PBS. Even the blog in which this post resides is a storytelling medium of sorts. Though they often transport us to places both real and imagined, stories are not (solely) things of magic. No–there is a science behind our insatiable appetite for being sat down and told, “Once upon a time…” Let’s examine how stories work and why they’re a trusty tool for marketers in any industry.

    The Scientific Facts Behind Fiction and Nonfiction

    People are emotional creatures. Yes, even the most stone-faced tough guy or gal has a song, movie or book that’s sure to evoke nostalgia, sadness or a smirk (even if internal). Enter: oxytocin. That stirring emotion of human connection you feel when watching your favorite film or hearing Johnny Cash belt out those Folsom Prison Blues is largely connected to the release of the neurochemical, oxytocin. Though you may not know it by name, you surely know how it feels — the pleasure you feel when meeting with friends, are complemented by colleagues or have the door held open for you by a smiling stranger.

    science of storytelling

    What’s paramount for marketers and brand managers to pull from the connection between storytelling and those oxytocin-fuelled warm fuzzies is that these feelings of engagement and connection aren’t unlocked with a paragraph of facts, hard data, or otherwise flatly presented pieces of information. So often, brands that are able to connect to their audiences with storytelling instead of dry, cold lists of benefits are more effective by being more emotionally affecting. The story of how a product or service has changed (or could change) someone’s life for the better often sticks with an audience far longer than the new, shiny features of the thing.

    Which is more convincing: a personal anecdote about how much my work has improved now that I’ve enjoyed full, restful sleep on Brand X mattresses or a paragraph on spring and wooden frame technology? If the thought of option B made you yawn, you’re not alone. By harnessing the deep-rooted, primordial power of storytelling, brands could very well write their businesses a “happily ever after” through this innately human connection.

    Crafting a Marketing Story Worth Telling

    Knowing the benefits of storytelling is all well and good, but you must also learn the tenets of good storytelling. Though there are many ways to tell a tale, you may want to keep these three common facets of effective storytelling in mind before spinning your own company’s yarn.

    • Characters: Your story is only as good as its characters are believable and relatable. Fill your brand storytelling with fully realized people who your audience can root for or against, depending on the needs of your story. Name them, imagine what they look like, where they are from and additional details that may illustrate them within your mind before you put them down on paper.
    • Conflict: Any traditional story needs a conflict for our heroes to overcome. Within your brand’s storytelling, this conflict should be relatable to common conflicts within your audience’s lives, thereby, creating an instant relatability to the story unfolding.
    • Memorable Moments: Beyond just catching the attention of your audience, you want to craft a story that will stick. Remarkable tales, whether humorous or harrowing, may stay with potential customers far longer than more mundane, dry explanations of your product or service’s key benefits. Take, for example, Founders Insurance. Founders’ “Hall of Coverage” series features truly unbelievable–yet 100% true–stories of claims they’ve actually satisfied. Sharing incredible tales rooted in the services they’ve actually provided customers has made Founders’ efforts hugely successful at sticking with people long after first viewing.

    Learning how to tell an effective story as a brand may seem like a lot of work, but if done correctly, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a more effective means of connecting your company with its customers–which is most certainly a story worth telling.  

    Looking for more marketing insights like the ones above? Check out my new book, Formulaic: How Thriving Companies Market from the Core, and stay tuned to the Findsome & Winmore blog for more tips on how to unlock the formula behind effective marketing for your brand.

  9. Mind Your Business: The Intricacies of Writing and Marketing for Financial Services

    Business is, well, big business, so it should come as no surprise that an important segment of our clients at Findsome & Winmore include the suit-and-tie-clad savants who provide various financial services to major business-based clients across the country. Though we serve our clients with equal amounts of ample T.L.C., it should be known that those we serve often have us searching new terms, creating audience profiles and otherwise scouring the earth to fully understand the all-important “who,” “what,” “where,” “when” and “why” of their worlds.

    As you’ll see, financial services are most certainly their own beasts (we mean that in the nicest way), offering up marketing challenges and unique quirks that help to keep our nine-to-five hours anything but mundane.

    What Makes Financial Services Marketing Tick?

    The Voice

    The Voice

    No, we’re not talking about the America’s Got Talent/American Idol spinoff (save the singing for Karaoke happy hour, please). Finding the voice that speaks to your target audience is unbelievably important to creating content that works. Because our financial services clients deal both with groups of execs in charge of sums of moneys that end in many, multiple zeroes down to teachers and police officers that are simply looking for the best way to prepare for retirement, the voice can vary pretty drastically. Some constants, however, include a voice that exudes a sense of trustworthiness and empathy, along with a careful balance of jargon for experienced trustees and straight-forward verbiage for the less familiar.

    Halt, Who Goes There?

    Financial Services Marketing

    Unfortunately, there is no single, blanket audience that we can attach to all financial services. Even within the segment of financial services, there are nuances and niches — too many to list, in fact. However, in the case of our clients, audiences include investment board members who understand much about finances, investment plans and the like, down to soon-to-retire teachers who, like many of us, couldn’t pass the 101 class.

    Like a Snowflake

    What makes our financial services clients a unique challenge? First, we have to realize that much of these clients lean heavily toward business to business, meaning our content must meet a business-centric (as opposed to customer-centric) approach. Secondly, if you don’t know about compliance, you are about to take a crash course. Getting our content approved by FINRA, the SEC, the FBI and CIA (OK, we’re just kidding about those last two) is no easy task. These alphabet soup organizations have a responsibility to ensure that our clients do not promise what they cannot substantiate. It’s an important job, no doubt, and one that they take very seriously. Thus, we need to take equal measures to ensure that the copy we craft stays within dictated guidelines. As the idiom goes, time is money, and the longer it takes for content to be approved, the worse off our clients are for it.


    To complicate matters further, some financial services aren’t even allowed to openly market their products. Yes, this throws quite a monkey wrench in our efforts but does not mean that we can’t find ways around this major stipulation; that is kind of our job, after all. Through strategically timed announcements that fall outside of the especially highly regulated fundraising periods and leveraging PR initiatives that focus on the success of past funds, market the company’s branding or garner attention with a new website, we are able to get just enough information out there to entice our target audience.

    What have we learned from working with a list of stellar local and national financial services? Quite a lot, actually. From learning to write with an extremely specific set of rules to cementing the importance of knowing your audience and writing to their voice, these clients have shown that they can teach much more than investment and financial planning best practices.

    Through it all, the biggest lesson we’ve learned is that research really matters. Financial services are not something you can guesstimate or stumble your way through when it comes to marketing efficiently and effectively. No, this is a field that earns its worth in precision, strategy and, frankly, doing your homework — all best practices that our friends in financial services have helped us {find} and {win}.

  10. When it Comes to Your Brand, Consistency is Key

    Far too often, companies invest massive amounts of money into creating a brand as a means to an end. A strategic logo is created, the color palette is just right, the font is unmatched, and the style speaks on its own. It’s been perfectly printed across all collateral materials and has been put on display for the target customer. The business is branded. The easiest mistake is then made when the creativity stops here, and all efforts have been put into creating a brand, and none into preserving it.

    That being said, does brand consistency matter?

    Does Brand Consistency Really Matter?

    The answer is YES.

    Take a look at one of the biggest players out there, one who has been excelling at offering a steady, protected brand since 1923: Disney. The Walt Disney Company evokes a certain reaction from us: feelings from childhood memories and emotional bonds to recognizable characters, neither of which happened overnight.  The company has worked hard to convey defined messages reflecting its values and voice through consistent branding in everything it does, from in-person interactions to written communications on social media. These efforts, built over time, allow the company to create a solid brand that has become recognizable and associated with the exact image they want to convey.

    Star Wars

    Photo Credit: Lucasfilm Ltd.

    Let’s take a look at a brand that, if it weren’t for some very clever maneuvering, may not exist as it does today: Star Wars. This brand experienced a slight misstep in the ‘70s after the notorious Star Wars holiday special, one even George Lucas wishes he could forget. Quickly swept under the rug, the Star Wars brand still exists and is stronger than ever (partly due to their buy-out by the multi-billion dollar Disney). This is a prime example of why correlated messaging is so important in building the brand you want, with the audience you want. With a cohesive team and a pivot in marketing tactics, Star Wars has proven that even in the face of adversity, a solid brand can overcome pretty much anything.

    As with all good things, brand consistency takes time, but is oh so worth the energy once it’s rolling. A company isn’t just a name, it has its own voice and attitude; you just need to define and build on it for the world to take in.

    So What Makes Brand Consistency Worth Your Time?

    It sets you apart. What makes you different from all the others providing the same things you do? Your identity. Building a brand with an individual voice differentiates you from your competition and makes you easy to recognize and create associations with. The personal experiences people have with your brand are what will later influence their opinions about you (and whether or not they think you’re worth their time).

    It gives you credibility. The initial contact a customer often has with a company is through its brand presence. It’s a search on social media, on a search engine, or a glance at a brochure on a desk. With branded messaging across all channels, trust is instilled and customer loyalty is achieved. They come to know what they can expect by associating your identity with what you do. And after all, creating sustainable relationships is what it’s all about.

    It makes you, you. Planning and showcasing a consistent voice that enforces core messaging is what will give your brand life. No longer just a name printed on a billboard, your audience now knows who you are, what you do, and how you roll. You can be witty, informative, sarcastic – anything you want. This is how your audience will come to remember you, and ultimately decide if you’re the right fit for them.

    Featured Image Credit: Yui Sotozaki