Live Up to Your Branding Potential

Quinlan

Branding is one of the most difficult things for a company, but it can also be the most rewarding. A brand creates an identity for your company, something that tells the public exactly what you’re all about and how you should be viewed. Your brand should mirror how your audience views you already and emphasize your known strengths. Easier said than done, right? Here are a few key qualities of a good brand:

1. A good brand must be clear. The message of your brand should be easily understood. Your audience shouldn’t have to work to understand it. Keep it simple. Otherwise they’ll lose interest fast.

2. A good brand must be consistent. Your brand should be consistent from your logo and website into advertisements, brochures, business cards, and anything else related to your company. This strengthens your identity and allows for your audience to make connections.

3. A good brand must be memorable. Making your brand different enough to stand out amongst your competition is crucial. A unique brand will peak interest and make it more memorable.

 4. A good brand must allow for change and growth. Successful companies are always evolving. This means that your brand must evolve, too. Your brand should always be consistent with your company’s identity, especially when it changes.

5. A good brand must dig deeper. Your brand should be more than just a pretty logo with eye-catching colors. It should represent your company’s personality as a whole. It should also inform people on what you’re all about. A generic slogan, no matter how catchy, will most likely confuse your audience and leave them with no knowledge of what you actually do.

Feeling overwhelmed? We can give you the help you need. Our Quinlan Path process will provide you with in-depth information on how your brand is viewed, both internally and externally. With our findings, the Quinlan Path will lead you towards the development and successful execution of your new brand so your business can reach its full potential. Contact us to get started!

Gaining Interest from Pinterest

Quinlan

Have you heard of Pinterest yet? If not, it’s time to crawl out from the rock you’re living under! Over the past few months, Pinterest has been quickly gaining attention in the social media world. In December, it became one of the Web’s Top 10 Social Networks, according to tracking firm Hitwise. Today, Pinterest has an estimated worth of $1.5 billion, with over 20% of Facebook users visiting the site every day. (source)

So… how does it work? Pinterest is an online bulletin board where users post images and videos and share them with others. It allows users to group these images and videos from other sites and organize them all in one place. Users can see all of their favorite things at once – recipes, Do-It-Yourself projects, inspirational quotes, and fashion, just to name a few. Pinterest also allows users to connect with others – people they may know personally or other “Pinners” with similar interests.

With Pinterest’s growing popularity, marketers are vying for a piece of the action. Businesses are using Pinterest to market themselves and their brands by creating custom boards that feature images related to their field. For example, an airline company can create different boards based on destinations, attractions, and travel recommendations to indirectly market themselves and gain interest in their brand. The site can also be used in more unique ways, through creating boards that may or may not have much to do with your actual business, but somehow tie into your branding or company personality. For a good example of a local organization using Pinterest creatively, check out the Buffalo Sabres Pinterest page.

Another popular way to use Pinterest for marketing is through contests. Lands’ End Canvas, for example, recently created a contest in which fans were asked to pin their favorite items from landsendcanvas.com for a chance to win one of their selections. Contests like this allow consumers to interact with a company and its products, promoting awareness and familiarity with the brand while also generating leads.

Linking Facebook and Twitter pages to Pinterest can also be helpful in generating more “buzz” for your business. As long as it’s done right, getting the most exposure possible will give you a leg up on the competition.

Like any other form of social media, it’s important to consider whether or not Pinterest is right for you and your brand. Marketing on Pinterest may not work for every company or organization, but if it is done in a unique and interesting way, it can surely help bolster your image and drive more traffic to your sites.

Do you think Pinterest is a valuable marketing tool? Share your thoughts by commenting below, or mention us on Twitter @QuinlanCompany!

Spoiler Alert: Can Twitter Save Live TV?

Frank

A few of the most important additions to my life in the last couple of years have been my iPad, Twitter, and Hulu. I’m sure those three would be on the top of a lot of people’s lists.  The growth of the tablet market is matched by Twitter’s growing exposure and influence in our daily lives, yet Hulu’s acceptance and customer satisfaction seem to be steadily falling. Being able to watch brand new episodes of Parks and Recreation a day after airing from anywhere I want is an amazing luxury. Hulu, along with Netflix, has made my Xbox the center of my entertainment universe. On the other end, cable prices are steadily rising while customer satisfaction is rapidly falling.

So why is cutting the cable cord still a terrifying venture? The problem is the networks.  The number of quality shows still available on Hulu and Netflix is quickly dropping. Networks are paranoid at the thought of people DVRing every show and skipping through the commercials, yet they are savvy enough to know users will not sit through 5 minute commercial breaks to watch a tv show on their laptop. This has led to major networks pulling their shows off the popular sites like Hulu and even full episodes from their own sites (Thanks Comedy Central). And now humanity has found hope in the most unlikely of places.  Twitter is set to save live TV.

For anyone (like me) who has watched a sporting event with their Twitter feed open, you’ve experienced a large chunk of your followers tweeting their ill informed breakdown of the last big play that happened. This phenomenon is easy to understand. The same would be happening if you were sitting in a room with these same people. Now imagine the newest episode of the #1 show in America debuts. It’s as if you’re watching it in a room full of thousands of people, even some celebrities. Twitter has rekindled the feeling of not wanting to miss a premiere or cliffhanger, or the fear of a spoiler alert the next time you hit refresh.

(Sidenote: People with spoiler laden tweets should be forced to flag their messages, especially regarding Game of Thrones)

It is difficult to keep up with the ever changing network schedules, but when Brian Baumgartner, Kevin on the Office, tweets that tonight is a new episode, I turn on NBC. Adding to this phenomenon, Mashable posts a weekly article “20 TV Shows With the Most Social Media Buzz This Week”. The numbers there are staggering and it gives advertisers and networks a better gauge than traditional rating systems. The social media explosion has given an unexpected side effect that the networks can enjoy. The people are back.

Join the discussion. Share your thoughts below or mention me on Twitter @fdc245