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Advertising, Marketing, Business promotion

The popularity of motorsport in Britain has seen a real resurgence recently, and there are now hundreds of events of varying degrees at Britain’s many racing circuits. Britain is heralded around the world as the home of motorsport, and for good reason; this is shown not least in the fact that 11 of the current Formula 1 teams are based in Britain. The attraction of motorsport is that there is a ticket to suit every budget; whether you splash out on Formula 1 or simply go to your nearest banger racing track you are sure to have a blast.

Advertising at major motoring events is an incredibly effective way to make sure that your product is shown to people whilst they are in a good mood, and have the time to engage with it. From the BTCC to the Moto GP, there are hundreds of stalls and displays for people to attend, and these are inevitably packed between race sessions over the weekend. Motor racing events are something that people save up for and look forward to, this means they have disposable income and are in an interactive and accepting mood.

promo girlAdvertising at these events is a skilled art though, and you must be able to attract attention to your business and the new product you are showcasing. The fact is that more men attend motorsport events than women, and there is one tried and tested way of getting their interest, and that is with girls, Promo Girls to be more specific. It may seem a little glib but it’s more from the ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ school of advertising, and is incredibly effective at grabbing the awareness of a largely male crowd.

 

Once you have their attention you will be able to capitalise on the fact that they are in a relaxed and positive attitude, and they are very receptive to new products and ideas. A great way to ensure that your product or company will be on their mind permanently is to give them some free promotional products. Sometimes known as the ‘ninja’ marketing device, they will make certain that all of these prospective customers have your contact details immediately to hand.

So if you are an established business that wants to give the best possible start to a new product then any of Britain’s motorsport events will provide a great platform.

A divorce is undoubtedly something that we all want to avoid and the ensuing arguments and legal proceedings can destroy families and cause much bitterness. The simple fact is though that divorce is an everyday fact of modern life. It is far better for some families to be separate and have an amicable situation as opposed to together and volatile. Many couples find that a divorce can even see them getting on better as the constant pressure of being together can be part of the animosity present.

Many people often see a divorce as the thing that sets them free from an oppressive relationship and finally begin to pursue life goals that they had set themselves before marriage. Something that many recent divorcees do is to finally take the risk of branching out into their own business venture. Not only is this a statement of their independence it is also a very time-consuming process which aids the healing process by occupying time.

Starting a business is something that should certainly not be taken lightly though and a quick look at new business statistics shows that an alarming number never reach their first birthday. The times really are hard at the moment and even large established companies are failing at an alarming rate. It is still possible to do well in an independent business though if you plan and execute the correct steps.

The first stepping stone that causes problems is the initial formation of the company and ensuring that all the necessary formative steps are taken. Luckily there are ways to make the formation process as easy as possible such as formation companies and business advisors. Taking the necessary steps initially can help to ensure that your company is formed correctly and that it has the best chance of success.

Another factor that really cannot be under estimated is the sheer financial support that is needed in order to give your company the best possible start. If you are funding your business venture personally then it is vital to keep close track on all expenditures and keep a track of the viability of your business. Business loans are often feared but can be a great resource to help you to get your business on track, it is vital that you do your research though and do not over-borrow.

Whether or not you are recently divorced or not the fact remains that setting up your own business is something that almost all of us dream of and a great way to become completely independent. Given that your business has a demand and you have a realistic business plan then even in today’s tough financial climate it is still possible to do well.

 If you’re an entrepreneur with a bright idea or a business with some new products, you’ve got to work on product promotion and building brand awareness. Big names don’t become big over night: you know their names, products, logo and possibly even business philosophy because they have put in the effort to get themselves out there. People become loyal to brands when they know who they are and what they represent.

 The aim, when bringing out a fresh product is informing people what the product is, what it can do for you and also the associations with that come with that brand. Coca Cola are a prime example of a strong and recognisable brand: they use a fixed colour scheme, a striking font for the logo and clever marketing strategies such as the “Share a coke with….” campaign that’s got people hooked on searching for their name on a Coke bottle. Click here to discover what makes Coca Cola such an innovative and successful brand.

 One way you can build your brand, and create a name for yourself is by investing in smart, innovative packaging solutions for your product. The packaging is the first thing people see; it’s like an introduction to the product and if done properly it should stir curiosity and excitement in the buyer. The packaging should also represent the company and the product; if the product is glamorous, then so the packaging should be or if it’s a serious product, then the casing should reflect this too. Think Tank Media are a creative packaging solutions business who has worked on fantastic products with the fashionable and famous. Click here to see their work.

Packaging can be make or break between someone buying your product or a competitor’s. People like to know that they’re getting quality and you can use the packaging to give off this impression. If effort has been put into designing the packaging, and even the promotional gifts that come with the products, you can see that you’re buying from a company who is passionate about what they do. Ted Baker is an example of stylish design of their products. If you walk down the beauty isles of Boots at this time of year you can see dozens of competing beauty products. The Ted Baker range stands out due to the patterns, distinctive colour schemes and the gorgeous curly font, which makes it instantly recognisable. Click here for Ted’s main site and here to see the range of Ted Baker beauty products on offer at Boots.

For the company, the packaging is the finishing touch of a product before it can be sent to stores, but for the customer, it is the beginning of an exciting relationship between consumer and commodity. The outer casing of a product is similar to the cover of a book; both should draw the audience in. It can also help to create brand character, buy using themes, images and colours on the outer shell. So when launching your product, don’t just think about the uses and features of the item, but think about its place in the market. You can make a product really stand out from all competitors if it’s “cover” is as amazing as the product within.

How you choose to package an object has a huge impact on the impression your product will make. Whether you’re selling breakfast cereal or take-away coffees, how you house the item will give certain signals to the consumer about the brand. There are certain industries where the packaging becomes an art in its own right, for example, with music and films. Even on a personal level, presentation is everything.

 

The Packaging is the Product

Some of the most innovative packaging ideas arise out of a desire to limit waste and use more environmentally-friendly materials. Oftentimes the packaging can be refashioned and becomes the product itself whereas on other occasions, the packaging becomes an additional item. For example, there are TVs that come in boxes which make TV stands and laptops that come in messenger bags, thereby avoiding the abundance of Styrofoam and plastic wrapping that they usually come in. One of the designs we liked best was this great idea for a way of packaging and shipping T shirts – the box can be made into a coat-hanger! Steve Haslip’s Hangerpak, http://stevehaslip.com/hangerpak.html, is a stroke of genius. If companies took a more responsible approach to packaging, there’s no reason why these multi-purpose storage boxes couldn’t be used for shipping other items too – jewellery and books for example. Some of the worst packaging crimes occur when companies fail to recognise that the product has its own packaging, for example, bananas wrapped in polystyrene and plastic is nothing short of ludicrous! Think about what you’re selling and whether it can sell itself; if not, how can you compliment, not necessarily cover, it?

 

Design Art

Products with thoughtful packaging often do very well as customers’ respond to this extra level of attention; another important aspect to consider is the visual appeal of the product. Packaging for daily essentials need not be overly elaborate but for items that are seen as more of a treat, an eye-catching package might be just what you need. While this is true of every luxury, it is with art that it really comes into its own. The collaboration between different creative people often gives fabulous results. A band makes an album, an artist designs the sleeve and designers put the whole thing together in a unique way. Key Production, www.keyproduction.co.uk/packaging is great at this: they create custom and bespoke packaging for CDs and records, giving customers that little bit extra when they buy an album. The tip is to always be adding to the overall impact of a piece – never detracting nor overshadowing.

 

If you are looking to send a message or make a statement, you can do it with the contents of you item, or you can start as soon as the customer sees the packaging. Innovative and original packaging can really help you stand apart from the competition and let your product get the attention it deserves.

We expect advertising in our lives. People are as likely to talk about a new advert as they are about something that happens in their personal lives; similarly, an easy way to make a group with a similar background cohere is by reminiscing about the adverts they saw growing up: the various incarnations of the Bisto family, PG Tips monkeys, Mr. Muscle, the Guinness Horse Surfer, the list is endless. The move towards complexity for marketing and advertising executives means that television adverts are no longer the one-stop-shop for drumming up business that they once were but nonetheless a new study by Deloitte, reported on Advanced Television, shows that the majority (52%) of UK consumers still consider television advertising the most significant. What do these figures show about consumption trends and how can businesses benefit from them?

Not only does the study show that the public consider adverts as significant, it also shows their perception of their own consumer trends. For example, 11% of those surveyed acknowledged that they had searched for a product after seeing it in an advert or sponsorship, with this figure rising to 24% among 16-24 year olds. This clearly indicates that advertisements can instigate direct responses, whether deliberately or not, i.e., even an advertisement designed solely to consolidate brand identity can have the effect of making someone actively seek out the product on offer. Many advertising agencies have long since noted this phenomenon and successfully capitalise on this behaviour. All Response Media are one of the best companies for Direct Response Television in the country. Their approach is to include an unmistakable call-to-action in their ads with results indicating a marked spike in activity after the ad airs. This call to action might be to phone a telephone number for further details, visit a website or make a purchase. As a way of generating a vast number of leads, DRTV is an exceptionally useful marketing tool which capitalises on individuals’ curiosity, impulsiveness and desire to know more.

When it comes to adverts that are geared more towards establishing or maintaining brand identity, it is an interesting question whether it is possible to do wrong? Consider Red Bull, who has a long-running quasi-historical perspective to their TV adverts as you can see on their website. On September 12th, Red Bulls’ new advert was aired in the UK and has been attracting a lot of attention. The ‘Titanic advert’ (shown below) uses the idea that ‘Red Bull Gives You Wings’ to make a joke about how it could have helped those on the Titanic. According to many sources, the advert has attracted criticism for being disrespectful and offensive. Whether or not the advert is disrespectful is down to individual opinion; what is interesting, however, is to consider whether this publicity could ever become ‘bad publicity.’ Will articles in the Daily Mail about offensive advertising agencies lead to a boycott of Red Bull or even reduced sales?

Television is not the only significant factor either. Internet advertising and social media have been hot-topics for some time now but nonetheless when you look at the figures it appears that television advertising is still, by a long way, the most successful. This might be because the television is seen as a source of authority where the internet is understood to be created on more ‘wiki’ like principles. As a business owner, the trick is to appreciate these time-tested methods whilst also not resting on your laurels. You have to try out new things with social media, online and radio advertising, with high quality DRTV and brand-identity TV adverts to back it up. Individuals take in information in a variety of different ways and to generate the most amount of interest in your company or product, you have to use a variety of tools to get the best results: being noticed seems to be the key, whether consciously or unconsciously, positively or otherwise.

Using promotional merchandise is a technique that is rapidly gaining in popularity among those companies who are seeking to advertise their brand name. Everyone loves getting something for nothing, and with many consumers struggling during the recession climate, free gifts have an especially strong appeal.

Promotional merchandise usually displays the brand name of the relevant company, and it is intended to raise awareness for that particular brand name. When choosing promotional merchandise it’s very important to keep it relevant. Novelty items might possess a certain short term value, but many recent surveys have suggested that distributing functional merchandise is more likely to go down well with consumer audiences. Functional items such as pens and or notepads also have the added benefit of being cheaper to manufacture, so your company can save a lot of money compared to businesses that focus on more exotic promotional gifts. If you’re at all unsure about what type of promotional merchandise to make use of, a great way to make your decision is to get some consumer feedback through an online survey website like SurveyMonkey. You can find out more about their free online survey tool by clicking here to visit their homepage.

Keeping your costs down can also be achieved by ordering merchandise in bulk. Promotional CDS and DVDs are widely used methods to communicate more detailed information about a company, but some companies dismiss such products as too costly an investment. However CD replication can actually be very cost efficient when provided by a leading replication firm such as VDC Group. Even if your demand isn’t quite so large it’s worth considering their services, as VDC Group offers a far smaller CD duplication service to cater for smaller disc quantities. So whatever the scale of your order they have the facilities to keep your costs to a minimum.  Click here to visit their website and find out more.

It also makes sense to take advantage of current trends when choosing your promotional gifts. With environmental concerns at an all time high, many companies have seen a rise in the success of reusable branded shopping bags. These also have the added benefit of broadcasting your company name to an especially broad audience, as the brand name on a bag will be visible to all those people who are frequenting a shopping centre at the same time as the user.

Promotional gifts can provide a much needed boost to any advertising campaign. They’re also a fantastic way to give a little back to your consumer market, which usually goes a long way towards building up your company reputation. Why not start looking into promotional merchandise today, and see whether you couldn’t further raise the profile of your business.

For many people, starting their own business can be the beginning of the best days in their working life. Simultaneously very daunting and highly rewarding, making your own ideas work and flourish in the world of business might well be the break you’re looking for. Success as an entrepreneur can come from perhaps the least predictable avenues, make sure you don’t write yourself off. Visit the BBC Website to read about how one charity, Startup, is actively engaged in giving recently released female convicts the opportunity to reform themselves into successful and sustainable businesswomen. You can learn more about the charity in question by going to the Startup website, which will keep you informed about all the essential details.

When it comes to business, your background doesn’t matter, however finding your niche does. Trying to put together a coherent business plan can leave many people floundering in uncertainty, so it makes sense to use some of the many resources out there to refine your ideas. Starting small is often a sensible beginning, so SmallBusiness.co.uk is a great place to visit when it comes to putting your ideas together. Here you can read up on a variety of tips and business advice, in addition to taking inspiration from some previous success stories.

Once you’ve got your company trading, you then need to think about promoting your new business. Promotional gifts can be a vital support for your business, as they help you to get your company name on the map. Four great ideas for being innovative with your promotional merchandise include:

  1. Using Quick Response codes on branded items. In this way, maximum information can be provided on the smallest print space.
  2. Using your promotional merchandise to promote social media. Joining up your offline and online marketing activities can be extremely helpful.
  3. Using the demand for smart phone and tablet accessories to your advantage. It’s thought more than half of all UK mobile phone users have smart phones, so making use of the available market is a good tip.
  4. Using personalised products. Digital printing techniques are improving all the time, so an ever increasing range of products can now be personalised.

You can read into more depth about these ideas and discover new marketing tips by visiting the RB Marketing website.

Whether or not you decide to experiment with these tips, EMC Advertising Gifts is a fantastic choice when it comes to organising a range of promotional gifts for your company. Supplying a colossal range of promotional and business gifts, they’re guaranteed to have something that will suit your needs. If you find yourself getting lost amid your options, why not consider using promotional mugs as a starting point?  Being both low in cost and innately useful, they’re an excellent advertising tool for a new company trying to ensure their business name is in the public eye. You can visit the EMC Advertising Gifts website to view their huge selection of promotional mugs.

Owning your own business is a dream option for many people. It’s also an option which is often wrongly dismissed as only being suitable for the exceptional few. If you’ve got ideas and innovations which could constitute a successful business, make sure you don’t waste them. And while you’re getting started, make sure you advertise yourself to as many people as possible too.

They say the old ways are best, and in this case they’re spot on. I like to think of online marketing as an ever-evolving entity, constantly needing new forms of nourishment and rewarding those who feed it information in interesting ways. It was only a few decades ago that TV, leaflets, magazines and radio were the major contenders for advertising a product: now online advertising encompasses all of them.

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Online vs Direct

This presents one major flaw: information is now easier to access than ever before. On almost every page on the web there’s an advert floating about trying to get your attention. Even on this page right now you are probably surrounded by adverts for things you probably don’t need. Now while Google tries to tailor these adverts on sites you’ve visited in the past, online ads still have to work hard to gain your attention, and it’s usually in a way that has little to do with the product/company. Direct Marketing is an old-fashioned method that is proving the test of time, with approximately 48% of residents responding to a leaflet through the door even by today’s standards. You can either spend your time designing an advert that will most likely never see the light of day due to Adblocker, or you can learn a thing or two from the leaflet pros.

Why Direct?

Direct Marketing uses the same kind of thought that goes into localized Google ads, but with much greater effect. A good leaflet distribution company like Direct Letterbox Marketing will plan a campaign by first identifying the area you want to target, and completing their rounds in a few short hours. You can find out more about the Direct Letterbox Marketing team and their services by clicking here. Identifying the nature of your target audience and then where they are most in abundance is a sure way to ensure you don’t waste time and money.

The Royal Mail states in their Market Reach blog here that you can keep track of your targeted audience and their responses more easily with direct marketing. Not only this, but you know that your ad has gone to the right people rather than jumping up and down and waving your arms about online.

Mail Man

Finally, direct marketing is the most cost-effective form of advertising today. This article from Marketing Week confirms that letterbox marketing is on the rise, all it takes is the dedication from you and your distribution team. Despite having fully interactive adverts online, they do very little to engage people at their computers. Answering the door to someone holding a leaflet leaves you no choice but to be engaged. It sounds just as bad, but if you’re a good salesperson you’ll only need those few seconds to make a good, personal impression on behalf of your company. Here’s a good example of a speedy sales-pitch:

Aside from the tongue-in-cheek ending, this ad from Communicology has it down. Direct marketing is a great way to kick-start your ad campaign, and while it’s crucial that you have an effective online campaign, it’s better to start on a more personal level with more traditional methods. The results speak for themselves; a bit of old-fashioned leg work may be just what your company is missing.

Game On

The entertainment industry’s dirty little secret is that gaming blows the competition out of the water. In 2012, it was estimated the UK gaming industry alone contributed £5.2bn to the economy, far outstripping the music and film industries. For gaming companies, that means getting your game marketed successfully can be a massive make-or-break moment in the life of the game and the studio. If you’re looking to get your game out there in this hyper-competitive, super-lucrative market, take a look at the guide below for some handy hints.

Online
The ubiquity of viral advertising coupled with the majority – if not all – games today possessing some form on online play, the need to market your game online is imperative. A lack of an online presence spells effective death for the modern game, so you need to think carefully about how to effectively promote your game. It’s worth casting an eye over www.merseyremakes.co.uk/gibber/2009/03/how-not-to-market-your-indie-game for some great starter tips to get abreast of some very important dos and don’ts. Most of you will realise the importance of social media in marketing your game; the use of Facebook, Twitter and YouTube are all vital. However, there’s more to online marketing than just the big three, and the obvious interactivity of your product (it is meant to be played, after all) lends itself well to viral marketing. Companies like Wicked Web can help you with online promotion in a way that will get potential customers engaging with your product before it’s even been released! Check out www.wickedweb.co.uk/viral-games-videos/ to see exactly how they can help you.

Offline
Offline marketing isn’t as important to gaming as online, but nevertheless should not be ignored. Most big games these days come with a glorious CGI trailer or two, gorgeous TV spots in prime advertising slots reaching a mass audience. That’s where companies like Blur Studios come in. You can find them at www.blur.com offering their creative services in award winning visual effects, animation and design. You can read http://kotaku.com/5649504/meet-the-pixar-of-video-games on Kotaku to read why they’ve been called the ‘Pixar of Video Games’, or you can just watch the video below to see it for yourself.  Having a stunning TV trailer maximises your audience potential by delivering your content straight into thousands of homes up and down the country, so after online marketing it should be your next biggest outlet.


Launch
Launch day is the box-office weekend equivalent for games. Just as cinemas do midnight releases of the latest blockbusters, so too do games companies roll out their products as the clock strikes twelve on release day. Big, flagship titles have been doing this for a few years with incredible gains, generating huge buzz and profits around midnight launches, and turning them from simple late-night shopping trips into mammoth events. The sheer scale of these events can be staggering, just take a look at the video below for the launch event for Starcraft II to get an idea of the scale of these things. Launching, and launching well, then, can be a major boon to your game and business. Thankfully, help is at hand in the form of Skyline Whitespace. They were actually integral in the UK launch of Starcraft II at the Apollo, and you can find out more about securing their event solutions services yourself at www.skylinewhitespace.com/services/installation/event-solutions.

The gaming industry is going from strength to strength, which means there’s never been a better time to launch your game. The trade-off is that this makes the environment exceedingly competitive, so having a fantastic advertising campaign and launch can work wonders in making yourself stand out from the crowd.

Advertising your business or event is essential for most companies (see this article from Return2Writing for more). Of course word of mouth can be incredibly successful but you also need to reach those potential customers who don’t hear about you in this way. Many companies will try some form of online advertising or internet marketing and in many cases it can produce some good results, but really you can’t beat the good old fashioned advertising leaflet for getting your business known.

A well designed advertising leaflet combined with the highest quality print services from a leaflet printing company such as one of the UK’s first, Circle, can work in a number of ways. It can be a visual reminder to the person who has picked it up next time they look at it. It can create an impact if it is well designed and has an eye catching heading, and it can provide a source of information that can be kept for future use. When designing your leaflet pay particular attention to one of two things. If you have a heading that grabs people’s attention it will make them want to read more so think carefully and make sure it creates the impact you want. If you want to persuade your customers than you must include a “call to action”.

It may be obvious to you how to get in contact but not to your customer so include something along the lines of “ring 01225741222 today and speak to Billy to book your free consultation”. You want people to have faith in what you do, so if you belong to some professional body then mention it in the leaflet to show your credibility and boost your sales. Another advantage of handing out a leaflet is that it can be targeted at the right sort of person. There’s little point handing a takeaway menu to elderly people in a retirement home if their meals are all provided, but you could try handing them out in your local town to much younger people who are far more likely to order from you.