Stir Blog
Apr-2-2014

Has Mobile Blurred “The Fold”?

As long as I can remember in the world of web design, one of the first problems to solve was “What information goes above ‘The Fold’”?

For those who don’t know,“The Fold” refers to the imaginary line created by computer monitors where the website cuts off before a user begins to scroll. To date the term even more, it’s an old term used by newspaper editors to determine what stories readers would first see when they would pick up a copy of the paper.

In the past, this was a usability issue for web designers. Clients wanted to keep everything above “the fold,” which usually resulted in having too much information crammed in a small space jockeying for position to get noticed.

With larger, higher resolution monitors becoming standard on our PCs  and the dominance of tablets and smart phones for web browsing taking over, the question I pose is, “Is mobile blurring ‘The Fold’ in web design?” Read the rest of this entry »

Posted under Advertising, Brand Marketing, Branding, Digital Marketing, IT, Marketing, Technology, Web Development
Mar-8-2014

Media Relations Maintains Relevance

We live in a golden age of communication. Everyone has access to self-publishing tools. We no longer have to depend entirely on traditional media gatekeepers. If we want to share a unique perspective or increase awareness about a product or issue, we can Tweet, Like or Blog our way to instant online exposure – something that would have been unimaginable just a few short years ago.

While technology has made it faster and easier to spread compelling ideas, there’s still tremendous value in more traditional outreach efforts, including media relations. Non-paid editorial placements earned in newspapers, magazines and other outlets still get noticed.

Of course, traditional outlets no longer have the same clout they had in decades past, but they still drive the collective conversation and unquestionably pull large numbers. For reference, the top 12 daily newspapers in the United States all have a circulation greater than 400,000 and the top 15 monthly magazines each have more than 3,000,000 paid subscribers.

That’s a lot of eyeballs, by any measure. If your message can resonate with even a small percentage of these audiences, it can really help to build awareness, boost credibility, and differentiate your organization from its competitors.

It’s also important to keep in mind that the most successful news outlets today are savvy online publishers too, which can create an appealing opportunity for triple exposure – in the actual outlet, on the outlet’s website, and then through the outlet’s social media channels. This is the secret sauce of message integration – a subject that we’ve been preaching at STIR for well over a decade.

So, what are the key takeaways here? Read the rest of this entry »

Posted under Advertising, Branding, General, Marketing, Media Relations, PR, Social Media
Feb-20-2014

STIR IMC Webisode 4-The Marketing Power Of Sharing

The fourth in our series of webisodes: Speaking at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Brian Bennett shares important takeaways from a research study conducted by Edelman which highlight the importance of sharing in your marketing program. The study finds not only how valuable it can be in creating brand loyalty, but also segments the different types of sharing – so that you can make your social media marketing strategy more effective.

This webisode is titled “The Marketing Power of Sharing.”

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted under Brand Marketing, Brand Story, Brand Strategy, Content Marketing, Digital Marketing, Marketing, Marketing Strategy, Social Marketing, Social Media
Feb-19-2014

You have three seconds. Entertain me. (Or, how to create a high-impact ad campaign)

Three seconds or less. That’s the amount of time it takes someone to decide whether they will consume your message or move on. Is it interesting or is it a dreaded sales call? This is the litmus test, the determining factor in whether your campaign has a chance to succeed, or whether it will be ignored.

When creating an ad campaign the natural instinct is to include as much information about your company as possible because you paid a lot of money for the space. In reality you’re probably wasting all that money by overwhelming the consumer with data. Few people will invite a lengthy sales call into their lives.

How can you break through in three seconds? Read the rest of this entry »

Posted under Advertising, Branding, Creative, Disruptive messaging, General, Marketing, Tips & Tricks
Jan-28-2014

The Super Bowl Variety Show

Once again on February 2, the largest audience assembled in the history of mankind will gather before television, computer screens, tablets, and cell phones to view the Super Bowl. Many viewers will admit to being more interested in the ads than the actual football game.

And once again corporations will invest $4+ million to put their 30-second spot in front of that audience – the most expensive spots and biggest gambit in the history of advertising.

The Super Bowl is not just a football game. It has become a variety show, with the advertisers serving as the acts. It is the American Idol of advertising.  Read the rest of this entry »

Posted under Advertising, Brand Marketing, Brand Strategy, Branding, General, Marketing, Super Bowl Commercials, Super Bowl Marketing Strategies
Jan-24-2014

STIR IMC Webisode 3 – New Technology Means New Opportunity

The third in our series of webisodes, Brian Bennett speaks at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee on the world of opportunity that is equaling the playing field in marketing.

This week’s webisode is titled with a key takeaway from the presentation: “New Technology Means A World Of Opportunity.”

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted under Advertising, Brand Strategy, General, Integrated Marketing, Marketing, Marketing Strategy, Social Marketing, Social Media, Technology, True IMC
Jan-17-2014

STIR IMC Webisode 2 – Brands Are About Emotions

The second in our series of webisodes, Brian Bennett speaks at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee on branding.

This week’s webisode is titled with a key takeaway from the presentation: “Brands Are About Emotions.”


Read the rest of this entry »

Posted under Advertising, Brand Marketing, Brand Story, Brand Strategy, Branding, General, Integrated Marketing, Marketing, Marketing Strategy, True IMC
Jan-14-2014

Responsive Design or Not

esign that is responsive adapts to the unit upon which it is displayedResponsive Web Design in the simplest of terms is taking a mobile-first approach to your web strategy.

Mobile web browsing is at an all-time high. Content is being consumed anytime, anywhere and on many different devices. If your website is not “native” to these devices, then your customers may not have a good experience viewing your content from a mobile device.

If the term “Responsive Web Design” (RWD) is new to you, you are not alone. Responsive design is a website design method that adjusts the layout and content seamlessly for desktop, tablet or smartphone web browser without redirecting you to a different mobile site. Users are 35% more likely to abandon your site if it is not optimized for the device they are using. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted under Advertising, Branding, Digital Marketing, General, IT, Marketing, Technology, Web Development
Jan-3-2014

STIR IMC Webisode 1 – What is Integrated Marketing?

In 2014, we wish you a robust bottom line. To help with that, we’re kicking off the year with a series of webisodes, lectures that Brian Bennett has delivered about Integrated Marketing.

This week’s webisode is titled, “What is Integrated Marketing?”

You may also benefit from these links:

We hope that you enjoy this series.

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© 2013 STIR, LLC

WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE ON YOUR BLOG OR WEB SITE? You can, as long as you include this complete blurb with it:

“STIR Advertising and Integrated Messaging in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, blends the disciplines of a creative advertising agency with a fully functional digital marketing agency. Find out more about STIR at www.stirstuff.com.

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Posted under Advertising, General, Integrated Marketing, Marketing, Marketing Strategy, True IMC
Dec-24-2013

Good Will Toward Men – A Holiday Theme That Should Be Executed Year-Round

Goodwill toward men. It’s a classic and touching thought, one that captures the underlying essence of how we all believe we should behave, but in actuality tend to celebrate only once a year. Truthfully, we’d all be better off if we were able to instill this concept into our daily lives, from a personal and professional basis year round.

We would be better off not just because “it’s the right thing to do,” but also because Good Will makes an enormous difference when it comes to integrated marketing and brand development!

Good Will is an essential form of value in a business. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted under Advertising, Brand Marketing, Brand Strategy, Branding, General, Integrated Marketing, Marketing, True IMC