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Telling a story through advertising is one of the most effective ways to run a successful and engaging campaign. However, mastering the art of visual storytelling is certainly no easy task. The narrative that you choose to run with must coincide with your brand ideals and, more importantly, it should be in line with the types of content your audience will react to.

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Below you will find three important tips to help you identify the story your brand should tell to make the most impact.

Play on emotion and logic. Instead of speaking of the direct benefit or use for your products or services, shed light on the emotional benefits they offer. For example, if you’re selling lawn care services, center your advertising campaign around how much more relaxed and carefree homeowners can be knowing their turf is in good hands, rather than the specifics of each service. Sure, homeowners know what it looks like to see a freshly mowed lawn, but do they know what it feels like to have their lawns kept fresh and green without lifting a finger? Let your advertising paint that picture.

Solve a problem. At the end of the day, consumers want to know how your products or services can help them succeed. While throwing statistics and results out there might appear to be the fastest way to get your point across, it’s not always the most well-received option. Instead, try telling a story to explain the power of your product and its benefits. Take the Allstate “Mayhem” ad campaign for example. The brand found a clever way to create an ongoing narrative that presents issues that only Allstate is qualified to solve.

Leave some stones unturned. Any good advertising campaign pulls consumers in with just enough to leave them wanting more! The goal of advertising is inevitably to drum up business, so your story should be left open-ended enough for consumers to feel compelled to contact your company for more information.

Here at Creative Partners, finding new ways to ensure your brand voice is heard above the ruckus is a challenge that we’re always excited to accept. Our commitment to developing personalized, relevant and inspiring messaging for each of our clients is unmatched by the competition.

To learn more about how we can help your company come up with a compelling and influential advertising story, call 203-705-9211 today! For more tips, find us on FacebookTwitterGoogle+ and LinkedIn.

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It’s the holiday season, which means advertisers are trying extra hard to tug at our heartstrings. We’ve already seen a plethora of heartwarming holiday ads for 2015, but today we’re going back in time. Below we take a look at some of our favorite holiday campaigns ever:

Our Favorite HolidayCampaigns of All Time

1. M&Ms – “Faint” (1996)

Nobody can forget this classic M&Ms TV spot — despite that fact that it’s a mere 15 seconds long. The ad, also known as “They Do Exist” and “Meeting Santa,” is comical, endearing and relatable all at the same time — a sweet spot for television advertisements. Watch below, and be prepared to start believing again:

2. Folger’s Coffee – “Peter Comes Home For Christmas” (1986)

“Home for the holidays” takes on a whole new meaning in Folger’s 1986 holiday commercial. Watch big brother Peter come home and surprise the family with a fresh-brewed pot of coffee on Christmas morning. Everybody can relate to that feeling of reconnecting with loved ones, and here, Folgers reminds us that a home is all about the familiar aroma of a good cup of Jo.

3. Coca Cola – “Seal and Polar Bears” (1997)

Coke began aligning its brand image with the holiday season in the early 20th century — a truly brilliant move. Perhaps the most memorable of its long history of Yuletide ads is this one, in which polar bears seem to forget that they’re higher in the food chain than seals. Watch Coca Cola make holiday magic occur between would-be enemies in the animal kingdom:

These are just a few of our favorite holiday ads here at Creative Partners. What other commercials would you add to our list? Sound off on Facebook and Twitter.

Looking to create a little holiday magic of your own? Allow us to help. With 25 years’ experience, Creative Partners is dedicated to finding new ways to ensure your voice is heard above the ruckus — this holiday season and beyond. Give us a call at (203) 705-9211 to get started.

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While the concept of public relations has been around for centuries, it’s more prominent now than ever before. It’s not only one of the fastest growing fields, but it’s a necessity — no matter the brand or industry. Receiving favorable publicity in the media is key to a brand’s survival in the marketplace.

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As we approach 2016, public relations continues to evolve at a rapid pace. Below is a list of a few trends to look out for:

Mobile usage is growing— In 2008, 12 percent of adults used mobile devices every day to access digital media; today, that number has grown to 51 percent. How does the growing shift toward mobile affect PR? Audiences can now access information more easily than ever before, so public relations professionals have to be prepared — whether that means creating apps or offering mobile customer support.

Security is a growing concern— Online security is a major issue that affects almost everyone. As technology continues to advance, so does the growing concern that private information can be leaked. (Remember 2014’s industry-changing Sony hack?) Public relations professionals need to be ready to handle a breach in security with a crisis management plan.

Say goodbye to traditional press releases— Just as other forms of communication are evolving, so is the press release. Long-winded press releases are a thing of the past. Now more than ever before, people expect to get information quickly and efficiently. Incorporating visuals — like infographics, GIFs and videos — not only makes a press release more attention-grabbing, but also easier to digest.

Say hello to social media— Social media has replaced the law of traditional public relations. Journalists rely heavily on social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter to find newsworthy stories. Share yours across the social web to meet the media where they are — instead of jamming up their inboxes.

If your company needs help managing the buzz, turn to Creative Partners. We’ll ensure you reach key audiences in a way that supports your brand and its value to media analysts, policy makers, influencers, customers and shareholders. Call us at (203) 705-9211. For more tips, find us on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn.

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When it comes to content marketing, text is passé; visual content — everything from infographics to videos — is in. And it’s only going to get bigger. Fail to get on board with this trend, and your brand will almost certainly be left in the dust. Here’s why:

  • The human brain processes visuals 60,000 times faster than text
  • Ninety percent of all information transmitted to our brains is visual
  • Seventy percent of sensory receptors are located in the eyes
  • When processing visual information, 50 percent of your brain is active
  • Forty percent of people respond better to visual content

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But that’s not to say that every kind of visual content is right for every brand. Let’s take a look at some of the most popular forms:

  1. Video– Not only has YouTube exploded over the last few years (it’s now the second-largest search engine), but now more social networks are embracing native video as well. In fact, Facebook’s algorithm gives native video content preference over other types.
  2. Photos– Stock photos will work, but users often prefer photos taken by and of you, your company and your team. This personal, behind-the-scenes touch can add that extra something to your digital marketing campaign.
  3. Infographics– No matter what industry you’re in, you have information that can be shared with the public. Data that’s laid out in a visual format is easy to digest.
  4. Screenshots– Whether you’re telling a story or giving directions, a simple screenshot can often describe what words cannot.
  5. Memes– This type of content works best for brands with a sense of humor. Don’t be afraid to dive in if a popular meme seems relevant for your business.
  6. Graphics– Turn plain text content into graphics to make it more pleasing to the eye. For example, overlay a photo with an inspirational quote for a motivational post that’s also engaging.

We at Creative Partners understand and embrace the trend towards visual content. With 25 years’ experience in branding and advertising, we make it our responsibility to deliver smart design anchored in your mission and aligned with your brand message. To learn more, give us a call at (203) 705-9211. Don’t forget to connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn for more tips!

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A simple Google search for “online marketing tips” yields approximately 210 million near-identical results. If you are already set up on social media, have a basic understanding of search engine optimization, and leverage email marketing, then it’s time to start thinking outside the box.

We at Creative Partners understand that in this digital age, an interactive marketing program is indispensable to a successful marketing strategy. It’s a matter of reaching out, connecting and making waves in an ocean of networks.

Below, we break down three out-of-the-box online marketing tips:

1. Explore lesser-known and niche social networks

Social media communication

These days, being active on Facebook and Twitter alone just won’t cut it. Keep an eye on up-and-coming social networks that may in fact be a better fit for your brand. For example, if you’re in the home improvement industry, it might be worth your while to invest time in social networks like Houzz and Porch. Other newer social channels to test include Meerkat and Periscope.

2. Invest in video

It’s no secret that video content is more popular than ever. Cisco predicts that by the year 2017, video will account for almost 70 percent of all consumer internet traffic. It’s also impossible to ignore the rise of native video on social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter. Don’t just upload your videos to YouTube and expect them to explode.

3. Consider paid social media

Today, fewer people are clicking on banner ads, and some users are choosing to shut these ads off completely. Research shows that consumers are losing patience with traditional forms of online advertising, resulting in somewhere between a third and a half of online users using a software that blocks the most popular forms of display advertising. Smart brands and marketers are stepping up mobile advertising efforts, and many are allocating funds specifically to social media advertising.

Call (203) 705-9211 to speak with a Creative Partners representative about more out-of-the-box online marketing tips. You can also request information at our website. Don’t forget to connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn for more tips.

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Grab a copy of Gretchen Rubin’s book, play mashups of the Pharrell’s song.

This version is from the Detroit Academy of Arts and Sciences choir.

Of course, we cannpt forget the original version by Pharrell.

If you google ‘how to be happy,’ you can find…About 2,330,000,000 search results and 12,800,000 videos. Happy happiness hunting!

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Meet the 2012 President of the American Institute of Architects,  Jeff Potter, FAIA by viewing the following web video from AIArchitect.com.

Potter discusses his experiences as a small-firm practitioner and how guitarist Jeff Beck influences his designs.

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Congratulations to Metropolitan College of New York for being featured on Channel 7 WABC New York News for the MPA in Emergency and Disaster Management Program & the Haitian effort.

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