Monthly Archives: December 2015

CREATIVE EMPORIUM'S

2015 highlights

WOW – can you believe another year has flown by? Us neither. Despite the fact it’s gone so quick, we feel like we’ve packed a lot in, it’s been yet another productive year for team CE. So, with the New Year just around the corner, we’re taking a look at some of our key team highlights of 2015 so far – from talented new hires, to the development of our CO3 online ordering platform, social events and generally having great fun together as a team. 2015, we salute you.

2015’s new hires

Check out some of our new team members who have joined the company in 2015. We’ve taken on a variety of new recruits across the business, from finance to art working, but the biggest growth has been seen in our ever expanding client services team (you’ll also see there’s a female take over happening!):

new-starters-1Welcome Ebony, Abi, Alice, Olivia, Tori, Holly, Funmi, Abby and Gemma!

It’s big. It’s Better. It’s Here. CO3 v2.0

In August 2015 we launched the new generation of our revolutionary CO3 online ordering platform: version 2.0! It comes with all of the benefits of its predecessor, but with sparkling new features – taking your promotional merchandise procurement and marketing campaigns to the next level.

If you’re not yet using CO3, it’s our bespoke built online ordering system that removes all the pain, administration, and hidden costs out of ordering branded merchandise and clothing (and any third party products). All CO3 systems are built in-house by our digital experts and are available to all our clients. > Read more.

CE Events

Our team Social Committee has had a busy year organising some key team building events, where the whole company gets together. It primarily involves music, dancing, food and alcohol – which are ‘great for team bonding’…or so we’re told…!

Here’s a few pics from our Summer BBQ in August:

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And some from our recent Xmas Party on the 4th December (these are the pics that made it through…some we just could not share!)

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2015: you’ve been a great year. Here’s to a happy, healthy and prosperous 2016 for all!

Well, that’s it for our year in review! There are so many things that made us happy and proud over the past year, and we want to take this opportunity to say a massive thank you to our great team and our amazing clients, for making this year special.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year Everyone!

PS: How was 2015 for you? Feel free to leave a comment below or drop us a tweet @creativeempo

is your website

Is your website fit for 2016? [CHECKLIST]

For most businesses, the primary role of the website is to engage the visiting target audience, capture their details and develop an on-going relationship with them until they buy. Simple, no? Well, it’s a little more complicated than that! Here, we’re discussing your strategy to convert more traffic into more customers, to ensure your website is working for you in 2016.

  • OBJECTIVES

 What are your website goals for 2016?

They could be, for instance, one or a combination of the following:

  • Branding – which, for example, is the particular focus of the Apple website
  • Traffic – which, for example, is a primary focus of newspaper websites, such as the FT.com
  • Sales – which for example, is the primary objective of eBay
  • Loyalty – which is the primary objective of TripAdvisor
  • Word-of-mouth – which you can argue is the primary goal of Facebook

But your objectives must be SMART, so attach some quantifiable metrics such as:

“Increase traffic by %XX by quarter three 2016”

  • STRATEGY

 Your website strategy

 The success of your website (and therefore your business!) boils down to just two things:

  • Traffic – getting people to visit your website.
  • Conversions – turning them into paying customers (which applies for non e-commerce sites too)

That’s it.  That’s what your strategy must focus on.

If you understand these two principles and how to master them,” says marketing manager Hannah, “you’re guaranteed success. If you don’t, you’re guaranteed to struggle!”

Hannah continues, “Forget clever web design, blogs, animations etc. Only two things matter: Traffic and Conversions. If your digital team isn’t talking to you every day about Traffic and Conversions, you need to consider the fact that your website might not be working as hard as it should for your business. But most importantly, you MUST master both. Traffic without Conversions is useless, and vice versa,” emphasizes Hannah.

  • Increasing Traffic

Hannah points out that to increase traffic to your website you have to convince Google that “your website is one of the most useful, relevant and valuable websites for particular keywords/key phrases – that your target audience uses when searching for information on your subject matter

CE TIP:

  • Have a look at your website. It may be working hard at communicating what you offer your customers but is it anything close to being ‘the most useful, relevant and valuable website’ in your market sector?
  • Also have a look at your competitors’ websites. Are they highly optimised?  If not then implementing some basic, inexpensive strategies should significantly improve your search results.

And you don’t need a five-figure budget or a sophisticated SEO company to achieve major search ranking improvements.

To build traffic, consistently publish high quality useful content on your website that has known value to your target audience. Video marketing is particularly effective,” says Hannah.

And once your website is full of valuable relevant content you can easily get third parties to link to you!

Other ways to boost traffic include:

  • Using keywords to speak your audience’s language.
  • FAQs on your website with (‘expert’) answers that your target audience are searching for.
  • Email marketing – with links back to content on your site such as blog posts and product information
  • Social media ads are a relatively inexpensive short-term tactic to drive traffic. Useful for short term campaigns.
  • Customer reviews, testimonials and case studies which can be shared across social platforms. Hint: video testimonials are really effective.
  • Create a blog and update it regularly with useful content
  • Add a ‘visit our website’ call-to-action tag to company email addresses, headed paper, invoices, business cards, etc.
  • Consider putting the URL on company cars, the office windows, and anywhere else appropriate.
  • Add your website address to your email signature.
  • Try Google Adwords
  • Increasing conversions

You have successfully delivered a consistent flow of visitors (prospects) to your website.  How do you start the process of converting them into customers?

Let’s say that you have 200 people visiting your website daily, of which 1% (2 people) convert on average. Increase the number of people visiting by 50% to 300 people. By increasing your traffic, you’re increasing the opportunity to convert”, says Hannah.

Think about your different website ‘audiences’. There will be, for example, three types:

  • Visitors who are looking to order from you (or your competitor) immediately (although this segment only represents a small percent of traffic)

CE TIP:

To fulfil their needs your website needs to instantly make it clear that you have the exact product offering that they are looking for.

So think about:

 What information do they need to be reassured that you are the right company to buy from?

  • How positive and prominent are your testimonials?
  • Is ordering really easy to do?
  • Research how other websites do this really successfully, and copy them!
  • People who are looking for more information now

CE TIP:

  • Is your telephone number on the home page (Call us now on 0800 XXX XXX)
  • How do you encourage them to pick up the phone? 
  • How do you make it clear that your company is the best one to speak to?
  • Visitors who are just browsing for information (this is where the majority of your visitor traffic will be) these prospects are a huge untapped opportunity for you!

CE TIP:

  • Give them a good reason to leave you with their contact details.
  • Think about how you will ‘nurture’ these leads once they have given you their contact info. A follow up email? A series of follow up emails? A phone call?
  • Start a conversation with them.

Just think:

If you increase your website traffic and your conversions

how would your profits increase? Significantly we’re sure!

Complete Branding Solution

We’re experts in providing the compete branding solution for our clients, so please get in touch today to discuss your requirements and how we can help you with your branded merchandise and clothing. Call us on 08707 500057 or drop us a line by email.

productpackaging

Product Focus: Why packaging counts

Everyone loves promotional products – especially us. Every month we focus on a particular promotional product to show you why we think they’re a great sales tool to boost your brand. We’ve looked at mugs, bags and pens, tech products, sweets, notebooks and bespoke items. This month we’re talking…packaging!

Your product packaging is as important as the product itself.

Packaging is everywhere. It’s used on just about everything we eat, wear, and use in our everyday lives. It also creates the first impression on a potential buyer. So will it be a good one or a bad one?

The role of packaging in marketing has become quite significant as it is one of the ways companies can get their target customers to notice them. However, packaging is often overlooked when it comes to promotional merchandise. Actually, packaging is very important in the promotion of your product and brand! Here’s why:

‘Out of the box’ experience

OOB image

Packaging design can affect the ‘perceived value’ of the product, as well as your brand overall. If you want your audiences to have a high perceived value of your product and brand, don’t send them a cheap promo item in a jiffy bag! “Think about the total customer experience,” says Marketing Manager Hannah. “How do you want them to feel when they open and take the product out of the box? You want them to feel impressed, delighted even!”

Types of packaging

Promotional packaging is all about making your product, marketing campaign or promotional item stand out from the crowd and encourage a purchase decision. Whether this is through a unique shaped box, the innovative design of a mailer or even making your packaging interactive – there are many high quality, and creative, innovative packaging solutions.

“Packaging adds more perceived value to the product; it can also bring a retail feel or give additional print/branding space”, says our Creative Support Executive, Charlotte Mitchie. “There’s a huge variety of types to choose from: gift bags, gift boxes, poly-bagging, backing cards…as well as extras such as foam inserts, tissue paper, shredded paper, stickers and so on. The options are vast!”

What to consider when choosing the right packaging for your product:

  • Colour is influential, and can encourage the purchase decision for a potential customer. For example, green or brown paper packaging is increasingly being used to denote an eco/environmental orientation for a brand.

eco pic

  • Shape can be a strong form of persuasion. For instance, the unique shape of the Coca-Cola contour bottle, gives it immense power to provoke brand recognition:

cc pic

  • Package size is important . Keep it relevant to the product size , but don’t be afraid to have a bigger box for a smaller product, as you can include complementary items inside such as marketing literature and other promo gifts to make the person receiving it feel extra special!

nectar 2 pic

Differentiation

Packaging can differentiate your brand from your competitors, as it can be “bespoke branded with your company names, logos and colour schemes, making the item easily identifiable with your company” says Hannah.

Functional

The real ‘purpose’ of product packaging is to protect the product from damage. Simples! It not only protects the product during transit, but it also prevents damage while its sat in a warehouse or on a shelf.

We can offer tons of ideas to help you choose the best promotional packaging option for your next marketing campaign. Maybe we can inspire you? Please get in touch today to discuss your requirements and how we can help you with your promotional merchandise and confectionery. Call us on 08707 500057 or drop us a line by email.

FREE

Your 2016 Marketing Planning Checklist

Now’s the time to look ahead and starting putting together your marketing plan for the next year; and to help, we’ve put together a useful checklist covering the essential things every marketing manager and business owner needs to be considering in their 2016 marketing strategies and written plans.

Okay, we’ll be honest with you. This is more than a checklist. It’s actually, a one page marketing plan. It’s super simple, jargon free and ready to use right away. (You can thank us later J) BUT, before you start thinking about your short term 12- month plan, make sure you fully understand your company’s vision and goals for the next 3-5 years, too.

Let’s get started!

2016 Marketing 1-Page Plan & Checklist

  • MISSION:

Firstly, what’s your overarching mission? Define and set your broad goals. For example: “Become the best marketing team in the world” (Aiming high!)

Real life example:

‘Our mission is to grow our company by providing innovative, strong, and high-performance products and solutions to meet our global customers’ needs’ (JCB)

  • OBJECTIVES:

Set SMART objectives.

For example: “Increase online lead acquisition by converting X% of web visitors by April 2016” or “Increase revenue from product X over the next 12 months”. Also, think about numerical goals you’ll hit to make sure you’re on track, such as “Increase revenue by X% to X% in 2016”

  • STRATEGY:

Your strategy details how you plan on achieving your objectives.

For example: “Accelerate growth by becoming the best source of information and credible thought leadership on X”

  • AUDIENCE:

 Who is your target audience? What keeps them up at night? What problems and desires do they have? What media do they consume?

  • TACTICS:

These detail what tactics you’ll use to implement your strategy. These are the tactical, actionable elements. They are how you will communicate your strategy and proposition to your target audiences.

For example:

“Use social media and content marketing to engage customers by delivering useful information and thought-provoking insights in the form of blog articles, white papers, eBooks, videos and email newsletters”

  • EVALUATION:

How will you measure the success of your marketing activities? What needs to be monitored, measured and evaluated?

Popular metrics include web data such as number of visitors/volume of traffic; conversion rates; revenue generated; social media – number of fans/followers; email marketing – number of subscribers/leads generated.

And finally, just keep it simple. Think about what success looks like for you and then see how you can measure it!

Complete Branding Solution

We’re experts in providing the compete branding solution for our clients, so please get in touch today to discuss your requirements and how we can help you with your branded merchandise and clothing. Call us on 08707 500057 or drop us a line by email.