Things That Are Happening

Just a quick blog to discuss some things that are happening at double 7’s lately. Yes, we’ve made it through the worst part of the pandemic. Certainly, our hope is that your business is making it happen too! Most importantly though, we hope everyone is safe.

Come Together

It seems like some local business is slowly starting to come back to a little normalcy. Although, we’re not sure how long it will last. We’ll continue to hope for normalcy again though!

All of this craziness (protests, racism, rioting, police problems, government overreach, and stupid virus stuff) needs to stop. When are we going to come together as a society and simply focus on being unified?

All of us (in the U.S.) live in the greatest country in the world (despite what some may say) and we need to treat each other with respect and dignity. To sum up, that’s all we’ll say about any of that. So, go be good to one another. Period.

Things that are happening. White 77 Design Co logo
Treat each other well.
Things We Are Working On

Through the mess, 77 Design Co has managed to maintain consistent stability and even picked up a few new projects. Helping business is what we do, and our overall goal is to grow each company that we work with.

Some of the new things that are happening with 77 include:

* A new website for a health insurance agency.

* A new website for a local spa.

* Social media management for an RHVAC company.

* Product and commercial photography for a manufacturer.

* Likewise, possibly a new website for that same manufacturer.

* Video project for a local church organization.

* Print catalog design for another manufacturer.

And a few more projects in the works.

In other words, it’s been kind of busy lately. It excites us to see some business owners forging ahead with their marketing plans! Additionally, it also excites us to see some business closing in on normal operations.

These last six months have been trying for everyone, but there needs to be a point where you say “forget it, move ahead.” Or, your business could be shackled like in the below image.

Things that are happening. Design of a shackled man in a suit to a large weight.
Don’t shackle your business.

Need ideas on how to kick start your business? Our FREE marketing consultation is offered to any business looking to get on the right track. https://77designco.com/services-2/

77Design Co logo and business cards.

Analyze. Create. Achieve.

Marketing Success Stories

Marketing success stories. How about some optimism? Because racial tensions, increased Covid cases, stupid politics, government mandates, business closures, riots, and everything else in the news is usually bad. So, let’s talk positivity.

Marketing success stories. Marketing Scrabble tiles and a 77 Design Co business card.
Marketing helps!

In this uncertain and crippled economic climate, some businesses have managed success. Despite the difficulties now your business needs to stay relevant. Marketing does that! On a micro level, a few places locally have seen an uptick in business due to continued marketing. We’ll share a few stories with you this week.

Story 1

One of the marketing success stories we’ll share is a local brewery. As a result of a social media training program, this local brewery is seeing a surge in engagement. Consequently, this has improved sales.

Customers consistently come in and say, “Hey, we follow you on Facebook.” Likewise, they’ll hear “we love your Facebook videos” or share similar comments. Awesome! We love to hear it!

Brewery: We were never open to retail before. Recently, we opened a pop up beer garden and we went from 0% retail to selling about the same as wholesale. Our business is selling more merchandise too. Social media is keeping us going. For instance, our engagement is now between 800-1200 per post versus the 60-200 we’d get before. That’s a big increase! It’s growing daily too. Likes and shares have increased as well. This varies post to post.

Another success we’ve seen is brand awareness. Most people didn’t know about us before. As a result of our consistent social media posting many people tell us they know all about our beers now. Facebook and Instagram are really helping. We’re more informed and educated about what we are doing now. http://www.sobbrews.com

Marketing Success Stories. Dollar bills and coins laying on glass with the 77 Design Co business card.
Story 2

Food is essential. We all know that. Everyone needs food to survive. A local food service company that we work with has taken the pitfalls of this pandemic and turned it into a way to increase business while also taking better care of their customers. They have utilized their customizable food packages to ensure the safety of their customers simultaneously. How? Offer great food, have it delivered, and never leave home for it.

Marketing success stories. Sirloin beef tip roast photograph.

Food Service Company: Our current success directly correlates with our social media program. Before the pandemic we did our best, but now its more tightened. Our pages are fun AND informative now. Creative photos and videos help tremendously. New likes and shares are common on a daily basis.

Messages come in multiple times daily. It’s sometimes overwhelming how many we get. Existing customers want to order more food. New customers want to learn more about our products.

Facebook and Instagram have been huge. Sales have increased 50-60% over last year. That’s the trend so far, though it may be higher by years end. That has translated into a massive increase in revenue, but we’d rather not state an exact dollar amount. https://proniosfoods.com

Story 3

We won’t get too deep into this marketing success story, but a few parishes in the local area that we work with have also seen improvements. Pre COVID numbers had increased giving, but more importantly to them, more member engagement.

These churches wanted ways of reaching their parishioners better to pass along the Word of God and they’ve been utilizing social media and user friendly website updates to do that. Email marketing (or as one church official says, “email evangelization”) has helped them reach those who cannot attend masses. It has also kept their parishes up to date on all the happenings. All of these are great ways to spread their message and stay in front of their beloved members.

If you need marketing help, drop us a line. We’ll help any way we can. https://77designco.com

Analyze. Create. Achieve.

77 Design Co gray and orange logo

Marketing with a Small Budget

Email marketing Girl here. Hola, and Happy New Year! How do you market your business with a small budget?
When you think of small budget, let’s start real small…like free. Therefore, what are some marketing tools that are free? Social media, email marketing, networking, blogging, webinars, ebooks, etc.

Email Marketing Girl with dog Image 2
Email Marketing Girl and pup.

Numero uno. Social media.
If you are a business, you need social media. One of the first things people do when they research are Google and most likely Facebook. Depending on the company and demographic, it could be Twitter, Instagram, YouTube or some others. Be consistent on social media. Engage people on social media. Be proactive instead of just reactive on social media. By proactive, for example, I mean look for the audience you wish to make business with. Likewise, look up hashtags and follow those people who are liking or posting those awesome pictures you wish were your content. (Consequently, learn from those cool profiles).
Email marketing.
There are a bunch of free email marketing tools out there that can do some cool stuff. Most popular from my experience, would be Mailchimp. However, all you have to do is go back to your friend Google and type in free email marketing and do some research on what best fits your needs.

email button on keyboard.
Web mail computer keyboard button for business contact concept. Email envelope icon key in blue color.

Networking.
I know, talking to people can be scary. That is to say, if you find yourself at a free marketing happy hour, talk the talk! Have your elevator pitch ready and go into it with a positive attitude. Even if you don’t get a sale or a client right there, you have planted a seed. Continue to follow up and make a relationship. Certainly, networking can be a powerful way to grow your company.
Blogging.
Like what I am doing now? Yep! Have a landscaping business? Blog about the newest trends you are seeing for the summer. What about some fun tips for your garden? I mean, that sounds interesting to me!
Free downloadable resources.
There is so much free stuff on the internet. If you don’t know much about SEO, download a free ebook about it or register for a one hour webinar on it. Likewise, it’s the same thing with literally anything marketing. Like I’ve said before, just Google.
There are a lot of free marketing things and resources you can get away with to start off your strategy. Have any questions? Reach out!
Analyze. Create. Achieve.
77Design Co logo and business cards.

Client Interview with a Marketing Coordinator

Hi all,

Recently, while on a product photography shoot, we conducted a quick Q&A interview with a recurring customer. Chelsea is a marketing/sales coordinator for a local company we’ve worked with frequently over the last few years. A great company making fantastic one of a kind products. We candidly asked her what she likes about her role and some general marketing questions.

What’s your role in marketing?

Chelsea: “So, I’m the sales and marketing coordinator here. I help coordinate trade shows. I help with photographic shoots, and I also manage a product line with our company. It’s really exciting because we’ve gained some new customers recently. We have a trade show in Pittsburgh and then one in New York in a few weeks too.”

What’s the hardest thing about marketing?

Chelsea: “Umm, so, probably finding out what people will like. Trying to grab their attention. Seeing what gets peoples attention and why they’d want our product. Since we have a new product line, I’m trying to find out what’s going to make them want our products over our competition. Learning about what sets our products apart. There’s other products that are similar, well, more simplified versions, but ours are unique and I have to show that.”

If you had to put a number on it. What percentage about marketing, do you think,  is related to creativity?

Chelsea: “Wow!…Honestly? A LOT! You have to be creative. I would say, wow, 70-80% really.  Even if you are writing a simple email blast you have to have it creative. What’s going to make them NOT want to delete your email? Finding that creative niche, that attention grabbing moment is super important!”

How important are the images, or photography, to your marketing plans?

Chelsea: “Oh my!” Extremely important. So, yes. Crucial! You have to show our products in many ways, even in lifestyle settings. For example, we even found that we had older product photos and once we had new photos taken by you guys, we sold them! I mean we sold many older products that weren’t selling once we had new images of them. They were updated, better focused, and started selling a lot better.”

Image of camera lenses signifying photography.

That’s fantastic!

Chelsea: “Yea! Honestly. We’ve found that really high quality pictures are really really important!”

What’s the biggest thing you’ve learned about marketing in your time here?

Chelsea: “Wow, I’ve learned a LOT. So, I came right out of college and I had no idea hardly what I was doing. College isn’t real world, it’s all like books, studying, book knowledge, and tests. It was hard at first. For instance, you take the concepts that you learn in school and apply it to your work in the real world. Getting a customers attention, like I first said, is probably the biggest thing.”

 

So, in conclusion, if your local business has a need for updated photography, design work, or a new website…drop us a line! 77 Design Co is here to help you grow your business and increase sales the only way we know how… through creative visual marketing!

77 Design Co logo

Analyze. Create. Achieve.

 

 

 

A Brief History of Halloween!

Halloween is here! It’s one of our favorite days of the year!
Why do we dress up? What’s trick or treating all about? Why do we carve pumpkins? Have you ever wondered why Halloween started and what traditions continued through the years, changed or have been phased out? Read further to find out more.
Jack O Lantern Gif
History
So, Halloween technically began as the festival of Samhain. Samhain is a Gaelic festival marking the end of the harvest season and the beginning of the “darker half” or winter as we know it. The festival takes places October 31 – November 1.  Celts believed that on the night before the new year (November 1), the boundary between the worlds of the living and the dead became blurred or thin. Scary stuff! Most importantly, they would have big parties or feasts and dress in costumes because they believed it would scare away the ghosts and spirits. Do you see the correlation?
Consequently, we then get to America, where we traditionalize everything and make carving pumpkins and trick or treating super popular.  Meanwhile, let’s talk about trick or treating. So, young women believed that on Halloween they could divine the name or appearance of their future husband by doing tricks with yarn, apple parings or mirrors. Subsequently, it then trickled down to young children dressing up and getting candy from neighbors.
Did you know?  One quarter of all the candy sold annually in the U.S. is purchased for Halloween.
So, do you carve pumpkins? Do you go the traditional scary route or do something fun and different? Are you the type of person that will hand out candy to little kids or keep the light off?
Speaking of modifying traditions, there are parents that have a basket of candy for kids, and a basket of beer for the parents that go around with them. In conclusion, that is a modern twist on a tradition that we can get down with!
Costumes?
What’s the coolest costumes you have? Send us photos and we’ll share them on social media!

Rob Hoffman and Halloween costume
77 Design Co owner, Rob Hoffman and his Halloween costume.

Analyze. Create. Achieve.

Building a Marketing Base

This blog will feature tips on how to build a marketing base for your business. Even if you haven’t done ANY marketing, here’s a few things to get you started.

Marketing Tiles image with 77 Design Co business card.

Who?

First, you need to know who your customer base is. Who are you marketing to? Where? Age? What’s their interests? For example, try to segment your customers based on who you’ve already sold to. Take notes and come up with an average at the very least. Tough to do with limited info, but necessary. 

If you don’t have these numbers, use a simple chart or even tally marks on a pad to get more specific. Use guesstimates if you need to. This will certainly get you a start.

Where?

Now take those numbers (even if it’s a small average from 10-20 customers) and determine where to put the marketing dollars. Yes, most importantly, you should have SOME marketing dollars set aside.

Are they on Facebook, Instagram, or mostly LinkedIn? Would billboards or signage in certain locations help? How about a direct mail campaign sent directly to businesses or homeowners? How’d your previous customers find you? Through your website, Google, or another online source?

Consequently, this will narrow down your best approach to get moving. As a result, you’ll learn quicker what works and what doesn’t as much.

How?

So, how are you going to implement your plan of action? This is the most difficult part. It will take time, patience, and some serious creative efforts to get the word out about your company.

If you aren’t very creative savvy, look to enlist those you know and trust that are. Get their thoughts about the look and aesthetics of your signage, social media pages and posts, or marketing materials. In addition, it’s very important that whatever strategy you plan to implement looks not just good, but GREAT! Marketing is all about visuals and attracting the eye to your message.

pen, keyboard, and flash drive image in inverted black and white color.

To clarify, we’ve said it before, an attractive image or design is key here. According to multiple eye tracking studies all over the Internet, the eye moves to an attractive image/design around 60,000-80,000 faster than just text.

Once an established base is determined, and where to market, the pieces or posts need to be interesting and visually appealing. How do you do this? Again, the difficult part. Billions of dollars per year are spent on creative marketing and advertising. There’s a good reason for it. It works!

Take the best quality photographs or video possible. Hire out if needed. Design materials, signage, or supporting charts/tables/infographics to make them interesting. Hire out if needed. In addition, if you hire a solid marketing team, or employee with an extensive creative background, they will (should) be able to convey that message visually.

Stay Level Headed.

Often times there may be a difference of opinion on the creative. Don’t get discouraged. For instance, you may have differences on an image or color. This is normal. However, stay true to your brand. Work together to come to a happy middle ground on how the creative side of things should look and feel, and as a result you’ll start to see the fruits of your labor.

So, in conclusion, by following these steps on a large or small scale you’ll begin to build a solid marketing base that will better your business. However, if you need advice we’re here to help.

77 Design Co gray and orange logo

Analyze. Create. Achieve.