Wednesday, April 21, 2010

The Value of Social Media – In Business, In Life…

It’s a funny thing, when I first started hearing about web 2.0 it seem like a foreign language, and now that I have stuck my toe into the river – I absolutely love it.

I have (finally!) figured out what social media sites work best for my business and I am still discovering great new ways to connect online.

Now don’t get me wrong, I am still learning and am yet to add some social bookmarking sites to my “tool box” when you are working with the internet you will be learning forever – nobody knows everything “Guaranteed”!

I have found that there is so much value in the connections you make with these networks, when you do it the “right way”.

I like to think of social media sites as “networking on steroids”.

If any of you have been in business for very long you know the value of networking – it is the life blood of any business. Building relationships is what business is all about – the give and take of information. Connecting with people who could use what you have to give, as well as making suggestions to others about businesses that could help them grow.

Social media is no different – when you are genuinely interested in following people, becoming part of their inner circle and networking. It is important that you nurture these relationships by personally reaching out and interacting with them as people. You also need to go out in the “neighborhood” and find people who you would enjoy networking with, giving value to and learning from.

You need to be a giver – but if you are a taker heed my warning….

Those that are the “takers” or the snake oil salesmen will surely be disappointed in what social media has to offer. Those individuals that are only out for the sell – and don’t want to connect as a giver are not going to have any satisfying, lasting connections to those of us who value quality above quantity and integrity above dishonesty.

I am a very good judge of character and I believe if you have been in business any length of time – you can tell the takers and the givers.

Those that are only out for themselves – and could care less about anything or anyone else.

The one thing I want you to take away from this article? Always remember, it is not always about you.

Learn to ask, “What is in it for them”.

If you do these things – when connecting on Facebook, Twitter, FriendFeed or any other social marketing site you will find a very rich, rewarding experience , in business and in every other personal connections you may make. Would you like to work out an online marketing plan? Contact me!

Pamela Jacob – Artista Design

Providing Creative Solutions & Valuable Results

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Think You Don't Need A Logo? Think Again!

One of the most basic things you need for your company is a logo.

A logo is an image that represents your company. It can be an illustration, a symbol, a name, or a combination of these. A proper logo works to project your desired company image.

You may be one of those people who think a logo is not a big deal, I beg to differ.

I run into people all the time that think having a logo designed is a “waste of money” but nothing can be farther from the truth.

Why is a logo important in the grand scheme of things?

The human brain recalls an image much easier than just words. Logos are about instant recognition. At a glance, your customer has found you. The brain triggers the relevant information about your company instantly. Symbols are much better and faster for recognition than words.

This is especially effective when branding a product. The logo becomes the product in the consumers' mind. Your logo can represent everything positive [or negative] about your company.

People really do judge businesses by that first visual impression.

A good logo is the anchor to which a great website, business cards and all other visual marketing materials are design around.

If you are starting your business and need a good logo, or if you think you could use a new logo to project your success, here are some things to think about.

Your Logo Must Be Original…

The design should be unique, with no potential of copyright infringement. You want the design to attract those you know would be your target demographic. You don’t want your logo to be confused with somebody else’s. The cost of a confused customer is way too high.

Keep You Logo Simple…

The best logos are those that will look good in black and white as well as color. You are going to want to use your logo on every document your company produces - all the marketing materials, e-mails, letters, etc.

In order to accurately and clearly reproduce your logo in so many different places and in so many different sizes, you want to keep it simple.

A simpler logo can be reduced, re-colored, enlarged, appear on the Internet, or be printed on your business card as needed.

Text Logos

Specialized fonts can be used in text logos.

Examples: A slanted font can represent movement and speed. A script font represents elegance and sophistication. A reversed font can represent modern art. A comic font is good for representing children. A thicker font shows power.

Words really are images, and presented in the right way, the written name of your company can give the same instant recognition, as an illustration or symbol can.

Symbolic Logos

Purely symbolic (abstract) logos can represent your company. A symbol is not as clear as text and it may take many more client impressions to get them to remember your logo. However, if you are good at marketing it can cause an indelible impression on the public (once it sticks). Think about it, when you see that Nike swish do you have to see the company name at all? I rest my case…

Before people could commonly read, businesses used pictures instead of words to advertise their services. If such an image is appropriate, you might consider it.

Text and Symbols Combined

Combining the benefits of both text and symbols may be the most powerful way to use a logo. You get the instant recognition of your name, and what you do.

Lean toward clarity of a message in your logo. If the common person can glance at it and know what business you are in, and what kind of company you are, then you are on the right track.

What Colors Should You Use?

Different colors represent different things in different industries. People react to color, and you want to make sure it’s the reaction you want. The right colors will add strength and clarity to your logo. The wrong color will turn customers away.

For more information on the psychology of color click here

All Images are Logo's of Actual Clients

Need some professional help? If so please contact me – together we can design an unbeatable visual concept for you or your company!