Tag Archives: trends

A Beginner’s Guide to Instagram for Business

As a business owner diving into the realm of digital and social media marketing, you may have just gotten comfortable with posting on Facebook or Twitter. However, as marketing trends evolve once again, you and your team can now add a bevy of tools to your disposal.

While you may be tempted to try everything and see what sticks, you’ll probably want to start with adding one new platform to your content strategy at a time instead, and we’ve got a great suggestion for you!

Recently alluded to and memorialized in a Taco Bell commercial involving “sunset heart hands,” Instagram provides an organic, in-the-moment approach to content creation and sharing that includes pictures, videos, hashtags and much more.

Read on to discover some Instagram basics as well as two features that can help you take your company’s marketing game to a completely new level.

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What’s Hot In Web Design — May 2016 Edition

Since the fickle fads that govern the design world’s sensibilities are constantly shifting, we find it useful to check in every once and a while and see what’s new, what still works and what has gone the way of the Dodo. Let’s jump right in!

Flat Design Still Rules

accountingrx-fullThe original shift towards flat design was in part caused by our collective shift into the mobile web-space, where vector-based graphics (many of which are flat-style) were able to deliver much speedier load times than traditional images. Given that our reliance on mobile devices has only grown, it only makes sense that flat design still reigns. Plus, it’s just so darn attractive! You’ll see flat design used everywhere, from simple icons to logos to large complex graphics. The solid colors of flat-design recall the bold palate of children’s animation, lending a light-hearted air to the graphics, which in turn can create a welcoming atmosphere wherever they are used. Continue reading

5 Ways the End of the 140 Character Tweet Could Change Business

twitterTweets have been short and sweet for over a decade…a 140 character cyber-certainty. According to Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, “It inspires creativity and brevity. And a sense of speed.”

However, in early January he hinted at possibly expanding the 140 character limit on tweets up to a whopping 10,000 characters (71 times the old limit!). While there’s been no official announcement confirming the increase, The Wall Street Journal reported that it’s a matter of when not if…most likely by the end of Q1 2016. Twitter’s devoted users have bemoaned the potential change and are worried that, “It could transform Twitter into more of a public blogging platform rather than one that is succinct and well-suited to quips and breaking news headlines.”

My first response to the reported character increase (one probably shared by many) was, “WTF!? Why would they want more characters? What makes Twitter stand apart from other social media is its mandate for brevity.”

But I kept my mind open to the idea, and came up with 5 reasons businesses should probably embrace the likely change. Despite the lamentations, this character increase could have positive impacts for content providers and brand advertisers…without noticeable negatives. Continue reading

Why You Might Not Need Squarespace

wp-vs-ssIt is important for entrepreneurs of all types to stay on top of the latest tools and technology available to them. It is also important to evaluate the efficacy of these tools before adopting them. Jumping on the latest bandwagon can be just as or more harmful than doing nothing at all.

Every year, there’s a new ‘trend’ or ‘fad’ to follow with some tool or another that will enable you to make more money at a lower cost point.  For instance, Optimize Press or Premise allowed you to create your own landing pages on the fly. Or there’s LeadPages, which allows you to create landing pages and conduct split testing. These tools were designed for semi-technical and low cost virtual assistants and they easily produce simple and unnatractive pages. They can be useful tools, but they only help you so long as you understand the needs of a landing page and split testing. Even further, they caused some people financial harm, as they were installed on WordPress websites that were then able to be hacked  and were opened to security risks. Those trend-adopters either now live with that or have paid someone to come and clean it all up. Continue reading

10 Marketing Trends to Follow in 2015

marketing-in-2015The good news about modern marketing for small business is that you have so many options for promoting and selling your products and services. Even better, many of these marketing options are more accessible to you than ever before.

With social media and other digital marketing tools, your marketing messages can reach a wide audience of target customers quickly and easily, relative to traditional marketing of the past. With lower costs, smaller barriers to entry and vast resources of information and ‘how-tos’ at your fingertips, you have the power to implement a small business marketing plan that gets results.

However, with so many ‘easy’ options comes potential overwhelm and confusion. New tools and techniques are popping up every day. Once you get the hang of one marketing channel, the rules change; what worked yesterday may not work today or tomorrow. And if you’re entrepreneurial, you are likely easily distracted by new ideas and shiny objects. You want in on the latest and greatest, and you don’t want to miss the boat.

As a boutique marketing agency, it is our job to sort through the latest marketing tools and tactics so we can develop and effectively guide our clients’ marketing strategies. We are in the trenches daily, implementing tactics, tracking results, deciphering the bigger picture, and watching the trends. Continue reading

Why It’s Important to be “Trendy” — Staying Current In Your Marketing

eye-402532_640If you know anything about fashion, you know that style is timeless, fashion is ever-changing, and when something is “trendy” it’s all the rage today, but it may be completely old-hat and possibly even a little embarrassing tomorrow.

Before you dismiss fashion advice dished by someone who wears jeans, a t-shirt, and flip flops every day (if I can help it), stick with me here.

It’s important that your marketing has style. Style stands the test of time, it’s classic, and it always allows you to present yourself and your business in the best possible and most alluring way.

Style shines through authentically, and resonates with the right people. You know a person who has style as soon as she walks in the room. You can’t quite put your finger on it, but you can see it and sense it. You want your marketing to have that kind of style — that turns heads and attracts the right attention and respect.

You also want your marketing to be fashionable. In much the same way that clothing styles are constantly changing from season to season, marketing — now more than ever — is continuously evolving. Your business will benefit from knowing the latest marketing techniques, tools, and best practices. Remaining fashionable and even ahead of the trends will set you apart from the crowd. Continue reading

Design Trends In 2014

sparkling_2014_lightsIn a recent post here on the Solamar blog, our senior designer Jill Anderson took a look at what’s hot or not in the current landscape of web design, and if you haven’t read it already, you should check it out. However, there are always more trends we could talk about, so I’m here to back her up with a few more of the things you can expect to be seeing in modern web design across the internet. Continue reading