Valuable Advice: Use Your Words! What to Expect from Marketing Copywriting

useyourwords
One of the biggest complaints we hear from prospective clients is the lack of creativity in the marketing writing.It's an age old question: How do you distinguish yourself from competitors who offer the same product or service? The fact is, most marketing copywriters are average writers who lack the ability to inspire and entice with their writing....
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Valuable Advice: It’s Not You, It’s Me… Secrets of a Great Long Term Marketing Relationship

pbjtest2
As of this writing, half of Dog Star Media's clients have been with us for more than fifteen years.We have two clients who are going on almost twenty years with us. Our Boutique Service approach is designed to nurture good relationships into great ones, but that is a two-way street. Do you seek the security of a long-term relationship with a market...
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Valuable Advice: Where Does Your Web Site Fit Into All This?

jenga
If you are like most small businesses you made a fairly sizable investment in your web site.It should have a look and feel that connects with your target market, guides users through an engaging user experience and works to convert visitors into customers. Let's say you had all that build and it's sitting there on the web. Now what? The Valuable Ad...
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Valuable Advice: Best Practices for Positioning

penguins
 A few factors conspire to frustrate small business owners about branding. The first is the idea that an elaborate, creative logo is needed and the second is that anyone can write a winning slogan. Both of these misconceptions bog down marketing and create unrealistic expectations. It's why at Dog Star Media, we always emphasize positioning. T...
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Valuable Advice: Best Practices for Web Maintenance

bestpractices
Most web site developers, SEO companies and tech support services are not good at explaining how web sites work to the novice. Complicating matters, most small business owners don't want to worry about the small technical details of their web sites. They just want them to work and not have to be concerned with it. So, at Dog Star Media, we start al...
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Valuable Advice: What Kind of Marketing Company Do You Want?

whoareyouhiring
Marketing companies are not interchangeable parts, but that is a common misperception. A business owner who is unsatisfied with his or her marketing company must determine the source of their dissatisfaction before changing companies, or it's likely the problems causing the dissatisfaction will continue. The first thing you want to do is factor out...
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Valuable Advice: The Tea and The Tea Cup

teacup
Most business owners have a strong personal identification with their web site. Done right, a web site is a personal statement on style and value for a small business owner, which is understandable psychology. Thus, conversations about web sites can get emotional, which is fertile ground for someone trying to sell you a new web site, when your curr...
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Valuable Advice: The Mark of Great Sales Experience

tennis
Win-win or no deal. That's the philosophy practiced by great salespeople and great business owners. If the transaction and service is not a good deal for both parties, why do it? Unfortunately, all of us have experienced the opposite in buying products and services. At Dog Star Media, win-win/no deal is the sales philosophy we teach clients and the...
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Valuable Advice: The Watermelon Seed

watermelon
Nearly twenty years ago, I first asked a client, "Which would you rather swallow, a watermelon or a watermelon seed?" It's an absurd question, but it effectively illustrates how positioning works. The watermelon is a concept that takes a lot of words and effort to be understood. The watermelon seed is an idea that has obvious meaning to most people...
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Chapter 16: The Customer’s Needs and Wants ... and Noise

Last week, we kicked off the holiday season with Thanksgiving, a national holiday centered around gratitude. Yet most celebrations tend to center on food. Hours, sometimes days, are put into food preparation and presentation. They say food brings us together. They also say being together reminds us to be thankful. Maybe you've experienced it: hours...
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Chapter 15: Noise in Your Website

Your website is the lynchpin of your marketing. So, when a disconnect occurs on your site, it undoes all the marketing efforts it takes to get visitors there. A disconnect on your site can have long-lasting negative effects, as well. If you don't take care of your website, it will create noise in your marketing. This is the worst kind of noise, bec...
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Chapter 14: How Inflexibility Creates Noise in Marketing

Inflexibility. Stagnation. Resistance. These are terrible words to describe an approach to marketing a business. Unfortunately, many poor marketing decisions (and indecisions) are guided by inflexibility, stagnation and resistance. Some business owners find change difficult, but that doesn't mean marketing strategies and new media are going to wait...
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Chapter 13: Avoiding Noise in Your Video Strategy

Among the rich media on the Internet today, video is the richest form, hands down. It's got motion, sound and the best potential to create an emotional connection through humor, realism and storytelling. However, not all video is created equally. Metrics measuring video use on social media make it clear that certain types of video work better in ce...
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Chapter 12: Causing Noise By Doing Nothing

Imagine never changing the oil in your car. It'll run for a long time before finally breaking down. As you reach the point of breakdown, you'll get less and less performance out of the vehicle. Cars need maintenance, and changing the oil is necessary to keep a car running properly. When you do nothing, decay sets in and eventually breaks the machin...
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Chapter 11: Are You Adding Noise By Rushing Readiness?

There's an important nuance in sales and marketing that has a heavy impact on why a campaign works or fails. The idea is called Improper Placement of Values. Understanding this concept can be the difference between success and failure in a marketing campaign. Improper Placement of Values can be summed up simply like this: "Just because something is...
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Chapter 10: Removing Noise from Your Organic Search Strategy

You'll probably agree that, dating back to the beginning of marketing on the Internet, we've all had one idea drilled into our heads: Optimize for search. We have a business legacy of chasing whatever marketing methods will result in better results from search engines. This long and confusing relationship with SEO is where the noise creeps into the...
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The Art and Science of Digital Marketing: Chapters 1-5

If you haven't already checked out some of the blogs in our new series, the Art and Science of Digital Marketing, you should! Digital marketing is an ever-evolving industry that requires both art and science to keep up with changes and succeed. Read it from the beginning or skip to the chapter that may help you with a challenge you are struggling w...
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Chapter 9: Understanding Value (and Misunderstanding It)

In this blog series about noise in your marketing, I've made plenty of references to metrics as a way of measuring and clarifying performance. The use of metric tools is vital to clearing up ambiguity and eliminating a lot of noise and confusion about your marketing activities. However, there is another aspect about using metrics that can cause jus...
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Chapter 8: Using Video Properly

It's hard to find someone who disagrees with the belief that video is the best medium for marketing. Rich, moving images blended with audio and effects, quality video production is the most interesting way to roll out your message. The viewer can just sit back, watch and view the details. Everyone wants video; the only pushback is the cost. Profess...
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Chapter 7: How We Misplace Our Message

Every business has an important value proposition to make for its prospective customers. In the case of a fee-for-service medical or dental practice, doctors must focus on several points of validation for themselves and their practice in addition to explaining the value of procedures and services. It can get complicated, and a practice's message ca...
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