Thursday, August 17, 2017

3 things you probably haven't considered for marketing to Generation Z

Who is Generation Z and why should companies today care? After all, this younger generation won't reach full financial independence for another decade. Their Millennial counter parts, on the other hand, now have a little cash left over for discretionary spending after the student loan payments are made. As time marches on, however, Generation Z won't be youngsters forever.

Digging a little deeper into Generation Z, we find that this new and elusive cohort has the opportunity to be a valuable addition to your target audiences. As brands and companies begin to develop strategies to market to Generation Z, we are taking a look at three things you may not have considered for your Generation Z marketing approach.

Marketing strategies for Generation Z

Thursday, August 10, 2017

How to use dynamic content to personalize your MailChimp email campaigns

When putting together your inbound marketing strategy, you’ll need to decide which tools best align with your goals while still fitting into your budget. If you aren’t ready to take the leap and invest in full-featured marketing software such as HubSpot, you may be looking at free alternatives that can offer similar features. For email marketing specifically, MailChimp is one such tool to consider, as it offers a wide variety of services free of charge.

While there are limitations to what you can accomplish with MailChimp, it does provide options for advanced marketing opportunities, such as adding dynamic content to your emails. In this post, we’ll look at why dynamic content is useful in email marketing and how to set it up for your MailChimp campaigns.


Thursday, August 3, 2017

Five signs your company website is outdated

How do you know when it’s time to update your website?

It’s not always an easy question to answer. You might love the design that was developed a few years ago or have a personal stake in the layout that makes it hard to be objective. As long as your website still generates some leads it’s good enough, right? You personally may not see any issues with your website… but what about your prospects and customers? The Internet moves quickly and you don’t want to be left behind because of personal bias or worse—because you haven’t been paying attention to how your site is performing.
When is it time to update your website?
Your website is your virtual storefront. It’s important that you keep it up to date and not just visually but technologically as well. Let’s review five objective signs that it’s time to update your company’s website.

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Join our team! We are hiring a Digital Marketing Assistant

When you peek behind the curtain at TBH Creative, you'll find a team of learners and doers... a group of talented, passionate marketers... perhaps most importantly, you'll find people with a genuine passion for creating success for the customers and brands we represent.

Since 2004, we have designed and developed over 500 websites and worked on countless digital marketing projects. Along the way, we have built strong relationships with each client and worked hard to make the web more of a strategic and welcoming place for information seekers.

We are hiring a digital marketing assistant

Currently seeking: Digital Marketing Assistant

TBH Creative is a small, fast-paced business and we all wear multiple hats. While the job title for this opening is officially Digital Marketing Assistant it could also be Customer Service Representative... Website Maintenance Guru... Project Coordinator... you get the idea! We need someone who can step in and handle a variety of marketing and administrative needs. Someone who is excited about the opportunity to learn and grow and make an impact.

Read on to learn more about this opportunity with TBH Creative. We can't wait to add a new team member full of energy and determination inside these yellow walls.

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Designing for the digital fold–myth or must?

The phrase "above the fold" originated from the time of the newspaper (for the younger readers out there, a newspaper is a ream of large, unstapled paper sheets used to convey news and information). In brief, "above the fold" means that publishers and designers ought to put the most important content and calls-to-action above the physical fold line of the page.

Designing for the digital fold line

But as newspapers go the way of the dinosaur, and news publications move to digital, does this concept still exist? Should important content be placed at the top of the homepage, so users don't have to scroll to find it? Or are web-surfers unbothered by scrolling, making the digital fold a myth?

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Web Development Case Study: Tracking Football

A phased website development approach leads to greater success

Tracking Football LLC is a football recruiting service that helps college and professional football teams identify key recruits based on independent athletic data. It’s a different approach to football recruiting and as a web-based product requires a site that is easy-to-use for fans while also marketing and educating their targeted prospects.

Tracking Football Web Design Home Page

When Tracking Football contacted TBH Creative they had a functional website that they had outgrown. It was a complicated new approach they were bringing to the industry, and the website didn’t educate the marketplace well enough. They needed a more polished design. And they had some new ideas for their service that required custom online functionality. Our first step? Define a phased approach to get the new site out working in the market in the short term while strategically adding functionality upgrades over time.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

What is the ideal length of a blog post?

As marketers, we are fortunate to live in an era of big data like no one who came before us. We have actual numbers to back up best practices, from how often to post on social media for optimal engagement to the ideal length of a blog post, and everything in between. These strategies previously relied on gut feelings and educated guesses.

Today, we are digging into the data to explore exactly how long a blog should be for SEO. From clients, we often hear out-dated ideologies about the right length for a blog post in 2017. About a decade ago, the experts cited 250-500 words as an optimal length for blog articles to accommodate readers' short attention spans.
Man and woman reading on tablet

Internet browsing habits + SEO

So much has changed in the digital marketing realm since that original advice was first shared with marketers. Online shoppers now spend hours (Nielsen) scouring the Internet for information, reviews, and product comparisons before making a purchase. As a result, content creators adapted to write longer, more informative articles with plenty of keywords, bullet points, and links to sources.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Best practices for hospital website design

When designing a hospital website, there are a number of unique challenges to take into consideration. Hospitals cater to a wide audience with a multitude of needs, which can make it difficult to create a cohesive website that addresses as many of those needs as possible. However, there are some general guidelines you can follow to ensure your hospital website is successful. Check out the following tips and best practices to help get you started.

Hospital website design

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Four skills to look for when hiring an inbound marketing agency

Good inbound marketing requires an intricate strategy that takes audience, content and communication channels all into account. It requires someone who understands each of those components and how they work together. It’s a very different way of looking at marketing plans and to do it well, you need a partner who can guide you through the process.

What should you look for in an inbound marketing agency?
Partnership Strategy Meeting

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Trend alert! Where web design is going in 2017 (and beyond)

Web design is constantly changing, but it's for the better (don't believe me? Just think back to your business's website circa 2007 and you'll get my point). Since it's ever-changing, there is no "goldilocks recipe" for a stellar website. What works for an ad agency's website might not be strategic for a pediatrician's site, and visa versa. However, distinct web design patterns have started to crop up within the past 6 months, and companies who have adopted them have tended to stand out. I can't predict the future, but it looks like these four emerging web design trends of 2017 are here to stay.
Web Design Trends of 2017

Monday, June 26, 2017

Use email automation to send fewer emails that perform better

Email marketing is one of the most effective tools in a marketer’s bag—when done right that is. Gone are the days of blanket emails with the same message sent at the same time to all prospects or customers. Successful email marketing is personalized and triggered by a user’s behavior - downloading a brochure or watching a video for example.

Automated email workflows let you leverage the best email marketing has to offer. Even better? Once they are set up, they do the work for you.

Automated email workflows for marketing

Website Design and Digital Marketing Case Study: Baker Hill

Re-establishing a brand identity with more robust website and digital marketing

As a company, Baker Hill was going through a big transition. After a change in ownership, they needed to re-establish their brand—a brand that had historic value but had been downplayed in recent years. They were counting on the web as a big part of launching the Next Generation of Baker Hill, and they were on a fast track to tie in digital marketing and video content at the same time.
Baker Hill Web Design Case Study

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Benefits of using SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics)

When it comes to adding imagery to your website, there are two basic image types to choose from: raster images and vector images.

A raster image, typically a photograph, is made up of pixels and has a set resolution. When scaled up, it will lose quality and can appear pixelated or grainy.

A vector image is created using points, lines, and shapes. You can scale vector images to any size without losing quality. Vectors images are limited in how much detail they can represent, so they are best used for elements like typography, logos, icons, or illustrations.

Benefits of SVG

Friday, June 9, 2017

Troubleshooting common post boosting issues on Facebook

Facebook should be a strategic part of any company's marketing plan. If you're working with a digital marketing partner, likely they are handling many of the details related to your Facebook presence, including ads and boosted posts. In this post, we will be troubleshooting issues and errors that are common when attempting to boost posts on Facebook.
Facebook boosting tips

For many businesses, managing your own social media can challenging. With Facebook specifically, it is particularly frustrating to find boosted posts under-performing or not spending their full budget. (Note: Unsure what a "boosted post" on Facebook is? Get started with Facebook Help Center and the basics of boosting.)

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Meet Mac, Digital Marketing Intern


Mac Ely, TBH Creative Digital Marketing Intern
Hiya! I’m Mac, the digital marketing intern. I just wrapped up my sophomore year in the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University, which marks the halfway point in my pursuit of a Marketing and Business Analytics degree. While I am new to the industry, I’m really excited to gain web design and writing experience this summer with TBH Creative!

I dipped my toes into the marketing world last summer, working in the marketing department of a larger corporation. However, I came to realize that my nine-to-five isn’t meant to be spent behind the three-and-a-half beige walls of a cubicle. I craved something more intimate, something client-facing, something bespoke. Luckily for me, I didn’t have to look too far! I was introduced to the TBH Creative team during my work last summer and quickly came to see they had what I wanted. Remembering how great the TBH team was to work with, I decided to reach out and apply for the internship position this summer.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Five tips for building your website budget

It’s one of the most common complaints we hear from new clients: “My last website project was so far over budget. It seemed as though our budget was just a suggestion.”

That’s not a complaint we want to hear from any of our clients at TBH Creative. We work hard from the very beginning to make sure that’s not the case. In fact, we often hear that we spend more time upfront preparing, asking questions and confirming details than our competitors. Why is that so? Even during the sales process, we want to take the time to really understand your project and give you an estimate that is as accurate as possible. It's worth the extra time because we want to build a website that meets your goals and that is completed on time and on budget. The more we know from the beginning, the better we are at doing just that.
Before you get started on a website project

So how do you build a website design budget that encompasses what you need and helps your website developer avoid those expensive surprises? We have five things to consider before you sit down in front of the spreadsheet.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

6 things we can learn from the evolution of homepage design

Technological advances and rapidly changing trends have helped usher in a new era of web design. This has brought along some much needed improvements to functionality, content strategy, and the overall user experience. To see these improvements in action, look no further than the homepage of a modern, well-designed website.

evolution of homepage design

By comparing modern homepage designs with those of the past, you can pinpoint the shifts in strategy and design that make today’s websites more successful. Understanding these changes can help you to better evaluate the effectiveness of your own website. Consider the following ways that homepage design has changed into consideration when looking for ways to improve your website.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Hire a professional writer for your website - you won’t regret it.

Updating or creating a new website is a big undertaking for an organization. Even after you take the time to find the right website design agency, you have quite a lot of work ahead of you. Strategy sessions, site architecture, design review and perhaps the biggest mountain of them all: content development.
Professional meeting with writer

Want to know one of the top delays in a website design project? Content development when it’s taken on by the client. Simply put, it’s hard to find the time to organize and write pages and pages of content for a website on top of your daily responsibilities. Add in the fact that writing for a website is different than writing traditional marketing pieces - you have to consider design elements, character counts, SEO, multiple calls to action and more. Writing for your own website can quickly seem overwhelming. Do yourself a favor, hire a writer to develop your website content. Let me tell you why…

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Transform digital marketing into your top salesperson

Once you know your ideal customer and have identified concrete goals, you can use that knowledge to inform website design and content creation. Aiming toward particular benchmarks helps you communicate effectively in order to lead site visitors in the right direction.

Many businesses begin marketing on the strength of personal relationships. At first, this works—you leverage your contacts and dabble in social media on the side and the business grows organically.

Sales person

But as you begin to scale up, ad hoc networking starts to break down. You and your team only have so much time. Can you really be the networker for multiple locations or a larger business? How will you find time to extend all of those relationships and reach new customers while also running your growing business and working in the core competencies that keep you viable? How can you sustain growth and continue to achieve success in a rapidly changing marketplace?

One of the most effective ways to rescue your time and structure your business for long-term sustainability is digital marketing. Done strategically, digital marketing can become your top salesperson.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Customer service: Why is it important, what makes it exceptional, and how does it impact marketing?

The thing about customer service is that you'll always remember when you've had a really good experience and when you've had a terrible service, too.

That's true in the minds of our clients and customers as well. Exceptional customer service isn't just nice to have. It is necessary.
Floral customer service

Why is customer service important?

Did you know it is less expensive to retain customers than it is to acquire new ones? According to Entrepreneur, it costs approximately five times more to attract a new customer than it does to retain an existing one.

Providing excellent service helps many businesses gain new customers as well through word-of-mouth marketing. In fact, happy customers tell nine people on average about their experience. (HubSpot).

On the flip side, a recent Customer Experience Report study determined that 82% of people have stopped doing business with a company because of a poor customer service experience. So yeah, customer service is vital for business success and even provides a competitive advantage.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Beginner's guide to emoji marketing πŸ‘πŸ˜€

The use of emojis has drastically changed in a short period of time. Emojis are no longer just for making text messages and social media more fun. They’ve now become a popular marketing tool as well. And, that should be no surprise! People are constantly finding new ways to express themselves and communicate online, and marketers have to stay in touch with those trends in order to remain effective.

According to one study, “92% of the online population use emojis,” spanning all age groups. With statistics like that, marketers can’t ignore the potential that emojis can bring to a digital marketing strategy.

Emoji Marketing

If you are on board with the idea of incorporating emojis into your marketing strategy but aren’t sure how, we’ve got you covered. Read on for tips on getting started with emoji marketing, as well as some campaign examples for inspiration.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

How to upgrade your web design planning process

Successful companies know that they need a website. For some, simply having a website seems good enough, but not all websites are created equal. Not all of them get results. Maybe you’re expecting your digital efforts to bring in more leads, drive more sales, or increase your donor base, but you aren’t seeing the numbers move. When you look at your website, it seems great. But was it designed and written to achieve your goals?

How can you get past “good enough” to make your website do more for your business? The problem is not looks; it’s lack of strategy. Make sure that your investment in high impact graphics, amazing code, and creative copy pays off by upgrading your web design planning process.

Every organization is different, but some core planning steps are universal.
Creative team meeting

Thursday, April 13, 2017

How to tell which stock photo subscription service is for you

Gorgeous photos are an integral part of digital marketing. Statistics show people are drawn to good visuals and respond to them, 150% more on Twitter even. (HubSpot) While some companies are lucky enough to have a professional photographer on staff, many turn to stock imagery as their primary source of visual content. With so many providers, subscription levels, and copyright types, how can you tell which stock photo service is right for you?

We picked the brains of three representatives at popular stock photo vendors to compare their services and help you make the best choice for your business. Here's what the experts said:

Looking at photos

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Our best tip for a successful inbound marketing campaign

Inbound marketing campaigns are still fairly new for most organizations. Outbound and inbound marketing activities have merit. The trick to success is making sure you let each build on their own strengths. In this article we are going to focus on inbound marketing and the importance of the content to the success of the campaigns.

Why should you hire a writer for your inbound marketing?

Don't know much about inbound marketing? Read this inbound marketing campaign article for a basic overview.
Inbound marketing campaigns consist of pieces that build on each other and leverage the power of the Internet and email. They require a different perspective than other campaigns and, in our experience, they are more successful when an experienced Internet writer takes the reigns. That writer—or online content strategist—will help you develop the right mix of content and use that content to lead your audience through your sales funnel.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

How to choose between email marketing services: MailChimp vs HubSpot vs Constant Contact

Email marketing is a major asset to any digital marketing strategy. Contacts on your email list have already opted-in to receive your communications, which makes them one step closer to hearing what you have to say. Not to mention, companies who send sales emails see remarkable engagement from their email lists. In fact, "81% of online shoppers who receive emails based on previous shopping habits were at least somewhat likely to make a purchase as a result of targeted email" (eMarketer).

Man reading email

Before getting started with email marketing, you'll need to choose from the variety of email marketing services available. Each service offers different tools, capabilities, and integrations. In order to choose the best service for your digital marketing strategy, you should take into consideration your audience, experience level, and goals.

In this article, we compare three popular email marketing tools to help business owners and marketers determine which email marketing service is the best fit.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

TBH Creative's recommended reading list for 2017

Keeping up to date on the latest trends and innovations is an essential part of our industry. Whether you’re a designer, developer, marketer, or in any related field, understanding the tools and techniques available helps you to create better solutions. However, best practices are constantly changing and improving, and it’s all too easy to fall behind. Luckily, there are a countless number of resources out there to help you stay connected and current, find inspiration, and explore new ideas.

If you aren’t sure where to start or are just looking for some fresh resources to add to your collection, we’ve put together a list of the TBH Creative team’s favorite go-to blogs for staying current and learning new things. Check it out!

TBH Creative Reading List 2017

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Website design shouldn't be frustrating! Learn three ways to make your next project easier.

One of the most common things we hear from new clients is how frustrated they were with their last website design project. It often starts with poor communication—people feel like they are left in the dark by their website design firm. And then when they do hear from them, they hear that the project is over budget or behind schedule or are quite honestly blindsided with a design that doesn’t match their needs.

 It doesn’t have to be that way. In fact, at TBH Creative we believe it should NEVER be that way.

Team planning meeting

Thursday, March 9, 2017

How to get more online reviews (and how to respond to the bad ones)

Happy shopper

Interested in getting more online reviews, but unsure where to start?

One way to begin is by getting your sales and marketing teams on board with the idea that online reviews matter, customer service matters, and the potential to gain or lose business based on your online reputation can be quite large. In fact, 90% of customers say buying decisions are influenced by online reviews (Marketing Land).

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Incorporating Twitter into your live event

So your corporate social media marketing strategy is off the ground—What's next? You have accounts on the major sites, and you are leveraging automation to efficiently schedule and post content regularly. It's awesome, and it's working. But, your company has a major event coming up in a few months, and you want to find a way to leverage social media using the event to engage your audience, build followers, and get your brand deeper into the digital space. Here are some ideas for making the most of social media at your live event.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

7 best practices for marketing to millennials

It is no secret that millennials are a unique audience. For businesses interested in marketing specifically to this tech-friendly consumer base, methods can be tricky and the results down-right frustrating. To help your marketing efforts get moving in the right direction with the younger crowd, we compiled seven tips for marketing to millennials.
Young couple shopping at market

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Internal site search tips & best practices

If you’re a website owner, you likely understand the value of search engine optimization (SEO) to ensure your website is visible in search results. But have you optimized your internal site search as well?

External search—when a user finds your website with Google or Bing—is usually a crucial part of the marketing strategy; however, sometimes internal search—when a user hunts for content using the search tool on your website to find a specific piece of information—can be overlooked during the planning process. This is why internal search plays such an important role in the user experience of a website and why shouldn’t be ignored.

By optimizing the internal search functionality on your website, you can help keep users on your website longer and improve lead generation.

Internal Site Search

Thursday, February 9, 2017

How 500 posts on our company blog has benefited us (and why your company should start blogging ASAP)

What's the key to driving traffic to your website and keeping your crew current with industry trends? Blogging!

At TBH Creative, we don’t just recommend blogging to our clients—blogging is a crucial part of our day-to-day planning. In fact, this very post is our 500th published blog post since we started blogging in 2008.
Celebrating 500 blog posts
We have come a long way in nine years of blogging, and the blogosphere has changed in many ways over the decade. In the post, I will cover three ways our blog adds value for team learning, supports our clients, and helps our business growth (plus, some ways your company could benefit from blogging as well).

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Video in digital marketing, part 2: Adding video to your marketing mix

In our previous post, we took a look at the importance of understanding how your target audience views videos and the types of videos that are generally created. In part 2 we will focus on what you need to consider about fitting your video into your marketing mix.

videogrpapher and camera

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Video in digital marketing, part 1: Your audience and your style

As digital marketers, we see and support all kinds of campaigns and creative projects, and video always stands out for its unique ability to engage with a viewer and tell a story. Before deciding to embrace video, though, you need to define your target audience, review best practices for using the format, and determine the best deployment strategy for getting the most out of your investment.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Big Data: What it is and 3 quick ways to incorporate it into your marketing strategy

Imagine if there was a way to speed up cancer research? Now there is thanks to researchers leveraging big data. The Cancer Moonshot Initiative's data commons allows physicians and scientists from all over to collaborate more easily and openly share genomic data associated with clinical trials. This innovative use of big data will not only help boost cancer research but improve its outcomes for patients, too.

On a smaller scale, big data can also advance marketing initiatives. But, when it comes to marketing, what exactly is big data? In this post, we will scratch the surface of big data and then share a few practical ways marketers can utilize the data for success.
Big data illustration

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Website navigation design trends to watch in 2017

Navigation is one of the most important elements on any website. Its design and structure impact the user experience and directly influence a website’s success. Navigation determines how a user browses and finds information, so a poorly designed navigation can cause users to leave a site before getting what they need.

So what makes for an effective navigation design? There isn’t one right answer to this question, and it ultimately depends on your website’s needs and goals. However, there are a variety of styles out there to draw inspiration from, and designers are continuously coming up with new and creative ways to present navigational elements.

Navigation Design Trends

In this post, we’ll take a look at the latest changes and trends in website navigation design, including some standout examples for inspiration.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Free web design & marketing resources: Our favorite freebie picks of 2016

Do you love free stuff? So do we! That’s why if you follow TBH Creative on Facebook or Twitter, you may have noticed that we share web design freebies every week. For projects that are on a budget or a quick timeline, using free resources can be a great alternative to custom elements. With the countless number of web professionals out there sharing their work with others, it’s now easier than ever to find high-quality resources for free.

To help point you in the right direction, here are some of our favorite freebies that we’ve shared in 2016. Enjoy.

Fonts

Butler — Download

Butler font freebie

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Use your content to educate customers

Many people might be able to tell you the benefits of common purchasable items (like smartphones) and services (like plumbing). But what about GoPros? Or grown-up summer camps? Or at-home vegan meal kit deliveries? Or cloud storage?

Potential customers expect to have access to all the details of products and services online, and if they can't find these details they are left frustrated.
frustrated woman looking at computer screen

Learning is now the first step of consuming, so it is key to ensure that you are meeting potential customers with informative content while they are in the exploratory phase of their buying journey.

Here are four steps to ensuring your website is set up to communicate with niche shoppers.

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

5 apps you should know about to help your marketing

When it comes to marketing, teams rely on tools and experience to create and monitor successful campaigns. 
The TBH Creative team works with a variety of tools each week to strategize, create, distribute, and analyze marketing efforts for ourselves and our clients. Here is a rundown of the five tools that we use regularly to create successful campaigns. 
Marketing team technology
 

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