QR CodesQR codes are back and they are really useful this time! Who would have thunk it?

Now that you can capture them with your phone and no QR code scanner is needed, they have exploded in marketing. More than two-thirds (67%) of consumers say that QR codes make life easier in a touchless world and 58% favor the greater use of QR codes.

QR Codes for Menus

I was recently in NYC and all the menus were touchless – just a QR code to order. I think we will see more of this as the variant spreads.

QR Codes for Loyalty Programs

QR CodesMake it easy for people to sign up for your loyalty program with a QR code, instead of having them to go to your website. They’re quick and error free – typing a URL is time-consuming and inconvenient on a mobile screen and consumers are also likely to make errors.

QR Codes in Print

Print based marketing has limitations in real estate space – with QR codes you can give consumers a way to access unlimited information. You can also change all the information behind the QR code anytime information or the offer changes without reprinting.

QR Codes to your Videos

You can engage your customer with rich content like video through a QR code – don’t just sell the product, include an informative video on how to use it. Video is very popular right now.

QR Codes for Promotions and Contests

QR CodesBy adding a QR code, you can make your promotions interactive and get input from your target audience. If you run a contest, have them register through the QR code for the product or event to allow your customers to participate. A good example is World Park in NYC – the codes were placed throughout the park and engaged visitors in a quiz on the park’s history, pop culture, art and music, science and geology.

QR Codes on Business Cards

Many of the business cards that we print now – have QR codes on the back so that someone can just capture their information and add it to their phone. Did you know that our portal can automatically generate a QR code with all of your information on the back of your card?

We used them years ago as a gimmick to reach our website, but I would never have guessed that they would come back and be so useful!

Guerilla Marketing TechniquesGuerilla Marketing is an unconventional form of marketing that raises brand awareness among large audiences without interrupting them. One of the most successful guerilla marketing teams is right here in Kansas City and works with Tech N9ne and Strange Music, one of our oldest clients.

When Strange Music is going into a new market, releasing an album, or launching a new artist, they are on the ground weeks before the concert or launch in a city. They print huge posters that the street teams staple back-to-back on telephone poles to get everyone excited. They freely pass out posters and promotional items on the street and at events where their followers are.

They have built an incredibly strong brand over the years, without any advertising.

In marketing, guerrilla techniques mostly play on the element of surprise. It sets out to create highly unconventional campaigns that catch people unexpectedly in the course of their day-to-day routines.

Marketing StrategyIf you’re promoting a smaller brand, think of creative approaches to your work that can maintain guerrilla marketing’s budget-friendly, inbound nature.

Guerrilla ways, by definition, are easy to understand, easy to implement, and inexpensive. Combine that with today’s technology and social media marketing, mobile devices, and the use of video to give you an awesomely unfair advantage.

The book Guerrilla Marketing Attack has been around since 1984, when Jay Conrad Levinson wrote his book while working as the creative director at J. Walter Thompson and Leo Burnett Advertising. The Facción Marketing principles – word of mouth, helped people like Steve Jobs and Bill Gates get their companies started, and are still taught today in MBA courses.

Catch people where they are and insert your brand there. Don’t interrupt, but invite them to participate.

us·er ex·pe·ri·ence

The overall experience of a person using a product such as a website or computer application, especially in terms of how easy or pleasing it is to use.

“if a website degrades the user experience too much, people will simply stay away.”

User Experience

This week, I talked with a client that is building a very large portal for a high-profile customer. After I gave my introduction, she told me that I was the only salesperson that talked about the user experience for her customer. All of the salespeople had talked about equipment, features and how robust the back end was.

Years ago, after we started building portals for customers, they told us that their previous sites were so “clunky” that their customers or employees hated using them and so they didn’t. The original intent of solving the problem with a solution was not working.

We learned to build products with the end user in mind.

It’s our goal to make it easy – on and off in 3 or 4 steps and make them pretty like your website.

Single-sign on, only seeing what you need, pre-determined approval processes, PDF proofs that are legible (not those tiny jpgs) and a great checkout (where you can still make changes), all add up to the EASY button.

We have also helped customers who have too many platforms – no one wants to log into different sites for print, merchandise, wearables, signage and digital. Even if we don’t produce the products – we can build a central, one-stop-shop with multiple vendors.

Marketing Portals Built from Scratch

MEDiAHEAD Marketing PortalsMEDiAHEAD builds all our portals from scratch with software that is constantly updated. Unfortunately, most “out of the box” solutions that are used cannot be modified for a pleasant/user friendly experience.

After 17 years of doing this, there is a lot of competition, but I still think we build the best portals. And our clients enjoy working with us while we figure out the best solution for them.

People always wonder how a small company like ours has such huge clients – I think it’s because we make our clients and their users happy.

Would you like to see how we can make you happy with a marketing portal? Let’s talk.

Most employees decide within 10 days whether they’ll stay, and 33% of new employees quit within their first six months.

What are you doing to make your new employees feel welcome?

New Team Member AppreciationWe recently completed a project for a large company here in Kansas City. They wanted to congratulate their new hires who were graduating from college and make them feel excited prior to their first day at work.

We mailed kits in a branded box with their new business cards, personalized notepads, a customized pen and a yeti water bottle. There was also a customized Happy Graduation card personalized with their name and department signatures.

We’ve done welcome kits with candles, baby succulents (so cute), company t-shirts and gear. This is also something that can be added to one of our marketing portals, so HR or the department head can execute in minutes.

Communication is so important!

Communication helps ensure that new team members feel excited about starting their new career with your company.

New Team Member AppreciationYou should have the new hire paperwork completed prior to their first day. Be considerate and send important information for them to review in advance. Reading the company handbook, knowing their benefits and having information on their other team members is important. Even now more than ever, because so many of us are working from home and our only interaction is through Zoom.

You could even send out an email with their picture and a short bio to team members, so they can be welcomed with a smile during Zoom meetings. And you could ask the new employee to help you with their bio by including some fun, personal facts about them.

Retention is the new acquisition.

Make sure new employees know how much you appreciate them joining your company. And if you need any help, you know where to find us. 🙂

New Team Member Appreciation

Michele StillwellBy Michele Stillwell, Director of Marketing and Accounting at MEDiAHEAD

Quite a year, right?

The Corona Virus has affected our lives in every capacity. It has taken a toll on all of us that is for sure. 2020 will be a year that will be very hard to forget!

We’ve sheltered in place, socially distanced, covered our faces and washed our hands repeatedly since the beginning of the year. I don’t need to remind you of all the other things we have had to do or could not do for any extended period of time.

I know that 2020 will not be a year that we remember with fondness and reverence, but we believe that it is now more important than ever to send good wishes to friends, family and business acquaintances.

Seasons Greetings CardSending holiday cards shows that you’re thinking of others during this time of year. And there’s a good chance they haven’t seen your smiling face for a while, so what a great opportunity to brighten their day! This is the best time to send a holiday card… any time after Thanksgiving is what we have heard. Sending an annual greeting card can help market your business as well!

Benefits of Sending Holiday Cards

  • It generates goodwill. It’s a contact point that’s non-salesy
  • It is a way to reinforce your brand, by including your logo
  • A great way to win back clients – a simple reminder that you’re still around
  • A perfect way to offer gratitude for their business in 2020
  • Usually, a holiday card will get opened!

Now is the time to send holiday cards and MEDiAHEAD can help. Let us do the work for you. You can create your card, or we can help you. After that, just send us your mailing list and we can do all the rest for you.

MEDiAHEAD - Happy HolidaysIf you have several locations and want different cards for each location, we would be happy to accommodate.

If you have several signatures you would like inside the card, we can assist with that as well.

We want to make this holiday as easy as possible on you and your business. Let’s get some good holiday wishes out to our friends, family, co-workers and other business acquaintances. Spread some cheer this holiday season!

Give us a call at 816-931-7900 or email us at help@mymediahead.com

Michele StillwellBy Michele Stillwell, Director of Marketing and Accounting at MEDiAHEAD

When doing a huge amount of research way back in my Corporate Marketing days, one of my tasks was to take on revamping a sales tool. I accepted that challenge with open arms. The current tool the sales team was using wasn’t working for them. We were splitting as a company and we needed to come up with a tool that would work for the new company. The tool would need to support the sales team with collateral and all the other tangible things they needed during the sales cycle.

The first step was to interview the sales team. I needed to understand the pros and cons of the current tool. I needed to know what they liked… and what they were missing. After that process, I had a great list of features a new system would need to provide.

Features Needed in the New Sales System

• Google search functionality
• Ability to customize the sales brochure/collateral/personalize
• Expiration dates for collateral pieces so the sales team wouldn’t be using outdated materials
• Photo library for vertical market segmentation
• Request for Proposal brochure build functionality
• Merchandise ordering
• Sales Kits
• Quick turn time
• Ability to add cost center codes for billing to various departments

Request For Proposal

The second step was to send out a Request for Proposal (RFP) to several companies around the country. This RFP contained all the requirements for the creation of the new sales tool. The companies were provided due dates to respond to the RFP. And then we started the interview process based on the proposals.

My team and I had a lot of work to do. We interviewed several companies and had them show us their web portals, sales tools and collateral asset management systems. (Several names for the same type of tool.) And then we chose a news sales tool that was perfect! They built the tool for us just the way we wanted it. It had lots of customization and many bells and whistles. This new system also came with a hefty price tag and a huge monthly fee.

Our team went out and trained the sales team in each of our locations. The sales tool housed more than 300 templates, 600 collateral items and supported the Welcome Kits for all our new and existing customers. Plus, we set up an integration with SalesForce. Even better.

So why all this information?

Marketing & Distribution PortalsWhen I went to work for Colormarketing Inc. about 10 years ago, I started out doing some marketing for them, then went into sales, and now I’m doing Marketing and Accounting. As I have evolved, I’ve grown very passionate for this company… not only because of the owner, Kat, whom I truly admire, but for the products we’re selling.

The portal that MEDiAHEAD builds for our clients is fantastic. I know this from my experience in marketing for over 25 years. If you want to purchase a tool off the shelf, then that is what you will get (and pay for.)

Our Marketing collateral web solution is much more than that. It takes everything that the sales team needed from my previous job and double the features. It’s all included in our Marketing Portal system. I’m proud that we’ve developed the best of the best, and I love backing that up during our demos. (Want a demo? Let me know!)

The MEDiAHEAD Marketing Portal

Our tool can do so many things to support your sales team in an efficient and timely way. How? Because we’ve built it from two different tool sets, and we have talented web developers. They’ll never say “no” when asked if something can be done. They always look for a solution. Which is good because that’s what we’re all about.

Does it have Google search functionality? Yes
Can you customize it? Yes
Does it let you put in expiration dates? Yes

All of the above plus so much more.

MEDiAHEAD: Marketing and Distribution PortalsI was amazed when I started working here and started reviewing our Marketing Portal. I found all the features I’d created from scratch in the previous sales support tool. It was right there in front of me in the MEDiAHEAD Marketing Portal. At a fraction of the cost.

It Just Needs to Work

Sales teams need to have access to a tool that they can get in, get the supporting assets they need and go make a darn sale. They can customize, download or print what they need and do it fast. Marketing needs to have the ability to change collateral on the fly. They need to be able to find what they need fast. Nobody has time to waste looking for stuff in a sea of documents, day in day out. I’ve been there, I’ve lived it. Personalization is also key in your marketing approach, let us help you with that. One touch of a button and it’s done.

As the world of sales and marketing continues to evolve, let us help. Everyone has had to learn new methods and processes to conduct sales and marketing efforts, and our Marketing Portal is built to support that effort. Want to know more? Let’s do a virtual coffee or lunch. We would love a chance to make your life easier and earn your business!

By Michele Stillwell, Director of Marketing and Accounting at MEDiAHEAD

Have you ever been looking for that one file and it took you forever to find it? I recently experienced this problem. Picture this: You get art files from someone and rename them. Then you save the files somewhere… A month or two goes by, and guess what? You need that file again.

Searching and searching, you forgot the name of the file. And you forgot where you saved the file. After looking for an hour or so… you finally find it! Whew.

It’s especially frustrating now working from home. Using a remote connection to your company files can be frustrating in itself, let alone trying to find a file.

This is where a marketing collateral asset management tool comes to the rescue.

MEDiAHEAD: Marketing and Distribution PortalsWith an asset management tool, all your collateral is online in a central repository. You can log into your portal site and see your collateral in real-time. Even better, you have the ability to customize the collateral, edit content and download. All at your fingertips.

You can upload anything to the asset management tool: documents, videos, graphics, working files, photo libraries and even physical merchandise. You have the control; it makes finding things super easy.

With a collateral asset management tool, you can:

  • Upload documents quickly and easily
  • Manage version control
  • Archive files that are out of date
  • Allow individual users to edit & customize content while still controlling your branded elements
  • Easily search and find any documents or file by campaign, product targeted audience or any other attribute you choose
  • Order materials digitally or to be printed on-demand and shipped globally
  • Control security access each user receives – what they can view, edit and order, and payment options as well
  • Choose your payment options – including credit card payment, point programs, internal cost center allocations or purchase orders

Brand Control

One thing I learned when working for a large corporation is that brand control is extremely important. When you have an asset management tool, you have control of the continuity of your brand.

There are several other reasons to have such a tool for your sales and marketing team. One stop shopping for your team for client handouts, client gifts and more.

  • You can store your trade show booth and giveaways on your management tool, manage orders for multiple shows in your portal, print customized collateral on-demand for that specific show and ship directly to the location… all from your own desk.
  • Provide turn-key campaigns to channel partners, allowing them to co-brand materials, upload prospect lists and execute marketing or print campaigns all from your asset management tool.
  • Allow your Sales team to easily search and download marketing assets for prospects, and order materials to be shipped out to the field or directly to the client.

Michele StillwellThink about all the time you can save with the organization and efficiency you get in an online marketing portal! Give me a call. I will walk you through one of our portals and show you where you can save time and stay on brand.

For more information, check us out at www.mymediahead.com.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

By Kat McDaniel, Principal at MEDiAHEAD.

I can’t even begin to count the number of prospective clients and strangers that ask me if I am veggiebellie‘s mom.

veggiebellie on Instagram

My daughter, Amy McDaniel has 5,580 followers on Instagram. In a very loving way, I’m frequently portrayed as the wacky human that doesn’t understand technology or how to properly operate my iPhone. She also documented my cancer journey and most recently my wedding.

If you follow her, you probably know that my husband is now featured in the fun (or being made fun of). Last Friday, there were many funny clips of us playing Trivial Pursuit… and Rieger Whiskey was involved.

Recently, I was pitching a large account when one of the attendees raised her hand and asked if I was veggiebellie’s Mom. At the Kemper Museum Gala I had no less than four people approach me and ask the same question. And this morning, at one of The Enterprise University Classes with Willoughby, I was approached while getting a cup of coffee. We both laughed and I said, “Yes. I’m the infamous Mom of Amy.”

The Power of Human Connection

I’m using this example to show the power and reach of social media through human connection.

Most brands need to get personal and funny to keep their clients engaged. No one wants to see an infomercial on what your company does.

Wendy’s is a perfect example – the secret to their social media success is confidence and culture. Their playful approach allows them to make their points in a likeable way, like trolling McDonald’s on National Frozen Food Day with tweets poking fun that their beef is frozen. More than three million people follow the brand for their saucy tweets and good natured burns.

Izzy head shotIt’s Not About Selling Product

Social media should not be about selling your product, it should be about people getting to know your brand and your core values.

A good brand should live in the hearts and minds of the people who you’re trying to engage.

At MEDiAHEAD, we show people our brand and core values through the stories we tell. Whether it’s another blog written by our mascot Izzy, or a story about our unique and fun referral gifts… giving people a window into our company and culture is important.

Are you sharing your stories?

By Kat McDaniel, Principal at MEDiAHEAD

MEDiAHEAD Trade Show BoothA month before our event, we sent a variable custom mailer to each of the attendees inviting them to visit a landing page for a free promotion. We used a PURL (Personalized URL) which led them to a custom micro website created with just that one person in mind, the recipient of a specific direct mail piece. In a campaign where 10,000 pieces are mailed, there will be 10,000 different personalized websites generated.

Not only does each website have a unique URL, but the PURL landing page typically greets the recipient by name. Because each website is unique, it’s very easy for the sender to determine which recipients responded to the mailing.

When they visited the micro website, they were able to choose a product – fairly normal for a trade show, BUT: we generated a huge response by allowing the recipient to upload a picture of their favorite thing – dogs, children or funny photos that we printed as a poster, notepad or on a deck of cards.

At the show our booth was mobbed with attendees picking up their gifts and chatting with us.

They were able to see the high quality that we were able to print digitally on their product in addition to the samples we had displayed from other projects. (And we were also able to capture their email addresses for future marketing initiatives.)

Successful marketing applications for PURLs can be found across nonprofit, for-profit businesses and even government. PURLs have been used effectively with existing customers & donors, and with new prospects. Any organization that wants to start a conversation with an audience, or pre-qualify a group of prospects should consider using PURLs!

By Michele Stilwell, Director of Marketing and Accounting at MEDiAHEAD

Window Clings Definition: Window cling decals are a popular material used for graphic displays. Window cling is made from a thin vinyl film that clings to various surfaces. Typically, they are displayed on glass windows and doors. However, they can also be displayed on smooth plastic or metal.

Have you ever wondered or wanted to print some cool window clings? Well, they’ve come a long way since the clings that the minute the sun hit it, it would peel or curl or worse… simply fall off. You can print all kinds of window clings now. Some can cling on the inside surfaces of your building, and some are super resilient to weather and can adhere to the outside of a window. Yes, they can survive outside in the storms, heat, snow and wind.

The other great part of using a window cling is you can reuse it, because it does not have any adhesive glue. It is just a cling.

The particular window clings in the picture below were printed on a dusted vinyl material that allows for some light to come through, but still offers some privacy.    This gives you a kind of etched or frosted glass look. You can do lettering and special shapes or full panels.

Window Cling Sample 1 Window Cling Sample 2

MEDiAHEAD would love to help you print your next window clings!

Soon you will see a display of window clings on all of our windows at 3525 Roanoke, Kansas City, MO 64111.

So stop by and chat with us… or contact us through our website.