FTC_March-Blog-2-_-Show-don't-tell

The secret to social media success

FTC_March-Blog-2-_-Show-don't-tell

Successful business pages on social media have one thing in common: they use their online presence to build a real connection with their clients, as opposed to merely selling their products. This is because the old “yell louder than the other guy” technique falls on deaf ears in a place where consumers have the final say as to whether or not they see your content. Social media should engage your customers, entertain them and offer them something that might enrich their lives, otherwise they will not engage with your brand. Not sure if you’re taking the right approach to social media? Ask yourself the following questions:

Do I offer value to consumers?

If you see a company page with too much of a sales push, you’ll tune out. But if your content is engaging, helpful and shows you really care about your product or service, your customers are far more likely to follow you, regularly interact with your material and even share it with their friends. Every time you produce a social media post ask yourself: ‘If I were a customer, would I be truly interested in viewing this?’. The answer should always be yes. Remember: one overly-pushy social media post can leave a sour taste with your followers, causing them to unfollow you. This makes it essential to add value, 100 per cent of the time.

Am I always authentic?

No longer do brands have to look authentic, but they also have to be authentic. Today’s socially conscious and tech-savvy consumers expect the brands they endorse to be honest, transparent, deliver on their promises and remain true to their identities. They are far more likely to join brand communities that speak to human experiences, appear passionate about what they believe in and are willing to accept their faults. On the other hand, if these expectations aren’t met, criticism can spread like wildfire across social networks, devastating your credibility and making it near impossible to build a strong community. Remember, your credibility is one of your most valuable commodities, so use it wisely.

Do I create personal content?

We live in an era of personalisation. It’s essential to customise your content to ensure individuals only see the information they’ll be interested in. Why not tailor your message to specific individuals to ensure they get the most out of your communications? You can segment customers into groups that would benefit from a unique offering – for example, location, sector, purchase history, browsing habits or gender by reviewing the analytics data you already have about them. By feeling like your content has been tailored specifically to them, studies show that customers are much more likely to engage with your brand.

If you answered no to any of these questions, it’s probably time to reconsider your business’ social media strategy. Need help generating a soft sell approach that grows your followers? Merryn Bourne Creative can work closely with your brand to create an impressive return on investment. For more detailed information, contact us today.

Fish Tank Creative team

Welcome to the fish tank!

Fish Tank Creative team

In 2017, our team expanded, widening our talent pool and growing our fish tank larger than it’s ever been. We’ve made huge strides in our industry, driving brands forward, connecting with target audiences and adding value to many organisations.

Swim on in and get to know our team…

fish-tank-creative-meet-team-merryn

Merryn Bourne, CEO & Founder

Merryn started Fish Tank Creative almost ten years ago in 2008, out of her creative industry experience in both design and marketing. With her passion for design, charming and upbeat personality, Merryn wears a hundred different hats in this company, balancing her role as CEO with creative strategy, accounts, HR, business sales and even dabbling in design. Plus, she somehow still has plenty of time to spend with her beautiful, young family.

How did you get into the line of work you’re in?
Natural progression. I knew I wanted to be an art director while studying 2D/3D art and social science at school. This was then confirmed by my work experience with George Paterson bates in Year 10 and later Bryce Courternay. My time at University taught me how to take artistic and creative ideas and make them commercially viable. From there, my experience in the real world, working in lifestyle advertising and corporate marketing for 20 years taught me other valuable lessons, like the fact that image is everything the skill of taking customers wants and needs and creating a solution.

What’s your favourite part of the job?
Meeting people, and showing them how the solution works to fix their problem.

What are your hobbies?
Relaxing on the beach, being with my family and laughing with my besties.

If you were a fish, which would you be?
The angel fish, all embellished and sparkly.

fish-tank-creative-meet-team-lyn

Lyn Taylor, Studio Manager

The most recent addition to the Fish Tank Team, Lyn is buzzing with helpful management strategies and insightful ways to improve our processes. She has seventeen years’ experience in the creative industries and is also a well-known photographer in Sydney’s fashion and music scenes.

How did you get into the line of work you’re in?
I started in project management in the creative industry – I thought it would be a perfect combination of creative and strategy.

What’s your favourite part of the job?
Thinking of new ways to assist the FTC team and getting to know our clients.

What are your hobbies?
Photography, playing, guitar and hanging out with my family.

If you were a fish, which would you be?
A puffer fish, haha.
Mardi Lowe. design lead, pre press mastermind and lord of all things WordPress

Mardi Lowe, Digital Design Lead

Mardi combines the distinctive worlds of web development and design with a unique passion and talent for both. She’s an instrumental member of the Fish Tank team, having blessed our Chippendale studio with her cheery, friendly energy and joyful presence for three and a half years.

How did you land up in the line of work you’re in?
I knew from a young age I wanted to be in the creative industry. My first job straight out of school was a Prepress and Graphic Arts apprenticeship, which taught me the design fundamentals of print. From there, I moved from print into the design world. 

What’s your favourite part of the job?
For a long time, I’ve wanted to use my design skills for something that could help the world, even in a small way. Working in aged care has been the most rewarding for me at Fish Tank Creative. I feel good knowing our ideas have been used to help families and elderly people.

What are your hobbies?
Scuba diving, yoga, fitness and reading.

If you were a fish, which would you be?
A parrot fish. They’re just so bright and colourful!

Juliet Forsyth, Designer, illustrator and lover of birds

Juliet Forsyth, Designer & Creative Services Manager

Juliet’s background in fine art gives her graphic design work a unique edge. In the two years she’s been with Fish Tank Creative, we’re yet to see her without a sketchpad in her bag or doodles in her meeting notes. But her talents extend beyond art – she’s got a good instinct for marketing and her mind always is full of creative, out of the box ideas.

How did you get into the line of work you’re in?
I started out studying art, which slid into time-based art which slid into animation which slid into digital media which slid into design …It was a slippery slope.

 What’s your favourite part of the job?
Whenever we get a new project that allows us to be super creative and make something beautiful.

 What are your hobbies?
Drawing, dungeons and dragons and bush walking.

If you were a fish, which would you be?
A Bristlenose Catfish, obviously.

 Kira Friedman Writer of copy and content aka the Beyonce of writing 

Kira Friedman, Copywriter

Word obsessed and a bit of a book nerd, Kira just returned from six months studying literature in Edinburgh, Scotland. She loves making complex ideas sound simple, striving to help brands’ unique personalities shine through.

How did you get into the line of work you’re in?
I’ve always been interested in the art of writing, but I’ve recently discovered the art of branding. There’s something very satisfying about listening to a client and helping them build their marketing goals.  

What’s your favourite part of the job?
Getting to write cool articles like this one…

What are your hobbies?
Travelling, cooking and reading.

If you were a fish, which would you be?
A Neon Tetra, they’re tiny and look just like a regular fish, but that glowing strip always catches your eye.

 Farhan Saeed, Web developer

Farhan Saeed, Web Developer

Farhan moved to Australia just one and a half years ago from Pakistan and is now doing his Masters in IT. He’s a web development and coding whizz, constantly impressing us with his coding skills and keeping us up to date with the latest in the tech world.

How did you get into the line of work you’re in?
It was my love for technology. I started off as a freelance writer, and was not very good at it. A few months into freelancing, I started my computer science degree and saw how much I could do with what I learn in class. Then I just kept learning new things to keep up with the changing needs of clients, which was both challenging and enjoyable. Time just flew from there.

What’s your favourite part of the job?
I can work from anywhere.

What are your hobbies?
Cricket, music, movies and TV shows.

If you were a fish, which would you be?
I don’t know… I don’t even know what type of fish we have in our office tank.

Yery Yoon, Marketing intern

Yery Yoon, Marketing Intern

A qualified optometrist, budding artist and talented photographer, Yery is a bright and friendly member of the Fish Tank Team. She’s fluent in Korean, loves fashion and is always keen to extend her marketing skills. In fact, she’s headed back to school next year to pursue her passion, Media Productions.

How did you get into the line of work you’re in?
(as a marketing intern): I was working at a small independent optometry practice where we had to all participate in a bit of everything to run a business and it sparked an interest in marketing. It lead me to actively paying attention to the way brands tried to win my attention as a consumer.

What’s your favourite part of the job?
Understanding what people may be interested in and engaging with them to entertain or inform them of their needs.

What are your hobbies?
Drawing, reading, taking photos, binge watching tv series

If you were a fish, which would you be?
The Finding Nemo fish because it’s cute to look at.

fish-tank-creative-meet-team-otto-cleo

Cleo and Otto, Studio Mascots

Tasked with the important role of swimming about all day and night, Cleo and Otto are 24/7 studio security guards, supervising the team and making sure nothing un-fishy is going on.

Looking to build your branding and communication strategy in the New Year? The Merryn Bourne Creative team can develop your marketing strategy and design you a brand image that perfectly aligns with your organisation. For an obligation-free chat, contact Merryn on 02 8399 2223.

how to create meaningful content in 2018

How to create meaningful content in 2018

how to create meaningful content in 2018

Studies increasingly show that creating engaging, helpful and consistent content results in higher overall retention and profit rates in the long term. This is because truly engaging your customers enhances brand recognition, likeability and community – the key ingredients for sales growth. If you’re not investing in content, you should start now – experts predict that creating meaningful content will be vital to business success in 2018, with our economy becoming more digitalised and socially connected than ever before. Here are some tips to help you develop content that engages your customers:

Add value, don’t just advertise

Many organisations produce content solely for advertising purposes, but this often comes at the detriment of building a real connection with your client. People tend to block out advertising material, or anything they deem to have too strong of a sales push. On the other hand, if your content is engaging, helpful and shows you really care about your product or service, your customers are far more likely to follow you, regularly interact with your material and even share it with their friends. If you’re unsure whether your content is adding value, simply ask: ‘If I were a customer, would I be truly interested in viewing this?’ If the answer is no, it’s probably time to reconsider the kind of material you’re producing.

Know your audience

We live in an era of personalisation. It’s essential to customise your content to ensure individuals only see the information they’ll be interested in. If the option is available, why not tailor your message to specific individuals to ensure they get the most out of your communications? You can segment customers into groups that would benefit from a unique offering – for example, location, sector, purchase history, browsing habits or gender by reviewing the analytics data you already have about them. By feeling like your content has been tailored specifically to them, studies show that customers are much more likely to engage with you and become a part of your brand community.

Always be authentic

No longer do brands have to look authentic, but they also have to be authentic. Today’s socially conscious and tech-savvy consumers expect the brands they endorse to be honest, transparent, deliver on their promises and to remain true to their identities. They are far more likely engage with content that speaks to human experiences, appears passionate about what they believe in and are willing to accept their faults. On the other hand, if these expectations aren’t met, criticism can spread like wildfire across social networks, devastating your credibility. Remember, your credibility is one of your most valuable commodities, so use it wisely.

Need help developing a content strategy that motivates and excites? Merryn Bourne Creative can work closely with your brand to develop integrated marketing communications that generates real sales results. For more detailed information, contact us today.

website-post-header

How you can grow sales by building a stronger brand community

website-post-header

Here are some tips we’ve accumulated to help you strengthen your brand community:

Create meaningful content

Many organisations produce content solely for advertising purposes, but this often comes at the detriment of building a community. People tend to block out advertising material, or anything they deem to have too strong of a sales push. On the other hand, if your content is engaging, helpful and shows you really care about your product or service, your customers are far more likely to follow you, regularly interact with your material and even share it with their friends. If you’re unsure whether your content is adding value, simply ask: ‘If I were a customer, would I be truly interested in viewing this?’ If the answer is no, it’s probably time to reconsider the kind of material you’re producing.

Know your audience

We live in an era of personalisation. It’s essential to customise your communications to ensure individuals only see the information they’ll be interested in. If the option is available, why not tailor your message to specific individuals to ensure they get the most out of your communications? You can segment customers into groups that would benefit from a unique offering – for example, location, sector, purchase history, browsing habits or gender by reviewing the analytics data you already have about them. By feeling like your message has been tailored specifically to them, studies show that customers are much more likely to engage with you and become a part of your brand community.

Always be authentic

No longer do brands have to look authentic, but they also have to be authentic. Today’s socially conscious and tech-savvy consumers expect the brands they endorse to be honest, transparent, deliver on their promises and to remain true to their identities. They are far more likely to join brand communities that speak to human experiences, appear passionate about what they believe in and are willing to accept their faults. On the other hand, if these expectations aren’t met, criticism can spread like wildfire across social networks, devastating your credibility and making it near impossible to build a strong community. Remember, your credibility is one of your most valuable commodities, so use it wisely.

Cabrini: A case study in Aged Care

cabrini-care-westmead-events-and-activities

When it comes to Aged Care, having a strong brand community doesn’t just benefit sales, but can significantly enhance quality of life for elderly people, which makes this extra important. Last year, Cabrini Care approached Fish Tank Creative to develop a multi-channelled communications strategy. By focusing on open and nurturing communications, our approach enabled closer communication between families, residents and staff. Here are some of the features we introduced to help build a stronger brand community for Cabrini:

A brand awareness campaign
Fish Tank Creative engaged the local community with a campaign of beautifully designed newsletters, articles, photography, blogs and Facebook posts. Not only did these provide important information and updates about day to day happenings, but they also emphasised the warm spirit of Cabrini, offering a glimpse into moments of happiness, laughter and joy.

Website redevelopment
We introduced a host of new, interactive web features to better engage families and members of the community. These included:

  • A monthly events calendar that updates in real time, helping keep families in the loop about activities during the month.
  • The “message a resident” feature, which allows users to send a personalised message or greeting to any resident, helping make their day.
  • An online booking channel, offering families the opportunity to book out the family dining space for special quality time with their loved one.

Information on the website and search engines has also been redeveloped for user-friendliness, ensuring the community has the best possible access to information.

As a result of this new approach, Cabrini says it now enjoys improved communication of important information and activities. But beyond this, the changes have also led to a more vibrant, open and engaged community, helping bring residents, staff and families closer than ever before.

Need help building a stronger brand community? Merryn Bourne Creative can work closely with your unique brand to develop an integrated marketing communication strategy. For more information, contact us today.

supercharge your ads with facebook pixel

How to Supercharge Your Ads with the New Facebook Pixel

supercharge your ads with facebook pixel

What’s a Facebook pixel?

A Facebook pixel is a small piece of coding that allows you to track and optimise your ads, helping build targeted audiences for future campaigns.

What’s new?

Released early this year, Facebook’s new pixel is easier to use and track. By integrating two separate pixels, Custom Audiences and Conversation Tracking into one, Facebook has streamlined its system, offering improvements to its functions:

fb-pixel-infographic-1

Conversation tracking

Track the actions of web visitors from your Facebook ad and monitor how they interact with your website. For example; are they buying more from desktop or mobile? How often do they drop out at your payment page? Use this to make necessary improvements.

Optimising ads for conversion

Improve the quality and targeting of your ads, boosting their overall effectiveness. Use the data provided to ensure your ads are being seen by the customers most likely to take your desired action.

Building custom audiences

Facebook can help find optimal audiences for your ads based on people’s interests, likes and demographics.

You can also expect other benefits like faster loading, improved website SEO and the capability to track multiple events.

How to get started

Create the pixel and add it to your website. Find the ‘Pixels’ tab under ‘Ads Manager’ on Facebook. Click ‘Create a Pixel,’ give it a name and accept the terms. Next, paste the pixel code into the header of your website and check the status is active by clicking ‘Send Text Traffic’. This code will then send data back to Facebook, allowing you to better measure your activity. For more info about setting up your pixel, see Facebook’s guide.

How to start tracking the events that matter to you:

Once you’ve set up your pixel, you can start adding events, which allow you to customise and track the actions people take on your website. To do this, find the ‘Pixels’ tab in your ‘Ads Manager’ on Facebook, click ‘Install Events’. Choose the events you’d like to track – for example, when people make a purchase, make a search, view certain content or sign up for registration. Next, assign whether you track these on ‘Page Load’ (when someone lands on a page) or on ‘Inline Action’ (when someone clicks something) and select any additional parameters you’d like to measure. Copy and paste to your site and enjoy the benefits of improved ads!

Merryn Bourne Creative can help you optimise the way you produce, measure and track your advertising with the new Facebook pixel. Contact us today.

your path to seo success

Your path to SEO success

your path to seo success

Want to make your brand more visible on Google? Here are some tips to help you improve your search engine ranking so you no longer feel invisible.

No matter what you do, never sacrifice good writing for Search Engine Optimisation (SEO). Quality content drives search engine rankings and the best websites are written for the user and not for the search engine. Rule of thumb: make a site you would want to visit and write it the way you (and other humans) would want to read it.

#1 Keywords are Key

Google relies on keywords to establish who you are and how to connect you to the World Wide Web.

Keywords should be thought of as the words someone is most likely to type into a search engine to find your content. To stand out, it’s important you place your keywords should somewhere in your content, preferably in the first paragraph, so that they appear.  Again, try here to speak like a human and use words that you believe humans are most likely to use when they are searching for a page about your topic.  

One thing to be mindful of with Google is that it looks for how often your keywords pop up. However, it’s less about quantity and more about quality, so don’t try to trick the search engine by repeating the same word over and over again. By creating quality content specifically for your intended user your site traffic will organically increase.

#2 Stay Fresh and Remember to Refresh

Updating your content on a regular basis is viewed by Google as one of the best indicators of relevance for a website.

#3 Be Link-worthy

Google looks at the words you use in links to help determine the content of your page. Using links within your website will help to emphasise keywords. So, rather than having “click here”, try writing out the name of the destination as “click here” has no search engine value.

#4 Start Socialising

If you want to achieve higher recognition and boost your brand, you need to socialise with your audience. Social media is great for this. You may find that a great deal of your traffic comes from social platforms, so it would be wise to make sure your content is “social friendly”.

In addition to this, social platforms will allow you to understand where your target audience is and therefore help you build a stronger presence.

#5 Mobile Friendly means Google Friendly

As more and more people are using their phones to search for content, it would be wise to make your content mobile-friendly for the sake of good user experience. In saying this, you will also want to do this for the sake of search, as Google has indicated that mobile-friendliness is a Google ranking signal. This also includes being wary of pop-up penalties.

#6 Make Friends with the Top Dogs

Work hard to make connections in your field as this will help you spread your business’s message and vision. Once you know which companies you want to befriend, follow and like them on social media and even engage with their content to help boost your brand’s awareness.

We hope these tips put you on the right SEO path.

With SEO there are no guarantees or quick schemes. SEO is highly technical and complex, but at its heart lies the philosophy that Google wants to highlight the most relevant search matches to each user when they go searching. So, remember this;

Google determines relevance by;

    • Seeing how many people visit your site
    • The content published on your pages
  • The websites that are linking to yours

If you need help optimising your status with Google, please get in contact with us at Merryn Bourne Creative.

Our team of communication specialists will help your brand’s voice sing loud and clear.

2-AB-testing-header

Uplift your EDM open rate with A/B testing

2-AB-testing-header

Want to improve the effectiveness of your website’s marketing efforts, but unsure how to evaluate whether the changes will be successful or not?

The solution to your problem is A/B testing.

A/B testing involves running an experiment between two web designs (A and B). By comparing the two versions against each other, you’re able to determine- via statistical evidence – which web page performs or converts the best.

From this, you’re able to gain an insight into the behaviour of the visitors accessing your web page and adjust your website accordingly to maximise conversion rates.

Not only does A/B testing help you understand the impact you’re making, but it also gives you a much fuller understanding about your customers’ behaviour and preferences.

Starting point:

Once you have determined your goal – perhaps to increase conversion rates, reduce bounce rates or increase sales – you then need to decide what it is you wish to test on your landing page.

What can you test?

A/B testing can look at anything on your website that affects visitor behaviour.

However, try focus on aspects which are most likely to have a large impact. For instance;

  • Headlines
  • Call to Action text
  • Call to Action Button
  • Any graphics used in direct correlation to sales efforts

By focusing on the aspects which have the greatest impact on your customers, you’re less likely to get caught up on minute details which may only have a minimal impact.

How A/B testing works:

In an A/B test, you take a web page and modify it to create a second version of the same page. This change can be as simple as a single headline or button, or be a complete redesign of a page.

This leads to half of your traffic being diverted through the original version of the page (known as the control, or A) and the other half through the modified version of the page (the variation, of B).

Visitors are then served either the control or variation, and their engagement with each is measured, collected and analysed through a statistical engine. As a result, you are able to determine whether changes made to the web page had an impact on visitor behaviour – positive, negative, or no effect at all.  

AB-testing-INFOGRAPHIC

The benefits of using an A/B test:

A well planned A/B test can help improve your bottom line by allowing you to better understand what works and what doesn’t. This means when it comes to deciding what marketing strategies to use, decisions can be made quicker with a result that’s guaranteed to be effective as the evidence found from the A/B tests will help you better understand what your customers are responding to.  

A/B Testing process:

When running an A/B testing experiment, you should treat the process in a scientific manner.

  1. Study your website data
  2. Observe user behaviour
  3. Construct a hypothesis
  4. Test your hypothesis
  5. Analyse test data and draw conclusions
  6. Report results to all concerned

For more information or guidance on A/B testing, please contact us on 02 8399 2223 or email us.

 

aftercare-blog-header

How to boost your retention rate with customer aftercare

aftercare-blog-headerA Harvard study has found that a five per cent improvement in customer retention can lead to up to an 85 per cent increase in profits. This is proof that the relationship you have with your existing customers is important to your overall business. A company with poor retention is like a bucket with a hole in it – you can keep filling it up, but it will continue to leak until you patch it up.

The key to retaining customers is to treat your relationship with them like you would a friendship. Keep it personal, stay in contact and remember to say thank you. You’ll soon notice customers stick around for the long term. Here’s how to build this friendship with customers:

Say thank you after each purchase.

Sending a customer a humble ‘thank you’ email after they’ve made a purchase is a great way to keep the dialogue open and flowing. It also gives them a chance to provide valuable feedback on your service. This communication should let the customer know that you’re still here for them and that they haven’t been forgotten once they’ve made a purchase. While you can use this space to up-sell, cross-sell or to capture data, its more important to show the customer that you value their business, their feedback and their time. 

Keep in touch.  

Studies show that strong engagement between a business and its customers will result in higher overall retention and profit rates in the long term. This means that its important to take advantage of your mailing list of existing customers by creating engaging, helpful and consistent content that will be of interest to them. Not only will you experience less customers unsubscribing from your communications as time passes, but truly engaging your customers contributes to higher brand recognition and likeability.

Make it personal.

We live in an era of personalisation, which means its essential to make use of the data you have already have about your customers. A good way to personalise your messages is to segment customers into the groups you believe will benefit from a unique offering or proposition. Dependent on your product or service, segments could be based on anything from location, to age, gender, industry, or past purchases. By feeling like your message has been tailored specifically to them, studies show that customers are much more likely to engage with what you have to say, which could direct them to make repeat purchases.

Don’t come on too strong.

It’s hard for customers to feel genuinely valued in today’s world. They’re met with a never-ending barrage of marketing material each day in everything they do – from browsing online, to watching TV, checking their emails or even walking down the street. As a consequence, they tend to block out anything they deem too much of a sales push. By maintaining a genuine relationship, sharing useful information with them and keeping things personal, you can help stick out above competition.

Merryn Bourne Creative can help you develop a customer aftercare plan suited to your unique business. For more information, contact us.

web-security-header

Why Google Analytics is your free gold mine for growth.

web-security-header

Google Analytics is a powerful website analysis tool which helps you understand the people who use your website. But how can this help your business? We’ve put together five ways Google Analytics can help you improve your marketing strategy and keep visitors engaged with your website and business.

Hot spots – Where are people looking?

Google Analytics shows you what parts of your website are attracting interest and the key words and phrases which pull in new visitors through search results. Meaning you can offer new content and services your customers are interested in.

Boring bits – Where are people NOT looking?

Help weed out content your customers are not interested in. Sometimes content is just not appealing, other times bad positioning can lead to great content being lost. Having a lacklustre heading is the first step in losing customers focus and an easy fix. There are some great guides out there to help write a punchy headline.

Break down the bounce.

Bounce rates are when visitors leave your site without clicking through to other pages, which means they are not engaging with your content and your business. Google Analytics helps break down what point visitors leave your site so you can see what’s turning customers away.

Desktop, tablet or mobile – How are people viewing your site?

If your customers are mainly using a mobile to use your site or a specific browser it’s vital that your site is optimised for that platform and they are getting the best viewing experience. This is where having a responsive website is important, so no matter which platform they are using your site will still be fully functional. The geo location feature of Google Analytics is also helpful in targeting your key audience and producing content that is relevant to them.

Who is the best – How does your site rate against your competitors?

You can use Google Analytics to compare your customers engagement with that of your competitors and find out where your site needs improvement. However this tool’s usefulness can depend on if your competitors are also using Google Analytics.