Business information written specifically for newspaper advertising departments

When it comes to Twitter and others, we know a presence is important for branding and connecting with customers in this day and age.  However, actually measuring the effectiveness of a Twitter presence is murkier territory. Many still place a lot of weight on follower counts as an indication of whether or not a business’ Twitter marketing is “working.” Though there’s an element of truth to that — the more the merrier when it comes to getting your message out there — it’s not the full picture.

Sales reps know that networking is a key part of their careers. In order to you’re your business and make sales, you need to get out there and make connections. As a result, sales people are continually keeping an eye out for networking events and opportunities — like the Chamber of Commerce’s after-work-hours mixers and the BBB’s business card exchanges — in order to expand their rolodexes.

Stewart was telling me about his first days of selling ads for his newspaper. “In looking through the files, I found some proposals that had been turned down by prospects. Even though I was new in the job, it was easy to see why they had been rejected. They looked like condensed versions of the rate card – never more than a half-page.

The latest of social networks to join forces with advertising are photo-sharing apps like Instagram. While we’ve spoken of such apps before, their role in advertising has become even clearer recently, as they have proven to hold a pragmatic function for retail advertisers.

At the end of January, the location check-in app Foursquare announced a new partnership with food delivery company GrubHub Seamless. Now, both iPhone and Android smartphone owners can place orders for delivery from local restaurants directly through the Foursquare app. This merger is not only great news for hungry customers who don’t want to leave the comfort of their homes, it’s also great news for local restaurants and your ad department!

 I was talking to Angela about her early days at her newspaper. “When I moved into this sales job, a lot of clients asked about the person I replaced. Most of them asked innocent questions about how that person was doing. But some of them were nosy and persistent. I figured the best strategy was to stay upbeat.” 

Recently, online retailer Amazon added Sunday deliveries in two major U.S. cities to its offerings. In a partnership with the U.S. Postal Service, Amazon began Sunday deliveries in New York City and Los Angeles in mid-November. It hopes to expand Sunday deliveries to Dallas, Houston, New Orleans and Phoenix within the next year.

In a way, social media giants, like Facebook and Twitter, are vying for the affection of newspapers, insofar as these sites want to be perceived as viable information resources that connect their users to the latest in breaking news and current events. Although local newspapers across the country felt like they were running to catch up to the social media movement, increasingly, this relationship is becoming more synergetic than ever.

Traction is a key element in any business. Even the business of football. 

Mobile has been on the rise, quickly becoming a major force in our everyday communication. An increase in affordable smartphone options — especially in comparison to laptop and desktop prices — has transformed mobile into a primary source of Internet and means of communication for many phone owners. One industry greatly affected by the surge in mobile technology is recruitment. Make sure your recruitment advertisers know how mobile can improve the hiring process. 

Another company, that was once a leader in its market, has bitten the dust due to its unwillingness to adapt with the changing times. This time, it’s Blockbuster. Last week, the movie rental retailer announced it would be shuttering its remaining 300 stores, leaving only 50 individual stores run as independent franchises. Blockbuster’s demise comes after years of losing customers to its online competitors — namely Netflix. In the wake of Blockbuster’s announcement, many have noted that it was a long time coming, and other businesses — especially media companies — should take Blockbuster’s story as a cautionary tale.

The New York Times’ Michael Moss asked Victors & Spoils, a Boulder, Colo., creative advertising agency, to create a hypothetical campaign that would overhaul the image of broccoli in the U.S. Of course, the challenge presented the advertising firm — which has worked with the likes of Coca-Cola and General Mills — with several obstacles. First and foremost, agencies like Victors & Spoils don’t typically take on campaigns for fresh produce, nor are they asked to. If such healthy foods are seeking advertising, it usually comes in the form of a government-funded campaign to promote healthy lifestyles across the country, which hasn’t been wildly successful in the past. Simply put, healthy foods like broccoli struggle to compete with their high-sugar, high-fat, high-everything junk food rivals. As a result, campaigns promoting produce and other healthy foods have been reduced to highlighting their nutritional benefits, which — again — haven’t worked in the past. The Victors & Spoils team was quick to decide that wasn’t the best path for broccoli’s future. 

As we mentioned last week, Pinterest made a move into advertising, and now, the photo-sharing app Instagram is following suit. On Oct. 24, Instagram posted a blog to inform users that an educational sample ad would appear in their feeds in the upcoming week. 

The social image and video-sharing giant Pinterest has crossed over into the advertising world. While the social network is still relatively young, at a mere three years old, its quick rise to fame makes Pinterest look less like a scrappy upstart these days, and more like a seasoned vet in the social media game. That is perhaps why the site now feels it’s the right time to roll out its first advertising offering to businesses.

With the constant growth in technology, it’s perfectly understandable that we want to leverage it to simplify our personal and professional lives. Tech and advertising are a natural pairing, and as a result, there are many options out there to simplify your department’s and your clients’ strategies. Case in point: automated advertising. Automated ads are pre-made ads created with certain mediums, like social media; times of day; or locations in mind. Coupled with circumstantial data, these ads are prompted to run without you having to lift another finger. However, automated advertising can lead to some issues for your clients’ brands.

No matter which industry you’re in, one thing seems to be true for all professionals: Offices are littered with a variety of personalities, and some of them can act as a deterrent to your productivity and success. From insufferable know-it-alls to the office gossip, these characters can distract you and even decrease your personal satisfaction at your job. Nevertheless, getting along with coworkers is a fundamental part of professional life, and it’s a key part of a successful career. While we don’t advocate anyone putting up with a job he is deeply unhappy with, these personalities are a reality in almost all workplaces. Therefore, it’s necessary to learn how to cope with these personalities, which range from just plain odd to detrimental to your performance. 

I was talking to Kyle, an advertiser who has been dealing with media representatives for many years. “I can tell a lot about a salesperson by what they say about their competitors,” he said. “It is extremely unprofessional to try to make sales points by trashing the other guys. In fact, negative comments reveal more about the critic than they do about the object of their criticism.” 

As we prepare to head to sunny Palm Springs, Calif., for the 2013 WCAA Conference, we thought it only appropriate to address the networking potential of conferences. If navigated correctly, you could meet potential colleagues, make valuable contacts and, yes, even land some new clients! We have some tips to make the most out of conferences:

Lately, you may have noticed a trend developing amongst brands using social media as a component of their marketing, especially on Twitter. This particular platform lends itself well to breaking news, as many in the media believe it’s crucial to be the first to report important news. Reporters have found that the quickest way to get information to the public and beat their competitors to the punch is by composing a 140-character tweet. It’s an immediate way for them to say, “I was there first,” and it’s even accompanied by a time stamp to prove they were. In addition to being the first to break news, journalists have also found Twitter and other social media platforms are a great way to connect with their readers and start a dialogue with them, as the public increasingly wants to play a role and have a say in the news. As a result, Twitter and other networks host huge audiences, all discussing similar topics at the same time and hitting refresh to see the latest post about the subject.

Advertisers — like the rest of us — often struggle with “fit in or stand out” decisions. While we all want to share an identity with our chosen group or groups, at the same time, we want to be recognized for our unique qualities.

Social apps like Instagram and Vine have inundated everyday life. Picture it: You go out to dinner, your plate arrives and before digging in, you stop to snap a picture and share it with your friends. If that doesn’t describe you, you could probably just as easily look around the restaurant and see others who are guilty of the habit. Such occurrences — which aren’t limited to pictures at restaurants, but rather all forms of commerce — have become so commonplace that it’s created new privacy issues in this era of ever-growing technology. Brands that have snagged photos posted on social networks like Instagram and Facebook and then used them without permission have subsequently sparked outrage amongst social media users. However, the new mobile app SnapMyAd wants to mediate these conflicts by connecting brands with consumers willing to give up their photos.

With the school year underway and autumn approaching, you and your advertisers might be deciding whether or not you will hire seasonal interns for the office. We already know that internships are a cost-effective solution to filling out your staff and consequently easing the workload of your team of full-time employees. However, sometimes training and educating an intern on top of your existing work can seem daunting and more time-consuming than it’s worth. Despite those fears, we’re here to tell you that the pros out-weigh the cons when it comes to internships.

Many have already recognized the great potential Facebook offers businesses. The social media giant allows both nationally recognized brands and small businesses the invaluable opportunity to reach their existing audience and widen that scope by connecting with potential clients. You and your advertisers are no doubt aware of Facebook’s business and advertising features, but if you haven’t already, it’s time to consider the power of Facebook promoted posts. These posts allow paying businesses with a Facebook page to promote a particular piece of content to not only their existing fans, but also to those fans’ Facebook friends. This allows businesses to grow their audience without breaking their budget.

The Flaw: An advertiser is concerned because her ad seems to blend in with the others on the page. She says, “There’s a lot of information in the ad, but it gets lost on the page.”