Online marketing magazine for SMEs
BRANDMAG ISSUE 03 | APRIL 2016
Happy Birthday Twitter! 10 YEARS OF NEWS
Is SEO Dead? SEARCH ENGINES ARE CHANGING, DON’T GET LEFT BEHIND!
Josh Cote DISCUSSES SUCCESSFUL SCALING: 3 TIPS TO BUSINESS GROWTH
Should you hire a Marketing Agency? THE BENEFITS VS COSTS
ISSUE 3 | APRIL 2016
EDITORIAL Stacey Kehoe - Editor firstname.lastname@example.org Megan Paynter - Editorial Assistant email@example.com Zenya Smith - Content Editor firstname.lastname@example.org Alex Obertelli - Picture Editor email@example.com
DESIGN & PRODUCTION Rachel Pottle - Graphic Designer firstname.lastname@example.org
CONTRIBUTORS Briony Quinn email@example.com Vicky Shaw firstname.lastname@example.org Gavin Walsh Kai Petrich
ADVERTISING Megan Paynter - Advert Design email@example.com If you are interested in advertising in the next edition of BrandMag, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information about our advertising rates.
FROM THE EDITOR Marketing is an essential part of business success. Not only does it aid in promotion and advertising, it also helps you establish your brand and image. As the Founder and Communications Director of an online marketing agency, I would agree that there are many benefits for small business owners in hiring an agency. In an attempt to avoid bias, the BrandMag editorial team have employed freelance content creator Vicky Shaw to explore how a marketing agency may offer value to your growing business (Page 10). Weâ€™ve asked successful entrepreneur, Josh Cote, to brave the cover and reveal the secrets to successful scaling following the exceptional growth of his empire, EA Worldwide Acquisitions, through the most challenging economic period of our time. His advice is informed, encouraging, transparent and perhaps most importantly, replicable (Page 16). Our social media feature in this edition of BrandMag centres around Facebookâ€™s controversial move towards monetization (Page 12). It is now more difficult than ever to get meaningful results on Facebook without spending money on paid advertising, and as Facebook is on the fast track to becoming an advertising giant, we ask how small businesses can possibly succeed on Facebook without a hefty marketing budget?
STACEY KEHOE - EDITOR
CONTACT BRANDLECTIVE Email: email@example.com Phone: +44 0207-407-2672 Address: 73b Weston Street, London Bridge SE1 3RS
16. SCALE YOUR BUSINESS EXPEDENTIALLY BY JOSH COTE
10. SHOULD YOU HIRE A MARKETING AGENCY? 6. IS SEO DEAD? It appears search engines are changing the way in which they optimise and rank websites, so we have underlined this growing shift in the dynamics of SEO.
8. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TWITTER!
22. 7 THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN DESIGNING A LOGO For those who are about to give their brand a face lift or those who are just starting out on their brand design journey, we have outlined the top tips you will need to bear in mind when creating a great logo.
Twitter turns 10 this year and to celebrate we have shared some of the most influential moments that have happened on Twitter over the last 10 years.
12. CAN SMALL BUSINESSES SUCCEED ON FACEBOOK? As Facebook is on the fast track to becoming an advertising giant, we ask how small businesses can possibly succeed on Facebook without a hefty marketing budget?
THE BUSINESS TRAVELLERâ€™S GUIDE TO MIAMI
14. 6-STEP BEST PRACTICE GUIDE FOR LANDING PAGES With landing pages often linked to social media channels, paid advertising or email marketing campaigns - a visually stimulating landing page is a must for brands if they wish to retain engagement.
Need some Inspiration? TED TALKS: Simon Sinek ‘The Golden Circle’
WHY DO SOME COMPANIES ACHIEVE THINGS THAT COMPLETELY EXCEED OUR EXPECTATIONS, DEFYING ALL OUR ASSUMPTIONS FOR WHAT’S POSSIBLE? KAI PETRICH
usiness owner, Kai Petrich, started his first business at just 22 years old and in 5 short years has successfully expanded across America. His core values rotate around people. He provides a business development opportunity to help young people embrace entrepreneurship and create a successful future for themselves.
When asked how he attributes his success, he says ‘People don’t buy WHAT you do… They buy WHY you do it!’ It’s a concept explained by Simon Sinek in a Ted Talk, titled ‘The Golden Circle’. ‘I love this Ted Talk and think the concept of starting with why hits the nail on the head regarding the ‘trust economy’ and why some businesses are more successful than others. Most businesses have comparable competitors, its trust, loyalty and relationships that differentiate my business from my competitors which we see reflected at the point of sale and through our customer retention rates. Starting with ‘why’ allows
businesses to go beyond what they’re selling and connect on an emotional level with their customers, suppliers and even their staff.’
THE CONCEPT: Sinek has developed what he calls the “Golden Circle,” which has three layers:
1. Why: This is the core belief of the business. It’s why the business exists.
2. How: This is how the business fulfills that core belief.
3. What: This is what the company does to fulfill that core belief.
Watch the video at www.ted.com
SEO 101: Image Optimisation The value of imagery is constantly referred to in successful online marketing and you’d be pressed to find a web marketer who doesn’t understand the importance of effective imagery. Despite this consensus, website designers and SEO’s very often fail to ensure their site’s images are properly optimised. Why Optimise? The web is increasingly visual and it’s rare that you see a big name brand website (or any website, for that matter) launch a new design that has less imagery than the previous version not to mention images are not cheap. If you’ve employed an expensive graphic designer or invested in highquality stock imagery for your website why would you not ensure those images were adding SEO value to your site?
TOP TIP When you save your image, ensure the ‘natural’ size of your image matches the ‘display’ size of the image on your site and ALWAYS rename that image to something that succinctly describes the contents of the image. If the contents of the image are relevant to the topic of the page where the image will live, you’ve not only helped reduce the loading time of the page but also just improved your page’s keyword optimisation.
It is absolutely critical to make optimisation a priority.
SEO: DEAD, DYING JUST AS TRENDS CHANGE IN HAIRSTYLES, FASHION AND TECHNOLOGY, IT APPEARS SEARCH ENGINES ARE CHANGING THE WAY IN WHICH THEY OPTIMISE AND RANK WEBSITES. HERE I HAVE UNDERLINED THIS GROWING SHIFT IN THE DYNAMICS OF SEO. Words by Alex Obertelli
ack in May 2015 Google altered how they assessed quality in web content, and continue today to make algorithmic changes to their system for ‘improving’ the quality of their search results (Forbes, 2015). Rand Fishkin of Moz and Inbound.org has suggested that it’s not the ‘concepts or practices’ themselves that are dying, but rather the particular ‘language’ used (Moz, 2015). This suggests that SEO is ‘evolving’ rather than dying, and progression implies that businesses must adapt to the new changes in order to be continually discovered on Google’s results pages.
ne of these changes is the demand for unique, quality content that keeps the reader interested. We believe the production of regular, valuable content can be used as a safety net to protect businesses of all sizes against the consistently changing environment of SEO. However, this is no easy feat
SEO HAS DEVELOPED INTO AN INCREASINGLY COMPLEX ENTITY
© NAGHIYEV / SHUTTERSTOCK
given the rise of content marketing over the last few years, raising the quality bar even higher. But I believe it’s extremely necessary considering the reports that suggest time spent on webpages has an increasingly significant impact on Google rankings (E-Consultancy, 2015). SEO has developed into an increasingly complex entity, and is no longer solely focused on keyword density and inbound links. Indeed, the primary aim when producing web content should be to make it read well, and if the content produced is relevant to the search term entered by users in Google, then it should naturally contain keywords to related subjects anyway.
5 WAYS SEO EVOLVED OVER THE LAST 12 MONTHS © NAGHIYEV / SHUTTERSTOCK
IN DECEMBER 2015, I PARTNERED WITH ONLINE MARKETING AGENCY BRANDLECTIVE, WHO PROVIDE SEO SERVICES TO SME’S.
ith the majority of branded conversations now taking place on social media channels, we’ve put forward a case for the influence of social media on SEO ranking. We believe that greater social reach of content, through Facebook shares or Twitter ‘retweets’, for example, will not only generate various brand awareness benefits but also drive more relevant web traffic. Our clients are often exposed to the flip side of this - the increased importance of having active and engaging social media channels. Many consumers stumble across the social media pages of businesses when seeking information about products or services because they usually have excellent SEO rankings.
iven the landscape of permanently connected consumers, we also believe that it is becoming an absolute must for all company websites to be user-friendly and easily accessible from mobile devices. In May of this year, Google announced impending SEO penalties for websites that didn’t translate faultlessly onto mobile devices (Business 2 Community, 2015). Widespread smartphone use has naturally caused increased traffic from mobile devices, and we’re certain that mobile-optimisation has already surpassed desktop. This is why we ensure that all web development services we provide are mobile-compatible as standard. Along with providing web development services, our online marketing agency aims to improve the visibility of clients’ brands in search engines and on social networks.
Mind-set: Previously, the aim was to use specific keywords and rank high in search engine results. Now, it’s important to focus on brand identity and reputation which engages an audience. Focusing on increasing shares as well as natural linking helps to increase your ranking position.
Keywords: SEO has gone from using a single keyword to bring in results to focusing on long tail searches and keyword intent.
Content: In the past marketers were writing content that would help them get good SERP rankings. Now marketers have realised that content must be written with the readers in view and should be focused on keeping them engaged. Link building: Marketers used to go all out and place links everywhere, focusing solely on quantity. Now links have to be earned and link building has to take place via authoritative sources and it’s important to be selective about the tactics you use.
Social Media: Previously, there wasn’t too much room to use social media for brands as it wasn’t a ranking factor in search engines. Social media sites now offer e-marketers an opportunity to engage with their audience in a more meaningful way and is something that should be prioritised.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TWITTER TURNS 10 THIS YEAR AND TO CELEBRATE THE POPULAR SOCIAL NETWORK’S BIRTHDAY WE HAVE SHARED SOME OF THE MOST INFLUENTIAL MOMENTS THAT HAVE HAPPENED ON TWITTER OVER THE LAST 10 YEARS.
Originally christened Twttr - the platform launches in 2006. The creation which was developed as a way to send text messages to a group of people was the invention of Jack Dorsey, Evan Williams, Biz Stone and Noah Glass. Dorsey sent the first ever tweet at 12:50pm on March 21st and said “just setting up my twttr”. Six months later the group buys the domain twitter.com from a bird-watching website.
BIRTH OF THE HASHTAG
Tech expert Chris Messina suggests using the hashtag symbol (#) to indicate group events. The hashtag is born.
A POLITICAL INVASION
By far, the biggest event to hit Twitter was the 2008 Presidential Election, with each of the presidential candidates — Barack Obama and John McCain — gaining thousands of followers on the service. Current TV even integrated Twitter into their debate coverage, bringing political tweets to the big screen.
At 3:30pm on 15 January, US Airways flight 1549 crashes into New York’s Hudson River. Four minutes later Jim Hanrahan, aka @Manolantern, writes “I just watched a plane crash into the Hudson.” It takes another 15 minitues before the TV and the rest of the web to catch up - establishing Twitter as a legitimate news source.
ALL EYES ON HOLLYWOOD
Even as they were flanked by celebrities, Twitter's media execs only had eyes for their screens at the MTV Video Music Awards in September 2010, the scene of an aggressive push to integrate Twitter with a live television event, the largest integrated-TV initiative the company had taken to date.
TWITTER IN MOURNING On July 23rd news of Amy Winehouse’s death is on Twitter just 20 minutes after the police are called. Her name makes up 10% of all tweets as 20 million people mourn her.
© JAKKAPAN / SHUTTERSTOCK
FOUR MORE YEARS
President Obama is re-elected tweeting “Four more years.” It becomes the most shared tweet ever with 800,000 retweets. (He later drops to third after Ellen DeGeneres’ 2014 Oscar selfie and a One Direction tweet.
AP TWITTER ACCOUNT IS HACKED Syrian Electronic Army hacked the Twitter account of Associated Press on April 2013 and tweeted “Breaking: Two Explosions in the White House and Barack Obama is injured.” It has been one of the most notorious cases of Twitter hacks to date, which had far-reaching consequences.
BRING BACK OUR GIRLS
267 school girls are abducted by Boko Haram in Nigeria and #bringbackourgirls becomes a rallying call. Two years on and only 57 have escaped.
HASHTAGS DEFINE THE NEWS
Twitter’s hashtags define the year’s news as #jesuischarlie, #blacklivesmatter and #refugeeswelcome become everyday slogans.
MOST POPULAR PERSON ON TWITTER
Katy Perry remains the most popular person on Twitter with 84.2 million followers beating Justin Bieber by seven million.
Should you hire a
MANY SMALL BUSINESSES IN A VARIETY OF INDUSTRIES ARE STRUGGLING WITH THE DILEMMA OF WHETHER TO OUTSOURCE THEIR MARKETING NEEDS TO A SPECIALIST AGENCY OR TO KEEP THE MARKETING TEAM IN-HOUSE. THERE ARE PROS AND CONS TO EACH DECISION- HIRING A MARKETING AGENCY WILL RESULT IN RELINQUISHING CONTROL OF THAT PART OF THE BUSINESS BUT IF YOU CHOOSE TO KEEP THE MARKETING TEAM IN-HOUSE, YOU MIGHT END UP SPENDING THE ENTIRE BUDGET ON PAYROLL AND STILL NOT HAVE THE REQUIRED SKILL SET. Words by Vicky Shaw
© WAVEBREAKMEDIA / SHUTTERSTOCK
he benefits of keeping the marketing department in-house should be considered before a decision to hire a marketing agency is made. Keeping marketing in-house will mean that you still have management and staff control, with accountability staying in the business. In addition to this, you control how much time and money is being spent; but this does not mean that it will be less expensive because you might not be able to hire the skill level or expertise required, so it may end up costing more.
THE LARGEST PART OF THE INTERNAL MARKETING BUDGET IS SPENT ON PEOPLE, SYSTEMS AND FACILITIES. A BAD IN-HOUSE HIRE CAN COST A COMPANY OVER £100 000
hen deciding to outsource your marketing needs to a specialist agency, your business will be provided with top class marketing talent, innovative marketing strategies, shared experiences, and access to more advanced marketing technology. And not only does a marketing agency bring in specialist talent to your business, they will save you money on salaries, overheads and direct purchases. A good outsourcing partner can save a company between 10-30% in their overall marketing spend.
THE MARKETING SKILLS GAP IS VERY REAL. AN AGENCY WILL HELP YOU BRIDGE THIS GAP AND PROVIDE YOUR BUSINESS WITH A TEAM OF DIVERSE, EXPERIENCED AND DEDICATED MARKETING PROFESSIONALS
supply of talent and money being saved are not the only benefits to outsourcing. When entrusting an agency with your marketing needs, it allows for you to maintain momentum on other projects that are critical to the success of your business. You focus on the core functions of the business and let the marketers do what they do best! It is very easy for an in-house marketing team to lose sight of the big picture and sometimes you can get too close to your business, which makes it hard to see the marketing strategy from your audience’s perspective. Marketing strategies are only successful when the marketer steps into the ‘customer’s shoes’ or those of the target market. An outside agency will help to keep this perspective.
utsourcing your marketing needs to an outside agency will create flexibility within your business and provide access to highly trained marketing professionals with a wide-range of skill sets. It is important to have at least one person within your business who is responsible for collaborating with the marketing agency, so that they can help them understand the voice of the brand, key messages that you want to give to your customers, marketing content and the demographics
© PATPITCHAYA / SHUTTERSTOCK
that your business is looking to target. Performance-based agencies are a great place to start because they often have an advantage when it comes to market trends, statistical data and competitive analysis.
TODAY, COMPANIES OF ALL SIZES ARE USING OUTSOURCED MARKETING AGENCIES TO STAY COMPETITIVE IN THE MARKET
AN AGENCY? If you’re looking for a marketing agency to help with your online marketing, social media, SEO or online reputation management, Brandlective Communications offer these services at an exclusive rate. As a marketing agency with several years’ experience in online communications and brand management Brandlective produce high quality online marketing campaigns aimed to return sublime results.
CAN SMALL BUSINESSES SUCCEED ON IT IS NOW MORE DIFFICULT THAN EVER TO GET MEANINGFUL RESULTS ON FACEBOOK WITHOUT SPENDING MONEY ON PAID ADVERTISING, AND AS FACEBOOK IS ON THE FAST TRACK TO BECOME AN ADVERTISING GIANT, WE ASK HOW SMALL BUSINESSES CAN POSSIBLY SUCCEED ON FACEBOOK WITHOUT A HEFTY MARKETING BUDGET? Words by Alex Obertelli
How the roles of paid vs. organic have changed Through organic endeavours of content creation on Facebook, businesses are able to expand their reach across the internet, build brand awareness and drive traffic to their website – and it works. However, due to the changes in Facebook’s advertising, organic efforts will now only take you so far, as paid advertising is now required to ensure posts get the same reach that they previously did. It’s been a shrewd business move indeed, but one that only benefits a single business – Facebook.
Now it all depends what your goals are for your Facebook channel Due to these changes in reach ability, it’s best not to experiment without a clear idea of how social media will support your business goals. The question you should be asking yourself is how much a Facebook ‘like’ is worth to you in monetary terms, and that might not be a particularly easy thing to figure out. Facebook can still be a place to build a free online presence, but it is no longer the way to drive meaningful engagement
© GIL C / SHUTTERSTOCK
with customers. Indeed, the aim of both organic and paid marketing efforts is to get more ‘likes’, followers, engagement and connections, but now paid advertising has made it even more difficult to truly acquire actual conversions in terms of subscribers and sales.
Different conceptions of awareness It is evident that the difference in post duration between Facebook ‘newsfeeds’ and Twitter ‘timelines’ could affect the reach and exposure of a brand’s posted content to followers.
Facebook is great for sculpting a brand image online, as it gives businesses a platform to express authority and produce valuable content to their ‘fans’. Your Facebook ‘likes’ may also be a good indicator of your popularity online, but if click-throughs and lead generation is what you’re after, paying for Facebook ads has almost become a necessity.
Fight back through user-generated content So what should small businesses do? Even though organic selfgenerated brand awareness processes are diminishing - those of your customers are not. If you can get customers to check-in or tag your business on their posts, this can still generate a ton of reach and electronic word-of-mouth. The impartial and unprejudiced nature of information provided by user-generated content is of great use to potential consumers, providing important and personal information upon which to base an informed decision later. By engaging with your main opinion leaders online, you may be able to shape and protect your brand image by having an active input in third-party discussions, without an overly direct involvement.
However, if you do decide to go down the paid route, try before you buy Before you allocate a portion of your marketing budget for paid Facebook advertising, make sure you do your homework and focus on what it’s good for. There’s no point investing time and money into an audience that doesn’t fulfil either of your needs, so use your analytics to make targeted ads, and engage in a little trial and error, but don’t expect to see off-the-scale results over night.
PAID TIP 1
TARGET YOUR AUDIENCE Use the demographic functionality of Facebook advertising like a heat-seeking missile. There’s absolutely no point in paying for your advertising to market snowboards to grandmas in Hawaii, so sit down and think about your target audience. How would you define them in terms of demographics? What are their interests, professions, geography – and income? Facebook can help you reach them.
PAID TIP 2
USE COMPETITIONS Even organically we believe that competitions provide a great way of boosting online engagement, so the extra boost of paid advertising can be a very attractive proposition. Remember, you’ll also able to obtain the email address of each competitor too - an added bonus for lead generation and potential follow-ups.
© ALEXEY BOLDIN / SHUTTERSTOCK
YOUR LANDING PAGE IS THE WINDOW TO YOUR BRAND AND PLAYS A CRUCIAL ROLE IN CONVERTING LEADS INTO SALES. A BORING OR UNINSPIRED LANDING PAGE WILL NOT ONLY TURN THESE LEADS COLD, BUT CAN DRIVE WEB SURFERS TO ACTIVELY SEEK OUT COMPETING BRANDS. WITH LANDING PAGES OFTEN LINKED TO SOCIAL MEDIA CHANNELS, PAID ADVERTISING OR EMAIL MARKETING CAMPAIGNS - A VISUALLY STIMULATING LANDING PAGE IS A MUST FOR BRANDS IF THEY WISH TO RETAIN ENGAGEMENT.
Words by Briony Quinn
GET TO THE POINT: The average adult attention span has plummeted from 12 minutes to just 5 minutes over the last decade. Today, the majority of internet users will avoid reading text-heavy content and instead, skim the page until they find something of interest. Therefore, in order to maximise engagement and conversion rates when designing landing pages, it is crucial to get straight to the point. It is important to highlight the value of what you’re offering, and how it addresses consumer’s needs, interests, or problems. Implement clear headers, sub-headers, and use bullet points to make information more visually appealing. Emphasise key points by using bold text or italics, and most importantly keep the content brief and waffle-free.
ALWAYS USE YOUR LOGO: Logos are a critical aspect of marketing. Whilst the logo doesn’t need to be focal point of your landing page, it’s important that it’s visible enough that people will recognise the landing page as being a publication of your business. This is particularly important when directing visitors to the landing page from an external, non-branded source like social media or search engines. Once you have decided on placement for your logo, it’s crucial that you maintain that position on all your landing pages in order to maintain a consistent brand image.
USE CONTRASTING COLOURS: When enticing visitors to a ‘call to action’ via a contact form or ‘submit’ button - colours play a key role. Ensure it’s easy for visitors to see where they should complete a specific action. Using complementary and contrasting colours is a great method of attracting a visitor’s attention, and directing them to exactly where you want them.
TIP 4 © MELPOMENE / SHUTTERSTOCK
AVOID VISUAL CLUTTER: Whilst it can be tempting to fill landing pages with multiple visual graphics, A/B tests by HubSpot have repeatedly shown that the inclusion of too many images has zero impact on conversion. In fact, these visuals can often distract the reader from the core message of the landing page, and can create unnecessary friction rather than supporting conversion goals. From a practical perspective, too many graphics can also slow down the loading time of the page– which will further test the already decreasing attention span of your visitors. According to research by the Aberdeen Group, even just a one-second delay in page-load time can result in 11% fewer page views, a 16% decrease in customer satisfaction, and a 7% loss in conversions. In order to design a successful landing page you must keep things simple, and make sure any images used support the goals of the website, and don’t distract visitors away from the pathway to a future conversion.
BE CONSISTENT: When enticing visitors to a ‘call to action’ via a contact form or ‘submit’ button - colours play a key role. Ensure it’s easy for visitors to see where they should complete a specific action. Using complementary and contrasting colours is a great method of attracting a visitor’s attention, and directing them to exactly where you want them.
ENCOURAGE SOCIAL SHARING: Always include social media sharing buttons that enable users to share your content and offers. To keep it simple and avoid clutter only include buttons for the social platforms your audience use. You should already know where your consumers are most active. Also, don’t forget to add an email forwarding option, since people have different sharing preferences. Remember that even if your social media prospects never make use of your page or your offers, there’s always a possibility that someone in their personal network will, so it needs to be easy to share your page with them .The easier your landing page is to share the more users will interact with it.
© THINK HEADSHOT
JOSH COTE ENTREPRENEUR AND BUSINESS OWNER OF EA WORLDWIDE ACQUISITIONS
YOU MUST ALLOW YOUR MOST TALENTED WORKERS TO HELP LEAD THE EXPANSION AS WELL AS TRAIN AND HIRE THE RIGHT PEOPLE
Want to successfully upscale your business?
Follow Josh Cote’s advice
© STEYNBERG PHOTOGRAPHY
ENTREPRENEUR AND MOTIVATIONAL SPEAKER JOSH COTE IS ONE OF THE OUTSOURCED SALES AND MARKETING INDUSTRY’S MOST SUCCESSFUL AND INFLUENTIAL BUSINESS OWNERS. HOWEVER HIS SUCCESS CERTAINLY DIDN’T HAPPEN OVERNIGHT, SO JOSH COTE HAS SHARED HIS ADVICE FOR THOSE LOOKING TO FOLLOW IN HIS FOOTSTEPS AND SUCCESSFULLY UPSCALE THEIR BUSINESS IN NEW MARKETS. Words by Rachel Pottle
Josh Cote - the early business years
Josh Cote – the mentor
Josh Cote, originally from the US, graduated from Springfield College with a degree in Sports Management and minor in business before entering the outsourced sales and marketing industry as an entry-level salesman. He worked incredibly hard to meet and exceed sales targets, listened to his mentors, put into practice everything he learnt and was able to transfer his knowledge and expertise to his peers like a true leader. After building up a varied skill set and having the desire for success, Josh Cote launched his own business within two years of working in direct sales at the age of 25.
In 2007, EA Worldwide Acquisitions was set up in London and his reputation as a market leader propelled Josh Cote to become an advocate for entrepreneurship. As well as being a successful businessman, Cote currently dedicates his time to educating the next generation of entrepreneurs in business management and has provided a wealth of opportunities for them to develop and
Josh Cote – the businessman He launched his business in Boston, Massachusetts in 2001 and for several years his business excelled quickly. He exceeded his growth targets year on year and his business soon became one of the industry’s most sought after outsourced sales and marketing firms in the North East. Cote’s success and drive to expand his business enabled him to move overseas with the mission to conquer the British market using all the experiences he had gained over the previous 6 years. He had a chance to start fresh and create the perfect business model for growth and expansion based on his previous experience in the US.
SCALEABLE? Anyone that sets up a business does so with the intention that it will secure long-term success. However, if the initial business model isn’t scalable, then it’s unlikely it will be able to go the long haul, no matter how much hard work or commitment is applied. The world’s most successful companies have succeeded because they have been able to scale their businesses internationally at a healthy rate. The secret to successful scaling is having a system in place where the business can increase its customer base without having to increase its overhead at the same pace.
JOSH COTE’S TIPS TO SCALING A BUSINESS
Having successfully expanded his business into several cities in both America and the UK, Josh Cote is looked upon as a role model for business excellence and market dominance. So he has shared his advice on how to upscale and grow a business effectively, whether it’s in a new city, country or continent.
TIP 1: Hire great people “A business is only as good as its people,” says Josh Cote. It is virtually impossible to grow a company without great people, so finding reliable, skilful individuals that you can trust is critical. It is important to be involved in the recruitment process yourself to make sure the right candidates are selected “These individuals should buy into the vision and philosophy of the company, and share the same goals as you, as this will make them motivated and help them grow their career as well as your company even further,” explains Josh Cote.
© STEYNBERG PHOTOGRAPHY
What role should a CEO take on during a business expansion? Entrepreneur Josh Cote attributes his business growth success to being involved at every stage of the expansion. In every new market he established, he did so by being at the heart of it. “If it means living in another city for six months to ensure the business is set up correctly then that’s what you have to do. It’s a small sacrifice for the long-term future of the business. A business needs to be nurtured, as growth doesn’t come easy. So my best piece of advice is to get involved as much as possible. Your job as the business leader is to make yourself available so you can offer your team continued support to ensure they meet their goals and grow personally as well as professionally.”further,” explains Josh Cote.
DON’T EXPECT SUCCESS IF YOU’RE PLANNING ON HIRING A WHOLE NETWORK OF NEW PEOPLE
After building up a core network of individuals, these people should play a pivotal role in future expansion projects as it is their resilience, expertise and understanding of how the company operates that will enable the business to grow. “When you expand a business into a new city, don’t expect success if you’re planning on hiring a whole network of new people. You must allow your most talented workers to help lead the expansion as well as train and hire the right people. These people are the reason for your success and they are your greatest asset, take care of them and provide opportunity for them to showcase their talents,” highlights Mr Cote.
YOUR JOB AS THE BUSINESS LEADER IS TO MAKE YOURSELF AVAILABLE SO YOU CAN OFFER YOUR TEAM CONTINUED SUPPORT TO ENSURE THEY MEET THEIR GOALS
© THINK HEADSHOT
IT IS VIRTUALLY IMPOSSIBLE TO GROW A COMPANY WITHOUT GREAT PEOPLE Josh Cote
TIP 2: Have a solid system in place Effective scaling requires a business to be able to anticipate demand, rather than react to it. “Play offense, not defence” adds Josh Cote. Josh Cote recommends creating a simple, replicable business model. Expansion can only occur once a business owner has developed a model for success. It could take many attempts for an entrepreneur to determine which strategies work, as there are many uncontrollable factors that can impact the success of a company. These can include an unstable economy, technological advancements and changing consumer needs; but once an understanding of the market and consumer demand is achieved, the business should stick to the winning formula. Josh Cote emphasizes that, “Business owners should evaluate the areas of their company that won’t change - whether in a year or ten years - and they should focus all their energy into these areas if they want to grow successfully. A solid system helps build confidence and moral within the company”.
TIP 3: Create a great network of suppliers Without a good source of suppliers a business will have a tough time growing. Selecting good suppliers from business banking and finance, accountants, solicitors, to web developers they all should be at the heart of any growth strategy, outlines Josh Cote. Many businesses focus on price when seeking out suppliers, which of course is important, however, Josh Cote advises to also consider their reliability and their fit for purpose. “After all, they will be there to accompany your growth as your business needs increase. It is important to have the ability to create a
relationship with them so they fully understand your company’s needs and the goals for the future.”
SUPPLIERS WILL BE THERE TO ACCOMPANY YOUR GROWTH AS YOUR BUSINESS NEEDS INCREASE. IT IS IMPORTANT TO HAVE THE ABILITY TO CREATE A RELATIONSHIP WITH THEM SO THEY FULLY UNDERSTAND YOUR COMPANY’S NEEDS AND THE GOALS FOR THE FUTURE.
Businesses should look to stick with their current network of suppliers at every stage of the expansion where possible rather than look to hire new partnerships in the local area. Once a loyal and efficient relationship with a supplier is established their services become invaluable, and it would be fatal to a business to break these ties that they have spent so much time developing.
The Business Traveller:
A Guide To
© CRISTINAMURACA / SHUTTERSTOCK
WHETHER YOU ARE COMING TO MIAMI AS A FIRST TIME BUSINESS TRAVELLER OR LOOKING AT IT AS A MORE PERMANENT PROPOSITION, THE CITY OF MIAMI HAS A LOT TO OFFER THE ENTREPRENEURIAL MINDED. HERE GAVIN WALSH, A LEADING BUSINESS OWNER BASED IN MIAMI HAS SHARED SOME OF HIS FAVOURITE THINGS ABOUT THIS VIBRANT CITY, AND REVEALS WHAT IT WAS THAT INSPIRED HIM TO CALL THE CITY HOME AFTER RUNNING A STRING OF SUCCESSFUL BUSINESSES THROUGHOUT EUROPE. Words by Zenya Smith
ituated on Florida’s South-eastern tip, Miami is a melting pot of cultures and ethnicities. From the strong Cuban influences of Little Havana to the irresistible atmosphere of the Little Haiti Cultural Complex which showcases the very best of Afro-Caribbean culture, Miami has so much more to offer than sprawling sandy beaches and a pleasing climate. side from its white sand, colourful art deco buildings, coastal hotels and trendsetting nightclubs Miami is also a growing hub for business innovation. Its Downtown district is south Florida’s largest central business district and is home to many major banks, research institutes and cultural attractions. With so much to see and do in Miami, business owner Gavin Walsh has shared a brief beginner’s guide to visiting and conducting business in Miami. GAVIN WALSH © SEAN PAVONE / SHUTTERSTOCK
TOP 3 TIPS!
Miami has a great millennial talent pool, which is great news for firms looking to tap into a younger market. As well as many graduates from Miami State University choosing to remain in the city, Miami also attracts millennials from all across the world with its idyllic coastline, active lifestyle and beautiful weather.
Florida is one of Miami is a the seven states gateway intovestibuSouth orbiin id pharetra leo. Pellentesque America thatlum hasarcu no est, non gravida and Latin America, massa gravida vel. state tax. This can be alobortis,so for any ambitious Vivamus at dolor placerat erat eget, vulhuge benefit to newProin or suscipit businesses looking putate massa. tellus facilisis ligula expanding businesses one day mattis, a scelerisque tellustoornare. Duisexpand in velit vel who may be keen into South America, sapien mattistovulputate. Phasellus tristique. keep outgoings as low the potential is on the as possible. This factor doorstep. Its excellent has contributed towards international transport Miami becoming a links has propelled thriving business hub Miami to become the for startups. next great city for entrepreneurship!
GETTING AROUND The City is serviced by Miami International Airport (MIA), which is just 8 miles northwest of downtown Miami. Once in the heart of the city the best way to get around is by the Metro System, which is made up of 90 bus routes, 23 miles of rail and a free elevated light rail way called the Metromover. If you’re planning on using Metrorail or Metrobuses be sure to purchase an EASY Card or EASY Ticket, available at any Metrorail station and most supermarkets.
© FOTOLUMINATE LLC / SHUTTERSTOCK
Fontainebleau 4441 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach FL. 33140 For many seasoned travellers to Miami no trip is complete without a stay in this iconic 1950’s hotel. Situated on the
WHERE TO STAY IN MIAMI? famous millionaires row in a prime coastal location Fontainbleau has been a revered Miami landmark for over half a century. The 22-acre oceanfront hotel is home to signature restaurants by the county’s top chefs; two chic nightlife venues; a luxury spa, an endless stretch of pristine beaches and state-of-theart conference and event facilities. The hotel’s 1504 rooms are stylish and sophisticated and include a top of the range 20” iMac® to help you stay connected in-between soaking up the sun!
© WHO IS DANNY / SHUTTERSTOCK © MAGSPACE / SHUTTERSTOCK
© BRENT HOFACKER / SHUTTERSTOCK
Toro Toro Cocktails
WHERE TO EAT AND UNWIND? Toro Toro
Opened in downtown Miami by acclaimed Chef Richard Sandoval, Toro Toro shakes up the traditional steakhouse experience cleverly blending Pan Latin flavours and creative sharing plates. Boasting a comfortable and chic Miami vibe, Toro Toro is also a highly praised cocktail bar, serving hand crafted drinks made from only the freshest ingredients. However be aware, Toro Toro operates a business casual dress code seven days a week, so turning up straight from the beach is a big no no.
Garcias Seafood Grille and fish market offers some of the freshest seafood in the city, so be sure to book your table early! The restaurant has been a Miami staple for nearly 50 years and is still owned and run by the Garcias family. As such, the menu is a lively blend of Cuban flavours and simple home cooking.
BRANDMAG © RAWPIXEL.COM / SHUTTERSTOCK
7 things to consider
when designing a IF YOU’RE ABOUT TO LAUNCH A BUSINESS THEN YOU WILL NEED A LOGO. “DESIGNING A LOGO- THAT CAN ONLY TAKE 5 MINUTES.” I HEAR YOU SAY – WELL IF YOU CARE ABOUT YOUR BUSINESS AND THE IMPRESSION IT MAKES THEN IT SHOULD DEFINITELY TAKE A LOT LONGER THAN THAT!
here’s much more to crafting your brand’s visual identity than just writing your company in a box and calling it a logo. A logo is often your company’s first impression, one that can impact a customer’s brand perception, purchase decisions and overall attitude towards a product. If your logo only took you 5 minutes expect that to also be the amount of time consumers remember your brand for.
or those who are about to give their brand a face lift or those who are just starting out on their brand design journey, here are the top tips you will need to bear in mind when creating a great logo. © OLLYY / SHUTTERSTOCK
Words by Megan Paynter
1) How will your logo be interpreted? Your logo is not just an image, it’s an introduction to your brand. The logo needs to reach a specific audience and must reflect your brand’s personality. Your logo needs to reflect your unique brand attributes but also needs to make sense and not be too complicated to understand. While it is helpful to stay up to date with design trends, it’s more vital to stay true to a brand’s personality. Know what your logo means and ensure that it is easy for consumers to interpret in the same way as you.
2) Colour is key Colour is one of the most important things to consider when designing a logo. Your colour choices should not be a superficial decision, colour carries meanings and communicates ideas. Again, if you understand your brand’s personality you will know what message you are trying to convey and you can pick colours accordingly by understand their connotations.
3) Text vs. Image Custom type helps to ensure that your logo is unique and recognisable – for example everyone recognises Coca-
Cola’s famous custom type font. But if you’re not a well-known brand or you do not have a unique name this type can struggle to catch on. If you have a more generic brand name your logo should consist of two things; a wordmark and a symbol. The symbol should be something consumers identify with and the font should be simple and easy to read.
4) Think about negative space The age old trick of utilising negative space in a clever way can be a perfect way to make your logo unique. This can be incredibly subtle, for example have you ever noticed the arrow in the FedEx logo? It’s there! Another example is the brand cork and cow who cleverly used colours and shapes to ensure their bull horns logo also looks like a glass of wine.
5) Be memorable or at least recognisable Rather than following the herd and using a cliché design, you should instead strive for something unique and instantly recognisable. As you’re designing your logo consider whether or not your design is generic or unique. Will customers remember your logo? Or will they at least recognise it when it is put in front of them?
6) Simplicity goes a long way Simple yet powerful logos flood the business world and always prove to be the best icons for standing the test of time. Just think about Apple or Nike’s logo, they don’t use fancy script or bright colours but they are instantly recognisable. The trick is to remain simple without being boring, for example it is the bite out of the apple in Apple’s logo that makes it interesting not the silhouette of the apple itself.
THE MOST RECOGNISABLE LOGOS OF ALL TIME! Nike Year Company Founded: 1964 Year Logo Introduced: 1971 Logo Designer: Carolyn Davidson (1971), Nike (1978, 1985, 1995) Company Founders: Bill Bowerman, Philip Knight The now iconic Nike “Swoosh” was selected half-heartedly by cofounder Philip Knight who said “I don’t love it, but it will grow on me.”
Coca-Cola Year Company Founded: 1886 Year Logo Introduced: 1886 Logo Designer: Frank Mason Robinson (1887), Lippincott & Margulies (1968), Desgrippes Gobe & Associates (1998), Turner Duckworth (2009), Company Founder: John Pemberton The Coca-Cola logo was created by Frank Mason Robinson, John Pemberton’s bookkeeper, in the Spencerian script typeface, which was the principal style of formal handwriting at the time.
Ford Year Company Founded: 1903 Year Logo Introduced: 1903 Logo Designer: Childe Harold Wills (1907) Company Founder: Henry Ford The original logo for the Ford Motor Co. was an embellished circle with the location and name of the company. It was changed to the famous blue oval in 1927 with the release of the Model A.
7) How about something fun? A fun trend which logo designers have taken on board recently is visual double entendre – which is a fancy way to say two pictures wrapped into one through a clever concept. Consumers love the clever mind games of these logos and enjoy seeing it from two different angles. For example the brand Wine Place takes on the shape of a thumbtack which suggests “location” or “place” but it also clearly looks like an upside down wine glass.
emember that no matter what logo style you choose it is important to choose a logo that ties into the company’s core values.
© AYSEZGICMELI / SHUTTERSTOCK
RANK HIGHER IN GOOGLE... www.brandlective.com
+44 (0) 207-407-2672
With Brandlectiveâ€™s help you can develop a SEO strategy that considers what terms your customers search for and optimises your content to encourage your website to be ranked higher in a search engine.