Are You Burned Out From Social Media? 3 Tips from a Social Media Marketing Team to Get Back on Track

If there was a diagnosis for social media burnout, the prescription would have to be getting rid of every social media app and blocking those websites. However, for people who need to use social media for their business or job, that just can’t happen. As a business owner, social media can be super stressful and not fun. As a marketer, it is our specialty to make sure we can help to take that pressure off of your shoulders and get you back to the parts of your business that you do think are fun. If you aren’t ready to delegate social media tasks to a marketing agency, we completely understand. So instead, here are 3 tips from a professional marketing team who specializes in social media to help prevent burn out and to keep social media fun!

Signs of Social Media Burnout

Social media burnout is a real phenomenon that can affect anyone who spends a lot of time on social media platforms. Some signs that you may be experiencing social media burnout include: 

  • Feeling anxious or stressed when you are not able to access social media
  • Feeling overwhelmed or exhausted from the constant stream of information
  • Experiencing a decrease in productivity or creativity
  • Feeling like you are not able to keep up with the demands of social media
  • Decreased engagement with friends and family
  • Feeling negative or cynical about social media
  • Experiencing physical symptoms like headaches or eye strain. 

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it may be time to take a break from social media or to reevaluate your relationship with it. Here are some ways to detox from social media.

Set Boundaries

Setting social media boundaries and goals can help to increase productivity in other areas of your life rather than social media. The first thing you can do is to set a realistic goal of how you’d like to decrease your time spent on social media. Whether you want to decrease it by hours, days or weeks, set a goal that you can track and achieve. During the workday, block out time in your calendar to focus on the most important work tasks and do not go on social media at this time. If possible, shut off your phone during those times or at least put it on Do Not Disturb or silent. Make sure your notifications are off for all apps and your email is silenced during this time. Set times for when you feel it is appropriate to scroll through social media. If social media is a task that you need to accomplish for work, but you find yourself getting distracted by it while trying to do work, set a timer for how long you think it should take you to complete the tasks at hand. If your timer goes off before the task is completed, this is a sign that you got distracted and you need to try again.

Allow for Downtime

Social media doesn’t need to happen everyday at a specific time. It is 100% fine if you do not post everyday. In fact, it is just unnecessary. If you are starting to feel burned out, allow for downtime with your social media. Tell your friends and family that you are going to take a break. If social media is a part of your job, and you haven’t tried a scheduling tool, give that a try. Schedule out maybe two weeks worth of posts and then step away. Recharge. Once the two weeks have passed, see if you feel better. You might be surprised how much, or rather how little, you miss out on when you are offline.

Ask for Help

If the task of social media is not your forte of your business, ask for help! This might be the perfect time to seek out a marketing agency to delegate this task to. Once the agency learns how you prefer your social media to be run, they can just take the ball and literally run with it! The level of involvement really depends on you!

The Bottom Line

There is not a one-size-fits-all way to prevent or help with social media burnout. Taking a break from social media can be a great way to reduce stress, increase productivity, and improve overall well-being. If you are a business owner and don’t love social media, please reach out to us and let’s have a discussion as it can be a very valuable tool that we would hate for you to be missing out on. 

In Store Shopping Versus Online Shopping: How Shopping Has Changed in This Lifetime

This blog was influenced by a mall close to True Fit Marketing called Century 3 Mall. This mall was quite a gem in its heyday. And then, like a lot of similar malls, it started to die. Now it is abandoned and has been for years. The local government associations are now trying to figure out what to do with the crumbling and dilapidated structure. There have been fires, break-ins, flooding, ceiling collapsing and many more issues. It is time to tear it down, but that costs money. It also costs money to keep the building up to code even though it is empty. Quite the predicament in this era of online shopping. Is there a mall like this near you?

 

Who scored some great deals a couple weeks ago during Amazon’s Prime Days? Walmart, Target, Kohl’s and a whole bunch of other retailers rode the coattails of one of Amazon’s biggest online sales days every year (besides Black Friday). It’s amazing how convenient technology has made shopping these days. With the option to shop online, people can now order everything they need from the comfort of their own homes. Some stores even offer delivery services, making it even easier for shoppers to get what they need without ever leaving the house.

The emergence of online shopping has transformed the retail industry and has forced brick and mortar shopping centers and stores to adjust their marketing strategies. In person shopping centers and stores now need to focus on creating unique experiences for customers that cannot be replicated online. This includes offering a variety of entertainment options, hosting events, and providing personalized services. Additionally, brick and mortar shops need to enhance their online presence by developing user-friendly websites and social media pages that engage with customers. To attract and retain customers in the digital age, shopping centers should adapt to the changing retail landscape. This can be achieved by implementing strategies that incorporate technology, such as offering online ordering and curbside pickup options. Additionally, creating unique experiences within the shopping center, such as hosting events and offering personalized services, can help to draw in customers. It is also important to focus on sustainability and social responsibility, as these values are becoming increasingly important to consumers. By embracing these changes, shopping centers can thrive in the digital age.

Here is how.

In Store Shopping at a Mall

Is there a mall near you? According to a report from Green Street, malls have experienced the sharpest decline in value among all commercial property types since 2018. From small stores to large retailers, malls were a big hit years ago. Now they seem to be dying faster than ever! Why? Likely because rent is higher than it has ever been, the trend is to shop closer to home and people are literally shopping at home on the Internet. It used to be a luxury of just mall walking and seeing what good things could be found, but now people have a mission, a true reason to go shopping. And thanks to the Internet, there isn’t a need to “waste” time walking around a mall. Stores that survived the mall era have moved out of the big complexes and into smaller strip mall areas.

Strip Malls/Strip Center/Strip Plaza

Ulta, Old Navy, Gap, Sephora, Macy’s and other well known mall stores have been moving to strip malls, also referred to as strip centers or strip plazas. Strip malls are open air retail developments that lack enclosed hallways. Instead, they consist of retail storefronts that are connected by common walkways. These storefronts are often arranged in a straight line, L-shaped, or U-shaped layout. They have large parking lots with spaces near whichever store you’d like to shop at and are typically closer to home rather than a big mall. 

There is a difference between buying and shopping which can also be seen as the difference between running errands and seeking out experiences. This can be linked to a mall and a strip mall. We know what we need to buy, so we just go buy it versus skimming the shelves. This change makes marketing for a mall very hard. There needs to be a reason to get consumers into the mall complex itself, plus ways to get them to visit multiple stores with multiple purchases. 

Online Shopping Versus In Store Shopping

The rise of mobile devices and easy access to the Internet has drastically changed consumer behavior in the past decade. Shopping habits have been revolutionized as a result.

To effectively market to consumers, it’s important to understand that the division between online and offline marketing is a myth. Consumers engage in both online and offline shopping, and it’s crucial to convey a consistent image across all channels. A multichannel marketing strategy is highly effective in making a strong impact.

Shopping in an actual store is facing increasing competition from online shopping, which requires businesses to adapt and modify their offers regularly. To remain competitive, brick and mortar stores must evolve their marketing strategies, as content marketing and social media could be essential tools in this effort. Just because you have a brick and mortar store does not mean you can’t have an online store as well. In fact, you should have an online store no matter what!

The Bottom Line

The role of malls has evolved beyond just shopping. Consumers now visit malls to socialize and feel a sense of belonging. As such, malls should prioritize their function as centers for socializing and culture rather than just shopping. This means focusing on hosting events such as musical and artistic performances to attract the general public. Marketing efforts should also be tailored towards promoting these events and creating a welcoming and inclusive atmosphere.

Open-air shopping centers are becoming increasingly popular among consumers due to the convenience, safety, and selection they offer. This trend is expected to continue, leading to healthy lease demand for the next few years. In addition to these benefits, open-air centers provide retailers with more opportunities to connect with customers and build brand loyalty. As a result, traditional shopping malls that fail to evolve may struggle to survive in this changing retail landscape.

No matter if it is a mall, strip mall or online shopping experience, marketing is still important and can work for both entities. Having the marketing work together simultaneously can help grow sales and customer engagement. Expanding an online presence can attract new customers, while promotions and advertising can increase sales. Collecting contact details enables personalized communication and rewarding loyal customers can foster repeat business. Highlighting brands and products through giveaways and promotions can showcase your best offerings. In times of low consumption, employing deals and online campaigns can help revive interest. Even though there is an added expense associated with brick and mortar stores, the pleasures of shopping have not died and plenty of shoppers still enjoy the experience.

Why are Colors Important for Business Branding?

What color is Starbucks logo? What are the main colors in McDonald’s logo? Have you ever played this game where the question has something to do with, “what color is this logo?” These types of games can be fun and challenging, and can test one’s visual perception and memory skills. They can also be a way to learn more about different brands and logos that we encounter in our daily lives. Usually there are reasons as to why a business chose the particular colors in their logo and that is very important to marketers. To ensure consistency and appeal to the target audience, businesses should follow color guidelines when choosing their brand colors. Here are some of those guidelines.

Why Are Colors Important?

Brand colors are essential for various applications, such as a company’s logo, website color scheme, social media channels, business card design, and print and digital ads. For brick-and-mortar businesses, brand colors can also be applied to the store design, staff uniforms, product packaging, and more. Choosing the right colors for your brand is crucial in expressing your brand’s identity. The colors you select should mirror your values and the message you want to convey to your audience. A well-thought-out color palette can help distinguish your brand from competitors and create a lasting impression on your customers.

Certain Colors Portray Certain Meanings

The impact of colors on branding is significant. Colors can evoke various emotions and influence consumer behavior. Therefore, it is essential to choose the right colors for a brand to create the desired perception in the minds of customers.

For example, blue is often associated with trust and reliability, while red can convey excitement and urgency. Green is often associated with nature and health, purple with luxury and creativity, and orange with energy and excitement. 

Consistent use of colors throughout a brand’s visual identity can help to increase brand recognition and awareness. Choosing the right colors for a brand can play a crucial role in shaping its image and communicating its values to consumers.

Primary Colors Versus Secondary Colors

There is no set rule for the number of colors that should be included in a brand’s color scheme. However, it is generally recommended to use no more than five colors to ensure consistency and simplicity. Ultimately, the number of colors used should align with the brand’s values and messaging.

Primary colors are frequently utilized in branding to establish a powerful and unforgettable visual identity for a business or product. Different shades and tones of these colors can be used as secondary colors to convey different emotions and messages to consumers. Overall, the use of primary colors in branding can help to create a consistent and recognizable image that resonates with customers.

When choosing secondary colors, it is important to consider the emotions and values that a company or product wants to convey to its audience. The right combination of colors can make a brand more memorable and recognizable. Secondary colors are also not used as main colors in branding but just colors to possibly make the marketing pop or stand out from the competition. 

Test The Colors on Digital and Print

Testing color schemes with print media involves several steps. First, choose a printer that can accurately reproduce the colors you want to use. Then, create a design using the color scheme you have in mind and print out a test copy. Make sure to check the colors under different lighting conditions to see how they appear in different environments. Adjust the color balance as needed and print another test copy. Repeat this process until you are satisfied with the results. It’s also a good idea to consult with a professional designer or printer for their expertise on color accuracy and print quality.

Digital color schemes refer to the specific set of colors used in digital design. These schemes can vary in the number of colors used, their combinations, and their hues, saturations, and brightness levels will matter. Digital color schemes play a crucial role in creating visually appealing digital media, such as websites, apps, and social media graphics. They are used to convey specific messages or moods through the use of colors. It is also important to remember that the color can vary from screen to screen. There are a variety of factors that make colors look different on every screen such as differences in color calibration, display technology, and lighting conditions. Each device may interpret and display colors differently, resulting in variations in color accuracy and vibrancy. Additionally, the color profile used for an image or video can affect how it appears on different screens. Simply stated, the differences in screen technology and settings can cause variations in color perception, which is important to consider when creating or viewing digital content.

The Bottom Line

Creating a section in your branding guidelines specific to colors is important once a color scheme has been decided upon. This helps ensure consistency and cohesiveness throughout all branding materials.

Colors are communicated in various formats depending on their intended use. The most common color formats include hexadecimal (HEX), Red Green Blue (RGB), Cyan Magenta Yellow Key (CMYK), Pantone Matching System (PMS), Natural Color System (NCS), and Imperial Commission for Delivery Terms and Quality Assurance (RAL). Be sure to include this information in your guideline.

In the end, the importance of first impressions cannot be overstated. Your brand colors, often seen in your logo, are the first thing a consumer will notice about your company. It is crucial to make sure your colors accurately represent your brand and leave a positive and memorable impression on potential customers.

Finding the Business Problems to Create Solutions

Typically, people don’t seek out help until there is a problem. No one says I need help when everything is going right! That is why when a potential client reaches out to us, we have a discovery meeting to really dig deeper into what the problem is and where it stems from. As a marketing agency, it is our job to turn marketing issues into solutions and sales. But sometimes we discover that marketing isn’t really the whole problem. Now, we aren’t magicians and can’t magically snap our fingers and everything will be fixed. But we can research and try ideas that may help to solve the problem. But how do you really figure out where the problem is stemming from? Below we will discuss some places besides marketing that we have found problems stemming from. Our team doesn’t necessarily have solutions for every problem, but we are always happy to help!

Current and Potential Customers

Looking to understand why sales may have declined? Consider seeking insights from your existing customer base, as they can provide valuable information. They are already a paying customer, they obviously like what they are buying, but they will also have ideas on how to improve it. Sometimes you will need to give something to get something, so maybe a freebie for some feedback will help! We can help with creating this for sure!

Economy

The past couple of years (2020-2022) have been really hard for businesses of all types. This year, 2023, isn’t much different but at least we are getting back to normal after the Covid-era rules. Adjusting your marketing strategy to reflect changes in the economy can be necessary at times. Do you need to do a full analysis of your marketing plan to see where you can make cuts, combine efforts or just see where we can save you some funds? 

It’s important to consider the financial situations of current and potential customers when setting prices. Offering competitive and reasonable prices can make a positive impact on their decision to purchase from your business. If you end up deciding you can make your product cost less for customers, that can be a huge marketing tactic to get those potential customers or former customers to buy into your business instead of the competition. 

Product and/or Service

Whether you have one product or service or 100, it is always important to pay attention to each one. Is it selling well or is it not selling at all? If it is not selling at all, is something wrong with the product? Is something not being explained correctly on how to use it or why the consumer needs it? Is there another misunderstanding when it comes to the product or service that your team isn’t noticing but your potential customers are? Is it time to just cut a product or service and put the effort and money into something else? Marketing can be very helpful in improving how your product or service is explained to others. Skilled in using language and visuals, marketers can effectively convey your message to your audience.

Your Team

The root of the problem might lie within the organization itself rather than being caused by external factors. If you have employees, are they working together? When was the last time you brought your departments or teams together to discuss what they need from each other? If you don’t have a team, maybe there is just too much on your plate to handle. This is when you can start to research hiring, bringing in consultants to help or outsourcing work. 

Another thing to consider is team morale if you have employees. Is your team happy? Studies have shown that when an employee feels valued, they work harder. If you have employees, are they happy with what you can offer them or is a change needed? More money isn’t always the answer. Appreciation can be shown in many other ways. These are just a couple of examples, and of course it may not work for everyone:

  • Buy lunch every now and then
  • Give an extra day off
  • Be more relaxed on start and end times
  • If possible, allow work from home days

These are just a couple of examples of what works for our team. You may have other awesome ideas that can work for your team. 

Competition

Ignoring the competition can have negative consequences for a business. It can lead to missed opportunities to improve and innovate, and ultimately lose market share. It’s important to stay aware of what competitors are doing and how they are impacting the industry. This can help businesses identify areas for improvement and develop strategies to stay competitive. By keeping an eye on the competition, businesses can stay ahead of the game and continue to grow and succeed. Competitors are competitors for a reason. They do something better than you to sell their product or service to someone who could be buying yours instead. It is your job to figure out what the difference is when it comes to purchase decision making for those people. Why did that potential customer purchase from the competitor and not you? Here are some ways you can see what the competition is doing without being sneaky about it:

  • Watch the competition on social media – what posts get good engagement?
  • Talk to your customers – ask them their feelings on competitors. Why do they choose you over them? And same for potential customers. What makes them choose product A versus B?
  • Talk to others in the business – if you work with suppliers, drivers, other businesses that also work with the competition, talk to them about the other business and see what you can learn from them. A lot of people will be open and honest with you when it comes to business conversations that don’t divulge secrets. Any and all information is useful when it comes to the competition.
  • See your competitors in action – if they have a store, go visit it. If they are going to be at an expo or conference, attend as well. Seeing them in action, in their own environment, or engaging with potential customers that could be yours instead will give you ideas of what they are doing versus your business. 

The Bottom Line

Problem solving is a process. The first plan of marketing to help solve this problem may not work. It can take time, money and a lot of combined effort to eventually solve the problem. Teams will need to work together, see their differences, and find a common ground for the betterment of the business. This could mean changes, but everyone needs to learn to be flexible. Change is hard, but so is losing business. So which would you rather have? Change or no business? 

Our job is to help with marketing, so if your current marketing isn’t working with potential customers, then maybe we can help. There really isn’t a one size fits all approach to marketing. And if there is one thing we know, it is that people have shorter attention spans now than ever before. So if your business has been around for 10+ years, and your tried and true marketing from previous years just isn’t working anymore, maybe it is time for a refresh to shorten the message. 

As always, our team is open to meeting with you to discuss whatever problems you may be having. If our marketing team can be of assistance, we will certainly bring our ideas to the table. If not, maybe we have trusted resources and outside consultants to help.

The 4 Key Components of Building Brand Authenticity

Brand authenticity is important in marketing because it helps build trust with customers. When a brand is authentic, it shows that the company is genuine and transparent, which can help establish a loyal customer base who trusts the brand. This can lead to increased sales and positive long-term relationships with customers. In today’s world, where consumers have access to a lot of information about products and companies, authenticity is becoming increasingly important as a way for brands to differentiate themselves and stand out in a crowded marketplace.

It is only through four key components that brands can have total authenticity. Let’s explore how brands can establish authenticity with their customers. You’ll notice in the examples below that there are a lot of similar message points. The components must work together to create the entire brand, making similarities crucial.

Continuity

Continuity is when a brand is faithful to itself. A brand was started with an idea, a value, a mission, a choice to fight for something or because of a desire. When customers value what the brand is putting forward, everything should align and support should continue for the long run. It emphasizes the importance of considering the bigger picture and ensuring that all elements are working together harmoniously. Continuity in branding refers to the consistency of a brand’s messaging, visual identity, and overall tone across various channels and over time. It helps to establish brand recognition and loyalty among customers.

A brand can have positive continuity by:

  1. Maintaining consistent messaging, visual identity, and customer experience across all touchpoints. This includes everything from advertising and social media to packaging and in-store displays. 
  2. By creating a cohesive and recognizable brand, customers are more likely to have positive associations with the brand and develop loyalty.

Some examples of continuity in marketing could include:

  1. Consistent branding and messaging across all marketing materials and channels.
  2. Regular email newsletters or social media posts to keep customers engaged and informed.
  3. Loyalty programs that reward customers for repeat purchases or referrals.
  4. Ongoing customer service and support to build trust and loyalty.
  5. Continuous product or service improvements based on customer feedback or market trends.

Credibility

Honesty is the number one policy. Being honest with your audience is a crucial aspect for any brand because it helps build trust and credibility. It enables you to establish a genuine connection with your customers, which can lead to increased loyalty and advocacy. Otherwise, when a brand gets caught in a dishonest position, all of their hard work to build the brand up will come tumbling down. Credibility leads to transparency which leads to everyone being able to understand what the brand stands for. Focusing on your business’s “why” can help inspire missions and values that customers can relate to. Having those relationships outside of sales helps to have consumers continuously show up to support you, even without making a purchase. 

There are a few ways companies can be honest with their customers, such as:

  1. Communicate clearly and openly about their products or services.
  2. Be transparent about their business practices, including pricing and policies.
  3. Own up to mistakes and take responsibility for any issues that arise.
  4. Listen to feedback from customers and take it into account when making decisions.
  5. Provide accurate information and avoid exaggerating claims about their products or services.

Integrity

It is crucial to prioritize customer care as it can enhance their satisfaction and loyalty towards a business, leading to increased sales and revenue. Taking responsibility can prevent negative consequences and improve overall business reputation. Brand integrity in marketing refers to the consistent representation of a brand’s values, messaging, and image across all marketing channels. Here are a few examples of how brands maintain their integrity in marketing:

  1. Consistent messaging: A brand’s messaging should be consistent across all marketing channels, including social media, advertising, and website content.
  2. Transparency: Brands should be transparent in their marketing efforts, disclosing any potential conflicts of interest or biases.
  3. Customer engagement: Brands should engage with their customers in a meaningful way, responding to feedback and addressing concerns.
  4. Quality control: Brands should ensure that their products and services meet or exceed their customers’ expectations, building trust and loyalty.

Symbolism

Symbolism can be a powerful tool for a brand to connect with consumers and allow them to express their identity through the brand. By using symbolism, a brand can create a deeper emotional connection with its customers. It allows consumers to identify with the brand’s values and beliefs, which can make them feel like they are a part of something bigger. This can lead to increased loyalty and advocacy for the brand. 

Some examples of successful brand symbolism include Nike’s “swoosh” logo, which represents movement and athleticism, and Apple’s bitten apple, which symbolizes knowledge and innovation. These symbols have become instantly recognizable and have helped to define the brand’s identity. When using symbolism, it’s important for a brand to consider its target audience and ensure that the symbol resonates with them. It should also be unique and easily distinguishable from other brands in the market. With the right approach, symbolism can be a powerful tool for a brand to connect with its consumers and build a loyal following.

Examples of Great Brand Authenticity

Of course this is going to differ between what your personal feelings and beliefs are, but for the sake of this, we will look at campaigns that had great success when connecting with their consumers on a level beyond sales.

  • Patagonia’s commitment to environmental sustainability and social responsibility
  • Dove’s “Real Beauty” campaign that promotes body positivity and inclusivity
  • Coca-Cola’s long-standing association with happiness and sharing moments with loved ones
  • Apple’s focus on sleek design and innovation
  • Ben & Jerry’s support of progressive social and political causes.
  • Toms’ “One for One” program, donating a pair of shoes for every pair purchased
  • Airbnb’s “Belong Anywhere” campaign promotes cultural immersion and community building through travel.

The Bottom Line

Brand authenticity is crucial in establishing a strong relationship with customers. When a business is perceived as authentic, it can increase customer loyalty and trust, which can lead to long-term success. When a brand is authentic, it means that it is true to its values, mission, and promises, which creates a sense of transparency and honesty. Customers are more likely to engage with and support a brand that they feel is authentic, leading to increased customer satisfaction and ultimately, business success. 

To assess your brand authenticity, you can review factors such as the consistency of your brand messaging and actions, the transparency of your business practices, and the alignment of your brand values with those of your target audience. It’s also important to listen to feedback from customers and address any concerns or issues promptly and honestly. As and always, you can reach out to our team to discuss how we may be able to help!