Social Media Marketing in Northern Iowa

I'm honored to have been asked to be part of this amazing group of  NIACC Oct 2015 Two Use
professional marketers who will do a full day event about Social Media Marketing for Business.  I'll post a link to the registration page toward the end of this post.

Here's the deal: As a business person you've been told "Social media is free and everybody should use it." That, my friends is a lie. Social Media Marketing is not free it takes time and talent. That being the case why not attend a session where some of the best professionals in marketing will share their tips, suggestions and demonstrate what works...and what needs work. Here's more:


If you are in business you want to add more to the bottom line...while engaging consumers with your story.  Spend some time with us on 24 October at NIACC during the Midwest Social Media Summit! Here is that registration link.


Thanks for reading, watching coming by!



What can we do?

Man Paper AirplaneThat was the honest question asked by a new blogger.  "What can we do to get our company blog post out there more?"  

They wanted to know if others would re-post their blogs or if other bloggers might use their content or if somebody in publishing might pick up their blog for some technical information.

Here is the reality:  Other bloggers might pick up another company blog IF it has amazing content. The blog might get re-posted IF there is some really interesting content that helps others. The media might pick up the blog if, once again, there is some great content that they might not have access to.

Notice the one word "content".

To be fair, we had not seen this corporate blog until we got the email and once we clicked through and found it...

Lesson #1 about blogging:  Quit selling!  When your company blog is simply a sales message about what you can do or what you have for sale or how wonderful your service is...nobody will pick it up or re-post other than friends (maybe) and family (maybe).

Three tips on content:

Be Helpful - You might have the very best product on the market but if you are seen as constantly selling turns folks off.  Better to tell a story about how your product or service truly helped somebody that needed it. Story telling is powerful.

Be Sincere - The days of the "Snake Oil Salesman" are long gone. (Unless you are in politics it seems.) Better to help people understand how you can fix a problem they have and be factual.  

Be Easy - A blog post should not scream at the reader.  It can be funny, helpful, informative but bold type, various hot colors in the text don't cut it.

One more?  For your blog post to "get out there" you must post more than three times a month. Honest...

Now, go "Get Out There!"

Thanks for reading...


We've Got Work To Do...

Yesterday I had the pleasure of addressing 40 leaders from the world of Woman work to do
tourism in Central Iowa. The program was 5 in Twenty-Four "Five things any business can do in 24 hours to maximize its brand."  These are all low cost to no cost proven methods of marketing.  And, yes, they work.

When I got to the part regarding social media and asked how many in the audience had incorporated a blog into their marketing strategy seven hands went up. Seven out of forty.

There is work to be done and here are four solid reasons why blogging should be one of your marketing tools:

  • Blogging Gives You "Voice": Sure you have a website but what is your "back-story"?  What nuggets can you share with visitors poking around on the Internet that will drive traffic back to you?  We think...plenty.
  • Blogging Offers Another "Touch Point": Again, you should want to maximixe the ways in which you reach out to consumers. A well crafted blog does just that.
  • Blogging - A Quick Alternative: We get it. Changing your website two or three times a week is a pain.  However, creating a blog that tells the story only you can tell is quick, easy and interactive.
  • Blogging Improves Your Skills: You have a story to tell and by sitting down and sharing those stories you will improve your story-telling skills.  And, remember, people react to...stories.

Thank you, Central Iowa Tourism Region for your warm reception!

If your business, for profit or non-profit, isn't incorporating a blog into your marketing efforts you could be missing out on...opportunity.  What do you think?


Insight Advertising, Marketing & Communications is a full service advertising agency based in the Des Moines Metro and the fuel that powers Insight on Business, The News Hour. Our Twitter Handle is @InsightADV and our Facebook Page is right here.

Thanks for reading!



We're Here to Help...Honest

For those of you who have been with us know about our passion for blogging.  We believe it is the single best way to promote Thick Bookyour product or service by letting others hear your "voice".  In addition it's a fantastic way to boost search engine optimization, organically.

It can also put folks to sleep.

We just passed around a blog that was released today by a new start-up and while it contained some great information the length was like War & Peace.  Our collective eyes crossed at word 700.

Some thoughts about your next blog post:

Keep It Short - You have just a few seconds to capture the attention of your audience if your blog doesn't get to the meat of the issue've lost your reader.

Episodes - Let's say you have have lots of information to share with your readers. Feel free to break up the post into several "editions" on the same topic. When you do this offer a quick update of a few sentences at the beginning and make mention, at the end, that more is coming.

Bullet Point - You can condense a post into well crafted bullet points and even link those to other examples...should you wish.

Don't Get Technical - Not everybody does "industry speak" know talking in the jargon of your profession.  Keep it simple so everybody understands.

Be Helpful - You don't always have to sell your product/service.  That will come when people find your advice helpful and honest.  Honest....



Insight Advertising, Marketing & Communications is a full service advertising agency that is also the fuel that powers Insight on Business the News Hour.  You can learn more about us on our Facebook Page and we're on Twitter @InsightADV

Blog Baby...Blog!

Happy New Year!!!! New Year 2014 

When we started blogging for Insight Advertising, Marketing & Communications we did so because we thought it was a great way to expose businesses to our craft of advertising.  Over the years, we've been at it since 2006, our goal has been to shed some light on advertising and marketing ideas.  At least that's what we wrote in our very first post, "Getting Noticed".

Since then, there have been many changes.  Sometimes we blogged about other people ("Bob Schnell - Thank You!"), sometimes we took our eye off the ball and blogged about politics ("Counting Chickens"),sometimes it was simply a way to engage our clients and help them boost their visibility ("Got Your Back!" and sometimes it was to poke fun at ourselves ("Chickens and Advertising").

In total there have been well over 1222 posts for our agency, several hundred for our TV Show and Radio Broadcast...and several hundred for our many clients. 


We've always thought that blogging allows us, and our clients, the opportunity to expand the voice of our brand.  To allow people to get to know us.  To improve SEO and finally as a creative outlet...because sometimes that's important for folks like us.

What's Changed?

We've added many more images, shortened our posts to under 300 words, added video, linked out more and asked more questions.

So, Happy 2014 and how has your message changed or how do you see it changing in the months ahead?




Using Video...Well

Years ago I met Karen McCullough as we were "joint speaking" to a group in Florida.  I have followed her career as a public speaker and she has done very, very well.

The other day I got an email from her company pointing me to this nifty video about "technology".  Here, take a minute and have a look:


We passed it around the office and the resounding response was, "Very cool how they used great edits to add interest to the video."


Karen McCollugh screen snapThat's the difference.  You can put up a video and drone on and folks lose interest but when you professionally weave various elements, change the angle and use sound. It works...well.  This is what happens when you employ professionals to help build your brand and we love it.

One other thing:  Karen uses email marketing to push her brand.  Here is a screen grab of her recent July news letter.  What we like about it is she uses few words, keeps to one point and offers up some action steps.

Once works.

Some good ideas for you and your business and, if you're looking for a speaker for your next event try Karen.  Here is her site you won't be sorry.




If you want to respond here, feel free!  And/Or let's connect on our advertising agency Twitter Stream @InsightADV and here is our agency Facebook Page.  Thanks for coming by!


Best Advice - Blogging & Patience

As a small business owner you need to understand that blogging isn't like Man Funny keyboard buying a series of radio, television or print ads.  In other words, blogging isn't "advertising".  Sure, blogging will help your business by pushing up your Google Ranking and blogging will, maybe, help you sell something but it's not as instant as traditional advertising.  And, for the small to medium size business owner patience is in short supply.

"So, what good is blogging if you don't actually sell something?"  It's a great question and we hear it often.  Here are three reasons not to lose patience but continue to share content through the blog:

  1. Find Me! - Blogging is another form of marketing which helps search engines find you and your product/service. If you keep at it (three times a week for three months) you'll start to notice your website visits and conversion rates increase.  Why...because folks can find you and your site.  Think of it as "home-grown SEO";
  2. Who Are You? - Blogging allows you more "voice" beyond the "About Us" page on your website.  If you stick with it your "corporate yet personal" voice can be heard loud and clear.  How does your company think and what do you think about your business, your city, your products/services;
  3. Be Creative - Words are fine but share video, images and perhaps a podcast. Remember YOU are the expert about your business and that personal connection can mean lots to consumers seeking an authority.  And, when you are "creative" with you blog it becomes less work and


Easy for me huh?  Nope, I understand that it can be tough but sticking with your blog and having the patience so do so will pay dividends along the way.  We''ve seen it happen too  many times.



If you want to connect shoot me an email, comment here or join us on our Twitter Stream and our advertising agency Facebook Page is right here.  Blog!

Living With Social Media

"I don't know what to write.", "I am not a "Tech" person.", "Nobody will  Woman Frustration Laptop find what I have to say interesting.", "I don't have time!", "We're going to have my daughter do the social media.  Will that work?", "Facebook? I already have a Facebook but that's just for friends and family." And on it goes...

Just a sample of what we hear each week from business people whom we attempt to get interested in building their brand using "new" or "social" media. But, in the end they fail.  At the same time we watch as hundreds of brands, large and small, work at their social media branding  What's the difference?

Dedication & Learning & A Plan

The brands that work their social media program well and expand their brand figured out that before they sit down to punch that first key-stroke they must have a plan.  "What are my branding goals and who do I want to reach?"  While we can guide a business along it ultimately becomes the companies responsibility to make sure they have a plan and it is followed.

Living with Social Media requires:

  • Thinking - What is it your brand/business wants to accomplish and who are you trying to reach;
  • Understanding - What social media platforms will work well with your key demographic and how do you know where your demographic is;
  • Commitment - The business must commit the necessary time and resources to building the plan and then working it...daily;
  • Reality - Each social media platform is different and the way in which a business engages consumers will vary with each;
  • Recognition - Social/New media is not broadcasting yet "reach" and "frequency" play an important role.

If you think you're frustrated with the process you are not alone.  However, if you commit yourself to a process and understand it as a process you'll win.

What other things much a business know to be able to better engage in New/Social Media and be effective?




If you would like to comment here, feel free. And we can also connect on our Twitter Stream @InsightADV and our advertising agency Facebook Page is right here.


All Business, No Hype - Social Media in DSM

Our advertising agency has been involved in the business of social media Jason Falls since figuring out Technorati Tag wasn't a playground game in Japan. But that's not keeping us from attending the "All Business, No Hype" program being delivered next week by Jason Falls from Social Media Explorer. Here's why your business needs to cough up the cash and attend:

Your consumers are...waiting.

Look, this ain't my first rodeo and I know most business leaders, marketers and advertising folks are failing when it comes to putting together a solid plan to maximize their social media efforts.  Why?  They have no direction and they have no idea of the ROI that can be attained when social media is done...well.

Jason will give you solid ideas, plans and tactics to use that will draw consumers to your message.  But, more importantly you'll learn how critical it is that you become engaged in the conversation.  That means actually responding to consumers.  Scary huh?

So, let loose some of that moldy money, click here and sign up for the afternoon event on August 30 at the Science Center of Iowa.  Added bonus our friends Angela Maiers and Ben Milne will also spend some time with us.

Ready?  Go here for more!

Thanks for coming by!  If you want to connect with us you can leave a comment here, head over to our Twitter Stream @InsightADV and our advvertising agency Facebook Page is right here.



What Is Central Iowa Bloggers?

Blogging, social media, Twitter, business, ideas.  That pretty much sums up with goes on at a Central Iowa Blogger meeting (#CIB if you use Twitter to follow the conversation).  Ten to fifteen folks gather on the first Friday of each month at Panera Bread on University in WDM.  But, rather than write about what goes are some folks sharing what we do.  It's shocking!


You don't have to be a social media super-star.  You just need to enjoy learning about new ideas and mixing it up with some pretty smart people.  Hope to see you the morning of June 1st...say 7:30ish?




If you want to connect feel free to leave a comment here.  Or let's chat on Twitter @InsightADV (business) or @MichaelLibbie (personal) and here is our advertising agency Facebook Page.  Have a superior Monday!