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September 2011
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November 2011

Getting The MOST Out of Twitter

Time to ramp up your Twitter account?  Here's a couple of quick and easyTwitter-bird things to remember that will help set you apart and build a loyal following of friends...and potential customers:

  • Be...YOU - Write the way you talk and interact with people when you're with them in person. You're not "selling" 24/7 so why change when you work your tweets?
  • Post Often - One of the things I'll often do is check the frequency of tweets.  When a business tweets two or three times a week you've got to wonder if they are serious about using this form of marketing.
  • Listen- Use the "search" on Twitter to see what people in your neck of the woods are talking about.  For example searching out "Des Moines" put you in touch with folks talking about our city.
  • Break Up The Day - I visit Twitter several times during the day for ten to fifteen minutes each.  Posting only in the morning or only in the afternoon means you'll miss a bunch.
  • Respond - When somebody re-tweets something you wrote say, "Thank you." it helps and it's good manners.
  • Speaking of Mannners - When somebody tweets something "nice" about you or your business it's rude to ignore the tweet.  If someone, "in real life" says something nice to you ignore it or say, "Thank you!".  Same here kids.
  • Post...Stuff- Photos, links to your video, link to your business blog.  Give your fellow Tweeps a place to go.
  • Be Nice - Remember it's your business.  Twitter isn't the place for ongoing rants.
  • 80/20 Rule - Because social media is about relationship building we've followed this rule for years. 80% of our Tweets are about building a voice, a relationship.  It even works for news if you work it well. And if we must sell that's 20% of the Tweets.

Have fun, get to know folks and build your business.  It works.  Should you want to leave a comment here...feel free.  Or let's connect on Twitter @InsightADV (business) or @MichaelLibbie (personal) for the Business News Hour we're @IoB_NewsHour and here is our advertising agency Facebook Page.  Have a super day!



Take A Break...Have Some Coffee

It's Sunday Morning Coffee, a delicious look at politics, sex, businessCoffee Cu ps and...this week HOCKEY!  This week:

  • Herman Cain - What Was He Thinking? (video)
  • Bucs Hockey & Costume Party
  • CenturyLink and Mediacom - Phone service from hell....
  • Taking Mom and Taylor Shopping - What Was HE Thinking?
  • Harvesting Corn in Northern Illinois...At Night (video)

Thanks for coming by...enjoy but's HOT!


Good Enough for Heinz

Coming to you on November 14th will be a new ketchup flavor from ourHeinzLogo friends at Heinz.  But, you won't be able to pick it up at your grocery store...for awhile.

Heinz announced this week that their new ketchup formula, which replaces traditional white vinegar with balsamic vinegar, will only be available on...Facebook.  Yep consumers won't find the new ketchup in their supermarkets until late December and until then the only outlet will be on social media.  Why this is such a big deal and why YOU should pay attention:

  • Major Brand Influence - The "Big Guns" have been flirting with Facebook for a very long time.  This new product launch will up the value of creative going social.
  • Data, Data, Data - By using Facebook Heinz will be able to capture data on a wide variety of individuals buyers...and non-buyers.  On-line sales have aways been able to capture sales data...but this time Heinz gets to have a relationship with non-buyers for future campaigns.
  • Viral Messaging - This is a brilliant PR move.  Take a product like ketchup and alter the recipe a tiny bit.  No big deal.  BUT, take it to social media and folks talk about it.
  • Start With Your Base - Heinz already has 825,000 fans on Facebook so why not launch to your most "friendly" base?
  • Make It Special - In this case Heinz is labeling this "new" product as a "limited edition" until March.  

The bottom line for you:  While you may not have the advertising dollars and marketing ability of Heinz you already have "loyal fans" and consumers on Facebook...and off.  The next time you launch a special Heinz Pkg useprice, a new product, a special event, START with your loyalists and give them a reason to tell somebody else.

One other ketchup detail.  Remember when I "discovered" the new "Dip & Squeeze" single serving packet on a filming in Georgia?  Single servings have NOT been available to consumers outside of fast-food facilities.  That is about to change.  You'll be able to buy ten of these single serve packages for, ready? $2.00... it! 




 If you would like to leave a comment here...feel free or let's connect on Twitter: @InsightADV and here is our advertising agency Facebook page.  Not yet at 825,000...friends. - Michael 

It Offends Me...Get Over It

Over the past couple of weeks the Internet has been on fire because of this new ad campaign for Dr. Pepper 10.  If you haven't seen you go.  My comments follow.


Loads of things, from production to copy-writing, to talk about here...but let's stick to the "hot button" issue of being offensive to women.  I'll admit when I first saw that ad it was, "What the heck?".  It's not your usual soft-drink piece.  So, I went to YouTube to watch it...several times.  (You see...I don't TIVO to cut out the ads...I make a note and then go find them.  Sad, I know.)  It's satire, parody the end it works.

Sure we've got some folks fired up about the "anti-women" message and the Facebook "Man'Ments"...that's the idea.  Get people talking about your product/service and make it as viral as possible.  Dr. Pepper could have launched something safe and predictable and they would have gotten the "safe and predictable" return: Yawn.

Get over it..and drink up.  But, if women REALLY want to get offended I present you with this new campaign from Hardee's.






If you've got a comment you can share here or let's connect on Twitter: @InsightADV or here is our agency Facebook Page.  Thanks for reading! 

Posting For Profit

Somebody told business that when you have people comment on wellMan Reading Newspaper read posts it will improve the Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for your site.  You know, the more you are "out there" the easier it is to be found.  In other words don't do any work on your own...just "piggy-back" on others.  We get loads of phony comments all the time.  For example:

Last week on a post I wrote back in 2008, "Building a Brand Within A Brand" which was about the success of the Fastsigns franchise in Clive a "Rebecca Hurst" wrote, "Great post! I am looking for a good company to make some signs for me. I'll be sure to check you out!"  Trouble is..."Rebecca" is really a sign company in Florida.  She was kind enough to include her URL.

On a short post I wrote in January about broadcast TV failing to carry the entire memorial in Tucson we get this from "Montclair": "I find life an exciting business, The point is succinctness of expression."  Uhmmm...What the heck does that mean?  Then of course he/she leaves their URL.

It happens all the time and usually I delete the comments and report it as spam.  The other day I posted on Twitter: "We love it when deadbeats comment on our agency blog postings and do an ad for themselves. Ain't SEO...amazing? Say..bye, bye."

That prompted my friend (another) Rebecca to ask what the heck I was talking about:Screen shot 3

The problem with 140 characters is that I couldn't explain it...well but promised to address the issue, here.

When companies attempt to improve their "ranking" or SEO by attaching goofy comments to blogs it' and it makes your company cheap and it's swarmy.  Yep, that's it...Swarmy!

Of course folks will continue to do this and we'll continue to delete and report the spam. 

It's all in a days adventure.  And, Rebecca:  Good luck with the dogs...and yes, wearing lipstick rather than flavored chapstick does raise your maturity level. ;-)

If you would like to connect on Twitter it's @InsightADV or here is our advertising agency Facebook Page.  Have a super day!



Thinking About ThincIowa...

So what might happen IF some start-up business folks mingled with someThincIowa established "corporate types"?  That's the big question that led to ThincIowa a production from our friends at Silicon Prairie News...who also bring Big Omaha to Nebraska.

Stay with me on this...because it's important that you start to understand the "parallel universe" that exists here or wherever you live.

Not long ago I addressed the American Institute of Architects - Iowa Chapter about business start-ups and social media.  I asked them to raise their hands if they had ever heard of Dwolla, FlareCaster or Vimeo. hands went up.  After I explained to them what each was and asked if they thought these, and others, were good ideas...everybody said..."Yes!".

That is part of ThincIowa and why it's important for folks who have a start-up idea...and for those who are in established corporations to get together and learn from each other.  Believe me, I've spent years working with corporate leaders who...just like my architect friends...have little knowledge of the start-up community. Same goes...the other way.  Maybe it's time to learn about our common ground.

It's time we talk and, together, build and re-build the entrepreneurial society that employs people and brings us all a better quality of life.  ThincIowa kicks off Thursday evening at the Des Moines Social Club and goes all day on Friday at the Temple for Performing Arts.  You can learn more and/or sign up!

You in?




If you would like to leave a comment here...feel free. Or head to Twitter @MichaelLibbie or @InsightADV.  And our agency Facebook Page is here.  Have a great day! - Michael

Agriculture? Seriously?

Say the words "advertising agency" and, for some, visions of MadisonAg Soybean Harvest Avenue or Mad Men pop up.  Slick offices in the middle of the city creating marketing messages for folks who live in the city. That's not us...

Most of our work centers around agriculture and the unique place Iowa is when it comes to our domination of the industry.  It's a great place to be.  When so many other companies are chasing after "slick" we prefer to have a conversation that is more (literally) down to earth.

That's not to say that we've not done some exceptional work for retail, social media and packaging...we have.  It's just that when we say we work "in ag" we often get that odd look from folks who may be wondering why we spend our time

That's a good question and for the answer here's a great piece on embracing agriculture from our friend Lynn Hicks for theDes Moines Register.  Agriculture:  Innovation, Ideas and...Opportunity.

Thanks for reading.  If you want to leave a comment here...feel free.  Our let's connect on Twitter @MichaelLibbie (personal) or @InsightADV (business).  Have a great day! - Michael




Four Blogging Tips

We spend a bunch of time...blogging.  Letting folks know what we thinkHand Four about advertising and marketing...what works and what needs some work.  So, the obvious question might be..."What works when it comes to a business blog?"

Here's a post about what you can do to improve your efforts, make sure folks read what you write...and build business. 

Four Business (Or Any) Blogging Tips

Enjoy and, let's connect.  We can do that on Twitter @MichaelLibbie (personal and business) or @InsightADV (business or our advertising agency Facebook Page is  Thanks for coming by!


Thinking Ahead...

Time...either you have it or you don't.  In advertising and marketing everything takes time.  We're just putting the wraps on a major campaign for a client...we've been working on this for nearly two months.  Not everyday...but several times a week.

Then comes the day when you get ready to roll out the print, video, PRJune 1 YIKES  and electronic.  Is everybody on the same page? Have we thought of everything?  WHAT???  Changes? 

It happens and that's why we like to give ourselves some cushion...a little time to get things put together.  In the end everything seems to move like lightening...but getting to this point, takes time.

So tell much time do you put into thinking, creating and then launching your campaign?  Love to know.

Thanks for reading and if you want to connect, leave a comment here, head over the our agency Facebook Page on Twitter it's @InsightAdvertising or @MichaelLibbie.  Have a fantastic day!


Being Stickey Might Get You...Stuck

For years marketers have preached "stickiness" as one of theMan Sticky Notes  measurements of having a successful web presence.  "If we could just get people to stick around longer perhaps they will be more motivated to buy our self-weasel-winding torque inducer!"

And so we would create all kinds of do-dads to entertain, inform and build up the amount of time a visitor would "stick around" the website. 

That day may be...over.  And, what is worse, being sticky might get you stuck in the back of the pack.  Why?


In a recent study by Summus Limited reported by Alexandra Carroll it's suggested that mobile users access web applications more often but at shorter duration.  (Which also begs the do have a mobile site...right?)  Frequency, rather than "sticky" might very well be the new measurement.  However, this creates another issue:

What's New That Will Drive People Back?

We've said for years that static sites that are not or never upgraded take a beating when it comes to SEO...but now if there is nothing new, different, unique or entertaining you might also get pushed to the back of the pack.

Our answer to that continues to be relavant information, specific to the demographic that engages an on-going dialogue...the new "sticky".

What do you think?