The Art of Telling Clients They’re Wrong

My WayWatching this past week’s episode of Mad Men(and for those of you who haven’t seen it, I’ll try to keep this post as spoiler-free as possible), I couldn’t help but ponder the often delicate relationship shared by creatives and their clients.  In short, Don and his team experienced understandable frustration in meeting a tricky client’s overly idealistic demands (how’s that for a generic recap?).  Watching him take a, some might say, undeserved lashing, I couldn’t help but feel defensive of Don.  If you work in a creative role, or really any career field that requires a niche skill-set, and are forced to meet client demands, I’m sure you too, dear reader, can empathize with Don’s woes (well, his professional woes, anyway) of being asked for the moon (in his case literally, but most likely in your case, figuratively) and working gingerly to let those asking know, in so many words, it ain’t gonna happen.  So how best to help a client see they are off-base without blanketing the room in a suffocating smog of arrogance?  Read on!

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Rise of the Mobile Newspaper

Where do you get your news?With the rise of mobile technologies, more people are using their cell phones like never before. After all, there are tens of thousands of apps just for the iPhone alone, and mobile commerce is seeing increased traction. Just take the Sears mobile Web site as an example: a team leader said the company sold a $3,000 lawnmower on a mobile device.

In fact, an eMarketer report indicates that  80% of respondents in a smartphone usage study said they use their mobile device to access the Internet — making it the No. 1 smartphone content activity, more than camera and e-mail. So with mobile devices making it easier to shop, easier to engage in social networks and download an app for just about anything, how are mobile devices changing the role of the traditional print newspaper?

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Link Building in Only 30 Minutes a Day

If your Web site is indexed with search engines but not driving enough organic traffic then it is time to build some back links. I hope you know the importance of backlinks, if not then read this article to familiarize yourself with the topic. If you wrote an online article then I anticipate you have optimized the page for its title, if not then make sure to read my previous post on importance of title tag to learn more about onpage SEO.

There are tons of ways to build backlinks but I will emphasize two factors, time and money. How much money and time should you invest in getting links to your website or web pages? The answers is very little. Do not spend more than 30 minutes a day and not even a DOLLAR to get those links. Here are 5 ways to build cheap, one way links that will not cost you a penny.

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5 Reasons Your Brand Should NOT Tweet

logo-twitterAt Walker Sands, we work with several clients who are developing better connections to their consumers via social media tools such as Twitter. Twitter is an especially powerful tool for connecting with customers and potential customers. With more than a 1300% increase in usage over the past year, Twitter is continually growing and adding users that are just waiting for brands to engage them.

In fact, 97% of Twitter users think brands should engage with consumers via the social media tool. But still, Twitter is NOT for everyone and every brand!

Some brands have had great success on Twitter. Two of my favorites are @DunkinDonuts and @GMBlogs. The reason: both of these brands engage and converse on Twitter. They answer questions, talk like people and do fairly well monitoring discussions about themselves.

Unfortunately, most brands are not like these two. So I put together a quick list of five reasons your brand should not be on Twitter. If one or more of these descriptions applies to your Twitter strategy then please, for the sake of the Twitterverse, don’t Tweet!

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BtoB Companies: What’s the Value of the BBB Logo?

bbblogoThis week the Better Business Bureau left me voice mail asking me to call them back at their earliest convenience. Fearing that I had some mystery blemish on our record I quickly returned the call only to learn it wasn’t bad news. We had a number of “positive inquires”, potential clients checking our record.

The good news was that we might have some new business coming in. The bad news was I was in the middle of a pitch for BBB accreditation. Which made me wonder, for a marketing firm like Walker Sands, is it worth it?

I’ve always thought of the BBB certification as something consumers relied on. Movers, contractors, plumbers. Those are the people I want to have the BBB logo. For them it’s a huge deal to have that certification out front and reassuring consumers. But a big consulting firm?

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