Why are we addicted to social media?

Social media is so engraved in our daily lives these days that we are ourselves are becoming a brand. We need to understand the psychology of social media and use that knowledge to bring our customers closer, give them more of what they want, and create better relationships. 


Why do a brand audit?

Why do a brand audit?’ is something I constantly have to educate prospective and existing clients. Brand audits help businesses recognise their strengths and weaknesses, they create opportunities for improving, and find ways to help them stay relevant and move forward.

What Is a Brand Identity?

A common mistake most clients make is they think a logo is their brand identity. Branding is so much more than a logo and your stationary or website. A brand identity influences your customers’ experience,  it’s a way to differentiate yourself from your competition.

Advantages Working with a Small Boutique Creative Agency

For a long time now big brands have worked with big creative agencies to work on their marketing, but lately what these big brands have found is they have top-heavy processes, people and systems. But lately there is a move towards a small boutique creative agency that can work more closely achieving your goals – at a fraction of the price.

The Importance Of A Brand Identity Guide

The word “brand” is one of the most overused and misunderstood words in the market place.

Usually, it gets thrown around as metaphor, a label or a descriptor, whether the brand is a entertainer, athlete,  movie franchise or just simply a product. Regardless of the use, the goal of every brand is to induce customers to buy their pitch, and ultimately make a purchase.

But, many businesses often rely too strongly on advertising to do achieve this, failing to realise that there’s more to swaying customers than just a message. The employees, culture, identity and tactics of a business are as important as the advertising message when it comes to creating a winning brand.

So how do you make it all come together? By making sure that there’s more than just a great vision being delivered. Management and employees must be on the same page, and this is by implementing a strategy and creating a strong identity to develop and extend a great brand.

What is a brand identity guide?

Simply put, a brand identity guide is a manual that defines the identity and explains how it should be used, both internally and externally. It helps make a connection between the corporate identity and it’s brand promise, so that all elements connect in a coherent way that resonates with both prospective and existing customers.

What is a brand guide

The brand guideline also has instructions on how all the elements of a brand, business cards, adverts, signage, etc should be used in communication across the board.

It functions as outline for both marketers and designers, helping them to work together to perfect the logo, put together ads that are both striking, and maintain the integrity of the brand across a number of different platforms. It ensures that communication with customers is consistent with it’s values, and that all advertisements will resonate both visually with what you provide to your’e customers.

Branding guides

Once these competencies have been established, they can be expanded on to add a positioning statement, that includes the brand promise, as well as the key reason to use the brand. This should also be wary of the brands vision, and it should include the value proposition, which helps build loyalty.

A Brand Guide’s importance

An important part of all this is the brands personality, which poses the question “who is this brand, and what is it about?” Once this has been identified and expanded, it can be taken back down to a ‘brand mantra’, which is a short, clean way of expressing what the brand represents and what is it’s unique selling proposition.

Intel brand guidelines

This mantra must be unforgettable. Ideally, it should consist of an emotional and/or descriptor modifier. For example, the mantra of Nike is athletic performance / authentic. The simplicity of this mantra makes it stick in the minds of the customers.

Nike Mantra

That simplicity makes it possible to manage the mantra with the brand language that follows, whether it appears in a form of visual or verbal codes. The end result is an unforgettable message about how the company (in this example Nike) differentiates itself from their competitors.

The brand identity guide should contain rules for running a brand. It should speak about what your business achieves, but you should always remember that the brand should be focused on customer needs. In the end, the brand comes from the company, using the principals mentioned above out in the brand guide.

On a different level, the brand guide can also be used for budgeting. Budgeting can be broken down into sections, which can include the time spent creating the brand, along with the cost of designing stationery, signage, printing, etc. It could also include the cost of advertising, PR and the expenses of using a agency.

And finally, a brand guide can also be used to introduce new products or services. These must be consistent with existing brand values because pushing a brand too far can ruin it.

In summary a brand guide is most important to any business, large or small. You must think of it as a operating manual for your business. Without one can ruin your businesses integrity and overall brand value. Speak to us at DesignLab about how we can develop a brand guide for your business.

The Marketing Guide for Pinterest

The Ultimate Pinterest Marketing Guide

Pinterest can be a very useful tool to market your business. We have developed a marketing guide for Pinterest.
Pinterest continues to grow at a very astonishing rate and is only second in terms of growth percentage to SnapChat which is the first. This interest-based social media platform attracts people who are into arts and crafts. Tutorial guides and DIY (do it yourself) pins have a greater likelihood to be clicked compared with other sort of images.

Data reveals that shoppers that are influenced by Pinterest are more likely to spend around on average $100 on Shopify, as compared to users who use Facebook.

The pins have more longevity than that of say a tweet or a Facebook post. A tweet lasts for few minutes, a Facebook post may last for few hours or couple of days. But pins, can live up to a period of up to 4 months.

Why Pinterest

A large amount of online shoppers admit they have bought at one product after finding it on Pinterest.

The simple interface of Pinterest makes it possible for advertisers to use this social media platform as a medium to increase their customer reach. Pinterest ads get seen as advertisements, but as a pin, which promotes their product or service.

More people are joining this image-based platform. About 85% of users on Pinterest have admitted they’ve purchased using Pinterest as a referral.

How To Get Started With Pinterest

There are two different types of accounts: beginners & business.

To begin you must set up a personal profile, then set up your business profile. See how to set up your business account on Pinterest.

Once your business account is ready, you will be directed to a dashboard in your Pinterest profile. Get yourself familiar with the basics and then read on below to learn how to get traffic to your website.

We start with how to optimise your boards, pins, content, SEO and finish analytics.

Optimising your Pins

I am sure such as myself a few of you might not know about pin optimisation in Pinterest. Don’t worry, below we give you each detail regarding how to make your pins more searchable.

Optimisation Pins

It  simple. You just post the image, which inspires you most.

There are different parameters to be taken in consideration though, it’s which deciding what to pin on Pinterest.

People just love to see images with valuable information and in-depth message. As a business owner, you should have a clear understanding of what & how to pin on Pinterest.

Below are simple and effective examples.

Optimize pins

CoolResumes provides an ideal example of how to optimise pins, in order to grab a users attention. Use a bold headline and put the content inside the pin.

The idea is that you make your pin searchable first; which is done by adding an description to your pin.

pins searchable

Pinterest just loves tall images so design to the appropriate size.

Optimising the Board

Once the pins are set, it’s time to direct your efforts to the boards. A board is a collection of different images arranged as an interest based topic.

If you have an online store, you can make different boards to entice more customers attention towards your brand. You can create different boards such as ‘Holiday Special’, ‘Summer Festivals’ or any topic which is similar to reach more customers on Pinterest.

Coca Cola

Coca Cola, is one of the most influential brands, they have created different boards such as  ‘Holiday’, ‘Recipes’ and ‘Thanksgiving’. This draws attention to a large number of different consumers & targets it’s markets to its brand.

Bon Appetit Magazine Pinterest Board

Optimising the Content

We all know that content is KING ,in terms of online marketing.

Some of the content optimisation tips that will help brands increase their searchability are listed below:

  • Write relevant content & keywords in the boards & pins
  • Make sure it’s short & effective
  • New York Times Trump

See how intelligent and creative the above pin is,  The New York Times is one of the world’s eminent names in news industry, and you can see why. This pin creates curiosity and draws the user to want to read more.

Content Optimisation

 Pinterest SEO (PSEO)

One of the most important things with increasing your brand visibility is that users should be able to find your pins and boards easily.

Pinterest has on-site SEO, which helps users to find the content of their interest, via the use of tags and keywords.

Pinterest SEO

You can see by for the search result ‘weight loss’, all the relevant pins are displayed. This means all the brands that have any product or service related to anywhere near weight loss will display.

This is a real power. Here are some tips for good optimisation:

  • Use relevant keywords in your headline, description
  • Use hashtags
  • Add the backlink of your website on every image that is posted from outside websites. This increases the traffic on your website.

Analytics for Pinterest

Pinterest has an in-built analytical tool, this helps your business grow organically. Get to know Pinterest Analytics as it will help increase your efforts.

Analytics for Pinterest
Pinterest analytics for business

Rich Pins

Rich pins are new to Pinterest, in order to encourage all sorts of businesses to start using this amazing platform.

It was only introduced this 2016, and there are 6 kinds of rich pins:

  1.  Movie
  2.  Article
  3.  Recipe
  4.  Place
  5.  App
  6.  Product

Each pin is meant for a separate purpose. for eg. clicking on a Product Pin takes you to the stock, and price of the product, and a user can easily click to buy the product they choose. You can also “Promote” pins to expand the visibility.

Final Conclusion

Pinterest has slowly been building steadily to reach the top place now in social media platforms, and because Pinterest’s users are mainly interested in purchasing products this platform has a real push for online businesses.


70% of the users on Pinterest users come online with the intention of purchasing a product.

Since Pinterest is really the best platform to refer, compare and choose products, customers love this when it comes to online shopping.



Social Media Trends to Make Your Brand Stand out in 2016

Are you looking to get tremendous results for your brand through social media this year?

Social media trends 2016

Social media is ever evolving as one of the biggest components for generating business sales and leads. It means that you need to come up with some plans that can stand you out from your competition.

Here is some tips.

Streaming Live Video Plays a Key Role

Video Streaming

Brands need to utilise live video streaming as a prominent option to connect with their customers and attract more customers.

Don’t get too concerned about knowledge because Periscope and Meerkat are apps that will let you do it easily.

Something to consider, consumers always trust a brand that has taken care about their customers and make every possible effort to fulfill their desires. We believe that streaming live video will bring you one stop closer to your targeted audience.

You can also use this option to share stories of your brand.

A Brand that Targets on Real-Time Engagement is Already Ahead

iPhone Engagement

When it comes to social media, consistency plays a major role, especially when people are spending 30% their time on social media.

Because this is a massive competition, if you are not listening to your chances properly, you will not be able to accomplish your targets.

So, keep your audience involved through constant interaction.

Have you ever thought that why giant brands like Coca-Cola or Starbucks are so successful on social media?

It’s simple. These brands are always active on social channels, and engage their audiences through a range of techniques. Such types of brands also respond quite efficiently which is yet another prominent reason behind their success.

So if you are expecting outstanding results from your social media, then get more focused towards real-time engagement.

 Collect Analysis for Decision Making

Data Analysis

Gone are the days when business decisions have been made on a ideal situation. Now with the fast advancement in technology, everything has changed.

If you want to create a social media strategy you have to gather facts and data to make a mature decision.

If you haven’t been collecting data analysis then it’s time for you to take it into consideration.

You don’t need to make any effort because there are plenty of data analysis tools available online.  We use Moz Analytics and SproutSocial.


Brands Should Focus More on Visual Content

Visual Content

Content (in text form) will no longer be enough to attract your customers. You really have to include video for making your content stand out more.

It’s a fact that social media platforms gets updated after every second with unlimited number of posts. So sometimes, it’s not possible for your’e user to read everything they come across.

Most of the times they will only consider reading a post that looks more appealing, and this is where video comes in.

It’s obvious that if you want to boost the visibility of your posts, make your content as appealing as possible through quality visuals.

Check out the following brands, they their audiences will get satisfied through visual content. Kate Spade New York and tHe Horse Footwear.


Customers Are Becoming You’re Ambassador

Customer is the ambassador

Satisfying your’e customer to make them your ambassador of your product is more important these days.

A potential customer usually conducts a research now before making their final decision. For this, they will ask other people about their experiences about your brand.

If you have already established a good relationship with your existing customers, they will certainly tell all their friends about it.

So, it is vital for you to satisfy your existing customers, so that they can become the real ambassadors of your brand.

New Publication Options Will Provide More Opportunities for Brands

Opportunities for Brands

Did you know Facebook has started to roll out a new Instant Article feature. We personally think this feature will be an amazing option for any brands, marketers and publishers and to convey their messages.

We live in such an informative age, which means it has become crucial for any brands to now educate their audience. Instant Article will be an appropriate feature for one of these purposes.

If you are targeting a more mature audience, then try LinkedIn’s new pulse features.

In summary, you now don’t need to miss any opportunity to win your audience, these publication features are quite useful tools that will keep you connected with your audience.


Smart phones Need to be Given Topmost Priority For Marketing

Smart Phone Stats

Browsing on your smart phone is becoming more and more the common way to be on the internet.

Do you know that the number of mobile-only internet users now exceeds desktop-only users?

If you are not using your smart phones correctly, then now is the time to think of it as the most powerful element for building up a social media marketing strategy for your brand.

It the sensible move because the majority of people now use smart phones to spend time using social media.

Because of this you will have to use appropriate size of images that look amazing on a smart phone. You may also have to re-structure your social content strategy accordingly to gain better results.

In Summary

Social media is emerging as one of the most appropriate platform for all types of brands. It is an ever-changing industry that requires you to be updated about the latest trends.