Blog Archive

Four Lessons I Learned at the Beach

The ocean does a lot of false advertising. “Come and visit me,” it beckons. “I will relax you. You will be rested.” If that message was not false, then at very least, it was targeted for some other demographic than me. While I was at the beach this past Labor …

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The #5BiggestMistakes in Social Media Marketing

Social Media Marketing can be a great asset to your business or nonprofit. But there are right and wrong ways to go about it. George Farris, CEO of Farris Marketing, takes about the five biggest Social Marketing mistakes — and how you can avoid making them. …

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Six Marketing Objectives You Must Achieve

As a brand coach, I usually help clients set long-term goals. And the two most important goals I can help them set are for becoming Strong and Profitable. Of course, you want a strong, sustainable brand. And of course, you need to be profitable. That makes sense. So why are organizations so unprepared when …

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Attracting Believers, Fans and Advocates

Does the thought of having “fans” for your product or service seem far-fetched? After all, your fans have to buy your product and pay for it. So is that even possible? Yes. You can have fans…and believers and advocates, too. And the way you develop them may surprise you. Of course …

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Use POV Presentations to Help You Win

O’Hare Airport in Chicago is not the greatest place to give a presentation, but I was invited to speak at special event for which water utility industry professionals flew into the airport for a day of talks and then flew out. My talk was the fifth of the day (out …

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Nike’s Secret: You Can’t Just Do It.

If you’re interested in marketing, you know about Nike. Or, at least you think you do. You’ve probably followed, watched and maybe even tried to emulate Nike’s edgy ads and clever marketing campaigns. You may even know that the iconic Nike logo was developed by a free-lancer who did occasional …

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The Discomfort Zone — If You Want to Win, You Have to Go In

When Ike and Tina Turner recorded “Proud Mary” in 1970, Tina added these words to the beginning — “Well ya’ know, every now and then, I think you might like to hear something from us ‘nice and easy.’ But there’s just one thing… you see we never, ever, do nothing …

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Message Is King in Presidential Politics

Choosing a leader was much simpler in the first century. You chose the strongest and most ruthless warrior to be your king. The warrior you chose usually had a very simple but powerful message: Pledge your loyalty and part of your earnings to me and I will protect you and …

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Three Key Components for Real Marketing Success

We’ve been marketing consultants for many top companies and non-profit organizations for 30+ years. Very early on, it became clear to us that — when you strip it down and really examine it — there are really three key components to achieving and sustaining real success with your marketing efforts. …

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Has Marketing Gone to the Dogs?

Tell the truth… did you look at the photo of the puppy that accompanies this column before you started reading it? You were probably saying to yourself, “Aww… what a cute puppy.” Some of you bonafide (pun intended) canine lovers were probably using baby talk, and mentally communicating with the …

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What Makes Your Favorite Store Your Favorite?

From an outsider’s standpoint, Store A and Store B are almost identical. They’re in the same market. They carry pretty much the same products. Their prices are just about dead even. Store A is operated and managed in a slightly more efficient manner. You can get in and out in …

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27 Great Marketing Quotes

It was bound to happen. I’ve become an accidental plagiarist. I have read and heard so many sayings, quotes, opinions and advice about marketing and related subjects like art, writing, technology and creativity, I can’t recall who said most of them. So I often catch myself quoting them and introducing …

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Online Reviews: Good, Bad & Ugly

Ten or fifteen years ago, when I wanted to buy a washer and dryer, I’d walk into someplace like Sears and ask the salesman which set most customers preferred, and which one model most customers said had the least problems. The salesman would scratch his chin or the side of …

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When It’s Wise to Break The Rules

Advertising and Marketing has always had a love/hate relationship with rules. In the hit TV series Mad Men, the star character Don Draper says, “What you call love was invented by guys like me, to sell nylons. You’re born alone and you die alone and this world just drops a …

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3 Simple Keys to Social Media Success

OK, you have a Facebook page and probably Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn at least, right? So what are you posting on those sites? How many followers do you have? Here’s the REAL question: Do you HAVE a social media strategy? Most businesses and non-profit organizations do not. You know, social media has been …

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Six Super Lessons From SB 50

What the heck is the big deal about advertising in the Super Bowl anyway? Why are dozens of advertisers willing to pay $5 million for a 30-second commercial? First, it’s the numbers — an average of 111 million watched this year’s game. When you consider the total population of the …

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5 Best and 5 Worst TV Spots of Super Bowl 50

What makes a great Super Bowl ad? If you ask most people what their favorite spot was,they’ll usually describe one that was most entertaining to them. And entertaining spots have value because often they are most talked about and therefore, the most remembered. One of the most successful and talked …

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New Strategies for the New Year

How were the last 12 months for you? How was business, how successful was your marketing program, and how much happiness and joy did you experience outside of work? If you’re like most of us, you probably had a mix of results. So here are suggestions to help you generate …

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Using Words for Fun and Profit

Our job as marketers usually requires using words to communicate, sell, motivate and inform. Sometimes we just run out of them and have to make them up. And popular culture is fickle. It is never satisfied with existing words and phrases, so we constantly evolve and create new words to …

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You Are a Hero…a Marketing Hero

A cute little puppy named Cheddar shuffles down the beach in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. He’s sniffing and investigating all the sights and sounds. He stops and looks out into the water and sees seagulls swooping down and plucking their fish dinners out of the ocean. Cheddar is just three weeks …

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My Favorite Marketing Mind Tricks

Mind Trick 1: Say your brand name or tag line a different way in order to stand out. “Zoom, zoom,” whispers the little kid, and a snappy little Caribbean-flavored jingle kicks in. It’s the 2003 commercial that launched Mazda’s repositioning back to its roots as a sports car. The whispered “Zoom Zoom” …

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Use the Power of New in Your Marketing

Think about this morning. You probably got up from the same bed in the same house you’ve lived in for years. Perhaps you took a morning jog around the neighborhood.You probably run the same route each day because now you know which one works best for you. Your earphones are …

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Keep Your Marketing Machine Running Great

Fast & Loud is an off-beat reality TV show that features a hot rod shop in Dallas called the Gas Monkey Garage. The guys there buy cars, make them into super-fast hot rods and then sell them. Usually, they start with cars are old and beat up. But sometimes they start …

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Monkey See…Monkey Do. Marketing Lessons from the Zoo

Bobo and Elroy, a couple of clever chimps, are hanging around the monkey bars. As usual, the subject of human behavior comes up. “I can’t believe humans say we try to imitate them,” says Bobo. “Yeah,” says his buddy Elroy. “Have you seen the scowl on Donald Trump’s face when …

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Bring in 350,000 Customers in Six Days

Promoting major seasonal events, like county fairs, has one big drawback — the weather. When it gets too cold, too hot or too rainy, visitors (aka the customers) stay home in large numbers. A few bad weather days can make the difference between a successful year or a bust. So …

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Five Marketing Lessons from Grade School

Do you remember how you felt when you were young as the summer began to fade? You started thinking about heading back to school with a mix of excitement and dread. Maybe you were heading to a new building as you moved up a grade. All kinds of questions popped …

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Farris selected for BSHM Architects Website Revamp

Farris first created a website for the Youngstown- and Columbus-based architectural firm BSHM several years ago. It is now being given a new look and added functionality through technology that will enable company personnel to make additions and changes to the site. An extensive portfolio of over 100 projects the …

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Using Facebook’s Bluetooth Beacon to Connect with Customers

Look around the next time you’re at a restaurant, the mall, a baseball game or a movie theatre. Almost everyone has a smartphone in their hand. People want information at their fingertips and at a moment’s notice — and that’s how they get it. Supplying some of the largest chunks …

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The Brand Experience Creates Your Brand Image

Everyone wants a great Brand Image. They want their product or service or organization to be in demand, popular, desired, and the envy of all the competition. Sounds a lot like what we boys wanted when we were in junior high. Back then everyone had a suggestion on how you could …

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Heidi Daniel Named Librarian of the Year

Heidi Daniel, director of the Public Library of Youngstown and Mahoning County,  has been named Librarian of the Year by the Ohio Library Council. The award honors a librarian whose recent accomplishments have impacted the library profession and library service. Heidi was chosen for the honor from among the approximately …

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Farris Will Create a New Website for Medina Municipal Court

Farris Marketing has been selected to create a new website for the Medina Municipal Court in Medina County, Ohio. The new site, which is being completely reorganized and redesigned by Farris, will feature easier navigation and greater visual appeal. The website will provide detailed information about the Court’s divisions and …

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The Real Risks of Running Flash on Your Website

Not long ago, I received an email from a client who was concerned about Flash. Facebook recently urged Adobe to kill off Flash — their nearly 20-year-old platform —citing security vulnerabilities among other reasons. Google and Mozilla, developers of the popular web browsers Chrome and Firefox, also made announcements that …

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Farris Selected by OAM for Web Project

Farris Marketing recently completed a large and complex website project for the Ohio Association of Magistrates (OAM). This statewide organization represents the interests of over 500 Magistrates in Ohio. Farris designed a completely new database-driven website for OAM with many enhanced capabilities, including searchable profiles of all Ohio Magistrates. Like …

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Develop a Brand Name with Bark and Bite

Choosing a brand name or changing your existing brand name is challenging. I’m always looking to develop a name that has “Bark” — grabs attention and stands out from the crowd and also“Bite” — it grabs you with emotion or some other connection. There is much speculation out there as …

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