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auditNext week marks the unofficial end to summer with Labor Day weekend which means that everyone will be heading back to school. It also means the start of the dreaded budget planning season. Marketers across the country will be starting to pull together their projections for 2016 and creating reports to explain ROI on expenditures during 2015. Whereas budget season can be stressful, it also forces us to really examine what works and where there can be room for improvement for marketing efforts. As you go into your budget, here are some tips:

Awards1As summer comes to a close, we’re about to enter the height of awards season! No, I’m not talking about the upcoming Emmy awards and we’re nowhere near Hollywood’s official awards season that seems to stretch on for months at the beginning of the year. Rather, I’m referring to personal and industry awards, many of which are currently open or will soliciting call for nominations in the coming weeks and months. From top 40 under 40 to projects of the year, every industry offers awards opportunities. As we’ve previously discussed, awards can be great credentialing tools. However, crafting successful award entries takes time and a creative story. Before you dive into awards season, here are five questions you need to ask:

content-marketing1Your brand is often your first impression and represents your company in public. It allows your customers and clients to understand who you are, what you sell or services you offer, and the personality of your business. To develop a successful marketing strategy, you must determine who you are as a company and build a brand around your core strengths, skills, and experience. Here are some tips on how to effectively communicate your brand:

interviewMedia relations is among the most valuable ways to credential companies and individuals as thought leaders on a particular subject matter. Study after study shows that media relations is one of the most important components that is taken into account when a consumer makes a purchasing decision. The reason being is that unlike advertising, there is no exchange of money when someone is quoted in the media or writing a by-line article. Despite this fact, individuals and companies continue to think that when they are presented with a media relations opportunity that they can come to the table ill-prepared or expecting a final product which is more like an advertorial. Here are some important tips when working with reporters and editors:

nhrIt can be hard to stand out in a crowded field, as far too many companies know. As the number of communications channels increase it can be more challenging to reach your target market and differentiate yourself. Traditional awareness tactics, like advertising, is expensive and offers diminishing returns. Even media relations or social media alone are rarely enough to break through the deafening noise hitting all of us. Content marketing has grown in popularity, but the sheer number of content options can be overwhelming for many. If you’re feeling lost and searching for a marketing communications tool to help superharge your efforts, consider branded and expert reports.