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Branding. Once again it is becoming top priority for marketers, as companies are realizing how important name recognition and reputation are to their customers. This includes finding new ways to evolve their marketing messages to match their brands’ position in the marketplace today.

A great branding campaign can take many shapes and forms. It doesn’t just have to stem on stating company facts or reinforcing a brand promise… it may actually be your customers that hold the key to your success.
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According to a new study by Direct Marketing News and Forrester Research, 91% of marketers believe that digital marketing is critical to success, and 92% say it will play a significantly more important role in the year ahead.

Tracy Stokes, Forrester’s principal analyst serving CMOs and author of the joint survey findings report said: “Digital is seen as a more efficient way to scale your marketing efforts and reach more people and, for some channels, in a more measurable way.”
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Debbie Szwast

I’m a sucker for anything pink. I bought my first iMac because Apple offered it in fuchsia. I got a brand-new KitchenAid in pink, even though my old one still worked. I even bought a car in red raspberry, which is as close to pink as cars come.

So imagine my delight when I walked the floor of the International Home and Housewares Show (IHHS) last week at McCormick Place in Chicago. Down every aisle pastel pinks, blues and purples captivated me while bright red, green and yellow items captured my attention. Everything from kitchen utensils to luggage…small appliances to pet supplies colorfully screamed “notice me.”
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Victor Pineiro | AdAge | March 12th 2015 search

Snapchat wasn’t built for brands, and barely behaves like a typical social platform. And yet, as it enters a new round of funding that would value the company at $19 billion, the photo-and-video-sharing app is working to become a more attractive place for advertisers. Brands see the opportunity to reach an audience that has grown to upwards of 100 million users, but how much value is there in paid placements that are ephemeral — up in smoke in ten seconds? And is there any room for organic success on a platform that takes pride in making discoverability difficult?

While Snapchat has its share of challenges for marketers, it offers something unique in the world of mostly-broadcast, feed-centric social media — intimacy at scale. Every time a user opens a snap, she has no idea who else – if anyone – is seeing it. It’s a tiny, personal gift, even when broadcast to a huge audience. And brands can use it to bring people closer to their culture, events and personalities. It’s the perfect behind-the-scenes platform because it’s built to deliver unfiltered, intimate content.

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Tim Peterson | AdAge | February 11th 2015 images

Facebook is giving advertisers a new tool to better compete for the social network’s expensive and scarce ad slots.

Starting this week, Facebook will tell advertisers how relevant the social network has judged their ads to be. Advertisers will be able to monitor their scores and tweak less relevant ads to become more relevant, potentially boosting the ad’s performance and lowering its price.

Facebook will score an ad’s relevance on a scale from 1 to 10, with 10 meaning the ad is highly relevant to its target audience.

Facebook determines an ad’s relevance by measuring how positively or negatively its target audience may respond to it. Positive measurements include video views, shares and clicks, and negative measurements include the number of times people click to hide an ad or report it as spam. Facebook will start scoring an ad’s relevance after it has been served 500 times and will update the relevance score as more people come across it.

This move appears to be the latest way Facebook is trying to get a grip on the firehose of content flooding people’s news feeds. Last year the company moved closer to a pay-to-play model for brands to communicate with people on Facebook, which made room in people’s feeds for posts from friends and family. But heated as the competition may be to freely take up space in people’s feeds, things are also heating up on the paid side.

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Nicole Wagner

In 2015, social media is a necessary part of advertising online. It creates awareness of your brand, facilitates customer interaction, promotes your content, and does a host of other things.

Even though it is so important, a lot of businesses still struggle with how to do it successfully.

Here are some tips and strategies to help you refocus your campaigns, create stronger goals, and implement a tracking schedule, so your social media efforts will be more successful in 2015.

Social Media Goals

Developing a group of goals should be the first step in any social media program. Your goals could be anything from attracting new followers and audience interactions, to an increase in white paper downloads and qualified leads. But, in order for your program to be successful, your goals should be attainable, measurable, and most importantly, a reflection of your overall business goals. Read the rest of this entry »

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Kate Maddox |January 2014| AdAgeimgres-1

Data and automated messaging are hot topics, but b-to-b marketers say their marketing must get more personal in 2015. “We need b-to-b to be more human,” said Andy Goldberg, global creative director at GE. That sentiment was echoed by other marketers and agency execs who shared their predictions for the top b-to-b trends of 2015.

Great storytelling

“You have to be great storytellers, especially in b-to-b,” Mr. Goldberg said. “One of the biggest challenges we had this year was telling the full GE story in one spot, and capturing the wonder and magic of what we do. ‘Childlike Imagination’ was wonderful storytelling — having a little girl talk about what her mom does at GE. We also did a partnership with ‘The Tonight Show’ called ‘Fallonventions’ about kids who like to innovate. It became a story. There will be more and more of that in 2015.”

Less data, more emotions

“Data will continue to play an important role in decision-making. However, we have found through our research with Fortune Knowledge Group that decision-makers are increasingly looking to their gut instead of the data,” said Christoph Becker, CEO and chief creative officer at b-to-b agency Gyro. “B-to-b marketing must become more humanly relevant. As the digital tsunami of information continues to grow larger, business decision-makers are increasingly becoming numb. That’s why messages that leverage emotion — that make them feel something — will only become more vital. USG’s ‘It’s Your World. Build It’ is a great example. Building materials and emotion aren’t something you would link immediately, but the campaign captures a powerful sentiment about the human need to build.”

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