The News Chair
  1. Useful, Free Apps? No way!

    August 27, 2014 by ttanner
    teresa

    Teresa Tanner

    Way! I know, you haven’t noticed any new apps since you got hooked on Candy Crush. Personally, I ignore all the Candy Crush invites because I can’t seem to quit Words With Friends. I have five games going with just one person!

    My latest must-read is the daily email from Buzzfeed. Sure, a fair amount of information they compile is silly (fun!) time wasters, but often there will be some useful info or “life hacks.”

    I came across their list of the 25 Free Apps That Are Making The World A Better Place, and thought I would share. I have already downloaded the Paper Karma app, number #22 on the list, and I can’t wait to get home to start scanning all the junk mail I get!

    Check it out, and see if you can find at least one useful app. As the article says, you can “change the world with just one click.”

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  2. The Price Paid for the Perfect Photo

    August 18, 2014 by Tiffany Whisner

    Tiffany Whisner

    Tiffany Whisner

    An image can grab your reader’s attention or bring about emotion. It can encourage your customer to make a purchase.

    Check out some statistics from Hubspot’s Amanda Sibley:

    • 90% of information transmitted to the brain is visual, and visuals are processed 60,000 times faster in the brain than text. (Sources: 3M and Zabisco)
    • 40% of people respond better to visual information than plain text. (Source: Zabisco)

    The power of visual content

    Kevin Moore

    Kevin Moore

    “Seeing an image gives the user experience of being able to relate that image to a personal memory or emotion, tying you to it,” said Coles Multimedia Designer Kevin Moore.

    With the growth of content marketing and social media, we continue to look for images to get our messages across. It seems easier than ever with countless images available online at the click of a button.

    But it’s essential to take precautions when choosing images to make sure you do it legally.

    Know the rules before you use

    Noelle Federico, the CFO of stock photo site Dreamstime.com, offers these tips:

    • Get familiar with fair use laws. These laws operate on a case-by-case basis, but there are general guidelines.
    • Investigate the source of an image before you copy it from the Web. Just because you “can” copy an image does NOT mean you have the right to use it.
    • Get permission. It’s best to get images you have authorization to use. You can purchase stock photos or use a free stock image website, such as Stock Free Images.
    • Search smarter. You can search images under the “Creative Commons license,” which allows for images the photographers have released for common use.
    • Cite appropriately. It’s safe to use an image for educational purposes. But when you use a photo this way, cite your source, giving credit to where you copied the picture.

    Do your research or create your own!

    How can you find the photos you want without getting a cease and desist order you don’t want?

    Tim Coulon

    Tim Coulon

    Plus, here are more sources to discover cost-free content!

    And if you can’t find the right photo, you can always create your own! Did you see the article “Six Simple Steps to Better Photos” from Coles VP Creative Tim Coulon? You should!

    A picture may be worth a thousand … dollars

    “Because images are so readily available and people are so used to sharing them through social sites, I think some may not understand the consequences of grabbing an image off the Web and posting it in a blog or e-blast,” Moore said.

    He suggested using TinEye, a reverse image search website. You can find out where an image came from and how it’s being used.

    “An image that may cost just a dollar to purchase can cost you thousands of dollars in a lawsuit if it’s used without permission and the proper citation,” Moore said. “Plus, there’s the embarrassment of being found out. It’s just not worth it.”

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  3. Web-only Videos Packing a Bigger Punch

    by Christopher Lloyd

    In last month’s newsletter, I wrote about how more companies are trying to get their videos to go viral. I wanted to expand on how much video is now being produced that wasn’t intended for a typical 30-second TV spot.

    Shawn Sorrells

    Shawn Sorrells

    Video is a burgeoning part of our business at Coles Marketing. Lately, it seems Videographer Shawn Sorrells, a news photographer and editor for years before joining our team, is always heading out to another site to gather content and then produce polished pieces for clients, such as auto dealer profiles for NextGear Capital.

    With most companies having their own website, plus inexpensive video-hosting sites like YouTube, it’s easier than ever for businesses to produce their own pieces and disseminate them across many audiences.

    More stories, less selling

    These videos are part of the brand journalism movement, in which companies don’t hit people with a hard pitch for their goods and services, but tell stories about themselves, their customers and products.

    In a sense, these “replacements” for TV commercials are a microcosm of streaming services like Netflix, which once merely distributed other’s content but is now increasingly a player on the production end, with shows like “Orange Is the New Black” and “House of Cards” racking up enough viewers and Emmy trophies to make the networks jealous.

    Some of these Web-only commercial videos are deliberately playing coy with their relationship to TV spots. One of the prime examples is Go Daddy, which uses plenty of sexual innuendo in its pieces.

    They generated a lot of attention for having a commercial rejected for the NFL championship game for being too racy. Now, they crank them out all the time — usually teased with a tagline like “Too Hot for TV!” Other advertisers soon followed suit, and now it’s a little cottage industry.

    Christopher Lloyd

    Christopher Lloyd

    Real innovation goes a step beyond

    Other Web-only videos move even further away from the “I-sell-you” mindset of traditional TV commercials. Take Dove’s “Real Beauty” campaign, which is more about empowering women to feel comfortable with their looks than fancy soap.

    In one of the most-talked-about pieces, women were asked to describe themselves to a sketch artist, and then that artist drew them based on a stranger’s description of them. Shockingly, the women described themselves physically in much more critical terms than how other people see them.

    (Just for fun, check out the parody version featuring egotistical dudes.)

    It should be noted videos like this can sometimes run much longer than the traditional 30- or 60-second commercial. And people will watch, as long as they’re emotionally and intellectually engaged by the piece.

    Reaching out in a new way

    The point is smart brands are now looking at producing their own videos and taking them directly to audiences without even thinking about buying ad time on their local broadcast station. It’s essentially a brand new outreach platform, and one that can be extremely cost-effective.

    Need a hand with creating your own Web-only videos? We’ve got the tools!

    CreativeShop

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