Blog Archives

Give me a break, break me off a piece of that Android Operating System

Google announced last week that it has teamed up with the delicious Nestle candy bar KitKat due to the fact that it has named the Android smartphone operating system after the chocolate-covered wafer treat.  What a dream partnership!

kitkat

Photo credit: AdvertisingAge: Google Names Android Version KitKat, But No Cash Exchanged

Most of us here at KRT are not Android users, we’re more iPhone people, but I couldn’t help but be thrilled to see the collaboration from both companies on the marketing campaign.

KitKat takes it a step further than Google. Google now has a statute of the KitKat Android guy at their corporate headquarters. KitKat revamped its website and created a promotional video entitled “Anrdoid KitKat 4.4 – The future of confectionery.”

According to Android, “limited edition Android KitKat bars will be coming soon to a candy aisle near you. For a lucky few, your KitKat bar might contain a winning ticket for a new Nexus 7 tablet or Google Play credits.”

The partnership is a clever one to say the least and hopefully, Google will continue to work with larger brands to name its systems.

What marketing partnerships, past or present, do you think have been successful? Share below in the comments.

Our Visual World Brought to You By Photoshop

Photoshop

Here at KRT, the Creative Department relies on a variety of digital tools in coming up with solutions for our clients. The most often used applications are within Adobe’s Creative Suite collection. InDesign, Illustrator, Dreamweaver and Flash, all have their uses on a project depending on the final product. The one piece of software that probably gets used the most use at some point in the creative process, is Adobe Photoshop. From simple image conversions to intricate retouching, it’s the one application that’s always open on our desktops’.

The majority of the media images you see every day were probably processed at some point through Photoshop. It has existed for 25 years and has changed the visual landscape around the world. Years ago, image manipulation and photo retouching used to be practiced among a few skilled professionals. The digital age has changed all that. Anyone can purchase Photoshop, and with enough patience, can master its capabilities. Of course, with all that ability to easily manipulate images, comes the danger of Photoshop #fails, as cataloged by psdisasters.com.

Beyond image retouching and manipulation, the program has also created a visual expectation of perfection. Every wrinkle, blemish, enhancement and upgrade can be removed or added. Even in the news, most photos are Photoshopped in some way and sometimes a little too much. Is it right or ethical? You be the judge.

The following PBS video explores the Photoshopped culture around us. From illustration to retouching to online memes, it explores how it’s remixed the way we see, think, communicate and feel about the world around us. With more and more people using social media and mobile image apps (like Instagram and Vine), will Photoshop be as influential in what we see around us? What are your thoughts? Let us know in the comments below.

According to Myers-Briggs, I am a Social Media Mastermind! I am an “Odd ball”.

I am a sucker for a personality test. A long time ago and again recently, I took the Myers-Briggs test and found out my Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) is still INTJ (Introversion  + Intuition + Thinking + Judging) – aka Mastermind (a rare kind).

Myers-Briggs Personality Types

Graphic credit: 16personalities.com

If you are not familiar with it, the Myers-Briggs scale evaluates four different dimensions (personality types developed by Carl Jung), which describes how a person:

gets energy: extraversion* – introversion

gathers information: sensing – intuition

makes decisions: thinking – feeling

interacts with the world: judging – perceiving

* Not a typo. The term used by Carl Jung is extravert and not extrovert.

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Same Table, Different Side

amaDuring my senior year of college, I was the Vice President of the Saint Mary’s College American Marketing Association Collegiate Chapter.  Every year we would organize the Meet the Firms event, which allowed students to get a glimpse into the real working world by asking questions that will prepare them for a professional career in marketing. They also got an opportunity to network with firms and alumni in order to land a possible internship or a full time job.

Three years later, I found myself back on campus attending the event with my colleague, Erik Rivas (also an alumnus), but this time we were on the other side of the table.  It felt gratifying giving advice and interacting with eager college students because I was in their shoes three years ago.  A few other companies that attended the event include Kara’s Cupcakes, Target and LinkedIn.

If you are a student looking to gain real world knowledge in marketing, I recommend becoming a member of the SMC AMA and attending networking events just like this one. Not only will you be part of a group of people who are passionate about marketing, but you get the opportunity to network with professionals, attend workshops, seminars and special events.  Learn more about SMC AMA.

kcups

Photos Credit: SMC AMA Facebook Page

Trends in Branding this year: What are the hot topics?

Most marketing professionals would agree — there isn’t anything much more important than your brand because it’s your face to the outside world. As far as what you need to know to help shape and maintain your brand, Landor, the brand strategy firm responsible for creating the image for a number of our clients, including Procter & Gamble and John Deere, provides a look at current trends in branding with a series of articles and videos, including gamification, brand purpose, Asian luxury, packaging, data, China and design.

I think that the following five are the most relevant for the balance of this year and into 2014.

Branding Collage

Photo Credit: Landor Associates

1. Gamification
Gamification is poised to be as important this year as social and mobile were in the past, according to Jason Bice, Landor’s senior manager of verbal branding. “Gamification could be considered the third component of a new ‘holy trinity’ of digital marketing,” Bice says. The question that all small-business owners must ask is: How do I turn a virtual achievement in a real one?

Find out the answer and more about Bice’s take on Gamification here.

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Walk into 2013 with a BRAND new YOU!

Many of us enter the New Year with resolutions to lose weight, save money, take a trip, etc., but the truth is, most of us never stick to these resolutions.  So, here’s my real challenge for the year – to get rid of empty resolutions, and focus on improving my personal “brand.”

I recently attended the “Dine with Alums” event at Saint Mary’s College, and the keynote speaker was Susan Chritton,.Ed.- she wrote the book, Personal Branding for Dummies in which she explains why branding is so important for corporations, celebrities, and ourselves. (Did I mention that she is a Saint Mary’s alumna?) According to Chritton, branding helps position us for success through image transformation and self-prominence.

Photo for blog

Here are ten cool tips from Chritton’s book to help you build your personal brand:

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The Universal Arts of Graphic Design

Design pinned on noticeboard

Wikipedia describes graphic design as “…a creative process—most often involving a client and a designer and usually completed in conjunction with producers of form (i.e., printers, sign makers, etc.)—undertaken in order to convey a specific message (or messages) to a targeted audience”. That simple description fits, until you realize how much more graphic design influences our lives. Design surrounds us to the point that it’s often overlooked. The only place where you might not see graphic design would be on the final pitch to the summit of K2, but even in such a wild desolate landscape, there’s that Patagonia or North Face logo emblazoned on the front your climbing partner’s jacket. As­­­­­ Debbie Millman, brand consultant and president of Design Sterling Brands, states: “We use graphic design to pay our bills, to get married, we use graphic design to get divorced. We use graphic design in every single aspect of human life…”

Here at KRT, we use graphic design in all aspects of our marketing solutions for our clients – from simple online marketing to product logos to multi-page corporate brochures. The final design is a result of carefully understanding the message to be conveyed, and creatively communicating it to be informative and impactful.

This “PBS Off Book” presentation looks into the world of graphic design and how it affects the world around us. Let us know how we can help to make your message, services or products more impactful.

2012: An Intern Odyssey (Part 1)

My internship journey at KRT Marketing began on Oct. 9, 2012.  The fact that my first official day in the office also happened to be John Lennon’s birthday felt like a good omen. The journey itself began much earlier, because like all journeys, the story behind how one arrives at the starting line is a separate chapter of its own.

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The story of my arrival at this internship is a long one, so instead of boring details, here’s a quick snapshot:   After being away from the formal office environment for over 10 years (while experiencing the adventures of full-time motherhood), I decided it was time to brush off the dust and get back into the working world.   My “b.c.” life (before children), had been engulfed in various facets of the music industry.  I adored all of the different jobs that I’d held over the years, but in the decade that I was away everything changed.  And by everything, I mean everything.  It became clear that I needed to look for a new gig.  After much pondering and a bit of research, I came to the conclusion that because I had always loved the marketing aspect of my previous endeavors, marketing was what I needed to pursue. One day a friend casually mentioned that I should consider looking for an internship.  Interning was a revolutionary idea which I’d never thought about, but it lit up the light bulb in my rusty little head immediately!  I decided to pursue the idea despite the fact that I am well past the customary age of most interns.  I found KRT within a week of my search, and the journey commenced.

So, what has life been like here at KRT these past two months?  The most significant aspect for me so far has been the kindness, acceptance & guidance of the staff (which I will expand upon in Part 2).  I’ve had access to client meetings (by being a “fly on the wall”), had time to meet with each employee individually, and am constantly encouraged to ask as many questions as I need to in order to expand the learning process.

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Bourbon Street, Beignets and Branding: AMA Symposium for the Marketing of Higher Education 2012

What does Bourbon Street, branding, a hip-hop President, and beignets all have in common?  They were all a part of the American Marketing Association’s Symposium for the Marketing of Higher Education conference in New Orleans!  Since my work in the higher education space has increased over the past few years, I was really interested in learning about the industry specific trends from some of the most innovative marketers out there! What better way to capture all of the great information that I learned than highlight reel of my favorite tweets from the conference.

First, congratulations to the top conference tweet of the event:

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Today, more than 50 million Americans have student loans, which is more than people on Medicare.  The value of education is under pressure now more than ever.  Institutions must prove their value to prospective student to get ahead.

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10 Examples of Social Recruiting using Facebook

For a while now, HR departments have adopted Social Media for recruitment. When you think of Social Recruiting, LinkedIn automatically comes to mind. Indeed, LinkedIn is the most popular Social Channel used for talent acquisition (see infographic at the bottom of this post). However, using Facebook as a social media recruitment tool is growing in popularity.

Since the Facebook job search feature will be launching soon, I thought it might be helpful to highlight a few examples from companies that have integrated Facebook into their recruitment marketing strategies.

Top 10 Facebook Recruitment Strategies

1- Heroes Work Here

An initiative from Walt Disney Company on their careers Facebook page where they highlight the veterans that work for the company. That shows they value Veterans recruitment.

2- Promoting Referrals

We all know how important referrals are for talent acquisition – DaVita takes it to Facebook reminding the existing workforce to refer their friends. Can the design be a bit better and effective? Yes! – but the idea is there.

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