Thursday
Oct172013

Managing Your Firm's Online Presence

[MDB Communications]

1. Utilize SEO for your brand/company

  • Search engine optimization, or SEO, is incredibly important in creating a strong online presence. We all want our website to come up on that first page of search engine hits. Here are some quick and easy tips to increase your company’s SEO.
  • Keywords are extremely important to have on your webpage. Google still relies on keywords and backlinks for presenting search results, so it’s important to have a variety of keywords. It’s also important to remember to keep these keywords user friendly and simple.
  • Create consistent and original content for your webpage. Make sure to update this content regularly and to write on varying topics related to your company. 
  • Don’t go crazy. Yes, keywords are important but overstuffing your website with keywords won’t help you. Try to avoid duplicating content. If you overpopulate your website with keywords and content, you may get downgraded on search engines, so it’s important to find a balance.
  • Remember: there is no exact formula for optimizing your SEO. Know your audience, know your company and you will find the right plan for you.

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Wednesday
Oct092013

Traction #82: "I Love Me"

By: Richard Coad [MDB Chief Creative Officer]

In a period of time that could only be referred to as alarmingly short, narcissism seems to have come from nowhere to officiate over all human activity. In short, we love ourselves.

The term narcissism was coined over a century ago to describe a psychological ailment:  taking pleasure from oneself. Today, narcissism is becoming a way of life. Our economy runs on it. The educational system has shifted from being knowledge-based to one of living-up-to-your-potential. Parents seem to value their child's self-esteem far more than their knowledge or virtue. Technology drives narcissism (the streets are full of people who no longer look up). The world comes to them through the glow of cell phones.

In 2011, Americans spent nearly $10 billion on plastic surgery, according to an industry association. In contrast, we spent $5 billion on NASA space operations. In other words, having perfect breasts seem more important than exploring the universe.

In 2009, the book "The Narcissism Epidemic:  Living in the Age of Entitlement," was published. In it, the authors found that among thirty-seven thousand college students, the rise of narcissistic traits from the 1980's to present was as steep as the rise in obesity. They also noted that the epidemic is mostly generational. According to a study by the National Institute of Health, 10 percent of young Americans exhibited symptoms of narcissistic personality disorder, while only 3 percent of older Americans did.

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Wednesday
Oct092013

Change: The Only Way to Succeed in Our Ever-Changing Industry

By: Gretchen Carswell [MDB Art Director] 

Going into its 10th year, Advertising Week DC promised to be part retrospective and part looking forward. What I saw, in both instances, was inspiring.

This year's ADWKDC kicked off with a new event called "CREATE." This was a day-long session where students and young professionals teamed with local nonprofits to create advertising campaigns designed to solve the respective problem each nonprofit had. The seven teams worked with industry mentors throughout the day to create strategic marketing plans, integrated advertising campaigns, social media outreach and more. While most nonprofits had a similar goal of boosting revenue, each team went at it creatively and in completely different ways. Walking the halls at Facebook DC headquarters, where CREATE was held, and listening to the brainstorming sessions, I am confident that the young people I saw will become the creative directors and leaders of tomorrow.  (The photo above was taken during the CREATE judging.)

One ADWKDC highlight was the annual Cannes event hosted by USA Today. While the city folk curse the rush-hour trip out to Tysons, the chance to network and catch up while getting to see the best of the best in advertising is well worth it. We got the opportunity to honor Karen Riordan as she accepted the AAF Silver Medal Award. Looking back at Karen's accomplishments and the stamp she has made on the advertising community, it's an award greatly overdue. As for the Cannes work, I challenge you to find anyone there that wasn't singing along to "Dumb Ways To Die" or trying to come up with their own "Oreo of the Day" idea. My favorite part of this event each year is the drive home as I try to think of ways to "borrow" what I've just seen and incorporate it into the client work I have sitting on my desk.

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Wednesday
Oct092013

Advertising Week DC Sees a Continuing Industry Shift

By: Evan Levent [MDB Art Director]

It’s advertising week again in the Nation’s Capital, and the theme I’m picking up is the ever-bigger growth of digital. While a great creative idea that connects to an audience is still the end zone, the rules of the game are continuing to change.

For some background, here are some advertising trends from PEW’s State of the Media report [http://stateofthemedia.org/2013/digital-as-mobile-grows-rapidly-the-pressures-on-news-intensify/]. In 2011, a huge marker was crossed when digital ad buys outpaced newspaper ads, a trend that will continue. Last year, digital advertising increased by 17% to a total of $37.3 billion. Digital now makes up over 23% of the total U.S. advertising landscape and, in 2012, mobile ad buys grew by 80%. By 2016, eMarketer projects mobile will account for 21% of total digital ads.

What does this mean for advertisers? Firms need to continue to have a greater understanding of the digital landscape and how to use it. On Oct. 1, a great panel on Native Advertising discussed what may be some of the most important developments in digital advertising. Derek Thompson, senior editor at The Atlantic; John Walls, vice president, public affairs at CTIA-The Wireless Association; and Patrick Keane, president at Sharethrough talked about the right kind of advertising for the right medium.  They told a story of the first advertisement ever broadcast on television. In 1941, during a Yankees game break, Bulova played an 11-second spot of an image of a wobbly U.S. map with a Bulova watch superimposed over top. There are about six seconds of awkward pause before you hear a voice over, “America runs on Bulova time.” It was clumsy, out of place, and better formatted for radio or newsprint.

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