Momentum Volume 3

10th Anniversary Celebrations

Managing Director: Paul Williamson, Realia Marketing

As part of our 10th anniversary celebrations we are aiming to arrange 10 events this year, all designed to raise money for our nominated charity Abigail’s Footsteps. You can find out more about the incredible work they do here The first of our 10 in 10 events was a 10km run where we raised £600! Thank you to everyone who sponsored us. I’ll be letting you know about our next 10 in 10 event soon!

Welcome to the latest edition of Momentum – our way of trying to engage, perhaps educate and hopefully entertain! This issue is all about ‘10’ as we celebrate our 10th anniversary as an agency.

Much has happened in that time but some things have also stayed the same. Our mission remains resolutely the same – to make our clients lives easier and better every day by delivering creative intelligence. Our values of Quality, Agility, Intelligence and Value remain as important to us as they have ever done. You can find out more about our story here.

Over the past 10 years we have supported many good causes and raised thousands in the process. We have also delivered award nominated work and created real ROI for our clients. None of this would be possible without the hard work of our people, the support of our supplier network and of course the trust of our clients. To you all, a huge thank you! I hope you enjoy Momentum!

Top 10 Jargon busters

Creative Director: Paul Newbold, Realia Marketing

  1. Spread

Ok, this is NOT in reference to the middle age of a rather experienced designer but actually is a graphical term for the joining of two facing pages. These are created to work as a unit in a double-sided document. A spread also refers to the inner panels of a brochure.

  1. Bleed

The bleed refers to a design element that reaches to the edge of the page. In order to print, the item is printed on paper that is bigger in size than the item being printed. Once printed, the paper is trimmed to accommodate the bleed. Having said that, it also refers to the tops of the designer’s fingers from working at breakneck speed on the keyboard, trying to hit those important deadlines!

  1. CMYK

Please don’t confuse this with the 80’s classic YMCA by the ‘Village People’. Seriously, look it up on YouTube sometime. It’s a classic even though it has a whiff of stilton about it. This actually is a reference to the print process. The four inks used in colour printing are: cyan, magenta, yellow, and key (black). Though it varies by print house, and press run, ink is typically applied in the order of the abbreviation.

  1. RGB

This one really is as easy as A, B, C. Except of course it’s actually RGB! Which just happens to stand for red, green and blue. It’s a colour system frequently used for digital printing only. This colour system may not be used for physical printing purposes. Just like television screens and monitors, colours can only be shown using the three primary colours of RGB. These are not the same as the primary colours of the pigments in inks and paint.

  1. Knockout

Now I know when it comes to certain awkward client work, we possibly all have this overwhelming urge to lash out and inflict physical damage, but in actual fact, knockout refers to a colour being printed right next to a second colour (there exists a small overlap in the printing of the colours).

  1. Lorem Ipsum

This one happens to be quite interesting for all you Latin lovers. That’s LATIN, not Latino! It’s actually derived from Latin ‘dolorem ipsum’, which translated is ‘pain itself’. Read into this what you will, but in publishing and graphic design, lorem ipsum is a filler text commonly used to demonstrate the graphic elements of a document or visual presentation without actually using real copy text.

  1. Lap Register

You won’t believe the amount of clubs I painstakingly had to endure before realising that this term is in reference to making sure there are no white lines between two ink colours when butted together. The colours are overlapped slightly to prevent this from happening.

  1. Scaling

Not of the de-scaling kettle variety. Although, without a healthy kettle constantly on the go you’ll find that designers generally don’t work as quickly or efficiently. In actual fact, scaling refers to the enlarging or reducing of a piece of artwork that may be either proportional or disproportional to the original piece.

  1. Widow

Meaning to be left on one’s own. Nobody wants this, that’s why we make the appropriate measures to avoid it. Widow consists of the short last lines of paragraphs in a page’s design. Widow is often considered inappropriate if it is divided from the paragraph by a column break, and is always considered inappropriate if it is divided from the rest of the paragraph by a page break.

  1. DPI: (Dots Per Inch)

DPI refers to the unit of measurement that gives the resolution of printed output. 300 dpi is the standard desktop laser printer output. 600 dpi is the medium resolution printer output and 72 dpi is screen resolution. So generally, when the client requests… ‘I’ve just pulled this image off the internet, can we not just use that?’ Ugh… no!

So then, this concludes my Top Ten Jargon. To be honest, this list of ten only barely scratches the surface. There’s always so much to consider when working with on-line and off-line files but hopefully this breaks down some of the confusion to make marketing life a little more bearable. For a full brain melting summary you could always go here.

Thanks for reading and please always consider with all this jargon knowledge swirling around in a designer’s head, it’s never particularly helpfully to insist to a designer when changing graphics and layouts… ‘Isn’t it just a case of pressing Alt, shift, 3 to create that?’

Eats, shoots and leaves – Top 10 proofreading tips

Client Services Director: Nicola Williamson, Realia Marketing

The title of this popular ‘rules of punctuation’ book (Lynne Truss) demonstrates a brilliant example of how the smallest detail can lead to the biggest mistake or change of context.

Proofreading is a part of everyday life at Realia. No matter what our role, we are all involved in proofreading – whether it’s proofing our own copy we have written; designers checking their own work before they pass it on for review; or a final proof of print files.

Here’s my top 10 tips for proofreading – they’re useful not only in the agency, but also to our clients. After all, we are working together to create communications, and it should be a shared responsibility to give that final green light.

  1. It’s all in the timing

Give yourself time and space – even in a busy environment, with multiple projects to juggle, emails pinging and the telephone ringing, you need to break away to a quiet place. Move yourself to a different desk if you can, and block out time to give proofing the attention it needs.

  1. Your brain will trick you

You will automatically read words without actually seeing what is in print on the page – there’s a lot of science to this I’m sure, but read the words below and you’ll see what I mean (taken from http://www.ecenglish.com) – even more reason to take your time and concentrate.

I cnduo’t bvleiee taht I culod aulaclty uesdtannrd waht I was rdnaieg. Unisg the icndeblire pweor of the hmuan mnid, aocdcrnig to rseecrah at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it dseno’t mttaer in waht oderr the lterets in a wrod are, the olny irpoamtnt tihng is taht the frsit and lsat ltteer be in the rhgit pclae. The rset can be a taotl mses and you can sitll raed it whoutit a pboerlm. Tihs is bucseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey ltteer by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe. Aaznmig, huh?

  1. One thing at a time

It’s always best to break proofing down into smaller stages – look at the logos and images first, then look at the page structure (are all of the brand elements in place, are images high resolution and relevant?). Check and re-check contact details and boiler plates (just because something has been used a hundred times over, doesn’t mean it will be right this time). Then, read and re-read the text checking for sentence structure, spelling, grammar, double-spaces and punctuation.

  1. It’s all in the detail

Double and triple-check all telephone numbers, web addresses, facts and figures.

  1. Print it

Within reason (we want to be kind to the environment) print a copy of your text or brochure. Sometimes, just viewing a project in a different format helps you to spot mistakes. Then, when you’re done, add it to the recycling pile!

  1. Say it out loud

If you’re not sure something reads well, then read it aloud – hearing how a sentence sounds out loud will help you to identify where a comma may be needed, or where a sentence is a little clunky in its structure.

  1. The dictionary is your friend; spell check isn’t

It doesn’t have to be the paperback version nowadays, but using a dictionary will help you avoid potential embarrassment. Never just rely on spell check – remember this will only tell you if a word is actually a word by correcting your spelling. Spell check will not tell you if you are using it in the correct context – lose / loose, there / their.

  1. Right click for synonyms

A quick way to check if you’re using the correct word is to right-click and check the synonyms associated with that word. Not only will this tell you if you’re using the word in context, but it will also suggest others to you if you find a lot of repetition.

  1. Reading backwards

I started out (as a left-hander) writing from right to left – and now reading from right to left can help you to spot spelling mistakes and formatting errors.

  1. Fresh eyes

Sometimes you will have read copy or looked at artwork several times with several iterations. Now’s the time to take a step back and ask somebody else to read it with fresh eyes. Or, take a break yourself, and revisit it when you’ve had a good night’s sleep!

One guy and his trip to the zoo

Junior Art Director: Rachel Hancock, Realia Marketing

YouTube has become a crucial part in our online world and this year, like us, it celebrates 10 years of existence. Now used as a platform for information and tutorials, sales and advertising, and the expressive new world of video blogging; as well as hilarious videos of people falling over, and of course, cats.

It’s hard to believe the first video ever uploaded was that of one guy and his trip to the zoo to see some elephants. Yeah, really. ‘Me at the zoo’ uploaded on the 23rd April 2005 by Jawed (one of YouTube’s co-founders) has had just over 25,500,000 views with Jawed himself having now 98,000 subscribers (even though this is the only video he’s ever uploaded!).

YouTube has come a long way in its 10 years; having being bought by Google in November 2006 for $1.65 billion, it now averages uploads of 300 hours of footage every minute. So, with all this going on, should you be getting involved?

With over 4 billion video views each day, YouTube has truly become a daily search destination for people. We are always hearing about the benefits of utilising social media for your business (see how we can help you out with that here) but what many forget is that YouTube is such a massive platform with such a wide range of audiences. Not only is there a large population of potential customers, but YouTube is easily accessible as well. The site and its content can be shared or viewed by almost every mobile device, and now even on your TV, with Smart TV’s and through applications on gaming consoles such as the PlayStation and XBOX.

Advertising on YouTube works exactly like a PPC ad where you bid on keywords and instead of a text ad coming up, searchers will see your videos pop up. When creating a campaign you choose for your ad to either show up during a video or before, have your video show in a search, or promoted on the right display panel. Along with those choices are some great demographic targeting tools as well as insightful analytics which let you see how successful your ads were.”*

If you’ve got a product or service worth showing off to the world, then why aren’t you! The best way to attract and keep watchers viewing videos is to create a YouTube channel.

This is a page that you should put in some effort and treat it as you would your website. If people can come to your YouTube channel and be able to read about your company, look at some pictures and videos they will be much more likely to then head over to your website and make a purchase. This should be an informative, but fun page for visitors to get more interested in your brand and products.”

*http://www.socialmediatoday.com/content/4-reasons-your-small-business-needs-be-youtube

To many, YouTube’s success, growth and innovation over the last 10 years is one to be inspired by. And you never know you may be the next YouTube success or viral video story!

Top 10 tips for engaging with your social media audience

PR and Social Account Manager: Rebecca Smith, Realia Marketing

The last decade has seen a phenomenal growth in social media and has changed the way that we live, communicate and interact with each other on both a personal and professional level. The opportunities that social media presents for your business are vast, so it’s important that your content stands out in a very busy marketplace. Below are my top ten tips for engaging with your social media audience.

  1. Content is King

Content is at the heart of your communications, it must be relevant, useful and of interest to your target market. With over 350,000 tweets sent per minute, and 30 billion pieces of content shared per month on Facebook, you must ensure your content makes the intended user stop and stare rather than scroll straight past. Give users a reason to want to follow you, offer sneak peaks of exclusive content and links to articles on your website driving traffic back to your site.

  1. Be you

It might sound obvious but make sure that your social media communications, although they may take a more personable approach, are an extension of your offline communications. This means they must be consistent in terms of tone of voice and company/brand identity.

  1. Be visible

Make sure that existing and potential customers can find you. Have a twitter handle, LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram page name (plus any other channels you are on) that is relevant to you. If possible, use your company/brand name. This makes it easy for your existing customers to engage with you and potential customers have a much simpler job locating you. Ensure that your biography is updated and relevant.

  1. Build relationships

If you have invested the time, effort and resources into generating great content, you want to make sure that it’s seen! Interact with known customers and industry influencers, join industry relevant discussion groups and actively participate in industry conversations.

  1. Understand, adapt, react

Social media allows you to listen to what your customers are saying about you, be it positive or negative. This can allow you to tailor and adapt your business to provide a better service. By reacting to any feedback online quickly, in particular negative feedback, you are able to diffuse a potentially damaging situation effectively.

  1. Find your frequency

In order to get your audience engaged with your content, you need to find the optimum balance between generating relevant content, with how often to post. This will vary depending on the platform in question, but you need to make enough posts to have an impact but be wary you are not bombarding the audience.

  1. Schedule content

Social media is 24/7, it does not shut down at the weekend, it thrives, and so should your communications. To save you having to constantly monitor your social media accounts at the weekend or whilst you are on annual leave, use a social media management tool such as Hootsuite. These tools allow you to pre schedule tweets and posts across a number of platforms, meaning there is no need to neglect your social media channels at any time.

  1. Shorten your URL’s

Not only are URL shortening tools great for saving those valuable characters when restricted to the 140 character limit on Twitter, but when you use a URL shortening service such as Bit.ly, goo.gl or ow.ly you are provided with a trackable URL so you are able to see how many clicks you have received via that URL, allowing you to see what content is engaging for your audience.

  1. Pick the right platforms

Social media platforms are constantly multiplying, making the decision of where to be visible a tricky one sometimes. On average B2B companies are using seven social media platforms with LinkedIn in top spot, followed by Twitter and Facebook. Always keep your existing and potential customers in mind before selecting a social media platform; would they spend time on this platform and does your content fit with this channel?

  1. Define goals

Dependent upon your business, goals will vary. Don’t think solely in terms of sales. Examples of goals can include:

  • Specific interactions that increase conversion rates
  • Increase in brand awareness through more connections
  • Improvement in brand

Top 10 Inventions of the last 10 years

Account Executive: Tianni Howard, Realia Marketing

 

  • 2006 – PlayStation 3

After wasting an unfathomable amount of my childhood staring at a screen with controller in hand, playing the PlayStation 2, I was only too happy when the PS3 launched. Now I could stare at a screen, controller in hand, whilst being virtually connected to all my friends, this was socialising at its best. I have grown up since then, the tiniest of amounts, but I do still use my PS3 for TV catch-up, Netflix, Blu-ray player, music streaming… the list goes on.

  • 2007 – iPhone

I always said I would never switch from my trusty Android to become just one of the many people jumping on the bandwagon and going Apple. That was in 2010… Welcome to 2015, I’m now on my third iPhone and I can never see myself changing back… how did that happen?! Well played Apple…well played.

  • 2008 – Retail DNA test 23andMe

An innovative form of DNA testing. Not so well known, but a visible milestone that indicates how far we have come considering it was only 1986 when DNA was first used in a criminal investigation for example. The mail order kit costs £125; you provide a saliva sample and return it for testing. You then receive an email with a report of your results. You can learn more about inherited conditions, drug response, traits and genetic risk factors. Google has input almost half of the funding raised by 23andMe so far. Current clients include the likes of Warren Buffett, Rupert Murdoch and Ivanka Trump.

  • 2009 – Sixth Sense by Pranav Mistry

Up until now, most digital technology we use hasn’t allowed us to physically interact with the device. Sixth sense changes this, making it possible for us to have that ‘sixth sense’. This allows us, as the user, to enhance the physical world with digital information. For example, imagine sitting on a train commuting to work and being able to connect to your phone and project a keyboard onto the table in front of you, enabling you to use as you would a laptop…this is just one example of its capabilities.

  • 2010 – iPad

Nearly called the iTablet or iSlate, the iPad was brought to us as the device that bridged the gap between the iPhone and the Mac… we were told we needed it. By April 2011, 15 million units had been shifted. This was more than the original iPhone sold in its first year, and also more than every other tablet combined had ever sold.

  • 2011 – IBM Watson

Watson is an artificially intelligent computer system. Unlike other computing systems, it is capable of answering questions posed in natural language. Watson takes in data from various sources such as research reports, any information humans produce and even Tweets! However, unlike humans who have a limited storage capacity for information, Watson is not as bound by volume or memory; it can read millions of unstructured documents in seconds. It can absorb this overwhelming information and keep it in one place and make quicker, better decisions with more confidence than a human.

  • 2012 – Gravity Light

‘Doing more with less.’ The Gravity Light was developed as a step on the way to eradicating kerosene lamps, aimed at families living off the grid, on less than £3 a day. It works by using kinetic energy to produce electricity, placing a 12kg weight 6ft high and letting it slowly drop at 1mm second. An LED then produces light which is roughly 5x brighter than a typical kerosene lamp. Once the weight reaches the bottom and the light goes out, you can just repeat the process.

  • 2013 – Oculus Rift

After launching a Kickstarter project in 2012, raising $2.4million and then being sold to Facebook for a cool $2Billion, we are sure the Oculus device is well on its way to being a well-known accessory, Oculus Rift are virtual reality goggles that will connect with your computer or mobile. It’s like wearing goggles, with a screen for each eye in front of you which creates a stereoscopic 3D image. The Rift includes sensors which monitor your head movements whilst you are wearing it, and this in turn adjusts the image accordingly. Next-Gen gaming will soon be here…

  • 2014 – Google Driverless Car

With most people being fairly apprehensive about the thought of a driverless car, here are some of the good points! It’s 100% electric, which means a smooth ride. You can summon the car using an app, so it will pick you up at your exact location! Time spent commuting could be spent doing what you want. People who usually cannot drive will now be able to get around. This technology is still in the early stages but it’s safe to say we will be seeing it on our roads very soon.

  • 2015 – Human-organs-on-chips

Microchips containing hollow tubes which are lined with human cells in which air, nutrients, blood and infection-causing bacteria are pumped. These memory stick sized chips can imitate how human organs work so we can test them exactly as we would a human. The fact they are also see-through is a major plus for observation purposes too. This breakthrough in science means we can look towards reducing our dependence on animal testing and reduce the time and costs of developing drugs.

Top 10 SEO Myths

SEM Director: Luke Redding, Reddico

Those on the outside often brand SEO as an industry of smoke and mirrors. Try feeding this nonsense to businesses seriously impacted by Google’s Penguin and Panda updates, as they helplessly watched their organic traffic plummet overnight.

Many problems facing these businesses are as a result of ill-advised ‘quick wins’, instead of placing a clear emphasis on long-term gains. However, the SEO business is also plagued by myths and misconceptions. These seem to have been doing the rounds since the conception of the Internet and they drive me crazy.

Let’s take a look at just 10 of these:

  1. SEO doesn’t work

Sadly what’s true is that many businesses have been approached and burnt by overseas providers offering a £99 per month SEO package guaranteeing the earth. SEO is a hugely powerful marketing strategy but requires a long-term commitment.

  1. PPC will aid your organic listings

Unfortunately this isn’t true. PPC and SEO are separate entities and work off different principles. Therefore, your sponsored ads will have no effect on your SEO endeavours.

  1. Link building is dead

This old timer rears its ugly head every year. However, legitimate links from high authority domains will improve the authority of your domain and enable you to rank competitively assuming your website is technically sound.

  1. Linking to my own sites will work

Search engines are smart. They know who owns the domain and won’t attribute the authority your website needs to rank well.

  1. Social media won’t affect SEO

Google won’t factor in Facebook likes or Twitter follows when ranking your website – true. But there are some excellent secondary effects, such as indexation, content distribution and links to your website.

  1. SEO is no longer required as I’m ranking well

Your website may be at the peak of its powers but a search strategy is continually needed to ensure your website isn’t stagnant and left behind by competitors fighting to overtake you.

  1. Google hates SEO

If this is the case, why have they published their very own SEO guide to help people keep on top of their website? The truth is that SEOs have the ability to help Google provide more relevant search results to users search queries by improving Google’s ability to crawl, index and understand what each webpage is about.

  1. Ranking for the number one keyword is crucial

Ranking for a high volume keyword will drive traffic, but not necessarily conversions. It’s important to consider the bigger picture and consider the opportunities available for medium and long tail search terms.

  1. Meta keywords are crucial

Meta keywords are no longer factored into search engine algorithms. They once played a useful role but due to continued abuse from webmasters and SEOs, they were discontinued as a ranking factor.

  1. SEO is easy

Yes, there are various courses designed to give people an overview of SEO and how it works, but in order to really understand SEO you need to understand the technical side. You need to understand how Google works, how it crawls a website, what it’s looking for and how to implement any changes.