The Best of Content Marketing

Content marketing has been a huge buzz word in digital marketing for the last couple years, and it’s a major place if interest for most marketers. Many business, though, don’t want to invest time in it, because they don’t see a return on investment. However, I believe when you combine great content with a great social strategy, you can find an amazing connection with your customers, and a substantial ROI.

Content Marketing Can…

      1. Improve SEO

      2. Engage Current Consumers (and get them to buy again)

      3. Engage Potential Consumers (and get your brand top-of-mind)  

To begin or improve your content marketing, I recommend looking at two content marketing queens: Free People and Bark & Co. Continue reading

How to Be Successful: Ask Questions

How were some of the biggest companies in the world created? Amazon? AirBnBPolaroid? People asked a simple question – along the lines of “why does this have to be this way, and what if it were different?” According to Warren Berger, in our age of technology – where every new answer comes quicker and easier than the last, “Questions are the new answers.” The Questionist spoke at Champlain College last week on why questions are important, who asks the best questions, and how to ask questions better.

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Great companies – especially great innovative and technological companies, are successful because they ask questions. In order to create a successful business, you must question, and you also must keep asking these questions, or someone else will. Kodak is a perfect example of this – rather than asking the questions that would have lead the company to digital photography, they kept doing things the same way because they followed the old “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” model that is a sure-fire way to run a business into the ground nowadays. But how do you ask a good question? The steps to asking a better question include: Continue reading

Understand Marketing: Organic Labels and Packaging

Most people immediately think advertising and social media when they think “marketing,” but a huge aspect of product marketing is also the packaging. It’s the place we (and our amazing graphic designers) get to show the main benefits of the product, and why you need it (which you obviously do). But something we can’t control are the labeling laws – and what our consumer expects from our labels.

all natural labelWe all know not to trust “all natural” labels – they’re awesome marketing to make consumers feel good about buying natural products, but there’s actually no strict regulations determining what “all natural” means in the United States. Prevention states, “neither the US Food and Drug Administration nor the Federal Trade Commission have a strict definition for the term; the FDA says it ‘has not objected to the use of the term if the food does not contain added color, artificial flavors, or synthetic substances.’ But so-called ‘natural’ foods can still contain a wide range of processed sweeteners, lab-produced ‘natural’ flavors and colors, additives and preservatives.” So we don’t trust “all natural” foods, but what about organic foods?

“Certified Organic” products aren’t the end all be all of healthy foods. The hypothesis is that they use all natural pesticides (no, they are not “pesticide free”) rather than chemically produced pesticides. This means that, hypothetically, the impact on the environment is lessened, as is the impact of unhealthy chemicals on our bodies. However, there is a theory that some of the “natural” pesticides allowed are still tied USDA certified organic products not healthyto cancer, but no formal inquiries to my knowledge have been made to determine the health impacts of these pesticides on the body. Furthermore, some question whether one or two applications of a chemical pesticide on a plant is better for the environment than the 6 or 7 many natural pesticides require to work well.

But why does it matter?

I still totally feel better buying organic foods rather than their conventional alternatives, but some are catching on the fact that the “certified organic” label isn’t quite trustworthy anymore. If you’re marketing legitimately healthy / organic / natural / pesticide-free products, that label is not necessarily what your audience trusts anymore. That being said, sometimes not having it and saying those alternative phrases then isn’t impressive to those who still purchase based off that organic label. Continue reading

8 Blogs Every Digital Marketer Should Already Be Following

To be competitive, you have to stay current… obvious, right? But what does this actually mean – and how do we do it? Using Snapchat because it’s cool and current doesn’t make you up-to-date on digital marketing platforms or marketing strategy. (Even though the snaps of your dog are super cute!)

Our jobs are constantly changing, and trying out a handful of new social apps is totally a part of staying current – but that’s not it. How about the new contest rules on Facebook, or that company that did that awful (or awesome!) PR move on Twitter? By the words of my father, you want to be the person your bosses come to asking about new technologies/platforms/strategies, and you want to be able to give them an answer. (I have to admit my father is pretty smart sometimes…)

Personally I really need to keep up with these because I feel like the world is constantly changing around me. Like that time I (embarrassingly) put text on Facebook cover images – then got punished by Facebook and realized Facebook cover images were like ads: mostly text-free. These kinds of updates are what I look for in blogs like AllFacebook, but I’m also constantly on the lookout for new platforms, SEO tips, and interesting strategies other businesses have implemented. I trust these blogs to give me the information I need to know. Continue reading

The Benefits of Pink Himalayan Sea Salt

Pink Himalayan Sea Salt has been a cherished mineral for health and healing for centuries because it is considered to be the purest salt found on earth. People say the 80+ minerals found in the salt can do many things – including to detoxify the body from heavy metals, lower blood pressure, support libido, and even reduce signs of aging. These minerals make up about 15% of the salt’s composition (with the other 85% being sodium, naturally.)*

Pink Himalayan Sea Salt

Typical table salt has been stripped of all minerals besides sodium and chloride, chemically cleaned, bleached, and heated at high temperatures, treated with anti-caking agents (which also keep it from dissolving in your body properly), then pumped chemically with iodine. At the same time, pink Himalayan sea salt (or real salt and similar alternatives) are essentially harvested, ground, and sold to the consumer – leaving its natural properties and minerals intact – including sulfate, magnesium, calcium, potassium, bicarbonate, bromide, strontium, iron, and others. Continue reading

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Alright, Let’s Do This

So… I totally have a blog over at taylormdowns.blogspot.com/ but this is my new one, and hopefully one I will actually post to consistently. To read anything about my study abroad or whatever I posted before that, check out my old blog! This one will consist of the interests of a 20-year-old marketing student about to graduate and actually take on the world. Yeah, terrifying, not sure how this is going to go – but stick around! (Especially if you’re interested in food, nutrition, yoga, fashion, and/or marketing!)

PS. The photo above is from my semester in Paris! I’m kind of interesting?

 

College Health & Wellness: Tweetchat #CHWchat Tuesdays @9PM!

Did you know students that exercise at least 20 minutes a day around 7 days a week have a GPA of .4 greater than students who don’t? We’ve known for a long time that exercise helps various aspects of our lives, but making someone more intelligent? (& More desirable post-grad?) These findings may be due to some or all of the following surprising exercise benefits:

Source
  1. Exercise Stimulates Brain Cell Development
  2. Exercise Improves Memory Retention
  3. Exercise Increases Focus & Concentration
  4. Exercise Boosts Mood
  5. Exercise Relieves Stress



Despite these results, less than half of college students meet exercise recommendations. Continue reading

Vegan Lentil, Spinach, and Wild Rice Soup

It’s in the sub-zeros here in Burlington, so when I came across this lentil soup recipe from Cara over at Hipsterfood, I had to make it – with a couple substitutions. It turned out being my first meal of the new year, so let’s hope the rest follow in its healthy and affordable footsteps!

Here’s what you’ll need:
Keep in mind, because this is a soup you can really alter all of this according to your preferences – I sure did!

– 1 cup dry wild rice/brown rice blend
– 1 cup dry lentils (2 cups cooked)
– 1 Bouillon cube or vegetable stock (we used the bouillon cubes with herbs)
– A handful or 2 of spinach (or kale or any other kind of dark leafy green)
– 2-3 tablespoons thyme
– 1 tablespoon oregano
– 1-2 teaspoons minced fresh garlic (feel free to leave out if you’re not a garlic fan)
– 3-4 tablespoons fresh chives
– Half a yellow onion, minced
(original recipe called for green onion, didn’t have any so used chives and onion as a substitute! we will try with a large handful of minced green onion and less chives and yellow onion next time, but this was great too.)

Continue reading

a bit of reworking.

Happy New Year!

I hope it brings your desires and everything you work for.

Before I left for Paris, this blog was firstly and primarily a fashion and personal style blog with very little depth beyond reviewing fashion shows and posting specifically-coordinated outfits. When I went abroad, it became a travel diary. (- albeit one I ceased to update about a month into my travels.) Despite not learning about it via this blog, I experienced a lot during this time and like to think I’ve changed for the better from my European travels, and look forward to continue to improve myself now that I’ve returned – a general statement I imagine many are saying this very moment.

I want to record the old and the new in my life here in Burlington, Vermont as I begin my senior year in college and look forward to what the rest of my life will bring. Continue reading

fontainebleau.

A trip with CEA brought us to Fontainebleau – basically an old hunting town for royalty outside of Paris. After a couple hour hike in the woods, we had a really excellent lunch then explored the Château de Fontainebleau, which is actually the castle & lands the Château de Versailles was created to out-do. And compared to Versailles, Château de Fontainebleau is almost understated.

Continue reading