Finding Work Life Balance

Finding Work Life Balance

“There is no perfect, one-size fits all, balance you should be striving for. The best work-life balance is different for each of us because we all have different priorities and different lives.”

~Jim Bird, author of Redefining Work-Life Balance

Finding Work Life Balance 1 ~Jim Bird, author of Redefining Work-Life Balance

A combination of factors go into determining desirable work-life outcomes. Core values, personal motivators, learning styles and recreational outlets are different depending on who you ask. Even then, the results are subject to change.   

Your work-life balance will look different in the different seasons of your life. As an entry level employee what you consider successful work-life balance will change after you become settled in a job position. It continues to transform even later if you marry, have a family, and are nearing retirement. 

Establishing work-life balance is not finding an exact 50/50 split between work and leisure. That split does not exist. But you can at least strive to maintain a balance. Sometimes work and leisure crossover and that is understandable and acceptable.  When you are able to find an appropriate balance, you will be able to experience work and leisure in more fulfilling ways.

Although factors for work-life balance vary from person to person, understanding what you enjoy and where you find achievement can help indicate how you best define and achieve work-life balance in your own life.

Achievement vs Enjoyment

When you evaluate your daily achievement and enjoyment, you are better able to identify your level of work-life balance. 

Achievement is a measure of success you can quantify. Are you meeting your work goals? Marking off tasks from a checklist allows you to visually see your accomplishments.  Are you growing on a personal level? Pursue opportunities that compliment your development like continuing education degrees or certifications.

Enjoyment focuses on the things that bring you delight. Think of the treat yourself motto.  Incorporating simple pleasures to daily routines helps maintain a positive perspective and build stamina for whatever mundane tasks your work may require.  

Be mindful that achievement and enjoyment are a packaged deal and there should be a balance of both in your life. Leaning too far to one side of the scale can produce negative results. Focusing only on your achievements at work, home and in your personal life can lead to burnout. Without enjoyment, the greatest achievements will leave you with an emotional void. 

The concepts of achievement and enjoyment should be applied to the different areas of your life: work, family, friends and self. Take a mental assessment of your achievement and enjoyment tanks for each of these areas. Find imbalances and figure out ways to restructure your focus.

Urgent vs Important

The Eisenhower Decision Matrix is a useful prioritization method. The matrix identifies and separates various activities into four categories: 

  • Urgent-important (things that need to be dealt with immediately)
  • Not urgent-important (things that need to be planned for)
  • Urgent-not important (time sucks that are a results of poor planning)
  • Not urgent- not important (trivial time wasters)

By determining the urgent versus the important and the things that fall in between, you are better able to use your time to reach achievement in work and incorporate personal enjoyment throughout the day. 

Pro-Tip: Don’t cheat yourself on vacation days. A study taken in 2017 from the U.S. Travel Association showed that 52 percent of Americans didn’t use all of their vacation days.

Millions of dollars in benefits are lost every year. Don’t be fearful of falling behind on your workload. Not only are vacations are beneficial to your personal health, they are proven to increase productivity at work. Mental Floss comprised a surprising list of 11 hidden benefits that vacations offer here. 

Work-life balance can seemingly become less of an option when you are the one calling the shots and things literally don’t function without you. Whether you are a startup business or you are expanding to a larger market, implementing effective work-life balance is critical at every stage. 

Delegation can be a powerful skill to help achieve the goal of maintaining work-life balance. You should look for trusted and credible partners like BreveCo Marketing that will effortlessly take on tasks that are specific to your business needs- allowing you to incorporate work-life balance practices into your everyday routine. 

Check out our website and let us show you how our services can provide the relief you need to ensure you experience maximum success and satisfaction both with your business and in your personal life.

Creating A Style Guide For Your Business Brand

Creating A Style Guide For Your Business Brand

Style guides set rules for visual and language-based content for your brand. These guides remain essential to articulating your brand well.

Creating A Style Guide For Your Business Brand 2 Overall a style guide will establish uniformity and help ensure that when you decide to outsource, companies are able to communicate a consistent brand message.

Overall a style guide will establish uniformity and help ensure that when you decide to outsource, companies are able to communicate a consistent brand message.

Visual Content

Visual content is what the public sees. Your logo, icons, and fonts make up your visual content. Using these items exclusively creates a harmonious look that keeps your brand recognizable.

The most well-known businesses have positive brand association with their visual content.  For example, the Apple franchise has created an unmistakable look with the signature forbidden fruit. 

Creating a recognizable design will help stand out among contenders, just like how the clean margins of Instagram’s emblematic camera logo allow individuals to identify the brand they love from a sea of other platforms.contribute on the front end.

Color Palette

Color and marketing have a long history. Many in depth studies dive in to how to choose colors for your specific business demand. 

Each color has a registered RGB, CMYK and HEX code assigned it. These different codes are required for different uses—RGB color codes display well on the web while CMYK colors  are used for print purposes. 

Figure out the corresponding codes across for each color in your palette to ensure the colors display correctly no matter the medium.

Logo + Iconography

The Nike swoosh logo is a perfect example of consistency in logo design. While Nike uses a single image to represent all of its branding, this technique is not a hard and fast rule for logo design. It all depends on your business. 

An alternative may be utilizing a primary logo and expounding on the look with different icons for specific target areas. Just be sure that the icons still connect with the main logo design. 

For example, the Google Places icon is different from the brand logo, yet the style and color palette remain cohesive to the visual branding rules of Google as a whole. The Google Places icon successfully ingrates innovative design while maintaining the brand integrity.

Typography uses text in creative ways that contribute to design. 

Font + Typography

Typography uses text in creative ways that contribute to design. 

A classic example of typography is Coca-Cola. The red, scripted font is actually a trademarked style. Even if the words “Coca-Cola” are not written, the typography is identifiable.

Choose key fonts for your style guide. Have enough to be able to differentiate headlines from standard text, but limit yourself to two or three fonts so as not to confuse the public.

 Visual style guides set requirements for everything associated with your brand. Find examples of style guides  here. 

Brand Language 

Language refers to the messages and key words behind your brand. Focusing on the brand language in your style guide is just as important as the visual components. Don’t neglect this element of the style guide. Ultimately, this language plays a vital role in who you are as a business as it helps set the tone and personality for your brand.

Brand Mission

To effectively tailor the brand language, your brand mission must be identified. The brand mission does more than state what you do. It identifies how you want to influence and interact with your consumers. Brand mission statements typically appeal to emotion and evoke deeper meaning in order to develop a voice that engages and resonates well with audiences. 

Key Characteristics

Identify three key characteristics of your business. Carefully choose your main identifiers. Let these descriptions be the words you want consumers to think of when they engage with your brand—from your written messages to your visual designs.

Allow these key characteristics to act as an anchor that will help you maintain consistency in the way you present your brand.

Brand Language Examples

The real magic of Disney is how it has developed a brand that connects with each person who comes into contact with the franchise.

Disney has gone through extreme measures to support the claim that it is the happiest place on earth. The Disney experience trickles down to every part of the consumer’s engagement experience.

Slogans are great tools for effective brand languaging. Gieco’s “15 minutes could save you 15%” message was so well-communicated that the company was able to set itself apart in the insurance field. 

Visual branding distinguishes you from the crowd by helping consumers remember who you are. Brand language develops a connection that builds trust and inspires loyalty. 

For smaller businesses, a style guide fills a huge void. While many companies outsource a variety of their brand projects, it’s important to keep a clear and consistent look and message when you receive the final product. 

Pro-Tip: Specificity is king when it comes to making a style guide. You have to be specific and clear in your style guide so that all your content is uniform and looks like it all came from the same place, even if many different hands were involved. 

The experts at BreveCo understand the importance of adhering to a style guide. We are ready to work with you and create brand collateral that will communicate a uniform style for your specific needs.

What to Look for in a Digital Marketing Agency

What to Look for in a Digital Marketing Agency

Beware the avalanche effect as you begin to integrate various branding strategies.  

What to Look for in a Digital Marketing Agency 3 Beware the avalanche effect as you begin to integrate various branding strategies.  

The signs are everywhere. Before things get too overwhelming you should consider working with a marketing agency.

The signs are everywhere. Before things get too overwhelming you should consider working with a marketing agency.

Choosing the right digital marketing agency is extremely important. The right choice will prove to be a valuable resource that ensures the integrity of your brand and contributes to your productivity and peace of mind. After all, your brand is a representation of yourself and you don’t want to hand it over to just anybody.

Four Things to Keep in Mind When Looking for a Marketing Agency

 

Identify goals and expectations.

Go into the process with two things in mind: know what you would like to see accomplished and know what you expect from your digital marketing agency. When you have an understanding of your needs, you are better equipped to choose a marketing agency that will be able to meet those needs. 

You also need to communicate how much input you would like in the marketing process. A good marketing agency will be able to work with your desired level of involvement. Make sure you communicate how much you would like to contribute on the front end.

Know what services a digital marketing agency provides and what it specializes in.

Marketing and brand management is a vast, ever-changing field. Some marketing agencies specialize in certain areas like SEO or website design. What they don’t choose to specialize in, agencies will often outsource. If your greatest needs are for phenomenal web design and cohesive brand collateral, make sure that 1) the digital marketing agency you choose offers these resources and 2) that these resources are a primary focus of the agency. 

Outsourcing services is common in the marketing realm, so don’t let that be a deterrent, but find an agency that has the capability to address your major needs directly. 

See what services BreveCo Marketing provides to help you meet your high priority needs.

Look at the agency’s client base.

Knowing your marketing agency’s client base is beneficial for several reasons. 

You will be able to see how the agency has helped other businesses,  get an idea of their branding style, and have examples of what they will be able to do for you. Past and current clients will be able to speak to the agency’s effectiveness or lack thereof. 

Be wary of a digital marketing agency that isn’t able to present you with a portfolio of past projects or provide clients who will give positive reviews.

At BreveCo Marketing we are proud to showcase the work we have done for our clients. Take a look at our portfolio. 

Find an agency that can match your style.

If you look over an agency’s portfolio and the work they have done for others doesn’t line up with the direction you want to go in, they may not be the best fit. When this happens don’t be quick to rule them out.

Tell them your concerns and ask if they are able to deliver content that matches your style. If they say yes, ask them to explain what they will do to tailor to your brand. The beauty of marketing and branding is versatility. An agency that can’t tailor itself to your brand is an agency that will possibly neglect making your brand identity a priority.

Pro-Tip: Choose a digital marketing agency that, outside of a working environment, you would be able to get along with in a casual setting–chemistry. This trait topped the Forbes list. You will be working closely with this agency, if your personalities don’t mesh well you might be setting yourself up for a disaster.

As your business grows and the marketing process becomes more extensive, partnering with an agency might be a venture to consider for your brand. We all take on more than we can handle at one time or another.  A marketing agency is going to step in and make up for lost time and resources. 

BreveCo Marketing is a great place to begin a conversation of how we can do that for you. We would love to rally behind you and your business. After you see what we have to offer, just reach out to us online for a free consultation. 

We will use our services to develop a package for your business and help manage your brand. That way you can you continue to focus on the important stuff like perfecting your trade and providing excellent service in your field.

What is SEO + Why Your Business Needs It

What is SEO + Why Your Business Needs It

Consumers have a world of information accessible to them with the swipe a finger. Successful SEO is how you make sure your content gets to them first.

What is SEO + Why Your Business Needs It 4 Consumers have a world of information accessible to them with the swipe a finger. Successful SEO is how you make sure your content gets to them first.

After establishing your brand and developing a user-friendly website to promote it, you need to effectively generate new and continuing online traffic to your website. This happens through SEO. But what is SEO?

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. It is how you ensure consumers will be directed to your content when they input a query into a search engine.

Have you ever wondered how Google prioritizes the information you see on the first page of your search results? Search engines like Google and Bing use algorithms to determine the order in which content is displayed to a consumer. Think of an algorithm like a recipe. Just like specific ingredients are required to produce a cake, specific components on a website  must match a search engine’s algorithm to get better visibility online.

So why is SEO so important?

The concept is similar to a fallen tree in the forest that doesn’t make a sound because no one is around to hear it. A dynamic website isn’t effective when consumers don’t have access to it after typing in related information in a search. When you effectively utilize SEO,  you increase your digital reach and, in turn, produce a higher client base for your brand.

With the wealth of information available online, increasing your visibility is vital to get any real traction on the search engine frontier. The best place to start is by knowing what concepts matter.

Five Concepts that matter for Search Engine Optimization 

Your word choices are extremely important. 

Search engines keep track of every word that is uploaded to the Internet. They use extensive databases and programs to record and appropriately file each word. Be sure to consider the associated meaning of the words you use throughout the pages of your website. Ask yourself what words would the general public use to define the content you are providing. If the words on your page don’t match up with the words consumers put into search engines, your content is less likely to pop up on their search results pages.

Be deliberate about titles.

Every page online has an official title. When titles show up in the code of a page, search engines interpret them as summaries of the page’s content. Make sure your titles correctly  inform search engines about what information the pages on your site provides.

Utilize links.

Links refer readers to other sources online.. When multiple web pages start referencing your site via links,  search engines will give your site a higher ranking. It is good to include links on your pages as well so that traffic from your linked pages funnel back to your site.

Words referring to links can be connected.

Search engines are very intuitive. Even the words used in links can attract search engines. Search engines will connect the words used in links. If you say that Target has toys and select the word “toys” as a link to the Target website, a search engine will associate Target with toys.

Website maintenance builds credible reputation online.

As you consistently generate new content search engines take notice. For your reputation among search engines to expand, you must continue to produce material. Blogs are a great way to stay on top of SEO and keep updated and relevant content on your website.

Common Craft explains more about SEO and outlines these concepts in a nifty little video.

Pro-Tip: Start with the basics to begin optimizing viewership on your site. Once you start, don’t stop. Producing more and more content helps you stay in the SEO race against your competitors. 

SEO takes some effort and dedication to yield the full force of its results. Sometimes translating your brand’s message and resources into intelligible print is more than enough work. When the idea of applying the concepts for SEO success is all too overwhelming, fear not. 

BreveCo Marketing doesn’t only offer web design services, we offer monthly website care packages and SEO maintenance packages that you don’t want to miss out on! Not to mention we’ve got a team of wordsmiths who are ready to develop content that increases online traffic to your brand. 

We will translate the purpose of your brand and the resources you offer in a way that search engines will acknowledge and readers will connect with and understand.

What is Brand Management + Why Your Business Needs It

What is Brand Management + Why Your Business Needs It

Brand management is not just some corporate fluff word, it’s the development of how your brand is perceived by the public, and more importantly, your audience.

What is Brand Management + Why Your Business Needs It 5 Brand management is not just some corporate fluff word, it’s the development of how your brand is perceived by the public, and more importantly, your audience.
Great brand management is essential to engaging with your customers, adding credibility to products and services and remaining relevant.

Great brand management is essential to engaging with your customers, adding credibility to products and services and remaining relevant. Think—everything from launching and maintaining a stellar website to creating beautiful brand collateral and running effective digital marketing campaigns to further establish your brand.

Your business brand runs hand-in-hand with products or services. It’s an essential foundation for every single business.

Think about all the time you put into maintaining your products and services, making updates based on feedback, and striving to deliver your A-game to all your customers and clients; that’s sort of how brand management works––it’s not a one and done task. It’s an on-going process that’s out to build better relationships with your target audience and stand out above the rest.

Brand Management requires a fine-tuning process.

Brand management requires  a fine tuning process of 1) separating your business apart from others in the industry and 2) building devoted customers. Most of these efforts require the same mediums like a business web design, engaging on social media, and digital marketing strategies.

See how BreveCo Marketing can help you take advantage of all of those mediums.

Handling your brand management can be tricky and time consuming, so it’s not for the faint of heart. So where to begin when it comes to brand management? Here are five simple, effective, and brand management mediums you can start with to better articulate your brand.

Brand Management – 5 Areas to Get Started

Create brand collateral.

Brand Collateral is a collection of materials intended to showcase a brand and market its products or services to consumers.  Business cards, brochures and other marketing material are just a few of the items that establish your brand, and they all serve as tangible evidence of your brand.

Build a website + make it mobile friendly.

Websites allow a unique space to display your brand on the world wide web. Having an online presence in 2019 is like hanging the “open” sign on your door each day, it’s essential.  Nearly half of your visitors will judge the credibility of your business based on your website. Need I say more?

Use well-written copy that generates engagement + converts

The gift of gab might be art many possess, but the gift of effective gab is an art not easily mastered. Copy is such a simple way to give your brand an incredible facelift, generate more engagement and even convert visitors into customers. Fresh copy on your website, brochures or blogs speaks volumes into your brand. Careful not to overlook this powerful brand management tactic.

Put a digital marketing plan into play.

Digital marketing is nothing new, but the strategies change rapidly. Find a company that knows what they are doing. Digital marketing isn’t just for growing a business, sometimes it’s a simple as creating brand awareness and establishing good relationships with your audience. Whatever your end game is in the realm of Digital Marketing, BreveCo Marketing has you covered.

Take advantage of social media.

It pains me to see unengaged profiles floating around out there. Social media is such an incredible tool that’s often put on the back-burner. Don’t let it go to waste–– whether you’re looking to grow your business or simply create your genuine online presence, never underestimate the power of social media.

Pro-Tip: Don’t abandon the brand.

All-in-all brand management is about representing the core of your mission and articulating your brand well. Establishing your brand can take time, but once it’s finally complete, it requires results-driven strategies and a creative flair. That’s where BreveCo Marketing comes in.

Lucky for you, you’ve happened upon an awesome team of creatives that are ready to start work on your next project.

If you’re on the fence about venturing on to a company to handle your creative brand management, just reach out to us online for a free consultation. We’d love to chat about what BreveCo Marketing could do for you.