This is a quick overview to understanding how media works for you.
Whether your creating an advertisement, a business card, a brochure or a website you are entering the world of the
media and people will form opinions based upon the information you present them and how you present that information.
There is something called the K.I.S.S. Method. This stands for Keep It Simple Silly! Most times silly is the person
designing the media who for the sake of making the client happy panders to all their requests and you end up with a
cluttered message instead of one solid message that people will remember.
Silly can also be the client who tries to put their resume on a business card, or make their brochures or advertisements
so jam packed with information people just toss them away. This is a case where less is more and where a photo may
speak volumes over the printed word. When your putting anything out to the public you need a strategy.
Let's Look At Business Cards
It doesn't matter the business your in, a business card is the most important piece of media you have because chances
are you gave it to the person who is calling or they got it from someone who thought enough of you and passed it on.
Never leave home without your business cards, EVER.
One Saturday when I was drawing by the Rideau Canal, a fellow who was walking stopped and was watching what I was
doing. He wasn't dressed all that well, he looked like someone taking a break from yard work but commented he liked my
work. I gave him a business card and the end result was a major piece of work for me and I continue to receive work from
his company to this day including the creation of electronic forms, which saved his company thousands of dollars.
A business card would contain the following information:
Your Logo (if you have one, you should have one)
Your Company Name
Your Company Slogan (if you use one)
Your Name & Title
Your Telephone Number (including the area code)
Your Fax Number
Your Business Address
Your Website Address
Your Email Address For Your Company
Digital Business Card
Don't forget to include a digital business card with all your e-mails. I can create these for you.
Letterhead - Envelopes - Note Pads
Your letterhead, invoices, envelopes and all business stationary would be formatted the same way. Part of branding
your company is being consistent in using your logo.
Electronic Correspondence, Invoices, Brochures = Savings Of Time and Money
It doesn't matter the size of your company, utilizing electronic correspondence, invoices, brochures and any other type of
information not only saves you money, but also saves trees and postal costs. Set up invoicing with a PAYPAL account
and you have instant cash flow.
This would be a great time to learn and use electronic documents. I can create forms (invoices, surveys) for you that can
be either printed out, mailed or faxed or filled out online, saved electronically and emailed back to you. Instant
communication without the cost of paper and postage.
If your attending a trade show, you can have your brochures or any other handouts printed out by simply sending them
to a company that does digital printing by e-mailing them your electronic documents. There are some tricks to this to
ensure great quality work, but if your too busy I can arrange printing for you and have it delivered to your door.
BE WEB WISE
The only exception to electronic forms is dealing with financial institutions or services. Only use their website and never
respond to phising emails that try to sucker you into logging into a fake website to steal your login information. Financial
Institutions and Services DO NOT EMAIL their customers, their communication is done through their website where you
log on or they call you (then call them back to make sure it's your financial institution or service).
What type of website format is right for you?
If your selling Ferrari's then the Ferrari website (which is very cool) is for you, but if your a medical clinic, lawyer,
architect, doctor, lawn maintenance company, cabinet maker, photographer, florist, or a garage you probably require
more of an information / service portal to tell people about you and the services you provide. Remember sharp clean
photo's are important.
If your a clothing store that also sells as an on-line merchant, you need to create a virtual store front. One of the best
examples I have ever seen of a virtual storefront is www.zazzle.com . Whoever dreamed this up scored a home run with
me. I am also a merchant on this site; www.zazzle.com/marcscreations* and www.zazzle.ca/canadaday*
Keep the website targeted to your customers. An example would be if you provide services to seniors, you may want a
website where you can make the font on the screen larger and avoid the bling. If your doing a website geared towards
young adults you may want to add social media connections. If your a body shop or customizer, you will want high quality
photo's showing your work.
Plan your website like a road map and write down where you want to go with your website and design idea's.
A website is an infomercial / resume about your company. If you fail to plan then you will only plan to fail.
Give thought to how many categories you want, for example: ABOUT US, WHAT WE DO, HOW WE DO IT, WHAT WE
CAN DO FOR YOU, CONTACT INFO. Make it relevant to your business and leave out the clutter.
A Call To Action
A call to action is where you lead your prospective customer to contact you for more information. In simple terms you
make sure your contact information is prominently displayed, so the customer knows how to connect with you.