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1130 Broadway,
Suite 205,
Tacoma, WA 98402

We’ve been approached several times in the past few months from friends and colleagues asking us, “What’s new with MPS?”

And we would reply with a smile and, “Oh, you know, the same ol’, same ol’. Busy with lots of projects and awesome clients!”

FB-COMING-SOON-ORANGEBut something has been weighing heavy on our shoulders and, well, it’s confession time. Yes, we’ve been keeping a secret. Although we were careful with undercover meetings and worked feverishly in the quiet shadows, it was inevitable that the truth would soon reveal itself… and that the world would know what Marketing Puget Sound has really been up to.

Alas, today is not that day that we are ready to completely announce the big plans ahead. But rest assure – it’s coming soon…

snapSnapchat has become a top tier platform when it comes to social media, up there with the likes of Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. With the launch of Snapchat Discover and the “Stories” users have to opportunity to share and interact on a whole different level. A concept that brands can really capitalize on if done the right way. Before taking the plunge with your own company, there are a few things you need to consider.

Know Your Audience
It’s important to know the audience you’re trying to reach down to the very core. Just because Snapchat may be the new platform that everything is using, that may not mean it’s the perfect fit for your brand or business. Your target audience may be more inclined to use platforms like Facebook or LinkedIn and in that case, those are the ones you should be sticking to. Knowing your audience is the most important step to understanding whether or not Snapchat can be an asset to reaching your business goals.

How It Fits Into Your Social Media Strategy
If you decide that marketing with Snapchat can be beneficial to your business, you need to decide on how you see it fitting into you social media strategy. There are so many different platforms, so you have to consider what other aspect Snapchats can bring. The app itself allows for brands to connect with consumers on a more personal level and since users are in control of which stories they watch, businesses are forced to think outside the box. Snapchat can allow you to reach younger audiences and provide interesting video content that may not be accessible otherwise.

Connect Authentically
Snapchat is a platform where the focus isn’t about selling your product, but more about building a brand. People choose to follow a company’s story because they are providing interesting experiences that can’t be seen anywhere else. If you are consistently pushing a product through Snapachat, the platform won’t be of any benefit to your business. Today’s consumers want to connect on a more personal level and are interested in the values and goals of the brands they interact with, so content that makes them laugh, think and wonder will go a long way.

Snapchat is continuing to grow and it’s a great way to bring another element into you social media strategy. It allows you to create new and interesting content that can help to give your brand a voice. Take into consideration the aspects above as you start exploring this new platformopprtunity.


Communication is Key!
Communication is the foundation of all good relationships – whether business or personal – and businesses are increasingly looking to social media as a way to communicate with their customers.

What is a Hashtag?
Each of the major social media sites has their own characteristics and the key feature of Twitter is the ability to use hashtags (#). A hashtag is a way of identifying a keyword or major topic in a Tweet (Twitter message).

Clicking on the hashtag shows you all other tweets containing the same hashtag information. It is considered good twitter etiquette to exercise restraint in the use of hashtags and to keep to a maximum of two per tweet. When a keyword or topic becomes very popular, it is identified as a trending topic, which brings it further publicity.

It is important to note that the hashtag only applies until the next space. For example #Bat out of Hell would actually show up tweets with #Bat, if you wanted to reference the Meatloaf song, you would need to write #BatoutofHell.

Another thing to watch out for is putting punctuation before a space because it will be incorporated into the hashtag. Also, hashtags ignore cases, so #batoutofhell will have the same effect as #BatoutofHell.

Getting Started
First of all, use Twitter search to find out what people are saying about you, your competitors and anything else which is relevant to your line of business. Then create an attractive Twitter profile including a photo.

Your Photo Matters
Twitter is a place to build up an image of a company run by and for humans. People like to be able to put faces to names so your profile photo is important.

Ideally, your avatar should show your dedicated Twitter representative. This means having a photograph of a dedicated social media manager, or having an appealing brand logo that people will recognize.

Twitter is about Meaningful Conversations
It can be useful to have a Twitter account just to keep an eye on what people are saying about you, but that’s a bit like having a boat and keeping it in a harbor; it may be safe, but that is not what boats are for.

When you start tweeting, remember that the cardinal sin of Twitter is becoming the online equivalent of the party loudmouth. It’s fine to talk about yourself, provided that you have something meaningful to say, but keep it in moderation and remember to listen.

Be Valuable, be Human and You will be Followed
Add value with useful content relevant to your niche. For example, if you run a cleaning company, you can post regular tips on ways to deal with household cleaning issues.

Keep them relevant to the seasons, e.g. getting rid of grass stains in summer, or dealing with red wine stains in winter. Ask your followers to send in their questions and post their own tips.

Let your followers know what individual employees are doing. This can take the form of sharing any funny stories they may have from their day and also sharing anything special they’re doing outside of work.

Commenting and retweeting (forwarding other people’s messages) shows humanity and humility. You may wish to draw the line at promoting content posted by a direct competitor (although doing so can show confidence). Commenting on other tweets and retweeting them shows that you are willing to participate in the Twitter community as a whole, rather than just using it to publicize your own business.

As a final tip, one of the joys of Twitter is that it’s short and sweet. It’s absolutely fine to use twitter to make people aware of useful content which has been posted elsewhere, such as on your website. Ideally, you should include a link back to Twitter on your website so that people who found it valuable can retweet it.

If you’re unsure where to get started with Twitter then contact our professional social media team today.

Making an e-commerce site is getting more popular as time goes on. Webmasters can get started with an e-commerce website quickly, but making a business model that works can be a different story. Fortunately, traffic can be obtained through the use of free and paid techniques and services. Here’s a look at the top four ways to start increasing traffic without spending too much money.

1. Make ads on social media sites
Ads placed on Google and Facebook make it easy to reach a site’s target audience. For example, a site that aims to sell beauty products to young women can request that Facebook display its ads to women in that age group who live in areas that are specified. Other criteria, such as entertainment preferences, can also be used to determine who sees the ads.

2. Take advantage of affiliates
Thousands of people are happy to direct traffic to e-commerce websites in exchange for a cut of its profits. To make it easier to find affiliates, many sites manage the operation for clients. Everything from fraud prevention to tracking and payments are handled by these companies, leaving webmasters free to work on other business details.

3. Reach consumers directly with social networking sites
Most companies now have profiles on Twitter and Facebook, but these sites must be used wisely to get the most from them. An e-commerce site can have excellent interactivity and visual appeal, but the quality of engagement will determine whether users visit and buy things. To this end, webmasters should try to foster connections with users through valuable information, as well as links.

4. Work with other e-commerce site webmasters
These days, competition for links can be fierce. However, this doesn’t mean that webmasters with similar interests can’t help each other out in this area. Link trading is an excellent way to increase visits from consumers. One great way to institute this is to trade guest blog posts, which also enhance sites by increasing the diversity of information offered there.

With so many options for building traffic and sales at e-commerce sites, webmasters have to make a plan to keep productivity up from the start. Traffic goals for specific dates help structure plans for using techniques like those listed above. In addition, a plan will help maintain consistency – a crucial part of long-term success in e-commerce. By taking the right steps and following through, e-commerce webmasters can go a long way in today’s market.

Today, digital marketing is an essential part of running a business. When running a company it is important to have a steady customer base and know that there is a consumer base awareness. Many people (business owners included) are under the impression that effective digital marketing is a costly affair. No matter what your business is, digital marketing can help drive your sales.
Contrary to popular belief, there are many free techniques that can be utilized for digital marketing – you just need to know how. Below, we will outline a list of tools that are at your disposal and that have a successful, proven track record for helping online marketers. But don’t get too excited yet; before you begin thinking about implementing any of these techniques you must have a clear understanding of whom you are targeting and what the main message of your campaign is. Here are some tips to help your business on its digital marketing journey without breaking the bank.

Have a Plan
Like any successful project, goals need to be set. Decide what you want to achieve from this marketing campaign, what and why are you promoting, and if you want to develop brand awareness. When you have decided what you want from the campaign it will be easier to implement relevant strategies.

Search Engine Optimization
Search Engine Optimization is the technique of structuring your presence online and defining where your website will rank in different search engines for different keywords. When starting off, ensure you know what people are searching for in relation to your product or service and how they are searching for it. You can find out this information through Google Analytics and Google Ad words – both of these tools are free and there are plenty of resources online that can help you understand how to use them. When you are aware and informed of the SEO techniques that you can implement you will successfully be able to start providing content related to what customers are searching for by including relevant key words.

Fresh Content
It is important to make visitors want to return to your website. In many cases a customer will visit your site once and never return because they have attained whatever information they were looking for. In order to engage visitors and encourage them to return to the site it is essential that you update your site with fresh, interesting and relevant content. This will increase traffic to your website and in turn, drive sales.

Fresh content will keep your site ranking in various search engines. A good way to update content on your site is by blogging. A blog will allow you to express your voice and opinion on relevant topics or issues in your industry. By incorporating keywords it is a practical way of improving your search engine optimization as well as gaining a regular user base for your website.

Social Media
Social media is now more than ever an essential part of running any business. Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin, Pinterest and Google + can all be used to connect with customers as well as to broaden your audience. Companies can effectively use social media to build and maintain relationships with their customer base. Many businesses now use Facebook and Twitter as the main point of contact with customers to help with any queries, problems, or suggestions. Social media can also be used as a point of self-promotion to spread the business name to the wider social media community.

As you start implementing digital marketing practices to your business it is key to monitor results. You can manage and keep track of results using tools such as Google Analytics, and Hootsuite or Tweetdeck to monitor social media work. If you monitor the results of your work it will be easier to see what is working well and what isn’t. Knowing this information will assist you in further development to utilize the most effective marketing techniques for your business.

If you are serious about improving your business’ digital marketing to spread awareness about your company and in turn drive sales, the above techniques will give you the power to do so.

The fourth always sneaks up so quickly, doesn’t it? If you’re looking for something to do for the fourth of July in Tacoma, we recommend you attend the Freedom Fair. Freedom Fair Tacoma is going to have all sorts of elements for you to enjoy. Whether you are planning on going with your family, buddies, or if you’re taking out a significant other, The Freedom Fair won’t disappoint.
There’s going to be everything from an air show with aviation acts, live music all throughout the day, car shows, to a remote control car race for the kids. As a grand finale, the Freedom Fair is going to have an amazing firework show that is going to be synchronized to a soundtrack full of songs. The Tacoma firework show is always impressive year after year.

Of course all of the local restaurants and concession stands are going to be open selling refreshments and great food all day. What do you have to lose?

Freedom Fair Tacoma is presented by the Tacoma Events Commission and has been running every year for over thirty years now!

Some of our team members from Marketing Puget Sound are going to be in attendance at the July fourth festival and are looking out at Ruston Way in anticipation for it. See you there!

Having a marketing plan and goal for social media is crucial for any company, professional artist or entrepreneur if they want to generate business around themselves or their product. But it’s no good if you’re trying to get everyone to check out your brand new Myspace, or if you’re trying to dump big loads of info onto Twitter. If you want to do well, you have to use the right sites in the right way. You need to get to know these sites; they need to be your blog’s, and your business’s, best friends.

Twitter is your chatty, social friend. If you want everyone to know something, tell it to Twitter and word will spread like wildfire. The character limit is 144 though, so keep it brief, breezy and to the point. Local businesses use Twitter to keep people updated on deals, offers, events, and keep up a rapport with customers. Celebrities and authors, such asNeil Gaiman, use Twitter to talk to their fans and keep them updated about everyday goings-ons in their lives.

YouTube is your funny, energetic friend. YouTube is a treasure trove of funny and informative videos, and a goldmine for marketing and advertisement. With most people skipping past TV ads these days, online ads are the best new way of getting your business known. The big dream of every Youtuber is for a video to go viral, which general a buzz like none other and really gets everyone talking. Keep your videos brief, about 5 or 3 minutes long, and be creative, funny and memorable. Youtubers such as John Green use their fame in the blogging world to sell and market their novels, making a solid fan base before their books even hit the shelves.

LinkedIn is your no-nonsense friend in the suit and tie. He knows that guy with the job you want, so you best behave around him. LinkedIn is a social networking site for business people, and provides a good way to market yourself to potential employers and get to know others in the business. Keep your profile professional and fresh, avoiding commonly used buzzwords, such as “innovative” and “creative”, to make sure your profile sticks out from the thousands of others.

Facebook isn’t just your friend, he’s your buddy. He’s companionable and friendly, can tell you a lot more than Twitter can, and gets everyone together. On Facebook, even professional profiles still need to be amiable and laid-back. Facebook is great for getting people involved, so put up events and send out invites. Facebook will get people excited to be part of whatever you’re putting together, and help you see who your loyal customers or supporters are. It’s also a great way to build readership to your main blog.

Tumblr is your socially aware, artsy friend. You never feel that comfortable eating a hamburger around Tumblr, but she’s great for getting the word out and for anything visual. In fact even Obama has got caught up in the Tumblr craze.  With Tumblr, use a lot of visuals to capture your readership’s attention and take care with what you post – once it’s been reblogged you can’t just delete it! The users tend to be young and left-leaning, so make sure your product or business is right for the demographic. If it is though, Tumblr can be a powerful tool in your belt, especially if you want to get funding through websites such as Kick starter.


Author Bio:
Charlotte Frances is Team Blogger for MPS plus a psychology student as well as a freelance writer and blogger. She is passionate about creative writing, psychology, marine life, as well as film and video games. She is here writing on behalf of Dimasoft, providers of a range of digital services from SEO to website design in the north east.