Monthly Archives: December 2008

Don’t slash your marketing budget just yet

We have all heard the economists say the “R” word but we really can’t let that effect our business. We may have to make some changes, but we have to keep marketing. Even the big companies are tweaking their marketing. One thing to keep in mind the reason why big companies get big and succeed is because they understand that marketing is vital to maintaining through the tough times and growing in the good times.
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If you want proof that consistent marketing and advertising works, consider the effect the media has had on the “so called” slow economy. The repeated focus on the subject of the slowing economy has created just that, a slow economy.

Any business owner wanting to be successful, even when the economy is sluggish, must make consistent marketing a priority.

Lack of marketing produces lack of clients

Just as your car needs fuel to run, your business needs consistent fuel to operate. Fuel for your business is leads, prospects and clients. Without actively generating leads, your pipeline will eventually dry up. When you’re pipeline dries up then your business is in trouble.

While this may seem logical, not every business owner gets it. Far too often money is spent on marketing tactics that are not planned out and result in a disappointing return on investment. This type of behavior is why business owners believe that marketing is an expense that is easily cut in difficult times. The truth is just the opposite. Poorly planned marketing or failure to invest in marketing at all, will produce poor results.

Investing in your company’s marketing WILL deliver results!


You need a full range of marketing services including annual direct mail marketing campaigns, search engine compliant web design and email marketing and more…

If you feel lost or unsure about how to market your business or need assistance with a new marketing campaign, give Creative Intuition a call. We are here to help.

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4 ideas to improve your web presence and generate more website traffic…

eMail Marketing1 – Email Marketing

Email marketing is a highly effective and inexpensive way to reach your target market directly – they won’t visit your web site every day, but they will check their email. And we can tell who has opened the email or deleted it or clicked on any of the links.

Get in touch to find out how we can get an email marketing program up and running for you.

2 – Search Engine Optimization

How searchable is your website? Are your keywords up to date & do they describe your business well? We can make sure that your website contains all the relevant keywords, that you are registered with the top search engines and that you are using Google webmaster tools like site map & analytics. You can even advertise on Google from as little as 1p per keyword!

Get in touch to find out how we can help improve your websites visibility.

3 – Update your homepage

Sounds obvious doesn’t it?…. but it is very common for websites to have little or no changing content on their homepage. The homepage is your window to the world, many visitors will arrive and leave without visiting any of your other pages so make sure that your most important messages are clearly visible and that the content changes regularly. Also, it may be time to give your site a facelift to make it more visually appealing to visitors.

Get in touch to find out about ideas to improve your homepage.

4 – Start a blogget-blogging

Should you blog?….. absolutely! If you have an opinion on your industry and want to generate debate while at the same time increase your website’s value, and make yourself more visible to search engines… a business blog could be the answer.

Get in touch to find out more about setting up a blog.

The Future of Design is in Good Hands

portfolioToday I had the pleasure of participating in portfolio reviews of a class of design students at a local community college. There were two observations I came away with.

The first observation was, good design can be nurtured anywhere. I know in Phoenix there is a bit of snobbery when it comes to where you went to school for design. Many of the larger firms here turn their noses down on someone who didn’t get their degree from a university. I can personally vouch for that.

Don’t get me wrong, I agree that the design programs at the university level are very good and have very talented instructors and do provide a broader curriculum for the aspiring designer. However, in design, the proof is in the pudding, as they say. I believe a young designers portfolio is the best resume they can have. Also, the art and technical schools have come a long way in recent years and provide a very good education.

I don’t think it’s wise to discount someone based on where they got their degree. If you see a spec of talent in someone then grab onto them, mentor them, inspire them to be the best they can be. I remember kids in my class that I thought were really good but didn’t get that chance and ended up as a lowly desktop publisher at the local print shop. Their raw talent squandered away. Who knows what they are doing now.

My second observation was the high quality of their work. These kids have no practical experience in design but their work was really good. Some of it was ready to go as is, others needed some more refining, but they were on the right track.

Their generation has grown up with so much visual stimulation that they just “get it”. I don’t think I “got it” that quickly. Quite frankly I didn’t even know what graphic design was. I wanted to be a marine biologist when I graduated from high school. It took me about six years to figure it out. I had exposure to the world of layout and design through my yearbook and photography classes but honestly didn’t think that was an actual career. Boy I’m sure glad I figured it out.

I’m happy to say that the future of design is in good hands. I thoroughly enjoyed discussing with these students the methodology behind their work and what their plans for the future were. I was re-inspired about my profession.

Logo Contests

Wow, what a brilliant idea. I really need a new mechanic; I think I’ll run a contest where some local service centers can work on my car for free, then I’ll pick the one who did the best job, pay them what I think it’s worth, and let them use my name as their customer on all their advertising. Meanwhile, the rest of them can add the experience to their resumes, even though they don’t get paid. Everyone wins!!

If your a business owner and you think you are going to bring the best ideas to the top by offering $100 to people participating in a contest to design your company logo, I’m sorry to tell you but the opposite is true. People looking to be the best of the best don’t set foot into design contests because it goes against the basic heart of good logo development.

Forget about the fact that things like this water down design by letting anyone pretend they are a designer. Forget about the fact that its unethical to pay someone such a little fee for something that takes so much skill when done right. Forget about the fact that you’re insulting the REAL designers that could actually help you build your business. BUT think about the fact that what you’re doing is not helping your business, but in fact hurting it. You get what you pay for… Why even bother with a logo if you’re going to skimp on it? Your brand is your first impression to the customer, why chance it that the impression you make will be a bad one.

I’ve linked to some further reading that probably makes these points better than I do. most of these articles link to more articles on the topic.

Graphic design is a profession and professionals get paid for their work.

See AIGA.org to read a good article on how to hire a designer.

Who owns the Copyright?

A lot of clients ask me about copyright. It can be confusing and some designers treat copyright differently than others.

So let me walk you through a very simple scenario. You have a logo designed and you pay for it, so you own it, right? Well, not exactly. What you paid for was the right to use the artwork as your logo, but not for the copyright. Copyright law states that the creator of artwork, in this case, a logo, owns the copyright in it unless and until they transfer it in writing. To obtain those rights, you have to have a document which makes it either work for hire or which transfers all rights, title and interest in the work.

OK, OK I know this doesn’t sound right but that is the way the law is written. However, a designer can easily transfer the copyright to their client, and they should, with a simple “copyright transfer agreement.” This is something you should talk about with your designer if you don’t have one. If you are a client of Creative Intuition we include in our terms and conditions an automatic copyright transfer to our clients. So no need to worry if you are a client of ours, you own the copyright on work we’ve done for you.

However, fonts and photos are copyrighted and not to the designer but to the company that created them. These are not transferable. So if you have a corporate font in your logo that you want to use in other documents just go to MyFonts.com and purchase the one you need. For photographs, make sure that the designer has licensed the usage properly so that you can use the photo in a brochure as well as on your website or other marketing material. The photo will have to be licensed for each use separately.

This is just a simple example of copyright for a logo, if you want to learn more visit the US Copyright Office website. Speaking of web sites the copyright for a website is different. Click Here for a helpful article pertaining to web site copyright.

What Are the Benefits of Digital Printing?

In the hundreds of years since Gutenberg printed his first Bible, one thing has not changed in the printing business: Setup costs remained the same regardless of the quantity. The first copy costs almost as much as printing thousands. Twenty years of rapidly advancing technology have done little to change this fact—until now.

Modern digital-to-plate technology, digital presses and state-of-the-art laser printers have made it possible to produce small quantities of high-quality color products at prices everyone can afford. Aside from cost… there are a number of benefits to using Digital On-Demand Printing.

  • Meeting tight deadlines… quick turn around times.
  • Lower cost for short runs… use 4-color printing for quantities that aren’t cost-effective with traditional printing techniques.
  • Reduce your print inventory and storage space… print only as much as you need and keep your documents on file electronically for future reprints — reduces waste and obsolete literature.
  • Easy to update… changes and revisions are no problem — since files are stored electronically, they can be easily updated and revised. And, since you didn’t need to order a large volume initially, you overcome the problem with discarding outdated literature.
    Personalization… digital printing allow vendors to use your database to personalize information directly into each individual document.

Not all projects are a good fit for digital printing. Contact Creative Intuition to discuss the best printing options for your project.