Category: Thoughts

GDPR Confused? Let &Marketing Be Your Guide

Whether you’re a consumer, a brand owner, or fall somewhere in between, chances are your inbox has been flooded over the last few weeks with emails about privacy updates and requests to confirm your subscriptions and placement on lists. This is all because of the GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) that the EU rolled out as law of the land as of May 25th. GDPR applies to all of us, not just those who live within the European Union. All aspects of your site and business must be compliant for anyone visiting it from the EU whether you reside there or not. Plus, it’s likely this initiative will be adopted by the United States eventually.

Sounds complicated, right? The “G” in GDPR can start to stand for “grey area” if you stare at the language laid out in the requirements for too long. GDPR compliance is important, but it doesn’t have to be complex. With the influx of checklists, articles, how-to guides, and scary memes, many businesses have lost sight of the intention behind GDPR, which is to require us all to communicate what we are doing with people’s personal information in a clear and effective way. At &Marketing we always strive for transparency and concise, easy to understand information, and we’ve made it our job to understand the essentials of GDPR so it’s an easier process for you. So, what are the most important takeaways from all of these new requirements?

Update your privacy policy. Users of your website need to know what personal information is being captured along with the marketing tools your company is using. Take a look at the example below, which cleanly and clearly displays the ways personal data is being used and the exact details being taken for those purposes.

Update all marketing products and tools you use.Whether it’s social media scheduling, Google AdWords, or any other third party tool, these programs should be notifying users that they’ve updated their policies as well. The company you work with should either notify you and direct you toward their updated policy, or display a banner or pop-up to prompt you of these changes and require you to accept in order to continue using the product.

&Marketing has discovered a system to work with you to become compliant. We’ve done the research and found a tool that easily communicates updates to your website and company policies, including privacy and cookies. We use iubenda.com (https://www.iubenda.com/), which pulls in the typical marketing data sources along with the information collected for their use. They also have a cookie policy and offer guidelines for opting out of services. All of these tools can be fully embedded onto all of your selected web pages, so you won’t have to copy and paste to each one individually.

Still overwhelmed? &Marketing is here to help. If you’re unsure where to start the process of becoming GDPR compliant, reach out to us. We’ll guide you through the process, starting with a free one-hour consultation. We at &Marketing believe in transparency, and we want to share that transparency with you.

Contact &Marketing now for your free GDPR compliance consultation.

Why Diversity Is One of Our Greatest Strengths

Rainbow flags and parades are common spectacles during the month of June, a prominent indication that Pride Month has arrived. Throughout this first month of summer, the LGBTQ+ community and its allies celebrate the rainbow of identity that makes us all unique. The last Sunday of the month of originally recognized as Gay Pride Day in remembrance of the Stonewall Riots of 1969 in Manhattan, which was a benchmark of the Gay Liberation Movement. Now, the commemoration of this event has evolved into a month-long celebration of diversity, where people come together to recognize individuality and the path toward equality.

Here at &Marketing, we pride ourselves in supporting and honoring diversity in all its forms. Our biggest strength is that we embrace what makes each of our team members and clients different, using our backgrounds, culture, and work styles to bring out the best in ourselves and each other. We bring together a collection of individuals from various races, religions, sexual orientations, professional experiences, and personalities to channel their strengths and build them up, because we invest in who people are above all else.

Our business culture revolves around a remote work environment, with employees bringing their passion and expertise from both big cities and tiny towns to their daily tasks. We’re a blend of immigrants, globetrotters, nomads, and homebodies. Some of us are the most productive with the buzz and bustle in the background of a coffee shop, whereas others prefer the privacy of a home office. From small start-ups to Fortune 500 companies, our experience varies as much as our education. We have introverts, extroverts, motivators, harmonizers, writers, and speakers strategizing together. These work styles and backgrounds shape our strengths and skill sets to sharpen each of our tools in a special way, so that no two of our tool belts are exactly the same.

These differences, along with our open and accepting environment, combine to create a diversity of expertise and experience that puts &Marketing in a unique position. We’re able to offer a breadth of ideation and perspective that clients would be hard-pressed to find anywhere else. The good intentions and the positive, welcoming demeanor of our people is the glue that keeps our team working together toward the same goal. Diversity and acceptance was built into the core of our culture from the ground up, creating a pillar of pride in who each of us are. After all, we know everyone works better when we work &.

&Marketing is an equal opportunity employer that celebrates each color of the rainbow every day of the year, and our team is growing! Please review our open job postings,and follow us on LinkedIn.

Tell Me a Story: The Art and Craft of Meaningful Messaging

Content marketing is everywhere. A quick google search leads to thousands of items hawked by hundreds of companies, each trying to outdo the other and gain that all-important conversion. In this world of abundant information, how can you rise above the fray? How can you convince a prospect that your product or service beats the others?

Stop selling. Start telling.

I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.

Maya Angelou

Most people instinctively want to prove their widget is better with fancy graphs and statistics. They’ll use the latest and greatest jargon and pepper their prose with awkward acronyms. They might even explain a before and after or use astonishingly amazing alliteration. But they often miss the point—what really sets you apart isn’t the quality of your product or the expertise of your service—it’s your story.

What is a story?

Apologies to English teachers everywhere, but content marketing stories don’t necessarily have to follow a traditional five-step character arc. Brands should focus on telling stories that are:

  • Simple. Many companies want to include every bit of information in every piece of content, or convey too much technical information. This is especially difficult for those in highly technical industries. Your customer may not be on the tech side; even if they are, they don’t want to be bombarded with detailed specifications at first glance.
  • Emotional.  Don’t worry, we don’t mean your software solution has to make grown men cry. An emotional impact can be as simple as your prospect imagining the feeling of relief she’ll get when her product is FDA compliant. A better world is possible—you can make it happen.
  • Actionable. Don’t be coy. Make life easy on your prospect by painting a picture of what happens next. What can they expect? Don’t explain that it works—explain how it works. Then, most importantly, follow through.
  • Authentic. Tread carefully. You know you’re not being real when you’re trying too hard to be real. Consumers are cynical and savvy, they can spot disingenuousness a mile away. Don’t tell them the story you think they want to hear—tell the one that matters.

Here’s the catch: brand stories are best told by storytellers. Subject matter experts are rarely capable of crafting a compelling story. Your engineers are likely actual geniuses, your CEO a dynamic and visionary leader. But even if they are excellent weavers of words and tellers of tales, they’re too close. A talented marketing team can build a brand with insights even the founder couldn’t imagine. And of course, even if your engineers are secretly experts in product launches, their time is likely better spent perfecting their product or ideating a new one.

Wondering how you can turn your dull deliverables into quality content? Contact the storytellers at &Marketing today and discover how compelling your company can be.

Make Your Message Matter: Identifying and Promoting Your Superpowers

Ever feel a disconnect between the message you want to convey about your business and what you actually say?

At &Marketing, we understand that how you frame your message is key to how your clients—and prospects—see you. That’s why we’re proud to share this handy guide on uncovering and promoting your unique superpowers, written by our very own Chris “The Brain.” After reading, you’ll understand:

  • The top three messaging mistakes smart people make
  • How to help a prospect work with you before they make a big commitment
  • Valuable insights on what you’re *actually* selling
  • How to better discuss your unique position
  • & more!

Uncover Your Superpower

Still wondering to craft your unique message? We can help. &Marketing’s team of superpower sleuths can help you develop clear, engaging messaging that converts prospects into customers—faster than a speeding bullet. Consider us your personal Lois Lane.