How Not to Kill Your Marketing Team

Shepherds. They tend their sheep daily. They guide them, rear them, and teach them. It is their duty to protect the flock and count each sheep’s lil’ fluffy head to ensure none have wandered astray. For thousands of years, shepherds have watched over their flocks with care.

I’ve heard business leaders use the analogy of shepherds and sheep when they talk about managing their workforces. The analogy can be poignant. If there’s a leader (shepherd) who cares for his or her employees (sheep), protects them, and guides them along their way in developing their skills and furthering their careers, I know I’d want to be part of that shepherd’s flock! Wouldn’t you? It sounds great!

Here’s the rub…and it’s not a fluffy . . .

Read more

Oh boy have things gotten heated in the world of advertising and marketing!

Political ads and radical brands are certainly on the rise in our new American political order, as FastCo recently discussed. It is becoming quite ‘en vogue’ to use politics as yet another tool in the marketing tool belt.

I’ve certainly seen this confirmed in recent events, not least being the various politically-tinged ads during the last Super Bowl. And of course there’s the politically-fueled feud that erupted between Uber and Lyft the weekend of Trump’s immigration policy announcement a few weeks ago. This was a particularly interesting episode in the saga of brands dealing with politics that directly affect their staff and customers. (If you haven’t heard much about this . . .

Read more

You can’t wait until your project is “perfect” – you’ll never introduce it to the world…because perfect is a lie. Sometimes it’s better to ship it, gather feedback, then make it better. Plus, your community can give you important outside perspectives and ideas. You can’t get to remarkable on your own.

That’s pretty much where we were with our Brand Maturity Assessment. You know how we always say, “Iterate, then re-iterate?” We don’t just preach it. We actually did it.

The first version of the assessment was a great…first version! With the amazing feedback we received from clients and our community, we’ve built out the meat of the report and made the assessment itself more intuitive.

Here’s what’s new:

Tool tips that can give . . .

Read more

You know that sensation you get when you feel yourself being equally pulled in 87 different directions? That unmistakeable strain and just a touch of anxiety? Well, that’s been Mike…pretty much all year. Sometimes being a CEO is mostly about figuring out things you don’t have to do.

Enter Eric.

Eric came to Resound mainly to manage our creative team and delight our clients. He comes from a background in military and law enforcement, which is obviously quite perfect for wrangling us creative cats.

After earning his BA in Psychology (minor in Child Development) from ASU, Eric went straight into law enforcement after a military officer training experience. Sidenote: boot camp was fun for him…so we’re a little nervous. While he had sights . . .

Read more

A video posted by Mike Jones (@remarkamike) on Nov 15, 2016 at 7:58am PST

It seems like the business conference industry is hitting a new high.

Beyond the big guys like SXSW, CES, Inbound, and Dreamforce, I’m seeing loads of other conferences joining the space. And it’s been fun seeing some newer conferences starting up in the Phoenix area – like last week’s NextCon (put on by Nextiva).

When I first discovered NextCon earlier this year, I was intrigued:

it’s Nextiva’s first time putting on this conference
they had some big-time speakers lined up (Steve Wozniak and Guy Kawasaki)
they hosted it locally in . . .

Read more

Every year, the folks at AIGA Arizona put on Phoenix Design Week – a week dedicated to the vibrant design community in Phoenix. The week typically kicks off with Method + Madness, a two-day design conference hosted in the heart of Downtown Phoenix.

I attended both days of the conference, held down the fort at our Taftly pop-up shop, and picked up some valuable insights from the presenting speakers.

The first day began with a keynote speech from AIGA Director, Julie Anixter. She talked about how understanding the business of design is just as important as understanding design itself. Designers are more than just designers – they’re facilitators, leaders, researchers, system thinkers, narrators, visualizers, strategists, educators, innovators, and entrepreneurs.

If designers understand the . . .

Read more

Sales copy.

There’s a lot of tips, tricks, strategies, pointers, methods, angles, and tactics out there on how to make a sale.

But guess what, it’s really easy to slip from serving your customers down the dark, slimy, creepy-crawly path of manipulation.

At Resound, we believe that marketing is really about making connections between remarkable companies and the people that are already looking for them. (Check out this blog post by David Cosand circa 2013.)

The world is waiting for you to be you. Sales should be about showing off the DNA of your company – the authentic identity that makes you unique.

That’s what helps you position in relation to competitors.

Read more

Brand New Conference 2016 Recap

Brand New Conference is a two-day event by Under Consideration on brand identity – chock-full of inspirational talks from some of the design industry’s most significant contributors. Mike and I had the opportunity to attend this year in Nashville (aptly nicknamed the “Athens of the South” – seriously, they even have a full-scale replica of the Parthenon).

There was an implicit, common thread among the speakers this year: make something and own it – for yourself and for your clients. Every organization has a unique story to tell. Designers have the power to support our clients’ sheer force of will and guide where that energy goes. Each of us can help our clients – and ourselves – by truly owning the . . .

Read more

A delighted customer will come back and bring their friends.

Isn’t that every business’s dream scenario—to create experiences so remarkable that their customers not only want to continue to do business with them, but also tell all their friends? I know that’s what I want.

Experiences like that can only be built upon one foundation: a great brand.

And that’s where the problem comes in. It can be a struggle to cultivate a great brand. You want to create the kinds of compelling experiences that really “wow” your customers, and you might be suspicious that brand concept has something to do with it…but it’s all so abstract! You’re not sure where to start.

I feel for you. I really do. Branding is one . . .

Read more

The details are not the details. They make the design. — Charles Eames

As some of you already know, Resound is going through its own brand redesign. If you haven’t been following us, here’s our new logo roll out.

After branding so many companies, we figured we should practice what we preach. We’re finalizing brighter colors, creative fonts, and foundational values (among many other things). And that brings us to our topic today…textures!

Kelsey Jones — Instagram: @ms_j77

A couple months ago, the very talented Kelsey Jones (Instagram: @ms_j77) painted some beautiful watercolor and oil paintings for us to use as textures. We’re so stoked to introduce them to you in our new look!

There are so many creative people in this world — think . . .

Read more