Branding Your Business

Branding BusinessHave you taken a look at the branding of your business lately?  Branding is an important area in your marketing that can easily be overlooked.  There are many areas to branding – today I’m talking about the visual:

  • E-mail Address: Is it something like sandi@sandrakaydesign.com?  You can usually get email addresses like this through your website host.
  • E-mail Signature: Do you have ALL of your contact and social media links in your signature?
  • Business Cards: Same as the e-mail signature – include your social media links.
  • Website and Social Media Profiles: Logos, colors, fonts, and photos should be the same across all of these avenues and should be echoed in your business cards and signature as well.

User experience and recognition of your brand across all of these areas is very important.  You want your users to recognize you. With all of the custom design options available on the social media sites, this is easy to accomplish with your web designer.  This is one of my favorite and most rewarding areas to work.

How’s your brand looking?  Let me know in the comments below.  I’d love to check it out. And… have a great week!

Sandi

Designers and Spec Work

I thought I’d share this great little video on designers and spec work. It makes some great points… Enjoy.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this subject in the comments below.

-Sandi

Search Engine Optimization and Keywords

client's shoesHave you put yourself in your customer’s or client’s shoes lately? This is an important little exercise while looking for the appropriate keywords that will connect your website and other media to your target audience.  Do you know what your keywords are? Do you change them periodically to optimize your search results?

It’s easy to forget about this important part of SEO and when you do think about it do you know what to do with those keywords? Here are some areas where your keywords should make an appearance:

  • In your Content of course
  • In your website’s Title Tag
  • In the Meta Description
  • Header Tags
  • Image and Alt Tags
  • In your Links

If you don’t know what these areas are, talk to your web designer and make sure this is included in your website.

Have a great 4th of July!

Sandi

Burnout

It was a Friday night. The night of commencement. I was beat. Happy to be at home, I checked Facebook. A friend had messaged me saying that I was graduating with honors and wondering if I was there (at commencement).  Um. No. It was a rather anti-climactic end to my college career but I was fine with it. One word could explain my lackluster attitude at the end: BURNOUT. Yes, I’m happy to be graduating, and with honors to boot! Don’t get me wrong. But I was tired.

The next week was spent on a road trip with my kids. I looked at Facebook only to keep up with friends. I completely ignored everything else.  Aaaaaah!  Big sigh!  This week I can feel it’s starting to come back… that excitement over social media and web design… that excitement to help businesses with their online presence.

We need to re-boot once in a while. We need to take a break. If we don’t, we lose our passion. What do you do to avoid burnout or recover from it? Let me know below. And have a great day!

Sandi

Advanced Digital Imaging – Final Project

I can’t believe this is my final project already!  I loved this class! Here it is – my Photo Montage: A Sense of Place. I used a total of 5 of my own photos.

Advanced Digital Imaging

They Just Don’t Make Em Like They Used To: Part 2

Here is the other church I took photos of. Unfortunately I couldn’t find any information on it’s history.

church architecture

church architecture

church architecture

On this last photo I took out the red railings. On the first photo I took out a telephone pole and wires. Oh how I love Photoshop!

Architecture In Our Churches: They Just Don’t Make Em Like They Used To

Today’s post is the first of 2 in which I’m sharing photos of churches that I took recently for the purpose of a photo montage project. I love the beauty of these buildings and find it a bit sad that they just don’t make em like they used to.

In 1885, this first church building was constructed at a cost of $1,300 on donated land:

Photo of church

In 1927 at a cost of approximately $45,000 this new church was built:

So much beauty and detail. I’m afraid we don’t want to know how much it would cost to build it today.

Platform: Get Noticed In A Noisy World

Platform is a new book coming out by Michael Hyatt. No, I’m not getting paid to promote it. I just think it’s a good book and would like to recommend it if you happen to be someone with something to say or sell to the world. I’ve just started reading it and have already found it to be valuable. You can read more about it on michaelhyatt.com and be sure to check out the bonuses you get if you order it by the end of today!

I’m sure you’ll see some reviews on portions of this book in the coming weeks right here.

Have you read any great business books lately?  What do you recommend?

Have a great Memorial Day weekend and happy reading!

Sandi

Advanced Digital Imaging

Happy Friday! I’ve been enjoying my Advanced Digital Imaging class so much, I thought I’d share a few recent projects. All of the photos are my own. Both projects consist of 2 blended photos. To me, they depict summer and the places I love. Enjoy and have a great weekend!  -Sandi

Blended photo project

Blended photo project

Continuing Education

educationAs a small business owner, what do you do to educate yourself and stay up on the latest developments in your industry? With our world constantly changing, it’s a subject we can’t avoid. I’d like to explore a few options here and I’d really like to hear about your sources of education.

Lynda.com has become a favorite of mine. If they were accepting new applications to their affiliate program, I’d probably apply. They have a total of 1347 courses ranging in subjects from Home Computing, Business, Design, Photography, and the list goes on. A Lynda.com membership has become part of my business budget and it’s so worth it.

Another source for education which is a bit more informal and is something I do almost every day is reading blogs. I have a number of blogs I read that deal with Social Media Marketing and Web Design. It’s always the latest information and keeps me up to date on the latest trends which makes it easier for me to help my clients be more effective.

Finally, I will occasionally follow the groups I’ve joined on LinkedIn. These groups are an informal way to get a glimpse of other peoples problems and the solutions that are offered by colleagues. They are a great source of help and a great way to help others if you have the experience.

So, how do you keep up on the latest in your industry? I’d love to hear about it in the comments below.

Sandi

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