Nextphase Strategy Blog



5 Tips on How to Write for the Web

Writing for the Internet isn’t rocket science. But some do achieve better results than others. Give the following 5 useful rules a try-- you will notice an improvement.

1. Create keyword-rich content.

Load your writing with keywords for maximum impact. This will optimize ‘searchability’, thus increasing site traffic.

2. Less is better.

Keep each sentence to one line. If your sentences get too long, people will get tired of reading and drift away. They should sound quite conversational.

3. Use headlines.

Headlines break up convoluted paragraphs and make your writing more readable. They also let readers choose which topics they want to read about.

4. Include hyperlinks.

Links engage readers and make it easier for them to check out related information. Your writing becomes more dynamic and less like a textbook.

5. Avoid jargon.

Use plain English and make sure that anyone, not just experts from certain fields, can understand your writing. Keep it simple and concise.





What Colour is Your Business?

Regardless of our culture, gender, or age, we can’t help but be drawn in by the colours surrounding us. Indeed, colours are everywhere, all the time, and they are one of the first elements our brains process when we notice something. Colours are so powerful that they stimulate our nervous system and evoke physiological and emotional states.

Of course, our unique experiences influence how we perceive colours as individuals. This is why the same colour can often mean different things to different people. For example, writing one’s name in red ink may mean nothing to a Norwegian, but it is condemned by a Korean as red is linked to death. So, it should come as no surprise that colour can be part of your marketing strategy to influence your customers’ purchase decisions.

Let’s take a look at some of the most common colours in business and how they are interpreted in North American culture.

  • Red

o   Commands attention
o   Stimulates senses
o   Symbolises energy, excitement and passion
o   Encourages action; thus, a selling colour

  • Yellow

o   Represents cheerfulness and playfulness
o   Uplifts people’s moods
o   Stimulates mental activity
o   A fun, happy colour

  • Green

o   Creates a sense of calm
o   Associated with nature, environment, vitality, and health
o   Soothing on the eye
o   Colour of money 

  • Blue

o   Most popular colour in business and in general
o   Implies loyalty, trust, and conservatism
o   Reduces tension and fear
o   A reliable, responsible colour

  • Black

o   Suggests authority, boldness, and stability
o   A classic, luxurious feel
o   The ultimate power colour
o   Can add seriousness or weight to a brand

  • White

o   Colour of new beginnings
o   Symbolizes simplicity and organization
o   Associated with innocence and peace
o   Adds purity and transparency to a brand

Now, take a look at the colours used in your business’s brand assets: your logo, brochures, business cards, office, website, and so on.  And remember to take into account your target market. Are your colours painting the picture you want reflected in your marketplace? 





B2B vs. B2C Marketing: What's the Difference?

Broadly speaking, both B2B and B2C marketing involve selling a product or service to a customer. However, there are fundamental differences between these two types of marketing.

Put simply, B2B marketing is brain-driven, while B2C marketing is heart-driven. In other words, B2B marketing makes use of logic, whereas B2C marketing makes use of emotions. Let’s delve a little deeper into what distinguishes one from the other.

B2B Marketing:

·      Centered around relationships
·      Smaller, more focused audience
·      Lower customer turnover rate
·      Educational, awareness-building work to turn prospects into clients
·      High cost of sales
·      Logical purchase process driven by business value
·      Longer sales cycle

B2C Marketing:

·      Centered around products/transactions
·      Larger, broader audience
·      Higher customer turnover rate
·      Aggressive promotional work to turn shoppers into buyers
·      Wide range of cost of sales
·      Emotional purchase process driven by benefits and desires
·      Shorter sales cycle 

The most effective marketing occurs when you understand what your specific market requires to make a purchase decision. What are your thoughts on the key differences between B2B and B2C marketing? Share your comments below.





Top 5 Tips for Professional Marketing Material

Even with the importance of the web these days, most companies still have a need for printed materials – whether they are brochures, product sheets, newsletters, presentation folders, trade-show hand-outs, direct mail, case studies and so on. Here are our top five tips for developing compelling, sales-oriented marketing materials.

1.   Define whom you are writing for. Resist the urge to develop content for a variety of audiences. Appeal to your main audience with content that will lead them to take action.

2.   Hook them with the headline. The headline is what will initially capture attention and prompt the reader to read on. Make sure that it is short, concise and communicates a key benefit.

3.   Use subheads to guide content. Subheads help guide your reader through your document, separating it into manageable, readable sections. They can also highlight benefits and keep interest at a peak. Used appropriately, they’re powerful tools for getting your message across clearly and effectively.

4.   Be sure all your materials have a ‘family look’. Every piece of literature doesn't have to look identical, but they should all look planned as a compatible unit. Picture all of your marketing materials laid in front of you on a conference table. Does it all look like it comes from the same company? It should.

5.   Invest in good images. Companies sometimes scrimp on getting good photos of their equipment, job sites, people and projects. Strong, professional photography will go a long way to reflecting the quality of your product or service while amateur snapshots can give a poor impression. Consider professional photography as an investment in your future.