Happy December, folks. Where has 2012 gone? Hope you all are enjoying the holiday season and are able to keep your heads on straight in all the chaos. Over here, we’re doing just fine. We’re busy with some super cool projects, and thankful as ever to serve a great client base. (On that note, we’re also really thankful for coffee).
For the rest of you coffee lovers – we thought we’d give you a great excuse to take a break and enjoy a good ol’ cup of joe, so without further adieu, here are a few ad industry articles for your coffee break today.
“Small Agencies Crush Big Ones: It’s Not Even Close” – Okay, we just love this article from AdAge. It sums up a lot of what we’re all about over here at RP. Here’s our favorite quote from the article – “Agencies truly come down to one thing — people. Interactions, camaraderie and synergies are the key ingredients for success. They are fueled by a culture that encourages this. Small agencies consider culture a key priority.” Agreed, agreed, agreed. Well said, AdAge. Read the article here.
This post is coming to you a week early, but we celebrated Thanksgiving at the office this week, so we’re in THANKFUL mode (or should we say thankFULL mode).
Yesterday, we took a break from our daily schedules of creating, meeting, writing, programming, coordinating and designing to do something we all love: EAT. And eat we did. We had the entire table in the graphics room covered with delicious dishes. The yummy smells of green bean casserole, turkey, stuffing and the rest of the food are still lingering here at the office. The whole meal was delicious. But the best part of it all, was being able to all gather together and celebrate our thankfulness for each other, the work we do together, our families, our clients and all the blessings that have been given to us. It really put us in the mindset of gratitude and prepared us for the holiday season, a time that we often find ourselves scrambling to keep our heads on straight while juggling work projects and family activities and this event and that get together and so on and so forth. Amidst the chaos – we must remember to be thankful. So, in honor of yesterdays fabulous feast and the upcoming holiday, here just a short list of some things we’re really grateful for over here at RP.
– We’re thankful for a God who watches over us, and who guides our daily lives and continues to bless the entire crew at Rudkin Productions.
– We’re thankful for each other and the fact that we truly have a work family.
– We’re thankful for clients who we love to work with. Our clients are extended members of the Rudkin Productions family – and we are truly honored to serve them in their marketing and advertising needs.
– We’re thankful that we’re able to be a part of awesome projects, like this one.
– We’re thankful for our leader, who is selfless, motivating, encouraging – and makes our work lives pretty darn cool.
– We’re thankful that Thanksgiving came twice for us this year, once this week and once next week (bring on the turkey, baby!).
– We’re thankful for coffee – which we drink a lot of over here.
– We’re thankful to be in an industry that we love, that is exciting, challenging and fun.
We could go on and on and on. Basically, we just wanted to take a moment out of the busyness that this time of year brings and express our gratitude for what we have. We hope you enjoy your Thanksgiving and are able to take some time to relax and reflect on everything you’re thankful for.
We’re constantly having conversations with new and existing clients about social media. While some folks think it’s the best thing since sliced bread, others are wary of it and just aren’t sure it’s for them or their business. We understand, we really do. Because, when used correctly, social media really can be pretty darn sweet, build and maintain relationships and create a buzz about your brand (personal, business or otherwise) – BUT – when used incorrectly, social media can be destructive, hinder relationships and eliminate potential leads. There are thousands of articles out there about how to manage your social media reputation, and it wouldn’t hurt to read a few and keep up with the dos and don’ts of the ever-changing social sphere. Here’s a short version of what we know to be true regarding the good, bad and the ugly of social media.
Personal Social Accounts:For those looking for a job, establishing themselves as a professional or want people to take them seriously.
The Bad & The Ugly:
Sure, your personal Facebook page isn’t a corporate account and it should be a casual, fun place to connect with friends and families, but how far is too far when it comes to sharing and posting? Well I’m sure we’re not the only ones who have witnessed Facebook accounts with simply TMI. You have to remember, this is not private. Even if you have high privacy settings, people can still find a way to see your page. Friends can tag pictures of you, and if their pages aren’t private, neither are the pictures. Here’s a good rule of thumb to use: if you wouldn’t want your boss, your mother-in-law or your grandmother to see it… don’t put it on Facebook or Twitter. This is especially true for those of you out there that are looking for jobs or building your professional image. Potential employees will look you up on Facebook – and if the first thing they see are your bikini and booze pics from a college spring break trip – they might think twice about bringing you on to their team. Monitor your content – watch your language, your photos and your conversations about work.
The Good: Use your social platforms to promote the best parts of your personality. Be funny, share your thoughts and dreams. Keep people updated on where you live, what you’re up to and if you’re on the market for a job, a new house, or anything in between, like a new hairstylist. You’ll be surprised by how many leads and connections you’ll get through a simple status update! Use your network to your benefit. Plan events, keep in touch with colleagues and friends, post pictures of your family, your vacations and your life events. Let your personality shine and use these platforms to build bridges, maintain relationships and represent your very best Y-O-U. Social media is fun, so have fun with it! Just remember to play it safe when it comes to hurting your reputation by what you’re posting.
Business Social Accounts:From small agencies and mom-and-pop shops all the way up to the big dogs – these rules apply to you!
The Bad & The Ugly:
More and more companies are jumping on the social media bandwagon. This is great, because social media is a wonderful tool that is an effective way of creating a two-way conversation with new and existing customers. Some companies haven’t quite gotten the hang of generating the right content for their social accounts, resulting in some major social media fails. Here are a few things we’ve seen firsthand and read about regarding no-no’s when it comes to business social accounts.
Don’t be too stiff. Sure, you’re professional – but Facebook and Twitter are social platforms, with real people who want to have real conversations. Loosen up and be personable. Show a little personality, don’t be too uptight. PRDaily put it best in a recent article when they wrote, “Lose the arrogance, be approachable, and humanize the brand. It’s really that simple.”
Slow and steady wins the race. This really is true, folks, when it comes to social media. Sure, everyone would like to start a Facebook page and have 2,000 followers overnight, but unless you’re Kim Kardashian, that’s probably not realistic. The followers and relationships formed on your social accounts that come organically and over time are the ones that will be most heavily engaged and worthwhile to your brand. 100 followers who actually read what you’re posting are much better than 2,000 followers who never take a second look at your page. Slow and steady, nice and easy. Build your presence, and the followers will come. (Anyone thinking of Field of Dreams right now? “If you build it, they will come.”) Bottom line, don’t force the “Likes” and the “Follows” just for the sake of having them. Your content should be good enough to establish a natural appeal and engagement.
Don’t oversell. Sure, if we’re being honest, the point of your Facebook page is to increase revenue. You’re not paying your social media manager to just sit around and play on Facebook and Twitter all day for the fun of it. But try not to make this so obvious to your consumers. Don’t just push the sales. Push the relationships, and the sales will follow.
The good parts of social media are that once you get the hang of it – you can use it as a very effective marketing tool. Use your social platforms to sell, but also to increase your reputation as a pro in the industry, to make your current clients feel loved and appreciated, to give consumers a look into the folks behind the scenes at your office, to connect with community members and businesses, as so on. Take a look at these articles to help you make your social platforms the best that they can be:
Sorry for the blog silence this past week. We’ve been hustling and bustling and meeting and greeting and starting and finishing and designing and editing and calling and answering and planning and coordinating and our heads are spinning with all these awesome projects we’re working on and…We wouldn’t have it any other way (yes I am aware that was a major run-on sentence). You see, for folks in the industry we’re in, this is the life. We’re dreamers, thinkers, doers, believers, planners, jugglers, magicians, artists, I-think-I-canners. Dare I say, we thrive in the chaos? We also really privileged to work with clients we love. Good people with good businesses and plans. To all the clients out there who trust us and let us help you build and create, please know how much we appreciate you.
Anyway – We’re working on some really cool projects, and we can’t wait to share them with the world. We’re also working on adding more of our work to the portfolio section on our website, so come back soon and check it out. We promise to be more diligent about blogging and sharing our news/work/industry insight with you. Until then – here’s some great reads we’ve found recently. And, yes, you guessed it, this is where the title of the blog post comes in…These reads do pair nicely with a cup of joe. So, without further adieu, grab your favorite mug and your reading glasses and take a five minute break for these good coffee break reads:
Oh no, the candy companies are coming for the adults! A great read entitled, “Chocolate and Its Friends Await the Callers” published in the NY Times discusses the ad campaigns candy companies are coming out with for Halloween to appeal to both kids and adults. Click here to read the article.
“Don’t be a Social Media One Hit Wonder” – This article from PR Daily breaks down the do’s and don’ts of social media and gives great insight on how to build a sustainable social media strategy. As you can tell by our previous posts (refer here and here and here), we like social media. Click here to read the article.
With Pinterest users increasing daily, brands are scheming on how to use the social site to increase sales. “Retailers Pin Hopes on Christmas,” by AdWeek, might give you some insight into how to Pin to your company’s best interest. Click here to read the article.
Okay – this one is just funny. Since we spend a lot of time proofing to avoid spelling and grammatical errors such as these, we got a real kick out of this article. “5 Terrible Tattoo Typos” – Click here to read the article.
Albert Einstein once said, “It is the supreme art of the teacher to awaken joy in creative expression and knowledge.”
We agree with old Albert, and we are passionate about finding ways to awaken joy in creative expression and knowledge in the young people in our community. We are grateful for opportunities to teach, to pass along our wisdom and our love for the work we do, and we always end up learning along the way.
In the summer of 2011, we had the honor of hosting four young, talented students in a summer internship program, called Illuminate. It’s hard to believe it has been over a full year since they were here working alongside us. It was a joy to have them, to teach them and to watch them learn and grow over the summer. We love our work and we enjoyed having the opportunity to share our passions and talents with these students.
Kathy Rudkin, the brains behind this whole operation known as Rudkin Productions, was quoted in the Boerne Star, saying “The internship program allows local students, who have shown remarkable talent in the field of advertising or broadcasting, to hone in on their skills and work with an actual client while having access to an array of professionals in the industry.”
The mission of the internship program was two-fold: to give back to the community and introduce new talent to the advertising industry. The Hill Country Pregnancy Care Center (HCPCC) was chosen from an array of local non-profits to receive the benefits of the program. Our four superstar interns were on the project from day one, from the initial client meeting through the complete and finished campaign. Our team here at RP developed the campaign and put it in the hands of these talented students to make it come to life. From revamping the HCPCC website, brochures and other print materials to expanding fundraising efforts and creating a promotional video – the group covered it all. They conducted interviews, researched other pregnancy centers, wrote copy, shot video, edited and designed. The foursome became a part of the Rudkin crew from the beginning and were given full access to to the whole creative staff. It was a summer full of learning, engaging and growing. We were so happy to be able to host these young people as they spent the summer working alongside us. For more information on the internship program and the work done for HCPCC, click here.
Here are a few pictures of Hilary Commer, Ryan Travis, Emma Rudkin and Maddie Inglish, AKA our four superstar interns:
Fast forward to the spring of 2012, when we had another opportunity to take a break from our fast-paced days and spend some time engaging in the young students in our community. We had been approached by Boerne Middle School South teacher, Sandie Ford, about hosting a field trip for the students in her two Exploring Careers classes. We were thrilled to be able to give these students a glimpse into our industry. For two days in a row, we watched as a big yellow school bus pulled up to our building and poured out a handful of smiling middle school students, happy to be out of the classroom during school hours and on a field trip. Kathy lead the students through a tour of the agency and adjacent print shop, while giving project examples and answering questions from the attentive students.
It was such a fun opportunity for us to give back to the students of our community. We hope to see some of those students come back in a couple of years as interns!
Here are a few pictures from the field trips:
Reflecting on these experiences makes us grateful for the opportunity to invest in young people. We can all remember teachers, educational programs, mentors, internships, etc., that sparked a flame in our minds and kept us motivated to get where we are now. We are grateful for those people and experiences, and hope to have provided that for the students that have come through our doors. Looking forward to more!