If you have a Growth Voucher and need marketing advice, we can help!
We’ve been approved as a Growth Voucher Adviser and, because have Chartered Institute of Public Relations members within our team and have Professional Indemnity Insurance, we can now accept ‘Marketing & Customer Service’ vouchers.
You can exchange your voucher for up to £2,000 of strategic advice on how to market your business.
Announced in the 2013 Budget, the Growth Vouchers programme is a £30 million fund that will enable small business to access expert advice. The Government will match your investment, so you can turn £2,000 into £4,000 of help and support. It’s worth noting you can invest more or less than £2,000 but the Government’s top contribution will be £2,000.
Madonna and her now infamous plunge this week got everyone in the office wondering the same thing: why has Madonna’s gaffe gotten loads more media coverage than anything else having to do with the Brit Awards – including the winners?
After a bit of a discussion, we concluded that media simply love a bit of drama and unexpected controversy. This isn’t new news, though. We know this because we’re all blessed with seeing Kanye West and Kim Kardashian’s faces in print and online on a near daily basis.
What makes the Brit Awards different is that it in itself is an extremely newsworthy event and a PR generator that all of the nominees and winners were likely banking on to provide a bit of a boost for their own publicity.
Instead, after a quick search on various websites for ‘Brit Awards’, we found that all of the top-of-the-page articles included Madonna’s fall in the headline – and when we clicked to read the stories, text about the fall was at the top and the winners were way down at the bottom of the page.
Yes, Madonna’s fall was part of the Brit Awards, but it was a five-second blip of a two hour long event, yet it got the majority of the headlines in the end – as well as several follow-up stories about her cape being tied too tight and experiencing a bit of whiplash, which have kept her name in the headlines in the run up to her new album’s release.
So what can we learn from this blunder? It’s that it doesn’t matter if you lose the competition, or even if you take a bad step or say the wrong thing. You can still ‘win’ if your mishap helps you stand out from the crowd at an event.
**Lava does not condone or take responsibility for injuries acquired as a result of trying to make your presence known at an event.
Have you ever thought that the font type you chose for your logo could say something about you and your business? Have you ever sat next to someone who has sneered at a Comic Sans logo? I would be surprised if you haven’t been in that situation, as this is just one font that seems to be able to curl the toes of most creative types.
Choosing a suitable font for your logo is an integral part of the design process.
When designing a logo, you’re attempting to communicate multiple complex messages in the simplest form possible. When you have only limited space to write just a few words or in most cases just a name, the typeface you use can portray your company’s name or catchy slogan can say a lot, not just about your company’s motives, but your characteristics as well.
Pick the right font and it will amplify the meaning of the words, pick the wrong one and you will be sending mixed messages, which could be nothing short of disaster.
So which font should you choose? My advice is to experiment, that way you’ll quickly be able to see which style is right for you. For those who aren’t confident knowing their Sans Serif from their Serif, here’s my quick guide to the types of fonts on offer for your business and the psychology behind them:
Serif fonts – think Times New Roman or Baskerville. These fonts are characterised by a slight decorative projection added as an embellishment to a letter. Implying a sense of tradition, respectability and reliability, they’re like old friends, but be warned, a younger crowd might see them as too ‘old school’. A company that wants to emphasise its pedigree or heritage would do well to choose a Serif font.
Sans serif fonts –think Helvetica, Ariel or Franklin Gothic. Clean, simple and futuristic, Sans Serif typefaces are very popular, especially in educational applications. They’re easy to read making them ideal for the visually impaired. These work well for companies that want to send out a straightforward message and give the impression of reliability and honesty.
Modern fonts – these fonts include Futura, Avant Garde and Century Gothic. Strong and dependable but with a touch of sophistication, modern fonts suit forward looking brands and can be good for fashion lines, companies in niche markets, luxury brands and purveyors of the exclusive.
Script fonts – cursive and handwritten fonts can be beautiful but proceed with caution! Care needs to be taken over legibility when using a font like Zapfino or Scriptina. A logo font may be reduced in size for stationery or similar, and nobody is going to understand a message they can’t read or remember an illegible company name. However, these issues notwithstanding, a script can convey elegance, femininity or creativity. A font that looks genuinely handwritten can also give your design a sense of informality or spontaneity.
Novelty fonts – a novelty or display typeface is any typeface that’s a lbit different from the norm and generally one that you wouldn’t want to read a whole body of text in. These can work well for logos and singular words, however, staff and customers alike may quickly tire of something overly childish (unless, of course, it is for a brand that is aimed at children).
Custom fonts – can’t find what you really want in a typeface? Then you could always have a custom font designed. For companies like Coca-Cola, Disney and Pinterest customised fonts have become synonymous with their brand. It’s an expensive option but one that will give you everything you want; text that stands out, a recognisable and unique typeface, consistency and above all the freedom to do what you want.
So remember think carefully before you choose your font. What subliminal message will it put across to your customers? Experiment with different fonts and you’ll quickly be able to see which style is right or wrong for you.
Lava, the integrated marketing agency, has been appointed to handle PR and social media engagement for Festival800, Lincoln’s artistic response to Magna Carta.
Organised by cultural solutions UK on behalf of Lincolnshire County Council and supported by the National Lottery through Arts Council England, Festival800 will offer ten days of live music, comedy, spoken word, street theatre, lectures and debate. Unlike previous celebrations of Magna Carta’s 800th anniversary, Festival800 will focus on how the document’s powers of liberty, justice and freedom of speech have shaped today’s society.
Some of Festival800’s highlights include performances by acclaimed musicians Billy Bragg and the Levellers; author, screenwriter and comedian Shappi Khorsandi; YouTube sensation Alfie Deyes; and Poet Laureate Dame Carol Ann Duffy, DBE, FRSL. A host of national and international artists and human rights activists will also visit Lincoln for Festival800, which takes place between 28th August and 6th September.
Lava, which offers copywriting, design, PR and social media marketing services, started work this month and will provide a full press office service along with audience development and social media engagement for Festival800.
David Lambert, director of cultural solutions UK: “We’re all really excited about Festival800. It’s going to be an amazing event and we have a varied and challenging programme. We need to create an audience and raise awareness of Festival800 quickly. Lava has an incredibly strong track record of delivering impressive results for arts events and festivals – that’s why we chose to work with them. We’ve been working with them for just over a fortnight now and we’re really impressed with their understanding of our needs, their contacts and the speed at which they work. We can’t wait to see the results of their campaign.”
As well as Festival800, Lava has an impressive track record of helping festival organisers build audiences, having worked on the visit of Black/North SEAS to the UK in 2009, Lincoln Book Festival and SO Festival between 2010 and 2014.
Love is certainly in the air amongst Lincolnshire businesses says one of the county’s leading marketing agencies.
In the run up to Valentine’s Day, Lincoln based Lava asked marketing managers and directors what they look for in their ideal marketing agency.
The results of the 50 interviews show that Lincolnshire businesses look for creativity, value for money, honesty, relevant previous experience and ‘chemistry’ between the agency team and their in-house team.
“We’re not surprised with the top five answers to what people seeking to find their ideal agency are looking for,” says David Wright, Lava’s Business Development Manager, who undertook the research. “When we compared the findings to the working relationships we have with our clients, we found all five characteristics shone through. The survey was a bit of a tongue in cheek exercise if you like but I think the results speak volumes and explain why so many client –agency relationships break down.”
As well as asking what marketing budget holders love to see in their future partners, David also investigated what the biggest turn offs are. Unexpected costs, poor results, lack of proactivity, not working with the pitch team after awarding the work and repeatedly missing deadlines were the top five sure fire ways for an agency to be dumped.
“As with the turn ons, the ways in which a client can fall out of love with their agency are not a complete shock,” adds David. “We know that, just like romantic relationships between people, the client relationships thrive on keeping things fresh, regular communication, open and honest dialogue and if things do start to niggle, then getting things out in the open as quickly as possible, resolving the situation and moving on, are vital.”
Integrated marketing agency, Lava was established in 2006 and offers design, digital, public relations and social media marketing support to clients across the private, public and third sector. Find out more about them at www.wearelava.co.uk or @WeAreLava.
The media are loving our 2014 Christmas Card, which comes with two make-your-own reindeers!
Last year our Christmas Card contained everything people needed to make their own Christmas Penguin. We were inundated with photos of orange and black penguins, including one of Jeremy Vine in the BBC Radio 2 studio.
Like you, we know that Christmas penguins are so last year. That’s why this time around we included not one but two make-your-own reindeers. And, once again, the media have raved about our creative approach to celebrating Christmas.
BBC Radio Lincolnshire really got into the festive feeling with Nicola Gilroy challenging her Lunch Bunch panel to make the reindeers we sent her. She even took to social media to share her enthusiasm and posted a video onto BBC Radio Lincolnshire’s Facebook page.