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10 Nonprofit Organizations Whose Visions We Believe In

Like many other groups, the world of marketing and entrepreneurship has become oversaturated with constant content and materialistic motivations. While countless brands are overpaying for advertisements and struggling to develop their marketing efforts, hardworking nonprofit organizations are getting lost in the shuffle. To help you, we’ve put together a list of 10 nonprofit organizations whose visions we support.

Nonprofit organizations are in a unique situation, they have to deal with board members and budgeting. They too need to make money and increase awareness for financial success. Curating marketing strategies and developing an effective marketing plan are extremely important for success, just like any for-profit businesses. Nonprofits should not overlook the power of a well-crafted content marketing and/or email marketing strategy!

There are many charitable foundations in the nonprofit sector that are leveraging creative marketing tactics. These strategies are bringing in more donors and spreading awareness!

Here are ten nonprofits you should consider collaborating with.

10 Nonprofit Organizations Who's Visions We Support

Be Positive Foundation

After Joe McDonough lost his teenage son Andrew to cancer, he hoped to honor Andrew’s legacy by helping other families through the same struggle. Named after Andrew’s blood type and his cheerful attitude, the Be Positive Foundation dedicates its donations to cancer research and providing financial and emotional support for child cancer patients.

The foundation took a unique approach to marketing and fundraising, as they partner with high schools and colleges across the country to host dance marathons and events where students can connect with young patients and donate to the cause. 

Homeboy Industries

How do tortilla chips help former gang members? Father Gregory Boyle started Homeboy Industries to stop the cycle of mass incarceration in Los Angeles. Through therapy, tattoo removal treatments, and a supportive community, Homeboy Industries has become the top rehabilitation center in the country.

Not only does the center provide emotional support, but also employment through the production of Homeboy merchandise, catering, tortilla chips, and bakery items. Fr. Boyle and his friends travel around the country as public speakers, sharing their own personal stories about the power of a second chance. 

ThinkHer Project

Although The ThinkHer Project is only eight months old, the nonprofit organization has already provided over 100 women with sustainable incomes. By working with underprivileged communities in Tanzania and Kenya, the team hopes to reduce gender inequalities and prioritize environmental conservation. In collaboration with Funds2Org, the organization launched Share A Pair, a social media fundraiser that has garnered 500 pairs of shoes for micro-entrepreneurs in underdeveloped areas. As a relatively new organization, ThinkHer has collaborated with multiple other nonprofits to expand its network and increase volunteers. 

Starts with One Today

When founder Victoriah Bech began volunteering on Los Angeles’ “Skidrow”, she became overwhelmed with the number of families struggling through homelessness. Inspiried, she began a nonprofit organization called Starts with One Today. The nonprofit offers educational assistance, food giveaways, and a positive community for LA’s homeless women and children.

At its core, the organization lives by the motto “everyone you meet is somebody’s someone” to counteract the negative connotation toward homeless people. The team dedicates their weekend mornings to the Sundays in Skidrow volunteer event which brings fresh food to homeless communities, free of charge. 

4Ocean

Although it is a for-profit organization, 4Ocean has been making waves through its work in ocean conservation. As one of the more popular brands, 4Ocean is a Public Benefit Corporation. Instead of taking donations, the organization is solely funded by product sales. Since its launch in 2017, 4Ocean has extracted over 14 million pounds of trash from the ocean.

Through their recycled bracelets, the company has garnered 30 million dollars, which goes right back to ocean conservation efforts. The brand relies on engaging social media videos for the majority of its marketing campaigns, as its verified Instagram account has over 2.3 million followers. 

Herizon Music Foundation

By creating and empowering young women, the Herizon Music Foundation promotes gender equality and feminist values. Out of all the GRAMMY Award nominees from 2012-2018, only 9.3% were women. This is a statistic they hope to increase. Based out of Austin, Texas, the program offers scholarships for girls in need to have access to music and sound camps. The foundation also has a “Random Acts of Music” program. This program assists female musicians in finding paid gigs to financially support themselves.
Check out their amazing podcast, Backstage with Women in Music.

Autism Society Inland Empire 

Located in Southern California, the Autism Society Inland Empire helps individuals with autism and their families through a variety of programs. The organization’s services include social events, system advocacy, parental support, and access to basic needs.

For autistic children, teens and adults, the organization holds art classes, game, movie nights, and other fun events. Families and professionals can attend conferences/workshops or use a bilingual Resource Navigator to help find services and support. Although the pandemic brought a unique set of challenges to the autism community, the society distributed over 200,000 face masks, and 4,600 meals, provided over 6,000 individuals with social-emotional programs and over 20,000 people received training and resources.

Ali Forney Center 

Located in the heart of New York City, the Ali Forney Center provides LGBTQ+ youth with safe housing and resources within an accepting community. Like many LGBTQ+ teenagers, Ali Forney left an abusive home at a young age. She became homeless with absolutely no place to go. The center offers educational courses, job preparation, emergency housing, transitional living, and HIV health care to around 2,000 children per year. Musician Lady Gaga is one of the many celebrities who have openly supported the center, and she has even visited their Brooklyn headquarters in 2016 to perform a song and lead a group meditation. 

SonRise Equestrian Foundation 

Since 2006, the SonRise Equestrian Foundation has provided therapeutic horseback riding to children with special needs. Due to their tame and loyal nature, horses have been known to help children connect emotionally with others. Plus, this experience also helps the children exercise. Located in San Ramon, California, the center offers four free programs. Each caters to a specific age group, allowing them to get comfortable with animals and ranch life. Since the programs are free to families, fundraising has relied on their annual Wine and Equine event, which raised over $85,000 last year. 

Global Mamas

For the past 18 years, Global Mamas has been selling unique products handcrafted by African women in their local communities. The organization has a network of around 400 “Mamas” who have been able to expand their equipment and increase their quality of life thanks to the organization’s profits. From face masks to jewelry to everyday clothing, customers can choose from an array of handmade products for affordable prices.

By facilitating a relationship with the artisans, each Mama is highlighted on their website. 

Collaborate For A Good Cause

These 10 nonprofit organizations who’s visions we support are just a few great examples. Businesses and marketers should consider the value national and local nonprofit marketing can bring. Collaborating with a charitable nonprofit can help advertise your business. But more importantly, you’ll be doing your part! Your collaboration will support a good cause and help them raise money and raise awareness at the same time.  

Do you know of any nonprofits that should be added to this list? Feel free to contact us with your suggestions.

NFTs Impact on Marketing

Comic books, sports cards, coins, and stamps – all these common collectible items are outshined by the new fad, non-fungible tokens (NFTs). These non-fungible tokens have the ability to change the way marketers engage with their audiences, and alter marketing tactics for good. NFTs impact on marketing should not be overlooked.

What Are Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs)?

NFTs are unique digital items created by blockchain technology to ensure validity. They are impossible to fake. Similar to artwork, countless people can look at a painting or take photos of it, but only one person can own the original.

Often bought using cryptocurrency like Ethereum Blockchain, NFTs have become Wall Street’s biggest fans as profitable ways to invest in entertainment. Although NFT sales are solely online, owning a digital NFT of the Mona Lisa is now considered one of the most valuable assets in modern art. Digital art, produced by these digital artists, now hold more power. Digital images of any sort such as graphics or photographs can also be considered NFTS, giving them value they didn’t have before.

As such a new industry, the NFT industry has not become oversaturated just yet, leaving the door open for marketers eager to get involved. But, how can marketers take advantage of this emerging resource?

The NBA was one of the first to utilize the power of NFTs.

NBA Shoots and Scores with NFTs

The National Basketball Association was one of the first businesses to immerse itself in NFT creation with NBA Top Shot. On the website, users can buy and sell player cards, moments capturing their favorite plays, and unknown packs. The site is run by NFT company Dapper Labs which has licensed all recorded NBA moments and attached a serial number to each.

The software launched in 2020, but skyrocketed in February of 2021 with over 800,000 users interacting on the site. Sports fans across the world are offering hundreds of thousands of dollars for the most popular plays. For example, a Los Angeles Lakers Lebron James dunk sold for $280,000.

Similar to sports cards, a player’s value directly corresponds to their performance in recent seasons. This is evidenced by recent champion James, who stars in the top three most expensive Top Shot moments. Not only are users buying their favorite moments to support beloved teams, but they are also investing in a player’s future prominence to increase their investment.

Creating Buzz 

Positive press is a marketer’s best friend. But in such an oversaturated digital world, it’s hard to stand out from the crowd.

However, NFTs can impact marketing. They can create the opportunity for unique campaigns while also increasing the investment value of your business.

Exclusivity is often synonymous with popularity as we have seen time and time again with the fad of limited clothing drops.

With so many businesses out there, it can be a struggle to develop a winning digital marketing strategy. You may feel like you’re constantly doing marketing research.

Why should a customer choose your product or service? What sets your online marketing apart from the crowd? Having a unique offer is key for success in a crowded market, which is possible through NFT access.

Microsoft recently launched a virtual game in celebration of the International Day of Women and Girls in Science with NFT rewards for completing tasks. The tokens are also compatible with Minecraft and can help users unlock special game experiences. This promotion doesn’t only create buzz around Microsoft’s game, Minecraft play, and female empowerment. It also shows potential customers that these brands prioritize innovation and the user experience.

Similarly, rapper Post Malone created an NFT titled “Celebrity World Pong League” to honor his favorite party activity — beer pong. By collaborating with NFT creators at Fyooz, Malone created the token to facilitate competition among fans. The users who collect the most of their NFTs will get the chance to play beer pong with Malone himself.

Both Microsoft and Post Malone are successful in their respective fields. However, they are also continuing their time at the top by making themselves unique and irreplaceable.

How NFT’s Will Impact Marketing

In a culture of endless content, originality is few and far between. The non-fungible aspect of NFTs has become the most valuable aspect of the industry. But the profit does not stop there.

NFT marketplace Rarible is one of the many online platforms that allow NFT creators a certain percentage of profit on every resale. For example, actress Lindsay Lohan recently released her first collectible titled “Lightning” which rose from $1,000 to $63,000 in just one hour.

Lohan will receive 17% of each sale. She plans to “donate to charities that accept Bitcoin to empower younger generations in order for them to adapt and learn about this revolution that humanity is witnessing.”

However, most businesses would not be donating to charity. Instead, they will use profits to grow their team and improve internal affairs.

Don’t think your company’s NFT would be popular? You never know. Examine your target audience. Find the common interests among your customers and find ways to create an NFT they would want.

You may need to reconsider your digital media, email marketing and social media marketing strategies for this rapidly changing media landscape.

Incorporating NFTs could impact your marketing goals. By collaborating with other businesses or influencers, you can unite resources. Promoting an NFT could attract potential customers and add value to your brand.

It may be something to consider.

What Celebrities Can Teach Us About Marketing 

How did a 21-year-old socialite become the world’s youngest self-made billionaire? In March of 2019, Forbes gave this title to Kylie Jenner, a member of the famous Kardashian clan and founder of Kylie Cosmetics. So, what can celebrities teach us about marketing?

Like her or not, Jenner has turned her celebrity status into cash as her business brings in around $200 million a year in revenue — with a team of only twelve employees.

What makes celebrity-owned businesses so successful?

The answer lies primarily in social media marketing and targeting the right niche audience for your product or service.

Social media success

When Kylie Cosmetics began in 2015, Jenner had around 46 million followers on Instagram and had racked up over one billion likes across 960 photos. Now almost six years later, Jenner has more than 230 million followers, a number she uses to market her business almost every day.

 

What Celebrities Can Teach Us About Marketing

Targeting her audience

Before makeup, the social media star was mostly known for her family’s hit reality TV show, Keeping Up With The Kardashians, which followed the famous family and their lavish celebrity lifestyle.

While her four sisters have also tried their hand at entrepreneurship, Jenner’s cosmetics brand has garnered the most success by far simply by meeting the needs of her fanbase. The show’s demographics report over 77% of viewers is female with the majority falling between the ages of 18-24.

This massive group of young women follows the Kardashian women because they want to live the fantasy – the look, the clothes, the money. Many young women ask themselves, how can I become more like the Kardashians?

Purchasing the new Kylie Cosmetics products might be a good start. Or a fantastic marketing tactic.

It’s not difficult to connect the dots between a young female fanbase and their desire for a branded cosmetic line, however, finding a target audience is where her sisters failed before her.

A prepaid debit card, multiple spin-off talk shows, a sock line, and a young adult fiction novel are among the many failed Kardashian ventures. While many of these projects probably fell victim to poor management, they also missed the mark on their target demographic — something Kylie successfully capitalized.

Celebrities and marketing

Like Apple and the clothing brand Supreme, Kylie Cosmetics drops her collections at a specific time with a limited amount of supply, creating exclusivity among products.

Consumers love exclusive products, especially those that can only be accessed at a specific time and place.

A product that stays in the mall for years will have little demand compared to a product that is only available for thirty minutes on a Tuesday night.

As dedicated fans refresh their browsers in hopes to quickly buy products, the lucky few who can successfully check out then get a rush of excitement, thrilled that they were able to nab a beloved lip liner.

Kylie Cosmetics consistently sells out of their products in seconds due to this “drop” selling style, which has inspired countless other brands to do the same.

The magic of PR boxes

After spending her childhood in the spotlight, Jenner monetized her famous friends and family to market her brand. Usually, influencer marketing includes positive promotion in exchange for payment or the product/service.

Legally, sponsored posts must include an indication that the promotion was paid. But, friendly PR boxes carefully avoid this issue.

Besides her uber-famous family, Jenner’s circle of close friends are some of the most influential social media personalities on the internet. People love to see products that are celebrity endorsed.

Before every collection launches, Jenner sends out her products in aesthetically themed packaging in hopes that recipients will post the boxes on their own social media profiles.

PR boxes not only create a buzz around the upcoming launch but appear more genuine than paid promotions. Instead of having to include #advertisement, Jenner’s friends simply discuss their excitement for the product and support their friend’s ventures.

No matter how big or small, PR boxes are a great way to expand your marketing and receive free promotion from friends, business people, and like-minded influencers. Watching social media unboxings also create a layer of exclusivity, as viewers now long for the products they’ve seen promoted.

Becoming the next billionaire

How can you apply these tactics to your business? Even if you’re not in cosmetics — or a global celebrity — you can learn a thing or two from Kylie.

Highlight your passions

Genuine may not be synonymous with Kardashian, but there is one thing you can’t argue — Kylie loves makeup. Through her Youtube “Get Ready With Me” videos, fans can see her passion for cosmetics which motivates them to get excited as well.

Use your company’s website and social media to create a genuine representation of what you do. With this approach, you will attract like-minded customers.

Demonstrate utility

Before a consumer buys something, they look at reviews. Is this product or service useful, well-liked and/or easy to use?

If you check Jenner’s Instagram or Youtube at any time of day, odds are you will probably find a makeup tutorial. She is demonstrating the usefulness of her products before consumers even consider purchasing. These videos also give away tips and tricks free of charge.

Bring the answers to your audience before they even ask the question by sharing customer reviews and first-hand tutorials.

Pressure for publicity

If you don’t come from fame and fortune, getting publicity from news outlets might seem like an impossible task. But, with perseverance and a little strategy, you can attract articles with ease.

Ever heard of the Museum of English Rural Life? This small, niche museum has created a loyal Twitter following. They consistently post hilarious animal-themed memes for all users to enjoy.

Although visiting the England-based museum may be out of reach for most followers, the team truly created publicity out of thin air. This goes to show you have to find your niche audience. Once you tap into the right audience, media attention follows.

 

Celebrity Marketing on Social Media

What you can do

While a celebrity lifestyle may seem out of reach, learning about celebrity marketing tactics can be useful for your own endeavors.

Give your target audience some thought and learn what marketing and social media marketing strategies work for them. Watch a few videos from Kylie’s YouTube channel and check out her social media posts for inspiration. Research which marketing tactics are trending on your social networks and social media platforms.

Take a page from Kylie Jenner’s book and see what changes for your business.

Not a celebrity? Need help getting some attention for your business, creating a social media marketing plan, or crafting blog posts? Are your marketing efforts floundering?

Here at Elevare, we offer a wide range of marketing services for your specific needs. Feel free to give us a call for your free estimate.

How Brands Are Rewarding Customers For Getting The Vaccine 

Top brands are rewarding customers for getting the vaccine with special deals, gift-cards, rewards programs and services.

For most young children, the doctor’s office is the pinnacle of fear. Annual shots can often trigger tears! That is why most nurses are prepared with everything from a Scooby-Doo band-aid to a red Tootsie Pop. A fun treat or dessert can turn an entire experience around!

The world’s top companies are similarly parenting customers.

Sweet treats 

Krispy Kreme became the front runner after announcing a new campaign.  Fully vaccinated patrons can get one free doughnut per day. All they have to do is show proof of vaccination, such as their vaccination card. It may seem ironic to some to reward healthy habits with calorie-heavy fried dough. However, the brand hopes to do its part in getting the world back to normal.

Greenhouse of Walled Lake, a marijuana dispensary based in Michigan, had a similar idea, creating a “Pots for Shots” promotion, offering their own products and services as a reward! With proof of vaccination, customers will receive a free Ubaked pre-rolled joint through April 30.

Their website states, “If you choose to get the Covid vaccine (we always support the freedom of choice), this is our way of saying ‘thank you for helping to end this pandemic and getting us back to normal.”

Statistics have not been released on how many people get the vaccine due to the alluring vaccine rewards. But, it is a fair assumption it is certainly a powerful way to encourage vaccine distribution.

 

How brands are rewarding customers for getting the vaccine

Help is on the way 

Free donuts and marijuana are a fun perk to becoming vaccinated. Ride-sharing apps such of Uber and Lyft realized the customer potential with offering rewards. Both have kicked off COVID-19 campaigns, offering free and discounted rides for low-income individuals to get their vaccine.

Many lower-income neighborhoods have a harder time getting to vaccination sites. These companies want to ensure that transportation does not stand in the way of accessing necessary healthcare.

Uber’s program will work hand-in-hand with Walgreens to offering free rides to vaccination. These free rides will service underserved communities in cities like Chicago, Atlanta, Houston, and El Paso, Texas. While the program will begin in these four cities, Uber hopes to expand across the nation.

Why the push?

The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted billions of people across the globe, taking over 572,000 lives in the U.S. alone, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Between the deaths, economic impacts, and job losses, the world is hoping for an end to this year-long pandemic. The CDC and public health officials believe the sooner the majority of Americans receive the vaccine, the better.

Although medical companies like Moderna and Pfizer have successfully conducted clinical trials and released vaccines, some are skeptical. As of April 30, there are over 240 million vaccinated Americans with solid success, as the majority have not had any serious symptoms.

However, recent market data conducted by NPR/Marist found that 1 in 4 Americans plan to refuse the COVID-19 vaccine. Many have reported feeling nervous and fearful of the unknown long-term effects despite research showing the vaccines are safe and effective.

Scientists have already seen these numbers decrease as more people become educated on the shot’s potential, but the initial skepticism has triggered a pro-vaccine marketing movement.

Brands are rewarding customers for getting the vaccine

Vaccinations are not the first time brands have used their influence to enact positive change around the world. During the 2020 election between Donald Trump and Joe Biden, countless companies created merchandise and incentives to entice people to vote.

Most companies did not go so far as to publicly endorse a presidential candidate but instead encouraged customers to simply register to vote.

Countless brands joined the movement, including Reddit, Patagonia, HBO, and Under Armour. Even the biggest names stepped into space, such as Nike, releasing their “You Can’t Stop Our Voice” campaign, which included a one-minute commercial promoting the power of having a vote.

While many would agree they were doing the right thing by openly supporting a political candidate, others argued about the dangers of companies using their platforms to push their own political agenda. Facebook recently dealt with this backlash and as a result, banned political ads for several months last year.

Where do we draw the line between rewarding good behavior and forcing propaganda onto consumers to achieve a specific agenda?

 

How brands are rewarding customers for getting the vaccine

Popular people and brands have the power to influence decision-making, especially if well-liked by the public. This power can be easily wielded for the greater good, or, for evil.

With such intense influence over consumers, brands are often put in a tough position between promoting powerful information or staying unbiased. Even the most subtle campaigns can truly impact the way people feel about a variety of issues and topics.

So, this leads to an important question – how do people feel about vaccine incentives? Should brands be rewarding customers for getting the vaccine or not?

A recent Harris Poll survey found that 42% of people would think higher of a company if they had post-vaccine information. Similarly, 60% said they are more likely to buy from a brand that shares positive encouragement regarding the COVID-19 vaccine.

While some anti-vaxxers feel it is not the place for marketers to step into healthcare, others feel it is a moral obligation to help the world emerge from a global crisis. This debate will likely be a hot topic for years to come.

Hiring A Reputable Company For Your Project

Don’t fall for a scammy marketing scheme. Follow our tips to hire the right marketing services for your company.

Trusting a digital marketing company with a new project can be tough. In the digital age, it seems anyone can build a nice-looking website and a solid social media presence.

It can be difficult to know which company would be the best for your job. By creating prior expectations and a checklist of needs, finding a high quality marketing company can become a lot easier.

Avoiding a scam

In the past three months, Lemke Media LLC, a marketing company, has become a Google Trends breakout, increasing +2,600 over the past year. What is all the hype about?

A quick Google search will bring you to the brand’s homepage. They have a clean website with a concise message and promise to help influencers succeed with original marketing solutions. While it may look like the average online marketing firm, customers have raised suspicion on their credibility.

Reddit investigation

Three months ago, an Instagram user posted their confusing interaction with Lemke marketing to the marketing subreddit, unsure whether to trust the business.

scam

In 45 comments, other users discussed their suspicious encounters with the company, confirming that they never received the services they paid for.

While it’s tough to decipher whether these allegations are true, going the extra mile to check reputation before using a service could save you the headache of a lost payment.

Hire the right marketing services for your projects.

Finding trustworthy marketing services

One of the best ways to spot a scam is to utilize the Better Business Bureau (BBB), a non-profit company that holds information on the credibility of all registered businesses.

The Better Business Bureau ranks businesses out of five stars based on customer reviews and gives each brand a letter grade based on their assessment.

Based on 7 customer reviews, Lemke Media, LLC has 1.57/5 stars and an F rating. The profile has 6 unanswered customer complaints, some claiming their credit cards are still being charged after they cancelled their subscription.

One user claims after reaching out to customer service number multiple times for a refund, they have been blocked by the company’s phone number.

By utilizing the BBB, you can find first-hand information from consumers and investigate a company’s credibility before hiring a marketing agency or buying a product or service.

Ask tough questions

Even if a business’ website looks professional, make sure it checks the necessary boxes to gain your trust.

  • How long has the business been in service?
  • Can you find examples of past client work?
  • Do they have positive customer reviews? If they have negative reviews, what are they saying?
  • Are they available for a consultation to chat by phone or do they only use email?

Using this checklist, or creating your own, can act as a helpful guide when deciding which company to trust. Customer reviews are key in understanding a team’s experience with past clients, and will directly reflect how they treat you.

Form a relationship

Don’t feel rushed to choose a company for your project. Take advantage of free consultations and take time to find the digital strategy for you.

Start by setting up a phone or Zoom call. Ask specific questions and get a feel for the company’s values. Speaking face to face allows for intuition to kick in. Consider if you could see yourself working with them. You don’t want to just hire any agency, you want to hire the right company for your marketing service needs.

Before calling a potential company, create a checklist of needs and deal-breakers to guide your conversation. By setting up consultations with multiple companies, you can compare different communication styles and decide who you will work with best. In addition, before sending any money, make sure they offer the specific digital marketing strategies and services you need.

Hiring the right marketing team will help your company grow.

Big fish in a small pond

When choosing a company to hire, size and success must be considered. Do you want to choose a smaller company where you will be their top priority? Or, would you prefer a larger, more successful company where you will be one of their smaller clients?

While both options have their own set of advantages and disadvantages, it is up to you to decide which choice will benefit your business.

Managing expectations

Once you have done your research to hire the right marketing services for your team, it’s important to clearly outline your expectations to avoid overpromises. When it comes to hiring a marketing team, do not let the excitement of customer expansion lead to false hope.

If a marketing agency claims their services will increase profit, ask for a concrete number. Can they guarantee a rise in Google rankings? Can they optimize your SEO and bring your website to the front page of web searches? Is their proposed digital marketing campaign targeted to your specific audience’s needs?

Hire the right marketing services

At Elevare, our team of experts will discuss your goals to create a marketing plan that will accelerate your business’ success.

For the past seven years, we have helped countless businesses expand their customer base through various marketing channels. We’ve helped to increase profits through search engine optimization, web design, email marketing, social media marketing, content marketing and branding. Our team at Elevare can optimize any digital media platform you need to reach your goals. Whether it’s building a brand, generating more leads, or dominating your market, we can create the perfect solution for you.

Contact us for a free consultation today!

Super Bowl Sunday Commercials Changing?

Just like most events this past year, Super Bowl LV this Sunday will look a bit different this year — and not because Tom Brady will be wearing a different uniform. While the big game centers around the great game of football, we all know the true star is not the MVP, but the commercials.  Let’s check out how the Super Bowl Sunday commercials are changing.

Budweiser backs out

For the past 37 years, Budweiser has brought animal-lovers to tears with their iconic Super Bowl commercials. However, the presence will not be entirely lost on game day, as the company plans to keep their fans happy by releasing a 90 second commercial on digital platforms called “Bigger Picture”.

Budweiser contribuetes to covid research and releif efforts

Although it lacks the well-known Clydesdale horses, the ad takes a look back at the chaotic 2020 with emphasis on heartfelt moments of community. The video closes by announcing Budweiser will use their advertising budget — not toward their annual game day commercial — but instead toward COVID-19 vaccine awareness in collaboration with the Ad Council and COVID Collaborative.

However, parent company Anheuser-Busch will air multiple advertisements for Bud Light, Michelob Ultra, and other various products.

According to Kantar, the average price for a 30-second advertisement will cost about $5.6 million this year. These numbers are no stranger to Anheuser-Busch, as they were the top spender by ad last year, handing over $42 million.

By publishing the video on Budweiser’s own social media accounts, they have saved millions of their marketing budget while delivering to a similar audience. In just two days, the video pulled in over 2.5 million views.

Pocket pinchers

Besides Budweiser, Coca-Cola, Pepsi, and Audi are among the countless classics that have decided to give up their beloved Super Bowl slot.

It’s hard to imagine major soda czars like Coke and Pepsi could be frugal with their spending, but the COVID-19 pandemic has imposed a drastic shift in profits. Coca-Cola recently laid off over 2,000 employees worldwide, making up around 17% of their global workforce.

Even the biggest brands are being forced to decide if tradition trumps the millions it takes for under a minute of screen time.

The new kids in town

Although the top brands pulled out of this year’s festivities, CBS has virtually sold out of commercial inventory space. So, who will replace these Super Bowl seniors? Huggies, Chipotle, Fiverr, Mercari, and Vroom. The last three brands may ring a bell and have made quite a name for themselves as e-commerce icons in an online world.

New commercials for super bowl LV

Fiverr, an online marketplace for freelancers has grown exponentially during the pandemic as countless workers lose their jobs due to COVID-19 setbacks. Last September, the company reported $52.3 million in revenue, an 88% increase from the previous year.

Similarly, e-commerce resale platform Mercari has helped users Marie Kondo their homes while stuck at home. Their fifteen-second commercial has already been released, set to the Beatles’ classic “Hello, Goodbye”. With over 15 million downloads, the platform is pushing out weekend garage sales, taking the resale market by storm.

Vroom is the next internet company to join the Big Game’s new advertising squad, as they already released a 30-second commercial overdramatizing the horrors of car dealerships. The online car agency allows customers to purchase vehicles from the comfort of their own home, an alternative necessary for life in a pandemic.

Contextualizing the moment

For everyone around the world, this past year has been full of unprecedented surprises — good and bad. Among the pandemic and potential impeachment, the Black Lives Matter movement has brought racial injustices to light, demanding a drastic change to our social systems.

This time of economic and political have influenced Super Bowl alumni away from renewing their advertising spot. According to the NY Post, Coca-Cola discussed their decision to sit out this year’s game by “investing in the right resources during these unprecedented times”.

This sensitive time in history is reminiscent of the 2008 financial crisis, which was emphasized in a Chrysler 2012 Super Bowl commercial.

In the sentimental two-minute video, narrator Clint Eastwood says “It’s halftime. Both teams are in their locker room discussing what they can do to win this game in the second half. It’s halftime in America, too. People are out of work and they’re hurting. And they’re all wondering what they’re going to do to make a comeback. And we’re all scared because this isn’t a game.”

The same applies to the present time, as the world desperately longs for pre-pandemic life.

Marketing on a budget

Don’t have $50 million to spend on a commercial? Not-so-shockingly, your brand can still increase clientele on a much smaller budget.

At Elevare, we create a personalized plan to adapt your business to the digital world and improve client engagement. As SEO experts, we will create an eye-catching online presence that shoots to the top of web search results. Whether you want to increase social media usage, create a more cohesive branding strategy, or simply reevaluate your marketing strategy, Elevare has your back.

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Marketer’s Guide to Crisis Response

The pandemic is not the only curveball 2020 threw full-speed at the world. Within the past year, Americans have endured countless gender/racial inequalities, the Black Lives Matter movement, a global pandemic, a storming of the Capitol, and potential impeachment. Experts agree that crisis hit the world harder in 2020 than ever before.

Unfortunately, we have grown accustomed to crises, and even more accustomed to forming politically correct, empathetic, and informative responses. Companies across all industries have been thrust onto their soapbox as consumers demand acknowledgment of political news.

A New Kind of Social Activism

National or global news commentary has never before fallen under the responsibility of businesses, however social media marketing has created a whole new social standard.

Instagram story infographics seem to be a common marketing strategy among smaller businesses in an attempt to subtly illustrate their social and political commentary. These cute graphic designs are often aesthetically appealing and made in-house unless they are re-posted by larger accounts.

Larger companies are taking concrete action, as Airbnb announces a seven-step plan to protect the Washington, D.C. area, lengthening cancellation periods and “removing accounts associated with hate group members”.

Airbnb isn’t certainly isn’t the only company to aggressively implement a crisis management plan.

Social Media Crisis Management

Social Media takes the stage for marketing

As the majority of modern society becomes more outspoken about social justice issues, this passion for equality is sometimes channeled toward public figures and companies who do not take a stand.

After pro-Trump protestors stormed the U.S. Capitol on January 6th, ten major social media platforms have banned President Trump and his allies from using their services. Twitter was the first to boot the President while Facebook and Instagram quickly followed suit.

With hardly any options left, Trump posted a public speech commenting on the Capitol’s attack on YouTube. Since the video streaming service had not yet commented on the controversy, users began to share the outrage that YouTube was allowing such a message on their site.

Comedian Amy Schumer shared her own thoughts via Twitter on the morning of January 12th, asking YouTube and Google to #BanTrumpSaveDemocracy.

Later that day, YouTube shared to Twitter that they would be removing content posted on Trump’s account for violating their policies.

What would have happened if YouTube had not taken this action? Although it is hard to say for sure, the repercussions definitely would not have been positive.

While most of these controversial situations include acting out for equality, this recent shift has shifted power to the consumers who demand accountability. And you do not want to be on their bad side.

Crisis Communications: The 2020 Marketing Plan?

The reality is that almost every industry in the world took a hit to their business in 2020. This meant your spam email folder filled up with “a letter from our CEO”.

While at first, it may have felt like all your favorite companies were concerned about your health and well being, reality struck and it became an effective form of marketing for many companies.

As the market shifted from buying local, customer service approaches had to change to keep potential customers happy and buying.

COVID Defines Marketing Shifts

As companies started to become comfortable with the idea that marketing and communications were making a huge shift, social listening becomes a critical step in market research.

Brick and mortar retail had become complacent in their marketing activities. Why not, people historically came to them for goods and services. As the year stretched on though, companies had to get creative with marketing their products or services.

Social Media come top of mind for marketers in 2020

They now had to compete on a different plane than they were used to. Digital marketing turned from a good idea to a necessity for most businesses.

Social media turned into a critical vehicle for getting messages out to the masses and ad spend revenue again soared to new levels. Not only did ad spend rise but companies became more active on social media platforms as well.

We also continued to see a rise in video on social media platforms. It has been strengthened as more companies are using platforms like TikTok as a primary marketing vehicle.

With the world throwing so many problems at us how do we shift effectively?

Creating the Shift You Need

With all of the challenges that happened in 2020 and new leadership being a critical part of 2021, your business will need to continue to innovate your marketing.  The key to success for your business will be to innovate in the right areas.  These are 5 ways you can innovate your marketing this year.

Create an Action Plan

With all the unexpected surprises the world has faced within the past few years– we can all agree, it doesn’t hurt to be prepared. Although we don’t know what will happen next, creating an action plan for a potential crisis can make the response process easier.

  1. Research how your favorite companies deal with turbulent times and take note of their timing, medium, and audience response.
  2. Communicate with your social media and graphic design team. If you want to speak out about an issue, will you adjust your website’s header? Post on social media? Send out an email? All of these responses must include professional visuals and a quick turn around.
  3. Keep your clientele in mind. Depending on the geography and age demographics of your audience, you may not need to address every single trending social justice issue.
  4. Stay genuine. Of course, building a response plan can increase efficiency within your business, but stay true to your core beliefs. Don’t make your responses sound robotic or pre-planned, instead, add your own personal flair.

Be Consistent

One thing consumers love is when they know what to expect from their favorite brand. If you have defined your brand a specific way, hold on to that.

Consumers are looking for any excuse to feel “normal” amongst the chaos caused by the crisis. If you try and blow their mind with new marketing and brand updates it may push them further away.

Nostalgia builds connections

Nostalgic ad campaigns make a comeback

More and more brands are leaning on yesteryear when things were better and bringing back the nostalgic feel of ads from the past. Memorable Superbowl commercials are littering tv, and social media ads are reminiscent of years past.

Influencer Marketing yields big results

2020 was the year of the creator. It seems that when you have nothing better to do you find ways to become a professional content creator. That means all over platforms like Instagram and Tiktok there are widely known creators that will hustle your products or services for swag or cash.

Rethink your marketing

This year is the year to rethink your marketing strategy. As you find your new normal, create an action plan, be consistent and think outside the box.

Does your marketing strategy need a 2021 overhaul?

Learn about how Elevare can help you reimagine your digital presence in 2021.

McDonald’s Sales Tower After Travis Scott collaboration

 Food’s new fad — celebrity marketing

Celebrity collaborations have been a great way for companies like McDonald's to increase their sales among the many challenges brought on by pandemic.

Odds are, you’ve heard rapper Travis Scott’s new hit song SICKO MODE. Odds are, you’ve also heard of McDonald’s. These two well-known cultural icons recently collaborated on a joint McDonald’s and Travis Scott meal, which garnered popularity among Scott’s young fans over social media. For just six dollars, buyers receive a Quarter Pounder, French fries, and a Sprite.

On October 8th, McDonald’s Corp. released their third-quarter statistics, showing a sales growth of 4.6% in the United States. Since the quarter took place during the COVID-19 pandemic, a substantial increase for a fast-food chain is almost unheard of.

The increase came at a crucial time for the brand, as their second quarter revealed an 8.7% decline after the pandemic took businesses by storm. McDonald’s also saw an international 2.2% decrease over their third quarter, as so many of their locations were forced to close.

Fortunately, Travis Scott saved the day with his exclusive McDonald’s Cactus Jack meal. Over its one month campaign, the meal became so popular that some locations ran out of ingredients. Others faced young fans stealing promotional posters to sell online, some of which are going for as much as $1,000 on eBay. Many fans have shared their buying experiences on social media platforms like TikTok and Instagram, making the meal’s purchase a popular trend among the other menu items.

Keeping the streak

Travis Scott is not the only artist in McDonald’s Rolodex, as the franchise releases another collaboration with Colombian singer J. Balvin. From October 5th to November 1st, customers can purchase the J. Balvin meal- which includes a Big Mac, fries with ketchup, and an Oreo McFlurry.

The 35-year-old reggaeton artist has sold over 35 million records internationally and recently released his 2020 album, Colores. His fast-food collaboration will surely work in his favor and promote his brand just after an album release.

On social media, some spectators have shared their assumptions about McDonald’s recent collaborations, claiming both Balvin and Scott’s campaigns were released to counteract racial discrimination lawsuits. According to Fox News, the fast-food chain did face two lawsuits earlier this year regarding racial discrimination; however, the chain denied its relevance to the collaborations.

Not the first time

This is not the Golden Arches’ first time at the celebrity marketing rodeo. In March of 2015, the global fast-food chain teamed up with multiple stars for their 24-hour campaign, ‘imLovinIt24’. Over 24 hours in 24 cities, the brand debuted special surprise events for customers, including secret concerts from artists Jessie J and Ne-Yo.

That same day, Ne-Yo released a song titled “Every Day With Love,” written by a compilation of lyrics submitted by McDonald’s customers. Talk about a symbiotic relationship.

For Jessie J’s charity cameo, McDonald’s U.K. customers entered a competition to win a seat at her concert. The winners were put on one of London’s iconic red buses and told they would be shuttled to the concert. To their surprise, Jessie J appeared alongside them, singing her greatest hits as they drove around the city. As a result, the intimate concert gained traction on social media and gave McDonald’s even more promotion.

Social media superstar runs on Dunkin’.

McDonald’s is not the first restaurant to make use of celebrity contacts. Recently, Dunkin’ Donuts released “The Charli,” a drink inspired by TikTok superstar Charli D’amelio. With over 93 million followers, the 16-year-old is the most followed person on the platform. Although she is known for her dance videos,  she’s also shared her love for her favorite eatery — Dunkin’ Donuts. She often posts videos drinking her own concoction, a Dunkin’ cold brew with three caramel swirl pumps. Which has caused a mass of fans to order her favorite drink.

With so many customers demanding it, Dunkin’ embraced the trend, partnering with the social media star. Dunkin’ has since added her drink to their permanent menu. “The Charli” is available at all stores and ordering ahead online will even give customers extra DD Perks on their account.

“Everyone knows that Charli runs on Dunkin’ and now Dunkin’ runs on Charli,” said Dunkin’ Vice President and Brand Stewardship, Drayton Martin.

Dunkin’ clearly hit the jackpot with this one but it’s not just the luck of having a young celebrity openly appreciate their products. It’s what they did with it. The franchise took advantage of the opportunity and seized the day. Rather than benefit off of her occasional free promotion, the brand took it a step further by creating a lasting professional partnership that will boost sales.

McDonald’s and Dunkin’ didn’t get to the top alone — and neither do any top brands. It takes a great marketing team, tactful strategy, and top tier connections. When teaming up with stars who have already accumulated a faithful following, companies are almost guaranteed a boost in sales.

Facebook Slams Door on Marketing Giant Rally Forge

It is clear in the current political landscape that social media plays a huge role.  In fact, according to data from the Pew research center, 8 out of 10 Americans say that social media platforms are effective for raising public awareness about political issues.  But what happens when organizations abuse these platforms?

In an unprecedented move, Facebook announced one of the heaviest punishments a marking firm can face.  Rally Forge out of phoenix, Arizona was banned from the Social media giant for multiple infractions around using fake accounts and pages to sway political influence.  All the accounts in questions were related to a conservative political group run by Charlie Kirk

Who Are Rally Forge and Turning Point USA?

Rally Forge is no small force in marketing.  Started in 2016 by Jake Hoffman, they now represent several companies and nonprofits in the Phoenix area.  They have become a major player in the market with annual revenues exceeding $11 Million.

According to their website Turning Point USA is a 501(c)3 organization founded by Charlie Kirk.  They focus on educating and training students in freedom, free markets, and limited government.  They claim to be the most organized, active, and powerful activist network in high schools and colleges across the country.

An Environment Ripe for Scandal

According to Facebook head of security, Nathaniel Gleicher, they removed 200 accounts and 55 pages on Facebook.  They also remove 76 Instagram accounts as well.  The question becomes how did they do it and why is it a problem.

While people make political comments on social media every day, these accounts stood out because of a few key factors.  It was noted that many of the accounts were operated by teenagers in the Phoenix area.  Additionally, the accounts often had cartoon like Bitmojis and seemed to oddly mirror real accounts.

More so the accounts seemed to create a perception of widespread support though commenting on posts by influential leaders and public filters.  The accounts were able to pass the security of the platform because they used modified spellings of real names that went undetected at account creation.

Additionally, twitter suspended 262 accounts related to the same issue.  Though neither platform has banned Turning Point USA, both platforms are continuing to investigate the issue further.  Rally Forge also put out a statement that it will be working with the platforms to correct this and remove the ban.

A History of Social Media and Politics

The use of social media to sway an election is nothing new.  In recent history, it was found that Russia interfered with the 2016 election through the active use of social media campaigns laced with false and extreme views about political candidates and issues

The US is not the only democracy to have dealt with this issue.  In, fact it is estimated that 26 out of 30 countries had similar types of interference in their last election.  It means that the social media companies are in a dire spot to reduce or remove this type of behavior from their platforms sooner than later.

What Does All of This Mean to You?

It means that in marketing we have entered a new era of ethical dilemma on how we approach social media.

The Ethical Use of Social Media

Marketers are constantly under the gun to drive more leads that will ultimately build more revenue for the company they represent.  At what length will marketers go to grow accounts and generate leads?

The good news is the majority will follow platform guidelines and behave in an ethical manner to ensure they are working within the values of their brand and the brand they represent.  Occasionally though you will find marketers that will step out of the straight and narrow because of an over promise or a “system” they have been shown.

What Does an Unethical Strategy Look Like?

There is no one size fits all clear answer to this question. However, there are several things business owners can look out for that are clear red flags:

  • It seems too good to be true: Often you will see marketers saying things like, “I can get you 50,000 followers in 1 week” or “I sell social media accounts with 10,000 followers.”  While both of these sound great the methods to achieve a huge audience, these often violate the terms and conditions of the social platform. They could ban your account while the scammer walks away with your money and prepares to do it to the next guy (or girl)
  • An offer for completely free services: Recently a slew of “marketers” (I use that term loosely) have taken to Facebook professing, “I have just learned a new strategy to grow your business through Facebook ads.  Before I start charging, I am looking for a business to see if I can get them results.” There are two ways to lose with this one.  You provide them access to your account and they steal all your follower data and run, or they waste your money on Facebook ads that do not work.
  • Fake Influencer Marketing/Influencer fraud: It is no lie that there are people making real money on social media as an influencer.  The reality is that the influencers are often a fad and their audiences come and go.  What you need to look at is not how many followers they have, but how many engaged followers they have.  They could have 2 million followers. But if they only engage 500 then their reach means nothing in the way of conversions to sales.

Learning From the Fall of a Giant

Rally Forge shows us that despite the size of the organization, social media platforms desire to keep the peace. Additionally, they want to make sure users are behaving in an ethical manner.  What is interesting though is how many advocates are on the platforms reporting issues that arise as well.  Seeing the user community for the most part as engaged in keeping the platforms ethical as the platforms themselves is refreshing.

Over time tolerance for unethical behavior is becoming less and less.  Some may call it censorship. However, it becomes an ethical obligation. Companies like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and TikTok must maintain safe platforms for users.

This news does not come lightly and will most likely be the center of many heated political and censorship arguments.  This is not the last we will see of social media companies seeking to maintain a safe platform for the users. Are you ready for the dominoes to fall as social media platforms start holding companies more accountable?

Our team is here to help you navigate the challenges of marketing. Ask us how we maintain ethical standards while getting the best result.

 

Is TikTok the Most Popular Platform Out There?

A New Wave of TikTok Marketing 

With stay-at-home orders forcing many to stay inside, everyone has been searching for ways to keep busy and sane. While some bake banana bread and binge Tiger King, over 800 million people have taken to the video-sharing social media platform, TikTok.

In September of 2016, Chinese technology company ByteDance released TikTok under the name Douyin, and within the year, gained around 100 million users. After changing the app’s name to TikTok in 2017, ByteDance expanded the app to international markets.

The Apple App Charts posed to be competition with the platform until ByteDance bought it for $1 billion.

The two apps were kept separate, with Musical.ly being mainly popular in the U.S., while TikTok reigned in Asian markets. However, this separation did not last for long, as Musical.ly merged into TikTok in late 2018.

With over 1.5 billion downloads, TikTok has surpassed YouTube, Instagram, and Snapchat, becoming the App Store’s most downloaded app.

How TikTok’s influence is changing the game

Marketing

TikTok has already created a variety of marketing options for companies eager to reach millions of consumers. The platform offers in-feed, brand takeover, and hashtag challenge advertisements at multiple costs with a vast reach.

Tik Tok users can create short videos that generate a crazy amount of video views that you can share in social media.

TikTok users can use this as a marketing strategy to build brand awareness and let users know of one’s products and services while enjoying videos. With videos as short as five seconds, in-feed video ads can blend in without a user having time to realize they are even consuming an advertisement TikTok is a $10 CPC rate.

Late last year, MAC Cosmetics created a hashtag challenge in collaboration with 18 TikTok influencers in hopes users would create their own. In a matter of a week, the #YouOwnIt campaign received over 2 billion views on millions of posts.

Some hashtag challenges have stepped it up by adding a shoppable feature. Users can click a hashtag not only to view linked content, but to see the products available to purchase. For example, Kroger created the hashtag #TransformUrDorm, challenging college users to share videos while updating their dorm rooms and encouraging them to show off Kroger products.

We are all guilty of using the Snapchat dog ears filter; a feature TikTok is also banking on.

Why you need to start advertising on TikTok

Selling the teenage dream 

Social Media Platform TikTok

With many options to market through the platform, the best approach is arguably through the influencers themselves. Although many are not even legal adults gaining fame from 15-second dance routines, these teenagers thrive on this platform

Addison Rae, a 19-year-old, is the fourth most followed individual on the platform, with just over 41 million followers. In a recent post sponsored by Olay, Rae and her mom are have an at-home spa day while her brother waits on them, holding a tray of Olay products.

The 15-second video is not overwhelming but instead features product placement. Viewed as a regular post– not as an advertisement– the video garnered over 24 million views and 4.8 million likes.

Working directly with influencers and utilizing their creativity allows access to the Gen Z user fanbase.

Influencers can generate brand awareness, popularity, and double up as a commercial all in a subtle way. Saving companies big bucks.

Changing the music industry

Teenager rapper Lil Nas X released his song “Old Town Road.” Four months later, TikTok found it popular, shooting the song to number one on the Billboard Hot 100 charts.

TikTok’s virality and short-form design are now playing a defining role in Gen Z culture and online marketing.

However you want to use TikTok, just know its popularity is just the beginning. Being at home, one has to find ways to make the best use of one’s time. Consider marketing for an extra source of income by starting with TikTok.