3 cross-sell email templates that convert

Picture this: you head to your local sports store to grab a new pair of sneakers. One of the assistants comes over and asks if you need help. You accept. While showing you the shoes, they point out their range of high-performance socks, insoles, and foam rollers. 

You walk out of the shop with the shoes you originally came for…and a three-pack of new socks too.

You probably didn’t realize it at the time, but you were just the subject of up-selling and cross-selling in person.

This tactic works well in person, but it works just as well online. There’s endless potential sales out there to seize -- but if you’re not grabbing these cross-sell opportunites with both hands, your business’ bottom line could be missing out.

To help improve the chance of upselling, we’ve compiled three proven cross-sell templates for you to tweak and use.

3 cross sell email templates that convert  |  Hue & Tone Creative

Opportunity #1: Right after a sale

Your very first cross-sell opportunity comes right after a new customer has made a purchase. We recommend sending out a thank you email — while you’re still fresh in the customer’s mind, offer them some complementary products.

For example, if you’re a DIY company and someone’s just bought a gallon of paint, why not highlight your paint brush, roller, and trays range? If they don’t already have them, odds are they’ll need them very soon… 

Sticking with the paint example, here’s some sample copy:

 

Hi [insert name],

Thanks a bunch for choosing us for your next DIY project. 

Your order’s been sent to the warehouse and should be on your doorstep in the next 2-3 business days.

If you need some more tools for the job, check out our range of [paint brushespaint rollers, and paint trays]

If there’s anything else we can help you with, get in touch with our customer service team on [insert number].

Thanks again,

[Company X] team


Opportunity #2: when asking for a review

It’s good practice to check in with customers down the line and ask for a review. The review itself will not only help you attract more new customers, but it could help you improve your product or service too.

So, if you’re already doing this, take the opportunity to kill two birds with one stone and steer them towards some more of your offerings. Here’s how you could do it:

 

Hi [insert name]

Thanks for shopping with us recently. 

Here at [company name] we take what you think to heart, and we’re always looking for ways to build on what we’ve got. If you have just a minute to spare, we’d love to hear what you thought about your recent purchase. 

>LEAVE A REVIEW< 

If you liked what you got, these might just be up your street too:

[Reel of relevant product names and images]

We look forward to hopefully seeing what you say soon.


Thanks,

[Company X] team

3 cross sell email templates that convert  |  Hue & Tone Creative


Opportunity #3: promotional pitch

Your cross-sell efforts don’t always have to piggyback onto another of your email activities. You can also send emails when you have a sale happening, you want to promote a new product, or offer a discount on a certain service. You can send cross-sell pitches whenever you want, just make sure you don’t bombard your database with emails — and be sure to keep the products or service offers relevant.

Here’s an example to steal some inspiration from:

Hi [insert name]

So, you’ve taken out our [insert service name] service, but have you ever considered our [insert service name] offering too?

If the answer’s yes then now’s the time to make your move, because we’re exclusively offering 15% off to existing customers!

By taking out our [insert service name]service, you’ll benefit from:

  • Benefit #1

  • Benefit #2

  • Benefit #3

  • Benefit #4

To claim your discount today, just use the code SUMMER2019 at checkout.

Thanks,

[Company X] team 


Hue & Tone: Email Design and Marketing

So, you’ve got the words, but do you have the design? Don’t worry if not, we can help you create kickass email templates that complement your content and encourage customers to re-convert. Interested? Then get in touch at (336) 365-8559 or hannah@hueandtonecreative.com.

4 event emails that’ll increase attendance rates

event emails that’ll increase attendance rates | Hue & Tone Creative

Organizing an event is no easy feat -- it’s time intensive, resource intensive, and financially intensive. So, if you’re investing your efforts into pulling an event together, you’ll want to make sure you’re squeezing every bit of benefit out of it as you can.

If your attendance levels aren’t as high as you’d hoped, hopefully, this four-stage email marketing plan will help you hit your event’s overarching key performance indicators (KPIs).

 

Phase #1: the invite

First things first, you need to pique peoples’ interest, and to do this, you need to feed them with the facts that will benefit them. What will they come away knowing that they don’t know now? How will this information benefit them? And what do you have to offer that others don’t? 

And, of course, as with any email, this all needs to be said in as few words as possible; easier said than done, we know.

 

The template 

Hi [insert name],

Do you want to build your business’ brand awareness? Attract more people to your site? Overtake your competitors? And increase that all-important profit margin?

Yes, yes, yes, and yes?

Then you NEED to come to our next event: [insert event name].

This event is being hosted by [insert speaker’s name] and he/she brings a whole load of knowledge to the table. He/she’s:

  • Reason #1 (e.g. number of years’ experience)

  • Reason #2 (e.g. qualifications)

  • Reason #3 (e.g. big brands they’ve helped)

Interested? Here are the details:

  • Date:XX/XX/XXXX

  • Time:XX.XX

  • Duration:XX hours

  • Location:XXXXXXXX

 

To secure your spot today, just RSVP to this email and let us know how many of you will be joining us.

Thanks,

[Company X] team


event emails that’ll increase attendance rates | Hue & Tone Creative

Phase #2: confirmation 

This one doesn’t need to be long at all, but don’t leave people guessing; let them know - right away - they’ve successfully signed up to your event. It’s a nice added touch, shows your professionalism, and saves them accidentally signing up twice.


The template

Hi [insert name],

Thanks for signing up for our [insert event name]event!

We’re really looking forward to meeting you there and we can’t wait for you to see what we’re all about. 

We’ll touch base with you again soon, but if you need anything from us between now and then, get in touch with our team at [insert number].

 

Thanks again,

 [Company X] team


Phase #3: Keep them keen 

Once you’ve got a bunch of people on board, let them know they’ve not slipped off your radar – and, as an added bonus, arm them with even more valuable information. We suggest sharing content like a blog article or guide that is relevant to the topic(s) covered in the event.

 

The template

Hi [insert name],

It’s only one week until our [insert event name]event - eek! We hope you’re as excited as we are for the big day.

To give you a flavor of what’s to come, we’ve put together a free guide on [insert event topic(s)]for you - just click hereto read it.

See you very soon!

Thanks,

[Company X] team


Phase #4: the reminder

The fourth and final stage of your pre-event build-up is your reminder. This one is important because, let’s be honest, everyone’s human and we all forget things now and then - especially at work when we’ve got to-do lists as long as our arm! So, give your attendee list a polite prod the day before. That’s how you can ensure your event is fresh on their mind.

 

The template

Hi [insert name],

We can’t wait to see you tomorrow!

To save you crawling through your emails, here’s all the info you need to get to the venue:

  • Location:XXXXXXXX

  • Time:XX.XX

  • Duration:XX hours

  • Directions:XXXXXXXXXXX

See you tomorrow, 

[Company X] team


Hue & Tone Creative: Let’s work together

If you need help with your email event marketing, presentation graphics, branding, business cards, or more, that’s exactly what we’re here for. Get in touch at (336) 365-8559 or hueandtonecreative.com to see what exactly we can do for you.

4 common web design mistakes - and how to fix them

You can have the best product on your shelves, the best customer service around, the best words on your webpages, and the best advice on your blogs, but, if your website’s design isn’t up to par it can all fall flat. 

Getting your website’s aesthetics just right can be a tough nut to crack - especially if it’s not your area of expertise. Small mistakes here and there can wreak havoc with your conversion rate. Many of these web design blunders are easily avoidable – or can be quickly corrected. 

4 Common Web Design Mistakes -- and how to fix them  |  Hue & Tone Creative

All you need is the knowledge about how to correct them, and then you can get your design quickly back on track. If you’re not sure where you might be going wrong, here are four common mistakes we come across and how to overcome them:

1. Hidden contact details

Getting people to land on your website is one half of the battle, getting people to take action is the other. So, make it as easy as possible for visitors to find your form, email, or number.

All too often, organizations leave their contact details buried in their footer or three links deep into their navigation, making it hard to get in touch. 

The fix: Task someone who doesn’t know your site inside and out with tracking down your contact details. If they report back it took them more than a second or two, it’s time to look at your placement. A couple of easy-to-see suggestions include: 

  • At the top right of your main navigation bar, so it’s instantly visible on every page

  • Within your main navigation bar, clearly labelled - something like ‘Contact us’ or ‘Get in touch’

2. Cluttered pages

4 Common Web Design Mistakes -- and how to fix them  |  Hue & Tone Creative

The phrase “less is more” couldn’t be more true when it comes to designing a clean and easy to navigate web page. Lots of sites out there are guilty of cramming each and every page with images, buttons, text, and widget – but all these elements are competing for your visitor’s attention and can quickly become overwhelming. 

People don’t know where to look, what to read, or what’s most important, and they certainly can’t skim your content - all of which can be a big turn-off.

The fix: Go through your website page-by-page and really question what the value of each element is. If there isn’t a motivation behind a certain element, go ahead and remove it. Once you’ve whittled your on-page items down to the essentials, start strategizing about each page’s hierarchy. Make sure you’re incorporating clear call to actions and plenty of whitespace.

Shameless plug: hiring a designer might help with this.

3. Fatal contact forms

Complicated contact forms can be fatal to your conversion rates. If you’ve got lines and lines of fields to fill in, there’s a good chance your visitors will take one look, race to the back button, and exit your site altogether. After all, time is of the essence for everyone on your website or social media. 


The fix: Similar to your site’s pages, go through all your forms field-by-field to see what info is and isn’t needed. For example, you probably don’t need a prospect’s address until they’re further down the funnel – so don’t ask for it, because it could deter people from filling out your form.

In most cases, we recommend keeping forms to just a name and email address. Often, even just an email address field will suffice. 

By the end of this process you should be left with concise, tidy forms, and a clear plan for your data collection strategy.

After some extra advice? Here’s more on how to design a user-friendly form.

4. Absent search boxes

Quick tip: Another quick and easy workaround could be Google Custom Search.

If your site’s relatively big (more than 10 - 20 pages including regular pages, products, blogs, etc.) it’s probably a good idea to add a search box. It makes your site easier to navigate and ensures people will be able to find the content they’re looking for. No more worrying about people leaving the site because the blog post they were looking for was buried in your archives! 


The fix: The solution will depend on your CMS. Some will have a search box feature built-in for you to download, but for other platforms you might have to source a developer to help create a custom one. 


Hue & Tone Creative: Your Website Design Expert

If you’ve not got the time or experience to give your website’s design the attention it needs, then we’re here to give it the TLC it deserves. To see what we can do for you, get in touch today at (336) 365-8559 or hannah@hueandtonecreative.com.

How to conduct A/B testing

Colleague #1:“Lets change the layout of this landing page.”

Colleague #2: “What’s the reason for the change?”

Colleague #1:“Just because. Maybe it’ll work better.”

 

How many times have you had or heard a conversation along these lines? It’s the marketing equivalent of shooting in the dark and hoping for the best. 

software-developer-and-ux-ui-designer-are-designing-mobile-application_t20_gopNPx.jpg

Spoiler: there’s a better way to make big business decisions.

A/B testing, also sometimes referred to as ‘split testing’, is a type of experiment used by marketers to gauge which variation of a campaign works best. 

The concept itself has been around for a long time, but is particularly relevant in the worlds of email and web marketing. It’s an inexpensive and reliable method to really understand whatworks for the correct audience. 

When it comes to what you can test the possibilities are almost endless, but some common examples include:

  • Landing page copy

  • Call to actions (CTAs)

  • Email subject lines

  • Headlines

  • Product descriptions

  • Advertisement imagery and colors

  • Email sender names

  • Personalization options

How to conduct A/B Testing  |  Hue & Tone Creative

The benefits of A/B testing

How many times have you or a colleague made a decision based on instinct, a gut feeling, or best practice? It’s impossible to predict how people will react, and A/B testing will help you remove some of that guess work.

If done right, it can give you tangible insights that increase web traffic and conversions -- and decrease bounce rates and missed opportunities. 

If done wrong, inaccurate results can be extracted which can result in performance-damaging decisions being made. So, let’s make sure you get it right! 

How to get started 


1. Pick your variable

First things first, you need to pick which variable you want to test. It’s important to focus your efforts on only one element or change at a time, otherwise you won’t know which is responsible for your surge or slump in performance.

For example, if you were focusing on improving the conversion rate of an email and changed the color of your CTA and the template, how would you know which change was behind the results?

That doesn’t mean you can’t fiddle with various elements of a single campaign, it just means they can’t be measured concurrently. Sticking with the email example, you’d need to make your CTA change, analyze your results, take action accordingly, and then experiment with your template

2. Set your goals

Once you’ve settled on your variable, you need to set its primary goal. Let’s say your experimenting with the text on a landing page, your primary goal could be to either: 

  • Reduce the page’s bounce rate

  • Increase the average time spent on the page

  • Increase the page’s conversion rate

3. Create your variables

Next up, you need to create your two variations. Your control version is either what you already have (i.e. current webpage copy) or what you’d normally use (your standard email template, for example).

Your second variation - the ‘challenger’ - is the same asset, but with the isolated change you’re looking to test. For example, let’s pretend your testing if changing the color of your ‘Buy now’ button increases conversions.  

Your control version would be simply leaving the webpage unaltered, and your challenger version would involve using the exact same page, but changing the color of the button to X, Y or Z. It’s as simple as that.

 

4. Split your data

When it comes to splitting your data, it’s important to divvy it up equally - i.e. 50/50. The reason for this, is that it’s the quickest and most reliable way to get statistically significant results.

To make a decision on which variable is more effective, each has to be viewed the same amount of times. So, if you were to split your data 30/70 (with 30% going to your challenger version and 70% to the original), for example, it’d take much longer for your challenger to rack up the numbers needed to complete your experiment.

If you’re not sure where to start with this bit, here are some of the best rated A/B testing tools to help you:

5. Set your sample size

This one will vary depending on what you’re testing and which A/B testing tool you use. If you’re testing a webpage, for example, you might want to set yourself a target number of visitors to base your experiment on.

Or, if you’re measuring a social media ad, you might choose to set your campaign to run until each variation has earned 3,000 impressions, for example.

For help on how to determine your sample size, check out this guide.

 

6. Analyze your results

Last but not least, you need to take the time to carefully read and understand your results. During the analysis stage, it’s important to keep your primary goal in mind and not get distracted by other metrics.

By this, we mean if your main goal was to improve email conversions by changing your template, try not to get too caught up with things like open rate, click through rate (CTR), and bounce rate.

Important things to remember

Before you get going with your A/B tests, here are a few final points to bear in mind:

  • Run both your variations at the same time

  • Run your tests for the same amount of time

  • Only run one test at a time

  • Give your experiment enough time to produce meaningful results


Hue & Tone Creative: Your Marketing Partner

If you need help producing your A/B testing assets, you know where we are. To discuss your needs, goals and requirements, contact the team at (336) 365-8559 or hannah@hueandtonecreative.com.

Inbound marketing: 8 tips for design that converts

Inbound marketing: 8 tips for design that converts  |  Hue & Tone Creative

Are your inbound marketing efforts failing to secure the numbers you projected? Are you confident in your concept and scratching your head to figure out where it’s going wrong? Well, perhaps it’s time to look in the direction of your design. 

Design possesses the power to convert spectators into engaged customers. It’s the first and last thing people see when engaging with your business. And it should be a key focus when working to increase your conversions.

So, without further ado, here are eight design tips to give your inbound conversion rate a nudge in the right direction.

1. Hick’s Law

Hick’s Law is a popular theory that suggests the time it takes someone to make a decision is directly proportionate to the number of possible choices they have. So, in layman’s terms, the more options you give your visitors, the less likely they are to perform the desired action.

To implement this theory, take a look at your site’s design and structure and ask yourself (and honestly answer!) whether you’ve got too much going on. If the answer’s yes, see how you can hone things down to give consumers one or two key choices. 

 

2. Don’t be afraid of white space

To a degree, the phrase “less is more” couldn’t be truer. Don’t cram your designs with color, text, and imagery out of the fear of being ‘bland’. White space can contribute to clean and clear designs that emphasize the content you want visitors to focus on… which, in turn, increases conversions. 

 

3. Choose your colors carefully

Color can evoke emotion. Emotion can result in action. Action can result in conversion. Use contrast to ensure your text, headlines and call to actions stand out, and experiment with your color choices to see which returns the best results.

 

4. Remember the 8-second rule 

It’s true what they say, the human attention span is less than that of a goldfish - a mere eight seconds, in fact. That means you’ve got limited time to grab a visitor’s attention.

Think about using: 

  • Large and snappy headlines

  • Eye-catching imagery

  • Clear call to actions

  • Power words

 

5. Use real faces

Using natural imagery and real people can improve your brand’s authenticity and in turn portray you as more trustworthy, human, and familiar. 

If you’ve got an ‘About us’ section with a breakdown of your employees, put a photo of them next to their bio. And, instead of buying stock photos for everything, consider organizing a photoshoot that shows off your product or office. 

 

6. Quality is key

Poor quality pictures don’t make a good first impression. They reflect badly on your brand and lead onlookers to associate the quality of your imagery with the quality of your product or service - after all, if you can’t master your pictures, how can you follow through on the other things your website promises? Now we know that’s not necessarily true, but it’s a conclusion people can jump to.

If you’ve got pictures on your site that are pixelated, distorted or just plain tacky, it’s time to go ahead and replace them.

 

7. Optimize your forms

Having trouble designing a form that converts? We can help with that

When it comes to conversions, your forms are key – because it’s where the action takes place. So, don’t let yourself fall flat at the final hurdle. Keep your form simple and concise, include a clear CTA, make sure the fields are clearly labelled, and use a large submit button. 

To see where there’s room for improvement, we suggest trying out some A/B testing (more on that here).

  

8. Don’t leave out your logo

This one might seem obvious, but it’s not unheard of for people to overlook the most obvious element of their website.   

Whether it’s a landing page, flyer, brochure, business card or online ad, you need to always include your logo. That’s how you reinforce your branding for people – and while it doesn’t have to be the focal point of your page, it does need to be strategically placed so people know where they are and who’s talking to them.


Hue & Tone Creative: Marketing in Greensboro

Don’t have the magic touch when it comes to design? Not need to worry, that’s where our creative team comes in. To see what we can do for you, get in touch today at (336) 365-8559.

4 free welcome email templates

According to Salesforce’s benchmark study, welcome emails (42%) are the third most popular type of email sent by businesses, trailing only to newsletters (66%) and promotional content (54%). Of the marketers who send them, three quarters rated them as highly effective.

But why are they so important, we hear you wonder? If done right, they engage new customers straight away by prompting recipients to start the next stage in their customer journey -- and they also provide a means for you to follow up on any value propositions you promised (a new customer discount, for example). 

young-woman-using-mobile-phone_t20_ZVNKKR.jpg

One last important thing to note before we dive right in with our templates, are these six golden rules: 

  1. Send your welcome email ASAP

  2. Remember to stamp your branding on it

  3. Include social links to encourage further engagement

  4. Track your email analytics and act on any concerning metrics

  5. Keep them short and to the point

  6. Only use personalization if you’re 100% confident your data is correct

Now, on to what you came for, the all-important templates to get you going…


Example 1: Product Purchase

Hi [insert name]

Thanks for choosing Company X for your Product Y needs - we’re so happy you chose us!

We’ve been delivering our goods to customers - like you - for X years now, and we can’t wait for you to see what all the fuss is about.

As our welcome gift to you, we’d like to offer you 15% off your next purchase with us. To claim your discount, simply enter the code WELCOME19 at checkout.

And if you want to keep up-to-date with our activity (including exciting giveaways!), don’t forget to follow us on FacebookTwitter and Instagram

Thanks again, 

[Company X] team


4 Free Welcome Email Templates  |  Hue & Tone Creative

Example 2: Service Sign-Up 

Hi [insert name],

Welcome to the team!

We’re delighted to have you on board and we can’t wait to start supporting you with our [insert service name].

The next steps are super simple:

  1. Your dedicated service manager will be in touch soon to talk you through the set-up process.

  2. Our Finance Team will invoice you on every [insert date] of the month.

  3. If you have any questions, our customer service team will be available on [insert phone number] between [insert hours and days].

It really is that easy. 

For regular updates, news, hints and tips off our experts, don’t forget to check into our blog every now and then, and if you’re feeling social, why not hit us up on FacebookLinkedIn or Instagram

Thanks again, 

[Company X] team


Example 3: Newsletter Sign-up

Hi [insert name],

Thank you for signing up to our monthly newsletter.

It’ll land in your inbox on the second Tuesday of every month, and it’ll be brimming with useful tips, guides, videos, resources, and more.

If, at any point, you have any feedback on our newsletters, we’d love to know what you think at [insert email address].

To hear more from us, head over to our social profiles and give us a follow:

[Social media icons]

Thanks again,

[Company X] team


Example 4: Event Registration

Hi [insert name],

Congratulations, you’ve successfully signed up to our [insert event name] event - we already can’t wait for you to join us on the big day!

Just so you have them handy, here are the details:  

  • Date:

  • Time:

  • Location: 

Don’t worry, we’ll send a reminder email over a few days before, just to be safe. 

If you have any questions between now and then, you can reach the team on [insert number] or [insert email address].

And so the countdown begins!

See you soon,

[Company X] team


Hue & Tone Creative: Marketing in Greensboro and Beyond

Need a hand writing or designing your very own welcome email? Then look no further - we’ve got you covered. To discuss our email services and more, contact us on (336) 365-8559 or hannah@hueandtonecreative.com.

19 marketing terms you need to know

Let’s be honest. We’ve all been sat in a meeting at one point or another, heard a term we’ve never come across before, not wanted to put our hand up to ask what it means, and instead sat there nodding along, not entirely sure what’s going on... hey, it happens to the best of us.

So, to help you bridge that gap and wave goodbye to your unknowing head nods, we’ve put together a glossary of 19 common marketing terms and what they mean - without the jargon. 

19 Marketing Terms You Need to Know  |  Hue & Tone Creative

1. A/B testing

A/B testing involves creating two variations of one element and running tests to compare which version works best. A few examples of when you would use A/B testing:

  • Email subject line text

  • Colors used for call-to-action (CTA) buttons

  • Content placed on landing pages

  • Imagery used in social media ads

The end goal of A/B testing is to figure out which assets are most successful and, ultimately, improve conversions.

2. Bounce rate

This number can be found in Google Analytics and it represents the percentage of visitors who land on any given page of your website, but then leave without clicking through to any other areas of your site. 
 

3. Buyer personas

buyer persona is a breakdown of what characteristics are typically present within certain clusters of your customer base, for example their:

  • Age, gender and geographic location

  • Professional and/or education status

  • Personality traits - i.e. comfort seekers, impulse buyers, worriers, confident, highly skilled, etc.

It’s worth noting that you can have several different types of buyer personas for a single product or service.

 

4. Click-through rate (CTR)

This is the number of visitors who visit a webpage and proceed to the next desired step - i.e. they click from your homepage through to a marketing advertisement. Or, they open your email and click through to your landing page.

5. Content management system (CMS)

The majority of us aren’t able to build a website from scratch, which is where CMS’ come in. Quite simply, a CMS is a facility created by web development experts, that allows non-technical users to create, edit and manage their very own site.  

It also helps with things like:

  • Making content SEO-friendly

  • Ensuring content is indexable

  • Automatically generating navigational elements

  • Setting up user permissions


6. Conversion rate

What defines a conversion can vary. For some businesses it might be a newsletter sign-up, for others it’s filling in a form, and for another it could be completing a purchase. So, your conversion rate is the percentage of people who follow through and complete yourdesired action.

A page with a high conversion rate can be classed as well-performing, while pages with a poor conversion rate might be an indication that work needs to be done to improve your numbers.

7. Dynamic content

Dynamic content enables you to present visitors with different content, based on what information you already have on them. 

For example, in the email world, this could be sending the same email to your entire customer base, but sending one cluster to a landing page promoting product X, another to product Y, and another again to product Z, because each item is best suited to their needs and spending history.

8. Evergreen content

Unlike things like news articles and seasonal blogs, evergreen content doesn’t have a sell-by date. It infinitely provides rich, useful information to its readers, and, if done well, it can add a great deal of SEO value to your site. 

For a flavor of what evergreen content looks like, here are a few great examples: 

9. HTML

Short for HyperText Markup Language, HTML is a type of language used to build webpages. It’s the foundation of every single site - regardless of its complexity, and works in conjunction with things like CSS and JavaScript.

11. Landing page

Landing pages are designated pages that are designed for lead generation purposes. Their content will vary from business-to-business, but some examples include offering an ebook, webinar, white paper or event. One element that tends to remain consistent though, is the presence of a form to capture important lead-generating information - like names, job titles, company information and contact details.

12. Microsite

You could say a microsite is a halfway house between a regular website and a landing page. They’re commonly used when companies want to create a unique experience for their audience, and one that’s distinct from their typical style. Because of this, microsites typically have their own domain name and a whole new look and feel design-wise.

13. On-page optimization

This is one of your site’s SEO elements, and it refers to things like your content, title tags, URL and image tags. Basically, it’s the practice of ensuring all the aforementioned areas are optimized for your desired keywords, to help bolster your organic rankings. 

14. Off-page optimization

Another segment that makes up your SEO efforts. Off-page optimization is often much more difficult to obtain success in because it’s usually out of your control, but if you master it, it can be incredibly fruitful.

A few ways to optimize your website off-page include:

  • Link building

  • Social media engagement

  • Social bookmarking

  • Guest blogging

15. PPC

PPC is short for pay-per-click. Quite simply, it involves paying a publisher (like a search engine, social media site or website owner) each time your ad is clicked on. 

19 Marketing Terms You Need to Know  |  Hue & Tone Creative


16. Responsive design

This refers to websites that are built to mould around the device they're being viewed on. So, for example, if you go to a website on your desktop and then again on your mobile, the content will automatically be optimized for both screens’ dimensions, ensuring ease of readability and accessibility.

17. User experience (UX)

UX encompasses everything your organization does from a prospect’s discovery all the way through to an existing customer’s renewal. A good UX can aid your conversions and a bad UX can do quite the opposite. To really get under the skin of a customer’s experience, you have to put yourself in their shoes and bethe customer - market research (like focus groups) can help with this.

18. Viral content

Viral content is the ultimate goal for most. It’s a piece of content that takes the internet by storm and spreads like wildfire through social sharing and re-publishing. Check out these examples for some inspiration. 

19. XML sitemap

Last but certainly not least, an XML sitemap is a file that hosts all your website’s relevant URLs. It helps search engines a) get to grips with your site’s structure, and b) crawl your pages more efficiently.

Although XML sitemaps don’t guarantee your pages will be indexed, they are still the best way to put your website out there and in front of search bots. 

Keywords form an important part of your SEO strategy and they play a key role in getting your pages ranked in search engines, such as Google, Yahoo, and Bing.

The keywords you target should be relevant to your product or service, in sync with what your target audience are likely to search for, and optimized both on-page (i.e. within a blog post or on a product page) and off-page (i.e. in your meta descriptions).


Hue & Tone Creative: Your marketing partners

So now you’ve come to grips with the jargon – but do you know how to truly utilize some of these tactics and trends If you don’t, don’t stress – that’s where we come in! To see how we can fulfill everything from your design and branding to social media and blogging needs, contact us today at (336) 365-8559 or hannah@hueandtonecreative.com

Typography for beginners

Typography for Beginners  |  Hue & Tone Creative

Some web pages and brochures good… and some look terribly unprofessional. If you’re new to graphic design or typesetting it can be hard to determine what makes someone’s branding look good or bad.  

If you’re a beginner – or you’re attempting to brand your own business -- there’s a number of type rules you can follow to give brand a polished look. Following these simple rules will help even the most amateur designer get their webpages and print assets in tip top shape!

 

1. Less is more when it comes to typeface

If you’re looking for some font pairing inspiration, head over to these two posts about pairing fonts on Squarespace (here and here). 

Choosing the right typeface is key. Get it right, and you’ll set yourself up for stylish, simple and easy-to-read assets. But get it wrong, and you’ll end up with illegible, cluttered and unappealing pages. 

Simple fonts should be used for main body copy, and decorative typefaces should be used sparingly for things like subheadings.

The golden rule in the design world is to stick to a maximum of three fonts in any given piece of artwork - whether that is a website page, social media banner, or hardcopy flyer. However, whittling your fonts down to two can sometimes be even better. 

If you stick to just one or two fonts, you can use varying weights to create a more refined look. 


2. Use a sensible hierarchical structure

Following a logical hierarchy helps to give your site’s pages a clear flow and effortlessly guides readers through the structure of the website. Let’s compare and contrast two examples to give you a better idea of what we mean: 

Good content formatting.png

Exhibit A is a bad example. The website’s name, navigation bar, subheadings, and main body copy are all the same font size. Now there are two issues with that – first, it gives readers no visual indication where they should start reading or what’s most important to look at. Secondly, it makes it really difficult for the reader to skim through the copy.
 

Now, let’s contrast an example of a solid hierarchical structure. The page’s title, navigation bar, subheadings and copy are clearly defined with varying font points, making it much easier on the viewer’s eye.


3. Be creative with contrast

Typography for Beginners  |  Hue & Tone Creative

Being creative is part of being a designer. Now we know we said earlier you should stick to two to three font combinations per project, but that doesn’t mean you can’t mix up your styling by playing around with things like the font’s size, weight, color and style.

Whether you emphasize a key word with italics, change the color of a subead to something more bold, or bump up a term in your tagline to a size that’s more eye-catching, there are endless ways to create contrast within your copy.


4. Keep your alignment neat and tidy

Alignment applies to all your on-page elements - like body text, titles, logos, images, and menu bars. When it comes to alignment, everything should be connected in one way or another. For example, you might want your logo to align with your main navigation bar, your body copy to align with your page’s title, and your images to align with your body copy.

Well thought-out alignment will help prevent your page from becoming disjointed and ensure all your assets create well-measured sizes and distances between each other.


5. Don’t be a stranger to whitespace

Don’t fall into the trap of thinking you need to fill everynook and cranny on your page. Creating whitespace around your words can be incredibly powerful, can help draw attention to text, and will aid you in achieving a simple and trendy look. 


6. Choose your colors carefully

Last but not least is your color choice. The right colors can make or break the look and readability of your copy – there’s nothing worse than colors that make your words a strain to read.

When it comes to color, there are three key components: 

  • Hue - the shade of the color

  • Saturation - the brilliance of the color

  • Value - the lightness or darkness of the color

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When it comes to choosing your colors, the aim of the game is to make your text as easy as possible to read. It’s as simple as that.


Hue & Tone Creative: Let’s work together

Feeling overwhelmed with information? If you’re not a designer, knowing and deciding what does and doesn’t work is easier said than done. If you need a hand with your typesetting - or any other area of design, get in touch with our team today at (336) 365-8559.

6 reasons to send a company newsletter

“For years, in large part thanks to the newsletter I think, I’ve never had trouble attracting new clients and the right kinds of clients. People will read my newsletter and be able to tell if I’m the right person for the project before they even call me.”

Tom Ahern, Small Business Owner


6 reasons to send a company newsletter  |  Hue & Tone Creative

Sold already? 

Newsletters can, and should be, a staple lead-generating part of your marketing activity. They add credibility. They add value. And, most importantly, they add revenue to your books.

In fact, you could say the proof’s already in the pudding. According to research conducted by the Content Marketing Institute, 83% of B2B marketers already send out email newsletters. And let’s be honest, the majority of organizations wouldn’t be willingly pouring their time and resources into them if the investment wasn’t worthwhile…right? 

Whether you’re already sending newsletters or are new to the scene, here’s a reminder of their six core benefits:

 

1. Constant communication

Sending a regular newsletter to prospective, current and past customers (providing they’ve asked for it, of course) opens up a non-invasive, continual line of communication. It might be one-sided, but it enables you to keep talking to your target market in a way that doesn’t leave them feeling bombarded. 



2. Gentle reminders

Whether you opt to send your newsletter weekly, biweekly, monthly or biannually, it serves as a reminder of your business to the recipients and ensures your name remains at the forefront of their mind. The benefit to you? It means they’re morelikely to turn to you when they’re in need of your product or service.

3. Add value

If your newsletter is packed with genuinely useful hints, tips, guides and videos, you’ll be giving something back to people for free - and they’ll appreciate that. But (and this is a big but) you’ll only reap the rewards of this if your newsletter content’s rich and relevant, which is where we can’t stress the importance of quality content enough. 

 

4. Increase sales

If you plan and pick your content smartly, your newsletter could help build your business’ bottom line. By using it as a platform to subtly sell as well as educate and inform, you can give both prospects and existing customers a polite nudge in the direction of a new sale.

For example, if you’re a social media management company and, say, 30% of your customers have only signed up for your Facebook services, why not include an article in their newsletter around the benefits of your Instagram and/or LinkedIn expertise? If not immediately, it could spark a sale down the line.

6 reasons to send a company newsletter  |  Hue & Tone Creative


5. Bolster your social following

More social media followers = more engagement = more reach. It’s as simple as that. As an added bonus, several studies indicate social signals can contribute to how search engines rank pages, so it could aid your SEO efforts too.

To maximize the benefits of this one, just make sure you remember to include links to all your profiles and in a place where they’re easily seen. 


6. Make your content go further 

If you’re investing time, money and resource into producing great content, it just makes business sense to make it go further, right? And your newsletter’s certainly one extra outlet for that. 


Now we’re not suggesting you start churning out generic content and pushing it out through every medium just for the sake of it. It’s important to tailor your content to each platform, audience and end goal -- but if you’ve got a bank of dormant articles, why not tweak and recycle them to boost their value and reach? 


Hue & Tone: all things creative marketing

If you’re sold but just don’t know where to start, we can help you with everything from your content and layout to design and social media. To get the wheels in motion, get in touch with the team at (336) 365-8559 or hannah@hueandtonecreative.com

4 types of emails you need to be sending

Want to learn more about our favorite email marketing platform? Check out this post.

Email marketing can help you engage new customers – in addition to helping you sell your products; email marketing will help you enhance your brand awareness and build trust with new prospects. Once you’ve engaged a customer, it can even help you build brand loyalty.

For businesses of any size, email marketing is a no brainer. If you have a small marketing budget, it’s an easy way to connect with a lot of customers at once. In addition to being low investment, it drives traffic to your website and it’s the channel most customer prefer. 

As your company grows you can also scale your email marketing efforts – making it a useful tool no matter what stage of growth your business is at. 

4 types of emails you need to be sending  |  Hue & Tone Creative


One study from Marketing Sherpa reports that 72% of consumers prefer to receive promotional messages through email (source).


You can send a wide variety of different emails to your marketing list, but if you’re just getting started with email marketing, there’s a few types of emails we suggest you start with. These four types are all great to engage both new customers and old leads. 


1. Welcome email

This is your first chance to get your newfound relationship off on the right foot. Your welcome email should include key components like:

  • A thank you message for choosing your brand

  • Links to your social media channels to encourage additional engagement

  • A discount or deal that’s exclusive to new customers (this not only demonstrate a token of appreciation, but it will give them a nudge to browse your products or services again)

As with any type of email, your welcome email should be kept short and sweet to ensure the recipient isn’t overwhelmed with information. We suggest sending this initial email within 48 hours of signing up or making a purchase - the sooner the better though. Often, people will actively check for your name in their inbox after a sale’s been processed, so any later can look a little lazy!


2. Regular newsletters

Newsletters are an excellent way to naturally maintain contact with customers – it’s a great way to share useful information while also ensuring your brand remains at the forefront of their mind.

Your newsletter could include content like:

  • Blogs relevant to the product/service they took out

  • Company updates

  • Competitions/giveaways

  • Teasers: if you’ve got something new coming out

  • Testimonials: to reaffirm you’re a good brand to be with

Your newsletters should be consistent. Don’t send three in one month and then go silent for the next four. Decide how regular you want to start sending them - weekly, biweekly, monthly or quarterly. Try to stick to the same date and time too, that way people can start to expect (and hopefully look forward to) your updates.


3. Promote your products 

Existing customers present a potential gold mine of up-sell and cross-sell opportunities. If they’ve already purchased from you there’s a good chance they already enjoy your brand, so it’s a waste not to play on that.

It’s really important you don’t go overboard with these kind of emails though. If you do, you run the risk of recipients unsubscribing and losing all chances of reaching out to them. 

Your promotional emails should:

 a)     Be clearly targeted
b)     Focus on quality, rather than quantity
c)     Outline why this product is suited to them
d)     If possible, offer an additional incentive - i.e. a discount

4 types of emails you need to be sending  |  Hue & Tone Creative


4. Ask for a review

If you never ask there’s no chance you’ll get what you want, right? 

Reviews are key to your success. The majority of prospects will peruse your reviews before making their final decision, so the more high-quality testimonials you have to your name, the more chance you have of attaining new leads. 

For existing customers, reviews provide an open platform to air opinions, and show that you a) care what they think, and b) are looking to continually improve and evolve your offering for them.

 Don’t be too keen with your review request though. To make sure it’s meaningful, give the customer chance to actually use your product or service first. Equally though, make sure you don’t leave it too long, if you do, you might slip off their radar before you land in their inbox. We suggest waiting a minimum of about 2-3 weeks before prompting someone for a product review, but no more than 2 months. 


Hue & Tone Creative: Email Marketing in Greensboro, NC

Whether you need help building your overarching email strategy, putting words together, or branding your template, we’re your go to experts. To start or improve your email strategy today, get in touch with our team at (336) 365-8550 or hannah@hueandtonecreative.com.