New Year, New Desk Swag

Blab Media Office Windsor Ontario

At the start of every year I always end up running around in a frantic whirlwind trying to catch up (and clean up) after a month of hectic holiday plans. At some point, when everything starts to calm down, I take it upon myself to organize my work space and freshen everything up for the months to come. There’s something to be said about starting fresh in January. It seems entirely possible to focus on goals and motivation comes easily with a blank slate laid out in front of you. The possibilities are endless and things seem so much less overwhelming when you have full control of the direction you’re going to take moving forward.

Usually after the holidays I have some new knick knacks to add, books to make space for, and a new calendar to put out. It gives me an excuse to tidy up, organize paperwork and purge/donate some unused items from the previous year. God knows I have way too many notebooks and pens for the average human so this step is essential to ensuring I don’t end up buried in unnecessary supplies. It’s also a wonderful reminder to kick it old school from time to time and take notes on paper instead of digitally. Never underestimate how inspiring a cute notebook can be! This year I was gifted quite a few new items for my office and was excited to make space for them. I added a cute desk calendar, a gratitude journal from local maker Pocket Squares, a beautiful gold notebook, a really fun #girlboss desk sign and an awesome Ambassador Bridge print from local agency Dark Roast Digital.


Do you refresh your work space every January?
What are your organizational tips/tricks for your home office?

5 Social Media Trends To Watch In 2018

Social Media Trends 2018

With every new year, comes new trends and opportunities for businesses. Surely we can all appreciate how far technology has come in such a short period of time and this year’s social media trends are no exception. If you’re looking to invest in social, reset your goals, overtake your competition or stand out in a crowded market, these are the five trends you’ll want to consider as we move into 2018:

  1. Augmented Reality Makes A Comeback
    Hard to believe that it’s already been five years since Google came out with a pair of glasses—Google Glass—that promised to bring augmented reality (AR) to the mainstream and change how we live and interact with each other. As you could have guessed by now, it was a flop. But now, multiple companies (Facebook, Google and Snap) are competing to enter or re-enter the market. After a handful of highly successful augmented reality apps, sales of VR headsets on the rise, and greater technological sophistication (faster internet speeds and better visual rendering), 2018 could very well be the year that AR takes off. If it does, and stays in the mainstream, you can bet that social media will be one of the most popular applications for the technology, bringing people together over vast distances and providing an entirely new user interface for social interactions.
  2. The Continued Rise Of Live Streaming
    Some businesses may argue that live streaming already dominated in 2017. About 80% of consumers would rather watch a live video from a brand than read a blog and 82% would prefer live video to written social media updates. Now that social platforms and users have settled into the concept, 2018 is bound to bring with it not only a cool new way to interact with audiences online, but an expectation for your brand to keep up.
  3. A Change To The Standard Social Formula
    Last year there were more than 50 million small businesses using social media to market their businesses. There’s no doubt that social media is popular for a reason, but the increased presence of brand-written content is leading to fatigue among users which makes them less likely to respond or engage. This shift in consumer behaviour is going to force brands to re-think their approach and consider a more unique approach to content and messaging.
  4. Gamification Extends Into Social
    There’s no doubt that users love interacting with each other, even with complete strangers! There’s also no doubt that people love playing games so why not bring those two together to create a better overall experience? Since 2017 saw the rise of gamification and immersive gaming experiences, it’s only a matter of time before we see an app that blends social media and gaming more naturally. There’s no way to know what will come from merging these two interests but it’ll definitely be something worth exploring when it does!
  5. Social Ad Adoption
    Now that brands are more established on social media, their focus is shifting to generating revenue and investing in ads. While most brands have already begun exploring ad potential across multiple platforms, this trend is going to grow even further as more small businesses catch up and work to compete with larger competitors.

While none of these trends are going to completely change the way brands and users interact with social media, they’ll definitely make for an interesting year. If your business is going to remain competitive moving forward, you’ll want to consider adopting and exploring these trends. Learn more about what they are, what value they present and how your business can leverage them for success.

Unsure how to move forward with your 2018 business goals? Consider scheduling a customized training session with Blab and start 2018 off with the knowledge you need to make things happen!

Want To Learn More About Social Media? Register For This Workshop!

Social Media Workshop Windsor

Super excited to announce that Blab is partnering with Imaginative Group to offer a workshop for small businesses at the Walkerville Brewery on Wednesday November 29th. Want to explore social media but aren’t sure which platforms are most valuable for your business? Looking to incorporate social media into your current strategy but aren’t sure how it’ll work with other elements? Let us help you take the first step towards better understanding the value of social media as part of an overall marketing strategy. We’ll be talking about the most popular platforms and the value they offer businesses, going over case studies to emphasize learning objectives, explaining the value of SEO and understanding the important role that your website plays as part of the bigger picture.

Attendees Will:
1. Learn why investing in social media and digital marketing leads to success
2. See the cost and benefits of integrating social into their current marketing plan
3. Understand how social media can help businesses of all sizes grow and thrive

Join us to discover the value of social media marketing and learn more about how it integrates into a multi-channel strategy. Snacks, coffee and water will be provided free of charge and wine/beer will be available for purchase from the bar. Click here to purchase your ticket!

Blab Explores The 2017 Small Biz Expo

Windsor Essex Small Business Expo Blab Media

Windsor Essex Small Business Expo Blab Media

Last night was a blast! Shoutout to The Windsor-Essex Small Business Centre for putting on an awesome event. Over 70 exhibitors set up shop at The Caboto Club to sell food, alcohol, beauty products, apparel, giftware and more. Blab had a cocktail table in the B2B lounge and had a chance to chat with so many awesome individuals and entrepreneurs about social media marketing. Got to catch up with some good friends and even made some valuable new connections. Blab shared the lounge area with friendly neighbour Biz X Magazine and a handful of other local service based businesses.

The event was the perfect excuse to show off Blab’s new popup banner and print material (sell booklets and social postcards) courtesy of Imaginative Group. It was really great to see how consistently the brand was communicated across all pieces. There’s still something to be said about a nice and functional print piece. Definitely a solid investment!

While fitting everything on a small cocktail table was a challenge, it ended up being the perfect amount of space to showcase my print and add some personality to my display. It’s really important to stay true to your brand, no matter which customer touchpoint you’re exploring.

After a few hours of mingling in the lounge, I managed to escape and grab some food! I picked up some dinner from Cedar Valley Selections (seriously their fattoush salad is amazing) and I couldn’t leave without a few delicious treats from Licia RubyAni & Fabi and Sweet Revenge Bakeshop. By the end of the night, over 500 attendees passed through the doors to shop, eat, drink and mingle. What a great way to support local!

St. Clair Features Blab’s Business Babe Spotlights

Blab Media Windsor Small Business Spotlights

Blab Media Windsor Small Business SpotlightsSuper excited to be featured in an article recently published by the St Clair College Media Plex highlighting Blab’s Business Babe Spotlights on social media! A few months ago I decided to start using my audience on social media to help promote women who are running their own businesses in Windsor-Essex. I’m a big supporter of all things local and often find myself out and about exploring our wonderful city and making new connections with business owners. In my travels I’ve learned about countless incredible businesses that are run by women. Being a female entrepreneur myself, I knew all too well that it can be a struggle to build up a support network so I thought, why not have Blab step in to help these women promote their businesses while offering encouragement and positive reinforcement in an often stressful career path? I got lucky in the friends and family department. I’ve always been surrounded by support in all forms but not every woman has the same opportunities I did. Since I’m a firm believer that we rise by lifting others, that became my inspiration for the campaign which is still running today. Each week Blab features a new women-owned business in Windsor-Essex by showcasing what they do and how they make our community a better place. If you’d like to get involved, please feel free to reach out via email or social media to nominate a woman-owned business that you think deserves a feature! Better yet, go out and support these women. Whether it’s purchasing something from them, promoting them to your networks or offering support as a mentor, it’s amazing what a big difference you can make with such a little gesture of faith.

Big thanks to Ryan Jones for the kind words and the opportunity to chat about woman-owned small businesses in Windsor. You can check out the full article here: http://themediaplex.com/put-your-money-where-your-heart-is/

 

Blab Attends Digital Summit Detroit 2017

Detroit Digital Summit Marketing Event

Another year, another Summit event! In 2016 Blab attended Digital Summit Detroit for the first time and had a blast. There was so much information to be absorbed, so many networking opportunities and an awesome lineup of talented guests speaking on a variety of digital/tech topics. I even got to meet Ann Handley from Marketing Profs and listen to the real life Siri chat with the crowd on stage. This year may not have had me feeling as star struck, but it was just as valuable in terms of content and experiences.

The event was two full days of learning from 7:30am to 5:30pm at Cobo Centre downtown. Sharing my referral link online got me a free book, t-shirt and even VIP lounge access so I was looking forward to experiencing the event in style. Day one started with a four hour pre-conference workshop where I learned everything there is to know about email marketing. What a valuable workshop! It was packed with internet research, industry knowledge and even actionable takeaways. The rest of the day was spent  attending a 6 other sessions covering topics such finding success with Facebook Live posts, creating shareable content, marketing to millennials and how artificial intelligence can help your business. We even got to hear from Jonah Peretti, co-founder of Buzzfeed and Huffpost. What an awesome experience!

Day two started with networking over coffee and was followed by 12 other informative sessions on social ads, online reviews, storytelling, going mobile, UX design, harnessing the power of content and more. I learned about new software, gadgets and best practices that will ultimately make Blab a stronger and smarter local competitor. Another successful year and I haven’t even had time to go through all my notes yet!

Proud Sponsor Of WEtech’s 2017 Nerd Olympics

Nerd Olympics Logo

Super excited to be a sponsor for WEtech Alliance’s 2nd annual Nerd Olympics. The event brings together the Windsor-Essex tech community in a fun, team-building competition to challenge the mind & body. It kicks off with the official Opening Ceremonies and Nerd Torch lighting ceremony before the first event on Tuesday September 5th.

Sixteen Tech Company teams will compete in a series of events spread out over the course of three months and just like the real Olympics, they’ll be able to win Gold, Silver & Bronze 3D printed “medals” for each event. The whole event will culminate with the Closing Ceremonies happening at the Tech Awards on Friday November 17th with a presentation of the coveted Nerd Cup.

As a social media challenge sponsor, Blab will be providing all teams with a unique social media challenge that they’ll need to complete for points. The best part? Blab will be at the closing ceremonies to present the challenge award to the team who did the best job. Stay tuned to Blab and WEtech Alliance’s social channels for updates and announcements as the event progresses and don’t forget to follow along during Blab’s challenge week from September 25 – October 1st to see the entries submitted in real time online. Let’s go nerds, you got this!

Panel Discussion: Marketing And Growing Your Business

Blab Volunteer Marketing Panel Discussion

A few weeks ago Blab was approached to volunteer as a panelist for the New Canadian’s Centre Of Excellence. The organization is a community based, direct-service agency that assists, supports and promotes the full and equitable participation of immigrants and refugees in all aspects of social, cultural and economic life in the Windsor-Essex Region. Blab has volunteered for many sessions here in the past hosting workshops, hands-on-learning sessions and more.

Today’s panel discussion featured myself and Kay Douglas from Douglas Marketing Group talking to clients about how they can market and grow their businesses regardless of industry. We met some very friendly people, answered lots of questions and even had a chance to chat about our own experiences in business. It’s always fun to talk about your own adventures in business, especially if it can help other people! I’m excited to see how these new businesses continue to grow and develop over the next few months. A community can never have too many entrepreneurs!

Giving back to the community is an important part of business. Even though Blab doesn’t have tangible products to donate or give away to those in need, having a valuable skill set to contribute can be equally as valuable. I know first hand how hard it can be to start, operate and maintain a small business in Windsor so why not help other aspiring entrepreneurs by providing insight, tips and support? If you’re interested in volunteering to help out a local organization in Windsor-Essex, be sure to check out WEVolunteer to match your interests/skills up with available positions in your community.

Happy World Emoji Day!

World Emoji Day 2017

We ❤️ emojis! Which one is YOUR favourite?

Since the early days of the internet, Emoji’s have been the best way to transmit emotion in the written medium. As internet technology advanced, so did the use of the emoji. Simple text symbols turned into a full-fledged animated series. The best part about emojis is that we’ve all used them at some point. World Emoji day celebrates the history of these emotional expressions and encourages us all to be exceptionally emotive. After all, communicating your feelings in written form can be difficult so why not inject some fun? Long ago the world used to communicate in images, before alphabetic languages were developed, and now in the modern age we’re back to using them again.

To celebrate World Emoji Day, Blab is hosting a simple online contest and giving away three emoji swag packs with tattoos, air fresheners and stickers. Visit our Facebook page for more information!

FUN FACT: The date of Emoji Day honours the date shown on the iOS Calendar Emoji (July 17). 

More Windsor Aims To Bring More Americans To YQG

More Windsor Campaign Launch

Super excited to be part of the More Windsor campaign launch today at Imaginative Group in Pillette Village. The campaign has multiple neighbourhoods collaborating in order to entice Americans to explore all that Windsor-Essex has to offer. The Downtown Windsor BIA, Wyandotte Town Centre BIA, Via Italia, Walkerville, Olde Riverside BIA, Pillette Village BIA, Belle River On The Lake BIA, Harrow BIA, Essex BIA and Tourism Windsor-Essex Pelee Island are all on board to spread the Windsor love.

More Windsor will be rolling out a multi-medium marketing campaign including magazine ads, newspaper ads and social media marketing that will have these BIAs working together to promote everything they offer to our friends across the border. From incredible restaurants to award-winning events, there is so much to see and do in Windsor so why not share that with Detroit? Organizers are excited to have BIA’s and tourism organizations collaborating and working towards a unified goal that helps the whole community.

If you’re interested in learning about More Windsor, check out the website and be sure to follow them on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for cool local updates and promotions.