Blog2021-04-07T15:21:37-06:00

Insightfully Building Brands: Q & A With Our Senior Vice President

Carol Kruger is a cornerstone of The Wendt Agency. She has been with the team for decades and is a powerhouse when it comes to everything media, social, and public relations. As Senior Vice President, Carol confidently builds brands through strong content creation and media strategy. And capitalizing on her roots in the journalism industry, she is deft at recognizing the power of a captivating story. We took a moment for a Q & A with Carol recently. Read on as she shares her media expertise and what marketing insights she sees building on the horizon. 

Who is Carol? 

“I am a person who loves puzzles. I like fitting the pieces together and creating something which is bigger than its parts. Whether that’s planning a new flower bed in my garden, trying to reverse engineer an amazing meal I had in a restaurant, or creating a communications plan which effectively delivers the message to the target audience; I like creating beautiful things.” 

When You Work With Clients, What do You Bring to The Table? 

“A commitment to listening and a love of problem-solving. I don’t like the same old, same old. I want to dig in and figure out how to build a communications strategy that really ‘fits’ the client; achieving their goals, sticking to their budget, and connecting to their audience in an honest and authentic way. Even when working with a long-term client and building on past success, I want to look at ALL the communication tools available before creating a strategy.” 

Do You Have Any Favorite Marketing Insights You’ve Seen Coming on The Horizon? 

“So many things are changing so quickly these days, but in the end, I think the one thing that never changes is the need to truly understand the audience. No matter what the product, the goal, and the media tactic; if you don’t understand the audience you are trying to reach, you will not be successful. There will always be new ways to reach people, and everyone wants to jump on a trend, be ahead of the curve for the next big thing, but trendy isn’t necessarily successful. People don’t want to be marketed to; they want to be listened to, to be heard, and understood. So, my insight is – do that; listen to your target audience, learn from them, and communicate with them in an authentic way.”  

You’ve been With Wendt a Long Time. How Many Years? Why The Longevity With Wendt? 

“I have, and it has gone so quickly! I started in this industry back in 1996 at a boutique agency that merged with The Wendt Agency, so I have been a part of this company, one way or another, for 25 years. I’ve stuck around because I love what I do, the people I work with, and the clients I have had the opportunity to partner with across the years. Watching, not only this company grow and thrive, but our clients do the same has just been an amazing experience. And the endless supply of good quality coffee hasn’t hurt either!”  

What Is The Best Part About Your Work That You Like The Most? 

“I love seeing the client’s message running in the media environments where we’ve placed it. Seeing an ad on Hulu, driving by a billboard, scrolling through Facebook, listening to Spotify, reading a magazine – it always makes me smile. Thinking of all the steps along the way to reach that moment – client meetings, goal setting, audience research, strategic planning, media negotiations, creative development, and so many more – so it can end up in front of the client’s target audience – it’s just the end result of a long and detailed process and so gratifying to see the final part.”  

If You Could Give Advice to an Up-and-Comer in Your Profession, What Would You Tell Them? 

“Great ideas can come from anywhere at any time. Listen, ask questions, do your research, and then – let your mind work. You might not get the answer at 3:30 p.m. on a Tuesday … it might be a 9:45 a.m. on a Saturday, but if you give your mind some time to think and pay attention to your own thoughts, you’ll get some great ideas! Just remember to write them down somewhere!” 

At Wendt, we consider ourselves very lucky to have Carol as an integral part of our team. If you’d like to learn more about Carol’s perspective on industry trends, check out, What You Don’t Know About Apple IOS Changes That May Hurt Your Business. To learn more about our team and how we create winning campaigns, reach out to us here. And be sure to sign up for Wendt Word, our monthly newsletter that shares our marketing insight, our expertise, and culture.  

 

 

By |November 24th, 2021|Categories: Culture, Industry Trends, Wendt Buzz|0 Comments

5 Elements Every Great Email Has

Many years ago, Mark Zuckerberg was quoted for famously stating that he believed “a modern messaging system wasn’t going to be email.” At the time, marketers everywhere were both shocked and intrigued by what Mark was predicting. We all held our collective breath. Could this be true? Was email dead? Fast forward several years later from that fateful statement, and the answer has been — perhaps in the future, but not quite yet.  

According to a recent article by HubSpot, nearly “64% of small businesses use email marketing to reach their customers. In fact, email generates $42 for every $1 spent, which is an astounding 4,200% ROI, making it one of the most effective marketing options available.”* Those are impressive numbers. Especially for businesses trying to make every campaign count. Bottom line, for now, email is still a powerful and profitable way to grow business. So, we are sharing five elements every great email has.  

1. SUBJECT LINES AND PRE-HEADERS ARE EVERYTHING

When creating emails that count, it’s easy to get caught up in the content of an email’s main body. However, it’s your subject line and pre-header that carry the most weight. No one is going to see the incredible offers you have within if they don’t  get past your opener. The best email headlines are 60 characters or less, create a sense of urgency or mystery, are personalized, and convey authenticity. 

2. THE MAIN BODY: MAKE IT ALL ABOUT THEM

The main body of your email needs to speak to your audience authentically. Ask yourself, are you using the right tone? Are you delivering on the expectations your reader has for opening the email in the first place? It should! Yes, you have a message to express, a product to sell, a brand to share, but if you don’t make the content and the messaging all about your customer, it will fall on deaf ears.   

3. WITHOUT SAYING A WORD, IMAGERY TELLS ALL

Like the headline, images are a critical element of any great email. Using best practices means using brevity in the copy and showcasing imagery that allows your email to be dynamic and easily scannable. And, including videos can increase click rates.  

4. CALLS TO ACTION: RIGHT THIS WAY!

Your email has a purpose (i.e., insert goal here). That goal needs to include a call to action — the thing you want readers to do in response to the perfect email you’ve worked so hard to craft. Do you want them to subscribe to your growing newsletter list? (Read 3 Benefits of Sending a Monthly Newsletter Here.) Book a vacation? Attend a webinar? If you have nowhere for your customers to go, no valuable landing page for them to get to, then they likely will have no option but to quickly move on from your email and maybe even your brand.  

5. WRAP IT UP WITH A FOOTER

Finally, your email needs a closer — this is where the footer comes into play. A footer of an email contains all the other helpful information, such as links to your social channels, necessary disclosures, and an opt-out option. All are necessary supporting elements that wrap up a well-thought-out email.  

Whether or not Mark’s email forecasting comes to fruition remains to be seen. Until then, through email, businesses have a solid avenue for reaching customers and growing revenue. And incorporating essential email elements like masterful headlines and brilliant imagery, can take your email game to another level. 

*Kirsch, Katrina. “The Ultimate List of Email Marketing Stats for 2021.” HubSpot Blog, 13 Aug. 2021, https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/email-marketing-stats. 

By |November 11th, 2021|Categories: Industry Trends, Wendt Buzz|0 Comments

Halloween Transforms Our Office Every Year: Why Leaning into it Matters

Every year as summer fades into fall and the green leaves give way to vibrant hues of burnt oranges, golden yellows, and rustic reds, a sense of anticipation begins to stir among the staff. It’s as if an imaginary current of electricity is suddenly flowing throughout the building. What is it that makes the staff buzz with such excitement? Is it the scent of pumpkin spice latte that wafts through the morning meetings? Perhaps. The buzz and the pumpkin spice can only mean one thing: it’s October. And October means that it’s Halloween!

Halloween is a big deal at The Wendt Agency. H-U-G-E. Once the office calendars flip to October, all friendly discussions of Halloween activities take on a surprisingly scheming nature. A Halloween Hooligans committee is enthusiastically appointed to plan a day of fun and games. Water cooler chit-chat suddenly becomes guarded as fellow employees slyly prod each other into giving away super-secret costume designs — for a good reason. The best costume winner not only gets supreme bragging rights for one year, but they also win a much-coveted extra paid day off.

Don’t get us wrong. We love all the holidays — but for us, Halloween is special. It’s a growing piece of our story that displays who we are, explains our culture, reveals our authenticity, and allows us to lean into our niche. Part of our niche is that we are the longest-established Montana advertising agency (a proven legacy that spans decades), but we also have a brand and culture that is creative, dynamic, and one that celebrates to the fullest.

Consumers embrace brands that align with their values. In a world full of competing brands and messaging, it is more important than ever for companies to hold tight to their uniqueness and the special stories that set them apart. Doing this helps consumers find their tribe — it helps them find your brand. So, when it comes to our culture and transforming our office every year during Halloween — it matters to us, and we lean into it.

THREE EASY STEPS BUSINESSES CAN TAKE TO LEAN INTO THEIR NICHE:

  1. Be your true self! Authenticity makes your business relatable.
  2. Tell your tale. Conveying your story reveals the culture behind the product.
  3. Define your values. (We did, you can read about it here.) Identifying values helps inform decisions and sets intentions.

When you zero in on your niche, consumers who are drawn to your brand because they found something that resounds with their values, in turn, become ambassadors for your brand. These advocates become more than just customers, and help your brand grow beyond the circle of your niche.

By |October 29th, 2021|Categories: Culture, Wendt Buzz|0 Comments

How Values Strengthen Collaboration

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At the top-most northwest corner of Montana, nestled among dense forests of Douglas-fir, stretches a 90-mile-long reservoir — Lake Koocanusa. Before 1972, when the lake was formed, the Kootenai River would wreak havoc in this area and cause extensive flooding each spring. Floodwaters spanned across Montana, Idaho, and British Columbia. The United States and Canada recognized they had a mutual dilemma that threatened values which were important to both countries – the health and safety of their citizens. So, they collaborated to harness the Kootenai, creating the Koocanusa and thereby providing flood protection for all and harnessing hydroelectric power in the process. The name, Koocanusa, itself is a portmanteau of Kootenai, Canada, and USA. (Thank you, Alice Beers, of Rexford, Montana, whose winning contest entry named the lake.) 

Collaborations Always Strengthen Strategy

Collaboration is what allowed Canada and the U.S. to create a strategy and solve a shared problem. Collaboration is also what recently brought our team to the Wilderness Club Resort located on the banks of the Koocanusa for our annual retreat. That, and some much-earned R & R. Here at The Wendt Agency, one of our core brand pillars is that we are a team of free-thinking individuals collaborating to achieve success. But what does that mean? Why is collaborating essential to strengthening strategy? (Read how we produce superior creative when we collaborate with our clients here.)   

The answer is simple. Innovation thrives when teams work together to create solutions. Innovation, in turn, is what we bring in everything we deliver to our clients. Former Head of Innovation and Creativity at Disney, Duncan Wardle, puts it like this: “The moment you can transform my idea into our idea is the moment you accelerate its opportunity to get it done.”   

Defining Values that Inform Decisions

Incidentally, collaboration was a personal value a few of our team members identified about themselves during a Living into Your Values training exercise we participated in as a group at the retreat. Living into Your Values, created by Dr. Brené Brown, helps teams crystalize what they believe is important and teaches them to consider those values when setting intentions and making decisions. Integrity, growth, balance, and creativity were some other values mentioned in the session.  

When teams can honor each other’s values, it allows for barriers to dissolve and collaboration to happen. That’s when teams solve problems and create magic, like building lakes between nations!  

By |October 14th, 2021|Categories: Wendt Buzz|0 Comments

3 Tips to Successfully Market Your Small Business

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Marketing your small business is crucial if you want to succeed. However, if you are like most small business owners, you are wearing many hats and it is hard to find the time. Unfortunately, there is no magic bullet to have the best marketing plan for your small business. Consider the following to establish a successful marketing plan:

1. Know your Audience.

One of the biggest mistakes small businesses make is trying to reach everyone with their advertising. The truth is you don’t have what everyone desires. Once you have identified that target audience, explore further to understand them and how you can reach them in the most authentic way.

2. Create Goals and Objectives

You cannot measure your success if you are not setting your goals. Your goals should be SMART

Specific – Marketing goals should be very specific. Saying you want to improve your sales is vague. Saying you want to improve your sales 10% is clear.
Measurable – Have a tangible way of measuring your marketing goals. You will spend money on your marketing to increase your business. However, if you are not tracking the business, you will have no way to see if your goals are successful.
Attainable – Don’t set unrealistic goals. It is important to consider any limitations that might impede your goal.
Relevant – Make sure the goals are moving your business forward. There should be a real benefit attached to reaching your chosen objective.
Time – Set a timeline for when you are going to accomplish your goals. In the next 12 months, I want to increase my sales 10%.

3. Create a strong brand.

A brand is more than just a name, a logo, and colors. A brand is a promise to your customers that they can expect quality, reliability, and consistency from your business.

Small business owners often feel like they are alone on an island. If you struggle with communicating your business to the public, it’s time to seek professional guidance. At The Wendt Agency, we work with small businesses to become true partners to help clients establish a strong brand and understand their audience so that they can achieve and exceed their goals.

Want to gain more small business marketing insight? Sign up for our monthly newsletter The Wendt Word, where you’ll get marketing news, insights, and Wendt culture.

Kattie Meyer, Account Manager

The Wendt Agency

Before joining our team at The Wendt Agency, Kattie owned her own small lifestyle boutique, Motifs. Kattie understands the hardships that small business owners face. She handled all aspects of marketing her small business and adds that knowledge value to her clients.

By |September 29th, 2021|Categories: Industry Trends, Uncategorized, Wendt Buzz|0 Comments

Crisp Fall – Free Wallpapers

The morning air turns crisp while there is an undeniable change in the color of the leaves. Shorts and tank tops turn into sweaters and scarves. Pumpkin spice latte and burnt orange hues become the new standard. Fall has arrived, and we are so excited to enjoy every minute of it.

-The Wendt Agency

Click to download wallpapers:

By |September 16th, 2021|Categories: Uncategorized, Wendt Buzz|0 Comments