On a breezy, hot Saturday afternoon kicking off the month of June, 11 local companies and organizations gathered for the unprecedented ‘Largest Archery Tag Tournament’ on the west coast to benefit Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Columbia Gorge. It all happened here in Hood River at the Waterfront Park and Blue Collar was there to revel in all the glory.
Now, we don’t know if that ambitious statement is actually true since archery tag, a cross between dodgeball, archery, and capture-the-flag is a relatively new and unknown sport, and it was all for charity anyway, but we’re going to roll with Global Session’s claims and wave that flag high.
Amidst the endless stream of advertisements cascading through a staggering number of channels, it can be overwhelming to attempt to set your brand apart. We have suggested that it derives from the power of custom assets in a previous post. Though, what can be more important to your brand’s enduring success is persuading customers to be proponents of your brand for the long term after you’ve managed to nab their attention. This starts with a solid product, but a serious cut-the-crap customer service experience can give your brand the traction it needs to pull your customers aboard for the long haul.
A well-crafted, single marketing endeavor can feel to us like a pebble dropped into a placid lake—the ripple effect can be a momentous one; the reach can go far beyond the initial energy it took to let the pebble leave your hand.
That’s not to say that there wasn’t a huge amount of effort that went into beachcombing for that perfect pebble. But let’s not stretch that metaphor too far. The point is, even an excellent product can fall short without the right assets that represent and differentiate your brand. In a recent post we nod to the power of custom assets and discuss why they are imperative to not only crafting memorable, effective advertising but for also earning enduring credibility.
We worked with Portland photographer, Nicolle Clemetson, this spring to create beautiful custom imagery for Sigma Photo.
So, you’ve looked in the mirror and have decided that while your brand identity and overall marketing strategy feels safest in your own hands, it’s just too much to realistically handle. You’ve done the nitty-gritty research about finding an agency partner that’s right for you; one that’s efficient, seamlessly balances client growth with staff growth and stands on a strong, but innovative and transformative foundation. Although their ambition and creative resources match well enough with your company’s goals, putting trust in agency professionals can still feel a bit like you’re streaming your creative voice through foreign speakers.
Enter the three stars of the show: trust, understanding, and mutual success.
In order to reap brand success it’s imperative to sow a healthy, dynamic relationship with your agency professionals. In doing so, brutal honesty is key. Okay, it doesn’t have to necessarily be brutal, but straight shooting when it comes to expressing a vision, whether short or long term is invaluable. Trust that your agency will hear you loud and clear, and convert your vision into a creative asset. As an added bonus: saved time is saved money. A concise, well-crafted, transparent, peer-to-peer conversation is the fastest track towards a result that you can cheers to.
That oh-so-recognizable move: smartphone in hand, thumb flicking upwards, stop, double tap. It can only mean one thing…Instagram. As the 7th most popular social platform with upwards of one hundred million users, Instagram is a goldmine of social media marketing waiting to be tapped, and we are goin’ in, picks in hand.
In the past quarter, we have started up three Instagram accounts, one for ourselves and two for our clients, Extensis and Mason County Tourism, respectively. Instagram is the third most used social platform used by millenials, and 73% of Instagrammers are between the ages of 15 and 35. As such, our campaigns have been crafted to target a young, vibrant audience. Although the three accounts aim to engage very different people with different interests, we have seen a positive upward trajectory across the board, and have learned quite a few interesting and somewhat unexpected lessons along the way.
Woven into the endless outdoor adventure that epitomizes the Columbia River Gorge lifestyle is a prolific art scene. Studding the mountain bike trails of Post Canyon and floating through the paths of ripping kiteboarders on the Columbia is an inherent natural beauty, and Hood River’s Big Art Walking Tour in our quaint downtown reveals an artful ode to those things we love and let define our lifestyles.
Nestled into the musty, moody underground cubbyhole of Al’s Den a few weeks back, the entire room full of our colleagues and some of Portland’s creative community sat in silent rapture at the thundering presence that is Rene Denfeld, author of the award winning new novel, “The Enchanted.” She brought to us the most recent event in The Persuaders Society, a brainchild of Blue Collar Agency c. 2012.
Wonderbag, the non-electric, portable slow cooker isn’t just a great kitchen tool, but also a life-changer for African women living below the poverty line. And now, they’re a Facebook success story.
From November 2014 through January 2015, Blue Collar worked with Wonderbag to run targeted video ads and link ads on Facebook to promote the North American launch of its portable, energy-saving heat-retention cooker. The Facebook ads resulted in 20,000 views at $0.04 per view. Social success!
We’re thrilled to welcome Jaime Singer to the garage as Graphic Designer.
Born and raised in Lancaster PA (yes, Amish people live there), Jaime grew up with three older brothers, who she credits for her thick skin and sense of adventure. After high school, she moved to Salt Lake City to be a full-time ski bum. (And attend university, of course).
Always a creative and hands-on person, Jaime earned her BFA in graphic design with a minor in photography at the University of Utah. Go UTES! After graduation, she moved to Hood River on a whim and fell in love.
Get to know a little more about our newest creative team member with some Q&A.
What’s your favorite thing about your job?
I love the fact that beautiful, functional design is number one here. Blue Collar stands behind their concepts and works hard coming up with unique solutions to the task at hand.
How did you get involved with Blue Collar?
I was freelancing and the stars aligned! It worked out perfectly. It was hard transitioning back into 9-5, but working with such fun and talented people makes it pretty easy. I am a young designer so I’m excited to be able to fine-tune my skills and learn from Blue Collar.
Blanketed in drippy mosses and mists, one usually ventures to the beautiful and serene Columbia River Gorge to escape the hustle and grind of the workplace. But the rush that comes from a breath-taking view after a strenuous slew of switchbacks certainly doesn’t end at the doorstep. Au contraire, inspiration from the wilderness is an integral part of any Pacific Northwest venture and here are five reasons why people who know how to have a good outdoor adventure know what it takes to produce good marketing:
1. What’s not to love about a well maintained trail beyond a hidden trailhead?
Sometimes an excellent well-traveled roadside marvel like Multnomah Falls is convenient and irresistible. Those that thirst for real adventure know there is something much more satisfying about a well kept trail behind a hidden trailhead. Off highway 14, up a residential backroad, it’s easy to miss the turnoff to a favorite hidden gem in the Gorge: Wind Mountain. The trailhead is marked by a humble sign but that only adds to the adventurer’s delight of a beautifully maintained trail to an excellent lookout. True, a nationally compelling, emotionally provocative, what-you-see-is-what-you-get Multnomah-like campaign, is undoubtedly effective. However, there is something much more satisfying and organic about a less ostentatious, speak-for-itself sort of tactic. Poler Stuff’s commandeering of the sweet and compelling #campvibes has social media working for them and their commitment to profiling real backyard adventures makes it feel as though we have stumbled upon a trove of amazing gear behind a mysterious trailhead.