FREE and LIVE Marketing Prep Kit Free Webinar Series

We look forward to seeing you LIVE!

We’ve been talking to our local Chambers of Commerce, our clients and various businesses about the need to have a strong marketing plan being even more important as we all navigate the potential of our area re-opening in the coming weeks and months. As we do, how will we market ourselves and our services? How will we ensure our message is clear, our budget is purposeful and we choose the right channels to put forth our message?

Our Marketing Prep Kit is a downloadable we created several years ago and updated back in December… and we decided that hosting an interactive webinar series based upon this resource would be the easiest way to help businesses just like yours!

So join us on our live and free webinar series as we walk through the Marketing Prep Kit and dive a little deeper into how to ensure you have a plan for your marketing. Register for all eight webinars or just the ones you are most interested in. Each free webinar will be about 20 minutes with some Q/A time on top of that, and they will cover different sections of the Prep Kit.

Get the Marketing Prep Kit download to follow along. Download Here

Register Now!

 

 

Register Now!

Mendx Studios Acquisition

We are excited to announce the acquisition of Mendx Studios!

At Rock Paper Simple, we have seen first hand how video content has shaped our clients marketing strategies! In fact, it is projected that by 2022, over 80% of web traffic will be video content and streaming.

That’s why we began conversations with Justin at Mendx Studios back in 2019 about becoming a part of the Rock Paper Simple family. So here we are, just 5 months later, and we are excited to announce the acquisition of Mendx Studios, one of the Space Coast’s premier video production companies.

This acquisition brings not just some incredible new talent on board, but also a history of award-winning videos on both a local and regional level, as well a host of equipment such as drones, camera cranes, flylines, underwater packages, gimbals, stabalizers and the list goes on and on.

It adds another whole vertical of service and value to our existing clients as well as future Marketing Partners by having an in-house team handling high quality video production services. Mendx Studios will continue to exist as a brand and serve their clients without interruption, but will be working alongside the Rock Paper Simple team now. Two brands, one team!

Justin and company… welcome to the team!

Ever Forward During COVID-19

COVID-19 is an historic event for all of us. Life has been very different for everyone in a truly global sense and we are right there with you. We want to encourage our clients, our neighbors and our community amidst all of the fear and uncertainty (and lack of toilet paper!) to continue to look up and continue forward. The Rock Paper Simple team certainly is!

Our team and client meetings have gone fully remote from our homes as of this past week, and we are offering video and conference call meetings instead of in-person, so we can be fully available to our clients as we partner with them to keep things moving as best we can. Our daily morning Zoom team check-ins have been just as fun as those in-office alley-rallies we normally have… just minus the freshly ground coffee!

“Ever Forward” is a motto I have lived by and now it is more meaningful that ever. It means that no matter what challenges are ahead of us, there is always a way forward. Our prayers are with all of you, and I truly believe that we will get through this better if we do it together (well, together at least 6 feet away from each other).

We’d like to invite you to join us in helping make a difference in our community, even while things are feeling a bit scary. In that spirit, below we share about a local business we all know and love and two non-profits we support that could use your help.

~Joshua Adams and the whole Rock Paper Simple Team

 

Supporting a local business that has given back to our community for 30+ years

One of our clients, Chris Conneen, owner of Brevard County’s Pizza Gallery & Grill, as well as 28 North Gastropub, shared the below message recently, and we wanted to share it with you. Standing together as a community makes all the difference in times like these. The hospitality industry is one of those very hard hit, so we have supported them during this time and hope you will too. Pizza Gallery is offering full menu for curbside service at a 20% discount and they are delivering the full menu with Bite Squad.

Chris’ Message (originally posted on Facebook):

“I don’t usually go to social media for these types of thoughts or actions, but I’m definitely feeling compelled to do so now.

The Hospitality Industry is one of America’s Greatest Industries and they are currently being hit with the first of several Economic Tsunamis due to COVID-19! Larger companies and even most independent operators should be able to sustain a 30-90 day hit, but I’m confident in saying that less than 10% of our industries workers can go more than 30 days without any income.

While I’m currently facing really hard decisions that will affect 100+ team members and their families, I want to share my experience, strength and hope and confidently say. “We will get through this together”. Philippians 4:6 says, “Do Not Be Anxious About Anything” and 1 Peter 4:10 “Calls us to use whatever gifts you have to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s Grace!!! I LOVE this industry and our hospitality community and want to serve them now more than ever!!! So I’m committed to seeking every resource there is, both private and public, to support the front line workers of our Local Hospitality Industry!!!

Please DM me if you want to help or have another resource that can assist serving those who serve us every day…

Teammates in Community,

Chris Conneen
28 North Gastropub & Pizza Gallery & Grill

Visit their FB page for the latest: https://www.facebook.com/PGGViera/

 

The Children’s Hunger Project and Brevard Public Schools: Feeding our Kids

Brevard Public Schools (BPS) have announced that starting Monday, March 23rd, they will begin providing breakfast and lunch food packets from the parking lots of designated school locations.  Click here to learn more about the school locations and guidelines. 

The Children’s Hunger Project will be joining BPS’ efforts and will be providing weekend food packages to their designated sites on Fridays beginning March 27th. While they have filled the initial need for volunteers, they could use more for future dates and could use both financial or food donations. To donate, click here.  To volunteer, look for future sign-up links here. 

 

Brevard Rescue Mission is OPEN and new families are being served

Another shining beacon of light right here in Brevard Rescue Mission (BRM), as they continue to serve homeless women and children through all that is going on. Stacia Long Glavas, Founder / CEO of BRM, released an update video and we encourage you to give it a watch. You can find the video below. Stacia, you and your team inspire us!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WiOHGS-vlQM

Did Your Organic Ranking Tank? We know why…

This is a safe place, can we all agree on that? Great, then it’s ok to admit the word “algorithm” mystifies you — perplexes you — even scares you a little bit.

So, when you hear Google is updating its algorithm it can cause fear, panic, and the like. Google has admitted to a March 2019 update that actually LOST entire web pages from its index. Gone. Poof. And the effect on organic rankings was HUGE.

In March 2019, Google did what it called a “Broad Core update” – meaning Google is not “fixing” something directly, or even addressing specific industries or areas of need – but rather, creating and implementing more sweeping adjustments to organic searches.

As one tech blogger explained it:

Broad core updates are improvements to Google’s overall algorithm for the purpose of better understanding search queries and webpages. These improvements help Google to more accurately match search queries to webpages and improve user satisfaction.

Everybody, Stay Calm!

Did you feel that? Did your site feel the full brunt of the digital earthquake? Or maybe you just felt a little aftershock. Either way, Google’s “advancements” truly hurt many sites’ rankings about a month after the update’s release.

On April 7th, Google tweeted:

We’re aware of indexing issues that impacted some sites beginning on Friday. We believe the issues are mostly resolved and don’t require any special efforts on the part of site owners. We’ll provide another update when the issues are considered fully resolved.

We won’t bore you with the nerdy details to indexes, search impacts, etc. etc. – but basically Google admitted “Houston, we have a problem.”

Here at RPS we experienced it on our own site. One day we’re trending along, enjoying the top spot in our market for the organic keywords we’ve identified in our marketing strategy, and then the proverbial bottom dropped out. It was easy to recognize, and virtually impossible to explain.

We saw the same trend in several client websites as well. Even after efforts to optimize, the organic search metrics didn’t seem to follow a logical pattern. We weren’t rattled, but rather challenged ourselves to find out why. Don’t get us wrong, we love a good mystery, BUT not without an explanation or a resolution. (Every good mystery movie ends by solving the mystery — haven’t they ever seen an episode of Scooby Doo?!)

Oh, that algorithm, it’ll get ya every time! And, just like it seemed to “get us” for a time, we’ve been digging in to deeper understand the update and its aftermath. Google is not really in the practice of explaining in depth the reasons behind updates, or the predicted effects. Sometimes they just drop an update and see if anyone notices.

We Will Rebuild

So, how do you overcome the aftershock of the Broad Core update of March 2019?

First, know that Google has since come out an assured the web community that it is reindexing sites already, and you can directly ask for Google to index your site. Not a great solution for sites with a lot of volume, but an option nonetheless.  

The dust will supposedly settle. Google is quick to assure it’s back to business as usual… but we’re a little more proactive than that. We trust the system but also believe in strategy implementation for the win.

We don’t believe major adjustments are ultimately your best move. Instead, we believe there’s value in monitoring. Organic rankings are the long-game in an often frantic, mile-a-minute digital marketplace. Craft a solid strategy, modify as needed, and remain calm.

We’ll get through this, together.

VR, AR, AI, Oh my!

Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR), Artificial Intelligence (AI)… If your head is spinning, you’re not alone. It’s a lot to keep up with, and even more difficult for your business to master.

Customers crave a more transformational experience with brands, products, services, and information. And there’s power in delivering those experiences.

Augmented Reality is defined as “a type of interactive, reality-based display environment that takes the capabilities of computer generated display, sound, text and effects to enhance the user’s real-world experience.” It is predicted Augmented Reality will grow to be a $35 billion industry by 2022! Talk about opportunity knocking!

So, how are brands using AR effectively and strategically to not only increase brand awareness but to create meaningful customer experiences (and loyal fans?) How to do go beyond the gimmick and make AR work for your company? How does AR become your brand differentiator?

Here’s how industries and brands are leveraging AR to do more than simply impress and entertain.

There’s an app for that

Nike is using Augmented Reality to assist shoe buyers to not only find the right shoe for their activity, but the correct SIZE. Their research showed up to 60% of their customers were purchasing the wrong size shoe, which was leading to more returns and more unhappy customers. Their sizing app, Nike Fit, lets buyers scan their feet at home to get their correct size (within a 2mm of accuracy which, we don’t measure things with rulers much these days but we’re pretty sure that’s super close to perfect) The result – a rise in consumer confidence, more brand loyalty, and fewer returns.

How Will I know?

Companies like Ikea, Wayfair, Target, and Amazon are augmenting the purchases of items, especially larger ones like furniture, and allowing buyers to “try before they buy” — you can virtually place the item in the room to see the piece in the real world before buying and potentially assembling (and we all know the joys of assembling an IKEA piece…) The result again is consumer confidence and a higher likelihood the buyer will ultimately make that big-ticket purchase.

Not sure if you’ll love a paint color? Try it out through AR and get it right the first time — companies like Sherwin-Williams are having extreme success with their ventures into Augmented Reality paint selection and it’s reinforcing the brand’s commitment to helping customers get it right the first time.

Don’t Just Tell Me, Show Me

We all know how essential visuals are to a brand. AR is taking this fact to an elevated level (basically, it’s like a picture times a million). Gone are the days of just showing an illustration to explain how something works. Or dropping a logo onto a piece of collateral to brand it as your own. The possibilities are endless when it comes to AR showing, versus telling, about your brand.

Jack Daniels is using AR to bring customers into the whiskey manufacturing world to immerse them in the distillery and makes the brand more relatable. The bottle’s label becomes a virtual pop-up storybook to show consumers the process, the location, and the history of the company. And, frankly, it’s just cool to watch.

Make The World a Better Place

Augmented Reality is being used as assistive technology for the visually impaired. One service “connects blind and low-vision people to highly trained, remotely-located agents.” The goal of this brand is to make information available to everyone regardless of disability, making life more full and enjoyable and further enhance everyday experiences.

Social and Search

Social media platforms have been on board with the utility of AR, and are leading the charge. Snapchat and Instagram have built entire identity on filters, which brands are now monetizing into awareness, relationship building, and just plain fun. The use of AR on social communicates the organic voice that a basic post simply cannot convey.

And of course Google is in on the frontlines of AR. Google maps are interactive with walking navigation and visual overlays. Google searches include AR immersive experiences to feel connected to the content that comes up on your next search — it’s fun to see an 18-foot great white shark floating in your backyard as you help your child research sharks for a school project.

Just Plain Fun

A Snapchat filter for a special event is a small investment to create a memorable impact. (Check out the filter we used for our recent RPS Open House event…)

But, be careful. There still has to be value to be, well, valuable to your base. Otherwise, it’s just a novelty that could hurt your brand more than help. Your AR experience has to have a strong message and clear function, and go beyond the initial “coolness” factor.

If your AR experience doesn’t drive customers to take action (buy that IKEA sofa, it’ll fit perfectly!), make an informed decision (that lipstick is totally your color!), meet a customer’s need (“What does this error message mean, oh wise AR tech support guy?), showcase your capabilities (have your smartphone out next time you’re in the RPS offices for our full AR experience), or directly align with your brand’s message and values it could end up being just a novelty (a moment of silence for QR codes…)

Bottom line: Don’t be Pokemon Go (hot one minute, obsolete the next). Using AR, and any other Experiential Marketing tools, correctly can have a lasting, positive effect on your business and brand. The key word — “correctly”.

The Backyard Team Building VIP Experience: Sponsored by Rock Paper Simple

The Backyard Team Building VIP Experience: Sponsored by RPS

What: An event for HR professionals to learn about The Backyard, and what it can offer your team

When: Wednesday, May 8th from 9am-2pm

Where: The Backyard Games and Eatery, located at 5270 N US Hwy 1
Palm Shores, FL 32940

At RPS, we’re all about doing things as a team. We work as a team, eat lunch as a team, and some of us even throw the frisbee around as a team. So when our good friends at The Backyard said they wanted to partner with us for their Team Building VIP Experience, we were thrilled!

Happening on Wednesday, May 8th, this event is designed for anyone in the human resources field to come and enjoy a free day of games, education, food, and fun! You can expect to experience a comprehensive overview of what The Backyard can offer your team, an introductory tour of the facility, and plenty of games and activities. Breakfast and lunch will be provided, and the day will conclude with a motivational presentation on success.

If you would like to register or learn more, visit backyardgamesandeatery.com/vipevent or call (321) 426-7480.

To keep up with the event on Facebook, click here.

Pre-registration is required. We hope to see you there!

 

Facebook’s Secret Weapon for Businesses

We are all about working smarter, not harder. And marketing is striking a balance between effort and time (and money, of course. But time equals money – round up to the next whole number, take the square root of pi and… sorry, we get nerdy sometimes.)

Where were we?

Oh yes, working smarter. This is why we love using a “secret weapon” within Facebook Insights for Business that is helping marketers and small business owners capitalize on powerful vicinity-specific statistics.If you run a brick-and-mortar business, the information you can glean from Facebook Local Insights can impact your ad strategy, staffing decisions, and more.

Within Business Manager there’s a tab that is often overlooked in the sea of other useful Insights. Even as super creative, right-brained people, we geek out over the metrics in this tab once we began to do a deep dive.

Here’s what we mean:

The Facebook Local Insights section provides super geographic-specific data that shows you what’s the busiest time for Facebook users to be in your set radius and date range, what the top age, gender and home location is of those passing by, and how often your ad was seen by those people (if you’re currently running campaigns.) It’s all privacy protected so it’s showing generalized stats and not specific users information, but there’s power in those summaries that you need to be using as you craft your marketing plans.

How does this help you as a business owner? For the three main categories you see in the screenshot above:

Activity and Peak Hours

Facebook Says:

Use info about when the most people are nearby to make smart decisions about store hours and more.

RPS Says:

We can’t make your operational decisions, but we do use this data to make sure content and ads are going out when you expect people to see it (your current followers AND passers-by alike).

 

Demographic Info

Facebook Says:

Get to know the general ages, genders and distance traveled by people near your business to inform your marketing and services.

RPS Says:

We use this data to get to know people who are not yet customers or clients and craft messages and ads accordingly to draw engagement. Creating custom audiences using this insight increases the likelihood of your ads do not falling victim to the mindless scroll.

 

Ad Performance

Facebook Says:

See if your ads reached people who are near your business.

RPS Says:

Spending money is an important decision for any business owner or decision maker. How powerful to be able to verify your ads are being seen by the people around you.

Now, like any data, it’s only useful if it’s actionable. And to be actionable, you have to understand it. A marketing partner like RPS can analyze the data in your business’ Facebook Local Insights and craft a plan to attract the people most likely to walk in your door, drive by your business, or be online when your ad is running.

We’d love to review Local Insights with you in a Discovery Session. Contact us through our site or give us a call – we promise not to be too nerdy when you come in.

2019: First Quarter

2019: First Quarter

The beginning of the year has come and gone quickly, and it’s been a busy 2019 at RPS! We’d like to take this opportunity to catch you up on what we’ve been up to in the first quarter.

Featured Blog Post

Logo vs Icon: Understanding the Difference

In an update of one of our most popular blog posts, we break down the difference between an icon and a logo, as well as defining these terms and more! To read this blog post, click here.

Client Spotlight

Family Promise of Brevard

RPS partnered with Family Promise of Brevard on their recent annual campaign to raise awareness and money to support homeless families in our county. Using direct mail letters to past supporters, as well as email blasts, press releases, and social media posting, the campaign was able to replace an entire annual fundraiser, providing $10,000 more to families in need as a result of generous giving by our community.

It’s always rewarding when we work with groups that directly impact our area. We also created a new website for the organization which, we must say, sparkles. We’re not kidding, it actually sparkles. If you’d like to visit their website, click here.

10 Wins for RPS at the ADDYs!

We had a wonderful time at the recent ADDY award ceremony and are proud to have been recognized for 10 awards, including two of the three Judges Choice awards. You can read more about it in one of our recent blog posts, here!

New Team Member Spotlight

Mackenzie Bills

Mackenzie joined our team in January as our Administrative Assistant, which basically means she does a little bit of everything, including answering phones, working on websites, fighting bad guys, and making a great pot of coffee.  If you’d like to learn more about Mackenzie, click here!

We’re looking for Interns!

We are looking for a few awesome individuals who are interested in learning the ropes and gaining some experience at the same time. If you’re interested in website building, digital marketing, graphic design, or content strategy, we’d love to hear from you! You can apply here!

The Backyard HR Team Building VIP Experience!

We are excited to announce that our sponsorship of the HR Team Building VIP Experience at the Backyard! Anyone in the human resources field is welcome to come for a FREE day of games and team building activities! Breakfast and lunch are included. Register to join us here!

RPS Open House


RPS is getting bigger! Last year was a great one for us as a team, full of change and growth. Altogether, we hired 6 new team members in 2018, and each one has already become a big part of our family! As a result, space has been getting a little tight. Don’t get us wrong, we love working with each other, but we also don’t mind a little room to stretch from time to time.

Seeing this growth, and planning on a few more additions still before 2019 is over, our leadership team realized the apparent need for more room. So we kicked down a wall and moved into the suite next door! We’re very excited about the new expansion, and each team member is all settled in.

Our content department, marketing department, Operations Director and Head Dealmaster have moved over to what we like to call the “east wing,” and they are loving it! Now, it’s time for you to see our new digs!

On March 14 at 5pm, we will be hosting an Open House to showcase our newly expanded office space. The event will feature catering by Bearded Chef, complimentary drinks, and giveaway raffles. This is also a great chance to meet our wonderful team and check out our creative space. So invite your friends and join us in celebrating a new chapter in our story!

See the Facebook Event here!

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