What I learned from 30 days of Facebook posting


Back in May business was slow. Up until that point, I mainly posted on Facebook new projects. Without any new projects I only posted once or twice that month. In the past I’ve gotten solid leads from Facebook, so I knew I needed to start posting. But what to post?

Here’s what I learned:

  • Once you get started the ideas will start flowing. Once I started brainstorming, writing down lists, and writing posts, more and more ideas came.
  • Everything is connected. As I started writing FB posts, I was motivated to elaborate on many of the ideas and turn them into blog posts. The FB posts and blog posts became content for my monthly newsletter, as well as Instagram and Twitter posts. We can reuse our own content.
  • Know your audience. I learned what topics they responded to the most. I got a better idea of who they were and the best way to speak to them.
  • Visuals are important. Posts with an image perform better than ones without.
  • There is a lot of interesting content out there. You don’t have to create everything from scratch. Sharing interesting links provides value to your audience.
  • People like humor.
  • People like honesty and seeing the real person behind the business. One of my best performing posts was when I wrote about doing something that scared me – making cold calls.

Other things to remember:

  • Have a set mission statement in mind. Mine has always been to show people the kind of work I do and to show them the knowledge and expertise I have in the areas of graphic design, and social media and email marketing.
  • Plan, Batch, Schedule. It’s more efficient to prepare a bunch of posts at once than to write one daily. Read more about this here.

Like me on Facebook for a steady stream of tips and helpful links on design, marketing, social media, and more. 🙂

Options for Selling Online


Thinking of Selling Online? Here are some options:

  1. Paypal “Buy Now” button. If you have a website and one product you’d like to sell, adding a paypal link is a fairly simple option. See sample here. (Paypal also offers a shopping cart option.)
  2. Online marketplace. There are online marketplaces – often within a category (i.e. Etsy/handmade stuff, Spoonflower/fabric designs) – where you can open a store and sell from there. If you have a website or blog make sure to link to your store. See sample here.
  3. Ecommerce platform. With tools like Shopify and BigCommerce, you can pick a theme and design a whole website and shopping cart, with many products. Plus you can access your site and make changes from anywhere. See sample here.

If you are computer savvy, you can set up any of these options. A designer/developer can help, especially with setting up a Shopify (or BigCommerce) site. Their themes can be customized to make your website uniquely yours.

For a more in-depth explanation of selling online options read “The Ultimate Selling Online Guide.”

10 Design Principles from the “How Posters Work” Exhibit


This past winter I went to the Cooper Hewitt museum in NYC and saw the exhibit How Posters Work.”

“The exhibition dissects the designers’ creative uses of design principles and visual expression to underscore the significance of a designer’s and the viewer’s eye to the design process.

How Posters Work uses the medium of the poster to explore principles of visual thinking that extend to many forms of design, including branding, packaging, book covers, websites, and motion graphics.”

Design Principles covered in the exhibit:

  • Focus the eye
  • Overwhelm the eye
  • Use text as image
  • Overlap
  • Cut and paste
  • Assault the surface
  • Simplify
  • Tell a story
  • Amplify
  • Double the meaning

Explore the exhibition online here.

Your Email List is Valuable


As Facebook (and soon Instagram) limit the visibility of your posts (through algorithms) your email list is becoming more and more valuable. Why? Because it is direct access to your audience. It is under your control.

Here are some tips:

  • Treat your list it wisely. Send emails your audience will be interested in. It’s a sales tool, but don’t just sell.
  • Build your list. Collect email addresses at every chance – on your website, at conferences, etc. Add a sign up link to your email signature, so whenever you communicate with someone new person they have the opportunity to sign up.
  • Offer incentive for people to sign up for your list.
  • Send regularly – at least monthly so the people on your list don’t forget who you are.
  • Learn from others. Study the successful emails you receive. What parts do you respond to? How can you apply that to your own content?

Some helpful links:
5 Simple Ways to Grow Your Email List Today by Abby Glassenberg
7 Types of Content for Your Newsletter by Meighan O’Toole

Social Media Tip: Plan, Batch, Schedule


It’s best to be ahead of the game with your social media marketing.

Plan out your posts for the week, or even month. You can always add if other pertinent things come up. Mid-month, I meet with a client to go over the next month’s posting schedule. We look at all holidays, occasions, and events that are relevant. We have a goal for how frequently we want to post. If it is a “slow” month with holidays, etc. we brainstorm other post ideas.

It’s more efficient to write out all your posts for the week or month in one sitting. The same goes for taking or retouching photos. Doing “like” tasks together is shown to be a more efficient use of time, than switching between different tasks.

Using a social media scheduling tool, like hootsuite*, allows you to schedule all of your weekly or monthly posts in one sitting. This way you don’t have to post in real time, which is especially great if you are going away, and/or if you manage more than one account.

Being prepared by planning and scheduling your posting will allow you to feel more secure with your social media marketing. And you can always add a post if something relevant comes up. It will also be easier to evaluate the months or weeks past, so if necessary you can change your plan accordingly.

*There are many resources that allow you to schedule your posts. I use hootsuite, which has a monthly fee (for what I need). Each service offers different options and fee structures.
Other services include:**
Edgar, buffer, tailwind, boardbooster
**List courtesy of Meighan O’Toole, Digital Strategist.

Facebook Algorithm

Yesterday my Facebook post reached 2 people. 2 people, even though I have over 200 fans. Why? It’s Facebook’s Algorithm.

“According to a closely guarded and constantly shifting formula, Facebook’s news feed algorithm ranks all the posts in your feed, in what it believes to be the precise order of how likely you are to find each post worthwhile.” –  (read the complete article here)

So what can businesses do, besides pay to “boost” our Facebook posts?

  • Post regularly. Try increasing your frequency.
  • Ask for engagement. Ask questions.
  • Share content your readers will “Like.” Don’t just sell, provide value.
  • Repeat the types of posts that get the most visibility.
  • Engage with those, that engage with you.

Please share any tips you have in the comments below.

My Year in Review

It’s a great time to reflect on past accomplishments, and set goals for the New Year. I think it’s important to take stock of how far you’ve come, and where you’re headed.

This year, I’ve had the pleasure of developing several new relationships. I offer different services, so I’m always interested in what specific areas I worked in throughout the year.

As the graphic below shows, web design was the largest part of my business, followed by print, then logo design. Social media and email marketing were tied. Illustration was the smalllest part of my business.

I know web design will continue to be a large part of my business in 2016. New businesses need an online presence, and for many existing businesses it’s time to update their sites, especially if they aren’t mobile friendly. I predict that social media and email marketing will continue to grow, as they are important elements to any marketing strategy.

What are your marketing goals for 2016? I’d love to connect with you in the new year and help you achieve your goals.

Happy New Year!

Have you seen my portfolio? Web, Print, Logo, Email, Social MediaIllustration