Pacesetter Media

Solving Promotion Problems

E-mail Plan, Facebook Changes

(This is a re-post of our February 2018 newsletter sent by e-mail. Subscribe to our newsletter here.)

Topics this month:

E-mail Backups
A client recently lost a lot of e-mail. It could have been prevented with regular backups. My advice: get a handle on your company e-mail system.

Facebook Changed the News Feed
Facebook announced that it was reducing the number of business and publisher posts in the news feed.


Email Large Graphic

E-mail – What’s a Business to Do?

First, e-mail is an IT function, not a marketing function.

Fifteen years ago, e-mail was pretty simple: a desktop computer connected to the mail server over the internet. It wasn’t directly related to marketing like a website, but it was included with website hosting. Most website hosting service includes e-mail, and it’s included with Pacesetter Media hosting.

Today, it’s more complicated. People access e-mail from anywhere on multiple devices. There are potential virus and security risks. And some companies want all e-mail archived and backed up.

It’s increasingly a combination of technical issues, business requirements and training. For most companies, it’s not simple.

The primary factors that complicate things:

  • Number of Users
    Obviously, one e-mail user is simpler than five users, and five is simpler than 20 e-mail users.
  • Individual Requirements
    Some people use one desktop computer to get e-mail. Others use multiple devices and need e-mail synced across all devices. Some people access e-mail from anywhere in the world. Others are always in the same office.
  • Business Requirements
    What do you need: backups, access from anywhere, mobile devices? Are your users tech savvy? Can they manage their e-mail and your business requirements themselves? Do you need training? Monthly support? On-call support?

The Best Approach

Take these primary factors, multiply them together, and that’s how complicated your e-mail system needs to be. And it’s technical, dependent on your current computer systems (including mobile devices), and dependent on the training of your e-mail users and tech support.

I would detail a generic solution to cover most businesses, but there are too many exceptions for most businesses.

Get IT Involved

If you have an IT department or computer support person, get them involved. Some of these decisions are technical and should be part of your overall plan for your computers. Your IT folks should already know your computers and network, and they’ll have to support your e-mail decisions.

Back Up

Whatever you do, include steps to back up your e-mail. You should certainly back up every computer regularly, and maybe that’s all you need. But I also suggest setting your devices to leave e-mail on the server for 35 days. That way, if a computer crashes, the most recent e-mail is quickly available. (Possible Exception: Somebody who receives lots of e-mails with large files. Like I said, there are exceptions to every rule of thumb I can offer.)

E-Mail Consultation

Have questions? Call so we can start the conversation about the best approach for you. If needed, I’ll come in, review your current systems, and write up my recommendations.


Facebook Changed

You wouldn’t believe how smart I felt the week after the January newsletter went out. In that newsletter, I said, “You can spend lots of time building a following and then lose control when Facebook limits your reach. It’s up to them, and if they change their terms next week, who knows what they’ll do?”

The next week, Facebook announced that it was reducing the number of business and publisher posts in the news feed. It’s not all bad for business; Facebook is trying to reduce low-quality and untrustworthy posts. They also say they’re showing more personal posts from friends and family. But for business, this still probably means less exposure without paid advertising (which is still pretty good as advertising goes).

So I’m sticking with my assessment from last month: An e-mail newsletter is still the most cost effective way to reach your customers in mass. Most businesses should have at least a minimal presence of Facebook. For some businesses, lots of Facebook interaction is fitting.

But, dang, I felt pretty smart the week after last month’s newsletter. 🙂


Get Reminders for Your Events

As you’re planning your events, remember to send me your dates. I’ll add them to the calendar and contact you at least one month before to make sure your print and promo materials arrive on time. If you’re planning a big event or a new campaign, I can contact you even earlier.
 Pacesetter Media – Solving Promotion Problems

Promotional Items

Best Tip Ever for Promotional Items

At a recent networking event, I shared the best tip I ever heard about promotional items, and it’s good enough for it’s own blog post:

The best promotional item is one your clients have in front of them when they realize they need your service.

That’s it. Pretty simple.

For an electrician, that might be a sticker on the fuse box or a flashlight. For a dentist, it could be a toothbrush cover or a toothbrush. For a auto repair shop, it could be a tire gauge or car phone holder.

I have a few generic suggestions: pens, notepads, calendars, and mouse pads. These are routine items, but they are usually kept or passed around. They’re often in front of office workers when they realize they need lots of things.

Popular Item – PopSockets® Phone Holder

Pop Socket Phone Holder

Right now, I think this is a go-to promotional item. A PopSockets® sticks flat to the back of your phone, tablet or case with its rinsable, repositionable gel. It makes handling a phone easier…a lot easier.

The bottom line for business: this item is kept and used. It keeps your logo in front of people.

Quantity 100 500 1000
Retail Each $5.08 $5.02 $4.98

After discounts, I expect this item to start at $3.99 each.

  • White/Light Gray
  • Imprint: One Color
  • Setup: $41.67

Call (813) 685-9206 for more information.

2018 Planning and Scheduling

2018 Planning, Facebook, Logo Text Size

(This is a re-post of our January 2018 newsletter sent by e-mail. Subscribe to our newsletter here.)

Greetings and Happy New Year!

Promo Scheduling

With the beginning of another year, I always think about scheduling…what’s coming up, what’s needed to make it happen. So that’s part of this newsletter.

Facebook – Kinda Cool, Kinda Meh

And Facebook…it’s not as good as we’d like. That’s also included.

Blog Highlights

I wrote a post about logo design. See the link below.


Schedule - Quarter 1, Quarter 2, Quarter 3, Quarter 4

2018 Scheduling and Reminders

Get Reminders for Your Events

As you’re planning for this year, remember to send me your event dates if we don’t already have them. I’ll add them to the calendar and contact you at least one month before to make sure your print and promo materials arrive on time. If you’re planning a big event or a new campaign, I can contact you even earlier.

Early is better, of course. I wrote a blog post in 2013 that includes a table of suggested planning times for typical promotional projects.

See the entire post here.

Planning Case Study

Around October 1, 2017, we got a call about new panels for a trade show display needed by November 21. Seven weeks seems like a lot of time, but we needed every bit of it. It’s a textbook case study for early scheduling.

First, these were panels for the back of the display, not the typical panels for the front, so we had to research what was needed. My vendor gave me part numbers, but when I looked at the specs, I found the size was wrong for the display. They had to take extra time to research again and finally came up with the right parts.

Second, the design had to be created. My client created the artwork, and it took some extra time; they had the software needed, but they were not experienced in designing for large format printing. And there’s always the time for reviews, changes and approvals.

Third, we ordered the panels, and they arrived a week early. My client did the right thing: they put it together to make sure it worked. And they discovered they were missing pins needed to hold the panels on the back. After a quick call to my vendor, they express shipped the pins, and it all came together.

Every one of these steps took days or weeks, and it was a success because of early planning. Projects can be rushed, of course, but that usually means higher costs.


A Little Less Facebook

Facebook and other social media are pretty amazing, but for small business it can be a mix. So Pacesetter Media is going back to newsletters as a primary way to communicate with our friends, customers and associates.

Facebook the Good

I think most businesses should have at least a minimal presence on Facebook. People search for businesses on Facebook, and Google sometimes shows business pages in search results. For some businesses, lots of Facebook interaction is fitting.

Facebook is like a big community fair or an industry trade show. If you go there to smoke and joke, that’s what you get. If you go there for business, that’s what you get. Despite what I’m about to say, Facebook can help your business.

Facebook the Bad

Facebook doesn’t show posts to your entire audience. They want you pay them to advertise, so they’re going to limit your reach when you use the free service.

You can spend lots of time building a following and then lose control when Facebook limits your reach. It’s up to them, and if they change their terms next week, who knows what they’ll do?

You can test their paid ads with a low commitment; it’s really a good, low-cost way to reach people and test advertising ideas, so it’s not all bad. But when you want stay in touch with your customers, the free Facebook is hit and miss.

Back to the “Old Fashioned” Way

An e-mail newsletter is still the most cost effective way to reach your customers in mass. Postal mailings, phone calls and face-to-face visits are more personal, but they take more time and cost more.

Maintaining Your Own List

A mailing service like MailChimp is the best way to manage your e-mail list. You can regularly export your list and keep a back up on your computer. Whenever needed, you can move it to another service.

A blog is another option, but a blog is passive. It doesn’t send anything to recipients. You have much better reach and control with a newsletter.

One quick warning about mailing lists: I always suggest using a newsletter service. There are several laws and best practices you should comply with, and a service makes it easy. For a small list up to 2000 subscribers, there are free options.


Logo Study Header Image

Logos Should Have Big Text

Pacesetter Media did a blog post about logo design…usually the text should be big compared to the graphics.

See the entire post here.


Pacesetter Media – Solving Promotion Problems

When you need help with scheduling, Facebook or logos, give us a call.

Here’s to a great 2018.